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l>€un of the School of I'l-iluyoyij 
Xew York ritircrsiti/ 

NEW VORK •-■• CINCrXXATI •:• CrncAfif^ 

A M H I{ I C A X ]^, () () K CO M 1 ' A X Y 

Copyright, 1900, 
By Edward It. Shaw. 

W. P. 4 



The practice of beginning the study of geography 

with the locality in which the pupil lives, in order 

that his tirst ideas of geographical conceptions may 

f2 be gained from observation directed upon the real 

^ conditions existing about him, has been steadily 

>- . . 

^;\ gaining adherence during the past few years as a 

2 rational method of entering upon the study of geog- 
oj After the pupil has finished an elementary study 
J!J of the locality, he is ready to pass to an elementary 
f consideration of the world as a whole, to get his first 
conception of the planet on which lie lives. His 
d knowledge of the forms of land and water, his knowl- 
X edge of rain and wind, of heat and cold, as ag(Mits, 
g aud of the easily traced effects resulting fi'om the 
^ interaction of these agents, have be«Mi acquii'ed by 
3 observation and inference u])Oii coiiditic^ns actually 
at hand; in othtM" words, iiis knowledge has been 
gained in a prescntative manner. 

Ills study of the woihl, li(>we\'er, must ditTfi' 
largely from this, and must be rffectcd pi-incipally 


4471^6 . 

by representation. The globe in relief, therefore, 
presents to him his basic idea, and all his future 
study of the world will but expand and modify this 
idea, until at length, if the study is properly con- 
tinued, the idea becomes exceedingly complex. 

In passing from the geographj^ of the locality to 
that of the world as a whole, the pupil is to deal 
broadly with the land masses and their general char- 
acteristics. The continents and oceans, their rela- 
tive situations, form, and size, are then to be treated, 
but the treatment is always to be kept easily within 
the pupil's capabilities — the end l:)eing merely an ele- 
mentary world- view. 

During the time the pupil is acquiring this ele- 
mentai'y knowledge of the world as a whole, certain 
facts of history may be interrelated with the geo- 
graphical study. 

According to the plan already suggested, it will be 
seen that the pupil is carried out from a study of the 
limited area of land and water about him to an idea 
of the world as a sphere, with its great distrilnition 
of land and water. In this transference he soon 
comes to perceive how small a part his hithei"to 
known world forms of the great earth-sphere itself. 

Something analogous to this transition on the part 
of the pupil to a larger view seems to l)e found in 
the history of the western nations of Europe. It is 

the gradual change in the conception of the world 
held during the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries to 
the enlarged conception of the world as a sphere 
which the remarkabk^ discoveries and explorations 
of the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries brought 

The analogy serves pedagogically to point out an 
interesting and valual)le biterrelation of certain facts 
of history with certain phases of geographical study. 

This book has been prepared for the purpose of 
affording material for such an interrelation. The 
plan of interrelation is simple. x\s the stud}' of the 
world as a whole, in the manner already sketched, 
progresses, the npproi>riate chapters are read, dis- 
cussed, and reproduce*!, and the routes of the various 
discoverers niid explorers ti'aced. No further word 
seems to the writer necessary in regard to the inter- 

Dresden, July 15, 1899. 



Beliefs as to the World Four Hundred Years Ago . 9 

Marco Polo 16 

Columbus 24 

Vasco da Gama 40 

John and Sebastian Cabot's Voyages .... 44 

Amerigo Vespucci 48 

Ponce de Leon 54 

Balboa 56 

Magellan 62 

Hernando Cortes 68 

Francisco Pizarro 78 

Ferdinand de Soto 84 

The Great River Amazon, and El Dorado . . .92 

Verrazzano 102 

The Famous Voyage of Sir Francis Drake -1577 . . lOS 
Henry Hudson 114 



Four liundred years ago most of the peoi^le who 
lived ill Europe thought that the earth was tlat. 
They knew only the land that was near them. They 
knew the continent of Eurox^e, a small part of Asia, 
and a strip along the 
northern shore of 

They thouglit this 
known land was sur- 
rounde<l l)y a vast 
l)ody of water that 
was like a l)road 
river. Sailors were afraid to v<'ntnre far U]ton this 
water, for tliey feared they would fall over the edge 
of tlit^ earth. 

Other seafaring men l)eli<'ved that if tliey sliould 
sail too far out upon this water thcii' \'<\<si'|s would 
be lost ill a fog. or that tlun' wouM suddenly hegin 
to slide downhill, and would never !)<■ ahlc to return. 


The World as Known Four Hundred 
Years ago. 


Wind gods and storm gods, too, were supposed to 
dwell upon this mysterious sea. Men believed that 
these wind and storm gods would be very angry with 
any one who dared to enter their domain, and that in 
their wrath they would hurl the ships over the edge 
of the earth, or keep them wandering round and 
round in a circle, in the mist and fog. 

It is no wonder that the name " Sea of Darkness" 
was given to this great body of water, which we now 
know to be the Atlantic Ocean ; nor is it surprising 
that the sailors feared to venture far out upon it. 

These sailors had no dread at all of a sea called the 
Mediterranean, upon wiiich they made voj^ages with- 
out fear of danger. This sea was named the Mediter- 
ranean because it was supposed to be in the middle 
of the land that was then known. On this body- of 
water the sailors were very bold, fighting, robbing, and 
plundering strangers and foes, without an}^ thought 
of fear. 

They sailed through this sea eastward to Constan- 
tinople, their ships being loaded with metals, woods, 
and pitch. These they traded for silks, cashmeres, 
dyewoods, spices, perfumes, precious stones, ivory, 
and pearls. All of these things were brought b}" 
caravan from the far Eastern countries, as India, 
China, and Japan, to the cities on the east coast of 
the Mediterranean. 


This caravan journey was a very long and tii*esome 
one. Worse than this, the Turks, througli wliose 
country the caravans j^assed, Ijegan to see how vahi- 

ahle this trade was, and 
they sent V)ands of rol)l)ers 
to prevent the caravans 
from reaching the coast. 

As time went on, these 
land journeys grew more 
difficult and more danger- 
ous, until tilt' trach'rs saw 
that the (hiy would soon come when tliey would hf 
entirely cut off from ti'affic with India an<l the rich 
Eastei'U c(nintries. The Turks would sccui'c all tli'ir 
profitable husiness. So the men of thai time iricd 
to think of some other wav of ri-achini:' tlic Ka>t. 

A Caravan. 


Among those who wished to find a short route 
to India was Prince Henry of Portugal, a bold navi- 
gator as well as a studious and thoughtful man. 
He was desirous of securing the rich Indian trade for 

Enc tne Red in Vinland. 

his own country. So he established a school for navi- 
gators at Lisboii, and gathered around him many 
men who wanted to study about the sea. 

Here they made maps and charts, and talked with 


one another about the stran<2:e lands wliich they 
thought might be found far out in that mysterious 
body of water wliich they so dreaded and feared. It 
is probabk^ that they liad heard soine accounts of the 
voyages of other navigators on this wonderful sea, 
and the beliefs about land beyond. 

There was Eric the Eed, a bold navigator of Ice- 
land, who had sailed west to (Jreenlan»^*'a-nd planted 
there a colony tliat grew and thrived. There was 
also Eric's son Leif, a venturesome young viking 
who had made a voyage soutlj from Clreenland, and 
reached a strange country with wooded shores and 
fragrjint vines. Tliis country he called Yinland be- 
cause of the al)undance of wild gra]:»es. 'When he 
returned to (xreenland, he took a load of timber back 
with liim. 

Some of the peoi)le of Greenland liad tried to make 
a settleuK^nt along this shore which Leif discovei-ed, 
but it is thought that th«^ Indians drove tliom away. 
It may now be said of tliis settlement that no trace 
ot it has ever IxM-n found, although the rejiort that 
the Norsemen ])ai(l many visits to the shore of North 
Amei-ica is undoubtedly ti'ue, 

Anotlitn- bold sea ro\ei- of l*()i-tngal sailed four 
hundred miles from land, wher*^ he ]>ickeil u\> a 
strangely car\-ed ]iaddlc and seNci'al i>ieces of wood 
of a sort not to be found in Eui'ope. 


St. Brandon, an Irish priest, was driven in a 
storm far, far to the west, and landed upon the 
shore of a strange country, inhabited by a race of 
people different from any he had ever seen. 
- All this time the bold Portuguese sailors were 
venturing farther and farther down the coast of 
Africa. They hoped to be able to sail around that 
continent and up the other side to India. But they 
dared not go beyond the equator, because they did 
not know the stars in the southern hemisphere and 
therefore had no guide. They also believed that 
beyond the equator there was a frightful region of 
intense heat, where tlie sun scorched the earth and 
Avhere the waters boiled. 

Many marvelous stories were told about the is- 
lands which the sailors said they saw in the distance. 
Scarcely a vessel returned from a voyage without 
some new story of signs of land seen by the crew. 

The people who lived on the Tariary Islands said 
that an island with high mountains on it could be 
seen to the west on clear days, but no one ever 
found it. 

Some thought these islauds existed only in the 
imagination of the sailors. Otliers thought they 
were floating islands, as thoy were seen in many 
different places. Every one was anxious to find 
them, for they were said to be rich in gold and spices. 


You can easily understand bow excited many peo- 
ple were in regard to new lands, and how they 
wished to find out whether the earth was round or 
not. There was l)ut one way to find out, and that 
was to try to sail around it. 

For a long time no one was brave enough to ven- 
ture to do so. To start out and sail away from land 
on this unknown water was to the people of that 
day as dangerous and foolhardy a journey as to try 
to cross the ocean in a balloon is to us at the present 


In the middle of the thirteenth century, about two 
hundred years before the time of Columbus, a boy 
named Marco Polo lived in the city of Venice. 

Marco Polo belonged to a rich and noble family, 

and had all the advantages of 
study that the city afforded. 
He studied at one of the 
finest schools in the cit}' of 
Venice. This city was then 
famous for its schools, and 
was the seat of culture and 
learning for the known world. 
"When Marco Polo started 
for scliool in the morn- 
ing, he did not step out into a street, as you do. 
Instead, he stepped from his front doorstep into 
a boat called a gondola; for Venice is built upon 
a cluster of small islands, and the streets are water 
ways and are called canals. 

The gondolier, as the man who rows the gondola 


Marco Polo. 


is called, took Marco -whorovcr lio wished to i^o. 
Sometimes, as they .i^'lided nioiii;-, the <;-(>ii(lolici- would 
sing old Venetian songs; and as ]\raivo Polo lay hack 
against the soft cushions and listened and looked 
about him, ho { wondei-ed if anywhei-e else on 
earth there was m so beautiful a citv as \'eni(M\ 
For the sky was M , very blue, and often its color 

A Scene in Venice. 

was reflected in tli<^ M'atei-; the biiildinu's were u'l'ace- 
fid and lieautiful, the sun was warm and liri-ht. and 
tlie ail' was bahny. 

In this delightful ci1_\' ^Farco Polo li\-ed unlll Ik^ 
was sevtMiteen )'eai's of age. Al)out this tinif. \\\< 
father, who owned a lai'u'e eoniniei'cial Ikhi^.' in ('mi- 
stantino|ile. told .Ahii-eo t lial he niiulit u'o w ii li liim ( 'ii 

DIS. .\N1> KXI- 


a long journey to Eastern countries. Tlie boy was 
very glad to go, and set out with liis father and his 
uncle, who were anxious to trade and gain more 
wealth in the East. This was in the year 1271. 

The three Polos traveled across Persia into China, 
and across the Desert of Gobi to the northwest, 
where they found the great ruler, Kublai Khan. 
This monarch was a kind-hearted and able man. He 
wanted to help his subjects to become civilized and 
learned, as the Europeans were. So Kublai Khan 
assisted the two elder Polos in their business of 
trading, and took Marco into his service. 

Soon Marco learned the languages of Asia, and 
then he was sent by the khan on errands of state to 
different parts of the country. He visited all the 
great cities in China, and traveled into the interior 
of xVsia to places almost unknown at the present 

At length the three Polos expressed a desire to re- 
turn to Venice. The great khan did not wish to 
part with them, but he at last consented ; for he 
found that by going they could do him a service. 
The service required was their escort for a beautiful 
young princess who was to be taken from Peking to 
Taljriz, where she was to marry the Khan of Persia. 

It was difficult to find any one trustworthy enough 
to take charge of so important a person on so long 


and dangerous a journey. But Kublai Khan had 
faith in the Polos. They had traveled more than 
any one else he knew, and were cautious and brave. 

So he gave them permission to return to their 
home, and requested them to take the princess to 
Tabriz on the way. It was decided that the journey 
should be made by sea, as the land route was so 
beset by robbers as to be unsafe. Besides, the Polos 
were fine sailors. 

They started from the eastern coast of C'hina, and 
continued their voyage for three years, around the 
peidnsula of Cochin China, and through the Indian 
Ocean to the Persian Gulf. Here they went ashore, 
and tlien proceeded by land across Persia to Ta])riz. 
They left the princess in that city, and resumed 
theii" journey by way of the Bosporus to Venice. 

AVhen they reached Venice they found that they 
had been forgotten l)y their friends. They had Ijeen 
away twenty-four years, and in tliat time (n-erything 
had changed very much. Tliey tliemsclves liad 
grown older, and their clothes differed from those 
worn by the Venetians; for fashiojis changed even 
in the thirteentli century, although not so often as 
they change at the present time. It is no woiidci- 
that the Polos were not known until they recallc<l 
themselves to the memory of theii' friends. 

One eveninji- tliev invited a few of their old friends 


to dinner, and during the evening they brought out 
three old coats. These coats they proceeded to rip 
apart, and out from the linings dropped all kinds of 
precious stones — diamonds, sapphires, emeralds, and 
ruhies. In this way these wary travelers had hidden 
their wealth and treasure while on their perilous 
journey. The visitors were astonished at the sight 
of so great riches, and listened eage^-ly to the ac- 
counts of the countries from which they came. 

Soon after the return of ]\[arco Polo to Venice, he 
took part with his countrymen in a l)attle against the 
Genoese. The city of (lenoa, like the city of Venice, 
had a hirge trade with the East. Tliese two cities 
were rivals in trade, and were very jealous of each 
other. Whenever Venetian ships and those of the 
(lenoese met on the ^Mediterranean Sea, the sailors 
found some way of starting a quarrel. The quarrel 
quickly led to a sea fiuht, and it Avas in one of these 
combats that Marco Polo engaged. The Venetians 
were defeated, and Marco Polo was taken ])risoner 
and cast into a dungeon. Here he si)ent his time 
in wi-itiiig the wonderfnl book in which he described 
liis travels. 

^riie d<'scri]>1i(iiis Polo gave of the East were as 
wr»n<lerful as fairy tales, lie told of conntries rich 
in gold, sih'er, aiid precious stones, and of islands 
where diamonds sparkled on the shore. The riders 


A Sea Fight. 

of tlicst' coiuitrit'S Avc^rc uariiuMits of ridi silk mv- 
(TtMl witli j^'littt'i-iiii;' o-(.iiis. and dwelt in |i;d;irt.'s, the 
I'oot's of wln(di Were made of li'tdd. 

Ill' d('sci-il)(Ml !j,-(>ldcii ( 'atliay, witli its vast cities 
ri(di ill luniiufactiiros, and also ('ipaiiu'o. Ilinilii-taii. 
and liido-(diiiia. Mo know of tlic Indie- I-lands. 
ricli in spices, and lie descidked Sikeria. and told of 


the sledges drawn by dogs, and of the pohir bears. The 
fact that an ocean washed the eastern coast of Asia was 
proved Ijy him, and this pnt at rest forever the theory 
that there was an impassable swamp east of Asia. 

Tills book by Marco Polo was eagerly read, and 
the facts that it stated were so remarl<able that 
many people refused to believe them. It stirred 
others with a desire to travel and see those lands for 

Traveling by land, however, was very dangerous, 
because of the bands of rol)])ers l)y wdiich the 
country was occupied. These outhiws rob1)ed every 
one whom they suspected of liavdng any money, and 
often murdered travelers in order to gain tlieir pos- 
sessions. 8ea travel, too, was just as dangerous, 
but in a dii¥(n'ent way. 

You will remember why sailoi'S dared not venture 
far out upon the ocean and seai'cli for a water route 
to the Eastern countries and islands. The time was 
soon coming, liowever, when they would daro to do 
so, and two wonderful inventions helped navigators 
very much. 

()ne came from the finding of the loadstone, or 
natural magnet. This is a stone wliich has the 
power of attracting iron. A steel needle ru1)bed on 
it becomes magnetized, as we say, and, when sus- 
pended by the center and allowed to move freely, 


always swings around until it points nortli and 
south. Hung on a pivot and inclosed in a box, this 
instrument is called the mariners' compass. It was 
of great importance to sailors, because it always told 
them which way was north. On cloudy days, and 
during dark, stormy nights, 
when the sun and stars could 
not be seen, the sailors could 
now keep on their way, far 
from land, and still know 
in which direction they were 

The other invention was 
that of the astrolabe. This ^^""'''" Compass. 

was an instrument by means of which sailors meas- 
ured the height of the sun above the horizon at 
noon, and could thus tell the distance of the ship 
from the equator. It is in use on all the ships at 
the present time, but it has been greatly improved, 
and is now called the quadrant. 

The compass and the astrolabe, together with im- 
proved maps and charts, made it possible for naviga- 
tors to t('ll where their ship was Avheii out of sight of 
land or in the midst of stoi-m and darkness. This 
made them more courageous, and they ventured a 
little farther from the coast, but still iio one dared 
to sail far out upon the Sea of Darkness, 


One day a man 
appeared in Por- 
tiig-al, who said lie 
was certain that the 
earth was ronnd, 
and that he could 
reach India hy 
sailing" westward. 
Every one huigiied 
at him and ashed 
him how he wonld 
like to try. JJo 
answere<l that he 

Christopher Columbus. WOuld Sail I'OUlld 

the eartli, if any one would provide him with ships. 

l-*t_M)})l(' j<'('re(l and sc()ffod. 

"It" tlie earth is a spliere," they said, "in order to 
sail ronnd it you must sail uphill! AVho ever heard 
of a shi}) sailing uphill .^" 

But this man, whos(^ nanu:" was Christopher Co- 
lumbus, renudned hrm in his helief. 



When a boy, Coluiiibus had listciKMl (>a<i:(M-ly to tho 
stones the sailors told about strange lands and won- 
derful islands ])eyond the water. He was in the 
liabit of sitting on the wharves and watcliing the 
ships. Often he would say, "I wish, oli, how I wish 
I could be a sailor ! " 

At last his father, who was a wool conibcr, said to 
hini, "]\Iy son, if you really wish to biM-omc a sailoi', 
I will send you to a school where you will be tauglit 

CV)lunil)US was delighted at this, and told his father 
that he would study diligently, lie was sont to the 
University of Pavia, where he learned all the geog- 
i-a]»hy that was tlx'n known, as well as how to draw 
nKqts and charts. He became a skillful penman, and 
also studied asti-onomy, geometry, and Latin. 

b)ut he did not s})end a loiig time at his studies, 
for at tli(^ age of fourteen lie went to sea. AVhat lie 
had learneil, liowevei', gave him an exeell«Mit gronnd- 
worh". arid fi'om this time foi'wai'd h<' made nsf of 
(n'ery o]>])ortunity to inform himself and to become 
a scliolai'ly man. 

His lii-st voyag(^ was niade with a distant relatix'e. 
who was an ad\'entui"ous and dai'ing man. and wlio 
was ev(M' ready to fiu-ht with any one willi whom lif 
could |>i(d>: a (|narrcl. In c(,ui'sc ot' tinif <'olinMtins 
commanded a ship of his own. and hrcann- know n as 


a bold and daring navigator. He made a voyage 
along the coast of Africa as far south as Guinea, 
and afterwards sailed northward to Iceland. 

At an early day he became familiar with the 
wildest kind of adventure, for at this time sea life 
on the Mediterranean was little more than a series 
of fights with pirates. Some say that during one of 
these conflicts Columbus's ship caught fire. In 
order to save his life, he jumped into the water and 
swam six miles to shore, reacliiiig the coast of Por- 
tugal. Others say that he was attracted to that 
country by the great school of navigation which 
Prince Henry had established. However that may 
be, he appeared at Lisbon at the age of thirty-five, 
filled with the idea of sailing westward to reach 
those rich Eastern countries in which every one was 
so much interested. 

He was laughed at for expressing such an idea. 
It is not pleasant to be laughed at, but Coluinbus 
was courageous and never wavered in his Ijelief. 

"The earth is a sphei-e," he said; "those foolish 
stories of its being flat and supported on a turtle's 
back cannot be true." 

But those persons to whom he talked only laughed 
the more. 

"Is there anything more foolish," they asked, 
"than to believe that there are people who walk 


with their heels up and with their heads liangiiig 
down!" " Tliink of a place where the trees grow 
with their branches down, and wherc^ it snows, hails, 
and riiins upward ! " 

Evxn-ybody thought him an idle dreamer. 

Columljus tried to persuade King John to furnish 
him with ships and allow him to test his belief. But 
King John cruelly deceived Columbus; for, after ob- 
taining his maps and charts, be sent off an expedi- 
tion of his own. lie lioi)ed in this way to gain the 
glory of the discovery. The sailors whom he sent, 
however, were not brave enough to continue the 
voyage, and returned, frightened by a severe storm. 

Columbus was so disgusted by the treachery of 
King John that he 
made up his mind to 
leave Portugal and go 
to Spain. !So, taking 
his little son, Diego, 
with him, lie started 
on his journey. He 
traveled from place to 
place, trying to find some person wlio would help him 
make liis ideas known to King Ferdinand and (^ueen 
Isabella. Rethought that if he could talk with them 
he could }>ersua<le them to furnish him witli ships. 

One dav he came to a conxcnt called La lij'ibida. 

tf* fllr^Mf ■ ^fc-'- ■■■ Big: iduJ^Sshks. - 

Convent of La Rabida. 


Here Die,2:o, who was we«iry and tliirsty, bo^-irod ]jis 
father to stop and ask for a drink of watci-. Colum- 
bus knocked at the big iron gate, and w]nhi lie was 
conversing with the attenchmt a })riest a[)]»i'<)a('lH'd. 

This priest was attracted by the noble benriiig and 
refined s})eech of Cohinibus, and saw at once that 
he was not a beggar. He asked him what he wished, 
and Columbus related his story. 

The good })riest believed in him and said he would 
tr}' to influence the king and (pieen to furnish him 
with ships. The pi-iest brought the matter Ix'fore 
the king; but at this time Spain was at war with tlie 
Mooi"s, and King Ferdinand had no time to attend 
to anything else. Colundjus was patient and waited. 
But as yeai' after year passed and brc)Ught no pros- 
pect of olitainiiig the ships he wishe<b his hopes fell. 
After seven long, weai'v years of waiting, he was 
about to leave Spain in despair. 

Just as he was leaving, however, a message was 
brought to him from the rpieen, asking him t(^ ex- 
plain his plans t<> liei' once more, ('olnmbus did so, 
and the ([iKM-n wa< so fully eonvince(l that >he ex- 
claimed ; " r will ]»i'ovi(h' ships anil men t'oi- you, if T 

ha\"e to jiledu'e mv jewels ill ol'def t() do so!" 

Three ships were lilleil out for the xoyau'e. TIie-e 
ships wei'e vrvy dilferent from tho<e we see id-day. 
They were light, frail Inirks ealle.i earavel<, and two 


of them, the Pinta and Nhla, had no decks. The 
third, the Santa 3Iaria, had a deck. It was upon 
this largest caravel that Columbus placed his flag. 

On the 3d of August, 1492, the little fleet set 
sail from Palos, entering upon the most daring ex- 
pedition ever undertaken by man. The people of 
the town gathered on the wharf to see the depar- 
ture of the vessels. Man}^ of them had friends or rel- 
atives on Ijoard whom they expected never to look 
upon again. Sad indeed was the sight as the little 
caravels sailed out of the harbor and faded from view. 

After sailing a few days, the Phda Ijroke her 
rudder. This accident the sailors took to l>e a sign 
of misfortune. They tried to persuade Columbus to 
put back to Palos, l)ut he would not listen to such a 
suggestion. Instead of sailing Ijack, he pushed on 
to the Canary Islands. Here his ships Avere delayed 
three weeks, after which they contiiiued the voyage 
into unknown waters. 

After they had sailed westward for many days, the 
sailors began to show signs of alai'in, and they im- 
plored Columbus to return. He tried to calm their 
fears. He described the I'ich lands lie hoped to tind, 
and reminded them of tlie wealth and fame this 
voyage would bring to them. So they agreed to 
venture a little farther. 

At last the compass began to point in a different 


direction, and the sailors became almost panic- 
stricken. They thought they were sailing straight 
to destruction, and when they found that Columbus 

The Pinta. 

would not listen to tlieir entreaties they planned a 
mutiny. Though Colinn])Us knew wliat the sailors 
were plotting, lie kept steadily on his eonrse. 
Fortunately, signs of hind so(^n began to a]>i»ear. 
A. branch with berries on it lioated past, a rudely 


carved paddle was picked up, and land birds were 
seen flying over the ships. 

A prize had been offered to the sailor who first 
saw land, and all eagerly watched for it night and 
day. At last, early one morning, a gun was fired from 

The Landing of Columbus. 

tlie P'nitu, and all know that land had l)e<>n siuhtoil. 
The sailors were filled with the wildest joy, and 
crowded around (\:)lund>us with expressions of grati- 
tude and admii'ation, in great contrast to the dis- 
trustful manner in wliich they had treated him a few 
days Ijefore. 

The land tlu^y were approacliing was very Leauti- 


fill. It was a grooii, siiiiny island witli pleasant 
groves in which birds were singini^. ]'H'antii'ul 
flowers were blooming all around and the trees wei-e 
laden with fruit. The island was iidiabited, too, for 
groups of strange-looking men were seen running to 
the shore. 

At length the ships cast anchor, the boats were 
lowered, and (V)lumbus, clad in rich scarlet and 
carrying in his hand the royal banner of S2)ain, was 
taken ashore. As soon as he stepped on the beach, 
CV)lumbus knelt down and gave thanks to (Jod. He 
then planted the bnnne]' of Si)aiii in the ground and 
took possession of the country in the name of Fer- 
dinand and Isaliclla. 

This island Ik^ call«'d San Salvador, becaus(^ lie and 
his crow had been saved from a watery grave, and 
also because October 12 was so named in the Siianish 

(*olnnd)US su])]>osod San Salx'ador to be one of th(^ 
islands n(\'ir tli<' coast of Asia, Imt it is one of 
the Bahamas. 

Thus was America discovered on the I'Jtli of 
October, 14!>_\ 

The natixes of this island wer(^ ditTei'eiit from any 
])eo]>le 1he S])aniarils ha<] e\'er si^'U. They vcre of 
a re<ldisli-bi-(^xvn color, and had liiu'li elieelc Ikuk^s, 
small blaclv e\-es. and sti'aighl blael-' hair. They were 

1>1S. ANI> i:\I'. — ;i 


entirely naked, and their bodies were greased and 
painted. Their hair was decorated with feathers, 
and many of tliem w^ere adorned with curious orna- 

They were at first very much afraid of the white 
men and kept far away. But gradually they lost 
their fear and brought the Spaniards presents of 
bananas and oranges. Some of them gathered 
courage enough to toucli tlie Spaniards and pass 
their hands ov^er them, as if to make certain that 
they were real beings. These men, whose skin was 
so white, they thought to be gods who had come 
down from the sky. 

When Columbus asked thom whore they found the 
gold of which many of their ornaments were made, 
they pointed toward tlie south. Tlien (bluml)us 
took some of them with him to search for the land 
of gold. 

The next land lie reached was the island of Cuba, 
Thiid<;ing that this was a part of India, he called the 
natives Indians. He then sailed to Haiti, Avhich he 
called Ilispauiola, or "Little Spain." For mori^ than 
three months Columlms cruised among these islands, 
where the air was always balmy, the sky clear, 
and the land beautiful. The sailors believcMl tlu^se 
new lands were Paradise, and wanted to live there 


At lenp:tl), however, tliey tlioiiglit of returning to 
their home and friends. So, taking sevei'al Indians 
with them, and many curious baskets and orna- 
ments, they set out on their return voyage. 

Tliis voyage proved to be very stormy, and at one 
time it seemed certain that the ships would go down ; 
but after a time the sea grew quiet, and on the 15th 
of ]\rareli they sailed again into the little harbor of 

You can imngine the excitement. 

"What! has Columbus returned?" asked the 
peox)le. " Has he reall}^ found the East by sailing 
west ward t " 

"Yes, he has," was the answer. "He has found 

Columbus was given a royal welcome. The king 
and qui'en held a great celebration in his honor at 
Barcelona; and when the Indians marched into court 
the astonishment of every pei'son Avas great. The 
Indians w(^rc half naked; their dark ])odies were 
])aintcd, and tlieii- liea<]s w(M-e adoi'iied with feathers. 
'J'liey cari'ied baskets of stM^d pc^arls, and wore strange 
ornaments of gold. Some carricMl the skins of wild 
animals, and other's cari'ied beautiful birds of brilliant 
plumau-e. E\-ei'y inhabitant of Barcelona rejoiced, 
and tlie 1 tells were rung in honor of the great dis- 


It was a liappy time for Coluniljus. He felt rex)aid 
for all Ills suffering and trouble. 

King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella now wished 
Columbus to go again to these newly discovered is- 
lands and search for the gold that was thought to be 

tlierc. You may be sure 
Columbus was willin<r to 



The Return of Columbus. 

go. So they fltt<Ml out sev<'iitcen vessels, maniie(l 
by tit'teeii hundred men, and iiIjkmmJ ('olunibus in 
command of this fleet. It was no ii-ou1)le b) find men 
who weiv willing to go on this voyage. All wanted 
to see Ihe new woi'ld 1liat ha<l been r(»und, 

Dnring this second voyage, \\lii<"h was made in 
Id!))), ('olumbns disco\"ei'e(l .lainai< a. Puerto liieo, 
and some small islands in the (.'aribbean Sea. 


On the islaiul of Jamaica tlio Spaniards came 
upon tlio footprints of some straii<;-(i animal which 
they tliong-lit to be a dragon. This dragon tliey 
believ'cd was gnarding the gold which they snpi>osed 
was on the island. So they ran hack to their ships 
in fear, 


Later on the}' l>e- 
came used to seeing these foot- 
jirints, and t'onnd that 1hev w<M'e those of alligators. 
At Pnerto Ivico they snft'ered from a savage attack 
made by the natives, who shot ])()ison(^d arrows and 
threw jax'elins at tliiMn. l>nt in most other ]>laces the 
natives wei'e vei'v tVieiidly. 

('ohinibus tlionuht this land was a ])art of tlie 
e;ist coast of Asia, and he conld not nndtM'stand 
wliy he dill not find cities such as ^Nlarco Polo had 


('obnnbns then saih^l to lIis])aniola, whei-e he 
jtlanted a cohmy, of which he \\as made goxci'iior. 
It was not an easy mattei' to go\-ern this i>laiid, be- 
cause of the Jealousies and (jnarrels ot' tlie Sjianiarils, 



At length Columbus returued to Spain, ill and 

Columbus made a third voyage in 1498, during 
which he sailed along the coast of Brazil, and dis- 
covered Trinidad Island. Here his ships encoun- 
tered currents of fresh water which flowed with great 
force into the ocean. This led Columbus to think 
that so large a river must flow across a great conti- 

Map Showing how Columbus Discovered America. 

nent, and strengthened his opinion that tlie land was 
a part of the great continent of Asia. 

After sailing farther north along the Pearl Coast, 
which was so called because of the pearls found 
there, he returned to Hispaniola. Here he found the 
Spaniards engaged in an Indian war, and quarreling 
among themselves. Some officials Ijecame jealous 
of him, bound him witli chains, niid sent him back 
to Spain a prisoner. Ferdinand and Isabella were 


much displeased at this treatment of Columbus, and 
set him free. 

A fourth voyage was made by Columbus in 1502, 
during which he explored the coast of Honduras in 
search of a strait leading to the Indian Ocean. In 
this venture he was unsuccessful. On his return to 
Spain he found his friend Queen Isabella very ill, and 
nineteen days after his arrival she died. 

After Isabella's death the king treated Columbus 
cruelly and ungratefully. The peoj^le bad become 
jealous of him, and his last days were spent in pov- 
erty and distress. He never knew that he had dis- 
covered a new continent, but supposed that he had 
found India. 

Seven years after his death the king repented of 
his ingratitude, and caused the remains of Columbus 
to be removed from the little monastery in Valladolid 
to a monastery in Seville, where a magnificent mon- 
ument was erected to his memory. In 1536 his 
bones were removed to the Cathedral of San Do- 
mingo in Hispaniola, and later they were taken to 
the catlicdral in Havana. 

Wlien the United States took possession of Cuba, 
the Spanish disinterred the bones of Columbus again 
and carried thorn to Si)ain, placing them in the 
cathedral of Seville, where they now are. 


Vasco da Gama. 

Both tlit.' Spaniards and tlie 
Portuguese were cut off fro]n 
trade witli the East, because 
the Turks had taken posses- 
sion of Constantiiiojtle. In 
consequence of this, tlie navi- 
gators of both countries wei-e 
making earnest efforts to 
find a water route to India. 
Spain, as you know, liad faith in (V)lunil)us, an<l 
helped him in his })hin of trying to ]-eac]i India l)y 
saihng westward. But tlie Portuguese liad a differ- 
ent idea. They spent tlieir time and money in iry- 
ing to sail round the African coast, in the helicf tliat 
India coukl be reached by means of a southeast 

Tliis soutlieast passage couhl be found only by 
crossing the "burning zone," as tlie jtart of tlie earlli 
near the equator was called ; and all sailors feared to 
make the attempt. 



It was thoiiglit almost iini)o,ssiblo to cross tliis 
burning zone, and tlio t'ow navigators who had 
ventured as far as tlie e(iuator iiad turncMl l)a('k in 
tear of steaming whirlpools and of liery belts of heat. 

In 14S0, six years before Columlnis discovered 
America, the King of Portugal sent IJarthohniicw 
Diaz, a bold and daring navigator, to lind the end of 
the African coast. 

Bartliolomew Diaz sailed tlirougli the fieiy zone 
without meeting any of the (b'eadful misfortunes 
wliieh tlie sailors so feared. AVhen lie had saile<l Ijc- 
yond the ti'opic of Capricorn, a severe storm arose. 
The wind blew his three vessels directly south foi- 
tldrteen days, during which time he lost siglit of 
land. AVhen the sun shone again, Diaz headed his 
vessels eastward, but as no land a})peare<l, Ik^ again 
changed the direction, this time heading them 
toward the north. Aft(U- sailing northward a short 
time, land was reached about two hundred miles east 
of the Cape of Good Hope. 

Diaz now pushed on four hundre(] miles farther 
along the coast of Africa, and saw the wide expanse 
of the Indian Ocean before him. ITere the sailors 
refuse(l to go any farther, and Diaz, although he 
wanted vei-y much to go ahead and try to reach 
India, was obliged to return. 

On the way home, the vessels passe<l chise to the 


cape which projects from the south coast of Africa, 
and Diaz named it Stormy Cape, in memory of the 
frightful storm which liid it from view on the way 
down. When they reached Lisbon, however. King 
John said that it should be called the Cape of Good 

Hoi^e, because they 
now had hope that 
the southern route 
to India was found. 
Diaz won much 
praise for his brav- 
ery and patience in 
i making this voyage. lie 
had proved that the stories 
about the fiery zone w<'re 
false, {ind that the African 
coast had an end. 

It remained, however, 

for Yasco da Gaina, then 

a young man of about 

twenty years of age, to 

prove that India could be reached in this way. 

In 14!)7 Da Gama sailed from Lisbon to the Ca})e 

of Good IIo})(', doubled the cape, and proceeded 

across the Indian Ocean to Hindustan. 

He returned to Lisbon iii 1499, liis ships loaded 
with the rich products of the East, including cloves, 

Spanish and Portuguese Vessels. 


spices, pepper, ginger, and nutmeg. TTe also Ijrouglit 
with liini ricli robes of silk and satin, costly gems, 
and many articles made of carved 
ivory, or of gold and of silver, 

The King of PortTigal was 
greatly pleased with what Da 
Gama had accomplished, and 
his successful voyage was the 
wonder of the day. 

The same year that Da Gaina 
returned from India by a route 
around the south end of Africa, 
with his ships loaded with rich 
produce, Sebastian Cabot returned from a fruitless 
voyage to the strange, barren coast of North America. 

It was no wonder that the voyages of Columbus 
and the Cabots were thought unsuccessful as com- 
pared with the voyage Da Gama had just finished. 

No one then dreamed of a New World; all were 
searching for the Orient — for golden Cathay. 

Costume of Explorers. 


John Caeot was a Venetian inorcliant, and a bold 
seafaring man. For purposes of trade lie had taken 
11}) his lionie in Biistol, England. Bristol at that 

time was the most important 
seaport of England, and car- 
ried on a largo fishing trade 
with Iceland. 

WluMi the news of the voy- 
ag(^ of Coinmbns reached 
Th'istol, Cabot begged the 
English king, PTenry VII,, to 
let him go and see if he conld 
find a shorter ronte to the In- 
dies. Tli(^ king gave his consent, and told Cabot to 
t;ik<' ])()sscssion of any land he might discover for 

(-'abot filled orit his vessel and, taking his son Se- 
bastian and a crew of eighteen men with him, set 
sail in 1497. Mo lieade(l his shi)) westward, hoping 
to reach the Spic(i Islands and that part of Asia 


Sebastian Cabot. 


which WJis so ricli in gold, and wliicli ( 'oliunbiis ]iad 
failed to lind. At last, oiio siiiiuy nioniiiig iu June, 
hind was sighted in the distance. 

This land, which was pi'obahly a part of Nova 
Scotia, proved to be a lonely shore with (h'lisc I'oi-- 
ests. Cabot called it "Land First Seen." It was 
entirely deserted, not a human being nor a hut of 
any kind being in sight. 

Here Cabot and liis son Sel»astian and sonic of 
his crew Avent ashore, and were the lirst white men, 
excepting the Norsemen, to step ii})on the mainland 
of America. Up to this time, Colundjus had dis- 
covered only islands of the West Indies. A A'ear 
later ilian this he discovered the continent of South 
Ameiica. Cabot and his com})anions erected a large 
ci'oss on the shore, and planted two flagpoles in the 
ground, from Avhich they unfurled the English and 
Venetian flags. Then they returned to tlieir shi})S, 
and, after sailing about the Gulf of St. Lawrence, 
went back to England. 

King TTenry and the peo])h3 recei\ed John (^ibot 
with great lionor. Everybody thought that Cabot had 
reacheil Asia, and lie also believed that he had. He 
was called iho, "Oi-eat Admiral." and th(^ i^eople of 
Rristol ran after him on the street, shouting his name 
and trying in ev«M"yAvay to slunv liini howiniieh jliey 
admired and honored him. The kiiiu' ga\e him fifty 


dollars in money, which seems to us in these days a 
small sum for so long and dangerous a voyage. Be- 
sides this, the king urged him to undertake another 

About a year later Sebastian Cabot made the 
second voyage, and this time the gloomy shore of 
Labrador was reached. 

Sebastian on his voyage sailed far north, passing 
many icebergs, and seeing many strange and won- 
derful sights. 

On great blocks of ice that floated past the ship he 
saw immense white bears. These bears were fine 
swimmers, and would often leap into the water and 
bring out fish, which they would devour greedily. 
The waters were filled with fish, and, as the shijj 
neared the shore, they gi-ew so numerous as almost 
to retard the sailing of the vessel. 

"Now," said Cabot, "the English will not have to 
go to Iceland any more for fish." 

But Cabot knew that the lands he was s<'eking 
were warm lands. So he turned his vessel south, 
hoping to reach some opening which would lead to 
them. To his great surprise, he found the coast very 
long and without any opening, and he sailed on and 
on as far as Maryland, taking possession of the land 
for England. 

At places along this shore were seen Indians, clad 


in skins and furs of wild animals, fishing from little 
canoes. Stags much larger than any in England 
were seen in great numbers, and wild turkeys and 
game of all sorts abounded. 

Then Sebastian Cabot began to think that this was 
a part of Asia never known before, and he set sail 
for home to t(dl the wonderful news. 

When he reached Bristol he found- everybody still 
interested in India. It was a water route to India 
that was wanted, and not a new country. People 
cared more about reaching, golden Cathay than 
about finding new, barren, lands. 

So, although King Henry was proud to know that 
the new land belonged to England, it was eleven 
years before he made any further attempt to send 
shi})s there to take possession. 


Ameetgo Vespucci was a native of Florence, Italy, 
and a friend of Colnnil)ns. He was an educated man 
and vei'}^ fond of study. 

At the time in which he lived it was difficult to 
find the latitude and longitude of places, and few 
people were ahle to calculate either correctly. Ves- 
pucci was skillful in the work of computing longi- 
tude, and he was also well versed 
in the history of all the voyages 
that had l)een made. He was 
familiar with the facts of astron- 
omy and geography then known, 
and was well ahle to conduct 
the sailing of a ship into 
strange waters. 
It is believed that Vespucci made 
six voyngcs. He did not command liis own vessels, 
as Columhus did, hut he went with the expiMlition as 
assistant or adviser to the captai]], k(M>])iiig records 
of the voyag<' and making maps and charts. 


Amerigo Vespucci. 


In his first voyage, made in 1497, Vespucci reached 
tlie coast of Honduras, and sailed into the Gulf of 
Mexico. Here he found, proba])ly on the coast of 
Yucatan, a queer little sea village which reminded 
him of the great city of Venice near his home. 

A Queer Little Sea Village. 

The liouses in this villag<' wei'o iria<le of wood, and 
were hnilt on piles ruuniiig out into the water. 
These houses wei'e connect(Ml with tlu* sliore l)y 
hridgcs, whicli were constructed in such a manner 
that they could ])o di-awn up, tlius cutting off all 
connection with the land. In one house Vesjnicci 
fcnmd six hundred })eople. Avery large family, was 
it not? 

i>:s. ANi) i;xi' -1 


Continuing the voyage around the Gulf of Mexico, 
Vespucci saw many strange and wonderful things. 
Tlie natives roasted and ate frightful animals, which 
from the descrij^tion given us we now know to have 
been alligators. They also made cakes, or patties, 
out of fish, and baked them on red-hot coals. The 
Spaniards were invited to taste these dainties, and 
those of the sailors who did so found the strange 
food very palatable. 

After sailing round the coast of Florida, th-e ships 
headed northeast, landing every now and then for 
the purpose of trading with the Indians. The 
Spaniards, finding but little gold and none of the rich 
spices for which they were looking, at last decided 
to return home. 

Just before sailing, some friendly Indians helped 
the Spaniards to make an attack upon a cannibal 
island. The attack was successful, and about two 
hundred cannibals were taken prisoners and carried 
to Spain, where they were sold as slaves. 

Ves})Ucci made a second voyage in 1-1-99, in which 
ho sailed down the African coast to the Cape Verde 
Islands, and then headed his ship almost directly 
west. IIo siuhtod land at Cape St. Roque, and then 
sailed northwest, exploring tljo north coast of Sonth 
America, then called the Pearl Coast. After this he 
returned to Spain. 


Shortly after tho return of Vespucci to Spain, he 
accepted, an offer to take service under the Portu- 
guese flag. 

In 1501 he set sail from Lisbon with three cara- 
vels, under this flag. He reached the coast of South 
America near Cape St. Roque, and sailed south as 
far as the South Georgia Islands. 

As he proceeded southward, he found the country 
was inhabited by fierce Indians, who ate their fellow- 
creatures. He did not like the natives, as you may 
suppose ; but he thought the country was beautiful, 
with the wonderful verdure and foliage of the trop- 
ics, and the queer animals and briglit-colored birds. 

Great was the joy of Vespucci when he discovered 
in the forests large quantities of a sort of red dye- 
wood which was prized very highly l)y Europeans. 
This wood, which had hitherto been found only in 
Eastern countries, was called brazil wood; and be- 
cause of its abundance there, he gave the name Brazil 
to that part of the country. 

The exp«Mlition sailed slowly on and at length lost 
sight of land. It is thought that A^espucci headed 
the ships southeast because he wished to find out 
whether there was land or not in the Antarctic Ocean, 

As they sailed farther and farther sonth, the cli- 
mate became very disagre(\abl(\ The wind< u-rewcold 
and forbidding, fields of floating ice hindered the 


progress of the vessel, and the nights became very 

The sailors grew frightened, fearing that they were 
entering a land of constant darkness. Their fear be- 
came greater when a terrific storm arose. The sea 
grew rough, and the fog and sleet i)re vented the 
sailors from seeing whether land was near or not. 
The land which they had hoped to find now became 
an added danger. 

One day, through the sleet and snow, the sailors 
saw with terror a rocky, jagged coast in front of them. 

This land proved to be the South Georgia Islands, 
and was a wretched and forlorn country composed of 
rocks and glaciers, and entirely deserted. For a day 
and a half they sailed in sight of this frightful shore, 
fearing each moment that their shi]) would be cast 
on the rocks and that they would all perish. As 
soon as the weather permitted, therefore, Vespucci 
signaled his fleet, and the ships were headed for 
home, reaching Portugal in 1502. 

This voyage secured Brazil for Portugal, and added 
greatly to the geographical knowledge of the day. 

The ancients had said that no continent existe*! 
south of the equator. But the great length of coast 
along which Vespucci had sailed proved that the land 
was not an island. It was plainly a continent, and 
south of the equator. 


Vespucci called tlio land ho found tlie New ^Vorld. 
For a time it was also called the Fourth Part of the 
p]artli, the other three parts l)eiiig Europe, Asia, and 
Africa. In l.")!)? a German writer published an ac- 
count of the discovery, in which he called the new 
country America, in honor of Aniericus Yespucius,^ 
the discoverer. 

This land was not connected in any way with the 
discovery of Columbus, for he was supposed to have 
found Asia. 

The name America was at first applied only to that 
part of the country which we now call Brazil, but 
little by little the name was extended until it in- 
cluded the whole of the West(n'n Continent. 

You will he glad to know that Yespucci, in the time 
of his snccess, did not forg(^t his old friend Colum- 
bus, who was then })oor and in disgrace. Yespucci 
visited iiim and did all he couhl to assist him. 

After Yesjnicci had made three other voyages to 
the Xew ^Vorld, ]\o was given an iiii]»ortaiit govern- 
ment |H)siti(>n in Spain, which he held duiing the 
remainder of his life. 

1 Aniericus Vcspucius is the Latin form of Amerigo Vespucci. 


You have heard many surprising things which 
the people of the fifteenth century beUeved. It 
seems ahnost impossible for us to think that those 

people really had faith in a 
Fountain of Youth; yet such 
is the case. 

Tills fountain was supposed 
to exist somewhere in the New 
A7orld, and it was thought that 
if any one should bathe in 
its waters, he would become 
young and would never grow 
old again. 

In 1513 Ponce de Leon, who was then governor of 
Puerto Rico, sailed from that island in search of this 
Fountain of Y^outh. De Leon was an old man, and 
he felt that his life was neaily over, unless he should 
succeed in finding this fountain. At the same time De 
Leon wished to gain gold, for, though he had ah'ead}^ 
made a fortune in Puerto Rico, he was still very greedy. 


Ponce de Leon. 


The expedition under his guidance sailed among the 
Bahamas and other islands near them, and at length 
reached a land beautiful with flowers, balmy with 
warm breezes, and cheerful witli the song of liirds. 
Partly because this discovery was made on Easter 
Sunday, which the Spaniards called Pascua Florida, 
and partly because of the abundance of flowers, De 
Leon called the land Florida. 

He took possession of this delightful country for 
Spain, and then spent many weeks exploring its 
coast. After sailing north as far as St. Augustine, 
and finding neither gold nor the fabled Fountain of 
Youth, De Leon turned his vessels and proceeded 
south, doubling the Florida Cape. Shortly afterwards 
he became discouraged and returned to Puerto Pico. 

In 1521 De Leon went again to Florida, this time 
for the purjwse of plnnting a colony. The Indians 
were very angry that the white men should try to 
take their land, and they made a fierce attack upon 
De Leon and his party. In this attack De Leon re- 
ceived a severe wound, which compelled liim to go 
to Cnl)a for care and rest. There he died after much 

De I^eon never found the Fountain of Youth, nor 
were the fabled waters discovered afterwards. 


The Spanish colonists on the island of Hispaniola 
made freqnent visits to the niaiidand, searching for 
the rich cities of which Marco Polo had written. 
' "Word reaclKHl the colonists that some of these gold 
hunters were starving at a place called Daiien, and a 
ship was innnediatel}^ sent to their relief. The cargo 
of the slup consisted of barrels of provisions and 

Imagine, if you can, the amazement of the com- 
mander of the expedition when, after his ships were 
under sail, a young and handsome man stepped out 
of one of the harrels. The young man was A^asco 
Nunez Balboa. He had chosen this way to escai)e 
from Cuba, where he owed large sums of money 
which he could not i>ay. The connnander was angry, 
and Ihreatened to leave Balboa on a des(M't island: 
but at length he took ]»ity (ui the young man, and 
allowed him to remain cm board the shi}). 

AVIkmi tlie mainland was reaclnMl. the Spaniards 
who were already there, having heard of the cruelty 



Balboa Crossing the Isthmus. 

of tlie coniiiiaiider, refused to let liiiii Liiid. lie there- 
fore put otf to sea, and was uever lieard of au'aiii. 
Balboa then took eoininand of the men and l»egan 
inmiediately to explore the country. 


He made a friendly alliance with an Indian chief, 
who presented him with gold and slaves. The Sj^an- 
iards were delighted at the sight of so much riches. 
They began to melt and weigh the gold, and at last 
fell to quarreling desperately about the division of it. 

This the Indians could not understand. They 
knew nothing of money, and valued the metal only 
because it could be made into beautiful ornaments. 

An Indian boy who had heard the dispute told the 
Spaniards that if they cared so much about that yel- 
low stuff, it would be wise for them to go to a 
country where there was enough of it for all. 

The Spaniards eagerly questioned him regarding 
this place. The boy then described a country across 
the mountains and to the south, on the shores of a 
great sea, where the metal was so plentiful that the 
natives used it for their ordinary drinking cups and 

Balboa immediately started southward across the 
mountains in search of this rich country. On his 
way he came upon a tribe of hostile Indians, who at- 
tacked him, l:)ut who fled in alarm from the guns of 
the Spaniards. 

Taking some Indians as guides, Balboa pushed on 
through the mountains, and on September 25, 1513, 
from one of the highest peaks, looked down upon the 
Pacific Ocean, 


Balboa Discovering the Pacific. 

Witli his Spaniards lie descended the inonii- 

tniii, and in four days readied tlie sliore of tliat 

'- '' niau'iiifi('(Mit ])ody of water. Bal1)oa wad(Ml out 

into it witli liis sword in liis hand, and formally took 

]-tossession of it for the King' of Spain. He called i1 tli<' 


South Sea, because lie was looking toward the south 
when be first saw it ; and the Pacific Ocean was known 
by this name for many years afterward. 

On this shore he met an Indian who repeated to 
him the same story that the Indian boy had told 
about the rich country on the border of this sea and 
farther to the south. 

Balboa then made up his mind to find this country. 
Accordingly he returned to Darien, and sent word to 
the Spanish king of bis great discovery of the South 

He then began to take his ships apart, and to send 
them, piece by piece, across the mountains to the 
Pacific coast. 

This was an enormous undertaking. The journey 
was a very difficult one, and hundreds of the poor 
Indians who carried the burdens dropped dead from 

At lengtli, after long months of laltor, four ships 
were thus carried across the mountains and rebuilt 
on the Pacific coast. These wore the first European 
vessels ever launched on the great South Son. Three 
hundred men were in I'eadiness to go with Balboa on 
his voyage in search of the rich country of the South. 

A little iron and a little ])itch were still needed for 
the shi})s, and Balboa delayed his departure in order 
to i^-et these articles. 


The delay gave his eiieinies, wlio were jealous be- 
cause of his success, time to carry out a plot against 
him. They accused him of })lotting to set u}) an in- 
dependent government of his own, and caused him 
to be arrested for treason. In less than twentv-fou.r 
hours this brave and high-spirited leader was ti-ied, 
found guilty, and beheaded. So ended all his amlji- 
tious plans. 


One of the boldest and most determined of all the 
early explorers was Ferdinand Magellan, a young 
Portuguese nobleman. He felt sure that somewhere 

on that long coast which so 
many explorers had reached 
he would find a strait through 
which he would be able to pass, 
and which would lead into the 
Indian Ocean ; and so Magel- 
lan formed the idea of cir- 
cumnavigating the globe. 
He applied to the King of 
Portugal for aid; but as the Portuguese king was 
not willing to help him, he went to Spain, where his 
plan found favor. 

Tlie Spanisli king gave him a fleet of five vessels, 
and on September 20, 1519, he set sail for the Ca- 
nary Islands, Continuing the voyage toward Sion-a 
Leone, tiie vess(3ls wore becabned, and foi* a, pei-iod of 
three weeks tlioy advanced only nine miles. Then a 


Ferdinand Magellan. 


terrific storm arose, and the sailors, wlio had f2:rumbled 
and found fault with everything duriug the entire 
voyage, broke into open mutiny. Tliis mutiny 
jVIagellan quickly quelled by causing the princii)al 
offender to be arrested and put in irons. 

The voyage was then continued, and land was at 
last sighted on the Brazilian coast, near Pei-naml)uco. 

The fleet then proceeded down the coast as far as 
Patagonia, where the weather grew so very cold that 
it was decided to seek winter quarters and postpone 
the remainder of the journey until si)ring. This 
was done, Magellan finding a sheltered spot at Port 
8t. Julian, where plenty of fish could be obtained 
and where the natives were friendly. 

These native Patagonians Magellan described as 
being very tall, like giants, with long, flowing hair, 
and dressed scantily in skins. 

Great hardships had been endured by the crew. 
Food and water had been scarce, the storms had been 
severe, and suffering from cold was intense. The 
sailors did not believe there was any strait, and they 
begged INlagellan to sail for home. It was useless to 
try to influence this determined man. Danger made 
him only the more firm. IMagellan told them tliat he 
would not r«'turn until he had found the opening for 
whicli he was looking. 

Then the mutinv broke out anew. P.ut :\lagollau 


by Lis prompt and decisive action pnt it down in 
twentj'-foiir hours. One offender was killed, and 
two others were put in irons and left to their fate 
on the shore when the ships sailed away. 

As soon as the weather grew warmer the ships 
started again southward. After nearly two months 
of sailing, most of the time through violent storms, 
a narrow channel was found, in which the water was 
salt. This the sidlors knew must be the entrance to 
a strait. 

Food was scarce, and the men again begged Ma- 
gellan to return ; but he firmly refused, saying : " I 
will go on, if I have to eat the leather off the ship's 

So the ships entered and sailed through the wind- 
ing passage, which sometimes broadened out into a 
bay and then became narrow again. Among the 
twists and windings of this perilous strait, one of the 
vessels, being in charge of a mutinous commander, 
escaped and turned l)ack. 

On both sides of the shore there were high moun- 
tains, the tops of which were covered with snow, and 
which cast gloomy shadows upon the water below 

Think of the fei^iugs of the crew when, after sail- 
ing five weeks through this winding channel, they 
came out into a calm expanse of water. Magellan 


was overcome by the siglit, and shod tears of joy. 
He named the vast waters Ijeforo him Pacifie, wliich 
means "peaceful," because of their conti-ast to the 
violent and stormy Atlantic. 

Strait of Magellan. 

The fleet now sailed northwest into a warmer 
climate and over a tranquil ocean, and as week after 
wt'ck pass(Ml ;ind no land was seen, the sailors lost 
all lioi»e. Th(n' heg'an to think tliat this ocean had 
no end, an<l that tlu^v iniuht sail on and on forever. 

Tliese poof men sufferiMl \'ery much from hi<'l\' of 
food and watei*, and many die(l of f;iminc. The 
boastful remark of Magellan was i'ccalle<l wlieii the 

Ms. AMI i;\l'.— 5 


sailors did really begin to eat the leather from the 
ship's yards, first soaking- it in the water. 

Anxiously these worn and haggard men looked 
about for signs of land, and at length they were re- 
warded. The Ladrone Islands were reached, and 
supplies of fresh vegetables, meats, and fruits were 
obtained. From the Isles de Ladrones, or "Isles 
of Robbers," the fleet proceeded to the Philip- 

Here Magellan knew that he was near the Indian 
Ocean, and realized that if he kept on in his course 
he would circumnavigate the globe. 

It was on one of the Philippine Islands that this 
"Prince of Navigators" lost his life in a skirmish 
with the natives. He was, as usual, in the thickest 


of the fight, and while trying to shield one of his 
men was struck down by the spear of a native. 

One of his ships, the Victoria, continued the voy- 
age around Cape of Good Hope, and on September 
G, 1522, with eighteen weary and half-starved men 
on board, succeeded in reaching Spain. 

Great hardships had been endured, but the won- 
dei-ful news they brought made up in some measure 
for their suffering. 

This was the gi'eatest voyage since the first voyage 
of Columbus, and the strait still Ijoars the name of the 
remarkable man whose courage and strength of pur- 


pose led to the accomplishment of one of the greatest 
undertaking's ever recorded in liistory. 

This wonderful voyage of Magellan's proved be- 
yon<l doubt that the earth is round. It also i)roved 
that South America is a continent, and that there is 
no short southwest passage. 

After this voyage all the navigators turned their 
attention to the discovery of a northwest passage. 


The Spaniards who lived on the island of Hispan- 
iola sent frequent expeditions to the mainland in the 
hope of finding gold. 

Hernando Cortes, a dashing young Spaniard with 
a love of adventure and a reckless daring seldom 
seen, was given command of one of these ex})editions. 

In March, 1519, he 
landed on the coast of 
Central America, with 
about six hundi'ed men, 
ten heavy guns, and 
sixteen horses. Here 
Cortes fouiid the na- 
tives in large numhers 
arrayed against liini. A 
fierce l:)atUe was fouglit. 
But tlie firearms of tlie 
Si)aniai'(ls IVigliteiKMl tli<> harliariaiis, and wlien the 
cavalry ariived the Indians lied in terror. The In- 


Hernando Cortes. 


dians, who had never seen liorses ))efore, tlion^ht 
the man riding the was a part of the animal, 
and that these strange creatnres were sent l»y the 
gods. Fear made tli(^ Indians lielpless, mid it was 
easy for Cortes to gain a victory over tlicDi. 

After this victory Cortes sailed northward along 
the coast of San Juan de Ulloa. The nH lives of tliat 
region had heard of the wondei'ful white-skiniu'd and 
bearded men who bore charmed lives, and tiiey 
thouglit that these men W(^re gods. Th(\v, therefore, 
treated the Spaniards in a friendly manner, and 
brought gifts of flowers, fruits, and vegetables, and 
also ornaments of gold and silver to Cortes. 

Here Cortes landed and founded the city of Vera 
( h'uz, which is to-da}' an important sea])ort of Mex- 
ico. The native Indians in this place wei'c called 
Aztecs. Some of their chiefs, who })aid a visit to 
Cortes, told him of the great Emperor ]\[onteznma, 
who was rich and })Owerfnl, and who lived inland, in 
a wondei'fnl city built in a lake. 

By these chiefs Cortes sent to ]\rontezunia presents 
of collars, bi'acelets, and ornaments of glass, an arm- 
chair riclily carved, and an embroidered crimson ca]). 
In return, ^NFontezuma sent shields, helmets, and 
[ilates of pnre gold, sandals, fans, gold oi-nameiits of 
exquisite worlvinanshi]), togethei' witii i-ohcs of fine 
cotton interwoven with feathei' work, so skillfnlly 


done that it resembled painting. The cap which 
Cortes had sent was returned filled with gold dust. 

The great Montezuma also sent a message to 
Cortes, saying that he would be glad to meet so 
brave a general, but that the road to the Mexican 
capital was too dangerous for an army to pass over. 
He also promised to pay a yearly tribute to the 


Spanish king if Cortes and his followers would 
depart and leave him in peace. 

The Spaniards were jubilant when they saw the su- 
perb gifts. They felt certain that this great emperor 
must have enormous wealth at his command, and in 
spite of the warning message, most of them wished 
to start immediately for the Mexican capital. Some, 
however, thought such a course very unwise; Mon- 
tezuma, they said, was so powerful a ruler that it 


was absurd to attack him with their small force, and 
they advised returning to Cuba for a large number 
of soldiers. 

But Cortes had his own ideas on the suljject. So 
he secretly ordered Ins ships to be sunk, and then, 
all chance of retreat being cut off, the entire force 
proceeded toward Mexico, August IG, 1519. 

After a long march, the Spaniards began to ascend 
the plateau on which the city of Mexico is situated, and 
finally reached the top of it, seven thousand feet high. 

They found the climate on this plateau temperate 
and balmy. The fields were cultivated, and beau- 
tiful flowers grew wild in profusion. 

During the march the Spaniards passed many 
towns containing queer houses and temples. They 
entered many of the temples, threw down the idols, 
and took possession of ornaments of A'alue. At 
length they saw in the distance a city which was 
built in a salt lake. Three avenues, built of stone, 
led across the water to it. 

These avenues, which were four or five miles in 
length, were guarded on both sides by Indians in 
canoes. The avenu(\s continued thfough the city, 
meeting in the center, where the great tem}»le was 

Tlu^ tem])le was inclosed by a liuiiv stone wall, 
and contained twenty pyi'ainids, each a hundred 


feet in height. Nearly all of the houses were two 
stories high, and were built of red stone. The roofs 
were flat, with towers at the corners, and on top of 
tlie roofs there were beautiful flower gardens. 

Meeting of Cortes and Montezuma. 

Into tliis reniarkal)lo town Cortes and liis follow- 
ers inarched. ]Monteznina received his unwek'oine 
guests witli every mark of friendship, and witli 
nnicli pomp and ceremony. Tlie great em})eror was 
carried on a litter, wliich was richly decoratf^l 
with gold and silver. The nobles of his court sur- 


rounded him, and hundreds of his retainers were 
drawn up in line behind him. 

The first thing, when Cortes and Montezuma met, 
was the customary exchange of i)resents. Cortes i)re- 
sented Montezuma with a chain of colored glass 
beads, and in return the Aztec ruler ga\'e Cortes a 
house which was large enough to accommodate all 
of the Spaniards. 

For ten days these two men met each other and 
exchanged civilities, Cortes pretending to Ije paying 
a friendly visit, and Montezuma feeling puzzled and 

At length Cortes induced Montezuma to go to the 
house where the Spaniards were living, and then, 
when he got him there, refused to allow him to leave, 
thus keeping him a prisoner in his own city. 

This daring act aroused the suspicions of the 
Aztecs. But Cortes used all his cunning to deceive 
these simple-hearted people and to make them con- 
tinue to think tliat the Spaniards were gods. Still, 
the Aztecs were beginning to feel very bitter 
toward Cortes and his followers because of the dis- 
respect witli which they treated tlie Aztec temples 
and gods. The Spaniards were constantly tlirowing 
these gods out of the tc^nples. Even their gi'cat god 
of war was not safe. 

Cortes openly derided this image, calling it trash. 


and proposing to erect the emblems of the Spanish 
religion in its place in the Aztec temples. 

Now, the Aztec god of war was a frightful image 
with golden serpents entwined about the body. The 
face was hideous, and in its hand was carried a plate 
upon which were placed human hearts as sacrifices. 
But to the Aztecs the image was sacred, and this 
insult, together with many others which had been 
offered their gods, made the natives very angry. 

One day the Aztecs discovered that some of the 
Spaniards had died. This knowledge dispelled the 
fear that their unbidden visitors were gods, and 
they attacked the Spaniards with great fury. 

The Aztec warriors wore quilted cotton doublets 
and headdresses adorned with feathers. They carried 
leather shields, and fought fiercely with bows and 
arrows, copper-pointed lances, javelins, and slings. 
Though l)y comparison few in numbers, the Span- 
iards, who were protected by coats of mail, made 
great havoc with their guns and horses. 

The battle IjetAveen these unequal forces raged Avith 
great fury, and for a time the result was uncertain. 
Cortes compelled Montezuma, his prisoner, to show 
himself on the roof of his house and try to persuade 
the Aztecs to stop fighting. 

The Indians, however, no longer feared their 
emperor, and instead of obeying him, they made 


him a target for their arrows and stones. In the 
midst of the figbt, the great Montezuma was finally 
knocked down 
and killed by 
one of his for- 
mer subjects. 

After a des- 
perate struggle, 
the Spaniards 
were forced to 
retreat. "While 
making their 
escape over the 
bridges of the 
city they were 
attacked by In- 
dian warriors 
in canoes, and 
more than half 
of their number 
were killed. 
ing this defeat 
and the loss of 

so many men, Cortes did not give up liis design of con- 
quering Mexico. He made an nlliniicc witli hostile 
tribes of Indians, and again attacked tlie city. 

Aztec Ruins. 


The Aztecs had now a new king, named Gua-te- 
niot-zin, who was as brave and determined as Cortes 
himself. Gruatemptzin made preparations to oppose 
Cortes, and during the terrible siege which followed 
never once thought of surrendering or of asking for 

The Spaniards made attack after attack, and ter- 
rible battles were fought, in which the loss on both 
sides was very great. During one of these battles 
( 'ortes was nearly captured, and it seemed as though 
the war god was to be avenged upon the man who 
had so insulted him. But a young Spaniard rushed 
to the assistance of Cortes, and with one blow of his 
sword cut off the arms of the Indian who had dared 
to seize the Spanish leader. 

After a time the Aztecs found themselves pris- 
oners within their own city. The Spaniards liad cut 
off all means of escape, and the Indians were starv- 
ing to death. Their sufferings were terrible, and 
hundreds dropped down daily in the streets. Yet 
the proud king Guatemotzin refused to submit, and 
Cortes ordei-ed a final attack. After furious figliting 
Guatemotzin was captured, and the Aztecs surren- 
dered. Their cruel religion, with its strange gods and 
human sacrifices, was now overthrown. 

Cortes, with his few followers, nevermore than one 
thousand trained soldiers, had succeeded in conquer- 


ing a country larger than Spain. Over a million 
Mexicans had peiished, and those that I'eniained left 
the city and fled to the mountains. 

In this way the magnificent civilization of the 
ancient Mexicans was destroyed. Shi})loads of treas- 
ures were sent by Cortes to the Spanish king, Charles 
v., who rejoiced at the glory gained for his country. 


Among the men who had been with Balboa, and 
who had heard of the wonderful country of the Incas, 
was Francisco Pizarro. He determined to find this 
ricli country and to conquer it. 

Securing a band of about two hundred men, well 
armed and mounted on sti'ong horses, he led them, in 

spite of terrible hardships, 
over mountains, through val- 
leys, and across plateaus to 
Cajamarca, the city where 
the Inca, or king, was then 

The natives gazed at the 
Spaniards in wonder and 
dread. These simple people 
thought that the white-faced, 
bcai'ded strangers, who car- 
ried tliun(lerl)f)lts in their liands, and who rode such 
fi'iglitful-looking animals, were gods. In spite of 
their i'ear, tin; Indians received the strangers kindly, 
and gave them food and slielter. 


Francisco Pizarro. 


That evening, Pizarro and De Soto, taking with 
them thirty-five horsemen, visited the Inca and ar- 
ranged with him for a meeting next day in tlie open 
square. It was a strange visit. The Inca was sur- 
rounded by his slaves and chieftains, and was very 
polite to the strangers. 

But the Spaniards began to feel very uneasy. An 
army composed of thousands of Indians was en- 
camped only two miles away ; and compared with it, 
the two hundred men of Pizari'o appeared powerless. 
The situation of tlie Spaniards, should the Inca de- 
cide to oppose them, seemed without hope. 

Pizarro scarcely slept that night. He lay awake 
planning how he might take the Inca prisoner. 

The next day, about noon, the Indian pi'ocession 
approached the market place. First came attendants 
who cleared the way, then followed nobles and men 
of high rank, richly dressed, and covered with orna- 
ments of gold and gems. Last came the Inca, car- 
ried on a throne of solid gold, which was gorgeously 
trimmed with the plumes of tropical birds. 

The Indian monarch wore rich garments adorned 
with gold ornaments, and around his neck was a 
collar of superb emeralds of great size and l)rillian('y. 
He took his position near the center of tlu^ s(inaro, 
his escort, numbering several thousand, gathered 
around him. 


Looking about, the Inca failed to see any of tlie 

" Where are the strangers ! " he asked. 

Just then Pizarro's chaplain, with his Bible in his 
hand, approached the Inca. The chaplain said that 
he and his people had been sent by a mighty prince 
to beg the Inca to accept the true religion and con- 
sent to be tributary to the great emperor, Charles V., 
who would then protect them. 

The Inca grew very angry at this, and declared 
that he v.ould not change his faith nor be any man's 
tributary. He then indignantly threw the sacred 
book upon the ground, and demanded satisfaction 
from the Spaniards for this insult to liim. 

At this the priest gave the signal, and the Span- 
iards rushed from their hiding-places and attacked 
the panic-stricken Indians. The Inca and his at- 
tendants were wholly unprepared, being unarmed 
and utterly defenseless. 

The Spaniards charged through them, showing no 
mercy, their swords slashing right and left, and their 
prancing horses trampling the natives under foot. 
The gnus and firearms of the Spaniards made such 
havoc and confusion that the terrified Indians offered 
no I'esistnnce. Indeed, they could not offer any. 

In the vicinity of the Inca the struggle was fierce. 
The Indians, faithful to the last to their beloved mon- 


arch, threw themselves before liim, sliieldiiig liini with 
their naked bodies from the swords of tlie Spaniards. 
At last, as night drew near, the Spaiiiai'ds, fearing 
that the Inca might escape, attempted to kill him. 

But Pizarro desired that he should Ije taken alive, 
and in a loud voice ordered his followers, as tliey 

The Spaniards Attacking the Inca's Escort. 

valued their own lives, not to strike the Inea. 
Stretching out his arm to save tlie monarch, Pi/ai'ro 
received a wound on Ids hand. This was tlie only 
wound received l)y a Spaniard during ilu' attack, 



At length the Inca was cast from his throne, and, 
falling to the ground, was caught by Pizarro. He was 
then imprisoned and placed under a strong guard. 
As soon as the news of the capture of the Inca spread, 
all resistance ceased. Many of the Indians fled to 
the mountains, leaving untold wealtli at the disposal 
of their conquerors, while others remained, hoping to 
be able to assist their fallen ruler. 

As soon as the Inca had an opportunity, he tried 
to think of some way of obtaining his freedom. 

The room in which he was confined was twenty- 
two feet in length by seventeen feet in width. Rais- 
ing his hand as high as he could, the Inca made a 
mark upon the wall, and told Pizarro that gold 
enough to fill the room to that mark would be given 
as a ransom for his release. 

Pizarro agreed to this bargain, and the natives be- 
gan to send gold to the Inca to secure his release. 
Some of the treasures in the temples were Ijuried and 
hidden by the priests; but ornaments of all kinds, 
vases, and plate were collected, and in a few months 
gold amounting to fifteen millions of dollars in our 
money was divided among the Spaniards. 

Millions of dollars' worth of gold and silver were 
shipped to Spain, and the Spanish nation grew very 
wealthy. Pizarro himself returned to Spain to take 
Charles V. his share of the plunder. During Pizar- 


ro's absence the Spaniards caused tlie Inca to be 
killed, notwithstanding the largo ransom which tliey 
liad accepted. 

The richer the Spanish people ^rew, the more 
careless they became in their treatment of other na- 
tions and of those under their rule. They grew more 
cruel and more merciless and more gree<ly for gold. 
They flocked in great numbers to South America, 
a reckless, adventurous, unprincipled horde, ready to 
connnit any crime in order to secure gold. 


Among the men who had been with Pizarro in 
Pern was Ferdinand de Soto, a bold and dashing 
Spanish cavalier. 

De Soto was appointed governor of Cuba in 1537, 
and at the same time received permission from the 
Spanish king to conquer Florida. This permission 
to conquer Florida was received 
by De Soto with great delight. 
He felt certain that in the inte- 
rior of Florida there were cities 
as large and as wealthy as those 
of Peru. To conquer these cities, 
obtain their treasure, and win 
for himself riches and fame, was 
the dream of De Soto. 
Strange as it may seem to you, De Soto was also 
anxious to er)nvei't the natives to his own religion. 
He intended to take from them all their possessions, 
but he meant to save their souls, if possible. 

So, leaving his young and beautiful wife Isabella 


Ferdinand de Soto. 


to rule over Cuba in his abseuco, De Soto, in May, 15o9, 
started from Havana with nine vessels, about six liun- 
dred men, and two hundred and twenty-three horses. 

After a safe voyage, the expedition landed on the 
coast of Florida, at Tampa Bay, Before starting on 
the march to the interior of the country, De Soto 
sent all the vessels back to Cuba. In this way he cut 
off all hope of retreat, in case the men should become 
discouraged. But no one thouglit of wanting to re- 
turn now. Everybody was in high s})irits. 

The soldiers wore brilliant uniforms, tlicir caps 
were adorned with waving plumes, and their polisln^d 
armor glistened and sparHed in the sunshine. 

In the company were twelve ])riests, who wci'e ex- 
pected to convert the prisoners wliich De Soto meant 
to capture. The Spaniards carried with them chains 
to secure these prisoners, and l)]oodhounds to track 
them in case any escaped. 

It was a gay comp;iny Avhich marched off into the 
interior of Florida with prancing liorses, waving 
flags and banners, and beating drums. 

At first De Soto marched directly nortli, plunging 
into a wilderness which })roved to be ahnost impass- 
able. The country was full of swamps, tlirougli 
which the horses could scarcely tra\"el. The ];irge 
trees wim'c bound together by tangled xiin's; mid 
their roots, which protruded fi'om the cart h, were like 


traps, catcliiiig the feet of the travelers and throwmg 
them to the ground. 

Besides all this, the heavy baggage which the men 
and horses carried weighed them down and made 
the journey almost impossible. 

De Soto, however, kept bravely on, encouraging 
his men as best he could, and at last reached the Sa- 
vannah River. Here he changed his course to west- 
ward, hoping to find gold in that direction. 

Week after week, month after month, the Span- 
iards traveled on through a dense wilderness, endur- 
ing great hardships and finding nothing but tribes of 
hostile Indians. 

De Soto asked one of these Indian chiefs to give 
him slaves enough to carry his baggage through the 
forest. The chief refused; whereupon De Soto and 
his men attacked the tribe and took many prisoners. 
These prisoners De Soto caused to be chained to- 
gether and placed in front of the expedition, Avhere 
they were made to act as guides as well as slaves. 

Tlien De Soto asked the Indians where the great 
cities witli gold and silver treasures were. One In- 
dian said he did not know of any. At this re])ly De 
Soto caused the Indian to be put to death with fi'ight- 
ful torture. This made the Indians untruthful, and 
they told De Soto many different stories of places 
where they thought gold niiglit be foimd. 


So the expedition wandered on, searching for the 
gold which they never found ; and the men grew dis- 
couraged and heartsick, and longed for home. 

The Indian tribes, angry at the cruel treatment of 
tlie Spaniards, attacked them frequently, and De Soto 
and liis men scarcely ever enjoyed a peaceful rest at 

De Soto Marching through the Forest. 

night. The Spaniards were unused to Indian war- 
fare, and were no niatcli foi' tlie quick, ninil)le sav- 
ages, who glided through the forests silently and 
swiftly. These Indians never came to o})en battle, 
but hid themselves behind rocks and trees, and were 



scarcely ever seen. Two or three would suddenlj 
appear, send a shower of arrows at the Spaniards, 
and then dart away again into the woods. The In- 
dians scarcely ever missed their aim, and the Span- 
iards never knew when they were near. 

One day De Soto captnred some Indians wlio said 
that they knew where gold was to be fonnd and that 
they wonld show the way to tlie place. De Soto 
only half trnsted them, but he allowed them to lead 
the way. The cunning savages led the Spaniards 
into an ambush, where other Indians attacked them 
fiercely, killing their horses and many of their inen. 

As punishment for this act, De Soto ordered that 
these Indians should be torn to pieces by the blood- 

Sometimes the Spaniards, in their wanderings, 
passed camps where the Indians were gathered round 
huge bonfires, singing, dancing, yelling, and shout- 
ing the terrible Indian war whoop. Under shcltor of 
this noise the Spaniards would steal quietly away and 
avoid the Indians for a time. 

At length, after wandering for two years, De Soto 
came, in 1541, to the shore of a large river. This river 
was wide and nuiddy, and had a strong eui'rent 
which carried much driftwood along with it. De 
Soto learned from the Indians thai it was callt'd 
Mississip})i, or the "Father of Waters." 


He had reached it near the spot where the city of 
Memphis now stands, and here his company halted 
and camped. 

At this place the Spaniards built rafts, striking 
the fetters from their captives in order to use the 
iron for nails, and so crossed the river. They hoped 
in this way to escape from their savage foes ; but on 
the other side of the river they found Indians who 
were just as fierce. 

So the Spaniards traveled south, hoping by follow- 
ing the course of the river to reach the sea. This 
De Soto soon found to be impossible, as the country 
was a wilderness of tangled vines and roots, and his 
followers could not cross the many creeks and small 
rivers which flowed into the Mississippi. The horses 
traveled through this country with difficulty, often 
being up to their girths in water. Each day saw 
the little band grow less in nu]ii1)ers. 

At length they returned to the banks of the river, 
being guided back by their liorses. Tlie men lost 
their way in the dreadful forest, but the instinct of 
the noble animals directed them aright. 

Food was growing scarce, and De Soto liimself was 
taken 'ill. He knew that unless something should be 
done soon to make the Indians Iielp them, all would 
perish. So he sent word to an Indian chief saying 
that he was tlie cliild of the snn, and that all men 


obeyed him. He then declarod that he wanted the 
chief's fi'iendsliip, and ordoi'ud liini to l)ring him food. 

The chief sent Ijack word that if De Soto would 
cause the river to dry up he would believe him. 
This, of course, De Soto could not do. 

He was disappointed and discouraged at not being 
able to get food. The illness from which he was 
suffering grew worse, and he died soon afterwards. 

His followers were anxious to hide liis death from 
the natives, who were very much afraid of liim. So 
they placed his body in the hollow of a scooped out 
tree, and sunk it at midnight in the water. 

Those of his followers who were left decided to try 
to reach home by following the river to its mouth. 
These men were in a wretched condition. Their 
clothing was nearly all gone. Few of them had shoes, 
and nianj^ had only the skins of animals and mats 
made of wild vines to keej) them warm. They built 
seven frail barks and sailed down the Mississippi, 
avoiding Indians all the way, and in seventeen days 
they came to the Gulf of ]\b\xi('0. 

In fifty days more they sucet^eded in reaching a 
Spanish settlement on tlic coast of Mexico, where 
they were received with much joy. 

Of the gay eompany of six huiidri^l an<l twenty 
who had s<^t out with such hiah li(>['es, ouW thi'ee 
hundred and ele\ en men returned. 


As yon may imagine, there was great excitement 

and eni'iosity in Spain, after tlie voyages of Colum- 

bns, abont the new hinds beyond the Western Ocean. 

Several of the men who had sailed with Colnnibns 

Avere ready to undertake new voyages of discovery. 

Among them was Yahez 

You will rejnember that 
when Columbus made his 
first voyage lie set out 
with three vessels. One 
of these was the Xitla. 
It was connnanded by 
YafK'Z Pinzon. 

After Oolumbus had 
returned from his second voyage, Yahez Pinzon suc- 
ceeded ill fitting out a ficet to go to the New "World. 
In 1-1-99 he sailed with four caravels from Palos, 


The Nina. 


the same port from wliidi Coliim])us liad sailod. 
Pinzoii took with him some of the .sailoi's wlio liad 
been with Columbus, and also his throe })riiicipal 
pilots. These pilots were men who understood liow 
to use the astrolabe and to tell the course of tlie 
ship at sea. 

Pinzon's fleet sailed toward the Canary and Cape 
Verde Islands, and after j^assing them its course was 
southwest across the Atlantic. At h'ngth the fleet 
crossed the equator, and Pinzon w^as the first explorer 
to cross the line in the western Atlantic. 

The fleet sailed on for nearly five hundred miles 
to the southward. Here Pinzon met a terrific storm, 
which came very near sending his whole fleet to the 
bottom. He was now not far from the coast, and 
after the storm was over he discovered land. The 
land proved to be the most eastern jioint of South 
America. This was in the month of January, in the 
year 1500. 

Pinzon and a com]\any of his men went ashore. 
Tlun^ did not r(^maiii long, however, as they found 
the Indians very hosfilo. Tlio Indians attacked the 
Spaniai-ds and killed several of thoir number. Tliey 
were so furious that, after eliasing the S]»aniards to 
their boats, they wailed into tln^ s(>a and fnnghl to get 
the oars. The Indians ea]»tnre(l one of tlie rowboats. 
but the Spaniards at last got off to tlieir vessels. 


Pinzon then set sail and steered northward along 
the coast. 

When his fleet came near tlie equator, he noticed 
that the water was very fresh. Accordingly he gave 
orders to fill the water casks of Ijis fleet. The fresh- 
ness of the water of the sea led hini to sail in toward 
the shore. 

At length he discovered whence the large volume 
of fresh w^ater came. It flowed out of the mouth of 
a great river. 

It was the mouth of the river xVmazon, and so great 
is the volume of water which it i)Ours into the sea 
that its current is noticed in the ocean two hundred 
miles from the shore. 

This fact is not so surprising when we learn that 
the main mouth of this great river is fifty miles wide, 
that the I'iver is four thousand miles long, including 
its windings, and that, besides iiiany smaller branches, 
it has five trilnitarics, each over a thousand miles long, 
and one over two thousand miles long, flowing into it. 

Pinzon anchored in the inouth of the rivei-, and 
found the natives peaceful. In this respect they 
were unlike those he had met fai'ther south. They 
came out to his ships in a fnendly way in theii- 
canoes. But when Pinzon, a short time later, left 
the river, he cruelly carried off t]iirt>'-six of the In- 
dians who had been friendly to him. 


While Piuzon's fleet was in the mouth of the river, 
it came a second time near being wrecked. 

Pinzon was, of course, in strange waters. He did 
not know that twice each month the tide does not 
rise in the usual way, i)ut rushes up the mouth of the 
Amazon with great force. The tide, as a rule, is 
about six hours in rising and six hours in falling. 
In the mouth of the Anuizon, however, at new moon 
and at full moon the tide swells to its limit in two 
or three minutes. It comes as a wall of water, twelve 
or fifteen feet high, followed by another wall of the 
same height. Often there is a third wall of water, 
and at some seasons of the year there is a fourth wall. 

This peculiar rising of the tid(3 is called the hore. 
The noise of this rushing flood can be heard five or 
six miles off. It comes with tremendous force, and 
sometimes uproots great trees along the banks. 
During the few days wlnui the tide rushes up the 
river in this way vessels do not remain in the main 
channel, but anchor in coves and protected places. 

Pinzon, as we have said, did not know about the 
sudden rising of tlie tide. ITis fleet was anchored in 
the main channel whon tlic borc^ camo, and it dashed 
his vessels about like toy l)oats and almost wrecked 

After re])airinix the damage dono to his fleot, he 
made up his mind that there was litth' gold to be found 


in those parts, and so he sailed out of the mouth of the 
great river, and then turned northward along the coast. 

Scene on the Orinoco River. 

It may be of interest to know wluit befell Pinzon 
after he left the mouth of the Amazon. We will tell 
you briefly. 

He sailed along the coast to the northwest, and 
passed the mouth of the Orinoco, another large river 
of South America. About a hundred and fifty miles 
beyond the Orinoco, he entered a gulf and landed. 
Here he cut a large quantity of brazil wood to take 
back to Spain. 


Then lie sailed for the isluiid of Hispaiiiola, now 
called Haiti. From this islaud he sailed to the 
Bahama Islands. 

It was July when he reached the Bahamas. Mis- 
fortune again came to his Heet. AVhile anchored in 
the Bahamas a hurricane came up, and two of his 
vessels were sunk. A third was blown out to sea. 
The fourth vessel rode out the storm, hut the crew, 
thinking all the while she would sink, took to their 
small boats and at length reached the shore. Tlie 
Indians came to them when they landed, and proved 

After the hurricane was over, the vessel that had 
been carried out to sea drifted back. xVs soon as the 
sea was smooth enough Pinzon and his men went on 
board the two remaining vessels and set sail for His- 

At Hispaiiiola he repaired his vessels, and then 
sailed back to Spain. He reached Palos in Sep- 

Al)Out three months after Pinzon sailed away from 
tlit^ mouth of the Amazon it was visited by a Portu- 
guese navigator iiaiiKHl Cabral. Although the Portu- 
guese were iK^t so fortunate as io discover America, 
yet tlK'V liad Ix'cn very active in making discoveries 
for stn-fiity years and more before C'olumbiis's first 

DIS. AND KXP. — 7 


In 1420 they discovered the Madeira Islands. In 
1432 they discovered the Azore Islands, which lie 
eight hundred miles west of Portugal in the Atlantic 
Ocean. Their vessels, from time to time, had been 
pushing farther and farther down the west coast of 
Africa. In the middle of tlie century as many as 
fifty-one of their caravels had been to the Guinea 
coast, or the Gold Coast, as it was more often called. 
In 1484, eight years before Columbus discovered 
America, they had discovered the mouth of the Kongo 
River on the African coast. 

It is not surprising, then, that their navigators 
were pushing out across the Atlantic soon after Co- 
lumbus had led the way. 

But though Cabral sailed along the whole coast of 
Brazil, and took possession of it in the name of the 
King of Portugal, he did not learn any more about 
the great river at the mouth of which he anchored 
than did Pinzon. Had he waited a few months, or 
had he returned to the river, he might easily have 
ex2>lored its course. For from July to December of 
each year the east wind blows steadily up the Ama- 
zon, and Cabral could have spread his sails and kept 
them spread as he sailed up the river for two thou- 
sand miles or more to the eastern foot of the great 
mountains of South America, the Andes. 

The exploration of the Amazon, however, fell to 


the lot of aiiotlier niaii, Fi'aiicisco Orellniui liy iiamo. 
Orelluua did not sail up tlio river from its iiioutli, l)iit 
came down it from one of its sources. Tliis was in 
1540, many years, as you see, after Pinzon and Cabral 
had anchored at the mouth. 

Orellana was one of Pizarro's men, and had been 
with liim when tlie Inca of Peru was taken and after- 
wards put to death. It was Francisco I^izarro, as you 
well know, who conquered Peru. After Francisco 
Pizarro had conquered the country, he made his 
brother, Gonzalo Pizarro, governor of (^uito, 

Tliis brother, while at Quito, made up his mind to 
cross the Andes Mountains and explore the country 
beyond. So he got ready an expedition, and made 
Orellana his li(nTtenant; Orellana was, therefore, sec- 
ond in command of the (^x})edition. 

The ai'my was made up of three hundred and fifty 
Spaniards, four thousand Indians, and one thousand 
bloodhounds for liunting down the natives. 

They had a hard march over the Audits, and 
suffered very much in crossing. When tliey were 
over tlie mountains, they discovered a river llowing 
towai'd tlie soutlieast. Tins was the river Xa])(^. 

Pi/tirro liad liad so hai'd a marcli across tlu^ Andes 
tliat he felt his men eould not stand it to go ba<dv 
l)y t1i(^ same way. He tlierefore eneani]»ed by the 
Xa})() liiver, and spent seven monllis in luiilding a 


vessel to hold his baggage aud those of his men who 
were ih. 

He put Orellana in charge of the vessel, and ordered 
him to float slowly down the river Avhile the other 
part of the army marched along the shore. The 
march was very slow and toilsome, and after a few 
weeks the food began to get low. 

At this time Pizarro heard of a rich country farther 
down the streain, where the Xapo flowed into a larger 
river. This countr\' lie wished to reach. So he sent 
( )rellana in the vessel, with fifty soldiers, down the 
Xapo to the larger river. There Orellana was to get 
food and su])plies for the army and then return. 

Pizarro waited and waited in vain for Orellana to 
return, and at last he and liis men had to find their 
way back across the Andes with scanty food and 
undergo great hardships. 

Orellana and the soldiers with liim were carried 
by the current swiftly down the Xa})0, and in tliree 
days they came into the great river. It was indeed 
a great river, for the Amazon at the phice wliere 
the Xapo flows into it is a mile in width. 

Orellana expeeted to find here many jieo^de an<] 
plenty of food. He found, however, only a wilder- 
ness. It was about lik<' the country where Pizarro 
and his army were encamped, 

Orellana conld Ijarelv u'ct food for liimsflf and the 


men witli liim, inncli loss enough for Pizarro and his 
army. To retnru against the swift current would Ije 
a lieavy task. After tliinking the matter over, he 
decided to follow the great river to the sea. But he 
must lirst win the soldiei's who wen; with him ov<'r 
to his i)lan. This ho soon suceeedod in doing, and 
they started down the Amazon. 

It w^as no easy joni-noy. He and the soldiers 
suffered greatly. But in August, 1541, after seven 
months of hardships, they readied the ocean, and a 
short time after this they sailed to Spain. 

When Orollana reached Spain, h(^ gave a glowing 
account of a wonderful country, rich in precious 
metals, through which he had passed. xVccording to 
his story, it was far riclier in gold tlian Peru. 

The name El Dorado, "The Golden," was given to 
this fal)led country; an<l for a score or more of 
years aftei' Orellana had told his story, efforts were 
made to find it. Expedition after expedition set out 
in search of El Dorado. An explorer named Phili]» 
von Huttcn, who led a party southward into the c(nin- 
try from the northern part of South America, helieved 
he caught sight of a city whose golden walls glistened 
far away in th(^ distance. But he never rea<'htMl the 
shining city which he thought he saw, nor was the 
fahled El Dorado ever found. 



Yerrazzano was a native of 
Florence, Italy, and a pirate 
like many other sailors of tliat 
time. Being known as a dar- 
ing seaman, he was asked by 
Francis I., King of France, to 
lake command of a fleet of 
four vessels and try to find 
a Avestern passage to rich 
Cathay. For Francis had be- 
come very jealons of tlie Spaniards, and felt that liis 
conntry onght to have a share in the riches of the 
Xew World. 

Yerrazzano sailed from France fnll of Ijope and 
joy ; l)ut he had gone only a sliort distance when a 
severe storm arose, and two of his vessels were lost 
sight of forever, Tlie two remaining vessels were 
obliged to return to France. 

After some delay Yci'razzano startt^l again, with 
one vessel called the JJa/i/ilili/t'. AVith this vessel he 


reached the island of Madeira, and from this island 
he sailed, January 17, 1524, for the unknown world. 

The voyage lasted forty-nine days, nitov which 
time a long, low coast was sighted in the distance. 
This coast, which was probably North Carolina, 
afforded no landing place, and for some time Verraz- 
zano sailed north and then south, searching for one. 
The search proved unsuccessful, and as the crew 
were in need of fresh water, Verrazzano decided to 
send a boat asliore. 

So a small l)oat was manned, and the sailors tried 
very hard to reach the shore, but the surf was so 
high that they were unable to do this. At last one 
brave sailor jumped from the l)oat into tlie foaming 
breakers and swam toward the sliore. He carried in 
one hand presents for the Tiidinns, who were stand- 
ing at the water's edge watching the strange sight. 
At length the sailor succeeded in swimming so close 
to the slior(^ that he was able to throw the presents 
to the Indians. 

His courage then deserted him, and in terror he 
tried to swim back to his vessel. The surf, however, 
daslied him on tlie sandy beach, and he would have 
been drowned had not some of the Indians waded in 
and dragge(l him ashore. These Indians quickly 
stripped liim of all his clothing and began to build 
an immense bonfire. The poor sailor thought his end 


Indians Rescuing the Sailor. 

bad come, and liis former companions looked on from 
their shij^ in horror at the preparations. 

All of them thought that the Indians meant to burn 
him alive or else to cook and eat liim. To tbeir great 
relief, the Indians treated him very gently and kindly ; 
tliey dried liis clothes by the fire and warmed him. 

These kind Indians looked very savage. Their 
skin was copper colored, their long, straight hair was 
tied and worn in a braid, and their faces were very 
stern ; foi', you know, an Indian never laughs or smiles. 

In spite of their fierce looks, however, they were 
very good to the pale-faced stranger, and when he 


was strong again they led him back to the shore, 
and he swam out to his ship. 

Verrazzano was glad to see his sailor return in 
safety from this dangerous trip. The man had risked 
liis life, but no water had been obtained for the crew. 
So Verrazzano started northward, and along the coast 
of Maryland he made a landing and secured the 
much-needed fresh water. 

At this place the Frenchmen had an opportunity 
to return the kindness that the Indians liad shown 
theii' companion, but I am sorry to have to tell you 
that they did not do so. Wiiile searching for the 
water, ViM'razzano and his followers came suddenly 
upon a little Indian boy, whom they seized and car- 
ried off to their ship. Tlie mother of the boy came 
(juickly from some buslics to rescue her son, and they 
would also have stolen her, but she made so much 
noise that they were obliged to run in order to escape 
from the rest of the tribe, who came to help her. The 
Frenchmen reached their ship in safety with the poor 
little Indian l)oy, and quickly set sail. 

Verrazzano proceeded northward, following the 
slior(\ and at length came to a very narrow neck of 
wattM", with rising land on both sides. Through this 
strait Verrazzano sailed, and, to his surprise, came 
out into a broad and beautiful bay which was sur- 
rounded on all sides bv forests, and was dotted here 


and there with the eaiioes of Indians who were com- 
ing out from the land to meet him. 

You have, of course, guessed that this strait was 
the Narrows, which separates Staten Island from 
Long Island, and that the bay was the beautiful New 
York Bay. 

Verrazzano followed the shore of Long Islai+d to a 
small island, which was likely Block Island. From 
this island h(^ sailed into a harbor on the mainland, 
probably Newport, where he remained fifteen days. 
Here the Indians received their pale-faced visitors 
with great dignity and pomp. Two of the Indian 
chiefs, arrayed in painted deer skins and raccoon and 
lynx skins, and decorated with copper ornaments, 
paid Verrazzano a visit of state. 

Soon after this Verrazzano sailed away, again 
northward. Tlie climate grew cooler and the country 
more rugged, and the vegetation changed. Instead 
of the sweet-scented cypress and bay trees which the 
sailors had admired aloiig the Carolina coast, there 
wore dark forests of stately pines, which were grand 
but gloomy. 

Groat cliffs of rock extended along the shores, and 
from these heights the natives looked down upon 
the lonely little sliip in fear, anger, and amazement. 
At length they consented to trade with the ])ale- 
faces; but th(3y lowered a cord from the rocks and 


drew lip tlie kniv^es, fishhooks, and pieces of stool 
which they (leniandod ill exeliJing(> for fiii-s and skins. 
Once Verrazzauo and a foAv of iiis men tried to land. 
But the Indians fiercely attacked them, and a shower 
of arrows and the sound of the dreaded war whoo]) 
caused the Europeans to fly to their ship for safety. 

So Verrazzano gave up the plan of landing jiniong 
these fierce Indians, and continued his voyage north- 
ward as far as Newfoundland. Here provisions grew 
scarce, and Verrazzano decided to sail for home. 

The return voyage was a safe one, and Verrazzano 
was greeted with joy when he arrived in France. 
Upon his discoveries the French based their claim to 
all the country in the New World between Carolina 
and Newfoundland, extending westward as far as 
land continued. 

Verrazzano wished very much to go again to this 
new land and try to plant a colony and to convert 
the Indians to the Christian religion. But France at 
this time was plunged into war at home, and all trace 
of Verrazzano is lost. Some say that he niade a sec- 
ond voyage, and that while ex]^loring a wild country 
he was taken prisoner and killed by a savage tribe of 
Indians. The story that is most likely true is that he 
did return to the New World, and that while there 
he was taken prisoner by the Spaniards and hanged 
as a pii'ate. 


SJr Francis Drake. 

Undek the rule of Queen Eliza- 
beth England became noted for 
her bold and daring seamen. 
These seamen were really pirates, 
or sea robbers ; but their occupa- 
tion in those days was looked 
upon as a lawful one by all ex- 
cept the people whom they plun- 

Queen Elizabeth encouraged 
the seafaring men to make voyages to tlie New World, 
and also to attack the Spanish ships, because she was 
displeased at the way the Spaniards were belia,ving. 
The Spaniards had grown very rich and })0\vorful 
by means of the wealth they had obtained in Amer- 
ica, and in their pride they did not tr(vit the other 
nations properly. They had no idea of fairness. 
They were selfish and wanted evei-ything for Spain. 
The English people thought that the best place to 



attack the Spaniards was in the New World. They 
well knew that if they could cut off the supply of 
gold and silver which the Spanish nation was receiv- 
ing from South America and the Indies, that nation 
would suffer. 

Sir Francis Drake, a brave young knight of Eliza- 
beth's court, formed a plan to teach the Spaniards a 
lesson. This plan was approved by the queen, and 
Drake was promised glory and riches if he should 
succeed in carrying it out. 

In November, 1577, Drake sailed from Plymouth, 
England, with a fleet of five vessels and one hundred 
and sixty-four men. He told ev^ery one that he was 
going to make a voyage to Alexandria, as he did not 
wish the Spaniards to know that he intended to cross 
the Atlantic. 

After a voyage of about five months, as they were 
sailing quietly along one evening, the crew saw 
strange fires in the distance. At first the sailors 
were ;!larmed ; but on sailing nearer they saw that 
tli(^ fii'cs were on the shoi'c of a strange country, 
which l)i'ak(^ knew to be South Amei'ica. 

The iiativi^s liad built tlu^se immense bonfires near 
the water and wcn^ })re] taring for some I'eligious rites. 

These natives wei'e fi'iendly, and Di'ake, after pro- 
curing some \'vo<]\ su]>plies, sailed on, as he was in 
haste to reach Peru. The fleet soon entered the 


Strait of Magellan, and sailed through without any 

On an island in the strait they found a great num- 
ber of fowl of the size of geese, which could not fly. 
The crew shot about three thousand of these birds, 
and now, having plenty of provisions, they began the 
journey up the west coast of South America. 

The Spaniards, never dreaming that any one would 
have the courage to try to reach their lands by way 
of the Strait of Magellan, had made no attempt to 
defend themselves from attack from the south. 
They feared that their enemies might come down 
upon them l)y way of the istlimus, and strong forces 
had been placed there to i)revent anyone from cross- 
ing ; but all the southern ports were defenseless. 

So Drake and his men sailed up the coast, dropping 
in at (liffe]'ent har]>ors, boldly taking everything of 
value that they saw, and then gayly sailing away, 
laughing at the sui'priso they left behind them. 

At on(^ place Drake found a Si)anish ship laden 
with s]>oils, ready to sail to Spain. The English 
(jiiickly took ])Ossessiou of her, set her crew asliore, 
and can-i('d her out to sea. There they found tliat 
she had on boai'd ])ni'e gold amounting to thirty- 
seven thousand Spanish ducats, stores of good wine, 
and other treasure. 

At one place where th(;y landed Drake himself 


found a Spaniard lying asleep near the sliore, with 
thirteen bars of silver by his side. The Englishmen 
took the silver and went quietly away, leaving the 
man to finish his nap. 

Farther on they met a Spaniard and an Indian boy 
driving eight llamas, as the sheep of 
that country are called, toward Peru. 
Each llama had on its back two 
bags of leather, and in ^ ^ 
each bag was 
fifty pounds of 
silver. This 
silver Drake 
ordered to be 
placed on his 
ship, and then 
he sailed away. 

Many other places 
were visited in tliis 
manner, and much treasure was collected; l)ut it 
was not until Drake reached Lima that the English 
understood the great wealth of tliat country. Al)Out 
twelve sliips were in the harbor, some fully hiden, and 
all un}>roteete(l, as the Spaniards never dreamed of 
attack. These ships Drake proceeded to ligliten 
of tlieir cargo by removing it to liis own sliips. 
' He then gave chase to anotlier vessel, winch he 

Drake and the Sleeping 



heard was laden with still greater treasure. This 
vessel he soon found, and the cargo proved to be 
very valuable. Thirteen chests of plate, many tons 
of gold and silver, jewels, precious stones, and quan- 
tities of silk and linen were taken. 

As you may suppose, after continuing this work 
for some time Drake's ships were very well loaded, 
and he and his companions began to think about 
returning to England. Drake felt that it would not 
be safe for him to return through the Strait of 
Magellan, as he knew the Spaniards would be expect- 
ing him. So he decided to sail across the Pacific 
Ocean to the Molucca Islands, and coniijlete his jour- 
ney by circumnavigating the globe. 

He was at this time becalmed in the tropics, and 
therefore headed his ships north, hoping to find the 
trade wind, which would carry him across the Pacific. 
After proceeding north along a strnnge coast for 
nearly a nionth, during which time the weather grad- 
ually became colder and colder, Drake decided to 
enter a harbor and anclior his vessels. 

The people of the country were friendly, and as the 
English treated them well, they renin ined so. They 
admired the brave Sir Francis Drake so much that 
they begged him to stay with them and be their 

But Drake had no desire to be kin^i' over an Indian 


tribe. He wanted to get back to his own good Queen 
Elizabeth and tell her of all the wonderful things that 
had happened to him. So he took possession of this 
country for England, and called it New Albion. 

New Albion was the land which is at present known 
as California, and the bay in which Drake anchored 
is just north of San Francisco Bay. 

Then Drake prepared his ships for the voyage 
home, hoisted anchor, and was soon sailing away in 
the direction of the Moluccas. These islands he 
reached after a long voyage, and after visiting several 
of the Indies he proceeded across the Indian Ocean 
to the Cape of Good Hope and thence northward 
to England. He reachcMl home in September, 1580, 
after an absence of three years. 

How glad Queen Elizabeth was to see him ! She 
granted him the honor of knighthood, and in other 
ways showed her pride in her brave subject. 

Drake's ship, the Golden H'mcl, was jJaced in a 
dock at Deptford, where it stood for inany years. 
Peoi)le used to take their eliildren to se(^ it, and they 
would tell them about the Golden Jlii/d, the good 
ship in which sailed the brave general, Sir Francis 
Drake, when he taught the Spaniards a lesson. 

When the timber of the ship 1)egan to decay, a 
chair was made of some of it and given to Oxford 
University, where it may be seen to this day. 



Henry Hudson was one of 
the best sea captains in all 
England. He loved the 
ocean, and he did not know 
the word " fear." 

In 1G07 a company of 
London merchants sent him 
to look for a northwest 
passage to Chhia. These 

Henry Hudson. t , n i -n 

merchants knew that ii 
such a x^'^^i^^^gG could l)o found, the journey to 
China would be much shorter than by the over- 
land route then used. It would take less time to 
sail around the earth near the pole than to sail 
around the earth near the equator. Besides, every 
one wlio had attempted to reach China by sailing 
west had reache<l, instead, that long coast of the 
New World, throngh which but o]ie 0})ening had ever 
been found. The route through this opening, the 
Strait of Magellan, had been proved by its discoverer, 
Ferdinand Magellan, to be Vo long for use in com- 



merce, so traders were trying hard to find a north- 
west passage. 

Caj^tain Hudson proceeded northwest from Eng- 
land, and tried to pass between Greenland and 
8pitzbergen and sail across the north j^ole into the 
Pacific. Failing in this attempt, he made a second 
voyage, during which he tried to pass between Spitz- 
bergen and Nova Zenibhu This voyage also was un- 
successful, and Hudson returned to England. He 
had found no northwest passage, but he had sailed 
past mountains of snow and ice and had been nearer 
the north j)ole than any man had ever been before. 

Captain Hudson was not discouraged by his two 
failures. He still believed a northwest passage could 
be found ; and when the Dutch people asked him to 
make a voyage for them in search of a passage to the 
Pacific Ocean, he was quite willing to accept the offer. 

In 1609 Hudson sailed from Amsterdam in a small 
craft of eighty tons, called tlie TlaJf Moon. After 
sailing many days througli fog and ice, the sailors 
refused to go farther in that direction, and then Hud- 
son headed his ship across the Atlantic toward 
America. You may think it strange that Hudson 
should cliaiige his plans so quickly, but he knew 
what he was about. He had received a letter from 
his friend ('ajitain John Smith, who was then in Vir- 
ginia, telling him tliat a northwest passage was to be 


found along the coast of North America, north of 
Chesapeake Bay. This letter Hudson had in mind 
when he started on his voj^age. 

He reached Chesapeake Bay, hut did not enter it, 

as the weather was 
stormy. Instead, he 
proceeded up the 
coast, looking for 
an opening. At 
length, in Septem- 
iz ber, he entered a 
beautiful bay. Into 
this bay a wide river 

The Half Moon on the Aowed whlch Hud- 
Hudson River. ,-, -, , ' ^ i 

son thought might 
be a strait that would lead into the 
Pacific Ocean. The water in this open- 
ing was salt, and this strengthened 
' Hudson in tlie belief that it was the 
strait for Avhich he had been searching so long. 
At the nioutli of the river tliei-e was a beantifnl 
island, long and nai'row, and wooded to th(^ shoi'e. 
At first the island seemed desei-ted, but soon the 
sailors saw here and ther(» slendei' curling columns of 
smoke risinu' from among the trees. This smoke 
showed them that the island was inhal)ited, and 
presently an Indian ap])eared on the shore. 


This Indian looked for a moment in astonishment 
at the ship, and then, shouting the war whoop, 
bounded back into the forest. In a few minutes he 
reappeared, bringing other Indians with him. All 
were amazed at the sight of tlie strauge ship, and 
tliey gazed in wonder and fear at it and at the white- 
faced, bearded strangers. Little by little, however, 
they lost their fear and talked with Captain Hudson. 
These Indians told Hudson that tlie name of the 
beautiful island was Manhattan, and that the stream 
led far, far to the north. 

So Hudson entered the river and sailed slowly 
north, enjoying the charming scenery, and stopping 
now and then to trade and to talk with the Indians. 

For twenty miles he saihMl along a great wall of 
rock about five hundred feet high, which we now 
know as the Palisades. This name was given to the 
rocky wall because it looks like a palisade, or high 
fence of stakes set close together and upright in the 

Soon after this the river l)ecame very winding, and 
high mountains arose on all sides. The TLtlf Moon 
now entered the beautiful Highlands, and her crew 
were the first white men to see this enchanting spot. 
The vessel sailed on, and at length it came to the plare 
where the city of Hudson now stands. Flcrt' an In- 
dian chief invited the cai)taiii to go ashoi-f. Hudson 


did so, and the Indians prepared a great feast in his 

They gave him roast pigeons and a roast dog to eat. 
Hudson did not like the dog meat very much, hut 
the Indians insisted upon cooking it for him. 

Hudson Feasting with the Indians. 

The Indians wanted him to stay overniyht with 
them, and one Indian arose, and gathering together 
all the arrows, Ijroke them and threw them into 
the fire. By this act he meant to show Hudson that 
he and his tribe would do him no harm. 


Hudson felt that he liad no time to lose, but must 
go on and find out whether this wonderful body of 
water would lead him into the Pacific. So he bade 
the Indians good-ljy and sailed away. 

He went on up the river until the place was reached 
where Albany now stands. Here the little Half 
Moon was ancliored. Indians came running down to 
the shore in wonder at the sight of the strange vessel. 
They brought with them strings of beaver skins, 
which they gave Hudson in exchange for pieces of 
gold lace, glass beads, and other trinkets. Hudson 
was quick to see the importance of this fur trade, 
and took back with him many valuable furs. Here 
the stream had become narrow, and was so shallow 
that the captain feared his vessel might run aground. 
He knew at last that the water was a river and not a 
strait, and that he was not likely to find here a pas- 
sage to China. So Hudson, turning back, started 
down the river. 

On the way down, an Indian who was in a canoe 
stole something from the ship. One of the crew saw 
the Indian commit tlie tlieft, and, i)icking up a gun, 
shot and killed him. This made the other Indians 
very angry, and Hudson had several fights with them. 

Nevertheless the ('X})edition reached the mouth of 
the river in safety, and early in October Hudson I'e- 
turned to Aiiisterdani. He liad not found a north- 


west i^assage, but he had secured a large tract of 
country in tlie New World for Holland. 

He told the Dutch about the rich furs to be found 
there, and they immediately began to build trading 
posts where the cities of New York and Albany now 

The next year Hudson made another voyage in 
search of a passage to Asia. This time he sailed far 
north into Hudson Bay. Here his crew mutinied and 
refused to obey him. They seized him and put him, 
together with his son, into an open boat, and set them 
adrift in the icy water. 

As Hudson was never heard of again, it is supposed 
that he perished in the waters of the great bay which 
he discovered, and which still bears his name. 

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