To receive daily emails from Breaking Christian News to your inbox CLICK HERE


SHARE THIS ARTICLE Printer friendly version of this page

The Truth Behind St. Patrick's Day Celebrations in America: Surprise Discovery in St. Augustine

News Staff : Mar 16, 2018 : University of South Florida

"It was certainly a surprise. It did not register the first time I saw the name 'San Patricio,' the Spanish name for St. Patrick. After a few seconds, it actually hit me that there was a St. Patrick's Day parade/procession in St. Augustine in 1601." -J. Michael Francis

(St. Augustine, FL)—[University of South Florida] Irish culture will soon be celebrated across the globe with parades, pub crawls and seas of green. But newly uncovered documents prove unlike previous belief, St. Patrick's Day celebrations did not start in Boston, rather at least 100 years earlier in St. Augustine, Florida. (Image: Gun expenditure logs from 1600 and 1601 indicating a St. Patrick's Day celebration in St. Augustine, Florida/Credit: AGI Contaduria 950/via USF.edu)

The curious discovery comes from a rather unlikely source: gunpowder expenditures lists from St. Augustine for the years 1600-1601.While cannons and other artillery were often fired to help guide ships safely across St. Augustine's protective sandbar, they were also shot off during times of public celebrations and religious festivities.

A single entry from March 1600 states St. Augustine's residents gathered together and processed through the streets in honor of the feast day of San Patricio, or St. Patrick. As they made their way through the town, cannons fired from the wooden fort in celebration of the Irish saint.

"It was certainly a surprise," said historian J. Michael Francis, PhD, University of South Florida-St. Petersburg, who uncovered the document. "It did not register the first time I saw the name "San Patricio," the Spanish name for St. Patrick. After a few seconds, it actually hit me that there was a St. Patrick's Day parade/procession in St. Augustine in 1601. Even more surprising was that the document identified St. Patrick as the patron saint of the city's maize fields."

Dr. Francis discovered the records while exploring St. Augustine's long Spanish imperial history. Over the past several decades, Dr. Francis has examined thousands of documents housed in Spain's Archivo General de Indias (AGI), one of the world's most important historical archives, classified as a World Heritage Site. The archive also includes information about Ricardo Artur (Richard Arthur), the Irish priest who likely introduced the devotion to St. Patrick. When Artur disappears from the historical record in 1604, so do the references to St. Patrick.







SHARE THIS ARTICLE Printer friendly version of this page

To receive daily emails from Breaking Christian News to your inbox CLICK HERE

 
Other Recent Articles from Breaking Christian News
     
 

Search the Articles Archives

Keyword  
Author  
Words Posted on
Day Month Year
 

Not all search fields are required


To Order by Phone Call: 1-866-354-5245 (1-541-926-3250 outside the U.S.)

BCN Plus

An BCN Paid Advertisement
A BCN Paid Advertisement
A BCN Paid Advertisement
BCN Store
Follow BCN on Twitter
Are You Praying for Our Government Leaders?
BCN Staff

Steve Shultz
Steve Shultz, Managing Editor


Aimee Herd
Aimee Herd, Editor


Teresa Neumann
Teresa Neumann, Reporter

BCN Plus
Are You Praying for President Trump?
 
An ElijahList Paid Advertisement
 
BCN Contact Info

All articles on this site and emails from BCN are copyrighted property of Breaking Christian News. Permission is given to link to, or share a BCN story if proper attribution is given to both the original writer and summarizer of the story. Breaking Christian News 2005-2017. All Rights Reserved.

 

Disclaimer: Articles and links, as well as the source articles linked to; do not necessarily reflect the opinion of Breaking Christian News.

541-924-3906