Spain and Florida, 1513–2013
From the earliest Spanish contact with native inhabitants to Miami’s Little Havana, Spaniards and los floridanos have changed La Florida as much as Florida has changed generations of Latinos, West Indians, Latin Americans, South Americans, peninsulares and isleños. Oscar Handlin once observed that when he set out to write The Uprooted (1951) that he wished to write a history of immigrants in American history, only to discover that immigrants were American history. So, too, is the Spanish legacy in Florida. A continuum spanning 500 years connects St. Augustine with Pensacola, Pedro Menéndez de Avilés and Bob Martínez, vaqueros on the Florida frontier with tabaqueros in Ybor City and cafeteros on Calle Ocho, the first Thanksgiving at St. Augustine to supermarkets brimming with tomatillos, mojo marinade, and rice and saffron from Valencia.
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