A Place Fit for a Princess

Princess Place Preserve is a 1500 acre park in the northern section of Flagler County, Florida. The preserve is located at the confluence of Pellicer Creek, Moody Creek, and the Matanzas River and is a popular spot for outdoor recreation as well as a historic site. The preserve has plenty of hiking trails, great places to spend time fishing or canoeing in the salt marshes along the Matanzas River and Pellicer Creek, and riding trails for the equestrian.

“In 1791, the King of Spain offered a 1,100-acre land grant to Francisco Pellicer. Henry Mason Cutting purchased the property in 1886, renaming it Cherokee Grove. Featuring local materials including tabby block cladding, cedar and palm tree trunk posts and pink coquina, the Adirondack camp-style lodge was constructed in 1887. The complex included servants’ quarters, a caretaker’s house, tennis courts, stables, bathhouse, pool house and the first in-ground concrete swimming pool in Florida. The Lodge became an entertainment center for many socially prominent Americans and New York families as well as European royalty. Cutting died in 1892, leaving a widow, Angela Mills Cutting and two small children. Angela later married an exiled Russian prince, Boris Scherbatoff, a member of the Russian royal family. Because he feared for his life, the Prince later changed the spelling to Scherbatow. After Prince Scherbatow died in 1949, the Princess used the lodge as her primary residence. For this reason it became known as the Princess Estate. In 1954, Princess Scherbatow sold the property to Lewis and Angela Wadsworth, one of the founding families of Flagler County. Flagler County purchased the property in 1993 as a preserve.”

Before the land was purchased and the hunt lodge built by Henry Mason Cutting the land had belonged to Francisco Pellicer who was born in Minorca around 1747 and later traveled to New Smyrna. Pellicer; a carpenter, and Jose Peso de Burgo bought a lot on St. George Street in St. Augustine where they built a house. The Pellicer House is located at 53 St. George Street, St. Augustine. Pellicer sold his home on George Street and bought land on what is today know as Orange Street. Eventually he moved his family to a large farm south of St. Augustine on the Matanzas River.  He farmed crops of cane, corn and cotton.  Pellicer Creek is named after him.”

Park information is available on the Flagler County website.

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