This Day in History: September 19, 1559

Just a little something to ponder as we enter the peak of the hurricane season, here in 2022.

Pensacola was the scene of a massive hurricane that changed the history of North America forever, illustrating the pivotal role that such storms played and continue to play in human affairs. A weeks-old settlement of over 1000 people, who had begun to clear land and even plat out residential lots, lost

their provisions and all but 4 small vessels as transportation. Learn more.

More about New Spain and the Spanish holdings in the Americas here.

In 1921, another hurricane caused history to change, although not as drastically, as noted in this Wikipedia article: “In Manatee County, the storm demolished much of the waterfront not only along Tampa Bay, but also Sarasota Bay and the Gulf of Mexico … On Anna Maria Island, the storm washed away high ground that was once a characteristic of the north end of the island. In the small fishing village of Cortez, the storm destroyed all of the community’s fish houses and docks. The storm surge completely flooded the area up to 67th Street in Bradenton. Cortez’s residents, with little forewarning of the storm, sought refuge in their rural graded schoolhouse, which withstood the storm while many houses floated away.[13] Inland, the storm caused flooding along the Myakka River and the destruction of many wharfs along the Manatee River.[14]

How did the 1921 hurricane change Sarasota history?

What the 1921 hurricane did for Sarasota was to give the opportunity to transform from a fishing village to a resort city. Before the storm, the site and the smell of the waterfront sent the tourists elsewhere. Afterwards, the city of Sarasota began to bill itself as a resort city.

Mark Smith writing in Sarasotahistoryalive

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