Gamble Plantation Historic State Park, Ellenton

Gamble Plantation Historic State Park, also known as the Gamble Mansion, is a Florida State Park located in Ellenton, Florida, on the Manatee River and US 301. It consists of the antebellum mansion developed by its first owner, Major Robert Gamble; a 40,000-gallon cistern to provide the household with fresh water; and 16acre of the former sugarcane plantation. At its peak, the plantation included 3,500 acres, and Gamble likely held more than 200 slaves to work the property and process the sugarcane.The mansion was listed on the National Register of Historic Places as the Robert Gamble House on August 12, 1970. Its columns and two-foot-thick walls are constructed of tabby, a regional material developed as a substitute for brick.The park also includes the restored wood-frame, two-story, Victorian-style Patten House, built in 1872 for owner George Patten. In 1925, the mansion and grounds were purchased by the United Daughters of the Confederacy (UDC) and donated to the state as a memorial to Judah P. Benjamin, who served in three Cabinet positions under Confederate President Jefferson Davis during the American Civil War. He stayed at the plantation in May 1865, before escaping Union forces and sailing to England, where he had a second career.
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Gamble Plantation Historic State Park Reviews
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173 reviews
  • The history was more interesting than the house, supposedly built to Greek revivalist style! However, the columns are definitely not Greek, and nor are the roof lines or verandahs, and the greeks neve...  more »
  • It was free admission when we went. Not super impressed -- but, when it's free, who can complain? Some interesting items and facts -- but only parts of the "mansion" was open for view.  more »
  • Interesting architecture. A nice place to learn the history of our local area. Several times during the year they have car shows, arts/crafts festivals, etc. Good backdrop for weddings too. Not super ...  more »
  • It was wonderful. Our guide was informative and fun. I loved the story about hush puppies. My sister and I had a great time. The admission was reasonable too. Thanks.
  • Don't miss it. A real plantation mansion. The staff is so friendly and informative. Thank you very much!
  • If you enjoy the historical south, this place is a treat. In the middle of a residential area, you think at first you won't get into it. Then, you're instantly lost in the history and beauty of it all.
  • I was there while a group of USF Archeologists were excavating a select area.The Plantation was 3500 acres used primarily as a sugar plantation. The history of this location is fascinating and little is know about the slaves or Indians.
  • This plantation house is definitely worth the stop. Jane Patterson, our guide, did an excellent job in bringing the house to life. She was thorough and entertaining.

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