"La Caroline", a show and a celebration to learn History [fr]

In 1564, French people settled in Fort Caroline, an early settlement presented as the first European colony of the future United States. Many events have been organized to celebrate this anniversary. In October, enjoy the great Rock-Opera "La Caroline" at the MOSH in Jacksonville. In November, attend the exceptional event dedicated to the "First French Colony in America".

First, the History

In 1562, French Huguenot Capt. Jean Ribault is believed to have sailed into what is today St. Johns River, claiming the land for France.

Then, in 1563, King Charles of France sent Captain Rene Goulaine de Laudonniere back to Florida with hundreds of French men, women and children to build a fort: La Caroline.


They would establish one of the first colonies in America upon the completion of the Fort on June 29, 1564.
The day after, they celebrated the first “Thanksgiving” by sharing a meal with the native Timucua Indians!
To learn more, visit the following links:
- Jacksonville Daily Record – French culture has new address at Visit Jacksonville
- City honors 450th anniversary of ‘1st Thanksgiving’
- Plenty to do at historic Fort Caroline National Memorial

The “France-Florida Cultural Center” is on track

On June 30, 2014, “Visit Jacksonville” opened the “France-Florida Cultural Center”.

Inauguration du centre franco-floridien le 30 juin 2014. - JPEG

In the presence of Florida Secretary of State, Ken Deztner, Consul general of France in Miami, Philippe Letrilliart, and Francois Kloc, Honorary Consul of France in Jacksonville, Visit Jacksonville’s president and CEO, Mr. Paul Astleford, stated during the ceremony: “The France–Florida Cultural Center is a space where history is remembered and where we look to the future to establish new relationships between French businesses, and visitors and the Jacksonville community”.

Being passionate by this shared history, members of the Center did organize many “first” events before or at the time of the opening.
Just to mention a few, a lecture at the City Hall called “Where is Fort Caroline, anyway? Archaeological and historical perspectives on Fort Caroline’s location” took place this summer, where University of North Florida anthropologists Robert Thunen and Keith Ashley discussed the continuing search for Fort Caroline’s actual location.


Next events

“The French in Florida”, the Great Travels by Theodore de Bry

Exhibition on view until November 7, 2014

After a presentation this summer at the Museum of Science and History in Jacksonville, the unique itinerary exhibition of digital reproductions of engravings by Theodore de Bry is displayed at the Collier County Museums in Naples until November è, 2014.

Till Nov. 7, 2004, at the Collier County Museums (3331 Tamiami Trail East, Naples, FL 3411).


The rock-opera “La Caroline”


"La Caroline", at the Museum of Science and History in Jacksonville

On October 16-18 2014 and for a special evening on Oct. 24, “La Caroline” will be presented at MOSH.
The project that combines music, theater and dance depicts wonderfuly the first European colony in future America. It was written by Jennifer Chase and John E. Citrone and produced by collaboration of local and French artists.

Performances Doors open at 7:30 p.m. performance starts at 8 p.m.

- October 16
- October 17
- October 18
- Gala Performance October 24, ticket includes a post performance reception
To get tickets for the opera, please visit www.themosh.com

“Celebration of the First French Colony in America”

“Celebration of the First French Colony in America” takes place at Fort Caroline National Memorial.


The National Park Service (NPS) and the Timucuan Trail Parks Foundation (TTPF) along with NPS’s official friends group and supporters organize a whole day dedicated to the Fort starting at 3:00 PM on Sunday, Nov. 2nd, 2014.
In the presence of local authorities and the Consul general of France, Mr. Philippe Létrilliart, this exceptional event will be closed by a gala dinner.

To learn more about the festivities, visit: timucuantrailparksfoundation.org

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Article updated on September 30, 2014.

Last modified on 08/10/2014

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