|A surviving section of the Pensacola-St. Augustine Road|
Please click here to see the complete list as it is unveiled.
In 1778 the American Revolution was underway and its outcome was far from certain. While most Americans of today have heard of the 13 Colonies and their fight for independence from Great Britain, few realize that there were other colonies in North America that did not join the war against King George III.
|1776 map shows East and West Florida|
The British administered Florida as two colonies. East Florida extended from the Atlantic Ocean to the Apalachicola and Chattahoochee Rivers, while West Florida extended from the Apalachicola and Chattahoochee all the way to the Mississippi. What is now Jackson County formed the northeastern corner of British West Florida.
|Purcell-Stuart Map of 1778, showing the Pensacola-St. Augustine Road|
|Heritage Village in Graceville|
A stop on the Jackson County Spanish Heritage Trail
The road was mapped in 1778 when a British force marched across Florida from Pensacola to reinforce St. Augustine against an expected attack by American Patriots. Accompanying that expedition was cartographer Joseph Purcell and his map of the Pensacola-St. Augustine Road provides a fascinating look back through time.
In western Jackson County, using Purcell's map as a guide, it appears that the historic road generally followed modern State Highway 2 east from Graceville to Campbellton. What is now Holmes Creek was shown on the map as the "Weekaywee Hatchee." This Hitchiti Creek term means "Spring Creek" or "Spring River." If the name looks familiar, there is a reason. Today's term Weeki Wachi (as in Weeki Wachi Springs) is a corruption of the Creek term Weekaywee Hatchee.
|Coosa Old Fields (today's Campbellton)|
As shown on the Purcell-Stuart Map of 1778
These "old fields" had been the site of the Spanish conversion or part-time church of San Antonio. The Chacato inhabitants who lived there had fled the area in 1675 following a rebellion against the Spanish missionaries. Most of them wound up living on the Coosa River in Alabama. Living on the Coosa Old Fields when Purcell passed through was a small band of Creeks who had a village on the site of present-day Campbellton that they called Puckanawhitla ("Peach Tree").
|Forks of the Creeks swamp|
The route by which the road crossed the Forks of the Creeks swamps is no longer in use today, but Purcell noted crossing what he called the "Chanpooly" (today's Chipola River). The creek that he called the "Chanpooly" was today's Cowarts Creek, a main tributary of the Chipola.
|Trace of Pensacola-St. Augustine Road|
Notice State Highway 2 through the trees at left.
The road passed through the modern town of Malone and continued on to the Chattahoochee River. The section of Biscayne Road between Concord Road and the point where Biscayne intersects with State Highway 2 is a part of the original Pensacola-St. Augustine Road that is still in use today.
|Chattahoochee River at Neal's Landing Park|
The Pensacola-St. Augustine Road was replaced in the 1820s by the Old Federal Road and still later by U.S. Highway 90 and eventually Interstate 10, all of which followed more direct routes between Pensacola and St. Augustine. Its surviving portions, however, remain important historical landmarks in Jackson County that date from before the time of the American Revolution.
|Jackson County Spanish Heritage Trail (in red)|
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An interpretive kiosk has been erected in Malone to tell the story of the Pensacola-St. Augustine Road. It stands in the city park facing Highway 71, one-half block south of Highway 2. Malone is a great place to stop for lunch while driving the Jackson County Spanish Heritage Trail.
If you are interested in learning more about the new Jackson County Spanish Heritage Trail, guide books are available for free at the historic Russ House and Visitor Center on West Lafayette Street in Marianna. You can also learn more by visiting the Spanish Heritage Trail section of the TDC website at: http://visitjacksoncountyfla.com/heritage/spanish-heritage-trail.