Florida from Swamp to State

FLORIDIA’S HARSH COLONIZATION                                                                                     1

Florida from swamp to state
Michael Meltzer
Sawicki, Kristin

FLORIDIA’S HARSH COLONIZATION                                                                                     2

Natural untamed territories require an interest for recourses or production of goods in
order to be colonized. Searching for a new trade route’s to the east without circling Africa was
the goal of every European power from 1400-1500. Among the astonishing land claims to the
new world was the peninsula of Florida which held a very petite population for two hundred
years before becoming the paradise getaway as we all know it now. The Thesis of this research
paper is to examine why Florida was of interest to be colonized then disputed by so many
countries while not flourishing for centuries. Between wars in Europe spreading to colonies in
North America, Environmental factors such as humidity and dangerous wildlife, even
business interests primarily shipping export goods.   American settlers found that land with
resources such as gold in California were good places to create population centers.

During the second new world voyage for Christopher Columbus a young gentleman
volunteer named Ponce de León was along for the expedition After Spain laid claim to
Hispaniola in the new world Ferdinand of Aragon gave permission to Young Ponce to discover
more islands in the Caribbean outside the control of Colón. A Royal contract was dispatched in
1512 by Ferdinand to search for “The Islands of Benimy”.   Ponce de León equipped with three
ships consisting of at least 200 men met at his own expense and set out from Puerto Rico on
March 4, 1513. One particular body of land he discovered drifting north of the Bahamas on
Easter Sunday had a verdant landscape, which reminded him of Pascua Florida (Spanish festival
of flowers) So it was...