When Pedro Menedez de Aviles landed here on September 8, 1565, he brought 20 artillery pieces with him to protect the fledgling settlement. We have a replica of one of those six-pounder guns, and we give hourly demonstrations about the history of their use in the settlement of St. Augustine.
Then we fire the cannon. BOOM!
Nothing can compare to the sound and feel of artillery – the roar and smell of the powder transports you back to a time when a small band of Spanish soldier-farmers faced an uncertain future in a new land that was naturally rich, but filled with hostile and potentially lethal threats.
Additional weapons demonstrations include arquebus gun lectures and firing and period crossbow demonstrations. Since these period weapons require dry powder charges, the demonstrations are weather-dependent.