tv American History TV in St. Augustine Florida CSPAN April 19, 2015 2:00pm-3:33pm EDT
other is there apocalyptic narrative. of course, it's impossible to for me to know for sure whether they really believe the end times are coming or whether they are capitalizing on widespread belief in moves -- muslim countries they will witness the end of time. >> tonight at 8:00 p.m. eastern pacific on c-span q&a. >> [speaking spanish] [cannon fire] welcome to see 19 saint augustine florida.
over the next 90 minutes we will continue our look at this city. >> saint augustine was the most violent, brutal, costly campaign that they ever conducted. at a moments notice a nonviolent group could be attacked by men wielding ax handles, bicycle chains, tire irons. it happened consistently. >> we will also visit a site considered to be the precursor to the underground railroad. >> we're standing in a marsh that was the first free black and settlement that was sanctioned in what is now today the united states. >> but first, inside the oldest
behind you is the castillo which is a fortification but it's the first one made out of stone in saint augustine. it was built for a very particular reason. spain decided they had to build the stone fortification in saint augustine to ensure their foothold on the florida territory. they were concerned about england encroaching and pushing them out of the area and they saw florida as important in helping to defend their hold on the caribbean and central south america. they started construction in 1672 so you have 23 years worth of construction and the biggest reason for all that time is only about 175 people were working on the project at any one time. all the stone had to be quarried from the island across the bay and shipped across a no mechanical stuff, no metal barges, it was all man-made stuff. brute force and ignorance played a part and add to that the fact that really they are dealing
with very simple machines building these ramps and pulleys and things like that. spain always wanted to have stone fortifications here. all the way back to the late 16th century. 1580's or so they were talking about a way to defend all of their caribbean holdings. piracy was a big problem. the treasure fleets were being preyed on and the king of spain sent over one of its best engineers, one of its best generals, to figure out a way to defend against piracy. they came up with an idea, fortifying spain's ports. the plan was puerto rico, havana , all these would be fortified. at the bottom of the list was saint augustine. ignacio diaz had the original plan and how they would use the land in the area they had to work with. literally, it is a 1/5 scale model.
it was defending the frontier between two nations. if you look at maps of sieges from the 16th and 17th century they will have fortifications around the city. you will see 15 or 16 of these in some places that they built up to go ahead and conduct a three or four year siege of the city so it was a common design. he took that design and worked with the area which is one of the reasons why the inside is a little bit odd ball because windows are slammed into a corner. there are things out of balance. that was in the architectural details. the original design of the fort's was called trace of italian. it has a couple of innovations that come from different people. right off the bat, they stole one from leonardo da vinci. the way the walls flare out at
the base, it increases the fort and distributes ground pressure over a greater surface area so we don't sink into the marshy ground. with the wall angled the way it is, it will have shots that will glance off. once the castillo is built, over time, they see they have to modify the way they will defend this area because we are on a finger of land surrounded on three sides by water. there is only one approach down from the north to get to the city by land. you want to be able to defend the whole thing. the best way to do that encompasses the fortification. this took so much effort to go ahead and build. the amount of effort it would take to build a stone fort around the whole city, it really wasn't worth it so they built wooden fortifications, small outline fortifications and ultimately walls around the city itself, 14 high foot walls with gunner placements around the
three sides of the city. they turned the city into a fortification. where we are now is a much where the last five fortifications were built. from here, even a little four pound gun can fire a four pound iron ball. most of that horseshoe coming into the harbor is under the small guns. what we've got here is one of the swedish iron cannons that were arming the castillo in 1702. it was one of the major sieges that took place here at saint augustine. prior to this fortress being held, the city had been burned to the ground by invaders,
privateers or pirates several times. spain went ahead and decided they would invest in building this fortification in stone that not only was it going to be a gun platform to defend the city in the harbor, it was going to be a safe haven, sit itself for the entire community. the plan was was once this fortress was built, the city came under attack, everybody in town could abandon their homes and grab their valuables and live inside the fortress until hope came from the next community. the problem was, that was havana, cuba. they would be inside the fort waiting for help to get here for up to three month. the fort was really geared for that. all the rooms on the left side were storage rooms. the north and east side stored guns. in 1702, in the fall, the english came down from charlestown, south carolina and attacked saint augustine and by
the second day, the spanish decided to abandon the city. the guns upstairs provide a covering fire for the bastions so that the people of town can make their way to the fortress. this is one of the guns doing that. this barrel is of note because during the second day of the siege this gun exploded. through the front end of the gun off the top of the fort and buried it with enough force so as not found until the 1960's when they were putting a new water main in. to use an example of how much force there is involved in these cannons firing, this 18-pounder had served the fort for number of years before but they forgot to keep track of how many shots had been fired. they had to keep track of how many shots the iron guns are because iron guns only have a lifespan of about 12 or 1300 shots. beyond that, too much damage have been done to the interior of the gun so that it would shatter.
for me, this gun is important because in the 1702 siege, there are four spanish soldiers killed in this 51 day siege. this gun here accounts for three of them. 1702 was also significant because we get the city we have today because the english upon realizing the siege was over help got here from havana and they did not want to face that so they burned the city to the ground and marched out. the spanish go back into town the next day and they see the english are gone and declare victory. they hold the fortress and saint augustine so they won. but they have to rebuild the city. there are actually 30 buildings in town today that can trace their heritage, either the core of the building foundation or almost the whole building, back to those decades right after 1702. this is one of the rooms that's associated with the artillery complex. for a while, this was living quarters for the artillerymen so
there was an alarm upstairs and they could pour out of here and go up the ladder way and get to the gun deck and command the view of the harbor and the city. later on, this became part of the governor's complex. the city was under siege, the governor would be living inside this room over here and this was the room where he met all of his officers and i made their plans and figured out things. one thing that helps us with that is this is also one of the rooms of the most original decorations because you can see in the wall we've got the stripes the go long and there is the little round scallop work at the top and smaller scallops at the bottom. they were all colored. this room here is one of the lead in rooms to the old powder magazine. the door without sin there is only three foot high and three foot wide.
this is probably the oldest part of the fort other than a foundation. it's one of the original structural parts of the fort. the walls are 6-8 feet thick and it has a vaulted arch. if it took hits above, the force goes down through the foundation to protect the contents. that room was also abandoned only after three years of the fort being used because there is no ventilation. florida was really humid and humidity is the enemy of black powder. it likes to suck the air dry. it takes the moisture out of the air. so that room was abandoned because there is no way for any ventilation to get in there.
it was sitting unused. when the 1702 siege hit, 1500 people came into the fortress and one of the first things they do is to figure out where to put the garbage. they don't want it laying outside. it could rot and you get disease buried you don't know how long you will have the entire city in here. you have to establish a garbage pit. that became the garbage pit. that old abandon gunpowder magazine. they throw the garbage in there. the interesting part of this is remember the gun i told you up? question mark it killed about that blew up? it killed three gunmen, three crew members, but not only did it killed three crew members, it wounded another one plus six more guys. when the thing is said and done, the doctors ended up taking the leg of one man and an arm off another. the leg and arm in those days
would go into the garbage. they got tossed in there as well. when the siege is over the city has been burned to the ground so it's more important to rebuild the city then to do something garbage so they sealed up the door. time goes by and the latter way which is the next room, they decide we don't need it and they sealed the top and seal the doorway and forget about it. for a long time, the only doors anyone knows about is this one in here and the one we were in before, the governor's day room and his living quarters during the time when we had the vaulted arches put in. we just have these two rooms in time goes on and the americans come in in 1832 and start putting bigger guns upstairs on top of the gun deck. they start hearing cracking from the ground below the gun. the crew backs away in the cannons fall through the gun deck into the rooms below. no problem, we will go downstairs and public and out and start all over again and fix the floor later. they get down here in the get
into this room and there is holes in the ceilings. where did the gun go? this is a solid stone wall. then they start thinking -- an old spanish fort, they had all that gold, secret room, early retirement. the post got gold fever. the lieutenant commander of the post had to take it on himself to get lowered on a rope into that hole to find that gun. he got down there and found that doorway sealed in and that's when he got gold fever. he literally kicked his way through the ceiling. he got into there and felt this huge black mound was all the treasure chest. he was going to dig into it and find his goal. ultimately, when the army breaks through the doorway, and the to room out, they find the head -- the bones of over 100 head of longhorn cattle. they find bones of chickens and
the bones of a human hand and arm and human leg and put taken by the doctors back in 1702 and tossed in there. believe it or not, those human bones and all the other bones are the seed of truth that all the legends about people being sealed up in the walls of the fort, that there was a dungeon in the fort and torture chambers. it all comes from that history in 1702. there is a lot more to this fort being a military fortification because this fort was built to protect the community. later on as you go to the history of the city, this fortification is a primary target of henry flagler. he would like it gone because this is prime real estate, a great place to build a hotel. the city keeps its fortification because it becomes an entrenched part of the city's fabric of history. the grounds around this fort are where people had their picnics easter celebrations and other things. you got the two that have been tied together for so long.
it's hard to pull the two apart. >> all weekend long, american history tv is featuring saint augustine, florida. together with her comcast and cable partners, our city tour staff explored saint augustine's rich history. learn about saint augustine all weekend on c-span3. >> welcome to the fountain of youth archaeological park.
this is the oldest park in florida. the park commemorates the 1513 century landing of ponce de leon is also said to be the settlement of saint augustine. 40 years before jamestown and 55 years before the pilgrims landed on plymouth rock. ponce de leon was an explorer. he came over in christopher columbus' second voyage to the new world. he rose to the ranks of the spanish military on the islands of espanola and puerto rico. he was appointed governor of puerto rico, much to the chagrin of christopher columbus' son diego, who protested. the king of spain really liked ponce de leon and said i would like you to be captain of a voyage of discovery, looking for land we heard about to the northwest. in march of 1513, ponce de leon
sailed a fleet of three ships from puerto rico outside to the east of the bahamas, up the gulfstream, making landfall very near here on april 2, 1513. he anchored offshore for the night and came ashore the next day. we say that he landed around 30 degrees, eight minutes north latitude, which corresponds to a point almost 11 miles north of here. details are sketchy at best. we do know that ponce de leon came ashore after searching for good harbor. took on water and wood. this area presents one of the few freshwater springs in the area around 30 degrees, eight minutes. around 30 degrees, eight odds are he landed here. ponce de leon may or may not have been searching for the fountain of eternal youth. a lot of people have said he was out for additional property for
the king of spain and colonization attempts and gold which is very decidedly true. however, he thought enough about the legend to peel off one of his ships on the return voyage around an island to search for the fountain of youth. while it may not have been his original mission, he did have an understanding and a gut feeling about the fountain of eternal youth. the true specialness of the spring was that it had been supporting the natives for over 3000 years. there was a large settlement that would have been easily visible from the water. the water in the fountain of youth spring rolls up from the floor. this aquifer holds trillions of gallons of water and is heart mineralized. when you take a sip, you will
taste sulfur and the feel of calcium carbonate. the spring is the first stop in the fountain of youth park. one of the more delightful aspects is is well integrated the front of the park commemorates the legend of ponce de leon's search for the fountain of youth. the eastern portion is textbook history. we like to say come for the legend, stay for the history. we are an awful lot more than a sip of water. we are standing next to the pedro menendez 1565 first settlement field. on september 8, 1655, pedro's members -- pedro menendez and 800 people landed here establishing the first colony of saint augustine. what this means is that the first settlement of the nation's old the city of saint augustine -- oldest city of saint augustine, 450 years ago this it number, was built here.
this map is a record of archaeological explorations through about 2006. when you look at the map, you will see color-coded structures. the white lines represent archaeological big trenches. -- dig trenches. the green circles represent structures that were given to the spanish. the rectangular structures are spanish colonial buildings. this large structure was the ca sa fuerta. this is where the spanish store d the gunpowder and weaponry for the settlement. the blue line was a defensive wall that was built on the very first day. menendez had to do business with the french about 40 miles to the north, dropped off 200 men with no tools or implements, and the
y built an earthwork barrier with their bare hands. the present-day shoreline of the settlement is similar to what it was 450 years ago up to about there. the fountain of youth spring was flowing freely as a freshwater spring at that point in the spring would have been about here. that outflow of freshwater me -- meandered in a run down to about here. this piece of land was actually a peninsula that was a perfect defensive position for menendez's military settlement. in 1565, an unfortunate situation cropped up for the spanish and french. a french colony had been established 40 miles north of here by french huguenots seeking religious and political freedom from the restraints of catholic europe. the spanish royalty could not abide this at all for two
reasons. the french were protestant and the spanish were catholic. at that point in history, those two things did not mix at all. the second reason was that spain was busily taking all the treasure that a good of the spanish main -- it could out of the spanish main. twice a year, a spanish fleet would head north from the caribbean back to spain. they would use the gulfstream, which at this point was 50 miles offshore. all that trash or -- all that treasure passing by enemy fornication's was an untenable position. the ping of -- king of spain ordered menendez to take care of the colony using any means necessary. he headed north and there was a short rattle of ships that could be described as a draw. menendez headed south and brought his equipment ashore.
menendez chose to make a forced march using 500 of his best men to go 40 miles up the quotes for caroline. while he was engaged in doing this, a hurricane struck. a french fleet was en route to the saint augustine, was caught in the hurricane, and was swept south to the day -- the current kate kennedy. it took the better part of a month, they were stopped cold at the metansas inlet. menendez's allies notified him that shipwreck victims were trapped on the south shore of this inlet. menendez went south, negotiated a surrender by saying, and i
quote, i will do what god tells me to do. he brought them across the inlet in groups of 10, bound their hands, marched them over the tall dune, and dispatch them 10 at a time. history has been unkind to menendez for his slaughter of the french shipwreck victims but the fledgling settlement of saint augustine had neither the food nor room to shelter hundreds of shipwreck victims. after settling the colony, he ranged up the coast to north carolina, possibly as far as the chesapeake bay, dotting the land with settlements. many of these settlements did not prosper. the spanish colonists had
difficulty growing food in the new climate and relations with the area native americans were iffy at best. after a mutiny in saint augustine where his people rose up for lack of food, menendez was forced to consolidate all of his colonies back to saint augustine. it lasted here for about nine months. evidently, relations with the spanish have degraded to the point where the natives were as in the most direct manner they could. the colony was moved across the river to anastasia island, where it was located for seven years. the location proved to be exposed to the weather and after constant erosion and perhaps a pirate attack or two, the city was moved to its present location, where it sits today.
>> all weekend american history tv is featuring the city of saint augustine, florida. it is home to the oldest masonry fort in the continental united states. c-span cities tour staff visited many sites showcasing the city's history. >> we are standing in what we call saint augustine's oldest house. it is a national landmark, under the park service. it is the oldest house in florida, it is not the oldest
house in the united states. i do believe for my research that it is probably the oldest spanish built residence in the u.s.. people used it as a residence for 200 years. about 100 years ago, it became a full-time museum. it was built in the 1720's, there had been a residence on this property before, but in 1702, there was an invasion by the english from south carolina. they occupied saint augustine for 52 days. everyone went inside the castillo days and marcos. -- de said marcos. english occupied the town, spanish reinforcements came from cuba as scared off the english. before they left they burned just about all the houses in town. the house that had been here was burned in the early 1700s. this was at least one of the
replacements. there probably was sort of a hot in between. this was built in 1725. of the local shale stone of which the castillo de san marcos was constructed as well. it appears very close to the surface, the water level is very high here. it is in a watery environment, it is really soft. when you dig down and find it in the ground. when you take it out, it starts to harden. this has been hardening for 300 years. the original building was probably -- we know it was just the downstairs. the second story was added later. as to whether or not it was two rooms as it is today, i don't know that we are so certain about that. it could have been just one large room. this was where the family lived. they all slept in here at night. a lot the cooking would have been done outside. and people lived outside a great deal of that time.
we think the places are small, but they warned inside most of the time it. the family that was here in the 1720's was the family of a soldier with the spanish army. as were almost all the men in town. saint augustine was a spanish military outpost. paid for by the crown fund of spain. most ever be here was male, was a soldier or did something in a support position for the army. saint augustine and what is now the state of florida was governed in the 1700s and had been since the middle of the 1500s by spain. spain had claimed a lot more territory early on, but as the moved into carolina, they actually took over some territory. saint augustine was under the spanish government, got most of its instructions about what to
do and it's money through havana. when you look at it, it is seems rather modern. as to have a communications and a budget was distributed. the treaty of paris in 1763 had a huge impact on san augustine. because spanish florida was traded to great britain, and that meant spanish than augustine was traded to great britain. and so all of the residents that were spanish departed san augustine by early 1764. almost all of them want to havana, with area around havana. if you want to mexico. saint augustine became a british town, the spanish left, the british came in. there was some overlap. the spanish looking town with british -- once again largely soldiers here. didn't care much for spanish houses in spanish architecture. they had been enemies for years. so we do have reports of them taking down some of the spanish wooden houses to use for firewood. that was easier than going out
and cutting firewood. they a lot of complaints about the spanish consultant convenience more than design in their buildings. the person the person then moved into this house was maria evans, she came here and her husband with whom she came died and she remarried, and they did very well. she was a midlife, she had her own income. he was the paymaster for the british soldiers. right across the street, right out that window, had been the franciscan monastery. they had the mission system for florida. the british turned it into a
barracks for soldiers. and so mary and her husband opened up a tavern over here. what a great location for a tavern. i don't know that it happened, but since he was the paymaster i'm sure he made sure that he was paid if anybody ran a tab. and they made enough money probably both to enlarge but you also because they had the money, they added a second floor of the building. the second floor is made of wood. so this building is wood on the top floor. they would have lived upstairs. have a tavern downstairs. she lives here longer than he did, she married again and she was in her early 50's and she married a man in his mid-20's. and she was very wealthy by then. she also had a plantation outside of san augustine. he liked to drink and gamble. and she ended up selling the house in bankruptcy. she moved out. by then, actually the spanish have returned. while all this is going on, mary
was in the spanish, they cameo back to san augustine after the end of the spanishd, revolution. they were on the right side of the treaty table, under the treaty made near paris. one of the awards for being on the right side of that war, the winning side of that war was a great britain abandoned her left florida and the spanish came back and took it over. and we're here for another almost 40 years, until it became u.s. territory in 1821. in the second spanish period the house was purchased. he was from northwest spain, a baker. he did very well. he lived here and became the first elected mayor of san augustine. upon his death, his family
continued to live here until after the civil war. most florida cities were not like saint augustine. most of them didn't exist during the time of the spanish and the british and the spanish coming back. it is not a typical thing for u.s. city. when we talk about the spanish period, english. anytime you have a transition, wholesale transition, everybody left. the british came in to replace them. it's really not good for the growth of the town. it's obviously disruptive, the new group wants to do things their way. there's always a heavy transitional period. because there was so few spanish here with the british arrive there wasn't much interpersonal problem. but when the spanish arrived, or came back, in 1784, there were
quite a number of british that did stay. there was a lot of arguing back and forth. when the u.s. took over in 1821, a lot of the spanish departed because once again, they were still part of the spanish military, they were sent to another post. the americans were really eager to move into florida. the existing spanish population that stayed certainly felt supplanted. they had hoped they would be in the position to be important political positions, etc.. that wasn't the way territorial u.s. territorial government posts were handed out. they were usually handed out as political paybacks. so the arriving americans quickly took over all the high-level posts that the spanish and hoped for.
they found themselves saying well, we wish it was the good old days. today, and since 1918, the oldest house has been and is operated by the san augustine historical society. when visitors come to the house, i hope that they absorbed two or three different things. i would like them to see that people live successfully and happy lives in an earlier time that was different without electronics. i like them to see that this was one of the earliest places in the united states, and it is the oldest city in the u.s.. we have a real mixture of backgrounds in the u.s.. it is not just about the original 13 colonies. i like them to see that there are other ways that people lived, other ways to look at life that are just as valid as the ones that we tend to think are the only way to do things. >> all weekend long, american
history tv featuring sent augustine, florida spanish settlers founded the fort in 1938. together with our cable partners our city tour staff visited saint augustine to learn its rich history. >> in 1960, a former navy pilot and dentist moved to saint augustine, and launched a civil rights movement in the city. >> at that time, as far as i know, it was only picketing and demonstrating, and carrying to get signs and things.
the youth had ideas of stepping up the methods they had been using. >> saint augustine, through medical expenses, was the most filing, brutal, costly campaign that they ever conducted. at a moments notice a nonviolent group could be attacked by men wielding ax handles, bicycle chains, tire irons, and it happened consistently. dr. haley was in 1961 a relative newcomer to saint augustine. he had a dental practice on the edge of town. his clientele was integrated. he had predominantly white customers, including the local sheriff, including some of the people who were the most stringent defenders of the local racial status quo's as he learned later. he became advisor to the ncaa --
and the lacey p youth council. he believed he could lead in the most effective protest against segregation that exist in saint augustine. >> naturally many of them had to be instructed as to how to stay on the sidewalk, how to keep moving, only certain numbers would be allowed. and we made a valid attempt to follow all of the rules. >> he was a person who did not mince words. he said what he thought, and meant what he said it that charisma, that personality endeared him to young saint augustine he is who want to do something to change the local environment. one of the things that added to the unique movement that
developed in saint augustine was the tourist trade. local whites felt that because of all of the incoming economic stimulus and all of the incoming tourist trade, because the fact that blacks have jobs, because of the fact that they were employed, that their race relations were good. when they compared it to montgomery, to little rock, birmingham, and some of the other locations that it. civil rights but has been demonstrations. that led to an outpouring of heat betrayal, that is not believe the african-american community anticipated. the idea that whites had, we have always had great race relations, why are you doing this to us now. part of it was amplified by the fact that the cities biggest event, the 400 commemoration of
the founding of saint augustine was being compromised at the end i the group of brown morons -- rabble-rousers. >> they were getting ready to celebrate the 400th anniversary of the founding of the city. the federal government has appropriated $400,000 to help celebrate and commemorate. not one black, even though at the time the black population was close to 20% city, have been appointed to any of the committees involved with the complete year of celebrating.
>> one of the catalysts of the movement is when lbj came to kick off the movement. to state their claims, local leaders promised that they would have a voice, that they would be able to meet with vice president johnson. that they would be allowed to -- a small group of local african-americans would go to holland for the race the rest of yo. the opportunity to meet with local leaders about their concerns and their demands to serve and have a black representative on the
commission. now it was the doctor's turn. now it was the local african-american community's turn to feel like they had been betrayed. they wanted to have a demonstration that drew attention to the fact that their segregated, and ignored by the city leaders as this was going on. >> we had to escalate, and the young people of that time got tired of coming and then were instructed in nonviolence. the newspaper post it to us. >> the doctors thought the city in campaign of local demonstrations, spearheaded by teenagers. what would bring attention to their grievances? >> we are standing in front of
one out downtown dining room establishment. in july 18, 1963, 17 young blacks were arrested in variety of races, trying to integrate their downtown lunch counter. all that remains is that we have stood arguing about the door. they cannot be remove no matter what business is here. what happened is that a number of young black adolescents were ordering comes a copy and refusing to leave when they were told they did not reserve -- signed an affidavit waiving the
doctor for putting the wrong thing on their activities. in return for their loyalty and their bravery, they were actually sent to adult prison. >> we did and have nobody but each other to talk to you and a bible that they gave to us. i learned how to pray at an early age i was lost, we had to ground floors on our knees . buff them until you see your face and them.
do it all over again. >> two of the young men that were suspended for their sin and activities went to the school in indiana and we're discovering now that it is a literal killing ground african-american inmates in the there were atrocities against african-americans and whites. they never spoke about what they endured in the prison. from all accounts, when did things begin to pick up in saint augustine? the summer and fall of 18963.
with that as the background, saint august the became a place where whites decided they would stake their ground, not given to the integrationist movement, and blacks wanted to bring the processors that were coming from outside to this town. it became symbolic of what they wanted. you have the reverend, the racist river and does what he can referred to themselves as. a very key figure in the four races of the united clan of america in.
then you have a local who started what was the catholic caln, in conjunction with local law enforcement to stage violent resistance, brutal resistance to some of the activities that were occurring, including nighttime marches him a daily demonstrations in front of the slave market. it was very thing to see. -- embarrassing to see. it was people for harassing for the people of saint augustine to see young people carrying these signs. in the meantime, the doctor is losing business, his home is the shot into but they advertised
clan meetings in the newspaper. so it was not intended to be a secret. african-americans were put on notice. one of the people who was targeted was what she called -- just south of town, he decided he would go for himself to see what it was all about. >> we were surrounded by klansmen, ordered out of the car and the physical punishment started at that time. they took our wallets and personal effects, and in my wallet they saw my identity and
her thing else. they also go discovered a card read i understand the images for them to really start beating us. the meeting was so severe with accidentals and baseball bats and all that we were eventually on stage where the speaker was. we were piled on top of each other, semiconscious model like -- being on top of each other. the announcer had said on the microphone that if any of spelling -- --because it was his
intent that they were going to burn. i encountered many things that i will take to my grave. >> about this time, the naacp had decided that we just had bad publicity. what we do not realize is that all civil rights groups have the same goal. the naacp came as really interested in legal change. demonstrations only got in the way of those goals are fairly made their jobs harder. they did not want violence the do not want activism, they wanted to sellettle is in the
local government. particularly after your baby they received the visit, they pulled out. it was literally fired from his job as thee naacp youth d director. the southern christian leadership conference is the organization of dr. king. it was founded by dr. marlowe thinking junior to represent the successes of this country, throw south and -- through the south.
dr. haley had to leave state augustine and only came back a few years ago. his house was shot into, and it. with killed, the fear for the safety of their onboard child. -- unborn child. they help to mobilize, direct, and train local blacks in nonviolence. this is the status of the local move. easter 1964. reverend hosea williams was correcting a selective buying campaign. the idea that for the easter holiday, east to test african-americans are going to see this department store. we will not tire people to work
here that will continue to endorse segregation in this panel. they had a great following in the northeast so wonder if dr. -- one of dr. king's associate sent out the call for all college students to come to saint augustine to participate in the easter boycott. it was the mother of the governor of massachusetts, her name was mary peabody. she was arrested at the motor lodge for violating a jim crow ordinance with one of her of americans. she actually spent time at the local jail here, and her arrest
attracted national interest. all eyes are on saint are seen in the spring of 1954. but however dr. king has bigger fish to fry. he decided what would most benefit, what would most rapidly and segregation in america. he did not want something to happen in a place like saint august the that would sanitize -- sabotage the lines like that. if there is a murderer and state augustine, if something happens in this town, pray that it does and. the more we try to do in terms of civil rights, in the aftermath of the easter
campaign they brought in the new lieutenant. he stopped the movement -- stop the movement. it is the reverend young coming to lead us in our march tonight. he did meet up with them that night and it was the only time that month. the corner of st. george and kings street, it is adrienne's crossing today, and it is where ambassador young, and leading a
group across the street comes to this very place. he was attacked, according to his recollections they finished the prayer and they remember somebody saying neil. so now we are standing in front of the steps of the regional motor lodge where on june 11, 1954 dr. king was arrested for trying to have a cup of coffee along with his colleague at the segregated lunch counter. it was part of the sclc. the organization of such owners
it was a symbol of segregation in the sunshine state. dr. king and protesters had protested in front of the motor lodge. on june 11 1964, dr. king was arrested here. it was the only place in florida he was arrested. it was an intimidation tactic. one of the things that we have that is pretty valuable for the civil rights library of san augustine -- saint augustin is a copy of the fingerprints of dr. king when he was processed into this jail here. these are the steps, one of the only things preserved when it was demolished in 2003, and it
was retained for its historical significance. remember, the focus of the national movement at the time was the civil rights act. dr. king was arrested as the filibuster was still happening in congress. it is the longest in senate history. on june 18 1964, an incident occurred at the monson motor lodge that attracted national attention. an sclc minister and a white person checked into the monson motor lodge with the idea of integrating the swimming pool. the monson motor lodge had become a focal point of the local movement, because it was what mr. brock represented. al lingo checked income and a group of african americans as his guests were going to jump into the local pool. they were going to integrate the
sinner -- the swimming pool. for some reason, mr. brock just snapped, and the photograph of him pouring acid into the swimming pool made the front page of national newspapers throughout the united states, including "the washington post." dr. king and ralph abernathy were watching as it happened, and as they saw mr. brock pouring acid in the pool, shouting at people to get out as they saw police jump in fully clothed to the swimming pool to wrestle the youngsters out of the pool, dr. king commented to ralph abernathy, we just ruined this man's career. the day after, the civil rights act moved through congress. some consolation to the people is that st. augustine not the role as an obstacle to passage of the movement, but what happened in saint augustine
shifted momentum in congress to get the civil rights act through congress. it is not unreasonable to consider st. augustine as one of the campaigns that really insured the civil rights act passes. however, it was at that point where dr. king decided sclc had accomplished its purpose in st. augustine. there was never any local resolution to long-held grievances in this city. civil rights act ended segregation in public places of accommodation. the irony is, it didn't bring local closure and in reflecting -- one of the only times he reference to the st. augustine movement, dr. king said some cities had to bear the cross for the rest of america, and st. augustine was one of those cities. i think the fact that st.
augustine and what happened here was messing, it was violent -- the fact that st. augustine is a small town, and a lot of people here know each other and remember which side of the proverbial street they were on in 1964 and 1965, has made it really hard to digest come in terms of, what happened here why was it important, and what is the true legacy of the st. augustine movement? i think that does a disservice to the movement. st. augustine represents the movement as a whole, in my opinion. it was not an easy to understand movement, in my opinion. it is a movement that still influences activities, beliefs feelings today. just like in many other parts of history, we do ourselves a disservice by ignoring what happened. we do ourselves a disservice by not focusing on st. augustine
and what we can learn about the movement. its progression. its focus. most important, it's legacy. >> all weekend, american history tv is featuring st. augustine florida. upon stay lay on landed in saint augustin with hopes of finding -- ponce de leon landed in st. augustine with hopes of finding the fountain of youth. learn all about st. augustine all weekend here on american history tv. >> we are standing in a marsh that once held for to mosaic in
st. augustine, florida. it was the first free black settlement sanctioned in what is today the united states. it was built in 1738 by newly freed people who have escaped from south carolina plantations where they had been slaves, and they escaped to florida and settled here at fort mose. >> we were the first destination of an underground railroad. it was actually working in reverse, coming from the northern states, such as south carolina and georgia, heading south into st. augustine. >>in 1738, the spanish decided to
start for t mose. there were approximately 100 freedom-seekers that arrived, a good mixture of men, women, and children. part of the spanish goal was to the encourage the ones-slaves to come into st. augustine so that the spanish would have all that extra labor, and they could protect the north side of downtown st. augustine. it also helped to take away from the british's labor force. if the plantation owners didn't have the labor to work their plantation then they would become poorer and poorer, and it would hurt the british's determination to take over georgia and florida. slavery under spanish rule was quite a bit different from what we consider slavery to be. it was not considered a natural state, and it was not due to
race or color. when the spaniards came to the americas, they brought that belief with them, and that is what allowed fort mose to become a free society, so slaves could leave their owners, and that was the only thing required, to follow the spaniards' religious belief. catholicism was very important. they were required to convert to catholicism in order to obtain their freedom and it was daily. was just part of their daily lives. in 1740, the british attacked fort mose. a general by the name of james oglethorpe led the attack on fort mose. they were concerned that the members of the militia might try to take georgia or southern carolina, or that they may cause
another major uprising amongst the remainders of the black slave community. they were successful in capturing the fort. fortunately, all members of the families at the fort were able to make it to castillo de san marcos. they stayed in the town of st. augustine for 12 years before returning to fort mose land. the town of fort mose was vacant for approximately 12 years before they decided to rebuild . the spanish opted to rebuild fort mose in another location, and they built it larger and stronger. the previous residents reluctantly returned to the town of fort mose. they had enjoyed living in st. augustine. the spanish encourage them to return in order to continue to protect the north side of the ca
stillo >> i first learned about fort mose when i was a graduate student in archaeology. the person who owned the land on which mose stands today was a local person named jack williams, and he believed fort mo was on this spot. she invited my major professor at that time charles fairbanks to come and do some tests to see if we could verify that this was the site of fort mose, which we did. this was 1971 or 1972, and we found evidence that this was the right time period, but it was another 15 years before we were able to get funding to actually come back and do any kind of extensive work. the next ovations done by the university of florida concentrated on the second fort mose. once we had established the
shape of the walls and where the moats went, it is clear it is the fort -- it was the second fort mose. the first had been attacked by the english in 1740 and was almost completely destroyed. that site has been almost completely inundated in the marsh. fort mose was actually on this largest island directly behind me and that is where we began doing excavations in 1985. during the excavations, the most important things we uncovered were traces in the soil of where the actual fort building had been. we were able to find a pit which when we hollowed it out turned out to be the fort moat, an area with a lot of money cap -- udmud cap.
it would have been a pretty effective deterrent. we were able to follow that out enough to know that this was fort mose. the fort itself shows up on maps of the period. the fort was a three-sided structure. it was about 65 feet to a side. it was made of a high embankment, and on the outside of this earthen embankment, they had plastered marsh mud which was really slippery. there was also a prickly pear cactus in the moat and on top of the wall. this law was unusual shape. the open side that didn't have a wall was along the creek, so it was protected by the water and that is where boats came in. the other three sides were this
open square, really, with corner bastions on two sides. the buildings for the fort were all clustered inside those walls. it was an area of about an acre and a half. it wasn't a huge area. we are not even certain still whether all of the people in the mose community lived inside the walls, or some of them outside on farmland. some of the other items that were found at fort mose were related to military activity. the men were in a militia, and they fought for the town and the government. we did find lots of musket balls and the buckles that were typically used on regimental belts and bandolier'ss. a number of white clay pipe
stems. a lot of rum bottles. rum was rationed to the militia. fort mose is a really important story for american history in general because it tells a very different story from what we are used to hearing or reading in traditional textbooks. most of the traditional stories about african-american pasts have concentrated on slavery being enslaved, and living a life of labor. fort mose really represents a strong self-determination, a willingness to just take things into their own hands and escape to another place and it really is a flight to freedom. this is not to say all the people who remained in slavery were not determined, but i think this highlights the error of thinking there is a universal
sort of experience for black americans when, in fact, their ancestors were having their own kind of revolution. >> all weekend long, american history tv is joining our comcast paid -- cable partners to showcase the history of st. augustine florida. to learn more but the cities on our 2015 tour, visit c-span.org/citiestour. we continue with our look at the history of st. augustine. this is american history tv on c-span3. >> we are at the saint augustin lighthouse and museum. this is the location of florida's first lighthouse. there was originally a light house that was built here sometime in the late 1600s and in the 1700s, it was turned into a functional lighthouse. it was down on the water.
after florida became a state they put the money into it and made it into a lighthouse with 10 oil lamps. they realized it was going to fall into the ocean. they started building the current because we have today, and that was completed in 1874. the current tower we have has been here since 1874. the purpose of the lighthouse, there are two -- one is to serve as a location reminder to all of the ships in the area. each lighthouse has its own individual day mark and night mark. our lighthouse day mark is the black and white stripes with a red top. no other lighthouse can have that. our night mark is our lens, which we still have our original 1874 lens -- it has three bull's-eyes on it, and when they rotate around, the beams are 30 seconds apart. it will look like 30-second flashes.
we want to let sailors know they're in block -- in st. augustine. the lighthouse still comes on every night. we maintain that through volunteers and staff and donations. we came in and restore the lighthouse and the original keepers house and we preserve those for future generations so they can see how the lighthouse worked. the keepers and their families lived here. they work day and night. it was a very tough job. 219 steps to the top of the tower, and they had to come up every two or three hours to put oil into the lantern and clean things up. it was a rigorous job and we just want to keep that commemorated and let people come and see how that worked. in addition to being historical
preservationists and taking care of the tower, we launched a lighthouse archaeological maritime program. we have a team of archaeological researchers. today go out and look at shipwrecks in our area. we want to know what the history of the port is because st. augustine is the nations oldest port. they go out and find shipwrecks using a magnetometer that they dragged through the water, and they actually dive down to those wrecks and analyze what is there. we analyze the artifacts, and we use those to figure out the story behind those ships. that was the main transportation in and out of st. augustine for hundreds of years. it can tell us a lot about the people who were coming and going. at one time, there was a shipwreck every two weeks in st. augustine. there are hundreds of shipwrecks off our coast waiting to be discovered waiting for us to come in and be able to excavate those.
we look forward to the next piece of history we will uncover. >> all weekend long, american history tv is featuring st. augustine florida. the city was settled by pedro menendez de avile in 1665. we recently traveled to st. augustine to explore the city's rich history. learn more about st. augustine all weekend here on american history tv. >> we are in the hotel ponce de leon which we now call ponce de leon hall, the centerpiece of the college in downtown st. augustine. henry flagler is known as the father of florida tourism. during his lifetime, he was a railroad magnate.
he also joined with henry plant from connecticut, a man who developed the gulf coast of florida, and they created with nine other men the plant investment company through which they were going to develop florida, the southernmost frontier of the united states. flagler's wife had consumption. the warm, moist air in florida was what her doctor recommended to help her feel better. they went to jacksonville and stayed there, and from there they made a day excursion to saint augustine. he was not impressed. they went back home to new york. unfortunately, she passed away. a lot change in florida. he had the opportunity to bring his new bride here with the rockefellers for his honeymoon in december of 1883. the town was very changed.
there were new modern hotels. the economy was coming back. he was much more impressed. in march of 1885, he bought his first piece of florida property, which is the site on which the hotel ponce de leon stands today. he decided when he bought the land that what st. augustine needed was a grand resort hotel for wealthy people who were beginning to travel up and down the east coast of the united states wintering in the south, summering in new england. he decided to create the most modern fireproof, luxury resort in the world. that is what the hotel ponce de leon when it opened was considered. it has more than 270,000 square feet. it's an engineering marvel, as the first major port -- poor in
place concrete structure in the united states. it had electricity by thomas edison. by 1909, it had a power plant that lets over 18,000 lightbulbs. people would write postcards about how many lights they had in their hotel room. they piped water out of the ground and ran it through four fountains to take out the minerals, and from there, pumped water into each of three cisterns and the towers. from there, that ran the hydraulics for the otis elevators. modern conveniences. we are in the rotunda or lobby of the former hotel ponce de leon. this was the centerpiece of the building when you first locked in. it is very strong and masculine. this is where men guests would come in and check in. this is also where you get the first impression of the hotel. it is the wow factor.
the building has eight greek ladies that are carved, and they are supporting the building. through them is run steel pipes all the way up to the dome. this is a building that is unreinforced poured concrete with the exception of a couple places, and this is it. that is what supports the building five stories up. the marble on the floor is italian. there is wainscoting on the walls that is pink marble. over our heads are murals. the explorers who came to the new world, most of them are spanish. the hotel ponce de leon operated from its opening in 1888 until april of 1967. you would have had people like william k vanderbilt. you would have had william rockefeller, for example.
probably the most important people, if we think about united states history, are the eight presidents, or men who would have been presidents, who came through here. william mckinley was the governor of ohio running for president when he came in and state. grover cleveland stayed five times. the first time was just a few days after the building opened in 1888. frank and roosevelt came as a college kid with his mom on vacation shortly after he was engaged to eleanor. uncle teddy came in november of 1905. since it was a winter resort, it wasn't opened. they opened everything up and have him stay for 24 hours. harding came for 20 years during the 20th century, including staying here after he had been elected. he created his cabinet literally by interviewing people and having them here. he was here a total of 20 years and played a lot of golf.
one of the most exciting is john f. kennedy came with his family when he was 13 years old, when the kennedys came for the first time to head down on the railroad to palm beach to buy what would later be known as the kennedy compound. the last president to have come through the doors was vice president lyndon baines johnson when he was here to kick off the city's 400th anniversary, and he did that and was here as an emissary of at that point president kennedy who had hoped to come and visit and have been invited and promised to do that. unfortunately, he went to dallas before he had a chance to come. we are in the hotel's graham paller -- grand parlor. this was designed initially as a gathering place for women. it quickly became a second ballroom to be used. women would come in the side entrances. their luggage would go up to their rooms and be unpacked, and they would come in this area to stand, chat, light writers.
it is very light and airy. it also ceases -- features 11 crystal chandeliers. it again has goldleaf throughout. it also is the place that we have most of the artwork that remains from henry fiber's location that was -- collection that was exhibited in the hotel. off to sit her, we have a portrait of henry flagler himself. we use this as the flagler room. it is sort of our museum room in that it reflects some of the victorian furniture that would've been here when the hotel opened. some of the early 20th century
french or was here when the hotel opened. some of the most important features in this room -- and the four quadrants, canvas murals created by an italian artist. his work was extremely popular. they were in hotels in the late 19th and early 20th century. almost all of those were destroyed for skyscrapers in downtown new york. to the best of my knowledge, we have the only collection of four that remain anywhere. these cherub murals are done on canvas. they are called "dreams of love ." the only other mural i know that exists was commissioned by misses thomas edison after she saw the murals in here, and they have one of those. it is at their house in glen month in new jersey. i want to walk you into the center of this space.
this is a very ceremonial place. this is the area that would have been closed off for presidents to have private entertainment, to be able to meet with dignitaries, to be able to socialize. louis comfort tiffany, the glass artist is credited with some of the interior design in the hotel building, including this room. you may be familiar with his father, the jewelry designer. you will recognize the color trademarked in 1845 that is the centerpiece of our ceiling in this room. we are in the flagler college dining hall, which was billed as the ponce de leon hotel dining hall. it is considered one of the 150 greatest rooms in the united states by architectural
historians. it is a room that has had celebratory dinners, of ends activities -- events activities. it is also the place where our students these days you get what they want to eat three times a day. they refer to it as "hogwarts." very popular. the 79 stained-glass windows are the largest collection in the world in their original location. over my right shoulder, you can see the half-brown cauldron pattern windows. you can also see them and our welcoming rooms. tiffany did these when he first began the company. he had been here to saint augustine. he worked with thomas edison. he worked with flagler and hastings. his windows here are much more geometric than they are in his later career.
in 1966, the united states passed the national historic preservation act. this hotel, the owner at that time, lawrence lewis junior, henry flagler's great great-nephew, realize that probably the greatest way to preserve his family was to recognize it needed to fit in that preservation framework. when a hotel closed in april of 1967 with a gala, it was the idea they would turn around and preserve the building as part of the college. in 1971, the college became coed and at that time, bill hébert and bill proctor were both tired. bill hebert came in as the admissions director. they are still here. that has been a huge reason for the success of this effort. 1971 was a coed situation. they worked on redoing hotel rooms to make them fit as what
we would call dorm rooms or residential housing. this room was really the impetus for the restoration back in 1988. the building was 100 years old. the murals at that time had -- the paint was coming off the plaster on the ceilings, on the walls. they collaborated on the restoration with a series of museum designers and archivists. there were also working on the ceiling in this room at the same time the vatican was working on the restoration of michelangelo's sistine chapel ceiling. they collaborated on technique the use of paint. they went to virginia to be restored in shenandoah studios. the chandeliers were conserved and restored. our lion headlights, which were created out of papier-mâché date to 1893. they were restored, as well.
the college is regularly recognized nationally as one of the most attractive campuses in the united states. many people come here to tour the campus that have no need for a college. we have probably about 100,000 people who come to the building every year as tourists. we know we have one million people who go by the building to look at the outside of it. it is very iconic. it's preservation story has been counted nationally by the national trust, by the council on higher education. we've worked very hard to maintain this room and the historic space. st. augustine's henry flagler legacy is evident each day in the way we move through the street in the buildings that we see. we are standing in the building that is recognized most directly with him. people recognize that saint augustin would not have become economically well-off, would not