Florida Historic Sites

Dade Battlefield A State Park with a History Lesson

Dade Battlefield State Park provides a beautiful setting for a picnic, a nature walk through Florida Pine Flatwoods, birding, wildlife viewing, and a casual walk through Florida History.

It happened here on the sacred grounds of the Dade Battlefield State Park. The bloody battle of 1835 between 110 US Soldiers and the determined Seminole Indians. The Seminoles would be victorious on that day and only three US Soldiers would survive, however, hostilities would only escalate and those hostilities would last for another seven years.

Two Army companies under the command of Francis Longhorne Dade departed Fort Brooke (now Tampa) on a resupply mission to Fort King (now Ocala). Indian scouts secretly watched the troops march for five days and then on December 28th, 1835, one hundred and eighty Indian warriors ambushed Dade and his men.

The Seminole Indians had the element of surprise in their favor and it is said that Major Dade went down on the very first shot, fired by Chief Micanopy himself.

The short easy walking trail that commemorates the soldiers and warriors that lost their lives on that bloody and sad day in Florida History, is very peaceful and serene, a sharp contrast to its violent history.

The Dade Battlefield also has a short nature hike through a lovely pine flatwood where you may cross paths with a wild turkey, a Gopher Tortoise, a deer, or spot a Red-headed woodpecker. Butterfly encounters are most certainly a guarantee. A word of note: The nature trail does not provide much shade. For optimal enjoyment in the summer, one should walk this nature trail in the morning hours.

The grounds provide a gorgeous setting for a picnic, and with all the shade of the giant oaks, your picnic will be shielded from the hot Florida sun.

The Dade Battlefield State Park is located at 7200 Battlefield Parkway in
Bushnell and admission is only $3.00 per carload of up to 8 people.

Dogs on a leash of at least 6 foot are welcome.

Restrooms and a nice playground area are provided.

The museum is currently closed due to covid19 but when it does finally open again, there is a short twelve-minute film that explains in detail the significance of this battle in Florida history.

During Covid19, John and I have been concentrating on outdoor locations that provide more than just another hike. We know that everyone is looking for ways to keep entertained while still continuing to practice social distancing and what better way to satisfy both than being out in the fresh air.

John and I spent about a half day at The Dade Battlefield State Park. where we walked the trails, chatted with the camp hosts who gave us info about the park’s amenities, took in some history and enjoyed a picnic together.

Life is about the memories we make so get out and make them the safest way you can.

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