The Spanish Conquistadors in La Florida

The Adventures and Misadventures of the Early Spanish Explorers in Florida

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The Spanish Conquistadors in La Florida


This course will provide an historical survey of how Spain found and named La Florida, and their attempts to explore and settle here. The early conquistadors faced tremendous dangers and difficulties in Florida. Finally, Pedro Menendez was successful in founding St. Augustine in 1565. Even then the Spanish faced opposition from the other countries of France and England, and eventually, England would assume ownership of Florida, with the United States finally possessing Florida.

This course includes eight lectures. The lectures begin with a discussion of 15th and 16th century Spain, and how Spain came to the Caribbean Islands, where eventually they found the land they named La Florida. The next lectures summarize the Conquistadors who attempted to explore and settle the land, concluding with Pedro Menendez who was finally successful at St. Augustine. There follows a short overview of the rest of the history of Spanish Florida until the time when the United States assumed control in 1819. Finally, there is a concluding lecture that draws conclusions and notes the legacy of Spanish Florida.

A person can finish all of the lectures in about 70 minutes, and there are student notes and self-check quiz with each lecture (except the introduction lecture). There is also a select bibliography, and a final crossword puzzle with the last lecture.

What You Will Learn!

  • In this course, you will be able to describe in overview fashion the origins of Spanish Florida, along with the main Spanish leaders who ventured here.
  • By the end of this course, you will be able to discuss how Spain and their successful Reconquista prepared them for their 'new world' adventures.
  • By the end of this course, you will be able to list the main conquistadors who came to La Florida, including Pedro Menendez, who founded St. Augustine.
  • By the end of this course, you will be able to summarize the history of Spanish Florida, and note some of the enduring legacies.

Who Should Attend!

  • This course is suitable for all persons, high school age and up.



  • U.S. History






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