In the late 1800s and early 1900s, immigrants from Spain, Cuba, Italy, Germany and other countries moved to Ybor City. The different immigrant groups formed mutual aid societies to address their social and economic challenges, and to provide essentials like medical care and burial services for members.
The buildings for the mutual aid societies remain, but their purpose has evolved over the years. For example, L’Unione Italiana now focuses on preserving Italian culture, traditions and heritage, offering social events, and memorializing the working class immigrants who shaped this region.
Visit Ybor City to see the majestic buildings that stand today.
– Missy MacFarlane, B2 Communications