Population per the 2012 census- 19,317,568.
FL was admitted to the Union as the 27th state, March 3rd 1845.
In 2006 FL officially designated her motto to be "In God we Trust". Her first motto est. in 1868 was "In God is Our Trust".
A Democratic State with a strong Republican presence. Let's work together to turn Florida into a 'Red' state.
Discovery to Settlement - Timeline:
1513 - Sometime between April 2 and April 8, Ponce de León waded ashore on the northeast coast of Florida, possibly near present-day St. Augustine.
1521 - Ponce de León returned to the southwestern coast of the peninsula, accompanied by two-hundred people, fifty horses, and numerous beasts of burden. His colonization was thwarted due to Indian attacks.
1539 - Hernando de Soto began another expedition in Florida in search of gold and silver.
1559 - Another attempt to colonize Florida was made by Tristán de Luna y Arellano. He established a settlement at Pensacola Bay, but a series of misfortunes caused his efforts to be abandoned after two years.
1562 - The French protestant Jean Ribault explored the area. Two years later, fellow Frenchman René Goulaine de Laudonnière established Fort Caroline at the mouth of the St. Johns River, near present-day Jacksonville.
1565 - The Spanish established the first permanent European settlement in what is now St. Augustine. He accomplished his goal of expelling the French, attacking and killing all settlers except for non-combatants and Frenchmen who professed belief in the Roman Catholic faith. The Spaniards captured Fort Caroline and renamed it San Mateo.
1586 - The English captain Sir Francis Drake looted and burned the tiny village of St. Augustine. However, Spanish control of Florida was not diminished.
1763 - Britain gained control in exchange for Havana, Cuba, which the British had captured from Spain during the Seven Years' War (1756–63). British rule in FL lasted for twenty years.
Revolutionary War Era
During the Revolutionary War (1775–1783) Florida remained a British Colony. Several signers of the Declaration of Independence fell into British hands during the war and were brought to St. Augustine as prisoners of war.
From The American Revolutionary War.net “In 1779, the number of British and German troops stationed in North America grew to over 60,000. The troops were scattered from Canada to Florida. There are about 10,000 Loyalist Americans included in this figure who are under arms for the British.”
For many Floridians in the British colonies of Florida , being loyalist, the war was viewed not as a war for independence but a Civil War against King and Country.
When the war ended with British defeat most loyalist left Florida. Florida had ceased to be a British colony and was ceded back to Spain after they captured and occupied St. Augustine in 1783.
Territorial Florida (1821 - 1845)
1821 - Florida was formally ceded to the United States according to the terms of the Adams-Onís Treaty.
Under President Andrew Jackson, the U.S. government spent $20 million and the lives of many U.S. soldiers, Indian people, and U.S. citizens to force the removal of the Seminoles. In the end, the outcome was not as the federal government had planned. Some Indians migrated "voluntarily." Some were captured and sent west under military guard; and others escaped into the Everglades, where they made a life for themselves away from contact with whites.
Officially 1822 - 1845 Florida was a Territory until it was admitted to the Union.
January 10th 1861, Florida seceded from the Union. An estimated 16,000 Floridians fought in the war. Most were in the Confederacy, but approximately 2,000 joined the Union army.
There were two large battles that that took place in Florida and both were won by Confederate troops. On February 20, 1864, the largest Civil War battle in Florida occurred near Lake City. It was called the Battle of Olustee. It was a victory for the Confederacy, but did not help win the war.
Florida the Reconstruction Era, 1865-1877
July 25th 1868, having met its reconstruction obligations, Florida was once again admitted to the Union.
An interesting part of history during this time is that the Republicans, often referred to in writings for the era as “Radical Republicans” were for the most part the ones who fought and instituted the reconstruction obligations for the states. The Democrats of the South were the folks who fought this tooth and nail. From these scoundrels arose the Black Codes.