Documents from St. Augustine, Florida shed light on life in the New World

The earliest documents relating to the city of St. Augustine, Florida (USA) are being digitized for preservation. The documents cover the time period from 1594 to 1763 CE.

The documents depict life in St. Augustine as somewhat different than is commonly thought. Many people lived quite well, with their own land and fruit trees. St. Augustine was also a diverse place with people from different countries, Native Americans, and freed slaves.

The city was founded in 1565. The documents were shipped from Florida to Cuba when the British took over Florida, and then back to Florida in 1906. The first 30 years worth of documents are missing. The digitized documents may be put online in the future. [photos]