The oldest continuously occupied European settlement in the continental U.S., the 452-year-old city of St. Augustine is commonly known for its history. Starting with the landing by Pedro Menendez de Aviles on September 8, 1565, St. Augustine has been governed twice by Spain and once by England, became a USA territory in 1891 and served as the capital of Florida from 1821-1824. Now a popular tourist destination famous for its Spanish charm and varied architecture, the City of St. Augustine is home to Flagler College, once the grand Hotel Ponce de Leon built by Henry Flagler in 1888. St. Johns County also boasts the top rated public-school system in the state of Florida and within a short drive many public colleges and universities are represented including St. Johns River State College, University of North Florida, Jacksonville University and Florida State College at Jacksonville, providing a ready skilled workforce for the area.
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