Ponce de Leon's Naming of La Florida Dedication

(904) 823-4500
  • Please Note: This event is from 2013.

    Today is the dedication of the Guana Tolomato Matanzas Research Reserve Ponce de Leon 30 degree and 8 minute Historical Site celebrating Ponce de Leon's naming of La Florida. This recognizes the only known navigational reading recorded on Ponce de Leon's "Journey of Discovery," taken the day before his landing on April 3, 1513. That was the day he claimed La Florida for Spain. The site, at a position of 30 degrees 8 minutes north latitude, between St. Augustine and Ponte Vedra Beach, will include the unveiling of an official historical marker, interpretive signage and a 15' statue of Ponce de Leon peering over the dunes. Call (904)823-4500 for exact directions and for additional details. Today's schedule:6:50 a.m. - Florida Governor Rick Scott will fire a cannon from the Castillo de San Marcos National Monument on St. Augustine's bayfront. 8 - 9 a.m. - Governor Scott will tour the Colonial Quarter, St. Augustine's newest living history museum, with local fourth graders. 9 - 10:30 a.m. - Governor Scott's monthly Cabinet meeting will be held in the Flagler Room at Flagler College, formerly the Hotel Ponce de Leon built by Henry Flagler 125 years ago. 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. - The only surviving navigational reading recorded of Ponce de Leon's journey in 1513 was at a position of 30 degrees 8 minutes north latitude, off the coast of Ponte Vedra Beach. Commemoration activities will take place at the North Beach Access parking lot at Guana Tolomato Matanzas National Estuarine Research Reserve on AIA in Ponte Vedra Beach with ceremonies and presentations featuring a re-enactment by The Florida Historic Militia portraying Ponce and his men reading a navigational fix on a 16th century nautical astrolabe; the unveiling of a 15-foot statue of Ponce de Leon by Florida Chief Financial Officer Jeff Atwater; and the dedication of a state historical marker and interpretive signage.

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