Tapestry: The Cultural Threads of First America
“Tapestry” is a signature St. Augustine 450th Commemoration exhibition that shares the story of how three intertwining cultures – Hispanics, Africans and Native Americans – came together to form the foundation of the American culture and create the blended society of today’s St. Augustine.
The exhibition debuts during St. Augustine’s 450th anniversary year.
The fusion of culture began in St. Augustine in 1565 when Spanish explorer Pedro Menéndez de Avilés arrived with 800 colonists to settle the New World in the name of Spain. The newly arrived colonists were Spanish and Africans. When they stepped off the ship onto the soils of the first permanent American colony, they became Hispanic - Americans and African -Americans for the first time.
The colonists survived because Native Americans at the Timucuan Indian village of Seloy allowed them to occupy and modify Indian structures, even digging a moat around a council house for fortification. The intermingling of Native Americans, Hispanics and Africans was the very beginning of the diverse American culture, one that characterizes our nation today.
Beyond exploring St. Augustine’s historical roots, “Tapestry” showcases the people who have shaped the city’s cultural landscape over four and a half centuries. The histories and contemporary cultural expressions of the Menorcans, Greeks, British and others who are part of St. Augustine’s rich cultural fabric are woven into the exhibition.
The exhibition is comprised of four themes that showcase the history and cultures of St. Augustine: America’s First People, The Story of First America, American Genesis and Tapestry: Contemporary Cultural Expressions.
The Cultural Threads of FIRST AMERICA exhibit runs April 4 to September 20, 2015, 8 am. – 5 p.m. daily at the St. Augustine Visitor Information Center, 10 W. Castillo Drive, St. Augustine.