www.staugustine.com: Voted America's best online newspaper
Is the doctor in?
Surgeon General not seen during anthrax crisis, 5A
State: West Nile spreading 'like crazy,' 3A
World: Gunmen kill 16 churchgoers in Pakistan, 7A
MONDAY 1 Opportunity knocks
October 29, 2001 Bartram Trail aims for playoffs
5o NewsstandSports/i B
THE ST. AUGUSTINE
SERVING THE COMMUNITIES OF ST. JOHNS COUNTY SINCE 1894
More weather information...10B
2 sections, 20 pages
By KEN LEWIS
The Monument de la Constitucion,
a chalky white obelisk in the center
of the Plaza de la Constitucion, was
rededicated Sunday afternoon by city
officials and history buffs.
The 188-year-old monument, built
to commemorate Spain's first
constitution, is most of the way
through eight coats of lime whitewash,
said Bill Adams, St. Augustine's
historic preservation and heritage
He and historian Cecile-Marie
Sastre said it might be the only one of
"We really don't know if there are
others throughout the Americas still
standing," Sastre said.
Citizens of St. Augustine built
the monument on Spanish orders by
Seven generations later,
Kinderlan family celebrates
By PETER GUINTA
They came to St. Augustine to
do what they have done in other
places reconnect with the distant
branches of their close family.
But Saturday was an extra-
special reunion for the Kinderlan
The rededication of the
Constitutional Monument in the
Plaza de la Constitucion means
more to them, perhaps, than to
Their name is on it.
Sebastian Kinderlan y O'Regan
talks at the Plaza
By RALPH D.
was a governor of Spanish Florida,
and is remembered today as a
military man who left his mark on
the city in 1812 and who also
left a proud family legacy:
Three of his great-great-great
grandchildren, and their children,
grandchildren and great
grandchildren, came from Naples,
Atlanta, Miami, Louisiana, Santo
Domingo and other places to attend
The 44 Kinderlan kin who
could make it posed for a group
photograph in front of the memorial
on Saturday afternoon.
Maria Luisa Kinderlan Alonso,
See FAMILY, 10A
ir % a,*' n Tr
I- --~--~- =I -- rl
-111 11 -C CC
special this time
Continued from 1A
of Miami, said St. Augustine resident
Paul Fagundo had called and told her
of the event. She then organized the
"He said, 'Since you are a direct
descendant, we would like you to
come.' And these are all the people
I took," she said, laughing and
waving her hand to show the many
children running around the room,
their parents chatting with cousins
they hadn't seen in a while, and older
folks catching up on family news.
Her sister, Margarita Kinderlan
de Cadenas, of Santo Domingo, said
the family held frequent reunions,
but this one was special.
"Everybody helped and tried to
get others to come," she said.
The two sisters, Maria Luisa
Alonso and Margarita Cadenas,
along with their brother, Roberto
Kinderlan, of Naples, are the three
oldest surviving direct descendants.
Roberto Kinderlan said his
famous ancestor was a soldier
stationed in Mexico before he came
to St. Augustine.
"After here, he went to Santo
Domingo and then Cuba," Kinderlan
said. "Kinderlan is an old Irish name.
Someone got on the wrong side of a
war and went to Spain. In Cuba there
were a lot of Irish."
Kinderlan is not a common
Spanish surname, but many live in
Cuba, especially near Santiago, he
Cecile-Marie Sastre, an authority
on Spanish colonial fortifications,
researched original documents
relating to the monument's
She and another historian, Carlos
Ripill, attended the family's reunion
Sastre explained the "Irish
connection" with Spain. In the 1600s,
she said, England conquered Ireland,
and many Irish fled to Spain.
King Phillip II gave them
welcome, asylum and citizenship,
since the Irish were fellow
And, as a result, Sastre said, "They
worked their way up the ranks of the
government, military and church."
Four Spanish governors of Florida
were known to be of Irish birth,
Kinderlan was one of them.
"All of the Kinderlans descended
from Sebastian Kinderlan, our
governor'" Sastre said.
Margarita Cardenas said that
when she was younger, she was told
to visit St. Augustine whenever she
She added, "Then, when I was
Crowd spoke both
Continued from 1A
the East Florida Governor Sebastian
Kinderlan in 1813.
Kinderlan governed during
tumultuous times. With a band of
American Indians and black slaves
-- who were given freedom for their
help -- he fought off a small Army of
American Floridians in the Patriotic
War in 1812.
Sastre said he was described as a
competent military man.
To help celebrate Sunday's
rededication, seven generations of the
Kinderlan clan came to town.
The rededication crowd spoke
English and Spanish and mixes, of
both and tried not to trip over the
tumbling schools of Kinderlan kids.
City commissioners were there as
was Mayor Mark Alexander.
Adams said he tried to redo the
monument in 1987, but the materials
were wrong and they cracked and
So he assigned Sastre to find the
original plans, which was almost
impossible because they were secret,
She said she learned how many
pounds of nails they used, how many
blocks of stones, how many buckets
"But I couldn't tell him block by
block how they put it together," Sastre
They found out how with help
from lime stucco experts in Virginia,
Chicago and Europe, Adams said.