La Florida explores a Spanish thread to early American history that is unfamiliar or even unknown to most Americans. As this book uncovers, it was Spanish influence, and not English, which drove America’s early history. By focusing on America’s Spanish heritage, this collection of stories complicates and sometimes challenges how Americans view their past, which author Kevin Kokomoor refers to as “the country’s founding mythology.”
Dig deeper into Hispanic and Caribbean history, and how important happenings elsewhere in the Spanish colonial world influenced the discovery and colonization of the American Southeast. Follow Spanish sailors discovering the edges of a new continent and greedy, violent conquistadors quickly moving in to find riches, along with Catholic missionaries on their search for religious converts. Learn how Spanish colonialism in Florida sparked the British’s plans for colonization of the continent and influenced some of the most enduring traditions of the larger Southeast. The key history presented in the book will challenge the general assumption that whatever is important or interesting about this country is a product of its English past.
Kevin Kokomoor is a fourth generation Floridian who grew up in the Tampa Bay area. He earned his bachelor’s and master’s Degrees in History at the University of South Florida and his Doctorate in Early American History at Florida State University. His first academic position after graduate school was at Coastal Carolina University in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, where he is currently employed.
Kokomoor recently published Of One Mind and of One Government: The Rise and Fall of the Creek Nation in the Early Republic with the University of Nebraska Press. He has also authored several articles in academic journals, including Journal of Southern History, Georgia Historical Quarterly, Florida Historical Quarterly, Journal of Sport History, and Journal of the Gilded Age and Progressive Era. He won the Thompson Award for the best article published in Florida Historical Quarterly in 2009 and the E. Merton Coulter Award for the best article published in Georgia Historical Quarterly in 2013. In 2017 he was a Howard H. Peckham Fellow of Revolutionary America at the Clements Library at the University of Michigan. Other sources of support include the American Philosophical Society, the David Library of the American Revolution, Emory University, and the University of Florida.