Tampa Bay Sesquicentennial Commission

The Tampa Bay Sesquicentennial Commission was formed to observe the 150th anniversary of the Tampa Bay area of Florida's role in the Confederate States of America. Our members and sponsors are historical re-enactors, genealogists, and descendants of Tampa's pioneer families, as well as other civic-minded individuals and organizations to understand the importance of remembering our history.

The Commission exists to develop events in commemoration of significant events in the history of Hillsborough County during the course of the Sesquicentennial of the War Between the States 1861-1865.

Each event and its commemoration is considered an ad hoc individual item in the sequence of their occurrence.  While there is an over-arching theme, each event is discrete and individual.  Some events take longer planning periods than others, and therefore the individual projects may overlap to some extent. 

The last event was held on Friday June 14, 2013 - a new National Flag flew over Tampa during a brief flag replacement ceremony.  Amid modern skyscrapers, bustling streets, and excitement of the monthly "Eat at Joe's" food truck event at Chillura Park, a colorful ceremony with military and civilian re-enactors will relived the moment when a new Confederate National flag made her appearance in Tampa 150 years ago.


1st National Flag


2nd National Flag

The new 2nd National Flag of the Confederate States of America was purposefully distinctive, so as not to be confused with the USA flag, the enemy of the Confederacy during the War.  Original Southern sentiment was to have a flag with a similar pattern to the Old Union established and maintained with Southern blood shed during two wars.  But friendly fire incidents, coupled with resentments over the mounting Southern casualties caused the Confederate Congress to change the design only 13 months after the first design was adopted. More information & Pictures.

Events in previous years of the sesquicentennial have included:

  • The commemoration of the 150th anniversary of the Flag Presentation Ceremony by the ladies of Tampa Town to the Sunny South Guard which occurred on September 17th, 2011.
  • The 2012 event was a commemoration of the "Battle of Tampa" when Tampa Town was bombed by the U.S.S. Sagamore.  This event was held, in conjunction with a walking tour of Confederate Tampa on Saturday, June 30, 2012.

The Commission was honored to participate in the groundbreaking for a new monument to Hillsborough County Confederate Veterans on April 20, 2013.  More information.  Additional events are planned each year of the Sesquicentennial. 

All the territory encompassed by Hillsborough County at the time, including Pinellas, Manatee, Polk, and the surrounding areas are included.   Several projects are under development and this site will be updated as they are developed.  Goals include the erection of historical markers, development of maps and travel guides for tourists to sites in the greater Tampa Bay area.

The Commission welcomes participation from public and private entities in the implementation of any projects that are congruent with the Commission's goals.  These include heritage and genealogical societies, local historical societies, public non-governmental and governmental agencies, and private for-profit and not-for-profit corporations.

The Commission has developed this website to be used in the arrangements for each of the events as they arise, and this is the major on-going connecting link between events. The website will be used for publicity and recruitment of participants. As well as for education about the Sesquicentennial as a whole.

Sponsors are solicited who appreciate these goals and want to further them by support of the events as they arise. Visit our Sponsor page for more information.

Please check back in, site will be updated frequently.

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