Meet Willie Mae "Bill" Grayson. Here she is surrounded by friends on the patio of her establishment, Bill's Ronrico. Back in the day, the patio hopped with jazz and blues bands. Today, the club at Ninth Street and Second Avenue S is gone, but not forgotten. It made room for Tropicana Field.

St. Petersburg is rich with success stories of African American men and women, and this project celebrates their accomplishments and keeps them fresh for generations to come.

"Bill" Grayson and the patio are just a few of the people and places you will come to know as you sift through photographs, listen to voices and glance at long forgotten records and newspaper articles.

Trace the footsteps homeward and hear the voices of African American people who helped shape St. Petersburg's destiny.

1998-99 University of South Florida. All rights reserved.
1998-99 Design: Rochelle Lewis Lavin, St. Petersburg, FL. All rights reserved.