Outreach of the De Soto Society

Where We Give

Where We Give

Through the Conquistador Historical Foundation, the Hernando de Soto Historical Society is able to support various local charities, offer college scholarships, fund a cultural museum in downtown Bradenton, and maintain a Sister City relationship with Barcarrota, Spain.

With its membership including many local civic, governmental and business leaders, the Society serves in a variety of community-oriented roles.


The Conquistador Historical Foundation distributes grants to local community charities, particularly those with youth educational programming initiatives.


Through a generous donation by De Soto member Art Engelhardt, we maintain an annual student exchange program with Barcarrota, Spain (Bradenton’s Sister City).


We offer college scholarships to our De Soto Queen & Princess as well as the 10 young ladies, ages 18-24, who annually serve on the De Soto Queen's Court.

Local Organizations We Support

Local Organizations We Support

Adopt A Family
American Cancer Society
Big Brothers & Big Sisters
Boys & Girls Club of Manatee
Community Haven for Adults & Children w/Disabilities
De Soto National Memorial
Early Learning Coalition of Manatee County
Emergency Services Memorial Fund
Feeding Empty Little Tummies (FELT)
Junior Leadership Manatee
Manasota Association for Retarded Citizens
Manasota Lighthouse for the Blind
Manasota Operation Troop Support (MOTS)
Miracle League of Manasota
Manatee Historical Village
PACE Center for Girls
South Florida Museum
Walter Moscoso Latino Education Fund
Women’s Resource Center

A 50+ Year partnership with Barcarrota, Spain

A 50+ Year partnership with Barcarrota, Spain

The members of the Hernando de Soto Historical Society maintain close ties with Bradenton’s Sister City – Barcarrota, Spain. For almost four decades, delegates from Barcarrota have traveled to Bradenton each year to take part in the annual Festival, and vice versa.

Student Exchange Program

Each year, a Bradenton resident is selected to journey to Spain for the summer (usually about 10 weeks). This individual becomes immersed in the Spanish culture and comes back home with a new appreciation of our cities’ relationship. Later in the year, a Barcarrota student travels to Bradenton to learn about our culture here in America.

2018-2019 Ambassador, Trey Horne, recently returned from his 86 day trip to Barcarrota. On his blog, he writes, “I have never felt so at home while being more than 4,000 miles away from home. I truly believe that every member of the Hernando de Soto Historical Society should make the trip to Barcarrota once, I know it won’t be their first and last visit to Barcarrota because the people of Barcarrota are absolutely amazing!

Apply For A Community Grant

Apply For The Exchange Program

Apply For De Soto Queen's Court

Nominate Someone For Queens Court



Opportunities are available to support the Hernando de Soto Historical Society's mission through sponsorship and advertising.

Learn More


Robert Ricciardo – HDHS President
Gary Holbrook
Shannon Glasgow - Vice Chairman
Curt Mahoney – Hernando de Soto

Dennis Romano - Treasurer
Tom Murphy – Secretary
Gary Scott - Chairman

Sid Jones - HDHS President Elect
John DeLesline
Mike Parrot – Curator


Fostering and facilitating an appreciation of Manatee County’s Spanish - American heritage and cultural alliances through special events, community collaborations and charitable giving Since 1939

605 17th Ave W 
Bradenton, FL 34205
(941) 747-1998
Mon - Fri: 9:00 - 5:00 
Sat - Sun: Closed