Tampa’s Photographers: Burgert Brothers

Rome Avenue

Rome AvenueEver wish you knew what a historic house or building looked like when it was first built? Thanks to the Burgert Brothers, you have a chance of finding out without tracking down relatives of the building’s early owners in search of old photos.

The Burgerts were three generations of photographers who captured Tampa images from the 1880s until the 1960s. The photograph legacy they provided gives insight into the people, places and events that made Tampa unique among Florida cities. Roughly 15,000 Burgert Brothers photographs are available at the main Tampa branch of the Hillsborough County Library, with most also available online.  While primarily professionally commissioned work for businesses, you may find a photo of your historic home among the collection since homeowners and builders did use their services.

An interesting history of the Burgert Brothers family and business can be found online at http://www.tampapix.com/burgert.htm complete with many of their interesting photographs.

Burgert Brothers Calendar

The new 2009 Burgert Brothers Calendar celebrates the Tampa Bay Hotel, its history, and its preservation. The calendar is produced to raise funds to preserve and restore the Burgert Brothers Historic Photographic Collection while educating the public about this wonderful documentation of our community’s past. Calendars can be purchased for $5.00 at all Hillsborough County Branch Libraries and at the Tampa Bay History Center. They are also available at Inkwood Books and local Barnes and Noble bookstores.

The Burgert Brothers Photographic Collection is an archive of approximately 15,000 local Tampa Bay area images taken from the late 1800s to the late 1950s. Images are available on-line at the Hillsborough County Public Library website. The library catalog can be searched by keyword through the library’s website at www.hcplc.org. The originals are located in the History & Genealogy Department of the John F. Germany Public Library in downtown Tampa and are available for research by the public. Reprints of the photographs from the negatives are available through a local photography studio. Ordering procedure and prices are also available on the library’s website.