Q. What was a Babbit? Answer on Page 4
A. Babbits were the aluminum coins used to pay workers who chopped down trees for the Dowling Lumber Co. and the Lyon Pine Mill, which operated sawmills near Odessa in the early 1900s. The Dowling mill used round coins and the Lyon mill used egg-shaped coins that could be spent only at the company stores or commissaries. The workers, mostly black men, were paid $1 for an 11-hour day.
SOURCE: Charles R. Wilson and Phyllis E. Binder in History of Keystone, Odessa and Citrus Park.
If you have an interesting fact about Hillsborough's History, send it to Ron Brackett, Community Times, 1000 N Ashley Drive, Suite 700, Tampa, FL 33602.