ybor_cigar_factory_tampaAbout Tampa History

They came from far away lands to a city they knew little about. Cubans, Spaniards, Italians, Afro-Cubans, Jews and others. With little money in their pockets and big dreams in their hearts they set out to make a life for themselves in the Tampa Bay area. They ended up creating a history and culture that continues to thrive.

Tampa History invites you to rediscover that culture, remember those people and relive the events that continue to influence life in Tampa today.

It was all made possible by two men. Vicente Martinez Ybor and Don Ignacio Haya who in 1886 began to build factories to manufacturer cigars. They also built housing nearby so that their employees could live close to work. This multicultural society prospered and its residents built clubs, hospitals and mutual aid societies. It was later named Ybor City and became a city within the city of Tampa.

Through articles, interviews, photographs and reader contributions, Tampa History tells the many stories of life in early Tampa. It is designed for the intellectually curious and anyone who treasures history and the impact it has on the present and future.

Feature stories will be determined by our writers’ and readers’ curiosity.