Witness the processions, pageantry, ceremony, and cannon salutes surrounding the official founding of Gracia Real de Santa Teresa de Mose, or ‘Fort Mose’, in 1738. This marks the 284th anniversary of the historic event that established Fort Mose as the first legally sanctioned free Black community in North America.
Join in the celebration as Captain Francisco Menendez, members of his free African militia, and members of the Fort Mose Militia officially receive their freedom from enslavement. Witness the official blessing of the site by Franciscan Friar Don Joseph de Leon.
Presented by the Fort Mose Historical Society, Founders Day takes place from 10 a.m. - noon. Admission to the event is free; however, there is a charge of $2.00 for adults who wish to explore the Visitors Center museum; children 5 and under enter free.
Schedule of Events:
10:00 am - Ceremony
Opening with Respect to the Flag
Prayer by the Priest
Welcome by Charles Ellis (CSO President)
25th Anniversary Announcements by Thomas Jackson (CSO Vice-President)
10:30 am Program Starts
Spanish Governor Don Manuel de Montiano Speech
Francisco Menendez Speech
11:15 am Interactive Program
Militia / Spanish soldiers & Ladies of Mose reenactors
Bring Fort Mose to Life
12:00 - Noon
Fort Mose Historic State Park, 15 Fort Mose Trail, St. Augustine. For more information, visit www.fortmose.org/founders-day-2022