Group Title: Historic St. Augustine: Gallegos House
Title: Outline for Gallegos House
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 Material Information
Title: Outline for Gallegos House
Series Title: Historic St. Augustine: Gallegos House
Physical Description: Interpretive outline
Language: English
Physical Location:
Box: 8
Divider: Interpretive Plans
Folder: Gallegos House
Subject: Saint Augustine (Fla.)
48 King Street (Saint Augustine, Fla.)
Government House (Saint Augustine, Fla.)
Spatial Coverage: North America -- United States of America -- Florida -- Saint Johns -- Saint Augustine -- 48 King Street
Coordinates: 29.892465 x -81.313142
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00095543
Volume ID: VID00002
Source Institution: University of Florida
Holding Location: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.

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I. Interpretive objective.
A. In Gallegos House we will inform the visitor about the life style of a
common soldier's family of the late First Spanish Period with an emphasis
on typical culinary practices of the same period.

B. Explanation of culinary practices will be supplemented whenever possible by
cooking demonstrations on the masonry stove or over the outdoor fire-pit.

II. The Building

A. Is a reconstruction, built in early 1963.

B. Occupies the site of a tabby house belonging in 1763 to Juan Garcia and
Martin Martinez Gallegos.

C. Was reconstructed of a modern simulation of tabby, a form of concrete using
oyster shell as aggregate, using 18th century techniques. After forms were
constructed, the tabby was poured into them and allowed to set; then the
forms were raised and another layer of tabby poured, and so on until the
walls reached the desired height.

D. Is built according to the common two-cell plan, with a porch along the
south side.

E. Is plastered inside and out, according to the usual practice.

F. Possesses many of the same architectural features as the Ribera House.
(For more details, see the interpretive outline for Ribera)

G. Has a built-in masonry stove of a type widely used in Spain, Latin America,
and colonial St. Augustine.

H. Features a reconstructed barrel well in the yard. This type of well was
very common in St. Augustine. Many have been discovered by archeologists.

III. History of the Site

A. On the Puente map of 1764 a tabby house was shown on the site. The owner
was listed as Juan Garcia Martinez Gallegos. Research has shown that the
name must refer to two people, a Juan Garcia and a Martinez Gallegos.

1. Martin Martinez Gallegos
a. Was from the town of Totana, near Murcia in southeastern Spain.
b. Came to St. Augustine sometime prior to 1743.
c. Was an artilleryman in the garrison.
d. Had at least two wives in St. Augustine
1.) Victoria Escalona
a.) Was a native of St. Augustine
b.) Married Martinez Gallegos in July 1743.
c.) Died in 1750.

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Outline for Gallegos House (continued)

2.) Isabel Serrano
a) Was identified in the parish registers as a
native of Germany. (How she got to St. Augustine
or acquired a Spanish surname is unknown.)
b) Married Martinez Gallegos between 1756 and 17??
(Marriage records for whites are missing from
1756 to 1763.)

e. Had at least 5 children by Victoria Escalona (two of which died
in infancy) and 1 by Isabel Serrano.

f. Went to Cuba with his family during the evacuation of St. Augustine
in 1763-64.

2. Juan Garcia

a. Is a more obscure figure than Martinez Gallegos, and there is some
doubt as to his identification.

b. Was an infantryman but by 1752 was no longer on active service,
he being 69 years old and gouty.

c. Was listed as a native of San Martin de Havana

d. Had been married to Antonia Espinosa, probably a mestiza, who
died in 1747. (No information on children is presently available.)

The most likely explanation for the apparent dual ownership of the house
is that Juan Garcia, a widower, granted Martinez Gallegos part ownership
in return for the privilege of living in his household. That way he
could be cared for by Gallegos's family.

The original Gallegos House was destroyed sometime during the British
Period. In 1784, at the beginning of the second Spanish administration,
the lot was in the possession of a Minorcan named Juan Frias, who had
planted it in fruit trees. When Lucia Escalona, sister of Gallegos's first
wife arrived in that same year with power of attorney from the Gallegos
children, she evicted Frias and build a wooden house on the lot. This
house appears on the Rocque map of 1788.

Life Style of a Soldier's Family.

A. In St. Augustine during the late First Spanish Period, c. 1750, most families
lived in surroundings similar to Gallegos House. The simplicity of the
house and its furnishings reflects the poverty of the isolated garrison

B. Common soldiers were not well paid.
1. Salaries
a. Infantrymen earned only 11 pesos a month, of 132 per year.
b. Artillerymen like Martinez Gallegos received 14 pesos per month
or 168 per year.

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Outline of Gallegos House (continued)

c. Cavalrymen received 22 pesos per month or 264 per year, but from
that amount they had to purchase and maintain their own horses.

2. Living Expenses

a. Annual deductions from salary
1. 22 pesos, 6 reales for uniform
2. 1 peso for hospital care
3. 3 pesos for medical care and weapons repair
4. 6 reales for medicine
5. 2 reales to support the Chapel of Nuestro Senora de la Leche
6. Total -- 27 pesos, 6 reales. (There were 8 reales to a peso)

b. Cost of living

1. Each solider received a daily ration allowance of
2 reales to pay for regular monthly issues of flour,
corn, beef, pork, and salt. The ration allowance, amounting
to 91 pesos 2 reales annually, was subtracted from the soldier's
pay. Total yearly deductions thus came to 119 pesos, 1/2 real.
The difference between the base pay and the deductions
was supposed to be paid to the soldiers in cash.

2. In practice, however, the soldier often received no cash.
Prices of food and clothing from Mexico and Havana were
so high that the soldier usually had to exceed his ration
allowance to feed his family, with the result that deductions
were greater than pay. Most of the soldiers were, therefore;
constantly in debt to the crown or to local merchants.

C. c. Common soldier's duties

1. The soldier customarily spent his days pulling guard
duty at one of the various posts in and round the city.
In 1759 they were:
a. Castillo 33 officers and men.
b. Santo Domingo redoubt (Cubo line)-7 men
c. Cubo redoubt 7 men
d. Rosario redoubt (Rosario Line) 5 men
e. Santo Christo redoubt (Rosario Line) 5 men
f. San Francisco redoubt (Rosario Line) 8 men
g. Guardhouse (plaza) 21 men (including Governor's guard)
h. City Gate 5 men
i. Palica (between Maria Sanchez Creek and San Sebastian.
River) 13 men
j. La Leche 5 men
k. Fort Mose 8 men, relieved monthly
1. Anastasia Island 7 men, relieved monthly
m. Fort Matanzas 7 men, relieved monthly
n. Picolata (on St. Johns River) 8 men, relieved every 2 weeks
o. San Marcos de Apalachee (south of present-day Tallahassee)-
48 men, relieved annually.
(During military emergencies, of course, guards would be
strengthened and units sent out into the field.)


Outline of Gallegos House (continued)

2. While on duty, the soldiers

a. Kept watch over the defense works, approaches to the town,
and the inhabitants.
b. Maintained the defense works and equipment.
c. Underwent training exercises. For example, they performed
the manual of arms twice a week, went through firing drills
with unloaded weapons twice a month, and fired their muskets
with ball once a month.

3. While off duty, the soldiers

a. Helped sustain their families by fishing or farming.
(The fishing equipment and garden tools in Gallegos call
attention to these important activities.)

b. Helped with household tasks such as repairing the house,
outbuildings, and fences, and chopping wood.

c. Spent a great deal of time with other men drinking,
gambling, and telling ribald stories. This they did
away from home. Taverns were popular gathering places.

d. Some soldiers helped support their families with
second occupations. They were craftsmen, merchants,
tavernkeepers, and so forth.

D. Women's Activities: Over half the soldiers in St. Augustine were married.
Gallegos House represents one of these domestic situations.

1. Cooking

a. Occupied a major portion of a housewife's day (a family
of Gallegos's status probably would not have owned a
slave to do the cooking.)

b. Is treated below as a separate subject.

2. Care of clothing

a. Washing
b. Repairing
c. Manufacture (many families cut and sewed their own
clothes. Some women also may have sewed for money
or payment in kind, but there is no direct evidence
of this.)

3. Housecleaning and whitewashing walls.
4. Tending the garden and caring for the stock (chiefly poultry).
5. Caring for children. (Older children would have helped with
all the above activities.)
6. Gossiping with neighbors.

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Outline for Gallegos House (continued)

PART II Food and Drink in Colonial St. Augustine

1. Introductory remark: this outline will discuss only the First Spanish
Period, since our interpretation of foodstuffs and culinary practices deal
solely with that era.

11. Foodstuffs
A. Imported foods
1. A major source was the situado, the official subsidy.
a. Cereal grains
1) Wheat flour
a. Was by far the most abundant single item. This reflected
the Spaniard's fondness for wheat bread.
b. Was probably for the most part white flour. Whole wheat
flour would not keep as well during lengthy voyages or
under prolonged storage.

2. Corn (maize)
a) Was the second most common grain import, by weight
(based on 1742-51 figures).
b) Is not known whether it was shipped on the cob or shelled.

3. Rice
a) Was third most important cereal (based on 1742-51 figures).
b) Was usually imported as polished rice.

(In the period 1742-51, the relative quantities of cereals deposited in the govern-
ment storehouse were wheat flours, 251,000 arrobas; corn, 87,000 arrobas; rice,
54,000 arrobas. The arrobas was equivalent to 25 pounds.

b. Meats (salted)
1) If 1742-51 figures are indicative of the general
beef was the most common meat, followed by pork.
was imported.

2) Over that period, relative quantities were

Some ham

Beef 46,000 arrobas
Pork 25,000 arrobas
Ham 2,000 arrobas

c. Other important imported foodstuffs
1) Dried beans
2) Hardtack (for military rations)
3) Salt
4) Lard
5) Olive Oil

2. As can be seen from the foregoing information, foods imported through
the situado were basic staples.

3. Another source of imports the private trade
a. Owing to the inadequacy of the records, this trade cannot be
b. Provided foods and drinks not available through situado.
Examples: Suqar Spices Vinegar Cheese, Wine, Rum, Chocolate.

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Outline for Gallegos House (continued)
B. Locally available foodstuffs--grown, hunted, or caught in the area.
1. Grains
a. An attempt to grow wheat in central Florida during the 1650's was
b. Corn (maize), a traditional crop of the Indians, was the principal
grain produced.

2. Vegetables
a. A wide variety are mentioned in the documents.
b. There is no evidence of the quantities produced, although yields
were almost certainly small.
c. Many were grown in kitchen gardens near the houses; others in
fields on the periphery of town.
d. Examples: squash, pumpkins, peas, beans, cabbage, sweet potatoes,
lettuce, onions, red peppers, radishes, garlic, tomatoes
(possibly 1765)

3. Fruits
a. Existed in considerable variety
b. Were usually cultivated in town in yards or in vacant lots.
c. Examples:
1) Oranges, both sweet and sour varieties
2) Lemons
3) Pome-citrons
4) Quinces
5) Medlars
6) Melons, including watermelon
7) Figs
8) Shaddocks
9) Pomegranates
10) Limes
11) Guavas
12) Plantains
13) Grapes (grown on arbors in the yards)
14) Peaches
15) Pears

d. There is no way to determine the relative abundance of these
fruits, but the citrus species, particularly the oranges, are
the most commonly mentioned in the documents.

4. Meat
a. Some fresh beef was produced on nearby cattle ranches.
1) Before 1702 there were a number of ranches in the interior of
Florida. These were destroyed by English and Indian attacks.
2) During the 1740's and '50's there were a few small ranches
in the vicinity of St. Augustine.
3) There was a slaughterhouse operating in St. Augustine in
b. Some hogs were also raised--were a semi-wild stock.
c. Chickens were present as a food resource.
d. There was limited hunting of wild game and feral domestic
species but it accounted for only a minor portion of the meat

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outline for Gallegos House (continued)

5. Seafood
a. Was locally abundant.
b. Was a major item in the diet.
c. Consisted of
1) Shellfish great quantities of oysters and clams were eaten.
2) Fish mullet, redfish, drum, flounder, and shark appear to
have been the most common species consumed (evidence based
on limited archeological recovery of food wastes).

II. Drinks

A. Non-alcoholic
1. Water
a) Came from shallow wells (every house had a well).
b) Was sulphurous but evidently healthy
2. Casina (also spelled cassina, caseena, etc.)
a) Was an Indian drink adopted by the Spaniards
b) Was an infusion made from the leaves of the yaupon (Ilex
vomitoria). Eaten raw, the leaves have an emetic effect, but
lose it when parched and used as a tea.

B. Alcoholic (there were numerous taverns in St. Augustine)
1. Wine
a) Was imported
b) Some may have been made from local grapes, but there is no
documentary confirmation of this.

2. Rum
a) Was apparently imported in some quantity through private trade
b) Was a popular drink

3. Beer
a) Was uncommon
b) Some was brought in by English traders

The Daily Eating Cycle

A. Breakfast (desayuno)
1. Was light and taken early.
2. Consisted usually of bread and chocolate. Bread might have been
soaked in olive oil
B. Dinner the mid-day meal (almuerzo)
1. Was eaten in the early afternoon.
2. Was the largest meal of the day.
C. Supper (cena)
1. Was the evening meal
2. Was a light meal, often consisting of leaftovers from dinner and,
possibly, some fruit.

Food Preparation

A. Bread

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Outline for Gallegos House (continued)

1. Wheat bread
a. Most wheat flour was baked as bread.
b. The type of loaves baked cannot be stated with certainty.
1) Much baking was probably done right on the hearth
2) Some of the better kitchens may have had ovens.

2. Corn Bread
a. Corn was typically used in the form of meal, ground with a
mano and metate, a pestle and concave grinding stone.

b. Most corn bread was probably eaten in the form of tortillas,
cooked on a griddle.

3. Rice was occasionally prepared as bread, also on a griddle or on the

B. Meals
1. Were generally one-pot meals, such as soups and stews.
2. Would contain what was available or in season.
3. Usually contained a bit of salt meat or seafood, vegetables, squash,
onions, and garlic.
4. Were usually quite spicy--lots of red pepper.
C. Cooking vessels
1. Ceramic cookware was the most common type. More often than not, it
was a local Indian pottery called San Marcos ware.
2. Some iron and copper vessels were also used, but much less frequently.
D. Kitchens
1. The most common type of kitchen was probably a simple hearth on the
ground covered by a crude shelter and located behind the house.
2. Some families had kitchen buildings with masonry stoves like those
exhibited in the Gallegos and Ribera Houses. These kitchens were
described by the English observer John Bartram to be "as smoky as
an Indian cabin."
3. There is also evidence of outdoor fire-pit cooking.

VI. Quality of Diet

A. According to the typical reports one finds in the official correspondence,
St. Augustine was always short of food.
1. There were obviously periods of want, even acute shortage, when
subsidies were late, when local crops were bad, or when war inter-
fered with the normal course of events. People were never secure
in their food supply.
2. But there is no evidence of starvation. On the contrary, St.
Augustinians had a reputation for being healthy and long-lived.
B. The diet was heavy on cereals, but this was not unusual for the period.
C. Fruits and vegetables were enjoyed seasonally. It is possible, although -
not certain, that the Spaniards preserved fruits and vegetables by
drying and pickling.
D. Fresh meat was a rare luxury. Fresh fish and oysters seem to have been
the most common sources of animal protein,followed by salt beef and
E. If a sufficient quantity of food was available, the diet was probably
adequate nutritionally.
F. The.typical St. Augustine family spent most of its income on food.

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Outline for Gallegos House (continued)

Food practices in Spanish St. Augustine were a blend of Hispanic and Indian
traditions. Typical Indian foods such as corn, beans, pumpkins, squash, and
casina tea, were important elements in the local diet, as were locally available
species of marine life that had nourished the Indians for centuries. To these
elements the Spaniards added their own traditional foodstuff-wheat, wine, olive
oil, beef, pork, onions, and garlic. The eating habits of the colonial population
are thus an outstanding example of cultural adaptation to a new environment.


VII. Foods Permissible in Cooking Demonstrations.

A. Grains
1. Wheat flour (usually white)
2. Corn
3. Rice

B. Meats, Poultry, and Fish
1. Beef
2. Pork
3. Ham (In limited amounts)
4. Chicken
5. Oysters

C. Vegetables
1. Pumpkin
2. Peas (black- eyed, chick)
3. Beans (kidney, lima, black)
4. Cabbage
5. Sweet potatoes
11. Pot herbs
a. Anise
b. Basil
c. Borage
d. Coriander
e. Dill
f. Sweet Fennel
g. Garlic

Sea bass (redfish)

Lettuce (romaine)
Red Pepper

Oregano (wild marjoram)
Parsley, palin and curled

D. Fruits (any listed in section II, B, 3, c. (add Prickly pear.)
E. Dairy Products
1. Cheese
2. Butter not common
F. Condiments
1. Olive oil 3. Vinegar
2. Lard 4. Sugar (not common)
G. Beverages
1. Water 4. Cassina tea
2. Rum 5. Chocolate
3. Wine

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Outline for Gallegos House (continued)


A. Lattice and reja in window: To give protection and privacy, especially to
1. Young women were closely guarded within the family and rarely
allowed to walk the streets unsupervised. The reja allowed
them to remain concealed while observing what took place outside.

2. Married women enjoyed more freedom of movement, but still remained
closely tied to the home.

B. The pallets on the floor

1. John Bartram observed that the Spaniards "lay chiefly on Mattresses."
Evidently beds were uncommon and were probably owned mainly by people
of higher status.

2. The mattresses shown here are made of coarse linen and filled with straw.
They could be rolled up during the day to create more floor space.

C. The sleeping cycle: was determined by the natural cycle of light and darkness.

1. People got up about daybreak and went to bed not long after dark.
(Men may have stayed out in taverns, but it would have been unusual
for people to stay up very late.)

2. There is no direct evidence of the siesta, but people probably napped
briefly after their mid-day meal.

D. Fishing Equipment: identified a common means of supplementing the diet.

E. Religious Image

1. The Roman Catholic faith shaped the world view of 18th Century Spaniards.
2. Most homes contained religious images, which served both a devotional
and a decorative purpose. The images were of favorite saints.
3. The image here is of Santiago, (Saint James) patron saint of Spain.
4. People also commonly wore religious medallions. Many have been found
by archaeology.

F. Chest and stools were the most typical items of furniture. Chests could
be used for both storage and seating.

G. Hanging shelf to keep vermin out of the food.

H. The Stove
1. Is a typical Mediterranean design, still widely used in that part of the
2. Is based on a description in John Bartram's Journal: "ye fireplace is
raised with stone 2 foot high to 3 broad & ye length of ye breadth of ye
room & above the floor is open to ye . roof: There is 1 or 2 openings
A hands breadth wide & 2 foot long in the back to let out some smoak . hearth they had several pots fixed with holes under each to
boil thair different soupes. I dislike this method above any belonging
to thair houses as they are all as smoaky as an Indian cabin . "

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Outline for Gallegos House (continued)

I. Eating Utensils iron or steel knives and pewter or wooden spoons were
the most common flatware. Plates and bowls were both ceramic and wooden

J. Cookware cooking was done in both ceramic and metal vessels.
1. Ceramic pots most common were of San Marcos pottery (see below).
This was the typical cookware.
2. Iron pots were also used, but not as frequently as ceramic cookware.

K. Ceramics: are a combination of Spanish, Indian, and British types.
1. Spanish wares imported from Mexico and Cuba via the private trade.
2. Indian pottery consisted chiefly of San Marcos ware, a Guale (?)
,Indian pottery produced by Christian Indian communities on the
fringes of town.
3. Englis-wares reached St. Augustine through trade, much of it illicit,
with the English North American colonies.

L. Mortar and pestle for grinding corn into meal. Corn meal was most likely
eaten in the form of tortillas, or flat cakes cooked on a griddle.

M. Barrel Well the Spaniards drank well water. Although it had a strong
sulphur taste, it was safe to drink. ( We would not recommend that anyone
drink water from the Gallegos well, however.)

N. Canoe

1. Is a dugout made in the Everglades by Seminole Indians.
2. Similar (although larger and deeper) canoes were used by both
Spaniards and Indians in the estuarine waters around St. Augustine.

0. Waste disposal

1. Human Waste
a. People usually relieved themselves in metal or ceramic urinals
and jars. Outhouses existed but were not the rule.
b. Wastes were either buried, used to fertilize the kitchen garden,
or collected for use on the fields.

2. Kitchen garbage was either
a. Buried in trash pits (usually dug about 3 feet deep) or
b. Scattered randomly about the yard and garden.
(There is archaeological evidence for both practices.)
3. Oyster shells, an abundant form of waste, were probably piled at the
back of the yard and periodically disposed of. (It is quite likely that
the oyster shell used in the construction of tabby houses was accumulated
in this manner.)

(From the above information one may imagine the mingling of odors in a typical house
and yard. People of the time were accustomed to a more pungent environment than
today's people are used to.)

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P. Personal Hygiene
1. Bathing
a. Was done infrequently, probably no more than once a month, if that

b. Meant a lot of hard work, drawing water and heating it.

c. Was considered to be potentially hazardous to health.
People were afraid of chills, believing they caused disease.

2. Oral hygiene: was poor

a. Excavated skeletal remains almost uniformly exhibit numerous cavities,
missing teeth, bone damage from abcesses, etc.

b. By the age of forty the average person would have lost most of his

c. Shaving: men of the 18th century went clean shaven although
they did not necessarily shave every day. The typical shaving
instrument was the straight razor.

O.G. Ganong
July 1977
Revised by
May 1978

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