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THE SPANIARDS IN FLORIDA.
23 Annapolis now stands as the site of a settlement, to which he gave the name of Port Royal. De Monts settled on the island of St. Croix, at the mouth of the river of the same name, but afterward abandoned this situation and removed to Port Royal, which was the first permanent French settlement made in North America. (1605.) Three years afterwards (1608) Champlain, acting in the service of a private company of merchants, occupied the site of the city of Quebec by raising some cottages and clearing a few acres of land. He afterwards took a part in the Indian wars, sailed up the river Sorel, and explored the lake which now bears his name. To his enterprise and courage the French were indebted for their colonies in this country.*
THE SPANIARDS TAKE POSSESSION OF FLORIDA.
As the Spaniards had been the first nation to attempt the discovery of the New World, so they were the most enterprising and adventurous in their endeavours to conquer and colonize its extensive and fertile countries. The history of their warlike achievements in Mexico and Peru presents examples of the most heroic bravery and perseverance, darkened by many shadows of avarice and injustice. The whole nation seems to have been fired with the spirit of foreign adventure, and the New World was the grand theatre for its display.
Previous to the expeditions of Cortes and Pizarro, Florida had been discovered by Juan Ponce de Leon. · This adventurer had accompanied Columbus in his second voyage ; and afterwards had been successively appointed governor of the eastern province of Hispaniola, and of Porto Rico. When he had been displaced from the government of the latter island, in consequence of the paramount claims of Columbus's family, he fitted out an expedition with the romantic
the first permanent | Who was Juan Ponce de Leon ? French settlement in North Ame- Where had he served ? mica made When? By whom? Under what leader ? When was Quebec settled ?
For what purpose did he fit out ar. Who were the earliest European set- expedition? tlers in the New World ?
DISCOVERY OF FLORIDA.
design of searching for a country in which, according to information received from the Caribs, there was a fountain whose waters imparted to those who bathed in them the gift of perpetual youth. Having sailed about among the Bahamas and touched at several of them, in pursuit of this fairy land, he at length, (March 27, 1512, came in sight of the continent.
this discovery was made on Easter Sunday, which the Spaniards call Pascua Florida, the land was called Florida. Its verdant forests and magnificent flowering aloes may have afforded another reason for assigning it this name.
It was not till the 8th of April that he was able to effect a landing in the latitude of thirty degrees and eight minutes, a little to the north of St. Augustine. He claimed the territory for Spain, remained some weeks exploring the coast, and then returned to Porto Rico, leaving a part of his company in the newly discovered country.
The King of Spain rewarded him with the government of Florida, on condition that he should conquer and colonise it. This he attempted in 1521, but was resisted with great fury by the Indians, who killed many of his followers, drove the survivors to their ships, and compelled him to relinquish the enterprise. Ponce de Leon himself was wounded with an arrow, and died shortly after his return to Cuba.
In 1510, the southern coast of the United States was partially explored by Grijalva; and in 1520, Lucas Vasques de Ayllon fitted out two slave ships, from St. Domingo, visited the coast of South Carolina, then called Chicora, discovered the Combahee river, to which the name of the Jordan was given; and finally, having decoyed a large number of the Indians on board his ships, set sail with them for St. Domingo, leaving behind the most determined purpose of revenge among the injured natives.
His sovereign rewarded this atrocious enterprise by appointing Ayllon to the conquest of Chicora. In attempting this, he lost one of his ships and a great number of his men; who were killed by the natives in revenge for former wrongs. He was finally compelled to relinquish his undertaking.
In 1526, Pamphilo de Narvaez, the same officer who had
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By Ayllon? When?
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Ponce de Leon repulsed by the Indians. been sent by Velasquez to supersede Cortes in Mexico, attempted the conquest of Florida. This expedition was signally disastrous. The Spaniards landed near Appalachee bay, marched into the interior, and spent six months, in various hardships and conflicts with the Indians, and at last found their way back to the sea shore, somewhere near the bay of Pensacola. Here they fitted out boats, and embarking were shipwrecked near the mouth of the Mississippi. Only four or five out of three hundred reached Mexico to tell the story of their disasters. These men gave such flattering accounts of the riches of the country, that their sufferings by no means deterred others from attempting its subjugation.
The next Spanish adventurer on the shores of the United States was Ferdinand de Soto, a highly distinguished officer, who had shared the glory and wealth obtained by Pizarro in the conquest of Peru. Returning to Spain after the most brilliant success in that country, he demanded of Charles V to conquer Forida at his own cost; and received from that monarch commission for that purpose, together with the governo.en ri Cuba. (1537.)
Miitudes o adventurers flocked to his standard. Expectatior had been raised to the greatest height by the exaggcra ed accounts of the wealth of Florida; and men of all classes sold their possessions in Spain 10 fit themselves out for a conquest which promised to outshine those of Mexico and Peru, in the brilliancy of its results.
Describe his expedition.
Under whom had he served ?
What did he offer to Charles V?
soTO'S EXPEDITION. Soto selected six hundred of the choicest men for his companions, and sailed to Cuba. (1538.) Here he was joined by other adventurers, and having completed his preparations, he embarked for Florida in May, 1539. Having arrived in the bay of Spiritu Santo, he sent back most of his ships to Havanna, and commenced his march into the interior -a march which has no parallel in the history of adventure. Fired by the example of their countrymen in the more southern regions, the Spaniards advanced as if to certain conquest and wealth. They were abundantly supplied with provisions and munitions of war, horses for the cavalry, and blood hounds for hunting the natives; and their numbers exceeded those of the armies which had conquered Mexico and Peru. But they were destined for a far different fate. Their grand error, the pursuit of gold, was the source of endless disasters and sufferings.
The ndians, who were determined in their hostility to the invaders, had recourse to stratagem, as well as force, in order to get rid of them. They continually deceived the Spaniards by representing to them that, by continuing their march into the interior, they would at last arrive at a region abounding with gold-and deluded, again and again, by this plausible story, Soto passed onward from tribe to tribe, and from river to river, until his splendid and well appointed army had melted away to a mere handful of men, worn out with sufferings, and destitute of the means of subsistence or defence.
Setting out from the bay of Spiritu Santo in June, 1539, they spent the time in wandering through forests and morasses, until October, when they found themselves in the neighbourhood of Appalachee bay.—The men were dispirited ; and desired to return home; but Soto would not hear of such a measure; he sent to Cuba for supplies for the next year's expedition.
In March, 1540, deluded by the promise of an Indian guide to conduct him to a country where gold was abundant, Soto set forth again and marched towards the north-east, till they reached the Ogechee, and then through the country of the Cherokees, now a part of the gold region; but without discovering any of the precious metal. From Georgia the
How many adventurers accompanied | What was his error? him?
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Whither did they march in the sucDescribe his army.
SOTO IN MISSOURI.
27 Spaniards passed into Alabama, and in October fought a severe battle with the Indians, at a town which was then called Mavilla or Mobile, on the Alabama, above the junction of the Tombecbee. In this engagement 2500 Indians are said to have fallen. The town was burned. The Spaniards had 18 killed and 150 wounded, and lost a part of their horses and all their baggage, which was burned in the town.
Having received supplies from Cuba, Soto now marched towards the north and west. In December, 1540, he had reached the upper part of the Mississippi, where he wintered in a deserted town of the Chickasaws. In the spring he demanded of them 250 men, to carry the baggage of the soldiers. The Indians, instead of complying with this unwarrantable requisition, set fire to the iown in which the Spaniards were encamped, in the night, and attacked them with great fury. The loss of men in this encounter was trifling, but the Spaniards suffered severely from the destruction of their clothing, their arms, and a part of their horses. The Indians knew not how to follow up their first advantage, and the invaders were soon in a condition to continue their progress to the west.
In April, 1541, Soto discovered the Mississippi, being the first European who visited that river. In June he had crossed it; and reached Missouri ; and during the summer he is supposed to have penetrated as far as the highlands of the White river, 200 miles from the Mississippi. Thence he turned towards the south, and passed through Arkansas into Louisiana. His wanderings and contests with the Indians continued until May 21st, 1542, when, worn out with sickness and fatigue, the unfortunate Soto died, on the banks of the great river which he had discovered. To conceal his death from the Indịans his followers sunk his body in the middle of the stream.
• The discoverer of the Mississippi,' says Bancroft, from whose eloquent history we have condensed this brief account of his expedition—the discoverer of the Mississippi siept beneath its waters. He had crossed a large part of the continent in search of gold, and found nothing so remarkable as his burial place.'
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the Indians ? When? What was the result?
What did Soto discover in April, 15411 What transpired in December? How far did he go to the west ? In the spring?
To what place did he return? What did the Spaniards lose ? When did he die ?