North Pinellas History| A look back

Pinellas history: In 1930, Belleair man builds plane from salvaged pieces, including some from Lindbergh's first air mail plane

Battle of the bands: Members of Largo High’s Band of Gold load luggage on a bus for a 1959 competition. In 1955, the band graced the cover of National Musician Magazine.

Times file (1959)

Battle of the bands: Members of Largo High’s Band of Gold load luggage on a bus for a 1959 competition. In 1955, the band graced the cover of National Musician Magazine.

CLEARWATER — Part of (Charles A. Lindbergh's) first airmail plane is in the possession of Roy Ahgrim of Belleair, who bought it and several other ships that were partly destroyed by the disastrous hangar fire at the Tampa airport some time ago.

Ahgrim is attempting to build a plane with the parts that he can salvage and expects the reconstructed ship to fly. He will power it with a 95-horsepower Cirris air-cooled motor, which will carry the plane at the rate of 100 miles per hour. The proposed ship will be an open cockpit biplane.

April 18, 1936

Citrus cannery ready to wrap up the season

TARPON SPRINGS — The Tugwell and Wiseman citrus fruit canning factory is about to complete its work for this season.

The few workmen are now employed labelling the supply canned this season. Due to scarcity of fruit this winter, the production of canned fruit was just a little over 20,000 cases.

Company president C.H. Tugwell left last week for Niagara Falls. Glenn Wiseman, vice president and plant manager, is remaining here for a while before returning to the north to open their plant at Modeltown, N.Y.

April 19, 1938

Fire department temp wins $50 back pay

CLEARWATER — City commissioners were forced last night to take cognizance of a dispute within the ranks of the fire department.

Acting as the civil service board, commissioners authorized payment of $50 in back pay to temporary fire department employee Danny Beck. A dispute as to Beck's salary, as well as his status as a temporary or probationary fireman, arose before the civil service board recently. The action taken by commissioners last night resulted from recommendations formulated at a closed-door meeting of that board. Commissioners said the various grades within the police and fire departments should be more clearly defined.

April 21, 1961

Starkey urges county to acquire park sites

Jay B. Starkey, a wealthy rancher who as a boy hunted and camped through the woods and along the creeks of Pinellas County a half-century ago, yesterday urged county authorities to act before it is too late to set aside adequate park areas for the generations to come.

Starkey, who served for 12 years as county tax assessor, said in a luncheon speech that park areas should be acquired now "before the county is bulldozed and subdivided to death."

But he said county commissioners are unlikely to spend taxpayers' money for park needs 10 or 20 years in the future unless they get a lot of "encouragement" from organized groups in the county.

Starkey singled out two areas in the St. Petersburg area which he said would be ideal for park use. One was a portion of Weedon Island, south of Gandy Bridge, and the other was an 80-acre tract east of the St. Petersburg-Clearwater International Airport along what is historically known as Badwater Creek.

In the upper part of the county, he mentioned a 205-acre site on Curlew Creek "with one of the biggest hickory trees in the state of Florida"; an area along Brooker Creek north of Oldsmar, and an 80-acre tract between Ulmerton Road and the north end of Lake Seminole.

"I'm concerned because public lands are getting scarce," he said. "As a small taxpayer, I'm willing to spend my part in tax funds to acquire land now that we're going to need in the future, whether or not the county wants to spend a dime in developing it in the next few years."

Starkey said Fort De Soto Park should be developed publicly as a place for families to get back to nature and not leased to private interests for development as "a Coney Island amusement park."

The 30 women attending the St. Petersburg Women's Democratic Club luncheon adopted a resolution asking the County Commission to investigate the possibility of acquiring part of Weedon Island and the Badwater Creek area as public park sites.

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A look back at the events, people and places that made North Pinellas the unique place that it is. The information is compiled from past editions of the St. Petersburg Times.

Pinellas history: In 1930, Belleair man builds plane from salvaged pieces, including some from Lindbergh's first air mail plane 04/26/08 [Last modified: Tuesday, April 29, 2008 12:27pm]

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