Florida under five flags

Material Information

Florida under five flags
Patrick, Rembert W ( Rembert Wallace ), 1909-1967
Place of Publication:
Gainesville, FL
University of Florida Press
The Record Press, Inc.
Publication Date:
Copyright Date:
Physical Description:
xiv, 140 p. : incl. front., illus. (incl. ports., maps, facsims.) ; 28.5 cm.


Subjects / Keywords:
History -- Florida ( lcsh )
government publication (state, provincial, terriorial, dependent) ( marcgt )
non-fiction ( marcgt )
Spatial Coverage:
United States of America -- Florida


Statement of Responsibility:
by Rembert W. Patrick ...

Record Information

Source Institution:
University of Florida
Holding Location:
University Press of Florida
Rights Management:
This work is licensed under a modified Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 Unported License. To view a copy of this license, visit You are free to electronically copy, distribute, and transmit this work if you attribute authorship. However, all printing rights are reserved by the University Press of Florida ( Please contact UPF for information about how to obtain copies of the work for print distribution. You must attribute the work in the manner specified by the author or licensor (but not in any way that suggests that they endorse you or your use of the work). For any reuse or distribution, you must make clear to others the license terms of this work. Any of the above conditions can be waived if you get permission from the University Press of Florida. Nothing in this license impairs or restricts the author's moral rights.
Resource Identifier:
01534953 ( OCLC )
46027032 ( LCCN )


This item has the following downloads:

Full Text

:. :: .::
'::::: ::.:"'::: ""'
""...:'.'. :
.:::.: ~- ~
:...i:l:. ijiiiii::: .:::.i..:':. ':"'.' ,,:!.:il:
-. : i .. '.' ''::::::'.~''::::::'..:.'.:j:" ':j:.::..:i ::::.:~::,

:""~ ':""'-'':" ::::::'
: :::::.-. : :'' ""
::;:;." ::::.::i..::l:i::
li:I!;: :: ~;I;:;:: :i:.:i!l'..: ::
"' ; i.'! ':' I ~
:1: :i':
': '
i.: :
:: :i':: :
.::~:;: -:::::.. .:
::.. :
:~:~1.: ::::.:::
": j':; .': ....... ...::':I
"': .;' *::.: '-. '.!:~:
: ""' '- --
::': .
I !.:::!.?

':' I:r
:. .. :.

.: ..i:'ji:":i ':
::: :.
.! ...1.::::~: ii ':
f:: :
"'-' '
I".i: i:
:.. ::.
.i: : i..':
.. .


'i::::' ::
.,..,1: ::::;i.l. :

:ii-' .- ;:l:.:i.


:: .;: ::: :- ,;,
": ':::.
i: ; "; .. .:
::: ::: :
-::::: :' ':'::.
i:ii.!.. 1 :. .:. i .:::..... :::..i:
::i. :::::' :':":" :

': ::.: :?:i::: j:.! ;
:: ::::: '-
:.. :
::~ "'''":' .:
:' ::::::;::. :: .
::.. :
..:::: :'..) ::..:i. ::~:ii::

: ;:
:' ':il'.:. :::::" '
: :
.::. -;;; :
::: ;:
'"""" I! ::' :
i..: l-i::
:..... :...:. :.:r- :"..
~~.:~~j:i:::i ii,:::::~li:: ::':I :. '
"" :: '.i!.::::::
''ij:1"-' '': :::,I:: i-:'::'::: ~
:i: :i;:iiiiiij: ili:iliiilt:ili i;'l:~::!':r

: : :~':::::::::


~: : ;
:. :; .i:. .li
.:. -.::i.j. :::::~: ; ,I :!~
: I::liiii:::i',li::jfitiiii:l:-i: :::
.. : :!-...::: --::~ ::i:.:: ii.
:'' '

-.-.' : ;:

:: ;..::..i :I:::11. ~ril::;:.:I'::'il-:liiiiiiiirl::~:::i
: .:: :::::- - ': ::-::':"!:! :ii'!;;i
-:.:. .... :i::;i:lil
.;: Ti :..."' ... :.. .....-I:l':i:~ ::il:iij
;..':i t~il:i;iir'::l! ..; ; ;:::::1:1:11''.:: ': ':':

.:.:.. ..;1 ;.:...

:::': r:; ......'::!::1::: .

r~i.!iiiii,,:.:. :i!i:.: ~li:l;i:i:li:ln
'' :;1::':;::::::.:~::. :::: --li:i:li6!::.'Ii:.:;:i:::;;;:~.: :ijji
':'.:::.I::::: ::::;:;!.?i, ~--- :?
':'1:. -::: :.:::!::::i::lil:!. :::: :'::: "" -:ii!iil!l;:13!i: i;l'i
i:;;-;:i;::: ::.~~:::~1I1 ':~.*
:: ~ :..:;:::!:::::~'!!?~:1 -:l/ltj::
:"i it::.l':
i' --
:::: ''
: ;;ii'::::::i-.;i
;i:- '"'i:::;~;: ........i.
'::::::~~iil: ':''':: ;:.ii~,i~iji.i ~:~
: .:: :: ::::.:::. ..::::::::::Ii:i.jjiiiiil:l'i"i'
: :i.:;: .::'. I:.:':.~ -~ :- :;;~ :I'.i :'

:: ::.. ~i~.~::~:i.~ : ::l(il::;'::l;f:i: .li::.iill
::. ::.
:::: .::

i' :
'"'::::I :1::::' ".......' .
..i..:i: --:
~~. .~.:~~.~ ~ .. .~..::.::.i~:~~~ :.:~ ~ ~~::::::
.:. .::
r "'I
1. '::i"

:-: : ':: .. ': :: : :::::' ;:I
;: ::

I.)i::'lj' :. :: .~ ..::..:...; .~:i;

'~:1.: i .. ij:li:..:.i:. : ': ~.~~~::: :::.: 1:.!1l;l'e-:'!':

;i ...~:..
:: ''-'- ;:
li':::::: :::: ~;:::::::::" ;:.
I : ""':'ii
"".' ...
I: '::
:::i .! :i .._,::I.:::::. :-:.... ::i:i::;i:::::.~.
: :. i::!i::;i.ii;:l:;lpil:i ii:~:i:l::.:: I:
: .'.:: :::: :::;::::::.""'; ....'.:.. ?''...
:.: I'I"-','-"- '"'':1.- 1!'I "'"
..r.;;; ':::!
::: ::' "::!: : ~:l:ii:~ lij':li:i
: ..:: ~' ..;..:.;'' :i:::: :. .. :"'
:: .-








AA-H Hf. A/o^^ r(CucSL
4 4 S< r
ao^ovj 71e
Q~~K^ho re /U^~~~nnnn~~~~


The St. Johns River at Palatka



Professor of Social Sciences
University of Florida

University of Florida Press
Operated by the University of Florida
Gainesville, 1945

Copyright, 1945, by the
University of Florida

Printed in the United States of America by
The Record Press, Inc., St. Augustine, Florida

dGo the 'People of Gjlorida


Floridians and visitors have been told again and again that Florida has
the longest and one of the most interesting and colorful histories of all the
states, but until now those who have little time for reading have had no
chance to see this for themselves. Here is a story of Florida's four hundred
years which can be read in a short evening.
Robert E. Lee's foremost biographer, Douglas Southall Freeman, says
in a review of the author's Jefferson Davis and His Cabinet: "Dr. Patrick
has written well and selected wisely from the materials. He has used his
sources with so much skill that one hopes this fine book will be followed
by others." Well, here is one for which Dr. Patrick went again to the orig-
inal sources and used them with the same care and skill.
In so few pages there can be no detail-only the thread of the story and
its interpretation. Every reader will miss a name or several names with
which he is familiar, men who have had important parts in our state's his-
tory; but only those could be brought in who carried on the thread of the
story. Perhaps this little volume will lead some readers to one of the larger
Florida histories in which the others are given a place.
The war has limited the celebration of our centennial. This is the Uni-
versity's commemoration.
Editor, Florida Historical Quarterly
University of Florida



This small volume was planned and written to present a brief and in-
terpretative account of the growth of Florida which could be read in a few
hours. Both the length of the period covered, 1513 to 1945, and the mass
of source material available complicated the work of selection and con-
densation. Data not essential to the theme of a chapter had to be dis-
carded; otherwise the purpose of the volume would have been unattained.
Although, in the interest of brevity, neither a bibliography nor footnotes
have been included, every effort was made to achieve factual accuracy by
the careful use of both primary and secondary historical sources.
The author is grateful to those who generously contributed to this
study. The idea of a commemorative volume for Florida's centennial of
statehood came from John J. Tigert, president of the University of Flor-
ida, and his interest in and support of the project were a constant encour-
agement. Julien C. Yonge was untiring in the search of sources and in
the critical examination of the manuscript. J. E. Congleton made numer-
ous suggestions which improved the composition and style. During the
latter part of the winter of 1945, Helen S. Haines and Eleanor Bangs Pat-
rick smoothed many rough passages as they listened to a reading of the
manuscript. Ruby Leach Carson, Mark F. Boyd, T. Frederick Davis, Dor-
othy Dodd, R. L. Goulding, Paul L. Hanna, and Edith P. Pitts read the
original copy and gave many constructive criticisms. Marjorie C. Proctor
contributed valuable editorial assistance in preparing the manuscript for pub-
lication. The care with which Ruth Dixon Bryan copied and recopied the
manuscript saved hours of tedious labor.
The illustrations in this volume were made from prints supplied by indi-
viduals, libraries, corporations, civic organizations, and state agencies. Re-
quests for pictures received such a ready response that the task of selecting
from the wealth of available pictorial material was indeed difficult. Al-
though relatively few of the many excellent pictures could be used, the large
number at hand contributed to and enriched the final selections. The illus-


trations came from the following sources: inside cover pages, Tallahassee
Chamber of Commerce; pages ii, 16, 55, 86, 87, 102, io8, 109, 130, and 131,
chambers of commerce of the cities named in the captions; pages 2, o1, and
18, St. Augustine Historical Society; page 3, T. Frederick Davis; pages 4,
12, 14, 24, 29, 31, 34, 45, 47, 53, 57, 77 (first picture), 78, and 97, P. K.
Yonge Library of Florida History; pages 5, II, 21, 50, 63, 67, 8o, 82, 90,
o11, 116, I19, 126, 128, 133, and 134, Federal Writers' Project collection
of Floridiana (now in the P. K. Yonge Library of Florida History); page
8, Florida Historical Society; pages 38, 41, 43, 59, 6o, 64, 69, 75, and 77
(second picture), Mark F. Boyd; page 49, M. H. Haughton; pages 84 and
85, Florida East Coast Railway; pages 95 and III, institutions named in the
captions; page 98, Atlantic Coast Line Railroad; page 99, Mrs. Napoleon
B. Broward; page 115, companies named in the captions; page 118, Pan
American Airways; page 120 (third picture), Marion County Chamber of
Commerce; pages 120 (first two pictures) and 124, State Department of
Agriculture; page 123, Mrs. J. M. McRae.
Gainesville, Florida
August, 1945


Foreword by Julien C. Yonge........................... vii

Preface ............................................ ix


I D discovery ................................... I

II Settlem ent ................... .... ................... 7

III Conflict .......................... ...... ........... 17

IV Under Changing Ownership .......................... 25

V A United States Territory ............................. 39

VI Ante-Bellum State .......................... .......... 51

VII Civil War and Reconstruction .......................... 65

VIII Pushing Back the Frontier .............................. 81

IX Urban State .......... ........................... 105

X Today and Tomorrow .................................. 127

Index............................................ 135



State Capitol, Tallahassee. ....................... Front End Paper
St. Johns River....................... ... ............ Frontispiece
Juan Ponce de Le6n......... ........... .......... .......... 2
Map -Route of Ponce de Le6n ................................ 3
De Soto Landing at Tampa Bay. ................................ 4
Narvaez Monument, Tampa .................................... 5
Indians of Florida .................. ................... ...... 8
Pedro Menendez de Aviles .................................... 10
Massacre of Ribaut................... .................... 11
St. Augustine in 1671 .................................. ........ .12
The First Mass Said in St. Augustine. .............. ............ 14
Catholic Chapel in St. Augustine. ................. .......... 16
Castillo de San Marcos .......... ..... .................. 18
St. Augustine in the Eighteenth Century. ................. . .. 21
Pensacola in the British Period. .............................. 24
Map British East and West Florida .................. ........ 27

First Newspaper Printed in Florida ............................
Headquarters of Panton, Leslie and Company, Pensacola. ..........
Residence of Spain's Intendant, Pensacola ..................... .
Map Acquisition of Florida..............................
Tallahassee Scenes .......................................
Key West in the 1830's...................................
Scenes of Territorial Florida .... ........ .....................
"Faith Bond" of the Union Bank...........................
M ap Florida about 1845 ....................................
William D. Moseley.....................................
Ante-Bellum M mansions ........................... ........
Negroes at Work and Play................................
Presbyterian Church, Tallahassee .. .. ....... ...................
Old Spanish Jail, Pensacola................................
Block House at Fort M years .. ........ .......................
View of Tallahassee........... ..........................
Cordurov Road ................... .....................
Destruction of a Confederate Salt Factory ................... .




Confederate Battery ........................ .....
Battle of Olustee............. ..................
Skirmish near Cedar Keys..........................
Battle of G ainesville .............................
Federal at Fernandina............ ............
Jacksonville during Reconstruction ..................
St. Augustine during the W ar........................
Harriet Beecher Stowe at Mandarin ................ .
Steamboats on the St. Johns and Ocklawaha Rivers.......
Street Scene, Jacksonville.........................
First Train into Miami........... ..............
Excursion Train in the 1880's........................
M iam i, 1897-1940 ...... ..........................
Citrus Groves ......... .......................
U university of Florida ............................
Florida State College for Women ...................
A Pair of "Crackers" of 1880.......................
Scenes in the I880's and 1890's .....................
Napoleon B. Broward ............................
First Streetcar Line, Palatka ......................
Governor's Mansion, Tallahassee ....................
Modern Highways................. .............
Florida Cities ............. .................
Florida Agricultural and Mechanical College for Negroes,
Tallahassee ......... ......................
M odern Transportation ...........................
Pulp W ood Industry .. ...........................
Maps Growth of Air Transport .................. .
Sugar Cane Industry .............................
Farm Scenes .. .......... ........................
Girl with a Basket of Fruit ........................
Millard F. Caldwell .............................
Indian Creek, M iami .. ..........................
Florida Land Scenes .. ...........................
Recreation in Florida ............................
Florida Water and Air Scenes ......................
Highway into the Future ........ ................
State Capitol, Tallahassee ........................ .

. .... 67
........ 69
........ 71
. ...... 71
........ 75
........ 77
. . 77
........ 77
. 78
........ 80
........ 82
........ 84
........ 85
... 86-87
........ 90
........ 95
... 95
........ 97
..... 98
........ 99
.... 101
.... 102
........ 104
...... 108-I09


S. 118
S. 128
. 133
. 134

.Back End Paper




Tj HREE small ships rode the choppy sea. Beneath white sails, men once
imbued with the fever of adventure grumbled in discontent. Back in
Puerto Rico they had dreamed of gold and pearls and lands of Oriental
wealth; and to some even the story of a magic fountain with youth restor-
ing powers must have seemed within the realm of possibility. The island
of Bimini, where their most extravagant hopes might be fulfilled, could not
be far; but as days grew into weeks and islands supplied only ordinary
springs of water or vistas of color, reality made former dreams fantastic.
Discontent brought recollection of feasts and celebrations-for it was
Easter, 1513.
Then from aloft came the cry "Land to port!" The words quickly spread
over the ships to the leader, Juan Ponce de Leon. Could this be the long-
sought Bimini with its treasures ? Men dreamed once more, only to learn that
they had arrived at another island, similar to those sighted in previous
weeks. For five days the comforting shore was lost as they sailed on toward
the northwest, but on the sixth day, April 2, the welcome cry "Land to port!"
renewed the joy of hope. Exploration of the coast in the days which fol-
lowed raised doubts that this new land was an island. On some beach,
probably between present-day St. Augustine and the mouth of the St. Johns
River, Ponce de Le6n disembarked and doubtless planted a cross as he took
possession in the name of His Majesty, Ferdinand of Spain.
It was a colorful land, this land he named Florida, but Ponce de Le6n
was searching for gold and glory, not for the beauty of flower and tree. In
vain he sailed down the coast to the Florida Keys and Tortugas, meeting
at every landing hostile Indians whose appearance gave no indication of
wealth, and who offered to lead him neither to hidden treasure nor magic
fountain. One of his ships eventually reached Bimini, but nowhere was
there evidence of the riches that motivated his quest.
Ponce de Le6n failed in his search for gold, and his quest for rejuve-


From a drawing in Herrera
Juan Ponce de Le6n

nating waters-a dream enlarged if not created by the romantic generations
that followed him-brought death on a second voyage, though he gained en-
during glory. He had discovered and named a vast land which, in Spanish
opinion, stretched beyond the Mississippi on the west and to the Arctic on
the north. Eventually the colonizing efforts of England and France con-
tracted the area of Florida, and when their day was spent, the United States
carried on to carve slices of old Spanish Florida for Alabama, Mississippi,
and Louisiana. Yet Florida retained her name through the centuries; and
with Florida, Ponce de Le6n gained immortality.
Ponce de Le6n was the inheritor of the spirit of Columbus and the fore-


runner of many other conquistadors in the new world. From the islands of
the Caribbean they moved north, west, and south, thirsty for gold and glory
and desirous of Christianizing the savage. A few followed Ponce de Le6n
northward, but the discoveries of precious metals by Cortes in Mexico and
Pizarro in Peru diverted Spanish interests from Florida. The fingers of
mighty Spain were long, however, and could grasp many lands simultane-
ously. In 1528 Panfilo de Narvaez landed near Tampa Bay, and enticed by
Indian tales of gold, led his three hundred men up the peninsula. After en-

A*l a8 A/l TACk OF
m, AF Fl 2 POiVCE itE LEO~al/5I'3
by T ri-rmff k Dovis
1b 1 0 100 zoo
d\. 0--r\t "i r bg and str
A I t 3, E /I,

N1. ,, 27\

rhe UNt All u ot

\ / "!(44
MN4 Y \ 4V
w'eJt.l1ari 1,avninMxio

From the Florida Historical Quarterly

during many hardships they built rough barges and started westward along
the coast. All but four perished and these four, led by Cabeza de Vaca,
wandered overland seven years before finding a haven in Mexico.
Undeterred by the failure of Narvfez, Hernando de Soto, grown wealthy
from his years with Pizarro in Peru and honored as one of the four great
captains of Spain, gathered a fleet and six hundred select recruits with all
the paraphernalia requisite to conquest and settlement. Good fortune at
first smiled on the conquistador, for a few days after landing at Tampa Bay
in May, 1539, Juan Ortiz, who had a speaking knowledge of the Indian
tongues, came into camp. He had been a member of the ill-fated Narvaez


venture and owed his life to a beautiful daughter of Hirrihiqua, whose pleas
had saved him from being burned alive. Lured by Indian assurances of gold
in the interior, De Soto moved north and west but found only the golden
waters of the Mississippi, and there on a bank of the Father of Waters he
died. Half of his original company, sick and starving, reached safety later
but Ortiz was not among them. He, too, had given his life in quest of El
Though De Soto's fate may have frightened it did not quell other ad-
venturous spirits who begged the honor of conquering Florida. The leader

From Wilmer, Ferdinand De Soto
De Soto Landing at Tampa Bay

of the next approved expedition, Father Luis Cancer de Barbastro, sought
to save the souls of Indians rather than to secure gold. His only thought was
the peaceful conversion of the heathen, and years of sacrifice among the In-
dians of Central America bore eloquent testimony to his sincerity and ability.
In 1549 the captain and crew of a small, unarmed vessel sailed from Havana
with orders to place Father Cancer and four monks on some hitherto un-
touched Florida shore, but the pilot steered to Tampa Bay, where previous
explorers had freely shed Indian blood. There two monks were landed, and


word soon came that their scalps were decorating Indian wigwams. Despite
the entreaties of his companions Father Cancer determined to land, and as
the Indians moved back from the beach, he ordered his boat to withdraw
and proceeded alone to a sandy hillock where, with cross held firmly, he
offered prayer. A native came forward, embraced Father Cancer, and led
him to the other Indians who, without a word, clubbed him into eternity.

Thus the blood of priest joined that of Indians killed by Spaniards of earlier
Ten years later Tristan de Luna, a brave and devout patriot, spent
his personal fortune and more for the conquest and settlement of Florida.
Supported by royal resources and aided by the Viceroy of Mexico, the am-
bitious and well-planned Luna expedition hoped to plant colonies on the


Florida Gulf coast, in the Alabama country, and at Santa Elena on the
Carolina shore. Five hundred soldiers and one thousand settlers, led by
Tristan de Luna, entered Pensacola harbor, the best natural harbor in
Florida, and the scene, a few days later, of a hurricane that destroyed most
of his ships and food supplies. Small forces were sent from Pensacola to
explore and to settle. Quarrels developed; and Luna, ill and irritable, saw
his grand plan fail through misfortune and inefficiency. Dismissed and
replaced by Angel de Villafafie, Luna eventually returned to Mexico to die,
his solitude broken only by hounding creditors. In 1561 Villafafie embarked
for Santa Elena with all the remaining settlers and soldiers who volun-
teered for service. The expedition, however, was doomed to failure, for
near the Carolina coast a second hurricane ended the grandiose colonizing
attempt of Tristan de Luna.
Almost fifty years had passed since the voyage of Juan Ponce de Leon,
and yet no Spaniard had gained a foothold on Florida soil. Attempts to
conquer or to colonize had again and again been wrecked by nature and by
the savage. Neither gold nor pearl had been found; had it been otherwise,
Spanish conquest would not have been delayed. Indians, it is true, were
there to be saved, but Spain was content to wait until a more propitious
time for their conversion by her missionaries.
Florida's strategic location would enable Spain to control the commerce
of the new world. The colonization of the peninsula was not fundamental
in itself, but arose from the necessity of preventing possession by an enemy
who would thereby point a dagger at the heart of Spanish colonial trade.
If the might that was Spain's had failed, there was little fear in Spanish
hearts of success by a weaker European power.




SHORTLY after the first voyage of Columbus, Pope Alexander VI issued
a papal bull dividing the Western World between Spain and Portugal.
The spheres of influence thus established at Spanish request eased the colon-
ial conflict of the great exploring nations, but overlooked the possibility of
other claimants for new-found lands. For a time neither England nor
France could contest Spanish monopoly of the Western Hemisphere; but
when the young, vain, and often rash Francis I came to the throne of
France, he lost no time in throwing the gauntlet before his neighbor. By
what right, he asked, did Spain and Portugal inherit the earth? If by
father Adam's will, let them produce it or a copy; nothing less would prevent
France from claiming all unoccupied lands touched by her explorers. The
ensuing years, however, found Francis too engrossed in loosening Spain's
vise-like grip on Europe to conduct extensive colonial enterprise. Thus
Philip II of Spain, viewing European affairs after the Luna expedition in
1561, expected no trouble from a France bled white by war and already in
the throes of religious discord. One year later the unexpected happened.
Fifty-eight years before the English Separatists landed on the rocks of
Massachusetts Bay, the French Huguenots, led by Jean Ribaut, stepped on-
to the sands of Florida. Behind Ribaut was the power of Gaspard de Co-
ligny, Admiral of France, and supporting Coligny were thousands of Hugue-
nots who had been caught in the flames of a rebellion lighted by Luther and
fanned by Calvin. Fundamentally it was France, with her discordant and
struggling vitality, that gave national support to the Ribaut expedition
which sailed from Havre de Grace on February 18, 1562. On May Day
Ribaut reached a majestic river on the Florida coast which he named the
River of May, now the St. Johns. There he landed, won the Indians with
mirrors and tinsel, and erected a column to record French ownership. After
two days of exploration near the present town of Mayport, twenty-three
miles east of Jacksonville, he sailed northward, stopping in passage to honor

Indian Agriculture

Indian Chief and
His Court

The Ribaut Columni

From drawings by Le
Moyne fn De Bry,
Brev'is Narratio


streams with the names of French rivers. Far up the coast he anchored in
a broad harbor which he named Port Royal. This harbor he selected as a
strategic base from which French vessels could prey on richly laden Span-
ish merchantmen. A fort was built and manned by twenty-eight volunteers
whom Ribaut left with the promise of a speedy voyage home and a quick
return. Religious wars in France prevented his making good the promise;
and with its life line cut, the colony sank into privation, strife, and death.
It was 1564 before Admiral de Coligny returned to his colonial project.
Because Ribaut was held prisoner in England, where he had wandered in
quest of aid for the infant colony, Rene de Laudonniere, a lieutenant of
the first voyage, led an expedition of three hundred settlers that embarked
in April. Once off the Florida coast he was convinced by his explorations
that a settlement should be made on a bluff overlooking the River of May.
The land was fertile, the Indians friendly, the site defensible, and the
river accessible to the interior where, surely, gold and silver lay. The small
triangular Fort Caroline was erected on the river bank and fortified with
naval guns. The promise of the beginning was fair, but misfortunes appeared
and deepened into tragedy. Day after day the colonists searched for gold,
while their ever-increasing demands for food made the once friendly Indians
surly and, at last, open enemies. The English slaver, John Hawkins, home-
ward bound from the Indies in 1565, found the discontented Frenchmen
thinking only of home. The timely arrival of Ribaut, exuberant in his re-
stored freedom and supplied with seven ships, provisions, and reinforce-
ments, shattered their gloom with the sunlight of his plans. But these high
hopes were destined to be short-lived, for up from the south death was on
the march.
Philip II was not the man to leave this French encroachment on Span-
ish domain unchallenged. The settlement at Port Royal was a threat, but
Fort Caroline endangered all Spanish West Indian trade, and Philip's anger
mounted as spies brought details of French plans and preparations. By
royal command Pedro Menendez de Aviles, noble by birth and tested in bat-
tle, fitted out an armada. As adelantado of Florida he was to explore the
coast as far north as Newfoundland and to destroy the piratical settlements
of other nations. On August 28, I565, the same day that Ribaut's fleet
anchored in the St. Johns, Menendez entered a harbor some thirty-five
miles south, where the feast day of St. Augustine was celebrated with High


From a sixteenth century painting

Pedro \lene'ndez de Avile's

Mass and the place named in his honor. Eager to attack the French in-
terlopers, Menendez waited impatiently while hi's colonists were provided
with temporary quarters, and then he hastened away in anticipation of de-
stroying Fort Caroline before it could be reinforced. His disappointment
at finding Ribaut already there spurred his attack on the superior French
vessels which, caught by surprise and forced to flee, easily outdistanced
their slower rivals. Menendez turned back but found the fort too powerful
for his forces, and returning to St. Augustine, he busied himself in erecting
a fort and establishing a settlement.


The indecisive meeting of Spanish and French vessels off the St. Johns
foreshadowed the conflict to come. Ribaut gathered his fleet and sped to
attack before Menendez could build strong defenses. Nature, which had so
often wrecked Spanish plans, now aided them, for a violent storm swept
Ribaut's fleet to destruction on the islands south of St. Augustine. In spite
of drenching rains and in the face of possible overland attack from Ribaut's
shipwrecked army, Menendez ordered his men to march against Fort Caro-
line. The Spaniards waded swamps and cut through virgin forests to reach
Caroline four days later. Their victory was complete: the women and chil-
dren were spared, but all the others who failed to find cover in the woods
found death. Meanwhile Fort Caroline, renamed San Mateo, was manned
for Spain and Menendez hastened back to St. Augustine.
But Ribaut's force threatened Spanish control of St. Augustine; and
when Indians brought news of a number of men near an inlet to the south,
Menendez marched with forty men to find almost five times that number
of starving Frenchmen. Although promised nothing beyond such treatment

From Scribner's Popular History

Massacre of Ribaut


"i~ ~B~'
" bP
'* I ~:



'I <

6.^ s

A .4


"-.rj ~-

From Montanus, Nieuwe Weereld

An Artist's Conception of St. Augustine in 1671

-lr r.7;*~-
I -.--~ac ~-~
~~~'p~Ba` X~~

'p~ we....
r p, ra
"f5~~:sa I
r lbl~
.~i ,~~l~a~




~1- -
~- --
=------ .:. I~b~S~ ~aD-~~'L

., J4da* d
V~ iP;
.e ~-"rrs*~c~c"~&~-armau~8a



I der~


as the Lord ordained, they surrendered to Menendez. Eight professed
Catholics were shipped to St. Augustine; the others were started overland
under guard. As the day faded, these French Huguenots, hands bound be-
hind them, were slaughtered by the swords and pikes of the conquerors. A
few days later the main body of Ribaut's force, along with their leader,
reached the inlet, which the Spanish named Matanzas or "Slaughters,"
and Menendez marched to repeat his performance. Ribaut and less than
half of his men begged for mercy and received death. Those who had refused
to surrender later yielded near Cape Canaveral when Menendez promised
them honorable terms; as his own forces now outnumbered the prisoners, he
could be merciful without endangering Spanish domination of Florida.
"He has done well," said Philip II on hearing of the victory. Menendez
had done well. France had been thrust from Florida.
France, stung to the quick by the slaughter of the colonists, exacted
vengeance in 1568 when Dominique de Gourgues captured San Mateo. Evi-
dently believing that Menendez had hanged the French captives of Fort
Caroline in 1565 and nailed over them some such inscription as, "I do this,
not as to Frenchmen, but as to Lutherans," Gourgues hanged his Spanish
prisoners and wrote above them, "Not as to Spaniards, but as to Traitors,
Robbers, and Murderers." It was a bloody episode in the story of co-
lonial rivalry-nothing more. France never again attempted settlement on
the Florida peninsula.
The more valuable, though less dramatic, work of Menendez lay before
him. Under his able direction the camp at St. Augustine grew into a pio-
neer village, and the surrounding land yielded some food, although the crops
were inadequate for colonial needs. The possibilities of orange culture were
investigated; Indians were held in check by treaties and arms; the coasts
north and south were explored; and from Santa Elena (Port Royal) to
Tocabaga (Tampa Bay) forts or blockhouses were erected at strategic
points. These were garrisoned for the defense of Florida and provided with
Jesuits for the Christianization of the Indians. Menendez moved here and
there to quell the mutinies of his own men, to provide protection against
the savages, or better to secure the land in the event of European attack.
The infant colony's survival was a monument to his leadership.
A leader of less resolution than Menendez would have abandoned Flor-
ida in these early years. Even he, with all his restless energy and construc-


tive imagination, accomplished little more than the establishment of mili-
tary posts from which missionaries worked to convert the Indians. In his
time the Jesuits devoted their lives to the cause of Christianity, toiled end-
less hours to learn the Indian tongues, and adapted their service to the
spiritual needs of the unbelieving savage. Their work, as intelligent In-
dians learned to their sorrow, resulted in the practical enslavement of those
converted. The Indians reacted in the only way they knew-by murder-
ing the priests whenever opportunity arose. Missions planted with the blood
of martyrs often died when military support was withdrawn. In 1570 Father

From a painting in the Spanish Cathedral
The First Mass Said in St. Augustine

Juan Bautista de Segura and eleven companions, one a small boy, separ-
ated themselves from all military power to found a mission on the Rappa-
hannock River. Their ineffectual attempt to convert the Indian ended in
1571 with the massacre of all the company except the boy. The following
year the Jesuits transferred their activities from Florida to Mexico; while
their record in Florida lacked tangible results, they laid the foundation for
others and thus in failure they triumphed.


The devoted brotherhood of Franciscans built on this foundation and
reaped a rich harvest in the generations after 1573. Though progress was
slow and the difficulties always tremendous, the courageous friars extended
their missions from St. Augustine to the St. Marys and to Gaule (South
Georgia). In 1597 an Indian revolt, resulting in the massacre of six priests,
temporarily halted their persistent expansion. One by one missions ad-
vanced from the St. Marys past the Suwannee. By 1679 there were fourteen
in the Apalache country (near present-day Tallahassee), and later the chain
of missions advanced down the Gulf coast and up the Apalachicola River.
These religious settlements became the outposts of the Spanish domain in
the new world. Around them, converted Indians labored on the land, be-
held in partial understanding the beauty of the Mass, and defended the
country against their unbroken brothers. Slowly, painfully, the friars were
conquering Florida for Spain. Theirs was not the vision of gold and silver
which impelled the explorers and founders, but the inner satisfaction of
bringing the Church to the unknowing. In return they demanded a contri-
bution in labor from their converts in order to spread the gospel deep into
the hinterland. Left alone, or adequately supported by Spain, the missions
would have established Spanish civilization in southeastern North America.
This was not to be. Decade after decade colonists from England and France,
pushing down the Atlantic and the Mississippi, reduced Spanish Florida to
the peninsula. The friars were valiant in defense of their labor, but Spain
was weak, and the missions perished.




4 .

Nuestra Senora de la Leche, Catholic Chapel in St. Augustine,
Built to Commemorate the First Mass Said in Florida



T ]HE appearance of John Hawkins at Fort Caroline,in 1565,foreshadowed
the growth of English interest in the new world. Led by Hawkins and
Francis Drake, British merchants and seafaring adventurers looted east-
bound Spanish galleons of their gold and silver. While Queen Elizabeth
secretly shared their profits and openly denounced them, these freebooters
laid a sound foundation for English commerce. Elizabeth could not stop
them, for she, as well as they, believed England was destined to challenge
Spanish naval and colonial supremacy. Spain replied by sending the Grand
Armada to invade and conquer the upstart in her island home. In 1588 the
lumbering Spanish warships were defeated by trim English merchantmen
that struck and lived by speed to strike again; defeat became catastrophe
when a storm, believed by some to be the protecting hand of the Church
of England's God, wrecked Spanish vessels on the rocky Scottish coast.
Spain was defeated, not conquered; and through the years she remained
mistress of the Indies and formidable in her strength.
England's irregular ventures in North America in the sixteenth century
fathered her consistent advance in the seventeenth. In the 1580's Walter
Raleigh planted a colony on Roanoke Island and Francis Drake warned
the Spaniards of impending conflict by capturing and burning St. Augus-
tine. The colonization of Virginia in 1607 threatened Spanish control of
Florida, but lethargic Spain only watched and waited hopefully for disease,
starvation, or Indians to end the Jamestown settlement. When hope faded,
as success not only crowned English efforts in Virginia but also in New Eng-
land and Maryland, Spain bowed to the inevitable and traded her indefensi-
ble territory along the Atlantic for the security of her galleons carrying the
riches of her southern possessions. In 1670, after Carolina, with a bound-
ary south of St. Augustine, had been granted by England to eight proprie-
tors, Spain recognized England's North American territory in exchange for
vague assurances of no further expansion south of Charleston. The indefi-


nite boundaries of this American treaty settled nothing, for England was
bent on expansion by peaceful negotiation, if possible; by war, if necessary.
Thus Spain's unwise but inevitable policy of defense by giving up expendable
territory strengthened her already robust opponent.
Spain could yield no more without surrendering all. Florida, in herself
profitless, guarded the abundance of Mexico and the islands, and somno-
lent Spain awakened to fight with the courage of desperation. The Fran-
ciscan missions of North Florida became posts of military defense, Indian
allies were sought, and plans were drawn to encourage migration to the
colony. The wooden fort at St. Augustine gave way to a moated coquina
fortress, Castillo de San Marcos, which little by little was enlarged and re-

.. .. ..:.. .. .... ... .... ............"

Castillo de San Marcos, St. Augustine

inforced until its unconquerable strength became Florida's center of defense.
In 1686 Spain took the offensive to capture and plunder Port Royal, but
intermittent fighting proved inconclusive for both sides until Governor
Moore of Carolina captured St. Augustine in 1702. After sacking the town
he retreated in disgrace when the fort held firm. To regain his honor he
later devastated the mission settlements in the Apalache country-a blow
from which Spanish Florida never fully recovered.
The struggle of England and France for world supremacy dominated the
seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. Spain with all her possessions was


caught in the riptide created by these two giants. The colonial advance of
both in America engulfed section after section of what Spain once called
Florida. A year after the founding of Jamestown, the French settled Quebec
in Canada. Up the St. Lawrence, through the Great Lakes, and down the
Mississippi her priestly explorers charted the path for traders, those runners
of the wood, who molded French America. Soldiers of the king, along with
transient settlers, manned the forts of this wilderness empire. In 1685 La
Salle sailed from France directly into the Gulf to colonize the Mississippi
area; his attempt failed, but the threat stirred Spain to plant a colony in the
region between peninsular Florida and Mexico.
As usual Spain deliberated and procrastinated. The pilot of an expedi-
tion sent to destroy the La Salle colony urged a settlement on Pensacola
Bay, but immediate attempts to execute this recommendation miscarried.
It was November, 1698, before Andres de Arriola led an expedition from
Mexico to the Bay where he found two Spanish vessels from Havana already
in the harbor. Arriola, expecting much, found little. Disillusioned by the
appearance of the country, he questioned the wisdom of remaining; and
though dissatisfied, he constructed a fort and equipped it with sixteen guns.
It was well that he did, for in January a French fleet appeared off the har-
bor. The sight of the fortifications checked the enemy until the timely ar-
rival of a hurricane sent them flying. But France came back. The Mis-
sissippi region, or Louisiana, became hers, Mobile Bay fell under her con-
trol, and in 1719 the fort at Pensacola surrendered to the might of France.
Pensacola was returned, for France and Spain moved into alliance under
the coercion of English aggression. Henceforth Spanish Florida was to suf-
fer no further contraction by the power of France. That which had been
lost, however, could not be recovered. France had carved western Florida
for herself while England had sliced Atlantic Florida to her taste.
England's prodigious appetite was not yet satiated, and the years fol-
lowing the Moore expedition brought Florida no peace. Colonial traders
moved inland to compete and fight with the Spaniard for Indian favor; and
Carolina planters complained of the Florida haven to which their slaves es-
caped and of the Indian raids, encouraged, they said, by Spanish words and
guns. In retaliation the English colonists fell upon the Indians to subdue



and enslave them. Perhaps in the knowledge that theirs was the greater
fault, English propagandists painted a gruesome picture of Spanish-Indian
relations. Even the writings of the gentle Spanish bishop, Las Casas, who
consciously exaggerated Spanish cruelty to stir compassion in the hearts of
his countrymen, were flung to the world as confessed proof of Spanish bru-
tality. So while the Spaniard lived with the Indian, often protecting him
though working him unmercifully, the English killed and enslaved him, and
pointed to the mote in the eye of Spain. No English propaganda, however
well done, blinded the Indians to realty; they arose in desperation, and for a
time, the flame of colonial life in Carolina flickered.
The Yamassee War of 1715 silhouetted the insecurity of Carolina. This
bloody evidence of their exposed position as a frontier colony goaded the
Carolinians to demand a buffer settlement for the protection of their lives
and accumulated wealth. After two attempts failed to colonize the area
between the Savannah and Altamaha rivers, the Carolinians planned a line
of forts in the trans-Savannah country. They constructed Fort George at
the mouth of the Altamaha in 1721, but the cost of maintaining it quickly
convinced them of the impracticality of their scheme. In their opinion the
defense of Carolina was an imperial problem of the mother country, not a
provincial one; and though England knew this, she preferred to pass the
economic risks of settlement to her citizens.
Thus in 1732 King George II of England readily granted James Ogle-
thorpe and his associates the right to hold and settle Georgia. Oglethorpe
envisioned a colony for imprisoned debtors where neither the practice of
slavery nor the drinking of beer would corrupt men's morals. Though his
dream quickly faded into an historic memory, the location of his grant be-
tween Spanish Florida and English Carolina, together with the rivalry of
the mother countries, determined Georgia's colonial function. Oglethorpe,
the humanitarian, became a warrior. From Savannah to San Juan Island
(Saint George), where the St. Johns flows into the sea, soldiers manned
hastily built forts. This invasion of Spanish-claimed territory invited at-
tack from St. Augustine, but the inadequacy of the forces of Governor Josf
Simeon Sanchez suggested the wisdom of negotiation. In 1736 an agree-
ment was reached at Frederica, Georgia: both nations would withdraw from



St. Augustine in the Eighteenth Century

the St. Johns. England thus gained tacit recognition of her rights above
the St. Johns, but Spain, outraged by the surrender of her claims, repudi-
ated the agreement and invited Governor Sanchez to return home, where
he was summarily executed.
The die had been cast for battle. Spain, hot with anger, moved rein-
forcements to St. Augustine, and England commissioned Oglethorpe as com-
mander in chief of the Carolina and Georgia forces. Yet the Florida-Geor-
gia controversy was but one of the many disputes between the mother coun-
tries. More important was England's determination to gain unlimited trade
in Spanish America. The crisis came in 1739 when Robert Jenkins, an Eng-
lish smuggler, presented Parliament with a severed ear, claiming that the
beastly Spanish sailors had relieved him of it some seven years earlier. The
ear was remarkably well preserved; perhaps it had been taken the previous
night from the unfortunate head of an inebriated Englishman. Parliament
rose in righteous wrath to declare war on Spain. Other European powers
chose sides and the fighting in Florida was dwarfed by the world struggle
which followed.
Long years of indecisive warfare opened in America when the Spanish


forces from Florida destroyed a small English colony on Amelia Island.
Oglethorpe, with a sizable army of settlers and Indians, retaliated by devas-
tating the country around the St. Johns. A part of his army proceeded up
the river to capture Fort Picolata and Fort St. Francis de Poppa, and the
success of this flanking movement cut St. Augustine's connection with the
western Florida settlements. Then by land and sea Oglethorpe struck to
capture the city's outlying defenses. Here his successes ended, for the Cas-
tillo de San Marcos held firm, and Spanish vessels slipped into the harbor
to bring reinforcements. Oglethorpe marched his bickering, disease-ridden
troops north. Deserted by the Carolinians and unaided by England, he was
faced with certain Spanish reprisal. In the summer of 1742 the Spanish
came with fifty ships and 2,800 men. The battle of Bloody Marsh, though
a minor reverse, helped to unnerve the Spanish. They had, perhaps, a four-
to-one advantage over the Georgians, but theirs was a motley crew of inef-
ficient fighting men, and the sudden arrival of English reinforcements
might spell disaster. The Spanish took counsel and fled. No further activ-
ity of importance came from either contestant, and the war officially ended
in 1748 with peace terms as inconclusive as had been the fighting.
For over a decade England and Spain lived in peace. In the meantime
the North American empires of England and France drew the mother coun-
tries into another war for world colonial supremacy; and by 1761 Spain,
fearful of her colonial pre-eminence should France be defeated, decided to
oppose the English juggernaut. She had hesitated too long, for France had
spent her force. The foolhardy decision cost Spain Havana, and with it,
Cuba. When the Treaty of Paris closed the war in 1763, she ransomed
Cuba by ceding Florida. Though a defeated but grateful France compen-
sated her with the gift of Louisiana, this magnificent acquisition failed to
appease Spain for the loss of a colony which was so vitally important to the
protection of her trade and for which she had fought for over two centuries.
Spanish Florida had been the northern outpost of a vast American em-
pire. The country was inhabited by intractable Indians who resisted con-
quest, and the difficulties of Florida's retention were increased by the im-
perial wars of England and France. Economically Florida was not profit-
able: her natural wealth was hidden and difficult to exploit; and her soil,



climate, and resources, though potentially valuable, required careful and ex-
tended husbandry. Furthermore, Spain lacked the population to colonize
her empire. Her short-sighted policy of prohibiting the immigration of
foreigners and restricting the migration of her own non-Catholic citizens
decreased her available manpower.
With few settlers, Florida was no match for the relatively populous Eng-
lish colonies to which men of all faiths and nationalities freely came. Hence
in the contest with England, as in the one to come with the United States,
Spain could not hold her undeveloped and underpopulated settlements in


'C g~g~g~"s"s~I
1 4 ~

p '

r .: ^
a irl *,* '*-*

: .. i o



From the original in the Library of Congress

Pensacola in the British Period

/h "B



T HE Treaty of Paris outlined extensive changes in the ownership of
North America. Spain ceded to England all the possessions east of the
Mississippi, and France withdrew from the continent by delivering to Eng-
land all her territory except Louisiana, which was later given to Spain.
Frenchman and Spaniard alike believed these forced cessions to be no more
than temporary expedients. Spain retired from Florida, determined to wait
until a more opportune moment would assure her victory over England and
the return of her colony; France, humiliated in defeat, worked in the night
of her sorrow and waited for the day of her triumph; and a new state, soon to
be born, would rise to demand a share of the British empire in America.
For more than half a century, Florida, her permanent ownership in doubt,
was to be a pawn of those who played the game of imperialism.
In accordance with the treaty, Spain delivered Florida to England on
the arrival of the commanders with their troops of occupation. Captain
John Hedges took possession of St. Augustine on July 20, and Lieutenant
Colonel Augustin Prevost received Pensacola on August 6, 1763. The Span-
ish officials, though demanding pomp, ceremony, and the paying of honor
to their sovereigns, facilitated the transfers and worked diligently to per-
suade Spanish residents to sell their holdings and accept grants in Cuba.
Recalcitrants were warned of the risk to their church under British rule,
although the treaty promised those who remained the liberty of their Cath-
olic faith. Spanish Floridians, soldiers and civilians, joined the exodus of
their leaders. By February of 1764 only eight of over three thousand former
colonists remained in the St. Augustine area and these stayed behind as
agents in the liquidation of property holdings. The settlements of Span-
ish Florida were in reality mere military posts supporting a few civilians;
when the soldiers were withdrawn, the settlers followed in their wake.
The first military commanders of British Florida and those who suc-
ceeded them were unfavorably impressed by the country and the evidences


of Spanish culture. St. Augustine, the largest town, was a struggling settle-
ment with hardly more than nine hundred buildings on grounds overgrown
with weeds, and with no visible source of economic life. Pensacola was a
crude village-like camp of huts and military barracks which were constructed
mainly of bark, and which were without windows, fireplaces, or adequate
furnishings. Sandy soil, along with the climate and the insects, gave the
British cause for many uncomplimentary reports to home authorities. In
addition to natural disadvantages and inadequate housing, the British oc-
cupation was further complicated by the presence of the Spanish. Their de-
parture ended the hardships arising from differences in language, law, and
religion, but the new owners remained more impressed by the poverty of the
country than by the possibility of future economic development.
The military occupation of Florida came in a year of transition when
England was reconsidering and revamping her colonial policy. The de-
fects of her colonial system, so clearly outlined in the course of the recent
war, forced England either to tighten her controls or recognize the independ-
ence of her distant American settlements. A new imperial policy enunci-
ated by Parliamentary acts and executive orders in the postwar years brought
increased taxation, a standing army, a definite Indian program, and gov-
ernmental establishments for Canada and Florida. The old French area
along the Gulf was joined to Spanish Florida and this almost virgin terri-
tory stretching from the Atlantic to the Mississippi was divided into the
royal colonies of East and West Florida. East Florida, with its government
at St. Augustine, included the peninsula to the St. Marys River, west to the
confluence of the Chattahoochee and Flint, and south along the Apalachi-
cola to the Gulf of Mexico. West Florida, with Pensacola as its capital, ex-
tended along the Gulf to the Mississippi, up this river to the mouth of the
Yazoo, due east to the Chattahoochee, and down this and the Apalachicola
to the Gulf. East and West Florida had little in common during the period
of English control: the former was Atlantic in thought and interest; the
latter looked to the Mississippi Valley.
In both colonies England established a government in the mold of her
royal Atlantic colonies. An appointed royal governor, together with a
crown-approved council and judiciary, ruled the settlements. The gover-
nors, unlike those of the Atlantic colonies, received their salaries directly
from the English treasury and thereby avoided one source of colonial con-


flict. There remained, nevertheless, ample cause for controversy with the
military authorities, the council members, the judges, and the holders of
large land grants, who broadly interpreted their rights. The creation of
elective assemblies for West Florida in 1766 and for East Florida in 1781
added to the governors' problems. Although one governor, John Eliot,
hanged himself in his study one month to the day after his arrival in Pen-
sacola, the other royal executives either bore the humiliating trials of office
or fought to uphold the dignity of their position.
In spite of the ever-present political controversy, British leadership gave
Florida her first substantial development. The Indians were bribed into
treaties by glittering trinkets, free entertainment, and the honor of small
and great medals. Generous land grants induced responsible men to move
settlers to the colony. Dr. Andrew Turnbull and his associates founded
New Smyrna and peopled the settlement with Greek, Italian, and Minor-

--0 -C/r1//,77rnO Baoa7C/-y of h/ej/
F /or:/a as -d/a 6/isrGed ,y
'roc/a c a /,"o,7 o .76d.

Drawn by Albert M. Laessle



can families; and the philanthropic Denys Rolle recruited the destitute and
the shiftless from London's crowded alleys to establish Rollestown on the
St. Johns. Campbell Town, on the west bank of the Escambia River and
north of Pensacola Bay, became a small village inhabited by French Prot-
estant refugees. These settlements never prospered, but such centers as Mo-
bile, Manchac, and Natchez grew in importance with the passing years.
Rough roads connecting the principal settlements opened the country for
agriculture. The plantation economy of England's southern and island
colonies found a productive home in Florida, and the large farms with their
slave labor not only supplied a part of the colony's necessary foodstuffs but
also produced staple crops for export.
The work of the farmer, woodsman, and trapper laid the basis for an ex-
panding trade with England. As early as 1774 indigo, deerskins, timber,
naval stores, and oranges accounted for exports valued at over 22,00ooo
from East Florida. The West Florida ports loaded ship after ship with
skins and furs; St. Augustine exported over 65,000 oranges in the year of
the American Declaration of Independence; and six years later the Flor-
idas were producing more than 22 per cent of England's entire import of
indigo. The colony's need for manufactured goods and even food necessi-
tated such large shipments, however, that the value of her exports never
equaled that of her imports. These advances under England were encour-
aging evidence of Florida's agricultural and commercial potentialities.
Much of this prosperity came from Florida's increasing population.
The growing difficulties between the mother country and her Atlantic colo-
nies caused a few northern colonials to migrate to England's southern-
most possession, where no thought of independence disturbed the settlers,
and with the advent of the Revolutionary War, thousands of Loyalists
found refuge in Florida. The eastern colony, where all but a few settled,
grew in population and wealth, but this good fortune was temporary, for the
rebellion of the thirteen colonies afforded powerful European countries the
long-awaited opportunity to crush England. France, little interested in
the welfare of the nascent United States but exceedingly eager to humiliate
England, joined forces with the Patriots. Spain and Holland threw in their
lots with France and the Revolution became a world war.
Florida suffered in this war as she had in previous world conflicts.
Spain, bent on regaining her lost colony, moved from her bases at New Or-


E'a- f/orida

NJLLtus ADDInoc-t JIR.\R It



No. 16.


i--__~---- --------

Y, MAY o0, to SATURDAY. MAY 17, 1783.

Sr. AUGIUtSTINE, May 17.

C,.j > "* + ;.. _, n t* i' h ,.t p r 'for r th ;
S ,. ,. i h er v e o 'arlf I ;a '. -. i a
S.. ,. : .

Yi, '. .v T. ".- P. T R KTo-
SYN, E /iv'rc, Ca tfain Genera:,
Ce r fl. / C ivirarrhtr in
(-., t, ": ercr iid C mam,,tcrlin
,':./+i ,r'i'"/ over ) is .M\I.:-i/t 'ss
Jrp?* t\ s/.i-F/'rJ./e, Cbesre-
o f ,/ i 7ce ,d,'.:d ao the

-- i i ,:A.\S his FI ccl-
C'C I.cyV Sir o C u, v CA(AR-
4L '?rTON CorTInand-
r ing in chief his Ia-
jeffl,'s forces in North
Am 'ric' lath informzed men that
r ruviti as to the t t of 0C1tl, r
I:', W en efntC to his p!'u-
v h-, ,: the fipport of his Mha-
j t- 's .o,,d and faithtfii fultjeo?,
v.i h.i':c becan i u er the necelii-
t- c-F learvng the provinces of
t .. Carolini and Georgia:
Antd wSc'rei his Fxccllencyy the
lior. RoiRT i DIGc;w' F qiuire,
cin;nardin- his N.ijcilcly's naval
10frcc in Norldt Aniei clt, from
his tender and comipaitionate re-
-grd for the 1futfring6s df hlis
nlaieftxvs oa local ljliets, and an-
x;ous to lighten their diltrcflls
1'V vcerv micanr. in his power,
rit th givcn ine the flrontgeit af-
furances of every aTi lance being
afforded the inhabitants of this
province for their removal; that
the commanding officer of his
Majeftyv's hips of war on this
flation has his directions to con-
fuil the convenience of the in-
habitants; and tliat tranfports
may be had for fuch of them as
wilh .to proceed to England or
the Weft-Indies, or any other
part of his M;:jcftly' dominions,

previous to the evacuation of the iprovincC, which priobatbly
will not be cfcTecfld during the
course of this fumnmer, as there
are no accounts of the definitive
trucity of peace being fitged. I
have twthrcfore thought ilt by and
with the advice of his Mlali. v's
ollouoirable COllli;, to ntify
and in i'<- puhlick, aid I do here-
by notify and make public fuch
information, atialt at;Itces to all
his M.iajclcit's ig:)d and faithful
fiubjecl of this his Miajefi's
faithful ]ril,;i;:ce of Eaft-Flori-
intl.bitants, who may not be eim-
ployed in ig::ii.itirte, and are
dclh ous of tAing the cariicft op-
p'UtU':itiv of d- ptarting,do forth-
with give in their umets, nun'i
bers, and ldefiin.tion, to the Se-
cretar)', t)itice, that they may
be properly ;icctinoialtcdl, here-
by otclring every afliftance and
fi ppc I 1t ini my' powir; and I do
ear; teltlv recominend and require
all his MNA'cllv's faid ihbiec.s who
nmay be Cemploy)ed in agriculture,
to be attentive in railing their
crops of provisions now in the
ground for their future iublifl-
Given under my Iland, and the
Great Seal of bis Majfjlrs fid
Province, in the CwuncilClham-
ber, at St. Auguflin'e, c the 'tn-
t'-nintb dajyojf A'fril, one thou-
frnd fvren hundred and eighty
ibree, and in the t senly-third
yearf his MajCfl's Reign.
God fave the King!
Br his Excellency's rcomrnand,
David Yeatcs, Secretary.
ALL perforsi who have any demands againft the
cilate of the late JOHNI REIor deccafed, are
required to bring in their accounts properly at.
tested, and all tIhofe any ways indebted to the faid
estate, are required to make payment immediately
it. Arsjflire, Afrdza, X7Ij.

On TUESDAY Evening, the rcth of NM.ay
D O U G L A S,
A Ta O DY :
7 i*. ,.r, c, k,' he ad&ck,
TheI Ci at.i ersi by Centknien, for the tar:i't d
the diftrlreed R "'ur".
Door to be op ened at S-IX o'Cok,; 'ren..
mauce to commence at SEVEN ; no mnretoc tiake
at the -oor, nor any perfon admitted bco ird the
Ticket to ti had at Mr. JOerOr'WT QN Sfore, for
merely Mr. Payne's.
ITT, 3,i 9d. ,4LLERT, 4. 5
On TIotRSt AY ncr ,, the td inf.
tt PLPVFeY N *aC" *,
( tiroa referrf
At MajorMaao oN'S quarter, cw w arrackS,
A MAfIOGANY % IdY i a. whh elegant
S Fuiniture, and Window Crtasins
A p.c.' i, i, t .,ayv Clcock
A i'f.'00' Crt-cii b Ji Drawers
A B i.,k Cfec
A DI f aihd ehT r Drawers
C:hi-r$ nmit a Sopha
Ir.It and ,,ither P gsi
Tl'c -t! Table Ciua
,ClIfrL,- and Glaft
A ,'i< trn i tt.l Grattar
Some ija:c, &c. &c.
A NY -erfon ftaving t r follow rg Ng-rGRnF-'.
gpod! property, uhih thiy r"i(h to (lirnfe
of, mIy bear of a purchaser, 16ho P;0i p.ri Jooor
the ca.h, fhv pplyirg to the Printer,
A gad Ca-pentrr, two Brkh':yr', a"' /akr-
Smwift tin/ a n t CSard. ser.
fTi"r FN or firaytd -iat of mr y m ',ro, or the
Sr:grt or TKutfi.y ia a fight Jay Horfe,
rrr',, r iti of 'furteen harn shigsh, about ipht yeaw
ohM, paces, trots, anti canticrs.lately irandetD
ro tie mr-innting fhouldcr, M, S. with flit in bia
left cr. Tie abxve reCa-d will -' e~iven to any.
pero ii thn swill deliver the frid Ho rf to the fib-
firlrer in St. Auguflire, Ciatl-,i Cjwrmjrr at Paca.
lato, or to Mr. SuatreandJ at Hefter'i Bt a.
J 0 H N M I-L t.',
Fer it ertenaeisj .rCapa rs fu ymr#-, A&rrhan
and others,
That he keeps his Notarya)Ofce
At h l Houfethe North end of Cheroit. 'ret "
near the houfe of Mr. Ronars Mrto.i, Ho
Carpenter. $
All forts of LA W PRECEDE NTS done
with' elre ard e itioi. -*n -

From the original in the Public Record Office, London

First Newspaper Printed in Florida

-- F~I


leans and Havana to capture Mobile in 1780. Pensacola fell the following
year and British West Florida ceased to exist. In the east the refugee co-
lonial Loyalists were organized into the "Florida Rangers." Thomas Brown,
who had been tarred, feathered, and run from his Georgia plantation, led
them as they wreaked havoc along the frontier. Such Rangers as Brown's
and the Carolinian Daniel McGirtt, a onetime Patriot who became a Loy-
alist when an officer demanded his favorite mare, avenged their injuries by
pillaging frontier homes. The Georgians and the Continental army retali-
ated with repeated and unsuccessful attempts to subdue East Florida. Al-
though the British at St. Augustine, especially after Yorktown, lived in
constant fear of a thrust by the combined forces of France, Spain, and the
United States, the only successful invasion of St. Augustine was that of the
dislodged Loyalists in search of new homes. Throughout the war East
Florida remained an unconquered British colony.
The peace treaties accomplished that which war had failed to do. Eng-
land recognized an independent United States, whose territory extended
from the Atlantic to the Mississippi and from Canada to Florida; and
West Florida went to her Spanish conqueror. British East Florida, boxed
in from the north, west, and south, would be at the mercy of Spanish or
American aggression, and England decided to withdraw from a colony whose
ownership would be more fruitful of conflict than of profit. News of the
intended abandonment of East Florida threw the British population into
panic. They waited in the hope that the final treaty would provide for
British retention of Florida, but English dispatches of September 30 and
December 4, 1783, confirmed the cession to Spain and ordered evacuation
of the province.
Confronted with the painful choice of living under the restricting hand
of Catholic Spain or migrating, Englishmen preferred the latter. England
provided her suffering colonists with money, free transportation, and re-
compense in land of other colonial areas. A few hundred returned to Eng-
land, more went to Nova Scotia, but thousands chose the Bahamas and
British Caribbean colonies. Other thousands rejected these offers and wan-
dered over wilderness trails to the uninhabited American west. Some, per-
haps fewer than a hundred, remained in Spanish Florida but their influ-
ence, like England's, almost ceased when Spanish rule became firm. Vir-
tually twenty years of British rule were wiped out, but still there remained


the place names, the boundaries, the heritage of political and religious free-
dom, and the example of a plantation economy upon which Floridians
would one day build a state.

During the second Spanish occupation Florida never reverted to what
she had been before the British came. The remaining foreign element of
Greeks, Italians, Minorcans, and English forced Spain to soften her former
rigid laws. The Indians, who had been spoiled by an abundance of rela-
tively inexpensive English goods, could not be satisfied by the limited quan-
tity of highly priced Spanish commodities. These and other considerations
led Spain to alter her previous colonial policy.

From a painting of the original building made about 1900 by E. D. Chandler
Eighteenth Century Headquarters of Panton, Leslie and Company, Pensacola:
Focal Point of the Indian Trade for the Gulf and Mississippi Areas


The change did not come with fanfare and blare of trumpet but slowly
year by year as necessity dictated. Where once only the devout Catholic
could enter Florida, now Catholics, as well as Lutheran and other Protes-
tant sects, lived together. A census of St. Augustine in 1786 listed many
non-Catholic residents, and Protestant American farmers moved down from
Georgia with their chosen forms of worship. The English trading firm of
Panton, Leslie and Company, founded during the British occupation, pros-
pered from favors granted by Spanish officials. American farmers with
their slaves and plantation economy found a welcome in Spanish Florida,
and lavish land grants were given to Spaniards partly in return for past
services but more in the hope of increasing the colony's population. In the
earlier occupation of Florida, Spain had attempted to hold the province by
missions and military posts. This policy had failed and Spain now turned
to the building of an economically profitable colony whose population, she
hoped, could fend for itself with little aid from the mother country.
The altered plan for the retention of Florida was foredoomed to failure.
As the United States expanded westward and plantations developed in
southern Georgia and the lands bordering on West Florida, she boldly de-
manded Florida's Gulf outlets and rich plantation lands. Spanish encour-
agement of American migration whetted rather than satisfied the appetite
of the land-hungry Anglo-Saxon. The central theme of the second occupa-
tion became a conflict between Spanish retentiveness and American acqui-
The United States did not take over all of Florida at one time. The ter-
ritory became American piece by piece with the United States waiting and
preparing new conquests between her aggressions. Justification for the
acquisition came from various sources: the inadequacy of Spanish control,
Indian outrages, and the loss of escaping slaves. But fundamentally Amer-
ica wanted the plantation land with its rivers flowing into the Gulf, and she
determined to have it.
The motives for procurement were less complicated than was the story of
attainment. When Spain reacquired Florida in 1783, she claimed all the
territory formerly known as British East and West Florida. Thus in Span-
ish opinion the northern boundary of West Florida was the line 32 degrees
and 28 minutes between the Mississippi and Chattahoochee rivers. The
United States, denying the validity of the northern boundary, set the line


at the 3Ist parallel. Negotiation failed to settle the controversy, for the
Americans also demanded the free navigation of the Mississippi without of-
fering anything of value in return. Spain planned a treaty whereby she
would give the territory in question in exchange for complete control of the
Mississippi waterway. When the United States refused to cripple her west-
ern territories by accepting such a treaty, negotiations ceased. Meanwhile
she developed a stronger government under the Constitution of 1787 and
Europe was thrust into war as a result of the French Revolution. Now faced
with the growing power of the United States and by uncertainties in Eu-
rope, Spain yielded free trade on the Mississippi and accepted the 3Ist par-
allel as the northern boundary of Florida. The clear title to this vast terri-
tory was acquired by the United States and lost forever to Spain and to
The European war created additional problems for the United States
and Spain. France, dreaming of a new empire to rival that of England, de-
manded and received Louisiana from enfeebled Spain. French ownership
of the Mississippi endangered American control of the Mississippi Valley
and American commissioners were dispatched to Napoleon with offers to
buy not only the Island of Orleans, through which the Mississippi flowed,
but also Florida, which the Americans mistakenly thought was included in
the Louisiana grant. Florida could not be purchased, but all of Louisiana
with its poorly defined boundaries was secured for the United States.
Florida remained as desirable as ever. An immediate attempt to pur-
chase the colony in 1803 failed, as did a later one in 1805. Undaunted by
these diplomatic rebuffs, the United States used the undefined east bound-
ary of southern Louisiana to claim West Florida to the Perdido River, but
Spain's well-founded protest stayed the American hand for a time. The set-
tlers of West Florida, however, were not so patient. After Napoleon had
placed his brother on the throne of Spain, the Spanish-American colonies
rose in rebellion. In West Florida where Spanish, English, and American
plantation owners, army deserters, and fugitives lived, the authority of gov-
ernment gave way to anarchy. From this confusion came the Republic of
West Florida with a lone-star flag and a request for immediate annexation
by the United States. The territory between the Pearl and the Mississippi
rivers was occupied by the United States in 18o10 and in the following year
Congress authorized President Madison to seize all of West Florida to the


Perdido, if the local authorities consented or if there was danger of foreign
occupation of this region. The territory west of the Pearl River was incor-
porated into the state of Louisiana in 1812.
The international situation had dictated quick action. Spain, long a
dependent ally of France, had joined England in the hope of destroying
Napoleon. The United States had feared the possible annexation of Flor-

From a painting of the original building made about 1900 by E. D. Chandler
Residence of Spain's Intendant, Pensacola

ida by England and already the demand in America for war with England
had reached feverish proportions. The elections of 181o had brought vigor-
ous young expansionists to the American Congress, who ostensibly de-
manded war with England to protect commercial and seamen's rights, but
who in reality wanted Canada and Florida. These aggressive nationalists
planned the quick conquest of these territories and their consolidation before
either England or Spain could span the Atlantic to defend their colonies.
Before the actual declaration of war in 1812 President Madison had en-


courage rebellion in East Florida. If the settlers there would declare their
independence of Spain, the United States might occupy the territory without
bloodshed. The rebellion, instigated by Madison's agent, broke early in
1812. John Houstoun McIntosh was chosen governor of the "indepen-
dents," Amelia Island with the town of Fernandina was taken, and St.
Augustine was invested. Before the town and the fortress of San Marcos
the rebellion faltered, and Madison was forced to disavow the act of his
agent. The British later used East Florida as a supply base in the war al-
though Spain never declared war on the United States. Ambitious Ameri-
can plans for the conquest of East Florida were never executed.
In the west there was a different story. General Andrew Jackson left
Nashville, Tennessee, in January of 1813 with frontier troops who hated
Spaniards and Indians and who knew little and cared less about interna-
tional law. The general and his men were eager to plant the American flag
on the ramparts of Mobile, Pensacola, and St. Augustine. Their desire was
not realized for Jackson was ordered back and General James Wilkinson
occupied Mobile. Jackson entered the town in 1814 to defend it from the
British who were using the neutral Spanish port at Pensacola as a base of
attack. After throwing back the invaders, Jackson marched on Pensacola,
captured the town, witnessed the destruction of its protecting fort, and
withdrew his forces to Mobile. From there he went to New Orleans to win
his greatest military success.
The United States, disillusioned by her defeats in battle, had made peace
with England before the Battle of New Orleans. The American desire for
Canada and Florida and the rights of neutrals the real and fictitious
causes of the war went unmentioned in the peace. As Spain had never
joined her English ally in the war against the United States she had no part
in the peace treaty.
Florida, however, was not forgotten in the years that followed. The
United States retained control of the country west of the Perdido; while
in the Spanish territory, British agents operated freely, buying, selling, and
encouraging the Indians to resist American encroachment. Escaping slaves
continued to find refuge south of the Georgia border where they joined
other Negroes at an abandoned British fort on the Apalachicola. Spain was
unable to keep order in her colony. The United States complained of this
and coveted the ungoverned land.


STerr'//or.y c/c /'77,cd y S, -oa/l' a/7d
6//e ,/i7/ed S/a /er, /763-/P9T; />/
a cQ u/red A4y /te c5,/edlS/a/tes /-?
// ee 7r-e;a i/ of / /79.

Occyu/ec // A/Ae Ul'ee/ S/a/e //7 /8/C.

[f lI 0 uc/~cUL / /A / /e^/ea/Je/7 a/7eJ i /8/'3.

Sy //he 'n

Drawn by Albert M. Laessle

Indian depredations in 1818 brought Jackson to Florida once more.
Coming down the Apalachicola he pushed the Indians before him, swung
east to take the Spanish fort at St. Marks, and went on to the Suwannee,
chasing and searching for the elusive Indians. Two Englishmen, thought
to be instigators of the Indians' hostilities, were captured and summarily
executed by Jackson, who allowed his personal antipathy to overcome his
judgment. Jackson's execution of these British subjects caused the inter-
national sensation of the year and war might have resulted had England
not been tied down by diplomatic struggles in Europe.
Jackson's activities in Florida did much to convince Spain of the diffi-
culties inherent in keeping a colony which bordered on so unfriendly a coun-
try as the United States. The situation between the two nations was tense.
They either had to fight or negotiate, and neither desired war. Spain knew


well that the United States could take Florida, and when President Monroe
appeased Spanish honor by restoring all the territory overrun by Jackson,
the way was open for negotiation. On February 22, I819, plenipotentiaries
of Spain and the United States reached an accord in Washington. East and
West Florida were ceded without payment although the United States
agreed to cancel the claims of her citizens against Spain and to satisfy the
claimants to the extent of five million dollars. The Senate ratified the treaty
immediately but Spain delayed for almost two years. It was February 22,
1821, before ratifications were exchanged and the treaty proclaimed.
The ownership of Florida had been determined. The first settled colony
of the Atlantic coast had been the last of that area to come under American
jurisdiction. Unlike Canada, Florida, with neither the size nor the backing
of a strong European country, had been unable to withstand the determina-
tion of the Americans. Good fortune had at last smiled on Florida.


From paintings by Comte de Castelnau

State Capitol and Street Scene in Tallahassee



T HE Spanish cession of 1821 marked the turning point in the history of
Florida. For over three hundred years the territory had been claimed
by a European power whose colonial interest centered in some other Amer-
ican possession. As the northern outpost of the Spanish-American empire
and the southern frontier of the British colonies, Florida had suffered from
centuries of imperial neglect. Tied as she had been to warring nations the
colony had felt repercussions from every world struggle, and her story had
been little more than a footnote to the history of Europe. With the coming
of American ownership Florida's internationalism gave way to continental
isolation. Almost a century was to pass before she would again be caught
in the disturbance of world war, and though isolation from Europe did not
bring peace, it did give the territory, and later the state, an opportunity to
develop an American culture. For the United States, in contrast to former
European owners, was ready to offer the economic and political assistance
which Florida required to fulfill her destiny.
President James Monroe appointed Andrew Jackson provisional gover-
nor of Florida. Although the office did not appeal to him, the general ac-
cepted it, viewing the appointment as a vindication of his severely criti-
cized activities there. In June of 1821 the governor and his family reached
Florida, and Mrs. Jackson proceeded to Pensacola where she visited friends
and was shocked at the gaiety, dancing, and gambling of the people.
Jackson refused to enter the town until the slow-moving Spanish gover-
nor, Jose Callava, was ready to surrender the province. Meanwhile, Colo-
nel Robert Butler received the transfer of East Florida at St. Augustine on
July 10, 1821. One week later Governor Callava's procrastination ended.
At ten o'clock on the morning of the seventeenth Jackson reached the town
square and entered the government house, where the official formalities
transferring Florida to the United States were concluded. The American
flag, to the accompaniment of cannon salutes and the playing of The Star-


Spangled Banner, replaced the Spanish flag over Pensacola. Spanish sol-
diers marched to their waiting ships while their countrymen watched, sad-
eyed and mournful. The American residents, along with those who had
rushed to Florida in anticipation of political and economic advantage, cele-
brated the transfer with hearty approval.
Andrew Jackson's stay in Florida was brief. He remained long enough,
however, to imprison former Governor Callava on a flimsy charge and to
confirm the notoriety of his ungovernable temper. There were other and
more lasting results of his administration: the counties of Escambia and
St. Johns with the towns of Pensacola and St. Augustine were organized in-
to governmental units; and ordinances to check the levity which Mrs. Jack-
son considered licentiousness were enacted. The military government of
the province became semi-civil as judges, attorneys, collectors, a marshal,
and two secretaries, one at Pensacola and the other at St. Augustine, began
their official duties. President Monroe had appointed his own men for
these posts, a fact which, as Mrs. Jackson intimated, may have hastened
Jackson's departure from Florida. By October, 1821, when Jackson re-
turned to Tennessee, the former Spanish colony had a workable government
under the executive direction of the two resident secretaries.
Florida attained territorial status on March 30, 1822, by a congres-
sional act which vested executive power in a governor appointed by the Pres-
ident of the United States, created an executive council, and established
territorial courts. William P. DuVal of Kentucky became the first terri-
torial governor, a position which he held for twelve years, and four other
governors succeeded him before the territory became a state. Most of them
were well known in American political circles. John H. Eaton with his
wife Peggy, the former barmaid around whom social snobbishness had cen-
tered in Washington, came to Florida in 1834. The vivacious Peggy was
gawked at by the populace and snubbed by "aristocrats" even in frontier
Florida. Richard Keith Call, who came to the territory with Jackson and
who was long to be associated with territorial and state politics, followed
Eaton, and after the short term of Robert Raymond Reid, was reappointed
to the governorship. John Branch, former governor of North Carolina and
member of the Federal Cabinet, served in 1844 and 1845 to complete the list
of territorial governors.


The people of Florida gained experience in self-government under the
direction of these appointed executives. Gradually the powers of home rule
were extended. Almost year by year new counties were created until there
were twenty-six in the territory. Tallahassee, selected in I824 as a com-
promise capital between jealous east and west factions, grew into a sizable
town with an adequate capitol building in its central square. Other com-
mercial and plantation villages such as St. Marks, Marianna, Madison,
Quincy, Jacksonville, Palatka, and the boom towns of Apalachicola and its
short-lived rival, St. Joseph, mushroomed over the land. Military forts
laid the base for the future cities of Tampa, Sanford, and Ocala. On the
Florida Keys the southernmost city of the United States, Key West, became
a naval base and salvage center. In these and other political units men
worked in the laboratories of self-government.
The knowledge gained in local government carried over into territorial
affairs. In 1826 Congress permitted the people of Florida to elect their
legislative council and twelve years later a senate and house of representa-
tives replaced the council. In the same year, 1838, a convention met at
St. Joseph to frame a constitution and request Congress to admit Florida in-

.. '

.m JAM
d iO"

From a painting by Comte de Castelnau
Key West in the 183o's


to the Union. Florida's political development under territorial status was
reaching maturity.
Economic expansion kept pace with political growth. An influx of set-
tlers came to buy land and operate profitable farms. Under Federal direc-
tion the old Spanish and English land grants were either validated or re-
jected. Much of the public domain was surveyed and almost a million
acres sold in the land offices of Tallahassee, St. Augustine, and Newnans-
ville, with over 90 per cent of the sales in the plantation region of Middle
Florida between the Apalachicola and Suwannee rivers. Plantations worked
by slaves, small farms with or without slave labor, and backwoods shanties
dotted this area. The products of agriculture and the exploitation of acces-
sible natural resources increased with the growth in population. Cotton was
the staple crop of export, but sugar cane, tobacco, rice, corn, and vegetables
had their place in territorial agriculture. The export of oranges from St.
Augustine reached into the millions and a variety of other fruits was culti-
vated for home consumption. In the west, Pensacola became a lumber and
naval stores outlet, and although the growth of the lumbering industry was
rapid, the possibilities were scarcely scratched before 1845. Agricultural
and allied products, together with the farmers' need for manufactured
goods, built the towns and enriched the merchants.
The handmaidens of trade were not forgotten. Settlement and commerce
could not be isolated from transportation. The crude trails of an earlier
period had mostly fallen into disuse by 1821. Within a decade a road linked
St. Augustine to Pensacola and branch lines of this road served the growing
settlements between the two towns. A coastal highway from New Smyrna
passed through St. Augustine and Jacksonville, and extended almost to the
Georgia border. Tampa Bay on the west coast was connected to the Su-
wannee by a road which was later extended to Jacksonville. Federal largess
provided most of these rough highways, but the counties and municipali-
ties joined in the program of internal improvements by constructing local
roads. Throughout the territorial period the dirt road remained the most
important course of inland transportation.
Canals and railroads, however, were a more engrossing field of specu-
lative activity. In a canal-crazy era Floridians advocated a trans-penin-

From paintings by Comte de Castelnau

Apalachicola River
Railroad at Tallahassee

Indian Village on the Apalachicola
Arsenal at Chattahoochee


sular canal and chartered many companies for the building of other canals,
but accomplished little. Four short railroads served the territory. The
Tallahassee-St. Marks Railroad was operated intermittently but at a profit
from its completion in 1837; the other railroads went bankrupt before the
end of the territorial era. Ambitious plans came to those who dreamed of
rail lines from Pensacola to Georgia and Alabama towns, of connecting the
east and west, or of spanning the peninsula and, although some passed be-
yond dreams, none were completed.
Territorial banks served the transportation and planter interest. Some
banks, organized on speculative principles and supported by territorial or
"faith" bonds, grew into paper giants. When the boom of the I830's col-
lapsed, the banks tottered and fell. Not one remained when Florida be-
came a state in 1845.
The disaster of unbridled speculation almost coincided with the long
and bloody Seminole War. Both checked the territory's economic advance.
The Seminoles, remnants of a number of Indian tribes, had been driven
deeper and deeper into peninsular Florida by the ever-advancing farmer.
In 1832 some of the tribal chiefs agreed to a treaty which provided for re-
moval of all the Indians. After the ratification of the treaty by the United
States Senate in 1834, Wiley Thompson was appointed agent and superin-
tendent of the migration. The rank and file of the Seminoles were opposed
to the acceptance of western land in exchange for their Florida acres, and
warriors under the leadership of Osceola massacred Thompson and a num-
ber of whites on December 28, 1835. The war thus begun was to continue
for almost seven years. Winfield Scott, Thomas Jesup, Zachary Taylor,
and other men, who later became famous American leaders, sought to con-
quer the wily Indians. Osceola, the Seminoles' great leader, was seized in
camp under a flag of truce, brought to St. Augustine, and then imprisoned at
Charleston, South Carolina, where he languished and died. The infuriated
Indians led by Wildcat, who had been captured with Osceola but who had
escaped from Fort Marion at St. Augustine, fought back savagely though
vainly. The war dragged on with intermittent massacres until August, 1842,
when little more than a hundred warriors remained. These were allowed to
stay in southern Florida. The other Seminoles had been killed or moved
to the West.


.i---K,- ._

Because of the heading, many English investors believed these
bonds were guaranteed by the United States.

had been approved by popular vote; and the rivalry between east and west
////^ < / H //45U // ,



The conflicting interests of local and sectional leaders delayed Florida's
entrance into the Union. Many Floridians urged the creation of two states,
rather than one, from the territory of Florida, and this demand was encour-
aged by Southern leaders who desired the greatest possible number of slave
states in the Union. Although the territory was only a part of the vast land
which had been known as Spanish Florida, it was still the second largest po-
litical unit of the eastern United States. Southerners contended that its
size and the differences between East and West Florida justified the crea-
tion of two states. Some Floridians held out to the very end for a division
of their land or at least for the right, after admission, to organize two states
from one. Northern leaders opposed these demands and objected to the
admission of a slave state unless provision was also made for the entry of a
free state. Definite congressional action was deferred until 1845 when a
compromise resulted in the Act of March 3 which provided for the admis-
sion of Florida and Iowa.
Iowa refused to accept the conditions requisite to her admission, but
Florida acted with dispatch. Territorial Governor Branch called a state
election in May, 1845. The Democratic party nominated William D. Mose-
ley, a lawyer-planter and former North Carolina politician, for governor;
and the Whig party chose Richard K. Call, a leader who had done more
than anyone except David Levy to bring Florida into the Union. Levy's
services were rewarded with the Democratic nomination for representative
in Congress. His Whig opponent, Benjamin A. Putnam, was a lawyer who
who had been an unsuccessful military figure in the Seminole War, but who
was second only to Call within the ranks of the party. As usual, editors of
Whig and Democratic newspapers magnified the virtues of their party's can-
didates and abused their opponents with complete abandon. Whiskey flowed
freely on election day with the Whigs offering the voter the jug and the
Democrats handing out well-filled glasses. Moseley and Levy, along with
most of the Democratic candidates for the Florida General Assembly, won
by large majorities.
The assembly met in Tallahassee on June 23, 1845, to organize and pre-
pare for the inauguration of Moseley. On the morning of the twenty-fifth
the residents and visitors who filled the town were up at an early hour. Old
friends meeting again, perhaps, lingered over hearty breakfasts, but the ma-
jority ate with haste and rushed to the Capitol Square in their eagerness to

aj Kf

~b ~ 3 ~ P% 'i C
5: 1?
2(94"s Wii N1 E ,:'i
P. 4 -"1i ~ p
~ ~ C

91 ~



~C'Ilia I~
AWA-9A Ia. A 7 F ."i f P,~


Florida about 1845

PIr,ab Isa
Aqw Tw"Ic



v~L .J KC .
" r "'
Y rya~u~un~u
~ '-r .n~n*.~lr:.?r
:rl'l:rl* ~vrn r~r ~r..~ r~


miss none of the day's color and excitement. On the arms of many were
black crepe bands, for the news of the death of General Jackson had reached
Tallahassee as the first general assembly convened. Both houses of the as-
sembly, after passing commemorative resolutions, had agreed to wear arm
bands out of respect for him who had led the common man in his fight for
political democracy.
Shortly before nine on the morning of June 25 these crepe-banded sena-
tors and representatives pushed through the crowd to enter their respective
legislative halls. The senators soon joined the representatives to receive
the official returns of the recent gubernatorial contest. While the legisla-
tors performed their constitutional duties, the people outside renewed old
friendships and made new acquaintances. No doubt the news of Jackson's
passing calmed the wonted exuberance of those who had shared his victories,
and here and there men who had served under the "Gen'l" at the Battle of
New Orleans or fought with him against the Spanish and Indians held back
an honest tear. But death could not still the excitement of life. Those
who had known him best realized that Jackson would have enjoyed to the
full this moment when the land he had fought for was entering the Union.
At noon Governor-elect Moseley and Territorial Governor John Branch
were escorted to the east portico of the capitol building. With them were
James D. Westcott, Jr., chairman of the St. Joseph constitutional commit-
tee, and two other surviving members of that committee, George T. Ward
and Thomas Brown. The state flag, with its five horizontal stripes in blue,
orange, red, white, and green, and with the motto "Let us alone," was hoisted
on the flagstaff of the capitol. Governor Branch made a short speech to his
successor and the "several thousand" assembled Floridians. Westcott's
speech which followed was equally brief. Governor-elect Moseley then took
the oath of office as the first governor of the state of Florida. The great
seal of the state was handed to him by Branch and the constitution was
presented by the constitutional committee.
At the conclusion of these formalities Governor Moseley proceeded with
his inaugural address. He gave his conception of the duties of a public
servant, touched on the importance of upholding states' rights, outlined his
program for advancing the state, and requested the cooperation of the as-
sembled senators and representatives. The booming of a cannon and the
deafening applause at the end of his address marked the approval of his


words. The shouts of the people told more than that. Their acclaim ex-
pressed their personal satisfaction in knowing that Florida was now a self-
governing commonwealth and the political equal of the other twenty-six
American states.

Governor William D. Moselev


Gamble Mansion, near Bradenton

Smith House, Madison

Ante-Bellum Mansions


..~: ~B~s~ : ,


f 1~- .

r ,. I

t% IC
.I ~s:rr



T HE twenty-seventh star, representing Florida, was added to the flag of
the United States on July 4, 1845. Before this date James D. Westcott
and David Levy, who relinquished his seat in the National House of Repre-
sentatives, had been chosen by the state assembly to represent Florida in the
United States Senate. The assembly also elected four circuit judges and
the executive officers as authorized by the constitution of Florida and
levied taxes on business enterprise, agricultural wealth, professional men,
slaveowners, and free Negroes. By the end of July a functioning state gov-
ernment had replaced the old territorial rule.
Geographic and economic factors were paramount in determining Flor-
ida's place in the American Union. With few exceptions state leaders came
from the lawyer-planter aristocracy to advocate the rights of the South and
support the Southern point of view. Florida's governors and most of her
other officials before 1861 were natives of Virginia, North Carolina, South
Carolina, and Georgia. Their backgrounds and preconceived ideas added
to the power of the geographic and economic forces which made the state
an integral part of the South.
Florida, like her sister states before the Civil War, supported two major
political parties. The Democrats were generally more successful than the
Whigs, but Whig candidates won many important elections. Within a
decade after statehood the Whigs elected a governor (Thomas Brown), a
senator (Jackson Morton), and a representative (Edward Carrington Ca-
bell). The four important offices of governor, representative, and two Sen-
ate posts were held by Whigs for two fifths of these first ten years. After
1855 the growing sectional differences between North and South forced
Southern leaders to close their ranks and present a united front to their
Northern opponents; before 1860 the Whig party was dead in Florida, and
the Democrats ruled with almost unchallenged conservatism.
The cultural ideals and material growth of Florida, like those of the


South, revolved around the plantation. Small farmers, merchants, artisans,
and professional men yearned for the social distinction associated with
plantation ownership. Relatively few of the many who longed for this pre-
ferred status achieved their ambition, for Florida never became a land of
numerous or large plantations. In 1860 fewer than eighty farms contained
more than one thousand acres, and not even fifty plantations had one hun-
dred or more slaves. Most of the plantations were located in the "black arc,"
beginning at Jackson County and extending down through Marion County,
where Negroes were numerically predominant. The ambitious Floridian,
however, with characteristic American optimism thought he, his son, or his
daughter, would one day become a member of the planter-aristocracy. A few
did rise by work, luck, or advantageous marriage, but for every successful
aspirant there were many who struggled only to sink deeper into debt and
On the plantations and in such towns as Tallahassee, Quincy, Monti-
cello, and Madison was developed a culture of charm and grace. Southern-
ers liked to call it a "way of life" and compared their living with the bustling
frenzy of the Northerner's existence. A Southern gentleman with his code
of chivalry, his paternalistic lordship, his cigar and drink, and his leisure
knew, or thought he knew, how to live in comfort and dignity. This "way
of life" produced little in Florida other than momentary satisfaction. The
ante-bellum generation created no literature, painting, or sculpture of en-
during value. Homes and public buildings, though architecturally sound
and pleasing in appearance, aped the creative genius of others. Public
schools and colleges were inferior to those in the free states and even from
politics, the forte of the Florida gentleman, came no original contribution to
either the theory or practice of government.
There was little time to develop an extensive culture in ante-bellum
Florida. If there had been centuries to work in, rather than less than a gen-
eration, the plantation regime might have created a diversified culture of
outstanding merit. Southerners, at least, believed that their economy, given
sufficient time, would bring a new age more golden than that of ancient
Rome. On the other hand, the intellectual atmosphere of ante-bellum Flor-
ida was not conducive to originality or departure from the normal. By 1860
the slaveholder responded to just and unjust criticism with an aggressive
hotheadedness that stifled freedom. Unity and conformity in defense of


S The Juvenile Band

A Negro Hut

Deserted Negro Cabins, Kingsley

Picking Cotton

From Harper's Magazine, November, 1878

c `rr SSrc-
rL''. prbc;p,
C*L _asq~~.~Lt I
J11 t


the institution of slavery were demanded: freedom of speech and press
where the institution was questioned could not be tolerated. A man of
Richard K. Call's standing could denounce secession and suffer no physical
harm, but others were not so fortunate. The defense of an outmoded and
dying institution blighted the creative spirit of a people.
The institution of slavery affected more than the arts in Florida. Slave-
owners found an uncertain future under a system that contributed to sta-
ple-crop production and exhausted the fertility of the land. The successful
man, and even more his wife, spent long days of labor making a precarious
fortune. A single bad year often wiped out the gain of a decade. Profits
came more from the exploitation of virgin resources than from slavery, and
the consequent decline in the value of land reduced or even wiped out these
spectacular earnings. Behind the romantic glitter of the plantation system
was work and heartache and fear.
Two thirds of white Floridians owned no slaves. Many small farmers
cleared forests and built homes to achieve a life of frontier abundance. These
yeoman farmers, strong, self-dependent, and courageous, were the solid citi-
zens of the type who had made America great. Far beneath them was the
relatively small class of shiftless, ambitionless "poor white trash" whose phy-
sical energy had been sapped by malnutrition and intestinal parasites. These
dwellers on the poor lands and in the piney woods lacked the material bene-
fits of slaves and, in fact, their only advantage over the slaves was a freedom
of person bestowed upon them by genealogical accident. The urban coun-
terpart of the poor whites huddled in the shanties and alleys of Florida's
ante-bellum towns. Within the towns, no one of which had a population of
three thousand, lived the workmen, merchants, exporters, agents, and pro-
fessional men. Some, but by no means all of them, owned slaves. Here,
too, the wealthier planters resided in stately homes. Although there was a
wide gulf between the top and bottom layers of society, rich and poor were
unified in the conviction that the institution of slavery alone could control
the Negro.
Negro slaves were more numerous than any one class of whites; in the
black arc they comprised a majority, and in all Florida almost equaled the
number of whites. The slave's life was one of toil, mitigated by lethargy
and simple pleasures. Food, shelter, clothing- economic security in gen-
eral-were his, but not freedom: he was property-like a wagon or a mule-


Presbyterian Church, Tallahassee, Built
during the Territorial Period

though a peculiar property with human form and reason. Where the kin-
ship of humanity failed to restrain a wrathful owner, the economic loss
which would result from bodily injury to his property usually sufficed. The
master was neither the evil lord of lash and leash painted by the rabid abo-
litionist nor the saintly father portrayed by the Southern apologist. Inhu-
mane overseers and sales resulting from bankruptcy or the settlement of
estates brought suffering and separation to Negro families, but most of the
slaves lived under a rule, the legal harshness of which was tempered with
indulgent laxity. They enjoyed a simple though not abundant life. Those


who viewed slavery from a distance never understood its hidden virtues,
which attached many slaves to their masters with loyal devotion.
The Negro contributed much to the advance of ante-bellum Florida-
a fact that has too often been overlooked by the white man who gives un-
due credit to the plantation owner, and by the Negro who avoids the subject
because of the stigma attached to slavery. The ancestors of a large per-
centage of white Americans were also slaves, though their period of indi-
vidual slavery was of limited duration. These white slaves or indentured
servants pushed back the American frontier and have been honored for it.
The Negro likewise deserves citation for his work, for his ancestors felled
the trees, built the houses, and cultivated the land which transformed Flor-
ida from a wilderness into a civilization. Agriculture and commerce, lum-
bering and naval stores, highways and railroads, canals and ferries were a
result of their productive activity. On the plantation and in the town skilled
Negro artisans, slave and free, designed or made the better manufactured
articles. Their labor was a part of nearly every material advance.
In spite of the incubus of slavery, Florida made creditable headway in
the ante-bellum years. Stagecoaches and wagons carried an increasing load
of passengers and freight over nominally improved, though rough, roads.
The seaport towns of Pensacola, St. Marks, Apalachicola, Jacksonville, and
Fernandina received and transshipped the products of the farms and lum-
ber mills. The need for better transportation centered the speculative spot-
light on railroads. David Levy Yulee, who had reassumed an old family
name, was the leading promoter, builder, and operator of the period. Back
in the 1840's he had emphasized the economic advantage that Florida would
gain from the 500,000 acres of public land which the United States would
give the state on entering the Union. In 1850 the Federal Government ceded
Florida all swamp and overflowed lands within the state, and in 1855 the In-
ternal Improvement Act established a board of trustees for internal im-
provements and vested in it the authority to use the state lands to develop
transportation routes. An all-state system of railroads was projected. Pri-
vate companies were encouraged by lavish grants of improvement bonds in
the amount of $10,000ooo a mile for actually constructed railroads and
$Ioo,oo000 for the larger bridges. By 1860 one could travel from Jackson-



-":zr, -7 --- ^ 1
", ;T" "

^mii1B'r r '
g),.^ ,.^, ;^-, **

.9ssKR^sl[~: u`"11~k~ --BTs, X

From a painting of the original building made about 1900 by E. D. Chandler
Old Spanish Jail, Pensacola
Jonathan Walker, classed as a slave stealer by Pensacolians and immortalized in Whittier's The
Branded Hand, was imprisoned here for nearly a year.

ville to Lake City, to Tallahassee, and to St. Marks, or from Fernandina
to Cedar Keys by rail.
The bettered, but still inadequate, means of transportation facilitated
the economic development of the state. Pensacola increased her leadership
as the lumbering center, but at points from Escambia Bay to Cedar Keys
trees fell and sawmills cut the lumber that formed a large part of Florida's
exports. Other trees, tapped for rosin, were the source of the growing naval
stores industry. Year by year new farms swelled the flow of cotton to the
nearby ports. In Alachua County cattle ranchers multiplied to bring into
prominence an agricultural enterprise that predated the transfer of Florida
to the United States. All over the state, agriculture and the extractive in-
dustries were growing in value and importance.
Men, women, and children moved into Florida to work the land and
build the towns. A population estimated at 66,500 in 1845 increased over
Ioo per cent within fifteen years. The white inhabitants were almost en-
tirely native-born citizens of the United States, although less than 50 per
cent were natives of Florida. Negroes accounted for nearly 45 per cent of


the total population of 140,424. This enlarged population justified the cre-
ation of twelve new counties, but there was a net increase of only eleven, for
St. Lucie County was divided and the name temporarily disappeared. Pen-
sacola, Key West, and Jacksonville grew into towns of more than 2,000 in-
habitants. At the crossroads, by harbors, and near forts families settled areas
upon which cities would one day stand.
Facilities for the education of children increased more rapidly than the
population of the state. Free public schools had their beginning in the ter-
ritorial years, but the results had been unsatisfactory. In 1849, 5 per cent of
all land sales were added to a school fund that hitherto had received only
the income from the sale of section sixteen in every township. This addi-
tional state aid, together with the school tax of some counties and towns,
gave the public school the funds for needed expansion. At this time, David
S. Walker, the registrar of public lands, became in effect the state school
superintendent. Leadership and financial support were responsible for al-
most one hundred free schools, which were operating for short terms by
1860. Private schools outnumbered the public schools in this year, but
their enrollment was little more than half that of the free schools. Tutors
gave instruction to the genteel on the plantation and often to the more cap-
able children of the yeoman farmer. Even advanced educational institu-
tions were not forgotten. The legislature of 1851 made provision for the
establishment of two seminaries-one east and one west of the Suwannee.
In 1853 one was located at Ocala and four years later the other was opened
at Tallahassee. From these beginnings the University of Florida and the
Florida State College for Women eventually developed into institutions of
recognized merit.
The church advanced along with the school. The Catholic and Episco-
pal churches traced their origins to the Spanish and British periods, but only
the Catholic Church could boast of a more or less continuous existence. Al-
though both of these denominations served a number of communicants, they
found their most productive field in the urban community and, as a result,
failed to capitalize on their early advantage. In agrarian Florida the evan-
gelical Baptists, Methodists, and Presbyterians gained ascendancy during
the territorial period. By the time Florida entered the Union each of these



denominations could boast of independent church organizations. Ministers,
who worked the land on week days and preached on Sundays, and courage-
ous circuit riders brought the church to rural Florida. Revivals and camp
meetings not only cared for spiritual needs but also gave farm families op-
portunities for social gatherings. Country and town churches were organ-
ized in the state and those previously established grew in strength and use-
Notwithstanding the substantial cultural and economic growth of Flor-
ida within the United States before 1861, the political leaders gave increas-
ing attention to their conception of states' rights. The first state flag of
Florida with its motto, "Let us alone," and parts of Governor Moseley's in-
augural address of 1845 foretold the clash of ideas between the agrarian
South and the industrial North. Business men wanted a more powerful

From Leslie's Illustrated Newspaper, 1858
Block House at Fort Myers




From a sketch by James E. Taylor

A View of Tallahassee

`';~ I C~r
~. ~


central government which would function in the interest of industry. North-
ern abolitionists and less radical anti-slave leaders demanded either the
complete abolition of slavery or its limitation to existing boundaries. The
Southerners protested against all these ideas. Their fundamental objection
was not to the increase of Federal power but to the planned use of that in-
creased power, for they proposed and advocated measures which, if en-
acted, would have enlarged Federal authority. The bills they introduced
in the Congress, however, called for additional Federal power which would
be used to benefit the South. Northerners likewise planned action and
hoped to establish an interpretation of the Federal Constitution which would
be advantageous to the North. Northerners possessed the political power
to accomplish their aims. This fearful truth impressed Southerners as they
saw the North move more and more toward a unity of purpose.
Under the circumstances the Floridian fell back on states' rights, a polit-
ical device that had the sanction of historical precedent. He protested the
Northerner's changed interpretation of the Constitution, he declared that
the central government was only the agent of sovereign states, and he pro-
claimed the constitutional right of secession. He became the defender of
the Constitution of the United States as written by the fathers, and accused
the Northerner of changing and breaking a document that should be kept
Acceptance of the Northerner's program, the Floridians believed, would
add to the North's material advantage over the South. The Florida agra-
rian, with his hostility to industrialism and his conviction that the farmer
was the main producer of wealth, believed that the people of the North lived
on the product of Southern labor. The enrichment of the North, Floridians
contended, had been brought about by governmental grants to Northern
business. These grants, as the South became more and more a minority
section of the United States, would increase tenfold, until in the end the
North would hold the entire South in economic bondage. Secession and
the formation of an independent confederacy of the Southern states were the
ostensible remedy for the South. By such action alone could the economic
domination of the North be thrown off, the institution of slavery be made
secure, and the social structure of the South be kept intact.



Floridians reached these conclusions after years of thought and political
agitation. In 1850 Governor Thomas Brown, a Whig, refused to appoint
delegates from Florida to a proposed Southern convention at Nashville,
Tennessee. Radical Democrats, however, called conventions over the state
and sent four men to Nashville. When the Compromise of 1850 brought
hope of sectional peace, Floridians endorsed it by re-electing Cabell to the
United States House of Representatives and replacing the radical Senator
Yulee with the politically unknown Stephen Russell Mallory.
The Compromise of 1850, unfortunately, did not end sectional disputes.
The publication of Harriet Beecher Stowe's Uncle Tom's Cabin, the debates
in Congress on the Kansas-Nebraska bill, and the rise of the Republican
party revivified controversy and strengthened the Southern radicals. David
Yulee returned to the Senate in I855. Political crisis followed political crisis.
As one ebbed another took its place; and the phenomenal strength of the
Republican party in 1856, the Dred Scott decision, the Lincoln-Douglas de-
bates, and John Brown's raid on Harper's Ferry kept sectional animosities
at fever pitch.
By 1860 Southerners were declaring that the election of a Republican to the
presidency would bring secession. In that year the Democrats split their vote
among three candidates for the presidency, but the Republicans gave unified
support to their candidate, Abraham Lincoln. When the election gave him a
majority of the electoral votes, though his popular vote was almost a million
less than the combined total of his opponents, the state of South Carolina
seceded from the Union. Florida along with Georgia, Alabama, Mississip-
pi, Louisiana, and Texas called state conventions to consider secession.
The Florida convention met in Tallahassee on January 3, 1861. There
was no question about the necessity for secession, but some members of the
convention wished to delay until the other Southern states acted, or desired
to submit an ordinance of secession to voters for popular approval. Though
radical agents from other states addressed the convention, their advice was
not necessary, for the radical members of the convention acted quickly. On
January Io the convention adopted the ordinance of secession by a vote of
62 to 7.
That night a torchlight procession paraded the streets of Tallahassee.



Before the Capital Hotel an enthusiastic crowd roared its approval of the
speech of Governor-elect John Milton. On the following afternoon the mem-
bers of the convention proceeded to the east portico of the capitol where,
in the presence of the state legislature, the supreme court, the cabinet, and a
host of onlookers they signed the ordinance of secession. The secretary of
state, Fred L. Villepigue, affixed the great seal of the state to the document
and proclaimed Florida an "independent nation."

Corduroy Road


I- :



From Harper's Weekly, 1862

Destruction of a Confederate Salt Factory at St. Josephs Bay

T~.~neal ~sli~ke~''~*

~~a c sa-~L~LI
-~_ Ip~-~C ~ --yr*D

,~T~S'J .xlxl---qT~~~..

-r r~ -*- ,



TIHE people of Florida had moved along with the people in other parts of
the South. All classes of society and all individuals, whether they
had favored or objected to dissolution of the Union, either conformed or
were made to conform to the new order. There could be no turning back
after secession. Representatives from Florida participated in the forma-
tion of the Southern Confederacy and the state took her place by the side of
the other Southern states.
Floridians hoped that secession and the formation of the Confederacy
could be accomplished in peace, but they took a warlike attitude toward the
acquisition of Federal property within the state. By order of Governor
Madison Perry, state troops seized the Federal arsenal at Chattahoochee on
January 5, 1861, and Fort Marion at St. Augustine two days later. At Pen-
sacola the Federal forces withdrew from the two mainland forts, McRee
and Barrancas, to Fort Pickens, which was located on Santa Rosa Island
and commanded the entrance to Pensacola Bay. When the Pensacola navy
yard was surrendered on January 12 to a combined force of Florida and
Alabama troops, the United States held only Fort Taylor at Key West, Fort
Jefferson on Garden Key, and Fort Pickens. The forces at Pensacola
were eager to attack Pickens, but Jefferson Davis, Stephen R. Mallory, and
other Southern leaders, fearing that bloodshed might bring immediate war,
urged delay. No attempt was made to capture the fort until after rein-
forcements had been moved in by order of President Lincoln, and by that
time the opportunity to take the position by quick assault had passed. The
three forts-Jefferson, Pickens, and Taylor--were held by the United
States during the entire course of the Civil \War.
In the meantime the swift pace of events, the firing on Fort Sumter,
the calls for troops by Abraham Lincoln and Jefferson Davis, the secession



of four additional Southern states, and their union with the Confederacy
brought war between two determined antagonists. With open conflict, the
center of interest shifted from Florida to the battlefields of Virginia and
the Mississippi Valley. Except for relatively unimportant engagements the
Florida civilian saw little of the war. This was not true, however, of the
volunteers and men of draft age. Approximately fifteen thousand Floridians
served in the Confederate army, and others enrolled for local defense in the
state forces. Almost thirteen hundred white Floridians volunteered for
service in the armies of the United States, and additional hundreds of Ne-
groes either volunteered or were induced to enter the Federal army as sub-
stitutes for Northerners who secured exemption by paying the Negroes to
take their places.
Florida's contribution in manpower, though large in proportion to
her population, was of less importance than the combined total of her ma-
terial and geographic aid. The location of the state and the protected har-
bors along her coast benefited both the United States and the Confederacy.
The Federal navy, which controlled the Florida Keys and Fort Pickens,
possessed supply bases and points from which warships could sail in search
of Confederate blockade runners. The conquest of Fernandina, Jackson-
ville, St. Augustine, Tampa, Cedar Keys, and Apalachicola enabled the
United States to tighten her general blockade of the South. At the same
time the numerous bays and inlets, the 'shallow waters, and the protected
rivers offered haven to Confederate vessels, which landed their cargoes on
the Florida shore. An adequate system of transportation would have in-
creased the value of Florida, but no doubt would have brought larger Fed-
eral forces into the state, with disastrous results to the people of Florida.
The most important contributions of the state to the Confederacy were
foodstuffs. In an age when refrigeration was almost unknown and in a
time when the army's need was tremendous, salt became a potent commod-
ity of war. Along the bays and inlets from the Choctawhatchee to Tampa,
men boiled sea water in large kettles and sheet-iron boilers to produce
thousands of bushels of salt. Salt-making, which centered around St. An-
drews Bay, became so important that men employed in it were exempted
from military service. At its height the industry, which was operated by



private individuals and by the Confederate government, employed nearly

five thousand workers. The total investment in kettles, boilers, furnaces,

warehouses, sacks, wagons, and mules may have reached ten million dollars,

for expeditions sent from the Federal fleet had destroyed six million dollars'

worth of equipment by the end of 1864. As soon as the Federal forces had

withdrawn, the salt-makers returned to reconstruct their furnaces and re-

store production. Repeated forays by the enemy severely diminished the

IT 11 I~

W-0=60 ~

Confederate Battery, Fort Barrancas,
Pensacola Harbor

amount of salt produced but never completely destroyed this war-created


The agricultural products of Florida were of even greater importance

than salt. Cotton and tobacco paid for most of the articles which came

through the blockade, but the Confederacy had a surplus of these staples

and urged farmers to plant grain and vegetables. In 1861 an act of the


* r'


Florida legislature limited every farm laborer to an acre of cotton or one
quarter of an acre of tobacco. Planters and small farmers needed no law
to force them into doing what was obviously necessary. They produced
corn, peas, potatoes, sugar, syrup, oranges, lemons, beef, pork, and fish,
which were moved from farms and harbors to state and Confederate ware-
houses. From the first, Florida was an important food producer for the
South, and the relative value of her supplies grew as military reverses con-
tracted the area of the Confederacy. By 1864 General John K. Jackson es-
timated that Florida could supply enough meat to feed 250,000 men for six
months, and in the same year, Alachua, Marion, and nearby counties were
shipping almost 25,000 beef cattle and Io,ooo hogs to army depots.
Backyard tanneries, country smithies, neighborhood grist mills, and
plantation handlooms were the source of manufactured goods. A farmer
who could turn all his cotton into cloth was exempted from any limitation
of production. Only a few took advantage of this privilege, for machinery
and labor were scarce. With the exception of Monticello, where a shoe
factory, a wool card factory, and the state's only cloth mill were located,
there was no manufacturing center worthy of mention.
The value of farm and home production within Florida brought the im-
portance of the state to Federal attention. In the first years of the war
the United States occupied Pensacola, Cedar Keys, Fernandina, Jackson-
ville, and St. Augustine. The Confederacy made little effort to hold these
distant points and the Federals gained footholds from which they moved
to check blockade-running and destroy salt-works. After 1863, the United
States gave more thought to the conquest of interior Florida, and the Con-
federacy offered stiff resistance, for the very life of the South depended to a
large extent on the retention of this breadbasket area. In February, 1864,
Federal transports brought an army which reoccupied Jacksonville and, in
the following days, pushed on to the railroad junction at Baldwin. In the
meantime the Confederate forces gathered at Lake City, and on February
20 the contestants met at Olustee, a few miles east of Lake City. The Con-
federate victory was decisive-1,86I men of a total 5,500 in the Federal
army were killed, wounded, or missing after the battle. A smaller Confed-
erate force defeated a larger Northern army composed of Negro as well as
white troops, a fact which made the victory all the more satisfying.


From Harper's Magazine, 1866

Battle of Olustee

The bloody battle of Olustee saved the rich agricultural areas of the
state, but the Confederates were unable to push the enemy from the east
coast. From Jacksonville, Fernandina, and St. Augustine Federal raiders
moved to Palatka, New Smyrna, and Gainesville to destroy provisions and
fight the seemingly ubiquitous Captain J. J. Dickison and his men. In the
west a Federal army moved from Pensacola to Marianna, but was unable to
gain more than temporary control of the town. In February, 1865, an ex-
pedition marched from Cedar Keys up the Florida Railroad only to be de-
feated by the forces of Captain Dickison. In March the United States
planned the capture of Tallahassee, but at Natural Bridge some children,
old men, and a few disciplined troops repelled the Federal forces and saved
the capital.
Throughout the war the people of Florida-in towns, in country ham-
lets, and on farms-shared the hardships of war. Necessities were scarce
and prices high. Women, in the absence of their men, labored on farms
and managed the estates. Helping them were loyal Negro slaves, who con-
tinued in their accustomed way to produce crop after crop and who gave


little trouble to the white population, which in the past had often feared a
slave insurrection. In spite of their additional wartime duties, Florida
women rolled bandages, supplied passing troops with refreshments, and
spent long hours in nursing the wounded. By work they sought escape from
the fear that pressed them, and by service they attempted to shorten the
interminable years of conflict. They faced the misfortunes of war with a
courage that equaled and often surpassed that of the soldier.
Despite personal sacrifice and heroic action the South was conquered by
the superior power of the North. On May 10, 1865, Federal forces under
the command of General Edward McCook entered Tallahassee without op-
position. The capital of Florida, unconquered in war, received the troops
of occupation long after the surrender of Robert E. Lee and the destruction
of the Confederacy. Governor John Milton, who had worked with tireless
energy to protect his people from the enemy and from overzealous Confed-
erate agents, was not among those who witnessed the occupation of Talla-
hassee. Four years of conflict and disappointment had taken away his will
to live-thoughts of a defeated South were more than his burdened mind
could bear. When he ended his own life on April I, 1865, Abraham K. Al-
lison, president of the state senate, succeeded him as governor.
Allison accepted defeat in good faith and prepared to restore a loyal
Florida to her place in the United States. He appointed five commission-
ers to meet with President Andrew Johnson in Washington, called a special
session of the state legislature, and set June 7 as the date for the election of
a governor. General McCook, on orders from his superior, cancelled the
plans of Governor Allison. On May 24, 1865, martial law was proclaimed
in Florida, and Negro or mixed garrisons were placed in the towns of the
Florida was in turmoil. "The world is upside down," wrote a represen-
tative of the old aristocracy. Negroes, informed of their freedom and not
quite certain of its meaning, flocked to the towns. Some apologetically left
their plantation owners and others ran with wild elation to embrace free-
dom. Many Negroes remained at work, but laborers were scarce and crops
went untended in the fields. White along with black was confused, and their
confusion brought idleness at a time when Florida needed labor to rebuild
her shattered economic structure.


-*I -C -I
4,~drdCf C. y 15

From Dickison, Dickison and His Men

Skirmish near Cedar Keys

c~ L
-,; ~ci
Ip~- *e
J ---r-~ e-
~- PPP
~-..-. Ir-,-.- Y -
.. ~-
-~-- J -~'.~
..e ra~~
; ==~b---,r --
~LL rB
~;gR&=LC~` Z
~ r ,
- C~L
urr~ rP, ~t~
rr 4pr,9~PU
ro". ca
'' --~f~ ~L~i~Z11

Battle of Gainesville

An artist's conception of what in reality was only a skirmish.

:~rr-t -.'.I


Confidence in the future was slowly restored. The appointment of
William Marvin, a native of the North but a resident and respected citizen
of Florida, as provisional governor gave hope to those who desired stable
government. A convention, which met in October, 1865, repealed the ordi-
nance of secession, abolished slavery, and framed a new state constitution.
The suffrage was granted to white males only, but Negroes were given lim-
ited rights before the courts. In November, David S. Walker, a former
Whig and unionist, was elected governor. After his inauguration on Jan-
uary 17, 1866, the state legislature enacted laws to restore order among the
Negroes. These laws, known as the "black code," provided harsh and dif-
ferential treatment for the freedmen. Floridians, having admitted the fal-
lacy of secession and abolished slavery, restored the old order as nearly as
possible and believed their state qualified to resume her position within the
Floridians had not counted on the political power of Northern radicals.
Senators and representatives from Florida and the other Southern states
were denied admission to Congress, while congressional committees investi-
gated conditions within the South. Conflicting reports were heard, with
the unfavorable accounts receiving more emphasis than the good. Northern
newspapers publicized disorders in the South, the ill-treatment of freedmen,
and the views of still rebellious Southern men. Throughout 1866 the South-
ern states were denied representation in Congress. During this time the
Freedman's Bureau, an agency of the Federal Government, gave rations to
thousands of destitute whites and blacks in Florida and furnished them ag-
ricultural supplies for future crops. Agents of the bureau supervised labor
contracts, worked to secure justice for the Negro, and attempted to educate
the freedman in his rights and duties. When President Johnson rejected a
bill which renewed and enlarged the Freedman's Bureau, the Northern radi-
cals passed the act over his veto.
This radical victory was the first of many to come. In the ensuing
months the cleavage between the radical Republicans and President John-
son grew wider and wider. The elections of 1866 gave the radicals complete
control of both houses of Congress. Reassured by this evidence of North-
ern support they passed, in 1867, a series of acts for the reconstruction of



the Southern states. Florida became a part of the third military district
under the control of a military governor, who could retain or replace the
existing civil authorities. The suffrage was given the Negro and denied
those who had voluntarily served the Confederacy. The constitution of 1865
was invalidated and elections for naming delegates to a constitutional con-
vention were set for November. All over Florida the freedmen were organ-
ized into secret leagues and brotherhoods for political action by Northern
carpetbaggers and Florida scalawags, who directed the political thinking of
the Negro. At least seventeen Negroes, fifteen Northern Republicans, and
ten Florida scalawags, out of a total of forty-five delegates, were elected to
the convention.
"Bottom rail's on top, now!" the jubilant freedmen proclaimed, but in
Florida the bottom rail was never really on top. The Republicans, divided
as they were into radical and conservative factions, were unable to over-
throw completely the old order. The convention, which assembled at Tal-
lahassee on January 20, 1868, framed an excellent state constitution. In
the following May a general election resulted in a Republican victory, and
Harrison Reed, a native of Massachusetts and a Federal postal agent, be-
came governor of the state. On July 4, 1868, civil authority replaced mili-
tary rule and martial law gave way to Republican control.
For over eight years the Republicans ruled the state of Florida. These
were years of political strife with Democrats fighting Republicans and rad-
ical Republicans engaging their more conservative colleagues. The Ku
Klux Klan and other white brotherhoods fought the politically active
Union League and secret Negro societies. Governor Reed was soon hated
by the radical Republicans of his party. His veto of a bill to compel hotels
and railroads to give equal treatment to blacks and whites aroused the Ne-
groes, and other vetoes angered those who had planned remunerative fi-
nancial schemes for themselves. Reed was impeached twice, but never con-
victed by the state senate. In 1873 Ossian B. Hart, the first native of
Florida to be elected to the governorship of his state, replaced Reed, and a
Maine Republican, Marcellus L. Stearns, became lieutenant governor. Be-
cause of illness Hart served only until June of that year, and Stearns fell
heir to the governorship. By this time the resurgent Democrats had the



strength to contest Republican control, a fact which quieted the warring
elements within the Republican party.
The election of 1874 encouraged the Democratic party in Florida. Re-
publican representatives to Congress won by slim margins, membership in
the state senate was equally divided between the two parties, and the Demo-
crats were a minority of only three in the state house of representatives.
In 1875 Charles W. Jones, a Democrat, was elected to the United States
Senate. The end of Republican rule was near.
Democrats and Republicans determined to fight in the critical election
of I876-the former to gain control, the latter to bolster their declining
strength. Marcellus L. Stearns received the Republican nomination for
governor and George F. Drew, a native of New Hampshire but an old resi-
dent of Florida, led the Democrats. Leaders of both parties directed the
campaign with much activity and little scruple. The Democrats checked
the Negro political organizations by violence and threat of violence. Every
white man was urged to vote and Negroes were threatened with loss of their
jobs unless they cast a Democratic ballot. In an age when the state did not
furnish a printed ballot, thousands of numbered ballots were handed Ne-
groes with the order "vote it." Officials of the Florida Railroad were ac-
cused of this practice and though David L. Yulee, president of the railroad,
denied the charge, he declared his company had a right to influence its em-
ployees. The Republicans answered the Democrats in kind and prepared
to obviate by fraud the political advantage which their opponents might
gain by intimidation.
The Democrats, however, were not amateurs in political trickery. In
spite of Republican control at the polling precincts, careful planning re-
sulted in many a Democratic victory. According to one story, the Demo-
crats stationed a confederate in a back room of the voting place with a sup-
ply of ballots and a ballot box almost identical to the official one. As each
voter cast his ballot, the Democratic inspector yelled "Check!" and the
back-room worker dropped a prepared ballot into his box. The Democrats
had made sure no lamp would be available, and in the darkness after the
voting had ended, the fraudulent ballot box was substituted for the legal one.
When the Republican inspectors finally secured a light and counted the bal-



lots, they found that the precinct was unanimously Democratic. In most
of the state's precincts, however, the election was conducted with a fairness
that precluded fraud and intimidation at the polling places.
Although the election returns as announced by precincts gave small ma-
jorities to Drew and the Democratic presidential electors, leaders of both
parties claimed the victory. If in the national election the four electoral
votes of Florida were counted for the Republicans, Rutherford B. Hayes
would be the next President of the United States. In the end this was the
case, and Samuel J. Tilden was defeated by one electoral vote-185 to 184.

From Leslie's Illustrated Newcspaper, 1862
Federal Shipping Rosin, Turpentine, and
Cotton from Fernandina

Stearns was declared the victor in the gubernatorial contest, but George F.
Drew, undaunted by his apparent loss of the governorship, appealed to the
state supreme court which was dominated by Republican justices. The
court ordered a recount with the result that Drew was declared the winner
by a majority of 195 out of the 48,163 ballots cast.
On January 7, 1877, the inauguration day of Governor-elect Drew, men


armed with shotguns and rifles were stationed in buildings around the Cap-
itol Square. The crowd was tense with suppressed excitement, but the cer-
emonies were concluded without disturbance. Governor Drew, as a North-
ern man by birth and a Union man on principle, asked the people to let old
animosities die, assured the Negro that his rights would be protected, and
pleaded for the unity of all Floridians. With the inauguration of Drew the
Reconstruction era came to a close.
Reconstruction in both its military and political phases was a sad expe-
rience for Florida. The political wrangling, the violence, the fraud, and
the mutual suspicion of the era could not be erased from the memories of
Floridians. Northern radicals had attempted to reconstruct the state by
enfranchising the ignorant and barring old leaders from political activity.
Upon the vote of the lower classes, Negro and white, the radicals hoped to
construct a new state government and a wider democracy. They failed,
and in failing, drew the whites of all classes into a unity that made Florida
a member of the Solid South.
The radicals of the North did not foresee the ultimate result of their
work. They, in fact, expected the opposite-the creation of a Solid South
which would always be in the Republican column. This was not their only
purpose in the attempted reconstruction of the South. Many Northern
radicals were sincerely interested in bettering the economic and political
status of those who had held an inferior place in the ante-bellum years.
Negroes and "poor whites" were to be elevated and given greater opportun-
ities. Hundreds of Northerners came south with this ideal in mind. Hun-
dreds of others, it is true, came to humble the proud and fill their own
pockets with gold, but for almost every Northern carpetbagger of this type,
there was a Southern scalawag of equal depravity. Finally, the radical Re-
publicans desired reconstruction as a punishment for the people of the
South who, in Northern opinion, were responsible for the long years of war.
This Northern desire for revenge, though explainable in terms of human
reaction, was never viewed with understanding or thought justifiable by the
conquered South.
The emotional duress created by Reconstruction made it impossible for
generations of Northern and Southern people to appraise the era with



From Scribner's Magazine, 1874
Jacksonville during Reconstruction

fairness. Reconstruction was neither completely good nor completely bad.
In Florida bribery and fraud permeated the state government. Republican
governors openly condemned members of their own party and a Republican
legislature attempted to expel one governor for accepting bribes. Political
bosses made a practice of selling offices to the highest bidders. The legisla-
ture granted franchises for internal improvements, sold public lands for a
fraction of their value, and delivered millions of dollars' worth of state
bonds to scheming promoters. State officials accepted offices and took stock
in the companies which they developed with the public funds, they increased

From Leslie's Illustrated Newspaper, 1862
St. Augustine during the War


the tax rate and allowed dishonest collectors to retain a large part of the re-
turns, and they made large appropriations and multiplied the state debt al-
most 900 per cent. The people of Florida received an inadequate return
for the money expended by corrupt officials.
Although the record of the Republican administration was tinged with
fraud and corruption, the Reconstruction period was an era of worth-while

Harriet Beecher Stowe and Family at Mandarin
on the St. Johns River

political advancement. In some respects the state constitution of 1868 was
the best Florida had had or would have in a hundred years of statehood.
The criminal code, the legal protection given to laborers, and the recogni-
tion of the rights of women and children reflected a legislative philosophy
which was superior to ante-bellum political thought. More than ever be-
fore concern was expressed for the interest of the individual citizen. The
services of the state were enlarged and the conception of public welfare
broadened. Public schools received financial aid, and the number of pupils
in the schools increased rapidly. The old stigma attached to the public
school-that the free school was for the poor and lowly-was largely re-
placed by a general belief in the necessity of democratic and equal educa-


tional opportunity for all classes. Above all, democracy achieved a broad-
er foundation-the idea that all men had the right to participate in a gov-
ernment of the people.
The Reconstruction years also brought noteworthy material gains. In
spite of war and political unrest, the population of Florida grew to 269,493,
an increase of almost 90 per cent from 1860 to 1880. Soldiers who had
come to conquer or to hold the land stayed or returned to build homes and
work the soil. Political adventurers and well-intentioned, though mis-
guided, reformers often became good citizens of the state. Northern indi-
viduals of note, among them Harriet Beecher Stowe, built winter homes
on river banks or near protected harbors where they could enjoy the sun-
shine and the warmth of the country. Northern capital aided in the res-
toration of railroads, backed the lumber industry, and financed orange
groves. The total valuation of all property declined during the period, but
the economic basis was laid for a future increase that would surpass the
most optimistic predictions.
Although the Republicans had ideas of undeniable merit, their attempt
to build a state government upon the votes of ignorant Negroes and the
poorer class of white people had failed. Those who engineered the political
revolution of 1876 condemned Reconstruction and, in their desire to erase
the bad, destroyed much that was good. Bitter memories of "Negro rule"
unified the whites, gave power to conservative leaders, and denied the Ne-
gro many of his legal rights. In years to come, however, a more liberal
generation was to rediscover the valid political philosophy of Reconstruc-
tion. Old laws were to be renewed and new ones enacted which would in-
crease the services of the state to her citizens, and make Florida a better
place in which to live.


... ..... .



i F W

.,. ......'.- .
1. 4 ? ~XA ...... ;:*
. .. ...... 7

X'' v. :d:c-~



f' ~~ slLsB~~ Lp~Ls ~ r ~ A 001i',


Stembat o te S. ohs ndOckawhaRier



A FTER centuries of intermittent and limited growth under European
control and over half a century of more rapid development as a part
of the United States, most of Florida was still frontier country. In 1880
the agricultural region which bordered on Georgia and extended down past
Cedar Keys and over to the St. Johns River supported a population that
numbered from six to forty-five inhabitants per square mile. Within this
area, however, large tracts of land lay untouched, and many of the people
lived in either a frontier society or one not far removed from frontier ways.
Below Cape Canaveral on the east coast and Charlotte Harbor on the west
coast, there were less than two inhabitants per square mile. Some Indians
and a small number of white people made up the population of this uncon-
quered region.
There was no urban community in all of Florida with a population of
ten thousand. The so-called cities of the interior were small agricultural
towns; and even the more important coastal cities of Key West, Jackson-
ville, Pensacola, St. Augustine, Fernandina, and Cedar Keys were not im-
posing centers of trade or industry. Key West was the largest city, but
Jacksonville, because of its location and its transportation facilities, was
becoming the most important city of the state. Inside Jacksonville horse-
car lines connected the principal hotels and business establishments with
the railroad stations and steamship landings. The city streets were sandy
roads and unpaved thoroughfares, and although little effort had been made
by the residents to cover yards and public places with grass, the live-oak
shaded streets gave Jacksonville an appealing beauty. Half a dozen well-
equipped livery stables supplied visitors with carriages and buggies, and
boats for river trips or sight-seeing excursions were plentiful. Such hotels
as the St. James, the Everett, the Carleton, the Windsor, and the Duval
could accommodate from one hundred to three hundred guests at prices
ranging from three to five dollars a day for room and board.



This was Florida in 1880-a few cities on the coasts, a developed agricul-
tural area, and an almost uninhabited region in the south. Within forty
years, changes were to come with such rapidity as to make the Florida of
1880 seem insignificant in comparison with that of 1920. The population
jumped from approximately a quarter of a million to almost a million.
Six cities grew to have more than ten thousand inhabitants, and Jackson-
ville was approaching a hundred thousand. Some of the older sections of
the state declined in population and others grew rapidly, but along the
southern coasts, east and west, frontier settlements became towns and towns
became cities. By 192o Tampa was a city of over fifty thousand people and
Miami had a population of nearly thirty thousand. When the coastal areas
had been settled, the adventurous moved from east and west and north to
conquer Florida's last frontier around Lake Okeechobee.

Full Text