If you haven't ventured south to Melbourne, Florida you need to put it on your day-trip list. It's about an hour and a half south of Orlando on the Atlantic Coast and I was amazed by what I found there. First, let's talk about a visit to Green Gables.
Green Gables was the winter home of William T. Wells and his family. Wells was a metallurgist who was known for his patent on the manufacturing of rustless iron. In 1894 Wells and his wife Nora, sons Stanford and Prescott, and daughter Gladys traveled from New York to find a healthier climate for Nora's health issues.
Melbourne was the perfect mix of friendly neighbors, great fishing, and outdoor activities. In 1896 Green Gables was completed on the high bluff facing the river just north of town.
This Queen Anne style house was the first of its kind and unique to a property like this, the house has remained family-owned to this day. However, after the 2004 hurricane season it was deemed uninhabitable.
The house is now used for events and parties but needs extensive repairs and restoration. You'll see some damage in the photos.
The Wells family contributed to the expansion of Melbourne both architecturally and culturally. Mrs. Wells built the first auditorium in the region and stage boasted perfect acoustics. She arranged the Chautauqua of the Tropics and had musicians, actors, poets, and lecturers come to visit and perform. The Wells' dedicated a portion of their land to the public which became Wells Park and the main branch of the Melbourne Public Library. They also provided the means for the first pubic high school. They were generous and progressive and left a legacy that remains today.
This 122 year old structure is now listed on the National Register of Historic Places and has an unparalleled view of the Indian River. What a spot to experience the beauty and history of Brevard County.
To arrange a tour or visit, reach out by email at the address below.
Mail: P.O. Box 1086, Melbourne, FL 32902
Click below to watch the Townie Tourist walk through Green Gables. 👇👇