Dr. Kathleen Deagan is Guest Speaker for Augustinian Day

August 28 is the feast day of St. Augustine of Hippo, our diocesan namesake and one of the greatest Doctors of the Church. To commemorate the day, the Cathedral Basilica of St. Augustine will host an Augustinian Address with noted historian and archeologist Dr. Kathleen Deagan as guest speaker.

Dr. Kathleen Deagan

It will begin with vespers in the Cathedral Basilica, at 6 p.m. The address begins at 7 p.m. at the Bishop Baker Center, 267 St. George Street, St. Augustine.

Dr. Deagan is a distinguished research curator of archaeology and adjunct professor of anthropology at the University of Florida’s Museum of Natural History. She is known for her historic archaeology which uncovered the colonial past of  La Florida, and she has directed excavations at Colombus’ first towns in America, the search for la Navidad, Columbus’s first fort in Haiti, America’s first free black community and Florida’s first Spanish fort in St. Augustine. Dr. Deagan has received multiple awards and honors, including the Society for Historical Archaeology’s Award of Merit and the J.C. Harrington Award. She has authored eight books and more than 65 scientific papers. Dr. Deagan has been conducting excavations in St. Augustine since 1972 and is leading the current archeological dig with Flagler College at the Shrine of Our Lady of La Leche at Mission Nombre de Dios in St. Augustine.

Dr. Deagan will talk about the life of St. Augustine and his influence on the history of our diocese and city.

“There’s something about St. Augustine and how his teaching and influence shaped what happened here in the past,” she said. “And how the Franciscans and the mission and the parish churches shaped life in the 18th century through archeology.”

The city of St. Augustine was named as such when Pedro Menéndez de Avilés and his fellow Spaniards spotted land on August 28, 1565 – St. Augustine’s death and feast day. To this day, Augustinian Day brings the history of this city and the saint to life hundreds of years later.

“I think it’s about commemorating our origins and also learning more about how some of the beliefs and teachings of that time have shaped the culture and people here,” said Deagan.