The Bradenton Herald from Bradenton, Florida on May 13, 2007 · 96
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The Bradenton Herald from Bradenton, Florida · 96

Bradenton, Florida
Issue Date:
Sunday, May 13, 2007
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THEN The home of Dr Joseph Braden built in the early 1840s at the confluence of the Manatee and Braden rivers The house dubbed ‘Braden Castle was built with a mixture of lime shell and clay — MAJUIH COUNTY MSTOKKAL S0QE1Y NOW The house was destroyed by a woods lira in 1903 and the ruins were purchased in 1924 by the Camping Tourists of America who built many homes around the site It is listed on the National Register of Historic Places — RUN WlUTlwAew HmH City named for early settler with checkered past Braidcntown Bradcntown Bradenton Our fair city bore each of those names during different spans since 1878 And Dr Joseph Braden an original settler in whose honor the town was named wasn't even around He departed die area due to financial failure something he experienced before he ever got here “1th certainly an irony" said Dean Dixon supervisor of Manatee Village Historical Park “I Ic seemed to have a Mack cloud over him but the town council still named die town after him” Braden and his brother Hector settled here in 1843 after the pair lost their sugar plantation in the Tallahassee area in a bank failure According to Joe Wsmerh "The Singing River” a history of the Manatee River area Braden estaMished his new sugar plantation where die Manatee and Braden rivers meet Although Hector drowned in 1846 his brother carried on in the sugarcane business Braden built a pine-log pier in the Manatee River near die aid of what is now Old Main Street to receive and deliver the molasses made in his sugar mill Braden also built a fort — near die site of the old City Hall at 13 th Street West and Fourth Avenue — which housed his sugar warehouse and became known as Fort Braden or the Braden Stockade The buildings around it eventually grew into modem day Bradenton While in the sugar business Braden built his home at the confluence of the Manatee and Braden riven He moved into the house in 1831 but six yean later massive debt and a substantial mortgage crippled his dreams and he returned to Tallahassee It became a popular camping site and in the 1920s die land around Braden Castle was subdivided for homes The castle property is on the National Register of Historic Places — Hn Mannix A bit of history tells a colorful story Newcomen and longtime residents might be surprised to know about the folkiwing landmarks and milestones in Manatee County history supplied by Cathy Slusacr supervisor of historical resources for the Manatee County Clerk of Circuit Court Manatee Countyh first white settlers came here in 1842 because the federal government promised them 160 acres of land — a quarter section — for flee if they would live here five yean clear five acres build a home and serve in the militia In 1846 a hurricane Mew the water out of the Manatee River It wax so dry you could walk across it That same year another hurricane Mew all the water up into the river causing mass flooding and ruining the freshwater supply At its creation in 1833 Manatee County was 5000 square miles running from its current northern boundary south almost to Fort Myers and east to Lake Okeechobee The city of Bradenton has had three names: Braidcntown Bradcntown and Bradenton It was named for Dr Joseph Braden an earfy settler who had a sugar plantation at the confluence of the Manatee and Braden rivers In 1 880 Julia "Madam Joe” Atzcmth grew a pound of coffee in what was then known as Fogartyvillc giving Manatee County the distinction of producing the first pound of coffee to be grown in the continental United States and earning Madam Joe a $10 gold piece from the president of the United States IWice in county history die population has almost doubled in a 10-ycar period between 1910 and 1920 and again between 1930 and 1960 The Manatee County Courthouse was built in 1913 Until the mid-1980s all county officials had their offices there The Village of Manatee now referred to as Last Bradenton was a separate town from 1842 to 1944 It was incorporated into the city of Bradenton because it could no longer afford to provide puMic services Sarasota-Bradenton International Airport had its beginnings in World War IL when it was used as an air base for training bomber pilots and crews The flights went over Longboat Key which was used as a bombing target A dozen historical organizations exist in Manatee County dedicated to preserving their cnmmunityfc history and educating residents about the past Each welcomes inquiries and volunteers — IhrulJ an-hiven THE BRADENTON HERALD 10 CELEBRATE BRADENTON

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