James Mckay, Jr. - 34th Mayor Of Tampa

James Mckay, Jr. - 34th Mayor Of Tampa

James McKay Jr

Born: November 27, 1842

Died: September 5, 1925

Term: June 5, 1902 - June 5, 1904

Born in Scotland, James McKay, Jr. was the oldest son ofJames and Matilda nee Cail McKay. His family immigrated to the United States in1846 and, later that year, they moved to Tampa. McKay, Jr. attended Tampa'sfirst public school. At the outbreak of the Civil War, he enlisted in the 4thFlorida Infantry. He was later promoted to captain of an independent companymade up of soldiers who were on detached duty to round up and transport cattlefor the Confederate Army. After the war, McKay returned to Tampa where he workedas a seaman on his father's schooners and eventually became a master mariner.With his father's death in 1876, McKay took over the family business but soldit ten years later to serve as a captain for the Plant Steamship Company. OnSeptember 1, 1894, he was appointed U.S. Marshall for the Southern District ofFlorida and served in this post until the outbreak of the Spanish-American Warin 1898 when he became Superintendent of Transport for the U.S. Army.

After his father'sdeath he was employed by the Mallory Line, serving as captain of the steamerAlicia A. Washburn which carried the mail on the Gulf Coast. McKay moved on tobecome captain of the Mascotte and was in charge of the construction of variousships.On September 1, 1894 he resigned to become United StatesMarshall for the southern district of Florida. During the Spanish-American Warhe superintended the loading and unloading of transports for the army. After thewar he became marine superintendent of U.S. transports, inspecting alltransports chartered by the government on the Atlantic and Gulf Coasts. Heresigned in 1914 to become Postmaster of Tampa. Always politically active, McKayserved two terms in the Florida State Senate during the 1880s and one two-yearterm as Mayor of Tampa (1902 - 1904). During his tenure as mayor, McKay made anumber of judicial appointments that expedited the city's court system andworked on expanding public works projects.

He was married three times; first to Mary Crichton, thenHelene Turton and third to Lillian Warren. Mr. McKay and his first wife had ninechildren. He had no children by his second or third wives.

James McKay, Jr. passed away in Tampa in September 1924.


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 ofFlorida, St. Petersburg Printing Company, FL, 1950.

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

Tampa Council Minutes, Cityof Tampa Archives, Tampa, FL

January 6, 1899 - March 7, 1905 Roll # 3