The Spanish were hardly prepared to defend their own city. By 1812, their presence in
Florida was feeble. During attacks on St. Augustine, Spaniards
refused to engage in direct combat, taking refuge instead in their impenetrable fort, el Castillo de San
Active defense was left to the free black militia of Mose, in concert with Seminole Indians. "Indeed, the principal strength of the garrison at St. Augustine consists of negroes," wrote the Governor of Georgia to Secretary of State Monroe. The black warriors
were more than capable of defending the city. They drove the Patriots from St.
Augustine. The Seminoles then sacked the Georgians at Fort Picolata, destroying their storehouses and stopping the offensive.
Smith Plot 188-212, Porter Black 8-9, State Papers 169.
Part 1, Early Years: l