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Hillsborough

TAMPA BAY HOTEL
Location:West Kennedy Boulevard, University of Tampa Campus
County: Hillsborough
City: Tampa
Description: Henry B. Plant built this ornate Moorish structure at a cost of $3 million. Opened in 1891, it became the social and cultural center of early Tampa. During the Spanish American War it was headquarters for troops going to Cuba and house such visitors as Col. Theodore Roosevelt, Clara Barton, Richard Harding Davis and Gen. Nelson Miles. Purchased by the City of Tampa in 1905, it has served as the main building of the University of Tampa since 1933.
THE FOUNDING OF THE CIGAR INDUSTRY IN TAMPA
Location:Corner of 9th Avenue and 14th Street, Ybor City.
County: Hillsborough
City: Tampa
Description: In 1886 two cigar factories were completed at Tampa signaling the founding of the industry in the area. Pioneer manufacturer was Vincente Martinez Ybor, a native of Spain, who had made cigars at Havana and Key West. Ybor's move to Tampa was prompted by better transportation and favorable terms offered by Tampa's Board of Trade. Due to the efforts of Ybor and his associates, Tampa became a world tobacco manufacturing center.
Sponsors: In Cooperation with Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce
TAMPA AS PORT OF EMBARKATION FOR SPANISH AMERICAN WAR
Location:Corner of West Shore Boulevard and Interbay Boulev
County: Hillsborough
City: Tampa
Description: From April to June, 1898, Tampa served as port of embarkation for U.S. Troops on their way to Cuba. Some 30,000 troops arrived in Tampa and 16,000 embarked from Port Tampa on June 7. The Tampa Bay Hotel was headquarters for the force's leaders including General Miles and Shafter and Colonel "Teddy" Roosevelt. The city also swarmed with visiting civilians including author Richard Harding Davis and Clara Barton, founder of the American Red Cross.
RUSKIN COLLEGE PRESIDENT'S HOME
Location:S.R. 674 and U.S. 41
County: Hillsborough
City: Ruskin
Description: Ruskin College opened in 1912 as a coeducational industrial and liberal arts college. It was located on part of a large tract of land purchased by Dr. George McA. Miller beginning in 1907 for the purpose of establishing a cooperative college and a planned community modelled on the philosphy of British social thinker, John Ruskin. Ruskin believed in making education abailable for everyone. Dr. Miller had previously established two other Ruskinian colleges in the mid-West and was devoted to the educational principle of combining intellectual endeavors with manual labor. His wife, Adeline Dickman Miller, designed the Swiss chalet style structure located near this marker. It was constructed in 1914 and was the only one of Ruskin College's original buildings to survive a fire in 1919. By that time the cooperative college had declined due to loss of students during World War I. In 1940, the Miller House was deeded by that family to the Ruskin Woman's Club. This structure was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1974. It remains a symbol of the utopian origins of the community of Ruskin.
Sponsors: sponsored by the Ruskin woman's club in cooperation with department of state
CIRCULO CUBANO (CUBAN CLUB)
Location:2010 Avenida Republica de Cuba
County: Hillsborough
City: Tampa
Description: Late 19th and early 20th century Cuban immigration to the United States was impressive for the craft talents brought to the country. Along with their Spanish counterparts, skilled Cuban cigar makers made Tampa’s hand-rolled cigars world famous. As early as 1899 Cuban immigrants formed recreational societies with varying degrees of success, and in 1902, Cuban workers founded El Circulo Cubano as a mutual aid society to bind all Cuban residents of Tampa into a fraternal group, to offer assistance and help to the sick. When fire destroyed the first clubhouse in 1916, members immediately initiated plans for its replacement. The present four-story, yellow brick building with Neo-Classical design elements sits on the original site at 14th Street and 10th Avenue. Constructed in 1917, the building contained a theater, pharmacy, library, ballroom, and cantina. Imported tile, stained glass windows and elaborately carved scraffito spandrels decorated the structure. The ballroom ceiling displayed elaborate murals. The clubhouse provided an elegant gathering place for members and served as a unifying force in the Cuban community. The National Register of Historic Places listed El Circulo Cubano in 1972.
Sponsors: HISTORIC TAMPA/HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY PRESERVATION BOARD AND THE FLORIDA DEPARTMENT OF STATE
CENTRO ESPANOL De TAMPA
Location:E. 7th Avenue in plaza at N 16th St.
County: Hillsborough
City: Tampa
Description: Chartered on September 7, 1891, El Centro Espanol was the first Latin club organized in Ybor City. As a mutual aid society, it provided early Spanish immigrants with a framework by which they maintained their identity and culture while supplying social privileges and death and injury benefits. Financed by stock pledges of $10 each by the original 186 Charter Members, the society opened the first club building in June 1892 on land purchased by Ignacio Haya at 16th Street and 7the Avenue. The membership soon outgrew the original building. By 1909 club officers embarked on a building campaign to build two new clubhouses, one in Ybor City and one to accommodate members in West Tampa. Completed in 1912, El Centro Espanol de Tampa sits on the site of the original structure on 7th Avenue. The long two-story rectangular building houses a cantina and ballroom at its south end separated by a foyer and stair hall from the theater at its north end. The parapet of the stage house steps above the roof line of the main building at the north end of the site. The red brick edifice reflects the French Renaissance Revival style with Moorish and Spanish influence. In 1988 the Department of the Interior designated El Centro Espanol de Tampa a National Historic Landmark.
Sponsors: HISTORIC TAMPA/HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY PRESERVATION BOARD AND THE FLORIDA DEPARTMENT OF STATE
GERMAN-AMERICAN CLUB
Location:2106 Nebraska Avenue
County: Hillsborough
City: Tampa
Description: Organized in 1901, the German-American Club was one of the few non-Latin ethnic clubs in Tampa. Club members laid the cornerstone for a building on the northeast corner of Nebraska Avenue and 11th Street on February 23, 1908, followed by a grand opening on January 1, 1909. Fine classical details and proportions marked the three-story building, with concrete bock molded to appear as tooled stone masonry. With a stage for speakers or theatrical productions, a swimming pool and a bowling alley, the building served Tampa’s German and Jewish population until its sale in 1919. From 1919 to 1924, it housed Tampa’s Labor Temple Association. The Young Men’s Hebrew Association bought the building in 1924 and remained until 1944. Focusing on education and recreation for Tampa’s Jewish community, the association held gym, art, and music classes, and outdoor sports and leisure activities. Various groups including an insurance company and the Hispanic organization, Los Caballeros de la Luz, occupied the building after 1944.
Sponsors: TAMPA/HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY PRESERVATION BOARD AND THE FLORIDA DEPARATMENT OF STATE
L'UNIONE ITALIANA (ITALIAN CLUB)
Location:1731 7th Avenue
County: Hillsborough
City: Tampa
Description: The nucleus of Tampa’s Italian colony arrived from New Orleans and Sicily in 1887. Founded in 1894, the primary purpose of L’Unione Italiana was to promote social and fraternal exchange among its members, and to provide medical benefits and burial expenses for its members. Health care benefits provided by Ybor City’s social clubs represent early examples of America’s health maintenance organizations and one of the oldest examples of cooperative medicine in the country. L’Unione Italiana is considered the forerunner of more than 1,400 Italian mutual aid societies founded in the United States. In 1914 fire destroyed the first club house built on the northwest corner of Seventh Avenue and Eighteenth Street. By 1918 the Society built the present three-story Neoclassical building across 7th Avenue from the original site at a cost of $80,000. The structure embraces the Italo-Greco tradition embodied in the ancient Greek temples found in the province of Agrigento, Sicily. Its theatre, ballroom, library and cantina were always beehives of activity. It stands today as a source of pride and commitment to early Italian immigrants.
Sponsors: HISTORIC TAMPA/HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY PRESERVATION BOARD AND THE FLORIDA DEPARTMENT OF STATE
EL CENTRO ASTURIANO DE TAMPA
Location:1913 Nebraska Avenue
County: Hillsborough
City: Tampa
Description: Spanish immigrants from the province of Asturias formed the Centro Asturiano de Tampa in 1902 as a mutual aid society dedicated to meeting the recreational, social and medical needs of its members. In an effort to broaden the concept of cooperative medicine, the club operated a hospital, El Sanatorio del Centro Asturiano, until its closing in 1988. The society built the present three-story yellow brick and stone building on the corner of Palm and Nebraska Avenues in 1914 after a fire destroyed the original club house building. Designed in the Neo-Classical style, the building features stylized classical columns and a sweeping stone staircase leading to the main entrance. Major interior spaces include a grand theater, ballroom, and cantina with a 50-foot onyx bar. With a membership open to all Latins, El Centro Asturiano quickly became the center of Spanish theater and opera hosting some of the finest opera performers in the nation. The National Register of Historic Places listed the Centro Asturiano building in 1974.
Sponsors: HISTORIC TAMPA/HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY PRESERVATION BOARD AND THE FLORIDA DEPARTMENT OF STATE
SOCIEDAD LA UNION MARTI-MACEO
Location:1226 7th Avenue
County: Hillsborough
City: Tampa
Description: Afro-Cuban cigar makers founded this society in 1900 as Los Libres Pensadores de Marti y Maceo. Founders had been members of El Club Nacional Cubano, an organization of Black and White Cubans involved in Cuban independence. Afro-Cubans were forced to withdraw in response to racial segregation. Ruperto Pedroso, well-known Afro-Cuban patriot, was among the 23 original founders. Meetings of the organization began in the parlor of Pedroso’s boardinghouse at 13th Street and 8th Avenue (present site of Marti Park). In 1904, medical benefits were added when the club merged with La Union, resulting in the new name, La Union Marti-Maceo. In 1909, members completed construction of a two-story club house at 11th Street and 6th Avenue. With an average membership of about 300, the club offered full medical benefits and a stipend for sick members, as well as social, cultural and educational activities. During the depression of the 1930s, many Afro-Cubans left Tampa. Membership declined and benefits were reduced, but the club continued in operation. In 1965, Urban Renewal demolished the original building, and the members moved to the present location at 7th Avenue and 13th Street. By the late 1960s, there were few members left and it appeared that the organization would soon cease to exist. However, in the early 1970s, a large number of people who had left Ybor City as children during the depression returned as retirees. The size increased to over 100 members, reviving the organization.
Sponsors: HISTORIC TAMPA/HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY PRESERVATION BOARD AND THE FLORIDA DEPARTMENT OF STATE
YBOR CITY HISTORIC DISTRICT
Location:1200 Block of E. 7th Ave
County: Hillsborough
City: Tampa
Description: Vicente Martinez-Ybor, a wealthy Spanish Cigar manufacturer from New York and Key West, began development of Ybor City in 1885. On April 12,1886, 500 Cuban cigar makers boarded the sidewheeler Hutchinson in Key West and sailed to Tampa. Over 3,000 workers arrived by the end of 1886. Cigar factories and home construction flourished and business thrived. Ybor City became known as the "Cigar Capital of the World". The Ybor City Historic District includes more than 1,300 buildings, nearly a thousand of which are Historic. The buildings include the largest collection of cigar factories and related industrial structures in the United States; a major collection of commercial and commercial-residential structures; a group of ethnic clubhouses; and historic worker housing, many structures, built between 1886 and World War 1, display Spanish and Cuban influences, such as wrought-iron balconies, even though many architects in the area were "Anglos". The Ybor City Historic District was listed in the National Register of Historic Places in 1974. For its importance in the Nation's Immigration Movement. The National Park Service declared Ybor City a National Historic Landmark District in 1990.
Sponsors: Sponsored by City Of Tampa Ybor City Development Corporation and Florida Department of State, Sandra B. Wortham, Secretary Of State.
IL CIMITERO DELL’UNIONE ITALIANA
Location:26th St. & 23rd Ave.
County: Hillsborough
City: Tampa
Description: L’Unione Italiana, founded in 1894 in Ybor City, institutionalized the Italian funeral in Tampa when in 1896 it purchased this property from the prominent African-American Armwood family and dedicated it as a cemetery. The first Italians were buried here in 1893. Also buried here is Blanche Armwood (1890-1939), a nationally known educator. The Italian cemetery includes a parcel belonging to the Societa de Mutuo Soccorso (Mutual Aid Society). Ceramic photographs on grave markers and tombstones inscribed in Sicilian and Italian pay homage to Sicily, where the stonecutters perfected their craft in granite and marble. A cherished set of rituals governed the Italian funeral. Hundreds of people walked in a cortege, often pausing for a final tribute in front of the deceased’s house and the Italian Club where flags of Italy and the United States stood at half mast. A brass band led them to the cemetery followed by family and paesani (countrymen). This ritual celebrated the decedent’s service to the community. In the early years, each club member contributed one dollar to the bereaved family. Later, the club established a $300 survivor benefit.
Sponsors: THE ITALIAN CLUB CEMETERY, INC. AND THE FLORIDA DEPARTMENT OF STATE
TAMPA UNION STATION
Location:601 Nebraska
County: Hillsborough
City: Tampa
Description: By 1902, the Seaboard Air Line [SAL] was formed and the Atlantic Coast Line [ACL] had taken over the rail system of Henry B. Plant. Tampa Union Station (TUS), built in 1912, was designed by architect J.F. Leitner in Italian Renaissance style, and served both railroads. The companies contributed $250,000 to build the station, which was managed by the Tampa Union Station Company. During the Depression, America’s passenger railroad earnings fell by half. Higher revenues during World War II were offset by the costs of overworking their stock to meet war needs. To increase profits, they reinvested in sleeker, more modern rolling stock, resulting in the Streamliner Era. Notable trains that served TUS then included the ACL’s West Coast Champion, South Wind, the Southland and the SAL’s Silver Meteor, Silver Star and Sunland. In 1971, Amtrak began operating the nation s passenger rail services and today runs trains out of Tampa Union Station. In 1991, the non-profit Tampa Union Station Preservation & Redevelopment, Inc. purchased the 1.97-acre terminal and baggage building, renovating in it 1998. Ownership was transferred to the City of Tampa in 1999. The station is on the National Register of Historic Places.
Sponsors: TAMPA UNION STATION PRESERVATION & REDEVELOPMENT, INC. AND THE FLORIDA DEPARTMENT OF STATE
OLD PEOPLES HOME
Location:1203 E. 22nd Ave Tampa, FL
County: Hillsborough
City: Tampa
Description: Opened in 1924, The Old People’s Home was the largest publicly supported home for the elderly in Tampa and represented a major civic achievement. An all-woman Board of Managers founded the Home and the original by-laws stated that men could serve only as Trustees or Advisors. Designed and built by architect, A.H. Johnson (1857-1925), it was built on land donated by Peter O. Knight. The building is masonry vernacular with elements of the Colonial Revival style on its main façade. The Tampa Tribune stated: “The building contains, besides the many bedrooms, four sun parlors, dining room, reception room and kitchen on the first floor, two large airy wards, an infirmary and baths on the second floor and a laundry in the basement. It is equipped with elevators and refrigerating plant, faucets of ice water in the upstairs halls and infirmary, and running water in every bedroom.” The site includes Sarah Knight Park, named for Knight’s mother, and features a canopy of oak trees, gazebos, picnic benches and a shuffleboard court. The Old People’s Home continues to operate as a non-profit agency providing a caring home environment for elderly Tampa residents. It was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2000.
Sponsors: THE HOME ASSOCIATION, INC. AND THE FLORIDA DEPARTMENT OF STATE
W.T. EDWARDS HOSPITAL COMPLEX
Location:4014 Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Blvd.
County: Hillsborough
City: Tampa
Description: The W.T. Edwards Hospital, erected in 1952, was one of three tuberculosis (TB) hospitals built in Florida after World War II, and was funded by a state cigarette tax and federal monies. The other hospitals were in Tallahassee and Lantana. The complex included 10 buildings, six of which were particularly significant: the hospital, laboratory, employee housing, laundry and heating plant, nurses’ quarters, and state medical director’s residence. The hospital, designed by Charles Kuhn, was a significant example of the International Style popular in the post-war years. It was a long, narrow, concrete building with many windows, designed to provide interior air circulation and sunlight. The buildings were steam heated, and air conditioned except in the patients’ rooms. At the time, air conditioning was thought to be unhealthy for TB patients. The Tampa hospital was the only facility in the state to treat children with TB and to be equipped to admit patients under Florida’s compulsory isolation law, which provided that, for public safety, those who refused treatment due to religious beliefs could be confined and treated against their will. With the decline in the occurrence of TB, the hospital closed in 1974.
Sponsors: HILLSBOROUGH COMMUNITY COLLEGE AND THE FLORIDA DEPARTMENT OF STATE