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THE SUNLAND TRIBUNE Volume VII Number 1 November, 1981 (Founded 1973 by Hampton D unn) Journal of the TAMPA HISTORICAL SOCIETY Tampa, Florida HAMPTON DUNN Editor Officers 1980-1981 MR. KEN MULDER President MR. RANDY STEVENS Vice President WARRENE CANNON Recording Secretary MRS. GUELDA GREGORY Corresponding Secretary MRS. LOIS LATIMER Treasurer MRS. FLORENCE MURPHY Membership Chairman Board of Directors Mrs. Mary Withrow Mrs. T. Roy Young Mrs. John Parrish Mrs. Nonita Henson Mr. Fred Rodgers Mr. Richard Clarke, Sr. Mrs. Jane Thompson Mr. Charlie Spicola Mr. Gene Packwood Mr. Joe Hipp Mr. Raphael M. Ybor Ms. Pattie Dervaes Mr. Manuel Garcia DR. L. GLENN WESTFALL Executive Director Headquarters 245 S. Hyde Park Avenue Tampa, FL 33606 ON OUR COVER Tampa was no more than a mere fishing village until Henry Bradley Plant brought his railroad here in 1884, and opened the fabulous Tampa Bay Hotel in 1891. Learn more about this pioneer by reading Hampton Dun's "Tampa Bay Hotel is 90 Years Old," starting on page 15. Photo from HAMPTON DUNN COLLECTION Table of Contents HOMESTEADING IN HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY 6 By Martha Parr TAMPA BAY HOTEL IS 90 YEARS OLD 15 By Hampton Dunn MEET THE GENIAL MANGER OF THE TAMPA BAY HOTEL 25 SKETCH OF THE LIFE OF MR. HENRY B. PLANT 27 By J. E. Ingraham PLANT RESPONDS TO TAMPA'S WELCOME 30 HENRY B. PLANT'S TAMPA AT THE BEGINNING OF'THE GAY 90s' 33 HUNDREDS REVISIT'HELL HARBOR' 38 THE FINAL YEARS OF FORT BROOKE 41 By James W. Covington, Ph.D. THE TRUE MEANING OF PALMA CEIA 45 By Dr. Eustasio Fernandez FAMED COMPANY H QUIETLY FADES AWAY 49 By Hampton Dunn RECIPIENTS OF THS' COVETED D. B. McKAY AWARD 52 LEVI COLLER CAME TO TAMPA FOR "THE CURE" 55 By Jo Ann Haskins Cimino 'ALEX'PHILLIPS WAS A PIONEER TAMPA MERCHANT 57 By Jo Ann Haskins Cimino CAPTAIN JOHN MILLER BUILT TAMPA'S FIRST SHIPYARD 59 By Jane (Mrs. Stockton) Smith NURSE CLARA BARTON, RED CROSS FOUNDER, SERVED IN TAMPA 62 By Hampton Dunn YBOR CITY HISTORIAN EMILIO DEL RIO DIES 66 By Tony Pizzo HE DIDN'T DIE UNTIL YBOR CITY'S HISTORY WAS SAVED 66 By Dick Burdette THE USS TAMPA IS BORN AGAIN 69 By Hampton Dunn THE'ROAD OFREMEMBRANCE' IS 60 YEARS OLD 73 By Hampton Dunn THE BLOODLETTERS OF FLORIDA 77 By Paul J. Schmidt, M.D., and James E. Changus, M.D., Ph.D. THE SOUTH'S MOST OUTSTANDING TOBACCO MERCHANT 85 By Earl J. Brown MARKING A HISTORIC TRAIL THROUGH TAMPA 97 By Ken Mulder A TRIBUTE TO BABE RUTH 99 HISTORICAL MARKERS OF TAMPA, FLORIDA 105 MEET THE AUTHORS 110 WEST TAMPA CIGAR FACTORIES REMINDERS OF AREA'S PAST BOOM 112 WEST TAMPA FLORIDA MASTER SITE FILE SITES 114 A PHOTOGRAPHIC ESSAY OF WEST TAMPA 120 By Hampton Dunn ANNUAL REPORT TO THE TAMPA HISTORICAL SOCIETY 127 By Ken Mulder MEMBERSHIP ROSTER, TAMPA HISTORICAL SOCIETY 130 KNIGHT HOUSE FINANCIAL PARTICIPATION 134 ORIGIN OF THE SUNLAND TRIBUNE 135 OAKLAWN CEMETERY 137 By Joan Manlove-Gleason A WALKING TOUR GUIDE OF OAKLAWN CEMETERY 139 RAMBLIN'THROUGH OLD OAKLAWN CEMETERY 148 By Hampton Dunn INDEX TO ADVERTISERS 153
HOMSTEADING IN HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY By MARTHA PARR Morris Bridge Road is a heavily-traveled, rural-suburban route running north from Temple Terrace Highway to Zephyrhills, halfway between Temple Terrace and Thonotosassa. Like my neighbors on this road, most of the time I take for granted our modern way of life and all its conveniences. But once in awhile, when I see a giant oak tree being uprooted because an interstate highway is coming through, or an orange grove bulldozed to build apartments, or a lovely old house being torn down in the name of progress, I tend to daydream....1 In the mid-1840s, when the Seminoles' Billy Bowlegs had inherited Chief Osceola's position as leader of the few remaining Indians in the area around Tampa, he and his handful of followers maintained a village not far from here on the shores of Lake THE M. M. DAVIS FAMILY, ABOUT 1901 taken at homestead on Morris Bridge Road
Thonotosassa. They had been successful in driving away the white men who attempted to settle there until 1846, when my great-great-grandfather, William Goodman Miley, brought his wife and five young children by covered wagon to this untamed wilderness.2 HOSTILE INDIANS Born August 2, 1802, in Glasgow, Scotland, Mr. Miley had married Catherine Shepperd in 1821 and resided in Charleston, South Carolina, until her death on July 11, 1830. He then moved to Augusta, Georgia, where he married Emmaline Ouentz on December 25, 1833. Miss Ouentz was a Jewess who demanded that Mr. Miley divest himself of his slaves before she would marry him. It is believed that they also lived in Montgomery, Alabama, for a time before coming south. In spite of the hostile Indians at Lake Thonotosassa, Mr. Miley cleared land, built a log cabin, and they established a home. They were in constant fear and danger, and had to make several hurried trips to Fort Brooke at Tampa for protection. I've been told by elderly relatives that one night in December, 1848, warning came of raiding Indians, but the family was unable to go to the Fort because my great-greatgrandmother was expecting a child. They gathered the children in the cabin and hovered in fear. During the night, an Indian woman, who was also expecting a child, wandered up to their cabin and was taken in. By morning, both women had delivered a son. Presumably because the Indian woman was treated kindly by the Mileys, the Indians grudgingly became friendly. The Miley baby, Martin Marion, was supposedly so named, in the Indian fashion, because his mother saw a Martin bird fly by shortly after his birth.3 OFF TO CIVIL WAR William Miley "Seanyear" continued to farm and transplanted several sweet orange trees that had sprouted from seeds dropped by Major Dade's troops years earlier, in 1835, on their ill-fated march toward Fort King. He also continued to raise an ever-growing family and child number 12, Ursula Ann "'Sula" Miley was born October 20, 1860. Her father died April 1, 1862. By this time, the older Miley children were grown and married. The Miley Family Bible records two marriages on September 20, 1860. William Goodman Miley '"Juneyear" married Elizabeth Delaney DeShong, and his brother, Samuel Augustine Miley, married Mary Keen. There was another wedding less than a month later, on October 17, 1860, CHIEF BILLY BOWLEGS ... early Thonotosassa settler -Photo from HAMPTON DUNN COLLECTION
when David Montgomery Miley married Martha Keen. These joyous events were soon to be marred by sadness, however, as first Mary Keen Miley died just six months later on March 19, 1861, and then the young men left to serve the Confederate Army during the Civil War. Marion Martin Miley returned home safely after the war, leaving his older brothers, William G. Miley, Jr. and David Montgomery Miley buried in Knoxville, Tennessee and Vicksburg, Mississippi. Their sister, Emmaline "Juneyear" had married Thomas Pollock in 1857. She later became a midwife and delivered most of the babies born in the community for many years.45 In Geneva, Alabama, near the Florida state line, another young man, John F. Davis, had been born on January 18, 1800. He married a schoolteacher, Mary Perkins, in Dale County, Alabama, and over the years 13 children were born to them, the youngest being twins. My great-grandfather, Marshall Melton "Met" and William Clint were born on June 19, 1855, in west Florida. In 1859, the family returned just across the state line and lived in Alabama until after the Civil War. In 1865, they returned to Florida and headed farther south. Over the next several years, they traveled by oxdrawn wagon for weeks at a time. They would camp and plant a crop, then harvest the crop and move on, searching for a place to settle. In about 1870, they camped at a spot on the east side of the GRANDMA MILEY ... came to Florida in 1844 AUNT EMMALINE MILEY POLLOCK ... mid-wife delivered the children
Hillsborough River known then as Sassafras Ridge, between the present Morris Bridge Road and Davis Road. After raising a crop, they decided to move again and settled in a hammock about two miles south of Lake Thonotosassa. By 1872, the Davises had established a farm and most of the children had married and moved away. In addition to the farm, their main "cash crop" was cutting wooden shingles which they took in to Tampa to sell. John F. Davis died that year, when the twins were 17 years old. In 1875, Clint married Sarah Pollock and they moved onto a piece of land her mother had given her. Clint later recalled that at that time the only families living around the Lake were his wife's grandmother, Emmaline Miley "Seanyear", his wife's mother, Emmaline "Juneyear" Pollock, and his own mother, Mary Perkins Davis.6 In 1877, the first "Yankees" arrived and settled the area. The Adams family and Elliott family were soon joined by their friend, General W. P. Hazen, from Ohio. Clint sold 40 acres of land to General Hazen for $1.00 per acre, then worked for him helping to clear the land and establish his well-known Belvedere Estate. General Hazen was the first to see the commercial possibilities of raising citrus fruit, and with the help of Clint Davis and Martin Miley, he established the first grove in the area. HARD LIFE ON THE FARM On May 25, 1875, Clint's twin brother, Met, had married 15-year-old Sula Miley. The young couple soon returned to the spot PICNIC AT HARNEY, FLA., ABOUT 1908
where the Davises had camped on Sassafras Ridge and in 1888 established their homestead there. The children came, first three girls, then six boys, one who died in infancy, and one who was killed in a tragic accident as a teenager. Their fourth son, Frank Edward Davis, was to become my grandfather. Life was hard on the 160-acre farm, where they raised cattle, hogs, goats, horses, chickens. "Uncle Met", as he came to be known by everyone, built first a log house, then what they called "the big house," and eventually a third house which is still standing in good repair and occupied today. Some of the orange trees he planted are still bearing fruit. About once a month, the family would make a trip to Tampa in the wagon to sell the farm produce or trade for their necessary supplies. It was an all-day trip, long after dark when they arrived home. After stopping to water and rest the horses at FRANK E. AND HARLEY DAVIS, CIRCA 1914 ... at work on father's farm THEY'RE PALS Martha Parr, M. M. Davis, 1946
Five Mile Pond, which was located where East Lake Square Mall is situated today, everyone would fall asleep in the wagon and the horses would continue on home.7 "KING OF THE COWHOUSE" By this time the community was growing as more families settled the area. Riley Wetherington was about 20 years old when he arrived at Six Mile Creek from Naylor, Georgia. In 1871 he became dissatisfied and moved to Cowhouse Slough, just north of present Fowler Avenue, where he built a log house and planted a grove. Riley was an enterprising young man and bought a lot of land scattered through Hillsborough and neighboring counties. In 1899, his log house at Cowhouse Slough burned and was rebuilt. It burned again in 1934 and was rebuilt. That house is still being used today. The barn he built in the 20s is also still in use, as is the garage built to house Riley's automobile, the only one in the community for years. In later years, he came to be known affectionately as "'King of the Cowhouse". In the 1890s Mr. Charlie Tuft built a large sawmill on the Hillsborough River at Harney. This was a thriving business and supported a rooming house, operated by the Sumner family, as well as a three-story hotel. Mr. Tuft also built quite a few cypress houses in which the mill workers lived, many of which were later sold, moved to other sites, and some are still in use today. RAILROAD COMES THROUGH In about 1898, the Tampa & Thonotosassa Railroad came through Harney, following Harney Road (the old Fort King Highway) to Thonotosassa. There was a large station at Harney and smaller ones at Morris Bridge Road (then called Hillsborough, later Temple Terrace Junction), Williams Road (then Idlewild), Tom Folsom Road (Clarkwilde), and Thonotosassa. The train left Thonotosassa in the morning, carrying people into Tampa to work, and returned in the evening, being "put to sleep" at Thonotosassa by a Mr. Strait. Many people THE MODEL A FORD Frank Davis, Martha Rowland Davis his wife, Ann Elizabeth Davis and Leo Davis, circa 1928 FOUR GENERATIONS Martha Anne Mathews Parr (baby); Anne Davis Mathews, (mother); Martha Rowland Davis (grandmother); Elizabeth Minns (great grandmother). Taken 1941 at Frank E. Davis Homeplace on Morris Bridge Road, now residence of Martha Parr.
who lived in town came 11 to the country" by train to visit relatives for the weekend. Another important service provided by the railroad was the delivery of 100-lb. blocks of ice which they dumped at the stations along the route on Saturday, for the use of the farmers for Sunday dinner, when there was much visiting and socializing. I've been told a story that the postmaster at Idlewild was a "Yankee carpetbagger" who had a Negro mistress. Local "renegades" gave him three warnings to get rid of her and when he failed to do so, they put them both on a train and shipped them back north. PRESIDENT TAFT SLEPT HERE? There was by this time an elegant hotel at Thonotosassa, also. It was a palatial structure, with 12' ceilings and a 40' long "main room". There is an unsubstantiated story that President Taft had been a neighbor in Ohio to the hotel proprietor and came to the hotel for a visit. They prepared a presidential suite which was never occupied by anyone else afterwards. As the population of the community increased, social life became somewhat easier. Schools were established every four or five miles, one being located at Harney, on land donated by the Vernon family for that purpose. The teachers at Harney School usually boarded at the Met Davis home. Met Davis was a generous, easy-going, fun-loving man and he loved to give parties. Cane grindings, candy pullings, square dances, and even oyster roasts were regular events at the Davis farm and at other farms in the community. Hog-killing time was a joyous occasion celebrated at the Strickland farm with square dancing all night, stopping The Davis boys Met and Clint were a youthful 69 when they celebrated their birth anniversary on June 19, 1924. The event wan an annual one for years after that. Met Davis lived to be 100 years old. Gathered around "the boys" in this snapshot include one daughter, three granddaughters, one great granddaughter and friends.
at midnight for a supper of backbone and rice and all the trimmings.8 THE TWINS' ANNUAL PICNIC The Davis twins, Met and Clint, began to have an annual birthday picnic, sometimes on the river at Harney, or at the present Fowler Avenue, Sulphur Springs, and even as far away as Bull Frog Creek. Platforms were built for square dancing, oysters were brought by the barrels from Port Tampa, a side of beef or a hog was barbecued, and people came for miles, by wagon, on TWINS 81YEARS OLD This clipping from The Tampa Morning Tribune reported the huge birthday celebration at Sulphur Springs for the Davis twins -Met and Clint -in 1936. When the old time fiddlers plunked out tunes of the 1870s and 1880s, their feet just wouldnt 't behave," the newspaper reported, and the twins danced the quadrille again.
horseback, and on foot. These picnics continued for years and were the forerunner to the present-day Old-timers Picnic, still held annually.9 When Miss Bertie Alman (Mrs. 0. L. Roberts) graduated from school in Tampa in 1914, she came to Harney to teach and boarded with the Met Davis family. Soon the young people in her classes expressed a desire to have religious youth meetings and Miss Alman had a group from her church in Tampa come out to help them get started. The Epworth League meetings thus began in the schoolhouse, moving in 1917 to a brush arbor on a site donated by Mr. Bill Mathews, and eventually developing into the present Hillsborough United Methodist Church in 1921. The brush arbor sessions were not held every Sunday and were conducted by circuit-riding preachers of various denominations. All the visiting preachers had a standing invitation to have Sunday dinner of chicken and dumplings at Met and Sula Davis' home. One of the most faithful pastors who came to hold services in the brush arbor was Rev. W. D. F. Snipes, a Presbyterian minister from Tampa. "PINES, GOPHERS AND SKUNKS" As vehicular traffic increased, upkeep of the unpaved Harney Road became a public responsibility. Every farmer or voter was required to donate time to maintain the road and the teenage boys were frequently hired to fill in the holes with pine straw. In about 1916 the road was paved with brick a width of nine feet, under the direction of Mr. Archie McCurdy. The young boys also cut fence posts and hoed orange trees to earn money. Young people "went around in a crowd until they got serious". One man told me, "Until we got involved with the women, we did a lot of fishin' and coon huntin'." "Wasn't much around except pine trees, gophers, and skunks." In spite of the difficulties, they managed to have buggy races, swimming parties at Lake Thonotosassa, and "get togethers" at the schoolhouse.10 ARRIVING IN 'HEAVEN' In December 1911, Walter and Elizabeth Minns sold their ranch in El Paso, Texas, and came to Tampa by train with their four children, including 10-year-old Martha "Dolly" Rowland. It was an arduous trip, but an exciting one for the children who knew nothing but the barren vastness of west Texas. Martha, later to become Mrs. Frank Davis and my grandmother, told me she could still remember the thrill of seeing pine trees and palm trees for the first time, and that her mother told her Florida was "Heaven" after living in Texas. The family stayed at the Palmetto Hotel at Polk and Florida Avenue for about a week, then rented rooms on Morgan Street until they could find a suitable farm to purchase. They bought forty acres in the "piney woods" in Dover, which necessitated Martha and her older sister, Mary Frances, boarding in town in order to attend school. They enrolled at the Academy of Holy Names, then located on Twiggs Street. Soon their two brothers left home also, and Mr. and Mrs. Minns could no longer manage the farm alone. There were several moves, and in 1915 they purchased 20 acres of farmland on Orient Road across from today's Tampa Bay Vocational-Technical School. The Tuft sawmill at Harney had recently closed and the Minns family bought one of the cypress houses. It was sawed in half from top to bottom and transported by wagon to their homesite, where it stood until destroyed by fire in 1978. The area east of the Hillsborough River and south of Harney Road to about where Sligh Avenue is today
was under water and was called the "backwater". There were many alligators and other hazards. Several families were entirely lost to malaria. I've been told that there was so much water that you could climb a cypress tree and shoot bass with a .22 rifle where Sunnybrook Dairy stands today. Martha returned home to live and continued to attend the Academy as a day student. This meant walking 51/2 miles each morning and each evening to Jackson Heights, where she caught a streetcar to go downtown to school. Her sister, Mary Frances, entered the convent after graduation became Sister Mary Lewina, and remained at the Academy as a teacher for many years. THE EPWORTH LEAGUE The Sunday evening meetings of the Epworth League at the Harney schoolhouse continued to be the primary social gathering in the community, and Martha walked to the school house each week with her mother and younger brother. It was one such evening in 1917, while sitting with a group of girlfriends, when a tall, handsome young man walked in and said, "Why doesn't someone introduce me to these pretty girls?" Of course, someone did, and she met Frank Davis, Met and Sula Davis' son who had been living away from home and working in Mulberry, but had come home to join the Army. During his training period, he was required to go in to Tampa once a week for "drill". He began to ride his bicycle from his father's home on Morris Bridge Road to Martha's home on Orient Road, and their courtship continued until he left with his unit to serve in France during World War I. Upon graduation from the Academy, Martha started to work at Western Union and boarded in town at the YWCA, coming home on weekends. Someone from the community would frequently go into town on Friday evenings and bring several of the girls out for the weekend, or they could come on the train, for a fare of 250. Martha's roommate at the YWCA was Annie Mae Milling, who became a frequent weekend guest with Martha's family. It wasn't long before she met Riley Wetherington's son, Tom, whom she later married. ALL DAY TRIP TO MIAMI The years passed, the Minns sold the farm on Orient Road, and Martha boarded in Tampa with Tom Wetherington's sister, Ola Wilson, as she continued to work at Western Union. Frank returned from the Army and their courtship resumed. One Friday, while routinely sending a wire, Martha was shocked to see that it was a message to Miami stating, "I will report for work Monday morning. Signed, Frank E. Davis." Frank came to see her that night and told her he was leaving Sunday and he guessed they better go ahead and get married. The next day, March 12, 1921, they were married in the courthouse in Tampa and Frank left for Miami on the following day. Martha remained in Tampa for several weeks, then also moved to Miami, to begin married life and "set up housekeeping." It was an allday trip by train, requiring going north to Palatka, then by taxi to East Palatka, then south again by train to Miami, where they stayed until after their first child, Anne, was born. After several moves, in 1926 they returned to Morris Bridge Road and built a house on ten acres that Frank had bought in 1915, across from his father's homestead on the old Sassafras Ridge. That house, where I am sitting now as I write this, was built at a cost of $1,500.00. Frank and Martha planted a grove, but after several freezes and attempts to replant, he returned to his work in
a power plant and the family moved back to Orlando.11 In June 1936, they came back to attend the Davis twins birthday picnic, which was held on Bull Frog Creek that year. Grandma Sula Davis warned 14-year-old Anne about "all those wild boys" and, of course, she met them all, including 16-year-old David Mathews. Dave's father, George Mathews, was a section foreman for the Atlantic Coast Line Railroad, which had replaced the old Tampa & Thonotosassa line by this time. The Mathews family lived in a railroad "section house" which was located next to the Hillsborough Methodist Church at Temple Terrace Junction. The church building had been erected in 1921 on land donated by Riley Wetherington, as the community had grown and the old brush arbor no longer fulfilled its needs for a meeting place. STREETCAR OPERATOR After the picnic, Frank Davis and his family returned to Orlando and it was not until 1938 when they moved back to their home they had left earlier on Morris Bridge Road that Anne renewed her acquaintance with Dave Mathews. She went into Tampa to the Academy of Holy Names, which was by this time at its present location on Bayshore Boulevard, and only came home on weekends. The church continued to be the center of social life for the young people as it had in earlier years, and Anne and Dave attended the youth meetings on Sunday evenings and the parties which were held about once a month. Anne graduated from high school in June 1940 and went back to Orlando to visit friends there, when she received a telegram from Dave telling her that his family was moving to Lake Alfred and if she wanted to see him again she had better come home. She returned home and they were married on June 22nd. They lived in Tampa, where Dave operated a streetcar until 1943, when Frank Davis' work once again required moving, this time to Jacksonville. Anne and Dave Mathews moved into her parents' home on Morris Bridge Road with their small daughter me. Morris Bridge Road was still "'country" when I was growing up, and life was still slow and gentle. Houses were few and scattered, and the occasional car which passed on the road each day was always a neighbor, everyone waving as they drove slowly past. Days were quiet, with just an occasional whistle as a train went by, and nights were filled only with animal sounds an owl hooting nearby, a dog's mournful howl. "ALL DAY SINGS" The church was still the social center of the community, with frequent "covered dish suppers", 4th of July and Labor Day picnics at Lake Thonotosassa, bazaars, ladies' afternoon quilting bees, annual revivals, and frequent "all day sings" on hot drowsy Sunday afternoons. Going to town on Saturday was a big event, which usually meant going to Sears & Roebuck on Florida Avenue for necessary shoes or housewares. Grocery shopping was done at Jaeb's Store on Harney Road, a fascinating mixture of sounds and smells emanating from the butcher's block and its sawdust floors, the soda fountain, and row after row of rainbow-colored penny candy. Family entertainment was gathering around the radio for "Gangbusters" and "Amos and Andy" and "Inner Sanctum". Jigsaw puzzles were spread out on the dining room table and left for several days, until they were
completed, then admired for several more days before being reluctantly taken apart piece by piece. "THE SASSAFRAS ON THE RIDGE IS GONE..." The quiet country road is a busy street now. The cow pasture where I played has streets running through it, and the sinkhole with its rope-like vines and shadowy "caves" has long since been filled in and covered with houses. The pond where I caught tadpoles was taken away when Highway 301 was built through the middle of the 10 acres that my grandfather had owned since 1915, and the country store has been replaced by supermarkets and convenience stores. The church has a new building, and the old one sits behind it, as outdated and neglected as the brush arbor before it. The little cemetery at Thonotosassa, where the Mileys and the Davises and their neighbors are buried is unkempt and seldom visited. We're always too busy. But once in awhile, when I catch a hint of orange blossoms, or a rare stillness at twilight is disturbed only by the lonely call of a whippoorwill, something stops me and I remember.... The sassafras on the ridge is gone now, as are those people. None of them were rich or famous, their names are not found in the history books, but each played an integral and important part in what Tampa and Hillsborough County are today. Sassafras Ridge should be remembered by all of us who cherish the memory of those brave, hardy men and women who forged a life from a wilderness so long ago.
BIBLIOGRAPHY 1History of Hillsborough County, Ernest L. Robinson, A. B., A. M., pp. 104-106, pp. 317, 318 2Miley Family Bible 3Miley Family Bible 4Miley Family Bible 5Interview by Miss Myra Hardin 6with William Clint Davis, 1935 7Interview by Martha M. Parr with Robert L. Wetherington May 20,1980 8Tampa Tribune, May 26, 1935 Tampa Tribune, June -, 1935 Tampa Tribune, June 20, 1936 Tampa Tribune, June 21, 1936 Tampa Tribune, June -, 1955 Tampa Tribune, June 19, 1955 Tampa Tribune, February 16,1956 9Interviews by Martha M. Parr with Mrs. 0. L. Roberts May 22, 1980 and Harley H. Davis November 12, 1979 10Interview by Martha M. Parr with Martha Rowland Davis June 1981 11Interview by Martha M. Parr with Anne Davis Mathews June 1981
TAMPA BAY HOTEL IS 90 YEARS OLD CEDAR KEY'S LOSS TRULY WAS TAMPA'S GAIN EN PLANT BROUGHT RAILROAD TO WEST COAST By HAMPTON DUNN Like a boy playing with building blocks, wealthy Henry Bradley Plant put together his $3.5 million Tampa Bay Hotel. As a rich man, this railroad magnate could easily afford to splurge on a luxury project of this scope in a small village quite remote from large population centers. Not only that, the visionary Plant foresaw Tampa as a booming metropolis. In fact, it already had grown tenfold from a community of 700 in 1884, when he brought his railroad to serve the area, to a healthy population of 7,000 by 1891 when he flung open the doors to the palatial hotel. The year 1981 marks the 90th anniversary of the opening of the fabulous hostelry. A FRIENDLY RIVAL GALA OFFICERS'BALL AT TAMPA BAY HOTEL ... during Spanish American War, 1898 -Photo from HAMPTON DUNN COLLECTION
Actually, Plant also was trying to outdo his friendly rival, Henry M. Flagler, another railroad giant who had just built a resort hotel in St. Augustine the Ponce de Leon and shouted that it was the world's most beautiful. The story goes that the two Henrys flipped a coin to decide which one would develop which coast of the fledgling Sunshine State. Under this pie-slicing arrangement, Flagler thus stretched his operations the full length of the East Coast, all the way to Key West. Plant looked to the West Coast. His first thought was of Cedar Key, a thriving little village already served by a railroad from Fernandina. At the time, Cedar Key's population was much greater than Tampa's. LOCAL POLITICS Plant bumped into local opposition at Cedar Key that caused him to scurry away and to figure another route for his railroad. He decided to link Sanford with Tampa, via Kissimmee. At Cedar Key he had collided head-on with David Levy Yulee, Florida's first U.S. Senator and a controversial personage of the Civil War days. Yulee and his relatives owned most of the Florida Transit & Peninsular and he wasn't hankering for any competition from an "outsider." Yulee laid down an ultimatum to Plant: "Stay out of my port!" Simultaneously, owners of local real estate tried to "hold up" the affluent Plant, and he was thwarted in other ways. Plant impatiently put the curse on Cedar Key and looked elsewhere. "I'll take my railroad to Tampa," he announced, "and I'll wipe Cedar Key off the map. Owls will hoot in your attics, bats will live in your houses PLANT PLAYS GOLF WITH HIS GUESTS Henry B. Plant strikes a golfing stance for some of his guests in this early photograph. The large woman in black in the center is Mrs. Plant. The man at far left is T. C. Taliaferro, prominent Tampan and founder of the First National Bank of Tampa. -Photo from HAMPTON DUNN COLLECTION
BEAUTIFULLY APPOINTED BEDROOM ... at plush winter resort -Photo from HAMPTON DUNN COLLECTION
and hogs will wallow in your deserted streets!" WELCOME MAT OUT Cedar Key's maximum population reached 5,000 but it has dwindled to a tiny fishing village, with the 1970 census putting its population at 714. The same census showed Tampa, which in 1880 had only 720 souls, has grown to 277,767. (A 1978 estimate placed Hillsborough County's population at 615,844.) Before settling in Tampa, however, Plant made a pass at acquiring Snead's Island in Manatee County but there, too, he bumped into local apathy and opposition. The welcome mat was out in Tampa, though. Local authorities were generous in concessions to get the railroad. The first Plant System train chugged eastward from Tampa on January 22, 1884. WEST SIDE OF RIVER Plant's next step was to realize his dream of the world's most magnificent hotel, one that would outsparkle any of the glittering GUESTS BOARDED NORTHBOUND TRAINS AT HOTEL ...1902 scene at west side of the Tampa Bay -Photo from HAMPTON DUNN COLLECTION MIRROR, MIRROR ON THE WALL ... ornate hotel furnishings -Photo from HAMPTON DUNN COLLECTION
Flagler establishments on the East Coast. He selected a site on the west bank of the Hillsborough River and bought 60 acres from a man who 20 years before had acquired it for a white horse and a wagon. Plant's local partners frowned on the project and the Tampa Board of Trade was hopeful the hotel would be built on the east side of the river near town. But Plant prevailed and the City agreed to build a bridge across at Lafayette Street (now J. F. Kennedy Blvd.). As the Gay Nineties period was inaugurated, contractors rushed to erect the mammoth building which became the most authentic example of Moorish architecture on the North American continent, and also featured fine Turkish architecture. The sprawling hotel, whose roof area spans six acres, was modeled in part after the Alhambra Palace in Granada, Spain. The building, which has more than 500 rooms, is about 1200 feet long, with hallways stretching so far the guests were transported from one end to the other by rickshaw. The fireproof structure has walls more than a foot thick which required 452 freight carloads of brick. At the time they were in transit, a fierce yellow fever epidemic raged in Jacksonville and when the freight cars arrived there they were fumigated as suspected carriers of the dread disease. About this time, much of Plant's railroad system in the state was being switched from narrow gauge to standard gauge, and much of the steel used in constructing the Tampa Bay was the old narrow gauge rails. NOCTURNAL SIGHTSEERS Trademark of the unusual showplace are the 13 silver minarets, representing the 13 months of the Moslem calendar. A movement was carried out by the present MUSICAL SALUTE TO NEW HOTEL The Tampa Bay Hotel Galop, composed by Mrs. I M. Murphy, was copyrighted in 1890just before the opening of this magnificent hostelry by Henry B. Plant. The dictionary defines Galop (or Galopade or Gallopade) as: -1. A lively dance in duple rhythm, popular in the 19th century; 2. The music for this dance. -Photo from HAMPTON DUNN COLLECTION
occupant of the building, the University of Tampa, to light the minarets as an attraction for nocturnal sightseers. In 1981, during the 50th Anniversary of the founding of the University of Tampa, the traditional silver minarets suddenly turned to gold. This brought on some public criticism. During construction, Mrs. Henry Plant and a corps of secretaries went to Europe on a mission. Armed with an unlimited drawing account, this lady of exquisite and expensive tastes in antiques and elegant furnishings accumulated the finest for the Tampa Bay Hotel. Later, Plant himself joined his wife on trips to roam the Orient for additional treasures. World history had swirled around some of the objets d'art selected during this famous shopping spree. The beautiful cabinet of fine inlaid wood and stones and the work of a noted European artist had once been the prized possession of Mary, Queen of Scots. It is recalled that she was a religious person and her beliefs brought about her execution. She worshipped before this cabinet and spies discovered her in the practice. RECEPTION HALL AT TAMPA BAY HOTEL ...today's lobby at Tampa U. -Photo from HAMPTON DUNN COLLECTION
TAMPA U. STUDENTS TAKE OVER HOTEL ... campus scene in 1939 Photo from HAMPTON DUNN COLLECTION
THE QUEEN'S CARPET The red carpeting used was purchased from Queen Victoria of England. She had refused to accept delivery because the dragon in the design resembled the emblematic British lion which they refused to walk upon. Antiques came from the palace of King Louis XIV of France, including a black and gold table on top of which rested "The Sleeping Beauty" marble carving. The fabulous list swelled. Mrs. Plant had carried out her unusual assignment with dispatch and efficiency. Cost of the furnishings has been estimated from $500,000 to one million dollars. An old-time Tampan, who recalls the colorful life at the Tampa Bay during its hey-day, recently observed that the hotel was furnished lavishly but in good taste. "Some good folks have the mistaken idea that the period known as 'The Gay 90s' was a time of vulgar display but that is very far from the truth and with people of means it was a time of gracious living," according to the late Francis M. Jones, a retired oil distributor. DE SOTO TREATY OAK The spacious hotel grounds likewise were carefully planned and developed with exotic plants and shrubbery and trees from many lands. To top it all, there stands a massive oak tree under which Hernando de Soto is said to have negotiated a peace treaty with the Indians. Finally, everything was in order and the first guests registered on January 31, 1891, with the grand opening ball set for February 5. Plant, of course, laid out a party befitting the historic occasion. He sent out some 15,000 invitations, including one to Henry Flagler. Flagler chided his old pal by sending a telegram inquiring, "Where's the Tampa Bay?" To which Plant retorted, "Follow the crowds!" Indeed the crowds did beat a path to the Tampa Bay. Millionaires, European royalty, American Presidents, writers, soldiers, people of high rank from all over the world came by special car and train, the final lap over the Plant System railroad, to indulge in the tropical splendor and to share its glamour with others in the international blue book. At a single table in the chandelier-lighted dining room, a party of 20 multi-millionaires feasted on the beauty, service, fine food and liquors. Giovanni Caretta, formerly of Delmonico's, was the Tampa Bay's pastry cook, and Rossi from the Manhattan Club of New York was baker. The hotel became a center of winter social activities, attracting the great and near-great of American society. One of the early ELLEN ELIZABETH IBLACKSTONE) PLANT ... Henry B. Plant's first wife -Photo from HAMPTON DUNN COLLECTION
special events was a gala birthday party for Mrs. Ulysses S. Grant. It was here in 1904 that Tampa's unique Gasparilla Carnival was launched. And the Tampa Rotary began a series of famous Press Breakfasts featuring such big names as Henry Watterson, James Whitcomb Riley, George Ade and Samuel Gompers. Everybody who was anybody sooner or later showed up at the Tampa Bay: to name a few, Anna Pavlova, John Drew, Minnie Maddern Fiske. The place attracted distinguished writers who found the delightful spot inspirational. Sidney Lanier wrote about the Robins in Plant Park. Hezekiah Butterworth wrote some of his best loved poems here. Stephen Crane drafted his "The Price of the Harness" while a guest at the hotel. Other writers who visited included Richard Harding Davis, famed war correspondent of the Spanish American War, Irwin S. Cobb, Clarence Buddington Kelland, Edward Bok and others. BILLY SUNDAY SLEPT HERE Famed evangelist Billy Sunday stayed here during his Tampa revival, and was described by a reporter as being "the most contagious individual that ever pounded the carpets of the halls of the Tampa Bay Hotel." Politicos made a point of being seen at this important castle. The silver-tongued orator, William Jennings Bryan, thrice Democratic nominee for President of the United States, addressed a well-heeled rally here in 1900. He was accompanied by his cousin, William S. Jennings, of Brooksville, who later became Governor of Florida. One other famous visitor was President Grover Cleveland. An event of historical significance took place in the dining room when the mighty Babe Ruth signed his first baseball contract with the Boston Red Sox. OTHER 'NAME' GUESTS Not all persons were "'sold" on & Tampa Bay. Sarah Bernhardt, for instance, performed at the Tampa Bay Casino on the grounds, but she preferred to stay in her private railroad car because she felt the rambling hotel was "too drafty". The Tampa Bay became headquarters for the top brass of the U.S. Army during the Spanish American War in 1898, as Tampa was the debarkation point for troops going to Cuba. A young unknown officer named Theodore Roosevelt camped nearby with his "'Rough Riders" but his wife lived at the "big hotel". Generals Joe Wheeler, John B. Gordon, Fitzhugh Lee and Nelson A. Miles were some of the brass who mapped strategy from the verandahs of the Tampa Bay. Clara Barton of Red Cross fame, the "'Angel of the Battlefield" in the Civil War, stopped briefly at the hotel then moved to a private residence nearby. Regimental bands played at night in the hotel, and every night people danced in the rotunda and the brilliant ballroom. But among those watching from the mahagonyrailed balconies were pretty Cuban maidens, vowing "We'll not dance again until Havana is free." "WORTH EVERY PENNY" The imaginative Plant always had something going for the enjoyment of guests and townspeople. He ran a train to Port Tampa where he had a pavilion for dancing, and he also had little launches with Naptha engines to cruise up the river to Sulphur Springs.
Death came suddenly to the railroad king who had done so much to open up the Florida West Coast. He passed away on June 23, 1899, at his northern home at 586 Fifth Avenue, New York, at the age of 80. Just a short time before this he had been strolling through the enchanting gardens of the Tampa Bay, admiring the flowers and flirting with the gailycolored peacocks. Friends had called this costly building and grounds "Plant's Folly" but the old gent laughed with them and said it was worth every penny it had cost him, because he could listen to the splendid music of the German pipe organ. Following Plant's death, the holding company couldn't get out of the hotel business quickly enough. The showplace had been profitless for some time, so it was put up for sale. An early mayor of Tampa, F. A. Salomonson, made a ridiculous offer of $125,000 and it was snapped up. His first callers turned out to be City tax collectors who presented a large bill for delinquent and current taxes. Salomonson, claiming the property was sold to him free of encumbrances, backed out of the deal. So for $90,000 and the cancellation of tax bills, the City of Tampa in 1906 became the owner of a world-famous hotel. As the years passed, the City tried to find some use besides running a hotel at a loss. Noting that in five years the deficit was $35,000, someone suggested in 1910 the hotel be made into a City Hall. Editors of the local newspapers fumed and snorted: "This would convert the beautiful Tampa Bay Park into a stamping ground for political rallies and a haven for super-annuated loafers, like the Court House Square." In 1915, promoters for dividing Florida into two states seized on the idea of turning the Tampa Bay Hotel into the State Capitol for the proposed State of South Florida. In 1920, W. F. Adams picked up the lease, spent a quarter million dollars refurbishing the place and did very well during the Florida boom. But the collapse brought on bankruptcy and in 1932, the doors on Plant's Folly closed. A short time later during the depression, townspeople formed a new University of Tampa and it turned out that the old hotel building would provide comfortable and adequate quarters. The University moved in in 1933. It continues today as the campus and home, although Tampa U. is bursting at the seams even with many other buildings added to the campus. It's on the National Register of Historic places and is a National Landmark. In recent times, there have been some derogatory remarks about the Tampa Bay, which has now been formally designated as "The Henry B. Plant Building". Some critics have called it an "architectural monstrosity". And Holiday Magazine a few years ago described the red brick building as an "eyesore". Former State Representative Robert T. Mann of Tampa, had a few unkind remarks about the esthetic quality of the Tampa U. complex charging that the dormitories and other buildings jammed on the campus present "an ugly view" from across the river at the new convention center. Be that as it may, the kids who live like millionaires while going to college "just love" the unique structure, and Tampa generally promotes the historic site at every opportunity.
Meanwhile, Plant's vision of 90 years ago that Tampa would become a metropolis has come to pass. WHERE HERNANDO DE SOTO AND INDIANS PARLEYED ...still stands in front of Tampa U. -Photo from AMPTON DUNN COLLECTION
WILLIAM FRED ADAMS MEET THE GENIAL MANAGER OF THE TAMPA BAY HOTEL (Editor's Note: A personality who loomed large over Tampa's business and social scene in the decade of the 1920s was William Fred Adams, the affable manager of the swank Tampa Bay Hotel. Here's a sketch on him published in 1922.) As the manager of the Tampa Bay Hotel, William Fred Adams is known far and wide. Every winter season the big tourist resort built by the late Henry Bradley Plant is filled with delighted guests, and much of the favorable impression which these guests take away with them is due to the personal attention given the service and the comfort of patrons by Mr. Adams. Mr. Adams was born at Plymouth, New Hampshire, in 1864, obtaining his education in the public schools. His entire life has been devoted to the hotel business. The greater part of his activity in this business has been in his native State, where he has been connected with the leading hotels, in various capacities. RAN SENATE RESTAURANT Senator Gallinger became interested in the energetic hotel man and secured for him the responsible concession of operating the United States Senate restaurant in the Capitol at Washington. This famous eating place was conducted by Mr. Adams for seven years, during which period he became personally acquainted with the leading statesmen of the country. His first connection in Florida was as manager of the Manavista Hotel, at Bradentown, which he made a very popular resort with winter tourists. He managed the Manavista for three years. In 1913 the Manavista Hotel Company leased from the City of Tampa the Tampa Bay Hotel, and WILLIAM FRED ADAMS 'known far and wide' -Photo fro. HAMPTON DUNN COLLECTION
Mr. Adams succeeded H. H. Stanford. For eight seasons, Mr. Adams has conducted this big hotel in the winter months and he has had the satisfaction of seeing the house filled to capacity each year. In the summer, Mr. Adams manages the Lake Tarleton Club, a popular resort at Pike, N. H. Numbers of his guests in the summer follow him to Florida in the winter. "MOST BEAUTIFUL PARK IN COUNTRY" The Tampa Bay Hotel accommodates 500 guests and represents an outlay of more than $3,000,000. It was built by H. B. Plant, the railroad and steamship magnate, and operated under his personal supervision until his death, when the property was sold to the city of Tampa for a merely nominal price. Various propositions for using the hotel property were considered by the people of Tampa, but the great marjority were in favor of maintaining it as a tourist hotel. The city derives a comparatively small annual rental, but finds the hotel a great asset, inasmuch as it offers a high-class resort for tourist visitors. Under Mr. Adams' management the social life of the hotel has been featured and both the Tampa society people and the visitors enjoy the dances, concerts and other entertainments offered. The hotel is surrounded by the most beautiful park in the country, and is convenient to golf courses, steamers, drives and other opportunities for tourist recreation. Mr. Adams is a Shriner and member of the golf clubs. He was married in 1893 to Miss Glennie A. Bartlett. Tampans in general hope that Mr. Adams will continue as manager of the big hotel for the rest of his life.
SKETCH OF THE LIFE OF MR. HENTY B. PLANT OF BRANFORD, CONN. By J. E. INGRAHAM Formerly President South Florida Railroad (Editor's Note: A business associate who was intimately acquainted with Henry Bradley Plant tells us a lot about him in this biographical sketch published in 1923 by State Commissioner of Agriculture W. A. McRae.) Mr. Plant before the Civil War was one of the organizers, I have been told, of the Adams Express Company. During the war all relations with the Southern States ceased, and the railway service in the South was disorganized. One of General Lee's transportation men was Col. Henry S. Haines, of Savannah. Mr. Plant and Colonel Haines were allied in the rehabilitation of southern railroads. Mr. Plant acquired controlling interests in the Charleston & Savannah; Savannah, Florida & Western, which at that time reached Jacksonville by way of Live Oak; the Florida Central and Peninsula; and two other lines reaching into Georgia and Alabama. These lines were rehabilitated and proved of enormous help in the recuperation of the South. Mr. Plant at an early day gave his attention to the organization of the Southern Express Co., of which he was President and a large stockholder. Early in 1882 Mr. Plant and his associates, some of the most important business men of the United States, namely: Mr. Henry Walters, Mr. B. F. Newcomer, of Baltimore; Mr. Jenkins, of Wilmington; Judge Chisholm, of Savannah; Mr. Jorris K. Jessop, of New York; Mr. Henry Sanford, President of the Adams Express Co., of New York, all interested in his enterprises, built the Waycross Short Line from Waycross, Ga., to Jacksonville, Fla., shortening the time from New York to Jacksonville very materially. BROADCLOTH COAT, SILK HAT At this time the writer was President of the South Florida Railroad, a "newspaper railroad," belonging to R. M. Pulsifer & Co., JAMES E. INGRAHAM ... Plant's friend, associate -Photo from HAMPTON DUNN COLLECTION
editors and owners of the Boston Herald, and extending from Sanford via Winter Park, to Orlando-under construction and nearly completed to Kissimmee-and projected to Tampa. About this time, I was walking down Bay Street in Jacksonville with General Sanford, when he remarked to me, "You see that elderly gentleman on the other side of the street, the one wearing the long black broadcloth coat and silk hat-that is a man I think you ought to know-Mr. Henry B. Plant, President of the Savannah, Florida, and Western Railway Company, with whom I traveled on my last trip down from New York." After saying I should like to meet him, I was introduced to Mr. Plant, who greeted me with "So you are the young man who is building a railroad from Sanford to somewhere in the south of Florida." "Yes, Mr. Plant, we have a little, narrow-gauge railroad there and we feel quite proud of it," was my reply. "We expect to open that railroad to Kissimmee shortly -sometime early next week-and I should be more than glad to have you and your friends come down and be our guests at the opening." Mr. Plant told of buying a steamer The Henry B. Plant, and with Captain Jim Fitzgerald thought of running to Sanford. Immediately I asked for a connection for our road, as we had such with the DeBary Line three days in the week and wished Mr. Plant's boat connection for alternate days. Agreeing to this request, he said he would join our party on the proposed initial trip. Inquiring how many we could take care of, I told him to bring as many as he wished, and that there would be a special train to meet him on Tuesday morning, when the Henry B. Plant reached Sanford. Early on that day my associates and I, with our wives, met Mr. Plant's party at the wharf, where we boarded a brand new train, consisting of a parlor car, coach, and baggage car-the train crew having on blue uniforms and -white gloves. In Mr. Plant's party were Mr. and Mrs. Plant, Col. and Mrs. Haines, and some half dozen business associates. "WHAT CAN I DO?" Mr. Plant was visibly impressed with the outlying country, and after returning from Belleair called a conference, at which he asked, "What can I do for you, Mr. Ingraham, on this railroad project?" "If you will give us connection with your river steamer, and secure for us through representation as to tickets and rates, I should be greatly obliged," I replied. Continuing, I said that it was my ambition to extend the railroad to Tampa, and put on a line of steamers to Key West and Havana. Do you think that your stockholders would sell an interest in this property?" to which I replied, "If you can see your way to purchasing, say, a three-fifths interest in this property, extending it to Tampa, eventually putting on such a line of steamers, I am satisfied they would." TAMPA GETS RAILROAD As a result of this meeting, and the subsequent one in Boston, The Plant Investment Company became owner of a three-fifths interest in the stock of the South Florida Railway, under contract to build the road from Kissimmee to Tampa. The work was pushed to completion very rapidly and on the 4th of January, 1884, the South Florida Railroad was opened to Tampa, Governor Bloxham and his entire cabinet and their families being the guests of the
Railway Company and present at the driving of the last spike. The policy pursued by the South Florida Railway Co., under Mr. Plant's approval, enabled us to put 45,000 people into that territory the first eighteen months after the opening of the road. Mr. Plant afterwards established a line called the Plant Line, from Tampa to Key West and Havana, later extending the Railway Company from Tampa to Port Tampa, a deepwater port on old Tampa Bay. In August, 1886, the lines all over the Southern territory, or the territory lying south of the Ohio River and east of the Mississippi were changed from the old 5 feet 2 inches standard gauge of the South to the 4 feet 81/2 inches gauge. The South Florida Railway changed at this time from 3 feet to the standard gauge, and through Pullman cars were then run from New York to Tampa and Port Tampa. This was the first railway through service in the State. PLANT AT PARIS EXPOSITION Mr. Plant afterward built the Tampa Bay Hotel, in the midst of beautiful gardens on the west side of the Hillsborough River, furnished it very magnificently, and ran it as a strictly first-class tourist hotel. Mr. Plant personally represented the South Florida Railroad, and exhibited Florida products at the Paris Exposition. During the interval the Jacksonville, Tampa and Key West Railroad had been extended gradually from Jacksonville to Palatka, and then to Sanford, entering into close connection with the South Florida Railroad. This railroad was afterwards bought by Mr. Plant, as well as the Florida Southern from Palatka to Brooksville, and later the Sanford & St. Petersburg, from Sanford via a northern route to St. Petersburg, Fla. Further, during 1884, Mr. Plant extended the South Florida Railroad from Bartow, Fla., to Pemberton Ferry, through Dade City and Lakeland, connecting with the Florida Southern at Pemberton Ferry, now called Trilby. In 1887 Mr. Plant extended his railroad to Port Tampa on the old Tampa Bay and there established great wharves, capable of berthing twenty-six steamers at the same time, providing ample track room and facilities for unloading phosphates from cars to ships, and Port Tampa became one of the greatest phosphate ports in the world. At the time of the Spanish-American War General Shafter's division was encamped near Tampa and his troops and supplies of all kinds were loaded on transports at the Company's wharf at Port Tampa, from which point General Shafter set sail on his campaign to Cuba. FLAGLER JOINS PLANT In 1886 Mr. Henry M. Flagler joined the directorate of the South Florida Railroad, becoming a large owner in the stock of the Plant Investment Company. Mr. Plant lived to see his great enterprises meeting with success, which his foresight, energy and expenditure of capital justly warranted. In 1887, during the period of yellow fever epidemic, shotgun quarantine prevailed all over the State, causing great demoralization. Mr. Plant, Mr. Haines and I, who had given a good deal of attention to this matter, proposed the organization of a State Board of Health, which would have charge of such affairs, and I was authorized by Mr. Plant to proceed to Tallahassee, interview the Governor, and make a proposition that if he would call a special session of the Legislature at once the South Florida
Railroad and the Plant Investment Co. would bear the expense of such a session, provided a health bill was not passed. The Governor declined this proposition, but a regular meeting of the Legislature held soon afterwards passed a bill organizing the State Board of Health, and Dr. J. Y. Porter, of Key West, was duly appointed State Health Officer. This appointment was most wise and timely and immediately all of the terrible shotgun quarantine ceased, protection to the health of the State was afforded, and since that time no serious epidemic of any kind has occurred in Florida.
PLANT RESPONDS TO TAMPA'S WELCOME (Editor's Note: It was a historic red-letter day for Tampa when Henry B. Plant brought his railroad to the West Coast of Florida and got the city moving. There follows Mr. Plant's response to a toast to him at a banquet welcoming him to Tampa, as reported in the biography The Life of Henry Bradley Plant by G. Hutchinson Smyth, D. D., published in 1898.) In March, 1886, the Tampa Board of Trade honored Mr. Plant with a splendid banquet, and warmly welcomed him and his friends to this once sleepy old hamlet, now kept awake by the steam whistles of the South Florida Railroad and those of the steamships sailing to the West Indies. In reply to a toast by General John B. Wall, Mr. Plant said: "Some two years and a half ago I was escorted here by some of the gentlemen present, upon a wagon-line across the peninsula of Florida from Kissimmee City, with Mr. Haines, Mr. Ingraham, Mr. Elliott, and Mr. Allen. We had a day's journey to reach over the gap in the railway that was then being constructed, connecting Tampa with the St. John's River. It was an interesting trip. I think to the best of my recollection we passed not more than seven habitations on that journey, certainly not A WOOD-BURNING LOCOMOTIVE IN THE PLANT SYSTEM ... train 37 and crew, South Florida & Western RR, Dade City, 1898 -Photo from HAMPTON DUNN COLLECTION
more than that while daylight lasted, and now we can make the trip from Kissimmee to Tampa in three or four hours and find cities on the way, cities of enterprise, with a frugal and industrious population. Business has grown, and great progress has been made in this part of Florida, but no place has improved more than this town of Tampa. Tampa, it seems to us, had a chill, although the climate was good. A citizen told me on that visit that they did not value the land at anything, but that the air was worth one thousand dollars an acre. That gave the value of Tampa land at that time. All are aware what is the value of Tampa land at present. Very little I am told is for sale." WHAT RR HAS DONE FOR TAMPA PLANT SYSTEM SPRAWLED OVER FLORIDA ... map dated May 30, 1901 -Photo from HAMPTON DUNN COLLECTION
"That is what the railroad has done for Tampa. The gentlemen who are associated with me look with pleasure upon the progress that has been made in Tampa. We go back and look upon the progress that has been made by what is known as the Plant System, which commences at Charleston, reaches out to Chattahoochee, and terminates at Tampa. This system, which you probably know, we call under various names; it is part railway, part express company, part steamboat company, part steamship company, but it all has one object and is known as the Plant System. It has been successful in what it has undertaken so far. I think that success may be attributed to the harmony that prevails in the councils on the part of the officers of the railroads, of the steamships, of the steamboats, and express, that go to make up that system. There is no jealousy, but rather a rivalry to know which will do the most. And to that spirit, in every one connected with the system, to do all that is possible to advance its progress is due the success of the Plant System. "This is, I think, all that can now be said in direct reponse to the toast, but I would like to say a few words of Tampa, of its possibilities and its opportunities. You are all aware that Tampa is but one port on the Gulf of Mexico from which a railroad extends to the interior. There are ports north of it and ports south of it; ports where railways extend to deep water. Some of them have the advantage of Tampa. It is useless to mention the names, for you all know them; you are familiar with the advantages of all these ports. I will not give the reason why they have not advanced. It may be because they have not all had the railway backing that Tampa has had; they have not had a united line of railways leading to them and extending from them. Tampa has just started, it seems to me, in its progress towards prosperity, and the prosperity that it must receive if it receives the backing that commerce would dictate to it. The wants of commerce are large; they are exacting, and Tampa has many rivals. There are many cities that aspire to it and to grow as these cities see that Tampa is growing at the present time. They will do it, if it is possible, by putting on steamship lines, by putting on railway lines, by extending them to get some of the business at least, that is now drawing towards Tampa, and it is for the people of Tampa to determine for themselves to what extent they shall share it. POST OFFICE, WAKE UP "'As I have stated, it is important to Tampa's interests to see that all obstructions to commerce are removed; in other words, that commerce and trade shall be unimpeded both to and through Tampa. You all recollect that last year there was a great Exposition in a neighboring city of the Gulf-New Orleans,-where millions of money were expended to draw the attention of the countries south of us, notably the West Indies and South America. This, that their attention might be drawn to the United States, and especially the southern part of the United States, for trade, and, as I said, millions of money were expended on making that Exposition and maintaining it all the winter for the purpose of showing the people of the West India Islands what could be done. That Exposition was gotten up not for benevolence, but for the purpose of inviting trade. Now we are doing all we can to encourage that trade by opening up mail communication between the United States and those very countries that so much money was spent to encourage the trade from. We are running steamships three times each week, and I think that every gentlemen
in this hall should raise his voice to the authorities at Washington and endeavor to persuade them to send the mails of the entire United States (I mean the mails of the entire United States, the South and West as well as the East), by the quickest route whereby they can reach those countries of which I have spoken, By that route the mails can reach the whole of the West India Islands, the whole of the west coast of South America, in better time and more frequently, with the present source of communication than by any other line. And notwithstanding that line was put on on the 1st of January, our postal authorities at Washington hardly seem alive to that fact, and, as I said before, I think that the gentlemen of Tampa should raise a united voice that the Post Office Department may be waked up to know there is a route via Tampa that is the quickest for the entire countries south of us. I do not know that I can say any more. I have responded to the toast "Our Honored Guests,' and said very little about them. I feel somewhat in the position that Mr. Ward probably felt when he was advertised to deliver a lecture on 'Twins.' He occupied his entire evening on the introduction, and left the speech on the 'Twins' out altogether."
HENRY B. PLANTS TAMPA AT THE BEGINNING OF THE GAY 90s (Editor's Note: Early results of the coming of the railroad to Tampa were recited in a New York newspaper in-depth article published in 1891 just prior to the opening of the Tampa Bay Hotel. This is how it was in Tampa at that time. Reprinted from the biography, The Life of Henry Bradley Plant by G. Hutchinson Smyth, D. D., published in 1898.) The following account of the growth of Tampa is taken from the New York Daily Tribune of November 17, 1891. It illustrates the large share which Mr. Plant has had in this growth, and the way in which he has closely identified himself with its history. "Over on the west coast of Florida in Hillsborough County, or less than two hundred miles north of the southern end of the State, is an old, old town, which, in the territorial days of Florida, when the Government first established a military reservation here, was a small settlement that grew into a village and was called Tampa. Owing to its extreme isolation, its growth was slow, and, in 1884, there were not more than one or two shops, and a population of a little less than seven hundred. A year later he southern terminus of the Plant System of railroads was established at Tampa, and since then the growth of the place has been phenomenal. As Postmaster Cooper, one of Tampa's wide-awake citizens and a PLANT'S PORT TAMPA INN IN 1884 ... tourists enjoy "boating" at resort -Photo from HAMPTON DUNN COLLECTION
newspaper editor, says: 'Henry B. Plant may be said to have been the founder of Tampa, and people of enterprise, industry, and capital from every State in the Union, and Cuba, have flocked here and built upon the foundation, until today Tampa rivals the best cities in the State. The South Florida Railroad is one of the best equipped railways in the South, extending from Port Tampa to Sanford, a distance of 124 miles.' 'THE FATHER OF TAMPA' "The South Florida Road runs through the most fertile and most prosperous part of the State and has done more than any other agency to develop South Florida. And while it is true that the railroad gave to Tampa her first onward impetus, and has done, and is yet doing, much toward the development of the place, yet there are other agencies which have done much to help along the great work. The most prominent of these is the cigar-making industry, which was first established here three years ago. It is second to none as an important factor in Tampa's substantial prosperity and commercial success. Tampa has also profited by the immense deposits of phosphate, which is shipped from here, not only by rail all over the country, but by water direct to Europe. There is a large grinding mill here, and a meeting of representatives of phosphate interests was held recently, and a movement started to put up the necessary tanks and machinery for making the acids and other I materials for the manufacture of, superphosphate. When factories of this sort are put up it wig no longer be necessary to send the phosphate to Europe to be acidulated. "I went over to the palatial Tampa Bay Hotel, an enterprise of Mr. Plant, and the completion and furnishing of which, preparatory to its opening in two or three weeks, Mr. Plant has been personally supervising. I found him and a portion of his family at breakfast in his private car, in which he was to start north in the afternoon for a brief stay before coming down here for the winter. Mr. Plant is always approachable, genial in his manner, ready to talk about people and their prosperity, but not of himself or his. No one can accuse him of egotism. He said nothing of his massive hotel until I drew him out. I said: 'Mr. Plant, I learn that no one knows better than you of the beginning and the progress of Tampa and its probable future. In fact, they say that you are the father of Tampa; tell me about it, please.' "I FOUND TAMPA SLUMBERING" "'Well,' said the genial railroad president, 'when I first drove across the country from Sanford, for we are nearly west of that point, and there was no other way of getting here by land, I found Tampa slumbering as it had been for years. This was eight years ago. It seemed to me that all South Florida needed for a successful future was a little spirit and energy, which could be fostered by transportation facilities. There were one or two small shops and a population of about seven hundred in Tampa. I made a careful survey of the situation, calculated upon its prospects and concluded to take advantage of the opportunity, and we who made early investments have proved the faith in our own judgment. Tampa was really unknown to the commercial world until the South Florida Railroad introduced her there. This was in 1885, and it brought to the town a new life, and breathed into it all the elements of push, progress, and success. Tampa at once began to spread itself, and ever since has been fairly bounding along the road to greatness. It has now a population of about ten thousand, and is rapidly increasing. Hundreds upon hundreds of thousands of dollars have been invested
in business, and instead of a few scattered and unpainted storehouses, there are now many magnificent brick blocks, handsome private residences, cozy cottages, large warehouses, mammoth wholesale establishments, busy workshops, comfortable hotels, two newspapers, a phosphate mill, cigar factories, first-class banking facilities, telegraph and telephone communications, two electric-light establishments, ice factories, a complete system of waterworks, eight lines of steamships and steamboats giving communication to Key West and Havana, Mobile, places on the Manatee River, etc.' "Mr. Plant's hotel, upon which he has spent about $2,000,000 on the building and grounds and $500,000 for the furnishing, and which is nearly ready for the opening, is in the centre of a sixteen-acre plot of ground just north of the city bridge. The architecture is Moorish, patterned after the palaces in Spain, and minarets and domes tower above the great five-story building, each one of which is surmounted with a crescent, which is lighted by electricity at night. The main building is 511 feet in length, and varies in width from 50 to 150 feet. A wide hall, on either side of which are bedrooms, single and in suites, runs the entire length of the building to the dining room at the southern end. The exterior walls are of darkened brick, with buff and red brick arches and stone dressings. The cornices are of stone and iron; the piazza columns are of steel, supported on pieces of cut stone. BEAUTIFUL AND ANTIQUE THINGS "The main entrances are through three pairs of double doors, flanked by sixteen polished granite columns, supporting Moorish arches, over which balconies open from the gallery around the rotunda to the second floor. The principal staircase is of stone, and the horseshoe arch and the crescent and the star meet the eye at every turn-the electric lights in the dining-hall, the music-hall, the drawing room, the reception-room, the reading-room, and the office being arranged after these patterns. The drawing-room is a casket of beautiful and antique things, embracing fine contrasts. There are a sofa and two chairs which were once the property of Marie Antoinette; a set of four superb gilt chairs which once belonged to Louis Philippe; two antique Spanish cabinets, and between ten high, wide windows appear Spanish, French, and Japanese cabinets, both old and quaint. Old carved Dutch chairs, rare onyx chairs, and queer seats of other kinds are scattered along the hall. Among the large collection of oil paintings, water-colors, and engravings, are portraits and old pictures of Spanish castles and fortresses. "A large rustic gate for carriages and two for pedestrians lead into the grounds on the northern side. These gates are made of cabbage-palmetto trunks, the mid-ribs being of the leaves worked into a quaint and rustic design. On either side of the great gate stand giant cabbage-palmettoes, thirty and forty feet high, set in groups of five and seven, the Moorish numbers. A number of large live-oaks, one a tree of great breadth and beauty, remain on the grounds. Near the centre of the lawn a fort has been built of white stone, having two embrasures. In it are mounted two old cannon that were spiked on the reservation of Tampa during the Civil War. The grounds front on the Hillsborough River and overlook the city, Fort Brooke and Tampa Bay, and are filled with fruit-trees, roses and flowers. ANNUAL CUSTOMS RECEIPTS: $75 "'The streets of Tampa are not what they will be, but a great improvement has been
going on in the last year; and when all the thoroughfares are paved, macadamized or otherwise hardened, they will be attractive drives. The roads on the west side of the river are naturally hard and smooth, giving fine drives in various directions. The water supply is obtained from one of the largest springs of water in the State, and is abundant for all purposes, and ample factories provide ice from distilled water. Until the session of Congress of 1889, Tampa was in the Key West customs district, and the customhouse business was looked after by a deputy appointed by the Collector of Customs at Key West. But when Congress passed a bill making Tampa a regular port of entry, a collector and a full corps of assistants were appointed. To give an idea of the growth of Tampa, it is only necessary to compare the customs returns for 1885, when, under a deputy-collector, the receipts were only $75, with the report of last year, which showed receipts considerably above $100,000. "For a long time builders had suffered great inconvenience and delay because there were no brickmaking works. It was not believed that good brick could be made in Tampa, and all orders for this necessary building material had to be sent away from home. But in 1888, one of the enterprising citizens, who had found a bed of good clay just north of the city, began to manufacture bricks. The result is that builders are now furnished with home-made bricks almost as fast as they need them. It was stated to me that as much as $300,000 had been expended in the erection of brick buildings during the last year. One of the new public buildings is the City Hall and Court House. It is 50 by 100 feet on the sides and is two and a half stories high. 'THE PEER OF ANY IN SOCIAL LIFE' "Tampa's population may certainly be called cosmopolitan, comprising people from every quarter of the globe; but three classes preponderate so largely as to warrant distinction, the American, the Cuban white people, and the African or colored people. There is no difference worthy of note between the first mentioned in Tampa and those of other sections of the United States. They have all the push and enterprise characteristic of the American people, and are the peer of any in social life. "There are between three and four thousand Cubans in Tampa, and some Spaniards, too, but there is an intense prejudice on the part of the Spaniards against the Cubans, and as the latter feel the same dislike for the Spaniards, conflicts between the two sometimes occur, and if it were not for the good police administration might prove serious in some instances. The Cubans are many of them property holders and are identified closely with the city's growth. They are reported as moral, temperate, energetic and quite desirable citizens; and, are almost without exception, engaged in cigar-making and kindred industries. They are also an amusement-loving people, have several clubs and societies, an opera-house, a band and a newspaper. The Cuban settlement is in the Fourth Ward, called Ybor City, after Martinez Ybor, the pioneer cigar manufacturer in Tampa. Only four years ago this part of the city was an unimproved and uncultivated forest; now it is an active, bustling, wealthy town within itself, and, to add to its interest, Postmaster Cooper recently established a branch station, as he has also in the settlement of the colored people, for the accommodation of those who live far from the general post-office. "Twelve cigar factories are located in Ybor City, and there nearly all of the cigar-makers
live. The largest factories are those of Ybor & Co., Sanchez, Haya & Co., Lozano, Pendas & Co., R. Monne & Bro., and E. Pons & Co. These five factories manufactured 33,950,575 cigars last year, the output of the Ybors alone being 15,030,700. The total number manufactured in the thirty factories in Key West was 77,251,374. More than $30,000 is paid out to the 1500 or 2000 cigar-makers in Ybor City every Saturday night, one-fourth of which is paid out at Ybor's factory; and about $150,000 has been expended here in the past six years upon improvements. This cigar-making industry has contributed materially to the development and growth of Tampa during the last five years, and it promises much greater benefit in the future. It was in October, 1885, that Martinez Ybor & Co., who began manufacturing in Havana in 1854, and afterward put up a large factory in Key West, came to Tampa to investigate the resources and advantages offered for cigar-making. They soon afterward purchased forty acres of land in the Fourth Ward, cleared it of the pines, wild-oats and gophers, and built a factory, a large boarding-house or hotel, and several small cottages for the workmen whom they brought from Key West and Havana. The venture proved a success from the start and improvements were added. The original factory, a wooden structure, is now the opera house, and a large brick factory has succeeded the first one, where the daily output of the 450 cigar makers employed is 40,000 to 50,000 cigars. Then came Sanchez & Haya, Emilio Pons, and others, and all declare that they are doing an excellent business. "'The required condition of the climate of Tampa for good cigars is said to be fully equal to that of Key West or Havana,' said one of the manufacturers who has had factories in both places. 'This has been proven by an actual and thorough test. Another advantage comes from the superior transportation facilities of the South Florida Railroad, which gets freight quickly to New York.' QUIET, INOFFENSIVE CLASS "The colored people of Tampa are declared to be in a better general condition than they are in any other part of the South. They are also represented to be a generous, quiet and inoffensive class of citizens. They are also far more industrious than those in some other sections of the South, working almost every day, and the 2000 negro population have a settlement of their own, midway between Tampa proper and Ybor City, which would be a credit to any community. Many of the houses, like the streets, run in irregular lines, but the homes and the shops have a tidy and orderly appearance as though not neglected, and at night everything about them is quiet and peaceful, only the songs and the moderate conversations and the musical laughter being heard. Very few of these people live in rented apartments, but nearly all own their little cottage homes. They have many excellent churches, schools taught by colored teachers, and nearly every home has a small library. Then, too, or with very few exceptions, the colored people command the respect of the whites. "Port Tampa, which is the port from which the Plant Steamship Line sails for Havana and other places, is about ten miles below here. One of its attractions is 'The Inn,' a great hotel built in colonial style, beside the South Florida Railroad, over the water and about 2000 feet from the shore. It is both a summer and winter resort for tourists and Floridians. Another attraction is the fishing, either for bass from the wharf or boats, or for the tarpon, or, 'Silver King,' at Pine
Island. The third attraction is Picnic Island, the name itself telling its purpose. "'Not withstanding the general depression of the country during the last five years, the growth of Tampa has gone forward with a rapidity unsurpassed in any five years of its history. The entire city has increased in population from seven thousand to twenty-eight thousand during the past decade and is still growing steadily. Property is as valuable on the main business street of Tampa as it is in New York City above Central Park. The city has a Board of Trade, a Board of Health, schools, academy and churches of all Christian denominations. Few, if any, cities in Florida have a more promising future before them than Tampa."
On the evening of March 18, 1981, more than 500 Tampans poured into the renovated Tampa Theatre to see a rerun of the locally-made movie, "Hell Harbor", presented by the Tampa Historical Society. It was a gala evening and a nostalgic one, as several old-timers stood on the beautiful stage and recalled the filming of this show in 1929 at Rocky Point and told of the personalities who appeared in the show Lupe Velez, Rondo Hatton and others. It was produced by Henry King, who married a Tampa lady. HUNDREDS REVISIT 'HELL HARBOR' MASTER OF CEREMONIES ... Hampton Dunn on stage at Tampa ELIZABETH DELANEY ... recalls filming of Show
THE TAMPA STAR OF'HELL HARBOR' ... featured in Ripley's 'Believe It or Not!' in 1939 -Photo from HAMPTON DUNN COLLECTION
THE FINAL YEARS OF FORT BROOKE By JAMES W. COVINGTON Professor of History University of Tampa With the discovery of more than 100 skeletons in downtown Tampa, on a site being prepaved for a parking garage, some of them buried alongside Indian artifacts and in coffins and others wearing clothes of possible military origin, the belief was entertained by some present-day Tampa history buffs that the Fort Brooke Cemetery was abandoned by the military when it moved from Fort Brooke and turned the area over to civilian control. Such was not the case. In 1883 the remains of the 20 or more officers and enlisted men in the Fort Brooke Cemetery were removed to Barrancas National Cemetery near Pensacola. During the Second Seminole War 1835-1842, there were 4,000 or more troops at Fort Brooke and the numerous buildings were kept in good condition. However, six years after the war had ended, the buildings had gotten into such bad shape that Colonel John T. Sprague complained that two buildings were in a condition that was dangerous. POSTCARD VIEW OF OLD FORT BROOKE PhotofromHAMPTONDUNNCOLLECTION
LAND FOR TOWN SITE After the hurricane of October, 1848, had leveled most of the Fort Brooke buildings, 35 citizens of Manatee (Bradenton) sent a letter to the Secretary of War pointing out that the people of Tampa did not want the fort for they needed the land for a town site. The Manatee people listed the good points of a Manatee River location including a nine foot deep water channel.1 Somehow, however, their request was denied but the Fort Brooke area was reduced in size and influence. When the people of Tampa did get most of the military reservation for a town site, the military saw little hope for further use for the base. By August, 1850, Major David Twiggs wrote that the post of Fort Brooke was to be broken up and the chaplain transferred to Camp Twiggs, MissisSippi.2 Yet, the post remained opened used as headquarters for the Indian emigration agent during the 1850s and played a fairly SALUTING THE DEAD Tampa Historical Society President Kenneth W. Mulder opens special memorial services remembering the 102 "unknown soldiers and settlers reburiedfrom the old Fort Brooke cemetery in Oaklawn Cemetery on May 3, 1981. Members of the Rough Riders Association look on. A slab marking the reburial site is shown at left. -Photo by HAMPTON DUNN
important role in the last Seminole War 1855-1858. After military units were transferred from Fort Brooke in 1858, the place was leased to Captain James McKay but his stay was interrupted first by Confederate and then Union troops. When the fort was occupied by the Confederates, the place was bombarded several times by Union warships. At the conclusion of the conflict, Union troops used the post as a base of operations for the military occupation of the area until 1869. By 1873, the buildings were unoccupied and James McKay was given a lease to use the wharf and one-half of the warehouse for his cattle shipping operations. Captain McKay at this time had the largest fleet of schooners and steamers in the state of Florida. RESERVATION REDUCED In 1877 the size of the reservation was reduced to 148 acres. Although the buildings were in deplorable condition, troops from Key West used the place as a refuge when yellow fever was prevalent on the island. People from the town of Tampa had roamed through the deserted post carrying away boards and bricks for use in their homes. One who became concerned about the condition of the area was Charles Hanford who commanded the Union troops at the fort when they occupied the place. He noted the grass and weed-ridden cemetery noting, "No longer is it a fit resting place for soldiers." The cemetery, one-fourth of an acre square was located one-fourth of a mile from the reduced military reservation.3 In response to his letter to the Army command, $200 was spent by the Quartermaster Corps to improve the conditions. In an inventory of the standing buildings made during the 1870s the following valuation was made: officer's quarters, 85 x 46, $3,000; barracks, 110 x 50, $1500; hospital, 42 x 30, $500; mess hall, 50 x 25, $500; bake house, 50 x 25, $300; storehouse, $50; commissary, $100; flag staff, $500; four wooden cisterns, $480 and boardwalk, $50, making a grand total of $7,180.4 In 1883 the War Department relinquished title to the Interior Department and the reservation was opened to homestead applications at the Federal Land Office. The 20 or more bodies in the Fort Brooke Cemetery were moved to Barrancas National Cemetery at Pensacola.5 The most famous remains to be moved was that of Captain Upton Fraser who had been killed at the Dade Massacre in 1835. As a result of the disclosure of the closing of the cemetery, it is clear that in the 1850s Tampa had three or more cemeteries, one for the military, one for the older Tampa families Oak Lawn and at least one for the Indians and those who for one reason or the other could not be placed in the other two. 'UNKNOWN" SOLDIERS AND SETTLERS' .. bodies transferred to Oaklawn -Photo by HAMPTON DUNN
FOOTNOTES 1Petition of E. Gla7ier and 35 others to Zachary Taylor, August 13, 1849, Letters Received AdJutant General's Office, 1822-1860, B115-445, Microcopy Roll 400, 258, National Archives, Washington, D.C. 2Major-General David Twiggs to Adjutant-General's Office, August 18, 1850, Historical Information Relative to Military Posts and Other Installations, 1700-1900, Volume A-B, Microcopy Roll 661-5511, National Archives, Washington, D.C. 3Charles Hanford to Major General Emery, October 20, 1874, ibid. 4List of buildings at Fort Brooke and their valuation, 1874, ibid. 5 Disposition of bodies in the Fort Brooke Cemetery, 1883, ibid.
THE TRUE MEANING OF PALMA CEIA By DR. EUSTASIO FERNANDEZ Chairman Department of Modern Languages University of Tampa For many years the meaning of the place named "Palma Ceia" has been a puzzle to native Tampans. The influx of new people to the area has made the problem once again acute. In the past there have been many divergent solutions suggested to Tampa's long-standing puzzle. Yet the correct answer has never been offered. With this article, the matter, I believe, is finally settled. The meaning of Palma Ceia should be considered in conjunction with the meaning of Terra Ceia, Terra Ceia Bay and Terra Ceia Point, all located on the southern side of Tampa Bay near its meeting with the Gulf. There is also a small town on State Road 683, north of Ellenton, called Terra Ceia Junction. Years ago, in 1912, there was an East Terra Ceia, but this name was PALMA CEIA SPRING TODAY ... Dr. Eustasio Fernandez PALMA CEIA POOL IN ITS HEYDAY The Palma Ceia Pool near present-day Garden Club Center on Bayshore Boulevard was a popular swimming hole for many years the early part of this century. This photo was made in July, 1926. The pool was spring fed, but reportedly health authorities felt it was inadequate source and eventually closed the pool. -Photo from HAMPTON DUNN COLLECTION
swallowed up by the community of Rubonia. A HYBRID TERM In recent years, in the western outskirts of Tampa the place name "Bay Ceia" was coined by someone who borrowed the Ceia from Palma Ceia and produced a hybrid: half English and half Portuguese. Since the term was coined from two languages, it has no meaning or translation. It has though, a pleasant phonetic sound. The Tampa subdivision known as Palma Ceia was developed around World War I by the Tampa Bay Land Company headed by James F. Taylor and his associate, Earle G. Moore. The name was borrowed from Palma Ceia Spring, which is located on the north side of Bayshore Boulevard at the corner of West Rubideaux Avenue, next to the Tampa Garden Center Building. From my early childhood years, I remember that at the spring site there was a poured-concrete swimming pool which received the fresh, clear-flowing water. It was the favorite swimming spot for the youth of the area. FRED BALL PARK After World War II, a half-acre mini-park was put together out of the spring area with concrete picnic tables and a large barbecue pit. The County Commissioners named it Fred Ball Park in honor of a commissioner of the time. ANOTHER VIEW OF THE PALMA CEIA POOL -Photo from HAMPTON DUNN COLLECTION
Today the spring lies abandoned to its past. On the east side of a concrete wall retaining the spring water is an old stone with chiseled-out, faded writing. It reads: Palma Ceia Spring, 1906. In the past, all the translations of Palma Ceia that I have known were based on the assumption that the two words were Spanish because "Palma" is a Spanish word. "Palma" is, however, also a Portuguese word. The term is identical in both languages and has the same meaning"palm." The word is derived from the Latin "palma," so named because the tree's spreading fronds look like the open palm and fingers of the hand. '"Ceia," however, is a Portuguese word that is not found in Spanish. OF SPANISH ORIGIN In the place name "Terra Ceia," both words are Portuguese. "Terra," which is derived from the Latin terra," is '"tierra" in Spanish, meaning "land." It should be kept in mind that in these two-word place names, the second element (Ceia) is used as an adjective, whereas the first element (Palma or Terra) is considered a noun. It is the reverse in English, where the adjective precedes the noun. Thus, the Portuguese words "Casa Branca," for example, (literally "house white" in the Portuguese word order) translate into English as "White House." In Palma Ceia, since Ceia, along with Palma, was assumed to be of Spanish origin and since there was no such Spanish word, it was further assumed that Ceia was the corrupted spelling of a Spanish word by English-speaking people. Consequently, ever since the subdivision was built, there have been many erroneous theories offered as to the meaning of Palma Ceia. The problem was not with Palma; it was the Ceia that had everyone stumped. "HEAVENLY PALM" As early as the period of the Florida land boom of the 1920s, the first translation of Palma Ceia was recorded as "'heavenly palm." It was thought that Ceia came from the Spanish "cielo," which means "'heaven" or "'sky." This translation became very popular, being for years the accepted meaning. In 1939, the Federal Writers' Project in their "Guide to Florida" stated that Terra Ceia stood for the Spanish phrase "heavenly land." Some national and Florida dictionaries of America place names and doctoral dissertation on Florida place names at the University of Florida contain the erroneous translation of Palma Ceia as "heavenly palm." ERRONEOUS EXPLANATION Another erroneous explanation offered later was that Palma Ceia came from the Spanish "'Palma Ceja," with "Ceja" meaning "'eyebrow" or the "brow of a hill." Thus arose the translation of ""palm ridge." The American Place Names: A Concise and Selective Dictionary for the Continental U.S.A., G. R. Stewart, 1970, states the following: "Terra Ceia: Florida. Probably for Spanish 'Tierra Ceja', which could be taken to mean 'land-summit'." In recent years, in yet another erroneous translation, Palma Ceia was taken to mean in Spanish "palmacilla," or "little palm." There was also the opinion that Palma Ceia was the corruption of the botanical name for the cabbage palm of Florida. Thus, Palma Ceia came from "Palaceae." Finally, there has been the translation of Palma Ceia as 11 palm by the seashore," Ceia meaning "by the shore" in Spanish.
According to the Spanish encyclopedia Espasa Calpe and world maps, there are several place names in Portugal and in Brazil using the words "'Seia" or "Ceia," a spelling variant because of the confusion of the two sibilants "c" and "s". In Brazil there is also a derivative of the word "Seia" which is "Seiada," meaning "a series of hollows," caves" or "deep recesses in a mountain." The root word "Seio," however, furnishes us with the meaning of the place names '"Seia" and "Ceia" of Portuguese origin. "Seio" means "bay of the sea"; it could also be interpreted as "concave opening" or "loop." There is a second Portuguese word "Ceia" which means supper, such as '"ceia-do senhor," meaning "the Lord's Supper." This word, however, comes from the Portuguese verb "cear," meaning "to dine," "to have supper." In view of the foregoing linguistic investigation, it is clear that Palma Ceia means "bay palm" in English, like the idea behind Bay Pines (Pinellas County). Terra Ceia translates as "bay land," similar to the fused place name "Lakeland" in central Florida.
COMPANY H IS DISMISSED! They went away smiling, these surviving members of Tampas famed Company H after their farewell dinner on November 7, 1980, at the Seville Restaurant. First mustered for service in the Mexican War in 1914, the group has held annual reunions since. But no more. They broke out the wine and celebrated their last get-together and then just faded away. Left to right: Herbert Gray, John Forsythe, Eric Fabian, Lt. Gen. Sumter L. Lowry, Joe Butzloff, Ed Olsen and Ralph Rouse. -TAMPA TIMES Photo
FAMED COMPANY H QUIETLY FADES AWAY By HAMPTON DUNN Amid the noise and merrymaking of a Friday evening crowd at Tampa's Seville Restaurant, a dramatic and historic moment took place on November 7, 1980, in a dark corner of the huge dining room. That was the instant Sumter Lowry "dismissed" the pitifully few survivors of famed Company H, 124th U.S. Infantry, ending an organization that had been in existence since 1914. The unit was put together by the now retired Lieutenant General to volunteer for duty on the Mexican border. They fought together down there and later in France, during World War I. They have had annual reunions from the end of World War I. SERGEANTS OF COMPANY H, 124th U.S. INFANTRY Non-commissioned officers of Company H were photographed at Camp Wheeler in Macon, GA, in November 1917. They're identified by the numbers penned on their hats: 1. Sgt. Rondo Hatton; 2. Sgt. Will Davis; 3. Sgt. Harold McGucken; 4. Sgt. Eugene Richard; 5. Sgt. John Dekle; 6. Sgt. Gettis Henderson; 7. Sgt. Joe Butzloff; 8. Sgt. Kenneth McPherson; 9. Sgt. James Booth; 10. Sgt. George Sheldon; 11. 1st Sgt. Byron Bushnell; 12. Sgt. Temple Hodges; 13. Sgt. Carl Epping; 14. Sgt. Roy Frierson; and 15. Sgt. Emil Fabian. -Photo from HAMPTON DUNN COLLECTION
But no more. Old soldiers never die, said General Douglas MacArthur, they just fade away. So this genial group of adventuresome soldiers plan no further get-togethers. They're all mighty old the General is 88, the others about the same and it becomes more burdensome every year to make the effort to go out socially. On this final, festive occasion, though, they had a high old time, joshing each other, shouting so their buddies could hear, drinking a toast from a bottle of fine wine they've been saving for decades for this very occasion, looking at scrapbooks and photos, and feasting on Spanish food. They also heard a proclamation from Mayor Bob Martinez, praising them in glowing terms for their service. A few days later, General Lowry wrote this writer, who was a guest at several of the annual reunions and the final one as well: This Reunion brought back many memories but it was a sad occasion for me. I look back to 1914 66 years ago and remember each one of these veterans as a THE 'OLD MAN' READIES A TOAST Lt. Gen. Sumter L. Lowry, with steady hand, gently pours a glass of rare wine as he readies a farewell toast to men of the Company H. This outfit was formed in 1914 and Lowry, now 88 years old and retired, led the unit through all the years. The wine was donated in 1923 and had been carefully stored for the day when the survivors would get together and fade away. That moment came on November 7, 1980, at the Seville Restaurant. -Photo by HAMPTON DUNN
virile strong man with his life before him and now they are just seven old men with their life's work almost completed. I certainly cannot complain about what the Lord has given me in my lifetime I am a very lucky man! At that last party, Lowry probably best expressed the love, affection and camaraderie these men still have for each other when he said: "When we get to heaven, our former top sergeant, Harold McGucken, will be standing next to St. Peter to greet us. And he'll personally lead each one of us to that section set aside for the old soldiers of Company H where love and friendship will be ours forever." So be it. THE ORIGINAL ROSTER OF COMPANY H Here is the original roster of Company H, 2nd Florida Infantry, as certified in 1963 by Maj. Gen. Henry W. McMillan, former Adjutant General: S. L. Lowry, Jr., Captain. Pasco Altman, J. P. Butzloff, John W. Biggar, J. L. Branch, T. A. Brown, H. N. Brown, A. B. Ballard, K. B. Cuesta, A. L. Cuesta, Jr., A. S. Clarke, Robert S. Clarke, Jr., L. L. Collins, M. C. Collins. Emil Fabian, Jr., F. C. Fessenden, H. Ford, A. D. Gates, N. B. Goodwin, R. J. Gould, H. P. Harvey, S. G. Harrison, Edgar Holtsinger, 0. H. Holmes, R. N. Hicks, W N. Hicks, E. A. Hyman, 0. P. Hilburn, William Honaker, W. A. Jordan, J. B. Kindig, Jr. C. T. Metcalfe, G. G. Myroner, Jr., J. W. Morris, Jr., R. P. McElbreth, Douglas McMichael, J. S. McNabb, Kenith MacPherson, H. A. MacPherson, W. L. Patrick, F. T. Phillips, J. B. Peters, Alfred Phillips. Y. D. Rey, W. L. Redditt, J. D. Robison, J. B. Sinclair, C. Schley, W. 0. Stovall, W. F. Steuart, John A. Smith, S. S. Sparkman, T. B. Sparkman, J. L. Slager, Samuel Selz. H. C. Turner, J. P. Tyner, J. E. Varela, John E. Walker, J. T. Watson, Jr., Stewart Wilson, E. H. Wilson, S. M. Yerkes, H. L. Peters, M. Sparkman, H. C. Hampton. These names were taken from Muster in Roll on September 24, 1914 at Tampa.
RECIPIENTS OF TAMPA HISTORICAL SOCIETY'S COVETED D. B. McKAY AWARD For Distinguished Contributions To Florida History 1972 FRANK LAUMER 1973 STATE SEN. DAVID McCLAIN 1974 CIRCUIT JUDGE JAMES R. KNOTT 1975 GLORIA JAHODA 1976 HARRIS H. MULLEN 1977 DR. JAMES W. COVINGTON 1978 HAMPTON DUNN 1979 WILLIAM M. GOZA 1980 TONY PIZZO
THE D. B. McKAY AWARD For Distinguished Contributions to Florida History 1981 WINNERS ALLEN MORRIS JOAN L. MORRIS The Tampa Historical Society is breaking precedent this year by making the D. B. McKay Award a joint honor for a couple of outstanding Floridians who have teamed together to collect and publish and preserve Florida history. Allen Morris, veteran journalist, Clerk of the Florida House of Representatives and compiler of The Florida Handbook, and his wife, Joan Lee (Perry) Morris, Curator of the State Photographic Archives at Strozier Library, Florida State University, are the recipients. WHO'S McKAY? D. B. McKay, native and member of a pioneer family, was three times Mayor of Tampa and for many years was the distinguished Editor and Publisher of The Tampa Daily Times In his later years, he produced the Pioneer Florida pages for The Tampa Tribune The D. B. McKay Award was created by the Tampa Historical Society in 1972 to honor others who have contributed to the cause of Florida history. Photo from HAMPTON DUNN COLLECTION SOME RECENT RECIPIENTS Three of Tampa's best known historians, all recipients of the D. B. McKay Award and active leaders in the Tampa Historical Society, are grouped in this photo taken at the 1980 annual meeting. Left to right are Hampton Dunn, Tony Pizzo and Dr. James W. Covington. TAMPA TRIBUNE Photo
.. LEVICOLLER Born March 22, 1791, Springfield, Mass.; died July 9, 1855, Tampa, Fla JEANNETTE COLLER HASKINS (MRS. W. T.) Born Sept. 25, 1841, Tampa, Fla.; died July 29, 1935, Tampa, Fla
LEVI COLLER CAME TO TAMPA FOR "THE CURE" By JO ANN HASKINS CIMINO Levi and Nancy Dixon Coller began their married life in 1813 on a land grant on Pigeon Creek near the St. Mary's River in north Florida. Their first child Nancy, who became Mrs. Robert Jackson, was born shortly after the young family experienced the death of Mrs. Coller's father, John Britton Dixon. He had been wounded by Indians and very much feared being scalped by them. The family hid in an abandoned cabin, and there John Dixon died. After this tragedy, they traveled on to Alachua County near present-day Gainesville. This is where Levi learned of the better land farther south. A story passed down to his descendants tells that Levi Coller had contracted a respiratory ailment. He had been told by friendly Indians that curative powers would be found on the sheltered shores of Tampa Bay. He was told to fashion a shallow, circular dugout and lie down on the sand within. The perimeter of the dugout should be lined with burning pine knots, known as "'lighter knots". These were found in abundance in the Florida woodland. What length of time this "Cure" would take is unknown. TROUBLES WITH INDIANS Levi and his family traveled on to the Bay Area. They arrived in 1824, with their young children along with Nancy's brothers, Britton and John Dixon. Some of their cattle had been stolen and released in the wilds by Indians. It was their hope that some of these would be found along the way, and would help sustain them in the new territory. They were Tampa's first family settlers. The healing "Cure" of the bountiful, better land must have instilled strength during his recovery, for Levi Coller lived for another 32 years through the early settlement of Tampa. JEANNETTE COLLER HASKINS TELLS OF ONE OF THE FIRST GOVERNMENT CONSERVATION EFFORTS IN THE BAY AREA AND THE BEGINNING OF THE LOCAL CITRUS INDUSTRY "When the Coller family arrived here they found a beautiful country, with fish and game in abundance. Soldiers were here under the command of Colonel George M. Brooke." The youngest daughter, Jeannette, then Mrs. William T. Haskins, gave an account to The Tampa Tribune in December, 1914, of some of her own experiences and some of the stories told to her by her family of Fort Brooke and the life of the early settlers. "'There was no village here at the time of the arrival of the soldiers. Key West, Pensacola, Tallahassee, Apalachicola, St. Joseph's Bay and St. Augustine were the principal cities of the state then. One of the reasons the soldiers had been sent to Tampa was to stop the cutting of the giant live oak trees. In those days of wooden ships, the staunch oak was in demand; particularly such great trees as then formed a massive grove covering practically all of what is now (1914) known as The Garrison. Then, as the United States
was forced to put soldiers in the fields against the Indians, Tampa became the headquarters for the troops on the west coast." START OF CITRUS INDUSTRY When the Coller's first came to Tampa, their home was near what is now Six Mile Creek. In those days it was known as Coller Creek. There they lived in times of peace, but when Indian uprisings came, they were forced to the shelter of the Garrison. "On his farm he raised livestock, and some of this he sold to Fort Brooke. Levi Coller, a hardy woodsman, usually found profitable employment," Jeannette related. "One of his ventures was the building of a boat. A sailor ran this boat for him between Tampa and Cuba, bringing back fruit and produce that he sold to the Garrison. Oranges in barrels were brought back also. The oranges that rotted on the way over from Cuba were carefully saved. When the boat landed it was his custom to cover the spoiled fruit over with a little soil in rows. Thus he began the first nursery in the state of Florida. From these oranges the first groves were planted in Hillsborough County. The Odet Phillippe grove along Old Tampa Bay was the first to be planted with these trees. Levi Coller's grove on his farm was the second in the area. He sold nursery stock to many of the pioneers from the old stock that was grown on his land." Levi Coller had served as a guide for the troops in Fort Brooke. Later in his life he moved into town and was granted permission to build his house inside of the military reservation. His daughter, while recalling her childhood days, described the Fort: "The military grounds were kept in beautiful condition with the cleared drilling grounds in front of the general's quarters and winding walks throughout the mammoth oaks." Throughout the lifetime of Jeannette Coller, Tampa had grown from only a military post at her birth to an outpost of civilization. She walked through the mighty oaks and smelled the blossoms of the budding Tampa citrus industry. For 94 years she saw Tampa grow from a small fortress defending the sturdy oaks to the advent of the cigar industry and the commercial growth of today's Tampa.
Pay Today, I'll Trust Tomorrow ALEX PHILLIPS WAS A PIONEER TAMPA MERCHANT By JO ANN HASKINS CIMINO Samuel Alexander Phillips is shown, above, in his carriage at his residence on East Street. He owned a grocery, feed and grain business at 501 E. Harrison Street. During the depression years times were hard and though this sign hung in his store, Phillips had compassion for his customers. Their debits increased until he had to give up his store and land. "Alex" Phillips in a better year is shown on the left in the rear seat. The other gentleman is unidentified. Behind the steering wheel is his daughter Ruby Phillips, wife of Vernon "Gadabout" Gaddis, television personality of fishing fame. Daughter Jeannette Phillips, Mrs. Lee A. Prior, is sitting opposite her sister. They are shown in their "Auburn Beauty" of early 1900 vintage, obviously on SAMUEL ALEXANDER PHILLIPS AND HIS SPORTY CARRIAGE. Since man to man is so unjust, I hardly know which one to trust. I've trusted many to my sorrow. So pay today, I'll trust tomorrow. -Sign in Phillips Store
a festive occasion in their gaily decorated auto. "Gadabout" Gaddis now resides in Jacksonville, Florida and spends his summers in the state of Maine. THE PHILLIPS AND THEIR AUBURN BEAUTY
CAPTAIN JOHN MILLER BUILT TAMPA'S FIRST SHIPYARD By JANE (MRS. STOCKTON) SMITH Captain John Miller, pioneer Tampa merchant, ship owner and operator, builder of Tampa's first shipbuilding and repair yard, had a very interesting history. It is related in Governor Francis P. Fleming's Memoirs of Florida that he was born in Norway, August 4, 1834. At the age of 11 he sailed as a cabin boy to Quebec. On CAPTAIN JOHN MILLER John's Pass named for him
reaching Quebec he became an apprentice on the American ship Allegheny and served four years learning navigation and seamanship. During this time the vessel visited ports in all parts of the world; but those years, though rich in experience and interest, were not correspondingly lucrative for the young boy, as he received no pay for his services. During the next three years, Miller was a sailor on a packet boat running between New York and Liverpool, serving as second mate part of the time. Then, after spending a year or so on the New England coast and at Matanzas, Cuba, he went to Cape Cod, where he engaged in the summer time in fishing and in the winter was master of a boat making West Indies ports. CIVIL WAR EXPERIENCES At the outbreak of the Civil War Captain Miller purchased a brig, which was used by the Federal government during the war as a transport. His life was filled with adventure during the war period. At the close of the war he bought the schooner George W. Dill in New York, loaded it with merchandise and sailed for CAPE COD'S MELROSE INN ... homestead of Captain Miller
Florida to engage in trading. He touched first at Key West, then came to Tampa. Captain Miller's name was a prominent one in all the navigation in all the waters about Tampa. In 1867, Miller bought the largest mercantile establishment in the city and for many years was the leading merchant and banker. In 1874 he took as partner, W. B. Henderson, and the firm Miller and Henderson did a large mercantile and banking business for 20 years. CARRIED THE MAIL Also during this time Captain Miller owned many vessels which made regular trips to New York, New Orleans, Mobile, Philadelphia, Havana, and Central American ports. These vessels carried the mail for all the west coast of Florida, and the firm maintained an inland mail service by wagons until the railroad came in. Two of the largest steamships were the Lucy P. Miller and the Lizzie Henderson, named for Captain Miller's daughter and Mrs. Henderson. The firm developed a great banana plantation in Honduras and were pioneers in the shipment of the fruit to the United States. Miller and Henderson built the first telegraph line into Tampa and were instrumental in bringing the cigar industry to Tampa. One of the last business ventures of Captain Miller was the shipyard on the east bank of the Hillsborough River, which is still in operation. Captain Miller's first residence on Ashley Street was used by the South Florida Railroad as its passenger station when the road entered Tampa. STORY-TELLING TIME Captain Miller is entitled to recognition as an important factor in the early development of Tampa and its port. He was a big man physically, and had great courage and vision. It was my privilege during the latter years of his life, when he had retired from active service and when I was embarking in newspaper work, to spend many pleasant hours with him listening to his tales of exciting experiences at sea. Captain Miller had a wide reputation for honesty and fair dealing. Captain Miller had two children John H. and Lucy P. (the wife of R. A. Crowell, Tampa1). Lucy P. was my very beloved grandmother who helped raise me after my mother, Berdina Crowell Tarr, died when I was young. She used to thrill me with stories of sailing with her father to and from the ports mentioned above, sometimes at the helm alongside her father. She also told of her father and Mr. Henderson owning all the property from John's Pass to St. Petersburg, recorded in Tampa archives, as payment for a $46 grocery bill. According to my grandmother, John's Pass was named for her father, Captain Miller. All of this means that my grandchildren are 6th generation Tampans, of which I am very proud. The beautiful Melrose Inn in Harwich Port, Massachusetts, still in operation, was the home of Captain Miller and my mother's birthplace. The center section of the Inn is the original homestead. FOOTNOTES 1From the D. B. McKay column in The Tampa Tribune, and from the History of Hillsborough County by Ernest L. Robinson, copyright 1928.
NURSE CLARA BARTON, RED CROSS FOUNDER, SERVED IN TAMPA by HAMPTON DUNN NURSE CLARA BARTON, RED CROSS FOUNDER, SERVED IN TAMPA By HAMPTION DUNN During an unwelcome vacation from the front lines of the Spanish American War, Clara Barton, founder of the American Red Cross, picnicked at the water's edge on the grounds of the Tampa Bay Hotel. This rare photograph was made in 1898 by Mrs. E. B. Drumright (then Miss Annie Laurie Dean) and is one of the few known portraits of Miss Barton of this era. Miss Barton (striped neckpiece) is seated to the right of the coffee urn. The other women are not identified, but the men are(left to right) a Mr. McDowell, Dr. Egan, and Dr. Eldwell. Miss Barton at first was stationed in the plush hotel, but moved to more modest quarters over on Plant Avenue. The American Red Cross is celebrating its Centenary this year. Photo at left is from an old memorial postcard. Photos from HAMPTON DUNN Clara Barton Born December 25, 1821 At North Oxford, Massachusetts Died April 12, 1912 Founder American National Red Cross
YBOR CITY HISTORIAN EMILIO DEL RIO DIES HE DIDN'T DIE UNTIL YBOR CITY'S HISTORYWAS SECURE Reprinted From ORLANDO SENTINEL-STAR Aug. 16,1981 By DICK BURDETTE TAMPA I wish I could have been there. I wish I could have seen the look on the old man's face. Not that he could have seen anything. The old man was blind and pushing 90 and so frail and in such poor health, sometimes they just didn't know how he kept going. Perhaps it was the dream that made him cling so tenaciously to life. Perhaps that's why, shortly after he attended the long-awaited opening of the State-operated Ybor City historical museum, Emilio Del Rio died. 20-YEAR PASSION For more than 20 years, it was Emilio Del Rio's passion, this idea of preserving a portion of Ybor City's colorful past in the form of a museum. A couple of years ago, on a hot, muggy weekday afternoon, Emilio Del Rio sat in his cool, neat, modest bungalow on this city's east side, near the Republica de Cuba, and talked about relics and keepsakes and mementos of days gone by. Like thousands of people who live, or once lived, in this historic Cuban-SpanishItalian settlement, Emilio Del Rio was proud of Ybor City and not without good reason. It was Emilio Del Rio's father, Antonio Del Rio, who along with Jose Martinez Ybor EMILIO DEL RIO. 1893-1980
and Jose Santo, founded Ybor City in 1886. A DEED OF 1886 And if anybody doubted it, hanging on the wall of Emilio Del Rio's living room was an original deed page 11, book no. 1 and dated Dec. 16, 1886. It wasn't, by any stretch of the imagination, the only relic adorning Emilio Del Rio's home. On another wall hung a "'Graham Bell" one of the first-ever telephones in town. In another room was an upright Edison phonograph, and a bunch of cylinder-shaped records. The place was a storehouse of photographs irreplaceable photographs of Ybor City landmarks, personalities. Of Gasparilla parades, vintage 1910. Of the first car ever built in Tampa. Old cigar factories. YBOR'S OWN CARNIVAL And there was good reason it was Emilio Del Rio who spent so much time searching out and preserving remnants of Ybor City's past. Emilio Del Rio, see, was Ybor City's very first-ever mechanic. And bicycle repairman; its first locksmith and phonograph repairman and typewriter repairman and gunsmith and watchmaker. And if you got past his modesty, Emilio Del Rio would own up to being a juggler and a ventriloquist and a magician back in the days when Ybor City residents flocked to their very own carnival. Before his sight failed him, Emilio Del Rio also wrote a history of Ybor City one version in Spanish, one in English. DEL RIO PRESERVED YBOR CITY'S PAST THANKS TO EMILIO DEL RIO, hundreds of photographs of Ybor City's early days have been preserved for future generations. His book, published in 1972, reproduced numerous scenes.
And even after he was forced to live in a world of shadows, Emilio Del Rio refused to give up on the idea that someday, people would be able to walk into a museum and read much of the history he not only lived, but wrote and saved. Even though, if you want to know the truth, Emilio Del Rio was not convinced that anyone shared his passion for Ybor City's past. THEY ARE GOING TO... So many people say they are going to do something," Emilio Del Rio said that afternoon a couple of years ago. "They come and they borrow my things and lose them or steal them or destroy them ." Which was why, back in 1979, even when the city of Tampa and the state of Florida began clearing the rats and the debris and winos out of the old F. Ferlita Bakery Building, within view of Seventh Avenue, Ybor City's main drag, and announced plans to restore and preserve the old bakery building as a state-run museum, Emilio Del Rio politely said he would wait and see. So many had promised so much so often.... But this time it wasn't just talk. The museum is open, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., seven days a week, and in it are relies and photographs, some of them the ones Emilio Del Rio saved when nobody else seemed to care. Yeah, I wish I had been there the day it opened. I wish I could have seen the smile on the old man's face....
THE USS TAMPA IS BORN AGAIN! By HAMPTON DUNN The USS Tampa sails again That was the name of the Coast Guard cutter that was torpedoed and sunk in World War I in the Bristol Channel carrying to watery graves 24 Tampans serving aboard. On a cold, blustery day on March 19, 1981, at the Tacoma, Washington, Boat Building Co. yards, a new USS Tampa went down the ways after formal christening. It was the commencement of life for the fourth Coast Guard cutter by that name. Representing the City of Tampa at the christening was City Representative Helen Chavez. Chilled by the wind, Mrs. Chavez facetiously suggested the traditional bottle of champagne broken on the cutter's bow probably could have been put to better use. DIGNITARIES LAUNCH NEW USS TAMPA Tampa's City Representative Helen Chavez at center -Photo from HAMPTON DUNN COLLECTION ISN'T SHE A BEAUTY? the "reborn" USS Tampa -Photo from HAMPTON DUNN COLLECTION
We would have been better off if we had passed around the bottle, she remarked. Mrs. Chavez was warmed, however, by the spirit of friendship among Tacoma's residents. Tacoma Mayor Mike Parker made her an honorary citizen of the city. The Tampa Councilwoman found the launching really exciting. It almost makes you want to cry when the vessel slides down the ways, she said. Christening the cutter as the Tampa was Dorothy Hoffman of New York City, whose husband, Irwin, was principal speaker at the launching. Hoffman, a professional artist, is the surviving younger brother of David Hoffman, a former Harvard law student who was among the 131 seafarers lost aboard the original Tampa. The cutter, the second of 13 vessels the Coast Guard has on order in the so-called Famous class, cost about $35 million. Each of the cutters will be named for a famous Coast Guard vessel of yesteryear.
SOLEMN CEREMONIES marked the dedication by the Rotary Club of Tampa of Memorial Highway at the corner of Howard Avenue and Grand Central Avenue (now Kennedy Boulevard) on January 2, honoring the Hillsborough County men who lost their lives in World War I. -Photo by C. VERNE KLINTWORTH
THE ROAD OF REMEMBRANCE IS 60 YEARS OLD By HAMPTON DUNN This year, 1981, marks the 60th anniversary of the dedication of Memorial Highway Hillsborough County's enduring "Road of Remembrance" now honoring veterans of two World Wars. THE MEMORIAL MONUMENT at Howard Avenue and Grand Central Avenue (now Kennedy Boulevard) was still new when this photo was taken probably in the late 1920s. The Memorial Highway project was constructed in 1921. This photo shows a modest amount of traffic looking east on Grand Central from the monument. Monument Pharmacy, for many years a landmark at the intersection is shown at right. Note traffic sign warning the speed limit was 20 miles per hour. The monument at this point later became a traffic hazard and was often hit by speeding motorists. -Photo from HAMPTON DUNN COLLECTION
Chopped up by new expressways and expansion of Tampa International Airport and other modern projects, nevertheless there still remains a large portion of the old Memorial Drive, and even some of the lovely water oaks that were planted as part of the beautification back in 1921 are standing. When the 15-foot "superhighway" was dedicated on January 2, 1921, a message was read from the president of the American Forestry Association declaring, "May these trees you dedicated on the first Road of Remembrance in the United States live as long as the memory of the 106 you so finely honor." 105 MEN, ONE WOMAN The figure referred to was the number of EARLY VIEW OF MONUMENT at Howard and Memorial Highway Photo from HAMPTON DUNN COLLECTION A SUNDAY OUTING on Memorial Highway near Tampa was a popular event in the early 1920s. The highway was new and young couples parked along the way to pick oleanders and to sit on the bridge rails for picture-taking. The guys wore straw hats or caps and the gals all had on hats and long dresses. -Photo from HAMPTON DUNN COLLECTION
Hillsborough County soldiers who lost their lives in World War 1. Actually, there were 105 men and one woman who made the supreme sacrifice in that conflict. Both the highway and its beautification were sponsored by the Rotary Club of Tampa. The project was conceived by James G. Yeats, a Rotarian and then Chairman of the Board of County Commissioners. Jack Hedrick, a County engineer and also a Rotarian, laid out the highway, a planned asphalt ribbon that replaced a shell road from Howard Avenue, then the City limits, on Grand Central Avenue (now Kennedy Boulevard) to the Pinellas County line. The road was 131/2 miles long and cost $870,000, and when opened was considered one of the finest highways in all of Florida. The Tampa Rotarians spent $7,500 for beautification, lining both sides with water oaks and oleanders of many colors. AUGUST FOX, SCULPTOR There were two monuments, identical in design, and sculpted of marble and granite, which marked the east and west terminals. Each shaft was inscribed with the names of the dead Hillsborough heroes. The monuments were designed by yet another Rotarian, Ralph Martin. ONE OF TWO SHAFTS in the Memorial Highway project stands proudly today at a triangular park on State Road 60 just off Kennedy Boulevard. The 12 mileposts which originally were spaced along the highway between Howard Avenue and the Pinellas County line encircle this monument which originally was erected at the county line. Another monument, which stood at Howard Avenue, now is located in front of the American Legion Cemetery on Kennedy Boulevard at Dale Mabry. Names of the 106 Hillsborough County veterans who lost their lives in WWI are engraved in plates on the milestones, as well as being etched on the base of the monuments. -Photo by HAMPTON DUNN
The beautiful memorials were carved in the plant of Turner Marble & Granite Company. The sculptor was August R. Fox and this was one of several "special" jobs he did. Others included carving the Greek coins on the Exchange National Building and the decorations on the Scottish Rite Temple on Kennedy Blvd. Fox was a native of Carrara, Italy, where the fine Carrara marble is quarried. He was born in 1875 and came with his family to the States when he was a young boy. They settled in Vermont where his father, Adrian Fox, worked in the granite quarries and young August learned the trade. (The Italian family name is "Volpei," which is "Fox" in English. August Fox had his name legally changed after he came to Tampa in the early part of this century.) His daughter, Mrs. Flora Fox Antinori, lives at 3019 Emerson Street, and recalls how proud her father was of his sculpture and always pointed with pride to it when the family drove by the monuments on Sunday afternoon outings. Mrs. Antinori is the widow of Ignazio Antinori, who also worked at Turner Marble and was called "Benny" by his co-workers. Sculptor Fox died in 1947. TRAFFIC HAZARD One monument stood for years in the center of the intersection of Howard and Grand Central. As World War II neared, the centerpiece became somewhat of a traffic hazard as automobiles frequently were driven into it. So in 1940 the shaft was moved to what is now the intersection of Dale Mabry Highway and Kennedy Boulevard. In 1958, when the intersection was widened, the monument was moved within the American Legion Cemetery, a short distance away. The monument originally placed at the Pinellas County line at Oldsmar, was moved in 1963 to a park in a triangle on Memorial Highway just north of Kennedy Boulevard, as State Road 60 starts for Clearwater. In the little triangle park also are placed the 12 mileposts that were set out by the Rotary Club in 1928. Each contained bronze scrolls on which several names of the veterans were etched. REDEDICATED AFTER WWII Memorial Highway was rededicated in June, 1948, to veterans of both World War I and II by the Rotary Club. As the highway was widened and improved through the years, many of the old trees had to be sacrificed. From time to time they had been bumped by colliding automobiles. Six decades have passed since that exciting day in 1921 when colorful ceremonies marked the opening of Memorial Highway and the monuments were dedicated. The inscription on the memorials was written by Ed Lambright, a past president of the Rotary Club and for many years Editor of The Tampa Tribune. It read: This Memorial Highway is reverently dedicated as a Road of Remembrance to those who gave their lives for Liberty in the World War, 1917-18, by the people of Tampa and Hillsborough County through the Tampa Rotary Club.
The Bloodletters of Florida Paul J. Schmidt, M.D., and James E. Changus, M.D., Ph.D. Reprinted from The Journal of the Florida Medical Association 67:743-747 (Aug.) 1980 In Florida, as elsewhere, there are modern usages of technically sophisticated therapeutic bloodletting with an occasional throwback to more primitive times. The most interesting period of phlebotomy in Florida may well have been the earliest colonial days. In that era, the bleeding customs of Caribbean Indian tribes were practiced side-by-side with the skills of European ship surgeons. The contrasting features of those medical traditions are uniquely illustrated by the experience of one Lionel Wafer. Indians and Colonists In 1681, Lionel Wafer, a young English physician, was marooned on the Isthmus of Darien. He had learned his profession while very young "in the service of the surgeon of the ship," probably on pirate vessels. He had also several years of practice in Jamaica, "at Port Royal where I followed my business of Surgery." On his third voyage, he was left behind with "the wild Indians" to recuperate. His book on that experience contains many medical observations on the New World.1 Among the most descriptive passages are those telling of his life with a Panamanian Indian tribe whose chief, Lacenta, was "Prince over all the South." "It so happen'd, that one of Lacenta's Wives being indisposed, was to be let Blood; which the Indians perform in this manner: The Patient is seated on a Stone in the River, and one with a small Bow shoots little Arrows into the naked Body of the Patient, up and down; shooting them as fast as he can, and not missing any part. But the Arrows are gaged, so that they penetrate no farther than we generally thrust our Lancets: And if by The Authors PAUL J SCHMIDT, M.D. Dr. Schmidt is Director of the Southwest F7orida Blood Bank, Inc. and Clinical Professor of Pathology, University of South Florida, College of Medicine, Tampa. JAMES E CHANG US, M.D., Ph.D. Dr. Changus is Staff Pathologist, Department of Pathology, St. Joseph's Hospital, Tampa. Fig. 1. Bloodletting by the American Indian. (From Lionel Wafer, A New Voyage and Description of the Isthmus of America. 1699. National Library of Medicine).
chance they hit a Vein which is full of Wind, and the Blood spurts out a little, they will leap and skip about, shewing many Antick Gestures, by way of rejoycing and triumph." Wafer offered to perform the "Business of Surgery". in a better way and with his lancet "breathed" Lacenta's wife's vein. There was the sudden appearance of a stream of blood, and Lacenta swore by his Tooth, that if she did otherwise than well, he would have my Hearts Blood. Only 12 ounces were taken and the patient was well the next day. Wafer was made much of by Lacenta in a speech and after that he was carried from tribe to tribe in a hammock in great Splendor and Repute, administering both Physick and Phlebotomy to those that wanted. It is not likely that Wafer had read of the circulation as described by Harvey 50 years earlier. But of course, bleeding had been the job of the barber surgeons from earliest times. Henry VIII had granted a charter in 1541 to his chief surgeon, Thomas Vicary, the elected Master of the United Company of Barbers and of Surgeons. Warfer specifically could cut or breathe a vein, whereas the American Indian just cut indiscriminately, albeit to a regular gaged depth. To what extent was Lacentas method of bloodletting practiced by the Indians of Florida? The Calusas of South Florida were skilled seafarers and it is possible that they had come from the island of the Caribbean to make a new home in Florida long before the coming of the white man.2 They would have brought their knowledge of medicine with them. Already in 1564, a century before Wafer, French Huguenots had planted the first European Colony this side of Mexico near the mouth of the Saint Johns River in Northeast Florida. In the engravings of Le Moyne, he illustrated bloodletting for pain by the Timucuan Indians who cut the skin with a sharp shell and then sucked out blood.3 Rather than waste it, that blood was given to drink to women who were nursing or pregnant. Much later, Bartram describes the use by Floridas 18th century Indians of the sharp teeth of the garfish to scratch and bleed themselves.4 Those references tell us that the practice of bleeding by the Indians of Northern Florida was much more primitive than that of the Indians of Panama. There was an official position of sangrador barbero (phlebotomist barber) on the rolls of the St. Augustine garrison in 1749.5 Fig. 2-North Florida. Blood sucked from the patients skin is then drunk by a pregnant woman. LeMoyne 1564 (From Charles E. Bennett. Settlement of Florida. U. of Florida Presses).
The Armamentarium Many of the instruments used for venesection by European surgeons of Wafers day, and earlier, became the tools of Floridas colonial physicians. In an important sense the available tools molded the history of practice. For an appreciation of the depth of such practice, one documenting a 600 year history of surgical instruments bleeding instruments and describes them in 45 pages of text.6 The instruments are classified as being of five types: the Lancet, the Fleam and the Schnapper were for opening an artery or vein; the Scarificator and the Cup were for collecting capillary blood. There were also special instruments for applying the leech. The Lancet -the true lancet was described over five hundred years ago. It had a flexible, pointed blade, usually double-edged and with folding guards of tortoise shell. Closed it was only 1 to 2 inches long. It was of course such a universal instrument in the medical practice that its name was given in 1823 to the most prestigious medical journal of the day. The Fleam -The fleam usually had three triangular blades which folded into a brass or bone case. The Schnapper -The spring lancet invented in 1680,7 had a single blade which was springloaded. It was made of steel or brass and was packaged in a small, fitted leather case. It became popular because its use required little knowledge of anatomy, and less bravery than the fleam. The Scarificator -Ambrose Pare is credited with introducing the name in the 16th century8 for the brass box containing a strong spring which drove a set of razor-sharp blades. The cutting depth was adjustable. The Cup -Dry cupping was done by placing a dome-shaped glass on the skin. The cup was heated to produce a vacuum although some models connected to a stopcock and syringe. In wet cupping, the glass was applied after Fig. 3 The Physician's tools: Fleam, Scarificators and Cups. (Property of Dr. G. C. Austin, Miami. Photograph by Charles Bailey, U. Miami Department of Medical Photography).
the scarificator or the lancet had made multiple superficial cuts in the skin. The Leech -Feeding the leech to engorgement has been a method used from antiquity to the present day. One of the theses submitted for the degree of Doctor of Medicine from the University of Basel as late as 1949 was entitled: "On the leech and its use in medicine."9 The leech jar was once a classic piece of pharmacist's pottery. The animal had to be handled carefully and among the instruments described was a speculum for placing the leech in the vagina.6 The Nineteenth Century Among American physicians who brought the tradition of bloodletting to this country from their European training was Benjamin Rush, the "Prince of Bleeders". That signer of the Declaration of Independence, Physician-General of the Military Hospitals of the United States, first American psychiatrist and founder of Dickinson College, believed with a passion in the value of bloodletting, especially in the treatment of yellow fever and mental illness. In a career as medical educator he taught more than 3,000 students, and he taught them all how to bleed, and bleed, and bleed again. "If the state of the pulse be our guide, the continuation of its inflammatory action after the loss of even 100 ounces of blood, indicates the necessity of more bleeding." One of Rush's patients lost 470 ounces (14 liters) in forty-seven bleedings.10 As a teacher, Rush had a great influence on medicine in the South. Of the 116 physicians who had become members of the Medical Society of South Carolina up to 1813, the year of his death, 60 were pupils of Rush. One of them, William Montgomery, writing to Rush described his treatment of a member of the South Carolina legislature in 1797 by saying that he, "took from him 165 ounces in five days without affecting his pulse or diminishing his fever. He died. Had we taken a still greater quantity the event might perhaps have been more fortunate.11 More of Florida's early physicians were trained in the medical schools of South Carolina than in any other.12 There is no doubt that copious bleeding was primary therapy in Florida for yellow fever, as well as everything else. Dr. Ayers P. Merrill was stationed in 1822 at Fort Barrancas near Pensacola. He reported to the Surgeon General of his success several years earlier with yellow fever by bleeding thirty-six ounces at one time (followed by calomel, jalop, opium and mercury). As a prophylaxis, after Fig. 4 Bloodletting in Nigeria 1979. Fig. 4A Animal horn used for cupping. (Smithsonian Institution Photo No. 73-5643). Fig. 4B Improvised lancet.
the arrival of a detachment in a yellow fever area he bled each man of sixteen ounces.13 The reports of surgeons stationed at Fort Brooke (Tampa) before the Civil War show a similar reliance on bleeding and cupping for many ailments including the sudden transition of troops from "the cold climate of Maine to the almost tropical one of Tampa Bay."5 Elsewhere in the South before the War between the States, another strong advocate of bloodletting was Dr. Moritz Schuppert, a graduate of the University of Marburg, who came to New Orleans in the early 1850's. He described its use during his training:14 I occasionally attended in one or the other village a dozen of young, full-blooded country girls, who assembled at the house of one or another, and while the feet were immersed in a bucket of warm water, I opened the saphena veins, abstracting from twelve to sixteen ounces of blood from each one. This was done every year in girls from the time when sixteen years old, till they were married, and never did I hear of any bad consequences. In 1861 in a pamphlet on gunshot wounds written for the surgeons of the Confederate States Army15 Schuppert advised: The best results follow venesection in the treatment of complicated gun-shot wounds. But, alas! the value of bloodletting, is like so many other valuable remedies, now discredited, and expectant homoeopathy seems to rule the day, so that young physicians are afraid to practice venesection." Halstead in 1884 in his famous paper on exchange transfusion for illuminating gas poisoning, first bled the patient and then retransfused the defibrinated blood. (The term he used, "refusion", certainly is much more direct than today's, "autologuous transfusion.") But his report really is a description of the excellent effects of simple bloodletting on carbon monoxide poisoning. 16 He says: "Why then transfuse, if venesection accomplished so much? If for no other reason, to allow of repeated venesection." However, by the end of the 19th century, there were few standard textbooks of medicine which advocated bloodletting.17 It was well recognized that the bleeding and purging therapy had taken its toll, and in Florida as well. In an address on the medical history of Florida in 1877 Palmer decries the earlier use of the lancet "which exhausted the strength of the patient."18 Modern Usages A bona fide case of wet cupping came to light in Florida in 1979 when a patient with an unusual history was seen by one of us (J.C.): A Florida engineer, working for a maritime company in Nigeria, was wearing heavy boots and working on a piece of machinery in a room where the temperature was in excess of 120F. Seeking relief from the heat, he went swimming and on emerging from the water developed swelling and pain in both legs. The German-speaking company doctor he went to see provided some treatment, but little rapport or relief. As a consequence he went to the local native doctor. That doctor sucked the air out of a hole in the small end of a hollow animal horn. He applied the horn to the skin and closed off the hole with a piece of rawhide he had been chewing. After the patient's skin had been raised by the vacuum thus produced, the doctor removed the horn and made multiple superficial cuts in the skin over that area. The animal horn was then reapplied in the same manner to the now lacerated area causing the extraction of blood and serous fluid. The treatment was applied to several areas.
The patient reported relief from his pain and the swelling receded in his left leg. However, the swelling in his right leg persisted, and the company shipped him home for care. He was admitted to a Florida hospital with a cellulitis, but also with nothing but praise for his native doctor. He was treated successfully with antibiotics and returned to Africa. Photographs of the lacerating implement which he brought with him, and a Nigerian animal horn used for such cupping are shown. The modern "lancet" appears to have been constructed from an automobile radio antenna and a piece of tin can. Therapeutic phlebotomy is still practiced in folk medicine and is also a mainstay in managing polycythemia. It has been revived recently in medical centers in a special form as exchange plasmapheresis where, like the old art of bloodletting it "eliminates rheumatic ailments, warms the marrow, clears the mind and makes the urine clean and clear."19 But do our modern reasons for bloodletting do ill or good? Perhaps like our predecessors in the art of medicine, and their patients, we should respect the healing value of the loss of blood. An old English adage 17 may be true: "A bleeding in the spring Is Physic for a king. References 1Walter L.: A New Voyage and Description of the Isthmus of America. London, James Knapton, 1699, pp 28-30. 2Federal Writers Project: Florida, A Guide to the Southernmost State. New York, Oxford University Press, 1939, pp 39, 327 3Bennett C. E.: Settlement of Florida, Gainesville, University of Florida Press, 1968. 4Bartram W.: Travels. New York, Dover, 1955, p 157 5W. M. Straight, M.D., unpublished data, January 1980. 6Seerig A. W. H.: Armamentarium Chirurgicum, Breslau, A. Gosohorsky, 1838, Vol 1, pp 573-618. 7Bennion E.: Antique Medical Instruments. Berkeley, University of California Press, 1979. 8 Davis A., and Appel T.: Bloodletting Instruments in the National Museum of History and Technology. Smithsonian Studies in History and Technology, number 41, Smithsonian Institution, 1979. 9Westfall P. P.: On the leech and its use in medicine, Thesis, Basel, 1949. 10Goodman N.G.: Benjamin Rush. Philadelphia, University of Pennsylvania Press, 1934, pp 250, 264. 11Waring J. L: The influence of Benjamin Rush on the practice of bleeding in South Carolina. Bull Hist. Med. 35:230-237, 1961. 12Personal Communication: Dr. Ashby Hammond, August 1979. 13Statistical Report on the Sickness and Mortality in the Army of the United States Washington, 1840, p 21. 14Schuppert M.: Blood-letting and kindred questions. New Orl Med S J IX(n.s.): 247, 256, 1881.
15Schuppert M.: A Treatise on Gunshot Wounds. New Orleans, Bulletin Book and Job Office, 1861. 16 Halstead W. S.: Refusion in the treatment of carbon oxide poisoning. Ann Anat Surg, Jan 1884. 17Bryan Jr. L. S.: Blood-letting in American Medicine, 1830-1892. Bull Hist Med 38:516-529, 1964. 18Palmer T. M.: Proc Fl Med Assoc Jacksonville, 1877. 19Talbot C. H.: Medicine in Medieval England. New York, Elsevier, 1967, p 131.0 Dr. Schmidt, P. 0. Box 2125, Tampa, FL 33601 Dr. Schmidt, P. O. Box 2125, Tampa, FL 33601
ELI BUCHANAN WITT THE SOUTHS MOST OUTSTANDING TOBACCO MERCHANT By EARL J. BROWN Vice President Emeritus Havatampa Cigar Company Eli Buchanan Witt, born at Gates, Tennessee, April 16, 1880, the son of Susie Lucas1 and Clayton H. Witt,2 attended public school in his home town and also attended Southwestern Baptist University, Jackson, Tennessee where he was a member of Sigma Nu Fraternity. He moved to Tampa in 1898 and in April 1903 was married to Ida Coffee of Texas who on October 27, 1904, gave birth to his only child, Ida Witt, in Tampa. Ida Coffee Witt3 died October 29, two days after her daughter's birth. She is buried in Woodlawn Cemetery. Mr. Witt and his daughter lived with his parents who provided a home for them giving AN ELI WITT STORE IN 1936 ... At 519 Franklin Street, at Twiggs -Photo from HAMPTON DUNN COLLECTION
the baby the care that a young child needs. His daughter, now Ida Witt Eskridge, and her daughter, Edwina Witt Lovingood, both make their homes in Tampa today. The South's most outstanding tobacco merchant of the early 1900s, Eli Witt,4 who prior to opening his own business in downtown Tampa, had worked at a soda fountain on Franklin Street, had in 1902 secured a position as a commercial -traveler (a traveling salesman) for American Tobacco Company and for R. J. Reynolds and had returned to Tampa in 1904 to work for his brother, C. B. Witt,5 who operated a wholesale grocery business. After following this line of work for several months Eli went into business on his own and opened his first retail cigar stand. This was early in 1905 and is considered to be the start of Eli Witt's career in the retail cigar and tobacco business. In the spring of 1905, Eli Witt purchased a cigar store, located at 505 Franklin Street, from D.A. Switzer who also operated a small cigar factory. Switzer manufactured a cigar brand, "Tampa Custom House", which was later to become a brand manufactured A HANDSOME FAMILY PORTRAIT Left to right are W, L. Van Dyke, Mrs. Eli (Billie) Witt, Mrs. Edna de Mandel (Mrs. Witt's mother) and Eli Witt. Date undetermined -From the HAV-A-TAMPA ELI WITT Collection by EARL BROWN
Mr. J. J. Shapiro, of New York, Mrs. Ruth Murray, of Atlanta, Ga., and Mr. and Mrs. Eli Witt, of Tampa, Fla., who were present on the veranda of the Jockey Club during the last week's racing. P. T. Jones. Fotograms, New York WITT VISITS CUBA When Eli Witt made his first visit to Cuba, from whence he got all the tobacco used in his products, he was interviewed by the Havana newspaper. This is a clipping of the story in the 1920s. The Witts are shown with J. J. Shapiro and Mrs. Ruth MurrayWhile there they were entertained by Mr. and Mrs. Karl Cuesta. -From the HAV-A-TAMPA ELI WITT CollectionbyEARLBROWN Tampa Cigar Magnate' Enjoys Havana Visit; Guest at Hotel Plaza Although he is a veteran of the Spanish-American war, and president and principal stockholder of a firm which annually uses thousands of pounds of Cuban tobacco in the manufacture of cigars, Ell Witt, of Tampa, Fla., had never visited this country until a few days ago, when he and Mrs. Witt accompanied by Ira J. Shapiro, of New York city, and Mrs. Ruth Murray, arrived here to be the guest of Fausto Simon at the Hotel Plaza. The career of Mr. Witt reads like a tale from the pen of Horatio Alger. At the outbreak of the Spanish-American war, when Mr. Witt was 18 he entered the United States army and was sent to Tampa, where he was stationed during the war. When the war was over Mr. Witt decided to remain in Tampa. He saw that city as a logical center for the establishment of a tobacco business. His first venture was a small retail cigar store, the daily turn-over in which was less than $7, and from that small beginning has grown one of the largest concerns of its kind in the south. For today the firm manufactures and sells through its own distributors and stores, more than 180,000,000 cigars a year. Mr. Witt's company operates 60 distributing plants, stretching from, the middle west to the Atlantic sea. board. Aside from the cigars which he manufactures under the trade name of Havatampa, Mr. Witt also is a large distributor o f cigarettes, pipes, tobacco and smokers' articles. His company is the largest distributor of cigars in the south and the second largest distributor of cigarettes in the United States, the annual business exceeding $18,000,000. Mr. Witt is greatly impressed with Havana and marvels at its beauty and modern aspects. He is conferring with leading tobacco men of Havana concerning the establishment of a branch in this city. Yesterday afternoon Mr. Witt and his party were the guests of Mr. and Mrs. Karl Cuesta at the Havana-American Jockey club, and afterwards were taken by Mr. Cuesta to the Havana Country club for tea. In the evening Mr. and Mrs. Cuesta were hosts to the party at a dinner at the Reguladora restaurant. rendezvous of every Cuban and visiting tobacco man when in Havana. Mr. Witt and his party will return to Florida tonight, but they have announced their determination to again visit Havana at an early date and for a longer stay.
by the Havatampa Cigar Company. The cigar store sold by Switzer to Eli Witt was the "Hole-in-the-Wall" so named because of its size and shape, being 9 feet wide and 30 feet deep. The young clerk operating this cigar store for Switzer was a very promising one by the name of Gillie Trezevant. Eli Witt made the statement that one of the reasons he bought the '"Hole-in-the-Wall" was that he wanted Gillie to work for him as he was a very bright young man. After purchasing this store it was identified by a sign hanging over the sidewalk with light bulbs spelling the name "E L I" and as other cigar stores were opened by Eli Witt similar signs were installed. "MR. ELI" It was not too long before Eli Witt became known as "'MR. ELI". In 1906 Mr. Eli was connected in business with Garrett W. Judy doing business under the combined names of "Witt and Judy" at three locations: 505 Franklin Street (The Hole-in-the-Wall), 704 Franklin Street, and Court Square Pharmacy at 412 Franklin Street. This association existed for about a year. However, Mr. Eli continued to operate his business at the Hole-in-the-Wall and the cigar stand in the drug store. A new employee, W. L. (Bill) Van Dyke, began working for Mr. Eli in 1907. Soon after, Van Dyke's twin brother, Jessie, was likewise employed. Jessie was assigned to work at the cigar stand in the drug store while Bill and Gillie assisted Mr. Eli in the operation of the Hole-in-the-Wall. Soon after his employment by Mr. Eli, Jessie met a very untimely death by drowning in Tampa Bay. BUSINESS EXPANDS By 1908 Mr. Eli had begun to do some wholesale business from the Hole-in-the-Wall THE WITTS ON A SUNDAY SPIN Mr. and Mrs. Eli Witt take a Sunday spin in their Elcar. Photo thought to have been made in Sulphur Springs, circa 1920 -From the HAV-A-TAMPA ELI WITT Collection by EARL BROWN
and during 1908-1909 had his landlord expand the building, first by 30 feet and finally by another 30 feet making the building 9 feet by 90 feet a shape aptly described by its name. Mr. Eli's retail cigar store occupied the front 30 feet; Badger Wilder, a tobacco broker, the next 30 feet, and Mr. Eli's wholesale business the remaining 30 feet. He and his young associates, Van Dyke and Trezevant worked hard and built their volume to $10,000 per month. In Mr. Eli's words, "The business was going good," when he was shocked by Gillie Trezevant telling him that he did not see any future in Mr. Eli's business and that he was accepting a job at the First National Bank. It was at that point that Mr. Eli vowed he would make a future out of his business. By late 1908, Mr. Eli's business was known as Eli B. Witt Cigars & Tobacco. He had also joined in a venture with Badger Wilder known as Witt & Wilder, a billiard parlor at 207 Twiggs Street. By 1909 a number of business locations had been added and a list of Mr. Eli's stores showed them at: 505 Franklin Street 315 Zack Street 211 Twiggs Street 406 Franklin Street DeSoto Hotel Tampa Bay Hotel Witt & Wilder Billiards 207 Twiggs Street. 'BANANA HOUSE' This was the "Banana House located at the south end of Tampa Street at 107 Whiting Street. The building was torn down in order to extend Tampa Street southward to Platt Street. -From the HAV-A-TAMPA ELI WITT Collection by EARL BROWN
ENTER D. H. WOODBERY His brother, C. B. Witt, was instrumental in giving Mr. Eli his start as he financed him from the beginning and continued helping him for some time. The business needed a temporary bookkeeper so C. B. Witt told Mr. Eli he would ask his friend, who was President of the Business College, to send someone over. In May of 1910 a young man by the name of D. H. Woodbery began working for Mr. Eli as a temporary employee. (He stayed on and became President of the company at Mr. Eli's death in 1947.) The business was doing about $30,000 per month from its location, the Hole-in-the-Wall, at 505 Franklin Street in Tampa and it continued to grow. Badger Wilder had moved out and left all of the space at the Hole-in-the-Wall to Mr. Eli. C. B. Witt did not like the plan of operating the retail business and the wholesale business from the same location and tried to get Mr. Eli to separate the two. Mr. Eli and the young men working with him did not want to move as they liked to be in the center of town where there was lots of activity. However, Mr. Eli had to go to a higher altitude for his health about this time, 1911 or 1912, and decided to go to Asheville, N.C. He had not been away for long when C. B. Witt told Van Dyke and Woodbery that ELI WITT PUT TAMPA ON THE MAP One of Eli Witt's close pals was the famed newspaper cartoonist Frank Willard, creator of the funny "Moon Mullins. Willard and his wife Marie lived at 190 Bosphorus Avenue, Davis Islands. The cartoon here and on the opposite page were drawn by Willard to thank his buddy for the Havatampas, which Moon Mullins was always puffing. -From the HAV-A-TAMPA ELI WITT Collection by EARL BROWN
they were to move the wholesale end of the business. Mr. Eli's father, Clayton H. Witt, operated a banana warehouse at 107 Whiting Street, about six or eight blocks south of the Hole-in-the-Wall. This building was very close to the river and thus very convenient to the docks where schooner loads of bananas were brought in. The warehouse was also on a railroad siding. As the banana business had about played out, C. B. Witt decided to move Mr. Eli's wholesale business to that location sometime during the year of 1912. The Hole-in-the-Wall continued to operate as a retail store at the original location. ILL MOST OF HIS LIFE On July 6, 1914, Mr. Eli married Wilma Lucille (known as "Billie") de Mandel6 from Denver, Colorado, a very personable lady with good business judgement and whose opinions Mr. Eli respected highly. It was known that Mr. Eli counseled with her frequently on business decisions and that she assisted him by writing letters for him at times when he was ill. It was her decision that D. H. Woodbery would succeed Mr. Eli as President of the company at his death. Mr. Eli was ill most of his life, even during the time he was founding and building this business. From 1905 or 1906 he was plagued with illnessess of various sorts. The company had created a good business on several brands of cigars, the, backbone of the business in those days, and had secured an exclusive arrangement on some of these brands. Among the controlled brands were, El Principe De Gales, La Preferencia, Cuesta-Rey, Tampa Custom House, Morey & Ponce, Jose Villa, La Fama Universal, Portinas and El Toros. There were, of course, other good selling brands in their inventory as well. Mr. Eli had two salesmen working in the city and one who worked the country territory including Lakeland, Kissimmee, Orlando, St. Petersburg, Clearwater, Bartow, Arcadia, Fort Myers, Bradenton, Palmetto, and Sarasota. This was a widespread area and the salesmen could not get around often to these towns. The C. B. Witt Company travelled eight or ten salesmen and they also sold the above brands which they secured from Mr. Eli at his cost price. They helped generate a good volume on these controlled brands. C. B. Witt became ill and went to Asheville for his health, but not noticing any improvement he went to Saranac Lake, New York where his illness worsened. He died there in 1914.
PRESSURE OF OLD DEBT Mr. Eli owed his brother about $65,000 at his death and with his brother's consent was paying it off at a rate of $1,000 per month. C. B. Witt's widow, Vannye7, and his partner in the wholesale grocery business, N. M. McLeran, did not extend to Mr. Eli the generosity that he had received from his brother. They put pressure on him to pay off his debt and would not allow Mr. Eli money to further expand or develop his wholesale business. An ex-P. Lorillard Co. salesman, George Harris, to quote Mr. Eli, "took up loafing around the Eli Witt warehouse" with a friend from his home town of Montgomery, Alabama George had a Model T Ford and Mr. Eli thought it would be a good idea to send George and his friend to Bradenton and Palmetto to sell cigars. He loaded his car down and sent him on this 35 mile trip. They were back the next night all sold out. They made this trip a number of times until George's car could not make it. At this point they wanted to buy a truck for George to use on this trip but McLeran had made it so they could not draw money out of the business. Not to be defeated, Mr. Eli, Van Dyke, Woodbery and George Harris pooled their personal funds and bought a Ford truck at a cost of about $550. They painted it up with signs, "Eli Witt Cigars", loaded it with cigars from the wholesale house, and George returned to Bradenton selling the cigars for cash as he made deliveries. He returned with an empty truck but with cash to help pay some of the D. HOYT WOODBERY faithful Witt Lieutenant -Photo from HAMPTON DUNN COLLECTION HAMMING IT UP Eli Witt in a frivolous mood. Inscription on picture reads "When I Rode the Range. Colorado. Eli Witt. Date undetermined -From the HAV-A-TAMPA ELI WITT Collection by EARL BROWN
bills which were pressing. This is thought to be the first cash truck operation in the cigar and tobacco business in the United States. McLeran was "burnt up" when he heard that Mr. Eli had bought the truck even though a search of the books revealed that no company money had been used for this venture. This was a very profitable trip with sales of about $1,000 on each trip. A little later a larger truck replaced the Ford. Then another truck and another territory were added. Trucks with signs, "Eli Witt Cigars" or with "Eli Witt, Cigars That's My Business" were becoming prominent throughout the area. The business continued to grow. CHANGE OF NAME RARE LABEL Eli Witt once produced a cigar saluting the Tampa Times. This was the colorful inside box display label. --From the HAV-A-TAMPA ELI WITT Collection by EARL BROWN
The name was changed from "Eli Witt Cigars" to Eli Witt Cigar Company. The amount owed to the C. B. Witt Company was now about $60,000 which Mr. Eli wanted so badly to pay off. He told Woodbery and Van Dyke that if they would help him by working hard and saving money for the company that he would give them a substantial share of the stock in the business when this debt was paid. Instead of it taking five years to pay off this debt, as it was originally planned, it was paid in less than half that time. To quote Mr. Eli, "I think all of the hardships which we had in those days helped to make the Eli Witt Cigar Company and the Havatampa Cigar Company what they are today. We all came up the hard way it was shirt tails for us all the way up." Mr. Eli lived up to his word in dividing the ownership of the business, 20% each for Woodbery and Van Dyke and 60% for himself. In 1916, officers of the Eli Witt Cigar Company were Eli B. Witt, President, W. L. Van Dyke, Vice President, and D. H. Woodbery, Secretary-Treasurer. It will be noticed that the name, "Havatampa" has not yet come into the picture and we will have to revert to another beginning to bring it into focus. In the early years of the cigar business in Tampa there were many cigarmakers in opening cigar factories. A cigar factory was considered to be a factory even if it had only one cigarmaker. The cigar box factories would think up a brand name, draw up a label for it and register it with The Tobacco Leaf Publishing Co., or some other appropriate organization, in order to own exclusive rights for its use. One such name, drawn up by the Tampa Box Company was La Havatampa, registered on August 25th, 1902 by Roland A Wilson, one of the principals of the box company. The box factory would print up a supply of labels of each name it registered and allow the cigar manufacturer to select a name he would like to use. In return, the manufacturer would agree to buy his boxes from that factory. LABEL TRANSFERRED On November 3, 1902, Tampa Box Company agreed to give Jose Hilgers, a cigar manufacturer, the exclusive use of the name, La Havatampa for two years if he ordered and paid for 10,000 boxes and labels. They also agreed to transfer all rights to the label when he had done this. Evidently, Hilgers did not accomplish this in two years as the name was not transferred to him until March 13, 1906. About one year later, on March 30, 1907, the name was transferred by Hilgers to Havatampa Cigar Company, Krause Bros. (Propt.). On this same date a bill of sale was issued by Hilgers selling his entire claim in the Havatampa Cigar Co., tobacco, boxes and everything belonging to the factory for the sum of $520.00 to Henry and Fred Krause of Tampa. The sill of sale was signed by Jose Hilgers and J. Henry Krause and was witnessed by Joe Verdyck. A letterhead of Krause Bros. Manufacturers, factory no. 174, Tampa, Fla., carries the wording, "Clear Havana Cigars, No Salesmen No Agents, Shipped Direct from Factory to Consumer". It also carries a photo of an open box of Havatampa cigars showing the Havatampa label on which a man is pictured. This is thought to be the first Havatampa label. This letterhead bears no date except the three numbers "190-". It is assumed the last number would be filled in when the month and day was typed on the letterhead. Krause Bros. registered the name Tampa Nugget on October 23, 1906, and as they began operating the Havatampa Cigar Co. in 1907, it is assumed the letterhead would have been used during the latter part of 1906 and/or early 1907.
MILLIONS OF CIGARS A document in hand shows a partnership formed two days after the sale of the Havatampa Cigar Co. by Hilgers to J. Henry Krause on April 1, 1907 with J. H. Krause, Joe Verdyck and F. W. Krause as partners. Another shows a U. S. Internal Revenue Collector's Certificate to manufacture cigars in the name of Havatampa Cigar Company dated April 3, 1907. It is estimated that approximately six million cigars were sold by the Havatampa Cigar Company during the period 1902-1916. We now return to Eli Witt and the wholesale -retail business. The Eli Witt organization had developed a very good cigar business as already pointed out. This business was so good on some brands of cigars that some manufacturers began to sell their cigars to other distributors thereby cutting into Mr. Eli's sales. This is what made him decide that he would have to own a brand of cigars or own a cigar factory so that he would be assured that the brand or brands could not be taken away from him when they began to sell. The Havatampa Cigar Co. at this time was making primarily Tampa Nugget cigars, this brand being owned by the Krause Bros. as pointed out earlier. They had created some demand in the area for Tampa Nuggets through their local jobber who was not very strong and who soon went out of business. At this time Mr. Eli contacted Fred Krause, who was the head of the partnership doing business as the Havatampa Cigar Company and told him that the Eli Witt Cigar Company would like to handle his cigars. The Havatampa Cigar Company which was located in the home of Fred Krause at the corner of Nebraska and Henry Avenues near Sulphur Springs was making about 3,000 Tampa Nuggets per day at the time probably late 1916. After a short time (1917) the Eli Witt Cigar Company entered into a contract with the partnership to take their entire output for all time to come. Because Mr. Eli knew that he was not in position to finance a factory of his own and feeling that if he could gain the control of this factory by agreeing to take the complete output, that would be the next best thing to owning a factory. The contract specified that the Eli Witt Cigar Company would sell a minimum of 10,000 cigars per day, or 60,000 per week and as long as the company did that it would retain control of the complete output. Mr. Eli had three months to build up to this volume with Tampa Nuggets being the big number. MOVE TO YBOR CITY Things went very well for awhile. In April, 1917, Krause moved the factory to Ybor City to larger quarters at 2302 14th Street and made more cigars. Mr. Eli had to put out more effort to continue to sell the complete output. It was agreed that Krause would give Mr. Eli a copy of all orders received and Mr. Eli would give Krause a copy of all letters he wrote. Mr. Eli was acquainted with many jobbers and retailers throughout the south and began writing to them about Tampa Nugget cigars. The area close around in Florida was taking about all the cigars it could and Mr. Eli had to expand the sales area. He hit the road through the southern states and established a good Tampa Nugget business, but production was growing constantly and the cigars had to be sold. It was late 1917 and Krause had again moved the factory to larger quarters at 2411-21st Street. Krause wanted to get out of the agreement and realized that if Mr. Eli could not sell all the cigars Krause could make, the contract would be void. Mr. Eli had again been ill and had to go to Colorado for his health. When he heard from Tampa telling him they were not selling enough cigars to hold the contract, he got out of bed and went to work selling Tampa Nuggets in Colorado.
Sales in Colorado, plus those in the southern states and in Tampa made a sufficient total to hold the contract. While Mr. Eli was in Colorado, just before returning to Tampa, he received word that Fred Krause had died. After he returned to Tampa it was announced that Henry Krause was in bad health and wanted to sell the business. This was the opportunity of a lifetime for Mr. Eli a chance to own his own cigar factory but money was the problem. Henry Krause and Joe Verdyck, the remaining partners, wanted $12,200 for the business. The Eli Witt Cigar Co. could raise $8,000 but that was all. Mr. Eli tried to borrow money, from the bank, from business people, from friends, from anybody, but it seemed futile. He had all but given up hope when Woodbery and Van Dyke told him they thought that they along with several of their relatives and with Joe Verdyck included could raise the additional $4,200 to complete the deal. This was in May or June 1917 and from this point on the Eli Witt Cigar Company and the Havatampa Cigar Company began to operate as one company. The ownership of both companies remained in the same proportions as in Eli Witt Cigar Company. A royalty contract was entered into in order to compensate those persons who provided the $4,200 necessary to complete the purchase of Havatampa Cigar Co. from J. H. Krause and Joe Verdyck. By this time in 1917, the Eli Witt Cigar Company was staffed by Eli Witt, President, W. L. Van Dyke, Vice President, and D. H. Woodbery, Secretary-Treasurer with stores located at 505 Franklin Street and 315 Zack Street. The wholesale business and offices were at the "Old Banana House" at 107 Whiting Street. The Havatampa Cigar Company continued to operate at the 2411-21st Street address in 1919 with the management being the same as Eli Witt Cigar Co. but with the additional name of T. W. McElvy, Manager. McElvy was one of Woodbery's relatives who contributed money to buy the cigar business from the Krause Brothers. Mr. Eli told Woodbery that in view of the fact that he had been raised on a farm in Gadsden County, Florida, where tobacco was grown, he would have to assume the responsibility of the cigar factory. The company was affected by a strike of all cigar makers in Ybor City and arranged to have its brands made by the Dade City Cigar Co. in Dade City, Florida. This supplier found it necessary to add more employees and began training new cigar makers. Many came from other rural areas close by and many from south Georgia. In July 1920 the Havatampa Cigar Company began operating in a much larger plant at 2007-21st Street in Ybor City having moved from its previous location four blocks north at 2411-21st Street. This move proved to be a permanent one and as the Home of Hav-A-Tampa cigars for 52 years until it moved, in 1972, into its new manufacturing facility and corporate headquarters at 500 Faulkenburg Road, Tampa. Together these two companies grew and expanded to become one of the largest wholesale distributors and cigar manufacturers in the United States. During the years from 1917 to 1962 many companies were acquired and many new ones formed. Administration of the company had become complicated to the point that it was deemed advisable to merge all entities into one with this merger the Havatampa Cigar Corporation was formed November 1, 1962. Several changes in management and ownership of the company were made after the death of D. H. Woodbery on March 16, 1973. In 1977 the company was sold to an out of town group, the HAV Corporation. On December 1, 1978 the cigar manufacturing business was sold to a group of local investors
most of whom were already employed in that division of the company. The name "Havatampa Incorporated" was taken by the cigar manufacturing firm and the wholesale distribution firm now operates under the name of "The Eli Witt Company". Havatampa Incorporated is building a new cigar manufacturing facility in Sabal Park east of Highway 301 just south of Buffalo Avenue and is expected to occupy same by the end of 1981. A biographical sketch of Eli Witt was published in Men of the South, a work for the newspaper reference library, in 1922. The Tampan was described thusly: ". Eli Witt is a striking example of the result of personality plus hard work achieving business success. He is well-liked everywhere he is known and has always the "glad hand' and the encouraging word for everyone with whom he comes in contact. His retail places in Tampa are headquarters for those interested in current events of interest throughout the country and one, the 'Horse Shoe', on Franklin Street, is the center of the sporting and amusement activities of the city. Mr. Witt has also been fortunate in surrounding himself with able associates and assistants. He is an aggressive and original advertiser and his name is well known in cigar and tobacco circles everywhere ." FOOTNOTES year of Year of birth Death 1Susie Lucas Witt 1858 1919 2Clayton H. Witt 1851 1921 3 1da Coffee Witt 1881 1904 4Eli B. Witt 1880 1947 5Currie B. Witt 1876 1914 6Wilma de Mandel Witt 1897 1960 7Vannye C. Witt 1881 1959
MARKING A HISTORIC TRAIL THROUGH TAMPA By KEN MULDER Fifty years ago the use of cast aluminum in fabrication of plaques for marking sites of historical interest was unheard of. Up to that time bronze was the accepted standard for dedication and memorial plaques, wood and ferrous metals sharing about equal prominence as second choice. However, each of these materials had certain characteristics which limited their extensive use. Bronze was durable but its high cost was prohibitive except where finances were no problem and even then an extensive state-wide marking program was impractical. In isolated areas, the scrap value of this brass alloy was an open invitation to thievery. Ferrous metals were much cheaper to use but susceptibility to oxidation in the form of rust presented the problem of yearly maintenance expense. Wood was probably GREAT 1909 AUTO RACE REMEMBERED The TAMPA HISTORICAL SOCIETY dedicated a historical marker commemorating the ""Great 1909 Auto Endurance Race" between Tampa and Jacksonville as the event was reenacted, starting Thanksgiving morning 1978. Participants in the ceremony included Tampa Mayor William F. Poe, left, and Dr. L. Glenn Westfall, then president now executive director of the Historical Society. The plaque was funded by the AAA Motor Clubs of Florida. -TAMPA TRIBUNE-TIMES Photo by Fred Fox
the most widely used because of low cost, but it too was unsatisfactory. When exposed to the elements of winter and summer, it was short-lived and warping created an unsightly appearance. THE PUBLIC WAS UNAWARE The lack of a practical material had so far made the value of a widespread marking program very questionable. Rather than invest in something which could prove to be more of a liability than an asset, the state and local historical societies confined their activities to research and compiling of historical data. History was being preserved for posterity, but only a very small percentage of the public was remotely aware of the fact. In 1927, a man of vision and foresight became intensely interested in the possibilities of roadside historical marking. E. M. Hawes of Marietta, Ohio, was the founder of a small sign factory in which process a foundry operation was involved.1 TAMPAN WROTE PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE TO FLAG MINI-SKIRTED Betty Castor, then Chairman of the Hillsborough County Commissioners and later State Senator, was dedicatory speaker the day in 1974 when the Tampa Historical Society unveiled a marker to Francis Bellamy, author of the Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag, at Curtis Hixon Convention Center. A MacDill Air Force color guard was on hand as Hampton Dunn, master of ceremonies, held up a little schoolgirl to unveil the plaque. A Tampa Tribune photographer records the scene. Bellamy lived and worked in Tampa and died in 1931.
Mr. Hawes had traveled considerably and the need for a marking system designed for the motoring public was evident. First though, material which would meet the requirements of a practical marker must be found. Virginia and New York has used cast iron and they were either badly rusted or broken by traffic impact. Iron then was out of the question so he must look further. THE LETTERS DISAPPEARED! Aluminum was used in his foundry on a small scale, primarily for small thick castings. Little was known at this time of the use of aluminum alloys in the casting of large thin sections containing any detail, but actually no one had ever made a conscientious effort to do any research or work on the possibility. So far the use of aluminum in construction of roadside historical markers had been limited to the casting of letters which were fastened to wooden panels. The letters had a habit of disappearing and after a period of time could be found above some barn door or on a mail box. This lightweight, inexpensive, and corrosion resistant metal had all the desirable qualities for use in making markers, if only a way could be found to use it. Mr. Hawes was firmly convinced that it could be done and spent 18 long months proving his theory. Then success; the first cast aluminum marker with lettering on both sides was an actuality. Of course, it was only a sample plate, but the feasibility of the idea was proved and it was now only a matter of improvement in method and procedure. The entire facilities of Sewah Studios, which was the firm name of the Hawes enterprise, was devoted almost exclusively to this end. One problem would be solved only to be replaced by another; but through perseverance and determination the right combination of material, equipment, and process was determined. THE REVOLUTIONARY TRAIL About this time, 1929, the Ohio Revolutionary Trail Commission was set up by the State of Ohio.2 This group wanted plaques to mark the course of the Old Revolutionary Trail throughout the state. Sewah Studios had the product they wanted, if only the commission could be convinced. It required all the resourcefulness at his command for Mr. Hawes to sell them on the idea of considering cast aluminum markers. It was unheard of and the members of the commission were skeptical of this new innovation. Finally, they were persuaded to, at least, look and consider the idea. Arrangements were then made for inspection of sample plates and complete markers of various designs and colors were constructed and set up on the factory grounds When the appointed day arrived and the delegates viewed the samples, they were First LT. BALDOMERO LOPEZ TAMPA NATIVE AWARDED CONGRESSIONAL MEDAL OF HONOR During the Inchon invasion in Korea, September 15, 1950, Marine 1st Lieutenant Baldomero Lopezs platoon was engaging the enemy. Exposing himself to hostile fire, he attempted to hurl a grenade into the pillbox whose fire was pinning them down. Wounded, he fell and dropped the grenade. Dragging his body forward, critically wounded and unable to grasp the grenade, he sacrificed himsel f rather than endanger the lives of his men. With his wounded right arm, he cradled the grenade under him absorbing the full impact of the explosion. With courage and devotion to duty, he gallantly gave his life for his men and his country. Erected 1981, by the citizens of Tampa with the cooperation of the Tampa Historical society.
enthusiastic about appearance but could not believe that cast aluminum was durable enough for permanent installation. Sledge hammers were handed to them and each one had an opportunity to test the quality of the markers. Everything possible was done to the castings to determine just how much they could stand. They were bent, dented, and scarred, but not one of them broke and every letter was still legible. Everyone was finally convinced the Sewah Marker was what they were looking for and this was the debut of the thousands of roadside historical markers that are now seen throughout the TAMPA BOASTED FLORIDA'S FIRST RADIO STATION TAMPA'S WDAE was the first radio station in Florida to be licensed commercially to operate by the Federal Communications Commission. In 1972, on the 50th anniversary of WDAE's founding, the Tampa Historical Society erected a marker at the Maas Brothers corner, site of the first broadcasting studio. Left to right are Donald K. Clark, then manager of WDAE; Tony Pizzo of the Historical Society, and Hampton Dunn, THS president and master of ceremonies fhi
United States. This initial project involved 110 large markers and some 400 smaller ones, all of which are still in service today.3 CAPS AND LOWER CASE One thing that had a great deal of influence on the decision of this Revolutionary Trail Commission was the legibility of the copy on the test plates. It was set in upper and lower case letters, which was what everyone was accustomed to reading in practically all printed matter, and they at once recognized the fact that it could be read faster than the same text set in all upper case or capital letters. This use of the alphabet was not a matter of chance or convenience, far from it. Mr. Hawes had at one time been a copywriter and from past experience knew that the ease with which printed matter is read has a direct bearing on how often it will be read. In his opinion, a plaque with the inscription in all upper case had to be studied rather than read and was not at all suitable for a roadside marker. An extensive search revealed the fact that there was no firm which manufactured pattern letters for casting in both upper and lower case in a size smaller than one inch. DISPLAYS RESOURCEFULNESS The limitation imposed by large text letters did not fit in with future plans so some solution must be found. It was apparent that if no compromise was to be made, someone would have to design a letter to meet these requirements and here again, Mr. Hawes displayed an example of his resourcefulness. A cash prize was awarded for the letter design of his choice selected from entries submitted by several well-known hand lettering artists. The winning entry was chosen, a few changes made in design, and so was originated, the Sewah alphabet that is exclusive in its field. It is a derivative of the old Caslin Font, as are most of the popular printing types in use today.4 From the original drawings, patterns were made for letter sizes ranging from 3 inches down to and including 5/8 inches. Then began the casting and finishing of hundreds of pattern letters, which were required in the manufacture of markers. A portion of the work was farmed out to pattern and die-casting establishments, although a large portion was completed at the home plant. This discussion of letter design is to a degree only a sidelight in the story of marker development, decidedly not irrelevant. The Sewah alphabet is directly responsible for a large number of historical organizations deciding to plan a marking system. In fact, during the past decade the history of Sewah Studios and the development of marker programs is so closely interwoven that it is almost impossible to separate one from the other. BLUE STAR MARKERS
The outbreak of World War II, of course, called a halt to all major operations of this kind. Only a pittance of metal was available for non-essential use, and the increase in the number of marker installations during this period was very slight. Even after the war ceased, it was several years before restrictions were removed on material allotments. About 1948, the situation was considerably better and once more activity was apparent among the historical groups throughout the country. It was also in 1948, that three other projects of notable interest came into being. Vermont authorized a planned system and the additional Council of State Garden Clubs sponsored a memorial program honoring the ones who served in the defense of our country. Certain highways were selected by mutual cooperation and consent of the National Council and the state officials. Beautifying improvements were made and markers were erected dedicating these highways as memorials. Cost of the markers is borne by individual Garden Clubs and no assistance is forthcoming from any state or county funds. These Blue Star markers are all identical except for the signature line of the local club sponsoring the plaque, and they may be seen in every state in the union. This is probably the most widespread marking system in the country today and is under direct supervision of the National Council headquarters in New York. FLORIDA IS LEADER During the years from 1949 to 1952, the value of adequate marking of historical sites was widely recognized, and a large number of states made the necessary provisions. Cast aluminum was now the accepted standard and this specific material was called for in the specifications adopted by the states. Mississippi, Tennessee, Georgia, Alabama, Missouri, Florida, Washington and Kansas were some of the states who became active in the field of roadside marking at this time. All are long-range programs and are as yet more or less in their infancy. If any one thing can be given more credit for this sudden interest on the part of state agencies to mark their highways historically, it is the tremendous increase in the tourist industry since World War II. More traveling was being done than ever before in the history of this country. Each one of the 50 states was and is doing its upmost to entice the vacationers by making highways as attractive as possible. A thorough study proved that informative and interesting marking was one of the surest ways of achieving this goal. The execution of a planned program varies from state to state, depending on the political structure of the governmental agencies. In some cases, it is not possible to make any direct appropriations for marking purposes and some other means of financing must be arranged. In one of our southern cities, Tampa, Florida, a group of citizens organized as a historical society, received recognition from the state, and financed their project from private funds and have created over 30 plaques in Tampa alone, since its founding in 1971. EAGLE SCOUT PROJECT The history and photos of all of Tampa's historical markers, statues and plaques were done by Joe Garcia as an award winning Eagle Scout project in July, 1976. Joe Garcia, son of the prominent Tampa attorney, William F. Garcia, currently a student in journalism at Harvard, donated
his project to the Tampa Historical Society and is on display in its library. The research and the erection of most all of the historical markers in the Tampa Bay area has been accomplished and financed through the dedicated efforts of one man, a native Tampan and a founder of the Tampa Historical Society, Mr. Tony Pizzo. His life has been dedicated to research and writing about his beloved Tampa and Ybor City. He encouraged the Ybor City Rotary Club to sponsor more markers than any other organization in Tampa. A visible, active and ever growing local historical society represents to new industry, business, tourists and new neighbors what Tampa thinks of itself: "We grow with the future but we have not forgotten our past and humble beginning." FOOTNOTES 1How, Why, When, and Where of Historical Markers, Sewah Studios (1950), p. 5. Researched and written by Anne Thomas, daughter of President of Sewah's Studios, L. M. Thomas. 2The Files of E. M. Hawes's Library. 3Ibid. "How, Why, When and Where of Historical Markers", Sewah Studios (1950), p. 17. 4The Files of E. M. Hawes's Library. BIBLIOGRAPHY Something New on the Highways, Marietta Daily Times, Marietta, Ohio (September, 1954). The Files of E. M. Hawes's Library. "How, Why, When and Where of Historical Markers", Sewah Studios (1950). English Thesis Anne Thomas, University of Ohio, 1955. Eagle Scout Project 1976 pictures, self-guided tour of all Tampa's historical markers by Joe Garcia.
A TRIBUTE TO BABE RUTH RUTH, "BABE," GEORGE HERMAN (1895-1948), won fame as the greatest slugger in baseball history. He set many records, including his 714 regular-season home runs. Ruth had a personality that caught the imagination of fans and helped popularize baseball. Ruth was born in Baltimore, Md., on Feb. 6, 1895. He was raised at St. Mary's Industrial School in Baltimore. One of Ruth's teachers recognized his skill at baseball and helped him start his career in 1914. Later that year, Ruth joined the Boston Red Sox and became a successful pitcher. But when the Red Sox sold him to the New York Yankees in 1920, he gave up pitching to play in the outfield and concentrate on hitting. In 1927, Ruth set a record of 60 home runs during a single season. His slugging power made him baseball's biggest attraction, and when the Left to right in the photo are Ken Mulder, President of the the Italian American Gol f Association, Inc., and Tom McMullen, Chairman Tampa Historical Society, Sam Ferlita and Roger Raines, members of the Board of Directors of of the Tampa Historical Society "Babe Ruth Marker" Commission
Yankees built a huge new stadium, it was nicknamed "The House That Ruth Built." The Yankees released him at the end of the 1934 season, and he finished his career with the Boston Braves in 1935. Ruth died of cancer. Ed Fitzgerald. The Italian American Golf Association, Inc. is the financial sponsor of the long awaited Historical Marker commemorating "Babe Ruth's Longest Hit Homerun" that occurred in Tampa, Florida, on April 4, 1919, on a beautiful spring day. This historical event took place at Plant Field. The Marker was unveiled at the Banquet on March 21, 1981 at the Dinner-Dance at Egypt Temple Shrine. Participating in the ceremony were Tom McMullen, Chairman of the Tampa Historical Society "Babe Ruth Marker" Commission; along with Baseball's all time Greats, Roger Maris, Mickey Mantel and Whitey Ford, pulling the cord that unveiled and dedicated this Historical Marker, which joins other markers that dot out city's landscape calling attention to Tampa's rich heritage of historical events. The Italian American Golf Association, Inc. in sponsoring the plaque at a cost of $625 have another first as they have supported financially many other worthwhile endeavors.
HISTORICAL MARKERS OF TAMPA, FLORIDA OCTOBER 1, 1981 Spanish American War, Picnic Island Port Tampa. Spanish American War Tablet, Port Tampa at Apex. Jules Verne, Ballast Point near the pier. Civil War Skirmish, Bayshore & Gandy. Holy Names Academy, Bayshore Boulevard. Statue of Jose Gaspar, Guernsey Plaza. Spanishtown Creek, Bayshore east of Magnolia. Gordon Keller, Tampa General Hospital. Father Cancer Plaque on Rock, Bayshore Tarpon Weighing Station. Gasparilla Marker, Bayshore at Pirate Ship. Fort Brooke, Bayshore at Pirate Ship. Peter 0. Knight, Tampa Historical Society headquarters, 245 Hyde Park Avenue. Columbus Statue, Bayshore and the river. Tony Jannus, Bayshore & Platt (corner of Park). Captain Joseph Frye, Platt & Tampa Streets. Fort Brooke Marker, Franklin & Brorein Streets. Auto Race 1909, Franklin & Washington Streets. Teddy Roosevelt, Franklin & Kennedy. Tampa Bay Hotel, Plant Park. Kennedy Statue, Plant Park. Spanish American War Memorial, Kennedy & Hyde Park. DeSoto Oak Plaque, Kennedy & Hyde Park. Panfilo De Narvaiz Stone Marker, Plant Park. Rough Rider Headquarters, National Guard Armory, Howard Ave. Courthouse Marker, Madison & Franklin. River Ferry Marker, LaFayette & Ashley. Celi Marker, Madison Street at the river. WDAE Marker, Zack & Franklin. First Methodist Church, Kennedy & Marion. Pres. Kennedy's Speech Marker, Front of Courthouse.
Pres. Johnson's Speech Marker, Front of Courthouse. Civil War Monument, Courthouse lawn. World War II Memorial, Courthouse lawn. American Legion Memorial, Ashley & Kennedy. Francis Bellamy Marker, Curtis Hixon Convention Center. Oaklawn Cemetery, Morgan at Oaklawn Cemetery. Government Spring, 5th Avenue & 13th Street Brewery. Cradle of Cuban Liberty, 7th Avenue & 13th Street. Marti House (Pauline Pechard), Marti Park 8th Avenue & 13th Street. "Cuba" Newspaper of Revolution, 8th Avenue near Marti Park. Mirta Hook & Ladder Fire Station, Ybor Square at 8th Avenue. Cuban School Marker, 8th Avenue & 14th Street. El Chino Pajarito Restaurant, 8th Avenue & 14th Street. Marti Stone Marker, in front of Ybor factory 14th Street & 9th Avenue. Founding of Cigar Industry, 9th Avenue & 14th Street. Cherokee Club, 9th Avenue & 14th Street. Marti Marker, Front of Cuban Club at 14th Street. Marti Statue, Front of Cuban Club at 14th Street. Billy Graham Marker, Florida State Building on Franklin Street. Hotel Habana, 15th Street & 7th Avenue, Las Novedades Corner. Birth of Ybor City, 15th Street & 7th Avenue, Las Novedades Corner. First Cigar Marker, 7th Avenue & 15th Street. First Duel in Ybor City, 7th Avenue near 15th Street. The Charge of the Yellow Rice Brigade, 7th Avenue Las Novedades. Mutual Aid Societies, 8th Avenue at Centro Espanol Mall. Monument to Mothers, 8th Avenue at Centro Espanol Mall. First Railroad Station, 16th Street & 6th Avenue. Orestas Ferrera Marker, 7th Avenue & 16th Broadway Bank. Emilio Pons Factory, 17th Street & 6th Avenue. Fort King Trail, 8th Avenue & 18th Street. La Joven Francesa Bakery, 9th Avenue & 19th Street, Ybor State Museum.
Italian Club Marker, 8th Avenue & 18th Street. Coming of the Italians, 7th Avenue to 21st Street, Broadway Bank. The Rough Riders, Columbia Restaurant, 7th Avenue & 22nd Street. The Tobacco War, 7th & 28th Street (stolen). Gabino Gutierrez, Spanish Park Restaurant. Spanish American War Bronze Plaque, City Hall Mall. H. B. Plant Memorial, Plant Park. Fort Brooke (2) Cannon, Plaque & Guns at Plant Park. Babe Ruth's ""Longest Hit Homerun", McKay Auditorium, University of Tampa. Timuquan Mound, 401 E. Platt Street. Baldomero Lopez, Tampa's only Congressional Medal of Honor winner. Tampa Federal Savings & Loan, Madison & Florida.
MEETH THE AUTHORS EARL J. BROWN DICK BURDETTE DR. J. E. CHANGUS JO ANN H. CIMINO EARL J. BROWN spent his entire business life, which began in 1937, with Havatampa Cigar Company. he became interested in preserving the history of his famous Tampa firm and has published A History of the Name HAV-A-TAMPA. He gives us more insight into the company and its founder, Eli Witt, in an article, "'Eli Witt, The South's Most Outstanding Tobacco Merchant," in this issue. Brown is Vice President Emeritus of the company. DICK BURDETTE roams throughout Central Florida digging up off-beat features for his popular column in the Orlando Sentinel-Star. On one of his rounds he met and was fascinated by Ybor City pioneer and historian, Emilio Del Rio. DR. JAMES E. CHANGUS currently practices Pathology including its subspecialty of Blook Banking at John F. Kennedy Memorial Hospital in Lake Worth, Fla. His interest in blood therapy and its origins stems from earlier experiences leading to a Doctorate in human genetics from the University of Minnesota and residency training he received while at the Southwest Florida Blood Bank in Tampa. JO ANN HASKINS CIMINO is a native Tampan, great granddaughter of Levi Coller and great granddaughter of Jeannette Haskins. She is a homemaker, wife of Tampa pediatric cardiologist Dr. Louis E. Cimino, mother of eight children, part time student at the University of South Florida, majoring in history. Her hobby is research of family genealogy. DR. JAMES W. COVINGTON is Dana Professor of History at the University of Tampa, author of five books and more than 50 articles. He is former president of the Florida Anthropological Society and of the Tampa Historical Society, and former member of the Barrio Latino Commission and of the Hillsborough County Historical Commission. Dr. Covington was awarded the D. B. McKay Award by the Tampa Historical Society in 1977. His latest book is Under the Minarets, a 50-year history of the University of Tampa. HAMPTON DUNN has been a leader in Florida journalism for nearly 50 years. He was managing editor of The Tampa Daily Times, one-time commentator on Television Station WCKT-TV in Miami, and presently senior vice president of the Peninsula Motor Club (AAA). He is a founder and past president of the Tampa Historical Society and winner of the 1978 D. B. McKay Award. He is chairman of the Historic Tampa/Hillsborough County Preservation Board and has had much service in preservation. A prize-winning author of more than a dozen books on Florida history, he was one of 76 Floridians chosen as Florida Patriot during the 1976 Bicentennial. In 1980, he was honored by the American Association for State and Local History. DR. J. W. COVINGTON HAMPTON DUNN DR. E. FERNANDEZ KEN MULDER
MEET THE AUTHORS MARTHA PARR TONY PIZZO DR. P. J. SCHMIDT MRS. JANE SMITH DR. EUSTASIO FERNANDEZ was born in Tampa and received an early education in Spain. He was graduated from local schools; received his baccalaureate degree from the University of Florida and entered the Armed Forces of World War 11 to serve in the Military Intelligence Service. Dr. Fernandez holds membership in many distinguished and learned societies and organizations in the field of language teaching and education. He has been awarded graduate degrees from the University of Maryland, Middlebury College in Vermont and the National University of Mexico. Before coming to the University of Tampa where he has been professor and coordinator of modern languages for 30 years, he taught at the University of Maryland. He is listed in Who's Who in America, Who's Who in the World and in the Directory of American Scholars. KENNETH W. MULDER has served as president of the Tampa Historical Society for the past two years. A native Tampan, he was educated at Plant High School, University of Tampa, and the University of Florida. He has been active in insurance sales for 31 years and taught at the University of Tampa for 25 years. He is a Senior Insurance Broker with the Tampa headquarters of Poe & Associates. Mulder is an author, lecturer, and historian on early Florida. As president he has contributed to the Tampa Historical Society by doubling the membership in two years. His salesmanship and aggressiveness has resulted in doubling the size of our annual "'Sunland Tribune" as well. He was invited to speak at the annual meeting of the Florida Historical Society to encourage membership, growth and participation. His enthusiasm and energy is boundless and has made the Tampa Historical Society the largest local historical society in Florida. MARTHA M. PARR is a fifth generation Hillsborough Countian whose article in this issue is the result of a lifelong interest in preserving heritage and tradition. A former legal secretary, Martha Parr now devotes her time to her husband, Bert, and daughter, Rachel, as well as to genealogy and oil painting. She is a member of Tampa Realistic Artists, Inc., and the Tampa Historical Society. TONY PIZZO was born and reared in Ybor City. He is author of Tampa Town: A Cracker Village With A Latin Accent. He was co-host on the 10-part television series Tony Pizzo's Tampa presented on WUSF-TV, Channel 16. He also instructs a class, "Tampa's Latin Roots," at the University of South Florida. Pizzo also is a founder and past president of the Tampa Historical Society and winner of the 1980 D. B. McKay Award. He is a long-time historic preservationist and has been a leader in erecting historical markers in the city. DR. PAUL J. SCHMIDT is the Director of the Southwest Florida Blood Bank in Tampa. He is author of more than 100 articles, including a number of national and regional histories of both Blood Transfusion and its predecessor art of Therapeuti c Bloodletting. JANE (MRS. STOCKTON) SMITH is a fourth generation Tampan and her grandchildren are sixth generation natives. She was born at the family home in Hyde Park. She attended Plant High School and Florida State University. Mrs. Smith is past president of Tampa Junior Woman's Club, a member of the Junior League of Tampa, charter board Christian Women's Club, charter member Davis Islands Community Church and charter member Christ Community Church. She is an interior designer. Do You Have A Tampa Story To Tell? Contributions for the 1982 Sunland Tribune may be submitted to the editor, Hampton Dunn, 10610 Carrollwood Drive, Tampa, Florida 33618.
WEST TAMPA CIGAR FACTORIES REMINDERS OF AREA'S PAST BOOM (Editor's Note: In September, 1979, this Cultural Resources Survey of The Man-Made Environment in Tampa and Hillsborough County, Phase 1, was prepared by the Historic Tampa/Hillsborough County Preservation Board of Trustees.) HISTORICAL SKETCH OF THE DEVELOPMENT OF WEST TAMPA In the spring of 1892, Hugh C. Macfarlane, a prominent Tampa lawyer and real estate investor, formed the Macfarlane Investment Company to develop a new cigar manufacturing area west of the Hillsborough River. Beginning with his own 200 acre tract of land, Macfarlane assembled between 1892 and 1895 other interested businessmen, including Matthew Hooper, W. W. Hooper, Philip H. Collins, George N. Benjamin, L. B. Skinner, and A. C. Clewis, who would soon own 90 percent of the 800 acres which became the City of West Tampa (Jacksonville, Florida Times-Union and Citizen, South Florida Edition, 1897). While Macfarlane's subdivision formed the center of West Tampa, the participation and investment of his partners were essential to WEST TAMPA PUBLIC LIBRARY ... Howard Avenue and Union Street -Photo by HAMPTON DUNN
the area's development, from Columbus Drive on the north to Fig Street on the south, from the Hillsborough River on the east to Himes Avenue on the west. Dr. Philip H. Collins owned the subdivisions of El Cerro, Collins' Addition, and Collins' Second Addition. His son-in-law George Nelson Benjamin obtained two large subdivisions in 1892 from William B. Henderson. He ended these orange grove properties and promoted the growth of West Tampa's industry, serving also as Treasurer in the West Tampa Land Improvement Company and as Director of the Bank of West Tampa. STREETCAR ROUTE Agri-businessman Matthew Hooper and realtor William W. Hooper owned the Munro and Clewis subdivision land and the property which became C. B. Bouton's Addition to West Tampa. Alonzo C. Clewis, owner of the Tampa Abstract Company and an organizer of the Exchange National Bank, was a key financial promoter of many West Tampa projects. Two other key associates in the Macfarlane organization were landholder Christopher B. Bouton and builder Lee B. Skinner. In order to develop West Tampa as Hillsborough County's second cigar manufacturing area, in 1892, Macfarlane and his partners financed the first bridge across the Hillsborough River, the iron Fortune Street drawbridge. In the fall of 1892, the Macfarlane Investment Company helped start a streetcar route from downtown Tampa into West Tampa, as part of the Consumers Electric Light and Power Company system. By 1900, good transportation and communication between West Tampa and Tampa's port facilities were essential factors in making the new community competitive with Ybor City and Tampa for new factories and businesses. $400 COTTAGES Duplicating many of the successful methods utilized by Vicente Martinez Ybor and his Ybor City Land and Development Company, the Macfarlane group constructed numerous two and three-story factories and hundreds of cigar workers' cottages, which they offered to cigar firms from New York City to Havana. Long term leases and specially designed facilities were common practices offered as inducements by most West Tampa developers. The Tampa Building and Loan Association, headed by A. C. Clewis and M. M. Dobson, constructed many of the larger commercial buildings along Howard and Armenia Avenues. Lee B. Skinner, operating from his office at the First National Bank, offered residential ALONZO C. CLEWIS Financial Promoter -Photo from HAMPTON DUNN COLLECTION
lots at moderate prices, at 20 percent down and monthly installments catering to the workers' salaries. George Benjamin constructed dozens of $400 cottages for cigar workers in his successful subdivision. The lure of these attractive and well-advertised developments quickly made West Tampa an immediate rival to Ybor City as a cigar manufacturing center. Beginning with the construction in 1892 of the factories for the O'Hara and Company and the large Julius Ellinger Company, the Macfarlane Investment Company attracted over two dozen large firms and 50 small, family-operated companies to West Tampa during the next 30 years. CIGAR FACTORIES STAND The most impressive structures in West Tampa today are the cigar factories which have survived the decline in the industry after 1920. Two of the most significant early brick factories are the Cuesta-Rey plant (1896) at 2416 Howard Avenue and the A. Santaella factory (1904) at 1906 Armenia Avenue Angel L. Cuesta and Peregrino Rey were two leaders in the Tampa Latin community, whose civic contributions bonded relations between the Anglo and Latin Communities. Antonio Santaella's factories were among the most important economic institutions of West Tampa in the first decade of the twentieth century. REGENSBURG CIGAR FACTORY Albany and Cherry -Photo by HAMPTON DUNN
West Tampa's commercial district, concentrated on Main Street between Howard Avenue and Albany Street, and on Howard between Nassau and Walnut Streets with scattered structures along Armenia Avenue, was developed by alliances between West Tampa land developers and the downtown Tampa banking community. The early structures were frame with brick gradually becoming the standard after 1900. The bulk of the brick commercial structures were constructed after 1903. ROLE OF LATINS West Tampa developed the same vital Latin environment of Cubans, Spaniards, Italians, Afro-Cubans, and Anglos, that made Ybor City a unique community. Each group maintained its cultural identity with the
creation of social and men's organizations, churches, and labor groups. Although the developers of West Tampa were downtown Tampans, Latins had an immediate role in the government of West Tampa when the city was started in 1895 and were partners in all major developments. Many of the important ethnic buildings, such as John Drew's three-story Cespedes Hall have been destroyed, duplicating the structures of Ybor City in their architecture and design. The most important remaining ethnic building is El Centro Espanol de West Tampa located at 2306 North Howard Avenue. When the club opened in January 11, 1913, it was the largest and finest of the
many men's clubs in the city. The structure is a National Register building. The Sicilia Club at 2001 North Howard was completed in 1930, after two decades existence on Main Street. West Tampa maintained its separate economic and social identity even after the city was incorporated into Tampa on Jan. 1, 1925. The decline of the cigar industry due to automation, acculturation of the Latin population into the greater Tampa society, and the extension of urban renewal housing projects westward from the Hillsborough River since 1940 were major factors in the economic fall of West Tampa. 1-4 CUTS SWATH Beginning in the early 1960s the construction of the elevated roadbed for Interstate 4 cut an east-west swath through West Tampa between Laurel and Green Streets. The imposed barrier artificially divides the neighborhood. The most blighted area of West Tampa is its commercial area where many of the buildings are vacant or under utilized and in deteriorated condition. All but two of the brick cigar factories are utilized for storage and retail manufacturing purposes. There are some pockets of blight in the residential sections, but the vast majority of the houses are in good condition. Newer houses, post-1940, dominated the western portion of the area. Currently an economic feasibility study of West Tampa undertaken by the CIGAR MANUFACTURED IN WEST TAMPA ... by San Martin & Leon -Photo from HAMPTON DUNN COLLECTION
Community Design Center in conjunction with other local agencies is looking at ways to revitalize the area and mitigate the adverse effects of 30 years of steady decline in the core of the area. WEST TAMPA ARCHITECTURE Architecturally the core of the approximately 800 acre West Tampa community appears much as it did in 1919 when the cigar making industry was at its peak. Many of the original brick-paved streets, granite curb stones and hexagonal-paver paved sidewalks survive. Conceived by its developers as a self-sufficient community, it has its own commercial district, supporting industry, and residential areas. The brick cigar factories are randomly scattered throughout the grid-plan community and are surrounded by modest oneand two-story frame dwellings. The character of the area is one of quiet, substantial architecture periodically punctuated by an impressive social club or more pretentious dwelling. The earliest buildings, both residential and commercial, in West Tampa were frame. Cuesta-Rey at 2410 North Howard Avenue is the only documented extant 19th century structure in West Tampa. Although a few others are known to have existed, including the Old City Hall on the northwest corner of Main and Albany Streets, frame construction predominated until after 1900. Most of the earliest cigar factories were frame, but, unfortunately, none have survived. The major cigar producing concerns opted for brick factories from about 190 on. NEARLY IDENTICAL Eleven brick cigar factories built between 1894 and 1919 survive. All follow the same basic plan being three stories over a high basement and oriented on an east-west axis to take advantage of the southern light exposure which was necessary to grade tobacco by color. Ranges of diminishing double-hung windows maximize light and ventilation into the unpartitioned interior workrooms that were set with rows of work tables. First floor windows were secured with operable metal-clad shutters. Five of the I I factories are nearly identical differing only in the style of the sign plaque and the length of the building. The exteriors were articulated with red brick bands of decorative string courses framing the fenestration, a corbelled cornice, and a central sign plaque crowning the plain parapet. The body of the building is laid up in tan brick. A flight of steps with a solid, radiating balustrade leads to the entrance centered on the five-bay facade, and simple pedimented porch with concrete columns shelters the entrance set with double-leaded doors and a deep transom. The 1894 Cuesta-Rey factory follows this same basic form but is constructed entirely of red brick. ORIGINAL STOREFRONTS Two cigar factories, Samuel I. Davis & Co. at 900 N. Howard Avenue and Y Pendas & Alvarez at 2400 N. Albany Street, differ from their counterparts in their more classical detailing. The two factories are nearly identical with pilasters to divide the bays of the upper levels. An offset side octagonal tower which housed the water tank that serviced the sprinkler system and also served as a clock tower, reportedly was never finished. The two are the most architecturally distinguished industrial structures in West Tampa. The commercial district of West Tampa is basically located on Main Street (from Howard to Albany) and on Howard Avenue
(from Nassau to Walnut) with a few scattered commercial buildings located on Armenia Avenue. These structures are usually of masonry construction and incorporate decorative corbelled entablatures and parapets, as well as string courses in the street facades. Many structures retain their original storefronts with free-standing cast-iron colonettes or pilasters and cast-iron work in the second story galleries. The original pressed-tin interior ceilings are often retained in many of these commercial structures. PUBLIC BUILDINGS The most distinguished structures in West Tampa are the public buildings. The Tampa Public Library, a superb diminutive Beaux Arts structure, is the most academic duilding in the community. The Entrol Espanol, an impressive Mediterranean/Neo-Classical structure listed in the National Register in 1974 and the Mediterranean style Sicilia Club provide a nice contrast to the decided vernacular bend to the bulk of West Tampas building. The 1905 Cuesta School is the most literal Italianate public school in the city. The residential stock of West Tampa offers a complete sampling of the variety of vernacular housing forms that were utilized in the area between the mid-1980s and the Depression. Rows of identical simple frame, modified shotgun plan dwellings set gable end to the street were built by the developers to house the cigar workers. The modest houseform dominated until about 1908 when the bungalow style was used to update the standard form or used for more substantial homes. The bungalow or vernacular variations of the style became the norm after the First World War. Am incident study of the neighborhood identified five basic houseforms that comprise a majority of the pre-1929 houses in the oldest sections of the neighborhood. There are few grand, highstyle houses in West Tampa which still conveys its position as a workers neighborhood. WEST TAMPA FLORIDA MASTER SITE FILE SITES SITE ADDRESS NAME STATUS 1 900 N. Howard Ave. S.I. Davis Cigar Factory I 2 1212 N. Howard Ave. Balbin Bros./Tampa-Cuba Cigar Factory I 3 1307-1311 N. Howard Ave Orient Building H II 4 1403 N. Howard Ave. Berriman-Morgan Cigar Factory I 5 2747 W. Green St. Residence II 6 2113 W. Main St. Simovitz Building I 7 2117 W. Main St. Warren Building I 8 2119 W. Main St. Katz-Fondianu Building I 9 2122-2126 W. Main St. Commercial Duplex I 0 2128-2130 W. Main St. Commercial Building II 11 2129-2139 W. Main St. "90" Building I 12 1617 N. Howard Ave. Bank of West Tampa I 13 2301 W. Main St. Commercial Building II
14 2534 W. Main St. Arthur Morales House I 15 2733 W. Main St. Bungalow I 16 1700 N. Rome Ave. West Tampa Freight Depot II 17 1707 N. Howard Ave. Leira Building I 18 1715 N. Howard Ave. West Tampa Post Office II 19 1718 N. Howard Ave. West Tampa Free Library I 20 1801-03 N. Howard Ave. Guida Building I 21 1801 N. Habana Ave. Robert Mugge Building I 22 2906 W. Chestnut St. Residence I 23 1902-08 N. Howard Ave. Macfarlane Building I 24 1911-19 N. Howard Ave. Perfecto Velo Building II 25 1906 N. Howard Ave. Santaella Cigar Factory I 26 2001 W. Tampa Ave. Sicilia Club of West Tampa I 27 2108-10 N. Howard Ave. Eladio Gonzalez Commercial Row II 28 2111 N. Albany Ave. Bustillo & Diaz Cigar Company I 29 2202 N. Howard Ave. San Martin & Leon Cigar Factory I 30 2105 N. Habana Ave. West Tampa Junior High School II 31 2205 Tampania Ave. Cuesta School II 32 3201 N. Albany Ave. Y Pendas & Alvarez Cigar Factory I 33 2322-2334 W. Cherry St. Multi-family Residences I 34 2213 N. Armenia Ave. Guiseppe Clemente Grocery II 35* 2306 N. Howard Ave. El Centro Espanol of West Tampa I 36 2523 W. Palmetto St. Scardino House I 37 2515 N. Albany Ave. Holway & Co. Factory I 38 2126,W. Beach St. Arias House II 39 2127 W. Beach St. Mistretta House II 40 2510 N. Howard Ave. Cuesta-Rey Cigar Factory I 41 2506 N. Howard Ave. Commercial Building I 42 2135, 2139 W. Beech St. Residences II 43 2512, 2516 N. Howard AveResidences I 44 2409-13 N. Armenia Ave. Residences II 45 2347 W. Beach St. C ornme rcial/ Reside nti al Duplex II 46 2701 W. Beach St. Residence II 47 2902-04 N. Albany Ave. Bethel F. B. H. Church II 48 3102 N. Armenia Ave. Garcia & Vega Cigar Factory I 49 3024 N. Habana Ave. Fitzgerald Building I 50 3102 N. Habana Ave. Andres Diaz Cigar Factory I 51 2107-23 W. Walnut St. Residences I 52 2802 N. Howard Ave. Morgan Cigar Company I
A PHOTO GRAPHIC ESSAY OF WEST TAMPA Photos by Hampton Dunn Assisted by Dr. Eustasio Fernandez OLD WEST TAMPA THEATRE Howard and Main CUBAN VEGETABLE AND FRUIT STAND Howard amd Main BAKERYITALIAN & CUBAN Howard and main 4th of JULY CUBAN COFFEE SHOP Howard and main OLD MUNICIPAL COURT HELD HERE Near Howard and main SIMOVITZ BLDG.-DEPT. STORE Main between Howard and Albany
ROSA VALDEZ SETTLEMENT THE FIRST METHODIST CHURCH Albany and Union ST. JOSEPH CHURCH BLDG. Albany and Chestnut ANTONIA CIGAR FACTORY Albany and Pine TYPICAL CIGAR MAKERS HOME Albany and Cherry CIGAR BOX FACTORY Albeny and Beach
SANTAELLA CIGAR FACTORY 1904 HowardandChestnut MACFARLANE PARK 1902 Chestnut and MacDill EL SIDELO CIGAR FACTORY Howard and State DIAZ HAVANA CIGARNCO. Howard and Nassau ONCE DIAMONTE URGAS HOME Albbany Street and I-275 THE ICE HOUSE Albany and Carmen
WARREN BUILDING Near Howard and Main WEST TAMPA BANK Howard and Main MESQUIDA BLDG. Howard and Main A. L. CUESTA SCHOOL Dr. Eustasio Fernandez an alumuns
MORGAN CIGAR CO. FACTORY Howard Avenue, and Laurel WEST TAMPA POST OFFICE Howard and Union ONCE PIGGLY WIGGLY STORE Howard and Union ALESSI BAKERY Howard and Union MACFARLANE BUILDING Howard and Union LA UNIONLA SICILIA Howard and Spruce
LA NUOVA VITA INC. Sicilian Cooperative Grocery SAN MARTIN & LEON CIGAR FACTORY Howard and Pine CENTRO ESPANOL DE TAMPA Howard and Cherry CUBAN LODGE Howard and Palmetto CUESTA-REY CIGAR FACTORY Howard and Beach EL BORDEN (BOARDING HOUSE) Howard and Beach
HUMANE SOCIETY LARGE BUCKEYE FACTORY Howard at St. Louis BARRIO LOS CIEN 100-house neighborhood GARCIA & VEGA CIGAR CO. only one in operation ANDRES DIAZ CIGAR FACTORY Habana and Kathleen CEMETERIO COLON Dr. Eustasio Fernandez at Gate
'Tell me, I forget. Show me, I remember. Involve me, I understand.' ANNUAL REPORT TO THE TAMPA HISTORICAL SOCIETY KEN MULDER I quote from an ancient Chinese proverb: "TELL ME, I FORGET. SHOW ME, I REMEMBER. INVOLVE ME, I UNDERSTAND." This has been Tampa Historical Society's guide for the past two years. Our membership has broadened to over 1,000 involved citizens of our community from all walks of life. Our members have taken our area's rich history to numerous civic, service and community organizations in the form of lectures and slide presentations and the public has loved it. This year over 75 prestigious local businesses have come forth with advertisements in the SUNLAND TRIBUNE. Their participation has contributed to its continued success as the finest historical journal in the state, thanks to our editor, Hampton Dunn. Our society has continued to place historical markers throughout our community to perpetuate and preserve our heritage. Ten new markers have been placed in the past two years. Tampa is changing and growing by leaps and bounds. We are grateful for our continued prosperity. Were it not for the Tampa Historical Society's continued interest in preserving past events they would be lost forever. I am presently communicating with the National Geographic Society in hopes of having them do a documentary on Tampa's role as the doorway to the New World in North America during the early 1500s. The Tampa Historical Society has earned a prestigious position in the community as the fastest growing family oriented organization in the area. We're on the move! I have enjoyed immensely the honor as your President over the past two years and I wish continued success and growth to our new President, Randy Stevens, as well as the Tampa Historical Society. Thank you! KEN MULDER
Tampa Historical Society MEMBERSHIP ROSTER 1980-1981 Academy of the Holy Names Adler, M/M C. J. Adler, M/M Haskell T. Allen, Diana Allen, M/M S. T. Allison, M/M John M., Jr. Allsopp, Richard Altman, Mr. Frederick W. Amaryllis Garden Circle Anderson, Mrs. De Lane Anderson, M/M Davis G. Anderson, Fred A. Anderson, M/M W. P., Jr. Annis, Mrs. John Antinori, Mrs. Creeda N. Antolin, Mr. Vincent Archaeological Society Armitage, M/M Robert, Jr. Armstrong, Jadeene Arnold, M/M James Assn. for State & Local History Austin, M/M Alfred S. Ayala, M/M R. Gabe Azzarelli Construction Co. Bagby, Dr. R. A. Baily, James Baldwin, M/M Walter A. Banana Transport Barnett, M/M L. E. Barritt, M/M W. J., Jr. Barszcz, Brandon Barry Beaver, Mr. Ralph Belcher, M/M Robert S. Bellows, Anne D. Benito Advertising, Louis Bennett, M/M Arthur M. Bentschner, Raphael Bergman, M/M Charles E. Berkhan, Mrs. William J. Bevis, M/M H. Wayne Biddle, Joan Marie Kennedy Biddy, Margaret Billingsley, Dr. & Mrs. B. Black, M/M Walter Blain, M/M Buddy Blake, M/M Hawley Blanford, M/M George T. Blank, Dr. Richard Blau, Philip Blount, Jackie Bolt, Ms. Pat Boone, Daniel, Jr. Bowles, M/M Samuel P., Jr. Bowman, M/M Don Bozeman, Richard W. Branch, Mrs. Grace N. Brandon, Jr. Women's Club Brill, Noni Brinen, M/M Phillip Brooker, Dr. & Mrs. A. R. Brooker, Mrs. W. C. Brown, Audrey M. Brown, Burrell J. Brown, Earl J., Jr. Brown, M/M Earl J., Jr. Brown, M/M Henry C. Brown, J. Danforth Brown, M/M Joseph E. Brown, Mrs. Nell R. Bruton, Judge & Mrs. J. D. Buckley, William H. Buesing, M/M Robert H. Burnside, Judge & Mrs. W. N., Jr. Burrows, M/M A. E. Butler, Mrs. Martin E. Byars, M/M Joe C. Caldwell, Ms. Louise M.
Camp, Paul Eugene Cannon, Ms. Warrene Carlton, Mrs. Leffie M., Jr. Carnes, Miss Mary Carpenter, Mrs. Annie Kate Carte, M/M Ballard, Jr. Carte, Mrs. Virginia Carver Mr. Tom Catheran, Brad Cavanaugh, Dr. & Mrs. David Caton, Kathleen Chambliss, M/M R. F. Chapman, M/M Ralph Charles, J. B., Jr. Childon, Mrs. Mary Ann Chiles, F. M., Jr. Christian, M/M Mack T. Cimino, Dr. & Mrs. Louis E. Cimino, M/M Ophelia G., Jr. Clarke, M/M J. D., Jr. Clarke, M/M Richard S. Clendenin, M/M William Clendinen, M/M James Cline, Col. & Mrs. James D. Cobb, M/M David Cole, Evelyn Coles, Mrs. A. Pickens Cone, Mike Cooper, Carl Cooper, Mrs. Ruth Ley Corum, Dr. Lewis T. & Molly Costa Broom Works, Inc. Council, M/M B. W., Sr. Covington, Dr. James W. Crandell, Mrs. Naomi Crawford, M/M Bertram Criddlebaugh, M/M C. R. Crumpton, M/M Thomas Cuervo, Donald A. Culbreath, M/M H. L. Culbreath, M/M M. O. Cullen, Mrs. Thomas Curren, M/M H. F. Curtis, M/M G. David, III Daley, M/M Tom Davis, M/M Bobbie C. Davis, George T. Davis, Hon. Helen Gordon Davis Islands Service Center Davis, M/M Sam F. Davis, Winifred G. Del Re, M/M Robert Delaney, Mrs. A. E. & Brian Dervaes, Mrs. Pattie Dewald, Rev. & Mrs. Allen G. Diaz, M/M John A. Dickerson, Mrs. Daisy S. Didier, M/M Norbert Diehl, M/M Frank Dingman, M/M Daniel B. Dodson, M/M Eugene B. Dovi, Mrs. Lula J. Dunn, M/M Hampton Dykes, M/M Walter Echevarria, Dr. & Mrs. Emilio Equipment Sales Corp. Eskridge, Mrs. Ida Witt Estes, Mrs. James L. Exchange Nat'l Bank of Tampa Falk, Mrs. David A. The David Falk Foundation Farr, Donald Farr, Joseph W. Farrior, J. Rex, Sr. Fellows, M/M Robert J. Ferguson, M/M Chester Ferman, M/M J. L., Sr. Fernandez, Dr. Eustasio Few, M/M Crosby Ficarrotta, Carolina Fields, Dr. & Mrs. Rodney First National Bank Trust Fisher, M/M Charles E., Sr. Fisher, Mr. Charley Fisher, M/M Lester P. Flamme, Mrs. Lois Fletcher, M/M Marvin Florida Genealogical Society
Floyd, Mrs. Helen Foecking, M/M Ralph Fonte, M/M Morris, Sr. Ford, Mrs. Michael Foreman, M/M William R. Forrester, M/M W. T. Fouts, M/M Fred Fowler, Mrs. Cody Frankland, M/M Perry Frazier, M/M J. Warren Freedman, M/M Michael J. Freeman, M/M Lowell T. Freeman, W. A., III Friedman, M/M Herbert J. Frisbie, M/M Loyal Fusilier, Mr. Dennis Garcia, M/M Manuel Gardner, M/M James H. Garrison, M/M Ernest M. Gatlin & George, PA Gay, Marjorie Gibbons, Hon. Sam Giunta, M/M Frank V. Gloger, Mrs. Paul L. Goden, M/M Walter Gonzalez, Anthony Gonzalez, Anthony F. Gooding, Mrs. Charles T. Goodson, Mrs. John S., Jr. Gordon, Gerry Goring, Helen Grable, Dorothy Graham, Neva Byrd Grandoff, M/M J. Bert Grandoff, John Grantham, M/M William E. Gray, Barbara Gray, Beverly Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce Greening, Mrs. J. N. Gregory, Mrs. Donn Griffin, M/M Jack Gruetzmacher, M/M Robert Guernsey, M/M Welburn Guito, M/M R. M., Jr. Gulf Tampa Drydock Gunn, Mrs. Jack A. Gustafson, M/M Glen R. Guyton, J. A. Hackney, Frances Merle Haines, Dr. & Mrs. R. E. Hair, Mrs. Collette J. Hall, Mrs. D. R., Jr. Hamilton, M/M A. R. Hamilton, M/M J. William W. Hammontree, M/M W. C. Hamner, Mrs. William E. Hampton, Jim Handley, Mrs. C. V. Hankins, M. S. Hardee, M/M C. J., Jr. Hart, M/M Harold E. Harrison, M/M John, III Hartley, M/M L. E. Harvey, M/M Charles Hawes, Mrs. L. M. Hawes, Mrs. Leland M., Jr. Hawkins, M/M Joseph Hazelden, M/M Glyn Hazelrig, M/M Sam & Family Healy, M/M Charles T. Hearne, M/M James, Jr. Heavner, Joe R. Hemmingway, Ruth Henderson, Otto Lee Henderson, M/M T. N., III Hendry, M/M William M., III Henson, M/M William E. & Kirk Herndon, M/M S. D., Jr. Hevia, M/M Freddie, Jr. Hewit, Dr. & Mrs. Linus Hickey, John B. Higgins, M/M Nash Hilburn, John P. (Jack) Sheriff of Hillsborough Historical Society Himes, Mrs. John R.
Hipp, Mr. Joseph Historic Preservation -Tallahassee Historic PreservationWashington, D.C. Historical Association Historical Museums, Bureau of Historical N. O. Collection Hobson, M/M T. F., Jr. Hoedt, Mrs. Mabel Hoedt, M/M William Hofmann, Lois J. Hood, M/M Harold H. Hook, Penny A. Howard, Frederick J. Howard, Mary Emma Hubert, M/M Clifford Hughes, Patti Hunter, Mrs. W. Finlay Hurner, Mrs. George T. Huskey, M/M Gary L. Ingram, Dr. & Mrs. James M. Jackson, Lois K. James, Theodore S., Jr. Jeffery, Mrs. Brooks Jessee, M/M M. B. Johns, M/M Corydon T. Johnson Mrs. George Johnson, Mrs. Ora Johnson, M/M Ronald B. Johnson, Tom J., Jr. Jones, M/M John Arthur Jones, M/M Warren Jordan, Mrs. C. S. Junior League of Tampa Juster, M/M Floyd P. Kaiser, Robert J. Keel, Mr. C. J., Jr. Keen, Mrs. J. Velma Kendrick, Jean Lykes Key West Seafood Market Kickliter, Patricia A. Kilgore, Bobby & Nancy King, Carl D. King, James King, M/M Guy Kiser, Mrs. Lawson Klay, M/M James B. Klay, Joe M. Klein, C. R. Klintworth, M/M C. Verne Knight, M/M Peter O., Jr. Knight, Mrs. Victor H., Jr. Knope, M/M William C., 11 Koerner, Lt. Col. & Mrs. P. C. Lane, M/M Julian B. Lang Aquatech Pools Latimer, M/M Samuel 1. Lawhon, M/M James E. Leary, M/M Fred D. Lehner, Dr. & Mrs. George Lenfestey, Syd Leonard, M/M Marston C. Leonard, Dr. William N. Lesley, M/M John T. Levy, Gladys Licata, M/M Gene Lien, Paul M. Linebaugh, M/M C. David Linebaugh, Mrs. Elizabeth Linebaugh, Dr. Marion List, M/M Irvin, Jr. Logan, M/M Claude, Sr. Lopez, Joseph K. Lopez, Mr. J. R., Jr. Lopez, Joseph, Sr. Lowry, Lt. Gen. & Mrs. S. L. Lowry, Mrs. W. D. Lucas, Mrs. E. B. Lucas, Emily L. Lykes Bros. Inc. MacBryde, M/M E. P. Mack, M/M Edward (Ted) Maida, Tom Major, Mrs. Marie Winton Major, M/M Robert W. Manatee Historical Society
Mansfield, Mrs. Clifford B. Markert, M/M Walter Frank Marchesotto Co., Inc. Martely, M/M Jose Martin, Mrs. Fred Martinez-Ybor, M/M Rafael Marvil, M/M Sirman Mary Help of Christians McAbee, Mrs. Bessie Ruth McClain, Mrs. Leslie McClarney, M/M John McCloskey, Dr. & Mrs. Paul McCullers, Mamie J. McDermott, Suzanne McGill, Mrs. J. Maurice McGlucken, M/M Stephen McKay, M/M David McKay, Don McKay, Frederick McKay, M/M Herbert G. McKay, M/M Howell A. McKell, Dr. & Mrs. Thomas McKinney, Betty W. McLeod, M/M Norris, Jr. McMullen, Judge & Mrs. Neil McMullen, M/M Thomas K. McPhee, M/M Stuart McQuigg, M/M John McWhirter, M/M John W. Menendez, R. A. Merchant, Col. B. Messerli, C. Richard Meyer, Mrs. Loraine Mickler, Mrs. Joseph R. Midulla, M/M Joseph D., Sr. Milam, Frank A., Jr. Militello, M/M Sam Miller, M/M Kent S. Miller, Lois Jean Milsap, M/M Ralph Milton, M/M Joseph O., Jr. Mirabella, M/M Sam Montague, Col. & Mrs. Jack H. Moody, M/M Ashby M. Mook, James A., Jr. Moore, C. Aaron Moore, M/M Harry R., Jr. Mormino, Dr. & Mrs. Gary R. Morris & Rosen Attys. Morse, Mrs. C. Farley Moseley, Miss Dorothy M. Moses, Ms. Paddy Mosko, M/M Marvin Mulder, M/M Kenneth W. Mulder, Kenneth W., Jr. Mulder, L. Ed Mulholland, Mrs. Ruth Mullen, Mrs. Earl Murphy, M/M Pat Musselman, M/M D. R. N.S.C.D.A., State of Fla. Napoli, Miss Elia Neilsen, Fran Nelson, M/M Burt Nelson, Nancy Lee Newbern, M/M C. D. Newman, Mr. Millard W. Newman, M/M Eric Newton, Mrs. V. M., Jr. Nicholls, M/M Charles Nolen, M/M Phillip R. Norman, M/M Broadus North, M/M Robert W. Nosti, M/M Dick Nunez, Ms. Griselda O'Connor, M/M Thomas J. O'Neil, M/M Solon F., Jr. Ogden, Mr. Richard C., Jr. Olson, M/M Lester K. Olson, Louise M. Orlowsky, M/M Juergen Oser, Mrs. Phyllis G. Owen, M/M Homer E. Owen, Hilde D. Owens, Mrs. Beaulah Logan Owrey, Mrs. R. H. Pachler, M/M F. T.
Packwood, Mr. Norval E. Padgett, Judge & Mrs. J. R. Painter, M/M Jack Palermo, Nick & Olga Palori, Dr. & Mrs. J. P. Paramore, Peggy Paretti, Dr. & Mrs. Louis Parkhill, M/M John R. Parr, M/M William Parrish, Mrs. John Parrish, M/M John R. Pascual, M/M Murray J. Patten, Judy M. Patten Printing & Label Co. Peeler, Scott L., Jr. Pennino, M/M James Pepsi-Cola Bottling Co. Percligon, Dr. & Mrs. G. J. Perry, Mrs. Elizabeth K. Phillips, Sallie Mae Phosphate Rock Export Pinellas Historical Society Pizzo, Dr. Anthony J. Pizzo, M/M Paul R. Poe, M/M William F. Polk County Historical Society Pollard, M/M Merrill Pons, Mr. Emilio Pope, Elizabeth W. Portluck, K. W. Powell, Dr. & Mrs. James C. Power, M/M Fred Proctor, Dr. Sam Prytyka, M/M Philip Quinn, M/M C. N. Raber, Ms. Jan Racette, Mrs. Martha R. Rains, M/M Roger 1. Randazzo, M/M Santo Randell, Mrs. Gladys R. Rankin, M/M Gene Rawls, Lt. Col. J. B., ret. Reeves, Barbara Reid, M/M William Reynolds, M/M W. H. Rice, M/M Robert C., Jr. Riggs, Dr. & Mrs. Carl Rinaldi, Clyde L. Riverside Avondale Press Roberson, M/M Bruce H. Rodgers, Fred T. Rodgers, Bettye J. Rodriguez, Mr. Rudy Rood, E. B. Rosenblatt, M/M Frank L. Rosier, M/M Pat Rossiter, Harold Rossman, M/M Charles W. Rubio, Dr. & Mrs. Mauricio Russo, M/M R. P. St. Petersburg Historical Society Sale, Mrs. J. L. Salcines, E. J. Salomonson, Miss Frieda Salzer, Mrs. W. W. Sanchez, M/M Arsenio Sanders, M/M B. A. Sansbury, Mrs. Dudley Lee Sapp, Mr. Robert Savage, M/M W. O. Savarese, J. A., Jr. Schleich, Margaret E. Schmidt, Dr. & Mrs. Paul J. Schoo,John Schoo, Mrs. John Schrager, M/M David Scruggs, Mr. Charles H., III Seaburg, M/M Richard C. Segars, Mrs. William Setlow, Dorothy Byrd Sevigity, Sister Eleanor Shade, M/M Leslie N., Sr. Shea, M/M J. H. Shelton, James & Vivian Shimek, M/M John Lyle Shirah, M/M Gordon
Shuman, M/M William J. Sierra, M/M Michael Sierra, M/M George Simpson, Mr. Clyde Sinardi, M/M Joe Skemp, M/M Peter S. Sloan, Mrs. G. Dexter Smith, M/M B. C. Smith, M/M B. G. Smith, E. C. Smith, Mr. H. Mason, Jr. Smith, Mr. H. Vance Smith, Mrs. Margaret V. Smith, Stockton H. Smith, M/M W. Gordon Smoak, Dr. & Mrs. Philip L. Snead, Mrs. T. S. Snyder, M/M B. M. Souto, Joseph A. Sparkman, M/M Lamar Spicola, M/M Charles, Jr. Spoto, M/M Sam Srodes, Mrs. Louise H. Stallings, M/M Mitchell Stallings, Mr. Norman, Jr. Stallings, M/M Norman Stapleton Gooch Inc. State, Department of State Library of Florida Stephens, M/M K. R., Sr. Stephens, Mrs. Wade C. Stevens, M/M Carl L. Stevens, M/M Randolph Stowers, M/M Richard Stuckey, M/M Arthur Sturm, Maj. & Mrs. Henry B. Suarez, Ms. Conchita Suarez, Mrs. Maunell Sutton, Phyllis B. Taaffe, Mr.John Tampa Crown Distributors Tampa Electric Co. Tampa Federal Savings & Loan Tampa Jr. Womens Club Tampa Parks Dept. Tampa Preservation Inc. Tampa Public Library Tampa Times Tampa Tribune Tanner, M/M J. H. Tata, Mrs. Mary Taylor, M/M J. G., Jr. Telfer, Dr. & Mrs. J. D. Terrell, Carolyn Jones Thomas, M/M Robert Thomas, Wayne Thomas, M/M William L. Thomas, M/M Guy Thompson, Charlotte Ann Thompson, M/M Uldric, III Toffaletti, Lt. Col. Edith Toney, Mrs. James B. Toomey, Mrs. Janet Torres, M/M Fernando A. Touchton, M/M J. Thomas Towne, M/M John M. Townsend, M/M J. C., III Truitt, M/M W. E. Turman, Solon Brinton Turner, Ms. Kathryn Hill Turner, M/M J. Arthur, Jr. Turpin, Mrs. Walter H., Sr. Tuttle, Anne University of Cen. Florida University of Florida, College of Architecture Van Vaerenbergh, Margaret Vance, Thomas Varn, M/M Ronald Vasey, Dr. & Mrs. Frank V. Vega, Mrs. C. C. Vesley, Dr. & Mrs. Donald R. Vildibill, Dr. & Mrs. Harry D. Villanueva, Rey Wabeke, Mark, Campbell Affl., Inc. Wackerman, M/M James R.
Walker, Zoe King Walker, H. Leslie Wall, M/M James E., Jr. Wall, J. Edgar, III Wallace, Mrs. Helen Holmes Wallace, Mrs. Florence Wallace, M/M O. R. Walter, James W., Jr. Ward, M/M David E. Ware, Mrs. John D. Watson, M/M Laverne Weaver, M/M Robert C. Westfall, Dr. Glenn Western Waterproofing Co. Wetherell, Dr. O. D. Wetherington, M/M Robert Wharton, M/M Paul R. Whidden, M/M Harry L., Sr. White, Robert A. White, M/M Morris E. Williams, M/M Glenn R. Williams, Jimmy Williams, John M. Wilsher, Dee Wilson, M/M Kirby Wincey Interiors Winter, Mr. Herman C., Jr. Withers, Dr. & Mrs. R. W. Wolfe, Mrs. Elizabeth Womble, Dorothy B. Wood, M/M G. Pierce Woodall, M/M Fred Woods, Judge & Mrs. Fred Woods, Jean Woodward, Dr. & Mrs. H. Elton Worthington, Mrs. Agnes R. Wray, Mrs. Jody Wuermli, M/M Joseph Yanger, M/M William, Jr. Ybor City Chamber of Commerce Yeats, M/M Victor B. Young, Mrs. T. Roy, Jr. Young, M/M Thomas R., III Zacchini, M/M Rene A. Zalupski, M/M Joseph Zewadski, M/M William K.
KNIGHT HOUSE FINANCIAL PARTICIPATION of the TAMPA HISTORICAL SOCIETY Victorian Society Lifetime Membership: Donors of $ 1000 or more The David Falk Foundation Mary Irene McKay Falk The Junior League of Tampa, Inc. Mr. & Mrs. Peter 0. Knight, Jr. Lykes Bros., Inc. Herbert G. McKay, Chairman Board of Advisors Tampa Historical Society Anthony P. Pizzo Saunders Foundation Solon Brinton Turman Stapleton Gooch, Incorporated Ms. Carolyn Terrell Zoe King Walker L. Glenn Westfall, Ph.D. Patrons of The Knight House: $ 500 to $ 1000 Donations Amaryllis Garden Circle Exchange National Bank of Tampa Tom Carver Leslie McClain Pepsi Cola Bottling Co. of Tampa Mrs. Jean Lykes Rankin Tampa Crown Distributors, Inc. T. Roy Young, III Contributor: $50 to $500 Donations Aboly Foundation Mr. & Mrs. Richard A. Benn Winifred G. Davis Dorothy R. Downs Ferman Oldsmobile, Ferman Chevrolet, and Ferman Family Founders Garden Circle Mrs. Harrison Giddens Mrs. Jane Cralle Hall Mrs. Sara K. Hobbs Frederick Jamison Lt. Gen. Sumter L. Lowry, Ret. Mrs. David R. Murphey, III Phosphate Rock Export Mr. & Mrs. Robert C. Rice, Jr. Bruce Robbins Fred T. Rodgers Mrs. Dale Rodriguez A. R. Savage and Son J. Thomas Touchton Donors: $ 10 to $ 50 Donations Mrs. John Annis R. A. Bagby, M.D. Mrs. R. S. Belcher Raphael Bentschner Walter Black Insurance, Inc. Helen Campbell Michael L. Carrere Nannie Christian Mrs. B. W. Council H. L. Culbreath Mrs. Nancy C. Curtis Mrs. Louise Ferguson Sylvia E. Frazier Susan Gillen Golf View Garden Club Dorothy Grable L. M. Hawes Family Dr. & Mrs. Linus W. Hewit Mrs. T. Paine Kelly C. Verne Klintworth Mrs. Richard Knight Mrs. Elizabeth Linebaugh Mrs. Lesley May W. F. McLane Mrs. Ralph Millsap Mrs. Anne Mullis
National Society of Colonial Dames of America in the State of Florida, Tampa Committee E. K. Nelson Millard Newman S. J. Newman Elizabeth W. Pope Patten Printing Company Mrs. Edward 0. Savitz Southeast Bank of Tampa Gloria Sparkman Charles Spicola George R. Thompson Construction Co. Mrs. W. L. Van Dyke, III Harry D. Vildibill Mr. & Mrs. James R. Wackerman Corporate Members: $50 Donations Azzarelli Construction Company Banana Transport Gatlin and George, P.A. Gulf Tampa Drydock Dr. and Mrs. Louis 0. Pasetti Pepsi Cola Bottling Company Mr. and Mrs. W. 0. Savage Mr. and Mrs. B. G. Smith Patron Members: $25 Donations Adler, M/M Haskell T. Austin, M/M Alfred S. Baldwin, M/M Walter Biddy, Margaret Brown, M/M Joe E. Christian, M/M Mack T. Cimino, M/M Louis Cimino, M/M Peter S., Jr. Costa, Frank J., President Costa Broom Works, Inc. Daley, M/M Thomas Davis, M/M Bobbie C. Davis, M/M Sam F. Davis, Winifred Falk, Mrs. David A. Forrester, W. T. Freeman, W. A., III Friedman, M/M Herbert Fuente, Auturo Fuente, Carlos Giunta, M/M Frank V. Griffin, M/M Jack Hamner, Mrs. William E. Hartley, M/M L. E. Hawes, Mr. Leland Hofman, Lois Hood, Mr. Harold Logan, M/M Claude Lowry, Lt. Gen. & Mrs. S. L. McPhee, M/M Stuart McWhirter, M/M John W. Market, M/M Walter Marvil, M/M Sirmon Mook, M/M J. A. Mulder, M/M Kenneth N.S.C.D.A., in the State of Florida Olson, M/M Lester K. O'Neil, M/M Solon F. Pollard, M/M Merrill Rice, M/M Robert C., Jr. Shirah, M/M Gordon Spicola, M/M Charles, Jr. Stallings, M/M Mitchell Stuckey, M/M Arthur Tampa Federal Savings & Loan (Attention: J. Voskerichian) Touchton, M/M J. Thomas Vance, Thomas Wall, M/M James E., Jr. Williams, Jimmie Wilsher, Dee Young, Mrs. T. Roy, Jr.
THE SUNLAND TRIBUNE First issue of the original The Sunland Tribune, appeared March 2, 1876, Thomas K. Spencer, Publisher, Dr. John P. Wall, Editor. The name of The Sunland Tribune was changed to The Tampa Tribune, March 1, 1883. And it was in The Sunland Tribune of Jan. 19, 1882, that the need for a Tampa Historical Society was first noted publicly. Under a major headline,
TAMPA SHOULD HAVE A HISTORICAL SOCIETY, the newspaper reported Judge J. G. Knapp of Hillsborough County as follows: "Ponce de Leon landed at Tampa Bay and started his march through the wilderness in search for the Fountain of Youth. This is one reason why Tampa should have a Historical Society. "We reflect how long will it be before not a vestige of the history (of our past) will remain, unless snatched from irretrievable loss by the men and women of the present day." Eighty-nine years later, in 1971, the Tampa Historical Society was, indeed, formed with Tony Pizzo the first president. In 1973 when Hampton Dunn created a Journal for the Society, he named it, appropriately, The Sunland Tribune
OAKLAWN CEMETARY By Joan Manlove-Gleason In 1850, Tampa was a small coastal fishing village with a population of about 500. Oaklawn Cemetery was created as Tampa's first public burial ground. The Alachua County Commissioners deeded a plot of ground to the City of Tampa as a final resting place for "white and slave, rich and poor". Soon after the Ladies Memorial Society was given supervision of Oaklawn and promptly purchased additional land. In 1874, B. C. Leonardi donated one acre of land to the Archbishop of St. Augustine, Florida. The Archbishop designated this land, at the Northwest end as the St. Louis Catholic Cemetery. James T. Magbee deeded a gift of additional land to Oaklawn in 1880-this completed acquisition of land for the cemetery. The earliest recorded clean-up campaign took place after the Civil War. The Town Improvement Society, a group of Tampa ladies, raised money for restoration of ENTRANCE TO HISTORIC OAKLAWN CEMETERY ... burial ground since the 1850s -Photo by HAMPTON DUNN
A WALKING TOUR GUIDE TO OAKLAWN CEMETERY Presented by TAMPA HISTORICAL SOCIETY through the assistance of Bob Leonard, Joan Gleason-Manlove, Gail Ortabello, Lilian Wharton, Bettie Nelson, Carmen Toney, Tony Pizzo and Hampton Dunn. written by BOB LEONARD
Oaklawn through raffles and lawn parties. The ladies were also able to employ a caretaker for Oaklawn. Oaklawn Cemetery contains the graves of one Florida Governor, Henry L. Mitchell, two Supreme Court Justices, the framers of four State Constitutions, and the veterans of eight wars. The cemetery was swept by fire in the early 1800s. Most of the old markersbeautifully carved cypress posts, were destroyed. Who was the first person buried at Oaklawn? Early reports claimed that a slave of the Rev. L. G. Lesley was the first man buried at Oaklawn in June of 1850. A Cuban pirate, found dead in the woods that same June, is supposed to be the first white man buried there. The Tampa City Directory of 1901 lists Mrs. B. J. Hagler as the first burial at Oaklawn. She was also buried in June of 1850. The earliest marked gravestone still in existence, is that of the Rev. A. Martin. He was a Methodist circuit rider who owned a plantation on the Alafia River. He died in Tampa and was buried at Oaklawn Cemetery in October of 1850. A walk through Oaklawn Cemetery can offer the visitor a rare glimpse of the youthful deaths and close family ties that were a part of the lives of the pioneers of the 1800s.
A WALKING TOUR GUIDE OF OAKLAWN CEMETRY Presented by The Tampa Historical Society Based upon the narratives of Theodore Lesley, Hillsborough County Historian. Compiled by: Gail Ortabello, Lillian Wharton, Bettie Nelson, Carmen Toney, Tony Pizzo. Written by: M. C. Leonard. OAKLAWN CEMETER located in the northeast corner of the original plat of the County Seat, is the oldest cemetery in Tampa. Given by the County Commissioners in 1850, the cemetery is the resting place of most of Tampa's pioneer leaders and their families. The signers of four State Constitutions are here: 1839-William B. Hooker; 1861-James Gettis, Simon Turman; 1865-James Gettis, James T. Magbee, C. R. Mobley; 1885-John T. Lesley, Dr. J. P. Wall. THE SOUTHWEST SECTION: The oldest Protestant section of Oaklawn cemetery, the Southwest section contains OLD-TIMERS ARRIVE FOR RAMBLE ... Lester and Yetive Olson -Photo by HAMPTON DUNN
many of the earliest Tampa families. This guide will present some of the older families. LETTERS will match with the SW map section. A. THE FERRIS FAMILY: William G. Ferris, and wife Elizabeth opened a store at Ft. Brooke in 1843 and had six children. Son Henry C. Ferris (1848-1902) was mayorin 1880. B. WILLIAM T. LESLEY (1870-1904), son of pioneer Captain John T. Lesley (1835-1913), was sheriff (1900-1904) and member of 1885 Constitutional Convention. C. AMOS HARRIS a Georgian businessman, wed Mattie Henderson, daughter of W. B. and headed the Harris family, an early Tampa family. DOMBROSKY FAMILY D. THE TURMAN FAMILY : Simon Turman (1799-1858) was editor of Florida Peninsular, clerk of circuit court; Simon Turman Jr., (1829-1864), editor of Peninsular, member of 1861 Constitutional Convention, killed in battle of Resaca (Ga.). E. Christian Krause STAFFORD FAMILY F. JOHN T. LESLEY (1835-1913), Indian fighter, Civil War captain, state senator, wed to Margaret, daughter of William T. Brown (1810-1868), city councilman and Two Mile Branch plantation owner. G. WILLIAM H. BROWN son of William T. Like father, a notable cattleman, businessman. H. WEISSBROD FAMILY : founder was saddlemaker who owned property across from old First National Bank site. I. DOMBROSKY FAMILY J. C. R. MOBLEY Tampa Representative to Constitutional Convention in 1865. K. WILLIAM & NANCY ASHLEY : the famous gravestone dedicated to a forbidden love between master and servant (dedicated by John Jackson). L. SPENCER FAMILY : William Samuel Spencer (1811-1871) came from Georgia in 1845; wife Emily Kendrick had 8 children, including Thomas K. (1846-1901), sheriff from 1892 to 1901 and whose son William C. also served as sheriff. M. MITCHELL FAMILY : Thomas Mitchell came to Plant City from Alabama in 1846; wife Elizabeth Starns had 9 children, including HENRY LAURENS MITCHELL (1831-1903), Governor of Florida from 1892 to 1896. N. HANSON FAMILY : George Hanson was old shipping leader in Fort Brooke; his Unionist views forced him to Key West during Civil War, but returned to continue business and family; nearby is CHRISTOPHER BUTLER, only Fort Brooke officer buried in civilian Oaklawn. 0. Near wall is marker to JOSEPH B. LANCASTER (1790-1856) first mayor of Tampa and 1843-47 Speaker of Florida House; he is not buried here. MOORE FAMILY P. Emily Spencer Q. A. P. Brockway R. KENDRICK FAMILY : Elizabeth Mickler Kendrick (widow) and 5 children came to Tampa in 1840; sons Edward Tatwell (1819-1863) sheriff in 1849, and Captain William H., Indian fighter and founder of Kendrick, Florida.
S. K.L. WING: FRIEBELE FAMILY (See S in NW section) T. & U. WALL FAMILY : Perry G. Wall (1809-1897) came from Liberty county; judge of probate and postmaster; married thrice, nine children. Son William W. Wall (1834-1891), Civil War vet and merchant; grandson Perry G. II, mayor from 1923 to 1928, and co-founder of Knight & Wall Company. Dr. J. P. Wall was member of 1885 Constitutional Convention and founder of the Tampa Board of Trade. V. HART FAMILY : J. J. Wells and R. A. Wells, old Tampa family. W. BRANCH FAMILY : Dr. Franklin Branch (1802-1882) was early druggist, se corner of Florida and Washington; son Darwin Austen (1832-1858), mayor from 1857 to 1858. NORTHWEST SECTION : The old Northwest section contains many of the older Protestant families and the old St. Louis Catholic Cemetery, containing the earliest Catholic pioneers. The old dividing fence has long disappeared and the path should not be considered a division between the two cemeteries. A. HENDERSON FAMILY : Irishman Andrew J. Henderson came to Hillsboro county in 1847; wife Olivia McDonald had five children, including William Benton (1839-1909), founder of early store with Captain John Miller. He wed Caroline E. Spencer. GETTIS FAMILY. B. G. Frank Gay C. AVERILL FAMILY D. Jose Mayol, Pedro G. Cruz, Charles Frances E. KENNEDY FAMILY : Thomas Pugh Kennedy (1812-1858) came fron Philadelphia in 1840 and set up trading post. Billy Bowlegs gave him his Presidential medal. Daughter Jane became soprano at New York's Trinity Church and inspiration of song, ""When You and I Were Young, Maggie." Sons Thomas Jr., chairman of Board of Public Instruction, and Henry P., editor of Gulf Coast Progress. F. HANKS FAMILY, FERRIS FAMILY (see SW section) FARR FAMILY. G. Charles M. McKay, James McKay Sr., Thomas Murphy H. ORRIN S. FARR a Dutch Ohioan lawyer who was nominated by Pres. Garfield to serve as Consul General to Brazil, but Garfield was shot and Farr never went far. P. Dunbaugh, Samuel Hamlin, JACKSON J. CAPTAIN JOHN PECK -Tampa's first harbour captain. K. HOOKER FAMILY : William B. Hooker established one of the largest cattle firms in county and the family continued in the cattle industry. Owned Orange Grove Hotel. L. John McMormick, Thomas Cook, W. L. Campbell
M. Lawrence A. Masters N. Marguerite S. de la Pena 0. SAUVE FAMILY P. HENDERSON FAMILY (see above A) John W. Henderson Q. REV. ALEXANDER MARTIN (d. October 7, 1850), retired Methodist minister who had alafia plantation; one of the earliest graves. R. WILLIAMS FAMILY S. FRIEBELE FAMILY : German Christopher L. Friebele (1815-1886) set up store on nw corner of Franklin and Washington. Wife Julia A. Wall had 3 kids, including Samuel who wed Rosa Dagenhardt. T. BELL U. WILLIAM REDFIELD -one of the earliest pre Civil War merchants in Tampa. V McABEE FAMILY W. Buff X. MICKLER FAMILY : one of the most active Tampa business families. Y. MAGNON FAMILY : ancestors of the notable jewelry business family. Z. MOSES FAMILY NORTHWEST SECTION continued utilizing numbers: 1. LEONARDI FAMILY : merchant brothers Bartholomew C. (1818-1900) and Vincent and three sisters came in 1855. B. C. on early city councils. 2. HASKINS FAMILY 3. LeDUC FAMILY : Realtor William LeDuc built early estate on corner of Howard and Bayshore. 4. GRILLON FAMILY : Odet Grillon was one of the pioneer businessmen in Tampa. 5. ANDREU FAMILY : John P. Andreu wed Theodosia Leonardi. 6. C. H. Davis 7. John Hanlon, Peter Hanlon 8. ALFONSO de LAUNEY was the first postmaster of Tampa, an early mayor, and an editor of the Florida Peninsular; he wed Victoria Montes de Oca of Spanish Town Creek (Hyde Park). 9. Lyons 10. J. W. Harlon 11. PONS FAMILY : Emilio Pons was one of the pioneer cigar manufacturers of Tampa; one of the distinguished Tampa families. 12. W.C. BROWN was a clerk of circuit court and the surveyor of the second plat of Oaklawn Cemetery; Louis Garney. 13. MORSE FAMILY 14. Father Francisco Garcia
15. MULRENNAN FAMILY 16 HICKEY FAMILY 17. Roberts 18. Valdez 19. S. Knight 20. MENENDEZ FAMILY 21. CHAVEZ FAMILY 22. CONSTANTINE BOURGUARDEZ (1824-1884) came to Tampa from St. Augustine in 1847 and built a homestead on the River near present Constant Street (named for him). 23. ESTEVEZ FAMILY 24. Luis Robanina 25. Thomas Leahy 26.27. WESLEY HENDERSON first Superintendent of Public Instruction. 28. GHIRA FAMILY : merchant Domenico Ghira (1816-1897) came to Tampa from Italy; wife Domenica Masters had six children; daughter Josephine wed famous architect Alfred H. Parslow. SOUTHEAST SECTION : This section of the cemetery contains numerous older families, particularly on the western side of the section. Buried here is James Macbee who gave this section of property as an extension of the cemetery. 1. LOVENGREEN FAMILY : you enter the cemetery and find a mortician (true). 2. 23. 26. GIVENS FAMILY : John T. Given(s) served at Fort Brooke and settled in 1848 on the se corner of Morgan and Lafayette (Kennedy). Wife Nancy Walker had 12 children, including John Jasper, a clerk of circuit court, and Darwin Branch. 3. McCARTY FAMILY: Mitchell McCarty (1818-1858) came to Tampa in 1849 and set up a store; his wife was Elizabeth Simmons of "Simmons Hammock." 4. Afthimeos Sampson 5. HILL FAMILY 6. CONDON FAMILY 7. James Davis 8. W. C. Hubner HAYDEN 9. Marcus Morales 10. MCKAY FAMILY : Pioneer founder James McKay is located in the NE section near W. B. Henderson and the Hooker family; James Sr. (1808-1876) came from Scotland to Tampa in 1846; was mayor in 1858, and was famous blockade runner in Civil War; James McKay, Jr. (1842-1924) organized the Mallory Line and was mayor 1902-1903. Donald McKay was mayor (1910-1920, 1928-1931) and editor and publisher of the Tampa Times. 11. GAMBELL FAMILY 12 BURROUGHS FAMILY 13. CAMPBELL FAMILY : once owners of much of Franklin Street. 14. Charles F. Vincat
15. Mary Landrum 16. WILSON FAMILY : First Lt. C. S. Wilson, Louis L. Wilson 17. Alice E. Taylor 18 HUBERT FAMILY 19.20. Dr. George W. Murphy 21. PHILIPPS FAMILY : Barron Philipps was a notable lawyer; his daughter is the only Gasparilla Queen buried at Oakla22. MAGBEE FAMILY : James Macbee was a lawyer, state legislator, realtor, owner of this land before it became a cemetery, and member of the 1865 State Constitutional Convention. 24. Henry N. Sumner 25. PaulJones 26. BRUCE FAMILY : an old Tampa family. 27. Frank W. Ross 28. Theo Bush 29. WEBB FAMILY : Jensen 30. MILFORD FAMILY 31. FRANK O'HALLARAN : the Hallaran family was one of the pioneer cigar-making manufacturers in West Tampa; messages were said to be smuggled to Cuba in cigar shipments to help the Revolution. 32. George Drumond 34. HARRIAN FAMILY 35. A. York 37. Samuel Haddon 38.39. open 40. KRAUSE FAMILY : Henry Krause was a blacksmith and owned a large business on Franklin Street. John Henry also owned Sulphur Springs and wagon center. 41. HAYDEN FAMILY : Jesse Hayden was a businessman and purchaser of the general Carter estates; his widow sold this land which became the Tampa Bay Hotel grounds. 42. FISHER FAMILY : an early Tampa family; early saltmakers for Confederate Army. 43 REINER FAMILY : a business family coming after the Civil War. 44. MUGGE FAMILY : Robert Mugge came to Tampa in 1876 and set up brewery, soda water firm, and operated the Tampa and New Orleans Transportation Company. 45. FIELD FAMILY 46. FISHER 47. WALL FAMILY : see SW section 48. POST 49. T. Stevens 50. John A. Medena, I. Craft, J. Tatum 51. Sarah Henderson, Captain Block 52. J. T. GIVENS
NORTHEAST SECTION : While this large section contains a wide range of years, it contains the small frame house where Confederate Veterans used to sit and discuss the old Tampa families. The house was used for the coffin and eulogy in poor weather and later as a tool house. 1. BOOKER FAMILY : pioneer family on the Manatee River; George W. Lumberman. 2. BOEDO FAMILY 3. KIRKPATRICK FAMILY, GARCIA FAMILY 4. AURORA FAMILY 5. J. W. Harlow 6. BEMIS FAMILY 7. LEA FAMILY : Henry Lea was a Captain in the Confederate Army, from Alabama. 8. (east of little building) CRANE FAMILY : New Jersey's Henry A. Crane founded the Tampa Herald in 1852 and served in Union Navy in Key West; son Henry L. was Confederate soldier, county judge, and U. S. Commissioner of district. 9. ROSS FAMILY 10. Jessie S. Mather 11. PROBONE FAMILY 12. TINNY FAMILY 13. FUCHS FAMILY : George Fuchs, a businessman, married one of the Hooker daughters. 14. Craft 15. BATES FAMILY : G. W. Lipton, Roberts 16. HILLS FAMILY 17. RAND FAMILY 18. Julia T. McKay 19. Carruth 20. GIDDENS FAMILY : kin to Wesley B. Henderson, first Superintendent of Public Instruction in Hillsborough County and a grad of Washington & Lee when Robert E. Lee was President. 21. SMITH FAMILY : an old Tampa family 22. CARTER FAMILY 23. S. D. Chase 24. Mary Cardy: a widow of the 1850's who raised a large Tampa family 25. LOUDE FAMILY 26. THOMAS FAMILY 27. BEAN FAMILY 28. WARNER FAMILY 29. FERRIS FAMILY : (see SW section) J. T. GUNN 30. John B. Spencer 31. CLINE FAMILY : merchant George W. Cline had memorial windows in the old First
Methodist Church; a very civic family of old Tampa. 32. MORRIS FAMILY : an old Confederate family whose farm was near the Morris Bridge on the Hillsborough River. A. SAMFORD FAMILY B. DIAZ FAMILY: Maximo Diaz was a pioneer drug gist and businessman. C. VALERIA FAMILY D. ORTON FAMILY E. DIAZ FAMILY F. CACCIATORE FAMILY G. BALBONTIN FAMILY : a large family; Bautista M. Balbontin was a cigar manufacturer and wine merchant H. DIAZ FAMILY I. Narcisca D. Saravia K. Francesca Torres J. HARTMAN FAMILY L. Antonia E. Nacto M. SAUVE FAMILY N. CLARKE FAMILY : an early Tampa Family, founder E. A. Clarke from New York was located in the west section and moved to Woodlawn when Morgan Street was constructed. 0. Emma Macfarlane. There were two Macfarlane families; Hugh C. Macfarlane (1851-1935), founder of West Tampa, is the most famous. P. (located behind and to east of small house) JACKSON FAMILY: Robert Jackson was pioneer Tampa businessman. The other early Jackson family, the JOHN JACKSON FAMILY, was moved to Myrtle Hill Cemetery. Q. George Cline (see Cline family) R. MORRIS FAMILY S. Lawrence Taylor W. G. Bartholomew T. J. D. Clarke U. DUFF POST, four times Mayor of Tampa and an early dentist; son of Madison Post (1815-1867), who was mayor in 1858. V. NOBLE FAMILY: A. C. Noble W. Lula Fernandez X. OSBURN FAMILY Y. VICENTE MARTINEZ YBOR (18181896), founder of Ybor City, is buried beneath his grandson who died in 1906. Originally Ybor was to be buried in Havana with Oaklawn as a temporary resting place, but the transfer was never accomplished. PLEASE NOTE THAT DUE TO VANDALISM SOME GRAVESTONES HAVE BEEN REPOSITIONED OR EVEN MOVED FROM ORIGINAL LOCATIONS. THIS CHART AND MAP IS NOT NECESSARILY ACCCURATE, BUT APPROXIMATE IN DESIGN. PLEASE ASSIST THE TAMPA HISTORICAL SOCIETY: The Tampa Historical Society would like to gather
information and material on all the old Tampa families. Please assist us in improving our guide and other materials about Tampa's early history. Revisions in this guide are essential to eliminate errors of placement, dates, and background. Contact any member of the Tampa Historical Society.
RAMBLIN THROUGH OLD OAKLAWN CEMETERY A Photographic Essay By HAMPTON DUNN CARMEN TONEY, PATTI DERVAES hostesses for Annual Event M.C. (BOB) LEONARD identifying the graves MR. & MRS. RICHARD S. CLARKE haverelat i vesbur i edhere MOLLIE OWENS & DORA NOTO at V. M. Ybors tomb TONY PIZZO, DR. E. FERNANDEZ and unidentified visitor CAPT. JOHN T. LESLEYS PLOT pioneer Tampa family
MRS. ALMA DeWALD, DR. M. LINEBAUGH talking about their heritage DR. MARION LINEBAUGH, TONY PIZZO at Charlie Walls grave MARY AND MARGIANNE MATTOX Cemetery Clerk is on left MR. AND MMRS. DAVID McKAY of the Tampa McKays
DR. MARION LINEBOUGH a long-time residence WILLIAM ASHLEY GRAVE buried with black servent CHARLES FISHER at grandfathers grave PRESSIE WALLS STONE wife of Dr. J. P. Wall
FIRST MAYORS MARKER Judge Joseph B. Lancaster ANOTHER MAYORS TOMB Duff Post died in 1915 KENNEDY FAMILY PLOT listed in Blue Book DECORATED TOMBSTONE of Spanish residence
BICYCLE SHOP OWNER COLLECTED OLD, RARE PHOTOS By TONY PIZZO Emilio Del Rio, veteran Ybor City historian, died in November, 1980, at the age of 87 years. He was born in June, 1893, in the town of Fort Brooke, adjacent to Tampa. His father, Antonio Del Rio, came with V. Martinez Ybor to Tampa in 1886 and participated in the establishment of the cigar community of Ybor City. Emilio Del Rio owned a bicycle shop on 7th Avenue for more than 50 years. He made important contributions in the preservation of the history of Ybor City. His book, Yo Fui Uno de Los Fundares de Ybor City has preserved much of the early social history of the Latin Quarter. In 1950, he established the Ybor City Museum which he funded from his personal assets. Many of the old, rare photographs we have today on Ybor City were collected by Del Rio.