Monday, April 1, 2019

Santa Elena on Parris Island #genealogy #southcarolinapioneersnet

Santa Elena on Parris Island

Santa Elena MonumentA Spanish settlement once occupied the Port Royal Sound near what is known today as Parris Island in Beaufort County. Interestingly, Santa Elena was the capital of Spanish Florida from 1566 to 1587. Archaeologists and historians did not realize that the site was French, not Spanish. It was first excavated in the 1850s, but without written records from Spain, historians assumed that it was French. Interestingly, the historical society in St. Augustine, Florida has a significant number of records dating during that period. They are, however, written in Spanish. Pottery dating to the 16th century began to emerge on Parris Island during World War I when the Marine Corps occupied the region but it wasn't until 1957 that the National Park Service archaeologists examined the artifacts and determined they were from Spain or made by Spaniards. Later excavations proved that both the French and Spanish had occupied the site. Today, the digs may be viewed by tourists.  

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