Timeline of Events

1733

Royal edict reiterates freedom for African Americans who reach Florida from Carolina, but requires conversion to Catholicism and four years of service to the Spanish crown.
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1726

African American slave militia formed in Florida. This group participates in the defense of St. Augustine in 1728 and in attacks on the Carolina province.
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1708

Africans now outnumber Europeans in the Carolina colony. African slave revolts occur in 1711 and 1714. Many slaves join the Yamasee (a Carolina Native American tribe) in their war against the English in 1715.
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1702

Col. James Moore of Carolina attacks and burns St. Augustine. Residents including African Americans, take refuge in the fort and Moore fails to capture the town. Many Native Americans from outlying missions and villages are taken into slavery by the English.
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1693

King Charles II of Spain approves official sanctuary for runaway foreign slaves.
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1687

First recorded escaped slave enter St. Augustine, eight men, two women and a three year old nursing child. Florida governor refuses to return them to Carolina and puts the men to work on the Castillo de San Marcos for wages. Runaway African Americans accept the Catholic faith.
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1686

A Spanish raiding party form Florida, including 53 Native Americans and African Americans, attack the Carolina colony, carrying away booty, money and slaves.
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1638

First African American militia formed to help defend Florida against English encroachment.
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1670

English colonists settle Carolina, bringing African slaves with them. Throughout he seventeenth and eighteenth centuries English colonists import Africans and also capture Native Americans, impressing them into slavery. Many Native Americans are shipped as slaves to the Caribbean.
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1606

First recorded birth of an African American child in the St. Augustine Catholic parish records.
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1565

Pedro Menendez de Aviles founds St. Augustine. Free and enslaved Africans are part of his colonial expedition and become a constant component of St. Augustine society.
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