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Safety Harbor in Pinellas County, Florida — The American South (South Atlantic)
 

Espiritu Santo Church

Site of Early Spanish Missionary Efforts

 
 
Espiritu Santo Church Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Fr. Len Plazewski, July 6, 2011
1. Espiritu Santo Church Marker
Inscription.  
On Pentecost Sunday, May 26, 1539, Hernando de Soto sailed into Tampa Bay and named it “Bahia Espiritu Santo” (Holy Spirit Bay). A decade later it is believed that the famed Dominican missionary, Father Luis de Cancer, was martyred nearby after spending 6 weeks in the area in an attempt to spread the Gospel among the native peoples. The stained glass window over the main doors pays tribute to Father de Cancer. Twenty years later, St. Augustine founder, Pedro Menendez de Aviles came here with a fleet of ships, leaving a captain, 30 soldiers and a Jesuit priest who erected a chapel with the intention of ministering to the native Tocabaga. The mission had to be abandoned within a few years because of hostility and distance. Nearly 400 years later, the present parish was established on this knoll overlooking Old Tampa Bay, close to the site of the ancient Spanish mission on Bahia Espiritu Santo.
 
Erected 2011.
 
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Churches & ReligionColonial EraExploration. A significant historical date for this entry is May 26, 1854.
 
Location.
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28° 0.67′ N, 82° 41.125′ W. Marker is in Safety Harbor, Florida, in Pinellas County. Marker can be reached from Philippe Parkway near Enterprise Road. Marker is affixed to the facade of Espiritu Santo Church near the main doors. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 2405, Safety Harbor FL 34695, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 2 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Bahia Espiritu Santo Mission (approx. 0.4 miles away); Tocobaga Temple Mound (approx. half a mile away); Safety Harbor Site (approx. half a mile away); Odet Philippe (approx. half a mile away); Philippe Park (approx. half a mile away); Safety Harbor Historical Site: Safety Harbor School (approx. 1.2 miles away); Safety Harbor Historical Site: Tucker Mansion (approx. 1.3 miles away); Safety Harbor Historical Event: Peace Treaty Between the Tocobaga and the Calusa (approx. 1.3 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Safety Harbor.
 
Espiritu Santo Church Marker near main doors image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Fr. Len Plazewski, July 6, 2011
2. Espiritu Santo Church Marker near main doors
Espiritu Santo Church image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Fr. Len Plazewski, September 11, 2009
3. Espiritu Santo Church
Espiritu Santo Church image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Fr. Len Plazewski, September 11, 2009
4. Espiritu Santo Church
Espiritu Santo Church Interior image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Fr. Len Plazewski, January 15, 2010
5. Espiritu Santo Church Interior
Stained Glass window of Fr. Luis de Cancer image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Fr. Len Plazewski, January 15, 2010
6. Stained Glass window of Fr. Luis de Cancer
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on April 10, 2018. It was originally submitted on July 6, 2011, by Fr. Len Plazewski of Tampa, Florida. This page has been viewed 2,093 times since then and 537 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6. submitted on July 6, 2011, by Fr. Len Plazewski of Tampa, Florida. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page.

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Sep. 23, 2023