This chronology of the Braddock family's presence in Florida from 1795 up to statehood was composed from information from numerous sources.
Most of the births, deaths, and marriages cited came from the Braddock genealogy published by the late Helen Hodges, who laid a solid foundation on which several subsequent Braddock genealogies on the Internet are built.
Some of it comes from the research of Helen's daughter Jean Mizell (Jean's Web page) and from Linda Balsavage, Verna Mae Braddock Campbell (Verna Mae's Web Page), Edgar Taylor, Hank Lewis, Pat Braddock Youngs, Donl Kite, and Lori Bragg (Nassau County Web Page). Bits and pieces of it were "borrowed" from various web pages on the Internet. A lot of it comes from records and documents I collected while researching Wooden Ships - Iron Men , a book I wrote about four of the ancestors of the subjects of this chronology. And with the generous assistance of Dr. James Cusick, curator of the George A. Smathers Libraries Special Collection Library (Special Collection's Web Page)at the University of Florida, I got some of the information during a recent visit to that library. The oaths of allegiance cited in the following were excerpted from Dr. Cusicks East Florida Papers Oaths of Allegiance 1793 - 1804, a translation of the Spanish documents.
The Internet version of issues of the Florida Historical Quarterly (FHQ Web Page), an excellent source for studying Florida history, provided background information for some of the chronology's events.
The primary source of practically all we know about our ancestors who resided in Spanish East Florida is East Florida Papers. The East Florida Papers (178 microfilm reels) contain the complete archives of the Second Spanish Administration of East Florida (1784 - 1821). A searchable index to documents, which are in Spanish, in the East Florida Papers is on the Internet at: [East Florida Papers]. A brief description, in English, of each document is in its index record. In the following history of my Braddocks and associated families in East Florida, items I found in the index records are prefaced with [EFP].
The dual purposes of this web page is to share this information and to stimulate others to add to it.
For a skinny little peninsula, Florida has had a lot of history crammed between its coasts and borders, especially in its northeast corner. And Braddocks have played roles in each of the state's five distinct historic periods: the first Spanish possession, the British possession, the second Spanish possession, U. S. Territorial, and are now playing vital roles in its statehood.
In the period of the first Spanish possession, in which Ponce de Leon first set foot on Florida shores and in which the Castillio de San Marcos was built and two colonial expeditions against it failed, David Cutler Braddock, captured on high seas by Spanish privateers, was held prisoner behind the forts formidable walls. Later, after escaping and making his way to Georgia, he commanded a Georgia provincial schooner in the fleet that bombarded the fort in the summer of 1742. His father-in-law, Captain William Lyford, Sr., also commanded a ship in that fleet. For several years afterward, he and Lyford, commanding South Carolina galleys, regularly cruised the First Coast keeping an eye on Spanish activity. Lyford later lost his command and barely escaped being charged with treason for trading with the Spanish while exchanging a boatload of prisoners at St. Augustine. Lyford played a role in the naming of Looe Key in the Florida Keys in 1744 as he served as pilot aboard the H. M. S. Loo when she wrecked on the key which now bears its name. Also during this period, Captain Braddock made a well-known chart of the Keys which is now in the Library of Congress. Chart of Florida Keys
During the second period, in which the British controlled Florida and divided it into the two provinces of East and West Florida and in which the states posterity was greatly enriched with the Minorcans arrival, John Cutler Braddock commanded one of the galleys that ran aground on Amelia Narrows ferrying Continentals from Georgia to battle the British Florida Rangers. In that period East Florida became a haven for Loyalists fleeing the lower colonies. Johns uncle, Loyalist William Lyford, Jr., sat in a meeting in St. Augustine with Col. Andrew Deveaux and others to plan the famous raid that drove the Spanish from Nassau, Bahamas in April 1783.
During the third period, with the Spanish again ruling, visits to Florida ceased to be only brief incursions for Braddocks, descendants of iron men who sailed wooden ships, when they became permanent inhabitants. The story of the their migration to North Florida began with the death of John Cutler Braddock prior to April 23, 1794 when, in the only public record of the Revolutionary heros death, the following was noted in the Minutes of the Executive Council of Georgia:
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