Gulf City was founded by British Pirate Ben Margoza in the mid 17th century. It went into decline in the 19th century. In 1895 it was listed as having a population of 76 people, and a post office. Gulf City was completely abandoned by or shortly after the 1920s.
The site of Gulf City is now Hillsborough County property. While it was formerly connected by road to Tampa via a bridge over the Little Manatee River, the bridge is gone and the site of Gulf City cannot be reached by road.