Thursday, December 15, 2011

City of Tampa is Dissolved

1855 Map of Tampa (TBHC Collection)
Following the end of the Civil War, Tampa’s leaders attempted to return their shattered city to some level of normalcy. Not surprisingly, Federal authorities had their own plans for bringing the South back into the United States. The era that would come to be called Reconstruction was highlighted by the national government’s attempts to bring what they considered equality to the Southern states. Those attempts were met with resistance and even open hostility throughout the South.

John T. Lesley (TBHC Collection)

Though involved with Tampa’s resurgence in the 1880s, John T. Lesley is perhaps best-known for his political actions during the initial post-war period. In his return to civilian life, he played an instrumental role in how Tampa received the concept of Reconstruction.

Florida’s Reconstruction legislature passed a law in 1869 calling for the reorganization of municipal governments. Lesley and other former Confederates felt that this would lead to Republican and African American control of city government. In an effort to eliminate that threat, Lesley ran for mayor on the platform that if was elected he would abolish Tampa’s city government. He won in a landslide and, true to his word, he saw that the city’s charter lapsed, therefore ensuring that it would not fall into the hands of Carpetbaggers (Northerners) and Scalawags (Southerners aiding the Carpetbaggers). Tampa would not become a city again until July 1887.

Rodney Kite-Powell
Saunders Foundation Curator of History
Tampa Bay History Center

Friday, December 2, 2011

History Center Holiday Festivities

In celebration of the holiday season, choral ensembles from several local schools will perform in the Lykes Atrium at the History Center on select Sundays in December.

Dec. 4 - Riverview High School Choral Ensemble
Dec. 11 - Gulf Coast Children's Choir
Dec. 18 - Cambridge Christian School
Drama Ensemble

All choirs will perform from 2 p.m. to 3:30 p.m.

There will also be holiday-themed children's crafts available for children and parents on December 17, 18, 19, 22, 26, 27, and 28, and Jan. 1. Children's crafts are included with admission and free to members. Please join us in celebrating the holidays at the History Center.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

History Center Welcomes Jerald Milanich to Florida Conversations

Discover the “hidden lives” of Florida’s Seminoles when the History Center welcomes renowned author and anthropologist Jerald Milanich to Florida Conversations, this Thursday, December 1 at 6:30 p.m.

Milanich will discuss his new book, co-authored with Nina J. Root, Hidden Seminoles: Julian Dimock’s Historic Florida Photographs, which chronicles Dimock’s exploration of the Florida Everglades in 1905. The book features photographs culled from Dimock’s more than 6,000 glass negatives, which are housed at the American Museum of Natural History. These rare images document the lives of Seminoles in the Everglades and the Big Cypress Swamp at a time when the tribe was largely unknown to the outside world.

Jerald Milanich is curator emeritus of the Florida Museum of Natural History and the author of many books and articles on Florida anthropology including Laboring in the Fields of the Lord: Spanish Missions and Southeastern Indians.

Florida Conversations is co-sponsored by the USF Libraries Florida Studies Center and supported by WUSF Public Media and features authors and presenters covering a variety of Florida topics, from politics to fiction, history to environmental issues.

Public parking is available at St. Pete Times Forum East Lot, the Channelside garage and other city-owned lots. For more information, contact the Tampa Bay Center at (813) 228-0097 or online at www.tampabayhistorycenter.org.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

History Center Re-creates WWII Radio Broadcast

Step back in time and tune in to December 8, 1941, a Studio@620/WMNF Radio Theater Project production written and directed by Emmy Award winning PBS documentary film director Larry Elliston and performed live at the Tampa Bay History Center on Thursday, Dec. 8 at 6 p.m.

The classic 1940s-era syndicated radio show Lum & Abner sets the stage, preceding the live broadcast of MacDill Field Radio News, as it might have been heard on WDAE in 1941. Staged 70 years and one day after the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, December 8, 1941 recreates the tension and anxiety that gripped Tampa on that dark day in American history.

Dr. Gary Mormino will introduce the program, leading a short panel discussion featuring Tampa residents who grew up in Tampa during WWII.

December 8, 1941 is presented by Tampa Bay History Center, the Frank E. Duckwall Foundation, Studio@620, WMNF 88.5 FM and the Florida Humanities Council. This event is free and open to the public. For more information, visit www.tampabayhistorycenter.org or call (813) 228-0097.

Out of This World: Extraordinary Costumes from Film and Television

Cydi Edwards and our friends at WFLA Channel 8 visit the Tampa Bay History Center to check out Out of This World: Extraordinary Costumes from Film and Television. 


Monday, November 7, 2011

History Center Leads Kids on a Great Caper

It's a bird! It's a plane! No, it's super family! On Saturday, November 19, you can experience the History Center’s newest exhibit, Out of This World: Extraordinary Costumes from Film and Television, by dressing your family team in your craziest hero or villain outfits and exploring Tampa’s historic neighborhoods.

This caper takes your crew on a scavenger hunt through our galleries, then on to some of Tampa's historic urban treasures. We provide the clues as you hop on and off the TECO streetcar line through Channelside and Ybor City in search of storied landmarks. Return to the History Center to create a scrapbook of your adventure!

The Great Caper takes place from 10 a.m. until 3 p.m. and is recommended for ages 4 and up with an adult companion. $12 per child; $18 per adult. Price includes streetcar fare and TBHC admission for the day. TBHC members $10/child, $15/adult. Pre-registration is required.

For more information, contact Assistant Curator of Education, Jennifer Tyson, at (813) 675-8960 or jtyson@tampabayhistorycenter.org.

History Center Welcomes Veterans

Col. Lenny J. Richoux
All veterans and active-duty service members will receive buy-one-get-one-free admission to the Tampa Bay History Center on Veteran’s Day weekend, beginning Friday, November 11 through Sunday, November 13.

To mark the weekend-long celebration, the History Center will welcome Col. Lenny J. Richoux, Commander of the 6th Air Mobility Wing at MacDill Air Force Base, who will discuss the history of Veteran’s Day. Richoux’s talk, “Veteran's Day-Honoring a Legacy of Service,” is scheduled for Saturday, November 12 at 2 p.m.

Veteran’s Day weekend at the History Center is sponsored by the TECO Energy Foundation. All veterans and active-duty service members with military I.D. will receive buy-one-get-one-free admission.

The History Center is open 10 a.m.-5 p.m. daily. Public parking is available at the St. Pete Times Forum East Lot, the Channelside garage and other city-owned lots. For more information, contact the Tampa Bay Center at (813) 228-0097 or online at www.tampabayhistorycenter.org.

Friday, October 14, 2011

History Center Comes Alive During Night at the Museum

As the museum winds down, the exhibits come alive! Catch Darth Vader, the “Real” Tampa Bay Ghostbusters and more sneaking around the galleries after hours during A Night at the Museum, Sunday, Oct. 30 from 5-7 p.m. at the Tampa Bay History Center.

Families are invited to haunt the History Center while kids trick-or-treat through the new exhibition Out of This World: Extraordinary Costumes from Film and Television.

Wear your coolest costumes, play ghoulish games, make creepy crafts, and go on a scavenger hunt–all while snagging candy from movie characters come to life!

A Night at the Museum is open to children of all ages with adult companion. TBHC members $6/child; $8/adult. Non-members $9/child; $14/adult. Children should bring thier own treat holders. For more information, give us a call at (813) 228-0097.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Kids Explore ‘Museum Mysteries’ at the History Center

The Tampa Bay History Center continues its children's program, A Little History, on Thursday, October 13 from 10:30 to 11:30 a.m. with Museum Mysteries.

Dress up in your favorite costume and enjoy a spooky (not scary!) adventure as you solve the case of the missing artifact. Fingerprints will be taken as we search behind the scenes and through the galleries to find the culprit! Make a spooky craft with your thumbprints and enjoy a silly sing-a-long.

A Little History is open to children ages 3-5 with an adult companion. Programs are held the second Thursday of each month from 10:30-11:30 a.m. Each program is $10 per child and $6 per adult. Members of the Tampa Bay History Center receive a $2 discount for children and adults. One adult must accompany every two children. Space is limited, pre-registration is required.

For more information on A Little History, contact Assistant Curator of Education, Jennifer Tyson, at (813) 675-8960 or jtyson@tampabayhistorycenter.org.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Political insiders gather at the History Center to discuss history of Tampa Politics

Tampa politics is filled with tales of corruption, scandals and labor disputes - and that’s just the 19th century.

A new course at the Tampa Bay History Center will assemble politicians, journalists, historians, lobbyists and activists for a five-week exploration of Tampa Bay’s fascinating – and sometimes wild – political past.

Each session will cover a different aspect of local politics, including women in politics, corruption and mafia influence, the news media, voter participation and more. Panelists include USF historian Gary Mormino, former Tampa mayor Sandra Freedman, former County Commissioner Jan Platt, journalists Rob Lorei, Dan Ruth, Keith Kate and Kelly Ring, along with a host of local political activists, lobbyists and other experts.

Tampa History Highlights is organized by the Tampa Bay History Center and USF’s Osher Lifelong Learning Institute. Classes are held each Wednesday from 10 a.m.-noon, beginning Oct. 5th at the History Center. Cost is $50 for the five-week series Pre-registration is required. To register, call USF at (813) 974-2403. For more information about the course or the exhibition and related programming, visit http://www.tampabayhistorycenter.org/.

Course Schedule:

Oct. 5
Gary Mormino: Florida Politics Since 1900
Mafia and Corruption featuring Bob Kerstein, John A. Jones, Paul Game, Suzanne Willett

Oct. 12
Darryl Paulson: Shifts in Political Parties in Florida
Politics and Civil Rights in 20th Century Tampa with Fred Hearns, Helen G. Davis, Sandy Freedman, Delano Stewart

Oct. 19 
Betty Castor: Changing Role of Women in Politics
Women Making a Difference featuring Jan Platt, Mary Figg, Pat Frank, Gwen Miller

Oct. 26
Changing Media Landscape featuring Patrick Manteiga, Dan Ruth, William March , Kelly Ring, and Keith Cate. Moderated by Rob Lorei
How Voter Participation Affects Politics featuring Mickey Castor, Joseph Citro, Stacy Feiler, Chuck Smith

Nov. 5
Political Influences of Lobbyist and Consultants featuring Kathy Betancourt, Ron Weaver, Jan Gorrie April Schiff, Adam Goodman , Mitch Kates
Susan MacManus: Political Changes of Today and Tomorrow

Sunday, September 18, 2011

History Center Exhibit is 'Out of This World'

There’s the Gasparilla Parade of Pirates, the Sant Yago Night Parade, and the Mama Guava Stumble -- but downtown Tampa will experience its first out-of-this-world invasion when the Tampa Bay History Center opens Out of This World: Extraordinary Costumes from Film and Television on Saturday, Oct. 1.

Just in time for Halloween, Out of This World will feature more than 30 costumes and related objects from science fiction films and television programs such as, Star Wars, Blade Runner, Terminator, Star Trek, Battlestar Galactica and Batman.

The exhibit kicks off on Oct. 1 with an inter-galactic invasion led by Florida’s 501st Rebel Legion and the Real Tampa Ghostbusters. Costumed characters will begin their march to the History Center along downtown Tampa’s Riverwalk in Cotanchobee-Ft. Brooke Park at 1 p.m. The procession begins at the Marriott Waterside, traveling east to the History Center.

The exhibition will allow visitors to examine how costume design incorporates color, style, scale, materials, historical traditions and cultural cues to help performers and audiences engage, in new or accepted ways, with the characters being portrayed.

“The costumes and characters depicted in Out of This World are part of American culture, part of our shared cultural history,” said Rodney Kite-Powell, Saunders Foundation Curator at the History Center.

On exhibit through January 7, 2012 in the History Center’s Wayne Thomas Gallery, Out of This World: Extraordinary Costumes from Film and Television is organized by the Experience Music Project and Science Fiction Museum and Hall of Fame in Seattle and is presented by Bright House Networks, the St. Petersburg Times, Tampa Digital and the Kimmins Foundation.

For more information on the exhibit and related programming, visit our website.

Author Shares Stories of Young Explorer at History Center

Follow in the footsteps of one of Florida’s youngest explorers when the Tampa Bay History Center welcomes Harvey E. Oyer III, author of the children’s book series The Adventures of Charlie Pierce, to Florida Conversations on Saturday, September 24 at 2 p.m.

The Pierce family was among the first to settle in South Florida in the late 1800s and young Charlie grew up exploring the Florida wilderness, populated at the time by Seminole Indians, alligators and the remnants of Spanish shipwrecks.

Oyer will discuss the stories featured in his Adventures of Charlie Pierce series, which are drawn from the diaries and journals Pierce kept throughout his life.

Admission to the History Center is free on Saturday, part of Museum Day, which is organized by Smithsonian Magazine. Smithsonian Day at the History Center is made possible by Dex Imaging.

Florida Conversations is co-sponsored by the USF Libraries Florida Studies Center and supported by WUSF Public Media and features authors and presenters covering a variety of Florida topics, from politics to fiction, history to environmental issues.

Public parking is available at St. Pete Times Forum East Lot, the Channelside garage and other city-owned lots. For more information, contact the Tampa Bay Center at (813) 228-0097 or online at http://www.tampabayhistorycenter.org/.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Archaeology: Classes at the Tampa Bay History Center Unlock the Secrets of Human Bones

You won’t find them on CSI, but archaeologists from USF and the Florida Public Archaeology Network know a thing or two about dead people. Secrets of Human Bones, a new class series, will be held on September 27th, October 4th & 11th from 6:30-8 p.m. at the History Center. The series will dig down deep to find out how Florida's first people lived and died by investigating human remains uncovered in Florida's mortuary ponds and burial mounds. Find out what these well-preserved bones tell today's archaelogists about early life in Florida.

The classes will be held in the classroom at the Tampa Bay History Center and the cost is $30 for the 3-week series. To find out more information or to register for the series, call TBHC at 813-228-0097, ext. 0.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Ybor City Photo History Safari presented by the Tampa Bay History Center and the Florida Museum of Photographic Arts

Put on your walking shoes and prepare to capture some historic sights on this three-hour photo safari. Camera and history enthusiasts alike will enjoy this enjoyable and educational photo safari through Ybor City. Participants will discover the colorful history and heritage of Ybor, while learning from a professional photographer how to get the best shots of local historic landmarks. Co-presented by the Tampa Bay History Center and the Florida Museum of Photographic Arts (FMOPA). 

The tours will be held on two Saturdays, September 17th & November 12th and will go from 1-4 P.M.

Participants will meet at La Tropicana Café, located at 1822 E 7th Ave. in Ybor City and leave from there. The cost is $50 for members of the Tampa Bay History Center and the Florida Museum of Photographic Arts; the cost for non-members is $60. Since each tour is limited to a maximum of 15 participants, you may secure your spot in a class by calling FMOPA at 813-221-2222. For more information, please visit http://www.fmopa.org/.

HISTeria Returns to the Tampa Bay History Center

Grab your superhero tights and get ready for HISTeria, returning to the History Center from 8 p.m. till midnight on Saturday, October 22. Presented by Cigar City Brewing, downtown Tampa's premier adult costume party promises to be even bigger and better than last year, featuring beers from Cigar City brewing and food from Datz Delicatessen, Café Dufrain, the Columbia Café, Pizza Fusion, Splitsville and more.

Drawing on the History Center’s newest exhibit Out of This World: Extraordinary Costumes from Film and Television, HISTeria attendees are encouraged to wear costumes inspired by classic movies and kitschy television shows from the past.

Tickets are $50 in advance. History Center members recieve a $10 discount before October 1. For more information and to purchase tickets, visit http://www.histeriaevent.org/.


Seeking New Volunteer Docents

Do you have a passion for history? Want to learn more about Florida and the Tampa Bay region, and share your knowledge and enthusiasm with others? If so, apply to become a volunteer docent at the History Center. Docents are the History Center's welcoming faces and informed voices, leading thousands of school children through the galleries for lively and interactive lessons.

We are currently recruiting applicants for our 2011 training class. No experience is necessary-the only prerequisites are enthusiasm, commitment and a willingness to learn. For more information, contact Julie Henry Matus at 813-675-8981 or matus@tampabayhistorycenter.org.


History Center Announces Partnership with Smithsonian Institution

The Smithsonian Institution has selected the Tampa Bay History Center to participate in its Smithsonian Affiliations Program. The History Center joins a prestigious national list of affiliates and is one of only 12 in Florida.

This partnership between the History Center, which opened its new facility in downtown Tampa’s Channelside District in 2009, and the Smithsonian provides a broad range of benefits including access to technical support for programs and collections, professional development opportunities for History Center staff, and increased marketing and awareness through the Smithsonian Affiliations website and newsletter.

Perhaps most significantly, this relationship allows the History Center access to the Smithsonian’s collection of more than 130 million artifacts, offering extended loans for temporary and permanent exhibits.

“We are proud of this partnership and we are excited about the opportunities available to us through the affiliation agreement,” said the History Center’s Frank E. Duckwall Foundation President and CEO, C.J. Roberts.

“We are delighted to begin our affiliation with the Tampa Bay History Center,” said Harold A. Closter, director of Smithsonian Affiliations. “The History Center has a distinguished record of serving the public through exhibitions, educational outreach and public programming. Working together, we look forward to bringing the Smithsonian to Tampa, while we bring Tampa’s story to larger national audiences.”

Visitors will have the opportunity to visit the History Center free of charge as part of Smithsonian Magazine’s Museum Day, on Saturday, September 24. Museum Day at the History Center is made possible locally by Dex Imaging.

For more information about the Tampa Bay History Center, visit http://www.tampabayhistorycenter.org/. For more information about Smithsonian Magazine’s Museum Day, visit www.smithsonianmag.com/museumday.

Friday, August 26, 2011

History Center Celebrates Grandparent’s Day

Celebrate Grandparent’s Day at the History Center with a special party and a “sleepover” just for stuffed animals. Kids ages 4-8 are invited to bring their grandparents and favorite stuffed animal to enjoy treats, crafts and story time on Saturday, Sept. 10, from 10:30-11:30 a.m.


Let Grammy or Grandpa help you make a one-of-kind blanket for your furry pal before leaving him or her with us to spend the night at the museum. Come back the next day to pick up your stuffed friend along with photos of their fun adventures!

Stuffed Animal Sleep Over is $8 /adult, $12 / child. History Center members receive a $2 discount for both adults and children. One stuffed animal per child, pre-registration required.

For more information on A Little History, contact Assistant Curator of Education, Jennifer Tyson, at (813) 675-8960 or jtyson@tampabayhistorycenter.org.

Make Time for 'A Little History'

The Tampa Bay History Center continues its children's program, A Little History, on Thursday, September 8th from 10:30 to 11:30 a.m. with Child’s Play!

Celebrate our new Tampa Sports exhibit by playing timeless Tampa games like bocce ball and jai alai, old time favorites like relay races and target toss, and crafting your very own game to play at home! Seek more fun with a scavenger hunt through our new exhibit to find the Lightning's Stanley Cup and more!

A Little History is open to children ages 3 to 5 with an adult companion. Programs are once each month from 10:30-11:30 a.m. Each program is $10 per child and $6 per adult. Members of the Tampa Bay History Center receive a $2 discount for children and adults. One adult must accompany every two children. Space is limited, pre-registration is required.

For more information on A Little History, contact Assistant Curator of Education, Jennifer Tyson, at (813) 675-8960 or jtyson@tampabayhistorycenter.org.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Visit Northern Spain with the History Center

Santiago De Compostella, Oviedo, Covadonga, Comillas, Santander. These are just a few of the places you'll explore during this exclusive tour of northern Spain presented by the History Center and AAA.

On May 2 - 12, 2012, travel abroad with former History Center Trustee E.J. Salcines and trace Tampa Bay's and Florida's Spanish roots through the picturesque towns and cities of northern Spain.
To receive more detailed information or to reserve your place on the trip, visit the AAA website.



Monday, August 15, 2011

Tampa Bay Lightning and the History Center Encourage Kids to ‘Play it Forward’

Bolt into one last summer adventure with the History Center and the Tampa Bay Lightning on Saturday, August 20 from 10-3 p.m.

Join Lightning mascot Thunderbug and get your hands on real hockey equipment, play street hockey in Cotanchobee Park, or go on a scavenger hunt through the History Center's galleries.

Plus, receive one free admission per family with a donation of new school supplies. Donations benefit the Salvation Army.

Activities are free with admission to the History Center.
Play it Forward is part of Sports in Tampa Bay: Through the Eyes of Lamar Sparkman, currently on exhibit at the Tampa Bay History Center through September 12.

Play it Forward is presented by the Tampa Bay Lightning and Tampa Bay Parenting Magazine. Regular admission rates apply. For more information, visit www.tampabayhistorycenter.org or call (813) 228-0097.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Summer Camp Celebrates Tampa's Latin Heritage

¿Habla Español? Begining August 8, children 8-11 can learn to speak Spanish while they make a Tampa-style Cuban sandwich and pick up some Latin dance moves during Viva Tampa!, our last History Adventure Camp of the season. For one week, campers will celebrate the food, music, and festivals of Tampa's rich Hispanic and Latin cultures.

Viva Tampa! is $150 for non-members and $135 for TBHC members. Camp begins at 9 a.m. and runs until 4 p.m. Extended care is available for an additional fee. Pre-registration is required. For more information and to register, visit our website.

Monday, August 1, 2011

History Center Welcomes Sports Legends

Remember when the Bucs wore orange, soccer was a “Kick in the Grass” and Steve Spurrier was head coach…of the Bandits? Relive Tampa Bay’s early sports glory during the Tampa Sports Reunion at the Tampa Bay History Center on Saturday, August 13 from 3-6 p.m.

Hosted by 970 WFLA’s Jack Harris, visitors can mingle with former pros from the Bucs, Bandits, Lighting and Rowdies as more than 30 former athletes will be on hand to sign autographs, take photographs and chat with museum patrons. Harris will be joined by announcers from 620 WDAE The Sports Animal broadcasting live from the History Center.

Confirmed players include*:

BUCS
Tyji Armstrong, Ian Beckles, Aaron Brown, Jeff Carlson, Brian Gant, Dave Green, David Greenwood, Harold Hart, David Lewis, Ricky Reynolds, Council Rudolph, Rob Taylor, Richard “Batman” Wood, Nathan Wonsley, Jerry Wunsch, Steve Young (not the QB).

BANDITS
Mike Butler, Jim Fitzpatrick, John Reaves, Chuck Pitcock, Bruce Vaughan, Walter Carter, Mike Clark, Zenon Andrusyshyn

ROWDIES
Mike Connell, Dave Power, Francisco Marcos, Arnie Mausser, Winston Dubose, Rodney Marsh, Peter Roe, Ed Austin, Steve Wegerle

LIGHTNING
Dave Andreychuk

Tampa Sports Legends is part of Sports in Tampa Bay: Through the Eyes of Lamar Sparkman, currently on exhibit at the Tampa Bay History Center.

Best known as the creator of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ original swashbuckling logo, Lamar Sparkman’s drawings of professional and amateur athletes span more than 40 years. Those drawings, along with trophies and memorabilia from Tampa’s Bay’s professional, collegiate and amateur teams are on exhibit through September 12.

Admission to Tampa Sports Legends includes full gallery access.

The Tampa Sports Reunion is presented by 620 WDAE The Sports Animal and sponsored by the Tampa Tribune. Regular admission rates apply. For more information, visit www.tampabayhistorycenter.org or call (813) 228-0097.

* Player appearances are not guaranteed. The History Center is not responsible for cancellations or players' personal schedules.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Rays Head to History Center

 Watch the Tampa Bay Rays battle the Kansas City Royals in Cotanchobee Park in front of the History Center on Friday evening, July 22.

View the game on a huge 16-foot screen in the park or relax with a glass of sangria on the Columbia Cafe's outdoor patio while watching the action on two flat screen TVs. Also, check out the pre- and post-game radio show featuring Rays broadcaster Rich Herrera.

Plus, if you haven't seen the History Center’s latest exhibit Sports in Tampa Bay, featuring the Rays’ 2008 ALCS Trophy and other items from the Bucs and the Lightning, now's your chance. The History Center is staying open late, with extended gallery hours and half-price admission from 5-7:30 p.m.

Enjoy Rays activities and giveaways throughout the evening, plus an appearance by the Rays’ mascot, Raymond. The pre-game radio show starts at 7:30 p.m., and the game’s first pitch is at 8:10 p.m.

Parking will be available at the St. Pete Times Forum East Lot, Channelside Parking Garage or the Channelside Surface Lot.

For more information, visit www.tampabayhistorycenter.org or call 813-228-0097.

Rays, Pirates and Thunderbugs at the Tampa Bay History Center

Catch up on the latest History Center news by clicking the link to our monthly newsletter:
http://myemail.constantcontact.com/News-from-Tampa-Bay-History-Center.html?soid=1102418510164&aid=q0KCljSgQdg

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Sports in Tampa Bay: Through the Eyes of Lamar Sparkman - Behind the Scenes

We're just a few short days away from the opening of our sports exhibit here at the History Center. Opening Father's Day weekend, Sports in Tampa Bay: Through the Eyes of Lamar Sparkman covers more than 70 years of competitive play in the Tampa Bay area.

The exhibit features artifacts from high school stand-outs to home-grown pros and includes the Buccaneers' Vince Lombardi Trophy, the Lightning's Stanley Cup replica and the Rays' ALCS trophy.

Here are a few behind-the-scenes shots as our curatorial team puts the finishing touches on the exhibit.

Sports in Tampa Bay opens this Saturday, June 18 with free admission for Dads all weekend courtesy of Verizon.











All images courtesy of Tampa Bay History Center and may not be reproduced without permission.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Tampa Sports Remembered Recalls Area's Sports Legacy

WFLA 970's Jack Harris
Phil Esposito. Tino Martinez. Don Zimmer. These are just a few of the people who, beginning June 15 at the Tampa Bay History Center, will gather to discuss the history of sports in Tampa Bay.

With sessions moderated by News Radio 970’s Jack Harris, WTSP-TV reporter Grayson Kamm, and former WFLA-TV sports anchor Dick Crippen, Tampa Sports Remembered is a new four-week course covering everything from the Tampa Bay Bandits and Rowdies of the early 1980s, to the 1990s efforts to bring professional hockey and other big-league franchises to Tampa Bay.

The course is part of Sports in Tampa Bay: Through the Eyes of Lamar Sparkman, a new exhibition opening June 18 at the Tampa Bay History Center.

Best known as the creator of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ original swashbuckling logo, Lamar Sparkman’s drawings of professional and amateur athletes span more than 40 years. Those drawings, along with trophies, jerseys and memorabilia from Tampa’s professional, collegiate and amateur teams will be on exhibit at the History Center through September 12.

Tampa Sports Remembered is organized by the Tampa Bay History Center and USF’s Osher Lifelong Learning Institute. Classes are held each Wednesday at 10 a.m. beginning June 15 through July 6 at the History Center. Cost is $40 for the series. To register, call (813) 974-2403. For more information about the course or the exhibition and related programming, our website or call (813) 228-0097.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

History Center Welcomes New York Times Bestseller Tim Dorsey

The History Center welcomes New York Times bestselling author Tim Dorsey to the Florida Conversations Lecture Series on Thursday, June 16th at 6:30 p.m.

A former Tampa Tribune reporter and long-time Tampa resident, Dorsey has authored 13 novels including Florida Roadkill (1999) Stingray Shuffle (2003), and The Big Bamboo (2006).

Florida’s quirky and diverse landscape serves as the backdrop for Dorsey’s crime capers as his main character, Surge Storms, traverses the state from Lake Okeechobee to the panhandle in search of scam artists, fugitives and corrupt politicians.

Dorsey’s talk at the History Center, “Florida: A Target-Rich Environment for Writers,” will offer a Florida travelogue as only Tim Dorsey could present it.

Co-sponsored by the USF Libraries Florida Studies Center and supported by WUSF Public Media, Florida Conversations features authors and presenters covering a variety of Florida topics, from politics to fiction, history to environmental issues.

Florida Conversations is free and open to the public. Public parking is available at St. Pete Times Forum East Lot, the Channelside garage and other city-owned lots. For more information, contact the Tampa Bay History Center at (813) 228-0097 or online at http://www.tampabayhistorycenter.org./

Sports in Tampa Bay Draws on Area's Sports History

The NFL’s Vince Lombardi Trophy, MLB’s American League Championship Trophy, and a replica of the NHL’s Stanley Cup will be on display to the public during a new exhibit opening Father’s Day weekend at the Tampa Bay History Center.

Bring dad to the Tampa Bay History Center and experience 70 years of competitive play during Sports in Tampa Bay: Through the Eyes of Lamar Sparkman, a new exhibition opening Saturday, June 18. All dads will receive free admission on both Saturday and Sunday, courtesy of Verizon.

Sports in Tampa Bay recounts teams and players from Tampa’s past, highlighting spring training stars, Super Bowl champions and college stand-outs. Tampa Bay’s modern sports franchises are also celebrated, with memorabilia from the Tampa Bay Rays, Lightning and Buccaneers, as well as personal items from some of Tampa’s home-grown sports heroes.

In addition to the Buc’s Vince Lombardi trophy and the Rays’ ALCS trophy, the exhibit will include Lou Piniella’s World Series trophy, Tino Martinez’s Silver Slugger award, and line up-cards from the Rays’ 2008 World Series run.

Perhaps best known as the creator of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ original swashbuckling logo, which fans labeled “Bucco Bruce,” Lamar Sparkman’s drawings of professional and amateur athletes span more than 40 years. In 2010, the Sparkman family donated more than 200 original drawings by the late cartoonist to the Tampa Bay History Center. Those drawings, along with objects from Tampa’s professional, collegiate and amateur teams, tell the story of Sports in Tampa Bay: Through the Eyes of Lamar Sparkman.


Sports in Tampa Bay is made possible with support from the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Tampa Bay Lightning, Tampa Bay Rays, USF, Kimmins Foundation and Clear Channel Communications and is on exhibit June 18 through September 12, 2011 in the History Center’s Wayne Thomas gallery. For more information about the exhibition and related programming, visit www.tampabayhistorycenter.org or call (813) 228-0097.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Artifact Spotlight

“Welcome President Carter” political button, ca. 1979
2011.012.014
Courtesy of J. Thomas Touchton

On August 30, 1979, President Jimmy Carter visited Thomas Jefferson High School in Tampa for a town hall meeting to discuss his energy policies. Buttons to commemorate the presidential visit – such as the one now in our collection - could be purchased at the event for $2.

Carter’s trip to Tampa came during the height of the second major energy crisis of the 1970s, this one sparked by the Iranian Revolution. A month earlier, on July 15, Carter delivered his “Crisis of Confidence” speech to the American public. In the speech, Carter touched on the major issues of the day: unemployment, soaring gas prices, dependence on foreign oil, energy conservation, and the need to develop alternative sources of energy. 

For more than an hour during his visit to Tampa, Carter fielded questions from the audience on the issue of energy. He urged everyone to go home and figure out how to save on gas and electricity. Saving energy, Carter said, “is the cheapest, easiest, most pleasant way to be a patriotic American.”

Just a few months after his visit to Tampa, new developments around the world joined the energy crisis as priorities for Carter. The Iranian Hostage Crisis, the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan, and a challenge by Sen. Edward Kennedy for the Democratic nomination in 1980 would consume the remainder of his presidency.

Carter’s visit to Jefferson High School marked his last public appearance in Tampa as President, though he would return to the Tampa Bay area for a campaign stop in St. Petersburg on October 10, 1980. 

Shipwrecked!

The sidewheel steamship Isis caught fire and sank near Tampa in 1836. The Kate Dale and the Scottish Chief, two Confederate blockade runners, lie at the bottom of the Hillsborough River. The Evening Star went down at Clearwater in 1872.

Shipwrecked!, a new course offered by the Tampa Bay History Center, dives beneath the surface to uncover thousands of years of maritime history in West Central Florida.

Beginning with Florida’s first people, who navigated dugout canoes along Florida’s inland lakes and streams, to Spanish Conquistadores whose grand galleons were the first European sailing vessels to reach the New World, Shipwrecked! maps the schooners and steamers, pirates and legends that lie at the bottom of Florida’s Gulf Coast.

Classes begin Wednesday, June 1 from 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. and continue through June 15. Cost is $30 per person. Space is limited and pre-registration is required.  To register, call Lee Leavengood at 813.675.8971 or email her at lleavengood@tampabayhistorycenter.org.

Monday, May 2, 2011

New Course Celebrates Tampa Landmarks

Each of Tampa’s historic neighborhoods tells a story. From the bungalows of Hyde Park and the grand social clubs of Ybor City, to the towering cigar factories of West Tampa, the architecture of each neighborhood reveals its unique personality. Beginning May 4, Tampa’s Landmark Neighborhoods, a new four-week course, offered by the History Center and USF’s Osher Lifelong Learning Institute, takes you on a virtual tour of Old Tampa.

The course features former Tampa City Councilwoman Linda Saul-Sena, former City of Tampa Historic Preservation Manager, Del Acosta, and preservation architect Grant Rimby. Each will review the history, development and architectural features of Hillsborough County’s historic neighborhoods from Temple Terrace to Port Tampa. Join these long-time preservation advocates and Tampa natives as they share their knowledge and enthusiasm about Tampa’s landmark neighborhoods.

Tampa’s Landmark Neighborhoods takes place each Wednesday from May 4 through May 25 from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. at the Tampa Bay History Center. Cost is $40.00. Pre-registration is required. For more information, contact the History Center's Adult Programs Coordinator, Lee Leavengood, at (813) 675-8971. Or, contact the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at (813) 974-2403 to register.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Hillsborough County History: Part Five of a Series

Captian James McKay
TBHC Collection
The only profitable (legal) ventures [in the Tampa Bay area] were cattle and timber.  As early as the 1850s, cattle traders established a route from Florida to Cuba. This trade resumed shortly after the conclusion of the Civil War.  Cubans were able to pay in gold for cattle, so area ranchers soon were back on their feet.  The trade was pioneered by Tampan James McKay. He shipped his cattle to Cuba from Gadsden Point, at the lower end of the Interbay Peninsula.  McKay was joined in this endeavor by other Hillsborough County residents, notably the Lesleys, Lykes and Hookers.

Florida, and Tampa, however, remained destitute for almost two decades.  Finally, in 1881, relief was on the northern horizon.  Henry Plant was bringing his new railroad south, and he picked Tampa as his railhead. 

The railroad arrived in 1884, and the following year construction began on Tampa's first two cigar factories, Sanchez y Haya and V. M. Ybor and Co., in a new suburb -- Ybor City.  The railroad and cigars would shape Tampa like nothing else had.  Plant improved the fledgling port at the southwestern tip of the Interbay Peninsula, and soon Port Tampa was shipping goods and people throughout ports along the Gulf of Mexico.

Hillsborough County's population grew, as did its prosperity.  Immigrants from Cuba, Spain and Italy came to work in the cigar factories of Ybor City and West Tampa. 

Ignacio Haya
TBHC Collection
Tens, and later hundreds, of millions of hand rolled cigars were produced in Tampa factories.  The industry enjoyed its status as Tampa's biggest money-maker until the 1930s, when the Great Depression, mechanization and cigarette smoking began to take their toll.

Loading phosphate at Port Tampa
TBHC Collection
The same year that Ybor and Haya opened their factories, 1886, pebble phosphate was discovered in the Peace River in Polk County, Florida.  Phosphate was later discovered in the Hillsborough River and in the largely undeveloped southern portion of Hillsborough County.  Though not mentioned as much as the cigar industry and the railroad, the phosphate industry outlasted both.  Daily, trains traverse the tracks through downtown Tampa, as they have done since 1889, carrying their loads of phosphate to the docks at Port Tampa.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Tampa Bay History Center Celebrates Moms

The Tampa Bay History Center will celebrate Mother’s Day by offering free admission for moms on Saturday, May 7 and Sunday, May 8, from 10:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m. To commemorate the day, the History Center will offer arts and crafts for kids in the Lykes Atrium and a 15% discount in the Museum Store on select items.

Complimentary admission to the History Center is made possible by Verizon.

The Mother’s Day celebration will take place during regular business hours at the History Center. Call (813) 228-0097 or check our website for more information.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Civil War Sesquicentennial Week Recap


Florida Volunteer, Library of Congress
  The 150th anniversary of the Civil War has recieved quite a bit of attention this week with our own Rodney Kite-Powell appearing on several local broadcasts and many more news stories appearing in the local papers and national media. The New York Times blog DISUNION is a particularly good read.

Of course, if you haven't gotten a chance to see it yet, be sure you check out Blue and Gray in Tampa Bay: The Civil War of Florida's Gulf Coast, on exhibit in the Wayne Thomas Gallery at the History Center through May.

Also, coming up on May 22, Historian Daniel Schafer will be at the History Center to talk about his book, Thunder on the River: The Civil War in Northeast Florida. The free lecture is part of the Florida Conversations Lecture Series.

To round out the week of Civil War coverage, Studio 360 featured a series of Civil War-releated interivews and podcasts marking the sesquicentennial. An interview with historian Adam Goodheart, author of the new book 1861: The Civil War Awakening is embeded below:

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Florida Conversations Explores Environmental ‘Insanity’

The History Center welcomes award-winning St. Petersburg Times environmental reporter Craig Pittman to the Florida Conversations Lecture Series on Sunday, April 17, at 3:00 p.m. 
 

A three-time Waldo Proffitt Award winner for Distinguished Environmental Journalism in Florida, Pittman’s investigative reporting has exposed flaws and corruption in Florida’s regulation of sensitive wetlands and water resources. In a 2004 story for the Times, he uncovered a secret plan by Florida’s business leaders to transfer water from sleepy North Florida to booming South Florida. The stories caused such an uproar that then-Gov. Jeb Bush scuttled the plan.

Pittman’s previous book, Paving Paradise: Florida’s Vanishing Wetlands and the Failure of No Net Loss, was recognized by the Society of Environmental Journalists.

Co-sponsored by the USF Libraries Florida Studies Center and supported by WUSF Public Media, Florida Conversations features authors and presenters covering a variety of Florida topics, from politics to fiction, history to environmental issues.

Florida Conversations is free and open to the public. Public parking is available at St. Pete Times Forum East Lot, the Channelside garage and other city-owned lots. For more information, contact the Tampa Bay History Center at (813) 228-0097 our website.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

History Center Curator Discusses 150th Anniversary of the Civil War on Good Day Tampa Bay

The War Between the States started 150 years ago today and it remains one of the most compelling topics in American history.

In fact, 800 new books are reportedly published on the Civil War each year. The four-year war changed us and the way we see ourselves.

While the issue of slavery, of course, is definitely one of the root causes of the war, there were other reasons that so many young men put on the blue and gray -- and some say those same causes are alive and well today.

Rodney Kite-Powell, curator of the Tampa Bay History Center, discussed the Civil War on Good Day Tampa Bay.


Monday, April 11, 2011

Hillsborough County History Part 3 of a Series

Within the first two decades of the 1800s, two distinct settlements had grown in present-day Hillsboroough County -- the Cuban settlement of Spanishtown Creek, near today's Hyde Park, and the Seminole village of Thlonotosassa, on the shore of Lake Thonotosassa.  These enclaves attracted little attention until after the transfer of Florida to the United States in 1821.

National and international attention shifted to Florida when General Andrew Jackson made an illegal foray into the territory in 1817 to aid Americans living on the Florida/Georgia border who were fighting the Seminoles and to capture runaway slaves.  Eventually, the United States would fight three wars against the Seminoles, with the last one (1855-1858) ending with the deportation of all but approximately 300 Seminoles from the state to the Indian Territory in Oklahoma.  This last group lived deep in the Everglades of south Florida.  From this determined group grew the Seminole Tribe of Florida and the Miccosukee Tribe of Florida of today.

As a result of early fighting between the Seminoles and white settlers, the American government established a series of forts throughout Florida. 

One of these, Fort Brooke, is now the nucleus of modern Tampa.  Fort Brooke was established in 1824 by Colonel George Mercer Brooke and Colonel James Gadsden.  During the Second Seminole War (1835-1842), the fort served as the United States Army's Southern Headquarters.  Future U. S. President Zachery Taylor, a general during the war, served at Fort Brooke.


Within a few years of its founding, a small village sprang from the northern boundary of the fort.  The first post office (1831) officially named the village Tampa Bay, but the name was soon shortened to Tampa.  The meaning and origin of the name has been debated for years, with no consensus, but a strong theory is it was the name of a native village (sometimes spelled Tanpa) on the bay.

The first town plots were laid out in the 1830s by Judge Augustus Steele, but these were invalidated by the US government because they included Fort Brooke property.  In 1847, the government reduced the size of the fort and donated the excess land to Hillsborough County.  The land was platted for sale, the proceeds of which would fund the construction of a new county courthouse in Tampa, which by this point was the county seat.  John Jackson completed the survey and drew the first official map of Tampa in 1853.

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