The General History of Pensacola
America's First Settlement (Prehistory-1561)
The area around present-day Pensacola was inhabited by Native American peoples thousands of years before European contact. Early exploration of Pensacola Bay spanned decades, with Ponce de León (1513), Pánfilo de Narváez (1528), and Hernando de Soto (1539) plus others charting the area.
Due to prior exploration, the first settlement in the region was large, landing on August 15, 1559, and led by Don Tristán de Luna y Arellano with over 1,400 people on 11 ships from Vera Cruz, Mexico. However, weeks later, the colony was decimated by a hurricane [September 19, 1559] which killed hundreds, sank 5 ships, grounded a caravel, and ruined supplies. The 1,000 survivors divided to relocate and resupply the settlement, but due to famine and attacks, the effort was abandoned in 1561.
About 240 people sailed to Santa Elena (today's Parris Island, South Carolina), but another storm hit there, so they sailed to Cuba and scattered. The remaining 50 at Pensacola were taken back to Mexico, and the Viceroy's advisors concluded northwest Florida was too dangerous to settle.
This decision held for the next 135 years.
The Five Flags (1719-1821)
The early years of settlement were extremely tenuous; the soil was poor, it was irregularly resupplied, and it was seen as an unpopular military posting due to disease, heat, and the poor conditions.
1698 – 1719 - The Presidio Santa Maria de Galve. The present city of Pensacola was established by the Spanish as a buffer against French settlement in Louisiana. This settlement included fort San Carlos de Austria (east of present Fort Barrancas) and a village with church. The Spanish settlers established a unique Creole culture in the region and brought in the first African slaves to the area and introduced the Roman Catholic Church.
1719, May 4 - Governor of French Louisiana, Jean-Baptiste Le Moyne de Bienville, arrived with his fleet and a large ground force of Indian warriors. The Spanish commander of Pensacola, Metamoras, had not heard that war had been declared between France and Spain, and his garrison was so small that he felt it would be useless to resist: at four o'clock in the afternoon, he surrendered on the conditions that private citizens and property should not be disturbed and the garrison should march out with honors of war and be shipped to Havana in French vessels. Having successfully conquored the city, Bienville left about sixty men at Pensacola and sailed away.
Overall, French influences were generally dominant among the Creoles on the Gulf Coast west of Pensacola, with Spanish influences dominant among Creoles in the modern Panhandle. A hurricane drove the French from Pensacola in 1722.
1722 – 1752 - Presidio Isla de Santa Rosa. This settlement was on Santa Rosa Island near the site of present Fort Pickens, but hurricanes battered the island in 1741 and the settlement was moved to the mainland. Population growth remained modest during this period, which was characterized by missionary work with Indians and the development of the mainland city as an important port and military outpost. Conflict with French and British interests was common, although Spain's informal alliance with France meant that the greatest threat was from English pirates, smugglers and especially merchants, whose ability to sell goods more cheaply than Spanish companies diminished local support for the Bourbon monarchy in Madrid.
1754 - 1763 - Presidio San Miguel de Panzacola. The final presidio was about five miles east of the first presidio, over in the present-day historic district now known as Seville Square. In 1757 "Panzacola" was affirmed as the area's name by a royal order of Spanish King Ferdinand VI.
1763 - Following Great Britain's victory in the Seven Years War, the British took control of Pensacola under the terms of the Treaty of Paris. It is during the British occupation that the area began to prosper. Pensacola was made the capital of British West Florida and the town was laid out in its current form around the Seville Square district. The British built the Royal Navy Redoubt, and made Pensacola the capital of the 14th British colony, West Florida.
1779 - After Spain joined the American Revolution late, the Spanish captured East Florida and West Florida, regaining Pensacola from 1781–1819.
1819 - In a Transcontinental Treaty, Spain renounced its claims to West Florida and ceded East Florida to the United States for the comisserate sum of $5 million.
1821 - With Andrew Jackson as provisional governor, Pensacola offically became part of the United States.
1861, Jan 10 - Florida became the third state to secede from the Union to join the newly formed Confederate States of America. Fort Pickens, one of three forts guarding the entrance to Pensacola Bay, was held by Federal troops, and remaining Union forces in the city also evacuated there: the fort was never taken by Confederate forces. In the Battle of Santa Rosa Island in October 1861, the city of Pensacola and the two Confederate forts fought against an invading United States army and the forces stationed at Fort Pickens.
1862, May - Pensacola conquered by U.S. troops, and most of the city was burned. Residents evacuated inland. The ravages of Reconstruction greatly damaged the region's economy.
1868, June 25 - Florida was readmitted to the Union.
The Kindred History of Pensacola
The Kindred Influx (1852-1882)
1852 - First recorded Kindred in Pensacola arrived. They were a coterie of Unaligned who took up residence around present day downtown. What is recorded is that this coterie had no regard for the Masquerade and their feeding frenzies were to blame for the so-called Yellow Fever epidemics of 1852 and 1853.
1870 - The first railroad connects Pensacola with the outside world. Members of the Invictus establish themselves around what will become present-day Milton.
1874 - Father Roger Bjeornsen establishes a Lancea Sanctum mission in Pensacola, using the Old Pensacola Church as his diocees.
1880 - Russell Grissom and Adriana DeLozier arrive in Milton, and immediately turn their attention to southern Santa Rosa County.
1880 - Adriana DeLozier makes contact with the local Circle of the Crone.
1882 - Russell Grissom buys Santa Rosa Island, which will later become Gulf Breeze and Pensacola Beach. He is criticized for buying land in the middle of nowhere. Together, Adriana DeLozier and Russell Grissom finance several building and improvement projects in the area.
Establishment of Praxis (1885-1900)
1885, May 20 - The Unaligned of the city attack the Invictus stronghold in Milton, burning much of the town. The Invictus regroup on Santa Rosa Island under the protection of Russell Grissom.
1885, May 30 - Adriana DeLozier extends the aid of her Covenant to the Invictus.
1890 - The Invictus launch reprisals for the burning of Milton. Dame Elizabeth Bolynn-Black leads the Thorned Wreath and House Black in conquest of the city. Adriana DeLozier and the majority of the other Acolytes stand with Prince Black against the Unaligned. Much of downtown is burned during the conquest.
1891, Jan 1 - Elizabeth Bolynn-Black proclaims herself the first Prince of Pensacola and is awarded title of Duchess of Escambia and Santa Rosa. Unaligned are banned from the city. Adriana DeLozier rallies the Crone of the area in support of Invictus rule vice the chaos offered by the Unaligned, and dedicates much of her time towards aiding in rebuilding of Downtown.
1898 - Russell Grissom is named Viscount of Santa Rosa Island by Prince Black.
1900 - 1950
1900 - Gavin Rayne-Smythe arrives in Pensacola, as Russell Grissom's vassal; takes residence in Floridatown, which will become modern-day Pace.
1902 - Adriana DeLozier takes leave from Pensacola under amicable terms.
1905, Nov 1 - Hostilities between the Lancea Sanctum and the Circle of the Crone flare up and several buildings downtown are burned.
1910 - Charles Wingates is named Marquis of Pensacola by Prince Black.
1916 - The Ordo Dracul establishes a research center in the basement of Sacred Heart Hospital, directly under the noses of the Lancea Sanctum.
1921 - The Newport Company is found to be run by a group of Unaligned, with asperations of "taking over" Pensacola.
1922 - Through the machinations of Gavin Rayne-Smythe, The Newport Company is shut down and the attached Kindred thwarted in their efforts of takeover. Mister Rayne-Smythe is named Viscount of Pace by Prince Black for his efforts.
1929 - When the stock market crashes, Gavin Rayne-Smythe works tirelessly to ensure the financial stability of the Kindred of Pensacola.
1931, June 13 - Through the efforts of Russell Grissom the bridge connecting Pensacola to Santa Rosa Island (through what will become Gulf Breeze), and the Pensacola Casino are opened on the same day.
1936- Russell Grissom disappears from Pensacola society – presumed in Torpor. Gavin Rayne-Smythe protects and nurtures his Liege-lords interests, maintaining them to respectable operating margins.
The Goon of Guillemard Street (1938)
During the week of Feb. 11, 1938, records show that a creature dubbed the Goon of Guillemard Street terrorized the city of Pensacola. Stories of the goon surfaced about the same time a similarly mysterious beast dragged itself out of the swamps of Mobile and killed a dog. The Monster of Fisher's Alley, as it was called, turned out to be an abnormally large otter. It is speculated that the rumor simply spread to Pensacola in a wilder, more distorted version.
The monster was described as having the head of a panther, the body of a gorilla and six hands and legs. It dwelled in the city's sewer system and emerged mostly in the area of Guillemard and Romana streets. Locals were warned that the goon was dangerous and often attacked from storm sewers, treetops and rooftops. Rumors of sightings spread like wildfire throughout the city.
Stories of the Goon created enough panic to disturb daily life. For three days, residents in the area of Guillemard stayed indoors as committees of armed citizens patrolled the streets. The complaint line at the police station rang continuously. At one point, police were called to St. Michael's Cemetery following a sighting of the goon. Nothing was found, but the police weren't complaining. It was reported that crime virtually vanished during the goon scare. Street fights, usually common near the port area, were nonexistent.
Local commerce was also affected by the fright. Popular dance halls couldn't attract customers, and street vendors complained of lost business. Eventually, worried merchants who feared loss of revenue spread a counter-rumor that the goon was found dead on Mobile Highway after it tried to attack a speeding car.
Eventually, talk of the goon subsided, and newspapers reported that the public was safe. Years passed, and the Goon of Guillemard Street became a memory of local lore.
1950 - 1980
1957 - Russell Grissom reappears in Pensacola society. Management Ventures, Limited began. Gavin Rayne-Smythe is named CFO.
1961, Feb - Pensacola Casino management transferred to Management Ventures Limited.
1961 - The City of Gulf Breeze becomes incorporated.
1962, May 7 - The “Night of the VII.” A priest of the Lancea Sanctum is killed along with members of the Invictus, Carthian Movement, and the Unaligned at a chapel in Cantonment. Spray painted on the doors of the chapel is “VII.” In a gesture of good faith Prince Black lifts the ban on the Unaligned within the city.
1966, June 13 - In an effort to bring revenue to Pensacola, Management Ventures, Ltd., announces the construction of an offshore casino, in the style of the old Mississippi paddle-boats.
1971 - May 25 - Adriana DeLozier returns to Pensacola; after re-establishing good relations with Prince Black she houses herself in Gulf Breeze. She is seen by all to be enjoying herself during the preperations for the opening of the second Pensacola Casino.
1971, June 13 - The second Pensacola Casino opens offshore. Historic Casino officially closed.
1972 - Historic Casino demolished. The area is officially renamed Casino beach in memory.
1972, August - Adriana DeLozier once more leaves Pensacola.
The Beginning of the End (1980-2000)
1984 - Geoffrey Faucheux-Black arrives as the ward of Prince Black.
1999 - The Gangrel known as Ghosteyes launches her bid for Prince. She rallies much of her support from the Carthian Movement and surprisingly the Circle of the Crone. She promotes civil unrest and after many shenanigans, Ghosteyes is torpored and imprisoned within the foundation of the clock tower at Pensacola Jr. College.
Mad Prince Geoffrey (2000-2004)
2000 - Prince Black enters torpor. She is succeeded by The Good Geoffrey Devaux-Black, Viscount of East Hill. Prince Geoffrey Black exiles members of all covenants except for the Invictus from Pensacola. The reign of “Mad Prince Geoffrey” begins. Russell Grissom is seen as being the Mad Prince's most consistant supporter.
2000 - Charles Wingates departs city on personal business.
2001 - In response to Prince Geoffrey's exile of all Kindred who are not members of the First Estate, Carthian Prefect Maxwell Washington declares that the “traditional Carthian territory of Brownsville, Ensley, the docks and rail yards” are no longer subject to the Prince's rule.
2003 - Aoide Radio, a division of Union Broadcasting Corporation, under the Atlas Conglomerate umbrella, purchases several radio stations throughout Santa Rosa and Escambia counties.
2004 - Prince Geoffrey attempts to kill Elizabeth Bolynn-Black while she is in torpor. Due to the efforts of her loyal retainers, he fails. In retaliation, Geoffrey is killed by members of House Black and the Lancea Sanctum. Duchess Elizabeth Bolynn-Black once again becomes Prince.
Task Force Valkyrie (2005)
2005, Jan - Duchess Black calls the Kindred of Pensacola for a Summit, which is held with Russell Grissom's blessings at Fort Pickens. The purpose of the Summit was to settle grievances created during and due to Geoffrey's reign. The summit is, basically a success, with only the Carthians not recognizing Duchess Blacks' rule. The summit however is attacked by a group of heavily armed hunters using advanced weapons and technology. Kindred casualties are high; they retreat to their various strongholds and lick their wounds.
2005, April - Task Force Valkyrie reveals itself, and launches a raid on the Prince Black's haven. However the raid is less than successful and leads to one member of TFV being captured. After tense negotiations an accord is struck between TFV and the Kindred of the city: TFV's commander will not persue the Kindred presence of Pensacola if the city's vampires pledge to keep their fangs out of military personnel.
2005, date unknown - PCC was attacked by a group of Kindred who managed to steal some antique books. The content of the books was unknown, and the troubles with TFV prevented any research into the matter.
The Death of Prince Black (Jan - June 2006)
2006, Jan - Like a horrific bastardization of a phoenix rising from its ashes, Ghosteyes somehow slipped her bonds within the cornerstone, and returned to terrorize Pensacola once more. She makes another bid for Praxis, once again using the Carthians and the Circle of the Crone as her basis of power. Her intervention ended any idea of reconciliation in the city under an Invictus Prince, her manipulation of the Crone dogma and her power over the Carthian Sheriff break the foundation of trust which Prince Black had tried so hard to repair, and open war between the kindred citizenry begins.
During this crucible of blood and fire, Ghosteyes is revealed to be a member of the Brood. Efforts to bring her to Final Death are redoubled.
2006, June 20 - During a celebration of the 125th year of Prince Blacks Praxis, Ghost Eyes and her supporters attack the gala. Most of the Kindred of the city, including Prince Black, are killed.
In the chaotic aftermath, many of the surviving Kindred flee Pensacola.
The Rise of the Triumverate (2006)
Charles Wingates of the Invictus returns to Pensacola, and with the aid of Russell Grissom rallies the other Kindred who remain. A war party is formed, with the sole ambition of eradicating Ghosteyes once and for all. In a bloody pitched battle the haggard warriors finally bring the foul creature low, and it is believed that she has, at last, met with her Final Death.
Understanding that the events from 2000 to 2006 severely weakened Invictus control of the city, and that Geoffrey's time as Prince left a very bad taste in the mouths of Pensacola's surviving kindred, Charles Wingates, Russell Grissom of the Invictus, and Peter Euric of the Unaligned establish a Board of Directors system of governance. No longer threatened with the yolk of domination by a singular Praxis holder, Kindred begin to slowly trickle home.
Influx and Development (2006-2012)
2007, March - Adriana DeLozier returns to Pensacola with the promise of aiding the city rebuild.
2007, March - Fiona and Fenley Dune arrive in Pensacola.
2007, May-December - Aoide Radio, a division of Union Broadcasting Corporation, under the umbrella of Atlas Conglomerate, engages in a bitter yet successful battle with Cumulus, and Clear Channel Radio. The result is the acquisition of every raido station in the Escambia and Santa Rosa County listening areas.
2007, Dec - Construction on the new Pensacola Casino begins. The new structure is an offshore platform anchored several miles out, and therefore continues to operate outside the jurisdiction of several city-centric anti-gambling laws.
2007 - Adriana DeLozier, using the umbrella of Union Broadcasting Corporation, aids in financing WEAR3's move to a newer, more modern facility.
2008, Feb - Aoide Radio begins construction of the SE Division Office Complex in downtown Gulf Breeze. The project brings over 2000 jobs to the area.
2008 - Peter Euric begins construction of a large buisness-plex/appartment complex on the site of University Mall. Boasting three helipads, an olympic-sized pool and an open-air restaraunt on the roof, the project brings a glut of skilled laborers to the city.
2009 - The Pensacola News Jorunal is in financial straights, so when their press breaks they are forced to consider moving operations to Mobile, Alamaba. Adriana DeLozier, through Union Broadcasting Corporation, makes a sizeable donation and stops the move. UBC then invests heavily in PNJ, providing an upgrade to its facilities. PNJ now has access to state-of-the-art equipment.
2010 - Construction of the Aoide Radio SE Division Office Complex completed. The complex hires at least 200 office and janitorial staff. Begins the systematic conglomeration of the stations in Escambia and Santa Rosa to the new Complex.
2012, June 13 - New Pensacola Casino officially opened. The old casino is towed out and sunk as an artificial reef.
2012 - Aoide Radio SE Division Office Complex completes the congolomeration process. The now-vacant station buildings are stripped of their sensitive equipment and Aoide offers them at a signifigantly reduced rent cost to the YMCA, Boys&Girls Club of America, and other Community Outreach projects in an effort to better the youth programs in Pensacola.
2013, July - Euric Tower is complete and used as the location for the citizenry of Pensacola to gather and celebrate the induction of Mister James Ellinton into the Thorned Wreath.