West Volusia News

Take a Trip Back in Time to the ‘House that Hats Built’

By June 13, 2019 No Comments

Stetson Legacy Week is Back in DeLand with Rare Family Heirlooms on Display

Stetson Mansion Legacy Week flyer

DeLand, FL – Tip your hat in honor of John B. Stetson, as Legacy Week returns for its third straight year at Stetson Mansion. After a hugely successful past couple of years, the week-long celebration is set to get underway on July 13-20. It will include special events in tribute to John B. Stetson – Florida’s first “snowbird” – who left an amazing cultural legacy beyond the world’s most famous hat.

Legacy Week centers on the award-winning guided tours at the Stetson Mansion; a journey through every room of Florida’s most historic home. Tours are like a one-man show where visitors learn about John B. Stetson’s contributions to American industry, Florida tourism and American pop culture. During Legacy Week, rare family heirlooms will be on display, such as a Stetson hat worn by John’s son, Henry, the Stetson family Bible and medals awarded to John Jr. from countries like Iran. You can also watch family movies and an early Stetson Hat company film.

“We are excited to have so much history to share through all these nostalgic Stetson family items. Everything from the diary of John’s wife, Elizabeth, which details her journey to be with her second husband, a Count in Portugal, to John’s obituary notices from papers across the country – some even detailing his last will and testament … each portraying a part of life for this famous hat baron,” said Michael Solari, Co-owner of Stetson Mansion.

The “Stetson Legacy Week” tours will be available twice daily at 10:30 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. during the week of July 13-20 at the Stetson Mansion, located at 1031 Camphor Lane in DeLand. Tickets are $30 and reservations are required.Stetson Mansion ticket holders21 and older can also enjoy free wine and beer tastings at selected establishments in downtown DeLand during Stetson Legacy Week. The West Volusia Tourism Advertising Authority and Stetson Mansion – Florida’s “Most Popular Tourist Attraction” according to TripAdvisor – are partnering for this exceptional week and encouraging everyone to attend the special events at the Mansion and around DeLand.

Stetson was known for giving back to the community and donating generously to charities, as well as for being a progressive employer. He had a specific affinity for DeLand and made it his family’s winter home. He became the main benefactor for the state’s first private university – named Stetson University in 1889; and brought electricity to DeLand, making it the first area in Florida with electric streetlights. The Stetson Mansion is the first and only “Gilded Age” mansion in Florida and is listed in the National Register of Historic Places.

For more information about Stetson Mansion and Stetson Legacy Week, please visit stetsonmansion.com.

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