miércoles, 3 de junio de 2015

June 3: Spanish explorer Hernando De Soto claimed Florida for the Spanish crown, in 1539.





Hernando De Soto asked the king Carlos I of Spain, the government of Guatemala with "permission to the discovery of the South Sea". But it was granted the government of Cuba in place. De Soto was expected to colonize the continent of North America to Spain over a period of four years, which would be given an important piece of land for his family.


A proposed route for the de Soto Expedition, based on Charles M. Hudson  map of 1997


In May 1539, with 700 men, twenty-four priests, nine ships and 220 horses, De Soto reached the west coast of Florida, which would become Bradenton, and south of Tampa, Florida. He named the place the Holy Spirit. The goal of Hernando De Soto was to colonize the area, preferably looking for a city like Cuzco or Mexico City. Therefore, he brought several tons of distributed tools, weapons, guns, dogs, and pigs. In addition to the sailors, the ships brought blacksmiths, craftsmen, engineers, farmers and traders. Few of them had traveled before outside Spain, or worse, out of their villages.


Library of Congress’ engraving.The Spanish caption reads:
"HERNANDO DE SOTO: Extremaduran, one of the discoverers and conquerors of Peru: he travelled across all of Florida and defeated its previously invincible natives, he died on his expedition in the year 1543 at the age of 42".


Beginning in the Holy Spirit, De Soto explored Florida and much of the southern United States. Already in Florida, his misfortune began. Instead of being full of gold abounded in the country was full of swamps and mosquitoes, being extremely hot and humid. Indians also complicated its work progress and exploration.