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Water Tower and Park - Page 1

Back when women wore petticoats and men wore straw hats called boaters, a village grew up north of Tampa around a bubbling spring thought to possess magical powers. --Mike Salinero, Tampa Tribune


The Sulphur Springs neighborhood is located about 6 miles north of downtown Tampa. Its southern boundary is the Hillsborough River, the northern boundary is Waters Ave. to Nebraska Ave. to Busch Boulevard.  Florida Avenue and the CSX railroad line forms boundaries on the west and east.

Sulphur Springs, like most of Florida, has a rich and ancient natural history. The manmade history of the area starts with Native Americans, who legend has it, drank from the springs and benefited from the medicinal benefits of the natural mineral water.

Various tourists brochures from the late 1890s to the 1910s attribute a flow rate of the spring of 30,000 gallons per minute to 50,000 gallons per minute.  Visitors once flocked to the spring for its healing waters; a 1911 publication by the Tampa Board of Trade proclaimed Sulphur Springs as possessing “water which is especially beneficial in cases of chronic constipation, intestinal auto-intoxication and most kidney diseases where there is need of a cathartic and diuretic in combinations.”


The Sulphur Springs neighborhood is outlined in red, with the water tower and park marked in blue.

Sulphur vs. Sulfur
Both modern spellings have been in use for many centuries, but sulphur prevailed by a wide margin in the 19th century until the Americans adopted sulfur around the start of the 20th century.  For the pale yellow nonmetallic element found especially in volcanic deposits, sulfur is the usual spelling in American English. Sulphur is generally the preferred spelling in nonscientific texts from outside North America, but sulfur is gaining ground in scientific writing throughout the English-speaking world.  The word, from the French soufre, entered English around the end of the 14th century.

   Early History of Sulphur Springs

The 1870 census of John Henry Krause and his family, with wheelwright Herman Hurgeist

J. H. Krause

In 1855, a sturdy, young German pioneer from Saxony named John Henry Krause settled in Tampa.  Krause was the first blacksmith in Tampa and along with Herman Hurgeist, a wheelwright, they became known all over south Florida for their high quality wagons, buggies and other vehicles. In the 1880s he was a builder of quality railroad cars for the Tampa steam street railway system.  

Krause's shop was located for many years on the northeast corner of Zack and Franklin Streets, where on the southeast corner Krause later went into the mercantile business and became a prominent Tampa businessman and real estate developer.  The second home of Maas Brothers dry goods store (1898) was in the Krause building on that location.



 John Henry Krause bio from Ward Sandahl at

Newspaper photo from article circa 1940s, photo circa 1880s, from Ward Sandahl at

J. H. Krause from Ward Sandahl at


Krause also served 3 nonconsecutive terms as a Tampa City Councilman from Aug. 1877 to Aug. 1885.  In 1882, he was one of the signers of two petitions to the State, along with hundreds of other Tampa citizens, to keep the former Ft. Brooke land from being developed by railroad companies and land speculators.  Krause's wife was Mary Elizabeth Daegenhardt, and in 1887, their daughter Henrietta Krause married John T. Gunn, a city councilman for whom Gunn Highway was named.  Krause financed the ship building industry and established a brass and iron foundry in Tampa in the early 1890s.

Mary Elizabeth Daegenhardt Krause and her children, (L to R) Annie, Mary, Henrietta, Henry. Photo from from Ward Sandahl at



In 1882, J.H.Krause purchased 173 acres in the Sulphur Springs area from the U.S. government, where he later built a second family home.  

Krause's April 10, 1882 land patent consisted of two aliquots in Range 18 and two in Range 19.
Click document at right to see larger.

This 1852 land survey shows Township 28 south, Range 18 east.  Sections 25, 26, 35 and 36 are in the lower right corner.

The tan-colored area on the left is a close up of the 1852 survey of Township 28 south, Range 18 east. Section 24 has been divided into quarters, and each quarter has been subdivided into quarters so that the SE quarter of the SE quarter of Sec 24 could be shown (A).   Notice that (B) in Sec. 25 was 53 acres and was already marked lot/tract 1. The yellow area to the right has been added due to the lack of a survey of Township 28 south, Range 19 east.  Sections 19 and 30 have been added and subdivided so that the SW quarter of the SW quarter of Sec. 19 could be shown, (C), as well as the NW quarter of the NW quarter of Sec. 30, (D). Since (A) and (C) and (D) were quarters of a quarter, they were 40 acres each.  (B) was a 53 acre tract so the total was 173 acres.  The approximate location of the spring is marked with a red dot.

On the present-day map at left, Krause's 1882 properties are outlined in blue, orange, green and purple. They are bounded by Yukon St. on the north, Lamar Ave. (almost I-275) on the west, 12th to 13th St. on the east, and the river between I-275 and Nebraska Ave. on the south, and just south of Bird St. between Nebraska and 12th/13th St on the south.

The spring is marked by the green circle.

The property outlined in light blue was purchased by William M. Fisher on June 30, 1884.  The "T" marks the location of the Sulphur Springs water tower which would be built by Josiah Richardson in 1927.

The property outlined in yellow was Krause's 1896 purchase.  It runs between Florida Ave. and Nebraska Avenue, and between the river and Kirby St.




The first bridge across the river at Sulphur Springs

In the mid 1800s, a ferry operated by Alexander Gage was the only way to get across the river.  In 1889, Tampa city commissioners contracted the Berlin Iron Bridge Company of Berlin, Connecticut to build a bridge to cross the Hillsborough River at the county road at what is now Van Dyke Place.  That bridge was completed in 1891 and was in use as late as 1961.

The 1891 Berlin Iron Bridge Company bridge, circa 1909


As was typical of early iron truss bridges, the road surface consisted
of wooden planks.   State Archives of Florida, Florida Memory,

A man and a horse on the bridge
State Archives of Florida, Florida Memory,



Berlin Iron Bridge Company marker
Photo by Margaret Allsopp, Van Dyke bridge marker
USF Heritage Research Lab

Dr. John H. Mills and the first resort at Sulphur Springs

John H. Mills was a Dutch immigrant who came to America in 1897 and settled in the Horse Pond area of Hillsborough County with his wife Bessie Elizabeth Mills.  On the 1900 census in Horse Pond, Mills was listed as a physician, age 29; his wife Bessie was 20.  Today, Horse Pond is Lake Carroll, and the Horse Pond census area was the area now between Lake Carroll and Lake Magdalene.


John Mills' 1900 census shows he was born in 1870.  He and Bessie had been married for 3 years.  Lack of a birth month and "Un" (Unknown) for his place of birth indicates that he may not have been home at the time and that Bessie provided the information.  A later census provides his birth place and year of immigration.

In 1899, Dr. Mills purchased Krause's 93 acres surrounding the spring.  Being a physician, Mills may have been interested in using the spring as a means of attracting visitors for its healing ability. 

Today, the area on the north side of the river between Nebraska, Florida, and Waters avenues would contain 100 acres.


The montage above is a photograph taken by the Burgert Brothers, of a page in an issue of the Tampa Tribune in 1900.  The photo on in the middle on the left was used for a later publication in 1906 and again for a post card.



Dr. Mills built a small resort community park, laying out walks, building bathhouses, a fishpond, restaurant, dock and a pool fed by the bubbling spring, opening it in 1900 with the intended visitors being “respectable white people” (The Tampa Daily Times, 1922.) 


The photo at left appears on page 34 of a 1905 Tampa Board of Trade publication titled "Tampa, Florida: Its Industries and Advantages."  There is a mention of Sulphur Springs in the section "Municipal" on page 5 where it says, "Adjacent to the city [Tampa] are also Palmetto Beach, Ballast Point and Sulphur Springs, delightful resorts reached by an electric street car system or an auto line."  Under the title of "Electrical Transportation," streetcar lines are mentioned to Ybor City, West Tampa, Hyde Park, Bayshore, Ballast Point, and Port Tampa City, but none yet to Sulphur Springs.   Under "A Winter Resort," on page 29, Sulphur Springs is mentioned after a reference to trips down the bay and the Manatee River; "Sulphur Springs is also a delightful trip and there are many others."

Courtesy of the University of Florida Digital Collections

The above photo, though it appears in a 1905 publication, is likely to be one of a series of photos taken for the 1900 Tampa Tribune montage above.


Restaurant and pavilion at Sulphur Springs,  J.H. Mills, circa 1904,
 from "Tampa Illustrated," University of Florida Digital Collections





Two views of Sulphur Springs, 1906*.  Upper left, a  view of Sulphur Springs and dock.  Lower right view of benches surrounding the Springs.

State Archives of Florida, Florida Memory,

*The oval photo at lower right is clearly the same photo used in the 1900 Tampa Tribune montage above.



Benches and water tank at Sulphur Springs, no date.

This photo of an undated postcard shows the same image used in thee two montages above, so it was likely taken around 1900.

State Archives of Florida, Florida Memory,


Reaching Sulphur Springs Circa 1900
At the time of its opening, Sulphur Springs could only be reached from Tampa by horse and buggy, bicycle, or by foot over a narrow winding road and the narrow, one-lane iron bridge that crossed the Hillsborough River.  Shortly after Mills' resort opened for business, H.B. Plant had small launches with Naphtha engines to cruise up the river, filled with urbanites seeking recreation at the springs.

Example of a typical Naphtha launch, from Adirondack Almanac "Boating Before Gasoline."

Naphtha launch ad from 1894 from eBay



Josiah Settle Richardson

In 1898, a 25-year-old Kentucky native sign painter, house painter and wall paper hanger named Josiah S. Richardson arrived in Tampa with his wife and baby daughter. 

1899 Tampa city directory listing of Josiah Richardson and wife Addie.  Josiah's business was at 715 Florida Avenue, his residence was at 701 Lafayette Street.

The 1900 census shows Josiah and his family living at 715 Florida Avenue.  Josiah was 28 and his wife Addie was 26.  They had been married for 6 years and Addie was the mother of 2 children; Cecile (4) and James T. Richardson (age 5 months). Josiah was from Kentucky, Addie was from Illinois.  Cecile was born in Illinois, so it's likely that is where Josiah and Addie were married and lived before coming to Tampa.  Josiah's occupation was "painter."

Left: Josiah Richardson's ad in the 1903 Tampa city directory was so large it took up the whole page on the back fly leaf and was printed vertically.

Above: Josiah's listing in the "R" section of the 1903 directory shows that his business and home were at the same address, 715 Florida Ave.   The ad from "left bottom" page has been included here.


The 1903 Sanborn fire insurance map at left shows Richardson's wall paper and print shop at 709 through 715 Florida Avenue.  Yellow buildings were wood frame structures and green was "special."



See the Krause building at the TampaPix Maas brothers history feature.

Richardson begins development in Sulphur Springs

After working for six years as a house and glass sign painter, and paper hanger, Richardson entered the real estate business in 1904 when he borrowed $10,000 to buy Mills' property in Sulphur Springs and filed a subdivision called the “Sulphur Springs addition to Tampa.”  Josiah's first directory listing as a real estate agent was in the 1905 city directory.  Sulphur Springs was still a rustic swimming pool with a few wooden bathhouses.

The 1905 city directory shows Josiah in the real estate business at 712 ½ Franklin Street.  Josiah and Addie had also moved to 105 E. Palm Ave. by 1905, a home they would live in at least into the mid 1930s.

The 1906 Tampa city directory shows that Josiah's real estate partner was S. T. Woodward.  The Richardson's address is likely to be an error, all his listings except this one show 105 E. Palm.

This postcard circa 1906 of "Franklyn [sic] Street looking south" (towards Zack Street) shows Josiah Richardson's banner stretched across the middle of the 700 block of Franklin St.  His real estate office was located at 712 ½ Franklin Street from 1904 to 1906, which would have been on the right side of the street, upstairs near the banner.  The building at far left is the Hampton Building at 713-711 Franklin St. where Walgreen's Drug Store was located in the 1930s.  The building with the The "Elgin's Fine Tailoring" sign on the side was the location of Maas the Haberdasher in the 1920s to 1930s.  The one-story stores in between the Elgin sign and the Hampton building was where the Tampa Theater was built in 1926. The building with the conical roof on a turret was the Citizen's Bank & Trust building at this time.  On the next block on the left (600 block) is the J. H. Krause building.  It was the 2nd home of Maas Brothers dry goods.  Across from the Krause building, on the right side of the street, is the American National Bank where Maas Brothers would move to in 1920.  On the right, the tan colored 3-story building to the right end of the banner was Maas the Haberdasher at this time, and where the Citizen's Bank moved in 1911 when a ten-story building was built there as a new home for the bank.  It was also home to Wolf Brothers store.  In 1926, two more stories were added to it.  To the right of it, the 3-story building with arched windows on the third floor, is where the Franklin Theatre was located in the 1920s, in the 1940s it was the Florida Theatre.  At far right is where O. Falk's store was located.  Colorized photo postcard from the Hampton Dunn Collection at the University of South Florida Digital Collections.

Place your cursor on the photo to see buildings identified.


The following photos appear to be from circa 1900 to 1908 show a tranquil park. Postcards from this period were created from actual photos colorized by artists.  The dates, when provided by the sources, may not necessarily be the date the photo was taken for the postcards, but instead could be the postmark date on the reverse.  

Man on a footbridge at Sulphur Springs
This postcard image can be used as a guide for dating subsequent postcards of the same style and general scenery.
Notice at lower right corner it was sent in December of 1904, so the photo it was created from was probably taken around 1900 to 1903.
State Archives of Florida, Florida Memory,



View of dock at Sulphur Springs, no date
Photonegative from a postcard, probably circa 1905 to 1908

State Archives of Florida, Florida Memory,

People stand by a horse-drawn carriage by the pool at Sulphur Springs, circa 1906

University of South Florida Digital Collections
Hampton Dunn Postcard Collection



Boys dive in the cool waters of Sulphur Springs, photo probably taken from 1904 to 1908
University of South Florida Digital Collections
Hampton Dunn Postcard Collection


Sulphur Springs, the outlet in the Hillsborough River

University of South Florida Digital Collections
Hampton Dunn Postcard Collection

Estimated 1907 to 1915, photo probably 1905 to 1908



The dam and overflow at famous Sulphur Springs
Dated 1910, photo probably circa 1905
University of South Florida Digital Collections
Hampton Dunn Postcard Collection


Footbridge over the spring at Sulphur Springs
Photo source probably circa 1905 to 1908
University of South Florida Digital Collections
Hampton Dunn Postcard Collection


The Streetcar comes to Sulphur Springs

The popularity of the once small resort community increased so drastically that a trolley line was built to Sulphur Springs in 1907 by the Tampa and Sulphur Springs Traction Company.  The company was formed by Eugene Holtsinger,  a developer who helped create Bayshore Boulevard's first subdivision, Suburb Beautiful.  Holtsinger teamed up with Alfred Swann in a land-development business and built homes in Hyde Park, Ridgewood Park, Ybor City and West Tampa, as well as Suburb Beautiful.  Holtsinger was also the developer of the area known today as Channelside. The streetcar line ran up Tampa Street to Buffalo Avenue and across Buffalo to Central Avenue and then north on Central Avenue to Broad Street and east to Nebraska Avenue, then north to Sulphur Springs pool.  Plans and a map of the location of a bridge for the Tampa and Sulphur Springs Traction Company were approved in 1907. The new steel bridge was located over the Hillsborough River at today's Nebraska Avenue, but at that time, was west of the Berlin Bridge Co. bridge on the Nebraska Avenue of that time.

American Street Railway Investments

The 1922 Sanborn Fire Insurance map shows the 1891 Berlin Co. bridge along Nebraska Avenue, which is today's Van Dyke Place, and the north-northeasterly path that it followed just south of the river.

Tampa & Sulphur Springs Traction Company and the Garcia Avenue Bridge to West Tampa
After building the line into Sulphur Springs in 1907, the Tampa & Sulphur Springs Traction Company (T&SSTC) established other lines in the city and competed with the Tampa Electric Company. The T&SSTC was running streetcars into West Tampa, forming a direct route from the cosmopolitan cities of Ybor City and West Tampa by January 1909. This was accomplished by building the Garcia Avenue bridge across the Hillsborough River on which the tracks were laid. Steel was laid on concrete piers to form a strong foundation for the new bridge. The structure was put together by the Virginia Bridge & Iron Company. 

A satisfactory agreement was reached between the traction company and the City of Tampa whereby the city paid a part of the cost and in return would have free use of the bridge for pedestrians, providing a sidewalk for their use. The bridge was not provided with an electric apparatus for opening the draw, like the one at the Lafayette (Kennedy) Street Bridge. The draw was opened by hand power, but this did not cause delay. The traffic in this part of the river was not heavy, and the bridge was not open often.  The City of Tampa could not support two systems and in 1911 the T&SSTC, headed by John P Martin, went into the hands of the receiver. Two years later (1913) it was purchased at receiver sale by Tampa Electric Company, and the systems were consolidated. The Company then had 47 miles of track and was operating 67 trolley cars, 63 of which were open cars.

Holtsinger, who had diabetes, was 48 when he died on Dec. 16, 1916. The bridge on North Blvd. bearing his name, which replaced the nearby Garcia Avenue Bridge, cost $892,000 and was dedicated July 22, 1959.


This wide-angle panoramic view by Burgert Brothers, looking north from the river's south bank, shows the 1907 streetcar bridge on the left and the 1891 bridge on the right.  See this photo full size.   Photo from Library of Congress

The area of the park seen here was to the west (left) of the first panorama photo above.
See this photo full size  Photo from Library of Congress

Dr. Mills moved to Tampa around 1914 where he and Bessie lived and owned the Magnolia Pharmacy at 907 17th Avenue. 


1916 through 1919 directory listings were the same as 1915.

The 1920 census of Dr. John Mills shows he immigrated in 1897, was naturalized in 1898, was born in Holland and his native tongue was Dutch.  His occupation was drug merchant.

Newspaper ad announcing grand 4th of July celebration, June 28, 1910

According to the newspaper ad at the left, Gaither & Henderson took over ownership of Sulphur Springs Park before July, 1910.  This was a lease arrangement they had with Josiah Richardson which would later result in a long and complex lawsuit by Richardson.

The fine print:

Sulphur Springs Park is but a few moments ride from Tampa, situated in the beautiful Hillsborough River, an Amusement Park that has no equal in the South.  Thousands of dollars have recently been expended by its new owners, GAITHER & HENDERSON, in perfecting all amusement features and beautifying the surroundings.

FOR THE FOURTH OF JULY CELEBRATION the two new and large swimming pools will be completed, all the amusement features will be perfected and the New Colonial Hotel will offer the most perfect and elegant service.

There will be Brass Bands in attendance all day.  A most excellent orchestra at the Dancing Pavilion, dancing from 2pm until midnight. The charge for dancing will be 5c for each couple each dance.

Many of the amusements and facilities listed in this ad are clearly missing from the photos and postcard images presented above.  Those images show a relatively pastoral setting. By assuming those images were from circa 1900 to 19o5, there should have been sufficient time to develop the park to the condition advertised here.

Gaither & Henderson and Stomawa Mineral Water

Gaither & Henderson were William C. Gaither and Green T. Henderson, local Tampa businessmen.  Gaither was a confectioner with J. L. Young of Young & Gaither, Confectioners.  Henderson was the manager of Tampa Real Estate and Loan Association.   Sometime around 1910 they acquired the Sulphur Springs park as an investment opportunity.  In 1911, they went into business as "Stomawa Mineral Water Company" in Tampa, bottling and selling the mineral water.




It is at this time that the word "Stomawa" appears in local literature, claimed to be a Seminole Indian word for "Stomach water" due to its healing properties and benefit for the stomach. 

According to ENGLISH / SEMINOLE VOCABULARY as documented during THE SECOND SEMINOLE WAR 1835 - 1842, Compiled and edited by Debra Kay Harper, Introduction by Frank Laumer Series Editor Frank Laumer, there were many Seminole words for water, depending on the type of water, and the local dialect.  A portion of the introduction states:

"The goal of this work is to provide the English equivalent of Seminole words as written phonetically during the period of the Seminole Wars, with emphasis on the second war, 1835-1842, by soldiers, interpreters, and government agents. The Seminole people did not have a written language and white men’s versions of their words during that time are all that exist. We believe this collection will be a valuable resource to all who have an interest in this period of Florida’s history - the spoken Seminole words as heard, understood and used by these men. Unfortunately missing from the sources is any hyphenation of syllables in the Seminole words, making correct pronunciation difficult. In an attempt to balance the understanding and comprehension of these words with current Seminole usage, we have been generously assisted by Lorene B. Gopher, Director of Culture Education Department, Seminole Tribe of Florida. She has syllabicated our entries as she believes them to have been used at the time."

Entries for "Water" include (these are phonetic spellings, with 3-letter source citation in all caps):

spring [of water] - wee-ki-vah NOR, wekewa SIM, wekiwa SMI,WIL,  welika SIM, weliki SIM
water, big - thak-ko GOP,  we-wa cluccko SMI
water, black - wee-lus-tee NOR, wee-wah NOR
water - owewah MOT, we-wa SMI,WIL, we-waw SIM, wee-wah NOR

Key to sources:
GOP - Lorene B. Gopher, Director of Culture Education Department, Seminole Tribe of Florida.
MOT - Motte, Jacob Rhett. Journey Into Wilderness. Gainesville, FL. University of Florida Press, 1953.
NOR - Norton, Charles Ledyard. A Handbook of Florida. New York, NY. Longmans, Green, & Co., 1891.
SIM - Simmons, William Hayne. Notices of East Florida. Charleston, SC. A.E. Miller, 1822.
WIL - Williams, John Lee. Territory of Florida. New York, NY. A. T. Goodrich, 1837.

There are no entries for "stomach."  Although some Seminole words for water contain the "wa" syllable, it seems unlikely that the Seminole word for "stomach" consisted of the same first 5 letters of the English word.  Gaither and Henderson's claim that "Stomawa" was a Seminole word for the water at the Sulphur Springs may have simply been concocted by Gaither and Henderson from the words Stomach and Water, or Stomach, and we-wa.


Rinaldi Guidebook to Tampa, 1915-1916

U.S Geological Survey 8th Annual Report, 1916

SULPHUR SPRINGS— About six miles north of the city, fronting the Hillsborough river, is located Sulphur Springs park, of especial interest to visitors to this section. Here is found the famous "Stomawa" mineral well, the name being of Seminole Indian origin and meaning Stomach Water. It is claimed the effect of the water is identical with that of the Kissingen Springs of Kissingen, Germany, the analyses showing but slight differences. In the days of the Seminole supremacy, the spring was visited yearly by thousands of Indians who came from the country both north and south of Tampa to drink the water and regain their health. Today the spring is visited by thousands of Americans each year. The water is slightly alkaline and has a saltine taste. The enormous Sulphur Spring, from which the park takes its name, is another feature of intense interest. This spring is confined in a large concrete basin, 125 x 135 feet in dimensions, in which bathing is permitted. The spring has an eight and one-half foot fall, a flow of 30,000 gallons per minute, or 43,200,000 gallons every 24 hours. The grounds surrounding the springs are interesting for their natural tropical growth. The amusements provided consist of a zoological garden, including a collection of Florida alligators, dancing pavilion, cafe. and several minor attractions. There is also a good hotel on the grounds giving excellent accommodations either by the week or for a single meal. The car ride to Sulphur Springs takes the visitor through some of the most rapidly growing suburbs of the city and directly through the center of two large orange groves, where during the season the golden fruit may be seen hanging from the branches of the trees. Take Sulphur Springs car.


The postcard at right clearly shows the roller coaster in the distance, beyond the pool..  It is postmarked on the reverse, Sept. 4, 1911.

From the University of Florida Digital Collections

The electric streetcar shed at Sulphur Springs, 1912

Burgert Brothers photo from the Tampa-Hillsborough County Public Library





1915 streetcar schedule from Rinaldi's Guidebook




In 1913, the movie “The Birth of a Race,” directed by John W. Noble, began filming in Sulphur Springs. Hundreds of African Americans in the Tampa area were extras. The film was considered an early response to T.F. Dixon’s play, “The Clansman,” adapted to the stage in 1910 and a forerunner to D.W. Griffith’s film, “Birth of a Nation” produced in 1915.

This image is from 1913, "Birth of a Race" (released in 1919), the opening "birth of the human race" sequence which was filmed in Sulphur Springs and around Tampa. Funded in large part by Booker T. Washington and his Tuskegee Institute. One of the earliest African American-made films, it was directed by Washington's personal secretary, John Noble, and produced by Emmett Scott. Its title, added probably after 1915, was a reference (and rebuttal) of D.W. Griffith's controversial and racist "Birth of a Nation."

State Archives of Florida, Florida Memory,


These ads appeared in Rinaldi's Guidebook of Tampa 1915-16.
See the whole book at the University of Florida Digital Collections

It is not until 1916 that the amusement park appears in Tampa's directories.  It appears as if Gaither and Henderson no longer owned the park in these years.

  • 1916 Sulphur Springs Park, C. D. Dennis Manager, 6 mi no. of courthouse, end Sulphur Springs street car line

  • 1917 Sulphur Springs Park, 6 mi no. of courthouse, end Sulphur Springs street car line

  • 1918 Sulphur Springs Park, 6 mi no. of courthouse, end SS car line, SS Pavilion, Seymour B. Baxter, proprietor

  • 1919 Sulphur Springs Park, 6 mi no. of courthouse, end SS car line

From 1905 through 1919, Josiah Richardson was listed as a real estate agent. 











"Gatormobile - Driving in the Sunny South"
Sulphur Springs, Tampa, Florida - 1924

State Archives of Florida, Florida Memory,








1917 Burgert Bros. photo of alligator farm
from the Tampa-Hillsborough Co. Public Library


Ad from 1920 Rinaldi's Guidebook of Tampa


1917 Burgert Bros. photo of alligator farm from the Tampa-Hillsborough Co. Public Library

1918 - The Live Oak cabins, one of the first motels to be built in Sulphur Springs, is completed.

Continued on Page 2

Sources used for this entire feature:

City of Tampa Official Website - Tampa city council memebers (J.H. Krause)

City of Tampa Official Website - Sulphur Springs Neighborhood

Eugene Holtsinger: Span's Rededication Bridges Gap, by Jose Patino, Tampa Tribune (Josiah Richardson middle name)

Find A Grave

Genealogical records of the pioneers of Tampa and of some who came after them - John Henry Krause
Guide to Historic Tampa, by Steve Rajtar

Heritage Lab Historic Timeline

Hillsborough River Guidebook by Kevin McCarthy

Historic American Buildings Survey, Library of Congress: Sulphur Springs Arcade (Hotel)

Historic Sulphur Springs Hotel (Arcade) at DAS Studio

Historic Sulphur Springs Water Tower in Tampa, by Joshua McMorrow-Hernandez

History of Tampa's Oaklawn Cemetery by Theodore Lesley, Sunland Tribune, Journal of the Tampa Historical Society, Vol 17, Nov. 1991

Mapping a Generation:  Oral History Research in Sulphur Springs, by Connie J. Brown, USF Scholar Commons
Reconstructing the Past: Heritage Research and Preservation Activities in Tampa Bay Communities by Courtney Ross Spillane

Tampa At The Turn Of The Century 1899, by Leland Hawes, Jr.  Sunland Tribune, Journal of the Tampa Historical Society, V.25, 1999

Tampa Bay History Magazine, V.19, #1, Spring/Summer 1997

Tampa Bay Times - Sulphur Springs too far gone, experts say, by Craig Pittman
Tampa Early Lighting & Transportation by Arsenio Sanchez,  Sunland Tribune, Journal of the Tampa Historical Society, Vol. 17, Nov. 1991

Tampa Illustrated, 1904 - University of Florida Digital Collection

Tampa Riverfront Park Plan Hits Snag on Price of Land, Steve Huettel, St. Pete Times, May 11, 2000

Tampa Tribune at - Sulphur Springs Revisted, by Mike Salinero

Then and Now, by Kathy Steele, Tampa Tribune,

Tower of Terror, by Jeff Klinkenberg, St. Pete Times, July 13, 2003

Wikipedia - 1933 Treasure Coast Hurricane

Sulphur Springs Page 1 General description ● J. H. Krause ● The 1891 Iron Bridge ● Dr. Mills and his resort ● Circa 1900 images ● Josiah S. Richardson early years ● The streetcar line and the 1907 steel bridge ● Gaither & Henderson park improvements and Stomawa Mineral Water ● The park in Rinaldi's Guidebook of Tampa 1915 ●  Alligator farm
Sulphur Springs Page 2 Josiah Richardson's Sulphur Springs Amusement Park ● 1922 map of the park with photo positions marked ● Photos of the park in the "Roaring Twenties" ● Van Dyke's Service Station ● The 1924 Nebraska Avenue bridge ● Josiah Richardson's Sulphur Springs Hotel,  "The Arcade"
Sulphur Springs Page 3 Water tower history ● The hurricane and flood of 1933 ●  Richardson's loss and demise of the Arcade ●  The Tower Drive-In Theater
Sulphur Springs Page 4 Water tower recent photos and lighting ceremony
Sulphur Springs Page 5 Sulphur Springs Park and Gazebo, recent photos ● Information sources for all pages