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Tampa in Hillsborough County, Florida — The American South (South Atlantic)
 

The Beginning of the Cigar Industry in West Tampa

 
 
The Beginning of the Cigar Industry in West Tampa Marker image. Click for full size.
By AGS Media, September 5, 2011
1. The Beginning of the Cigar Industry in West Tampa Marker
Inscription. A cigar factory built on this site in June 1892 by Hugh C. Macfarlane brought the first industry to the community of West Tampa. First operated by A. Del Pino and Company, it failed financially. In 1894 the O'Halloran Cigar Company occupied the building.

On May 18, 1895, a bill passed Florida's legislature creating the municipality of West Tampa. Its first mayor was Fernando Figueredo, a prominent figure in the Cuban revolution.

Sponsored by the Tampa Historical Society - June 15, 1990

 
Erected 1990 by the Tampa Historical Society.
 
Location. 27° 57.468′ N, 82° 28.98′ W. Marker is in Tampa, Florida, in Hillsborough County. Marker is at the intersection of North Howard Avenue and West Union Street, on the left when traveling north on North Howard Avenue. Click for map. The marker is in the Old West Tampa neighborhood of the City of Tampa, in front of the West Tampa Branch Library. Marker is at or near this postal address: 2312 West Union Street, Tampa FL 33607, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. The West Tampa Boys Club (about 500 feet away, measured in a direct line); Academy of The Holy Names (approx.
The Beginning of the Cigar Industry in West Tampa Marker image. Click for full size.
By AGS Media, September 5, 2011
2. The Beginning of the Cigar Industry in West Tampa Marker
0.2 miles away); Centro Español de West Tampa (approx. 0.3 miles away); Rough Rider Encampment (approx. half a mile away); Morgan Cigar Factory (approx. half a mile away); Rough Riders Encampment ~ (approx. 0.6 miles away); George Guida (approx. ¾ mile away); Hugh C. Macfarlane (approx. ¾ mile away but has been reported missing). Click for a list of all markers in Tampa.
 
More about this marker. The marker is capped with the seal of the former City of West Tampa.

The marker stands outside the West Tampa Library. Built by steel magnate and philanthropist Andrew Carnegie in 1913, it was the first public library in Hillsborough County.

The marker and library are located within the West Tampa Historic District. The district was listed with the National Register of Historic Places (# 83003539) in 1983 with 908 historic buildings on approximately 273 acres.
 
Regarding The Beginning of the Cigar Industry in West Tampa. Hugh C. MacFarlane (1851-1935) was an immigrant from Scotland who first settled and began developing
The Beginning of the Cigar Industry in West Tampa Marker image. Click for full size.
By AGS Media, September 5, 2011
3. The Beginning of the Cigar Industry in West Tampa Marker
Seen along North Howard Avenue
West Tampa in 1886. The City of West Tampa incorporated in 1895 and attracted immigrants from Cuba, Spain, Italy, Scotland, Ireland, Germany, and numerous states outside Florida. West Tampa was annexed by the City of Tampa in 1925.

Tampa's once booming cigar industry is today but a shadow of its former self. However, numerous factory buildings remain in the neighborhoods of West Tampa and Ybor City as a testament to the days when Tampa was known as the "Cigar Capital of the World".
 
Also see . . .  The Cigar History Collection. Extensive archive of photos and stories from Tampa's days as "Cigar City". Hosted by the Gonzalez Habano Cigar Company. (Submitted on September 9, 2011, by Glenn Sheffield of Tampa, Florida.) 
 
Categories. Hispanic AmericansIndustry & CommercePoliticsSettlements & Settlers
 
West Tampa Library image. Click for full size.
By AGS Media, September 5, 2011
4. West Tampa Library
Built on the site of the old O'Halloran Cigar factory, the West Tampa Library is a Contributing Structure in the West Tampa Historic District.
O'Halloran & Co. Cigars Label image. Click for full size.
By O'Halloran & Co., 1897
5. O'Halloran & Co. Cigars Label
This illustration depicts the factory in which West Tampa's cigar industry began. After the failure of A. Del Pino and Company, O'Halloran & Company moved in in 1984. Since 1913, the site has been home to the West Tampa Library.
Courtesy: Tony Pizzo Collection, University of South Florida Special Collections
West Tampa Library Plaque image. Click for full size.
By AGS Media, September 5, 2011
6. West Tampa Library Plaque
Original Construction 1913
A donation of the Carnegie Corporation

Restoration & Addition by Hillsborough County
GroundbreakingSept. 23, 2000
Dedication April 29, 2004
Y. Pendas & Alvarez Cigar Factory image. Click for full size.
By AGS Media, September 5, 2011
7. Y. Pendas & Alvarez Cigar Factory
Built in 1909, the former factory is a Contributing Structure in the West Tampa Historic District.
Morgan Cigar Factory image. Click for full size.
By AGS Media, September 9, 2011
8. Morgan Cigar Factory
    In 1907 Colonel William T. Morgan erected this three story factory and soon his "Juan De Fuca" label attained popularity nationwide. By 1910, the company and its 1,000 employees had to move to a larger factory. The building was later home to six other cigar companies. It currently houses professional and commercial offices. The Morgan building is a Contributing Structure in the West Tampa Historic District, and it has been honored with its own historical marker (see "Other Nearby Markers" above).
Berriman-Morgan Cigar Factory image. Click for full size.
By AGS Media, September 5, 2011
9. Berriman-Morgan Cigar Factory
     Built for the Berriman Cigar Co. in 1903, the 33,000 square feet building became the new home to the Morgan Cigar Co. in 1910. Here, with up to 1,000 workers, Morgan produced over 11 million hand-rolled cigars a year. The former factory has been thoroughly restored and updated and is now home to the Tampa campus of Argosy University, and is a Contributing Structure in the West Tampa Historic District.
Bustillo Brothers & Diaz Cigar Factory image. Click for full size.
By AGS Media, September 5, 2011
10. Bustillo Brothers & Diaz Cigar Factory
The former factory is a Contributing Structure in the West Tampa Historic District.
A. Santaella Co. Cigar Factory image. Click for full size.
By AGS Media, September 5, 2011
11. A. Santaella Co. Cigar Factory
Built in 1904, the former cigar factory now houses a restaurant supply business.
Samuel L. Davis Cigar Factory image. Click for full size.
By AGS Media, September 5, 2011
12. Samuel L. Davis Cigar Factory
Built in 1910, the former factory is a Contributing Structure in the West Tampa Historic District.
Mural of Cuesta Rey & Co. Cigar Factory image. Click for full size.
By AGS Media, September 5, 2011
13. Mural of Cuesta Rey & Co. Cigar Factory
    In nearby Rey Park, a mural depicts the Cuesta Rey & Co. factory, which was built in 1896 by Spanish immigrants Angel Cuesta and Peregrino Rey (for whom the park was named). Their factory produced the popular labels "Ponce de Leon", "La Favorita De Tampa", "La Flor de Cuesta Rey", and "Unica". At its peak, the company operated factories in West Tampa and in Ybor City, and was named official Purveyor to the Court of Spain by King Alfonzo XIII. The company was later bought out. Their West Tampa factory was a Contributing Structure in the West Tampa Historic District but was destroyed by fire in 1989.
The Andres Diaz Cigar Factory image. Click for full size.
By AGS Media, September 9, 2011
14. The Andres Diaz Cigar Factory
     Built in 1908, the factory produced cigar labels such as "Terreno", "Flor de A. Diaz", and "La Flor de Scott." In more recent years, the building was home to the Tampa Church of Scientology (which has since moved into a larger former cigar factory in Tampa's Ybor City). The building is a Contributing Structure of the West Tampa Historic District and has been honored with its own historical marker (see "Other Nearby Markers" above).
San Martin & Leon Cigar Company Factory image. Click for full size.
By AGS Media, September 5, 2011
15. San Martin & Leon Cigar Company Factory
The former factory is a Contributing Structure in the West Tampa Historic District. It now houses commercial offices.
Balbin Brothers Cigar Company Factory image. Click for full size.
By AGS Media, September 5, 2011
16. Balbin Brothers Cigar Company Factory
The former factory is a Contributing Structure in the West Tampa Historic District.
Oliva Tobacco Company - The Garcia y Vega Cigar Factory image. Click for full size.
By AGS Media, September 9, 2011
17. Oliva Tobacco Company - The Garcia y Vega Cigar Factory
Established 1882, the Garcia y Vega Company made their "Bonded Havana Cigars" in this West Tampa factory. Today the building is home to the Oliva Tobacco Company, one of the few cigar companies still operating in West Tampa.
The building is a Contributing Structure in the West Tampa Historic District.
 
 
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Glenn Sheffield of Tampa, Florida. This page has been viewed 1,355 times since then and 53 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8. submitted on , by Glenn Sheffield of Tampa, Florida.   9. submitted on , by Glenn Sheffield of Tampa, Florida.   10, 11, 12, 13. submitted on , by Glenn Sheffield of Tampa, Florida.   14, 15. submitted on , by Glenn Sheffield of Tampa, Florida.   16. submitted on , by Glenn Sheffield of Tampa, Florida.   17. submitted on , by Glenn Sheffield of Tampa, Florida. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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