Sunday, December 11, 2011

Lincoln Beachey

Amory shook up history in Tampa
Thousands of people pass by the Fort Homer Hesterly Armory every day. However, few have any idea of the history that resides within the walls of the building that sits unoccupied and largely unnoticed along Howard Avenue in West Tampa. The Armory sits atop a site that is historic in and of itself. During the summer of 1898, Theodore Roosevelt's Rough Riders used the open land as their campsite in the days leading up to the Spanish-American War.

The space later came to be known as Benjamin Field, named for George Benjamin, one of the founders of West Tampa. Benjamin donated the land to the city of West Tampa in 1896 for use as a park. In the early 1910s, Benjamin Field became an airfield. Aviation was still in its infancy, and pioneering pilots like LINCOLN BEACHEY participated in several air meets at the field — and accomplished one of the first night flights in aviation history at that site. Click to read the article Tampa Bay Online By RODNEY KITE-POWELL | Special correspondent Published: December 11, 2011