Monday, October 13, 2008

St. Augustine

Took the day off to have some work done on my bicycle and to do some sight seeing in historic St. Augustine Florida, America's oldest city settled by the Spainish in 1565.

Toured Castillo de San Marcos, a fort built by the Spanish from 1672 to 1695 to defend St. Augustine against the English and to protect the Florida coast which was vital for Spanish fleets sailing to Spain with riches from its various colonies in the New World. In 1586 the English attacked and burned St. Augustine and in the 1600's English pirates repeatedly attacked Spanish treasure ships. The fort withstood several attacks over the years as a result of it's 15+ foot thick falls built from coquina (pronounced ko-kee-na), a locally quarried soft shellrock which did not become brittle or crumble under cannon fire.

Over the years the fort has been controlled by the Spanish, English and Americans as Florida bounced between the various countries. In 1763 after the French and Indian War the Spanish ceded control of Florida to the English in exchange for Cuba. Florida remained loyal to the English and did not take part in the American Revolutionary War. In 1783 England transferred Florida back to the Spanish as part of the treaty to end the American Revolutinary War. In 1821 the Spanish transferred control of Florida to the U.S.

Given the long history of Spanish control, St. Augustine's architecture is very unique compared to other historic American cities.

Weather has been cloudy with a very strong breeze off the Atlantic as seen in the photo of the flag above. Rained very hard early this morning and is currently raining.


At October 16, 2008 6:48 PM , Blogger Sharon said...

You certainly have some great pictures. Can you put them all up on FLICKER or FACEBOOK so we can look through the albums at our leisure?


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