History of Tampa, Florida
Image Credit: Tampa Magazine

The History of Tampa Florida stretches back to around 1824. The US had acquired Florida from Spain. In 1823, the US Army was ordered to create a military presence in what would be downtown Tampa today, to control the Seminole Indians, and the result was Fort Brooke.

Growth in Tampa came slowly, and by 1880, Tampa had less than 800 residents.

The City of Tampa however, grew rapidly from the 1880s to 1900. Developing railroad links resulted in the creation of phosphate mines, and the cigar industry, which brought floods of Cuban, Italian, and Spanish immigrants.

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Suddenly, Tampa bloomed from a mere 800 residents to 15,000 in the next two decades.

The City of Tampa became a modern hub of trade, commercial activities, and financial activities, and by the time 1930s had hit, the City of Tampa grew to nearly 100,000 people.

By the time of 1845, Florida itself became the 27th state to enter the Union.
However, a major hurricane in 1948 completely decimated or at least partially destroyed the city.

Despite the damage, however, many residents of the City stayed and started to build the city over from the ground up, including Fort Brooke.

The History of Tampa saw the city incorporate officially as a village in 1849, and in 1850, the first census reported nearly 1,000 residents, mostly military personnel from Fort Brooke.

The first churches, first a Methodist church, and then later Baptists, were formed from 1846 to 1859.

Of course, in 1861, all of Florida succeeded and sided with the Confederacy.

There were a number of major skirmishes surrounding the city, mostly naval battles, but also land battles, particularly at Fort Brooke.

After the war ended, US soldiers took most of the arms from Fort Brooke and dumped them in the Hillsborough River. The Union soldiers also took most of the food from the city.

Then, in both 1870, 1880, and 1890, epidemics of Yellow Fever as a result of mosquitoes continued to ravage the population, which dropped as low as 770 in 1880.

However, as alluded to earlier, the addition of a major railway spike caused the development of both phosphate mining and the cigar industry and the population then soared to around 15,000 by 1900.

Phosphate, for use in fertilizer, and the Cigar industry made the city flourish and it never retreated back.

Hospitals, schools, fire and police departments, streetcars, and an electric grid all formed to make a vibrant city, which was bolstered by the City being the jumping-off point for 30,000 soldiers to participated in the Spanish American War.

The war was not only popular for the many residents who were Cuban but also brought Federal Government money to dig deep-water channels to allow larger ships.

From the 30s on up, the Federal government began establishing a heavy military presence in the Tampa area, anticipating the eventual reality of World War II.

Throughout the 30s, 4os, and 1950s, Tampas population remained steady at around 100,000 residents, but a short decade later, in the 1960s. Tampa had doubled in population.

Throughout the 60s and 70s, Tampas fortunes ebbed and flowed. The population grew steadily, and economic development began to widen, but racial riots in 1967 marred the city, and there was actually a brief decline in population.

However, urban renewal took place in the 1880s, and today, Tampa and the surrounding area is a very vital city with lots of jobs, plenty of housing, and even a fantastic professional football team.

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Tampa has a wide variety of restaurants to choose from. Whether you’re looking for upscale dining, casual fare, or something in between there’s sure to be a restaurant that suits your needs and meets your budget. The best restaurants in Tampa are right here. Find out where to eat, what to order, and why it’s the best place for you!

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3113 N Armenia Ave, Tampa, FL 33607
(877) 848-4822

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