Julian Barnes Lane - 48th Mayor

Julian Lane

Born: October 21, 1914 

Term: October 1, 1959 - October 1, 1963

Julian Lane was born in Tampa, Florida and married Frances LaMott, another Tampa native on December 4, 1940. The couple had four children: Susan, Julian,Jr., Virginia and William. Mr. Lane graduated from Hillsborough High School and holds a degree in Business Administration from the University of Florida. After graduating from college, he was commissioned a Second Lieutenant in the U.S.Army and, on February 28, 1946, was discharged as a Lieutenant Colonel. After his return to Tampa, Lane established his own dairy business and eventually became vice-president of the Florida Dairymen's Association and the president of the Tampa Bay Milk Producers. He also served as campaign manager for Dan McCarthy, who was elected Governor of Florida in 1951.

In 1959, Lane campaigned against three other candidates for mayor and defeated Nick Nuccio in a run-off election. During his term, Lane faced a depleted treasury and a city budget of thirty million dollars. The municipal hospitals were unable to pay their bills and storm sewers were desperately needed after the havoc created by Hurricane Donna. Mayor Lane enforced stricter adherence to Civil Service hiring guidelines. He closed the Clara Frye Hospital for blacks and merged its services with the Tampa Municipal Hospital. Mayor Lane helped establish the Tampa Hospital Board and removed the hospitals from the city's direct administration.

During his term of office, Julian Lane and the City Council expanded the construction of storm and sanitary sewers and the pavement of over two hundred miles of streets. Construction of a new public library building was approved and Redland Baseball Field was completed replacing Plant Field. Improvements were made along the public beach on Davis Causeway and 12.7 acres of riverfront land was purchased along the Hillsborough River. The city also began the Maryland Avenue Urban Renewal Project and built Community Centers in Interbay, West Tampa, and Forrest Hills. Mayor Lane also appointed a committee to study the proposed construction of Tampa Stadium.

The Fire Department's man power was increased by the addition of two hundred new firemen. There were also ninety-nine new fire hydrants installed in the City. In 1961, Lane supervised the transition when the City of Port Tampa and surrounding industrial areas were annexed into the City of Tampa.

It was during Mayor Lane's term, in September 1963, that the first black children were enrolled in traditionally white schools at Jackson Heights and Westshore Elementary Schools. He worked closely with the Bi-Racial Committee to facilitate peaceful integration of downtown businesses. The Tampa Tribune also worked with the mayor to help ensure that integration in Tampa was as orderly as possible.

Sources for this Biographical Sketch:

Covington, Dr. James W. and Wavering, Debbie Lee, "The Mayors of Tampa: A Brief Administrative History," Tampa, FL: University of Tampa, 1987.

Grismer, Karl H., Tampa: A History of the City and the Tampa Bay Region of Florida, St. Petersburg Printing Company, FL, 1950.

Robinson, Ernest L., History of Hillsborough County, Florida: Narrative and Biographical, The Record Company, St. Augustine, FL, 1928.

Tampa Council Minutes, City of Tampa Archives, Tampa, FL.

Photo provided by The Tampa Tribune.

Interview with Julian Lane on April 3, 1992.