Tampa in Hillsborough County, Florida — The American South (South Atlantic)
West Tampa Centennial
1895 ~ 1995
Erected 1995 by the Tampa Tribune and the Tampa Historical Society.
Location. 27° 58.011′ N, 82° 29.514′ W. Marker is in Tampa, Florida, in Hillsborough County. Marker is on West Columbus Drive east of North MacDill Avenue, on the right when traveling west. Touch for map. The marker is located in front of the West Tampa Convention Center. Marker is at or near this postal address: 3005 West Columbus Drive, Tampa FL 33607, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. The Andres Diaz Building (approx. 0.2 miles away); Morgan Cigar Factory (approx. Hugh C. Macfarlane (was approx. 0.6 miles away but has been reported missing. ); George Guida (approx. 0.6 miles away); Centro Español de West Tampa (approx. 0.6 miles away); The Beginning of the Cigar Industry in West Tampa (approx. 0.8 miles away); Academy of The Holy Names (approx. 0.9 miles away); The West Tampa Boys Club (approx. 0.9 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Tampa.
More about this marker. The marker is planted on a pole which is anchored by a small, square area paved with terra-cotta brick. Upon the brick area sits a small metal plate which bears an inscription related to the marker. The plate has weathered, leaving the inscription difficult if not impossible to accurately decipher in its entirety. Following is a rough transcription:
base were salvaged from the
Cuesta-Rey Cigar Factory on
the corner of Howard Avenue
and Beech Street.
The factory was built in 1896 and
demolished July 1989.
Arsenio M. Sanchez
Regarding West Tampa Centennial. The development of West Tampa was initially slow to take off. The boom period only began after Hugh MacFarlane and his associates invested in a new steel bridge over the Hillsborough River from Tampa and established a streetcar line.
Once it did get rolling, the City of West Tampa was, indeed, a boom town. As of its incorporation in 1895, it had the second highest Hispanic population of any Florida community. Five years later, it had a larger overall population than the state capital, Tallahassee. And by its tenth year, West Tampa had become not only the second-largest city in Hillsborough County, but the fifth-largest city in Florida. West Tampa also boasted the first public library in Hillsborough County, which was built by Andrew Carnegie in 1913, and is still used today.
After more decades passed, the two neighboring cities grew closer together in the senses of both physical development and community identity. It was not uncommon for West Tampa residents to commute to jobs in Tampa or have family there, while the reverse was true for many residents of Tampa. In 1925, West Tampa ceased to be its own city and officially became
In 1983, the National Register of Historic Places recognized West Tampa's importance to the area's early industrial, cultural, and social development, along with its rich legacy of old cigar factories and other period buildings. This was made official with the creation of the 2730-acre West Tampa Historic District, which features 908 significant Contributing Structures (# 83003539).
Categories. • Industry & Commerce • Settlements & Settlers •
Credits. This page was last revised on August 19, 2017. This page originally submitted on September 25, 2011, by Glenn Sheffield of Tampa, Florida. This page has been viewed 681 times since then. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7. submitted on September 25, 2011, by Glenn Sheffield of Tampa, Florida. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page.