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Britain ceded control of the territory to Spain in 1783, after being defeated in the American Revolutionary War, and the settlement at the Cow Ford continued to grow.After Spain ceded the Florida Territory to the United States in 1821, American settlers on the north side of the Cow Ford decided to plan a town, laying out the streets and plats.On Black Hammock Island in the national Timucuan Ecological and Historic Preserve, a University of North Florida team discovered some of the oldest remnants of pottery in the United States, dating to 2500 BC.In the 16th century, the beginning of the historical era, the region was inhabited by the Mocama, a coastal subgroup of the Timucua people.
Though no battles were fought in Jacksonville proper, the city changed hands several times between Union and Confederate forces.
Its riverine location facilitates Naval Station Mayport, Naval Air Station Jacksonville, the U. Marine Corps Blount Island Command, and the Port of Jacksonville, Florida's third largest seaport.
Significant factors in the local economy include services such as banking, insurance, healthcare and logistics.
A platted town was established there in 1822, a year after the United States gained Florida from Spain; it was named after Andrew Jackson, the first military governor of the Florida Territory and seventh President of the United States.
Harbor improvements since the late 19th century have made Jacksonville a major military and civilian deep-water port.