The mission of the Estero Historical Society is to educate the public and inspire a spirit to learn, teach, and preserve the history of Estero. By our continuing efforts, we hope to secure a rich historical legacy of the early Estero settlers for future generations and share in the strong sense of community identity.
Our purpose is to provide a capability for the greater Estero community to experience history through docent tours of the cottage and schoolhouse, interactive touchscreens, displays of artifacts, events, and documentation of early Estero history.
Past accomplishments include:
- Producing the ‘Map of Historic and Present Day Estero’
- Publishing the book ‘Early Estero’ by Quentin Quesnell, a retired Smith College professor
- Publishing an ‘Historical Cookbook’ by Darlene Horne Johnson honoring Evelyn Luettich Horne
- Co-sponsoring an Essay Contest with the Estero Chamber of Commerce for the Elementary and Middle Schools in Estero. Here the students research local history and we all benefit.
We continue to learn by:
- Gathering the history of the pioneering families of Estero
- Publishing winning essays from our past and future Essay Contests.
In the last few years we have:
- Lead the effort to mark the State Champion Lemon Scented Gum Tree on Corkscrew Road.
- Planned the Centennial of Estero 1904 Incorporation with parade, calliope, entertainment and exhibits.
- Conducted tours to historical places of interest.
- Provided a lecture series ‘Preserving Our Past’.
Continuing efforts will include:
- Additional lectures for our “Preserving the Past” series with some evening meetings.
- More historical books for our library
- Monthly newsletter for members
- More tours to historical sites
- Maintaining our Estero Historical Society website and Facebook page
- Reprinting our book ‘Early Estero’.
- Field trips for local students to our newly refurbished 1904 Schoolhouse.
We Get Together
We meet to learn, teach, preserve, conduct business, recruit new members, raise funds and fun.
Society Meeting Schedule:
- First Tuesday of Each Month – Board of Directors Meeting at 9:00 a.m. at The Cottage.
Everyone is welcome to attend each of these meetings. We do offer a ‘Membership Forum’ at each meeting.
Some other get-togethers:
- EHS annual themed ‘Tea’ – Spring
- Annual Pioneer Picnic – April
- Reading of the Declaration of Independence – July 4th
- High Tea in “Mimi’s Tea Room” at our Cottage a few times per year
- Holiday Luncheon – December.
We are proud that the community came together to move to the Estero Community Park the Hanson-Hall-Collier House (The Cottage) and the 1904 Schoolhouse. Restored and authentically furnished, these buildings serve as the home for many Society activities.
Ongoing preservation activities include:
- Production and sale of Edith Trebell’s Mango Chutney Meat Sauce along with delicious jams and jellies made from locally grown fruits
- Documentation of additional local pioneer stories
- Preservation of archival materials with the assistance of FGCU
- Enshrining your history through our Brick Walkway at the front of the Cottage and 1904 Schoolhouse
✓ Acquire, refurbish if necessary, and preserve Estero artifacts
✓ Continue to learn and document early Estero history
✓ Conduct annual local history essay contest
✓ Publish quarterly newsletter
✓ Provide meaningful events to grow our membership
✓ Offer tours of local historical interest
✓ Host fundraising events
✓ Engage with Estero area schools
✓ Sell more bricks to extend our walkway
✓ Find individuals to fill our volunteer positions
✓ Establish and maintain a relationship with FGCU to assist us in documenting, cataloging, and
preserving our collections
✓ Apply for grants to create and expand our electronic capability
✓ Ensure back-ups to all volunteer positions and document succession planning
✓ Update the EHS website to be a world class place to browse for Estero history
✓ Share meaningful articles and comments on the EHS Facebook page
✓ Provide interactive touch screens in the cottage and schoolhouse for visitors to experience
✓ Acquire, transport, refurbish, and preserve the 3rd building
✓ Find a funding source to rely less on individual dues and events
✓ Be a participating member of the Virtual Estero Visitors center
✓ All artifacts be documented, cataloged, and available to be researched on EHS computers
✓ Ensure funds available to research and purchase period furnishings for the cottage and