Pilgrims Before Plymouth

Pilgrims Before Plymouth


  • Pilgrims Before Plymouth

Published Date

  • published 1940


[page 17]
Menendez turned its guns upon the French boats, sinking one. The other
two set sail for France, bearing among others Laudonniere, Le Moyne,
and Ribaut's son.

On September 28, Menendez learned that survivors from Ribaut's
wrecked fleet were on the beach a number of miles below St. Augustine.
Hurrying southward with a detachment of forty soldiers, Menendez, the
following day executed over two hundred Frenchmen after they had
surrendered and were ferried over Matanzas inlet by boat in groups of

Again on October 10, came tidings to St. Augustine that there
were many more Frenchmen at Matanzas inlet, and again Mendendez
sped down the beach, taking with him one hundred and fifty soldiers.
Near the same place and under nearly the same circumstances he slew all
of a group of one hundred and fifty Frenchmen who surrendered, except
several musicians who were kept alive to furnish music for dancing, four
men who professed to be Catholics, and one sailor, who was stunned and
left for dead, but reviving, managed to escape. Among the victims of
the second Matanzas massacre, October 12, 1565, was the French leader,
Jean Ribaut. Two hundred Frenchmen had refused to surrender, and
retreated southward along the coast. Later, all but a remnant of these
threw themselves upon Menendez's mercy, and were well treated. The
handful of irreconcilables, declaring that they would "rather be eaten by
Indians than surrender to Spaniards," fled into the interior, and were
never heard of again.