NAME: Gillette
COUNTY: Manatee
CLIMATE: Hot and humid in the summer and most of spring and fall, otherwise moderate to cool
COMMENTS: Scattered rural residents. US 41 or I-75 to Moccasin-Wallow Road. Gillette is on Moccasin-Wallow between these two major highways.
REMAINS: Gillette First Baptist Church, Cemetery, Schoolhouse, various old homes
Originally known as Frog Creek, Gillette was first settled before the Civil War. Many of the early residents came from Alabama, north Florida, and Georgia. Among them was Daniel Gillett, who brought his family to Frog Creek in the late 1840s. Like many other Florida pioneers, Gillett raised cattle and citrus. He and his descendants were so closely identified with the Frog Creek settlement that it became known as Gillette. It is not known why the extra E was added to the town name. The Benevolence Baptist church began here in 1850, and was formally organized in 1868. It was the first baptist chuch to be organized in what is now Manatee County and the first church of any denomination to be organized north of the Manatee River. It is now the Gillette First Baptist Church. The cemetery dates back to its earliest recorded tombstone in 1869. There was a town post office in service from 1895 to 1910. In 1925 the Gillette Schoolhouse opened its doors, although by that time, with no post office, Gillette was considered a community rather than a town. The Schoolhouse operated until 1948, when it was consolidated with another area school. The backbone of Gillette has always been agriculture; producing vegetables, cattle, and citrus while the town flourished and through to the present day, where it is classified as a "former community". Submitted by: Jim Pike

Gillette First Baptist Church
Courtesy Jim Pike

Gillette abandoned house
Courtesy Jim Pike

Gillette house out in the bushes
Courtesy Jim Pike

Gillette Schoolhouse, now being restored
Courtesy Jim Pike

Gillette Cemetery, final resting place of founder Daniel Gillette
Courtesy Jim Pike

Town directory, 1897
Courtesy Jim Pike

Gillette 1905
Courtesy of USF digital library

Gillett family house, 1920's
Courtesy of USF Digital Library