Piracy has had a profound impact on the culture of Tampa Bay. We have adopted them as arrr sports team mascot, we created the Legendary Jose Gaspar- around which the annual Gasparilla Pirate Festival has arisen. Tampa also be home to Pirate Fashions- Home to the World's Largest Selection of Pirate Plunder n' Riches!
We want to elaborate on how n' why pirates have left such a strong impression on the Bay Area. In the early 19th Century there was a very influential pirate captain (later a privateer) named Jean Lafitte that operated in the Gulf of Mexico. Lafitte and his family mostly operated out of Louisiana Allegedly he had a subordinate Pirate Captain that operated out of the islands near Tampa Bay named Henry Ross. Lafitte n' his pirates ran a very successful smuggling ring in the Gulf o' Mexico. And if the stories are accurate he may have held sway in the Bay Area.
Jean Lafitte became a privateer during the War of 1812 when he helped Andrew Jackson fend off the British in the Battle of New Orleans, it is believed to be the final Battle of the War.
In Tampa's first public graveyard, visitors can also find the grave stones of two men identified as Mid-19th Century Cuban Pirates. Jose "El Indio" Perfino and Captain Hubbard. Though their origins be shrouded in mystery, the Tampa Locals are believed to have hung El Indio. It is unknown how Hubbard met his end.
Jose Gaspar is widely accepted as a Mythical figure, but we have been celebrating his legend annually with Gasparilla since 1904. It is believed that he is based off of a Portuguese Seaman n Teller of Tall Tales named John Gomez- who operated along the Gulf Coast in the late 19th Century. Myth suggests that Gomez was part of Gaspar's pirate crew.
Today of course, we celebrate Gasparilla with arrr own Legendary Pirate Invasion, as of 2015 it is the third largest parade in the United States. Strike yar colors, drink some rum and revel in the Piratical Culture o' Tampa Bay! Learn more: http://bit.ly/2jzHFYG