1st Period Spanish Florida
1700 - 1763
ab urbe condita - 135 - 198
|Attack by Carolina (See Defenses of St. Augustine)
In Europe the War of Spanish Succession would break out. In America it is known as Queen Anne's
War with Spain and France against Britain.
September 7 the Carolina legislature votes to attack St. Augustine. On November 10,1702 St.
Augustine was attacked by Carolina under Governor Moore. 600 soldiers and militia plus about 300
Indians made up the Carolina force commanded by Colonel Robert Daniel. The gates to the Castillo
were closed. Captain James Daniel came down the St. Johns River and marched overland. Governor
Moor arrived by sea. The Spanish Governor Joseph de Zuniga y Zeda ordered supplies to be placed
in the Castillo and brought into the moat about 160 head of cattle. Inside the Castillo were 1500 men,
women, and children. There were 230 soldiers and 100 Indian militia included in this number. The
Spanish conceded the town to the British. Moore managed to burn the city down but the people
successfully hid in the Castillo. On December 29 General Estevan de Berroa, the commander of the
relief force, arrived from Havana and landed on Anastasia island.
The burning of the city left only the Castillo, the parish church (Nuestra Senora de la Soledad) and 20
structures of no value. Martin de Alacano reported that Nombre de Dios was also burnt down. Don't
look for anything older than 1702 in St. Augustine other than the Castillo. (Pictures of older houses)
Gonzalez-Alvarez House (Oldest House)
The Gonzalez-Alvarez House (on St. Francis Street) known today as "the oldest House" was one of
those early 1st Period structures. The basic plan for the house was a two room one story house made
of coquina with a flat roof. The floor was made of tabby. The house has an unknown completion but
was documented by the 1720s. Archaeology has determined that houses were located on the site
since 1650. The second floor was added in the British period.
The Fernandez-Llambias House located at 31 St. Francis Street was owned during the first Spanish
period by Pedro Fernandez. Once again no original date for the house is known but it was a house
that Jesse Fish was responsible for after the Spanish evacuation. Once again it was a stone (coquina)
one story house with a tabby floor but with only a single rectangular room (35' 5" by 17' 5 1/4").
During the British period the house changed hands several times but ended up in the possession of
Nicholas Turnbull. At some time in the British period the house was enlarged with the second floor.
The floor is accessible from the outside and has two rooms. The Llambias did not have possession of
the house until 1854. The house was restored in 1954 by Stuart Barnette, architect.
The Walled City (See Defenses of St. Augustine)
To prevent the burning of the city again the Spanish constructed a series of fortifications around the
city. The Rosario and Cubo lines with redoubts made St. Augustine a walled city. The Horn line
stretched across from Numbre de Dios.
Where Trinity Church is today a stone house was erected for the Bishop. Bishop Francisco de San
Buenaventura y Tejada was the Bishop to reside in St. Augustine between 1735 and 1745. He
established a classical school for boys. Stones from the Bishop's house may be found in the base of
the Constitution monument on the Plaza.
Francisco Menendez (part 1)
In 1726 Francisco Menendez was appointed by Governor Benavides to command a slave militia.
They defended St. Augustine against Col. John Palmer who invaded Florida in 1728.
Nuestra Senora de la Leche
Col. Palmer got as far as Numbre de Dios where he burnt the church and carried off the statue of the
Virgin Mary nursing the infant. When it was rebuilt by the Spanish it was placed within the Hornwork.
The church was rebuilt of stone and a new statue was ordered from Spain to replace the statue taken
by the English. A picture of this sculpture was painted in 1760 and is located in Campeche, Mexico.
Founding of Georgia
Georgia was established with the settlement of Savannah in 1733. The St. Augustine defenses were
reviewed in 1736 by two engineers from Havana: Antonio de Arredondo and his assistant, Pedro Ruiz
de Olano. They gave Governor Manuel de Montiano plans for a modernization of the Castillo and the
walls around the city. Arrendondo may be credited with giving the island across the Bridge of Lions its
name: Anastasia Island. It was named after Saint Anastasia. Ruiz de Olano in 1738 began the work
on the Castillo. Also in 1738 the first fort was being built at Gracia Real de Santa Teresa de Mose. In
1740 the city was attacked by Governor Oglethorpe of Georgia.
Capture of Picolata by Georgians and 1740 Attack on St. Augustine (See Defenses of St.
Lieutenant Dunbar of thee Georgia Militia captured the Spanish fort at Picolata. The Spanish naval
officer who started "The War of Jenkins Ear" commanded three of the galleys in the bay --- Juan de
Leon Fandino. Oglethorpe's army consisted of 1,400 men excluding sailors. He had English Regulars,
Georgia and Carolina militia and Scots Highlanders and representatives of several Indian tribes.
(picture of siege)The defenses held. (Picture of Oglethorpe's Battery marker on Anastasia Island)
On June 26, 1740 a force of Spanish Regulars, dragoons, and black, Indian, convict and urban militia
assaulted the English garrison at Fort Mose. Out of 135 English at Mose only 24 were not killed or
captured. Colonel Palmer was among the dead.
When you travel to St. Augustine today you can see our number one attraction the Castillo de San
Marcos,many houses dating back to 1st Spanish period (see oldest house), the old Spanish Plaza and
representations of the wall and redoubts. A little further down A1A you get pleasant boat ride to Fort
Matanzas to see the fortress that guarded the southern approach to St. Augustine.
Mortors and round shot were sent into the town and fort from the inlet. The townspeople fled. This
continued for 27 days. Only two soldiers were killed. Oglethorpe made ready to assault the Castillo
but the naval commander, Captain Warren of the Squirrel, refused. The siege ended.
Francisco Menendez (Part 2)
North of the city you can view the site of Fort Mose, the first free authorized black settlement in the
United States and the northern defense to St. Augustine. This was established in 1738 by Governor
Montiano. This Fort and village was operated by Captain Menendez for over 20 years. He was the
same Francisco Menendez appointed in 1726. After the battle of Fort Mose in 1740 he took a
commission as a privateer. He was captured by the British ship Revenge in July 1741. He was tied to
a gun and the British ordered the ship's doctor to pretend to castrate him. Later he was given 200
lashes by the British and pickled (given a vinegar and salt bath). They tried to sell him back into
slavery but by 1752 he was again in command at Fort Mose. (Census of Fort Mose 1759)
In 1742 Oglethorpe made another futile attempt at St. Augustine. In March of 1743 Oglethorpe takes
the attack for the third time against the Spanish. He returns to the city of St. Augustine with only 500
troops, but doesn't accomplish anything. On February 24 the ship Success commanded by Captain
Thompson left Frederic for St. Augustine. The troops boarded two days later on the schooner
Walker commanded by Captain Davis and the schooners Seaflower and Elizabeth. A small
detachment from Virginia joined the party. Also included was the Highland Provisional Company and
75 Native Americans. One of the soldiers on the expedition was Kenneth Bailey who had been
captured at the battle of Fort Mose but escaped from Spain to England. The Native Americans made
first contact attacking a boat close to St. Augustine. They killed at least 5 or six men. However most
of them had enough already with the guns at the Castillo. The expedition got under way again on
March 14. Diego was undefended it had not been rebuilt since its destruction in the 1740 fight. March
16 they were one mile north of Fort Mose. The Spanish refused to come out of the Castillo. A soldier
deserted with knowledge of the little force opposing the Spanish. Oglethorpe retreated.
St. Augustine in 1759
After 194 years of Spanish rule the city still did not have a mayor or any elected government, nor was
there a judge. The ruling officials consisted of a treasurer, a scribe, and the Govenor. There were 303
houses of stone and flat roofs; 23 roofed of shingles or boards and some 2nd story houses. 190 of the
one story houses were covered with thatch and the rest with board or palm thatch. There were 462
families and 2,446 people. There were also 124 forced laborers. 26 soldiers were divided between
Picolata, Matanzas and St. Anastasia and Mose. 50 soldiers at San Marco de Apalache with 23
forced laborers and 40 islander families. There were 171 people living outside the city in 26 bojios. 35
free Negroes were located at Mose and 79 Indians at the Pueblos of Tolomato and la Leche.
The royal employees consisted of the governor, a sergeant major, a major adjutant, a doctor, a
surgeon, and an ordinary engineer. The treasurer, a storehouse guard, an accountant, a major guard,
two shore guards. An overseer of construction, one master mason, one Indian interpreter one French
and English interpreter and an apothecary. The sloop had a captain and 3 pilots, a cook, 12 sailors
and 2 cabin boys.
The government buildings included a guard barracks, walls for a new Church, a men's jail and a
women's prison unfinished. A two room hospital for 24 beds with a kitchen and treatment rooms. The
Governor's house, the Episcopal Palace (7 rooms).
The garrison was composed of three infantry riflemen companies of the Havana Regiment. The
artillerymen, dragoons, and unmounted dragoons and 50 riflemen supporting them. There was a militia
company of 56 men and the free negro company of 40 soldiers.
Other house survivors of the 1st Spanish period include the Don Pedro Horruytiner House, Pardes
Segui MacMillan House, DeMesa-Sanchez House.
End of Spanish Rule
In the end Britain gets all of Florida in exchange for Havana, Cuba at the end of the Seven Years' War
(French and Indian War) in the Treaty of 1763. Governor Melchor Feliu, Royal Treasurer Esteban de
Pena, and Juan Elixio de la Puente planned and executed the mass exodus. 3,091 people departed
from the Plaza of St. Augustine, Fort San Marcos de Apalache, Nuestra Senora de la Leche, Nustra
Senora de Guadalupe de Tolomato, and Santa Teresa de Gracia Real de Mose. The group included
Spanish creoles, Catalans, Canary Islanders, German Catholics, Indians, free and slave blacks. Even
convicts were removed. One of the notable families that remained was Jose Sanchez.
Spanish and some Timucuan Vocabulary helps
Go to the British Period
Library of Congress
Library of Congress
|Fictionalized Picture of Attack
|Entry to the Castillo
finishing of the Castillo
New York Public Library
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