Four miles south of Marineland is the site of an archaeological project to excavate and preserve the remains of Mala Compra, the 19th century plantation belonging to the nation's first Hispanic Congressman and first Delegate from the territory of Florida, Joseph Marion Hern?°ndez. Hern?°ndez was born in St. Augustine when Florida was still a Spanish colony. He transferred his allegiance to the U.S. when the territory of Florida was established in 1821, and in 1822 he was appointed Delegate to the U.S. House of Representatives. Hern?°ndez was appointed a brigadier general in the Florida Militia in 1823. From 1835 to 1838 he served in the U.S. Army. In 1837 he commanded the expedition that captured Seminole Chief Osceola, and was appointed brigadier general of the Mounted Volunteers. Mala Compra was the General's main residence by the end of the 1820s. During Christmas 1831 John James Audubon visited the plantation. In 1836 it was burned by the Seminoles during the Second Seminole War. Excavation of the plantation ruins began in 2001. The visitor center and permanent outside exhibit, located in Bing's Landing Park at The Hammock, display the archaeology and history of the site . Excavation of the home's foundation continues on site today.