ADA Compliance
The City of St. Augustine remains committed to providing accessibility to all and provides for handicapped accessible parking in the city. For a map of accessible parking locations, Click Here To notify the city regarding accessibility concerns contact: Will Franke, Building Official, Phn: 904.825.1065, Fax: 904.209.4335, Email: wfranke@citystaug.com; or Todd Grant, Public Works Deputy Director, Phn: 904.825.1040, Fax: 904.209.4286, Email: tgrant@citystaug.com. You may also write either of these contacts at City of St. Augustine, P.O. Box 210, St. Augustine, FL 32085-0210.

Consumer Confidence Report
The City of St. Augustine remains committed to providing clean and safe drinking water. For the previous year's sampling results please click here. To notify the city regarding water treatment concerns contact: Patrick Timoney, Water Treatment Plant Supervisor, Phn: 904.825.1044, Fax: 904.823-2280, Email: ptimoney@citystaug.com; or woperators@citystaug.com, or write the City of St. Augustine, P.O. Box 210, St. Augustine, FL 32085-0210.

Constitution Monument has long been a City Landmark

Bicentennial Monument serves as start

of St. Augustine's 450th Commemoration

In March of 2012, the City of St. Augustine will join international commemorations of the 200th anniversary of the Spanish Constitution of 1812. The constitution came into effect when St. Augustine was still a Spanish colony so its adoption was certainly important then, but why is it important today?

As it turns out, the monument situated in the city Plaza de la Constitución may be the Western Hemispheres' only remaining monument built to honor the constitution. Additionally, the bicentennial, which is a very big event in Spain centered in the City of Cadiz, is being used as the first large scale commemoration held as part of the greater 450th Commemoration of the founding of the city. Last February, the city hosted the Vice Mayor of Cadiz for initial discussions and planning for the joint efforts of the two municipalities. Read about those meetings and the agreement resulting from them here.

The monument acts as St. Augustine's link not only to this specific historical event but also to the much more expansive connections between our city's history and Spain's. One thing is for certain, since it was built in early 1814 it has been a landmark associated with the city's Old World ties. The monument was one of several topics on a recent edition of The Break Room. Listen to the program here.

Images of the Monument to the Spanish Constitution of 1812 was a program offered by the Saint Augustine Historical Society taking a close look at the many depictions of the monument. The program, held at Flagler College on September 13, was presented by Dr. Susan Parker, the Society’s Executive Director, and Magen Wilson, research and programs assistant.

Throughout the years, the monument has been portrayed by many artists using a variety of media. From the time the monument was erected, paintings, engravings, photographs and stereoscopic pictures, some by famous artists such as Francis Benjamin Johnson and Sam Cooley, brought national attention to this unique piece of history. During the U.S. Civil War the monument appeared in national publications, such as Harper’s Weekly. The presentation may be seen here.

The presentation offered not only a history of the monument as depicted, but also of its origin. On March 19, 1812, the Spanish Constitution was promulgated by the Cortes Generales (Parliament) for Spain and its colonies, including St. Augustine and East Florida. The constitution reduced the power of the crown, the nobility and the Catholic Church, and established such principles as a constitutional monarchy. In honor of this significant document's adoption, the Cortes issued a decree naming all plazas throughout the empire Plazas de la Constitución and ordering the building of monuments to commemorate the constitution.

News of the constitution reached St. Augustine five months later, in August 1812, and in October the city held an official proclamation ceremony and a parade. By August 1813, the St. Augustine town council approved a design for the new monument, and the 18 foot tall obelisk was completed in January 1814.

But, just a few months later, King Ferdinand VII revoked the constitution, and even though St. Augustine's City Council received no order to do so, the city followed the example of other Spanish colonial towns and removed the plaques noting “Plaza de la Constitución" replacing them with the name King Ferdinand VII. But the Council did not order the removal of the monument itself, so St. Augustine’s monument remains possibly the only one still dedicated to the Spanish Constitution in the Western Hemisphere.

The city continues to develop plans for the constitution's bicentennial commemoration as part of the greater 450th Commemoration. For more information about the program, email info@citystaug.com. For more information about the presentation by the Saint Augustine Historical Society, call 904.824.2872.

 

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