St. Augustine

Oldest City in America

 

Origins

St. Augustine, is an old city on the northern east coast of Florida near Jacksonville. This ancient city is the oldest in America. Originally this area was occupied by a Native American tribe known as the Timucuan. In 1512, Juan Ponce De Leon,  was commissioned by the crown of Spain to take some ships and seek out the rumored islands near Hispaniola. Previously Ponce De Leon was noted for being a member of the 200 man team that Columbus took with him in 1492. He is also known for stopping the rebellion of a native tribe (Tainos)  in the newly conquered territory of Puerto Rico. For his success in the massacre, he became the first governor of Puerto Rico. In 1512, rumors spread about land rich with gold outside of Hispaniola in the "New World." King Ferdinand of Spain, contacts governor De Leon asking him to seek out this land for Spain and be rich. On April 2, 1513, Ponce De Leon and his 3 ships spotted the east coast of Florida. De Leon named this new land La Florida in honor of the Spanish festival of Flowers that was taking place.

This is the waterway that was used to land in St. Augustine. The landing site is marked by the worlds tallest cross.

On September 8, 1565, Pedro Menéndez de Avilés, a Spanish conquistador, founded the city of St. Augustine. He named the city after the patron saint of his hometown, Saint Augustine.