Colonial America/Week 2
Spain established a few small settlements in Florida, most of which were soon abandoned. The most important settlement was at St. Augustine, Florida, founded in 1565. It was never more than a fortress, and was repeatedly attacked and burned, with most residents killed or fled. Missionaries converted 26.000 natives by 1655, but a revolt in 1656 and an epidemic in 1659 proved devastating. Pirate attacks were unrelenting against small outposts and even St Augustine.
The British and their colonies made war repeatedly. South Carolina launched large scale invasions in 1702 and 1704, which effectively destroyed the Spanish mission system. St Augustine survived, but English-allied Indians such as the Yamasee conducted slave raids throughout Florida, killing or enslaving most of the region's natives. St Augustine itself was captured in 1740. The British and Spanish had been enemies for many decades. The conflicts in Spanish Florida were one part of a larger, global struggle. In the mid-1700s, invading Seminoles killed off most of the remaining local Indians.
Florida had about 3000 Spaniards when Britain took control 1763. Nearly all quickly left. Even though in 1783 control was restored to Spain, Spain sent no more settlers or missionaries. The US took control in 1819, by giving Spain 5 million dollars through a treaty.
Spanish explorers sailed along the coast of California from the early 1500s to the mid-1700s, but no settlements were established.
During the last quarter of the 18th century, the first European settlements were established in California. Reacting to interest by Russia and possibly Great Britain in the fur-bearing animals of the Pacific coast, Spain created a series of Catholic missions, accompanied by troops and ranches, along the southern and central coast of California. These missions were intended to demonstrate the claim of the Spanish Crown to modern-day California.
The first quarter of the 19th century continued the slow colonization of the southern and central California coast by Spanish missionaries, ranchers, and troops. By 1820, Spanish influence was marked by the chain of missions reaching from San Diego to just north of today's San Francisco Bay area, and extended inland approximately 25 to 50 miles from the missions. Outside of this zone, perhaps 200,000 to 250,000 Native Americans were continuing to lead traditional lives. The Adams-Onís Treaty, signed in 1819 set the northern boundary of the Spanish claims at the 42nd parallel, effectively creating today's northern boundary of California.
Father Junípero Serra, a Franciscan missionary, founded the mission chain, starting with San Diego de Alcalá in 1769. The California Missions comprised a series of outposts established to spread the Christianity among the local Native Americans, with the added benefit of confirming historic Spanish claims to the area. The missions introduced European technology, livestock and crops. The highway and missions have become for many a romantic symbol of an idyllic and peaceful past. The "Mission Revival Style" was an architectural movement that drew its inspiration from this idealized view of California's past. The Spanish (and later the Mexicans) encouraged settlement of California with large land grants which were turned into ranchos, where cattle and sheep were raised. The Hispanic population reached about 10,000 in the 1840s.
New France was the area colonized by France from the exploration of the Saint Lawrence River, by Jacques Cartier in 1534, to the cession of New France to Spain and Britain in 1763. At its peak in 1712, the territory of New France extended from Newfoundland to Lake Superior and from the Hudson Bay to the Mississippi River and the Gulf of Mexico. The territory was then divided in five colonies, each with its own administration: Canada, Acadia, Hudson Bay, Newfoundland and Louisiana. About 16,000 French settlers came, and concentrated in villages along the St. Lawrence River. The area around New Orleans and west of the Mississippi passed to Spain, which ceded it to France in 1803, allowing France to sell it as the Louisiana Purchase to the United States.