The course of this region's history was changed forever by the interactions between the Timucua Indians, French, and Spanish. Throughout history, including the present, people of many cultural and ethnic backgrounds have interacted with the natural resources of this area. How we have interacted with our environment and with each other in the past continues to impact our daily lives. Understanding this connection is an important aspect of your visit to Fort Caroline.
The information and activities in this guide are targeted to upper elementary students, but may be adapted to other levels.
Students will spend approximately 1 hour with the ranger.
Students will develop an understanding of the interactions that occurred between the Spanish, French, and Timucua cultures of 16th century northeast Florida.
Upon completion of the program, the students will be able to:
- Identify two reasons why the French Huguenots left France to establish a colony in Florida. (God, gold, glory)
- Analyze three differences between Timucua and French culture. (religion, family structure, diet, language, etc.)
- Explain why the Spanish attacked Fort Caroline. (to maintain control of Florida and protect its trade routes from Central America)
- Describe three consequences of the capture of Fort Caroline. (Spanish remain in control of Florida, French lose their foothold in Florida, Timucua culture and population declines)
The program will begin with an introduction to the site and the Timucuan Preserve. The students will then walk with the ranger down to the fort, making several stops along the trail to talk about the importance of the river and environment in the past and present; to view a reconstructed Timucua home; and to discuss with the students the process of selecting a site for the fort, building a fort, and the daily life of a settler or soldier. The Spanish attack and its importance will be discussed. The students and leaders will be advised to break into groups to view the Preserve's Visitor Center or walk the nature trail. The ranger will be inside the Visitor Center to help answer questions.
In the case of inclement weather, groups may be given an abbreviated program under the picnic pavilion, but as this is an outdoor program, groups are advised to reschedule.