The Library of Congress has again turned up a jewel of an old teatime photo, and this one is from the Jewel Box Tea Garden in Tampa, Florida, taken October 19, 1923. I was a little concerned about the women wearing long-sleeved dresses and hats at an outdoor tea in Florida until I realized the tea was held in October. That not only made it okay but also made it seem like quite a lovely idea! The summary on the Library of Congress website says simply, "Women having a tea party around fountain."
I was trying to learn more about this tea garden when I came across a postcard of a similar scene, only this one is tinted. You can check it out here and note the particularly *interesting* outfit one of the women in the foreground is wearing!
Another website revealed this tea party scene was staged in "Plant Park,"which was an attraction of the Tampa Bay Hotel. The word "Plant," I learned, doesn't refer to horticulture but to Henry B. Plant, a railroad magnate who built this luxurious hotel in the sands of Tampa in 1891. Since 1933, the Tampa Bay Hotel has been home of the Henry B. Plant Museum and the University of Tampa, and the building is a National Historic Landmark. This definitely looks like a place to visit for anyone traveling in the Tampa Bay area!