EXHIBIT: Cuban Ranchos in Tampa Bay

On Exhibit: October 12th – December 15th, 2017


Did you know that seasonal visitors are nothing new to Florida? For more than 100 years, between the mid-1800s, Cuban fishermen set up seasonal fishing camps along our coast where they would catch fish, salt them, and send them back to Cuba to sell. Explore what brought these visitors to our shores and what happened to them in our upcoming exhibit on Cuban Fishing Ranchos.

20th Annual Cortez Nautical Flea Market
October 14, 2017 | 8am-2pm


Check out lots of new and used items, available for buy or trade. You might find a great deal, and you’ll definitely have fun looking around. This event is free to the public, so bring the whole family!

You can also donate your gently used boating and fishing gear to the Friends of the Florida Maritime Museum to be sold at their fundraising booth!
Proceeds from this booth will support the Florida Maritime Museum’s continued efforts to preserve and share Florida’s maritime history.

For more information or to reserve a vendor space contact Kristin Sweeting at (941) 708-6121 or

Upcoming Lectures: 2017

Admission is FREE but donations are appreciated. Seating is first come first serve, beginning at 2:30. FMM members can reserve seats by calling (941) 708-6120

version13Cuban Fishing Ranchos in Tampa Bay
Wednesday, October 18th, 2017 at 3pm
Explore the history of Florida’s “Fishing Rancho Period,” from the late 1700s to the late 1800s when Cuban fishermen lived and worked on the Gulf Coast, including several sites in the Tampa Bay area. This talk, by the Florida Public Archaeology Network focuses on some of the earliest historic settlements along the Gulf Coast, and how important these early Spanish/Cuban fishing camps were to the development of Tampa Bay.

View of a lionfish at the Marineland attraction. 1980. Color slide, . State Archives of Florida, Florida Memory.The Lionfish Invasion
Wednesday, November 15th, 2017 at 3pm
Non-native marine fish species can pose as a major threat to marine ecosystems and how they function and the Lionfish, although beautiful, is no exception.In fact, the Lionfish Invasion has been coined one of the worst marine invasions to date. Join the FWC (Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission) to learn more about this invasive species and its impact to the Caribbean Sea, Gulf of Mexico, and Atlantic Ocean. Topics covered in the presentation include a history of the invasion, basic lionfish biology, their impacts, and proper harvesting and handling techniques.

Alligator-reef-lhLighthouses of the Florida Keys
Wednesday, December 13th, 2017 at 3pm
The Lighthouses of the Florida Keys run from Loggerhead Key in the Dry Tortugas to just south of Miami. The majority are located offshore, along the edge of the reef, and most are not open to visitation. Many interesting lighthouses have been lost and replaced by more modern lights, while others may soon be lost to the ravages of time. Join Richard Johnson, member of the Egmont Key Alliance to learn the fascinating history of these buildings in the sea.