This Day in Georgia History
June 29, 1565
Spanish Drove French From Florida
Pedro Menendez de Aviles and a large force of Spanish soldiers and colonists sailed from Spain to drive out French Huguenots who had built Fort Caroline at the mouth of the St. Johns River (site of present-day Jacksonville) and to begin Spanish colonization of the Southeast - a region then known as “La Florida.” Menendez’s soldiers captured Fort Caroline and then executed the French Huguenots living behind its walls. With the French presence removed, Menendez built St. Augustine and then directed the establishment of a chain of missions northward along Georgia’s coast to Santa Elena (present-day Port Royal, South Carolina).