• Fort Matanzas

    Fort Matanzas

    National Monument Florida

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British Attacks on St. Augustine

The Castillo was built 1672-1695 to protect St. Augustine.

L. Chandler -- NPS Photo

The Siege of 1702

In 1700,Spain’s King Charles II died without an heir. Soon, most of Europe was embroiled in a conflict with each country supporting its own Protestant or Catholic candidate for the Throne. This War of Spanish Secession boiled over into the New World where it became known as Queen Anne’s War. This was the excuse South Carolina's Governor James Moore needed. In 1702 he led an expedition against St. Augustine and its new fort. After 58 days, the British retreated, but as they left, they burned St. Augustine to the ground.

 
Governor James Oglethorpe of Georgia

Oglethorpe's Attack of 1740

Just as the 1702 Siege grew out of a larger European conflict, so would the next attack on St. Augustine-- James Oglethorpe's Siege of 1740, which grew out of the War of Jenkin's Ear, a dispute between Britain and Spain over trade in the Caribbean.

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Governor Montiano ordered that a fort be built to guard the matanzas Inlet.

L. Chandler --NPS Photo

The Building of Fort Matanzas and British Challenges

The British siege convinced Governor Manuel de Montiano that he needed more than just a wooden tower at Matanzas Inlet. Had the British been able to seize that point, they would probably have been able to starve the city into surrender. Montiano, therefore, put his career on the line. He did not even ask the king’s permission before he ordered engineer Pedro Ruiz de Olano to build a strong, stone tower at Matanzas.

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Did You Know?

Ft Matanzas stands stark against the low landscape of the Matanzas River

Matanzas is Spanish for "slaughters" or "killings" and refers to the execution of over 250 Frenchmen by Don Pedro Menendez de Aviles, founder of St. Augustine. Ft Matanzas National Monument, Florida