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The second century of settlement in Spanish St. Augustine, 1670-1763

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The second century of settlement in Spanish St. Augustine, 1670-1763
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Parker, Susan R
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viii, 280 leaves : ; 29 cm.

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Buildings ( jstor )
Governors ( jstor )
Marriage ( jstor )
Native Americans ( jstor )
Parishes ( jstor )
Slavery ( jstor )
Soldiers ( jstor )
Towns ( jstor )
United States history ( jstor )
Women ( jstor )
Dissertations, Academic -- History -- UF ( lcsh )
History thesis, Ph. D ( lcsh )
City of St. Augustine ( local )
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bibliography ( marcgt )
non-fiction ( marcgt )

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Thesis:
Thesis (Ph. D.)--University of Florida, 1999.
Bibliography:
Includes bibliographical references (leaves 265-279).
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Typescript.
General Note:
Vita.
Statement of Responsibility:
by Susan R. Parker.

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University of Florida
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THE SECOND CENTURY OF SETTLEMENT
IN SPANISH ST. AUGUSTINE, 1670-1763






By
SUSAN R. PARKER









A DISSERTATION PRESENTED TO THE GRADUATE SCHOOL
OF THE UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE
REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF DOCTOR OF PHILOSOPHY

UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA




THE SECOND CENTURY OF SETTLEMENT
IN SPANISH ST. AUGUSTINE, 1670-1763
By
SUSAN R. PARKER
A DISSERTATION PRESENTED TO THE GRADUATE SCHOOL
OF THE UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE
REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF DOCTOR OF PHILOSOPHY
UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA
1999


This dissertation is dedicated to my children:
Christopher, Amanda, Robert


ACKNOWLEDGMENTS
As with many areas of life, a dissertation is the product of the efforts
and concern of many persons. I am indebted to earlier archival researchers,
abstractors, and indexers whose work and painstaking detail facilitated my
research efforts. Professor Michael Gannon, who supervised this
dissertation, guided and vastly improved my project. He endured the tedium
of reading every word of several drafts and commented in both breadth and
detail. Professors Murdo MacLeod, Kathleen Deagan, and Anthony Oliver-
Smith helped shape my work with their specific remarks and suggestions as
well as their wealth of research and publications. I was fortunate that for
several years a consultation with Professor Eugene Lyon was only a few old-
St. Augustine-sized blocks from my office. Meetings with him were always
both pleasurable and enlightening.
Many others helped with their interest, knowledge, expertise, and
creative suggestions and ideas: Bruce Chappell and James Cusick at the
P. K. Yonge Library of Florida History, University of Florida; Charles Tingley,
Mary Herron, Dorothy Lyon and Leslie Wilson at the St. Augustine Historical
Society Library; David Coles at the Division of Archives, Florida Department
of State; Joe Knetsch at the Bureau of State Lands, Florida Department of
iii


Environmental Protection. Luis Arana, Bruce Piatek, and Stanley Bond
provided their knowledge and encouragement. An Albert W. Beveridge Grant
from the American Historical Association assisted in my research.
Two colleagues and very dear friends, Jane Landers and Patricia
Griffin, offered scholarly insight, suggestions and affectionate concern. My
friends, Nancy Hamilton and Grace Anna Paaso, performed well as sounding
boards and sympathizers. A long-time co-worker and good friend, Betty
Galipeau, generously proofread the manuscript. My dear Mai Haughton
volunteered for tedious tasks in order to free up my time and gently urged me
on when I sagged And, there is long-suffering Robert, my youngest child,
whose lot it was to live with me throughout the entire project.
I appreciate you all.
IV


TABLE OF CONTENTS
page
ACKNOWLEDGMENTS ¡
ABSTRACT vii
CHAPTERS
1 INTRODUCTION 1
Periodization 5
Regional Cultures 8
Documentary Sources 14
Notes 23
2 LA FLORIDAS FIRST CENTURY 29
Notes 36
3 ASSIMILATED NATIVE AMERICANS:
FLORIDA'S URBAN INDIANS 38
Retreat and Relocations 47
From Village to Town; from Ward to Citizen 51
Social Alliances 61
Flexible Racial Classification 64
Conclusions 67
Notes 70
4 ARCHITECTURE 77
New Men, New Iberian Regional Traditions 80
Buildings as Detailed By Those Who Knew Them Best 87
Conclusions 98
Notes 104
v


5 PROVIDING A HOME 109
Conclusions 128
Notes 130
6 PERSONAL POSSESSIONS 137
Furnishings 139
Implements and Containers 144
Textiles and Clothing 147
Jewelry 149
Building Materials 150
Slaves 152
Livestock 156
Transportation 157
Conclusions 159
Notes 168
7 FOOD 173
The Food Supply 176
Conclusions 182
Notes 183
8 RETAILING AND PERSONAL FINANCE 186
Debts and Debtors 189
Retailing 194
Stores and Shops 204
Conclusions 206
Notes 211
9 CONFRATERNITIES IN SPANISH FLORIDA 216
Functions and Ceremonies 224
Chapters and Their Members 225
Financial and Performance Obligations 231
Material Wealth of the Confraternities 239
Conclusions 245
Notes 247
10CONCLUSIONS 253
BIBLIOGRAPHY 266
BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH 280
vi


Abstract of Dissertation Presented to the Graduate School
of the University of Florida in Partial Fulfillment of the
Requirements for the Degree of Doctor of Philosophy
THE SECOND CENTURY OF SETTLEMENT
IN SPANISH ST. AUGUSTINE, 1670-1763
By
Susan R. Parker
August 1999
Chairman: Michael V. Gannon
Major Department: History
Residents of Spanish Florida and its capital, St. Augustine,
conducted their lives guided and constrained by the strong social institutions
of the Roman Catholic Church and the army. The primacy of church and
state has overshadowed the private lives of the residents in the historical
literature of colonial Florida as it did in the colonial era itself. This study
relies on information written or provided by the individuals themselves,
rather than by officials or churchmen, to describe the personal and private
aspects of life. As a counterpoise to scholarly emphasis upon minority or
peripheral citizens, this study focuses primarily on ordinary, white (Euro-
American) colonists and assimilated non-whites. It examines the topics of
assimilation, property ownership, private buildings, personal possessions,
vii


interpersonal financial arrangements, and small-scale business activities,
food, and parishioners religious organizations.
After a century of permanent Spanish settlement in the southeast
region of North America, English colonists established South Carolina in
1670. The Second Century of Settlement became an era of mutual enmity
and alert for the residents of the southeast. Native American groups
simultaneously faced more pressures and also benefitted from new leverage
with the advent of South Carolina. Spain delivered new fighting men, who
brought their various Iberian regional cultures into Florida and to its
generations of American-born residents.
This dissertation adds to the study of the role of European regional
donor cultures upon the development of regional cultures in the New World.
Scholars have viewed the cultural differences within Spanish Florida through
the wider, more overt lens of race; the transplantation of Iberian cultural
diversity has hardly played a role in analysis. Floridas difference from North
American Anglo colonies lay as well in its service-based, cash economy of
the military regime rather than in an export-based agricultural economy.
This study presents Spanish Florida as an essential element of the
history of the colonial southeast. It depicts changes in everyday life brought
about in the Second Century by the permanent proximity of an enemy, the
introduction of new regional cultures, and the expansion in the Atlantic world
of goods and commerce.
viii


CHAPTER 1
INTRODUCTION
It would be greatly inconvenient
if anyone else might settle in Florida.
-Pedro Menndez de Avils, 1565
The history of the colonial southeast differs from that of the rest of
eastern North America.1 Typically, histories of the colonial period reduce the
Spanish presence in the continent to merely an extension of the original
conquistadors adventures. The presence of the Spanish appears as a
transitory activity in the southeastern region, with colorful mention of ill-fated
explorers followed by a sentence or two noting the founding of St. Augustine
and the colony of Florida in 1565 Whether survey texts or monographs,
these histories give few words and little importance to Spanish settlements
that lasted continuously for two years short of two centuries, from 1565 to
1763. In fact, permanent Spanish presence in the southeast had achieved
the century mark by the date when English settlers initiated their colony of
South Carolina in the region in 1670.
A dismissive and overly succinct treatment of the Spanish presence
diminishes the complexity of relationships in the region, and developments in
the English settlements thus seem to take place in a splendid isolation rather
1


2
than in the international environment which was indeed the colonial reality.2
Not only is Spanish activity almost unseen historiographlcally, but without
adequate consideration of Spanish activities, the Carolina colonial experience
is thus less filled out than it should be. Florida is often portrayed as a block to
English expansion to be overcome, but seldom is Floridas existence seen as
shaping the development of Carolina itself, although Carolinas settlers did
indeed incorporate adaptive measures by virtue of the Spanish presence.3
Historian Betty Wood credits Spanish Floridas presence as a major
factor in the debate over use of slave labor at the time of the establishment of
British Georgia in 1733. Georgias founding trustees saw Spanish Florida in
the 1730s as a runaway slave haven and as an incendiary force to foment
slave revolts. Wood asserts that the trustees made the decision against
slavery as much because of a pragmatic concern for the potential loss of
capital invested in enslaved laborers and the dangers to settlers as they did
because of any philosophical tenets about labor. By the middle of the 1740s
the trustees perception of a weakened Florida encouraged them to
reconsider the original prohibition against slavery.4 Permanent French
settlements on the coast of the Gulf of Mexico, beginning in 1699, added to
the complexities of colonial development in the entire region. Extant Spanish
and English settlements now had to deal with the French as well as each
other. Native Americans acquired another element to incorporate in their
survival strategies as they played the European powers off against each


3
other. European and Native American diplomacy took on a multilateral
perspective rather than the more nearly bilateral division prior to the French
settlements.
Studies of Native Americans in the southeast have paid more attention
to the multinational presence in the southeast than have those concerned with
white or Euro-American settlement. Many recent historical and
anthropological studies of Spanish Florida have focused on the lives of the
Native Americans and the changes within native societies following contact
with Europeans, while the white or European society has received little
attention. Our own contemporary emphasis on diversity and upon eliciting the
history of minorities has left us with a picture that is better developed for what
today constitutes minorities (although the groups were often not numerical
minorities during the period studied) than for that of colonial Euro-American
society.5 Yet changes were always developing within white societies as well.
The current focus on ethnic legacies among today's minorities has also turned
the focus away from assimilation by non-whites into the dominant culture.
This study presents a description and interpretation of Spanish Florida
as an essential element of the history of the colonial southeast. It depicts the
changes and practices which developed in or were introduced into Florida
following the arrival of the English and which were responses to the English
presence. Without Floridas existence, South Carolina would have developed
in a different manner. Without South Carolinas inception, Florida likewise


4
would have -been different Both colonies evidenced their mutual fear of the
other by erecting defensive walls around their capitals. Carolinians had
begun construction of Charlestons wall by 1697. Floridians tarried until
1706, adding their wall as they rebuilt St. Augustine after Carolinians had
burned the Spanish town in 1702.6
An enlarged and elaborated portrayal of Floridas society provides a
lens for viewing other contemporary colonial societies and locales as well as
for increasing the knowledge base and understanding of the Spanish colony
itself. A depiction of the society in Florida which developed in ways which
were different from other areas of both British America and Spanish America
fosters new questions about those other areas in the context of alternative
colonial developments. Floridas differences did not just lie in its Iberian
roots, but also in the fact that it did not become a colony with an export-
based, agricultural economy despite founders plans and hopes. The roles of
work and labor, real and personal property, developed within the context of
Florida's economic base, wherein these assets served a different function
than in an agricultural economy. Florida also developed from and within in a
seminal European-based culture which was different than many other areas.
The course of Spanish Florida offers historians the opportunity to examine a
service-based, cash economy as a comparison to the more nearly self-
sufficient, agricultural societies in British America and other areas of Spanish
and also French America.


5
Periodization
This study seeks to describe the society that developed in the
southeast in the context of regional realities. Thus its temporal boundaries
match local or regional changes rather than those originating in Europe.
Employing the date of 1670 as a point of beginning recognizes the changes
wrought by the arrival of the English and permits the ease of using a common
temporal point for analysis of activities in both the English and Spanish
spheres.7
Spanish Floridas longevity in the region and on the continent is clearly
illustrated when we recall that children who had been founders of the Florida
colony in 1565 were themselves grandparents and great-grandparents when
English settlers stepped ashore at Jamestown and Plymouth in the early
1600s.8 Seldom are the Englishmens planting of South Carolina in 1670 and
its development portrayed in the context of that English colonys proximity to
the existing Spanish colony and the latters already established influence in
the southeast. Yet, Carolinians concerned themselves with threats and
attacks from the Spanish in Florida as well as from Native Americans. The
defenses of both St. Augustine and Charleston revealed that each prepared
to fend off a European enemy fighting in the European style. In both towns,
fortifications and entrenchments resembled simplified versions of European
defenses.


6
Floridas Iberian founders intended for the colony to be a profitable
enterprise. Instead, the Spanish monarch had to assume financial
responsibility for the viability of the Florida colony In 1571. A century later,
the Spanish crown had to respond vigorously to fend off threats to the realm
throughout Spanish America.9 In the middle of the seventeenth century the
crown increased its concern and thereafter its attention and funding to the
vulnerable areas. Royal decrees allocated monies to finance physical
improvements and additions to fortifications and relocated fighting men to the
besieged or vital areas.
It was the founding of the English colony of South Carolina in 1670 that
especially menaced Spanish Florida. Defensive remedies of additional
money and men sent by the Spanish crown impelled the lives of the ordinary
colonists to take a new direction in the second century of Spanish settlement.
Floridas white residents, especially the American-born (criollos') colonists,
became more oriented toward Iberia, toward the metropolis, with the influx of
men from the homeland (peninsulares) and the new mens enlarged influence.
Arriving white colonists, who were mostly male, Native Americans, and
residents of African descent, found new roles offered to them within the
reinvigorated defense structure. For subordinated groups, the new roles
translated into greater access to goods and enlarged relationships with
members of the dominant society, that is the society of persons of Iberian


7
descent. The defensive actions brought about changes in the lives of the
residents of all races and racial mixtures.
Many studies of Spanish Florida employ the beginning years of the
eighteenth century as a defining point. For studies which focus on
international politics or on imperial activities and policies, the year 1700
serves well. A new dynasty laid claim to the Spanish throne upon the death of
Spains childless Charles II and a subsequent war to decide the succession
ensued. The Bourbon family, triumphant in its grasp for the throne, brought
changes in Spains imperial policies and introduced amity with France by
virtue of close kinship of the kings of the two nations.10
Crown decisions regarding Florida which resulted in the colonys
reorientation toward the metropolis began, however, while a Hapsburg
monarch still occupied the throne of Spain. The changes in direction for
Spanish Florida predated the War of Spanish Succession and its
accompanying destructions in Florida and predated Spanish colonial reforms
initiated by the victorious Bourbon family although these events are usually
invoked as the markers for periodization. The year 1702 has served as a
distinctive marker for the analysis of architecture in Spanish Florida. While
1702 brought destruction of the buildings in St. Augustine and at the
missions, in the capital the replacement buildings incorporated ideas that had
already been introduced and were holdovers from before the conflagration.


8
In 1763 the transfer of Florida to Great Britain brought more than a
change of sovereigns. The attendant departure of Spanish colonists
sundered lives and regional patterns and marked the end of the Second
Century of Settlement. The changes that began in the 1670s and continued
until Floridas abrupt transfer to Great Britain validate the concept and
periodization of the second century of settlement-a century characterized by
persistent conflict, new men and their new traditions entering the colony, and
the simultaneous expansion and growth of trade in the Atlantic world.
Regional Cultures
This study of the southeast fits with the recent emphasis on the role of
European regional donor cultures upon regional development in the New
World as well as adding an element to the larger transatlantic analysis.
Invoking the idea of the influence of new (that is, arriving) European regional
cultural factors in the Spanish southeast builds upon works by scholars
seeking to explain the regional diversity which developed in Anglo America.
Historians Bernard Bailyn, Jack P. Greene, and David Hackett Fischer and
cultural geographer D. W. Meinig examine relationships between components
brought from European donor regions and their manifestations in the
American colonies. These scholars distill and assess the variations of
multiple, but consistent, elements that were transported and established by
immigrating generations into different areas of North America. Meinig looks at


9
cause, citing Michael Kammen's remark that "colonials didn't come from
Europe. They came from [regions.]" Focusing on effect, Bailyn asserts that
"the colonies' strange ways were only distensions and combinations of
elements that existed in the parent cultures." In the Americas these elements
"were released, fulfilled--at times with strange results that could not have
been anticipated."1 Greenes finer focus looks at the transference of political
and intellectual thought from England to America. He explains dissimilar
developments among the various American regions and colonies as resulting
from the particular state of ideas in the home islands at the time of the
founding in the New World. Thus New England and South Carolina began as
quite different colonies because of the different premises carried into each of
these colonies at inception. In other words, they would have been different
even if the natural environments were more alike.12
Fischer's use of the concept of cultural hearths and the sequential
arrivals of their components at different times into different American regions
is especially pertinent for the study of the Spanish southeast. Fischer
maintains that the series of implantations fashioned differing characteristics
within British America. Four discrete combinations of a particular region of
the British Isles feeding immigrations which occurred at a particular period of
time resulted in four identifiable cultures in the British colonies, which have
persisted into the present.13 The four folkways Fischer discerns are: English
Puritans to New England, 1629-41; cavaliers and indentured servants to the


10
Chesapeake, 1642-75; Quaker migration to the Delaware Valley, 1675-1725;
British borderland inhabitants to the American backcountry, 1717-75.
In Florida too there was a sequence of immigration from Iberia, but
unlike the British colonies, the later arrivals in Florida came into an already
Europeanized area. Historians of Spanish Florida have paid little attention to
the influence of immigrants arriving in the eighteenth century who came with
cultural traditions which had developed in different regions than those of
Floridas founders, who had arrived in the sixteenth century. Cultural
differences within the Florida colony and among its residents have been
viewed through the wider and more overt lens of race, especially Native
American vis--vis European. The transplantation of the cultural diversity that
existed within Iberia has played hardly a role. Theodore Corbitts study of SL
Augustines population dealt with the size of the population and the birth and
death rates, but was not concerned with the Iberian regional origins of
immigrating persons. Kathleen Hoffman uses racial categories as the cultural
categories. Thus persons of European ancestry were placed within a single
category whether their origin was Iberian or Spanish American, with no
discernment by regions.'4
Spanish America displayed more colonial uniformity than Anglo
America and that has lessened the questioning of the role of Iberian regional
diversity within the former Spanish empire. The ubiquity of dogma, ritual, and
accoutrements throughout the Roman Catholic Church made for religious


11
homogeneity throughout the Spanish world--in Europe, in the Americas, in
Asia. The uniformity of the singular church eliminated one of the big dividers
of humans in society. As Meinig observes, "Cultural diversity ... is
fundamentally either regional or religious in character.15 There was almost
no diversity of the latter in Spanish America. A strong centralized colonial
administration and empire-wide colonial legal codes likewise engendered
homogeneity throughout Spanish colonies.16 In Spain, however, the
geographical areas of the old kingdoms which were incorporated into the
Spanish throne still retained many provincial traditions, privileges, and rights,
making the metropolis culturally more heterogeneous than the colonies.17
Entry of new cultural elements into the areas where a creole society already
existed in Florida meant that either the existing ways held fast and resisted
the new or were supplanted, or both old and new were altered to
accommodate each other.
Historiographical emphasis since the shift in the 1960s by the history
profession toward an enlarged interest and concern for the ordinary, minority,
and peripheral citizens18 has paid more attention to Native Americans and
African Americans in Spanish Florida to remedy the negative or trivialized
roles that those ethnic and racial groups held for so long. In the study of
Spanish Florida, the practitioners of history and anthropology have worked
well together in this endeavor.19 Life among mission Indians has received
extensive scrutiny and analysis.20 Jane Landerss investigation of black


12
society in Florida has focused attention on the lives of the previously unknown
residents of African descent and their role in the geopolitical developments in
the region.21 But, ordinary white (Euro-American) colonists, because they
were part of the dominant culture, and non-whites who successfully
assimilated have not received the same attention of late.
What if the words written, dictated, or in some aspect overseen by the
Florida colonists themselves were to form the basis for the picture of their own
lives in the Second Century? The image of the colonists has relied heavily
on reports composed by military and ecclesiastical administrators. This study
looks to documents which were either written by the colonists or were subject
to their scrutiny, to their editing and then verification indicated by their
signatures or their even more frequent cross marks. Some records, like the
recording of the administering of sacraments, were not written by the
participants, but the communicants supplied at least some of the details
recorded by the priests.
In the highly institutionalized and formalized society of the colony of
Florida what was life like for the ordinary resident? For the corporal, for the
midwife, for the slave, for the mission Indian fulfilling a labor obligation?
What changes took place in their lives? How did developments in the rest of
the Atlantic world affect the ways in which the colonists organized themselves,
protected their possessions, provided for their offspring? What were their
relations with each other?


13
This study in no way attempts to diminish the primacy in Florida of the
military and the church organizations and their leaders. That would be folly.
The firm and often rigid framework of those institutions underlay the colony.
Because of the presence of these strong institutions, Spanish Florida's early
society was orderly, stable, and less contentious than those societies
established later in southern English colonies. In contrast, Jack Greene
describes the Chesapeake and the Carolinas as locales where "religion and
other traditional Institutions were weak, a sense of community tenuous, and
cultural amenities almost non-existent." Thus the "potential for social discord
was high."22
But life was not all army and church. Florida's men did not spend all of
their time on guard duty; parishioners and even priests did not spend all of
their waking hours in prayer or at mass. Yet almost any depictions in
communiques concerning the actions of ordinary folk were drawn to express
the needs of the military or the church. The governor, his officials, priests,
and friars composed and compiled the reports. Other views were offered by
foreigners, visitors, and enemies. The remarks of this last group of observers
revealed as much about the foreign writer as about the Spanish in Florida.
And the ordinary people of Florida, most of them illiterate, generated few
documents themselves. Spanish military historian Juan Marchena Fernndez
computed that 78 percent of his sample of enlisted men who served in Florida


14
between 1700 and 1763 could neither read nor write; 12 percent could write
only their name (Marchenas study begins with the year 1700).23
Most citizens appeared in non-narrative documents rather than in
descriptive reports, and it is to those records that this study turns. When bits
of this sort of information are combined, we can discern something of what
historians Darrett and Anita Rutman called the evolving web of associations
which existed among the colonial residents.24 The content and form of the
records changed over the time under consideration here. In subsequent
decades and centuries, books became lost, and damage by humidity and
hungry bugs and microbes has left literal holes in the data.
Documentary Sources
The departure of Spanish residents from the mainland meant the
departure of the documentation of their lives as well. The emigration of 1763
was the first of several generated by treaty cessions. In 1784 British subjects
departed as the Spanish returned to the peninsula; in 1821 Spain once again
divested itself of Florida, this last time to the United States.
Departure of Florida's Spanish population upon British takeover of the
peninsula in 1763 resulted in the removal of the documents created in Florida
during the first two hundred years of European settlement. The Catholic
Church's records of baptisms, confirmations, marriages, and burials for the
first two centuries were removed to the cathedral in Havana, where they


15
remained unnoticed until 1871, when St. Augustine's then-bishop discovered
them. Another thirty-five years passed before the parish records were
returned to Florida.25 Departing Spanish officials transferred the military and
civil records, some of which went to the office of the exchequer in Havana.26
Official correspondence by government, military, and church administrators
remains in collections in Spain, Cuba, the Dominican Republic, and Mexico.
Notaries and government secretaries in Spanish Florida often made multiple
copies to be forwarded to various officials at several administrative centers in
the empire. Florida officials sent copies of their correspondence via several
ships and on subsequent sailings to improve the chance that the information
would reach its destination in the face of possible loss to weather, water
damage, or enemy capture.27
Personal documents from Florida's first two centuries of European
settlement are almost nonexistent or at least undiscovered. Evacuees in
1763 carried their important papers-deeds, wills, debt documentswith them
among their furnishings and other possessions to their new homes in Cuba or
Mexico. When Spanish subjects returned to Florida twenty-one years later in
1784, they complained that "ownership papers had been lost by virtue of the
evacuation." Unlike the transported governmental documents, which were
grouped and stored under official auspices, it is likely that the personal
documents stayed with their owners and thus physically were dispersed.
Given the refugee mode of life experienced by the evacuees, documents


16
often survived the relocations no better than did their owners, who died in
substantial numbers in Cuba.28 If available, the evacuees personal papers
would reveal individual-level decisions, although usually expressed in the
hand and language of a notary rather than that of the subject.
On the other hand, the change of sovereignty created a need for
inventories, maps, and other documentation that otherwise might not have
been ordered and effected. In fact, Florida's several changes of flags
generated documentation to clarify situations and establish land titles. The
periods of departure and arrival of governments and residents offer clusters of
information, which were not generated with the same intensity during more
stable times. The content and form of the records change over time. One
sort of information ceases to be recorded, only for some other concern to
appear.
The records of the Roman Catholic Church provide the most nearly
complete data on the individuals who resided in Spanish Florida. The parish
records cover a long period of time and encompass all ages, races,
occupations and social groups. The time span and inclusiveness make them
an invaluable source.29 The Church, not the state, recorded information which
today is considered as vital-statistics data. Many times an entry in the parish
records was the sole documentary evidence of an individuals existence in the
world.


17
The St. Augustine parish registers have the distinction of being the
oldest written records of American origin in the United States. There are
continuous records from 1594 to1763, except for a five-year hiatus between
1638 and1643.30 For some periods, the parish records offer only a minimum
of information. For example, in the early 1600s marriage entries limited
information about the bride and groom to their names only. In the 1720s and
1730s the recording of infant burials was often so succinct as to include only
a reference to a small child and name of the father, no mother's name at all.
In the eighteenth century, the Enlightenment appreciation and appetite for
facts revealed itself in the expansion of church records, enlarged to include
information about the parentage of marital partners, previous spouses, and
sometimes occupations.
The records of marriages are available from 1594 forward, although the
information contained in them varies over time. There is a gap in the records
of baptisms from 1640 to 1670. Burial records likewise disappear in 1640 and
do not resume until 1720.
The parish records of baptisms, marriages, and burials for the middle
third of the eighteenth century offer a good deal about familial and fictive
kinship.31 In the middle of the 1730s the parish records were enlarged to
include information on the birthplaces of parents of baptismal candidates,
information on nativity of marriage partners and their parents, and information
on any previous marriages of the spouses. Sometimes information on


18
occupation or employment was included. Burial records provided information
about the decedents' survivors and heirs, sometimes with notations
concerning irregularities regarding burials or last rites. For example, entries
specify when circumstances made burial impossible, such as drowning or
death at the hands of the enemy and no corpse was retrieved. Many burial
entries after 1735 mention wills made by the decedents and list the executors
and the specific bequests which would benefit the Church's ritualistic needs
and charitable goals. But the wills themselves which were referenced have
not been located.
In 1735 parallel but separate sets of books for whites and non-whites
(pardos v morenos v indiosl were established. The books of non-whites
recorded information on nativity and parentage, Native American or African
tribe of origin, racial mixture, free or slave status, and listing of the owners of
the enslaved.
Muster rolls of the military units provide a listing of men in service for
many individual years. Muster rolls for the garrison also offer information
regarding age, birthplace, parentage, physical infirmities, and annual salary.
The rolls sometimes include all who were recipients of crown funds: civilian
employees paid by the crown, such as interpreters or harbor pilots, clergy,
soldiers widows and orphans, convict laborers, and mission Indians. Like the
parish registers, the information on the individuals increases in the middle of
the eighteenth century. Musters in the 1670s and 1680s, in addition to listing


19
soldiers, concern themselves with the assignment of weapons. The repetition
of because he is a creole or similar wording in the muster of 1683 May 27
reveals the elimination of many men for the garrison. In the 1690s, notations
about disabilitiesgouty, blind-replace the weapons as a concern. By the
1740s, evermore data states salaries and where individual soldiers were
posted, such as in Apalache or at Fort Matanzas. The 1751 roster compiled by
Jos Gelabert is very detailed. It lists age, date of enlistment, birthplace and
father of the soldiers as well as annual pay. Civilian employees such as a
surgeon, drummers, and pilots appear within the listing of soldiers.
Dependents of deceased soldiers are cited with the amounts of their stipends.
Clergy and their church or mission village assignments are included.
Birthplace of convict laborers and the prisoners locations-slck, at the
quarry-are stated. Mission Indians are listed by village, age, and marital
status. The musters do not constitute a discrete collection, but a series of
similar listings of ordinary individuals which span the time period considered
here and for the purposes of this study they can be seen as a specific kind of
source. The original musters are located in the Archive of the Indies and were
microfilmed for Incorporation in the John B. Stetson Collection (described
later).32
The few testamentary and probate documents and a smattering of lists
and inventories which were not generated by postmortem affairs found their
way back to the North American mainland or to colonial archives in Spain.


20
While the fewest in number, these documents offer detailed information about
the material life of the colonists. Fragmentary and scanty, their avaiJability is
extremely valuable in the void. Although the paucity of the documentation from
probate papers precludes the ability to make observations about the
representativeness of practices which the documents reveal, the papers do
serve as a starting point from which to ask more questions and to make
comparisons to other sources. These documents are located in the Stetson
Collection and East Florida Papers Collection. The latter Is the governmental
archive of the second Spanish period (1784-1821), but it contains a few items
which were generated in the earlier Spanish period.
Notary records of the first two centuries either have not survived or also
await discovery. In the absence of the books wherein the notaries recorded
sales of lands and slaves, contractual agreements and wills, the few
documents of this sort contained in the Spanish Land Grants Manuscript
Collection must serve. This collection is primarily a source for activities of
second Spanish period, but the Section for Claims for Town Lots holds
unexpected material generated In the first Spanish era.
When Florida was returned to Spain by Great Britain in 1784, some of
the evacuees of 1763, their offspring, or other relatives sailed to Florida
intending to reside on former family lands. Inside the desks, chests, and
trunks loaded on the departing ships in 1763 the townspeople had placed their
personal documents. Now the evacuees or their representatives submitted


21
certified copies of documents that had been transported to Cuba, usually
deeds or wills, in order to support their claims to the abandoned property.33
For the two decades of Spanish absence and of British ownership, British
colonists had perforce occupied, purchased, and improved the former Spanish
sites. While a number of British-era residents chose to stay under Spanish
rule after 1784, others opted to leave and receive some compensation through
sale of property to incoming Spanish subjects. Conflicting claims arose in this
situation, of course, and in cases where there were not valid claimants, the
Spanish crown intended to benefit from the sale of ownerless property. The
documents are conserved in the Claims for Town Lots section of the Spanish
Land Grants collection at the Division of Historical Resources in Tallahassee.
For years these documents were valued as substantiation of property
ownership, which was the intent when presented, but the papers, in fact,
mention a lot more. A few other similar claims became part of the East Florida
Papers Manuscript Collection, now at the Library of Congress. The
documentation arising from property claims should be considered a highly
biased source as only those families with reason to return to Florida after 1784
were included, unlike records such as notary books which would include
property transactions across the population. Given the original intent,
historians Jook to the Claims for Town Lots for information on property
ownership and perhaps descriptions of buildings. This collection has never
been consulted as a source for other evidence, which was merely incidental at


22
the time of the claims, but which in fact provides information on aspects of
individuals lives in Florida, almost impossible to investigate in the absence of
the notarial records. As claimants submitted wills and sworn statements which
justified ownership of abandoned real property they also described all sorts of
personal property, financial arrangements among individuals, relations with
slaves, and the use of specific rooms within houses.
The John B. Steston Collection is the premier source for the study of
first Spanish period with its copies of official correspondence between Florida,
Cuba, and Spain that span the entire period. It provides the documentation
that constitutes a chronology of the events in the Spanish colony and in the
region. The documents were selected in the 1920s from the holdings at the
Archive of the Indies in Seville, photographed, and subsequently microfilmed.
Especially useful for this study, in addition to the official perspective, are
petitions, testimony and affidavits made by lower-ranking soldiers and civilians
and incorporated into official communiques.34 Numerous archival bundles in
the Archive of the Indies which concern Spanish Florida have been microfilmed
in their entirety and are available on microfilm in addition to the Stetson
Collection at the P. K. Yonge Library of Florida History at the University of
Florida.
The lives of the ordinary residents can be partially reconstructed by
combining the information from several of the sources mentioned above.
Seldom will a single source provide a good picture. In combination, these


23
documents permit the examination of what concerned ordinary residents. The
documents offer information and insight into the decisions and behavior of
individuals and their interaction with kin, friends, associates, sponsors, and
superiors. Sometimes we can pursue questions that interest us, but with which
the colonial residents were probably not consciously concerned. The data
offer the possibility to see changes in personal behavior in response to the
larger political, social, and material world and also see the individual lives as
components of the aggregate behaviors that propelled the larger
changes-forces which in turn pressed the lives of the colonists into ever-
changing patterns.
Notes
1. This is a slightly altered restatement of Joel Evanss contention. Evans
also includes in his assessment of Spanish influence the passive and
unwitting introduction of disease and the resulting demographic collapse and
greatly diminished Native American populations with which Europeans might
have to contend. Southeastern Indians and the English Trade in Skins and
Slaves, in Charles Hudson and Carmen Chaves Tesser, eds.. The Forgotten
Centuries: Indians and Europeans in the American South (Athens: University
of Georgia Press, 1994), 305.
2. It is not intended to present here a broad critique of current survey texts,
but to give representative examples. Although Philip Jenkins sets forth his
temporal focus as 1492-1765, he in fact limits it to the earliest years, reducing
Spanish presence to the wonder of the conquistadors, in A History of the
United States (New York: St. Martins Press, 1997), 7. Maldwyn A. Jones
observes that apart from leaving a fort at St. Augustine, Florida a number of
missions in the southwest, Spain turned her back on America north of the Rio
Grande in the late sixteenth century though without relinquishing her claims
there." Limits of Liberty: American History, 1607-1992. 2nd ed., (New York:
Oxford University Press, 1995), 4. Similar presentations appear in Virginia
Bernhard, David Bruner, Elizabeth-Fox Genovese, John McClymer, Firsthand


24
America: A History of the United States. 3rd ed., (St. James, NY: Brandywine
Press, 1993), 11-14, even though it claimed to be more inclusive than previous
texts.
3. Robert M. Weir continues the interpretation and portrayal of Spanish
Florida as a barrier in Colonial South Carolina: A History (Columbia:
University of South Carolina Press, 1997), 42, 52, 82,. Weirs role for Florida
as part of the prologue to South Carolinas settlement perpetuates the
exclusion of the Spanish colonys continued function in the development of
the region. Weir includes the most recent material on Florida jn his
bibliographic essay (395-96) with emphasis on the contact period in the
sixteenth-century, but not upon the Spanish colony as an on-going factor.
4. Betty Wood, Slavery in Colonial Georgia, 1733-1775 (Athens: University of
Georgia Press, 1984), 8-9.
5. In the colonial context the terms dominant and subordinated" better
reflect the colonial situation than majority and minority. Peter H. Woods
term, black majority, to describe colonial South Carolina is a good example
where the majority was not the dominant group. Black Majority: Negroes in
Colonial South Carolina from 1670 to the Stono Rebellion (New York: Alfred
A. Knopf, 1974).
6. [n.a.j, The Walled City," in Carter L. Hudgins, Carl R. Lounsbury, Louis P.
Nelson, Jonathan H. Poston, eds.. The Vernacular Architecture of Charleston
and the Lowcountrv, 1670-1990: A Field Guide. 24-25.
7. The use of regional activities as the basis for periodization appears in
historian Michael V. Gannons The Cross in the Sand: The Early Catholic
Church in Florida. 1513-1870 (Gainesville: University of Florida Press, 1965)
wherein he invokes 1675, the finest hour of the missionary movement, (66)
as a turning point in the Spanish mission system in the region rather than
looking to the destructions of 1702 and 1704, which were major events, but
still part of the downward path rather than the end (Ch. 5). Gannon continues
the use of the regional reality with chapter 6, whose periodization (1768-1790)
reflects the break in the presence of clergy of the Catholic Church in Florida
rather than using the political change, from a Spanish colony to a British
colony, as a marker.
8. By the time the Pilgrims came ashore at Plymouth, St. Augustine was up
for urban renewal. Michael Gannon. Florida: A Short History (Gainesville:
University Press of Florida, 1993), 4.


25
9. Engel Sluiter, The Florida Situado: Quantifying the First Eighty Years.
1571-1651 (Gainesville: University of Florida Libraries, 1985), 1.
10. John Jay TePaske, The Governorship of Spanish Florida. 1700-1763
(Durham: Duke University Press, 1964); Amy Turner Bushnell. The Kina's
Coffer: Proprietors of the Spanish Florida Treasury, 1565-1702 (Gainesville:
University of Florida Press, 1981).
11. Bernard Bailvn. The Peopling of British North America: An Introduction
(New York: Vintage Books, 1988), quote on 122; David Hackett Fischer,
Albion's Seed: Four British Folkways in America (New York: Oxford University
Press, 1989); D. W. Meinig. The Shaping of America: A Geographical
Perspective on 500 Years of FI ¡story. Vol. I, Atlantic America. 1492-1800 (New
Flaven: Yale University Press, 1986), quote on 80.
12. Jack P. Greene, Pursuits of Happiness: The Social Development of Early
Modern British Colonies and the Formation of American Culture (Chapel Hill:
University of North Carolina Press, 1988).
13. Fischer. Albion's' Seed. 6-7. Extending his argument into modern times,
for example, Fischer claims that "each American culture had its own motives
for supporting (World War II]" and attributes the different style of the top-
ranking U.S. military commanders to regional differences, 877-80
14. Theodore G. Corbitt, Population Structure of Hispanic St. Augustine,
1763, Florida Historical Quarterly. 54 (1976): 263-84; Kathleen Hoffman,
Cultural Development in La Florida, in Donna L. Ruhl and Kathleen Hoffman,
eds., Diversity and Social Identity Colonial Spanish America: Native
American. African and Hispanic Communities During the Middle Period.
Historical'Archaeology 31 (19971: 24-35.
15. Meinig, Atlantic America. 80. Meinig offers a framework composed of
three sequential, developmental periods and eleven cultural regions for North
America and the West Indies. With this framework, he describes how
Europeans established their dominance in America and how that dominance
reshaped the American world. Meinig separates the sequential framework
into "seafaring," "conquering," and "planting" periods. The last, which
encompasses the eighteenth century, he divides into two phases:
"implantation" and "reorganization." In the "implantation" phase major
production districts and cultural areas were formed. During the
"reorganization" phase, metropolitan authorities attempted to bring these New
World offshoots under tighter central control. His criteria for identifying a
cultural region largely being homogeneity of the population, Meinig identifies
Greater New England, the St. Lawrence River valley, Hudson's Bay, the


26
Hudson River valley, Pennsylvania, Greater Virginia, the Tropical Islands, the
Carolinas, Florida, Louisiana, and Texas and the Lower Rio Grande valley.
Meinig addresses the concept of "reorganization" as a situation molded
by external political demands and gives little weight to internal regional
cultural or economic factors.
16. Jos Maria Ots v Caodeaui. Historia del derecho espaol in Amrica v
del derecho indiano (Buenos Aires: Losada, 1945), 3.
17. Ann M. Pescatello, Power and Pawn: The Female in Iberian Families.
Society, and Culture. (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1976), Ch. 1.
18. There is a plethora of discussions of the evolution of the field of social
history. For a brief overview of its roots, methods and content, see Alice
Kessler-Harris, Social History, in Eric Foner, ed., The New American History
(Philadelphia: Temple University Press, 1990), 163-84.
19. See Michael Gannon, The New Alliance of History and Archaeology in
the Eastern Spanish Borderlands, William and Mary Quarterly 49, 3,d ser.
(1992): 321-44 for a discussion of interdisciplinary projects.
20. David Hurst Thomas, ed., Columbian Consequences: Impact of Hispanic
Colonization in the Southeast and Caribbean (Washington, D C: Smithsonian
Institution Press, 1990), includes essays by most of the mission researchers
and mission sites. Jerald T. Mllanlch, Florida Indians and the Invasion from
Europe (Gainesville; University Press of Florida, 1995); John H. Hann, A
History of the Timucua Indians and Missions (Gainesville: University Press of
Florida, 1996): idem, Apalachee: The Land Between the Rivers (Gainesville:
University of Florida Press, 1988); idem and Bonnie G. McEwan, The
Apalachee Indians and Mission San Luis (Gainesville: University Press of
Florida, 1998) deals with interactions among the Native Americans and the
Spanish. Hudson and Tesser. eds.. The Forgotten Centuries and Peter H.
Wood, Gregory A. Waselkov, and M. Thomas Hatley, eds., Powhatan's
Mantle: Indians in the Colonial Southeast (Lincoln: University of Nebraska,
1989) survey the Native Americans in the southeast.
21. Jane Landers, "Black Society in Spanish St. Augustine," Ph.D. diss.
(University of Florida, 1988); idem. "Traditions of African American Freedom
and Community in Colonial Spanish Florida," in David R. Colburn and Jane L.
Landers, eds., The African American Heritage of Florida (Gainesville:
University Press of Florida, 1995), 19-41; "Gracia Real de Santa Teresa de
Mose: A Free Black Town in Spanish Colonial Florida." American Historical
Review 95 (19901:9-30.


27
22. Greene. Pursuits of Happiness. 12-13.
23. Juan Marchena Fernndez, St. Augustines Military Society, 1700-1820,
El Escribano 22 (1985): 69.
24. Darrett B and Anita H. Rutman, A Place in Time: Middlesex County,
Virginia. 1650-1750 (New York: Norton, 1984), 12.
25. Gannon, Cross in the Sand. 191.
26. Charles S. Coomes, "Our Country's Oldest Parish Records, El Escribano.
18 (1981):74-83. Pedro Jos Gmez's claim stated that Eligi de la Puente's
papers were located in Cuba in the office of the exchequer (Tribunal de
Cuentas de Real Audiencia), Bnd. 320, no. 81, Claims for Town Lots, Spanish
Land Grants manuscript collection (SLG), Florida Division of Historical
Resources, Tallahassee, Florida.
27. For an example of the multiple distribution, see Juan Fernndez de
Olivera to the Crown, 1612 October 13, Archivo General de Indias (hereafter
AGI), Audiencia de Santo Domingo 229 (hereafter SD), number 75.
28. Jos Miguel Chapuz, claim for the house of his mother Beatriz Amadora,
Bundle 320, claim no. 62 [also numbered 298], Town Lots, SLG. Juan Jos
Eligi de la Puentes correspondence to the Governor of Cuba noted that
many of the evacuees were dead by the date of his report of 1770 January
27. AGI SC 87-1-5/4.
29. Cathedral Parish Records (hereafter CPR), Diocese of St. Augustine,
Diocesan Center, Mandarin, Florida (microfilm copies at St. Augustine
Historical Society).
30. Gannon. Cross in the Sand. 191-92.
31. CPR.
32. The muster rolls of soldiers and those individuals sustained by crown
funds are generally titled "General List (lista general or pie de lista),
sometimes signed by the governor, at other times sent in the name of a
subordinate, administrative official. The following musters were consulted;
only date and archival citation are listed here: 1671 July 6, 58-1-26/16A;
1680 December 4, 54-5-12/9; 1683 May 27, 54-5-12/9:1683 June 28, 54-5-
11/102 duplicate; 1687 April 20, 54-5-14/41; 1698 December 2, 58-2-3/25;
1699 September 1, 54-5-15/136; 1701 December 3, 58-2-3/34; 1706, 1707,
1708, 1709 all December 3, 58-1-35/61; 1712 December 3, 58-2-3/59; 1714
December 31, 1714; 58-2-4/17; 1719 August 12, 58-2-4/25; 1717 June 3, 87-


28
1-2/63; 1738 April 5; 87-1-3/20; 1740 58-1-32/23; 1745 January 2, 87-3-
12/70; 1746 January 12, 87-3-12/76; 1746 July 15, 87-3-12/84; 1747 January
23, 87-3-12/23; 1748 July 8 and 17, 87-3-13/2. The report by Jos Gelabert,
1751 October 29, 87-1-14/2 is very detailed and thus contributed a great deal
to this study. All AGI SC.
33. Hardly any claimants presented certified copies of documents which had
been transported to Mexico.
34. Gannon. Cross in the Sand. 192-93.


CHAPTER 2
LA FLORIDAS FIRST CENTURY
St. Augustine, a Spanish garrison being planted to
the southward of us about a hundred leagues,
makes Carolina a frontier to all the English
settlements on the main.
-Governor Nathaniel Johnson of
South Carolina, 1709
From an Iberian perspective, La Florida was a latecomer among New
World settlements. Still, this youngster of Spains American territories
predated any enduring settlements of England or France in North America.
The boundaries of La Florida originally extended to Newfoundland and to the
west as far as the mind could comprehend. Other nations who planted
settlements could only trespass in this context.
After a half-century of exploration of the southeast and thwarted
settlement attempts, which began with Juan Ponce de Len,1 the Spanish at
last in September 1565 founded St. Augustine, the first settlement to endure.
Juan Ponce had set out from Puerto Rico in February 1521 with matriel to
settle on the lower west coast of the Florida peninsula. But Native Americans
drove the settlers out. In 1526 Spanish settlers established the San Miguel
de Gualdape settlement on or near Sapelo, a Georgia barrier island. It
29


30
endured for no more than six weeks.2 In 1559 a hurricane undermined the
nascent Spanish settlement at Pensacola even before all cargo could be
offloaded; still it survived until 1561.3 The 1565 expedition's leader, Pedro
Menndez de Avils, had intended to settle in the vicinity of Parris Island,
South Carolina, but the construction of a French fort at the mouth of the St.
Johns River led Menndez to debark his colonists and supplies at the next
harbor south of the French foothold. Such a location would provide a land
base for Menndez to attack French Fort Caroline and oust French colonists
from Spanish-claimed lands. And Menndez's men handily accomplished the
removal within a few weeks of first landing.
Menndez did establish a settlement at the intended Carolina location
at Eastertide 1566. But Santa Elena's survival was even more fitful than that
of St. Augustine. The Spanish abandoned Santa Elena in 1576 and
reestablished it in 1578. By 1587 the Santa Elena site was given up for the
second and final time and its residents resettled in St. Augustine.4 Thus the
site at St. Augustine, which had begun as a default location, became the seat
of permanent Spanish presence on the North American Atlantic coast.
The wisdom for St. Augustine's location probably caused many to
question Menndez's rationality for maintaining the settlement.5 The town
took root on the west bank of an estuary of the Atlantic Ocean, not at the
mouth of a river flowing from the interior. Surrounding rivers and creeks are
tidal. Thus access to St. Augustine's hinterland was by land rather than via a


31
ready-made highway of water. The difficulty inherent in overland transport of
the era would hinder interior development. Overland transport would become
expensive In both money and good relations with the natives.
Nor was the harbor itself of much note. The entrance to the safety and
haven of the estuary passed through a fickle Inlet and shifting sand bars. An
eighteenth-century traveler perceived the security from invading vessels that
the bar offered. "It was Spanish wariness to fix the capital of a colony behind
a sand-bank which cannot be crossed except at great peril."6 Such conditions
served well at the time of founding when protection against French vessels
was paramount. But the St. Augustine inlet bore out the Spanish proverb
which advised "el cuchillo que corta el pan tambin se corta el dedo" (The
knife which cuts your bread will also cut your finger). Storms and hurricanes
could Improve and deepen the passage or relocate and virtually close the
entry.
Laborers had to offload supplies from deep-draft vessels anchored
outside the inlet to be ferried in smaller boats to the city's landing. Larger
ships dared not risk running aground in the inlet or allow themselves to be
Imprisoned in St. Augustine's harbor, awaiting the lunar phase to bring the
highest tides and thus navigable depths. A series of north-south estuaries
facilitated movement and transportation that paralleled the coast. But access
into the interior from St. Augustine had to be overland, making the movement
of goods most onerous.


32
Despite Spains claim to the lone settlement in the region, the Spanish
never had the lower southeast all to themselves. Raiders and traders from
other European nations appeared and departed. For a century following the
founding, no other European power secured a toehold In the region. But by
the last quarter of the seventeenth century Spain faced a permanent English
presence In South Carolina and the Incipient French colony of Louisiana. A
century of successive wars would re-shape both Europe and North America.
Spain's territorial status in the lower southeast went largely
unchallenged from the time of Menndez's founding of St. Augustine and
Santa Elena in 1565 and 1566 until the advent of English Charleston in 1670.
Historian Ralph Davis asserts that the 1607 placement of Jamestown
reflected concern by England's James I "to keep well clear of the Spanish
limits in Florida" in the early seventeenth century.7 Historian Kenneth
Andrews similarly claims that England "shrank" from challenging Spain over
Virginia and that the English even explained that endeavor to the Spanish as
a private risk rather than an English crown project.8 English, French, and
Dutch traders and privateers indeed devastated Spanish settlements
throughout the circum-Caribbean and deprived residents and the crown of
security and material goods, but acquisition of the land and the labor of its
native inhabitants was not a part of their agenda. Early Dutch, French, and
especially English activity was as booty driven as early Spanish aims,
although stereotypes persist of the "settling" English and the "greedy,"


33
extractive Spanish.9 These latecomer raiders generally targeted the wealth or
goods of other Europeans while the Spanish had focused on appropriating
Native American resources. Money, supplies, and perhaps artillery, not
lands, lured Francis Drake to attack St. Augustine In 1586.10 The French,
more oriented to trade than plunder, continued seasonal trading visits to the
southeast coast despite their rout by Menndez In 1565 and again in 1580 at
the mouth of the St. Johns River. The Guale natives of the Georgia coast
and French corsairs both ignored Spanish prohibitions on their trading
activities.11
The advent in the south of English settlement in 1670 marked a change
in life and activity in the southeast by virtue of the raids and attacks that the
English and their Indian allies made in the region. Governor Johnsons
remark in 1709 charging that the Spanish presence so near to Carolina forced
the English colonists to live in a state of fear and alert ignored the chronology
of settlement, but well illustrated English jealousy. Frances appearance in
1699 along the lower Mississippi River and the coast of the northern Gulf of
Mexico added to the complexity. Historian Charles Arnade refers to the
international conflict in the southeast as a "triangular struggle."12 Yet,
continuing with his geometric metaphor, a polygon serves as a better
description, for the various Native American nations comprised "sides" as
well. The struggle was certainly not equilateral and the number of sides and
their respective sizes varied over time. Arnade assigns the Native


34
Americans' weight to one of the three major European players rather than
seeing native activity as purely native in character, driven by native benefit
and survival rather than by allegiance to one or another of the colonial
powers. Historian Daniel Usner views Native Americans in the region as a
forceful group who participates fully in shaping its own destiny in the face of
Europeans' territorial and commercial machinations. Usner, for the French
Lower Mississippi Valley, and historian Amy Bushnell, for Spanish Florida,
both point out the Europeans' or Euro-Americans' dependence upon the
natives for food in the face of the French and Spanish metropolises' ever-
inadequate supply practices.13
Entry of the English permanently into the southeast in 1670 coincided
with the zenith of the Spanish Florida mission system and with the time of the
largest reported number of Indian communicants. It was the mission residents
on the coast of the southeast who felt the first English attacks on Spanish
enclaves and against Spanish influence in the region. The mission residents
quickly adapted to the new reality in the region as they relocated and
reorganized. It was only the beginning of changes for Spanish Florida.
Floridas proximity to the Gulf Stream offered an asset that Spain could
not risk having another empire control. The current came very close to the
mainland along Floridas southern coast, increasing the potential for
shipwreck in that area. So long as Florida remained Spanish, cargo and
passengers cast overboard might be saved by Spanish interests. Near St.


35
Augustine the current turned sharply eastward and the natural propulsion of
the Gulf Stream carried the galleons away from the Americas and out into the
Atlantic toward Europe. This route made St. Augustine the last chance for
Spains silver fleet to get assistance with navigational problems or aid against
threatening enemy vessels.'4 When Florida's benefit to the empire was
questioned in light of its meager production during hearings in 1602,
justification for maintaining the colony was put forth in the larger context of the
colonys role in the security of the fleets and therefore the security of Spain's
economy.15
Florida helped protect Spains access to precious metals. Floridas
role continued to be its strategic location to protect shipping headed to Spain
laden with ingots and other colonial products. Near the end of the eighteenth
century Florida additionally buffered the valuable silver mines of Mexico from
overland Incursions from the new United States.16 Only when Spain had
almost nothing left to protect in the Caribbean after the wars for independence
of the early nineteenth century did the Spanish crown give up Its colony of
Florida.


36
Notes
1. Michael Gannon, "First European Contacts," in Michael Gannon, ed., The
New History of Florida (Gainesville: University Press of Florida, 1996), 20-21.
2. Paul E. Hoffman, "Lucas Vzquez de Aylln," in Jeannine Cook, ed.,
Columbus and the Land of Avlln: The Exploration and Settlement of the
Southeast (Darien, GA: Lower Altahama Historical Society, 1992), 27.
3. Gannon, "First European Contacts," 34-35.
4. Eugene Lyon, "Settlement and Survival," in Gannon, ed., New History of
Florida. 48-58; Amy Turner Bushnell, Situado and Sabana: Spains Support
System for the Presidio and Mission Provinces of Florida (New York:
American Museum of Natural History, 1994), 62-64.
5. Among the concerns addressed during the 1602 inquiry by the Spanish
crown of St. Augustine's continued existence were the area's topographical
defects (questions 4 and 5). Charles W. Arnade, Florida On Trial. 1593-1602
(Coral Gables, FL: University of Miami Press, 1959), 24.
6. Johann David Schoepf, Travels in the Confederation, trans. Alfred J.
Morrison, Vol. 2 (New York: B. Franklin, 1968), 228-29.
7. Ralph Davis, The Rise of the Atlantic Economies (Ithaca, NY: Cornell
University Press, 1973), 83.
8. Kenneth R. Andrews, Trade. Plunder and Settlement: Maritime Enterprise
and the Genesis of the British Empire, 1480-1630 (Cambridge: Cambridge
University Press, 1984), 310-12.
9. Eugene Lyon's numerous studies of Pedro Menndezs plans for Florida
have dispelled the traditional Hispanophobic conclusions which limited
actions to conquering, enslaving and mining. See The Enterprise of Florida:
Pedro Menndez de Avils and the Spanish Conauest of 1565-1568.
(Gainesville: University of Florida Press, 1976) and Pedro Menndez de
Avils Vol. 24 Spanish Borderlands Sourcebooks (New York: Garland, 1995).
10. J. Leitch Wright. Jr.. Analo-Spanish Rivalry in North America (Athens:
University of Georgia Press, 1971), 28-29; Amy Turner Bushnell, The King's
Coffer: Proprietors of the Spanish Florida Treasury. 1656-1702 (Gainesville:
University of Florida Press, 1981), 94-95.
11.Bushnell, Situado and Sabana. 63-65.


37
12. Charles W. Arnade, "Raids, Sieges and International Wars," in Gannon,
ed., New History of Florida (Gainesville: University Press of Florida, 1996),
100.
13. Daniel H. Usner, Jr., Indians. Settlers and Slaves in a Frontier Exchange
Economy: The Lower Mississippi Valiev Before 1783 (Chapel Hill: University
of North Carolina Press, 1992); Amy Turner Bushnell, Situado and Sabana.
14. Murdo MacLeod, "Spain's Atlantic Trade, 1492-1720," in Leslie Bethell,
ed. The Cambridge History of Latin America I, (Cambridge: Cambridge
University Press, 1984), 341 -88.
15. Arnade summarizes the Franciscan friars position as in favor of
maintaining the colony of La Florida, but abandoning the Florida peninsula in
favor of an area located closer to the bulk of the Indian population.
Geographical and nautical considerations, indeed recognized by the fathers,
were of but minor importance in their point of view. Florida on Trial. 89.
16. Elena Snchez-Fabrs Mirat, Situacin histrica de las Floridas en la
segunda mitad del siglo XVIII (1783-18191 (Madrid: Ministerio de Asuntos
Exteriores, 1977), 9, 111.


CHAPTER 3
ASSIMILATED NATIVE AMERICANS:
FLORIDA'S URBAN INDIANS
The inhabitants were of all colours, whites,
negroes, mulattoes, Indians, &c, at the evacuation
of St. Augustine.
-John Bartram, 1765
Of the three major empires to claim and colonize the Americas-Spain,
England, France-the Spanish viewed the Native Americans more as a
resource, in fact a necessity, rather than an obstruction to the viability of their
New World endeavors. Indian labor had been among the first rewards offered
by the crown to early Spanish colonizers of the Caribbean. When Spain
finally turned toward settling the North American mainland, the Spanish
carried with them their viewpoint that Native labor was essential for success.
Indian slavery was never really a factor in the colony of Florida, for by
the time of Juan Ponce's first voyage to Florida in 1513, Indian slavery had
already been legally prohibited in Spanish America by the Laws of Burgos of
1512, so called for the city in which they were promulgated. Thus,
theoretically, the Native Americans of Florida were free Spanish subjects, and
the Spanish had to rely upon enticing native laborers rather than enslaving
them. The institution of slavery remained firmly in place for Africans in
38


39
Spanish Florida and throughout Spanish America, although Spanish rule
offered Africans more options for freedom and economic opportunities than
did other colonial regimes.1
Euro-Americans, Native Americans and African-Americans were
present as well in the contemporary regions of other colonial powers on the
North American mainland, but the interaction among the races differed with
region, culture, and empire. French New Orleans counted Indians and blacks
among its residents. Daniel Usner writes that slaves "constituted the core of
the resident Indian population" of the Louisiana capital. Indian slavery was
also permitted in the English colonies. In Maryland,-Virginia, North and South
Carolina, the sale of Indians enslaved in wars of removal helped to pay for the
wars themselves. South Carolina has been described as "preeminent in the
use and exportation of Indian slaves" among all the British continental
colonies.2
After the middle of the seventeenth century, Native American groups
formed the frontier between rival European nations who claimed territory in
southeastern North America. By the time of the establishment of Florida (and
the Philippines and New Mexico), Flapsburg purposefulness had altered the
earlier American encomienda system (a state assignment of compulsory
labor) into a grant to collect tribute.3 In comparison to the expectations upon
Native labor in Peru and New Spain, Florida officials believed that they were
especially ungreedy and lax in their demands with "no encomiendas, obrajes


40
[sweat shops] or mines." The labor levy which Florida officials had
negotiated with chiefs (caciques) supplied manpower (and it was to be
unmarried manpower) primarily to maintain fortifications, to plant fields for
Spaniards, and to furnish household and personal servants and ranch hands.
As for the specific labor demands, Natives found the requirement of burden
bearing to be the most galling. While Governor Andrs Rodrguez de Villegas
declared In 1630 that Florida Indians were "the best treated in America," it is
doubtful that the Florida Natives shared His Lordship's positive view of the
situation, for the workers were not comparing the demands upon them with
those upon Natives in the labor-devouring areas of Mexico or Peru. Nor did
the Florida Natives worldview include a pre-Columbian past of massive labor
exaction of or by other Native groups.4
Still, the number of Indians in the Florida colony fell and alarmed
officials. Anthropologist John Worth describes the seventeenth-century
mission era as being a time of a free-fall decline in population. The decline
mystified Governor Luis de Rojas y Borja (1624-30). The shrinking Native
population ultimately translated into fewer producers of food for the Spanish
in Florida.5 The colony's governors continually fretted about feeding and
fighting and the intertwining of the two problems. Plagued by such concerns,
Florida officials responded to the specter of a scarcity of Native labor with
decisions that only exacerbated the problem and alienated the labor source.
When an epidemic in 1655 diminished the number of Timucuan Indians of


41
northeastern Florida who were available to grow corn to be sent to feed the
presidio in St. Augustine, Governor Diego de Rebolledo (1654-1659)
launched a ruthless raid on other groups to acquire workers to plant
compensatory fields near St. Augustine. Contemporary events in the
Caribbean worsened the situation for Florida Natives. Multinational rivalries,
especially the Anglo-Spanish competition in the Americas, brought pressures
upon the Natives of La Florida even before the English established a
permanent presence in the lower southeast. Alarmed by the English capture
of Jamaica, Rebolledo attempted to call up Indian nobles for militia service,
who were in addition ordered to bring their own food with them on their backs,
thus demeaned "as if they were mules or horses."6
Then in 1670 the English made a permanent incursion into the lower
southeast and henceforth into the Spanish monopoly of the region's Native
American labor pool and surplus. The dynamics between Europeans and
Native changed dramatically.
Unlike most regions of Spanish America, residents of all colors and
cultures in colonial Florida found themselves physically threatened by
European enemies, primarily England. Within the context of the international
face-off in the southeast, Spanish colonial officials had to adapt their methods
of dealing with the Native Americans of the region. No longer could the
requirement of native labor be demanded and expected; rather officials had to


42
recruit and woo Natives' cooperation or sometimes at best settle for Natives'
inaction.
More plentiful and superior gifts and trade items lured Native groups to
the orbit of England and Carolina. But Interchange with the Carolinians could
mean tragedy instead of material acquisitions for Natives. Under the guise of
warfare, Carolinians also captured and enslaved Indians, citing
disagreements over land rights, destruction of crops and slaying of cattle as
bases to justify attack. Carolina's Indian allies brought in Spanish-allied
Indians to be slaves. Most of the Carolina slaves were shipped to the West
Indies to work. Exported Indian labor capitalized Carolina in the early years
when no staple crop had yet proved successful. Historian Converse Clowse
asserts that the export of Indian slaves may have been the most important
generator of profits during the first five years of Carolina's existence. The
extent of the trade is not known as it was illicit and thus little documented.7 It
was a simple extractive venture, so to speak, that could be quickly set up with
little equipment, expertise or capitalization. With slaves being supplied by
wars among the Native groups themselves, Carolinians did not make direct
demands upon individual labor as the Spanish did.
A decade after the founding of Charleston, Carolinians began the
assault on Spanish presence in the southeast in earnest. Abetted by fickle
Yamasee allies, Carolina colonists drove the Spanish soldiers, priests and
Indian converts from St. Catherine's Island as the first operation. The mission


43
towns and the Indians who chose to remain with the Spanish began island
hopping southward, regrouping all the while. The English also harried to the
west in the Apalachee area and extended their influence among the Lower
Creeks.8 Meanwhile the Spanish demands upon Native labor surged in order
to furnish laborers for the building of the shellstone fortress in St. Augustine.
Groundbreaking for the fortress began only two years after the founding of
Charleston and continued for 23 years. Natives became disenchanted with
European empires in the southeast, but were given little opportunity to be
neutral. Additionally, Natives' attraction to manufactured metal goods, cloth
and liquor altered the Native lifeways so that they became materially
dependent upon the imports. During the 1690s the hostilities abated and
superficially friendly relations existed, with the English and the Spanish each
keeping the other informed on activities of the French, the common threat-of-
the-moment to them both.9
In 1702 the English in Carolina took advantage of the outbreak of war
in Europe to attack Spain in Florida. In September 1702 a Carolinian and
Yamassee expeditionary force of 800 to 1200 (sources disagree) set out for
Spanish Florida. Spanish-allied coastal Natives fled to St. Augustine's
fortress as the English with their own Indian allies approached. Charles
Arnade termed the conflict in Florida as "one of the first large engagements in
the international struggle on the North American continent.... [which]
marked the beginning of a century of warfare in North America."10 English


44
attacks in the Apalachee area in both 1702 and 1704 resulted In the
destruction of Spanish missions and the capture and enslavement of
reasonably no more than a thousand Natives according to John Hann's
assessment. The leader of the English forces, James Moore, reported figures
ranging from 400 to 4000. The English would sell the captives to offset the
cost of the conflict. The Carolinians' assaults left the Natives scattered.
While In the east all racial and cultural groups suffered from the total burning
of the capital city by the English before the invaders retreated.
In 1715 Carolinas Yamassee allies turned on the English colonists.
Florida's governor denied any part in inciting the attacks. In truth the Spanish
in Florida were engaged in literally rebuilding St. Augustine and were hardly
in a condition to give more than verbal support to attacks against the English.
Outlying Spanish missions were almost nonexistent, for the Spanish in Florida
had not yet recuperated sufficiently to move out much beyond the capital and
the protection of the fort and Its artillery. Many Native Americans of South
Carolina subsequently fled to Florida for refuge. Historian John Hann notes
the paradox of the refugees running to Spanish Florida from the Yamassee
War who had only a decade earlier "played prominent roles in the destruction
of the Florida missions." Hann further asserts that the influx led to a
significant reorganization and expansion of the settlements that had already
arisen to accommodate the refugees from the missions in the century's first
decade.12 Hoping to perpetuate "infidel and Catholic Indians" as allies,


45
Florida Governor Coreles requested from the Spanish crown "funds to
succor and bring them to our side ... [and] make them productive."13 He
feared that the English would try to invade in order to destroy their former
Native allies nowin Florida.14
The tables of the southeast had turned. The Yamassees had forced
contraction of English settlement to a small area of South Carolina
reminiscent of what the English had done to the Spanish of Florida only about
fifteen years earlier. Perhaps Crcols wanted also to ensure his own peace
with the Native rebels, who had now seen their own strength and who might
decide to use it on the Spanish as well. Indeed the Interaction between the
Spanish and the Natives, albeit with various and different Native groups as
time passed, had transformed from the Spaniards requiring labor and
products to a Spanish position of supporting Natives as refugees and
potential allies or at the least to appease them and assure inaction on the part
of the Natives.
During the first quarter of the eighteenth century relations with Native
Americans in Spanish Florida found the Natives transformed into an expense,
a fiscal liability that could not be neglected lest they defect to other empires.
Gangs of workers no longer arrived from missions to sustain defense projects
and other public works. Indians had been interacting within the society since
the Europeans' arrival. Spanish male colonists early on took Indian women
as brides, which allowed the establishment of a stable and self-sustaining


46
population early. A priest shipwrecked about 1595 reported "there are few
Spanish women, and only today I heard It said that a Spaniard was married to
an Indian chieftainess". He also observed that some of the Indians spoke
Castlllian well and dressed in the Spanish style.15
Indians served as personal servants and contract workers for Spanish
families at outposts and in St. Augustine. Native Americans in Apalachee in
the San Luis region resentfully provided services to the household of the
deputy governor stationed there, Juan Fernndez de Florencia. Indians
manned the ferries at the St. Johns River crossing to the interior, building and
repairing the vessels as well. Indians came from Apalachee to serve
employers in St. Augustine. Two who ran amok in St. Augustine, fashioning
small counterfeit coins, described themselves: "a contract Indian" and the
other as having "no other trade than to render service in what he is ordered
to, as at present he Is serving [his master] in his field."16 Indians' carpentry
skills helped literally to build St. Augustine. After felling the trees, the Natives
had planed the finished boards for the roof and fences of the governor's
house built in 1690 and they might very well have done so for private building
in exchange for payment in cash, but more likely in kind. During the
confinement of Florida residents In the English siege of St. Augustine, Marta
Mara, a Guale wage worker (nabora! married to a slave, gave birth to one of
the babies bom inside the fortress.17


47
The Yamassee uprising in Carolina and its shockwaves of refugees
brought about new interactions between Native and Spanish. The refugees
were settled along the very perimeter of the town of St. Augustine. Indians
from several villages and language groups were mixed together within the
enclaves. John Hann has translated accountings by officials and friars of the
refugee villages, which emphasize languages as well as village affiliations.
Chilean historian Mario Gngora observes that colonial officials and priests
throughout Spanish America denominated and grouped Natives by language
rather than by Native organization In the early days of New-World
settlement, missionaries emphasized the preservation of Native tongues and
evangelized in the Indian languages, the learning of which they considered to
be one of their first duties. More than two hundred years later the tradition of
linguistic classification and separation persisted throughout Latin America and
perpetuated the racial and caste system.18
Retreat and Relocations
Like a concertina, Floridas mission villages over the five decades after
the 1702-1704 destructions moved alternately nearer to and then farther from
St. Augustine in response to raids or threats of raids. In the process of the
relocations villages were combined and sometimes new refugees attached
when the latters towns ceased to be viable communities. For example, the
Pocotalaca village had relocated nearer the capital after an early-morning


48
attack on November 1, 1725 drove its residents into the safety of the city from
their location at Las Rosas de Ayamn about 16 miles south of St. Augustine
(two or three miles south of Matanzas Inlet). Following this raid, the chief of
the village and his family lived in town, sustained by one of the town's
upstanding citizens. Agustn Guillermo de Fuentes "received into his own
house" the chief, his wife, three children, his father- and mother-in-law, the
chiefs nephew and another young boy.19 But so insecure did the refugees of
the relocated Pocotalaca village feel that in 1728 they moved into the town at
night from their daytime location already as close as "a musket-shot distance
from the castillo."20 In 1739 Governor Manuel de Montlano moved the
Pocatalaca members back to the countryside "to cultivate more fertile lands .
at a distance of four leagues," probably near their earlier location at Ayamn.
(A leagues size varied from 2-1/2 to four miles. By the late 1700s in Florida,
it often equaled about three miles.) But they would not remain in the
countryside. In 1763 an alphabetical symbol on Engineer Pablo Castell's
map marked the existence of the village of Pocotalaca once again closer to
St. Augustine, on the southern outskirts of the town.21 An ordinary green-
and-white bridge sign on Interstate 95 today bearing the words "Pocotaliga
River" reminds of the villagers refugee history and the sign serves as an
unintentional epitaph for that village's even earlier, pre-Florida site in South
Carolina.


49
The trail of the village of Tolomato likewise wound its way ever
southward down the coastal islands and ultimately departed the North
American mainland for the Antilles in 1763. Until the middle of the
seventeenth century the Tolomato people inhabited the area around St.
Catherine's Island on the Georgia coast. At some time prior to 1658 the
Tolomato village was located in McIntosh County; some have suggested at
the site of Fort King George.22 Raids by hostile, non-Christian Indians forced
the village's displacement to a new site some two to three leagues north of St.
Augustine. Bishop Caldern visited the mission of La Natividad de Nuestra
Seora de Guadalupe de Tolomato in 1675, when it was situated at the tip of
the Guana peninsula on North River near St. Augustine.23 The Tolomato
Cemetery on Cordova Street in St. Augustine marks a subsequent location of
the village and perpetuates its name. (The cemetery postdates the village.)
The graveyard occupies the last North American mainland location of the
Tolomato villagers. In 1763 remnants of the Tolomato people evacuated
Florida for Cuba, along with the rest of the colony's Spanish subjects, in the
face of incoming British rule.
While Natives associated with missions themselves or at least with the
missions' inhabitants sought security near the capital, other southeastern
Natives were filling the lands in the interior of the Florida peninsula left vacant
by the missions disappearance. Spanish colonial officials took advantage of
animosities between Creek groups and English colonists in the southeast and


50
among the Creeks groups themselves to invite the disenchanted groups to
relocate to Florida. The Creek groups might have also been looking for areas
with more fertile soil than their planting grounds in todays Georgia could offer
after years of maize and bean culture. Lt. Diego Pea visited Lower Creek
villages in 1716, 1717 and 1718 and successfully recruited new residents for
Spanish Florida.2'1
Little Is known about the half century of relocation into Florida.
Anthropologist Brent Weisman illustrates the minimal information in his
remark that with respect to the exact dates of Seminole colonization in
Florida: The period 1716-67 is as much as we can say. Weisman and
historian John Mahon divide early Seminole history into two periods. The
colonization period featured the initial migrations of the Creek towns into
Florida. The enterprise period" saw an era of prosperity under British and
returned Spanish rule prior to the cession of Florida to the United States.
During the colonization period Creeks not only migrated into Florida, but also
diminished their ties and identification with the Creek groups they left behind.
By the time of Floridas transfer to Great Britain, the relocated Creeks had
become known as Seminles.25 The term Seminole derives from a
Muskogee term simano-li. which itself had been appropriated from the
Spanish word cimarrn, both meaning wild or runaway."26


51
While these migrating groups were friendly with the Spanish regime, there
was little contact between these two groups and cultures. With little
interaction, Seminles remained for the most part outside of the orbit of
Iberian cultural influence.
From Village to Town; from Ward to Citizen
Proximity and manpower needs of the Spanish colony enabled some of
the Native Americans refuged near the capital to move out of their Indian
enclaves and into the towns neighborhoods. According to historian Robert
Gold's computations, eighty-nine Indians, composing nineteen families, left
St. Augustine in the 1763 evacuation. But St. Augustine's Indians were in fact
undercounted; the tally of the Indian evacuees included only wards of the
Crown and not the independent Indian residents.
Native American families who had left their village homes for a town
residence and economic integration also achieved documentary identification
with the military and civilian personnel.27 For modern researchers the Indian
who moved into homes interspersed among the Spanish citizenry became
increasingly difficult to locate in contemporary records: with their progressive
integration into the tableau of Spanish society, the Indians blended into the
documentary mosaic as well. Without the survival of the Catholic Church's
records of births, marriages and deaths and the expanded information
required for those entries in the mid-eighteenth century, these "urban Indians"


52
would be almost Impossible to dlscem-perhaps an indication of how well the
Natives blended into the society itself at the time. Intensive study of the
parish records yields recognition of the presence of independent Indians
families and enables the creation of genealogies and partial biographies of
the individuals who composed the families.
Pedro Toms de Ribera and his wife, Mara de la Cruz, of Tolomato
village, established themselves as an Independent, self-sustaining family
within the town walls or inside the defense line (linea). Pedro and Maria
literally and juridically crossed the line, truly making a positive passage
toward higher personal and social evolution from the perspective of the
dominant Hispanic culture. Pedro and Maria had been born during the years
when the Tolomato village relocated for the survival of its members and as a
group. In sworn statements and Church records Ribera claimed that he was a
native of this Guale (Ibaia) village.28 Although in the eyes of Euro-American
recorders the Riberas had shed their village affiliation for town citizenship,
Maria and Pedro continued to live very close to their village. They located
their home on the west side of Spanish Street--at the closest possible site to
the Tolomato village.29 In 1764 the Ribera-de la Cruz homesite occupied the
width of the block and with street frontage of 44 varas (120 English feet). The
structures on the Ribera-de la Cruz lot were not ephemeral refugee huts.
Archaeological evidence indicated a two-cell structure with an interior


53
masonry partition and the foundations' dimensions suggest a two-story
building.30
Physically as well as symbolically, Pedro and Maria remained,
however, close to the line between being Indian and Hispanicbetween ward
and citizen. Their back property boundary was a portion of the defense line
that surrounded St. Augustine and it marked the spatial and social
designation between inside the walls and outside the walls. Discussing free-
black contemporaries of Pedro and Maria as well as other town Indians in St.
Augustine society, historian Jane Landers refers to the Spanish cultural
association of urbanization with the advance of civilization. Residence
outside the city, outside its walls, reflected lower cultural and spiritual
development. She asserts that the efforts in 1752 of Governor Garca de s
Solis to remove blacks back to their own former village at Mose '"beyond the
walls'.. made a visible statement about their supposed inferiority." The free
blacks had moved into St. Augustine for protection in 1740, abandoning their
own village about two miles north of the capital. It is interesting that Governor
Montiano's moving the Pocotalaca village back to the countryside (mentioned
previously) was contemporaneous with Montianos establishing of the free
black community at Mose in 1738.31 Montiano had removed the less Hispanic
elements out of town and to the periphery, where they could also serve as
first lines of defense. These peripheral residents had the most to fear and to


54
lose from British attacks or British-allied Indian raids; runaway slaves and
enemy Indians could be taken or re-taken as slaves.
Ribera claimed that he and his family were parishioners and citizens of
juridical St. Augustine and were listed as such on the official rolls. Distinction
between full-fledged parishoner and mission Indian meant the difference
between independence or dependency, between being a legally full member
of the society, a vecino, or being a ward under the jurisdiction of the friars.
Ribera stated that he had been married and received a nuptial benediction in
the parish church, and that his children likewise had all been baptized in the
parish church. When a Franciscan friar included Ribera and his family on the
lists of those under the friars' care, Ribera objected and claimed that the
friar's action was "against my wishes." The formal objection by Ribera might
well have been instigated and orchestrated by the secular clergy, who wanted
to retain as many parishioners as possible. Riberas statement, however,
illustrates the importance of the distinction to him and his family. Natives had
the option, or in the language of the day privilege, granted by the king to
choose their parish. Ribera and de la Cruz chose the main parish church of
St. Augustine, not a mission church.32
Ribera acquired a man-space (plaza del rev) with the cavalry company
and it can be reasonably assumed the pay and equipment that accompanied
the position as well. In 1746 he was killed while fighting enemy Indians.33
Mara de la Cruz might have also have contributed cash or goods to the family


55
through her own work. A notation that Maria baptized a newborn infant at the
point of death suggests that Maria might have served as a midwife.34
Assimilation and incorporation of Pedro and Maria into the economy
and society of colonial Florida was reflected in the marriages of their four
children who lived to adulthood. Many other siblings had been laid to rest in
the Florida soil, for the parish records reveal a succession of burials in the
churchyard of small, frequently nameless, children prvulos) born to Pedro
and Maria: in December 1737, November 1738 (this girl surviving at least
long enough to receive a name), August 1740, June 1741.35
The marriages of Pedro and Maria's children reflected the changing
population and the changes to the society of St. Augustine society. Four
children survived Pedro, none of whom married either residents of Indian
towns nor mestizos (children with white and Indian parentage).36 Very much
in the St. Augustine tradition, daughter Ana Lucia married a soldier from
southern Spain. This couple represented the expected interracial marriage:
Spanish soldiers had been finding wives among the Native population since
the earliest days of the colony. Juan de Ribera married a woman recently
arrived in St. Augustine as part of an immigrant group of Canary Islanders.
When Juan died in Havana in 1772, his will revealed how acculturated into
Hispanic society he had become. He instructed that he be buried according
to the rituals of the Third of Order of St. Francis, a prestigious international
religious order for laypersons.37


56
Sons Francisco Xavier and Antonio married white creole women born
in St. Augustine. The recognition of the existence of these marriages runs
counter to the widely accepted assumption that "in the Spanish town ... the
union of Spanish and Indian always involved a Spanish man and an Indian
women."38 Francisco Xavier's father-in-law had arrived in St. Augustine as a
soldier from southern Spain and typically found a wife among the town's Euro-
American population.39 The most surprising union was the one contracted by
Antonio de la Cruz Ribera. Here was a Native American man who married a
local Spanish woman--and one who was highly connected, at that. Antonio's
wife was a first cousin of the wife of Governor Lucas de Palacio. Did Antonio
make a surprising match or did the governor? Perhaps both men did. Father
Juan Jos de Solana, who said little about Governor Palacio that was
complimentary, criticized the governor for marrying below his station with this
match.40
One street to the east of the Ribera-de la Cruz homesite lived another
Indian family. In the house that stood directly at the head of the alley that led
to the Castillo lived the Native American family of Chief fCacique) Francisco
Jospogue.4' In his old age, Chief Francisco petitioned the Spanish Crown to
award him a pension in recognition of his loyalty and sacrifices. His written
request provides an unusual opportunity to follow the story of a Native
American family for more than a century. The family's tale represents and
symbolizes the travails of the Native groups buffeted by international rivalry in


57
the colonial southeast. Chief Francisco's testimony indicated that he was
born to "noble Christian" parents only a few years before the founding (1670)
of Charleston; he claimed to be about thirty-six years of age when Florida
Governor Torres y Ayala (1693-99) recognized him as hereditary chief of his
village.42 St. Catherine's Island or its vicinity was probably Chief Francisco's
birthplace; Ospogue Bar was located four leagues south of Sapelo Sound in
Guale.43 Francisco's long association with the Spanish, perhaps since birth in
the 1660s or 1670s, indicated Guale or Timucuan ancestry. Perhaps a friar
taught him early to sign his name, for his petition to the king in 1728 bears
Francisco's signature.
Chief Francisco was silent about his migration toward St. Augustine
and Spanish protection. He paid a high price for his allegiance to the Spanish
Crown. In the early months of 1702 Governor Ziga spoke of Francisco's
position as chief of the mission village of Nombre de Dios Chiquito. The
English incursions into Spanish Florida and the siege of St. Augustine at the
end of that year would destroy and displace Native villages along the coast.
In November 1715, enemy "pagan" Indians allied with the English descended
upon St. Augustine seeking to burn the town. Chief Francisco was "one of the
first to take up arms to defend" the "city of Florida." His family, defenseless in
the absence of the fighting men of the village, were captured by the
marauders. The Spanish Council of the Indies in Madrid in 1716 regretted the
situation in which the English "offer[ed] arms, munitions, foods and clothing to


58
those Indians who will capture Christian [that is, Catholic] Indians found within
Carolina's jurisdiction." Carolina's putative territorial claims at that time
extended to a line far south of St. Augustine. English-led raiders separated
the strong Indians at knifepoint, then "gather[ed] up the women and children
to conduct them away to be sold as slaves in other British lands." Often the
head chiefs of these violated villages banded together to offer foods and other
products to ransom their captured families. Three times the English offered to
return Chief Francisco's family in exchange for his alliance with the English
side and abandonment of Catholicism. Three times he refused. He believed
that his wife and four children had been dispersed and separately "perished,"
probably sold as slaves to work on sugar plantations in Jamaica or
Barbados.44
In 1717, left without a family and perhaps without many of his former
followers Chief Francisco found himself shepherding a group of recent
refugees who had fled the Yamasees' war with the English. In 1715 the
Yamasees as well as Creeks, Choctaws and Cherokees in Carolina had
revolted in dissatisfaction with English traders. The Yamasees, who had
forsaken the Spanish and the Guale region for the English in Carolina during
the 1680s, turned back to their old Spanish allies for protection after the
uprising.45 Chief Jospo[gue] was attached, possibly assigned, to the
Yamasee village of Our Lady of Candelaria. He governed forty-six adults and
twenty-three children, all "heathens" except one warrior. Perhaps the


59
governor placed these newcomers under Francisco's care because of the
chiefs record of accomplishing many conversions in the past and his
knowledge of the Yamasee language."16
Francisco Jospo[gue] and Agustina Prez were married some time
before 1728. Agustina appears only once in the parish records with a racial
description: mestiza. All of the entries for Agustina reside in the books for
non-whites, but records offer no village association for her or her parents.
Perhaps Agustina was, like her sister, a native of the village of Nombre de
Dios Chiquito, which had at one time been headed by Chief Francisco
Jospogue. Perhaps wishing to create a new family, Chief Francisco chose a
wife quite a bit younger than himself, for Agustina bore children as late as
1751, whereas Francisco was in his sixties when their son Miguel was born in
1728. Over the at least twenty-two years that Agustina was giving birth, the
Church records suggest that the newborns that she buried outnumbered
those that survived.47
The Jospo family probably took advantage of the purchasing power
that came with the granting of Francisco's pension of two reales daily to
acquire a lot and tabby house on St. George Street. They moved In between
1734, when Francisco's petition was finally forwarded to the proper
authorities, and before 1737, when neighbors referred to Jospo as deceased.
Their lot, like the Riberas' property, spanned the width of the block, 191 feet
(70 varas), but provided only 41 feet (15 varas) frontage on St. George Street.


60
In 1738 Agustina married the son of a chief, a birth position that held little
promise in the matrilineal Native societies of the southeast. Thus would
Agustina's new husband be bypassed in a structure wherein inheritance to
rule passed from uncle to nephew through the chiefs sister.48
Agustina's new husband, Juan de Fuentes, found employment as a
sailor and later as a soldier in the artillery company, while Agustina and her
child or children contributed money to the household as the heirs to Chief
Francisco's pension, secured by virtue of Francisco's loyalty. Thus Agustina
Prez provided income for her family through the same pension mechanism
as did many of St. Augustine's Euro-American widows.49
The "urban" Indians insinuated themselves into the social fabric of St.
Augustine through the foremost institutions of the Spanish world: the church
and the military. Like Ribera, Fuentes looked to his relationship to the Church
structure to verify his independence and citizenship. Incorporated into the
Franciscans' census like Ribera and his family, Fuentes also argued that he
was a citizen of the town and that he and his family were communicants of the
parish church, not residents of the missions or their churches. In the rivalry
between the secular priests, who staffed the parish church, and the friars, who
manned the missions, Ribera, Fuentes, along with other neighbors, were
enrolled by the friars to "pad" statistics as the missionaries tried to justify their
continued existence in the face of dwindling flocks when the Indian families
had indeed left behind their status as dependent, mission Indians. The


61
controversy about who had jurisdiction over natives in St. Augustine had
come up at the beginning at the eighteenth century. At that time the crown
decided in favor of the regular clergy-the Franciscans. But in 1746, the
crown reversed its earlier decision and favored the secular clergy. John
TePaskes administrative viewpoint presents the religious contention from the
administrative viewpoint and what the decisions meant for the church and
state. But, indeed, the subjects of the controversy had their own concerns
and saw their autonomy at issue.50
Social Alliances
Mirroring the dominant society, these Indian families employed the
relationships arising out of personal religious life to improve and solidify their
status as citizens. Choices of sponsors and attendants at the personal
religious rites of baptism and marriage established and formalized obligations
which could carry over into the profane parts of life. Godparents of higher
standing could open social and economic opportunities for the godchild or for
the child's parents. Landers has identified the importance of the ritual
kinships and the dynamics associated with godparenthood as practiced by
blacks in Spanish St. Augustine. She notes that religious kinships linked all
three races. Generally white persons could offer the most status and benefits
through the ritual relations to blacks, Indians, or mixed bloods. Throughout
the Spanish Indies birth in the Iberian peninsula carried status that birth in the


62
Americas did not command. Choice of sponsors was effected by proximity
considerations, such as the selection of neighbors, or by corporate or
institutional relations, such as social hierarchy or social distance imposed by
military ranks. Nor should we diminish or discount the importance and
strength of affection as an influence in the selection. Native Americans, of
course, honored and entrusted members of their own families and villages
with selection to stand for them in these important positions.
But St. Augustine's Native American families also chose Spanish-born
neighbors, and in a few surprising instances were chosen by Spanish families
to act as witnesses or sponsors at rites for Spanish citizens. When the
daughter of Agustina Prez and the deceased Chief Francisco Jospogue
married in 1750, Agustina selected her entrepreneurial next-door neighbor,
the Iberian, Francisco Navarro, to be a witness. Agustina had similarly
incorporated other Spanish neighbors when her own sister, the latter still
living in her natal village, had married a few years earlier. Agustina at that
time chose a locally important couple, the Hitas, who lived only a few doors
away. It is likely that the nuptials took place at Agustina's house on St.
George Street. Navarro, who owned a store that sold English wares,
members of the Hita family, and Joaquin Blanco, in charge of the Crown's
warehouse and an importer in his own right, frequently participated in non
white ceremonies, perhaps expanding or reinforcing obligations and
strengthening their own commercial positions in the process.51


63
Several Latin American historians who have studied the practice of
godparenthood (compadrazgo) conclude that in the Spanish New World the
relationship between the parents and godparents was more important than
that between the godparent and godchild, the latter being the primary
relationship In Spain.52 Artillery Sergeant Martn Martinez Gallegos, who lived
directly across the street from Agustina Prez and Juan de Fuentes, agreed
to be godfather to their daughter. A sailor at the time of the baby's baptism,
Fuentes subsequently advanced economically and no doubt socially when he
was able to enlist in an artillery company. Did the godfather-sergeant
facilitate Fuentes's entry into the artillery corps? Artillery service was
desirable in a military town for not only did the artillery pay better than cavalry
service but it also offered its members exemptions and privileges not
available to other branches, such as the cavalry or infantry.53 Fuentes and
Antonio de la Cruz Ribera, both Indians, drew annual salaries of 180 pesos
as artillerymen in comparison to the 158 pesos paid to Fuentes's neighbor,
infantryman Lorenzo Gmez, from an old St. Augustine creole family. In an
interesting interracial turnabout Gmez requested the Indian Francisco Xvler
de Ribera to be the godfather of Gomez's two-day-old daughter. Kinship with
the Indian Ribera might have offered some economic advantage to Gmez for
Francisco Xavier owned land and buildings along the waterfront in the area
where retail stores and warehouses were located.54


64
Flexible Racial Classification
As Native American residents of St. Augustine moved further into the
town's social and economic life, the descriptions of them in racial terms
diminished in documents and was replaced by economic identification, usually
in occupational terms. When Juan de Fuentes married Agustina Prez, the
priest recording the union described the bride and groom In terms of their
relationships to Indian nobles: the widow and the son of chiefs, respectively.
Parish records made two and three years later denominated Fuentes by his
occupation, a sailor, and did not include a racial description for him.
The priests were not consistent in their use of terms specifying racial
mixture. Yet what appears to be inconsistencies might very well have been
determined acts by the recorders. In 1735 the Church In St. Augustine began
to record the sacraments-baptlsm, marriage, burials-in separate sets of
books for whites and for non-whites (pardos v morenos v indios). The books
of the St. Augustine parish, however, did not employ the variety of terms
Indicating fractional racial mixture that were used in Central and South
America. In addition to "Indian" and "black," "mestizo" (of Indian and white
ancestry) and "mulatto" (of black and white ancestry) appeared in the St.
Augustine records with few additional terms. During the course of a lifetime a
person of non-white or mixed ancestry might be described with different terms
by the same recorder. The members of the Ribera family appear as Indians in
some entries, as mestizos in others, and in still other with no racial


65
identification, which implied a white person, even when it was the same priest
signing the seemingly contradictory entries. The inconsistencies cannot be
attributed merely to carelessness or mental lapses on the part of the priests
for such practices have been noted in other areas of colonial Latin America.
Throughout Latin America, even to modern times, terms that denote
racial identification have been applied to individuals with fluidity, the terms
being contingent upon the benefits to either the recorder and/or the subject.
Thus in Latin America the same individual might be named even by the same
recorder as an Indian in one instance and a mestizo in another, depending on
the circumstances. Conversely in much of Anglo America the ambiguity of
intermediate identity was avoided by the practice of what anthropologist
Marvin Harris calls "hypo-descent:" identification with a racially subordinate
ancestor rather than with one of the superordinate group. Identification with
"whiteness" was, however, still beneficial in Latin America. Marriage records
tended to list the marital parties in racial terms that narrowed the social
distance. Thus the union between an Indian and a Caucasian might be
recorded in the books of white marriages with the Indian's racial identity
"lightened" to the category of mestizo. Historian Patricia Seed found such
occurrences in her analysis of mid-eighteenth century parish and census
records from Mexico City. Seed's study offers insight into the interracial
relationships, which were also interpersonal relationships, in St. Augustine.


66
Additionally her work suggests possible explanations for the documentary
Inconsistencies in St. Augustine's records.55
The treatment of Antonio de la Cruz Ribera and his children Is
particularly Interesting. In May 1756, when Ribera married Rosa Mara de
Angulo, a woman of an established St. Augustine creole family, Father Juan
Jos de Solana entered the record of their nuptials in the book of white
marriages; the priest made no reference to Ribera's racial background,
implying white. Thus was the social distance narrowed in the records. The
earlier marriage of Antonio's brother, Francisco Xavier, to a white woman was
recorded In the same manner. At the baptism of the former couple's firstborn
In January 1758, Father Solana again registered the event in the book for
whites. But the following January, Father Solana recorded the baptism of the
Riberas second son in the book of non-whites and furthermore identified
Antonio Ribera as a mestizo. In March 1761 the record of the baptism of the
Riberas' third son was entered in the book of whites. Perhaps the complexion
or appearance of the individual babies influenced the decisions.
But there is another scenario that illustrates the presence in St.
Augustine of the same attitudes and practices identified by Seed for Mexico.
Father Solana probably chose to record the marriage in the book of whites in
consideration for the respectable birth family of Rosa Maria de Angulo and
the same sentiment was at work at the time of the first child's baptism. By the
time that Ildefonso, the second son, was born a strong animosity existed


67
between Father Solana and Governor Palacio, the latter having married into
the family of the baby's mother. Solana found the governor lacking in his
religious behavior and selfish and remiss in carrying out the responsibilities of
office and reported these opinions to officials in Cuba any number of times.56
In the honor-oriented society of the colonial Spanish world the baptism of the
tiny Ribera boy offered Father Solana an opportunity for a more subtle and
enduring slight than direct criticism of the governor. The priest could gleefully
dishonor the colony's highest official by recording the governor's kinship with
racially inferior relatives. The baptismal record of two-days-old Ildefonso
Ribera became the weapon. By 1761 a different priest entered the baptism of
the couple's third child in the book of white baptisms. By then, however,
Father Solana was no longer serving the St. Augustine parish, having fled to
Cuba to avoid arrest at the orders of Governor Palacio. And in the finality and
singularity of burial, Antonio Ribera came full circle in the Church documents,
back to his identity as an Indian.57
Conclusions
The recognition of the activities and roles of Indian families such as the
de la Cruz-Ribera group or the families formed by Agustina Prez and her two
husbands introduces a new perspective into the history of Spanish Florida
and the colonial southeast. The institutional structures that kept St. Augustine
society so conservative and ordered also provided the scaffolding for


68
adventurous and enterprising Indians to become citizens of the town, not just
residents. These families penetrated St. Augustine society through Active
kinship (godparental relationships) and corporate and commercial
connections. Certainly the opportunity to move into the cash economy
through military enlistment provided the means to advance socially and
materially. Members of the Ribera-de la Cruz family had acquired enough
worldly goods to make wills necessary in order to direct the disposition of their
possessions, and they had sufficient funds to pay the government notaries to
compose the wills.58 While it is doubtful that they were fully integrated into the
society of St. Augustine, these Indian families illustrate that their participation
in the town's social and economic life was not as constrained and
opportunities were not as foreclosed as previously thought.
In Spanish Florida, some Natives were able to take advantage of the
labor and defensive needs to insert themselves into the mainstream economy:
the defense budget. In the process they lost their Indian identity in the
documents. Usually their racial classification was first lightened to mestizo
and with incorporation into the army a military or occupational designation
replaced the racial one. These same individuals declared themselves full-
fledged parishioners of the St. Augustine church and were listed by the
secular priests and no longer ministered to by Franciscans priests and
counted as mission villagers and wards of the crown.59 Regular and secular
clergy argued over the status of Indians, which was in fact a conflict over


69
control and authority over a clientele. For the Natives, becoming a
parishioner was part of the process toward full citizenship, being a vecino.
The natives who received a plaza In the garrison were paid as any other
cavalryman, pilot, or artilleryman and were not dependent upon royal charity.
They were sui juris and no longer children or incompetents under the law nor
under the Franciscans. Every Native American who became a vecino
diminished the influence of the friars.
Spanish Florida had looked to non-whites for fighting men for many
years. It has already been mentioned that the Spanish governor activated an
Indian militia in the light of Cromwells Western Design.60 In 1683 blacks and
mulattoes were organized into their own militia-before the Spanish Crown
would formally institute such a policy in the Caribbean following the Seven
Years War.61
As British Carolina and Georgia burgeoned, Spanish Florida
increasingly felt the need for soldiers who were bound by a formalized
obligation-more than a militia requirement-and Spain did not adequately
deliver fighting men. To oversimplify: Spain now had to pay the going rate for
what in former times it could demand.
Recognizing the entry of Indian families into the economic mainstream
adds another dimension to the existing view of assimilation of Natives in St.
Augustine. Economic integration is much more rapid than cultural
amalgamation as Marvin Harris has observed. Thus economic means offer


70
more rapid integration than do cultural mechanisms. For the Native
Americans of Spanish Florida social independence and economic integration
went hand in hand when achieved through the primary institutions of the
existing society. Not all Indians entered mainstream society in the cultural
slipstream of a Spanish or creole male, whether he be husband or father. It
was possible for the individual to make the entre directly, rapidly, and in the
individual's own right rather than serving some sort of cultural apprenticeship
while attached to a member of the dominant society and culture.
Notes
1. Jane Landers, "Black Society in Spanish St. Augustine," Ph D. diss.
University of Florida, 1988; and Landers, "Traditions of African American
Freedom and Community in Colonial Spanish Florida," in David R. Colburn
and Jane L. Landers, eds., The African American Fleritaqe of Florida
(Gainesville: University Press of Florida, 1995), 19-25.
2. Daniel H. Usner, Jr., "American Indians in Colonial New Orleans," in Peter
H. Wood, Gregory A. Waselkov, and M. Thomas Hatley, eds., Powhatan's
Mantle: Indians in the Colonial Southeast (Lincoln: University of Nebraska
Press, 1989), 106; Almon Wheeler Lauber, Indian Slavery in Colonial Times
Within the Present Limits of the United States. (1913, reprint, Williamstown,
Mass.: Corner House Publishers, 1970), 130-33; John Donald Duncan,
"Indian Slavery," in Bruce Glasrud and Alan M. Smith, Race Relations in
British North America. 1607-1783 (Chicago: Nelson-Hall, 1982), quote on 85.
3. Amy Turner Bushnell. Situado and Sabana: Spain's Support System for
the Presidio and Mission Provinces of Florida (New York: American Museum
of Natural History, 1994), 30-31; David J. Weber, The Spanish Frontier in
North America (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1992), 125.


71
4. Bushnell, Situado and Sabana. 118,122, quotes on 122; Leslie Bethell,
ed. Cambridge History of Latin America (Cambridge: Cambridge University
Press, 1984)1:220-21
5. John E. Worth, The Timucuan Chiefdoms of Spanish Florida (Gainesville:
University Press of Florida, 1997)1:213; John H. Hann, A History of the
Timucua Indians and Missions (Gainesville: University Press of Florida,
1996), 192, 261-5. Flann asserts that the Timucua bore the full brunt of a
series of epidemics from 1614-17 by virtue of their close contact with the
pathogen-carrying Spanish Floridians. He claims that the disappearance of a
substantial portion of the Timucua population was an important motivator for
extension of the missions into Apalachee.
6. Bushnell, Situado and Sabana. 129-31, quote on 129; J. Leitch Wright, Jr.,
Analo-Spanish Rivalry in North America (Athens: University of Georgia Press,
1971), 44-45.
7. Converse D. Clowse, Economic Beginnings in Colonial South Carolina
(Columbia: University of South Carolina Press, 1971), 65-66.
8. Wright, Analo-Spanish Rivalry. 56.
9. Wright, Analo-Spanish Rivalry. 58.
10. Charles W. Arnade, The Sieoe of St. Augustine in 1702 (Gainesville:
University of Florida Press, 1959), quote on 8. Arnade's monograph is the
most complete account of the siege from the Spanish perspective.
11. John H. Hann, Apalachee. The Land Between the Rivers (Gainesville:
University of Florida Press, 1988), 281-83. Chapter 12 discusses the
discrepancies in the reports of number of slaves captured.
12. John H. Hann "St. Augustine's Fallout from the Yamassee War," Florida
Historical Quarterly 68 (1989): 186.
13. Governor and Other Officials to King, St. Augustine, 1715 November 28,
Archivo General de Indias (hereafter AGI) Johns B. Stetson Collection
(hereafter SC) P. K. Yonge Library of Florida, 58-1-30/44 (microfilm copies in
Historic St. Augustine Preservation Board collection [HSAPB]).
14. Governor of Florida, 1716 April 23, AGI SC 58-1-30/57.
15. Genaro Garca. Relacin de los trabajos oue la oente de una nao
llamada Nra. Seora de la Merced padeci v de algunas cosas oue en
aquella flota sucedieron, escrita por Fray Andrs de San Miguel, publicada


72
por primera vez por Genaro Garca (Mexico: Casa de F. Aguilar Vera y
Compaa, 1902), 205-06.
16. Governor Diego Quiroga y Losada to Crown, 1693 April 24, AGI SC 54-5-
15/693; John H. Hann [trans ], "Apalachee Counterfeiters in St. Augustine,"
Florida Historical Quarterly 67 (1988): 59-60.
17. Royal Officials to Crown, 1696 April 20, AGI SC 54-5-15/114; Baptism of
Francisco, mulatto son of Juan de los Gasdos, slave of Adjutant Gernimo
Regidor and Marta Mara, a nabora. 1702 November 18, Cathedral Parish
Records (hereafter CPR), Diocesan Center, Mandarin, Florida (microfilm
copies at St. Augustine Historical Society).
18. Mario Gngora. Studies in the Colonial History of Spanish America.
Richard Southern, trans. (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1975),
161-2.,
19. Petition of Agustn Guillermo de Fuentes y Herrera, 1734 April 29, AGI
SC 86-7-21/6.
20. Hann, "St. Augustine's Fallout from the Yamasee War," 194.
21. Manuel de Montiano Letterbook, 1740 January 31, Bundle 37 (hereafter
Bnd.), no.180, East Florida Papers (hereafter EFP), Library of Congress
Manuscript Collection (microfilm copies at St. Augustine Historical Society;
Pablo Castell, "Plano del presidio de San Agustn de la Florida y sus
contornos ..." 1763 July 21. Library of Congress (original in the Spanish
Ministry of War, LM 8a-1a), map #30, HSAPB
22. Alonso Las Alas spoke of the villages of Yoa and Tolomate along Sapelo
and St. Catherine's sounds in his testimony of September 12, 1600. Charles
W. Arnade, Florida on Trial. 1593-1602 (Coral Gables, Fla.: University of
Miami Press, 1959), 16; David Hurst Thomas, St. Catherine's: An Island in
Time (Atlanta: Georgia Endowment for the Humanities, 1988), 17. Hurst is
not convinced that the subsequent fort's location was the mission site.
23. Robert Allan Matter, "The Spanish Missions of Florida: The Friars Versus
the Governors in the 'Golden Age,' 1606-1690." (Ph D. diss., University of
Washington, 1972), 106, Michael V. Gannon, The Cross in the Sand: The
Early Catholic Church in Florida. 1513-1870 (Gainesville: University of Florida
Press, 1961), 64.
24. James W. Covington, Migration of the Seminles into Florida, 1700-
1820. Florida Historical Quarterly 46 (1968): 340-57.


73
25. John K. Mahon and Brent R. Weisman, Florida's Seminole and
Missocukee Peoples, in Gannon, ed., The New History of Florida. 186-88,
quote on 187.
26. Harry A. Kersey. Jr.. The Seminole and Miccosukee Tribes: A Critical
Bibliography (Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1987), 1-2. Several
scholars disagree with this sequence of evolution of the name.
27. Robert L. Gold, Borderland Empires in Transition: The Triple-Nation
Transfer of Florida (Carbondale & Edwardsville: Southern Illinois University
Press, 1969), 67.
28. Statement of Pedro Toms de Ribera, 1745 February 9, AGI Santo
Domingo (hereafter SD) 842 (microfilm copies at Yonge Library).
29. I have placed a different family on this site than the one selected by
Kathleen Deagan in her archaeological excavations. Deagan identified the
mestizo family of Maria Sebastiana de la Cruz and Jos Gallardo with this
site, but a better argument can be made for locating the Indian family of
another Mara de la Cruz and her husband, Pedro Toms de Ribera, there.
There were several women by the name of Mara de la Cruz who appear in
the parish records during the pertinent time period. The biographical cards at
the St. Augustine Historical Society, which were probably the source of
information about Mara de la Cruz, did not and still do not include the parish
records of non-whites. Thus the existence of the Indian, rather than mixed,
family which I place on the site was not a possibility offered to Deagan.
Both de la Puente's map and transfer of parcel #51 to Samuel Piles in
July 1764 refer to the "heirs of Mara de la Cruz" as the evacuating owner.
Maria, wife of Pedro Toms de Ribera, had died shortly before the evacuation
and there was no time for the disposition of her estate, hence the notation on
the map as belonging to her heirs. A woman by the name of Maria
Sebastiana de la Cruz owned a house and lot on today's Tolomato Lane (de
la Puente #28) and there is no record of her death before the evacuation.
Juan Jos Elixio de la Puente, "Plano de la real fuerza, baluartes y linea de la
Plaza de San Agustn," 1764 January 22, parcel #51; Deagan, "Sex, Status
and Role of Mestizaje:" Kathleen Deagan, Spanish St. Auaustine: The
Archaeology of a Colonial Creole Community (Orlando: Academic Press,
1983); Burial of Mara de la Cruz, 1763 June 3, CPR (non-whites). After 1735
separate books were kept for whites and non-whites. Following the practice
of the colonial recorders, the term non-whites is used to indicate such
books. No racial term either indicates the books for whites, after 1735, or the
racially unseparated books before 1735.


74
30. Eligi de la Puente map, lot #51; Claims for Town Lots, Spanish Land
Grants Manuscript Collection, Florida Department of State, Division of
Historical Resources; Deagan, Spanish St. Augustine. 108.
31. Jane Landers, "Gracia Real de Santa Teresa de Mose: A Free Black
Town In Spanish Colonial Florida,' American Historical Review 95 pp. 28 &
29 in SAHS booklet.
32. Statement of Pedro Toms de Ribera, 1745 February 9, AGI SD 846.
33. Burial of Pedro Toms de Ribera, 1746 January 13; burial of a small child
of Toms Ribera, soldier of this presidio, and of Mara de la Cruz, 1737
December 19, CPR, (non-whites).
34. Burial of Maria Ignacia [Morente], 1749 February 5, CPR.
35. Burials, CPR (non-whites).
36. Estate of Juan de Ribera, Testamentary Proceedings, EFP.
37. Estate of Juan de Ribera; see A. J. R. Russell-Wood, "Prestige, Power
and Piety in Colonial Brazil: The Third Orders of Salvador," Hispanic
American Historical Review 69 (1989), for a discussion of third orders,
especially 78-87.
38. Deagan, Spanish St. Augustine. 104.
39. Baptism of Maria Barba, 1738 April 16; marriage of Mara de los Dolores
Barba to Francisco Xavier de Ribera, 1756 August 2, CPR.
40. Governor Palacio, a knight, was a widower when he married Josefa de
Escovedo.
41. House of Agustina Prez (Eligi de la Puente map #62).
42. Petition of Francisco Jospogue, 1728 October with transmittal
correspondence dated 1734 January 12, AGI SC 86-7-21/5 (hereafter
Jospogue petition).
43. This information is included in listing of available ports from St. Augustine
in Santa Elena described by Bartolom Arguelles in September 1602. See
Charles W. Arnade, Florida on Trial (Coral Gables, FL: University of Miami
Press, 1959), 47.
44.Jospogue Petition; Council of the Indies, Madrid, 1716 January 8, AGI SC
58-1-24/18.


75
45. Wright, Analo-Soanish Rivalry. 56.
46. Cacique Tospe [sic] was described as a speaker of the Yamasee
language. Hann, "St. Augustine's Fallout," 185; Statement of Governor Jos
de Ziga, 1702 [sic] January 11 in Jospogue Petition.
47. Marriage of Francisca Xaviela Prez to Lorenzo de Selva, 1747 October
30; Statement of Governor Jos de Ziga, 1702 [sic] January 11, in
Jospogue Petition; Miguel Jospo was fifteen years old at his death in January
1744, giving him a 1728 birth date. Burial of Miguel Jospo, 1744 January 3;
burial of a small nameless child of Juan de Fuentes and Agustina [Prez],
1751 August 7, CPR (non-whites).
48. Will of Gernima Rodrguez states that her southern neighbors are "the
heirs of Francisco Jospo," 1737 February 14, Claim of Juana Navarro, Bundle
359, EFP; Marriage of Juan de Fuentes and Agustina Prez, 1738 June 12,
CPR (non-whites).
49. Burial of Juana [de Fuentes], 1741 August 3, CRP (non-whites);
Francisco Jospogue had requested that his pension be passed to his heirs.
Jospogue Petition; Don Jos Antonio Gelabert to the Crown, General list of all
who serve and are paid by the king at the presidio of San Agustn, 1752,
Havana, AGI SC 87-1-14/2; Statement of Juan Jos de Fuentes, 1745
February 9, AGI SD 846; Juan Jos Eligi de la Puente to Governor of Cuba,
Havana, 1770 January 27, AGI SC 87-1-5/4; statement of Juan Jos de
Fuentes, 1745 February 5, AGI SD 846.
50. Statement of Juan Jos de Fuentes, 1745 February 9, AGI SD 846; John
Jay TePaske, The Governorship of Spanish Florida, 1700-1763 (Durham:
Duke University Press, 1964), 175.77.
51. Marriage of Crespin Francisco Diaz and Maria Antonia Jospo, 1750 July
1: Don Gernimo de Hita and his wife, Juan de Avero, sponsored the
marriage of Agustina's sister, Mara Solana, marriage of Juan Mateo Muos
and Mara Solana, 1747 March 13, CPR (non-whites).
52. George Foster, Hugo Nutini and Betty Bell, Sidney Mintz and Eric Wolfe
noted flexibility and regional variations, but agreed on the importance of the
relationship among compadres.
53. Marriage of Lorenzo de Selva and Francisca Xaviela Prez, 1747
October 30; baptism of Juana [de Fuentes], 1741 August 3, CPR (non
whites).


76
54. Don Jos Antonio Gelabert to the Crown, General list of all who serve
and are paid by the king at the presidio of San Agustn, 1752, Havana, AGI
SC 87-1-14/2; baptism of Mara Catalina Gmez, 1754 March 11, CPR; Eligi
de la Puente map, parcel #173.
55. Marvin Harris, Patterns of Race In the Americas (New York: Walker and
Company, 1964), 54-58; Patricia Seed," Social Dimensions of Race: Mexico
City, 1753." Hispanic American Historical Review 62 (1982): 569-606.
56. Robert Kaptizke, "The 'Calamities of Florida': Father Solana, Governor
Palacio y Valenzuela and the Desertions of 1756, Florida Historical Quarterly
62 (1993): 1 -18.
57. Baptism of Josefa Maria de los Dolores Ribera, 1761 March 14, burial of
Antonio de la Cruz Ribera, 1763 July 19, CPR (non-whites); Kapitzke,
"Calamities of Florida," 16-17.
58. Burial of Mara de la Cruz, 1763 June 3; burial of Antonio de la Cruz
Ribera, 1763 June 19, CPR (non-whites).
59. Statements, 1745 February-April, AGI SD 846.
60. Western Design (1654-6) was the term used by Englands Oliver
Cromwell for his expedition aimed at seizing important points in the West
Indies from which Spanish America might be placed at his mercy. The
successful seizure of Jamaica gave England a major naval base in the
Caribbean from which to attack Spanish and French colonies.
61. Jane Landers, "Fort Mose: Gracia Real de Santa Teresa de Mose: A
Free Black Town in Spanish Colonial Florida." American Historical Review 95
(1990): 9-30.


CHAPTER 4
ARCHITECTURE
The Spanish consulted conveniency
more than taste in their buildings.
-William Stork, 1765
Spanish residents and officials of Florida were able to pack up their
possessions and important papers both times they departed the colony, 1763
and 1821. But the buildings where they ate and slept, transacted business,
loved, grieved, and made their plans stayed in the Florida peninsula and
panhandle. When British subjects evacuated Florida in 1784, many
dismantled their buildings to transport for reconstruction in new locations, but
there are no reports of the Spanish doing likewise at either evacuation.1
The buildings left behind became the most notable and durable vestige
of Spanish presence in the southeast-a vestige that was at times
misunderstood and misinterpreted by contemporary non-Spanish observers
and then repeated by generations to come. In the attempt to reconcile the
status of St. Augustine's sixteenth-century beginnings with the remnant
physical evidence extant in later centuries, writers both ingenuous and
ingenious, historical and otherwise, attributed age to structures which in fact
77


78
were much younger; they either overlooked or perhaps were unaware of the
almost total destruction of the city In 1702.2
Albert Manucy's The Houses of St. Augustine, first published in 1962,
is the seminal, enduring, and standard analysis of the Euro-American
architecture of Spanish Florida.3 Manucys pioneering work emphasizes and
relies upon late colonial structures; that is, the era for which the most
documentary information is available. More extant examples originated in the
second Spanish period than in the first, and those that did remain from before
the 1763 evacuation were altered and enlarged by subsequent British and
Spanish residents. Because this study focuses on the period for which less
field data were available, it is less accepting of assertions in The Houses of
St. Augustine than many previous studies have been and offers refinements
to Manucys work for the years of the second Spanish century.
Decades later in 1997, looking back to the even earlier, founding days,
Manucy produced Sixteenth-Century St. Augustine to provide an architectural
picture of a now-invisible period.4 Seventeenth-century buildings remain the
most unknown of all although they succeeded the founding-era Euro-
American buildings. Anthropologist Kathleen Hoffman recently provided the
most descriptive assessment to date of the structures of the 1600s, based
largely on archaeological remnants. Hoffman found that post molds offered
evidence of wood-frame buildings. Narrative descriptions from the 1600s
were few and a dearth of inventories for what Hoffman denominates the


79
middle period limits data as well. What descriptions may be available for
the 1600s are characteristically less detailed than those for the eighteenth
century. In a succinct valuation in 1681 of Governor Pablo de Hita y
Salazars new private home, the appraising mason and carpenter reported
two buildings about 17 feet in height (6 varas) on a waterfront lot, constructed
primarily of wood and incorporating a small amount of masonry.5
By the middle of the eighteenth century appraisals articulated building
materials by unit sizes and number of items, as a mathematical and
engineering perspective came to prevail. But with regard to modern field
work, most architecture from the first half of the eighteenth century had
disappeared by the time of Manucy's investigations or had been altered and
masked by years of use and accommodation to the needs of occupants.6
This study brings to the analysis of architecture in Spanish Florida the
concept of several and successive Iberian regional cultures rather than a
single Spanish cultural tradition. In the second Spanish century the influx of
new soldiers and accompanying influence from additional Iberian regions
provoked change. This study also looks to previously unexamined individual-
level documents to present a functional analysis of building space and of
building components. It enables a look at the attributes and use of upper
levels and also provides descriptions of the exterior, which are difficult to
discern in the archaeological record.


80
New Men. New Iberian Regional Traditions
Floridas buildings in 1763 were different creatures that those in 1565,
despite the implication of the idea of a first-Spanish-period architecture.
Developments in architecture in Spanish Florida should be seen as a product
of physical and cultural forces rather than predictable stages in a
deterministic architectural metamorphosis. Developments and changes in the
architecture of Spanish St. Augustine have been viewed from an almost
Darwinian evolutionary perspective. That is, an assumption that the changes
from earthen structures to wooden and then to masonry represented an ever
improving course. This is a presentist, antiquarian and heritage-oriented view
which assigns disproportionate importance to durability and longevity.
Because a building still stands for our use, observation and enjoyment today,
we too often narcissistically assume that its endurance represents the
desiderata of its creators as well. In this evolutionary perspective, the
changes in choice of construction materials has been attributed to determined
choices by supposedly ever more astute and prescient residents. Changing
to building with masonry over wood has been adjudged as intentional
progress. Other, non-linear factors have not entered the analysis. Vet, when
addressing motive and intent of persons in the past, we would do well to heed
Barbara Tuchman's admonition that "history is the unfolding of
miscalculations.


81
Cultural considerations and differences among the Spanish colonists
regarding building construction in Florida and use of materials have received
little attention. David Weber with his view as wide as the borderlands,
however, recognized that Spanish-built homes In North America resembled
those of different regions of Spain.7 Paradoxically, the preference by the
British Inhabitants for wood upon their acquisition of Florida after two
centuries of Spanish building developments has not generally been seen as
regressive. Yet the British choice of wood over stone contradicts the
assessment that the Spanish residents' turn toward stone be judged as a
move up the architectural evolutionary ladder. Use of wood by the British is
portrayed as a decision to employ familiar cultural elements while use of wood
by the Spanish Is seen as a manifestation of a materially pitiful locale (see
Chapters 6 and 7).
The turn toward masonry structures in Florida was fueled by several
contemporaneous changes. It has long been accepted that for more than a
century after settlement by Europeans, Florida's town residents constructed
their buildings of wattle and daub or of wood. Residents with a minimum of
economic resources turned to buildings of wattle and daub. In supposed
Imitation of the Native Americans, the builders employed the technique of
pressing an earthen mixture into a framework, woven of supple poles or
reeds. Lightweight roofs of either palm fronds or of some strawlike material


82
topped these structures. Constructing such buildings required simple
technological skills and few tools.
The use of wattle and daub in the founding period has generally been
viewed as the Spaniards' imitation or appropriation of Native styles. With
landfall Mnendez quickly commandeered Timucuan Chief Seloy's building
and assigned his men to convert part of the village into a fort for defense
against feared French assaults. Manucy reasonably concludes that the
settlers "became familiar with Indian structures" and that mimicking of Native
housing took place. This conclusion, however, evidences a Eurocentric
viewpoint that Native techniques were adopted out of necessity and by default
as a stopgap rather than asking whether the arriving settlers gravitated toward
a variation of what was familiar. Yet the Asturian settlers might have felt
somewhat comfortable with the Timucuan structures which they encountered
on the Florida coast, for there were similar structures in their Iberian
homeland. Circular folk structures roofed with straw still persisted in Asturias
as recently as the years just prior to the Spanish Civil War (1936-39).8
Wood was the material of choice for the more substantial and higher-
status buildings of Florida's early years. The use of wood could very well
have been a determined choice to rely on timber rather than the local
shellstone. Manucy claims that the "early builders in Florida did not have
stone to work with," yet by 1580 Florida residents were aware of and even
had constructed at least one building of coquina.9 The reliance upon wooden


83
structures was the product of the happy occurrence of settlement in an area
which could provide plenty of the construction material which was the primary
fabric of the arriving settlers' building tradition. The leading first settlers,
hailing from wooded areas of the northwestern Iberian peninsula, brought with
them a tradition of building with timber. The members of Menndez's Florida-
bound coterie departed from a region where most of the houses were still of
wood. Constantino Cabal's study of popular housing or "vernacular
architecture" in Asturias asserted that in the middle of the sixteenth century
(1540) the majority of houses were made of board (de tabla).10 Florida's
forests enabled the early settlers to replicate the fabric as well as the style of
the homes of the land that they left behind.
Even the buildings used by the highest officials were made of wood. A
circa 1595 drawing of St. Augustine depicts structures of vertical boards for
the governor's house and the church. The roofs were of planks as well. But it
was the weaponry rather than the buildings which were important to the
inhabitants, or perhaps in this case to the "artist" passing through St.
Augustine. The cannon placed in the openings of the guardhouse were
drawn with more care than the buildings. The cannon were presented with a
three-dimensional appearance while the buildings more resembled a two-
dimensional child's drawing. The attention to storage barrels was also
disproportionate. This focus parallels the relative depiction of the structures
and artillery at Santa Elena. Therein, the handles on the cannon were


84
elaborated while the buildings received little concern." Buildings were in
effect available locally and thus inexpensive. Buildings could be fashioned
from resources near the settlements while cannon had to be transported from
Spain, where the foundries were located. Distance and the locus of
technology elsewhere made the weaponry expensive and important, and by
default made for an uneven graphic portrayal of the colony.
Governor Gonzalo Mndez de Canzo relocated the executive
residence in St. Augustine from the waterfront to a more inland lot when he
purchased a wooden house from Maria de Pomar. After making
improvements and additions, Mendez de Canzo sold his homesite to the
Crown "at a bankruptcy price" (in his opinion) when he departed Florida for
his next tour of duty. Mndez de Canzos upgrades were of wood, except for
the replacement of a palm thatch roof with flat roof (azoteal, a sealant coat of
tabby over planking.12
Although use of wattle and daub persisted throughout the seventeenth
century, it became less prevalent. "Board walls became increasingly
numerous up to the wholesale destruction of the 1702 siege." concluded
Albert Manucy. Then, he says, over the next half century (1700-50) masonry
became the principal building material.13
Changes in St. Augustine's buildings were brought about by a
combination of factors-technical, economic, social and cultural: the
availability of trained craftsmen and construction material, more money and


85
credit, and the influence of new cultural elements in the population. The
impetus for the turn toward masonry structures was fed by the release to the
public of the local shellstone into a scenario which provided a cadre of
craftsmen who had been trained to work with the shellstone during the
construction of the Castillo de San Marcos. Governor Manuel de Cendoya
imported fifteen skilled workers-masons, stonecutters and lime burners-from
Cuba in 1671 to work on the proposed masonry fortification, begun the
following year. Others learned the skills in Florida, as demonstrated by the
predominance of Native American and African slave craftsmen in building a
new governor's residence in 1690.14
Fear of widespread destruction by fire following the 1702 siege and the
enemys purposely ignited conflagration has been considered the primary
motivating factor for the change in material, especially the turning away from
flammable material. But here again, hindsight takes on a deterministic
character in historical analyses. Because the change in building materials
took place largely in the years following the 1702 razing, it has been
concluded that it was the English-set inferno which instilled a pervasive fear
of fire in the community and the preventive action of building with masonry.
Why would the residents wait until after 1702 to prevent fire when it had
always been a threat? Francis Drake burned the town in 1586, fire consumed
important buildings in 1599, and fire certainly deprived colonists of their
homes in random and intermittent individual tragedies.15 Yet masonry


86
buildings did not spring up after these events. Even if coquina were not
readily available for private use, the material for tabby masonry certainly
abounded in the oysterbeds in tidal creeks and in nearby shellmounds
created in earlier millennia.
Historians Luis and Eugenia Arana state that the 1702 destruction cut
short masonry construction rather than serving as the impetus for turning to
shellstone. The Aranas attribute the turn to masonry construction to more
money entering the colony in the last third of the seventeenth century and the
ability of the residents to build on credit. Royal policy permitted soldiers to
pledge their salaries to finance new structures.16
Cultural traditions were at work as well. The influence of a substantial
number of arrivals from Iberian regions where masonry construction prevailed
prompted a preference for masonry instead of wood as much as did pragmatic
concerns and local events. The soldiers who began arriving in 1680 after
decades of no new troops and thus no immigrating residents were largely
natives of Castilla and Andaluca.17 The aridity of these areas of Iberia did
not nurture forests, and masonry construction in those areas was if nothing
else a default choice. Leopoldo Torres Balbs described the situation in
Andalusia as "construction materials are stone, in the form of rubble
(manipostera) for the most part.... The arboreal vegetation is scarce and
wood for building is scarce and poor."18


87
When English expeditionaries kindled St. Augustine and the missions
in 1702 and 1704, the invaders accelerated the incorporation of the arriving
architectural notions and practices. The towns ashen earth presented a
physical tabula rasa as a stage for the building traditions arriving with new
soldiers.19 The incorporation of arriving architectural traditions did not have to
await the need for a repair or for an addition to what was already in place.
New architectural ways neither blended with nor competed with the old. The
destruction wrought by the 1702 siege provided an empty and yet fertile arena
for new materials and styles in architecture.
Buildings as Detailed bv Those Who Knew Them Best
Individual-level appraisals and inventories available from the first half
of the eighteenth century were overseen and perhaps contributed by the
owners and residents of the buildings themselves. Details were set forth In
those documents that town-wide sources did not include. Such specifics
make it possible to ascertain or at least reasonably to Infer use and perhaps
even the level of comfort of the spaces.
The Eligi de la Puente map of 1764 of St. Augustine provides
standardized information about property ownership, building materials, and lot
size throughout the entire town. Eligi did not, however, include Information
on building size or for outbuildings. For his purposes in the role of real estate
agent, the latter sort of information might have been superfluous.20 Although


88
Eligi recorded only simple measurements of length and width, lots were
sometimes trapezoidal as blocks widened between their extremes. Some lots
surely included jogs and irregularities as the property lines on de la Rocque's
1788 map depict. The succinct measurements given for length and width of
parcels In both of the aforementioned maps, however, allows for later
reconstruction of only rectangular lots. Pablo Castell's map, contemporary
with that of Eligi, depicted St. Augustine with the eye of the mathematician
and engineer for detail, including outbuildings, gardens and fields, but it did
not include measurements and building materials.21
Much of the picture we have of the Spanish capital has relied upon the
observations and writings of visitors. The information was often sprltely and
entertaining, for the visitor tended to comment upon that which was unusual
from his perspective. The generic, common and prosaic were absent while
cultural bias pervaded the descriptions, as seen in William Storks remark that
Spanish buildings gave more consideration to convenience than to taste.22
Conversely, those most familiar with the structures left us little narrative
description. Tedious probate inventories and other official papers are the
only record we have from the Spanish residents who actually walked In and
out of the buildings, who supervised the construction, alterations, and repairs.
The persons who used the doors and windows that they evaluated left us little
more than brief itemizations and costs, not phrases about decoration and
pleasing proportions. They saw no reason to do more. Yet they did in fact tell


89
us more about their houses than was explicit in the list of elements. For
example, when an occupant described a door specifically as the door
between the bedroom and the shop, the use of space was made apparent.23
The appraisals of ten private stone buildings constructed in the first
half of the eighteenth century provide a picture of Floridas substantial city
structures and their attendant secondary buildings. Father Juan Jos Solana
wrote in 1760 that there were 303 buildings in St. Augustine; stone buildings
comprised 49 or about one-sixth of the buildings. He reported that among
those stone structures, the kind of roofing material was about evenly
distributed: 23 of stone and flat roofs, 26 of boards and shingles.2'* Based on
Solanas figures, the available appraisals describe about twenty percent of
the stone buildings. Private buildings in the town made of other materials do
not appear in the available appraisals, except for wooden kitchens or other
workspaces, such as washhouses, which were secondary to and associated
with a primary stone building.
The probate of the property of Diego de Espinosa on St. Augustines
waterfront provides the most detailed description of buildings, use of space
within the buildings, and the relationship of rooms to one another. The few
other available contemporary probate proceedings did not include
accountings which were as detailed as these. The entries in the appraisal of
Espinosa's estate were surely scrutinized closely by those who knew the
buildings the best: his widow and four children. The cross mark of his widow


90
Josefa de Torres, who did not know how to write, vouched for the information.
Because the buildings would not be transferred to all the heirs, careful
attention was called for in order to assure fair distribution of the value of
assets. Thus one child received livestock or slaves rather than real estate;
the price of a calf turned over to one child might well offset the value assigned
to a door or roof in a building acquired by a sibling.25
Three primary masonry buildings stood on Espinosa's property when
he died in May 1756: the main house (casa grande) and its kitchen, the
house with the tabby roof (casa de azotea) and the small house on the
waterfront (casa chica de la marina!. Espinosa's holdings occupied lots on
both sides of todays Charlotte Street. The two-story main house on the west
side of the street with approximately 800 square feet (98 [square] varas) per
floor served as the living quarters for Espinosa and his wife.26 The exterior
and some interior walls were of masonry. A low-pitched roof of wooden
shingles covered the building.27 Tabique (thin-wall masonry) divided the
interior space into rooms; there were also partition walls built of boards. A
dining room and an apartment (or bedroom) occupied the ground floor with a
doorway joining the two rooms. The rooms also had other doors opening to
the outside for independent access. Three windows admitted breezes and
light into the apartment. Upstairs were another bedroom and a drawing room
or salon (sala).28 From a small balcony on the back of the house the


91
Espinosas could enjoy the land breeze fpuerta del terral v el balconcito). A
larger balcony overhung the street.
The one-story, tabby-roof house was situated at a street corner. With
Its six, ground-level rooms, It covered a large area.29 The northwest corner of
the building also formed the street corner. The building could be accessed by
several doors opening to the streets. At the corner were double doors; there
were other doors opening to the street as well. And there was a large door or
gate on the street. The building was divided Into an entryway, a shop and a
storeroom, a dining room, a parlor and two bedrooms.
Espinosas two-story building directly on the waterfront had shellstone
exterior walls honed to a Spanish foot In thickness (a tercia: 11 Inches).
Tabby also composed a portion of the east side of the building in the only
example describing a combination of the local cement material and the hewn
stone. Perhaps an originally open-ended space was later walled In and the
use of tabby cement was easier than joining cut shellstone blocks. Although
this structure was located nearest to the waterfront, there was no mention of
its use for storage of goods offloaded from boats. A bedroom and parlor
occupied the lower floor, with the bedroom opening onto a patio. The
appraisal suggests that there were two patios, one serving the bedroom and
another on the waterfront. Doors were listed for the patio del aposento and
patio de la marina. Upstairs a balcony offered an outside space. The


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FILES


THE SECOND CENTURY OF SETTLEMENT
IN SPANISH ST. AUGUSTINE, 1670-1763
By
SUSAN R. PARKER
A DISSERTATION PRESENTED TO THE GRADUATE SCHOOL
OF THE UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE
REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF DOCTOR OF PHILOSOPHY
UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA
1999

This dissertation is dedicated to my children:
Christopher, Amanda, Robert

ACKNOWLEDGMENTS
As with many areas of life, a dissertation is the product of the efforts
and concern of many persons. I am indebted to earlier archival researchers,
abstractors, and indexers whose work and painstaking detail facilitated my
research efforts. Professor Michael Gannon, who supervised this
dissertation, guided and vastly improved my project. He endured the tedium
of reading every word of several drafts and commented in both breadth and
detail. Professors Murdo MacLeod, Kathleen Deagan, and Anthony Oliver-
Smith helped shape my work with their specific remarks and suggestions as
well as their wealth of research and publications. I was fortunate that for
several years a consultation with Professor Eugene Lyon was only a few old-
St. Augustine-sized blocks from my office. Meetings with him were always
both pleasurable and enlightening.
Many others helped with their interest, knowledge, expertise, and
creative suggestions and ideas: Bruce Chappell and James Cusick at the
P. K. Yonge Library of Florida History, University of Florida; Charles Tingley,
Mary Herron, Dorothy Lyon and Leslie Wilson at the St. Augustine Historical
Society Library; David Coles at the Division of Archives, Florida Department
of State; Joe Knetsch at the Bureau of State Lands, Florida Department of
iii

Environmental Protection. Luis Arana, Bruce Piatek, and Stanley Bond
provided their knowledge and encouragement. An Albert W. Beveridge Grant
from the American Historical Association assisted in my research.
Two colleagues and very dear friends, Jane Landers and Patricia
Griffin, offered scholarly insight, suggestions and affectionate concern. My
friends, Nancy Hamilton and Grace Anna Paaso, performed well as sounding
boards and sympathizers. A long-time co-worker and good friend, Betty
Galipeau, generously proofread the manuscript. My dear Mai Haughton
volunteered for tedious tasks in order to free up my time and gently urged me
on when I sagged And, there is long-suffering Robert, my youngest child,
whose lot it was to live with me throughout the entire project.
I appreciate you all.
IV

TABLE OF CONTENTS
page
ACKNOWLEDGMENTS ¡Ü
ABSTRACT vii
CHAPTERS
1 INTRODUCTION 1
Periodization 5
Regional Cultures 8
Documentary Sources 14
Notes 23
2 “LA FLORIDA’S” FIRST CENTURY 29
Notes 36
3 ASSIMILATED NATIVE AMERICANS:
FLORIDA'S “URBAN INDIANS” 38
Retreat and Relocations 47
From Village to Town; from Ward to Citizen 51
Social Alliances 61
Flexible Racial Classification 64
Conclusions 67
Notes 70
4 ARCHITECTURE 77
New Men, New Iberian Regional Traditions 80
Buildings as Detailed By Those Who Knew Them Best 87
Conclusions 98
Notes 104
v

5 PROVIDING A HOME 109
Conclusions 128
Notes 130
6 PERSONAL POSSESSIONS 137
Furnishings 139
Implements and Containers 144
Textiles and Clothing 147
Jewelry 149
Building Materials 150
Slaves 152
Livestock 156
Transportation 157
Conclusions 159
Notes 168
7 FOOD 173
The Food Supply 176
Conclusions 182
Notes 183
8 RETAILING AND PERSONAL FINANCE 186
Debts and Debtors 189
Retailing 194
Stores and Shops 204
Conclusions 206
Notes 211
9 CONFRATERNITIES IN SPANISH FLORIDA 216
Functions and Ceremonies 224
Chapters and Their Members 225
Financial and Performance Obligations 231
Material Wealth of the Confraternities 239
Conclusions 245
Notes 247
10CONCLUSIONS 253
BIBLIOGRAPHY 266
BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH 280
vi

Abstract of Dissertation Presented to the Graduate School
of the University of Florida in Partial Fulfillment of the
Requirements for the Degree of Doctor of Philosophy
THE SECOND CENTURY OF SETTLEMENT
IN SPANISH ST. AUGUSTINE, 1670-1763
By
Susan R. Parker
August 1999
Chairman: Michael V. Gannon
Major Department: History
Residents of Spanish Florida and its capital, St. Augustine,
conducted their lives guided and constrained by the strong social institutions
of the Roman Catholic Church and the army. The primacy of church and
state has overshadowed the private lives of the residents in the historical
literature of colonial Florida as it did in the colonial era itself. This study
relies on information written or provided by the individuals themselves,
rather than by officials or churchmen, to describe the personal and private
aspects of life. As a counterpoise to scholarly emphasis upon minority or
peripheral citizens, this study focuses primarily on ordinary, white (Euro-
American) colonists and assimilated non-whites. It examines the topics of
assimilation, property ownership, private buildings, personal possessions,
vii

interpersonal financial arrangements, and small-scale business activities,
food, and parishioners’ religious organizations.
After a century of permanent Spanish settlement in the southeast
region of North America, English colonists established South Carolina in
1670. The Second Century of Settlement became an era of mutual enmity
and alert for the residents of the southeast. Native American groups
simultaneously faced more pressures and also benefitted from new leverage
with the advent of South Carolina. Spain delivered new fighting men, who
brought their various Iberian regional cultures into Florida and to its
generations of American-born residents.
This dissertation adds to the study of the role of European regional
donor cultures upon the development of regional cultures in the New World.
Scholars have viewed the cultural differences within Spanish Florida through
the wider, more overt lens of race; the transplantation of Iberian cultural
diversity has hardly played a role in analysis. Florida’s difference from North
American Anglo colonies lay as well in its service-based, cash economy of
the military regime rather than in an export-based agricultural economy.
This study presents Spanish Florida as an essential element of the
history of the colonial southeast. It depicts changes in everyday life brought
about in the Second Century by the permanent proximity of an enemy, the
introduction of new regional cultures, and the expansion in the Atlantic world
of goods and commerce.
viii

CHAPTER 1
INTRODUCTION
It would be greatly inconvenient
if anyone else might settle in Florida.
-Pedro Menéndez de Avilés, 1565
The history of the colonial southeast differs from that of the rest of
eastern North America.1 Typically, histories of the colonial period reduce the
Spanish presence in the continent to merely an extension of the original
conquistadors’ adventures. The presence of the Spanish appears as a
transitory activity in the southeastern region, with colorful mention of ill-fated
explorers followed by a sentence or two noting the founding of St. Augustine
and the colony of Florida in 1565 . Whether survey texts or monographs,
these histories give few words and little importance to Spanish settlements
that lasted continuously for two years short of two centuries, from 1565 to
1763. In fact, permanent Spanish presence in the southeast had achieved
the century mark by the date when English settlers initiated their colony of
South Carolina in the region in 1670.
A dismissive and overly succinct treatment of the Spanish presence
diminishes the complexity of relationships in the region, and developments in
the English settlements thus seem to take place in a splendid isolation rather
1

2
than in the international environment which was indeed the colonial reality.2
Not only is Spanish activity almost unseen historiographlcally, but without
adequate consideration of Spanish activities, the Carolina colonial experience
is thus less filled out than it should be. Florida is often portrayed as a block to
English expansion to be overcome, but seldom is Florida’s existence seen as
shaping the development of Carolina itself, although Carolina’s settlers did
indeed incorporate adaptive measures by virtue of the Spanish presence.3
Historian Betty Wood credits Spanish Florida’s presence as a major
factor in the debate over use of slave labor at the time of the establishment of
British Georgia in 1733. Georgia’s founding trustees saw Spanish Florida in
the 1730s as a runaway slave haven and as an incendiary force to foment
slave revolts. Wood asserts that the trustees made the decision against
slavery as much because of a pragmatic concern for the potential loss of
capital invested in enslaved laborers and the dangers to settlers as they did
because of any philosophical tenets about labor. By the middle of the 1740s
the trustees’ perception of a weakened Florida encouraged them to
reconsider the original prohibition against slavery.4 Permanent French
settlements on the coast of the Gulf of Mexico, beginning in 1699, added to
the complexities of colonial development in the entire region. Extant Spanish
and English settlements now had to deal with the French as well as each
other. Native Americans acquired another element to incorporate in their
survival strategies as they played the European powers off against each

3
other. European and Native American diplomacy took on a multilateral
perspective rather than the more nearly bilateral division prior to the French
settlements.
Studies of Native Americans in the southeast have paid more attention
to the multinational presence in the southeast than have those concerned with
white or Euro-American settlement. Many recent historical and
anthropological studies of Spanish Florida have focused on the lives of the
Native Americans and the changes within native societies following contact
with Europeans, while the white or European society has received little
attention. Our own contemporary emphasis on diversity and upon eliciting the
history of minorities has left us with a picture that is better developed for what
today constitutes minorities (although the groups were often not numerical
minorities during the period studied) than for that of colonial Euro-American
society.5 Yet changes were always developing within white societies as well.
The current focus on ethnic legacies among today's minorities has also turned
the focus away from assimilation by non-whites into the dominant culture.
This study presents a description and interpretation of Spanish Florida
as an essential element of the history of the colonial southeast. It depicts the
changes and practices which developed in or were introduced into Florida
following the arrival of the English and which were responses to the English
presence. Without Florida’s existence, South Carolina would have developed
in a different manner. Without South Carolina’s inception, Florida likewise

4
would have -been different Both colonies evidenced their mutual fear of the
other by erecting defensive walls around their capitals. Carolinians had
begun construction of Charleston’s wall by 1697. Floridians tarried until
1706, adding their wall as they rebuilt St. Augustine after Carolinians had
burned the Spanish town in 1702.6
An enlarged and elaborated portrayal of Florida’s society provides a
lens for viewing other contemporary colonial societies and locales as well as
for increasing the knowledge base and understanding of the Spanish colony
itself. A depiction of the society in Florida which developed in ways which
were different from other areas of both British America and Spanish America
fosters new questions about those other areas in the context of alternative
colonial developments. Florida’s differences did not just lie in its Iberian
roots, but also in the fact that it did not become a colony with an export-
based, agricultural economy despite founders’ plans and hopes. The roles of
work and labor, real and personal property, developed within the context of
Florida's economic base, wherein these assets served a different function
than in an agricultural economy. Florida also developed from and within in a
seminal European-based culture which was different than many other areas.
The course of Spanish Florida offers historians the opportunity to examine a
service-based, cash economy as a comparison to the more nearly self-
sufficient, agricultural societies in British America and other areas of Spanish
and also French America.

5
Periodization
This study seeks to describe the society that developed in the
southeast in the context of regional realities. Thus its temporal boundaries
match local or regional changes rather than those originating in Europe.
Employing the date of 1670 as a point of beginning recognizes the changes
wrought by the arrival of the English and permits the ease of using a common
temporal point for analysis of activities in both the English and Spanish
spheres.7
Spanish Florida’s longevity in the region and on the continent is clearly
illustrated when we recall that children who had been founders of the Florida
colony in 1565 were themselves grandparents and great-grandparents when
English settlers stepped ashore at Jamestown and Plymouth in the early
1600s.8 Seldom are the Englishmen’s planting of South Carolina in 1670 and
its development portrayed in the context of that English colony’s proximity to
the existing Spanish colony and the latter’s already established influence in
the southeast. Yet, Carolinians concerned themselves with threats and
attacks from the Spanish in Florida as well as from Native Americans. The
defenses of both St. Augustine and Charleston revealed that each prepared
to fend off a European enemy fighting in the European style. In both towns,
fortifications and entrenchments resembled simplified versions of European
defenses.

6
Florida’s Iberian founders intended for the colony to be a profitable
enterprise. Instead, the Spanish monarch had to assume financial
responsibility for the viability of the Florida colony in 1571. A century later,
the Spanish crown had to respond vigorously to fend off threats to the realm
throughout Spanish America.9 In the middle of the seventeenth century the
crown increased its concern and thereafter its attention and funding to the
vulnerable areas. Royal decrees allocated monies to finance physical
improvements and additions to fortifications and relocated fighting men to the
besieged or vital areas.
It was the founding of the English colony of South Carolina in 1670 that
especially menaced Spanish Florida. Defensive remedies of additional
money and men sent by the Spanish crown impelled the lives of the ordinary
colonists to take a new direction in the second century of Spanish settlement.
Florida’s white residents, especially the American-born (criollos') colonists,
became more oriented toward Iberia, toward the metropolis, with the influx of
men from the homeland (peninsulares) and the new men’s enlarged influence.
Arriving white colonists, who were mostly male, Native Americans, and
residents of African descent, found new roles offered to them within the
reinvigorated defense structure. For subordinated groups, the new roles
translated into greater access to goods and enlarged relationships with
members of the dominant society, that is the society of persons of Iberian

7
descent. The defensive actions brought about changes in the lives of the
residents of all races and racial mixtures.
Many studies of Spanish Florida employ the beginning years of the
eighteenth century as a defining point. For studies which focus on
international politics or on imperial activities and policies, the year 1700
serves well. A new dynasty laid claim to the Spanish throne upon the death of
Spain’s childless Charles II and a subsequent war to decide the succession
ensued. The Bourbon family, triumphant in its grasp for the throne, brought
changes in Spain’s imperial policies and introduced amity with France by
virtue of close kinship of the kings of the two nations.10
Crown decisions regarding Florida which resulted in the colony’s
reorientation toward the metropolis began, however, while a Hapsburg
monarch still occupied the throne of Spain. The changes in direction for
Spanish Florida predated the War of Spanish Succession and its
accompanying destructions in Florida and predated Spanish colonial reforms
initiated by the victorious Bourbon family although these events are usually
invoked as the markers for periodization. The year 1702 has served as a
distinctive marker for the analysis of architecture in Spanish Florida. While
1702 brought destruction of the buildings in St. Augustine and at the
missions, in the capital the replacement buildings incorporated ideas that had
already been introduced and were holdovers from before the conflagration.

8
In 1763 the transfer of Florida to Great Britain brought more than a
change of sovereigns. The attendant departure of Spanish colonists
sundered lives and regional patterns and marked the end of the Second
Century of Settlement. The changes that began in the 1670s and continued
until Florida’s abrupt transfer to Great Britain validate the concept and
periodization of “the second century of settlement”-a century characterized by
persistent conflict, new men and their new traditions entering the colony, and
the simultaneous expansion and growth of trade in the Atlantic world.
Regional Cultures
This study of the southeast fits with the recent emphasis on the role of
European regional donor cultures upon regional development in the New
World as well as adding an element to the larger transatlantic analysis.
Invoking the idea of the influence of new (that is, arriving) European regional
cultural factors in the Spanish southeast builds upon works by scholars
seeking to explain the regional diversity which developed in Anglo America.
Historians Bernard Bailyn, Jack P. Greene, and David Hackett Fischer and
cultural geographer D. W. Meinig examine relationships between components
brought from European donor regions and their manifestations in the
American colonies. These scholars distill and assess the variations of
multiple, but consistent, elements that were transported and established by
immigrating generations into different areas of North America. Meinig looks at

9
cause, citing Michael Kammen's remark that "colonials didn't come from
Europe. They came from [regions.]" Focusing on effect, Bailyn asserts that
"the colonies' strange ways were only distensions and combinations of
elements that existed in the parent cultures." In the Americas these elements
"were released, fulfilled--at times with strange results that could not have
been anticipated."’1 Greene’s finer focus looks at the transference of political
and intellectual thought from England to America. He explains dissimilar
developments among the various American regions and colonies as resulting
from the particular state of ideas in the home islands at the time of the
founding in the New World. Thus New England and South Carolina began as
quite different colonies because of the different premises carried into each of
these colonies at inception. In other words, they would have been different
even if the natural environments were more alike.12
Fischer's use of the concept of cultural hearths and the sequential
arrivals of their components at different times into different American regions
is especially pertinent for the study of the Spanish southeast. Fischer
maintains that the series of implantations fashioned differing characteristics
within British America. Four discrete combinations of a particular region of
the British Isles feeding immigrations which occurred at a particular period of
time resulted in four identifiable cultures in the British colonies, which have
persisted into the present.13 The four folkways Fischer discerns are: English
Puritans to New England, 1629-41; cavaliers and indentured servants to the

10
Chesapeake, 1642-75; Quaker migration to the Delaware Valley, 1675-1725;
British borderland inhabitants to the American backcountry, 1717-75.
In Florida too there was a sequence of immigration from Iberia, but
unlike the British colonies, the later arrivals in Florida came into an already
Europeanized area. Historians of Spanish Florida have paid little attention to
the influence of immigrants arriving in the eighteenth century who came with
cultural traditions which had developed in different regions than those of
Florida’s founders, who had arrived in the sixteenth century. Cultural
differences within the Florida colony and among its residents have been
viewed through the wider and more overt lens of race, especially Native
American vis-á-vis European. The transplantation of the cultural diversity that
existed within Iberia has played hardly a role. Theodore Corbitt’s study of SL
Augustine’s population dealt with the size of the population and the birth and
death rates, but was not concerned with the Iberian regional origins of
immigrating persons. Kathleen Hoffman uses racial categories as the cultural
categories. Thus persons of European ancestry were placed within a single
category whether their origin was Iberian or Spanish American, with no
discernment by regions.14
Spanish America displayed more colonial uniformity than Anglo
America and that has lessened the questioning of the role of Iberian regional
diversity within the former Spanish empire. The ubiquity of dogma, ritual, and
accoutrements throughout the Roman Catholic Church made for religious

11
homogeneity throughout the Spanish world--in Europe, in the Americas, in
Asia. The uniformity of the singular church eliminated one of the big dividers
of humans in society. As Meinig observes, "Cultural diversity ... is
fundamentally either regional or religious in character.”15 There was almost
no diversity of the latter in Spanish America. A strong centralized colonial
administration and empire-wide colonial legal codes likewise engendered
homogeneity throughout Spanish colonies.16 In Spain, however, the
geographical areas of the old kingdoms which were incorporated into the
Spanish throne still retained many provincial traditions, privileges, and rights,
making the metropolis culturally more heterogeneous than the colonies.17
Entry of new cultural elements into the areas where a creole society already
existed in Florida meant that either the existing ways held fast and resisted
the new or were supplanted, or both old and new were altered to
accommodate each other.
Historiographical emphasis since the shift in the 1960s by the history
profession toward an enlarged interest and concern for the ordinary, minority,
and peripheral citizens18 has paid more attention to Native Americans and
African Americans in Spanish Florida to remedy the negative or trivialized
roles that those ethnic and racial groups held for so long. In the study of
Spanish Florida, the practitioners of history and anthropology have worked
well together in this endeavor.19 Life among mission Indians has received
extensive scrutiny and analysis.20 Jane Landers’s investigation of black

12
society in Florida has focused attention on the lives of the previously unknown
residents of African descent and their role in the geopolitical developments in
the region.21 But, ordinary white (Euro-American) colonists, because they
were part of the dominant culture, and non-whites who successfully
assimilated have not received the same attention of late.
What if the words written, dictated, or in some aspect overseen by the
Florida colonists themselves were to form the basis for the picture of their own
lives in the Second Century? The image of the colonists has relied heavily
on reports composed by military and ecclesiastical administrators. This study
looks to documents which were either written by the colonists or were subject
to their scrutiny, to their editing and then verification indicated by their
signatures or their even more frequent “cross” marks. Some records, like the
recording of the administering of sacraments, were not written by the
participants, but the communicants supplied at least some of the details
recorded by the priests.
In the highly institutionalized and formalized society of the colony of
Florida what was life like for the ordinary resident? For the corporal, for the
midwife, for the slave, for the mission Indian fulfilling a labor obligation?
What changes took place in their lives? How did developments in the rest of
the Atlantic world affect the ways in which the colonists organized themselves,
protected their possessions, provided for their offspring? What were their
relations with each other?

13
This study in no way attempts to diminish the primacy in Florida of the
military and the church organizations and their leaders. That would be folly.
The firm and often rigid framework of those institutions underlay the colony.
Because of the presence of these strong Institutions, Spanish Florida's early
society was orderly, stable, and less contentious than those societies
established later in southern English colonies. In contrast, Jack Greene
describes the Chesapeake and the Carolinas as locales where "religion and
other traditional institutions were weak, a sense of community tenuous, and
cultural amenities almost non-existent." Thus the "potential for social discord
was high."22
But life was not all army and church. Florida's men did not spend all of
their time on guard duty; parishioners and even priests did not spend all of
their waking hours in prayer or at mass. Yet almost any depictions in
communiques concerning the actions of ordinary folk were drawn to express
the needs of the military or the church. The governor, his officials, priests,
and friars composed and compiled the reports. Other views were offered by
foreigners, visitors, and enemies. The remarks of this last group of observers
revealed as much about the foreign writer as about the Spanish in Florida.
And the ordinary people of Florida, most of them illiterate, generated few
documents themselves. Spanish military historian Juan Marchena Fernández
computed that 78 percent of his sample of enlisted men who served in Florida

14
between 1700 and 1763 could neither read nor write; 12 percent could write
only their name (Marchena’s study begins with the year 1700).23
Most citizens appeared in non-narrative documents rather than in
descriptive reports, and it is to those records that this study turns. When bits
of this sort of information are combined, we can discern something of what
historians Darrett and Anita Rutman called “the evolving web of associations”
which existed among the colonial residents.24 The content and form of the
records changed over the time under consideration here. In subsequent
decades and centuries, books became lost, and damage by humidity and
hungry bugs and microbes has left literal holes in the data.
Documentary Sources
The departure of Spanish residents from the mainland meant the
departure of the documentation of their lives as well. The emigration of 1763
was the first of several generated by treaty cessions. In 1784 British subjects
departed as the Spanish returned to the peninsula; in 1821 Spain once again
divested itself of Florida, this last time to the United States.
Departure of Florida's Spanish population upon British takeover of the
peninsula in 1763 resulted in the removal of the documents created in Florida
during the first two hundred years of European settlement. The Catholic
Church's records of baptisms, confirmations, marriages, and burials for the
first two centuries were removed to the cathedral in Havana, where they

15
remained unnoticed until 1871, when St. Augustine's then-bishop discovered
them. Another thirty-five years passed before the parish records were
returned to Florida.25 Departing Spanish officials transferred the military and
civil records, some of which went to the office of the exchequer in Havana.26
Official correspondence by government, military, and church administrators
remains in collections in Spain, Cuba, the Dominican Republic, and Mexico.
Notaries and government secretaries in Spanish Florida often made multiple
copies to be forwarded to various officials at several administrative centers in
the empire. Florida officials sent copies of their correspondence via several
ships and on subsequent sailings to improve the chance that the information
would reach its destination in the face of possible loss to weather, water
damage, or enemy capture.27
Personal documents from Florida's first two centuries of European
settlement are almost nonexistent or at least undiscovered. Evacuees in
1763 carried their important papers-deeds, wills, debt documents—with them
among their furnishings and other possessions to their new homes in Cuba or
Mexico. When Spanish subjects returned to Florida twenty-one years later in
1784, they complained that "ownership papers had been lost by virtue of the
evacuation." Unlike the transported governmental documents, which were
grouped and stored under official auspices, it is likely that the personal
documents stayed with their owners and thus physically were dispersed.
Given the refugee mode of life experienced by the evacuees, documents

16
often survived the relocations no better than did their owners, who died in
substantial numbers in Cuba.28 If available, the evacuees’ personal papers
would reveal individual-level decisions, although usually expressed in the
hand and language of a notary rather than that of the subject.
On the other hand, the change of sovereignty created a need for
inventories, maps, and other documentation that otherwise might not have
been ordered and effected. In fact, Florida's several changes of flags
generated documentation to clarify situations and establish land titles. The
periods of departure and arrival of governments and residents offer clusters of
information, which were not generated with the same intensity during more
stable times. The content and form of the records change over time. One
sort of information ceases to be recorded, only for some other concern to
appear.
The records of the Roman Catholic Church provide the most nearly
complete data on the individuals who resided in Spanish Florida. The parish
records cover a long period of time and encompass all ages, races,
occupations and social groups. The time span and inclusiveness make them
an invaluable source.29 The Church, not the state, recorded information which
today is considered as vital-statistics data. Many times an entry in the parish
records was the sole documentary evidence of an individual’s existence in the
world.

17
The St. Augustine parish registers have the distinction of being the
oldest written records of American origin in the United States. There are
continuous records from 1594 to1763, except for a five-year hiatus between
1638 and1643.30 For some periods, the parish records offer only a minimum
of information. For example, in the early 1600s marriage entries limited
information about the bride and groom to their names only. In the 1720s and
1730s the recording of infant burials was often so succinct as to include only
a reference to “a small child” and name of the father, no mother's name at all.
In the eighteenth century, the Enlightenment appreciation and appetite for
facts revealed itself in the expansion of church records, enlarged to include
information about the parentage of marital partners, previous spouses, and
sometimes occupations.
The records of marriages are available from 1594 forward, although the
information contained in them varies over time. There is a gap in the records
of baptisms from 1640 to 1670. Burial records likewise disappear in 1640 and
do not resume until 1720.
The parish records of baptisms, marriages, and burials for the middle
third of the eighteenth century offer a good deal about familial and fictive
kinship.31 In the middle of the 1730s the parish records were enlarged to
include information on the birthplaces of parents of baptismal candidates,
information on nativity of marriage partners and their parents, and information
on any previous marriages of the spouses. Sometimes information on

18
occupation or employment was included. Burial records provided information
about the decedents' survivors and heirs, sometimes with notations
concerning irregularities regarding burials or last rites. For example, entries
specify when circumstances made burial impossible, such as drowning or
death at the hands of the enemy and no corpse was retrieved. Many burial
entries after 1735 mention wills made by the decedents and list the executors
and the specific bequests which would benefit the Church's ritualistic needs
and charitable goals. But the wills themselves which were referenced have
not been located.
In 1735 parallel but separate sets of books for whites and non-whites
(pardos v morenos v indiosl were established. The books of non-whites
recorded information on nativity and parentage, Native American or African
tribe of origin, racial mixture, free or slave status, and listing of the owners of
the enslaved.
Muster rolls of the military units provide a listing of men in service for
many individual years. Muster rolls for the garrison also offer information
regarding age, birthplace, parentage, physical infirmities, and annual salary.
The rolls sometimes include all who were recipients of crown funds: civilian
employees paid by the crown, such as interpreters or harbor pilots, clergy,
soldiers’ widows and orphans, convict laborers, and mission Indians. Like the
parish registers, the information on the individuals increases in the middle of
the eighteenth century. Musters in the 1670s and 1680s, in addition to listing

19
soldiers, concern themselves with the assignment of weapons. The repetition
of “because he is a creole” or similar wording in the muster of 1683 May 27
reveals the elimination of many men for the garrison. In the 1690s, notations
about disabilities—gouty, blind-replace the weapons as a concern. By the
1740s, evermore data states salaries and where individual soldiers were
posted, such as in Apalache or at Fort Matanzas. The 1751 roster compiled by
José Gelabert is very detailed. It lists age, date of enlistment, birthplace and
father of the soldiers as well as annual pay. Civilian employees such as a
surgeon, drummers, and pilots appear within the listing of soldiers.
Dependents of deceased soldiers are cited with the amounts of their stipends.
Clergy and their church or mission village assignments are included.
Birthplace of convict laborers and the prisoners’ locations-slck, at the
quarry-are stated. Mission Indians are listed by village, age, and marital
status. The musters do not constitute a discrete collection, but a series of
similar listings of ordinary individuals which span the time period considered
here and for the purposes of this study they can be seen as a specific kind of
source. The original musters are located in the Archive of the Indies and were
microfilmed for Incorporation in the John B. Stetson Collection (described
later).32
The few testamentary and probate documents and a smattering of lists
and inventories which were not generated by postmortem affairs found their
way back to the North American mainland or to colonial archives in Spain.

20
While the fewest in number, these documents offer detailed information about
the material life of the colonists. Fragmentary and scanty, their avaiJability is
extremely valuable in the void. Although the paucity of the documentation from
probate papers precludes the ability to make observations about the
representativeness of practices which the documents reveal, the papers do
serve as a starting point from which to ask more questions and to make
comparisons to other sources. These documents are located in the Stetson
Collection and East Florida Papers Collection. The latter Is the governmental
archive of the second Spanish period (1784-1821), but it contains a few items
which were generated in the earlier Spanish period.
Notary records of the first two centuries either have not survived or also
await discovery. In the absence of the books wherein the notaries recorded
sales of lands and slaves, contractual agreements and wills, the few
documents of this sort contained in the Spanish Land Grants Manuscript
Collection must serve. This collection is primarily a source for activities of
second Spanish period, but the Section for Claims for Town Lots holds
unexpected material generated In the first Spanish era.
When Florida was returned to Spain by Great Britain in 1784, some of
the evacuees of 1763, their offspring, or other relatives sailed to Florida
intending to reside on former family lands. Inside the desks, chests, and
trunks loaded on the departing ships in 1763 the townspeople had placed their
personal documents. Now the evacuees or their representatives submitted

21
certified copies of documents that had been transported to Cuba, usually
deeds or wills, in order to support their claims to the abandoned property.33
For the two decades of Spanish absence and of British ownership, British
colonists had perforce occupied, purchased, and improved the former Spanish
sites. While a number of British-era residents chose to stay under Spanish
rule after 1784, others opted to leave and receive some compensation through
sale of property to incoming Spanish subjects. Conflicting claims arose in this
situation, of course, and in cases where there were not valid claimants, the
Spanish crown intended to benefit from the sale of ownerless property. The
documents are conserved in the Claims for Town Lots section of the Spanish
Land Grants collection at the Division of Historical Resources in Tallahassee.
For years these documents were valued as substantiation of property
ownership, which was the intent when presented, but the papers, in fact,
mention a lot more. A few other similar claims became part of the East Florida
Papers Manuscript Collection, now at the Library of Congress. The
documentation arising from property claims should be considered a highly
biased source as only those families with reason to return to Florida after 1784
were included, unlike records such as notary books which would include
property transactions across the population. Given the original intent,
historians look to the Claims for Town Lots for information on property
ownership and perhaps descriptions of buildings. This collection has never
been consulted as a source for other evidence, which was merely incidental at

22
the time of the claims, but which in fact provides information on aspects of
individuals’ lives in Florida, almost impossible to investigate in the absence of
the notarial records. As claimants submitted wills and sworn statements which
justified ownership of abandoned real property they also described all sorts of
personal property, financial arrangements among individuals, relations with
slaves, and the use of specific rooms within houses.
The John B. Steston Collection is the premier source for the study of
first Spanish period with its copies of official correspondence between Florida,
Cuba, and Spain that span the entire period. It provides the documentation
that constitutes a chronology of the events in the Spanish colony and in the
region. The documents were selected in the 1920s from the holdings at the
Archive of the Indies in Seville, photographed, and subsequently microfilmed.
Especially useful for this study, in addition to the official perspective, are
petitions, testimony and affidavits made by lower-ranking soldiers and civilians
and incorporated into official communiques.34 Numerous archival bundles in
the Archive of the Indies which concern Spanish Florida have been microfilmed
in their entirety and are available on microfilm in addition to the Stetson
Collection at the P. K. Yonge Library of Florida History at the University of
Florida.
The lives of the ordinary residents can be partially reconstructed by
combining the information from several of the sources mentioned above.
Seldom will a single source provide a good picture. In combination, these

23
documents permit the examination of what concerned ordinary residents. The
documents offer information and insight into the decisions and behavior of
individuals and their interaction with kin, friends, associates, sponsors, and
superiors. Sometimes we can pursue questions that interest us, but with which
the colonial residents were probably not consciously concerned. The data
offer the possibility to see changes in personal behavior in response to the
larger political, social, and material world and also see the individual lives as
components of the aggregate behaviors that propelled the larger
changes-forces which in turn pressed the lives of the colonists into ever-
changing patterns.
Notes
1. This is a slightly altered restatement of Joel Evans’s contention. Evans
also includes in his assessment of Spanish influence the passive and
unwitting introduction of disease and the resulting demographic collapse and
greatly diminished Native American populations with which Europeans might
have to contend. “Southeastern Indians and the English Trade in Skins and
Slaves,” in Charles Hudson and Carmen Chaves Tesser, eds.. The Forgotten
Centuries: Indians and Europeans in the American South (Athens: University
of Georgia Press, 1994), 305.
2. It is not intended to present here a broad critique of current survey texts,
but to give representative examples. Although Philip Jenkins sets forth his
temporal focus as 1492-1765, he in fact limits it to the earliest years, reducing
Spanish presence to the “wonder of the conquistadors,” in A History of the
United States (New York: St. Martin’s Press, 1997), 7. Maldwyn A. Jones
observes that “apart from leaving a fort at St. Augustine, Florida a number of
missions in the southwest, Spain turned her back on America north of the Rio
Grande in the late sixteenth century though without relinquishing her claims
there." Limits of Liberty: American History, 1607-1992. 2nd ed., (New York:
Oxford University Press, 1995), 4. Similar presentations appear in Virginia
Bernhard, David Bruner, Elizabeth-Fox Genovese, John McClymer, Firsthand

24
America: A History of the United States. 3rd ed., (St. James, NY: Brandywine
Press, 1993), 11-14, even though it claimed to be more inclusive than previous
texts.
3. Robert M. Weir continues the interpretation and portrayal of Spanish
Florida as a barrier in Colonial South Carolina: A History (Columbia:
University of South Carolina Press, 1997), 42, 52, 82,. Weir’s role for Florida
as part of the “prologue” to South Carolina’s settlement perpetuates the
exclusion of the Spanish colony’s continued function in the development of
the region. Weir includes the most recent material on Florida in his
bibliographic essay (395-96) with emphasis on the contact period in the
sixteenth-century, but not upon the Spanish colony as an on-going factor.
4. Betty Wood, Slavery in Colonial Georgia, 1733-1775 (Athens: University of
Georgia Press, 1984), 8-9.
5. In the colonial context the terms “dominant” and “subordinated" better
reflect the colonial situation than “majority” and “minority.” Peter H. Wood’s
term, “black majority,” to describe colonial South Carolina is a good example
where the majority was not the dominant group. Black Majority: Negroes in
Colonial South Carolina from 1670 to the Stono Rebellion (New York: Alfred
A. Knopf, 1974).
6. [n.a.j, “The Walled City," in Carter L. Hudgins, Carl R. Lounsbury, Louis P.
Nelson, Jonathan H. Poston, eds.. The Vernacular Architecture of Charleston
and the Lowcountrv, 1670-1990: A Field Guide. 24-25.
7. The use of regional activities as the basis for periodization appears in
historian Michael V. Gannon’s The Cross in the Sand: The Early Catholic
Church in Florida. 1513-1870 (Gainesville: University of Florida Press, 1965)
wherein he invokes 1675, “the finest hour of the missionary movement,” (66)
as a turning point in the Spanish mission system in the region rather than
looking to the destructions of 1702 and 1704, which were major events, but
still part of the downward path rather than the end (Ch. 5). Gannon continues
the use of the regional reality with chapter 6, whose periodization (1768-1790)
reflects the break in the presence of clergy of the Catholic Church in Florida
rather than using the political change, from a Spanish colony to a British
colony, as a marker.
8. “By the time the Pilgrims came ashore at Plymouth, St. Augustine was up
for urban renewal.” Michael Gannon. Florida: A Short History (Gainesville:
University Press of Florida, 1993), 4.

25
9. Engel Sluiter, The Florida Situado: Quantifying the First Eighty Years.
1571-1651 (Gainesville: University of Florida Libraries, 1985), 1.
10. John Jay TePaske, The Governorship of Spanish Florida. 1700-1763
(Durham: Duke University Press, 1964); Amy Turner Bushnell. The Kina's
Coffer: Proprietors of the Spanish Florida Treasury, 1565-1702 (Gainesville:
University of Florida Press, 1981).
11. Bernard Bailvn. The Peopling of British North America: An Introduction
(New York: Vintage Books, 1988), quote on 122; David Hackett Fischer,
Albion's Seed: Four British Folkways in America (New York: Oxford University
Press, 1989); D. W. Meinig. The Shaping of America: A Geographical
Perspective on 500 Years of FI ¡story. Vol. I, Atlantic America. 1492-1800 (New
Flaven: Yale University Press, 1986), quote on 80.
12. Jack P. Greene, Pursuits of Happiness: The Social Development of Early
Modern British Colonies and the Formation of American Culture (Chapel Hill:
University of North Carolina Press, 1988).
13. Fischer. Albion's' Seed. 6-7. Extending his argument into modern times,
for example, Fischer claims that "each American culture had its own motives
for supporting (World War II]" and attributes the different style of the top-
ranking U.S. military commanders to regional differences, 877-80
14. Theodore G. Corbitt, “Population Structure of Hispanic St. Augustine,
1763,” Florida Historical Quarterly. 54 (1976): 263-84; Kathleen Hoffman,
“Cultural Development in La Florida, in Donna L. Ruhl and Kathleen Hoffman,
eds., Diversity and Social Identity Colonial Spanish America: Native
American. African and Hispanic Communities During the Middle Period.
Historical'Archaeology 31 (19971: 24-35.
15. Meinig, Atlantic America. 80. Meinig offers a framework composed of
three sequential, developmental periods and eleven cultural regions for North
America and the West Indies. With this framework, he describes how
Europeans established their dominance in America and how that dominance
reshaped the American world. Meinig separates the sequential framework
into "seafaring," "conquering," and "planting" periods. The last, which
encompasses the eighteenth century, he divides into two phases:
"implantation" and "reorganization." In the "implantation" phase major
production districts and cultural areas were formed. During the
"reorganization" phase, metropolitan authorities attempted to bring these New
World offshoots under tighter central control. His criteria for identifying a
cultural region largely being homogeneity of the population, Meinig identifies
Greater New England, the St. Lawrence River valley, Hudson's Bay, the

26
Hudson River valley, Pennsylvania, Greater Virginia, the Tropical Islands, the
Carolinas, Florida, Louisiana, and Texas and the Lower Rio Grande valley.
Meinig addresses the concept of "reorganization" as a situation molded
by external political demands and gives little weight to internal regional
cultural or economic factors.
16. José Maria Ots v Caodeaui. Historia del derecho español in América v
del derecho indiano (Buenos Aires: Losada, 1945), 3.
17. Ann M. Pescatello, Power and Pawn: The Female in Iberian Families.
Society, and Culture. (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1976), Ch. 1.
18. There is a plethora of discussions of the evolution of the field of social
history. For a brief overview of its roots, methods and content, see Alice
Kessler-Harris, “Social History,” in Eric Foner, ed., The New American History
(Philadelphia: Temple University Press, 1990), 163-84.
19. See Michael Gannon, “The New Alliance of History and Archaeology in
the Eastern Spanish Borderlands," William and Mary Quarterly 49, 3,d ser.
(1992): 321-44 for a discussion of interdisciplinary projects.
20. David Hurst Thomas, ed., Columbian Consequences: Impact of Hispanic
Colonization in the Southeast and Caribbean (Washington, D C: Smithsonian
Institution Press, 1990), includes essays by most of the mission researchers
and mission sites. Jerald T. Mllanlch, Florida Indians and the Invasion from
Europe (Gainesville; University Press of Florida, 1995); John H. Hann, A
History of the Timucua Indians and Missions (Gainesville: University Press of
Florida, 1996): idem, Apalachee: The Land Between the Rivers (Gainesville:
University of Florida Press, 1988); idem and Bonnie G. McEwan, The
Apalachee Indians and Mission San Luis (Gainesville: University Press of
Florida, 1998) deals with interactions among the Native Americans and the
Spanish. Hudson and Tesser. eds.. The Forgotten Centuries and Peter H.
Wood, Gregory A. Waselkov, and M. Thomas Hatley, eds., Powhatan's
Mantle: Indians in the Colonial Southeast (Lincoln: University of Nebraska,
1989) survey the Native Americans in the southeast.
21. Jane Landers, "Black Society in Spanish St. Augustine," Ph.D. diss.
(University of Florida, 1988); idem. "Traditions of African American Freedom
and Community in Colonial Spanish Florida," in David R. Colburn and Jane L.
Landers, eds., The African American Heritage of Florida (Gainesville:
University Press of Florida, 1995), 19-41; "Gracia Real de Santa Teresa de
Mose: A Free Black Town in Spanish Colonial Florida." American Historical
Review 95 (19901:9-30.

27
22. Greene. Pursuits of Happiness. 12-13.
23. Juan Marchena Fernández, “St. Augustine’s Military Society, 1700-1820,”
El Escribano 22 (1985): 69.
24. Darrett B and Anita H. Rutman, A Place in Time: Middlesex County,
Virginia. 1650-1750 (New York: Norton, 1984), 12.
25. Gannon, Cross in the Sand. 191.
26. Charles S. Coomes, "Our Country's Oldest Parish Records, El Escribano.
18 (1981 ):74-83. Pedro José Gómez's claim stated that Eligió de la Puente's
papers were located in Cuba in the office of the exchequer (Tribunal de
Cuentas de Real Audiencia), Bnd. 320, no. 81, Claims for Town Lots, Spanish
Land Grants manuscript collection (SLG), Florida Division of Historical
Resources, Tallahassee, Florida.
27. For an example of the multiple distribution, see Juan Fernández de
Olivera to the Crown, 1612 October 13, Archivo General de Indias (hereafter
AGI), Audiencia de Santo Domingo 229 (hereafter SD), number 75.
28. José Miguel Chapuz, claim for the house of his mother Beatriz Amadora,
Bundle 320, claim no. 62 [also numbered 298], Town Lots, SLG. Juan José
Eligió de la Puente’s correspondence to the Governor of Cuba noted that
many of the evacuees were dead by the date of his report of 1770 January
27. AGI SC 87-1-5/4.
29. Cathedral Parish Records (hereafter CPR), Diocese of St. Augustine,
Diocesan Center, Mandarin, Florida (microfilm copies at St. Augustine
Historical Society).
30. Gannon. Cross in the Sand. 191-92.
31. CPR.
32. The muster rolls of soldiers and those individuals sustained by crown
funds are generally titled "General List” (lista general or pie de lista),
sometimes signed by the governor, at other times sent in the name of a
subordinate, administrative official. The following musters were consulted;
only date and archival citation are listed here: 1671 July 6, 58-1-26/16A;
1680 December 4, 54-5-12/9; 1683 May 27, 54-5-12/9:1683 June 28, 54-5-
11/102 duplicate; 1687 April 20, 54-5-14/41; 1698 December 2, 58-2-3/25;
1699 September 1, 54-5-15/136; 1701 December 3, 58-2-3/34; 1706, 1707,
1708, 1709 all December 3, 58-1-35/61; 1712 December 3, 58-2-3/59; 1714
December 31, 1714; 58-2-4/17; 1719 August 12, 58-2-4/25; 1717 June 3, 87-

28
1-2/63; 1738 April 5; 87-1-3/20; 1740 58-1-32/23; 1745 January 2, 87-3-
12/70; 1746 January 12, 87-3-12/76; 1746 July 15, 87-3-12/84; 1747 January
23, 87-3-12/23; 1748 July 8 and 17, 87-3-13/2. The report by José Gelabert,
1751 October 29, 87-1-14/2 is very detailed and thus contributed a great deal
to this study. All AGI SC.
33. Hardly any claimants presented certified copies of documents which had
been transported to Mexico.
34. Gannon. Cross in the Sand. 192-93.

CHAPTER 2
LA FLORIDA’S FIRST CENTURY
St. Augustine, a Spanish garrison being planted to
the southward of us about a hundred leagues,
makes Carolina a frontier to all the English
settlements on the main.
-Governor Nathaniel Johnson of
South Carolina, 1709
From an Iberian perspective, La Florida was a latecomer among New
World settlements. Still, this youngster of Spain’s American territories
predated any enduring settlements of England or France in North America.
The boundaries of La Florida originally extended to Newfoundland and to the
west as far as the mind could comprehend. Other nations who planted
settlements could only trespass in this context.
After a half-century of exploration of the southeast and thwarted
settlement attempts, which began with Juan Ponce de León,1 the Spanish at
last in September 1565 founded St. Augustine, the first settlement to endure.
Juan Ponce had set out from Puerto Rico in February 1521 with matériel to
settle on the lower west coast of the Florida peninsula. But Native Americans
drove the settlers out. In 1526 Spanish settlers established the San Miguel
de Gualdape settlement on or near Sapelo, a Georgia barrier island. It
29

30
endured for no more than six weeks.2 In 1559 a hurricane undermined the
nascent Spanish settlement at Pensacola even before all cargo could be
offloaded; still it survived until 1561.3 The 1565 expedition's leader, Pedro
Menéndez de Avilés, had intended to settle in the vicinity of Parris Island,
South Carolina, but the construction of a French fort at the mouth of the St.
Johns River led Menéndez to debark his colonists and supplies at the next
harbor south of the French foothold. Such a location would provide a land
base for Menéndez to attack French Fort Caroline and oust French colonists
from Spanish-claimed lands. And Menéndez's men handily accomplished the
removal within a few weeks of first landing.
Menéndez did establish a settlement at the intended Carolina location
at Eastertide 1566. But Santa Elena's survival was even more fitful than that
of St. Augustine. The Spanish abandoned Santa Elena in 1576 and
reestablished it in 1578. By 1587 the Santa Elena site was given up for the
second and final time and its residents resettled in St. Augustine.4 Thus the
site at St. Augustine, which had begun as a default location, became the seat
of permanent Spanish presence on the North American Atlantic coast.
The wisdom for St. Augustine's location probably caused many to
question Menéndez's rationality for maintaining the settlement.5 The town
took root on the west bank of an estuary of the Atlantic Ocean, not at the
mouth of a river flowing from the interior. Surrounding rivers and creeks are
tidal. Thus access to St. Augustine's hinterland was by land rather than via a

31
ready-made highway of water. The difficulty inherent in overland transport of
the era would hinder interior development. Overland transport would become
expensive In both money and good relations with the natives.
Nor was the harbor itself of much note. The entrance to the safety and
haven of the estuary passed through a fickle Inlet and shifting sand bars. An
eighteenth-century traveler perceived the security from invading vessels that
the bar offered. "It was Spanish wariness to fix the capital of a colony behind
a sand-bank which cannot be crossed except at great peril."6 Such conditions
served well at the time of founding when protection against French vessels
was paramount. But the St. Augustine inlet bore out the Spanish proverb
which advised "el cuchillo que corta el pan también se corta el dedo" (The
knife which cuts your bread will also cut your finger). Storms and hurricanes
could Improve and deepen the passage or relocate and virtually close the
entry.
Laborers had to offload supplies from deep-draft vessels anchored
outside the inlet to be ferried in smaller boats to the city's landing. Larger
ships dared not risk running aground in the inlet or allow themselves to be
Imprisoned in St. Augustine's harbor, awaiting the lunar phase to bring the
highest tides and thus navigable depths. A series of north-south estuaries
facilitated movement and transportation that paralleled the coast. But access
into the interior from St. Augustine had to be overland, making the movement
of goods most onerous.

32
Despite Spain’s claim to the lone settlement in the region, the Spanish
never had the lower southeast all to themselves. Raiders and traders from
other European nations appeared and departed. For a century following the
founding, no other European power secured a toehold In the region. But by
the last quarter of the seventeenth century Spain faced a permanent English
presence In South Carolina and the Incipient French colony of Louisiana. A
century of successive wars would re-shape both Europe and North America.
Spain's territorial status in the lower southeast went largely
unchallenged from the time of Menéndez's founding of St. Augustine and
Santa Elena in 1565 and 1566 until the advent of English Charleston in 1670.
Fllstorian Ralph Davis asserts that the 1607 placement of Jamestown
reflected concern by England's James I "to keep well clear of the Spanish
limits in Florida" in the early seventeenth century.7 Historian Kenneth
Andrews similarly claims that England "shrank" from challenging Spain over
Virginia and that the English even explained that endeavor to the Spanish as
a private risk rather than an English crown project.8 English, French, and
Dutch traders and privateers indeed devastated Spanish settlements
throughout the circum-Caribbean and deprived residents and the crown of
security and material goods, but acquisition of the land and the labor of its
native inhabitants was not a part of their agenda. Early Dutch, French, and
especially English activity was as booty driven as early Spanish aims,
although stereotypes persist of the "settling" English and the "greedy,"

33
extractive Spanish.9 These latecomer raiders generally targeted the wealth or
goods of other Europeans while the Spanish had focused on appropriating
Native American resources. Money, supplies, and perhaps artillery, not
lands, lured Francis Drake to attack St. Augustine In 1586.10 The French,
more oriented to trade than plunder, continued seasonal trading visits to the
southeast coast despite their rout by Menéndez In 1565 and again in 1580 at
the mouth of the St. Johns River. The Guale natives of the Georgia coast
and French corsairs both ignored Spanish prohibitions on their trading
activities.11
The advent in the south of English settlement in 1670 marked a change
in life and activity in the southeast by virtue of the raids and attacks that the
English and their Indian allies made in the region. Governor Johnson’s
remark in 1709 charging that the Spanish presence so near to Carolina forced
the English colonists to live in a state of fear and alert ignored the chronology
of settlement, but well illustrated English jealousy. France’s appearance in
1699 along the lower Mississippi River and the coast of the northern Gulf of
Mexico added to the complexity. Historian Charles Arnade refers to the
international conflict in the southeast as a "triangular struggle."12 Yet,
continuing with his geometric metaphor, a polygon serves as a better
description, for the various Native American nations comprised "sides" as
well. The struggle was certainly not equilateral and the number of sides and
their respective sizes varied over time. Arnade assigns the Native

34
Americans' weight to one of the three major European players rather than
seeing native activity as purely native in character, driven by native benefit
and survival rather than by allegiance to one or another of the colonial
powers. Historian Daniel Usner views Native Americans in the region as a
forceful group who participates fully in shaping its own destiny in the face of
Europeans' territorial and commercial machinations. Usner, for the French
Lower Mississippi Valley, and historian Amy Bushnell, for Spanish Florida,
both point out the Europeans' or Euro-Americans' dependence upon the
natives for food in the face of the French and Spanish metropolises' ever-
inadequate supply practices.13
Entry of the English permanently into the southeast in 1670 coincided
with the zenith of the Spanish Florida mission system and with the time of the
largest reported number of Indian communicants. It was the mission residents
on the coast of the southeast who felt the first English attacks on Spanish
enclaves and against Spanish influence in the region. The mission residents
quickly adapted to the new reality in the region as they relocated and
reorganized. It was only the beginning of changes for Spanish Florida.
Florida’s proximity to the Gulf Stream offered an asset that Spain could
not risk having another empire control. The current came very close to the
mainland along Florida’s southern coast, increasing the potential for
shipwreck in that area. So long as Florida remained Spanish, cargo and
passengers cast overboard might be saved by Spanish interests. Near St.

35
Augustine the current turned sharply eastward and the natural propulsion of
the Gulf Stream carried the galleons away from the Americas and out into the
Atlantic toward Europe. This route made St. Augustine the last chance for
Spain’s silver fleet to get assistance with navigational problems or aid against
threatening enemy vessels.'4 When Florida's benefit to the empire was
questioned in light of its meager production during hearings in 1602,
justification for maintaining the colony was put forth in the larger context of the
colony’s role in the security of the fleets and therefore the security of Spain's
economy.15
Florida helped protect Spain’s access to precious metals. Florida’s
role continued to be its strategic location to protect shipping headed to Spain
laden with ingots and other colonial products. Near the end of the eighteenth
century Florida additionally buffered the valuable silver mines of Mexico from
overland Incursions from the new United States.16 Only when Spain had
almost nothing left to protect in the Caribbean after the wars for independence
of the early nineteenth century did the Spanish crown give up Its colony of
Florida.

36
Notes
1. Michael Gannon, "First European Contacts," in Michael Gannon, ed., The
New History of Florida (Gainesville: University Press of Florida, 1996), 20-21.
2. Paul E. Hoffman, "Lucas Vázquez de Ayllón," in Jeannine Cook, ed.,
Columbus and the Land of Avllón: The Exploration and Settlement of the
Southeast (Darien, GA: Lower Altahama Historical Society, 1992), 27.
3. Gannon, "First European Contacts," 34-35.
4. Eugene Lyon, "Settlement and Survival," in Gannon, ed., New History of
Florida. 48-58; Amy Turner Bushnell, Situado and Sabana: Spain’s Support
System for the Presidio and Mission Provinces of Florida (New York:
American Museum of Natural History, 1994), 62-64.
5. Among the concerns addressed during the 1602 inquiry by the Spanish
crown of St. Augustine's continued existence were the area's topographical
defects (questions 4 and 5). Charles W. Arnade, Florida On Trial. 1593-1602
(Coral Gables, FL: University of Miami Press, 1959), 24.
6. Johann David Schoepf, Travels in the Confederation, trans. Alfred J.
Morrison, Vol. 2 (New York: B. Franklin, 1968), 228-29.
7. Ralph Davis, The Rise of the Atlantic Economies (Ithaca, NY: Cornell
University Press, 1973), 83.
8. Kenneth R. Andrews, Trade. Plunder and Settlement: Maritime Enterprise
and the Genesis of the British Empire, 1480-1630 (Cambridge: Cambridge
University Press, 1984), 310-12.
9. Eugene Lyon's numerous studies of Pedro Menéndez’s plans for Florida
have dispelled the traditional Hispanophobic conclusions which limited
actions to conquering, enslaving and mining. See The Enterprise of Florida:
Pedro Menéndez de Avilés and the Spanish Conquest of 1565-1568.
(Gainesville: University of Florida Press, 1976) and Pedro Menéndez de
Avilés Vol. 24 Spanish Borderlands Sourcebooks (New York: Garland, 1995).
10. J. Leitch Wright. Jr.. Analo-Spanish Rivalry in North America (Athens:
University of Georgia Press, 1971), 28-29; Amy Turner Bushnell, The King's
Coffer: Proprietors of the Spanish Florida Treasury. 1656-1702 (Gainesville:
University of Florida Press, 1981), 94-95.
11.Bushnell, Situado and Sabana. 63-65.

37
12. Charles W. Arnade, "Raids, Sieges and International Wars," in Gannon,
ed., New History of Florida (Gainesville: University Press of Florida, 1996),
100.
13. Daniel H. Usner, Jr., Indians. Settlers and Slaves in a Frontier Exchange
Economy: The Lower Mississippi Valiev Before 1783 (Chapel Hill: University
of North Carolina Press, 1992); Amy Turner Bushnell, Situado and Sabana.
14. Murdo MacLeod, "Spain's Atlantic Trade, 1492-1720," in Leslie Bethell,
ed. The Cambridge History of Latin America I, (Cambridge: Cambridge
University Press, 1984), 341-88.
15. Arnade summarizes the Franciscan friars’ position as in favor of
maintaining the colony of La Florida, but abandoning the Florida peninsula in
favor of an area located closer to the bulk of the Indian population.
“Geographical and nautical considerations, indeed recognized by the fathers,
were of but minor importance” in their point of view. Florida on Trial. 89.
16. Elena Sánchez-Fabrés Mirat, Situación histórica de las Floridas en la
segunda mitad del siglo XVIII (1783-18191 (Madrid: Ministerio de Asuntos
Exteriores, 1977), 9, 111.

CHAPTER 3
ASSIMILATED NATIVE AMERICANS:
FLORIDA'S 'URBAN' INDIANS
The inhabitants were of all colours, whites,
negroes, mulattoes, Indians, &c, at the evacuation
of St. Augustine.
-John Bartram, 1765
Of the three major empires to claim and colonize the Americas-Spain,
England, France-the Spanish viewed the Native Americans more as a
resource, in fact a necessity, rather than an obstruction to the viability of their
New World endeavors. Indian labor had been among the first rewards offered
by the crown to early Spanish colonizers of the Caribbean. When Spain
finally turned toward settling the North American mainland, the Spanish
carried with them their viewpoint that Native labor was essential for success.
Indian slavery was never really a factor in the colony of Florida, for by
the time of Juan Ponce's first voyage to Florida in 1513, Indian slavery had
already been legally prohibited in Spanish America by the Laws of Burgos of
1512, so called for the city in which they were promulgated. Thus,
theoretically, the Native Americans of Florida were free Spanish subjects, and
the Spanish had to rely upon enticing native laborers rather than enslaving
them. The institution of slavery remained firmly in place for Africans in
38

39
Spanish Florida and throughout Spanish America, although Spanish rule
offered Africans more options for freedom and economic opportunities than
did other colonial regimes.1
Euro-Americans, Native Americans and African-Americans were
present as well in the contemporary regions of other colonial powers on the
North American mainland, but the interaction among the races differed with
region, culture, and empire. French New Orleans counted Indians and blacks
among its residents. Daniel Usner writes that slaves "constituted the core of
the resident Indian population" of the Louisiana capital. Indian slavery was
also permitted in the English colonies. In Maryland,-Virginia, North and South
Carolina, the sale of Indians enslaved in wars of removal helped to pay for the
wars themselves. South Carolina has been described as "preeminent in the
use and exportation of Indian slaves" among all the British continental
colonies.2
After the middle of the seventeenth century, Native American groups
formed the frontier between rival European nations who claimed territory in
southeastern North America. By the time of the establishment of Florida (and
the Philippines and New Mexico), Hapsburg purposefulness had altered the
earlier American encomienda system (a state assignment of compulsory
labor) into a grant to collect tribute.3 In comparison to the expectations upon
Native labor in Peru and New Spain, Florida officials believed that they were
especially ungreedy and lax in their demands with "no encomiendas, obrajes

40
[sweat shops] or mines." The labor levy which Florida officials had
negotiated with chiefs (caciques) supplied manpower (and it was to be
unmarried manpower) primarily to maintain fortifications, to plant fields for
Spaniards, and to furnish household and personal servants and ranch hands.
As for the specific labor demands, Natives found the requirement of burden¬
bearing to be the most galling. While Governor Andrés Rodríguez de Villegas
declared In 1630 that Florida Indians were "the best treated in America," it is
doubtful that the Florida Natives shared His Lordship's positive view of the
situation, for the workers were not comparing the demands upon them with
those upon Natives in the labor-devouring areas of Mexico or Peru. Nor did
the Florida Natives’ worldview include a pre-Columbian past of massive labor
exaction of or by other Native groups.4
Still, the number of Indians in the Florida colony fell and alarmed
officials. Anthropologist John Worth describes the seventeenth-century
mission era as being a time of “a free-fall decline” in population. The decline
mystified Governor Luis de Rojas y Borja (1624-30). The shrinking Native
population ultimately translated into fewer producers of food for the Spanish
in Florida.5 The colony's governors continually fretted about feeding and
fighting and the intertwining of the two problems. Plagued by such concerns,
Florida officials responded to the specter of a scarcity of Native labor with
decisions that only exacerbated the problem and alienated the labor source.
When an epidemic in 1655 diminished the number of Timucuan Indians of

41
northeastern Florida who were available to grow corn to be sent to feed the
presidio in St. Augustine, Governor Diego de Rebolledo (1654-1659)
launched a ruthless raid on other groups to acquire workers to plant
compensatory fields near St. Augustine. Contemporary events in the
Caribbean worsened the situation for Florida Natives. Multinational rivalries,
especially the Anglo-Spanish competition in the Americas, brought pressures
upon the Natives of La Florida even before the English established a
permanent presence in the lower southeast. Alarmed by the English capture
of Jamaica, Rebolledo attempted to call up Indian nobles for militia service,
who were in addition ordered to bring their own food with them on their backs,
thus demeaned "as if they were mules or horses."6
Then in 1670 the English made a permanent incursion into the lower
southeast and henceforth into the Spanish monopoly of the region's Native
American labor pool and surplus. The dynamics between Europeans and
Native changed dramatically.
Unlike most regions of Spanish America, residents of all colors and
cultures in colonial Florida found themselves physically threatened by
European enemies, primarily England. Within the context of the international
face-off in the southeast, Spanish colonial officials had to adapt their methods
of dealing with the Native Americans of the region. No longer could the
requirement of native labor be demanded and expected; rather officials had to

42
recruit and woo Natives' cooperation or sometimes at best settle for Natives'
inaction.
More plentiful and superior gifts and trade items lured Native groups to
the orbit of England and Carolina. But Interchange with the Carolinians could
mean tragedy Instead of material acquisitions for Natives. Under the guise of
warfare, Carolinians also captured and enslaved Indians, citing
disagreements over land rights, destruction of crops and slaying of cattle as
bases to justify attack. Carolina's Indian allies brought in Spanish-allied
Indians to be slaves. Most of the Carolina slaves were shipped to the West
Indies to work. Exported Indian labor capitalized Carolina in the early years
when no staple crop had yet proved successful. Historian Converse Clowse
asserts that the export of Indian slaves may have been the most important
generator of profits during the first five years of Carolina's existence. The
extent of the trade is not known as it was illicit and thus little documented.7 It
was a simple extractive venture, so to speak, that could be quickly set up with
little equipment, expertise or capitalization. With slaves being supplied by
wars among the Native groups themselves, Carolinians did not make direct
demands upon individual labor as the Spanish did.
A decade after the founding of Charleston, Carolinians began the
assault on Spanish presence in the southeast in earnest. Abetted by fickle
Yamasee allies, Carolina colonists drove the Spanish soldiers, priests and
Indian converts from St. Catherine's Island as the first operation. The mission

43
towns and the Indians who chose to remain with the Spanish began island¬
hopping southward, regrouping all the while. The English also harried to the
west in the Apalachee area and extended their influence among the Lower
Creeks.8 Meanwhile the Spanish demands upon Native labor surged in order
to furnish laborers for the building of the shellstone fortress in St. Augustine.
Groundbreaking for the fortress began only two years after the founding of
Charleston and continued for 23 years. Natives became disenchanted with
European empires in the southeast, but were given little opportunity to be
neutral. Additionally, Natives' attraction to manufactured metal goods, cloth
and liquor altered the Native lifeways so that they became materially
dependent upon the imports. During the 1690s the hostilities abated and
superficially friendly relations existed, with the English and the Spanish each
keeping the other informed on activities of the French, the common threat-of-
the-moment to them both.9
In 1702 the English in Carolina took advantage of the outbreak of war
in Europe to attack Spain in Florida. In September 1702 a Carolinian and
Yamassee expeditionary force of 800 to 1200 (sources disagree) set out for
Spanish Florida. Spanish-allied coastal Natives fled to St. Augustine's
fortress as the English with their own Indian allies approached. Charles
Arnade termed the conflict in Florida as "one of the first large engagements in
the international struggle on the North American continent.... [which]
marked the beginning of a century of warfare in North America."10 English

44
attacks in the Apalachee area in both 1702 and 1704 resulted In the
destruction of Spanish missions and the capture and enslavement of
“reasonably no more than a thousand Natives” according to John Hann's
assessment. The leader of the English forces, James Moore, reported figures
ranging from 400 to 4000.” The English would sell the captives to offset the
cost of the conflict. The Carolinians' assaults left the Natives scattered.
While In the east all racial and cultural groups suffered from the total burning
of the capital city by the English before the invaders retreated.
In 1715 Carolina’s Yamassee allies turned on the English colonists.
Florida's governor denied any part in inciting the attacks. In truth the Spanish
in Florida were engaged in literally rebuilding St. Augustine and were hardly
in a condition to give more than verbal support to attacks against the English.
Outlying Spanish missions were almost nonexistent, for the Spanish in Florida
had not yet recuperated sufficiently to move out much beyond the capital and
the protection of the fort and Its artillery. Many Native Americans of South
Carolina subsequently fled to Florida for refuge. Historian John Hann notes
the paradox of the refugees running to Spanish Florida from the Yamassee
War who had only a decade earlier "played prominent roles in the destruction
of the Florida missions." Hann further asserts that the influx led to a
significant reorganization and expansion of the settlements that had already
arisen to accommodate the refugees from the missions in the century's first
decade.12 Hoping to perpetuate "infidel and Catholic Indians" as allies,

45
Florida Governor Coreóles requested from the Spanish crown "funds to
succor and bring them to our side ... [and] make them productive."13 He
feared that the English would try to invade in order to destroy their former
Native allies nowin Florida.14
The tables of the southeast had turned. The Yamassees had forced
contraction of English settlement to a small area of South Carolina
reminiscent of what the English had done to the Spanish of Florida only about
fifteen years earlier. Perhaps Córcolés wanted also to ensure his own peace
with the Native rebels, who had now seen their own strength and who might
decide to use It on the Spanish as well. Indeed the Interaction between the
Spanish and the Natives, albeit with various and different Native groups as
time passed, had transformed from the Spaniards’ requiring labor and
products to a Spanish position of supporting Natives as refugees and
potential allies or at the least to appease them and assure inaction on the part
of the Natives.
During the first quarter of the eighteenth century relations with Native
Americans in Spanish Florida found the Natives transformed into an expense,
a fiscal liability that could not be neglected lest they defect to other empires.
Gangs of workers no longer arrived from missions to sustain defense projects
and other public works. Indians had been interacting within the society since
the Europeans' arrival. Spanish male colonists early on took Indian women
as brides, which allowed the establishment of a stable and self-sustaining

46
population early. A priest shipwrecked about 1595 reported "there are few
Spanish women, and only today I heard it said that a Spaniard was married to
an Indian chieftainess". He also observed that some of the Indians spoke
Castillian well and dressed in the Spanish style.15
Indians served as personal servants and contract workers for Spanish
families at outposts and in St. Augustine. Native Americans in Apalachee in
the San Luis region resentfully provided services to the household of the
deputy governor stationed there, Juan Fernández de Florencia. Indians
manned the ferries at the St. Johns River crossing to the interior, building and
repairing the vessels as well. Indians came from Apalachee to serve
employers in St. Augustine. Two who ran amok in St. Augustine, fashioning
small counterfeit coins, described themselves: "a contract Indian" and the
other as having "no other trade than to render service in what he is ordered
to, as at present he is serving [his master] in his field."16 Indians' carpentry
skills helped literally to build St. Augustine. After felling the trees, the Natives
had planed the finished boards for the roof and fences of the governor's
house built in 1690 and they might very well have done so for private building
in exchange for payment in cash, but more likely in kind. During the
confinement of Florida residents in the English siege of St. Augustine, Marta
María, a Guale wage worker (naboría) married to a slave, gave birth to one of
the babies bom inside the fortress.17

47
The Yamassee uprising in Carolina and its shockwaves of refugees
brought about new interactions between Native and Spanish. The refugees
were settled along the very perimeter of the town of St. Augustine. Indians
from several villages and language groups were mixed together within the
enclaves. John Hann has translated accountings by officials and friars of the
refugee villages, which emphasize languages as well as village affiliations.
Chilean historian Mario Góngora observes that colonial officials and priests
throughout Spanish America denominated and grouped Natives by language
rather than by Native organization In the early days of New-World
settlement, missionaries emphasized the preservation of Native tongues and
evangelized in the Indian languages, the learning of which they considered to
be one of their first duties. More than two hundred years later the tradition of
linguistic classification and separation persisted throughout Latin America and
perpetuated the racial and caste system.18
Retreat and Relocations
Like a concertina, Florida’s mission villages over the five decades after
the 1702-1704 destructions moved alternately nearer to and then farther from
St. Augustine in response to raids or threats of raids. In the process of the
relocations villages were combined and sometimes new refugees attached
when the latters’ towns ceased to be viable communities. For example, the
Pocotalaca village had relocated nearer the capital after an early-morning

48
attack on November 1, 1725 drove its residents into the safety of the city from
their location at Las Rosas de Ayamón about 16 miles south of St. Augustine
(two or three miles south of Matanzas Inlet). Following this raid, the chief of
the village and his family lived in town, sustained by one of the town's
upstanding citizens. Agustín Guillermo de Fuentes "received into his own
house" the chief, his wife, three children, his father- and mother-in-law, the
chiefs nephew and another young boy.19 But so insecure did the refugees of
the relocated Pocotalaca village feel that in 1728 they moved into the town at
night from their daytime location already as close as "a musket-shot distance
from the castillo."20 In 1739 Governor Manuel de Montlano moved the
Pocatalaca members back to the countryside "to cultivate more fertile lands . .
at a distance of four leagues," probably near their earlier location at Ayamón.
(A league’s size varied from 2-1/2 to four miles. By the late 1700s in Florida,
it often equaled about three miles.) But they would not remain in the
countryside. In 1763 an alphabetical symbol on Engineer Pablo Castelló's
map marked the existence of the village of Pocotalaca once again closer to
St. Augustine, on the southern outskirts of the town.21 An ordinary green-
and-white bridge sign on Interstate 95 today bearing the words "Pocotaliga
River" reminds of the villagers’ refugee history and the sign serves as an
unintentional epitaph for that village's even earlier, pre-Florida site in South
Carolina.

49
The trail of the village of Tolomato likewise wound its way ever
southward down the coastal islands and ultimately departed the North
American mainland for the Antilles in 1763. Until the middle of the
seventeenth century the Tolomato people inhabited the area around St.
Catherine's Island on the Georgia coast. At some time prior to 1658 the
Tolomato village was located in McIntosh County; some have suggested at
the site of Fort King George.22 Raids by hostile, non-Christian Indians forced
the village's displacement to a new site some two to three leagues north of St.
Augustine. Bishop Calderón visited the mission of La Natividad de Nuestra
Señora de Guadalupe de Tolomato in 1675, when it was situated at the tip of
the Guana peninsula on North River near St. Augustine.23 The Tolomato
Cemetery on Cordova Street in St. Augustine marks a subsequent location of
the village and perpetuates its name. (The cemetery postdates the village.)
The graveyard occupies the last North American mainland location of the
Tolomato villagers. In 1763 remnants of the Tolomato people evacuated
Florida for Cuba, along with the rest of the colony's Spanish subjects, in the
face of incoming British rule.
While Natives associated with missions themselves or at least with the
missions' inhabitants sought security near the capital, other southeastern
Natives were filling the lands in the interior of the Florida peninsula left vacant
by the missions’ disappearance. Spanish colonial officials took advantage of
animosities between Creek groups and English colonists in the southeast and

50
among the Creeks groups themselves to invite the disenchanted groups to
relocate to Florida. The Creek groups might have also been looking for areas
with more fertile soil than their planting grounds in today’s Georgia could offer
after years of maize and bean culture. Lt. Diego Peña visited Lower Creek
villages in 1716, 1717 and 1718 and successfully recruited new residents for
Spanish Florida.2'1
Little Is known about the half century of relocation into Florida.
Anthropologist Brent Weisman illustrates the minimal information in his
remark that with respect to the exact dates of Seminole colonization in
Florida: “The period 1716-67 is as much as we can say.” Weisman and
historian John Mahon divide early Seminole history into two periods. The
“colonization period” featured the initial migrations of the Creek towns into
Florida. The “enterprise period" saw an era of prosperity under British and
returned Spanish rule prior to the cession of Florida to the United States.
During the colonization period Creeks not only migrated into Florida, but also
diminished their ties and identification with the Creek groups they left behind.
By the time of Florida’s transfer to Great Britain, the relocated Creeks had
become known as Seminóles.25 The term “Seminole” derives from a
Muskogee term simano-li. which itself had been appropriated from the
Spanish word cimarrón, both meaning “wild” or “runaway."26

51
While these migrating groups were friendly with the Spanish regime, there
was little contact between these two groups and cultures. With little
interaction, Seminóles remained for the most part outside of the orbit of
Iberian cultural influence.
From Village to Town; from Ward to Citizen
Proximity and manpower needs of the Spanish colony enabled some of
the Native Americans refuged near the capital to move out of their Indian
enclaves and into the town’s neighborhoods. According to historian Robert
Gold's computations, eighty-nine Indians, composing nineteen families, left
St. Augustine in the 1763 evacuation. But St. Augustine's Indians were in fact
undercounted; the tally of the Indian evacuees included only wards of the
Crown and not the independent Indian residents.
Native American families who had left their village homes for a town
residence and economic integration also achieved documentary identification
with the military and civilian personnel.27 For modern researchers the Indian
who moved into homes interspersed among the Spanish citizenry became
increasingly difficult to locate in contemporary records: with their progressive
integration into the tableau of Spanish society, the Indians blended into the
documentary mosaic as well. Without the survival of the Catholic Church's
records of births, marriages and deaths and the expanded information
required for those entries in the mid-eighteenth century, these "urban Indians"

52
would be almost Impossible to discern-perhaps an Indication of how well the
Natives blended into the society itself at the time. Intensive study of the
parish records yields recognition of the presence of independent Indians
families and enables the creation of genealogies and partial biographies of
the individuals who composed the families.
Pedro Tomás de Ribera and his wife, María de la Cruz, of Tolomato
village, established themselves as an Independent, self-sustaining family
within the town walls or inside the defense line (lineal Pedro and Maria
literally and juridically crossed the line, truly making a positive passage
toward higher personal and social evolution from the perspective of the
dominant Hispanic culture. Pedro and Maria had been born during the years
when the Tolomato village relocated for the survival of its members and as a
group. In sworn statements and Church records Ribera claimed that he was a
native of this Guale (¡baja) village.28 Although in the eyes of Euro-American
recorders the Riberas had shed their village affiliation for town citizenship,
Maria and Pedro continued to live very close to their village. They located
their home on the west side of Spanish Street--at the closest possible site to
the Tolomato village.29 In 1764 the Ribera-de la Cruz homesite occupied the
width of the block and with street frontage of 44 varas (120 English feet). The
structures on the Ribera-de la Cruz lot were not ephemeral refugee huts.
Archaeological evidence indicated a two-cell structure with an interior

53
masonry partition and the foundations' dimensions suggest a two-story
building.30
Physically as well as symbolically, Pedro and Maria remained,
however, close to the line between being Indian and Hispanic—between ward
and citizen. Their back property boundary was a portion of the defense line
that surrounded St. Augustine and it marked the spatial and social
designation between inside the walls and outside the walls. Discussing free-
black contemporaries of Pedro and Maria as well as other town Indians in St.
Augustine society, historian Jane Landers refers to the Spanish cultural
association of urbanization with the advance of civilization. Residence
outside the city, outside its walls, reflected lower cultural and spiritual
development. She asserts that the efforts in 1752 of Governor García de ,,
Solis to remove blacks back to their own former village at Mose '"beyond the
walls'.. . made a visible statement about their supposed inferiority." The free
blacks had moved into St. Augustine for protection in 1740, abandoning their
own village about two miles north of the capital. It is interesting that Governor
Montiano's moving the Pocotalaca village back to the countryside (mentioned
previously) was contemporaneous with Montiano’s establishing of the free
black community at Mose in 1738.31 Montiano had removed the less Hispanic
elements out of town and to the periphery, where they could also serve as
first lines of defense. These peripheral residents had the most to fear and to

54
lose from British attacks or British-allied Indian raids; runaway slaves and
enemy Indians could be taken or re-taken as slaves.
Ribera claimed that he and his family were parishioners and citizens of
juridical St. Augustine and were listed as such on the official rolls. Distinction
between full-fledged parishoner and mission Indian meant the difference
between independence or dependency, between being a legally full member
of the society, a vecino, or being a ward under the jurisdiction of the friars.
Ribera stated that he had been married and received a nuptial benediction in
the parish church, and that his children likewise had all been baptized in the
parish church. When a Franciscan friar included Ribera and his family on the
lists of those under the friars' care, Ribera objected and claimed that the
friar's action was "against my wishes." The formal objection by Ribera might
well have been instigated and orchestrated by the secular clergy, who wanted
to retain as many parishioners as possible. Ribera’s statement, however,
illustrates the importance of the distinction to him and his family. Natives had
the option, or in the language of the day privilege, granted by the king to
choose their parish. Ribera and de la Cruz chose the main parish church of
St. Augustine, not a mission church.32
Ribera acquired a man-space (plaza del rev) with the cavalry company
and it can be reasonably assumed the pay and equipment that accompanied
the position as well. In 1746 he was killed while fighting enemy Indians.33
María de la Cruz might have also have contributed cash or goods to the family

55
through her own work. A notation that Maria baptized a newborn infant at the
point of death suggests that Maria might have served as a midwife.34
Assimilation and incorporation of Pedro and Maria into the economy
and society of colonial Florida was reflected in the marriages of their four
children who lived to adulthood. Many other siblings had been laid to rest in
the Florida soil, for the parish records reveal a succession of burials in the
churchyard of small, frequently nameless, children Ípárvulos) born to Pedro
and Maria: in December 1737, November 1738 (this girl surviving at least
long enough to receive a name), August 1740, June 1741.35
The marriages of Pedro and Maria's children reflected the changing
population and the changes to the society of St. Augustine society. Four
children survived Pedro, none of whom married either residents of Indian
towns nor mestizos (children with white and Indian parentage).36 Very much
in the St. Augustine tradition, daughter Ana Lucia married a soldier from
southern Spain. This couple represented the expected interracial marriage:
Spanish soldiers had been finding wives among the Native population since
the earliest days of the colony. Juan de Ribera married a woman recently
arrived in St. Augustine as part of an immigrant group of Canary Islanders.
When Juan died in Havana in 1772, his will revealed how acculturated into
Hispanic society he had become. He instructed that he be buried according
to the rituals of the Third of Order of St. Francis, a prestigious international
religious order for laypersons.37

56
Sons Francisco Xavier and Antonio married white creole women born
in St. Augustine. The recognition of the existence of these marriages runs
counter to the widely accepted assumption that "in the Spanish town ... the
union of Spanish and Indian always involved a Spanish man and an Indian
women."38 Francisco Xavier's father-in-law had arrived in St. Augustine as a
soldier from southern Spain and typically found a wife among the town's Euro-
American population.39 The most surprising union was the one contracted by
Antonio de la Cruz Ribera. Here was a Native American man who married a
local Spanish woman--and one who was highly connected, at that. Antonio's
wife was a first cousin of the wife of Governor Lucas de Palacio. Did Antonio
make a surprising match or did the governor? Perhaps both men did. Father
Juan José de Solana, who said little about Governor Palacio that was
complimentary, criticized the governor for marrying below his station with this
match.40
One street to the east of the Ribera-de la Cruz homesite lived another
Indian family. In the house that stood directly at the head of the alley that led
to the Castillo lived the Native American family of Chief (Cacjgue) Francisco
Jospogue.41 In his old age, Chief Francisco petitioned the Spanish Crown to
award him a pension in recognition of his loyalty and sacrifices. His written
request provides an unusual opportunity to follow the story of a Native
American family for more than a century. The family's tale represents and
symbolizes the travails of the Native groups buffeted by international rivalry in

57
the colonial southeast. Chief Francisco's testimony indicated that he was
born to "noble Christian" parents only a few years before the founding (1670)
of Charleston; he claimed to be about thirty-six years of age when Florida
Governor Torres y Ayala (1693-99) recognized him as hereditary chief of his
village.42 St. Catherine's Island or its vicinity was probably Chief Francisco's
birthplace; Ospogue Bar was located four leagues south of Sapelo Sound in
Guale.43 Francisco's long association with the Spanish, perhaps since birth in
the 1660s or 1670s, indicated Guale or Timucuan ancestry. Perhaps a friar
taught him early to sign his name, for his petition to the king in 1728 bears
Francisco's signature.
Chief Francisco was silent about his migration toward St. Augustine
and Spanish protection. He paid a high price for his allegiance to the Spanish
Crown. In the early months of 1702 Governor Zúñiga spoke of Francisco's
position as chief of the mission village of Nombre de Dios Chiquito. The
English incursions into Spanish Florida and the siege of St. Augustine at the
end of that year would destroy and displace Native villages along the coast.
In November 1715, enemy "pagan" Indians allied with the English descended
upon St. Augustine seeking to burn the town. Chief Francisco was "one of the
first to take up arms to defend" the "city of Florida." His family, defenseless in
the absence of the fighting men of the village, were captured by the
marauders. The Spanish Council of the Indies in Madrid in 1716 regretted the
situation in which the English "offer[ed] arms, munitions, foods and clothing to

58
those Indians who will capture Christian [that is, Catholic] Indians found within
Carolina's jurisdiction." Carolina's putative territorial claims at that time
extended to a line far south of St. Augustine. English-led raiders separated
the strong Indians at knifepoint, then "gather[ed] up the women and children
to conduct them away to be sold as slaves in other British lands." Often the
head chiefs of these violated villages banded together to offer foods and other
products to ransom their captured families. Three times the English offered to
return Chief Francisco's family in exchange for his alliance with the English
side and abandonment of Catholicism. Three times he refused. He believed
that his wife and four children had been dispersed and separately "perished,"
probably sold as slaves to work on sugar plantations in Jamaica or
Barbados.44
In 1717, left without a family and perhaps without many of his former
followers Chief Francisco found himself shepherding a group of recent
refugees who had fled the Yamasees' war with the English. In 1715 the
Yamasees as well as Creeks, Choctaws and Cherokees in Carolina had
revolted in dissatisfaction with English traders. The Yamasees, who had
forsaken the Spanish and the Guale region for the English in Carolina during
the 1680s, turned back to their old Spanish allies for protection after the
uprising.45 Chief Jospo[gue] was attached, possibly assigned, to the
Yamasee village of Our Lady of Candelaria. He governed forty-six adults and
twenty-three children, all "heathens" except one warrior. Perhaps the

59
governor placed these newcomers under Francisco's care because of the
chiefs record of accomplishing many conversions in the past and his
knowledge of the Yamasee language."16
Francisco Jospo[gue] and Agustina Pérez were married some time
before 1728. Agustina appears only once in the parish records with a racial
description: mestiza. All of the entries for Agustina reside in the books for
non-whites, but records offer no village association for her or her parents.
Perhaps Agustina was, like her sister, a native of the village of Nombre de
Dios Chiquito, which had at one time been headed by Chief Francisco
Jospogue. Perhaps wishing to create a new family, Chief Francisco chose a
wife quite a bit younger than himself, for Agustina bore children as late as
1751, whereas Francisco was in his sixties when their son Miguel was born in
1728. Over the at least twenty-two years that Agustina was giving birth, the
Church records suggest that the newborns that she buried outnumbered
those that survived.47
The Jospo family probably took advantage of the purchasing power
that came with the granting of Francisco's pension of two reales daily to
acquire a lot and tabby house on St. George Street. They moved In between
1734, when Francisco's petition was finally forwarded to the proper
authorities, and before 1737, when neighbors referred to Jospo as deceased.
Their lot, like the Riberas' property, spanned the width of the block, 191 feet
(70 varas), but provided only 41 feet (15 varas) frontage on St. George Street.

60
In 1738 Agustina married the son of a chief, a birth position that held little
promise in the matrilineal Native societies of the southeast. Thus would
Agustina's new husband be bypassed in a structure wherein inheritance to
rule passed from uncle to nephew through the chiefs sister.48
Agustina's new husband, Juan de Fuentes, found employment as a
sailor and later as a soldier in the artillery company, while Agustina and her
child or children contributed money to the household as the heirs to Chief
Francisco's pension, secured by virtue of Francisco's loyalty. Thus Agustina
Pérez provided income for her family through the same pension mechanism
as did many of St. Augustine's Euro-American widows.49
The "urban" Indians insinuated themselves into the social fabric of St.
Augustine through the foremost institutions of the Spanish world: the church
and the military. Like Ribera, Fuentes looked to his relationship to the Church
structure to verify his independence and citizenship. Incorporated into the
Franciscans' census like Ribera and his family, Fuentes also argued that he
was a citizen of the town and that he and his family were communicants of the
parish church, not residents of the missions or their churches. In the rivalry
between the secular priests, who staffed the parish church, and the friars, who
manned the missions, Ribera, Fuentes, along with other neighbors, were
enrolled by the friars to "pad" statistics as the missionaries tried to justify their
continued existence in the face of dwindling flocks when the Indian families
had indeed left behind their status as dependent, mission Indians. The

61
controversy about who had jurisdiction over natives in St. Augustine had
come up at the beginning at the eighteenth century. At that time the crown
decided in favor of the regular clergy-the Franciscans. But in 1746, the
crown reversed its earlier decision and favored the secular clergy. John
TePaske’s administrative viewpoint presents the religious contention from the
administrative viewpoint and what the decisions meant for the church and
state. But, indeed, the subjects of the controversy had their own concerns
and saw their autonomy at issue.50
Social Alliances
Mirroring the dominant society, these Indian families employed the
relationships arising out of personal religious life to improve and solidify their
status as citizens. Choices of sponsors and attendants at the personal
religious rites of baptism and marriage established and formalized obligations
which could carry over into the profane parts of life. Godparents of higher
standing could open social and economic opportunities for the godchild or for
the child's parents. Landers has identified the importance of the ritual
kinships and the dynamics associated with godparenthood as practiced by
blacks in Spanish St. Augustine. She notes that religious kinships linked all
three races. Generally white persons could offer the most status and benefits
through the ritual relations to blacks, Indians, or mixed bloods. Throughout
the Spanish Indies birth in the Iberian peninsula carried status that birth in the

62
Americas did not command. Choice of sponsors was effected by proximity
considerations, such as the selection of neighbors, or by corporate or
institutional relations, such as social hierarchy or social distance imposed by
military ranks. Nor should we diminish or discount the importance and
strength of affection as an influence in the selection. Native Americans, of
course, honored and entrusted members of their own families and villages
with selection to stand for them in these important positions.
But St. Augustine's Native American families also chose Spanish-born
neighbors, and in a few surprising instances were chosen by Spanish families
to act as witnesses or sponsors at rites for Spanish citizens. When the
daughter of Agustina Pérez and the deceased Chief Francisco Jospogue
married in 1750, Agustina selected her entrepreneurial next-door neighbor,
the Iberian, Francisco Navarro, to be a witness. Agustina had similarly
incorporated other Spanish neighbors when her own sister, the latter still
living in her natal village, had married a few years earlier. Agustina at that
time chose a locally important couple, the Hitas, who lived only a few doors
away. It is likely that the nuptials took place at Agustina's house on St.
George Street. Navarro, who owned a store that sold English wares,
members of the Hita family, and Joaquin Blanco, in charge of the Crown's
warehouse and an importer in his own right, frequently participated in non¬
white ceremonies, perhaps expanding or reinforcing obligations and
strengthening their own commercial positions in the process.51

63
Several Latin American historians who have studied the practice of
godparenthood (compadrazgo) conclude that in the Spanish New World the
relationship between the parents and godparents was more important than
that between the godparent and godchild, the latter being the primary
relationship In Spain.52 Artillery Sergeant Martín Martinez Gallegos, who lived
directly across the street from Agustina Pérez and Juan de Fuentes, agreed
to be godfather to their daughter. A sailor at the time of the baby's baptism,
Fuentes subsequently advanced economically and no doubt socially when he
was able to enlist in an artillery company. Did the godfather-sergeant
facilitate Fuentes's entry into the artillery corps? Artillery service was
desirable in a military town for not only did the artillery pay better than cavalry
service but it also offered its members exemptions and privileges not
available to other branches, such as the cavalry or infantry.53 Fuentes and
Antonio de la Cruz Ribera, both Indians, drew annual salaries of 180 pesos
as artillerymen in comparison to the 158 pesos paid to Fuentes's neighbor,
infantryman Lorenzo Gómez, from an old St. Augustine creole family. In an
Interesting interracial turnabout Gómez requested the Indian Francisco Xávler
de Ribera to be the godfather of Gomez's two-day-old daughter. Kinship with
the Indian Ribera might have offered some economic advantage to Gómez for
Francisco Xavier owned land and buildings along the waterfront in the area
where retail stores and warehouses were located.54

64
Flexible Racial Classification
As Native American residents of St. Augustine moved further into the
town's social and economic life, the descriptions of them in racial terms
diminished in documents and was replaced by economic identification, usually
in occupational terms. When Juan de Fuentes married Agustina Pérez, the
priest recording the union described the bride and groom in terms of their
relationships to Indian nobles: the widow and the son of chiefs, respectively.
Parish records made two and three years later denominated Fuentes by his
occupation, a sailor, and did not include a racial description for him.
The priests were not consistent in their use of terms specifying racial
mixture. Yet what appears to be inconsistencies might very well have been
determined acts by the recorders. In 1735 the Church in St. Augustine began
to record the sacraments-baptism, marriage, burials-in separate sets of
books for whites and for non-whites (pardos v morenos v indios). The books
of the St. Augustine parish, however, did not employ the variety of terms
indicating fractional racial mixture that were used in Central and South
America. In addition to "Indian" and "black," "mestizo" (of Indian and white
ancestry) and "mulatto" (of black and white ancestry) appeared in the St.
Augustine records with few additional terms. During the course of a lifetime a
person of non-white or mixed ancestry might be described with different terms
by the same recorder. The members of the Ribera family appear as Indians in
some entries, as mestizos in others, and in still other with no racial

65
identification, which implied a white person, even when it was the same priest
signing the seemingly contradictory entries. The inconsistencies cannot be
attributed merely to carelessness or mental lapses on the part of the priests
for such practices have been noted in other areas of colonial Latin America.
Throughout Latin America, even to modern times, terms that denote
racial identification have been applied to individuals with fluidity, the terms
being contingent upon the benefits to either the recorder and/or the subject.
Thus in Latin America the same individual might be named even by the same
recorder as an Indian in one instance and a mestizo in another, depending on
the circumstances. Conversely in much of Anglo America the ambiguity of
intermediate identity was avoided by the practice of what anthropologist
Marvin Harris calls "hypo-descent:" identification with a racially subordinate
ancestor rather than with one of the superordinate group. Identification with
"whiteness" was, however, still beneficial in Latin America. Marriage records
tended to list the marital parties in racial terms that narrowed the social
distance. Thus the union between an Indian and a Caucasian might be
recorded in the books of white marriages with the Indian's racial identity
"lightened" to the category of mestizo. Historian Patricia Seed found such
occurrences in her analysis of mid-eighteenth century parish and census
records from Mexico City. Seed's study offers insight into the interracial
relationships, which were also interpersonal relationships, in St. Augustine.

66
Additionally her work suggests possible explanations for the documentary
Inconsistencies in St. Augustine's records.55
The treatment of Antonio de la Cruz Ribera and his children Is
particularly Interesting. In May 1756, when Ribera married Rosa María de
Angulo, a woman of an established St. Augustine creole family, Father Juan
José de Solana entered the record of their nuptials in the book of white
marriages; the priest made no reference to Ribera's racial background,
implying white. Thus was the social distance narrowed in the records. The
earlier marriage of Antonio's brother, Francisco Xavier, to a white woman was
recorded In the same manner. At the baptism of the former couple's firstborn
In January 1758, Father Solana again registered the event In the book for
whites. But the following January, Father Solana recorded the baptism of the
Riberas second son in the book of non-whites and furthermore identified
Antonio Ribera as a mestizo. In March 1761 the record of the baptism of the
Riberas' third son was entered in the book of whites. Perhaps the complexion
or appearance of the individual babies influenced the decisions.
But there is another scenario that illustrates the presence in St.
Augustine of the same attitudes and practices identified by Seed for Mexico.
Father Solana probably chose to record the marriage in the book of whites in
consideration for the respectable birth family of Rosa Maria de Angulo and
the same sentiment was at work at the time of the first child's baptism. By the
time that Ildefonso, the second son, was born a strong animosity existed

67
between Father Solana and Governor Palacio, the latter having married into
the family of the baby's mother. Solana found the governor lacking in his
religious behavior and selfish and remiss in carrying out the responsibilities of
office and reported these opinions to officials in Cuba any number of times.56
In the honor-oriented society of the colonial Spanish world the baptism of the
tiny Ribera boy offered Father Solana an opportunity for a more subtle and
enduring slight than direct criticism of the governor. The priest could gleefully
dishonor the colony's highest official by recording the governor's kinship with
racially inferior relatives. The baptismal record of two-days-old Ildefonso
Ribera became the weapon. By 1761 a different priest entered the baptism of
the couple's third child in the book of white baptisms. By then, however,
Father Solana was no longer serving the St. Augustine parish, having fled to
Cuba to avoid arrest at the orders of Governor Palacio. And in the finality and
singularity of burial, Antonio Ribera came full circle in the Church documents,
back to his identity as an Indian.57
Conclusions
The recognition of the activities and roles of Indian families such as the
de la Cruz-Ribera group or the families formed by Agustina Pérez and her two
husbands introduces a new perspective into the history of Spanish Florida
and the colonial southeast. The institutional structures that kept St. Augustine
society so conservative and ordered also provided the scaffolding for

68
adventurous and enterprising Indians to become citizens of the town, not just
residents. These families penetrated St. Augustine society through fictive
kinship (godparental relationships) and corporate and commercial
connections. Certainly the opportunity to move into the cash economy
through military enlistment provided the means to advance socially and
materially. Members of the Ribera-de la Cruz family had acquired enough
worldly goods to make wills necessary in order to direct the disposition of their
possessions, and they had sufficient funds to pay the government notaries to
compose the wills.58 While it is doubtful that they were fully integrated into the
society of St. Augustine, these Indian families illustrate that their participation
in the town's social and economic life was not as constrained and
opportunities were not as foreclosed as previously thought.
In Spanish Florida, some Natives were able to take advantage of the
labor and defensive needs to insert themselves into the mainstream economy:
the defense budget. In the process they lost their Indian identity in the
documents. Usually their racial classification was first lightened to mestizo
and with incorporation into the army a military or occupational designation
replaced the racial one. These same individuals declared themselves full-
fledged parishioners of the St. Augustine church and were listed by the
secular priests and no longer ministered to by Franciscans priests and
counted as mission villagers and wards of the crown.59 Regular and secular
clergy argued over the status of Indians, which was in fact a conflict over

69
control and authority over a clientele. For the Natives, becoming a
parishioner was part of the process toward full citizenship, being a vecino.
The natives who received a plaza in the garrison were paid as any other
cavalryman, pilot, or artilleryman and were not dependent upon royal charity.
They were sui juris and no longer children or incompetents under the law nor
under the Franciscans. Every Native American who became a vecino
diminished the influence of the friars.
Spanish Florida had looked to non-whites for fighting men for many
years. It has already been mentioned that the Spanish governor activated an
Indian militia in the light of Cromwell’s Western Design.60 In 1683 blacks and
mulattoes were organized into their own militia-before the Spanish Crown
would formally institute such a policy in the Caribbean following the Seven
Years War.61
As British Carolina and Georgia burgeoned, Spanish Florida
increasingly felt the need for soldiers who were bound by a formalized
obligation-more than a militia requirement-and Spain did not adequately
deliver fighting men. To oversimplify: Spain now had to pay the going rate for
what in former times it could demand.
Recognizing the entry of Indian families into the economic mainstream
adds another dimension to the existing view of assimilation of Natives in St.
Augustine. Economic integration is much more rapid than cultural
amalgamation as Marvin Harris has observed. Thus economic means offer

70
more rapid integration than do cultural mechanisms. For the Native
Americans of Spanish Florida social independence and economic integration
went hand in hand when achieved through the primary institutions of the
existing society. Not all Indians entered mainstream society in the cultural
slipstream of a Spanish or creole male, whether he be husband or father. It
was possible for the individual to make the entrée directly, rapidly, and in the
individual's own right rather than serving some sort of cultural apprenticeship
while attached to a member of the dominant society and culture.
Notes
1. Jane Landers, "Black Society in Spanish St. Augustine," Ph D. diss.
University of Florida, 1988; and Landers, "Traditions of African American
Freedom and Community in Colonial Spanish Florida," in David R. Colburn
and Jane L. Landers, eds., The African American Fleritaqe of Florida
(Gainesville: University Press of Florida, 1995), 19-25.
2. Daniel H. Usner, Jr., "American Indians in Colonial New Orleans," in Peter
H. Wood, Gregory A. Waselkov, and M. Thomas Hatley, eds., Powhatan's
Mantle: Indians in the Colonial Southeast (Lincoln: University of Nebraska
Press, 1989), 106; Almon Wheeler Lauber, Indian Slavery in Colonial Times
Within the Present Limits of the United States. (1913, reprint, Williamstown,
Mass.: Corner House Publishers, 1970), 130-33; John Donald Duncan,
"Indian Slavery," in Bruce Glasrud and Alan M. Smith, Race Relations in
British North America. 1607-1783 (Chicago: Nelson-Hall, 1982), quote on 85.
3. Amy Turner Bushnell. Situado and Sabana: Spain's Support System for
the Presidio and Mission Provinces of Florida (New York: American Museum
of Natural History, 1994), 30-31; David J. Weber, The Spanish Frontier in
North America (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1992), 125.

71
4. Bushnell, Situado and Sabana. 118,122, quotes on 122; Leslie Bethell,
ed. Cambridge History of Latin America (Cambridge: Cambridge University
Press, 1984)1:220-21
5. John E. Worth, The Timucuan Chiefdoms of Spanish Florida (Gainesville:
University Press of Florida, 1997)1:213; John H. Hann, A History of the
Timucua Indians and Missions (Gainesville: University Press of Florida,
1996), 192, 261-5. Flann asserts that the Timucua bore the full brunt of a
series of epidemics from 1614-17 by virtue of their close contact with the
pathogen-carrying Spanish Floridians. He claims that the disappearance of a
substantial portion of the Timucua population was an important motivator for
extension of the missions into Apalachee.
6. Bushnell, Situado and Sabana. 129-31, quote on 129; J. Leitch Wright, Jr.,
Analo-Spanish Rivalry in North America (Athens: University of Georgia Press,
1971), 44-45.
7. Converse D. Clowse, Economic Beginnings in Colonial South Carolina
(Columbia: University of South Carolina Press, 1971), 65-66.
8. Wright, Analo-Spanish Rivalry. 56.
9. Wright, Analo-Spanish Rivalry. 58.
10. Charles W. Arnade, The Sieoe of St. Augustine in 1702 (Gainesville:
University of Florida Press, 1959), quote on 8. Arnade's monograph is the
most complete account of the siege from the Spanish perspective.
11. John H. Hann, Apalachee. The Land Between the Rivers (Gainesville:
University of Florida Press, 1988), 281-83. Chapter 12 discusses the
discrepancies in the reports of number of slaves captured.
12. John H. Hann "St. Augustine's Fallout from the Yamassee War," Florida
Historical Quarterly 68 (1989): 186.
13. Governor and Other Officials to King, St. Augustine, 1715 November 28,
Archivo General de Indias (hereafter AGI) Johns B. Stetson Collection
(hereafter SC) P. K. Yonge Library of Florida, 58-1-30/44 (microfilm copies in
Historic St. Augustine Preservation Board collection [HSAPB]).
14. Governor of Florida, 1716 April 23, AGI SC 58-1-30/57.
15. Genaro García. Relación de los trabajos oue la oente de una nao
llamada Nra. Señora de la Merced padeció v de algunas cosas oue en
aquella flota sucedieron, escrita por Fray Andrés de San Miguel, publicada

72
por primera vez por Genaro García (Mexico: Casa de F. Aguilar Vera y
Compañía, 1902), 205-06.
16. Governor Diego Quiroga y Losada to Crown, 1693 April 24, AGI SC 54-5-
15/693; John H. Hann [trans ], "Apalachee Counterfeiters in St. Augustine,"
Florida Historical Quarterly 67 (1988): 59-60.
17. Royal Officials to Crown, 1696 April 20, AGI SC 54-5-15/114; Baptism of
Francisco, mulatto son of Juan de los Gasdos, slave of Adjutant Gerónimo
Regidor and Marta María, a naboría. 1702 November 18, Cathedral Parish
Records (hereafter CPR), Diocesan Center, Mandarin, Florida (microfilm
copies at St. Augustine Historical Society).
18. Mario Góngora. Studies in the Colonial History of Spanish America.
Richard Southern, trans. (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1975),
161-2.,
19. Petition of Agustín Guillermo de Fuentes y Herrera, 1734 April 29, AGI
SC 86-7-21/6.
20. Hann, "St. Augustine's Fallout from the Yamasee War," 194.
21. Manuel de Montiano Letterbook, 1740 January 31, Bundle 37 (hereafter
Bnd.), no.180, East Florida Papers (hereafter EFP), Library of Congress
Manuscript Collection (microfilm copies at St. Augustine Historical Society;
Pablo Castelló, "Plano del presidio de San Agustín de la Florida y sus
contornos . ..." 1763 July 21. Library of Congress (original in the Spanish
Ministry of War, LM 8a-1a), map #30, HSAPB
22. Alonso Las Alas spoke of the villages of Yoa and Tolomate along Sapelo
and St. Catherine's sounds in his testimony of September 12, 1600. Charles
W. Arnade, Florida on Trial. 1593-1602 (Coral Gables, Fla.: University of
Miami Press, 1959), 16; David Hurst Thomas, St. Catherine's: An Island in
Time (Atlanta: Georgia Endowment for the Humanities, 1988), 17. Hurst is
not convinced that the subsequent fort's location was the mission site.
23. Robert Allan Matter, "The Spanish Missions of Florida: The Friars Versus
the Governors in the 'Golden Age,' 1606-1690." (Ph D. diss., University of
Washington, 1972), 106, Michael V. Gannon, The Cross in the Sand: The
Early Catholic Church in Florida. 1513-1870 (Gainesville: University of Florida
Press, 1961), 64.
24. James W. Covington, “Migration of the Seminóles into Florida, 1700-
1820.” Florida Historical Quarterly 46 (1968): 340-57.

73
25. John K. Mahon and Brent R. Weisman, “Florida's Seminole and
Missocukee Peoples,” in Gannon, ed., The New History of Florida. 186-88,
quote on 187.
26. Harry A. Kersey. Jr.. The Seminole and Miccosukee Tribes: A Critical
Bibliography (Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1987), 1-2. Several
scholars disagree with this sequence of evolution of the name.
27. Robert L. Gold, Borderland Empires in Transition: The Triple-Nation
Transfer of Florida (Carbondale & Edwardsville: Southern Illinois University
Press, 1969), 67.
28. Statement of Pedro Tomás de Ribera, 1745 February 9, AGI Santo
Domingo (hereafter SD) 842 (microfilm copies at Yonge Library).
29. I have placed a different family on this site than the one selected by
Kathleen Deagan in her archaeological excavations. Deagan identified the
mestizo family of María Sebastiana de la Cruz and José Gallardo with this
site, but a better argument can be made for locating the Indian family of
another María de la Cruz and her husband, Pedro Tomás de Ribera, there.
There were several women by the name of María de la Cruz who appear in
the parish records during the pertinent time period. The biographical cards at
the St. Augustine Historical Society, which were probably the source of
information about María de la Cruz, did not and still do not include the parish
records of non-whites. Thus the existence of the Indian, rather than mixed,
family which I place on the site was not a possibility offered to Deagan.
Both de la Puente's map and transfer of parcel #51 to Samuel Piles in
July 1764 refer to the "heirs of María de la Cruz" as the evacuating owner.
Maria, wife of Pedro Tomás de Ribera, had died shortly before the evacuation
and there was no time for the disposition of her estate, hence the notation on
the map as belonging to her heirs. A woman by the name of Maria
Sebastiana de la Cruz owned a house and lot on today's Tolomato Lane (de
la Puente #28) and there is no record of her death before the evacuation.
Juan José Elixio de la Puente, "Plano de la real fuerza, baluartes y linea de la
Plaza de San Agustín," 1764 January 22, parcel #51; Deagan, "Sex, Status
and Role of Mestizaje:" Kathleen Deagan, Spanish St. Auaustine: The
Archaeology of a Colonial Creole Community (Orlando: Academic Press,
1983); Burial of María de la Cruz, 1763 June 3, CPR (non-whites). After 1735
separate books were kept for whites and non-whites. Following the practice
of the colonial recorders, the term “non-whites” is used to indicate such
books. No racial term either indicates the books for whites, after 1735, or the
racially unseparated books before 1735.

74
30. Eligió de la Puente map, lot #51; Claims for Town Lots, Spanish Land
Grants Manuscript Collection, Florida Department of State, Division of
Historical Resources; Deagan, Spanish St. Augustine. 108.
31. Jane Landers, "Gracia Real de Santa Teresa de Mose: A Free Black
Town In Spanish Colonial Florida,' American Historical Review 95 pp. 28 &
29 in SAHS booklet.
32. Statement of Pedro Tomás de Ribera, 1745 February 9, AGI SD 846.
33. Burial of Pedro Tomás de Ribera, 1746 January 13; burial of a small child
of Tomás Ribera, soldier of this presidio, and of Maria de la Cruz, 1737
December 19, CPR, (non-whites).
34. Burial of Maria Ignacia [Morente], 1749 February 5, CPR.
35. Burials, CPR (non-whites).
36. Estate of Juan de Ribera, Testamentary Proceedings, EFP.
37. Estate of Juan de Ribera; see A. J. R. Russell-Wood, "Prestige, Power
and Piety in Colonial Brazil: The Third Orders of Salvador," Hispanic
American Historical Review 69 (1989), for a discussion of third orders,
especially 78-87.
38. Deagan, Spanish St. Augustine. 104.
39. Baptism of Maria Barba, 1738 April 16; marriage of María de los Dolores
Barba to Francisco Xavier de Ribera, 1756 August 2, CPR.
40. Governor Palacio, a knight, was a widower when he married Josefa de
Escovedo.
41. House of Agustina Pérez (Eligió de la Puente map #62).
42. Petition of Francisco Jospogue, 1728 October with transmittal
correspondence dated 1734 January 12, AGI SC 86-7-21/5 (hereafter
Jospogue petition).
43. This information is included in listing of available ports from St. Augustine
in Santa Elena described by Bartolomé Arguelles in September 1602. See
Charles W. Arnade, Florida on Trial (Coral Gables, FL: University of Miami
Press, 1959), 47.
44.Jospogue Petition; Council of the Indies, Madrid, 1716 January 8, AGI SC
58-1-24/18.

75
45. Wright, Analo-Soanish Rivalry. 56.
46. Cacique Tospe [sic] was described as a speaker of the Yamasee
language. Hann, "St. Augustine's Fallout," 185; Statement of Governor José
de Zúñiga, 1702 [sic] January 11 in Jospogue Petition.
47. Marriage of Francisca Xaviela Pérez to Lorenzo de Selva, 1747 October
30; Statement of Governor José de Zúñiga, 1702 [sic] January 11, in
Jospogue Petition; Miguel Jospo was fifteen years old at his death in January
1744, giving him a 1728 birth date. Burial of Miguel Jospo, 1744 January 3;
burial of a small nameless child of Juan de Fuentes and Agustina [Pérez],
1751 August 7, CPR (non-whites).
48. Will of Gerónima Rodríguez states that her southern neighbors are "the
heirs of Francisco Jospo," 1737 February 14, Claim of Juana Navarro, Bundle
359, EFP; Marriage of Juan de Fuentes and Agustina Pérez, 1738 June 12,
CPR (non-whites).
49. Burial of Juana [de Fuentes], 1741 August 3, CRP (non-whites);
Francisco Jospogue had requested that his pension be passed to his heirs.
Jospogue Petition; Don José Antonio Gelabert to the Crown, General list of all
who serve and are paid by the king at the presidio of San Agustín, 1752,
Havana, AGI SC 87-1-14/2; Statement of Juan José de Fuentes, 1745
February 9, AGI SD 846; Juan José Eligió de la Puente to Governor of Cuba,
Havana, 1770 January 27, AGI SC 87-1-5/4; statement of Juan José de
Fuentes, 1745 February 5, AGI SD 846.
50. Statement of Juan José de Fuentes, 1745 February 9, AGI SD 846; John
Jay TePaske, The Governorship of Spanish Florida, 1700-1763 (Durham:
Duke University Press, 1964), 175.77.
51. Marriage of Crespin Francisco Diaz and Maria Antonia Jospo, 1750 July
1: Don Gerónimo de Hita and his wife, Juan de Avero, sponsored the
marriage of Agustina's sister, María Solana, marriage of Juan Mateo Muños
and María Solana, 1747 March 13, CPR (non-whites).
52. George Foster, Hugo Nutini and Betty Bell, Sidney Mintz and Eric Wolfe
noted flexibility and regional variations, but agreed on the importance of the
relationship among compadres.
53. Marriage of Lorenzo de Selva and Francisca Xaviela Pérez, 1747
October 30; baptism of Juana [de Fuentes], 1741 August 3, CPR (non¬
whites).

76
54. Don José Antonio Gelabert to the Crown, General list of all who serve
and are paid by the king at the presidio of San Agustín, 1752, Havana, AGI
SC 87-1-14/2; baptism of María Catalina Gómez, 1754 March 11, CPR; Eligió
de la Puente map, parcel #173.
55. Marvin Harris, Patterns of Race In the Americas (New York: Walker and
Company, 1964), 54-58; Patricia Seed," Social Dimensions of Race: Mexico
City, 1753." Hispanic American Historical Review 62 (1982): 569-606.
56. Robert Kaptizke, "The 'Calamities of Florida': Father Solana, Governor
Palacio y Valenzuela and the Desertions of 1756,” Florida Historical Quarterly
62 (1993): 1 -18.
57. Baptism of Josefa Maria de los Dolores Ribera, 1761 March 14, burial of
Antonio de la Cruz Ribera, 1763 July 19, CPR (non-whites); Kapitzke,
"Calamities of Florida," 16-17.
58. Burial of María de la Cruz, 1763 June 3; burial of Antonio de la Cruz
Ribera, 1763 June 19, CPR (non-whites).
59. Statements, 1745 February-April, AGI SD 846
60. “Western Design” (1654-6) was the term used by England’s Oliver
Cromwell for his expedition aimed at seizing important points in the West
Indies from which Spanish America might be placed at his mercy. The
successful seizure of Jamaica gave England a major naval base in the
Caribbean from which to attack Spanish and French colonies.
61. Jane Landers, "Fort Mose: Gracia Real de Santa Teresa de Mose: A
Free Black Town in Spanish Colonial Florida." American Historical Review 95
(1990): 9-30.

CHAPTER 4
ARCHITECTURE
The Spanish consulted conveniency
more than taste in their buildings.
-William Stork, 1765
Spanish residents and officials of Florida were able to pack up their
possessions and important papers both times they departed the colony, 1763
and 1821. But the buildings where they ate and slept, transacted business,
loved, grieved, and made their plans stayed in the Florida peninsula and
panhandle. When British subjects evacuated Florida in 1784, many
dismantled their buildings to transport for reconstruction in new locations, but
there are no reports of the Spanish doing likewise at either evacuation.1
The buildings left behind became the most notable and durable vestige
of Spanish presence in the southeast-a vestige that was at times
misunderstood and misinterpreted by contemporary non-Spanish observers
and then repeated by generations to come. In the attempt to reconcile the
status of St. Augustine's sixteenth-century beginnings with the remnant
physical evidence extant in later centuries, writers both ingenuous and
ingenious, historical and otherwise, attributed age to structures which in fact
77

78
were much younger; they either overlooked or perhaps were unaware of the
almost total destruction of the city in 1702.2
Albert Manucy's The Houses of St. Augustine, first published in 1962,
is the seminal, enduring, and standard analysis of the Euro-American
architecture of Spanish Florida.3 Manucy’s pioneering work emphasizes and
relies upon late colonial structures; that is, the era for which the most
documentary information is available. More extant examples originated in the
second Spanish period than in the first, and those that did remain from before
the 1763 evacuation were altered and enlarged by subsequent British and
Spanish residents. Because this study focuses on the period for which less
field data were available, it is less accepting of assertions in The Houses of
St. Augustine than many previous studies have been and offers refinements
to Manucy’s work for the years of the second Spanish century.
Decades later in 1997, looking back to the even earlier, founding days,
Manucy produced Sixteenth-Century St. Augustine to provide an architectural
picture of a now-invisible period.4 Seventeenth-century buildings remain the
most unknown of all although they succeeded the founding-era Euro-
American buildings. Anthropologist Kathleen Hoffman recently provided the
most descriptive assessment to date of the structures of the 1600s, based
largely on archaeological remnants. Hoffman found that post molds offered
evidence of wood-frame buildings. Narrative descriptions from the 1600s
were few and a dearth of inventories for what Hoffman denominates the

79
“middle period” limits data as well. What descriptions may be available for
the 1600s are characteristically less detailed than those for the eighteenth
century. In a succinct valuation in 1681 of Governor Pablo de Hita y
Salazar’s new private home, the appraising mason and carpenter reported
two buildings about 17 feet in height (6 varas) on a waterfront lot, constructed
primarily of wood and incorporating a small amount of masonry.5
By the middle of the eighteenth century appraisals articulated building
materials by unit sizes and number of items, as a mathematical and
engineering perspective came to prevail. But with regard to modern field
work, most architecture from the first half of the eighteenth century had
disappeared by the time of Manucy's investigations or had been altered and
masked by years of use and accommodation to the needs of occupants.6
This study brings to the analysis of architecture in Spanish Florida the
concept of several and successive Iberian regional cultures rather than a
single Spanish cultural tradition. In the second Spanish century the influx of
new soldiers and accompanying influence from additional Iberian regions
provoked change. This study also looks to previously unexamined individual-
level documents to present a functional analysis of building space and of
building components. It enables a look at the attributes and use of upper
levels and also provides descriptions of the exterior, which are difficult to
discern in the archaeological record.

80
New Men. New Iberian Regional Traditions
Florida’s buildings in 1763 were different creatures that those in 1565,
despite the implication of the idea of a “first-Spanish-period” architecture.
Developments in architecture in Spanish Florida should be seen as a product
of physical and cultural forces rather than predictable stages in a
deterministic architectural metamorphosis. Developments and changes in the
architecture of Spanish St. Augustine have been viewed from an almost
Darwinian evolutionary perspective. That is, an assumption that the changes
from earthen structures to wooden and then to masonry represented an ever
improving course. This is a presentist, antiquarian and heritage-oriented view
which assigns disproportionate importance to durability and longevity.
Because a building still stands for our use, observation and enjoyment today,
we too often narcissistically assume that its endurance represents the
desiderata of its creators as well. In this evolutionary perspective, the
changes in choice of construction materials has been attributed to determined
choices by supposedly ever more astute and prescient residents. Changing
to building with masonry over wood has been adjudged as Intentional
progress. Other, non-linear factors have not entered the analysis. Vet, when
addressing motive and intent of persons in the past, we would do well to heed
Barbara Tuchman's admonition that "history is the unfolding of
miscalculations.

81
Cultural considerations and differences among the Spanish colonists
regarding building construction in Florida and use of materials have received
little attention. David Weber with his view as wide as the borderlands,
however, recognized that “Spanish-built homes In North America resembled
those of different regions of Spain.”7 Paradoxically, the preference by the
British inhabitants for wood upon their acquisition of Florida after two
centuries of Spanish building developments has not generally been seen as
regressive. Yet the British choice of wood over stone contradicts the
assessment that the Spanish residents' turn toward stone be judged as a
move up the architectural evolutionary ladder. Use of wood by the British is
portrayed as a decision to employ familiar cultural elements while use of wood
by the Spanish is seen as a manifestation of a materially pitiful locale (see
Chapters 6 and 7).
The turn toward masonry structures in Florida was fueled by several
contemporaneous changes. It has long been accepted that for more than a
century after settlement by Europeans, Florida's town residents constructed
their buildings of wattle and daub or of wood. Residents with a minimum of
economic resources turned to buildings of wattle and daub. In supposed
Imitation of the Native Americans, the builders employed the technique of
pressing an earthen mixture into a framework, woven of supple poles or
reeds. Lightweight roofs of either palm fronds or of some strawlike material

82
topped these structures. Constructing such buildings required simple
technological skills and few tools.
The use of wattle and daub in the founding period has generally been
viewed as the Spaniards' imitation or appropriation of Native styles. With
landfall Ménendez quickly commandeered Timucuan Chief Seloy's building
and assigned his men to convert part of the village into a fort for defense
against feared French assaults. Manucy reasonably concludes that the
settlers "became familiar with Indian structures" and that mimicking of Native
housing took place. This conclusion, however, evidences a Eurocentric
viewpoint that Native techniques were adopted out of necessity and by default
as a stopgap rather than asking whether the arriving settlers gravitated toward
a variation of what was familiar. Yet the Asturian settlers might have felt
somewhat comfortable with the Timucuan structures which they encountered
on the Florida coast, for there were similar structures in their Iberian
homeland. Circular folk structures roofed with straw still persisted in Asturias
as recently as the years just prior to the Spanish Civil War (1936-39).8
Wood was the material of choice for the more substantial and higher-
status buildings of Florida's early years. The use of wood could very well
have been a determined choice to rely on timber rather than the local
shellstone. Manucy claims that the "early builders in Florida did not have
stone to work with," yet by 1580 Florida residents were aware of and even
had constructed at least one building of coquina.9 The reliance upon wooden

83
structures was the product of the happy occurrence of settlement in an area
which could provide plenty of the construction material which was the primary
fabric of the arriving settlers' building tradition. The leading first settlers,
hailing from wooded areas of the northwestern Iberian peninsula, brought with
them a tradition of building with timber. The members of Menéndez's Florida-
bound coterie departed from a region where most of the houses were still of
wood. Constantino Cabal's study of popular housing or "vernacular
architecture" in Asturias asserted that in the middle of the sixteenth century
(1540) the majority of houses were made of board (de tabla).10 Florida's
forests enabled the early settlers to replicate the fabric as well as the style of
the homes of the land that they left behind.
Even the buildings used by the highest officials were made of wood. A
circa 1595 drawing of St. Augustine depicts structures of vertical boards for
the governor's house and the church. The roofs were of planks as well. But it
was the weaponry rather than the buildings which were important to the
inhabitants, or perhaps in this case to the "artist" passing through St.
Augustine. The cannon placed in the openings of the guardhouse were
drawn with more care than the buildings. The cannon were presented with a
three-dimensional appearance while the buildings more resembled a two-
dimensional child's drawing. The attention to storage barrels was also
disproportionate. This focus parallels the relative depiction of the structures
and artillery at Santa Elena. Therein, the handles on the cannon were

84
elaborated while the buildings received little concern." Buildings were in
effect available locally and thus inexpensive. Buildings could be fashioned
from resources near the settlements while cannon had to be transported from
Spain, where the foundries were located. Distance and the locus of
technology elsewhere made the weaponry expensive and important, and by
default made for an uneven graphic portrayal of the colony.
Governor Gonzalo Méndez de Canzo relocated the executive
residence in St. Augustine from the waterfront to a more inland lot when he
purchased a wooden house from Maria de Pomar. After making
improvements and additions, Mendez de Canzo sold his homesite to the
Crown "at a bankruptcy price" (in his opinion) when he departed Florida for
his next tour of duty. Méndez de Canzo’s upgrades were of wood, except for
the replacement of a palm thatch roof with flat roof (azotea), a sealant coat of
tabby over planking.12
Although use of wattle and daub persisted throughout the seventeenth
century, it became less prevalent. "Board walls became increasingly
numerous up to the wholesale destruction of the 1702 siege." concluded
Albert Manucy. Then, he says, over the next half century (1700-50) masonry
became the principal building material.13
Changes in St. Augustine's buildings were brought about by a
combination of factors-technical, economic, social and cultural: the
availability of trained craftsmen and construction material, more money and

85
credit, and the influence of new cultural elements in the population. The
impetus for the turn toward masonry structures was fed by the release to the
public of the local shellstone into a scenario which provided a cadre of
craftsmen who had been trained to work with the shellstone during the
construction of the Castillo de San Marcos. Governor Manuel de Cendoya
imported fifteen skilled workers-masons, stonecutters and lime burners-from
Cuba in 1671 to work on the proposed masonry fortification, begun the
following year. Others learned the skills in Florida, as demonstrated by the
predominance of Native American and African slave craftsmen in building a
new governor's residence in 1690.14
Fear of widespread destruction by fire following the 1702 siege and the
enemy’s purposely ignited conflagration has been considered the primary
motivating factor for the change in material, especially the turning away from
flammable material. But here again, hindsight takes on a deterministic
character in historical analyses. Because the change in building materials
took place largely in the years following the 1702 razing, it has been
concluded that it was the English-set inferno which instilled a pervasive fear
of fire in the community and the preventive action of building with masonry.
Why would the residents wait until after 1702 to prevent fire when it had
always been a threat? Francis Drake burned the town in 1586, fire consumed
important buildings in 1599, and fire certainly deprived colonists of their
homes in random and intermittent individual tragedies.15 Yet masonry

86
buildings did not spring up after these events. Even if coquina were not
readily available for private use, the material for tabby masonry certainly
abounded in the oysterbeds in tidal creeks and in nearby shellmounds
created in earlier millennia.
Historians Luis and Eugenia Arana state that the 1702 destruction “cut
short” masonry construction rather than serving as the impetus for turning to
shellstone. The Aranas attribute the turn to masonry construction to more
money entering the colony in the last third of the seventeenth century and the
ability of the residents to build on credit. Royal policy permitted soldiers to
pledge their salaries to finance new structures.16
Cultural traditions were at work as well. The influence of a substantial
number of arrivals from Iberian regions where masonry construction prevailed
prompted a preference for masonry instead of wood as much as did pragmatic
concerns and local events. The soldiers who began arriving in 1680 after
decades of no new troops and thus no immigrating residents were largely
natives of Castilla and Andalucía.17 The aridity of these areas of Iberia did
not nurture forests, and masonry construction in those areas was if nothing
else a default choice. Leopoldo Torres Balbás described the situation in
Andalusia as "construction materials are stone, in the form of rubble
(manipostería) for the most part.... The arboreal vegetation is scarce and
wood for building is scarce and poor."18

87
When English expeditionaries kindled St. Augustine and the missions
in 1702 and 1704, the invaders accelerated the incorporation of the arriving
architectural notions and practices. The town’s ashen earth presented a
physical tabula rasa as a stage for the building traditions arriving with new
soldiers.19 The incorporation of arriving architectural traditions did not have to
await the need for a repair or for an addition to what was already in place.
New architectural ways neither blended with nor competed with the old. The
destruction wrought by the 1702 siege provided an empty and yet fertile arena
for new materials and styles in architecture.
Buildings as Detailed by Those Who Knew Them Best
Individual-level appraisals and inventories available from the first half
of the eighteenth century were overseen and perhaps contributed by the
owners and residents of the buildings themselves. Details were set forth In
those documents that town-wide sources did not include. Such specifics
make it possible to ascertain or at least reasonably to Infer use and perhaps
even the level of comfort of the spaces.
The Eligió de la Puente map of 1764 of St. Augustine provides
standardized information about property ownership, building materials, and lot
size throughout the entire town. Eligió did not, however, include Information
on building size or for outbuildings. For his purposes in the role of real estate
agent, the latter sort of information might have been superfluous.20 Although

88
Eligió recorded only simple measurements of length and width, lots were
sometimes trapezoidal as blocks widened between their extremes. Some lots
surely included jogs and irregularities as the property lines on de la Rocque's
1788 map depict. The succinct measurements given for length and width of
parcels In both of the aforementioned maps, however, allows for later
reconstruction of only rectangular lots. Pablo Castelló's map, contemporary
with that of Eligió, depicted St. Augustine with the eye of the mathematician
and engineer for detail, including outbuildings, gardens and fields, but it did
not include measurements and building materials.21
Much of the picture we have of the Spanish capital has relied upon the
observations and writings of visitors. The information was often sprltely and
entertaining, for the visitor tended to comment upon that which was unusual
from his perspective. The generic, common and prosaic were absent while
cultural bias pervaded the descriptions, as seen in William Stork’s remark that
Spanish buildings gave more consideration to convenience than to taste.22
Conversely, those most familiar with the structures left us little narrative
description. Tedious probate inventories and other official papers are the
only record we have from the Spanish residents who actually walked In and
out of the buildings, who supervised the construction, alterations, and repairs.
The persons who used the doors and windows that they evaluated left us little
more than brief itemizations and costs, not phrases about decoration and
pleasing proportions. They saw no reason to do more. Yet they did in fact tell

89
us more about their houses than was explicit in the list of elements. For
example, when an occupant described a door specifically as the “door
between the bedroom and the shop,” the use of space was made apparent.23
The appraisals of ten private stone buildings constructed in the first
half of the eighteenth century provide a picture of Florida’s substantial city
structures and their attendant secondary buildings. Father Juan José Solana
wrote in 1760 that there were 303 buildings in St. Augustine; stone buildings
comprised 49 or about one-sixth of the buildings. He reported that among
those stone structures, the kind of roofing material was about evenly
distributed: 23 of stone and flat roofs, 26 of boards and shingles.2'* Based on
Solana’s figures, the available appraisals describe about twenty percent of
the stone buildings. Private buildings in the town made of other materials do
not appear in the available appraisals, except for wooden kitchens or other
workspaces, such as washhouses, which were secondary to and associated
with a primary stone building.
The probate of the property of Diego de Espinosa on St. Augustine’s
waterfront provides the most detailed description of buildings, use of space
within the buildings, and the relationship of rooms to one another. The few
other available contemporary probate proceedings did not include
accountings which were as detailed as these. The entries in the appraisal of
Espinosa's estate were surely scrutinized closely by those who knew the
buildings the best: his widow and four children. The “cross” mark of his widow

90
Josefa de Torres, who did not know how to write, vouched for the information.
Because the buildings would not be transferred to all the heirs, careful
attention was called for in order to assure fair distribution of the value of
assets. Thus one child received livestock or slaves rather than real estate;
the price of a calf turned over to one child might well offset the value assigned
to a door or roof in a building acquired by a sibling.25
Three primary masonry buildings stood on Espinosa's property when
he died in May 1756: the main house (casa grande) and its kitchen, the
house with the tabby roof (casa de azotea) and the small house on the
waterfront (casa chica de la marina!. Espinosa's holdings occupied lots on
both sides of today’s Charlotte Street. The two-story main house on the west
side of the street with approximately 800 square feet (98 [square] varas) per
floor served as the living quarters for Espinosa and his wife.26 The exterior
and some interior walls were of masonry. A low-pitched roof of wooden
shingles covered the building.27 Tabique (thin-wall masonry) divided the
interior space into rooms; there were also partition walls built of boards. A
dining room and an apartment (or bedroom) occupied the ground floor with a
doorway joining the two rooms. The rooms also had other doors opening to
the outside for independent access. Three windows admitted breezes and
light into the apartment. Upstairs were another bedroom and a drawing room
or salon (sala).28 From a small balcony on the back of the house the

91
Espinosas could enjoy the land breeze fpuerta del terral v el balconcito). A
larger balcony overhung the street.
The one-story, tabby-roof house was situated at a street corner. With
Its six, ground-level rooms, It covered a large area.29 The northwest corner of
the building also formed the street corner. The building could be accessed by
several doors opening to the streets. At the corner were double doors; there
were other doors opening to the street as well. And there was a large door or
gate on the street. The building was divided Into an entryway, a shop and a
storeroom, a dining room, a parlor and two bedrooms.
Espinosa’s two-story building directly on the waterfront had shellstone
exterior walls honed to a Spanish foot In thickness (a tercia: 11 Inches).
Tabby also composed a portion of the east side of the building in the only
example describing a combination of the local cement material and the hewn
stone. Perhaps an originally open-ended space was later walled in and the
use of tabby cement was easier than joining cut shellstone blocks. Although
this structure was located nearest to the waterfront, there was no mention of
its use for storage of goods offloaded from boats. A bedroom and parlor
occupied the lower floor, with the bedroom opening onto a patio. The
appraisal suggests that there were two patios, one serving the bedroom and
another on the waterfront. Doors were listed for the patio del aposento and
patio de la marina. Upstairs a balcony offered an outside space. The

92
appraisal does not specify the use of the upstairs rooms. On the east side
were thin-wall arches or buttresses and a coquina wall.
Each of the three main buildings of the Espinosa compound had its
own kitchen with a fence around the kitchen yard. The kitchen of the main
house was built of coquina, displaying an unusual expenditure for utilitarian,
secondary space. The oven in this kitchen was also of coquina with no other
kinds of masonry, such as bricks, listed for the baking chamber. There were
no references to a hearth or fireplace, which might have been used for
cooking. Any breezes circulating through the two doors and small window
were no doubt most welcome.30 The roof was of masonry (tabby) as well. A
round table and a dozen chairs were inside the kitchen. Perhaps the kitchen
building was used for storing extra seating or maybe workers and servants ate
in the building. Because flooring usually appears in the evaluations, its
absence from the appraisal suggests that the kitchen’s floor was merely dirt.
Yet an earthen floor seems incongruous with the investment in the rest of the
kitchen building. Tabby flooring is listed for the main house, the waterfront
building, and the tabby-roof building, the last building containing the shop
and storeroom. The kitchens for the tabby-roof house and waterfront house
were built of wood, apparently without hearths or ovens, and each surrounded
by a wooden fence. The inventory included additional coquina blocks of
varying sizes and the lime to make the mortar to hold them together, which
were located in the yard of the main house when Espinosa died.

93
Next door to Espinosa’s waterfront property, Antonio Rodríguez Arfián
owned three buildings. A two-story masonry building with a shingle roof
occupied a small waterfront site. Rodriguez claimed only 24 feet (9 varas)
along the waterfront In connection with this building. The larger measurement
of his lot at 38 feet (14 varas) equaled what was commonly the smaller
dimension of town lots. Fourteen and fifteen varas of street frontage was
common in St. Augustine and was usually the smaller of a lot’s dimensions
rather than the greater (see Chapter 5). The importance and value of an
entree on to the waterfront possibly offset or compensated for the small size
of the plot or perhaps it was merely a division of the larger parcel.31
Two sets of wooden stairs offered access to the upper floor. The back
landing (entresuelo últimoi featured two small windows for sight, light, and air.
The upstairs living area had windows with glass panes, but only glassless
apertures on the lower floor.
Another of Rodriguez’s buildings faced a principal street (today's
Charlotte Street) which paralleled the waterfront. Also a two-story stone
structure, it housed a shop and storeroom on the ground floor. The roof over
the main part of the house and the dining room was composed of wood
shingles of varying widths (ancho de varia). Again, a large balcony overhung
the street and a small balcony provided a more private space on the back of
the house. The main stairway held landings for the parlor and a bedroom.
Another upper room was accessed by its own stainway. This room had a

94
tabby roof and a door leading to the flat masonry roof. The difference In roof
material suggests that the entire building was not constructed at the same
time. On the back of the building, there was also a third staircase, enclosed
and with a window. Rooms with separate entries lent themselves to use by
tenants or to more autonomy and independence for family members. A forlorn
cuckold, Onofre de Arguelles, reported In the 1730s that his wife occupied a
garret space in their home and came and went as she pleased in the
evenings when she visited her paramour and cooked her lover’s dinner while
the husband sat home alone and hungry.32
The shop and its storeroom must have been stuffy with only one
window, but perhaps the four doors distributed between these two rooms
provided fresh air. Stepping Into the shop from the street, a customer saw a
counter and a cabinet. The shingle-roofed, wooden kitchen boasted Its own
storeroom.33
Rodríguez Arfián shared ownership with Juan de Salas of the most
Impressive structure among his trio of side-by-side buildings.34 The house
was constructed of thick stone (based on the assessment of 5 pesos per cubic
unit). It was a sizable house and It displayed desired accouterments,
especially seventeen glass-paned windows. This house featured an upstairs
parlor with two chimneys. A sizable balcony overhung the street, for its length
accommodated three windows with glass panes. Ten upstairs windows had
glass. Despite its size and embellishments, this building apparently did not

95
have a second, smaller, and private balcony like several of the other houses
appraised. The ground-floor living quarters contained eleven doors. Seven
downstairs windows also contained glass. Outside stairs provided access to
rooftops on this building, like the building next door. A part of the building
was only a single story, implied by the downstairs living quarters having its
own shingle roof. Two rooms on the back side of the building each contained
a painted built-in armoire with either glass or mirrors in their doors. The room
built under the main stairs was probably used for storage. A fence with
balustered openings (rejas) surrounded the patio. The kitchen as well had its
own chimney with a mantel and also a storage area or pantry
On today’s St. George Street stood the building of Joaquin Blanco,
who was the supplymaster for the garrison. Blanco might have resided in the
house directly across the street rather than in his own building after marrying
Antonia de Avero. Blanco's position in the garrison organization would have
given him access to goods and connections, yet the inventory of his house did
not include some of the niceties found in other buildings. Whether that is by
virtue of a more succinct listing or owed to personal preference Is not clear.35
There were no glass windows. Considering the value and status of glass
windows, absence in the listing surely meant absence in the building. The
upstairs living area was covered with a tabby, flat roof. A balcony is listed, but
with no amplification about its doors and windows, unlike most of the
inventories. His lot contained a washhouse, and like so many others, a

96
wooden kitchen with a shingled roof. Blanco's appraisal also included fruit
trees in the yard.
By 1733 Pedro José Gómez had built his two-story shellstone home
near the north entrance to the city-just north of Blanco on today’s St. George
Street between the city gate and Bianco's house. Gomez’s homesite was in
the area that during the siege of 1702 had been razed by Spanish soldiers
and residents to create a structureless field of fire for cannoneers and
sharpshooters aiming from the gundeck of the Castillo. Overzealous with his
construction, Gómez extended his home onto his neighbor’s property. The
acquisition of the adjacent parcel to cure the encroachment problem gave
Gómez a large lot with substantial frontage (35 varas or 95Ví feet) on a main
street.36 The walls of Gomez’s home measured from one-third to one-half
vara (11 to 16-1/2 inches) in thickness with the interior stone divisions of both
the upper and lower floors measuring one-fourth of a vara in thickness.
Tabby served as flooring material for both upper and lower stories. Two
balconies adorned the upper story. The larger one overlooked the street, the
smaller faced east toward the back yard. In summer the Gómez family could
look down upon ripening melons, which they shared with friends.37
Salvador de Porras’s two buildings, one next to Espinosa on the
waterfront and the other on a lot located between the buildings belonging to
Blanco and Gómez on St. George Street, were succinctly described in
comparison to the other appraisals.38 At both sites the buildings were of two

97
stories, but whether specific assets were located on the upper or the lower
floor was seldom made clear. Only the reference to a staircase clarified that
the St. George Street building had an upper level. Like several other
buildings, Porras’s waterfront building had roofs both of shingles and of tabby.
The dining room was specifically described as having a shingle roof. Porras’s
house on St. George Street, which his wife brought into the marriage (see
Chapter 5), had a wooden room attached. This was the only house which
included a well in its inventory. It was probably a barrel well. The masonry
wells in the governor’s house averaged a value of 27 pesos per well.
Perhaps the well at Porras’s wife house had a cover, drawing mechanism or
decoration of worth which explained a value of 6 pesos.
Absence of Itemized wells in the inventories feeds the conclusion that
barrel wells provided the water for the buildings described here; there were no
wells listed In the masonry sections of the inventories. Masonry wells made
from coquina appeared in several sorts of real estate appraisals or other
property documents and the absence of wells in appraisals thus implies
reliance upon barrel wells. Guardians of orphans, who had to account for
funds, listed expenditures for repairing wells with recycled shipping barrels,
usually rice barrels, even though no wells had appeared in the post-mortem
appraisals for the parents’ estates.39
The governor’s house in 1763 relied on a dozen masonry wells. Eligió
de la Puente’s home boasted a scallop-shaped well of coquina.

98
Archaeologists found that the scallop shape was maintained Into the shaft, not
just in the well curb. The barely visible shaft continued the scallop shape
below grade, at least as far down as the modern watertable. The scallop shell
is a popular Hispanic decorative motif and is associated with St. James, the
patron saint of Spain and his pilgrimage site of Santiago de Compostela in
Galicia. Eligio’s family or some other owner expended considerable money or
labor to form such an elaborate well.40 Although a masonry well seems in
keeping with the scope and wealth associated with a compound such as that
of Espinosa, the documentation does not declare its existence.
Conclusions
The influx of men from the metropolis that began in the last quarter of
the 1600s brought new traditions that revitalized and strengthened the bond
between the Florida colony and Iberia. Florida with its financial reliance upon
the military funds had always maintained a strong connection with the
homeland-more so than most of Spanish America. When officials in both
Spain and Great Britain, after the Seven Years War, sought to bring the
colonials’ attention more toward the respective metropolises, Florida, did not
have to be re-oriented toward the mother country as did much of the
Americas. It had never strayed much from its Iberian focus because of
financial strictures and the influence of the influx of Iberian soldiers beginning
in the 1680s had re-directed the focus on the metropolis. Anthropologist

99
Stanley Bond has stated that through the built environment of Florida's
capital, settlers could recognize themselves as Spaniards. But there was no
single Spanish built environment during the Second Century. “Spanish” was
and is a concept employed by those who observed from a cultural,
geographical or temporal distance, not by the colonial participants in this
case.41 Stone buildings reflected the building traditions of the particular
regions from which arriving soldiers came, not of Iberia as a whole..
Appraisals and inventories disclose function as well as construction
details. Residents in Second-Century St. Augustine blended residential and
commercial activities in the same building. Numerous scholars have drawn
parallels between urban buildings in English Charleston and Spanish St.
Augustine, focusing primarily on climatic factors, but with little attention to
functional concerns. Buildings in St. Augustine used both stories of the
buildings for private space. At times private space opened onto a commercial
area. Upper- or lower- floor location did not seem to be a major factor in
whether space was relegated to private or public use.
Generally upper floors were the preferred level for refinements and
privacy. Many houses had bedrooms located on both floors. Likewise,
parlors might be either upstairs or downstairs, but if there was only one
drawing room, it was usually on the upper floor. Window glass was found on
both stories as well, but if glass panes appeared on only one level, it was the
upper story. The buildings described herein set aside rooms specifically for

100
commercial use, but private space also occupied ground-floor rooms right
next to the shops and storerooms. The dining room for Espinosa’s “flat-roof
building shared a wall with the room for the shop. The lone example of an
upstairs shop in Porras’s waterfront building did not provide many details.
Charleston's role as a primarily commercial town possibly led to more
segregation between residential and commercial space. In St. Augustine
commercial activities were supportive and auxiliary to the mainstay of the
economy-the military budget-and the two sorts of space were not so
separated. Bernard Herman noted that for Charleston “the most common
solution” was a street-level one-room shop, perhaps with a dining room
behind and ‘“best room’” and chambers above.42 Nor was accessible ground
floor space so dear in St. Augustine as in the Charleston context. Shops in
Florida used adjacent rooms on the first floor for storage rather than locating
the storage area in less valuable space in separate secondary structures.
Rooms in St. Augustine were accessed sometimes from the
inside-from other rooms--and almost always from the outside. Doors
frequently outnumbered windows. Houses featured several staircases rather
than a central stairway, the latter configuration being typical in Charleston.43
Several staircases in the Florida buildings ascended right on up to a masonry
roof, suggesting the use of the roofs as outdoor space. Otherwise, time and
materials would have not been expended on a permanent access where a
ladder would suffice. No stairways were listed which led to wood-shingle

101
roofs. Masonry roofs which were flat or barely sloped might have been
somewhat maladaptive with Florida’s substantial rainfall, but a raised outdoor
space provided by the flat roof, open to breezes, was surely desirable. Flat
roofs used as “living space” In addition to providing protection from the
elements might well have been an Innovation favored by the men arriving with
Andalusian traditions, which themselves exhibited strong Moorish Influence as
well as similarity to other Mediterranean areas. Perhaps the roofs were a bit
Ill-advised, but their proponents had not yet moved away from what was
familiar In their Iberian home regions.
Balconies provided leisure space and a vantage point. Consistently
the larger balcony on a building overhung the street, where one could see
and be seen. Consistently the smaller balcony (balconcito) was placed at the
back of the house, where it offered privacy and perhaps a garden overlook.
None of the balconcitos In the appraisals were streetfront amenities.
Balconies allowed occupants maximum control over publically oriented space.
Residents could at will enter and exit the balcony which overhung the public
space of the street, while permitting no entry by the public. With nightfall,
streetfront balconies offered a place for occupants to remain almost
undetected while observing passers-by.
The lists did not mention windows with rejas, which functioned much
like balconies for unobtrusive observation of the street scene. Windows with
rejas have become a distinctive feature of restored and reconstructed

102
buildings in St. Augustine today. The only mention of grating (rejas) was for
openings in the fence associated with the building owned by Juan de Salas
and Antonio Rodríguez Arfián on Charlotte Street. John Bartram reported
“bannisters” which shielded protruding street-level windows in 1765, yet the
residents make no mention of the gratings in the wooden elements of
inventories. Bartram as well as William Gerard De Brahm (1771) remarked
critically that there were no chimneys or window glass in St. Augustine, but
chimneys and window glass appeared several times in the lists critiqued by
the residents themselves.44
Free-standing kitchens had their own storage space as well as their
own yards fenced with wood. Kitchens were located in wooden buildings with
shingle roofs. None of the kitchen buildings was described as having a thatch
roof, either of palm or straw, despite the building’s use for work purposes If
the residents were so concerned with fire after the 1702 conflagration, why
were the kitchens built as flammable structures with flammable roofs of wood?
Espinosa’s coquina kitchen associated with his residence site was probably
an extravagance in the town. But tabby was a cheap and fire-resistant
masonry alternative that could have served as material for secondary
buildings that acted as workspaces, yet the appraisals and inventories do not
bear out its use in that context.
An interesting revelation from the appraisals was the presence of
compounds containing several substantial structures, each with its own

103
associated work buildings. Unfortunately the compounds can at this time only
be viewed in the freeze-frame of the date of the appraisals. The absence of
notary records prohibits following the history of the properties to discover
whether they had been consolidated over time or were large parcels that were
not yet divided. For example, Eligio’s list of property owners in 1764
obscured the compound character of Diego de Espinosa’s property in 1756,
only eight years before. By 1764 Espinosa’s land and buildings were
distributed to his widow and children and thus appeared with the heirs’ names
in Eligio’s list. Son Francisco de Espinosa acquired title to the site on the
waterfront. Widow Josefa de Torres received the dwelling house on the west
side of Charlotte Street and the main commercial building: the masonry, flat-
roof structure. She subsequently transferred the lot with the flat-roof building
to her daughter, Josefa de Espinosa, once again employing the practice
recognized in this study regarding successive female property ownership (see
Chapter 5), Josefa’s husband, Juan de Mata Pérez, was the owner listed by
Eligió.46
Compound sites offered the options of use by the owner for a
residence or for his or her own commercial endeavors or rental space to yield
income. At compounds of the dimensions of those of Espinosa or Rodriguez
Arfían all of the possibilities could take place concurrently. Stanley Bond
concurs that the blending of commercial and residential use in St. Augustine
brought about improvement in the financial situation of the property owner.46

104
Compounds also meant the potential for subsequent generations to have
residences or commercial space while maintaining the physical unity of the
family.
Notes
1. Wilbur Henry Siebert. Loyalists in East Florida. 1774-1785 (Deland: The
Florida State Historical Society, 1929), 2: passim.
2. Perhaps the most egregious example is the so-called “don Toledo” house
on today’s Aviles Street. At the beginning of the twentieth century the
building, then barely a century old, was touted as the 400-year-old love-nest
of a conquistador and a local Indian princess. Not satisfied in relying on this
claim to fame, the owner also planned to enhance the site with a backyard
tank for alligators to be ridden by “a lady swimmer of reputation.” Florida
Master Site File #8SJ77, 36 Aviles Street, Division of Historical Resources,
Tallahassee, Fla.
3. Albert Manucy, The Houses of St. Augustine, 1565-1821 (St. Augustine:
St. Augustine Historical Society, 1962).
4. Albert Manucy, Sixteenth-Century St. Augustine: The People and Their
Homes. (Gainesville: University Press of Florida, 1997).
5. Inventory of the houses, slaves, and furnishings of Pablo de Hita Salazar,
1681 March 10, Archivo General de Indias, Seville Spain (hereafter AGI),
Escribanía de Cámara, Bundle (hereafter Bnd.)156-A, p. 650 ff (P. K. Yonge
Library of Florida History, University of Florida, microfilm reel 27J).
Governor’s Hita’s possessions were seized and assessed as part of an
administrative investigation. In 1737, an inventory of the property of Governor
Francisco del Moral Sánchez was made also in the context of an
administrative investigation. Because Governor del Moral owned no houses,
however, a comparison of the style and detail of the appraising of houses
cannot be made. The appraisals of furniture in both circumstances were
similar in style of description and level of detail. "Inventory of the Papers and
Goods Belonging to Don Francisco del Moral Sánchez," 1737 March 22, AGI,
John B. Stetson Collection, Yonge Library (hereafter SC), 58-2-12.
6. The scholarly investigation of colonial times has now extended as well to
architecture located beyond the urban setting, especially at mission sites.

105
Archaeological research at these sites as caused researchers to become
“increasingly skeptical” about Florida's adherence to the spatial ideal set forth
for missions. See Bonnie G. McEwen, ed., The Spanish Missions of La
Florida (Gainesville: University Press of Florida, 1993), quote of Rebecca
Saunders on 57.
7. David J. Weber, The Spanish Frontier in North America (New Fiaven: Yale
University Press, 1992), 317.
8. Eugene Lyon, The Enterprise of Florida: Pedro Menéndez de Avilés and
the Spanish Conquest of 1565-1568 (Gainesville: University of Florida Press,
1976), 119; Manucy, Sixteenth-Century St. Augustine. 56; Leopoldo Torres
Balbás, "La vivienda popular en España," in Folklore v costumbres de España
(Barcelona: Casa Editorial Alberto Martín, 1933) 3:274.
9. Manucy, Sixteenth-Century St. Augustine, xiv.
10. "The ancient Asturian houses were of wood." Asturian municipalities gave
the predominance of wooden buildings as the rationale for fining those who
carried fire through the streets. C[onstantino] Cabal, La familia: La vivienda,
los oficios primitivos. Vol. 2. Las costumbres asturianas, su significación v
sus orígenes (Madrid: Talleres Voluntad, 1931), 76. Torres Balbás, "La
vivienda popular en España," 289.
11. Hernando de Mestas [?], Map of St. Augustine and its Environs, c. 1595,
map no. 60; Depiction of Santa Elena, c. 1580, map no 61; Bartolomé de
Argüelles, Plan for a Fort and Warehouse in St. Augustine, 1593, map no. 62;
HSAPB collection, original map and drawings in AGI.
12. "Papers relating to the sale of Governor's St. Augustine house, which
Gonzalo Méndez Canzo had bought from María de Pomar," Year of 1603-
1604. AGI Santo Domingo (SD) 82 (microfilm copies at Center for Historic
Research, Flagler College, St. Augustine).
13. Albert Manucy. The Houses of St. Augustine. 65.
14. Luis Arana, "Governor Cendoya's Negotiation in Mexico for a Stone Fort
in St. Augustine," El Escribano 7 (1970): 133; Royal Officials to Crown, 1696
April 20, AGI SC 54-5-15/114.
15. James W. Covington, "Drake Destroyed St. Augustine," Florida Historical
Quarterly 44 (1965): 92; Michael V. Gannon, The Cross in the Sand: The
Early Catholic Church in Florida. 1513-1870 (Gainesville: University of Florida
Press, 1961)45.

106
»
16. Luis R. and Eugenia B. Arana, “Private Coquina Construction in St.
Augustine, 1689-1702,” El Escribano 6 (3) (1969): 28-30.
17. Juan Marchena Fernández, “St. Augustine’s Military Society, 1700-1820,”
El Escribano 22 (1985): 54-57.
18. Torres, "La vivienda popular en España," 453, quotes on p. 456.
19. Charred mission sites presented similar blank architectural slates, but
Spanish resources were insufficient for rebuilding at those locations.
20. The field notes of Florida's buildings of engineer Juan de Cotilla were
available to Eligió. Eligió stated that he had collected the data and brought it
to Havana. Charles W. Arnade, "The Architecture of Spanish St. Augustine,"
The Americasl 8 (1961): 166 n.62.
21. See Arnade "Architecture of Spanish St. Augustine," 167-69 for Castelló's
credentials.
22. John Bartram, A Description of East-Florida with a Journal (London: W.
Nichols, 1769), 8.
23. Inventory, Appraisal and Distribution of Estate of Diego de Espinosa,
1756, Bnd. 301P4, East Florida Papers (hereafter EFP), Library of Congress
Manuscript Division (microfilm copies at St. Augustine Historical Society).
24. Juan José Solana to Julian de Arriaga, Report on the condition of St.
Augustine, 1760 April 9, AGI SC 86-7-21/41.
25. Appraisal of Estate of Diego de Espinosa, 1756 September 3, Bnd.
301P4, EFP.
26. The appraisal refers to the main house as the “house of the widow.”
Ibid.: Eligió de la Puente map.
27. The shallow slope of the roof is deduced from the statement that the roof
consisted of 828 shingles. Shingles ordered by the Spanish government were
described as being two Spanish feet long and a half foot wide, or one-square
foot per shingle. Thus the area of the roof barely exceeded the building's
footprint. Contract for Wooden Materials, 1799 May, Bnd. 279014, EFP.
28. No door joining the two upper room is mentioned in the appraisal. The
door described as "going from the [downstairs] bedroom to the dining room" is
specifically set forth and valued at 4 pesos. Inventory, Appraisal and
Distribution of Estate of Diego de Espinosa, 1756, Bnd. 301P4, EFP.

107
29. Bond states that only five buildings with more than two rooms (on the
ground) have been excavated and the largest was a 5-room structure.
Stanley C. Bond, Jr., "Tradition and Change in First Spanish Period (1565-
1763) St. Augustine Architecture: A Search for Colonial Identity.” Ph.D. diss.
State University of New York at Albany, 1995, 263.
30. The appraisal lists “two doors and a small window” (dos puertas v una
ventanita). Inventory, Appraisal and Distribution of Estate of Diego de
Espinosa, 1756, Bnd. 301P4, EFP.
31. Appraisal of property of Antonio Rodríguez Arfián, 1763 November 29,
Bnd. 359, EFP. Eligió de la Puente map, parcels #176 and 177.
32. Ibid [Appraisal of Rodríguez Arfían]; Testimony of Onofre de Arguelles,
1735 March 14, AGI SD 845, (microfilm copies at Yonge Library); John Jay
TePaske, The Governorship of Spanish Florida, 1700-1763. Durham: Duke
University Press, 1964), 174.
33. Appraisal of property of Antonio Rodríguez Arfián, 1763 November 29,
Bnd. 359.EFP.
34. This building was included in Arnade’s description of St. Augustine
architecture, but not the two adjacent buildings. Arnade used the Claims for
Town Lots in the Spanish Land Grants while this study used documents in the
East Florida Papers for this information. The translated inventory by Arnade
is the same as the one in the East Florida Papers. “Architecture of Spanish
St. Augustine,” 179 note d.
35. Arnade, ’’Architecture of Spanish St. Augustine,” 175-77; Eligió de la
Puente map.
36. Deed from Bernardo de Florencia to Pedro José Gómez, 1733 and
sworn statements in Claim of Nicolasa Gómez, Claim no. 82, Town Lots,
Spanish Land Grants (hereafter SLG) Division of Historical Resources,
Tallahassee (microfilm copies in HSAPB collection); Charles W. Arnade, The
Siege of St. Augustine in 1702 (Gainesville: University of Florida Press,
1959), 31.
37. Appraisal, n.d. [but prior to 1763-64 Spanish evacuation]; sworn
statement of Antonio Pueyo, 1801 March 2. Pueyo was testifying to pre-1763
evacuation matters. Both in Claim of Nicolasa Gómez, Claim no. 82. Town
Lots, SLG.
38. Arnade, “Architecture of Spanish St. Augustine,” 177-79.

108
39. Estate of Miguel Yznardy, 1803 ff.; estate of Catalina Nicles Mestre, 1804
ff., both in Bnd 139, EFP.
40. Stanley Bond, “Report on Puente Site, SA 24,” Historic St. Augustine
Preservation Board collection.
41. Bond, “Tradition and Change,” 294.
42. Bernard L. Herman, “Charleston Single House,” in Carter L. Hudgins,
Carl R. Lounsbury, Louis P. Nelson, Jonathan H. Poston, The Vernacular
Architecture of Charleston and the Lowcountrv. 1670-1990: A Field Guide
(Charleston: Historic Charleston Foundation, 1994 ), 352; Bond, “Tradition
and Change,” 285.
43. Bond, “Tradition and Change,” 284.
44. Manucy, Houses of St. Augustine. 86-87. DeBrahm’s and Bartram’s
remarks are quoted on p. 29 and 31
45. Petition for probate and Distribution of Estate of Diego de Espinosa,
1756, Bnd. 301P5, EFP; Eligió de la Puente map.
46. Bond, “Tradition and Change," 272-74.

CHAPTER 5
PROVIDING A HOME
Before marrying, have a house to live in
(Antes de casar, ten casa de morar.)
-Spanish proverb
Proverbial Spanish wisdom admonishes betrothed couples in rhythm
and rhyme to have a place to live before the wedding. The residents of
Spanish Florida developed ways of accomplishing this universal concern.
The Florida colony did not become a producing region for Spain's economic
benefit. The founding settlers' "utopia of mutual hopes," where commoners
would embrace land and profit and nobles would acquire agricultural
enterprises and vassals, did not come to be.1
The continued existence of Florida as a Spanish colony became an
expense to the crown. It was an expense that the crown could not renounce
without relinquishing the colony. Florida became a military outpost to protect
the seaways, conduits of American silver and gold to Iberia.2 Thus the Euro-
American residents of the colony received most of their sustenance from the
military payroll. Historian Amy Bushnell and anthropologists Kathleen
Hoffman, Elizabeth Reitz, Stephen Cumbaa, and John E. Worth have
109

110
asserted that food produced in the Florida countryside by Native Americans
was essential to the colony’s persistence, filling the shortfall in the military
supplies. Although there were some farms and cattle ranches, the majority
of Euro-American property owners held real estate as family homesites within
the walls of St. Augustine or nearby.3
The majority of homesites were not "units of production," but
residences with gardens and some food animals. Families did not rely on
their homesites to maintain themselves, rather the homesites augmented the
military salaries and supplies. The focus of real property practices was to
ensure living space for families, especially in a town where husbands were
often non-local and thus non-landed men. By contrast, in agricultural areas in
North America, especially In the British colonies, the concern was usually for
maintaining the viability of the productive unit-the farm. Planters often
evidenced this perspective by establishing inheritance arrangements favoring
the farm’s longevity over a spouse’s needs.4
In situations where land was perceived as holding a less Important role
as a source of wealth, women achieved a more nearly equal claim to land.
Historian John Crowley underscores this pattern by asserting that British
American tradesmen and merchants were more generous to their widows than
were planters. Despite a plantation economy, ironically in South Carolina,
Florida’s “neighbor” and nemesis, land was not perceived as the most
valuable asset. Carolina agriculturalists perceived slaves as a more valuable

111
asset than the land because the planters held that slave labor was essential
to the land’s productivity. In addition, Charleston’s role as an entrepot placed
commercial assets in an important role in the colony’s economy. The
attitudes in this southern British colony were exceptional and differed greatly
from the northeast colonies and further evidenced that difference with
favorable consideration of females as heirs and owners of land.5
In Spanish Florida the dominant role of a source of revenue other than
land--the military budget-engendered a pattern of residential property
ownership through successive female generations. Although very few
property records remain from Florida's first two centuries, those that are
available indicate that mothers often passed on homesites to their daughters.
In a military town male roles and values dominated society even more than in
other kinds of settlements, yet an intensive investigation of documentation
pertaining to individual sites illustrates the important role of women in the
social and economic stability of St. Augustine. St. Augustine’s white, female
population was almost exclusively creole, descending from the earliest
settlers. In the eighteenth century many of these women found husbands
among the soldiers arriving mostly from Spain, some from Cuba or Mexico to
man the garrison. In the face of the immigrant husbands' limited access to
real property, St. Augustine's society responded by providing homes for the
families formed by the marriage of a local woman and an "incoming" man. The
Laws of the Indies, which applied to all of Spain's New World colonies,

112
provided a ready legal mechanism in the dowry to accommodate the
demographic situation.
The somewhat schematic map drawn by Juan José Eligió de la Puente
in 1764 is the earliest document of property ownership for the entire town that
is available at this time. The map indicates owner's name, parcel size, and
construction materials of the buildings on the lots. Pablo Castelló, an
engineer and mathematician, more clearly portrayed the physical reality of the
town on his 1763 map, but it provides no listing of private land owners. In the
absence of property records and other legal documents, Eligió de la Puente’s
map has been the bible and often the sole source for analyzing St.
Augustine's Spanish land use and ownership.
Local records for St. Augustine's first two centuries sailed away with
the town's Spanish residents in 1763 and with only a few exceptions remain
unavailable still.6 Only a few of the deeds and wills transported to Cuba
returned to Florida with the Spanish after 1784. When Spain regained the
Florida peninsula after successes in the war of the American Revolution,
some of the exiles of 1763 or their offspring returned with intentions of re¬
establishing ownership of their abandoned property. The current absence of
notary records for land sales and probates precludes any broad or
proportional assessment of property ownership. The scope of practices thus
cannot be determined.

113
Women were prominent among the claimants for the family lots.
Although property maps drawn in 1764, at the evacuation, and in 1788, after
the Spanish returned, frequently listed male owners of lots, further
investigation showed female family members to be the agents of transfer of
ownership. The practice of female property control came into focus when the
phrases pertaining to ownership embedded in repatriated personal
documents were examined in conjunction with the kin relationships which
could be charted from the Catholic Church's records of baptisms, marriages
and burials. Women retained their surnames after marriage. Children usually
used the surnames of their fathers, but sometimes could choose their
mother's name if it were the more illustrious, or even that of a grandparent for
any status it might confer.
Reliance upon maternal property even into the second era of the
Spanish regime in Florida illustrated how firmly established was the tradition
and idea among Florida families. Two parcels across the street from each
other serve as examples. Gerónima Rodríguez lived and died in a house on
the west side of the Street of the Governor (today's St. George Street) in the
first third of the eighteenth century.7 Three generations of daughters would
follow her to live on the lot at the end of the alley that led and still leads to the
fort. As her mother before her, Gerónima married a native of southern Spain,
sent to St. Augustine as a soldier. The widower Francisco Navarro arrived in
early 1724; Gerónima and Francisco married in June of that year. From our

114
distance of two and a half-centuries we dare not conjecture the proportionate
influence of heart, hormones, and a homesite on the couple's decision to
wed.8
In the will written six weeks before her death, Gerónima described her
home as a tabby (shell concrete) structure with a roof composed of palm
thatch. A masonry wall surrounded the lot. A year and a half after her death
her twice-widowered husband married a thrice-widowed St. Augustine woman.
We do not know in what house this newly formed couple lived nor if the new
wife brought any of her own children to join Francisco and Gerónima's eleven-
year-old son and nine-year-old daughter Juana.9
In 1745 at age sixteen, Gerónima's daughter, Juana Navarro, married a
man who was also from southern Spaln--but a merchant, not a soldier.
Florida's transfer to Great Britain forced Juana and her family to abandon
what had been her mother's house.'0 In October of 1763, Juana, with a five-
week-old baby (her ninth) in her arms, her husband Salvador de Porras, and
as many as six other surviving children boarded the brigantine San Antonio
bound for Havana. The middle child, Catalina, a ten-year old girl, would
return after 1784 with her own children to the house on today's north St.
George Street-at the end of the alley that led to the fort.11
When Catalina de Porras came back to her birth town, she intended to
re-claim the lot where her mother and her grandmother had lived. Supporting
documents refer only to the ownership interest of Catalina's mother Juana

115
with no mention of any claim of her mother Juana's brother, Francisco. The
brother was also a child of Gerónima, who had survived to adulthood and
married, and thus would have been an heir. When the occupants balked at
vacating, and Catalina's husband, representing Catalina's mother, Juana,
presented grandmother Gerónima's will as testimony of the family's
ownership, ownership was affirmed for the old Florida claimants, though some
adjustments to the property lines were made to accommodate residents who
had moved onto the lands during the British years and stayed on after the
Spanish returned.
Reliance on the 1764 map made by Eligió de la Puente has obscured
the role and ownership of women in homesites.12 Eligió de la Puente listed
the house reclaimed by Catalina on behalf of her mother under the name of
Catalina's father. Eligió de la Puente's listing reflected the primacy of the
husband in identifying the household to the world outside the family. Perhaps
the ad hoc manner in which Eligió was forced to prepare his map in the face
of evacuation left little time for careful research into ownership. Eligió de la
Puente's list depicted on its face substantial female ownership of property,
even without considering the obscured owners. Of the named property
owners, 40 percent were women (80 of 203), although women owned only 24
percent of the individual parcels (85 of 350). Numerous property owners
claimed several parcels, resulting in the difference in the percentages.
Across the street, at Victoria Escalona's homesite, similar events took place.

116
Victoria lived on a corner with the north wall of her house bounded by the lane
that dead-ended at Gerónima's fence. In 1743 the widowed and apparently
childless Victoria married a soldier from Spain, Martín Martinez Gallegos.
Victoria might well have provided this house for the new marriage. Like
Gerónima she died long before her husband did. By virtue of Victoria's
dowry, Victoria's motherless children and their father, as their guardian, were
entitled to use Victoria’s house for their home. Before the first anniversary of
her death, her widower also buried two of their children within a period of four
days. This father with two (or possibly three) children still living married
again, choosing not a St. Augustine native, but a member of a recent
immigrant group of German Catholics brought to St. Augustine as settlers.
Victoria's widower was able to offer his new bride a home in the house that
his dead former wife had provided. This composite family, including children
of the new marriage, also sailed for Cuba in 1763. On his map Eligió de la
Puente listed the remarried husband as the owner of the house and lot. Yet
the property ownership rested with Victoria's lineage.13
Unlike the neighbors across the street, neither Victoria's daughter nor
son chose to return from Cuba in 1784. Victoria's sister, however, sailed back
to claim the corner property on behalf of her niece and nephew and
subsequently to live there herself. This rather brash aunt appeared at the
property and astounded the occupant, a man who had been paying rent for
years to a self-proclaimed owner, by ordering him to vacate immediately. A

117
wooden house the occupant had built now sat upon the property, for Victoria's
masonry house had not survived the intervening years. So Victoria's younger
sister moved onto the lot and into the new house. There is no mention of any
claim by Victoria's husband to the property nor by any of the children that
were bom of his subsequent marriage. Apparently the property was Victoria's
to pass on to her children. A pre-evacuation resident testified that there had
been ''no other resident or owner than Victoria Escalona."14
The stories of these two sites illustrate the practice of succession of
female ownership of real property that occurred as well among other families
in Spanish St. Augustine. In the earliest of the records studied, Micaela
González in 1727 sold the house "inherited" from her parents. Isabel
Rodriguez entered her second marriage in 1733 with family real estate,
acquired when she married the first time four years earlier. Eligió de la
Puente listed her second husband as the owner.15 In 1763 Doña Beatriz
Amadora, bound for Cuba, abandoned the site that was the "legacy of [her]
ancestors."16
Charles W. Arnade recognized this female participation in property
conveyance in St. Augustine through his study of the Avero family, with its
many daughters and apparently sufficient land to accommodate them all.17
Four of the Averos owned lots which either faced each other or were
contiguous. Eligió de la Puente listed the lots of the widow, Antonia (#81) and
Alfonsa (#66), in their own names, while the lots of Ursula (#67) and Juana

118
(#80) appear under the names of their husbands. The lots might well have
been distributed from land of their mother, who had married their soldier-
father, a Canary Islander, in 1711. Arnade identified the larger parcel from
which the girls' land was divided with their great-grandfather, based upon the
inclusion of the great-grandfather's name, Juan de Peñaloza, in a 1709
government appraisal of property in St. Augustine. In the next generation the
land passed to a daughter and subsequently to her daughter. Given this
sequence and the observations here about Eligió de la Puente's listing of
husbands, if alive, rather than their wives as owners, Arnade’s referring to the
Peñaloza "patrimony" and to the “patriarchal building" focuses incorrectly on
male rather than the successive female ownership.18 Arnade did not take into
account the laws in place in the colonies and refers to "Spanish tradition" and
"custom" regarding inheritance.19 But there was no single "Spanish" tradition
emanating from Iberia, for the regions of Spain had differing procedures
regarding inheritance. Colonial law, however, was based on antecedents of
the Castilian region and prevailed in the Americas. The colonies were the
property of the crown of Castile. Thus persons arriving from Iberia might find
themselves faced with colonial laws that did not fit with or support their
various traditions and expectations about residential and inheritance
practices. The lack of documents deprives us of prima facie evidence about
whether the observed matrilineal succession was de jure as well as de facto.

119
The most reasonable hypothesis is that the houses and their land
either served as dowries or were legacies. One of the Avero sisters, Ursula,
reclaimed her two-story house in 1785, after Florida was returned to Spanish
rule, so that the property could serve as a dowry for her daughter’s betrothal
to a Spanish army officer posted to St. Augustine. Although Ursula, then in
her sixties, remained in Havana, she continued the tradition of endowing a
daughter with a house as she had witnessed in her own family and among her
neighbors during her childhood in St. Augustine.20
The institution of the dowry recognized women's weak economic
position in society. Fathers and guardians were required to endow their
daughters or female wards at the time of marriage if there were means to do
so. The main purpose of the dowry was to provide for possible widowhood
and enable the widow to maintain a household separate from her parents or
siblings as well as to assist with the future family. The dowry remained the
property of the married woman although her husband controlled it. Any
income her dowry might generate was at his disposal. A woman recovered
the dowry upon the death of her husband, and if she predeceased him, her
children inherited the dowry or it reverted to her parents if she died childless.
Real property was not the usual corpus of a dowry in Hispanic areas; jewels,
slaves, furniture, clothes, and silver were customary. A dowry of a proprietary
government office assured many a colonial woman of a good marriage

120
throughout Spanish America, as it did in St. Augustine's during the town’s
early years.21
However, tradition as well as the economic means of the bride's family
determined the contents of the dowry according to Asunción Lavrin and Edith
Couturier. The local situation in St. Augustine made a house a pragmatic
choice for a dowry. A town that was dependent upon the military budget
(situado) did not generate wealth to provide brides with jewels, fine clothing
and silver plate. Besides, what a new couple needed in St. Augustine was a
place to live. Men coming from Spain or other parts of the empire to duty in
St. Augustine could not bring a home with them. In these circumstances, a lot
and a building upon it was an asset that a family could afford for endowing a
daughter and one not available to a prospective son-in-law who was a soldier
from elsewhere. The disposition of the houses of Victoria Escalona and
Ursula de Avero In the manner described above implies that the properties
were dowries. The passage of control from the deceased Victoria to her
children in the one case, and the conveyance solely by the widowed Ursula
de Avero in the other instance illustrate the "clear-cut separation" under
colonial law of a woman's own property (parafernales and dowries) from the
assets accumulated during the marriage (gananciales). Had the houses been
jointly owned by the marital couples, the ownership would have been divided
among the surviving spouse and the children of the deceased. Only
Victoria's two children, not any of their father's other children from his

121
subsequent marriage, reclaimed the house in St. Augustine. Ursula de Avero
acted as sole owner in the disposition of her house for her daughter's dowry,
with no reference to any claims of her children as heirs of either of her two
deceased husbands. Ursula pledged the house that she had left behind in St.
Augustine as collateral for a dowry of 70,000 copper reales. Ursula's use of
her house for her daughter's dowry was particularly telling in light of the fact
that her own son (the girl's brother) was stationed in St. Augustine at the time,
yet Ursula used it for the daughter's benefit.22
The wills of men of advanced age, who had outlived several wives and
many of their own children required detailed explanations to substantiate the
validity of ownership of properties that had come to them through dowry or
had been disposed of as dowry.23 The colony's long-time treasurer, Francisco
Menéndez Marquéz explicitly attested to the practice, stating that his
daughters were provided houses at the time of marriage and that his own
wives as well brought houses into marriage with them. Itemizing his assets
and debts in 1742 at the end of his life, the aged Menéndez Marquez recited
in his will that he "gave" houses to the two eldest of his five daughters when
they married. The youngest three received slaves, horses, and earrings-the
family's town real estate no doubt depleted by the time the younger girls wed.
Production lands, however, Menéndez had retained and not offered as part of
daughters' marriage arrangements: the cultivated lands of Araquei, which he

122
had purchased. Additionally his family had held cattle ranching lands through
several generations of Menéndez males.
Menéndez's wives had come into marriage with houses. His second
wife brought to the marriage a two-story house that was her "maternal
legacy," which she willed to him in the absence of offspring. Menéndez’s
father-in-law had to agree to the bequest which suggests that the property
might have been a dowry to which he had some right of use. Menéndez's
third wife was able to provide a small tabby house with a palm thatch roof
when they married.24 Likewise, Juana de Sepulveda" brought to her marriage
a house inherited from her parents." Her widower found it necessary to clarify
the homesite situation in his own will even though the "small house roofed
with thatch" was no longer part of his assets. After their house burned, the
couple sold the lot.25
The association of maternal or uxorial preeminence with homesites is
set forth by Artillery Sergeant Fernando Rodriguez, who became the owner of
property originally belonging to his mother-in-law. His mother-in-law provided
a homesite as a dowry that was to revert either to herself, her daughter or to
the daughter's heirs upon the death of Rodriguez. With his wife and then
their son predeceasing him, Rodriguez in his will outlined the demise of
members of his wife's family, which allowed him to become the owner and
bequeath it to a legatee of his own choice.26

123
Straightforward inheritance is the other plausible explanation of the
passage of property, and documents examined contain specific references by
women to legacies from their parents. The Laws of Castile applied to the
Indies so inheritance rules were consistent throughout the Spain’s New World
possessions unlike the dissimilarity among the British American colonies
north of Florida.27 Inheritance laws varied among the old kingdoms of the
Iberian peninsula, and Immigrants to St. Augustine surely brought their own
regional practices and traditions about of the acceptable methods of passing
on property, which they might incorporate in their wills within the limits of the
law. Castilian, and therefore colonial, law did not favor the right of
primogeniture, which prevailed In some areas of Spain itself, but Instead
prescribed equal inheritance for children and spouse. A testator could favor a
spouse or a particular child with a larger portion, the meiora. but within legal
limits that protected the other heirs. Silvia Arróm explains that "the law
favored the right to inherit over an individual's freedom to bequeath." David
A. Brading in his study of merchants and mining found the equal division of
family assets detrimental in Mexico, where once-viable commercial
enterprises suffered as their ownership became fragmented through the
practice of partible Inheritance. Although St. Augustine had no fortunes to
sunder on the Mexican scale, the use of the dowry as an advance legacy to
provide a home precluded multiple and potentially conflicting ownership of a
residence that was originally intended to accommodate one family. A dowry

124
was often considered an advance inheritance, thus the references to legacies
in the St. Augustine documents might well refer to legacles-as-dowries as
much as to other forms of Inheritance. The descriptions by elderly widowers
regarding reversion of property to parents of their deceased spouses or to
property to be held in trust for minor children of a dead mother or references
to consent required from a deceased wife’s imply a typical and codified dowry
situation rather than post-mortem inheritance.28
Providing new families with access to land was a logical solution to the
situation that developed in St. Augustine after 1680. Before then, Spain did
not replenish Florida's troops, and local men staffed the garrison despite
directives by the crown to the contrary. Royal orders had allowed native-born
soldiers only as a "stop-gap" when military units fell below strength. But in
the absence of incoming replacements, both the military and local women
chose locally born men by default. After the English began to settle Carolina
in 1670, Spain boosted its Florida's forces with men from the peninsula. Fifty
soldiers arrived with Governor Marqués Cabrera in 1680. Marqués, who was
more contemptuous of creoles than any other governor, began a determined
program of dismissal of natives until the garrison reached an all-time low in
manpower. Marqués then "shanghaied" an additional thirty-eight Spanish
troops for Florida service in 1684, and thirty more men arrived the following
year.29 As this trend continued, Florida-born men probably chose to leave the

125
colony to find a livelihood; homesltes in Florida would be of little use to them
in absentia.
These were also the years of the construction of the Castillo de San
Marcos, begun in 1672 and substantially completed in 1695. The advent of
the fort encouraged settlement of the area nearby it, where there had
previously been no white population. The appearance of the new section of
town coincided with the arrival of men from Spain. The fact that the area had
previously been unoccupied, at least by Europeans, might have permitted the
acquisition of larger parcels than In the older, settled part of town, or of
several parcels at one time that could provide separate homesites for future
generations. It might be more than a coincidence that Gerónima and Victoria,
who lived across from each other on the Street of the Governor, shared a
grandmother. The Avero sisters as well owned homes facing each other
across the Street of the Governor (today's St. George Street).30
Anthropologist William Tulio Divale has observed that among less
complex societies matrilocality (or uxorilocality) is an adaptive response to
disequilibrium that occurs when there is immigration into an already Inhabited
area. Anthropologists Melvin and Carol Ember and Divale have discerned a
positive relationship between matrilocality and external warfare. The
requirements of external warfare were St. Augustine's raison d'étre. The
external warfare system fueled the town's economy and devoured its sons.31

126
St. Augustine's population turned to the female element of society in
the face of the disequilibrium resulting from a relatively large male
immigration. For example, the 118 men arriving between 1680 and 1685
equaled more than thirty-seven per cent of the strength of the garrison, which
was composed of local men prior to the governor's arrival. The introduction of
so many men contemporaneous with the construction of the fortress exerted
pressure for housing that had not previously existed. Researchers
investigating the physical evolution of colonial St. Augustine have attributed
the spreading of the town to the northern side of the central plaza to the
advent of the Castillo, but the demographic changes no doubt played a part in
the creation of a residential area for Spanish families there.
The body of colonial law already provided legal mechanisms and
incorporated theories that enabled a solution to the problem through female
access to and residual control of property. Recently arrived, landless Iberians
and Latins surely opted for a bride who could offer a house or at least a lot
upon which to build a home. As for the preferences of the brides, Iberian birth
carried status throughout the New World. In St. Augustine after 1680,
marriage to a locally born man meant economic uncertainty as Governor
Marqués purposefully mustered out native-born soldiers. Thus young women
had a compelling reason in addition to status to choose peninsulares (Iberian
born) over locally born men, and to entice them with land. Of course, it is

127
both possible and plausible that this local pattern of property transfer pre¬
dated the 1680s, but again the documentation is lacking.
Many of the arriving males were natives of Andalusia in southern
Spain, a region where anthropologist David Gilmore has identified female-
oriented residence patterns and the very influential role of mothers-in-law. So
powerful Is her position that Gilmore labels the wife's mother the béte noire of
Andalusian husbands.32 Perhaps such patterns and practices were both
familiar and comfortable for many of the men who came to colonial Florida in
the late seventeenth and the first half of the eighteenth century.
Divale concluded that matrilocallty or the female-oriented pattern
"should be seen as specific, not general." St. Augustine's pattern was a
response to a particular set of conditions: a long-term Influx of landless men
and constricted area of settlement. But as a defense post and military town,
St. Augustine's conditions were not without similarity to other towns whose
primary function was to serve as protection for the Spanish empire or for other
nations. Nor is the in-migration of males as soldiers into military towns
restricted to the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. The actions of St.
Augustine's population might well be a particular version of a universal
pattern, and we should be alert to similar responses In other military towns.
Seen as part of the larger North American colonial experience, the
practice of female property control provided St. Augustine's creole women
with a security in widowhood not enjoyed by their counterparts in some of the

128
British colonies to the north. In British New England widows in families which
included adult male children might face an uncertain residential future, for
sons were favored over wives in the bequeathing of real property. Common
law allowed the widow to remain in the main family residence usually one or
two months; after the designated interim the heir could evict her if he
wished.33 Widow Carpenter in Massachusetts, for example, inherited the use
of two rooms and access to the hearth in the house that her husband willed to
his son. Perhaps Thomas King, also of Massachusetts, felt that he had been
adequately generous when he assigned his wife the "east end of [his]
dwelling house ... with liberty to make some use of the cellars and lean-
tos."34
Conclusions
In Spanish Florida the military character of Spanish culture was
perpetuated and reinforced and continued by the actuality of a military
province. The matrilineal property conveyance assured not only housing for
the soldiers’ families, but for the soldiers themselves. By contrast historians
Marylynn Salmon and David Narrett have observed that in colonial British
America "a married women’s power to will property was contrary to the orderly
descent of land at common law."35 While the female-oriented passing of
property can be seen as lessening the power of the husband vis-á-vis that of
the wife, the expectation and burden for the well-being of the family was

129
diffused among the relatives, and the expectation of the husband’s providing
were diminished and absorbed by the wife's parents. This is not to imply that
St. Augustine's widows acted without the constraints imposed by the inability
to read, the pressures of family, priests and local society or a suitor, but
ownership offered power and authority over more than just an "end" of the
house and some use of the fireplace.
After the Spanish regime returned to Florida in 1784 following two
decades of British rule, circumstances in the town no longer needed the
female-favorable property pattern as much as during the earlier Spanish
tenure. But the pattern persisted in spite of changes. St. Augustine was no
longer the closed society where the practice had served so well. Immigrants
of all nationalities, especially citizens of the new United States, settled In the
colony while other people just flowed through. A reorganized military rotated
troops with regularity-at least ideally. As the years went by the civilian
population grew while the military force shrunk. Ursula de Avero's son-in-law
was transferred, eliminating the need for the residence so long a part of the
family "matrimony."36
But the pattern had been firmly planted in the world view of the
floridano families that re-claimed their property in the second Spanish period.
Francisca de Hita, the daughter of another of the Avero sisters, Juana, moved
onto her mother's lot on St. George Street (yet another one listed by Eligió de
la Puente in the husband's name)37 Francisca's mother's house had since

130
disappeared, replaced by a footpath. The validity of Francisca's claim to the
now-closed right of way was too uncertain to risk investing in the construction
of a house, so she planted orange trees as her act of possession. Across the
street and a few paces to the north on St. George Street, Gerónima's
descendants still resided. When Florida was transferred to the United States
in 1821, Gerónima's great-granddaughter, Manuela, owned the property of
her maternal forebears that lay at the end of the alley that led to the fort.
About to set sail for Havana, Manuela issued a power of attorney to sell the
"small masonry house with its corresponding lot located ... near the land
gate." Eighty-five years had passed since Gerónima, "sick in body but sound
of mind," had signed the will that described her home.38 With the ships that
carried Manuela, her kinsmen, and neighbors to Cuba went those practices
and procedures that Florida would no longer need under United States
domination and in an agricultural economy.
Notes
1. Eugene Lyon, The Enterprise of Florida: Pedro Menéndez de Avilés and
the Spanish Conquest of 1565-1568 (Gainesville: University of Florida Press,
1976), 117.
2. Florida's protective role was often passive rather than assertive; it must be
seen very broadly. Much of the time, Florida protected the silver fleets by
depriving the British of a land base near the route of the silver fleets. In the
second Spanish period (1784-1821) the Spain viewed its colonies in the
southeast as a barrier to United States’ toward Mexico.

131
3.Engel Sluiter, The Florida Situado: Quantifying the First Eighty Years.
1571-1651 (Gainesville: University of Florida Libraries, 1985),1. Historian
Amy Bushnell, Situado and Sabana: Spain's Support System for the Presidio
and Mission Provinces of Florida (New York: American Museum of Natural
History, 1994); Kathleen Hoffman, “The Development of a Cultural Identity in
Colonial America: The Spanish-American Experience in La Florida” (Ph.D.
diss. University of Florida, 1994), Elizabeth J. Reitz and Stephen L. Cumbaa,
“Diet and Foodways of Eighteenth-Century Spanish St. Augustine,” in
Kathleen Deagan, Spanish St. Augustine: The Archaeology of a Colonial
Creole Community (Orlando: Academic Press, 1983), 151-85; John E. Worth,
The Timucuan Chlefdoms of Spanish Florida, Vol. 1 (Gainesville: University
Press of Florida, 1997).
4.Marylynn Salmon, Women and the Law of Property in Early America
(Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 1986), 157.
5.John E. Crowley, “Family Relations and Inheritance in Early South
Carolina, Histoire sociale-Social History 17 (1984): 35-57, esp. 45 and 51.
6.Pablo Castelló, "Plano del presidio de San Agustín de la Florida y sus
contornos ...." 1763 July 21. Library of Congress (original in the Spanish
Ministry of War, LM 8a-1a), map # 30; Juan José Eligió de la Puente, "El
Presidio de San Agustín de la Florida ...." 1764 January 22, Archivo General
de Indias, Seville, Spain, maps #1 and 129 in former Historic St. Augustine
Preservation Board collection, State of Florida, now under aegis of City of St.
Augustine, Florida (HSAPB); Robert L. Gold, Borderland Empires in Transition:
The Triple-Nation Transfer of Florida (Carbondale and Edwardsville: Southern
Illinois University Press, 1969), ch. 5.
Since 1983 historians and librarians at the University of Florida have
attempted, so far without success, to persuade the Castro government in Cuba
to permit microfilming of Florida notarial documents in Havana. Negotiations
with Cuban authorities are scheduled to resume in 1999.
7.Will of Gerónlma Rodríguez and Francisco Navarro, St. Augustine, 1737
February 4, Bundle (hereafter bnd.) 359, document number 1, East Florida
Papers (hereafter EFP), Library of Congress (microfilm copies at St. Augustine
Historical Society)

132
7. Marriage of Gerónima Rodríguez and Francisco Navarro, 1724 June 6;
Burial of Gerónima Rodríguez, 1737 April 8, St. Augustine Cathedral Parish
Records (CPR), Diocesan offices, Mandarin, Florida (microfilm copies at St.
Augustine Historical Society). Gerónima's father, José Antonio Rodriguez, was
the third husband of her mother, Gertrudis de Morales, the latter married first to
a native of Havana and then to a man born in St. Augustine. Marriage of
Gertrudis de Morales and Andrés Garrido, 1682 February 4; of Gertrudis Alvares
de Morales to Jacinto Rodriguez, 1683 Dec 9; of Gertrudis de Morales to José
Antonio Rodriguez, 1687 September 16, CPR. Luis R. Arana, trans., Service
record of Teniente Don Francisco Navarro in Stetson Collection (SC), P. K.
Yonge Library of Florida History, University of Florida, Gainesville, Florida, AGI
87-3-13/14, typescript copy in files at Castillo de San Marcos National
Monument, St. Augustine.
9.Marriage of Francisco Navarro and Mariana Entonado, 1738 December 28;
Baptisms of Juan Navarro, 1727 April 5; of Juana Navarro, 1729 January 19,
CPR.
10.Marriage of Juana Navarro to Salvador de Porras, 1745 February 8, CPR.
11.Baptisms of Catalina Gerónima Rafaela de Porras, 1753 January 9; of
Génera Antonia de Porras, 1763 September 9, CPR. Claim of Juana Navarro,
Bundle 320, Claims no.15 and 80, Claims for Town Lots, Spanish Land Grant
manuscripts (hereafter SLG), Florida Department of Natural Resources, now
conserved at Division of Historical Resources, Tallahassee (microfilm copies at
St. Augustine Historical Society). Juan José Solana in "Report on Conditions of
St. Augustine," 1760 April 9, Archivo General de Indias (hereafter AGI) John b.
Stetson Collection (hereafter SC), P. K. Yonge Library of Florida History,
(microfilm copies at St. Augustine Historical Society) stated that Porras was
selling English dry goods and other things. Translations of the inventories of
both of "Porras's" real properties appeared in Charles W. Arnade, 'The
Architecture of Spanish St. Augustine," The Americas. 18 (October 1961): 175-
179.
12.This map is commonly denominated "the Puente map," probably arising
from an Anglophone interpretation of the mapmaker’s name. This study uses the
Spanish form: "Eligió" in the shortened form or "Eligió de la Puente." but not
"Puente." His surname appears frequently in governmental and church records
as “Eligió.”

133
13."Further Information on the Martinez Gallegos House" Block 7, Lot 1, Lot-
and-Block File, Historic St. Augustine Preservation Board collection. The
baptism of the child in 1762 of Martin Martinez Gallegos and Isabel Serrano
implies their marriage prior to 1762. Isabel is listed as a native of Germany. A
settlement of Germans had been established in the nearby rural area in the
1750s. That Isabel was a religious refugee is my deduction.
14.Claim of Joaquín Martinez and Rosalia Martinez [children of Victoria
Escalona] and Lucía Escalona, 1783 April 19, Bnd. 320 Claim no. 79, SLG.
15.Isabel's brother as administrator's of the parents estate "conveyed" the
property. Deed from Antonio José Rodríguez, executor of estate of José
Rodríguez, to Bonifacio Gonázlez, 1729 September [?], Bnd. 320 Claim no. 81,
SLG.
16.Deed from Juan Méndez and Micaela González to José de Escalona, 1727
February 17, Bnd. 320, Claim no. 75; Petition of José Miguel Chapuz, heir of his
mother, Dona Beatriz Amadora, Bnd. 320 Claim no. 62, SLG.
17.Charles W. Arnade, "The Avero Story: An Early Saint Augustine Family with
Many Daughters and Many Houses." Florida Historical Quarterly 40 (1961): 1-
34.
18.Ibid., quotes on 10 and 13, respectively.
19.[bid-, 16.
20.Petition of Tadeo de Arribas, son and agent for Ursula de Avero, 1785
January 11, Bnd 359, doc. no. 2, EFP. His sister, Maria de Arribas, and Sub¬
lieutenant Pablo Catajal married on 1787 January 7.
21.Silvia Marina Arróm, The Women of Mexico City, 1790-1857 (Stanford:
Stanford University Press, 1985), 62, 67-8. Asunción Lavrin and Edith Couturier
in "Dowries and Wills: A View of Women's Socioeconomic Role in Colonial

134
Guadalajara and Puebla, 1640-1790." Hispanic American Historical Review. 59
(1979): 280-288, assert that the "dowry represents the first legal
acknowledgment of the women's personality and the first time she Is accorded
possession of goods and property," quote on p. 281. Amy Bushnell, "The Kina's
Coffer: Proprietors of the Spanish Florida Treasury. 1565-1702 (Gainesville:
University of Florida Press, 1981), 18; Della M Flusche and Eugene H. Korth, "A
Dowry Office in Seventeenth-Century Chile," Flistorian 49 (1987): 204-222.
22.Lavrln and Couturier, "Dowries and Wills," 288; Arrom, Women of Mexico
City, 67.
23.Amy Bushnell's asserts in The Kina's Coffer that the usual dowry in St.
Augustine was a house. Bushnell relied on Arnade's assessment of one family:
the Averos. Although Arnade's conclusion that real estate served as dowry Is
plausible, reasonable, and probably correct, it is a speculation nonetheless; the
documents he employed do not specifically state the creation of dowries.
Evidence of such behavior in one family, which happened to be overly endowed
with daughters, was not sufficient to support a broad statement. Arnade, "The
Avero Story;" Bushnell, Kina's Coffer, passim. The research presented here
illustrates and supports Bushnell's contention by addressing the patterns and
mechanisms.
24.Will of Francisco Menéndez Marquez, 1742 September 2, AGI SC 58-1-
34/73.
25.Will of Domingo Escalona, 1755 April 20, Estate of Domingo Escalona, Bnd.
301P5, EFP.
26.Will of Fernando Rodriguez, 1762 July [n.d ] in Claim of Antonia de Avero,
Bnd 319, claim no. 19, Claims for Town Lots, SLG.
27.Marylynn Salmon contends that the pervasive problem with studying
property rights in early [British] America is the remarkable diversity in the laws.
“No one ever envisioned a single colonial code of laws” because of the diverse
situation in the home islands. Women and the Law of Property. 1.

135
28.José María Ots y Capdequí, Manual de historia del derecho español en las
indias v del derecho propiamente indiano. (Buenos Aires: Editorial Losada,
1945), 112-77; Arróm, Women of Mexico City, 63; Lavrin and Couturier,
"Dowries and Wills;" David A. Brading, Miners and Merchants in Bourbon
Mexico. 1763-1810 (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1971), 103, 307.
29.Arana, "Spanish Infantry," 22-3, 78-84.
30.Archaeological evidence Indicates the Euro-American settlement of the
northern part of the town was contemporaneous with the construction of the fort.
Kathleen Deagan, Spanish St. Augustine: The Archaeology of a Colonial Creole
Community (Orlando, 1983), 25; Albert Manucy, "The Town Plan of St.
Augustine, 1580" (1977), Ms. on file at Historic St. Augustine Preservation Board
collection.
31.William Tulio Divale, "Migration, Warfare and Matrilocality," Behavior
Science Research. 9 (1974): 75-133; Melvin Ember and Carol Ember, "The
Conditions Favoring Matrilocal Versus Patrilocal Residence," American
Anthropologist 73 (1971): 571-594; Arana, "Spanish Infantry," 78-84.
32.Juan Marchena Fernández, "St. Augustine's Military Society, 1700-1820," E(
Escribano 22 (1985), 54-59; David D. Gilmore,"Men and Women in Southern
Spain: 'Domestic Power' Revlsted," American Anthropologist 92 (1990): 953-
970, quote on p. 958.
33.Salmon. Women and the Law of Property in Early America. 142-43. No
single body of law applied in the colonies in British America.
34.John Demos, A Little Commonwealth: Family Life in Plymouth Colony (New
York: Oxford University Press, 1970), 75.
35.David E. Narrett, "Men's Wills and Women's Property Rights in Colonial
New York," in Ronald Hoffman and Peter J. Albert, eds., Women in the Aoe of
the American Revolution (Charlottesville: University Press of Virginia, 1989), 106

136
36.Juan Marchena Fernández, "The Defense Structure of East Florida," 37-52,
and "St. Augustine's Military Society," 77; Arrivas Flouse File, Block 12, Lot 21,
Lot-and-Block File, Historic St. Augustine Preservation Board collection.
37.Claim of Antonia de Avero, Bnd. 319, claim no. 73, Claims for Town Lots,
SLG.
38.Manuela might not have been competent to handle her own affairs and
unlikely to marry. "Historical Report for Block 7, Lot 4" Lot-and-Block files,
Historic St. Augustine Preservation Board collection; Power of Attorney from
Doña Manuela Ponce de León to Don Pedro Miranda and Don Eusebio Maria
Gómez, 1823 February 12, Deed Book E, page 11, St. Johns County Records;
Payments to Don José María Gómez and to Doña Cipriana Gómez for Doña
Manuela Ponce de León, 1812 October 24 and 1817 February 6, respectively,
Bnd. 6115, EFP.

CHAPTER 6
PERSONAL POSSESSIONS
I declare as my possessions ....
(Yo declaro por mis bienes . ...)
-Sergeant Fernando Rodríguez, 1762
Decades of quoting, paraphrasing and thereby accepting at face value
the reports of Florida's royal officials as they described a minimal material
existence in the colony have prevented historians from looking for
possessions at the individual level. If officials reported that things were bleak,
who would expect an ordinary individual to say otherwise? Although the
documentary evidence is scant, individuals who were actually caught up in
events in Florida did relate what their possessions were.
Given the destructive events of the first years of the eighteenth
century, surely personal possessions were minimal in the years after 1702.
Possessions must have been few or new because little of the old survived the
1702 siege. Residents lost their possessions to looting and fire during the
siege (see Chapter 4). Salvaged items taken with the refugees into the
Castillo might have been altered or dismantled to serve more dire functions
during the 50-odd days inside the fortress's walls. Forty years after the siege
137

138
one survivor recalled that "although we each brought some property into [our]
marriage, none remains, as a result of the enemy's invasion."1
But colonists in Spanish Florida would once again own items that
exceeded in number and quality the bare necessities and so the residents set
out to describe and distribute their possessions in inventories and wills.
Unfortunately, only a few testaments and even fewer documents of estate
probate proceedings are available at this time to enable us to sketch a
material portrait of the colony. Crises other than death also generated the
necessity to enumerate worldly goods and these sorts of listings differ from
the estate inventories. Because the owner himself could compose or critique
the non-probate inventories, the last sort tends to be more detailed.
One such inventory was compiled when Governor Francisco del Moral
Sánchez was imprisoned in 1737, accused of abuse of office. When a
replacement arrived in Florida after numerous complaints of del Moral’s
behavior, the disfavored governor refused to submit to orders for his removal
from office. Interim Governor Manuel de Justis, after arguments and del
Moral’s attempt to claim sanctuary in the Franciscan convent, finally ordered
the seizure of del Moral himself, his specie and possessions.2
Another non-probate inventory recorded the goods owned by a locally
influential evacuee whom we have seen before, the cartographer, Juan José
Eligió de la Puente, when Spain turned over Florida to Great Britain in 1763.
Inventories of the goods of other residents were made at the same time but

139
are not available to contribute to this study. These two non-probate
inventories included items either intended for sale in outlets in St. Augustine
or for exchange in some fashion with the Native Americans. In neither case
were items described as retail goods rather than as items solely for personal
use, but the quantities and sorts of goods make that implication. And no
inventories for women contribute to this study of personal property. Again,
the deficit lies in the current availability of the resources, not in the lack of
testamentary activity by females, for the parish burial records refer to
numerous wills by women.3
These documents not only provide a sketch of what residents owned
and prized, but the relative value of possessions in relation to one another is
also often clear.
Furnishings
Furniture appeared on almost all of the inventories. Mahogany and
cedar appeared most frequently, if the variety of wood was specified. During
the eighteenth century, mahogany, a tropical wood, became widely used In
furniture. Easy to carve and often beautifully grained with swirled, mottled or
striped patterns, mahogany is also strong and durable. It also glues well and
takes a beautiful polish. Mahogany pieces, or at least the boards to make
them, had to be brought in to Florida from the Caribbean, thus making them
more costly than items made in Florida from nearby forests.4

140
Three mahogany writing desks were impounded at the time of the
incarceration of Governor del Moral. One of the desks was apparently sizable
for It was "in two parts," and fashioned in the English style. Although anti-
British sentiment marked the Spanish attitude during much of the eighteenth
century, the Spanish found the English style~"with its severity and utilitarian
feel"-more familiar and to Spanish taste than the more ambitious and
contorted French style that accompanied the Bourbons to the Spanish
throne.5 “[Simplicity, rigid rectangularity and austere dignity . . . have always
appealed to Spanish tastes in furniture" according to The Hispanic Society of
America. Crudity appeared in even the best examples of Spanish writing
desks, which appeared in inventories and room descriptions in plays and
tales set in Spain. According to modern museum professionals, "anyone with
a pretension to wealth must have owned a writing desk." Whatever
international influences might be in vogue, writing desks retained their
traditional Iberian appearance. Originally designed as traveling desks, these
items recalled the long centuries of Reconquest and military campaigns which
so strongly influenced Spanish character and culture.6
The disgraced governor also owned two smaller, portable, footed
writing desks (papeleras) of mahogany crafted "in the Havana style" and
another small wooden writing-desk of yet another sort (escribanía).7 Although
most of Florida's governors were of Iberian birth (peninsulares). Francisco del
Moral was Cuban and probably owned more items of Cuban origin than the

141
appointees who arrived either directly from Spain or from service in other
parts of the empire. Florida governors commonly had seen service in
outposts in Africa or campaigns in the Holy Land. With their cosmopolitan
experiences, perhaps they transported to Florida items acquired as gifts or
souvenirs or even as booty. Thus the officials sent to embody Iberian
presence in the New World might have introduced to their subordinates in
Florida the motifs and styles of supposedly subjugated peoples and cultures.8
Writing desks-escritorios. papeleras, baraueños-composed a part of
personal property in Florida since the colony's founding. The sixteenth- and
seventeenth-century residents claimed ownership of such items. A list from
the 1570s mentions "2 women's small writing desks" in the addition to other
desks described in more generic terms.9 More than a century later, Pablo de
Hita y Salazar made use of escritorios from China, decorated with copper. A
third writing desk might have been made in Florida, for it was described as
new with a body of cedar and feet of cypress, both local woods. Although
larger and newer than the Chinese desks, the cedar and cypress item was
valued at 12 reales (1-1/2 pesos! while the Asian items furniture was worth 20
pesos each or thirteen times as valuable.10 Governor Manuel de Cendoya
owned a writing desk inlaid with marble made from Campeche wood
[Honduran mahogany?] and a Spanish cedar writing desk with four iron straps
in 1673. A "small cedar writing desk with two drawers" was in the house of
Royal Accountant Francisco Menéndez Marquéz when he died in 1742.11

142
Juan José Eligió de la Puente owned " a full-size writing desk with smooth
surface'' and" two writing desks of half size" at the time of the Spanish
evacuation of St. Augustine in 1764. These Florida residents carried on the
Spanish tradition of the presence of numerous secretaries (furniture) in a
genteel or aspiring household. Pedro Fernández Navarette had commented
in 1626 that "a great many secretaries serve only for appearance or
correspondence" in Iberian homes.12
Other cedar items found among the inventories include a chest
belonging to Menéndez Marquéz and a cedar trunk "in the Havana style"
owned by Governor del Moral. Eligió and del Moral both counted cedar
cupboards or "presses" among their belongings as well as tables of several
sizes, round and square made from cedar or mahogany. Governor Cendoya’s
collection of fine clothing and lengths of cloth were stored in several cedar
chests.13
Chairs and stools also appeared in the inventories. To the modern
American eye the furniture for seating in colonial Florida may seem scanty,
yet austerity and minimal seating remains the style even today in Spain's
country houses. Governor Hita claimed only six chairs, with Mexican tacks, in
1681. Eighty years later, Eligió de la Puente's home was furnished with
eighteen chairs and twelve stools. In contrast, Eligio’s contemporary,
Governor del Moral, owned only "three English-style chairs with cane seats."
Perhaps the governor's house contained chairs and other furnishings

143
belonging to the crown and the governor did not personally have to supply all
the furnishings for the executive residence. The appraisers of Francisco
Menéndez's estate found only five chairs in his home. Diego de Espinosa's
heirs reported only twelve chairs and a round table as furnishings.'4
Elderly Sergeant Fernando Rodriguez was the only person to mention
his bed. He bequeathed his bedstead, mattress and bed curtains to his god¬
son and namesake. The appearance of this item illustrates that not all
ordinary soldiers slept on palettes on the floor beside other household
members and did, in fact, repose in comfort and style and with some privacy.15
Paintings and mirrors decorated the walls of buildings, while silver,
gold, and crystal items enhanced both the appearance of a residence and, at
the same time the status of the owner as well as performing utilitarian tasks.
The only decorative items of any value listed for Francisco Menéndez's house
were four paintings in fair condition. All four works of art only equaled the
value (10 pesos) of just one of his tables. Eligió de la Puente enjoyed two
sets of engravings, each set composed of a dozen scenes. Encompassing
both the sublime and the profane, one set portrayed the religious mysteries
and the other depicted pastoral scenes. The deposed Governor del Moral
owned a "large gilt picture of San Sebastián" and three other pictures with gilt
frames, measuring a vara long. Before his downfall, the governor reflected
upon his own image in a pair of English mirrors with black wooden frames and

144
also in a medium-sized and a small mirror. Another six mirrors with walnut
frames and gilded edges adorned the walls of his residence.16
With nightfall light was provided from unadorned as well as from
sumptuous sources. Eligió lit his rooms with a dozen pairs of large white
metal candlesticks accompanied by snuffers to extinguish them, five pairs of
yellow metal candlesticks, and sixteen small candlesticks with handles. Light
shone forth from hanging lanterns, and standing crystal lanterns sat next to a
parlor clock on one of Eligio's tables. Numerous boxes of sperm oil candles
were kept on hand.17
Implements and Containers
Implements used in the preparation and consumption of food and drink
could display wealth and status as well as serve more basic functions. Items
of ceramics and of precious metals were imported into Florida as well as more
prosaic "kitchen" items. Euro-Americans and Native Americans in Florida and
other parts of the southeast shared a desire for metallic manufactured goods,
usually produced in Europe. Much of the evidence for ceramic presence in
colonial Florida has been provided by archaeological excavations rather than
from personal inventories. The inventories, however, enable a glimpse of the
metallic items, which were more durable and thus less likely to be discarded
and have been subsequently excavated hundreds of years later.18

145
To an ordinary person, such as Sgt. Rodriguez, durable domestic items
of metal merited individual mention In a will. Rodriguez declared that he
owned three Iron cooking pots, a mortar and pestle, hooks for the hearth, two
large hatchets and a small one, and a kneading tray (batea de amasarl with
its flour-sieve. The sieve might not have been made entirely of metal, but was
constituted partially of cloth.19
The governor, of course, had to display the accouterments of his social
position as a means of exhibiting his authority. His tableware as much as his
clothing announced his status. Dutch porringers, goblets, fourteen pewter
platters, a salt-cellar, a large pitcher of wrought silver, knives, forks and
spoons of silver, silver snuffers, a gallery tray, soup plates and numerous
specialized serving dishes of a variety of sizes and styles were used in the
governor's residence.20
The surfeit of certain household items in Eligió de la Puente's
possession suggested that he intended to sell them to the residents of St.
Augustine, perhaps by installing them in someone else's store, as did José
Guillén, or perhaps in his own shop. It can be inferred from the inventory that
by the middle of the eighteenth century the colonists of Florida could
purchase luxury goods in St. Augustine and use them in their own homes.
Governor del Moral and Eligió de la Puente both engaged in local trade and
in trade with the Native Americans of the back country, and their inventories
reflect both types of clients. The inventories, however, did not discriminate

146
between the household items of the owner and the goods destined for re-sale.
Goods that appeared in number or volume which seemed to exceed the
needs of a household, even a well-to-do or high-status household, have been
assigned the status of commercial items for the purposes of this study.21
The colonial consumer could choose items from two barrels of pewter
platters and plates, a barrel of flintstones, two barrels of flatirons, two barrels
of green earthenware, seven barrels of crystal tumblers, as well as lanterns
and candlesticks in several sizes. Large and small mirrors were available.
Whether the eight copper coffeepots, coffeemill, tin-plated jelly pans and tart
pans were used in Eligio's residence or for retail is not known. He also
carried consumables such as barrels of rice, cocoa, and vitriol. More than
150 shirts, white and striped, awaited an owner. Ten small boxes of window
panes and hundred of shingles were also available The inclusion of boxes of
window panes in Eligio's inventory testified to the use of glass for windows by
the Spanish in Florida prior to evacuation to Cuba and before the arrival of
British rule. John Bartram reported in 1765 that the Spanish houses had no
glass windows and thus the British have been credited with the introduction of
glass windows into Florida-an assumption that has been accepted by
historians for years.22

147
Textiles and Clothing
Throughout ail the Atlantic colonies, cloth was a highly sought
commodity. Historian Adrienne D. Hood claims that: "cloth was the most
material item of material culture in the eighteenth century Atlantic world." She
asserts that "fabrics and clothing represented the largest expenditure on
household items for most families." Thus Florida testators and others
concerned with the fate of their possessions listed and assigned textile items
to their beneficiaries. Francisco Menéndez gave to his daughter María de los
Angeles a velvet cloak trimmed in gold upon her marriage. Sgt. Rodriguez
unequally divided his clothing between his two godsons. He favored his
namesake with all of his white garments and half of the colored clothing (in
addition to a bed and a residence). The other godson, Pedro Morente,
received the remaining half of the colored clothing (ropa de color). Eligió
listed four and a half varas of fine blue cloth, perhaps for his own use, given
the small amount. Equivalent to slightly more than twelve English yards, the
cloth was not enough to make a complete man's garment, which required
about seventeen yards. Wool ruffling or flounce of the same color as the dry
goods also appeared on his inventory.23
Governor del Moral might well have been the dandy of the colony
during his tenure, for his confiscated trunks held sumptuous cloth awaiting
tailoring. The governor possessed silk cloth of several varieties, caps of
embroidered velvet, buttonsets of silver, and two buttonsets (one set of silver)

148
specifically for a man's dress-coat, stockings of deep red silk, handkerchiefs,
Chinese silk ribbon, skeins of gold thread, pounds of ordinary white thread.
The sorts of textiles among the governor's possessions resembled the kinds
of textiles used for religious purposes in rituals and festivals. To complete his
sartorial presentation, he carried a silver-tipped walking-stick. Whether he
wore his scimitars or displayed them as exotica is unknown. Pocket pistols
and a sword made in the "Madrid style" completed the body weaponry.24
Curtains appeared on the governor's inventory, but none of luxurious
materials. The curtains were made of the more mundane and utilitarian chintz
and linsey-woolsey. A set of four green linsey-woolsey curtains boasted
printed borders.25
The Native Americans wanted cloth items as badly as the Euro-
Americans and they traded their enemies into slavery as well as exchanged
deerskins in order to obtain lengths of cloth and ready-made cloth items. As
colonial governments vied for Native alliances, cloth became part of the
annual gifts to the Indians in the hope to secure their support, or at times
merely to ensure their passivity or neutrality in the inter-European rivalries
that played out in the southeast. Florida's Governor Manuel de Montiano
reported in May 1738 that, "Clothes, shirts, hats, beads, and pipes" had
arrived and that they would be charged against the "Indian budget" and
exchanged for friendship. Twenty years later, Father Solana remarked about

149
the Native Americans who “were in need of ribbons, kerchiefs, etc.” and
wished to trade their deerskins in St. Augustine for the cloth items.26
Eligio's inventory listed several items "for the Indians." Packed in a
long box were twenty-five guns intended for Native American ownership.
Eligió also claimed some blue, medium-quality wool cloth and remnants of
white valletón. The large number of axes, hatchets, combs, and rosaries
among Governor del Moral's possessions might have been intended for the
Indians, but those items were also sought by the other residents of the colony
as well.27
The governor kept some home remedies in one of his chests, trunks, or
desks. Pieces of a plant that might have effected the human heart, similar to
digitalis, and candles which might have contained narcotic oil, as well as
papers containing a red powder and a blue powder and "a little bit of ¡tamo (a
Cuban all-purpose remedy), were found near the his half dozen cupping-
glasses (ventosas) suggesting the plants’ medicinal uses.26
Jewelry
Jewelry had long served as one of the most popular dowry items
throughout the Spanish world It not only bespoke wealth and respectability,
but could be offered up as collateral for financial arrangements. Accountant
Francisco Menéndez provided his daughters with jewelry, slaves, and horses
when they married. Gerónima, Teresa and Luisa Menéndez all received

150
earrings worth 40 pesos upon marriage. Luisa was also given a gold chain
valued at 50 pesos. Daughter María de los Angeles received two pairs of
earrings, worth 30 and 25 pesos as well as a gold necklace (no value stated).
A daughter’s dowry items remained the property of the woman to enjoy or to
use, with her spouse’s consent, for the family's survival if events resulted in
financial distress. Upon her death, the dowry items passed equally to her
children, not to her widower. The lone Menéndez son received livestock and
a slave, but no items of jewelry, at his marriage. Menéndez's marriage grant
to his son was only about half the value of those given to the daughters.29
Building Materials
Construction materials ready for use represented an investment of
labor even if there had been little or no costs associated with the acquisition
of the materials themselves. Coquina was the most durable of the
construction materials used in St. Augustine and was ferried to outposts as
well. Pedro Menéndez Marquez first reported the existence of the shellstone,
which was formed of compacted small marine shells, in 1580. The stone was
quarried on Anastasia Island, the long barrier island to the east of St.
Augustine, and lightered across to the city.30 (See chapter 4 for a discussion
of the incorporation of the shellstone into architecture.) In 1743, the post
known as Fort Matanzas, eighteen miles south of the St. Augustine inlet, was
at last built of stone, rather than wood, and in 1755 coquina stone was

151
transported to the river crossing on the mission trail to the interior at Picolata,
on the east bank of the St. Johns River, to build the fortification there.31
Father Solana, in 1760, and William Bartram, in 1774, described the coquina
walls of the small fort of Picolata. Building stone from the coquina quarries
on Anastasia Island was available for use in private construction projects and
appeared as assets in a few inventories.32
The inventories expressed the amount of stone owned by a decedent
in quantities of boatloads, or literally, by the "canoeful" (piraguas de piedra),
rather than in units of square or cubic measure. Diego de Espinosa counted
five canoesful of worked (labrada) coquina valued at 9 pesos per boatload.
Another boatload of coquina pieces (ripio) of various sizes was worth two
thirds of the value of the "worked" stone, or 6 pesos. Sgt. Rodriguez claimed
three canoesful of coquina, the costs of which he had already "paid in full"
(pagadas y satisfechas), but no values were stated. This gross measurement
of coquina stood in sharp contrast to the detail and precision used in stating
amounts of stone once the material was incorporated into a structure. In
assessments of buildings, appraisers listed blocks of different widths as
separate items in appraisals and with different values depending upon width.
For example, stone with a thickness of two-thirds of a vara was valued at 2
pesos 6 reales ; blocks cut to one-half of a vara wide, 2 pesos 4 reales:
blocks measuring one-third of a vara (usually used for interior walls), 1 peso 7
33
reales.

152
Slaves
Enslaved men, women and children of African descent comprised
some of the most valuable personal property claimed by Florida colonists.
Governor del Moral claimed ownership of five slaves, four males between the
ages of 12 and 22 and a four-year-old girl. The young age of his slaves
probably reflected their use as personal or household servants. As governor,
del Moral could call upon the slaves owned by the Spanish crown and would
not have to rely as much as ordinary citizens did on the labor of his own
chattels. Sgt. Rodriguez mentioned one female slave, Ana Maria, whom he
emancipated at his death and also provided her with a small cabin or hut
(choza) for her home near the La Leche mission village. José Guillén
succinctly mentioned four slaves In the same clause in which his houses and
his bllander appeared as possessions. With his wife still alive and her
knowledge of his affairs, Guillén probably had no need to elaborate or more
particularly identify these items.34
Francisco Menéndez Marquéz owned seven slaves at the time of his
death, ranging in age from three months to 70 years old. Their value
comprised one-third of the appraised value of his estate. A man with many
daughters, Menéndez had transferred some of his wealth to them as marriage
settlements. Menéndez had provided slaves as wedding presents to all of his
children in addition to other gifts. Two of his daughters who did not receive
houses at their marriage each received a slave for which Menéndez had paid

153
200 pesos. These more costly slaves offset the lower value of the rest of their
marriage gifts in comparison to their sisters. It appears that when Menéndez
ran out of houses and lots to give to his daughters, in the interest of
equanimity, he substituted more expensive slaves. The last daughter to wed
received the bulk of her gifts in jewelry. Menéndez gave to his son a "black
boy, Florida born, named Félix, who was worth 100 pesos." Like other
property, slaves could be rented out for income or mortgaged to secure loans
and thus made fine dowry assets.36
The inventory made in May 1756, after the death of Diego de Espinosa
presented revealing differences between the emphasis upon certain
possessions of town dwellers who gained their livelihood from government
service and that of Espinosa's heirs and executors, who were concerned
about his ranch. More like his agriculturally oriented counterparts in British
America, where houses and furniture mattered little according to historians
Lorena Walsh and Lois Green Carr, Espinosa's slaves, cattle, and horses
constituted the bulk of his declared wealth. Likewise, the cursory attention to
his ranch buildings in the inventory reflected the low monetary value accorded
rural buildings in the British and the Spanish southeast. Fitting into this
pattern, the only furniture claimed as Espinosa's were a mere dozen chairs
and a table, which were located in the kitchen of his house in town. No
furniture was listed for the ranch buildings.36

154
Espinosa left no will to clarify his affairs and possessions nor a
statement of his wishes for the distribution of any inheritance among his heirs;
his executors and family bore the burden of listing his possessions and
sorting out his business. Espinosa's executors submitted a list compiled by
Salvador de Porras of ten slaves described by sex, age and nation of birth.
The seven who had been born in Africa were cited by tribal or "nation"
affiliation-Arara, Mandingo, Congo, Caravali. Two of the creole slaves were
children aged 12 and 5, possibly born to parents already owned by Espinosa.
The slaves' aggregate value was placed at 2032 pesos. 25 per cent more
than the buildings on the two ranches. Espinosa surely utilized some his
slaves to herd and handle his cattle.37
None of the female slaves bore a surname in the inventory, whether
that reflected the actual situation or the biases of the appraisers. "Espinosa"
was the surname for all of the African-born males who were given a surname
in the listing; some African males had no surname listed. Only the male
creole slave, Francisco de Mora, possessed a name other than Espinosa.
The surname evidence might indicate that Diego de Espinosa had purchased
the African born slaves upon their arrival in the Americas or acquired some
who were runaways from Carolina and given them his name at baptism.38
According to Espinosa's inventory, the price of his slave cattlemen in
the middle of the eighteenth century was only half of what is had been a
century before. A black or mulatto slave brought from New Spain to Florida

155
for cattle-handling cost 500 to 600 pesos In the 1650s. Espinosa's most
valuable slaves in 1756, who were around 35 years old, carried a value of
280 pesos.
Amy Bushnell cites the above price of 500 to 600 pesos. Appraisers
valued Governor Hita y Salazar’s slaves in 1681 at around 500 pesos with
little differentiation in price regarding sex whether creole or Africa born.
Pedro and Catalina, both described as 20-years-old Congos, and an Arara
named Ana, 26, were each assessed at 500. The same sum was assigned to
Lorenzo, who was 40 and a creole from New Spain. Appraisers found the
mulatta Maria, 24, born in Puebla de los Angeles in New Spain to be worth
600 pesos. Amy Bushnell attributed the high price for slaves in the
seventeenth century to their need for their cattle-handling ability in the hey¬
day of Florida ranches, but the prices assigned to Hita's slaves weakens her
argument that the high value came from the knowledge and experience with
livestock39
Appraisers perhaps gave elevated values to Hita’s slaves in order to
keep the prices high during subsequent auction conditions. Yet, the prices
paid were not substantially lower than the appraised value although bidding
had typically begun at a much lower level. For example, the mulatta Maria
brought a final price of 510 pesos and Lorenzo sold for 450.

156
Livestock
Although it offends twentieth-century sensibilities, colonials comfortably
categorized and described human property (piezas esclavas, literally "slave
pieces") and livestock in a similar manner, for all were mobile as well as
moveable property. They could be removed by another human as well
wander away under their own power. Espinosa owned 111 cows worth about
2000 pesos. The 80 calves, 20 bulls, oxen and horses totaled an additional
2250 pesos. The cattle were described by age, sex and markings. Horses
received careful attention as well. The names of the horses were listed in
addition to information on age and physical description: "a horse named
'Desconfiado' (Jealous) worth 35 pesos ... a horse named 'Meladito' (Little
Honey) worth 20 pesos."40
The relative value of slave laborers or livestock to other possessions
associated with the Espinosa's agricultural enterprise is well Illustrated in the
probate proceedings. The value of a horse could, in fact, equal or exceed
that of a rural building as evidenced in the assessment of Espinosa's
property. At the San Diego ranch stood a house, kitchen and a structure for
storing corn. The appraisers offered no information about construction
materials dimensions, or embellishments, such as ovens, wells, or chimneys.
The value of the ranches of San Diego and of Monte Puerco were assessed
at 808 and 1608 pesos respectively. Diego Espinosa shared the ownership
of Monte Puerco in which his one-half interest equaled 804 pesos. If there

157
were slaves working at Monte Puerco who did not belong to the Diego, they
would not have appeared as part of his inventory. The buildings (fábricas! at
San Diego were valued at only 30 pesos and the half-interest in any
structures at Monte Puerco, 20 pesos. Thus the horse known as Little Honey
was worth more than the entire collection of buildings at San Diego.41 The
marked contrast between the values assigned to the horses to those of the
rural buildings as well as the minimal attention to detail in the accounting for
the rural buildings in comparison to the buildings in St. Augustine sharply
illustrated what was of importance in the colonial dichotomy of agricultural
context vis-á-vis the urban and commercial sphere.42
Transportation
Vessels for waterborne transportation exhibited their importance in the
itemizations in Florida listings as throughout the coastal southeast. In a
region replete with estuaries, tidal creeks and In Florida the wide, placid St.
Johns River, boats offered faster transportation and with less toil than
overland routes. A Spanish military officer's complaint that "I shall remain
prisoner here" in the absence of his canoe certainly reflected the central role
of boats in the life of the region. In rainy times or periods of very high tides,
roads became impassable and routes using water transport had to substitute.
Low-lying ground, frequently with standing water, pervaded the region and
inhibited overland transportation as well as development. Only one of every

158
ten acres of today's St. Johns County is naturally dry enough for human
habitation.43
Diego de Espinosa had at his disposal a large canoe fpiragua
habanera) either "in the style of or made in Havana" or named Habanera
(Havana lady) constructed of cedar valued at 120 pesos. In addition to a
bilander, which sailed to the Caribbean, José Guillén owned a barge (bombo)
and two canoes for use in Florida. One of Governor del Moral's canoes could
be found at "the brickmaking place" at the time of the official's arrest; his other
canoe was being used by Luis Marquéz. In the fall of 1725 Agustín Guillermo
de Fuentes owned the "best" canoe in town. It was certainly a sizable vessel,
capable of carrying "two small cannons that shot two-pound balls, 40 men and
their weapons, ammunition and supplies."44 The shallow-draft barges and
canoes offered maximum access along tidal creeks.
At the San Diego ranch, workers employed a small narrow cart and an
English-style cart with sides (carretón) for hauling and other transportation
needs. These items were not evaluated, but merely listed. The vehicles were
probably used primarily on the ranch itself with reliance upon the canoes to
carry passengers and goods beyond the ranch. Accountant Menéndez listed
a carriage "in bad condition" among his possessions, but it carried no more
value than one of his tables or cedar chests.45

159
Conclusions
Residents of Spanish Florida in the second century desired and
acquired manufactured items. While they no doubt relied on their own skills
and wit to provide a good bit of what they needed, imported items, especially
those fashioned from metal were preferred. Also important were buildings
which declared or enhanced the owner’s or occupant’s status. The
simultaneous concerns for the public standing as well as true affection led
Florida residents to provide for new family units when children wed.
Florida did not have the capability to manufacture metal items so that
the reality of shipping costs combined and the ascribed value that comes with
scarcity resulted in high prices for such objects. Both Euro-Americans and
Native Americans desired metal manufactures. Among the latter group, the
utilization of metal instruments had supplanted traditional tools. The
acquisition of metal Items required cash or the availability of items which
could be traded and subsequently converted readily into cash. Barter was not
a workable arrangement for acquiring goods from afar or from strangers.
Imported furniture was likewise expensive, for both its stylistic
attributes and exotic woods. The presence of portable writing desks attested
to the value of identification with the traditional Iberian military culture. The
desks bespoke the Reconquest need for easily moveable furnishings in a
campaign context and at the same time evidenced the Iberian emphasis on
written documents and codification.

160
Inventories reveal that the value placed on labor, especially skilled
workmanship. The addition of labor greatly elevated the value of
possessions. Witness the worth assigned to shellstone which had been
honed and cemented into a structure. The skill and time to do so represented
a major investment and thus a substantial increase over the “canoesful" of
grossly quarried stone. The price of labor was a worthwhile expenditure in
structures in town where one’s buildings spoke to peers and acquaintances of
the status of their owner. The common attitude toward buildings in town was
in marked contrast to the attitude generally taken toward rural buildings.
While the former investment declared the owner’s station in society on a daily
basis in the context of close city living, rural buildings were seen solely as
means of production and only the labor necessary to make the buildings
serviceable was invested in them. Diego de Espinosa’s family and the
appraisers of his estate agreed that his small house on the waterfront (casa
chica de la marinal was ten times more valuable than all of the buildings at
the San Diego ranch.
The inventories also revealed attitudes and practices about
possessions within the context of family responsibilities. A substantial
transfer of wealth to the next generations took place upon marriage rather

161
than being delayed until the death of the elders. Family members and
society felt an obligation to pass wealth to the rising members of the society at
the time when the recipients probably were most in need of assistance as
they began their own separate family units.

Table 6-1
Inventories
YEAR OF 1737
Inventory of the Papers and Goods Belonging
to Don Francisco del Moral Sánchez
A mahogany writing-desk (escritorio) in two parts in the English style with its
locks and keys
An old, abused English chest of drawers
Two used mahogany writing-desks (papeleras) in the Havana style with locks
and keys
Two small English mirrors with black wooden frames
A cedar trunk in the Havana style with lock and key
A new musket
Three English-style stools (taburetes) or armless chairs, with cane seats
Two dozen new, small pewter dishes
Sixty-nine large English axes
Ninety-four hatchets, or small axes
Six very large axes
One dozen black-handled knives
Five dozen ribbons with cotton fluff
One hundred eighty-two little wooden combs
Twenty-five wide-tooth combs (escarmendoras)
Five pairs of English cowhide shoes
One dozen scissors
A paper containing about a pound of blue powder
Another paper with red powder, weighing three pounds
Two pieces of raw coronilla
A chest of candles of fagina (probably a fat, resinous wood)
Twenty-seven china chocolate cups
Eight finely-made china porringers
Ten Dutch porringers
Nine medium-size glasses
A glass cup with a lid
Twenty-six glass goblets
Six cupping-glasses (ventosas)
A small, wooden writing desk (escribanía)
In the second part of the secretary (escritorio) were found:
Five chintz curtains
Two horseman’s or sailor’s caps (monteras) of embroidered velvet

163
An ordinary inlaid agnus-dei (a Lamb-of-God religious medal)
About a half of a piece of deep-red Chinese silk
A half dozen packs of playing cards
One masito of white thread
A small ordinary mirror
Two pairs of new silk stockings
An apothecary jar with four pounds of powders
In the first part of the secretary:
A small piece of wool
In a drawer, a little bit of ¡tamo (a wide-purpose medicine)
Two small pocket pistols
Cotton fringe
A new linen shirt
A medium-size mirror
Four scimitars with belts
A dozen belts
Two broken, silver-tipped walkingsticks
A gross of rosaries with Jesus and Mary
A silver salvilla and its bowl
A silver basin
Two unmatched silver candelabra
Two buttonsets of gold thread
Two buttonsets of silver
Eight skeins of gold thread
A piece of napkin material (seviManeta)
Four curtains of green linsey-woolsey with printed borders
A curtain of red linsey-woolsey
Five varas of silk-like taffeta (terdanela)
Four varas of nankeen silk (coletilla)
Five curtains with printed borders
Four books of the Recompilación [of the Laws of the Indies]
Twenty-four small and middle-size books
Three pounds of white wax candles
A buttonset of stone for a man's dress coat
A dozen ordinary razors
A telescope for a cannon
A pair of deep-red silk stockings
A half pound of white thread
Four ordinary handkerchiefs
About four ounces of thread

164
Five linen shirts
Two pieces of fine wool yarn
Half a piece of Chinese silk ribbon
Half a piece of linen
A silver buttonset for a waistcoat
A case with a dozen knives
[A case] of spoons
[A case] of forks
Two glass lanterns
A mahogany table
A round broken table
A gig, or chaise, and its mule
A slave named Francisco, 22, years old. [Note in left margin of document:]
This slave named Francisco by virtue of being struck by a very
contagious sickness remained in the city; Don Francisco del Moral
himself conferred the Catholic Faith upon him
Another slave named Juan de Dios, 18 years old, without bill of sale
Another slave named Miguel, 12 years old, without bill of sale
Another slave named Santiago, 22 years old, without bill of sale
A young female mulatta (mulatica). 4 years old, without bill of sale
One horse
Three hundred barrels of pitch, and turpentine
In the control of Don Domingo
Four and one-half pipes of rum
One hundred fifty-six bundles of tobacco
A box of broken sugar with five arrobas [at about 25 lbs. per arroba]
In the house of Don Agustín Guillermo
A large gilt picture of St. Sebastian
Three pictures measuring a vara long with gilt frames and colors
In the control of Don Luis Marquéz
A bridle and two riding saddles
An attarfxlalla

165
Some pewter serving platters
A piece of packing cloth
A little box with eight spoons
Eleven forks and twelve knives
A salt-cellar with five little spoons of becurte
A silver candelbrum
A canoe that is at the brickmaking place
Another canoe that he had given to Don Luis
A small barrel of gunpowder
Fourteen pewter platters
A cow, a female calf and a male calf
Some pigs that need to be counted
A slave for whom has not been made a bill of sale with eighty pesos owing
A pair of pistols
A sword made in Madrid [in the style of Madrid?, or from Madrid?]
A 13-year old mare
A large pitcher of wrought silver
Two platters (fuentes)
A wrought tray (bandeja)
Two salvillas
Two middle size dishes (flamencas) and a dozen soup-plates (platillos)
A salt-cellar of canpaña and twelve spoons
Six forks and some snuffers, all of silver
Twelve silver-handle knives
Four candlesticks of metal del principe
A cedar cupboard or clothes-press
All the aforesaid goods are those that have been found belonging to Don
Francisco Del Moral Sánchez, impounded and inventoried before your
servants, the Lord Governor and Captain-General Don Manuel José de
Justis, by me the scribe and with the assistance of the Adjutant Don Juan
Lorenzo del Pueyo, representative of the Royal Treasury officials, and they
were put on deposit; your loyal servant, the said adjutant signed it and I so
swear = Don Manuel José de Justis = Juan Lorenzo de Pueyo = Before me
Bartolomé Nieto, Public Scribe 22 March 1737.
Archivo General de Indias, Seville, Spain
John B. Stetson Collection
P. K. Yonge Library of Florida History, 58-2-12

166
Items Remaining in St. Augustine on [1764] May 10, 11, 12
Belonging to His Majesty and Other Individuals
Possessions of Juan José Eligió de la Puente
A full-size writing desk with smooth surface
Two writing desks of half size
Eighteen chairs
Twelve stools
A large cedar cupboard
A large mahogany table
A smaller mahogany table
Four small cedar tables
Three boxes with 24 crystal table lanterns
A box with two hanging lanterns
A box with a used parlor clock
Three small boxes with some plates, small plates [saucers?] and a china tea
set
A small box with four porringers and two tea pots of ordinary English
earthenware and three pairs of candlesticks
Two small boxes with two dozen engravings one [dozen] of the mysteries and
the other of country scenes
Twelve small boxes of sperm candles
Ten small boxes of window panes
A long box with 25 guns for the Indians
A square box with six mirrors of walnut wood and with gilded edges
Two boxes with 40 mirrors: half of them large, half of them small
Twelve pairs of large white metal candlesticks and snuffers
Five pairs of the same of yellow metal
Twenty-nine smaller pairs of the above
Sixteen small candlesticks with handles
Eight copper coffee pots
A small coffee mill
Two sets of tin-plated bucket-shaped cauldrons
Sixteen tin-plated jelly pans
Seven tart pans
Twelve sets of red, small trunks or coffers
Twenty-one dozen shirts, white and striped
Four and one-half varas of fine blue wool cloth
Six and one-half varas of fine wood ruffling (or flounce) of the same color as
the aforesaid
Twelve pairs of ordinary men's shoes
Twelve pairs of ordinary children’s shoes

167
Two pieces of wire
Two barrels of pewter platters and plates
Two barrels of agavas
A barrel of vitriol or ferrous sulfate
A barrel of flintstones
Two barrels of irons (for ironing)
Two casks or barrels of green earthenware
Two barrels of rice
Seven barrels of crystals vases and lanterns
Four hundred shingles of various sizes
Two large jars or oil
Two narrow-bottom, straight-mouth pitchers of oil
Nine sacks of cocoa from Havana
Nine pieces of red and blue wool for the Indians
Two pieces of blue, lesser-quality wool for the Indians
Two remnants of white valleton for the Indians
Twelve bits for bridles with their reins
Two hundred seventy-nine barrels of flour
Four barrels of tallow
Eight long saws with their sleeves
A large cross-cut? handsaw
Sixteen small pine beams
Archive of the Indies, Cuba 372
Typescript in Spanish by José de la Torre Navarro
Mark F. Boyd Collection
Bureau of Archives, Florida Division of Historical Resources
Tallahassee, Florida

168
Notes
1. Governor José de Zúñiga y Cerda ordered residents to bring their movable
belongings with them into the fort. Charles W. Arnade, The Siege of St.
Augustine in 1702 (Gainesville: University of Florida Press, 1959), 24; quote
from will of Francisco Menéndez Marquéz, 1742 September 2, Archivo
General de Indias (hereafter AGI), John B. Stetson Collection (hereafter SC)
P. K. Yonge Library of Florida History, 58-1-34/73.
2. "Inventory of the Papers and Goods Belonging to Don Francisco del
Moral Sánchez," 1737 March 22, AGI SC 58-2-12; John Jay TePaske
describes the developments of del Moral’s arrest drama and subsequent
inquiries in The Governorship of Spanish Florida. 1700-1763 (Durham: Duke
University Press, 1964), 45-57.
3. "Items Remaining in St. Augustine on May 10, 11, 12, [1764] Belonging to
His Majesty and Other Individuals." AGI Cuba 372, transcribed by José La
Torre Navarro, typescript in Mark F. Boyd Collection, Division of Historical
Resources, Tallahassee, Florida.
The typescript mentions the inventories of several residents of Florida
in addition to Eligió de la Puente, but does not itemize them. In March 1996,
the inventory transcribed by La Torre was no longer contained with the Cuba
372 leaaio in the Archives of the Indies in Seville, making the inventories for
other residents unattainable.
4. Encyclopedia Britannica. Vol. 14, 636.
5. "Inventory of the Papers and Goods Belonging to Don Francisco del Moral
Sánchez;" 1737 March 22, AGI SC 58-2-12; Márquez del Lozoya and José
Claret Rubira, Muebles de estilo español desde el oótico hasta el siglo XIX
con el mueble popular (Barcelona: Editorial Gustavo Gili, S.A., 1967), 264.
6. Grace Hardendorff Burr, Hispanic Furniture from the Fifteenth through the
Eighteenth Century (New York: The Archive Press, 1964), 42-45.
7. "Inventory of the Papers and Goods Belonging to Don Francisco del Moral
Sánchez;" 1737 March 22, AGI SC 58-2-12.
8. Governor Francisco de Coreóles y Martinez (1706-1716) had served in
Catalonia, Ceuta in North Africa across from Gibraltar, Milan, Palamos (a key
or small island in Cuba) and had been a prisoner of war in France.
Governor Antonio de Benavides (1718-1734) had served in Flanders
and in the 1702 siege of Acre on the northern coast of present-day Israel,
located on the old pilgrimage and trade route. John Jay TePaske,

169
Governorship of Spanish Florida. 16-19.
9. "Goods of Doña Mayor de Arango" in Eugene Lyon, Richer Than We
Thought: The Material Culture of Sixteenth-Century St. Augustine (St.
Augustine: St. Augustine Historical Society, 1992), 75.
10. Inventory of the Goods of Pablo de Hita y Salazar, 1681 March 10, AGI
Escribanía de Cámara 156-A.
11. [Luis R. Arana], "A Bitter Pill for the Widow Cendoya," El Escribano. 9
(1972): 73-94. In a situation similar to the now-missing documents of the
Eligió inventory (see note 2 above), Arana comments on the unavailability of
documents used by transcribers and translators several decades before his
article, but no longer available to him, 92 n.7 and 93 n. 11. Inventory and
Appraisal of the Estate of Francisco Menéndez Marquéz, 1743 May 2, AGI SC
58-1-34/73.
12. "Items Remaining in St. Augustine on May 10, 11,12, [1764] Belonging to
His Majesty and Other Individuals." AGI Cuba 372, transcribed by José La
Torre Navarro, typescript in Mark F. Boyd Collection; Pedro Fernández
Navarette, Conservación de monarouía v discursos politicos (Madrid. 1626),
quoted in Burr, Hispanic Furniture.. 42.
13. Inventory and Appraisal of the Estate of Francisco Menéndez Marquéz,
1743 May 2, AGI SC 58-1-34/73; "Inventory of the Papers and Goods
Belonging to Don Francisco del Moral Sánchez, 1737 March 22, 58-2-12,
both in AGI SC."Items Remaining in St. Augustine on May 10, 11, 12, [1764]
AGI Cuba 372, transcribed by José La Torre Navarro, typescript in Mark F.
Boyd Collection;" Arana, "A Bitter Pill."
14 Inventory of the Goods of Pablo de Hita y Salazar, 1681 March 10, AGI
EC 156-A; Inventory and Appraisal of the Estate of Francisco Menéndez
Marquéz, 1743 May 2, AGI SC 58-1-34/73; "Inventory of the Papers and
Goods Belonging to Don Francisco del Moral Sánchez, 1737 March 22, 58-2-
12, both in AGI SC."Items Remaining in St. Augustine on May 10,11,12,
[1764] AGI Cuba 372, transcribed by José La Torre Navarro, typescript in
Mark F. Boyd Collection; Appraisal of estate of Diego de Espinosa, 1756
September 3, Bundle (hereafter Bnd.) 301P5, East Florida Papers (hereafter
EFP), Library of Congress Manuscript Collection (microfilm copies at St.
Augustine Historical Society).
15. Will of Fernando Rodriguez, 1762 July 27, Bnd. 319, Claim of Antonia de
Avero, Claim no. 19, Town Lot Claims in Spanish Land Grants (hereafter
SLG), Florida Division of Historical Resources, Tallahassee.

170
16. Inventory and Appraisal of the Estate of Francisco Menéndez Marquéz,
1743 May 2, 58-1-34/73; "Inventory of the Papers and Goods Belonging to
Don Francisco del Moral Sánchez, 1737 March 22, 58-2-12, both in AGI
SC."Items Remaining in St. Augustine on May 10, 11,12, [1764] AGI Cuba
372, transcribed by José La Torre Navarro, typescript in Mark F. Boyd
Collection.
17. Items Remaining in St. Augustine on May 10, 11, 12, [1764] AGI Cuba
372, transcribed by José La Torre Navarro, typescript in Mark F. Boyd
Collection.
18. Kathleen Deaaan. Artifacts of the Spanish Colonies of Florida and the
Caribbean. 1500-1800 (Washington: Smithsonian Institution Press, 1987).
19. Will of Fernando Rodriguez, 1762 July 27, Bnd. 319, Claim of Antonia
de Avero, Claim no. 19, Town Lot Claims, SLG.
20. "Inventory of the Papers and Goods Belonging to Don Francisco del
Moral Sánchez,” 1737 March 22, AGI SC 58-2-12.
21. "Inventory of the Papers and Goods Belonging to Don Francisco del
Moral Sánchez, 1737 March 22, AGI SC 58-2-12; "Items Remaining in St.
Augustine on May 10, 11, 12, [1764] AGI Cuba 372, transcribed by José La
Torre Navarro, typescript in Mark F. Boyd Collection.
22. "Items Remaining in St. Augustine May 10, 11, 12, [1764], AGI Cuba 372,
transcribed by José La Torre Navarro, typescript in Mark F. Boyd Collection.;
Bartram quoted in Albert Manucy, The Houses of St. Augustine, 1565-1763
(St. Augustine: St. Augustine Historical Society, 1962), 31: "As they had no
chimneys, so they had no glass windows.... But now the English officers is
[sic] making great alteration. The sun and light now begin to shine through
glass...."
23. Adrienne D. Hood, "The Material World of Cloth: Production and Use in
Eighteenth-Century Pennsylvania," William and Marv Quarterly. 3rd series, 53
(1996): 43-66; will of Fernando Rodriguez, 1762 July 27, Bnd. 319, Claim of
Antonia de Avero, Claim no. 19, Town Lot Claims, SLG; “Items Remaining in
St. Augustine May 10, 11, 12, [1764],” AGI Cuba 372, transcribed by José La
Torre Navarro, typescript in Mark F. Boyd Collection.
24. "Inventory of Papers and Goods Belonging to Don Francisco del Moral
Sánchez, 58-2-12; Salvador de Cigarroa, List of Items Secured in Mexico,
1669 January 24, included in correspondence of Marqués de Mancera, 1669
April 20, 58-2-2/14, both in AGI SC. See chapter 9 for descriptions of the
textiles use for religious purposes.

171
25. "Inventory of Papers and Goods Belonging to Don Francisco del Moral
Sánchez, AGI SC 58-2-12.
26. Manuel de Montiano Letterbook, 1738 May 28, Bnd. 37, no. 41, EFP;
Juan José Solana to Julián de Arriaga, 1760 April 9, AGI SC 86-7-21/41.
27. "Inventory of Papers and Goods Belonging to Don Francisco del Moral
Sánchez," AGI SC 58-2-12; "Items Remaining in St. Augustine May 10,11,
12, [1764], AGI Cuba 372, transcribed by José La Torre Navarro, typescript in
Mark F. Boyd Collection.
28. The problem of definitiveness in translating results in the conjectural tone
of the description of the plant and the candles. "Inventory of Papers and
Goods Belonging to Don Francisco del Moral Sánchez,” AGI SC 58-2-12.
29. Will of Francisco Menéndez Marquez, 1742 September 2, AGI SC 58-1-
34/73; José Maria Ots y Capedquí, Historia del derecho español en América v
del derecho indiano (Buenos Aires: Losada, 1945), 222.
30. Manucy, Houses of St. Auoustine. 67.
31. Luis Rafael Arana,"The Fort at Matanzas Inlet." El Escribano. 17 (1980):
10; Cécile-Marle Sastre, "Picolata on the St. Johns: A Preliminary Study," E]
Escribano. 32 (1995): 35.
32. Juan José Solana to Julián de Arriaga, 1760 April 9, AGI SC 86-7-21/41;
William Bartram, Travels of William Bartram Through North and South
Carolina. Georgia, East & West Florida, ed. Mark Van Doren (New York:
Macy-Masius Publishers, 1928), 87.
33. Inventory of estate of Diego de Espinosa, 1756 May 3; Bnd. 301P5, EFP;
will of Fernando Rodriguez, 1762 July 27, Bnd. 319, Claim of Antonia de
Avero, Claim no. 19, Town Lot Claims, SLG; Charles W. Arnade "The
Architecture of Spanish St. Augustine," The Americas. 18 (1961): 175-86.
34. "Inventory of Papers and Goods Belonging to Don Francisco del Moral
Sánchez,” AGI SC 58-2-12;" will of Fernando Rodriguez, 1762 July 27; will of
José Guillén, 1743 December 17, both in Claim of Antonia de Avero, Bnd.
319, Claim no. 19, Town Lot Claims, SLG.
35. Will of Francisco Menéndez Marquez, 1742 September 2, AGI SC 58-1-
34/73.

172
36. Inventory of Estate of Diego de Espinosa, 1756 May 3, Bnd. 301P5, EFP;
Susan R. Parker, "Men Without God or King: Rural Settlers of East Florida,
1784-1790." M.A. thesis, University of Florida, 1990.
37. Appraisal of the estate of Diego de Espinosa, 1756 May 3, Bnd. 301P5,
EFP; Amy Turner Bushnell," The Menéndez Marquéz Cattle Barony at La
Chua and the Determinants of Economic Expansion in Seventeenth-century
Florida," Florida Historical Quarterly 56 (1978): 418.
38. Appraisal of the estate of Diego de Espinosa, 1756 May 3, Bnd. 301P5,
EFP.
39. Inventory of Impounded Property of Pablo de Hita y Salazar, 1681 March
10; Sale of slaves of Pablo de Hita y Salazar, 1681 May 30, AGI EC 156-A.
40. Appraisal of the estate of Diego de Espinosa, 1756 May 3, Bnd. 301P5,
EFP.
41. Appraisal of the estate of Diego de Espinosa, 1756 May 3, Distribution of
estate of Diego Espinosa, September 3, Bnd. 301P5, EFP.
42. Appraisal of the estate of Diego de Espinosa, 1756 May 3, Bnd. 301P5,
EFP.
43. James M. Smith, Before the White Man: The Prehistory of St. Johns
County, Florida ( St. Augustine: Historic St. Augustine Preservation Board,
19875), 31; William C. Fleetwood, Jr., Tidecraft: The Boats of South Carolina.
Georgia and Northeastern Florida -1550-1950 (Tybee Island, Ga.: WBG
Marine Press, 1995), ch. 3 and 4; Susan R. Parker, "Canoes: Workaday
Water craft in Eighteenth-Century East Florida," El Escribano. 24 (1987):
quote on 53. A letter from Sebastián Creagh to Governor Juan Nepomuceno
de Quesada, 1791 September 24, Bnd. 121D10 no. 201, EFP, described the
need for alternate routes when roads were flooded.
44. Appraisal of the Estate of Diego de Espinosa, 1756 May 3, Distribution of
estate of Diego Espinosa, September 3, Bnd. 301P5, EFP; will of José
Guillén, 1743 December 17, in Claim of Antonia de Avero, Bnd. 319, Claim
no. 19, Town Lot Claims, SLG; "Inventory of Papers and Goods Belonging to
Don Francisco del Moral Sánchez,” AGI SC 58-2-12; Statement of Don
Agustín Guillermo Fuentes y Herrera, 1727 March 27, included with his
petition of 1734 April 29, AGI, 86-7-21/6.
45. Appraisal of Estate of Diego de Espinosa, 1756 May 3, Bnd. 301P5, EFP;
Inventory and Appraisal of the Estate of Francisco Menéndez Marquéz, 1743
May 2, AGI SC 58-1-34/73.

CHAPTER 7
FOOD
My greatest concern is for supplies, and if we get none,
there is no doubt that we shall die of hunger,
-Governor Manuel de Montiano, 1740
Ordinary Spanish Florida colonists left more information about their
clothing and shelter than they did about their food-the third element of the
universal trio of essential needs. Concerns about food, or its professed
shortage, engendered a relatively large amount of documentation in the
administrative correspondence of Spanish Florida. When faced with
imminent attack by foreign troops, Florida’s governors fretted more about the
food supply than about the stockpile of munitions. Preparing for an invasion
in 1740 by British forces from Georgia, Governor Manuel de Montiano wrote
to his superior in Havana in March of that year about his unease that lack of
food could well result in a Spanish surrender, and “that nothing else so much
deserves our attention." Then, on May 10 and 15, Montiano sent duplicate
dispatches to Cuba, claiming that “we are in extreme want, without food.”1
Surely the officials at times exaggerated and obfuscated in their
desperation to get a positive response from superiors, which made it difficult
for later generations to assess the reality in the colony. Narratives which
173

174
repeatedly bemoaned the impending starvation of Florida’s colonists provide
most of the picture of food for Florida’s first two centuries. Less dramatically
worded rosters of arriving cargoes that were paid for by the situado provide
another and less subjective facet of the picture.
Anthropologist James Cusick was able to investigate the foods
available to Florida colonists in the second Spanish period, using probate
records and cargo information in addition to archaeological artifacts. Cusick
discerned differences in behavior among several regional, cultural, and status
groups through the varying amount of edible Imports consumed by those
respective groups.2 Registers of the arrival and departure of vessels and
their cargoes contain information on private activities for the second period.
The registers provide information on what was discharged at Florida’s docks,
landings, and bulkheads. They also indicate what items the colonists were
producing in surplus and what the colonists could send to other areas. For
example, although we can see that residents shipped cheese and butter out
of the colony during cool months in the 1790s, similar documentation is not
available either to support or deny such activity during the first period.
Individual-level and personal documents, upon which this dissertation
substantially, relies hardly ever addressed the issue of daily fare.3 Shipping
registers for private transactions are not available for the first period.
Assessment of food consumption has relied heavily on archaeological
studies. As historian Michael Gannon states, the depiction “could not have

175
been drawn using archival sources alone,” because of the absence of
documentation and the available documentation’s bias arising as officials
invoked hyperbole and inveigled to make their cases for the supplies that they
wanted. Gannon asserts that “the historians can offer certain correctives to
the archaeological record," noting that numerous items do not survive well in
the soil.4 We should also take into consideration that bias in the
archaeological record also exists by virtue of what was, in fact, never present
to enter the soil as refuse. Foods that arrived in Florida bearing few or no
bones, scales, hulls, husks, or seeds left no (or very little) physical trace.
Throughout the entire colonial period, Floridians perceived themselves
as existing in a supply situation that was very vulnerable to shortages. Much
of the constant consternation over food was generated by the fact that
Florida’s administrators and citizenry expected to have a sizable portion of
their food supplied as part of the crown’s support for the military post. The
expectation itself led to frustration and a feeling of dependency and want, and
thus complaints. In locations where colonists expected no assistance to feed
themselves they would hardly complain. In Spanish Florida, bad weather or
blockades, which hindered supply vessels, could result quickly in disruption of
shipments and subsequent shortages. Another irritant was that supplies
obtained through military procurement procedures often cost much more than
those acquired through the commercial market. Historian John TePaske
pointed out such instances for eighteenth-century Florida when market prices

178
taxed, they appeared in documents. And the cultural importance of cattle in
some parts of Iberia and the cultural association of beef consumption with
social status in some parts of Iberia, especially the southern part of the
peninsula, also made cattle worthy of the written word.7
Food supplies from the hinterland began to diminish in 1680s with the
English assault on the missions, their ensuing retraction and ultimately their
near demise after the attacks of 1702 and 1704. Historian Amy Bushnell
asserts that after the English breached Spanish exclusivity of Indian labor, the
colony had to “look seaward for its support.”8
Fish, game, and food grown for use by the consuming household or
that were acquired or grown for private sale or trade hardly appear in the
official correspondence. Remarks in random descriptions revealed the use of
these locally available foods. Father Solana wrote
the citizenry maintain themselves most of the year with salted,
meat, fish, which is abundant in the river, and some vegetables.
.... There are many fruits like in Spain: white and black figs,
peaches, quince, mulberries, berries, plums, grapes sweet and
sour oranges. In Apalachee there are in abundance chestnuts,
nuts, apples, strawberries and cherries.9
A parenthetical remark made by Antonio Pueyo forty years after he had seen
the garden told of melons growing in Pedro Gomez’s yard.10
Iberians and other Europeans modified their diets in the contact and
founding periods in response to new environments. Native American’s alter
their diets in response to Old World cultigens and also to the stress of

177
British colonial officials would have been any more willing to turn to Spanish
sources in times shortage than vice versa. Empires and nations in both the
past and the present tended to act protectionist toward the producers of their
own nation while such behavior often raised prices for the consumers of that
very nation. But Spanish Pensacola shared supplies with nearby French
Mobile and vice versa in time of shortages because of the family alliance
maintained between the Bourbon monarchs of the respective nations.
Foods produced within the Florida colony can be further divided into
two categories for the first century of European settlement: those produced in
the hinterland by missionized Natives and those produced on Euro-American
ranches and small farms or plots. Anthropologist Kathleen Hoffman surmised
that interior missions did not much supply St. Augustine, as they did for the
post in Apalache. The friars at the Franciscan convent in the capital,
however, seem to have used their close relationship with the mission villagers
to acquire food that was not so readily available to the capital’s lay residents.
Archaeological excavations suggested “heavy reliance” by the convent
residents on venison and chicken, both of which Hoffman claims were rare
and expensive in the town. Historian John Hann concluded that cattle raised
in Apalache either fed the residents in that area or was sent to Havana as
food and by-products. Hann flatly stated that meat from Apalache did not
supply St. Augustine; the La Chua ranch, in the peninsular interior near
today’s Gainesville, was the beef source for the capital. Because cattle were

178
taxed, they appeared in documents. And the cultural importance of cattle in
some parts of Iberia and the cultural association of beef consumption with
social status in some parts of Iberia, especially the southern part of the
peninsula, also made cattle worthy of the written word.7
Food supplies from the hinterland began to diminish in 1680s with the
English assault on the missions, their ensuing retraction and ultimately their
near demise after the attacks of 1702 and 1704. Historian Amy Bushnell
asserts that after the English breached Spanish exclusivity of Indian labor, the
colony had to “look seaward for its support.”8
Fish, game, and food grown for use by the consuming household or
that were acquired or grown for private sale or trade hardly appear in the
official correspondence. Remarks in random descriptions revealed the use of
these locally available foods. Father Solana wrote
the citizenry maintain themselves most of the year with salted,
meat, fish, which is abundant in the river, and some vegetables.
.... There are many fruits like in Spain: white and black figs,
peaches, quince, mulberries, berries, plums, grapes sweet and
sour oranges. In Apalachee there are in abundance chestnuts,
nuts, apples, strawberries and cherries.9
A parenthetical remark made by Antonio Pueyo forty years after he had seen
the garden told of melons growing in Pedro Gomez’s yard.'0
Iberians and other Europeans modified their diets in the contact and
founding periods in response to new environments. Native American’s alter
their diets in response to Old World cultigens and also to the stress of

179
European demands upon Native-grown food.1' By the Second Century
colonists altered their consumption to adapt to a changing supply situation
arising out of international warfare on both land and sea. Foods that were
expected from extra-Florida sources were viewed as the most endangered and
brought about the most complaints and correspondence.
Throughout the Second Century the kinds of foods arriving in the colony
remained generally the same. Grains and preserved meats comprised the
bulk of the imported foods. The growing Atlantic-wide trade probably made
more sorts or foods affordable.
Florida officials and the Royal Havana Company negotiated a supply
contract in 1742 which well illustrated the provisioning situation.12 Several
kinds of ground grains made up the list. Contracted goods were to include
flour grown both in Spain and in New Spain, the latter twenty per cent more
expensive than the Iberian product. Likewise, flour from New Spain’s San
Andrés valley and corn from the island of Cuba would also feed Florida’s
residents. The origin of the rice shipment, the cheapest of the grains, was not
specified. Although Florida officials had requested cassava (which was
measured by size rather than weight) grown in the Mexican interior, the
contract eventually negotiated did not specify any required place of origin
Beans, described only by the generic term frijoles completed the starchy items.
Colonists also expected salt to be shipped in.13

180
Meats were brought in as well and Florida colonists relied on both
imported and domestic meat. Beef and pork arrived in both barrels and boxes.
Hams and “little hams” (¡amónicos) also supplied protein. Given the processed
condition of the meats imported into Florida, Florida colonists probably
consumed more meat than the bone remains from archaeological excavations
indicate.14 But mostly boneless dried and smoked meats, except for hams,
would leave little to reveal their colonial presence.
Colonists ate locally raised cattle throughout both of first and second
Spanish periods as evidenced by documentary evidence in both appraisals
and narratives.15 Father Solana reported in 1760 that an Englishman operated
a butcher shop in St. Augustine. Unlike his predecessors, Governor Lucas de
Palacio submitted a report contemporary with that of Solana that the residents
were well supplied with fresh meat.16
Cargoes unloaded from British ships deposited the same sorts of
foods-flour and meats-that were brought in by Spanish sources. According to
British sources, butter and cheese were cargo from British ships in the 1710s,
but dairy products did not appear on the Spanish manifests until the 1750s.
Historian Joyce Harman’s compilation of the British traffic in and out of St.
Augustine was based on South Carolina documents. Her list showed a
relative spate of activity between 1716 and 1718 of deliveries of flour, meat,
and dairy products. Following a period of inaction after 1718-or perhaps lack
of documentation-Harman listed even more shipping activity for the middle of

181
the 1730s, but in most cases there were no description of arriving cargo.
These ships were departing St. Augustine in "ballast only,” implying the
discharge of cargo at Florida’s capital.’7
In the 1750s the provisioning contracts disclosed that a wider variety of
foods was available but that still the majority of government imports were
grains and dried meats. In the 1750s Spanish sources began to offer biscuit
as well a flour, but the items under contract remained very similar to those
originally set up with The Royal Havana Company in 1742. British sources
could add salt cod, cheese and lard and beef fat.18
The white wine and the oil from Spain were not considered to be food
items. They were listed along with waxes and lengths of silk, which suggests
that they were for sacramental rather than dietary use. No rum or other spirits
were listed.19
The appearance of copper coffee pots and coffee mills in inventories
indicated the availability of coffee; an item listing “sacks of cocoa” attested to
chocolate’s availability, both apparently from private sources.20 Inventories
included cooking implements used for the preparation of imported, luxury
foods or at least foods that were enhancements in the diet rather than basic
fare, as evidenced by jelly pans and coffee mills and pots, not ordinary cooking
vessels.
Information gleaned from archaeological excavations has expanded the
picture of the foodstuffs consumed in Spanish Florida. When the sorts of

182
arriving foods and those produced in Florida are compared to each other, it
becomes apparent that imported foods were largely processed. Not only did
processing lengthen their edible life, but reduction of the bulk in the processing
reduced cargo space required for such foods and made their shipment
affordable. Historian Murdo MacLeod points out the interplay of bulk and
distance in the profitability of shipping. With foods, perishability increased
along with distance.21
Given this compression and manipulation of grains and animal meats,
archaeology can enlighten regarding locally produced foods. Archaeologists
Elizabeth Reitz and Stephen Cumbaa analyzed the biomass from local animals
and asserted that high status households relied more on domestic animals,
while lower status households consumed more food from estuarine sources.
But the excavations reveal relatively less about foods shipped in, especially
the processed foods supplied by the subsidy.
Conclusions
Foods were either locally produced or imported. Arriving foods had to
be both transportable and durable. The more calories per cubic vara of cargo
space, the more desirable the item from the perspective of shipping. Foods
sent to Florida also needed to be shipped in a form that would travel well and
arrive as edible. Processing-milling, husking, butchering,
smoking-compacted foods and often added longevity to their “shelf life.”

183
Contracts made for provisioning Florida in the eighteenth century
demonstrated that grains of several varieties were needed. Shipping of grains
raised in Iberia, New Spain and Cuba spread the government’s expenditures
around the empire and helped to support growers and employment for
processing in several regions. Recognition that the nature of the imported
foods left little residue for the archaelogical record points out the bias in the
artifactual evidence of the food supply.
Notes
1. Manuel de Montiano to Governor of Cuba, 1740 March 24 and May 15,
East Florida Papers, Bnd. 37, nos. 191 and 198, respectively.
2. James Gregory Cusick, “Ethnic Groups and Class in an Emerging Market
Economy : Spaniards and Minorcans in Late Colonial St. Augustine,” Ph D.
diss., University of Florida, 1993, ch. 8 and 9.
3. Papers on Arrivals of Vessels and Cargoes, 1784-1821, Bnds 214F7 -
241G19; Register of Departures of Vessels, 1784-1821, Bnds. 242H19-
258K20, EFP.
4. Michael V. Gannon, “The New Alliance of History and Archaeology in the
Eastern Spanish Borderlands,” William and Marv Quarterly 49, 3rd ser.
(1992): 326.
5. TePaske. Governorship of Spanish Florida. 78-101. gives various
examples of the problem for the first six decades of the eighteenth century.
6. See Donna L. Ruhl, “Spanish Mission Paleoethnobotany and Culture
Change: A survey of Archaeogotanical Data and Some Speculations on
Aboriginal and Spanish Agrarian Interactions in La Florida," 555-80 and C.
Margaret Scarry and Elizabeth J. Reitz, “Herbs, Fish, Scum, and Vermin:
Subsistence Strategies in Sixteenth-Century Spanish Florida,” both in David
Hurst Thomas, ed., Columbian Consequences: Impact of Hispanic
Colonization in the Southeast and Caribbean (Washington, D. C.:
Smithsonian Institution Press, 1990). For the role of food in exhibiting and as

184
a indicator of class and status, see Cusick, “Ethnic Groups and Class,” and
Elizabeth J. Reitz and Stephen L. Cumbaa, “Diet and Foodways of
Eighteenth-Century Spanish St. Augustine,” in Kathleen Deagan, Spanish
St. Augustine: The Archaeology of a Colonial Creole Community (Orlando:
Academic Press, 1983) 151-85.
7. Terry G. Jordan, North-American Cattle Ranching Frontiers: Origins,
Diffusion and Differentiation (Albuquerque: University of New Mexico Press,
1993), ch. 2, especially 23-25.
8. Hoffman, “Development of Cultural Identity," 173-4; Bushnell, Situado and
Sabana. 211.
9. Juan José Solana to Julián de Arriaga, Report on the condition of St.
Augustine, 1760 April 9, AGI SC 86-7-21/41.
10. Sworn statement of Antonio Pueyo, 1801 March 2 (testifying to pre-1763
evacuation matters), Claim of Nicolasa Gómez. Bnd. 320, No. 82. Town Lots
SLG.
11. Scarry and Reitz, “Herbs, Fish, Scum, and Vermin.”
12. The Royal Havana Company was a joint stock enterprise similar to the
British East India Company and modeled after Spain’s earlier Caracas
Company. In the typical style of Spanish royal monopolies, privileges and
concessions were granted by the crown in exchange for responsibilities
undertaken by the company: maintaining a coast guard around Cuba, repress
smuggling, free freight for military goods and to furnish Florida its annual
quota of money supplies. The hard currency sent from Puebla for Florida’s
support was required to be sent to Havana, where officials of the company
would purchase supplies and food for Florida in consultation with Florida’s
governor and his council. TePaske, Governorship of Spanish Florida. 87-98.
13. Contract between Royal Officials of Florida and Royal Havana Company,
1742 April 12, included King’s decree made at El Pardo, 1744 January 16,
AGI SC 87-3-12/62.
14. Contract between Royal Officials of Florida and Royal Havana Company,
1742 April 12, included King’s decree made at El Pardo, 1744 January 16,
AGI SC 87-3-12/62. Scarry and Reitz reported excellent bone preservation at
the three excavated, sixteenth-century sites which they analyzed in “Herbs,
Fish, Scum, and Vermin,” 346.
15. Inventory of Impounded Property of Pablo de Hita y Salazar, 1681 March
10, AGI Escribanía de Cámara 156-A (Reel 27-J, PKY); will of José Guillén,

185
1743 December 17, in Claim of Antonio de Avero, Bundle 320, Claim no. 19,
Claims for Town Lots, Spanish Land Grants (hereafter SLG), Florida Division
of Historical Resources, Tallahassee; appraisal of estate of Diego de
Espinosa, 1756 September 3, Bnd. 301P4, EFP.
16. Contract between Royal Officials of Florida and The Royal Havana
Company, 1742 April 12, included King’s decree made at El Pardo, 1744
January 16, 87-3-12/62; Juan José Solana to Julián de Arriaga, Report on the
condition of St. Augustine, 1760 April 9, 86-7-21/41; Lucas de Palacio 1761
January 20, 86-6-6/16. All in AGI SC.
17. Joyce Elizabeth Harman. Trade and Privateering in Spanish Florida.
1732-1763 (St. Augustine: St. Augustine Historical Society, 1969), 83-91.
18. Contract Prices Negotiated with Englishman Jesse Fish, resident of New
York, 1754 February 1; Contract Prices offered by [The Royal Havana]
Company, 1756 September [n.d.], both in AGI SC 87-3-13/70.
19. Contract between Royal Officials of Florida and The Royal Havana
Company, 1742 April 12, included in King’s decree made at El Pardo, 1744
January 16, 87-3-12/62; Contract Prices offered by [The Royal Havana]
Company, 1756 September [n.d ], 87-3-13/70, both in AGI SC.
20. "Items Remaining in St. Augustine on May 10, 11, 12, [1764] Belonging to
His Majesty and Other Individuals." AGI Cuba 372, transcribed by José La
Torre Navarro, typescript in Mark F. Boyd Collection, Division of Historical
Resources, Tallahassee, Florida.
21. Murdo MacLeod, "Spain’s Atlantic Trade, 1492-1720," in Leslie Bethell,
ed. The Cambridge History of Latin America (Cambridge: Cambridge
University Press, 1984), 1: 354-55.

CHAPTER 8
RETAILING AND PERSONAL FINANCE
He who does not value a cent, will never have a dollar.
(Quien no aprecia el céntimo, nunca tendrá un duro.)
-Spanish proverb
Colonial Florida residents have appeared as brave settlers and
soldiers, religious fanatics, missionary priests, forced laborers, but seldom if
at all have they been assigned the more mundane roles of consumers. In part
this perspective stems from Florida's strategic function in the Spanish empire
and thus the attendant role of its residents. The colony's primary purpose
was military; the crown supplied or arranged for many of the needs of the
population. Additionally, in the historigraphical tradition which invoked
deprivation as the modus vivendi. wherein a meal featuring domestic or draft
animals would be tantamount to a banquet, historians tended not to focus on
private enterprise or financial relations.1
Thus, historians of Spanish Florida have asked few, if any, questions
about the dynamics, logistics, or mechanisms involved in the non¬
governmental or non-military acquisition of goods nor about retailing or the
accompanying interpersonal financial arrangements. Civilians and off-duty
soldiers are almost invisible. Ordinary soldiers have been portrayed as
186

187
perpetually indebted in advance of their salaries, but there has been no
investigation of the operation of the debt or credit experiences of most
individuals2. Nor has there been any attention in the literature to intentional
debt, that is, credit obligations arising out of business endeavors or property
acquisition. Indeed, Interpersonal finance in the colony awaits investigation.
Historian Eugene Lyon stands out as an exception in works about the
first settlers. Lyon described and analyzed the financial arrangements which
Pedro Menéndez de Avilés negotiated with the Spanish crown and with his kin
to finance the colonial enterprise in the 1560s. Lyon has also provided
examples of interpersonal debt among the founding generation. His work
illustrates the complexity of finance and the material wealth of some residents
within a unique group. The arrangements and persons reflected a first-
generation cohort which had access to the financial and material wealth of
Iberia in a scenario of founding that would not be repeated in later years.3
These questions about colonial Florida are indeed important. Who
sold to whom, and how was the transaction paid? What was sold and where
did it originate? Who loaned and who owed? How was debt secured and, if
needed, its collection enforced? With minimal development in the Florida
countryside, concerns about more complex issues, such as forward and
backward linkages, that have been addressed for other North American port
towns are premature and may well be moot. Carville Earle and Ronald

188
Hoffman describe backward linkages as “those impacts on economic activity
in the producing region occasioned by consumer demand within that region.”
Forward linkages refer to “those impacts on economic activity created by the
movement of staple exports from production sites to consumption sites
beyond the region.”4
Florida's scanty historiography of commerce does not stand alone
among circum-Caribbean places. Historian Allan Kuethe has observed that in
the case of Havana, the legal supply center for Florida, a systematic study of
the entrepreneurial sector of Havana and its business practices has not yet
been attempted.5 Thus any analysis of Florida cannot incorporate or even
build upon an understanding of the business arrangements at the port which
ranked next above Florida in the shipping hierarchy and was most frequented
by Florida merchants in the first half of the eighteenth century. Florida
entrepreneurs probably adopted Havana’s business practices.
Historian Murdo MacLeod's hemispheric perspective on shipping
assesses Florida's handicapped position as a result of the delivery process,
which developed in the context of environmental verities as much as financial
forces. Florida was physically at the end of the route of the Americas-bound
fleets. MacLeod explains what maps do not reveal: "Florida, quite close to
Spain in geographical distance, and certainly closer than Cartagena and
Veracruz, was the most distant destination of all for ships coming from Spain

189
and bound for the Caribbean." Goods initially destined for Florida were often
appropriated to offset shortage or spoilage in some port of call which was
earlier in the circuit. "Far more important than the geographical distance
between ports was the distance in time." The delay of a few days in the
tropics could transform food supplies literally mouldering in a ship’s hold from
edible to impalatable.6
Debts and Debtors
Contemporary narrative observations about colonial Florida's stores,
shopkeepers, and their wares came from government officials and priests
rather than from the shopkeepers, investors or importers themselves.
Officials composed their observations and assessments about the material
well-being of the colony from their own perspective of having to deal with the
government budget and procurement policies and the activities of trading
companies operating under royal aegis.7 Universally, legal and ordinary
activities do not generate much notice. Florida's administrators gave little
more than passing mention to private activities. In fact, such endeavors
usually merited comment if they were illegal or negative in some other way.
Flistorian Joyce Flarman looked to British colonial documents from South
Carolina and to Charleston newspapers to probe the contraband trade in

190
Spanish Florida. Her study has stood almost alone for nearly three decades
as the portrait of commerce in eighteenth-century Florida.8
Eugene Lyon's optimism regarding the sixteenth century that
"commercial documents-the very stuff of trade and business-abound in the
Florida records" cannot yet be extended to the 1700s.9 The removal and loss
in 1763 of personal documents, ledgers, notarized records of contracts and
debt instruments, and records of civil suits left a fragmentary and scanty base
for examining financial relations among the residents.
Within this void, a few wills and inventories must suffice. The will of
José Guillén, written in 1743, provides an inside glimpse. His testament
offers one of the few excursions into the perspective of the individual, not
officials or foreigners, about retailing and credit activities of residents of
Florida and St. Augustine. His testament offers detail about small-scale trade
and retail outlets and the financial arrangements associated with the
enterprises. Employing a common Spanish testamentary practice, Guillén set
forth in the will his accounts payable and receivable, how he bequeathed his
material goods, and gave instructions for his funeral service and memorial
masses. Rather than itemizing all accounts within the will itself, some
testators referred executors to chests which contained promissory notes or to
other accounting documentation, such as the "account book of the amounts I
still owe, and those owed me" of Francisco Menéndez Marquéz. Family

191
members or executors often safeguarded the chests or strongboxes. Other
testators, however, described the location, usually within the residence, where
such a chest might be found.10 Guillen detailed his accounts both in his will
and in other writings. In doing so, he was continuing testamentary
procedures followed by the earliest European settlers of Florida as portrayed
by Lyon in Richer Than We Thought.11
Contemporary British colonial wills, on the other hand, did not typically
offer such detailed information on personal debts. At the individual level, the
Hispanic cultural penchant for codification and written accords appeared in
Spain’s Atlantic frontier regions, such as Florida, while Anglo confidence in
common law and a greater reliance upon oral agreements and moral
obligation prevailed in the British areas.12
Guillén's will delineated more commercial debt than did the other
available documentation made by his contemporaries, and the sums owed to
others and due to him were larger as well than the other examples. Guillen
itemized debts owed to him amounting to more than 800 pesos. Additional
outstanding debts were substantiated by documents which he stated were in
his possession, but with no other elaboration in the will itself. One of Guillén's
largest debtors was his business partner, Sergeant Fernando Rodriguez.
Rodriguez was a creditor himself as well as a debtor to Guillen.
Clemente Hilario owed Rodriguez 140 pesos representing clothing and food,

192
which Hilario had been supplied by Rodriguez "from my [Rodriguez's] house."
The obligation to Rodriguez equaled more than half of Hilario's annual salary
of 248 pesos as a harbor pilot (práctico).13 Two women, Josefa de los
Angeles y Laso and Isadora Rosas, owed Rodriguez eleven pesos and about
five pesos (42'A reales) respectively for reasons not specified. Other debts
were listed in a separate book, but without special instruction in the will as to
their disposition; these debts would become part of the residual of his estate.
Rodriguez set forth specific obligations in the body of the will to ensure that
the money be distributed to the religious causes which he chose, rather than
the funds accruing to the “universal” heir, the beneficiary of the remainder.
Rodriguez made no mention of his own indebtedness although the inclusion
of debts was a common practice. Perhaps he owed none. In the intervening
two decades since José Guillén's death, Rodríguez had either paid what he
owed in conjunction with their business ventures or had arranged to satisfy
the debt by making Guillén's widow the residual heir (universal heir) of his
estate. In that way, Rodriguez forestalled suffering diminution of assets
during his own lifetime.14
In general, debts in Florida were small and one's debtors were few, in
keeping with the scope of commerce in the colony. Five persons owed small
sums to Diego de Espinosa when he died in 1756. Individual obligations of
20,19,16, 14, and 4 pesos totaled only 73 pesos. Francisco Menéndez

193
Marquéz named individuals whom he owed and also referred his executors to
"some notations" in his account book for other obligations. Menéndez
admitted owing Juan de la Valla the price of a vest and 12 pesos to José de
Briones. Menéndez stated that five named persons were owed "the amount
that they may say" and that Pedro Neri held a promissory note with the entire
face amount still due. Two of these debts were loans made to "provide him
support." Menéndez owed debts also to the Spanish royal treasury and
named the treasury as his heir in hopes of offsetting his "excesses."15
Obligations of a few reales each were owed to religious charities by
Gerónima Rodríguez in 1737 (no apparent relation to the above Fernando
Rodriguez) and Domingo Escalona in 1755. These small Christian
commitments were the only debts of these individuals and became payable
upon death. Obligations to local and distant Roman Catholic Church charities
had to be satisfied. Obligatory gifts to the parish church's maintenance fund
and to the hospital fund supported local needs, while sums for the Holy
Places of Jerusalem and for [Religious] Captives combined with those of
contributors from all over the Catholic world.16 Small slips of paper or
marginal notations on estate documents served as evidence of payment.
Debts set up to be paid over time were often secured by valuable
possessions such as buildings or slaves, especially as those items proved too
expensive to be paid at purchase.17 It is likely that boats served as collateral

194
as well, but the limited documentation provides no examples. Governor del
Moral owned several slaves for whom he had no bills of sale, which indicated
that money was still owed for the acquisition of the laborers. The inventory of
his confiscated possessions listed "a slave with eight pesos due for whom a
bill of sale has not been made." When José de Escalona bought a house
from Juan Méndez and Micaela González in 1727, the purchaser arranged to
pay the 200-pesos price over time at 80 pesos per year--a hefty obligation
equal to half of a Infantry soldier's annual salary.'8
In addition to individuals, confraternities were noted for acting as
institutional lenders to members, often using monies from rents received from
properties willed to them such as the bequest arranged by Sgt. Fernando
Rodriguez (see chapter 9). The specifics of confraternity loans for the first
Spanish period are not available, but those from later years in Spanish
Florida illustrated the practice. In 1791 Roque Leonardy received a loan of
100 pesos from the Confraternity of Souls in Purgatory to be repaid at the rate
of one peso per month; no interest rate was set forth. Leonardy mortgaged a
house and lot to secure the loan.19
Retailing
Retail activities and the movement of numerous, small goods required
flexible and fluid credit and payment arrangements. Consignment or similarly

195
contingent arrangements were the process and form of supply, credit and
payment in individual commerce in the Florida colony. In a domino-like
process, activity at the final point of purchase generated payment in a
sequential manner to the suppliers. Movement of money at this time often
meant just that: the physical delivery of cash from debtor to creditor. Historian
Antonio García-Baquero González asserts in his examination of Spanish
mercantilism and trade that entrepreneurs regarded money as an “authentic
lubricant of the economy.’’ Cash was necessary for sustaining commercial
traffic, but not necessarily for accumulating capital. Abundance of cash
enabled easy credit and low interest rates, but according to García-Baquero
its accumulation was not equated with wealth.20
Aboard his own ship, a bilander named "Blessed Christ of the Solitude,
San José and Souls in Purgatory," José Guillén transported goods purchased
from individuals in Cuba and Hispaniola to be sold in Florida. He dealt with
suppliers in Havana, Puerto de Principe, and Guarico. Guillén was involved
in a number of small ventures with several different partners in Florida as well
as in the Caribbean in a variety of arrangements at both the acquisition and
sales ends. On a small scale, Guillén illustrated historian David Hancock’s
observation about British participants in the burgeoning Atlantic trade that
there was “no one way” to set up business arrangements. In some ventures
Guillén’s partners placed the goods in their own shops, and later delivered

196
Guillén’s share when the items sold. Guillén subsequently and
proportionately paid his suppliers in the Antilles.21
In-kind contributions by all parties made for personalized arrangements
and served well in a time and a society wherein hard cash was always in short
supply. Guillén's will suggests that his partners furnished their own services
as shopkeepers and the space for shops as at least a part, and perhaps all, of
their share of the investment. Lodging provided by Guillén to his shopkeeper
and possibly other in-kind considerations also were part of the
arrangements.22 Guillén put 620 pesos worth of "different items of
merchandise" under the control of Salvador de Porras for Porras to "oversee
in the shop which he presently has." At the time Porras, born in southern
Spain, was still a bachelor. Porras and Guillén agreed to "divide" the profits
although no specific percentages were mentioned in the Guillén's will. At the
time that Guillén dictated his testament, Porras had delivered to his partner
only 50 pesos in payment of an unspecified total.23
Another business arrangement, between Guillén and Antonio de Mesa,
included lodging for Mesa in one of Guillén's buildings.24 Guillén did not
elaborate upon his agreement with Mesa, probably because Guillén's wife
safeguarded papers which documented the deal with Mesa. Guillén did
clarify that the arrangement with Mesa was "similar to" that with Porras. But in

197
restricting the details to the eyes of the parties, Guillén also made them
unavailable to those who would be interested centuries later.25
Other business partners of Guillén did not perform as shopkeepers, but
provided capital and perhaps connections. Sergeant Fernando Rodriguez
and José Guillén each committed 300 pesos to capitalize a joint venture. At
the time of Guillén's death, the sergeant still owed him 200 pesos.
Unfortunately Guillén did not relate In what sorts of goods he and Rodriguez
invested. Perhaps Rodriguez assisted in acquiring wares through personal
connections in his native province of Galicia in northern Spain or in the
Caribbean.26 Four and a half dozen bowls (escudillas) were in Rodriguez's
possession when he died in 1762. The presence of so many bowls of the
same kind by a long-time widower suggests that the ceramic items were
imported for retail purposes, rather than personal use, and that he might well
have brought in similar cargoes during his long residence in St. Augustine.27
On the other side of the ledger, Guillén also detailed the debts that he
owed for merchandise. His largest obligation was 200 pesos owed to José
Miranda of Havana. He also owed debts of: 117 pesos to Antonio Lazo [no
known city]; 114 pesos to José Rodríguez of Havana; and 155 pesos to José
[illegible] of Puerto de Principe. For sugar, which had been shipped in boxes
of different sizes, Guillén owed 102 pesos. 51 pesos each to Jacinto
Castellón and Cristóbal de Sayas. Smaller debts of 88 pesos to José

198
Romero, of 22 pesos to Antonio Urbano to Meló, and 14 pesos to José
Espinosa, were also outstanding in Havana. Guillén identified Urbano de
Meló a "resident" (residente) of Havana rather than "citizen" (vecino), the term
which Guillén used for his other creditors in that city. Urbano de Meló was
the widower of a woman of the Menéndez Marquéz family of Florida and
therefore a son-in-law of the colony's accountant. The captain-general of
Cuba (1734-1736), Juan Francisco de Güemes y Horcasitas, like Urbano's
deceased wife, was a descendant of the Menéndez family that founded
Florida and Urbano might have been able to use this kin connection to his
advantage in his business dealings in Cuba as well as in Florida.28
To forestall any questions, Guillén clarified that he had imported
several hundred pounds of nails from Havana, which were already paid for
and in the possession of his wife. He did not mention the debt that he had
owed to Governor del Moral in 1737; so it had apparently been paid off by the
time of Guillén's death. He admitted to indebtedness to persons in Guarico
as well, but did not itemize the obligations to the merchants of that city. His
will directed that all these should be satisfied.29
Was there any collateral or surety pledged to protect the credit
extended by Guillén’s Caribbean associates? It is difficult to believe that
Guillén's suppliers would leave themselves vulnerable to non-payment, but
the will did not mention any such pledges. The merchants in the islands

199
might have possessed leverage or assurances, which cannot be inferred from
the will, such as personal relationships wherein honor could be invoked. Nor
was there any mention in the will of interest charges upon either Guillén's
accounts payable or receivable. Guillen might have purchased the goods at a
credit price rather than at a lower, cash price. J. H. Soltow described the
different pricing for cash vis-á-vis credit purchases that was used by Scottish
companies in the contemporary British American colonies. This common
practice resolved and offset the financial disadvantage to the supplier arising
from delayed payment.30
On the Caribbean-bound leg of the voyage, Guillén's ship might have
carried some Florida products to be sold in Cuba or Hispaniola rather than
sailing totally In ballast, with Guillén or his captain possibly serving as the
agent or factor for fellow Florida colonists. Eighteenth-century Spanish
Florida was not a net producer of exports, but Florida had from time to time
sent onions and smoked fish and naval stores to Havana over the years. The
constricted nature of Euro-American settlement in Florida because of insistent
threats from British colonists and their Indian allies kept Florida residents
close to the protection of St. Augustine. Additionally, the Florida colonists
were probably hesitant to invest goods or the labors of themselves or their
slaves into planting activities which would be so readily subject to destruction.
Still, some did venture into the countryside to establish productive projects.

200
Crops requiring little labor and investment, however, continued to be
attempted, such as the orange grove along the St. Johns River near Tocoi
mentioned by Governor Montiano in 1740. Colonists even undertook to
develop plantations with the assistance of their slaves near the fort of Mojoloa
on the St. Johns.31
The men who engaged in the retail trade with Guillen had all arrived
from other parts of the Spanish empire; they were not Florida-born. Guillén
was born on Spain's eastern coast, known as the Levante. Porras claimed
Córdoba in southern Spain as his native province, and Sergeant Rodriguez
spent his early years in Galicia in the northwestern part of the Iberian
peninsula. Guillen's shop tender Mesa was a New World native from Vera¬
cruz in New Spain.32 Perhaps their "outsider" status encouraged them to
establish trading ties among themselves rather than with native-born men.
Immigrating men could and did establish connections through marriages with
local women although none of the individuals involved In Guillén's ventures
were part of his wife’s (Antonia de Avero) family. It was a time when family
business networks and the influence and the entrees that kin might provide
was of paramount importance in commerce.
Guillén's shopkeeping partners, Porras and Mesa, were bachelors and
Porras was not enlisted in the military. Their single-life situations probably
allowed for more time and flexibility to tend to retail demands. Shopkeepers

201
of contemporary stores in Virginia were also generally unmarried.33 Likewise
in Mexico, merchants in the eighteenth century were primarily Iberia-born and
tended to bring their nephews over to apprentice in their stores. Historian D.
A. Brading points out that this pattern is based on literal, not statistical
sources. Brading also describes a merchant role which is similar to what one
finds in Virginia, wherein merchants extended capital for purchases that were
essential in production of a crop which would subsequently be marketed by
the merchant.34 With Florida’s ability to grow cash crops frustrated by
international hostilities, the role of stores was less developed and integrated
into the economy and more resembled the merchandise outlets of today than
the intricate and integrated trans-Atlantic institutions that pivoted around
staple crops.
It might have been that Florida-born retailers leagued together, but the
documentation regarding any Florida creole merchants has not been located.
Quite possibly their access to venture capital was more limited than it was for
men from other areas. Florida residents surely suffered near financial
devastation from the destruction brought by the 1702 English siege, and the
losses must have negatively effected their ability to finance commercial
ventures.
The shops supplied by Guillén and overseen by his partners or
employees served the Florida colonists at the very time that Francisco de San

202
Buenaventura y Tejada, Auxiliary Bishop of Santiago de Cuba, resident in
Florida, was claiming in 1736 that the English had driven all the Spanish
stores out of business. At the time, however, Florida's governor owned three
stores of which the bishop disapproved. The churchman wrote that there
were three English stores, one dedicated only to selling "provisions" and had
"never kept any other class of goods." There was also a "permanently
located Italian" store. The town's citizens resented the competition of the
foreigners and all complained about the increase in duties which made prices
exorbitant.35
The bishop’s correspondence with the captain-general of Cuba might
have been, in fact, more concerned about the entry of Protestant ideas than of
British manufactures or British American foodstuffs, but he made his appeal to
the king's mercantilistic interests rather than to the sovereign's spiritual side.
Despite disclaimers, the prelate's animus toward Florida's Governor del Moral
shows through in his letters. It colored his reporting of the Florida situation
and also shapes our acceptance of his words. San Buenaventura reported
that British traders and seamen entertained themselves and scandalized
pious Hispanic pedestrians with "heretical, indecent dances in St. Augustine's
streets"-further evidence of the depravity that accompanied the English.36
Pedro Sánchez Griñán also described what he had observed of St.
Augustine's commerce in the early 1740s, but was forced to rely upon his

203
memory, for his report was written from Madrid fifteen years after he had
departed Florida. Sánchez Griñán recalled that
ten or twelve stores [sold] rum, wine, vinegar,
sugar, tobacco, spices, lard, soap, tallow candles
and other provisions with a few kinds of silk, wool,
linen goods, ribbons and other trifles.37
The changeability of the trade situation in the Atlantic world during a century
of imperial wars could turn legitimate trade and permissible sales quickly into
contraband activities. Goods and merchants once permitted quickly became
outlawed with the declaration of war or even with changes resulting from
lesser diplomatic commercial negotiations. Not only did certain goods
become forbidden, but the price of those items which continued to be
permitted could and did soar. The advent of war between Great Britain and
Spain in 1739 no doubt altered the trade and retail situation described by the
bishop, however biased his words. Warfare limited availability of British and
Spanish goods and drove up prices on all freight because of the increased
costs of doing business. British wares became legally embargoed while
Spanish American and peninsular goods were physically restricted by virtue
of diminished shipping or captures. Historian Carl Swanson claims that nearly
60 per cent of Spanish ships sailing to the New World from the Old fell victim
to British privateers during the war and that trade within the Caribbean
dropped as well.38 The viewpoint of chroniclers in Florida reflected their

204
sense of personal and immediate deprivation, perhaps with little thought or
understanding of the magnitude of the dilemma. But complaints heard and
written in Florida at the time were no doubt repeated in several languages
throughout the Atlantic world.
Stores and Shops
Participation in retail trade enabled improvement in social and material
status. Salvador de Porras moved on from partnership with Guillén to deal
directly with the British. He also progressed from a single-room existence in
the house of Doña Gerónima de Hita in the middle of the 1740s to the control
of two properties by 1763. One site, on St. George Street, was provided by
his wife's family. The other was a two-story shellstone building on the section
of the waterfront which had been bulkheaded and thus was usable for docking
and loading. It was located near the landing which was in front of the plaza.
De la Puente's map depicted a heavier concentration of buildings among the
lots adjoining the seawall. A high percentage of land was covered by
buildings in this waterfront area in comparison to the rest of the town.39 In
1760 English merchants were selling retail, dry goods on the upper story of
Porras's building on the bay. An evacuation inventory of the building listed a
store counter among the assets.40

205
Another store was located on the lot next to Porras in one of the
buildings In Diego de Espinosa's compound on the waterfront. The listing of
the particulars of Porras's location resulted from the general community-wide
upheaval caused by the departure of the Spanish from Florida and described
the main attributes of the property, while the appraisal of Diego de Espinosa's
property was performed in the much more orderly accounting of post-mortem
assets. The appraisal of Espinosa's estate provides the most detailed picture
available of a retail setting. Two of Espinosa’s buildings occupied the
bayside lot: a flat-roof building (casa de azotea), and a small, two-story
house on the waterfront.41
The master mason's and carpenter's assessment revealed that the
space used for the store occupied two rooms. There was a shop space
(tienda! and a storeroom (bodega!, in the flat-roof building (casa de azotea!
which was located on a street corner. Masonry arches enhanced the
building's loggia. Floor space for the two rooms used for retail purposes
measured 58 square varas (about 430 square feet). The shop had a masonry
floor, most likely of tabby, and wall of tabique (a tabby interior wall
approximately nine inches in thickness)42 separated the shop from the storage
area. Other interior walls were of tabique as well. The storage area shared
a wall with the dining room (comedor!, while the shop space abutted the entry
hall (zaguán!. The building also housed a public space for residential use,

206
such as a drawing room (sala) and two other, private rooms, probably
bedrooms (aposentos), one of which opened on to the dining room.
Apparently Diego de Espinosa was not the owner of the goods sold in the
shop, for the estate inventory did not include any retail items.
Retail activities in the building of Antonio Rodríguez Arfían across the
street from Espinosa also occupied two rooms: the room for the shop with a
counter and a built-in cabinet and an adjacent storage room.43 Thus retail
outlets in the urban setting in Florida used a public display area with an
adjoining storage space. Prominent streetside access was not necessary if
the merchandise was highly sought. Customers were willing first to seek out
and then to climb stairs if the product was cloth, as evidenced by the upstairs
location in Porras building on the waterfront.44
Conclusions
In the eighteenth century world of an ever increasing supply and
variety of retail goods, St. Augustine’s shopkeepers and merchants
endeavored to provide items desired by the residents in generally
straightforward retail outlets. Florida’s stores did not perform in the dual roles
of provider of manufactured or processed goods and also of marketing agent.
But in agricultural areas which grew staple crops, such as Virginia’s tobacco-
growing regions, trading stores served as both factor to transfer out the raw

207
produce and as retailer of consumer goods to Euro-American growers.
Trading stores likewise trafficked in both directions for Native Americans, who
delivered mostly peltry as produce. Clients came into St. Augustine shops to
purchase items with the monies-sometimes with specie, sometimes with not-
yet-disbursed salary-acquired as payment for the purchasers’ services to the
Spanish crown as military men or in supporting positions for the military
organization..
Although the trade was small, it was formalized. The protagonists were
not lackadaisical and irregular in their business habits. Barter was not the
modus operandi. Cash was the means of exchange. Accounting books kept
track of purchases and payments. Small slips of paper served as promissory
notes often signed with an illiterate debtor’s cross mark. Shops performed in
a businesslike manner. Retail space was located in building areas that were
specialized, dedicated to sales, with retail “furniture’’ such as counters and
cabinets and separate rooms for the storage of additional merchandise, rather
than limited to some corner of a dwelling, where domestic life and retail life
merged.
While account books and small-size promissory notes verified the
negotiated arrangements, other financial arrangements were also set up in
detail. Sergeant Rodriguez set forth the terms under which Our Lady of
Solitude confraternity could collect the rents from his property. Debts were

208
not readily written off by either individuals or religious organizations.
Sergeant Rodriguez had no dependents nor even close kin to benefit as
recipients of monies owed to him, but he intended for his executor to pursue
collecting his debts even if it meant turning out debtor Clemente Hilario's
family from their home. The sergeant was not without charity, for he freed his
slave rather than transferring ownership of her labors to a confraternity or to a
godson. Hilario’s debt was not to be forgiven and his dying creditor instructed
that collection was to proceed in the established way.
Joint ventures were the foundation of retail businesses. Partners might
contribute equal or unequal sums of cash or goods; some partners offered in-
kind services or beneficial personal connections. José Guillén’s partnerships
featured several different arrangements, illustrating Hancock’s observation
that there was a variety of ways to set up commercial ventures in the Atlantic
world of trade.45 Owners of the merchandise and the shops attempted to
preserve their cash which was needed to purchase more retail goods. They
restricted the cash costs of maintaining the sales outlets by offering assets,
such a lodging space, which they already owned for use by the shopkeepers
rather than depleting their cash by paying salaries or commissions. This
practice did, however, restrict any cash which the shopkeeper himself could
put in circulation in the local economy. Anthropologists Stephen Gudeman
and Alberto Rivera interpret this type of labor trade as a strategy of a market

209
economy rather than a reciprocity practice associated with peasants and a
moral economy. This use of a nonmonetary transaction within the market
context is due to the cash saving it permits.”46
Official dismissal or omission of reporting on retailing explains the
historical lack of attention to civilian finances in colonial Florida. By means of
constant contact and interchange with Havana and often illegally with
Charleston and other British American ports, Atlantic-wide commercial ideas
and tactics were imported into the colony. Procedures and practices
introduced by men arriving from Spain added elements to the financial
tableau of Florida. Florida might not have been wealthy and the commercial
scope was small, but it residents were participants in the ways of international
trade.
Studies of both Spanish and British commerce and trade have
focussed on the years following the latter third of the eighteenth century.
Historian David Brading points to the Seven Years War with Great Britain as
the “catalyst of change.”47 Administrative reforms by Bourbon rulers of the
Spanish empire brought changes to commercial organization as well as to
other areas of society. Both Brading and John Kicza investigated Mexican
commerce for a period subsequent to the 1763 departure of the Spanish fromr
Florida. Scholars of British American business also have focussed on the
years following the Seven Years War. Not only were the 1760s a punctuation

210
point as Great Britain’s tremendous industrial growth transformed the
character of Atlantic trade, but more and improved data are available for
Investigation for that period as well.48
Spanish Florida residents evidenced commercial and financial
activities which were incipient versions of the practices that would become
widespread following the Seven Years War. As Kizca would find for Mexico
several decades later, Spanish Florida residents relied on credit. They
diversified their investments, and made different contractual arrangements
with different individuals as both Kizca and David Hancock recognized for
Mexican and for British entreprenerus, respectively. Floridians also
separated ownership and management of retail outlets.49
After 1763, British entrepreneurs and men of commerce built
businesses and forged commercial networks of a scope unknown before the
war. The subsequent ascendancy of Great Britain in transatlantic commerce
and the historiographical interest in the topic of British vigor has
overshadowed the earlier, nascent activities themselves and also the
exploration of the role of non-British locations in the development of
transatlantic commerce. But here we recognize the existence of the activities
in Spanish Florida prior to the post-1760s changes in Atlantic commerce.

211
Notes
1. This description paraphrases John Jay TePaske's remark about cats, dogs,
and horses being real delicacies. The Governorship of Spanish Florida. 1700-
1763 (Durham, N.C.: Duke University Press, 1964), 5, 6, 83 n. 29.
2. John Jay TePaske, The Governorship of Spanish Florida. 1700-1763.
(Durham: Duke University Press, 1964); Luis R. Arana, "The Private Soldier in
Florida, 1672-1763." November 7, 1975. Ms. on file at Castillo de San Marcos
National Monument; Charles W. Arnade, "The Failure of Spanish Florida." The
Americas 16 (1960):271-281: Florida on Trial. 1593-1602. Coral Gables:
University of Miami Press, 1959; The Siege of St. Augustine in 1702.
Gainesville: University of Florida Press, 1959.
3. Eugene Lyon, The Enterprise of Florida: Pedro Menéndez de Avilés and
the Spanish Conquest of 1565-1568 (Gainesville: University Presses of
Florida, 1976) and Richer Than We Thought: The Material Culture of
Sixteenth-Centurv St. Augustine. (St. Augustine: St. Augustine Historical
Society, 1992).
4. For analysis of some contemporary British American southern locales, see
Jacob M. Price, "Economic Function and Growth of American Port Towns in the
Eighteenth Century." Perspectives in American History. 8 (1974): 123-86;
Carville Earle and Ronald Hoffman, "Staple Crops and Urban Development in
the Eighteenth Century South, "Perspectives in American History. 10 (1976): 7-
78; quote on p. 8 n. 1. Russell R. Menard, "Financing the Lowcountry Export
Boom: Capital and Growth in Early South Carolina," William and Mary
Quarterly. 3rd ser, 51 (1994): 659-76.
5. Allan J. Kuethe, "Havana in the Eighteenth Century,” in Franklin W. Knight
and Peggy K. Liss, eds., Atlantic Port Cities: Economy, Culture, and Society in
the Atlantic World. 1650-1850 (Knoxville: University of Tennessee Press,
1990). 14.
6. Murdo MacLeod, "Spain's Atlantic Trade, 1492-1720," in Leslie Bethell, ed.t
The Cambridge History of Latin America. Vol. I (Cambridge: Cambridge
University Press, 1984), 341-88, quotes on 354 and 353, respectively.
7. TePaske devotes a chapter to the workings of the colony's economic policy.
Governorship of Spanish Florida. Ch. 4.
8. Joyce Elizabeth Harman, Trade and Privateering in Spanish Florida. 1732-
1763 (St. Augustine: St. Augustine Historical Society, 1969).

212
9. Eugene Lyon, "Settlement and Survival," in Michael Gannon, ed., The New
History of Florida (Gainesville: University Press of Florida, 1996), quote on 56.
10. Father Pedro Camps pointed out in his will where to find the chest that
held his accounts. Estate of Pedro Camps, 1790, Bundle (hereafter Bnd.) 308,
East Florida Papers (hereafter EFP), Library of Congress Manuscript Collection
(microfilm copies at St. Augustine Historical Society).
11. Will of José Guillén, 1743 December 17, in Claim of Antonio de Avero, Bnd.
320, Claim no. 19, Claims for Town Lots, Spanish Land Grants (hereafter
SLG), Florida Division of Historical Resources, Tallahassee; will of Francisco
Menéndez Marquéz, 1742 September 2, Archivo General de Indias (hereafter
AGI), Seville, Spain, John B. Stetson Collection (hereafter SC), P. K. Yonge
Library of Florida History, 58-1-34/73; Lyon, Richer Than We Thought
presents translated testamentary personal accountings made by Florida's
sixteenth-century residents, now conserved in private archives in Spain.
12. Marylynn Salmon, Women and the Law of Property in Early America
(Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 1986), 9-13, 55-6.
13. Rodriguez used the term “casa” which might have meant a business
venture. Will of Fernando Rodriguez, 1762 July 27, in Claim of Antonia de
Avero, Bnd. 320, Claim no 19, Claims for Town Lots, SLG. Hilario's position
and salary appear in Don José Antonio Gelabert to the Crown, General list of
all who serve and are paid by the king at the presidio of San Agustín, 1752,
Havana, AGI SC 87-1-14/2..
14. Will of Fernando Rodriguez, 1762 July 27 and will of José Guillén 1743
December 17, both In Claim of Antonia de Avero, Bnd. 320, Claim no. 19,
Claims for Town Lots, SLG.
15. Estate of Diego de Espinosa, 1756 May through September, Bnd. 301P5,
EFP; Will of Pedro Menéndez Marquéz, 1742 September 2, AGI SC 58-1-34/73
16. Will of Gerónima Rodríguez and Francisco Navarro, 1737 February 14,
Bnd. 359; Will of Domingo Escalona, 1755, Bnd. 301, both in EFP.
17. In second Spanish period (1784-1821), sailing vessels were mortgaged.
Notarized instruments, Bnds. 301-318, EFP.
18. Inventory of the Papers and Goods Belonging to Don Francisco del Moral
Sánchez, 1737 March 22, SC AGI 58-2-12; deed from Juan Méndez and
Micaela González to José de Escalona, 1727 February 17, Bnd. 320, Claim
no. 75, Claims for Town Lots, SLG.

213
19. Mortgage from Roque Leonardy to Miguel Yznardy as mavordomoof the
Confraternity of Souls in Purgatory, 1791 March 11, Bundle 386, p. 22 ff, EFP.
20. Antonio García-Baquero González, Cádiz v el Atlántico (1717-1778): el
comercio colonial español balo el monopolio gaditano. Vol. 1 (Seville: Escuela
de estudios hispano-americanos de Sevilla, 1976), 62.
21. David Hancock. Citizens of the World. London Merchants and the
Integration of the British Atlantic community. 1735-1785 (Cambridge:
Cambridge University Press, 1995), 6-7; will of José Guillén, 1743 December
17, in Claim of Antonio de Avero, Bnd. 320, Claim no. 19, Claims for Town
Lots, SLG.
22. Will of José Guillén, 1743 December 17, in Claim of Antonio de Avero,
Bnd. 320, Claim no. 19, Claims for Town Lots, SLG.
23. Will of José Guillén, 1743 December 17, in Claim of Antonio de Avero, Bnd.
320, Claim no. 19, Claims for Town Lots, SLG; marriage of Salvador de Porras
and Juana Navarro, 1745 February 8, Cathedral Parish Records (hereafter
CPR), Diocesan Center, Mandarin, Florida.
24. Guillén used the term casa to described the building in which Mesa
resided, which could mean any house owned by Guillén. Elsewhere in the will,
Guillén uses the term morada to specify the house of his residence. Thus
Mesa might not have shared Guillén's residence.
25. Will of José Guillén, 1743 December 17, in Claim of Antonio de Avero, Bnd.
320, Claim no. 19, Claims for Town Lots, SLG.
26. Will of José Guillén, 1743 December 17, in Claim of Antonio de Avero, Bnd.
320, Claim no. 19, Claims for Town Lots, SLG.
27. Will of Fernando Rodriguez, 1762 July 27, in Claim of Antonio de Avero,
Bnd. 320, Claim no. 19, Claims for Town Lots, SLG.
28. Will of José Guillén, 1743 December 17, in Claim of Antonio de Avero, Bnd.
320, Claim no. 19, Claims for Town Lots, SLG; marriage of Antonio Urbano de
Melo to Manuela Menéndez Marquéz, 1721 April 14; burial of Manuela
Menéndez Marquéz, 1737 March 11, CPR; Rosa Maria Garcia-Weaver, 'The
Private Archive of the Count of Revillagigedo," El Escribano 30 (1993): 97-98.
29. Will of José Guillén, 1743 December 17, in Claim of Antonio de Avero, Bnd.
320, Claim no. 19, Claims for Town Lots, SLG.; Inventory of the Papers and
Goods Belonging to Don Francisco del Moral Sánchez, 1737 March 22, SC

214
AGI 58-2-12.
30. Will of José Guillén,1743 December 17, in Claim of Antonio de Avero, Bnd.
320, Claim no. 19, Claims for Town Lots, SLG; J. H. Soltow, "Scottish Traders
in Virginia, 1750-1775," Economic History Review. 2nd series, 12 (1959): 94.
31. Genaro García, Relación de los trabajos que la gente de una nao llamada
Nra. Señora de la Merced padeció v de algunas cosas que en aquella flota
sucedieron, escrita por Fray Andrés de San Miguel, publicada por primera vez
por Genaro García (Mexico: Casa de F. Aguilar Vera y Compañía, 1902
Manuel de Montiano Letterbook, 1740 February 23, Bnd. 37. no. 187, EFP.
32. Will of Fernando Rodríguez, 1762 July 27, and will of José Guillén 1743
December 17, both in Claim of Antonia de Avero, Bnd. 320, Claim no. 19,
Claims for Town Lots, SLG; marriage of Salvador de Porras to Juana Navarro,
1745 February 8; marriage of Antonio Mesa to Gerónima Santollo, 1746
September 26, CPR.
33. Soltow, “Scottish Traders,” 86.
34. D. A. Brading, Miners and Merchants in Bourbon Mexico. 1763-1810
(Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1971), 95-106.
35. ¡bid.
36. Ibid.
37. Michael Scardaville and Jesús Maria Belmonte, [eds. and trans.] "Florida
in the Late First Spanish Period: The 1756 Griñón Report," El Escribano. 16,
(1979): 10.
38. Carl E. Swanson, Predators and Prizes: American Privateering and
Imperial Warfare. 1739-1748 (Columbia: University of South Carolina Press,
1991), 180-84.
39. Will of José Guillén, 1743 December 17, both in Claim of Antonia de
Avero, Bnd. 320, Claim no. 19, Claims for Town Lots, SLG; Eligió de la Puente
map, parcels # 61 and 209.
40. Juan José Solana, "Report on the Condition of St. Augustine," 1760 April
9, AGI SC 86-7-21/41; Charles W. Arnade, 'The Architecture of Spanish St.
Augustine," The Americas. 18(1961): 178.

215
41. Appraisal of the estate of Diego de Espinosa, 1756 September 3, Bnd.
301P5, EFP. Espinosa’s estate also claimed a residence and its masonry
kitchen on the opposite side of today’s Charlotte Street.
42. Manucy states that tabique was a partition wall of 9-inches. The Houses of
St. Augustine, 1565-1821 (St. Augustine: St. Augustine Historical Society,
1962), 99.
43. Appraisal of houses of Don Antonio Rodríguez Arfián, 1763 October 22,
Bnd. 359, EFP.
44. Juan José Solana, "Report on the Condition of St. Augustine," 1760 April
9, AGI SC 86-7-21/41
45. Hancock, Citizens of the World. Ch 1.
46. Stephen Gudeman and Alberto Rivera, Conversations in Columbia: The
Domestic Economy in Life and Text (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press,
1990), 109.
47. David A. Brading, “Bourbon Spain and Its American Empire," in Leslie
Bethell, ed., Colonial Spanish America (Cambridge: Cambridge University
Press, 1990), quote on p. 122.
48. Brading, Miners and Merchants: John E. Kicza, Colonial Entrepreneurs:
Families and Business in Bourbon Mexico (Albuquerque, NM: University of
New Mexico Press, 1983), 46, ch. 5, 6, 7, 10.
49.Kicza, Colonial Entrepreneurs. 135-53, 230-33.

CHAPTER 9
CONFRATERNITIES IN SPANISH FLORIDA
The confraternities appear to be more in
number than this presidio can support.
-Father Juan José Solana, 1760
The scene was familiar to the residents of St. Augustine. Alerted by the
bells, residents watched the solemn procession moving through the alleys and
streets of the town. The priest carried the viaticum to the bedside of a
townsman whose remaining earthly hours were few. Members of the
Confraternity of The Blessed Sacrament held long wax tapers as they escorted
the Eucharist borne by the priest. Throughout the Spanish world passersby
would pause in their activities as such processions moved along. It is said that
even King Charles II halted his coach in a Madrid street and descended in
reverence to accompany a death-watch party.1
Members of one of the religious brotherhoods would next supervise the
funeral and take part in the requisite number of masses for the salvation of the
soul of the deceased. If the decedent had sufficient finances, the will would
provide a legacy to support the projects of the confraternities in which he or
she held membership.
216

217
Confraternities offered opportunity and organization for laypersons to
participate in, not just be recipients of, the rituals of the Roman Catholic
Church. Robert Kapitzke's study of the clergy in Spanish Florida briefly
examined these lay organizations. Katpizke continued the traditional historical
focus on the institutional aspects of organizations and the relationships among
the clergy and between them and the colonial officials. The brotherhoods
appear almost as a postscript in the context of the ecclesiastical structure, as
manifested in Kapitzke's almost parenthetical remark: "finally, a word must be
said about the cofradías in St. Augustine."2
But confraternities were no mere postscript in the eyes of the residents.
Historian A. J. R. Russell-Wood has called these institutions the "warp and
woof of urban life in Latin America. Ordinary citizens of Florida held their own
perspectives about the brotherhoods, which were not necessarily reflected in
the official correspondence, for the administrators' communiques focused upon
budgetary details, supplies and governance. The confraternities played a
larger role in the lives of the residents than they did in the colony's
administration.
In a military colony such as Spanish Florida, the confraternities offered
one of the few opportunities for ordinary individuals of both sexes to make
decisions within a corporate body and to participate with more influence than
was generally allowed within the rigid military hierarchy. Both Maureen Flynn
and Gary Graff noted in their studies of confraternities that within the

218
organizations a more egalitarian relationship existed, or was at least
encouraged, among their members, who otherwise lived in a rank-conscious
and hierarchical society. Focussing on Europe, Flynn states: "As conceived in
the minds of members, confraternities were microcosms of the ideal Christian
world of love and equality among believers." Focussing on Spanish America,
William Taylor, Olinda Celestino and Albert Meyers see the confraternities as a
venue for mediating unequal social relationships.3
From the perspective of the laity in Spanish Florida the confraternities
allowed for some sense of equality generated within religious activities that one
finds among the laity in contemporary areas of British North America. Flistorian
Patricia Bonomi sees the experience of equality and individuation developing
within a religious context during the Great Awakening in British America. She
asserts that this development provided an intellectual and psychological basis
for a more assertive political role and that the experience gained in
participation in religious services acted as a training ground for political action.4
Although the confraternities of Spanish Florida did not radicalize the colonists,
the organizations did offer a leveling ingredient in a very hierarchical society.
Placing the laity in Spanish Florida within the larger world of colonial
worshipers enables a comparison of the role of religion for laypersons across
boundaries of empires and boundaries of organized and often adversarial
Christian sects.

219
Just as throughout the other Spanish Catholic colonies, religious
organizations composed of laypersons in Florida-confraternities,
brotherhoods, and third orders-focused their activities on the advancement of
public worship and on "pious works" (obras pías). According to historian
Maureen Flynn, confraternities were a medieval, church-wide development
and, therefore, existed throughout pre-Reformation Europe. The episcopacy
sanctioned them and encouraged the growth of the institution which promoted
orthodoxy of religion in both belief and practice. The confraternities of the
Blessed Sacrament, Rosary, Souls in Purgatory, and Christian Doctrine were
designed especially for that end. To the members the confraternities offered
organized and approved activities for attaining salvation through acts of mercy
or other pious exercise. After death, members could rely on the community of
the confraternity to offer spiritual support, by means of prayer and good works,
for the decedent's salvation and the hastening his or her passage through
Purgatory. Popularity of the brotherhoods was so widespread that Flynn
asserts that, "Indeed, the confraternities may have encompassed into their
membership the majority of the population In the urban centers of Europe."5
Confraternities were more numerous in Spain than in other parts of the
European continent,6 and the establishment of Spanish and Portugese colonies
in the New World coincided with the high point of the confraternities in the
Iberian peninsula. This social institution was transferred to nascent colonial
cities and towns, where it began a life of its own as a colonial entity exhibiting

220
pre-Reformation vigor in the Americas, while its popularity and influence waned
in post-Reformation Europe.
The examination of these lay religious organizations not only provides a
better understanding of the social life of colonial Florida, but reveals that the
colony’s capital was very much a part of the Spanish world in its reflection of
metropolitan culture. Although very much a "part of the colonial microcosm,"
these institutions "have failed to elicit from scholars a degree of interest
commensurate with their importance," according to Russell-Wood. These
organizations in Brazil offered companionship and physical and financial
assistance to colonials who moved about, hopeful but often misinformed on the
chances of financial improvement in new locales. These hopefuls often found
themselves without the presence of family for support and also without the
profit envisioned in their dreams.7
Several areas of the New World have provided the "laboratories" for
historians of the colonial Americas to study lay fraternal organizations,
particularly Brazil, Peru, Mexico, and Guatemala. The minute books,
accounting ledgers, and codes of by-laws and privileges of chapters in
scattered locations in Latin America have provided documentary material.
Especially interesting to historians have been the confraternities whose
members were of African ancestry, both slave and free, in urban centers of
colonial Brazil. The self-generated archives of these organizations have

221
provided an opportunity to study the behavior of blacks functioning in a fairly
autonomous role.6
Russell-Wood has concentrated on the sodalities in the urban centers of
Brazil, ranging from the elitist third orders of Salvador to the slaves
confraternities of the urban areas. The less urbanized region of the Peruvian
mountains of New Granada drew the attention of Gary Wendell Graff. Alicia
Bazarte Martinez's study of confraternal life in Mexico City relies on more than
three centuries of chapter records. Chapter records also provided
documentation for Maureen Flynn's study of confraternal life in the mother
country, specifically the brotherhoods of Zamora in the province of León in
northwestern Spain. Adrian van Oss looked at Indian confraternities in rural
areas of Guatemala. William Taylor focussed on priests and parishioners in
eighteenth century Mexico to analyze the organization of public life. But he
focusses mostly on Indian confraternities, supported by indigeneous
populations that were much larger and widespread than in Florida and with
access to substantially more assets.9
Confraternities were simply too important to Florida colonists not to
discuss them here although the documentation is limited and scattered. The
location of the books maintained by the brotherhoods that functioned in St.
Augustine is unknown, should they still survive. Spanish colonial officials took
the books documenting St. Augustine's religious life as well as the religious
paraphernalia with them when they evacuated the peninsula in 1764 after the

222
colony's cession to Great Britain. In addition to the baptismal, marriage, and
burial records of the evacuees and their ancestors, the floridanos transferred to
the Cathedral of Havana, the altars, ornaments, banners, and other objects
belonging to St. Augustine's parish church and confraternities. Perhaps the
archives of the brotherhoods still remain tucked away somewhere within the
cathedral's walls. A 1727 list of Florida-bound supplies further tantalizes us
with its mention of a record book kept by the steward of St. Augustine's Blessed
Sacrament confraternity. But for now, the reports by governmental and
ecclesiastical officials must provide the information about the organizations in
Florida, while the parish burial records reveal a partial membership list. Wills
recount the commitments of members to the religious organizations.10
Although the membership of confraternities was composed primarily of
laymen and laywomen (priests were also members), the organizations existed
within the formalized structure of the Roman Catholic Church. Brotherhoods
were "erected by ecclesiastical authority," that is, by the bishop of the see who
approved their charters. In Florida’s case, this was the bishop of Santiago in
Cuba. Some confraternities were universal, such as Blessed Sacrament, and,
therefore, functioned similarly throughout the Catholic world. New World
Indian confraternities, on the other hand, were often dedicated to a local saint
and existed only within a single location. Every parish, however, was to have
a Confraternity of the Blessed Sacrament (Santísimo Sacramento^, the first
chapter having been confirmed in 1539 by the Pope, who granted it numerous

223
indulgences and explicitly called it a model for other confraternities. A 1685
report on the lay organizations in Florida stated that St. Augustine's chapter of
The Blessed Sacrament was founded in 1655 although Amy Bushnell
described genteel participation in that confraternity in the 1620s."
Whether in Florence, Madrid, Lima, Mexico, or St. Augustine, the
Blessed Sacrament confraternity promoted devotion to the Eucharist. Its
members cared for the main altar and the tabernacle, maintained the perpetual
tabernacle light and provided an escort for the taking of communion to the sick.
In the absence of records for St. Augustine, the constitutional rules from
chapters in other colonial cities can reasonably be extrapolated to apply to St.
Augustine.12
In St. Augustine confraternities directed their activities primarily toward
the altar and the sick bed. The most frequently described activities of
confraternities in the Florida capital were the maintenance of the religious
accouterments and ministering to the sick, especially In the running of the
hospital. And in this regard, the Confraternity of the Blessed Sacrament and
that of Our Lady of Solitude (Soledad), which focused on those concerns,
respectively, were the pre-eminent organizations in the Florida presidio.
Throughout the Spanish realm vagabonds and the "idle poor" also received
succor from confraternities. But St. Augustine was not accessible to beggars
wandering from town to town, and its military regimen discouraged vagrancy.
Therefore, it is doubtful that the itinerants who "shocked the sensibilities" of

224
citizens and visitors in other Spanish urban areas were present in St.
Augustine, and poor relief was not a major focus of the town's confraternities.
The persistence and pervasiveness of the obligation of Blessed Sacrament's
members to escort Communion to the dying was evidenced in the Florida
governor's attempt to control the bell-ringing that accompanied the ritual.
Governor Diego de Quiroga y Losada (1687-1693) complained that "it has
been the custom since time immemorial to ring the bells when the Blessed
Sacrament leaves the church until it returns" and also to use the bells to call
forth the "accompaniers." Quiroga was concerned that the pealing might
overshadow any alarm bell that might be needed to signal the approach of an
enemy. Because the guardhouse was next to the church building, one night
the soldiers had been kept on alert from 10 PM to 2 A M., and he wished such
further "embarrassment" to be avoided. Substituting a small altar bell for the
ritual resolved the problem.13
Functions and Ceremonies
Processions and celebrations to commemorate their patrons were the
annual high point of the confraternities' existence. Such events added sparkle
and fun to the lives of Florida colonists. Colorful and luxurious cloth shields or
standards moved outdoors for the religious processions. Blessed Sacrament
sponsored the most important procession of the liturgical year, Corpus Christi,
a week-long moveable feast which began fifty-seven days after Easter. On the

225
feast day the standards, statues, dignitaries, and the members of the
confraternities paraded along streets strewn with palm fronds and fragrant
herbs or grasses. Dancing followed the solemnities.14
In addition to the Corpus Christi observation the confraternities were
obligated to sponsor and support processions on Easter, St. James Day
(Spain's patron saint) in July, and thanksgiving for the naval victory at Lepanto
(el día de la naval), when Christian forces turned back the Islamic threat. Over
time certain celebrations were eliminated from Florida’s liturgical year and from
the streets; others took their place. For example, in 1685, the festivities
associated with the feast days of St. Michael and St. Andrew had been
suspended by royal order throughout the empire. The Florida confraternities
were responsible for expenses associated with the celebrations as well as for
the hours of work required from its members. The crown assumed
responsibility for the cost of candles for the masses on certain feast days, and
at his discretion the governor could order the royal cannons fired as part of a
celebration, with the crown donating the gunpowder. Coronations and royal
marriages and births were also celebrated as they came to pass.15
Chapters and Their Members
The Spanish settlers established confraternities upon their arrival in La
Florida. Over the decades new confraternities were established, probably
reflecting the changes in regional origins of Florida's citizenry as different

226
regions revered different saints and religious events and emphasized different
charities or good works. Men from Castile and Andalucía began arriving in the
1680, altering a century of a self-sustaining creole population and one of
Asturian preeminence. The new soldiers brought with them the contemporary
practices of Iberia as well as preference and devotion for their own regional
and cultural patron saints.
Francisco de la Rocha and Francisco de Cigarroa stated in a 1685
report that one of several Holy Cross confraternities had been founded at the
same time as the presidio itself and that of the Immaculate Conception was
nearly as old, instituted at the inception of the Franciscan convent. De la
Rocha and Cigarroa specified that Solitude confraternity was a creole creation,
inaugurated by the native-born children of the founding soldiers. Florida-born
residents-second-generation Euro-Americans--had started the hospital
organization of Solitude about 1605, the same year that Souls in Purgatory was
organized. Rosary brotherhood was established in the 1620s.16
Florida was not a colony of merchants. It had no mining except for
coquina. It had bare subsistence agriculture. It exported few goods, It was a
military colony with its capital a presidio and its population had a thoroughly
military stamp. The coffers of the brotherhoods were inextricably tied to the
military budget and to the officials who administered the money. Confraternal
dues were deducted from a soldier's base pay along with the assessments for
food, uniforms, and medical and hospital care.

227
Treasury officials oversaw the proportionate payroll deductions. Candle
wax and ornaments used by the confraternities could not be acquired in St.
Augustine; items had to be purchased elsewhere in the empire by government
officials and charged against the deductions from the soldier-members'
salaries. For example, in 1685, True Cross, Immaculate Conception, and
Solitude confraternities assessed their members four reales annually, and
Blessed Sacrament required an initial membership fee of eight reales. Not all
the funding of the confraternities was subject to royal treasury control. Blessed
Sacrament required its members to beg weekly for alms, and Souls in
Purgatory and Rosary depended upon donations, not required fees. Citizens
retained the control of the confraternal accounts of these three organizations
and did not allow the military structure to handle the funds.17
Simultaneous membership in several confraternities was common.
Members could transfer from a chapter in one location to that in another town
or parish. Soldiers arriving in Florida from other parts of the Spanish empire
could bring membership in the religious organizations with them. The 1685
report of de la Rocha and Cigarroa revealed multiple memberships in
confraternities among St. Augustine's military men. The report shows that four
of the local confraternities each counted more than eighty soldiers as
members. (This report addressed only the soldier-members.) The sum of
memberships reported for soldiers of the presidio was 520, at a time when the
total strength of the garrison hovered at 300. Father Solana in 1760 held the

228
opinion that there was a surfeit of brotherhoods and that they were more than
what he termed “the poverty of the place” could support. He claimed that the
Guadalupe confraternity had been brought to near extinction because of
spreading the limited funds among too many brotherhoods.18
A few confraternities were identified with missions and Native American
participants. The missions of San Pedro on Cumberland Island and of San
Juan del Puerto on Fort George Island in 1602 both had True Cross
confraternities with Native American membership. At both locations villagers
held two processions during Holy Week, with the Indians purchasing the
banners and candles used during the observations.19
Just beyond the town wall of St. Augustine the Indian villages of
Tolomato and Nombre de Dios (or Macaris) each had its own church and
corresponding confraternity. These organizations received non-Indian support
as well. The Nombre de Dios mission villagers belonged to the La Leche
brotherhood, which dated from the colony's beginning-“in primitive times.”
Nombre de Dios villagers took advantage of the propinquity to the capital for
currying favor and sponsorship from the colony's highest officials. In 1678 the
villager-members elected Governor Pablo de Hita Salazar to be their steward
and put treasury officials into all the other offices. The flattery succeeded, for
Hita built a stone church for the village. Decades later soldiers contributed to
the re-building of the stone church at La Leche.20

229
By the middle of the eighteenth century, the church of Our Lady of
Guadalupe and its confraternity was located just beyond the western defense
wall of St. Augustine in the Tolomato mission village. La Leche and
Guadalupe confraternities received donations from peninsular and creole
soldiers. Iberian-born Sergeant Fernando Rodriguez left bequests in his will to
both Guadalupe and La Leche. Rodríguez assigned his uncollected soldier's
pay to four confraternities, which included Guadalupe and La Leche. He also
bequeathed one-fourth of an unpaid debt to La Leche. He ordered that
memorial masses for himself be said at the mission church of Guadalupe,
which would, of course, receive its share of the fees for the services.21
Another sort of lay religious organization, third orders, universally
restricted its members to one such third-order organization at a time. Such a
restriction was a moot point in Florida, where the Third Order of St. Francis was
the sole organization of its kind. Membership in a third order might have been
associated with an elitist attitude and carried sufficient status to preclude many
members from feeling the need to join other confraternal organizations. Diego
de Espinosa's accounting itemized the expense for his burial at the Franciscan
convent, but no other confraternal membership obligations had to be satisfied
according to his probate accounts. On the other hand, those who endowed or
belonged to several confraternities, like Fernando Rodriguez and Domingo de
Escalona, were not associated with the third order.22

230
The Third Order of St. Francis was the lay organization for which there
is the least commentary about its activities or situation. Third orders were the
most exclusive and according to Russell-Wood the most financially viable of
the sodalities in the New World. The content of much of the correspondence of
Florida officials and observers focused on financial Insufficiency and thus a
solvent organization received few remarks. Father Solana did not even
mention the order's existence in Florida, yet the parish burial records furnish
plenty of evidence of the order's membership and benefactors. Russell-Wood
claims that there had to exist a "critical mass" of financial resources, social
prominence, and support by government and church officials before a third
order could be instituted. Therefore, third orders were not usually established
in the early years of a life of a town. Third orders also enjoyed a much better
survival rate than brotherhoods: the latter often were founded by faith alone
and then foundered.23
Potential members of third orders had to demonstrate that they had the
resources to pay the annual assessments as well as make additional financial
contributions. St. Augustine parish records indicate that Florida's third order
was composed of the elite and more affluent of the colonial population. The
burials at the Convent of St. Francis, where the order had its seat, represent
Florida colonists of locally high rank. In formulaic testamentary language,
Francisco Menéndez Marquéz directed that his body was to "be shrouded with
the robe of the Order of our Seraphic Patriarch, St. Francis, and interred in the

231
church of that convent in the grave which I already have selected there."
Christian benevolence also permitted the interment of some charity cases,
("buried with alms") in the Franciscan cemetery.24
Third orders selected their headquarters with status of association and
physical appearance in mind.25 The headquarters of the Franciscan friars in
Florida suffered from the same shortage of funds that plagued all the crown-
funded entities and surely presented a less pretentious image than many other
loci of the third orders in Spanish America. Still, in the context of the Florida
colony, the convent served as the headquarters of the mission effort and was
linked to a hierarchy separate from the military organization. The hierarchical
autonomy of the friars offered a form of elitism.
Financial and Performance Obligations
Confraternities provided collective support for members, and for non¬
members, in times of stress. Flynn found that the members in Zamora rarely
violated their obligations to the welfare programs for the relief of sickness and
poverty and the salvation of souls. Men and women gathered around the
sickbeds and caskets of their confraternal brothers or sisters, for throughout
the Spanish world, to be "accompanied" was one of the most "frequent and
heartfelt concerns" of those facing death, and one of the main reasons why
members joined confraternities. Even during St. Augustine's early days,
members of the Brotherhood of the Holy Cross were charged to visit sick

232
members, watch at their bedside "until God took them," and accompany the
body to the grave. Poles used to carry the caskets were listed among the
possessions of Holy Cross in a 1576 inventory. Funereal obligations to
members (cofrades') extended to the spouses of married members as well.26
But Christian charity did not excuse the obligations of either the living or
the recently deceased to the collective body. Corporate serenity and security
outweighed individual freedom. It has been noted that books of minutes or by¬
laws for St. Augustine's confraternities are not available at this time, but the
accessible documentation indicates that brotherhoods in St. Augustine
operated like their counterparts in the Spanish world. Throughout Spanish
America the decedent had to be financially current with his or her chapter in
order to receive the benefits of members' prayers and burial activities.
Delinquent membership dues provided sufficient reason for removal from the
rolls. In her 1737 will, Florida colonist Gerónima Rodríguez declared: "[I am] a
member of some of the confraternities which are established in this presidio,
and [I order] my executors to negotiate with their stewards and to pay what is
owed." One-sentence receipts appended to the will evidenced payments of
fifteen ducats to Blessed Sacrament, two reales to the hospital and to the
church maintenance fund as well as to some bulls. Twenty years later, similar
small receipts also verified that the confraternal obligations of Joaquin
Escalona had been satisfied by his estate.27

233
To protect their solvency and to fund their particular charitable goals,
many chapters required that the confraternal organization be a beneficiary in
members' wills. St. Augustine's parish records disclose that Blessed
Sacrament received legacies with frequency. Although the burial records
containing the information on legacies to confraternities are restricted to a short
period of time, this should be attributed to the record-keeping itself, rather than
seen as an indication that such bequests were popular only for the period of
their appearance in the burial records. In the winter of 1720-1721, Juan
Estéban Montañés, while in St. Augustine conducting a regular investigation
made three entries into the book of burials. Adding to the local priest's usually
abbreviated record, Montañés enlarged and corrected entries and included
information about the decedents' place of nativity and marriage(s) and also
bequests that benefitted the Church. Within a few days time Montañés
recorded the deaths of Captains Francisco Romo de Uriza and José Sánchez
de Uriza, listing a bequest by each man of fifteen ducats to the Confraternity of
the Blessed Sacrament. The next month Francisca Rexidor left the same
amount to Blessed Sacrament. But once Montañés was out of sight, the priest
reverted to his customary succinct entries, which did not include information on
legacies.28
Another criticism of the local priest's slackness in maintaining the parish
records came fifteen years later from Bishop Francisco de San Buenaventura.
Consequently, the entries were again expanded and improved to cite the

234
birthplace of the deceased, list current and previous spouses, and provide
information pertinent to the death and burial-the number of Masses and
Novenas said for the deceased, for example, or exceptional circumstances of
the death. Church officials had an interest in recording the legacies that were
intended to assist in worship and good works, and in St. Augustine were often
essential to providing the ceremonial vessels and consumables, such as
candles and oil. These bequests, expenses for the funeral, burial, and Masses
and Novenas ordered in the decedent's will were the first items to be
subtracted from the corpus of the estate.29
Copies of only a few wills from the Florida's first Spanish period are
available to American researchers. One of those is the previously mentioned
testament that Gerónima Rodríguez made jointly with her husband, Francisco
Navarro, on February 4,1737. Gerónima, "sick in body and sound in mind,"
left to the Confraternity of the Blessed Sacrament "fifteen ducats which the
brothers and sisters customarily give to achieve Grace that is conceded [to
them] in the article of death." Likewise in the 1743 will of the royal accountant,
Francisco Menéndez Marquéz, Blessed Sacrament received fifteen ducats. He
also set aside twelve reales for unspecified "obligatory legacies." José Guillén,
who died a few months after Menéndez Marquéz, also bequeathed twelve
ducats to Blessed Sacrament in his will.30
Sergeant Fernando Rodriguez put much thought and time into the will
he drew up in 1762. Sgt. Rodriguez had outlived his wife and son, and in the

235
absence of an immediate family, the religious organizations benefited. He was
explicit about the financial arrangements designed to benefit his chosen
legatees. But Rodriguez's good intentions might well have proved to be
elusive funding for the confraternities. The brotherhoods faced the frustrating
problem of converting debts owed to Rodriguez into cash; to friends and
godchildren went the tangible and readily available items.
In addition to a twelve-ducats bequest to Blessed Sacrament, Rodriguez
also assigned one-half of a 140-peso debt owed him by townsman Clemente
Hilario, and the remaining half of Hilario's debt to the Confraternity of Our Lady
of the Rosary. He ordered his executors to set about immediately to collect this
debt, empowering them to sell Hilario's house if the debtor could not pay up.
The Confraternity of Our Lady of the La Leche was to receive fifteen pesos
from other debts he was owed. Rodriguez assigned one hundred pesos of his
back military pay to the Confraternity of Souls In Purgatory for masses for the
benefit of his soul, with the remainder of the arrears to be divided equally
between the Confraternities of True Cross, Rosary, Guadalupe, and La Leche.
Rodríguez also endowed a chantry with the Solitude confraternity. In a practice
common throughout the Spanish world, he assigned 25 pesos annually to the
organization to be paid out of income from houses which he owned. In return,
masses would be said on his behalf on the Fridays during Lent. The bequest
to Solitude was equal to almost two months of a soldier's salary.31

236
In the absence of a will the parish records must substitute for information
on legacies intended to benefit religious purposes. From November 1735 to
December 1741 the parish burial records for whites included summary
information on bequests made for pious or charitable purposes. The
contemporary burial records for non-whites did not mention such bequests.
The economically "inferior" positions of the Indian villagers and blacks
probably precluded the ability of most of them to bequeath cash. Support for
the confraternities might well have been offered in the form of in-kind services
or donations during the life of the member. Foods were often used as
contributions in Indian parishes throughout Latin America and the St. Augustine
parish also received food.32
The church had a financial interest in documenting bequests for the
support of worship, especially those made to Blessed Sacrament. Many
entries refer to the existence of a will for the decedent made in the presence of
a public notary, but do not mention bequests for the benefit of religion.
Prominent on the list of death-bed donors to Blessed Sacrament were members
of the Menéndez Marquéz family. This family descended from Pedro
Menéndez Marquéz, the nephew and heir of Florida's founder, Pedro
Menéndez de Avilés. Family members maintained their favored position for the
two centuries that passed between the founding of St. Augustine in 1565 and
the departure of the Spanish populace in 1764. The previously mentioned
captains Romo de Uriza and Sánchez de Uriza, sons-in-law of Francisco

237
Menéndez Marquez, were the earliest listed donors to Blessed Sacrament,
each bequeathing 15 pesos. The family's noticeable participation in Blessed
Sacrament implies that the confraternity enjoyed the same high socioreligious
position in St. Augustine that it did throughout Latin America. Russell-Wood
states that Blessed Sacrament was the most eminent of the parochial
brotherhoods in Portuguese America. Graff found that on the western side of
South America the duty to maintain the Perpetual Light made Blessed
Sacrament one of "the most distinguished lay fraternities."33
Well-to-do members of Blessed Sacrament (and non-members)
enhanced their social status with gifts that were used to maintain and embellish
the altar. The gifts were not a matter of spontaneous largesse, but an
established and expected part of the expense of position for a Spanish
gentleman (hidalgo). In the early decades of the seventeenth century, royal
officials of Florida donated one-third of the fees that they collected from their
tavern inspections and the royal treasurer gave his payroll perquisites to
Blessed Sacrament. Funds were needed to purchase the bright and luxurious
banners, canopies, and other ornaments needed for the public processions
held on religious feast days. The confraternities provided the church with
these cloth items as well as silver and gold vessels and holders. The Blessed
Sacrament confraternity of St. Augustine in 1759 paid to have a baldachin
made in Havana re-using the silver from "candlesticks rendered useless by
their old style." One confraternity owned six bunches of artificial flowers.

238
Artificial flowers were manufactured in the eighteenth century from wax,
leather, and glass with vellum leaves.34
When the confraternities' numerous textile items needed repair, it was
probably the female members of the confraternities that provided the service.
There were veils of brocade and velvet trimmed with fringe or lace of gold or
silver, a parasol of crimson damask with gold fringe, altar cloths of Chinese silk
and stoles, which needed to be maintained with the reverence and propriety
due the Divine. The women of the confraternities probably sewed the habits for
the altar boys from the fine black flannel which arrived in lengths of cloth
designated for that purpose. And there were silver lamps and candlesticks to
be polished.36
In the bequests contained in the parish records of bequests the number
of testators leaving money to the Confraternity of the Blessed Sacrament was
almost evenly divided between the sexes. In some confraternities women
might well have been the majority, but they took "a definite second place" to
men in the administration of organizational affairs. Women were in charge of
prayer vigils and decorations for festivals. According to Graff, in New Granada
women sat in a separate section and had to surrender their seats to the male
members if the chapter meeting were crowded; in Spain women were required
to sit at separate tables in silence during feast-day banquets.36

239
Material Wealth of the Confraternities
Along with the rest of the colony, the confraternities suffered repeatedly
at the hands of English enemies. In the 1668 midnight sack of St. Augustine,
English pirate Robert Searles and his brigands helped themselves to the silver
and gold lamps, chalices, altar cloths festooned with precious metals, and other
ornaments that belonged to the church and the confraternities. The crown took
responsibility to compensate for losses incurred by its subjects in the colony as
a result of enemy action and paid to replace the stolen items with new ones
secured the following year in Mexico.37 In 1702, in preparation for a siege by
English colonists from Carolina, Governor Zúñiga y Cerda ordered the priests,
friars, and administrators of religious confraternities to bring the church items-
including statues, ornaments, and bells-into the fort for safekeeping. Although
moveable property was saved, the citizens emerged from the fortress after six
weeks to a town in ashes. The Spanish themselves had destroyed thirty-odd
buildings near the fort to deprive English snipers of cover. The unsuccessful,
frustrated invaders burned all but about twenty buildings before retreating to
Carolina. The countryside was devastated as well Outside the capital after
1704, the “Florida missions were no more." English-led raids from South
Carolina destroyed the mission system of Florida and thus eliminated the in-
kind economic contributions of agricultural products and labor from the
missionized villagers38

240
The losses were not quickly offset. Some of the confraternal buildings
destroyed during the siege had not been rebuilt more than three decades later.
In 1736 Bishop San Buenaventura bemoaned the state in which the
confraternities found themselves. The bishop found "no vestige at all" of four
confraternity chapels or shrines that had previously existed "nor any [of their]
ornaments." The "lost chapels" (hermitas perdidas] were San Patricio at the
corner of today's St. George and Hypolita streets, San Sebastián, Santa
Bárbara, and San Antonio "which was on the bar."39
At the same time, Governor Manuel de Montiano reported to the crown
that the church needed royal financial support. The St. Augustine parish
church had to rely for its sole support upon the very same brotherhoods that
the bishop described to be in such need themselves. But the king was not
generous, and instructed Montiano to dedicate himself to the growth of the
cofradías.
Confraternities in St. Augustine mirrored those in other Spanish
American locations in the sort of property they owned. Rural, and usually
Indian, confraternities in Mexico often held herds of cattle as capital, but urban
sodalities based their wealth on real estate and the money that they could
lend.40 Florida had few rural confraternities by the eighteenth century, for the
native, villages where the confraternities had resided had been destroyed.
Those that remained were in the “urban" area of the capital. When the Spanish
evacuated Florida in 1763, San Patricio confraternity still owned a lot, although

241
vacant, on the northeast corner of today’s St. George and Hypolita streets.
Among its many names during colonial times, today's St. George Street was
sometimes called St. Patrick's Street. Eligió de la Puente's map also showed
that the Confraternity of Blessed Sacrament owned two tabby buildings located
on a parcel bounded by today's Aviles and Charlotte streets and Bravo Lane.
One of the buildings was aligned lengthwise along the east-facing side of the
block, today's Charlotte Street. Composed of three rooms of nearly equal size,
the structure was one room deep. The other building on the confraternity's lot
was oriented perpendicular to the easterly edifice, presenting its shorter side to
today's Aviles Street. This western building contained two rooms, the
streetside room being about twice as large as the other. Engineer Castelló's
1763 map appears to show a very small building located at the corner of Aviles
Street and Bravo Lane. Either Blessed Sacrament acquired this property after
the 1702 siege or the lot was vacant at the time of the English destruction. The
confraternity did not appear on the list of property damages resulting from the
English invasion.41
Excavations of the site did not yield artifacts suggesting a religious
function for the lot. A religious medal depicting the Blessed Sacrament was
unearthed. One face of the medal was almost identical to Blessed Sacrament
medals found by archaeologists at the Santa Catalina de Guale site on St.
Catherine’s Island (Georgia), the Santa Rosa site in Pensacola, and at the
French Fort St. Joseph site in Michigan. Religious medals have been found at

242
numerous excavated sites in St. Augustine. A folk amulet known as a figa also
resided for centuries in the soil of this lot; figas also have been found on many
sites in St. Augustine. A small bit of silver embroidery also was exhumed.
Religious banners and vestments were embellished with this kind of textile
decoration and edging. This textile remnant, which can be encircled between
the tips of two fingers, is not, however, sufficient to conclude that this site was
used for religious purposes. Excavations revealed little evidence of human
occupation or activity at this site from circa 1670 until the construction of the
buildings portrayed on Eligio's map.42 A very large coquina well at the
southwest corner of the lot revealed that the destruction of a seventeenth-
century structure on the lot had been rapid. The well was filled in with what
appeared to be burned material in the last third of the seventeenth century and
was not rejuvenated. This non-use of such a substantial well, left structurally
viable despite the interior deposits, suggested that the site was abandoned for
some time.
Outside of the defense palisade that surrounded St. Augustine, Blessed
Sacrament confraternity owned another parcel with buildings of wood and
associated gardens of small fields. Blessed Sacrament might have used both
the in-town site and the extramural property for income, perhaps acquired as
bequests or through defaulted loans. With its focus on the altar, Blessed
Sacrament probably used a chapel in the church for its meeting purposes
rather than a separate building. Confraternities throughout the Spanish world

243
commonly used chapels for their organizational meetings or met at the home of
one of the brotherhood's officers. There were, however, also social houses
owned by the brotherhoods which existed for meeting purposes.43
The faithful of Florida provided the lay organizations with buildings to
support their projects and charities as elsewhere In the Spanish world.
Although Fernando Rodriguez’s testamentary arrangements were thwarted by
the evacuation, which began barely a year after his death, his will set forth a
bequest (censo) of a house and lot to Solitude, the hospital confraternity, and
specified the amount of income from the property which the confraternity was to
enjoy.44
The opportunities which the confraternities provided for independence
and autonomy were illustrated in the 1680s when the members of Solitude
refused to be co-opted during the frequent contests between the governors and
the Franciscans. Solitude confraternity existed to provide hospital care and
owned property for that purpose. But for years Solitude’s chapel had served as
the main church. Archaeological excavations of the site, which now belongs to
Roman Catholic nuns, the Sisters of St. Joseph, revealed numerous burials.
The discovery of associated churchyard burials further attested to the church's
location.46
Governor Juan Marques Cabrera wanted to bring in another order, San
Juan de Dios, from Cuba to administer the town's hospital. The governor
probably hoped that the arrival of rivals to the Franciscans would shift the

244
balance of power from the established friars toward himself. The new religious
men of San Juan de Dios, who would run the hospital, would help also to
disempower the clique of native-born residents which could obstruct the
governor by taking over a needed service from an established confraternity.
No doubt, the new hospital personnel would be partisan to the governor who
had invited them.46
But the members of Solitude confraternity contended that such a move
left their organization with practically no property and virtually no function.
They contended that it would be wiser to spend money rehabilitating the
existing hospital belonging to Solitude rather than constructing a new one. The
hospital building belonged to the confraternal corporation and the governor
could not summarily dictate its use nor could friars take it over and establish a
new monastery on the land. Solitude’s spokesperson came out in favor of
members of San Juan de Dios manning the facility as long as no proprietary
interests were established by them. This situation illustrated the tensions and
rivalries among the various arms of officialdom and in the colonial military
society of St. Augustine. The members of Solitude confraternity held their own
against both the governor and the friars. Several decades later and throughout
the first half of the eighteenth century, the primary religious struggle shifted to a
Iberian-versus-creole rivalry within the Franciscan order47
Like the Indians who had become citizens of the town, the confraternity
found itself cast in the role of a pawn In the power plays. Yet the confraternity’s

245
members resisted. Ironically, the very institutions which the officials were
attempting to manipulate in their fights were the very ones which offered to the
potential pawns the remedy or at least some safeguards against a diminished
status or condition befalling the ordinary citizen.
Conclusions
The confraternal organizations in Spanish colonial Florida served
functions similar to their roles throughout Latin America: participation in rituals,
opportunities for piety, physical and emotional support for the weak and
bereaved. The brotherhoods offered opportunities for ordinary individuals to
act in autonomous or independent ways, though they were still circumscribed
by the organizational structure of the church and governmental hierarchy. In
this military colony and post, chapters associated with artisanal skills and
trades never developed, for the skills and trades themselves had only a small
clientele.
Native Americans supported confraternities of their own and honored
officials and important personages with elected offices in hopes of largesse
from the well-placed members of the dominant society to subsidize the Natives’
organizations. Natives’ incorporation of officials secured favor for their lay
institutions in much the same way the honoring of Spaniards and officials with
godparentage brought favor to a baptized child or its family (see chapter 3).

246
Although a Spanish regime returned to the Florida peninsula and
Panhandle in 1784, the confraternal organizations did not return to their former
important place in the society and in the lives of the residents. A few testators
left bequests to confraternities in the early years of the second Spanish period.
But as the eighteenth century ended, the corporate beneficiary of death-bed
charity in Spanish Florida became the Junta de Caridad (translated as
Charitable Society in contemporary documents). The society identity was more
intellectualized, by virtue of its association with the idea of charitable works in
general, rather than the confraternities’ more personal affiliations with specific
saints. Reliance on human agency was nudging aside reliance on divine
intervention.48 In 1803 St. Augustine parish priest, Father Miguel O’Reilly, in
the same manner as Sergeant Rodriguez’s 1762 bequests, willed five lots to
the Charitable Society “with the burden of ten annual masses” for the benefit of
a named friend, for his own soul and those in Purgatory. Father O’Reilly left
other property to the parish itself, thus identifying the separate organizations of
the society and the parish.49
Nor was any missionary order re-established in Florida, although this
was the very time of the thrust of the mission effort by the Spanish in California.
Perforce, there were no mission villages among the Seminole nation, which
had replaced the original native people of Native Americans in Spanish Florida.
It was an era when religion was giving way to philosophy, philanthropy and

247
trade throughout the Atlantic world. Religious life among the laity of Florida
reflected those changes In part with the disappearing of the confraternities.
Notes
1. Charles E. Kany, Life and Manners in Madrid, 1750-1800 (Berkeley:
University of California Press, 1932), 361-62.
2. Robert L. Kapitzke, "The Secular Clergy in St. Augustine During the First
Spanish Period: 1565-1763," M. A. thesis (University of Florida, 1991), 72-75.
3. A. J. R. Russell-Wood, "Prestige, Power and Piety in Colonial Brazil: The
Third Orders of Salvador," Hispanic American Historical Review. 69 (1989): 61;
Maureen M. Flynn, Sacred Charity: Confraternities and Social Welfare in
Spain. 1400-1700 (Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 1989), quote on 33; Gary
Wendell Graff, "Cofradías in the New Kingdom of Granada: Lay Fraternities in
a Spanish American Frontier Society, 1600-1755," Ph D. diss., University of
Wisconsin, 1973; William B. Taylor, Magistrates of the Sacred: Priests and
Parishioners in Eiahteenth-Centurv Mexico (Stanford, CA: Stanford University
Press, 1996), 5; Olinda Celestino and Albert Meyers, “The Socio-Economic
Dynamic of the confraternal Endowment in Colonial Peru: Jauja in the
eighteenth Century,” in Albert Meyers, and Diane Elizabeth Hopkins, eds.
Manipulating the Saints: Religious Brotherhoods and Social Integration in
Postconouest Latin America (Hamburg. Germany: Wayasbah, 1988), 102.
4. Patricia U. Bonomi, Under the Cope of Heaven: Religion. Society and
Politics in Colonial America (New York: Oxford University Press, 1986).
5. Maureen M. Flynn, "Charitable Ritual in Late Medieval and Early Modern
Spain," Sixteenth-Century Journal 16 (1985): 337; Sacred Charity. 135.
6. "Beyond the Pyrenees, confraternities appear to have been less numerous
than in any of the Spanish provinces.” Flynn, Sacred Charity. 17.
7. Russell-Wood, "Prestige, Power and Piety," 62.
8. Russell-Wood, "Black and Mulatto Brotherhoods in Colonial Brazil: A Study
of Collective Behavior," Hispanic American Historical Review 54 (1974):567-
602.
9. Russell-Wood, "Prestige, Power and Piety," 62-89; Graff, "Cofradías in the
New Granada"; Alicia Bazarte Martínez, Las cofradías de españoles en la

248
ciudad de México (1526-1860) (Azcapotzalco, Mexico, Winter 1989); Flynn,
Sacred Charity; Adriaan C. van Oss, Catholic Colonialism: A Parish History of
Guatemala. 1524-1821 (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1986);
Taylor, Magistrates of the Sacred, especially ch. 10, 11,12.
10. Michael V. Gannon, Rebel Bishop: The Life and Era of Auoustin Verot
(Milwaukee, 1964), 235; Wilbur H. Siebert, "Some Church History of St.
Augustine during the Spanish Regime," Florida Historical Quarterly. 9 (1930):
117-123; Statement of Governor Antonio de Benavides, St. Augustine, 1727
July 15, Archivo General de Indias (hereafter AGI) Contaduría Bundle
(hereafter Bnd.) 961 (microfilm in Historic St. Augustine Preservation Board
[HSAPB] collection).
11. Donald Attwater, ed., A Catholic Dictionary 3rd edition (New York:
Macmillan 1961), 115; Erwin Iserloh, Joseph Gladzik, Hubert Jedin,
Reformation and Counter Reformation. History of the Church. Hubert Jedin
and John Dolan, eds, vol. 5 (New York: Seabury Press, 1980), 562; Francisco
de la Rocha and Francisco de Cigarroa, Report on the Confraternities, 1685
April 6, AGI SC 54-5-12/18; Michael V. Gannon, The Cross in the Sand: The
Early Catholic Church in Florida. 1513-1870 (Gainesville: University of Florida
Press, 1965), 78; Amy Bushnell, The Kina's Coffer: Proprietors of the Spanish
Florida Treasury. 1565-1702 (Gainesville: University Presses of Florida, 1981),
16.
12. Bazarte Martínez, Las cofradías de españoles. Graff, "Cofradías in the
New Kingdom of Granada, 84, 102; Flynn, Sacred Charity. 122.
13. William J. Callahan, "The Problem of Confinement: An Aspect of Poor
Relief in Eighteenth-Century Spain." Hispanic American Historical Review. 51
(1971): 1; Governor Diego de Quiroga y Losada to King, 1693 July 17, AGI,
John B. Stetson Collection (hereafter SC), P. K. Yonge Library of Florida
History, University of Florida (microfilm copies in HSAPB collection 58-1-
22/291.
14. Amy Bushnell examined the customary financial requirements on men of
position, in Chapter 2 of The Kina's Coffer: Francisco de la Rocha and
Francisco de Cigarroa, Report on the confraternities, 1685 April 6, AGI SC 54-
5-12/18.
For example, the danza castellana was performed in Burgos on Corpus
Chrlsti to the music of a bagpiper (gaitero) and two tamboriles. A tamboril was
a small drum associated with festive occasions in villages. Some were small
enough to dangle from the wrist and were beaten with a single small stick.
Martin Alonso. Enciclopedia del idioma (Madrid: Aguilar. 1958) 2:1388,
3:3882.

249
15. Francisco de la Rocha and Francisco de Cigarroa, Report on the
confraternities, 1685 April 6, SC AGI 54-5-12/18; Bazarte Martinez, Las
cofradías de españoles. 81; Juan José Solana to Julián de Arriaga, 1760 April
9, AGI SC 86-7-21/41; Alonso, Enciclopedia del idioma. 3: 2947.
16. Francisco de la Rocha and Francisco de Cigarroa, Report on the
Confraternities, 1685 April 6, AGI SC 54-5-12/18..
17. Luis Rafael Arana, 'The Private Soldier in Florida, 1672-1763," November
7,1975, Ms. on file at Castillo de San Marcos National Monument, St.
Augustine; Luis R. Arana, "The Spanish Infantry: The Queen of Battles in
Florida, 1761-1702," (M. A. Thesis, University of Florida, 1960; Francisco de la
Rocha and Francisco de Cigarroa to King, 1685 April 30, AGI SC 54-5-12/18.
18. Francisco de la Rocha and Francisco de Cigarroa to King, 1685 April 30,
AGI SC 54-5-12/18; Arana, "The Spanish Infantry," 106; Juan José Solana to
Julián de Arriaga, 1760 April 9, AGI SC 86-7-21/41.
19. John Flann. A History of the Timucua Indians and Missions (Gainesville:
University Press of Florida, 1996), 160-61.
20. Francisco de la Rocha and Francisco de Cigarroa, Report on the
Confraternities, 1685 April 6, AGI SC 54-5-12/18; Bushnell, Situado and
Sabana. 120-21; Juan José Eligió de la Puente map and Pablo Castelló map.
21. Will of Fernando Rodríguez, 1762 July 27, in Claim of Antonia de Avero,
Town Lots Claim no. 19, Spanish Land Grants (hereafter SLG), Division of
Historical Resources, Tallahassee, Florida..
22. Russell-Wood, “Power, Prestige and Piety,” 67, Probate of Estate of Diego
de Espinosa, 1756; and Probate of Estate of Domingo Escalona, 1755, both in
Bundle 301P4, East Florida Papers (hereafter EFP), Library of Congress
Manuscript Division (microfilm copies at St. Augustine Historical Society).
23. Russell-Wood, "Prestige, Power and Piety," 64-65; Juan José Solana to
Julián de Arriaga, Report on the condition of St. Augustine, 1760 April 9, AGI
SC 86-7-21/41; Burials, Cathedral Parish Records (hereafter CPR), Diocese of
St. Augustine, Mandarin, Florida (microfilm copies at St. Augustine Historical
Society).
24. Russell-Wood, "Prestige, Power and Piety," 64-65; White Burials, CPR;
Will of Francisco Menéndez Marquéz, 1742 September 2, SC AGI 58-1-13/73.
25. Russell-Wood, "Prestige, Power and Piety," 78-79.

250
26. Flynn, Sacred Charity. 43; Russell-Wood, “Prestige, Power, and Piety,” 80-
81; Discharge of Church Mayordomo and Visit to Cofradía and Brotherhood of
the Most Holy True Cross, St. Augustine, Archivo General de Indias,
Escribanía de Cámara 154-A, 377-80 (microfilm copies at Center for Historic
Research, Flagler College, St. Augustine).
27. Bazarte Martínez, Las cofradías de españoles. 75; Will of Gerónima
Rodríguez and Francisco Navarro, St. Augustine, 1737 February 4 and receipts
dated 1738 July, Bnd. 359, Claim for parcel no. 80; Estate of Joaquin
Escalona, Bundle 301P4, EFP
28. Burials of Francisco Romo de Uriza, 1720 December 2_; of Joseph
Sanchez de Uriza, 1720 December 25; of Francisca Rexidor, 1721 Jan ,
CPR. A ducat, was a gold coin worth 11 reales: a peso equaled 8 reales: a
real was worth 34 maravedís, the latter being the smallest unit of Spanish
account currency.
29. Examples of the kinds of information included in the expanded burial
records were: that during the summer of 1736 Pedro de Castro was "buried
with alms" because of his poverty; that two days later Francisco Zaragosa,
"whom the enemies killed at the battery of Pupo [on the St. Johns River]" was
buried. Auto of Visit of Bishop Francisco de San Buenaventura, 1735; burial of
Pedro de Castro, 1736 June 2; burial of Francisco Zaragosa, 1736 June 2,
CPR.
30. Will of Gerónima Rodríguez and Francisco Navarro, St. Augustine, 1737
February 4, Bundle 359, Claim for parcel no. 80, EFP; Will of Francisco
Menéndez Marquéz, St. Augustine, 1742 September 2, AGI 58-1-34/73; Will of
Joseph Guillen, St. Augustine, 1743 December 17, in Claim of Antonia de
Avero, Bnd. 320 Claim no. 19, City Lots: St. Augustine, SLG.
31. The irony of reality is that Florida's Spanish population began evacuating
about a year after Rodriguez's death and his careful arrangements probably
never materialized, but the sergeant's will which serves as an example of
testamentary practices and the provisions for Florida’s lay religious
organizations. The pay scale is based on Don José Antonio Gelabert to the
Crown, General list of all who serve and are paid by the king at the presidio of
San Agustín, 1752, Havana, AGI SC 87-1-14/2.
32. Van Oss, Catholic Colonialism: Report on Progress of Parish Church, 1794
February 2, Bnd. 10018, EFP.
33. Russell-Wood, "Prestige, Power and Piety," 78; Graff, "Cofradias in the
New Kingdom of Granada," 84, 177.

251
34. Salvador de Cigarroa, List of Items Secured in Mexico, 1669 January 24,
Included in correspondence of Marqués de Mancera, 1669 April 20, AGI SC
58-2-2/14; "Inventory of the Ornaments, Altars, Images, Bell, and Sacred
Vessels belonging to the Parochial Church and the Religious Brotherhoods of
the Garrison Town of St. Augustine, Florida," 1764 November 5, AGI, Cuba
372, Wilbur Henry Siebert, trans. (typescript in Spanish and English at St.
Augustine Historical Society); Charles Coulston Gillispie, ed., Diderot’s
Pictorial Encyclopedia of Trades and Industry (New York: Dover, 1959), II:
plate 447.
35. Salvador de Cigarroa, List of Items Secured in Mexico, 1669 January 24,
included in correspondence of Marqués de Mancera, 1669 April 20, AGI SC
58-2-2/14; "Inventory of the Ornaments, Altars, Images, Bell, and Sacred
Vessels belonging to the Parochial Church and the Religious Brotherhoods of
the Garrison Town of St. Augustine, Florida," 1764 November 5, AGI Cuba
372, Wilbur Henry Siebert, trans. (typescript in Spanish and English at St.
Augustine Historical Society; Statement of Governor Antonio de Benavides, St.
Augustine, 1727 July 15, AGI Contaduría 961 (microfilm copy in HSAPB
collection).
36. Burials, CPR; Graff, "Cofradías in the New Kingdom of Granada," 150-52,
170; Flynn, Sacred Charity. 133.
37. Luis Rafael Arana and Albert Manucy, The Building of Castillo de San
Marcos (Eastern National Park and Monument Association, 1977), 12-13;
Salvador de Cigarroa, List of Items Secured in Mexico, 1669 January 234,
included in correspondence of Marqués de Mancera, 1669 April 20, AGI SC
58-2-2/14.
38. Charles W. Arnade, The Siege of St. Augustine of 1702 (Gainesville:
University of Florida Press, 1959), 24; Gannon, Cross in the Sand, quote on
76; Bushnell, Situado and Sabana. 208-10.
39. Bishop of Tricale, "Report on Confraternities, 1736 April 29, AGI 58-2-14/7;
Governor Manuel de Montlano to King, 1738 June 20 included with
correspondence of 1738 December 12, AGI 58-2-14/131 and 1740 August 10,
AGI 58-1-21/11; Royal Order given at Aranjuez, 1738 May 12, AGI 58-1-25/61,
all in SC.
40. Taylor, Magistrates of the Sacred. 304-07; Ascunción Lavrin compares the
economies of rural and urban confraternities in eighteenty century Mexico.
“Diversity and Disparity: Rural and Urban Confraternities in Eighteenth Century
Mexico,” in Meyers and Hopkins, eds., Manipulating the Saints. 67-100.

252
41. Eligió de la Puente map; Castelló map; Mariano de la Rocque, Plano
particular de la Ciudad de Sn. Agustín de la Florida (map of the City of St.
Augustine, Florida), 1788 April 25, East Florida Papers; Governor Francisco
de Coreóles y Martinez to crown, Appraisal of Burned Buildings, 1709 August
23, SC AGI 58-1-28/66. De la Rocque's map provides the information on the
rooms and their size. Examination of sequential maps of St. Augustine indicate
the persistence of the buildings' location and size over several decades.
42. Archaeological site reports for SA 3-30 (230 Charlotte St.) and SA 24 (14
Marine St.), HSAPB collection; Charles Tingley, “The Cofradía Medal,”
SAAAinas (St. Augustine Archaeological Association newsletter), 5 (Sept.
1990): 1-2.
43. Eligió de la Puente map; George M. Foster, "Cofradía and Compradazgo
in Spain and Spanish America," Southwestern Journal of Anthropology 9
(1953): 14.
44. Will of Fernando Rodriguez, 1762 July 27, in Claim of Antonia de Avero,
Town Lots Claim no. 19, SLG.
45. The Sisters of St. Joseph did not arrive in Florida until 1866. Gannon,
Cross in the Sand. 76,182; Joan Koch, "Mortuary Behavior Patterning and
Physical Anthropology in Colonial St. Augustine," in Kathleen A. Deagan, ed.,
Spanish St. Augustine: The Archaeology of a Colonial Creole Community (New
York: Academic Press, 1983) 147-81.
46. Juan Márques Cabrera to crown, 1682 May 5, included in transmittal of
1685 April 30, AGI SC 54-5-15/17.
47. Captain Martín de la Vera as proxy for majordomo of royal hospital of St.
Augustine, 1685 March 7; Royals Officials to crown, March 8, 1685; included in
transmittal of 1685 April 30, AGI SC 54-5-15/17.
48. Mortgage by Roque Leonardy, 1790 January 8, Bnd. 368, p. 22; Juan
Sánchez; 1790 July 20, Bnd. 368, p. 247; Index to City [St. Augustine] Lots,
Bnd. 409, EFP. See John Jay Tepaske, The Governorship of Spanish Florida.
1700-1763 (Durham, NC: Duke Diversity Press, 1964), 177-192, for a
description of the in-fighting between the Franciscans and the governors’ roles.
49. Will of Don Miguel O’Reilly, 1803 March 1, Bnd. 374, pp. 43-48, EFP.
William Taylor suggests that it was not so much the direct influence of
Enlightment thought that brought about these changes, but that it was the
administrative changes effected by the Bourbons, which they based on
Enlightment thought. Magistrates of the Sacred. 451.

CHAPTER 10
CONCLUSIONS
He who holds lands has war on his hands.
(Quien tiene tierra, tiene guerra)
-Spanish proverb
The second century of European settlement in the southeast marked a
new path for the inhabitants of the region. Following permanent settlements by
the English (1670) and the French (1699) in the southeast, the persistent
potential for attacks among rivals kept settlements of all empires in a state of
alert and anxiety. Both England and France trespassed into Spanish territory
from the Spanish point of view, and their acquisition of lands could only come
at Spain’s expense. Spain’s defensive solutions, devised in order to hold its
position in the region, brought about changes in the quotidian lives of the
colonists, as they also had far-reaching international consequences. In Florida
the royal policies meant the coming of new men as soldiers in the colony and
the introduction of more money in the colony for fortifications.
The presence of a cash-based, service economy in Florida generated
attitudes and practices which were quite different from the agricultural
economies of other mainland colonies. It was not just Florida’s Spanish
traditions and practices that made the colony so different from the British
253

254
American mainland colonies, but also the basis of its economy and the
practices which such an economy both engendered and required. The arrival
of recruits from Iberia brought about de-creolization or at least diverted the
path of creolization. As maritime activity increased both in size and influence
with the growth of manufactures and trade, Spanish Florida experienced
atlantiquization and de-creolization at the same time. Previous studies looked
to assess the character and process of creolization and describe its
development and characteristics. Little notice was paid to distinctiveness
among metropolitan cultures or to the immigration of new Iberians and the
different traditions imparted by the arriving peninsulares at different periods.
With increased military defense activity, creolization was disrupted. Continued
deliveries of new Iberians maintained the hegemony of things Iberian.
The Spanish monarchy and its ministers made decisions in reaction to
threats to sovereignty throughout the Caribbean, which included Florida.
Responsive measures had already been decreed and the strengthening of
fortifications in the southeast was already in motion when English Barbadians
established their settlement at Charles Town.'
The necessity to defend against English expansion brought new people
into the society of Spanish Florida. To fulfil manpower needs of defense
activities, Spanish practices had to adapt to the realities in the region. Some
persons literally arrived from far away, such as the soldiers from Spain.
Others, Native Americans, had been in the region all along and had interacted

255
with the Spanish colonists for many years. After the establishment of South
Carolina, Spanish officials curried favor among the Native groups to keep them
out of the enlarging orbit of Carolina. Spanish-allied Natives-Timucua,
Apalachee, and even Yamassees previously allied with the English-retreated
ever nearer and finally to the capital. Thereafter, the value of their services
and their proximity kept the Natives in intimate contact with Spanish society.
Africans, too, became a larger, more Important and more integrated group In
Florida. The Spanish welcomed fugitive slaves from Carolina, simultaneously
strengthening Spanish forces and depleting English resources.2
In Spanish Florida, the influx of new men to be soldiers diminished the
role and opportunities for creoles and introduced different Iberian regional
traditions to supplant the creolized Asturian ways, transferred at founding.
Residents of the colony had to provide resources that immigrating men could
not. One such solution was the supplying of homesites by the families of
brides for new family units formed at marriage. Whether this was an adaptive
strategy after the influx of new men began in the 1680s and continued until the
evacuation or whether it was merely a perpetuation of already existing
practices cannot be discerned in the current absence of land records. Merely
its existence can be recognized. The men arriving from Andalusia, where there
was a tradition of a strong role of women in the control of the household, might
have felt quite comfortable with the preferential role for women in the
transference of residential property. In the military economy of Florida the

256
locus for producing income or subsistence and the site of the residence were
not one and the same. In an agricultural economy, however, one site served
both functions. In this context, female property perquisites did not place the
women in a position to control so much of the household assets and economy
as would a similar arrangement in an agricultural context. Perhaps the urban
sites inhabited by employees of the military and their families displayed this
female favoritism while non-military and agricultural properties exhibited a
pattern of male succession. But evidence about properties outside the town is
even more scanty than for city sites Francisco Menéndez Marquéz in 1742
still retained title literally to his forefathers’ lands of La Chua. Ownership had
not passed to grandmothers, aunts or sisters, and in his will he specifically
stated that he was giving information about the estate for the benefit of “my
brother and his heirs.”3
The persons entering the dominant society Included non-whites as well.
More opportunities and possibilities existed for Native Americans than for
Africans. The prohibition of enslaving Natives dictated that they would hold a
more preferred position in society than Africans, whose characteristics still
made them subject to endless bondage and ownership of their person.
Adaptive and enterprising mission Indians moved themselves and their families
rapidly into Spanish society through membership in or employment with the
military. The military salary enabled the recently assimilated Natives access to
and acquisition of the same goods purchased by the Hispanic colonists.

257
Widows and orphans of Indian soldiers and loyal defenders were entitled to
pensions like the dependents of Hispanics. While acceptance on the part of
the Hispanics of the newcomer Indians might well have been less than
complete and heartfelt, Spaniards did involve the acculturated, assimilated
military Indian families into their personal lives. The arrivals who came into St.
Augustine from Andalusia in southern Spain might have been more
accustomed to relationships in Iberia with other ethnic or racial groups than
were the original settlers from Asturias. Andalusians had interacted with Moors
longer than the rest of the Iberian peninsula. Andalusia’s proximity to Africa
and location on the Mediterranean exposed Andalusians to many racial and
cultural groups who transited the area. On the other hand, Asturias had prided
itself as being the seat of the Reconquest and the region of racial purity rather
than miscegenation. The inclusion of the non-whites into institutions and
official organizations rested upon the support or at least assent of the crown
and officialdom. Perhaps the Andalusian attitude helped to make the
incorporation and participation of Natives and Africans as successful as it was
in the official areas, limiting prejudicial balking and tensions. In the personal
arena, such interaction was indeed volitional, yet it was evidenced there as
well.
While the Spanish authorities adapted flexible measures to include
persons of several cultural and racial groups, the requirement to be a Catholic
Christian, at least nominally, never became negotiable. Stephen Innes has

258
described the role of Puritan religion in affirming and encouraging capitalistic
attitudes in the economic culture of New England.4 In Spanish Florida, religion
was the sine qua non for participation in the dominant society. Urbanized
Native Americans jealously proclaimed their identification with the supposedly
self-supporting parish church rather than with a mission church, for their place
in society depended upon their place within the parish structure.
Strong institutional forces fashioned the lives of Florida’s residents. The
ubiquitous presence of church and state in both tangible and intangible forms
and the intertwining of those institutions were a major force. Florida colonists
could not conceive of the idea of the separation of church and state. The
confraternities in St. Augustine served to maintain religious conformity through
an organization composed of laypersons who performed charitable acts and
who provided goods and services for the liturgy, devotions and religious
festivals. Many studies have examined the institution of the Roman Catholic
Church in Spanish Florida, but they have seldom considered the activities of
the laity other than their attendance at mass. It was through the confraternities
that Florida’s colonists felt a bond with other residents and worshipers
throughout Spanish America-indeed throughout the Spanish world and even
the Catholic world.
Confraternities provided opportunities for citizens to experience a
decision-making or leadership role which might not be available in the military
milieu. It was a situation where someone who was usually in a subordinate

259
position could outrank and issue directives to those of higher military rank.
Confraternities provided a stabilizing influence in the colonies and perhaps a
venue for diffusing rank-based tensions.
While creolization was disrupted or at least diverted in Florida by Iberian
immigration, atlantiquization was well under way during the Second Century.
The material world was expanding and growing. The desire for more and
better goods bound peoples together although they probably did not realize the
common bond. For the Native Americans of the southeast, the goods that at
first bonded them to Europeans came to bind the Natives tightly. Through the
realm of trade and the quest for manufactured items, the citizenry of Florida
became materially incorporated into and affiliated with the Atlantic world and
the Atlantic economy. At the same time, Spanish Florida was also part of the
multinational Atlantic world of goods and ideas. In the eighteenth century that
meant that Florida was an element of a large portion of the globe where there
was a growing universe of manmade goods to acquire. The potential for profit
with the enlarged acquisitiveness encouraged a perspective that economic
borders could be permeable for the passage of goods while still holding fast to
the precepts of rigid territorial demarcations
Commercial interests in colonial Florida exhibited the characteristics of
the Atlantic world of trade. Partnerships were an important mechanism for
combining enough capital to enter the world of trade or to offset cash
requirements with in-kind contributions so that cash could be channeled into

260
goods. Credit through personal and very often kinship ties permitted the
launching of new enterprises. Retailers who sold goods In Florida transported
the goods to the colony with a promise to pay their suppliers as the goods
themselves were sold. If barter of goods took place at the point of purchase,
the payment would need to be an item that could readily command cash.
Florida residents set forth their debts in detail, with not even a maravedí
overlooked, and gave instructions for the collection of the debt even after the
death of the original creditor. Creditors kept promissory documents and
account books in substantial chests. Marginal notations on documents
indicated satisfaction of payment obligations. If cash did not always literally
change hands, cash units were the basis for accounting for obligations.
The recitation of possessions showcased the goods which proclaimed
the place of the individual within the society and those items which were
expensive. Horses, slaves and cattle were valued throughout mainland
America; Spanish Florida was no exception. Horses and slaves provided
necessary labor and the livestock truly sacrificed for the benefit of the owner.
All three were symbols of wealth and achievement throughout the New World.
Allan Kulikoff found that in the Chesapeake from 1720 to 1775 the value of
slaves far surpassed that of land.5
Florida colonists also valued items which conveyed traditional messages
and manufactured goods which offered comforts and release from tedious
tasks. Writing desks continued to hold a prominent place in the public

261
projection of propriety in Florida. All sorts of metal and glass ornaments and
tools reflected the level of integration of individuals into the enlarging material.
Window glass was both a comfort and a status statement.
All members of Florida’s society wanted to own, use and display
manufactured cloth. Cloth arrived to be made into vestments worn by altar
boys and into banners for the altar and religious processions, to be made into
clothes for slaves, to be made into fancy garb for governors. Sgt. Fernando
Rodriguez demonstrated the importance of dry goods when he distributed his
“colored” and white clothing to godsons. The availability of lengths of colorful
fabric determined whether relations with the Native Americans were congenial
or contentious
Architecture and the use of space in buildings and on urban lots
reflected the changing cultural donation from Iberia. The role of the growing
number and increased availability of goods in Atlantic-world Florida is seen in
both the assignment of building spaces for solely commercial purposes and the
incorporation of manufactured goods as improvements or enhancements to the
buildings themselves.
Florida’s urban structures exhibited the ideas brought by men arriving
from the arid areas of central and southern Spain. For almost a century the
tradition of the Iberian cultural hearths were re-charged by new recruits sent to
Florida. Traditions transported to Florida in the minds of soldiers from southern
Spain as much as fear of another torching by the enemy influenced the style

262
and construction of the structures which re-built the town after 1702.
Residential and commercial uses appeared in the same buildings with some
sites composed of several sets of buildings.
With his mind on the founding years in the sixteenth century, Albert
Manucy recognized the role of Iberian regional traditions in the development of
lifeways in Florida when he wrote that
the nature of the housing and organization of space used by
colonists in a new and strange environment was influenced both
by the familiar traditions of their native provinces and by the
demands of the new settings.6
His words work as well for the arrivals in the second century of settlement.
They brought traditions that molded all aspects of Florida colonial life.
Donna Ruhl and Kathleen Hoffman have sent out the call for clarification
of “the middle period" in colonial society.7 The concept of the second century
of settlement in the southeast fits into the search for points to establish
periodization. The heightened belligerence, the new Spanish men and the new
speedy incorporation of non-white residents begins with Spanish resistance to
the first incursion by the English in 1670. Efforts to contain the English
delineate the end of the middle period and the start of its successor. The
successor period features the phasing out of the inwardly-turned creole or
American focus and the turning outward toward different Iberian modes and the
desire for acquisition of goods. The second century was a time when Florida
saw creolization truncated by the injection of different peninsular elements. In

263
the southeast the exigencies of the threats to Spanish sovereignty were overt
and the existence of its colony in the southeast allowed the Spanish crown to
respond with directness and speed. England and France challenged Spanish
claims to territory. With the efforts to maintain Spanish territorial integrity,
Florida experienced a re-orientation toward the metropolis and resurgence of
metropolitan ways before other areas and a quick incorporation of non-whites
into society. For example, the crown’s efforts to take back power in Peru that
had been lost to creole officeholders came much later, beginning in 1750, than
the Iberians’ usurping of military positions filled by default by creoles in Florida
in the seventeenth century. In the case of Peru, the crown had to wait to
replace sitting administrators; in the case of Florida, changes in procedures
could be implemented more directly and quickly. Likewise, the use of non¬
white troops with the accompanying affirmation of the fighting men’s place in
the non-military parts of society appeared in Florida before it did in many
others parts of Spanish America. Elsewhere, as in Mexico and Cuba, the
inclusion and reliance upon non-whites came in response to defeats during the
Seven Years War. In fact, it was the penalties paid by Spain for defeat in the
Seven Years War that abruptly eliminated from Florida the practices and
methods which had developed during almost a century of English
warmongering.

264
Epilogue
In 1763 Spain's long tenure in Florida ended, not on the battlefield but
on the negotiation table in Paris at the close of the Seven Years War.
Florida’s transfer seemed unrelated to events within Florida. The historian
cannot develop a presentation or thesis which neatly builds toward crisis or
climax and then proceeds to denouement. In fact, from the Florida
perspective, the loss of Florida was a non-event; no local crisis or climax
preceded the transfer. Spanish occupation resembles a road that crosses the
temporal terrain only to end abruptly at some manmade gulch. The break in
the historical road seems to make no sense. There were no signs that the
path would end. From the perspective of the colony's residents, the
disappearance of Spanish rule and residents from Florida was unrelated to
what took place in the colony. That was indeed the case, for at the end of the
Seven Years War, Florida was deemed expendable in the context of the well¬
being of the empire as a whole. The Florida territory became British; Spanish
Florida residents became evacuees and refugees. Spanish Florida colonists
paid a high price for what must have seemed to them ill-advised decisions
that had been made an ocean away.

265
Notes
1. J. Leitch Wright. Jr.. Analo-Spanish Rivalry in North America (Athens:
University of Geogia Press, 1971), 52-56; Luis Rafael Arana and Albert
Manucy, The Building of Castillo de San Marcos (n.p.: Eastern National Park
& Monument Association, 1977), 12-15.
2. Jane Landers, Gracia Real de Santa Teresa de More: A Free Black Town
in Spanish Colonial Florida." American Historical Review. 95 (1990): 9-30;
idem. "Traditions of African American Freedom and Community in Colonial
Spanish Florida." in David R. Colburn and Jane L. Landers, eds., The African
American Heritage of Florida (Gainesville: University Press of Florida, 1995)
19-41.
3. Will of Francisco Menéndez Marquéz, 1742 September 2, AGI SC 58-1-
34/73.
4. Stephen Innes, Creating the Commonwealth: The Economic Culture of
Puritan New England (New York: W. W. Norton, 1995).
5. Allan Kulikoff, Tobacco and Slaves: The Development of Southern
Cultures in the Chesapeake. 1680-1800 (Chapel Hill: University of North
Carolina Press, 1986), 133.
6. Albert Manucy, Sixteenth-Century St. Augustine: The People and Their
Homes (Gainesville: University Press of Florida, 1997),123.
7. Donna L. Ruhl and Kathleen Hoffman, eds. Diversity and Social Identity in
Colonial Spanish America: Native American African, and Hispanic
Communities During the Middle Period. Historical Archaeology 31. 1 (1997).

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BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH
Susan R. Parker grew up In St. Augustine, Florida, surrounded by
vestiges of the Spanish colonial presence in the southeast. She holds a
bachelor of arts degree in Spanish from The Florida State University and a
master of arts degree in history from the University of Florida. From 1987 to
1997, she was historian for the Historic St. Augustine Preservation Board,
Florida Department of State. She has appeared as a commentator in
nationwide television and radio presentations on historical topics.
280

I certify that I have read this study and that in my opinion it conforms to
acceptable standards of scholarly presentation and is fully adequate, in scope
and quality, as a dissertation for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy.
Michael V. Gannon, Chair
Distinguished Service Professor
Emeritus of History
I certify that I have read this study and that in my opinion it conforms to
acceptable standards of scholarly presentation and is fully adequate, in scope
and quality, as a dissertation for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy.
íoogjj* ñi.
Kathleen A. Deagan
Distinguished Research Professor
of Anthropology
I certify that I have read this study and that in my opinion it conforms to
acceptable standards of scholarly presentation and is fully adequate, in scope
and quality, as a dissertation for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy.
he K. Lyon J
Euge
Associate Professor of History
I certify that I have read this study and that in my opinion it conforms to
acceptable standards of scholarly presentation and is fully adequate, in scope
and quality, as a dissertation for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy.
/lurdo Ma
Graduate Research Professor
of History

I certify that I have read this study and that in my opinion it conforms to
acceptable standards of scholarly presentation and is fully adequate, in scope
and quality, as a dissertation for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy.
Anthony^pfívér-Smith
Professor of Anthropology
This dissertation was submitted to the Graduate Faculty of the
Department of History in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences and to the
Graduate School and was accepted as partial fulfillment of the requirements
for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy.
August 1999
Dean, Graduate School

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