Castillo by Candlelight: The Enemy at the Gates

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Date: November 14, 2016

St. Augustine, FL – On the evening of Friday, December 2nd, 2016, Castillo de San Marcos National Monument staff and volunteers, in partnership with the St. Augustine Garrison, will present living history tours that highlight the events of 1740. Visitors will experience the evening before the Fort Mose counterattack. They will learn about life in the town during the siege as the cannon fire away at the British on Anastasia Island. Staff and volunteers in 18th century period clothing will tell the stories of St. Augustine on the brink of its destiny.
In 1740, the continued existence of St. Augustine was in doubt. British forces from Georgia and South Carolina occupied Anastasia Island, Point Quartell and Fort Mose. British General James Oglethorpe laid siege and was poised to run the Spanish from the Ancient City. Citizens – terrified about the possibility of losing their homes – clung to the hope that the Spanish forces would strike a blow from the Castillo that would send the English invaders away.
A desperate plan was conceived to attack the British occupiers of Fort Mose. The evening before the counterattack was a moment of fear and hope for the Spanish soldiers chosen for the attack. If successful, they would help defend their families, homes and town. Ultimately, they faced a soldier’s reality; this was a risk that could get them killed.
Tours begin every 15 minutes from 6:45 until the final tour at 8:00 pm. Space is limited and tickets can be purchased at the park fee booth. Ticket prices are $10.00 per adult aged 16 and above, $5.00 per child aged 4-15, and children under 5 are free.
Built by the Spanish in St. Augustine to defend Florida and the Atlantic trade route, Castillo de San Marcos National Monument preserves the oldest masonry fortification in the continental United States and interprets more than 450 years of cultural intersections.  
Fort Matanzas National Monument preserves the fortified watchtower, completed in 1742, which defended the southern approach to the Spanish military settlement of St. Augustine, and protects approximately 300 acres of Florida coastal environment.
More than 20,000 National Park Service employees care for America's 413 national parks and work with communities across the nation to help preserve local history and create close-to-home recreational opportunities. Learn more at and visit us on Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube

Last updated: November 15, 2016

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1 South Castillo Drive
Saint Augustine, FL 32084


(904) 829-6506

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