The murals are designed to showcase the history of this largely African American neighborhood from the late 19th century to the present, a time when this neighborhood was the principal business and entertainment district of Tampa's African American community. Read more about Natalie's thoughts on the designs here.
Watch excerpts from Natalie's work making one of the murals:
The installation of the murals will take place over a two week period from March 25-April 9, when each tile will be carefully mortared onto the wall and the entire mural will be grouted.
Here is a section of one of the murals, depicting: 1) the Scrub, the community of freed slaves that developed after Emancipation that is now the site of Encore! 2) verses from the National Negro Anthem; 3) the Industrial Revolution, including the cigar boom of Ybor city; 4) commemoration of the first African American vote; 5) African-American-owned churches and businesses.
This detail shows: 1) the Emancipation Proclamation; 2) initial trade between Tampa and Cuba 3) a freed slave 4) The Counselor and Interpreter, Abraham, who served as a liaison between the US President and the Seminole Indians; 5) the first Tampa Bay Hotel.
This detail shows the Buckingham Theatre Saloon, one of the first African-American-owned businesses in the late 1800's.