Often called “The Cradle of Naval Aviation,” Pensacola, Florida is home to a number of United States Navy bases. The military presence has contributed an immense amount to the culture and economy of the area over the years, and that isn’t looking like it will change any time soon. Pensacola’s military history is something residents hold in high regard, making the Florida city one of the most patriotic in the country.
In addition to the vast number of Pensacola navy bases, the area is also home to the Blue Angels. Serving at the Navy’s flight demonstration squadron, the Blue Angels were founded in 1946 and is made up of Navy and Marine personnel. They generally put on more than 70 shows a year for more than 10 million spectators.
Pensacola is home to more than just the Navy and Marines though! The area is also home to the Eglin Air Force Base. The base hosts the 96th Test Wing, otherwise known as the testing and evaluation base for weapons, navigation, and other systems. It was originally established in 1935 and named after Lieutenant Colonel Frederick I. It also has scheduled passenger airline service with the Destin-Fort Walton Airport located on-base.
Pensacola, Florida has a long history, with a strong military presence throughout.European settles first arrived in the 1500s when Diego Miruelo sailed into the bay. By 1559, the Spanish settlement was lively with more than 1,500 settlers. Just weeks later, a hurricane decimated the area, driving those who survived further inland. Only 50 settlers remained by the end and the area was deemed too dangerous to settle.
It wasn’t until 1698 that the Spanish revisited Pensacola and the city was established as a buffer zone between French colonies in Louisiana. Starting in 1707, English-allied Native Americans attacked the fort.
In more recent history, Florida became the third state to secede from the Union during the American Civil War. Union troops held one of the forts that guarded the entrance to the bay and, despite the majority of troops leaving the area, Confederate troops never took the fort.
Stop by and experience everything Pensacola has to offer! While you’re here, be sure to stop in at Pete Moore Mitsubishi and say hello!