Ybor City Museum State Park

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Ybor City Museum State Park
IUCN category V (protected landscape/seascape)
Ybor City Museum State Park, Tampa, Florida.jpg
Front of the museum
Map showing the location of Ybor City Museum State Park
Map showing the location of Ybor City Museum State Park
LocationHillsborough County, Florida, USA
Nearest cityTampa, Florida
Coordinates27°57′40″N 82°26′17″W / 27.96111°N 82.43806°W / 27.96111; -82.43806Coordinates: 27°57′40″N 82°26′17″W / 27.96111°N 82.43806°W / 27.96111; -82.43806
Arealess than one acre
Governing bodyNational Park Service / Florida Department of Environmental Protection

Ybor City Museum State Park is a Florida State Park in Tampa, Florida's Ybor City. The museum occupies the former Ferlita Bakery (originally La Joven Francesca) building at 1818 9th Avenue in the Ybor City Historic District. The bakery was known for producing cuban bread and its ovens are part of the museum displays covering the history of the cigar industry and the Latin community from the 1880s through the 1930s. There is also an ornamental garden in the building (available for rental after regular hours).

Tours of the gardens and the "casitas" (small homes of cigar company workers) are provided by a ranger. Exhibits, period photos and a video cover the founding of Ybor City and the cigar making industry.[1]


A detail of the museum's building

The Museum is housed on the site of what is likely the earliest U.S. bakery to produce Cuban bread, La Joven Francesca bakery.[2] Established in 1896 by the Sicilian-born Francisco Ferlita, a Cuban-Spanish-Italian immigrant, bread sold for 3 to 5 cents a loaf, mainly to the Ybor City market.[3]

Historic display at the museum

The bakery was destroyed by fire in 1922 leaving only the brick bread oven standing. Francisco rebuilt the bakery even larger than before, added a second oven, and it became a major supplier of bread for the Tampa/Ybor area. The bakery also became a place to congregate, drink a good cup of Cuban coffee, and catch up on the local news.[4]

In Ybor City, bread (like milk) used to be delivered every morning. Houses had a sturdy nail driven into the doorframe next to the door on which deliveryman would impale the fresh loaf of bread.[5] La Joven closed in 1973[3] and was renovated and converted shortly after into a main part of the museum complex at the Ybor City State Museum. The original ovens where the original Cuban bread was baked are still viewable inside.[6]

La Segunda Bakery ('The Second' as La Primera, 'The First,' burned down long ago) is currently the major producer of Cuban Bread for the Tampa area. It was founded by Juan Morè, who migrated to Tampa, FL, and opened La Primera Bakery in 1915.[7]


  1. ^ Visit the Museum
  2. ^ "That Cuban beat presses on". Herald Tribune. 2009-10-21. Retrieved 2010-09-03.
  3. ^ a b "Historical Marker". Waymarking.com. Retrieved 2008-12-22.
  4. ^ "Citytimes: For 65 years, he brought Cuban bread all over town". Sptimes.com. Retrieved 2008-12-22.
  5. ^ "Cuban Is Ours, Any Way You Try To Slice It". Tbo.com. October 24, 2007. Archived from the original on May 7, 2009. Retrieved 2008-12-22.
  6. ^ "Museum | Ybor City Museum". Ybormuseum.org. Archived from the original on December 16, 2008. Retrieved 2008-12-22.
  7. ^ "Cuban Food and Latin Food Restaurants: La Segunda Central Bakery, Tampa, FL". Cuban-food-usa.com. Retrieved 2008-12-22.

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