Augustus Steele came to Florida in 1825 and helped establish a settlement called Magnolia on the St. Marks River. After Magnolia was eclipsed by the town of St. Marks, Steele moved to Ft. Brook in the Tampa Bay area.
In short time Steele became Fisheries Agent, County Judge, a member of the Territorial Legislature, a land agent and Postmaster. Early in the Second Seminole War, Steele was selected by the Ft. Brook post commander to deliver news of the Dade Massacre to the governor at Tallahassee.
Through pure personal effort Steele established Hillsborough County 1834 and also laid out the City of Tampa. After Tampa, Steele acquired land and buildings at Cedar Key from the US Navy at auction and built the first resort there. Steele was a founder’s founder with three towns and a county to his credit.