A Family History of the Ferlita Macaroni Factory 1912 - 1942


The Factory in Ybor City

 1924 - 1936


Giuseppe R. Ferlita and family relocated their macaroni manufacturing from West Tampa to 1607 North 22nd Street, located on the southeast corner of 22nd Street and 6th Avenue in Ybor City.   Giuseppe purchased the property at 1607 22nd Street on the southeast corner of 22nd Street and 6th Avenue to build his new factory.  The new Ferlita Macaroni Factory was designed with a beige brick Vernacular and elaborates Colonial Revival detailing and still extant including Palladian-style Portico which became a symbol of their success  in Ybor City.



Ybor City was developed in the late 1880's by Vincente M. Ybor as a factory town for production of his Cuban cigars.  Ybor City's industrial and immigration changes were a major contribution towards making Ybor City a National Landmark District in 1972.  In addition to the largest collection of buildings related to the cigar industry in America, and probably the world, it contains workers' housing, groceries, factories and ethnic clubs organized by new arrivals of Italians, Germans, Cubans, and Spaniards. Ybor City was a rare multiethnic, multiracial industrial community in the Deep South and illustrates manifold aspects of the history of human relations.  The Ferlita Macaroni Co Factory has been a contributing historic structure in Ybor City and is the last Italian built factory existing in the district


The Ybor City Factory remained in operation until about 1936 until a larger factory was needed.   For the past decade the Ferlita Family lived at the factory in the Ybor City factory until moving to their the family to their final home in South Tampa.  The family relocated to West Tampa and opened his macaroni factory at 933 Union Street.  By this time his children had grown and were an integral part of the business operation.

Click here to see the relocation to West Tampa for the Factory.



After the Ferlita Macaroni Factory moved out of Ybor City, it was sold in 1946 to Pedro and Digna Diaz Perez to be used as a cigar factory and their home.   Pedro, his wife Digna and their 13 year old son, Ulysses Perez lived and operated his cigar business until shortly after his death in 1960.  [Click here for photos of the Pedro Cigar Co.] 

Pedro Perez Cigar Co.

[Click Image For Pics]


The family sold the cigar business to E. Quintero and the family continued to reside in the factory until a few years before it was sold in 1974.  After the Perez family sold the building it was used as a water bed warehouse until the current owner, Les Thompson [1609 22nd St LLC] purchased the building in 1985.


Today, the original Ybor City factory of the Ferlita Macaroni Co. is at risk of demolition. The owner has allowed this historic structure to deteriorate and all that remains of the factory is the exterior brick facade. The family and a group of concerned citizens are working with local preservationist to secure the building and help retain another valuable piece of Ybor City's rich history.  Click here to read the first article about the proposed demolition of the Macaroni Factory in the St. Petersburg Times, published Saturday, February 28, 2009.  The Tampa Tribune followed with an article on Tuesday March 3, 2009, click here to read the article TO VIEW EARLY EFFORTS TO SAVE MACARONI FACTORY FROM DEMOLISH, CLICK HERE]





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