British and Spanish and French, oh my!

My history education is so limited and biased. Here in the northeast, we think of Jamestown in 1604 and Plymouth in 1620 as the start of New World settlement. But that is so British.

The British came to the party late. The Spanish had established trade routes to South and Central America in the early 1500s. The French wanted some of the riches of the new world and established a fort and colony in Florida in 1562. That got the Spanish stirred up to build their fort in St. Augustine, the oldest city in North America. The British didn’t come into the picture until 200 years later when they won Florida from Spain in the French and Indian War.

When I started the 100 National Parks project, one key element was a week-long vacation to visit parks proposed by Carol. At the beginning of September, we took this trip down along the Atlantic coast, visiting parks in Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, and Florida. On the return trip, we got a bonus park in Maryland. The trip included 18 National Park sites, bringing the total to 91. We also visited 12 lighthouses.

In the next few weeks, I’ll be writing some stories about forts, the Civil War, the coastal environment, and African-American culture, along with some stories of famous and not-so-famous Americans.

For today, here are pictures from forts with Confederate, French, and British flags. The question of the week is – what is the yellow flag in the cover photo? It’s from the Civil War. Bonus question- how does the British flag in this picture from Jamestown differ from the Union Jack that they fly today? Why?

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One thought on “British and Spanish and French, oh my!

  1. Scott, the Union Jack is the combination of the Crosses of Saint George, Saint Andrew and Saint Patrick. The flag in your photo must be before Britain’s formal union with Ireland.

    The yellow flag, I have no clue…is the flag of the “Brave Sir Robin” from “Monty Python and The Holy Grail”?

    Like

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