The Punta Gorda Historical Society, founded in 1983, is dedicated to preserving and interpreting the rich history of Punta Gorda, Florida. By saving historic buildings and other elements linked to the community's past, the Society not only provides connections to Punta Gorda's history, but suggests opportunities for its future.
Mission, Vision and Values
We're Preserving Historic Buildings
The Punta Gorda Historical Society protects historic properties representing our diverse cultural experience by taking direct action and inspiring broad public support.
We are a privately funded nonprofit organization, working to preserve Punta Gorda’s historic homes and buildings. We are the cause that inspires others to preserve the places where history happened. The cause that connects us to our diverse pasts, weaving a multi-cultural area together. The cause that transforms the places where we live into a community that we love. As the leading voice for preservation, restoration, and education, we are the cause for people saving historical homes and buildings.
Mission: Our mission is to protect significant historic properties representing our diverse cultural experience by taking direct action and inspiring broad public support. And how do we do it? By fostering a deep sense of community, commitment, and passion for saving these historic houses and buildings.
Vision: Enriching and transforming lives through unparalleled access and education of our historical properties and their stories.
Values: We believe that increasing the public's knowledge of history has profound societal, cultural, and economic benefit.
History Park - 501 Shreve Street
The History Park opened in 1999 as an outdoor museum consisting of a collection of historical structures in a garden setting. The Park hosts the Trabue Land Sales Office, the Cigar Worker's Cottage, The Price House, the Quednau-Hindman House, and the original town jail.
The Cigar Cottage
The El Palmetto Cigar Co., established in the 1890's, built cottages around their factory for their workers. The cottages housed two families and did not have a kitchen. In October 1999, this cottage was the first historical building to be relocated to the History Park.
The Price House
Maxwell Price, an architect known for his church designs, joined two cottages together in 1914 to form the house as it appears today. The Searles family purchased the property in the 1990's and operated it as a bed and breakfast known as the Gilchrist B&B. It was moved to History Park in 2005.
Trabue Land Sales Office
The Trabue Land Sales Office was built in 1886 by Isaac Trabue, founder of Punta Gorda, as his law and land sales office. The little structure was also the first Post Office. It was moved to History Park in 2000.
The building is also the host for the Hibiscus Artisan Shoppe sponsored by the Punta Gorda Historical Society. Check our Facebook page for hours www.facebook.com/hisbiscusartisan
Quednau Hindman House
The home of the Quednau - Hindman family was originally located at 220 Goldstein Street. Fred Quednau was a fisherman, cafe owner, Punta Gorda Mayor and County Sheriff. His daughter, Tosie Hindman, was Supervisor of Elections for Charlotte County of many years.
Judge William Fenmore Cooper of Cook County, Illinois donated the land to make it possible for the Punta Gorda Woman's Club to construct this building.
The Spanish mission style parapet, attenuated tiled loggia and triple arch entrance closely resemble the construction style of the Punta Gorda Train Depot. Both were built within several years of each other.
Forerunners to the formation of the Federated Woman's Club of Punta Gorda (1925) were the Fortnightly Literary Society (1896), the Married Ladies Social Club, and the Women's Civic Improvement Association (1911).
For more than 30 years the Punta Gorda Library was housed in this location. During World War II the building served as a USO and is currently on the National Register of Historic Places.
In 2000, the Punta Gorda Woman's Club transferred the deed to the Punta Gorda Historical Society.
Traditions start here! Rent this building for your special event.
Call Sherra Sims at 941-639-1887 for rental information.
Our fountain formerly in Laishley Park was salvaged from the grounds of the Hotel Punta Gorda in 1925 by George Brown, owner of the Cleveland Marine Steam Ways. The fountain was relocated to the Punta Gorda History Park on Shreve Street.
Historic Train Depot
The Punta Gorda Train Depot, built in 1928, is the sole survivor of the 6 depots built by the Atlantic Coast Line in Mediterranean Revival style.
The building which is listed on the National Register of Historic Places, was designed mainly to handle freight. The passenger area occupies a small portion of the northern end of the building. Separate ticket windows, waiting rooms and bathrooms reflect the segregation practiced at that time.
The building was obtained by the Punta Gorda Historical Society through the generosity of Fred Babcock. Restoration of the building is complete. The Antique Mall is now in the large freight room. The Antique Mall features over twenty independent booths. There is a wide selection of antiques, collectible items and just fascinating stuff from the past. Income generated by the mall is used to maintain the building and keep it open to the public.