April, 1561: Florida man leaves "priceless" artifacts in empty lot
December 21, 2015 2:04 AM   Subscribe

The site of the Tristán de Luna colony has reportedly been found in Pensacola: "'There were 1500 people there ... for about a two-year period' ... The colony lasted from 1559-61 and included 550 Spanish soldiers, about 200 Aztecs and an unknown number of African slaves ... The Luna colony is arguably the first European settlement and unquestionably the oldest multi-year European settlement" in the present-day United States. Just two years ago, the site of a 1567 fort built by the Juan Pardo expedition in western North Carolina [NYT] was confirmed as well.

Links related to Tristán de Luna (beyond Wikipedia): Links related to Juan Pardo (beyond Wikipedia):
posted by Wobbuffet (16 comments total) 22 users marked this as a favorite
 
Do you live here? No one but locals seem to know Tristan de Luna even is, much less this find.

This sounds aggressive, but I'm just curious.

Incidentally, the dig is about a half mile from where I grew up.
posted by syncope at 3:40 AM on December 21, 2015


TIL an ancient piece of broken glass is a shard, but an ancient piece of broken pottery is a sherd.

Sherd sherd shed. Sherd is the word.
posted by Dr Dracator at 4:21 AM on December 21, 2015 [7 favorites]


Also, (sorry to spam), all the news outlets keep saying the location of the dig is undisclosed.

HERE? We all know exactly where it is. It's on my cousin's block!

At any rate, this a great post, thank you.
posted by syncope at 4:23 AM on December 21, 2015 [1 favorite]


From TFA:

UWF declined to reveal the exact location to protect the neighborhood and integrity of the site.

i.e. they're not putting it out there to keep artifact poachers from flooding into town and making them post guards 24/7.
posted by Halloween Jack at 4:41 AM on December 21, 2015


fantastic post

!
posted by Fizz at 4:46 AM on December 21, 2015


TIL an ancient piece of broken glass is a shard, but an ancient piece of broken pottery is a sherd.

And an ancient piece of sharpened metal is a shord
posted by oulipian at 5:01 AM on December 21, 2015 [3 favorites]


A hurricane struck the colony just five weeks after the 1,500 or so people settled in Pensacola and wiped out the six ships carrying their supplies.

“They were stranded. It took them months to get supplies. The first relief of expedition didn’t show up until December, so Luna all of the sudden had too many mouths to feed,” Worth said. “There were not enough Native Americans in the area to even remotely provide food, and by that time, when they didn’t want to be seen they didn’t get seen.”


I feel like I have read the science fiction version of this story more than a few times. I liked how open the local historian was about enjoying the accolades from the professionals, and I hope the respect continues.

I've seen landowners around here resist archaeological access out of concern about tribal land claims; I wonder if the neighbors there would have been less supportive if it wasn't a discovery of European settlement?
posted by Dip Flash at 5:11 AM on December 21, 2015


TIL an ancient piece of broken glass is a shard, but an ancient piece of broken pottery is a sherd.

And an ancient piece of sharpened metal is a shord


And an ancient piece of poo is a tu...nevermind.
posted by Literaryhero at 5:27 AM on December 21, 2015 [3 favorites]


This is great. I've been to Pensacola almost every year of my life -- this will teach 12-year-old me who used to complain that there's nothing interesting there.
posted by JanetLand at 6:12 AM on December 21, 2015


And an ancient piece of poo is a tu...nevermind.

Caprolite. (Yes, I know, I am that guy.)
posted by BWA at 6:21 AM on December 21, 2015 [4 favorites]


Suck it, St. Augustine.
posted by Cookiebastard at 7:08 AM on December 21, 2015 [5 favorites]


That first linked article from the Pensacola newspaper is very well written. And what a find! Exciting. I love how all this history is only unearthed because some archeologist trespassed on a construction site and found some broken crockery.
posted by Nelson at 7:53 AM on December 21, 2015


It's on my cousin's block!

loot me some artifacts for christmas or i'll tell everyone about the turkey incident
posted by poffin boffin at 8:30 AM on December 21, 2015 [2 favorites]


This is remarkable but it is damned depressing that the oldest European settlement now located included slaves.
posted by bearwife at 9:00 AM on December 21, 2015


This is remarkable but it is damned depressing that the oldest European settlement now located included slaves.

Its ok. Slavery was well established in the Americas before European settlement. Just like it was everywhere else in the world.
posted by bartonlong at 11:27 AM on December 21, 2015


No looting.

But I did did go over to the site. It's several blocks now.

I stg, this is right by where I grew up.

Everyone here is all "SUCK IT ST AUGUSTINE!" Pretty funny, really.

If you memail me I will send you pics.
posted by syncope at 7:58 PM on December 21, 2015


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