Stop 7: The 1916 Old City Hall Building
Continuing on the tour and walking in the direction of the courthouse, you will pass by the YMCA building (which was dedicated as the Lindy C. Smith Building in 1994, for his 38 years of service as a clerk and finance director for Dade City; and subsequently the place was converted into a YMCA in 2000). Next you will pass a few office buildings. Now you will see an erect brick building that stands very handsomely and holds proudly onto early history of Dade City.
Completed in January 1917, the hundred plus year-old building was built by John W. Stephens as the original authentic city hall. It served as the municipal building housing the city commission chamber on the entire second floor and the fire department and jail in the rear on the ground floor. The first floor had four cells and a corridor. In 1943, the city of Dade City advertised the first city hall building and sold it as a private building.
Over time, it has been used by a variety of businesses. Currently the Lake Jovita Realty and Water Works share the space but it has also housed The Dade City Banner newspaper office and printers and the Tampa Bay Times with the Pasco division and a title company. Jean Larkin, Julia Pittman, and Renia Jordan operated an innovative shop named ‘Presents’ in the building in the 1990s.
The old brick gal has certainly withstood the test of time as she still eyes the goings-on of the city.