• Cannon firing on the gundeck of the Castillo de San Marcos

    Castillo De San Marcos

    National Monument Florida

History & Culture

The only way into the city of St. Augustine was through the city gate. First constructed in 1739, the now familiar coquina pillars were added in 1808.

St. Augustine City Gate c.1912

Architecture & Construction

The Monument site consists of 20.5 acres and includes a reconstructed section of the walled defense line surrounding the city of St. Augustine incorporating the original city gate. The Castillo de San Marcos' architecture and detail are distinctive and unique. It is the oldest masonry and only extant 17th century fort in North America. As such it is an excellent example of the "bastion system" of fortification. Read more....

 
The early Native Americans in North Florida were called Timucuans. They were a semi-nomadic hunting and farming society

Timucuan Indians Planting Maize

Cultures

We seek to preserve and interpret the history and cultural influences of various groups associated with the site including:

Native Americans

Spanish

Colonial African Americans

English

Minorcan

United States

 
Early Spanish Bronze Cannons were emblazoned with the coats of arms of the Spanish King & Queen

Spanish 4 pounder Cannon

Arms & Armament
The 16th century colonization of America paralleled the development of new weaponry. This technology centered on black powder (gunpowder) based systems. The cannon, first made of iron, later of bronze, became the weapon of political power projection and, along with small arms of various types, began to dominate the battlefields of both Europe and the New World. Read more....

 
Warfare expanded throughout the colonial era as new weapons and ever larger armies contended for the wealth of empire

Malplaquet 1709

Battles & Sieges

The 300 years of the colonial era

(c. 1500-1800) were ones of constant warfare. As European countries vied with each other for the economic wealth in the “New Worlds” they increasingly came into military conflict as well. Encounters starting in Europe, Africa, Asia or the Americas quickly escalated into international global warfare. The Castillo de San Marcos, though a remote outpost, weathered many attacks during these almost incessant colonial wars.

Did You Know?

WWII Coast Guard graduates marching across Castillo de San Marcos drawbridge

The Castillo de San Marcos was used for military purposes during WWII. The Coast Guard utilized the fort for training exercises and ceremonies throughout the war years. Castillo de San Marcos National Monument St. Augustine, Florida