This 1925 house was originally built for Joseph Blanchard, a black sea captain and key member of early Punta Gorda's business community, and Minnie, his mail-order bride. Upon the death of Blanchard's last surviving daughter, African American community historian, Bernice Russell, purchased the Blanchard House. Since Russell's death, the museum has been operated as an open access, educational institute devoted to the procurement, preservation, study and display of artifacts and materials related to the history, culture and contributions of African Americans in Charlotte County.
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406 Martin Luther King Blvd. Punta Gorda, FL 33950