City leaders in St. Augustine FL have proclaimed March as Minorcan Heritage Month, celebrating the group’s major contribution to early American history.

The term “Minorcan” describes the group of Mediterranean people (about 1,400 in all) who came to British East Florida in the late 18th century to work as indentured servants on a plantation settlement in New Smyrna. After the agricultural colony failed, some 600 of them arrived in St. Augustine in 1777, increasing the town’s population by more than 50 percent and have been an integral part of the community of the nation’s oldest city ever since.

Events Happening for Minorcan Heritage Month:

Minorcan Art Exhibit at Oldest House Complex, March 1 – 30

Enjoy a month-long exhibition of artwork portraying the Minorcan Heritage of St. Augustine. Works on display include paintings, photography, hand-made fishnets and more. Artists participating will be photographer Byron Capo; oils and folk artist, Barbara McCarl Acosta; mullet cast net knitter, Mike Usina; and Rosa Maria Johnson, originally from the island of Minorca, who works in acrylics. These award-winning artists have been active in the St. Augustine area for many years, having participated in local galleries and art shows. The exhibit is open daily 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. in the Dunham Building at the Oldest House Museum Complex, 271 Charlotte St., St. Augustine. Admission is free.

Minorcan Writers Symposium at Lewis Auditorium, March 12

Minorcan writers discuss and answer questions about books on the Minorcans of Florida. This presentation is part of The Minorcan Studies Project with funding from the St. Augustine Foundation. Admission is free and the talk will take place from 2-3:30 p.m. at Lewis Auditorium at Flagler College, 14 Granada St., St. Augustine.

Meet and Greet with Minorcan Artists at Oldest House Complex, March 19

There will be a meet & greet with the artists and makers of the Minorcan Artist Exhibition at the Oldest House Museum Complex. The program will take place from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday, March 19.

Admission is free.

Minorcan Burials Talk at Mission Nombre de Dios, March 26

Learn about Minorcan burials at the Mission Nombre de Dios and the connection to the Tolomato Cemetery in St. Augustine. The tour and talk are free and take place at 10 a.m. 

More information here.

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