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Title: Original Narratives of Early American History - Spanish Explorers in the Southern United States 1528-1543. - The Narrative of Alvar Nunez Cabeca de Vaca. The Narrative - Of The Expedition Of Hernando De Soto By The Gentleman Of - Elvas
Author: Vacandard, E. (Elphège), 1849-1927, others
Language: English
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Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Original Narratives of Early American History - Spanish Explorers in the Southern United States 1528-1543. - The Narrative of Alvar Nunez Cabeca de Vaca. The Narrative - Of The Expedition Of Hernando De Soto By The Gentleman Of - Elvas" ***

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Although, in the narrative of the Gentleman of Elvas, the translation
by Buckingham Smith has been followed, some corrections have been
made in the text, and pains have been taken to set right, in
accordance with the Portuguese original at the Lenox Library, the
native proper names, on whose interpretation in the Indian languages
the identification of localities in many cases depends. If variations
from page to page in the spelling of some such names are observed by
the reader, they may be assumed to exist in the original.

The three narratives printed in this book are but a small selection
from among many scores; for the narratives of Spanish explorers in
the southern United States constitute an extensive literature. But if
interest and historical importance are both taken into account, it is
believed that these three hold an undisputed preëminence among such

  J. F. J.






  INTRODUCTION                                                       3

  Proem                                                             12

  Chapter 1. In which is told when the Armada sailed, and of the
               Officers and Persons who went in it                  14

  Chapter 2. The Coming of the Governor to the Port of Xagua and
               with a Pilot                                         18

  Chapter 3. Our Arrival in Florida                                 19

  Chapter 4. Our Entrance into the Country                          20

  Chapter 5. The Governor leaves the Ships                          24

  Chapter 6. Our Arrival at Apalache                                28

  Chapter 7. The Character of the Country                           29

  Chapter 8. We go from Aute                                        33

  Chapter 9. We leave the Bay of Horses                             37

  Chapter 10. The Assault from the Indians                          40

  Chapter 11. Of what befell Lope de Oviedo with the Indians        44

  Chapter 12. The Indians bring us Food                             45

  Chapter 13. We hear of other Christians                           48

  Chapter 14. The Departure of four Christians                      49

  Chapter 15. What befell us among the People of Malhado            52

  Chapter 16. The Christians leave the Island of Malhado            55

  Chapter 17. The Coming of Indians with André's Dorantes,
                Castillo, and Estevanico                            59

  Chapter 18. The Story Figueroa recounted from Esquivel            63

  Extract from the Letter of the Survivors                          68

  Chapter 19. Our Separation by the Indians                         70

  Chapter 20. Of our Escape                                         72

  Chapter 21. Our Cure of some of the Afflicted                     74

  Chapter 22. The Coming of other Sick to us the next Day           76

  Chapter 23. Of our Departure after having eaten the Dogs          82

  Chapter 24. Customs of the Indians of that Country                83

  Chapter 25. Vigilance of the Indians in War                       85

  Chapter 26. Of the Nations and Tongues                            86

  Chapter 27. We moved away and were well received                  88

  Chapter 28. Of another strange Custom                             91

  Chapter 29. The Indians plunder each other                        94

  Chapter 30. The Fashion of receiving us changes                   99

  Chapter 31. Of our taking the Way to the Maize                   105

  Chapter 32. The Indians give us the Hearts of Deer               108

  Chapter 33. We see Traces of Christians                          112

  Chapter 34. Of sending for the Christians                        113

  Chapter 35. The Chief Alcalde receives us kindly the Night we
                arrive                                             116

  Chapter 36. Of building Churches in that Land                    119

  Chapter 37. Of what occurred when I wished to return             121

  Chapter 38. Of what became of the Others who went to Indias      123


                  EDITED BY THEODORE H. LEWIS

  THE GENTLEMAN OF ELVAS                                           127

  INTRODUCTION                                                     129

  Epigram of Silveira                                              133

  Prefatory Note by the Printer                                    134

  Chapter 1. Who Soto was, and how he came to get the Government
               of Florida                                          135

  Chapter 2. How Cabeça de Vaca arrived at Court, and gave
               Account of the Country of Florida; and of the
               Persons who assembled at Seville to accompany
               Don Hernando de Soto                                136

  Chapter 3. How the Portuguese went to Seville, and thence to
               Sanlúcar; and how the Captains were appointed
               over the Ships, and the People distributed among
               them                                                138

  Chapter 4. How the Adelantado with his People left Spain
               going to the Canary Islands, and afterward
               arrived in the Antillas                             139

  Chapter 5. Of the Inhabitants there are in the City of
               Santiago and other Towns of the Island, the
               Character of the Soil, and of the Fruit             140

  Chapter 6. How the Governor sent Doña Ysabel with the Ships
               from Santiago to Havana, while he with some of
               the Men went thither by land                        142

  Chapter 7. How we left Havana and came to Florida, and what
               other Matters took place                            145

  Chapter 8. Of some Inroads that were made, and how a Christian
               was found who had been a long time in the
               possession of a Cacique                             148

  Chapter 9. How the Christian came to the Land of Florida, who
               he was, and of what passed at his Interview with
               the Governor                                        149

  Chapter 10. How the Governor, having sent the Ships to Cuba,
                marched Inland, leaving one hundred Men at the
                Port                                               153

  Chapter 11. How the Governor arrived at Caliquen, and thence,
                taking the Cacique with him, came to Napetaca,
                where the Indians, attempting to rescue him,
                had many of their Number killed and captured       156

  Chapter 12. How the Governor arrived at Palache, and was
                informed that there was much Gold inland           160

  Chapter 13. How the Governor went from Apalache in quest of
                Yupaha, and what befell him                        164

  Chapter 14. How the Governor left the Province of Patofa,
                marching into a Desert Country, where he, with
                his People, became exposed to great Peril, and
                underwent severe Privation                         169

  Chapter 15. How the Governor went from Cutifachiqui in quest
                of Coça, and what occurred to him on the Journey   175

  Chapter 16. How the Governor left Chiaha, and, having run a
                Hazard of falling by the Hands of the Indians
                at Acoste, escaped by his Address: what occurred
                to him on the Route, and how he came to Coça       181

  Chapter 17. Of how the Governor went from Coça to Tascaluça      185

  Chapter 18. How the Indians rose upon the Governor, and what
                followed upon that Rising                          190

  Chapter 19. How the Governor set his Men in order of Battle, and
                entered the town of Mauilla                        192

  Chapter 20. How the Governor set out from Mauilla to go to
                Chicaça, and what befell him                       194

  Chapter 21. How the Indians returned to attack the Christians,
                and how the Governor went to Alimamu, and they
                tarried to give him Battle in the Way              199

  Chapter 22. How the Governor went from Quizquiz, and thence to
                the River Grande                                   201

  Chapter 23. How the Governor went from Aquixo to Casqui, and
                thence to Pacaha; and how this Country differs
                from the other                                     205

  Chapter 24. How the Cacique of Pacaha came in Peace, and he of
                Casqui, having absented himself, returned to
                excuse his Conduct; and how the Governor made
                Friendship between the Chiefs                      209

  Chapter 25. How the Governor went from Pacaha to Aquiguate and
                to Coligoa, and came to Cayas                      213

  Chapter 26. How the Governor went to visit the Province of
                Tulla, and what happened to him                    217

  Chapter 27. How the Governor went from Tulla to Autiamque,
                where he passed the Winter                         221

  Chapter 28. How the Governor went from Autiamque to Nilco, and
                thence to Guachoya                                 224

  Chapter 29. The Message sent to Quigaltam, and the Answer
                brought back to the Governor, and what occurred
                the while                                          228

  Chapter 30. The Death of the Adelantado, Don Hernando de Soto,
                and how Luys Moscoso de Alvarado was chosen
                Governor                                           232

  Chapter 31. How the Governor Luys de Moscoso left Guachoya and
                went to Chaguete, and thence to Aguacay            235

  Chapter 32. How the Governor went from Aguacay to Naguatex,
                and what happened to him                           238

  Chapter 33. How the Cacique of Naguatex came to visit the
                Governor, and how the Governor went thence, and
                arrived at Nondacao                                240

  Chapter 34. How the Governor marched from Nondacao to
                Soacatino and Guasco, passing through a
                Wilderness, whence, for want of a Guide and
                Interpreter, he retired to Nilco                   243

  Chapter 35. How the Christians returned to Nilco, and thence
                went to Minoya, where they prepared to build
                Vessels in which to leave Florida                  246

  Chapter 36. How Seven Brigantines were built, and the
                Christians took their Departure from Aminoya       250

  Chapter 37. How the Christians, on their Voyage, were attacked
                in the River, by the Indians of Quigualtam, and
                what happened                                      254

  Chapter 38. How the Christians were Pursued by the Indians       257

  Chapter 39. How the Christians came to the Sea, what occurred
                then, and what befell them on the Voyage           259

  Chapter 40. How the Brigantines lost Sight of each other in a
                Storm, and afterwards came together at a Kay       262

  Chapter 41. How the Christians arrived at the River Panico       264

  Chapter 42. How the Christians came to Panico, and of their
                Reception by the Inhabitants                       266

  Chapter 43. The Favor the People found in the Viceroy and
                Residents of Mexico                                268

  Chapter 44. Which sets forth some of the Diversities and
                Peculiarities of Florida; and the Fruit, Birds,
                and Beasts of the Country                          270

                      BY PEDRO DE CASTAÑEDA

                    EDITED BY FREDERICK W. HODGE

  CASTAÑEDA                                                        273

  INTRODUCTION                                                     275

  Preface                                                          281

                             FIRST PART

  Chapter 1. Which treats of the Way we first came to know about
               the Seven Cities, and of how Nuño de Guzman made
               an Expedition to discover them                      285

  Chapter 2. Of how Francisco Vazquez Coronado came to be
               Governor, and the second Account which Cabeza
               de Vaca gave                                        287

  Chapter 3. Of how they killed the Negro Estevan at Cibola, and
               Friar Marcos returned in Flight                     289

  Chapter 4. Of how the noble Don Antonio de Mendoza made an
               Expedition to discover Cibola                       290

  Chapter 5. Concerning the Captains who went to Cibola            292

  Chapter 6. Of how all the Companies collected in Compostela and
               set off on the Journey in good Order                293

  Chapter 7. Of how the Army reached Chiametla, and the Killing
               of the Army-Master, and the other things that
               happened up to the Arrival at Culiacan              295

  Chapter 8. Of how the Army entered the Town of Culiacan and
               the Reception it received, and other things
               which happened before the Departure                 297

  Chapter 9. Of how the Army started from Culiacan and the
               Arrival of the General at Cibola, and of the
               Army at Señora and of other things that happened    298

  Chapter 10. Of how the Army started from the Town of Señora,
                leaving it inhabited, and how it reached Cibola,
                and of what happened to Captain Melchior Diaz on
                his Expedition in Search of the Ships and how he
                discovered the Tison (Firebrand) River             302

  Chapter 11. Of how Don Pedro de Tovar discovered Tusayan or
                Tutahaco and Don Garcia Lopez de Cardenas saw
                the Firebrand River, and the other things that
                had happened                                       306

  Chapter 12. Of how people came from Cicuye to Cibola to see
                the Christians, and how Hernando de Alvarado went
                to see the Cows                                    310

  Chapter 13. Of how the General went toward Tutahaco with a few
                Men and left the Army with Don Tristan, who took
                it to Tiguex                                       313

  Chapter 14. Of how the Army went from Cibola to Tiguex and
                what happened to them on the way, on account of
                the Snow                                           315

  Chapter 15. Of why Tiguex revolted, and how they were
                punished, without being to Blame for it            317

  Chapter 16. Of how they besieged Tiguex and took it and of
                what happened during the Siege                     320

  Chapter 17. Of how Messengers reached the Army from the Valley
                of Señora, and how Captain Melchior Diaz died on
                the Expedition to the Firebrand River              324

  Chapter 18. Of how the General managed to leave the Country in
                Peace so as to go in Search of Quivira, where the
                Turk said there was the most Wealth                327

  Chapter 19. Of how they started in Search of Quivira and of
                what happened on the Way                           329

  Chapter 20. Of how great Stones fell in the Camp, and how they
                discovered another Ravine, where the Army was
                divided into two Parts                             333

  Chapter 21. Of how the Army returned to Tiguex and the General
                reached Quivira                                    335

  Chapter 22. Of how the General returned from Quivira and of
                other Expeditions toward the North                 339

                              SECOND PART


  Chapter 1. Of the Province of Culiacan and of its Habits and
               Customs                                             344

  Chapter 2. Of the Province of Petlatlan and all the Inhabited
               Country as far as Chichilticalli                    346

  Chapter 3. Of Chichilticalli and the Desert, of Cibola, its
               Customs and Habits, and of other things             349

  Chapter 4. Of how they live at Tiguex, and of the Province of
               Tiguex and its Neighborhood                         352

  Chapter 5. Of Cicuye and the Villages in its Neighborhood, and
               of how some People came to conquer this Country     355

  Chapter 6. Which gives the Number of Villages which were seen
               in the Country of the Terraced Houses, and their
               Population                                          358

  Chapter 7. Which treats of the Plains that were crossed, of
               the Cows, and of the People who inhabit them        361

  Chapter 8. Of Quivira, of where it is and some Information
               about it                                            364

                          THIRD PART


  Chapter 1. Of how Don Pedro de Tovar came from Señora with
               some Men, and Don Garcia Lopez de Cardenas
               started back to New Spain                           366

  Chapter 2. Of the General's Fall, and of how the Return to
               New Spain was ordered                               368

  Chapter 3. Of the Rebellion at Suya and the Reasons the
               Settlers gave for it                                370

  Chapter 4. Of how Friar Juan de Padilla and Friar Luis
               remained in the Country and the Army prepared
               to return to Mexico                                 372

  Chapter 5. Of how the Army left the Settlements and marched
               to Culiacan, and of what happened on the Way        375

  Chapter 6. Of how the General started from Culiacan to give the
               Viceroy an Account of the Army with which he had
               been intrusted                                      377

  Chapter 7. Of the Adventures of Captain Juan Gallego while he
               was bringing Reënforcements through the Revolted
               Country                                             379

  Chapter 8. Which describes some remarkable things that were
               seen on the Plains, with a Description of the
               Bulls                                               381

  Chapter 9. Which treats of the Direction which the Army took,
               and of how another more direct Way might be found,
               if anyone was to return to that Country             384




In some respects the journey of Alvar Nuñez Cabeza de Vaca and his
three companions overland from coast to coast during the eight years
from 1528 to 1536 is the most remarkable in the record of American
exploration, and as a narrative of suffering and privation the
relation here presented perhaps has no equal in the annals of the
northern continent.

The author of the narrative was a native of Jeréz de la Frontera,
in the province of Cadiz, in southern Spain, but the date of his
birth is not known. His father was Francisco de Vera, son of Pedro
de Vera, conqueror of the Grand Canary in 1483; his mother, Teresa
Cabeza de Vaca, who also was born in Jeréz. Why Alvar Nuñez assumed
the matronymic is not known, unless it was with a sense of pride that
he desired to perpetuate the name that had been bestowed by the King
of Navarre on his maternal ancestor, a shepherd named Martin Alhaja,
for guiding the army through a pass that he marked with the skull
of a cow (_cabeza de vaca_, literally "cow's head"), thus leading
the Spanish army to success in the battle of Las Navas de Tolosa, in
July, 1212, which led up to the final conquest of the Moors in Spain.

Having returned to Spain after many years of service in the New World
for the Crown, Pámfilo de Narvaez petitioned for a grant; and in
consequence the right to conquer and colonize the country between the
Rio de las Palmas, in eastern Mexico, and Florida was accorded him.
The expedition, consisting of six hundred colonists and soldiers,
set sail in five vessels from San Lucar de Barrameda, June 17, 1527,
and after various vicissitudes, including the wreck of two ships and
the loss of sixty men in a hurricane on the southern coast of Cuba,
was finally driven northward by storm, and landed, in April, 1528,
at St. Clements Point, near the entrance to Tampa Bay, on the west
coast of Florida. Despite the protest of Cabeza de Vaca, who had been
appointed treasurer of Rio de las Palmas by the King, Narvaez ordered
his ships to skirt the coast in an endeavor to find Pánuco, while
the expedition, now reduced to three hundred men by desertions in
Santo Domingo, death in the Cuban storm, and the return of those in
charge of the ships, started inland in a generally northern course.
The fleet searched for the expedition for a year and then sailed to

Among the members of the force, in addition to Alvar Nuñez Cabeza de
Vaca, were Andrés Dorantes de Carrança, son of Pablo, a native of
Béjar del Castañar, in Estremadura, who had received a commission as
captain of infantry on the recommendation of Don Alvaro de Zúñiga,
Duke of Béjar; Captain Alonzo del Castillo Maldonado, of Salamanca,
the son of Doctor Castillo and Aldonza Maldonado; and Estévan, or
Estévanico, a blackamoor of Asemmur, or Azamor, on the west coast
of Morocco, the slave of Dorantes. With the exception of those who
returned with the ships, these four men were the only ones of the
entire expedition who ever again entered a civilized community.

Pursuing a generally northerly course, harassed by Indians, and beset
with hunger, illness, and treachery in their ranks, Narvaez's party
finally reached the head of Appalachee Bay, in the country of the
Indians after whom this arm of the Gulf of Mexico takes its name.
Looking now to the sea as his only means of escape; Narvaez the
incompetent, with neither the proper materials nor the mechanics,
set about to build boats to conduct his men out of their trap--craft
that were expected to weather such tropical storms as they had
already so poorly buffeted with their stouter ships. Every object
of metal that the expedition afforded, even to stirrups and spurs,
was requisitioned for the manufacture of nails and necessary tools;
a rude forge was constructed, with bellows of wood and deer-skins;
the native palm supplied tow and covering; the horses were killed
and their hides used for water-bottles, while their flesh served the
Spaniards for food as the work went on; even the shirts from the very
backs of the men were fashioned into sails. Picturing the character
of the five boats, laden almost to the gunwales with nearly fifty men
each, besides such provisions as could be stowed away, and the untold
hardship from thirst after the decay of the horse-hide canteens, the
chief wonder is that the motley fleet survived long enough to reach
Pensacola Bay. As it passed the mouth of the Mississippi, the current
was so swift that fresh water was dipped from the gulf, and the wind
so strong that the boats were carried beyond sight of land for three
days, and for a time lost sight of each other. For four days more,
two of the boats, including that in which was Cabeza de Vaca, drifted
within view of each other; but another storm arose, again they were
lost to sight, and one by one the occupants succumbed to exhaustion
and cast themselves into the bottom of the boat, until Cabeza de Vaca
alone was left to steer the flimsy craft in its unknown course. Night
came on and the author of our narrative lay down to rest. The next
morning, November 6, 1528, the boat was cast ashore on a long narrow
island, inhabited by savages, on the Texas coast.

On this "Island of Misfortune" Cabeza de Vaca's party was soon
joined by that of one of the other boats, including Dorantes, so
that altogether the island harbored about eighty Spaniards. Four men
later attempted to reach Pánuco, but all perished but one. During
the following winter disease raged among the little colony, reducing
it to fifteen. Then the Spaniards became separated, Dorantes and his
slave Estévan, now both the slaves of the Indians, were taken to
the mainland, whither Cabeza de Vaca, weary of root-digging on the
island shore, also escaped, becoming a trader among the Indians,
journeying far inland and along the coast from tribe to tribe, for
forty or fifty leagues. Every year during the five years that he
plied his trade as a dealer in shells, sea-beads, medicine-beans,
skins, ochre, and the like, he returned to Malhado, where Lope de
Oviedo, and Alvarez, a sick companion, still remained. Finally the
latter died, and Cabeza de Vaca and Oviedo again sought the main in
the hope of reaching Christian people. Journeying southward along the
coast, they crossed the Brazos and other rivers, and finally reached
San Antonio Bay. Here Oviedo, owing to ill-treatment by the Indians,
deserted Cabeza de Vaca, who shortly after also stole away from the
savages and joined Dorantes, Castillo Maldonado, and the Moor (the
sole survivors of the party of twelve who had left Malhado years
before), whose Indian masters had come down the river, evidently the
San Antonio, to gather walnuts.

Once more together, the Christians planned to escape six months
hence, when all the Indians from the surrounding country gathered on
the southern Texas plains to eat prickly pears. But again were they
doomed to disappointment, for although the savages assembled in the
tuna fields, a quarrel arose among them (there was "a woman in the
case"), which caused the Spaniards to be separated for another year.
Their escape was finally accomplished in the manner they had planned;
but their departure for the Christian land was not at once effected,
by reason of the inhospitable character of the country, which
compelled them to sojourn among other Indians until the beginning of
another prickly-pear season.

While among the Avavares, with whom the Spaniards lived for eight
months, they resumed the treatment of the sick, a practice that had
first been forced on them, by the natives of Malhado Island, under
threat of starvation. With such success did the Spaniards, and
especially Cabeza de Vaca, meet, that their reputation as healers
was sounded far and wide among the tribes, thousands of the natives
following them from place to place and showering gifts upon them.

There are few Spanish narratives that are more unsatisfactory to
deal with by reason of the lack of directions, distances, and other
details, than that of Cabeza de Vaca; consequently there are scarcely
two students of the route who agree. His line of travel through
Texas was twice crossed by later explorers,--in 1541 by the army of
Francisco Vazquez Coronado, on the eastern edge of the Stake Plains,
and again in 1582 by Antonio de Espejo, on the Rio Grande below the
present El Paso. These data, with the clews afforded by the narrative
itself, point strongly to a course from the tuna fields, about
thirty leagues inland from San Antonio Bay, to the Rio Colorado and
perhaps to the Rio Llano, westward across the lower Pecos to the Rio
Grande above the junction of the Conchos, thence in an approximately
straight line across Chihuahua and Sonora to the Rio Sonora, where
we find Cabeza de Vaca's Village of the Hearts, which Coronado also
visited in 1540, at or in the vicinity of the present Ures. Soon
after he reached this point traces of the first Christians were seen,
and shortly after the Spaniards themselves, in the form of a military
body of slave-hunters.

As to the character of our chronicler, he seems to have been an
honest, modest, and humane man, who underestimated rather than
exaggerated the many strange things that came under his notice, if we
except the account of his marvellous healings, even to the revival
of the dead. The expedition of Narvaez was in itself a disastrous
and dismal failure, reaching "an end alike forlorn and fatal"; but
viewed from the standpoint of present-day civilization, the commander
deserved his fate. On the other hand, while one might well hesitate
to say that the accomplishment of Cabeza de Vaca and his three
companions compensated their untold sufferings, the world eventually
became the wiser in more ways than one. The northern continent had
been penetrated from shore to shore; the waters of the Mississippi
and the bison of the plains were now first seen by white men; and
some knowledge of the savage tribes had been gleaned for the benefit
of those who should come after. There is no blatant announcement of
great mineral wealth--a mountain with scoria of iron, some small bags
of mica, a quantity of galena, with which the Indians painted their
faces, a little turquoise, a few emeralds, and a small copper bell
were all. Yet the effect of the remarkable overland journey was to
inspire the expedition of Coronado in 1540; and it is not improbable
that De Soto, who endeavored to enlist the services of Cabeza de
Vaca, may likewise have been stimulated to action.

After the three Spaniards returned to Mexico they united in a report
to the Audiencia of Española (Santo Domingo), which is printed in
Oviedo's _Historia General y Natural de las Indias_ (tomo III., lib.
XXXV., ed. 1853). In April, 1537, they embarked for Spain, but the
ship in which Dorantes set sail proved to be unseaworthy and returned
to Vera Cruz. Invited to the capital by the Viceroy Mendoza, Dorantes
was tendered a commission to explore the northern country, but this
project was never carried out.

Cabeza de Vaca, in reward for his services, was appointed governor,
captain-general, and adelantado of the provinces of Rio de la Plata.
Sailing from Cadiz in November, 1540, he reached Brazil in March
of the following year. Here he remained seven months, when he sent
his vessels ahead to Buenos Ayres and started overland to Asuncion,
which he reached in March, 1542, after a remarkable experience in
the tropical forests. But the province seems to have needed a man of
sterner stuff than Alvar Nuñez, for he soon became the subject of
animosity and intrigue, which finally resulted in open rebellion,
and his arrest in April, 1543. He was kept under close guard for
about two years, when he was sent to Spain, and in 1551 was sentenced
to banishment in Africa for eight years--a judgment that does not
seem to have been carried out, for after serving probably a year or
so in mild captivity at Seville, he was acquitted. He died in 1557.

Of the subsequent career of Castillo little is known. He returned to
New Spain, became a citizen of the City of Mexico, married a widow,
and was granted half the rents of the Indian town of Tehuacan.

Dorantes, as has been stated, for some reason did not carry out
the plan of exploring the north, perhaps because of the projected
expedition of Coronado, the way for which was led by Fray Marcos
de Niza in 1539 with the negro Estévan as a guide. Dorantes served
Mendoza in the conquest of Jalisco, and married Doña María de la
Torre, a widow, by whom he had a large family. One of his sons,
Balthasar, sometime king's treasurer of Vera Cruz, was born about the
middle of the century, and on the death of his father inherited an
_encomienda_ that produced an income of five thousand pesos a year.
Another son, Gaspar, inherited the _encomienda_ of the pueblos of
Ocava; and another, Melchior, "an _encomienda_ of Indians and of very
good rents."

Of Estévan there is somewhat more definite information. Well on the
road toward the north in 1539, he was sent ahead by Fray Marcos to
report the character of the country and its people, and with rattle
in hand and accompanied by many Indians of the present Gila River
region, entered Háwikuh, the first of the Seven Cities of Cibola.
Here Estévan and most of his Indian followers were put to death by
the Zuñis; those who escaped fled to Fray Marcos, whose life was
threatened but who saved himself by regaling the natives with the
contents of his pack.

There was another survivor of the inland expedition of Narvaez--Juan
Ortiz by name. This Spaniard, who had been enticed ashore by the
Indians of Florida, led practically the life of a slave, like his
countrymen on the Texas main, until 1539, when he was rescued by De
Soto, but he died before the expedition returned to civilization.

The _Relación_ of Alvar Nuñez Cabeza de Vaca was first printed
at Zamora in 1542, and with slight changes was reprinted, with
the first edition of the _Comentarios_ on the Rio de la Plata, at
Valladolid, in 1555. The _editio princeps_ was translated into
Italian by Ramusio, in the third volume of his _Navigationi et
Viaggi_ (Venice, 1556), and this was paraphrased into English by
Samuel Purchas in volume IV. of _Purchas His Pilgrimes_ (London,
1613, pt. IV., lib. VIII., cap. 1). The _Naufragios_ (or _Relacion_)
and _Comentarios_ were reprinted at Madrid in 1736, preceded by the
_Exámen Apologético_ of Antonio Ardoino, who seemed to feel it his
duty to reply to an Austrian monk named Caspar Plautus, who, in
1621, under the name Philoponus, published a treatise in which he
maintained that laymen like Cabeza de Vaca should not be permitted to
perform miracles. This edition of the narration of Cabeza de Vaca is
included in volume I. of Barcia's _Historiadores Primitivos de las
Indias Occidentales_, published at Madrid in 1749. The _Naufragios_
of Alvar Nuñez, from the edition of 1555, appears in volume I. of
Vedia's _Historiadores Primitivos de Indias_ (Madrid, ed. 1852). The
letter to the Audiencia of Española, "edited" by Oviedo, has already
been alluded to. A "Capitulacion que se tomó con Alvar Nuñez Cabeza
de Vaca," dated Madrid, 18 Marzo, 1540, is found in the _Colección de
Documentos Inéditos del Archivo de Indias_ (tomo XXIII., pp. 8-33,
1875). A _Relación_ by Cabeza de Vaca, briefly narrating the story
of the expedition until the arrival of its survivors in Espíritu
Santo Bay, with his instructions as treasurer, is printed in the
_Colección de Documentos de Indias_, XIV. 265-279 (Madrid, 1870). The
most recent Spanish edition of the more famous _Relacion_ reprinted
in the following pages forms a part of volume V. of the _Colección
de Libros y Documentos referentes á la Historia de América_ (Madrid,
1906), which also contains the _Comentarios_.

The single French translation was published as volume VII. of Henri
Ternaux-Compans's _Voyages_ (Paris, 1837), from the edition of 1555,
while the _Commentaires_ form volume VI.

In 1851 a translation of the edition of 1555 into English, by
(Thomas) Buckingham Smith, under the title The _Narrative of Alvar
Nuñez Cabeça de Vaca_, was published privately at Washington by
George W. Riggs; and shortly after Mr. Smith's death, in 1871,
another edition, with many additions, was published in New York under
the editorial supervision of John Gilmary Shea and at the expense of
Henry C. Murphy. It is this edition of the _Narrative_ that is here
reprinted. A paraphrase of the 1851 edition of Smith's translation
appears in Henry Kingsley's _Tales of Old Travels_ (London, 1869).
The first fourteen chapters of W. W. H. Davis's _Spanish Conquest
of New Mexico_ (Doylestown, Pa., 1869) are also a paraphrase of
the same work. Chapters XXX.-XXXVI. of the 1871 edition of Smith,
somewhat abridged, were printed in an _Old South Leaflet_ (Gen.
Ser., No. 39, Boston, 1893). A "Relation of what Befel the Persons
who Escaped from the Disasters that Attended the Armament of Captain
Pamphilo de Narvaez on the Shores and in the countries of the North,"
translated and condensed from the letter published by Oviedo, is
printed in _The Historical Magazine_ (vol. XII., pp. 141, 204, 267,
347; September-December, 1867). The most recent English edition of
the Cabeza de Vaca _Relation_, translated from the very rare imprint
of 1542 by Mrs. Fanny Bandelier, and edited, with an introduction,
by her husband Ad. F. Bandelier, was published in New York, in 1905,
under the title, _The Journey of Alvar Nuñez Cabeza de Vaca_, as one
of the volumes of the "Trail Makers" series.

  F. W. HODGE.


     _Relation that Alvar Nuñez Cabeça de Vaca gave of what befell
     the armament in the Indies whither Pánfilo de Narváez went for
     Governor from the year 1527 to the year 1536 [1537] when with
     three comrades he returned and came to Sevilla._[1]

  [1] This heading is taken from the title-page of the edition of
  1542. The edition of 1555, generally followed in this book, has a
  title-page so phrased as to cover both the North American and the
  South American narratives of the author. The return really took
  place in 1537.



Among the many who have held sway, I think no prince can be found
whose service has been attended with the ardor and emulation shown
for that of your Highness[2] at this time. The inducement is evident
and powerful: men do not pursue together the same career without
motive, and strangers are observed to strive with those who are
equally impelled by religion and loyalty.

  [2] The Emperor Charles V.

Although ambition and love of action are common to all, as to the
advantages that each may gain, there are great inequalities of
fortune, the result not of conduct, but only accident, nor caused by
the fault of any one, but coming in the providence of God and solely
by His will. Hence to one arises deeds more signal than he thought to
achieve; to another the opposite in every way occurs, so that he can
show no higher proof of purpose than his effort, and at times even
this is so concealed that it cannot of itself appear.

As for me, I can say in undertaking the march I made on the main
by the royal authority, I firmly trusted that my conduct and
services would be as evident and distinguished as were those of my
ancestors[3] and that I should not have to speak in order to be
reckoned among those who for diligence and fidelity in affairs your
Majesty honors. Yet, as neither my counsel nor my constancy availed
to gain aught for which we set out, agreeably to your interests, for
our sins, no one of the many armaments that have gone into those
parts has been permitted to find itself in straits great like ours,
or come to an end alike forlorn and fatal. To me, one only duty
remains, to present a relation of what was seen and heard in the ten
years[4] I wandered lost and in privation through many and remote
lands. Not merely a statement of positions and distances, animals
and vegetation, but of the diverse customs of the many and very
barbarous people with whom I talked and dwelt, as well as all other
matters I could hear of and discern, that in some way I may avail
your Highness. My hope of going out from among those nations was
always small, still my care and diligence were none the less to keep
in particular remembrance everything, that if at any time God our
Lord should will to bring me where I now am, it might testify to my
exertion in the royal behalf.

  [3] He doubtless refers particularly to the services of his
  grandfather, Pedro de Vera, conqueror of the Canaries, to whom he
  refers at the close of this work. See the Introduction.

  [4] He arrived in Florida with the Narvaez expedition in April,
  1528, and reached New Spain overland in April, 1536--eight years

As the narrative is in my opinion of no trivial value to those who in
your name go to subdue those countries and bring them to a knowledge
of the true faith and true Lord, and under the imperial dominion,
I have written this with much exactness; and although in it may be
read things very novel and for some persons difficult to believe,
nevertheless they may without hesitation credit me as strictly
faithful. Better than to exaggerate, I have lessened in all things,
and it is sufficient to say the relation is offered to your Majesty
for truth. I beg it may be received in the name of homage, since it
is the most that one could bring who returned thence naked.

Chapter 1

_In which is told when the Armada sailed, and of the officers and
persons who went in it._

On the seventeenth day[5] of June, in the year fifteen hundred and
twenty-seven, the Governor Pánphilo de Narváez left the port of San
Lúcar de Barrameda,[6] authorized and commanded by your Majesty
to conquer and govern the provinces of the main, extending from
the River Palmas[7] to the cape of Florida. The fleet he took was
five ships, in which went six hundred men, a few more or less; the
officers (for we shall have to speak of them), were these, with their
rank: Cabeça de Vaca, treasurer and high-sheriff; Alonso Enrriquez,
comptroller; Alonso de Solis, distributor to your Majesty and
assessor; Juan Xuarez,[8] a friar of Saint Francis, commissary, and
four more friars of the same order.

  [5] The Spanish edition of 1542 has the date June 27.

  [6] At the mouth of the Guadalquivir, in the province of Cadiz,
  Spain; noted as the point of debarkation of Fernão Magalhães, or
  Magellan, September 20, 1519.

  [7] Probably the Rio de Santander, which enters the Gulf of
  Mexico one hundred miles north of Tampico. The name was later
  applied to the province that joined the province of Pánuco on the
  north. The latter was, in general terms, the region drained by
  the streams that empty into the Gulf about Tampico.

  [8] The edition of 1542 has "Juan Gutierrez."

We arrived at the island of Santo Domingo, where we tarried near
forty-five days, engaged in procuring for ourselves some necessary
material, particularly horses. Here we lost from our fleet more than
one hundred and forty men, who wished to remain, seduced by the
partidos,[9] and advantages held out to them by the people of that

  [9] A term often used to designate one of the districts or
  territories into which a Spanish province was divided for
  purposes of administration, and having a head pueblo or village;
  but here employed to signify the favorable proposals which the
  colonists made to the deserters from the fleet.

We sailed from the island and arrived at Santiago,[10] a port of
Cuba, where, during some days that we remained, the Governor supplied
himself further with men, also with arms and horses. It happened
there that a gentleman, Vasco Porcallo[11] of Trinidad, which is also
on the island,[12] offered to give the Governor some provisions which
he had in the town, a hundred leagues from the port of Santiago.
Accordingly the Governor set out with all the fleet for Trinidad; but
coming to a port half way, called Cabo de Santa Cruz,[13] he thought
it well to wait there, and send a vessel to bring the stores. To this
end he ordered that a Captain Pantoja[14] should go for them with
his ship, and for greater security, that I should accompany him with
another. The Governor remained with four ships, having bought one at
the island of Santo Domingo.

  [10] In southeastern Cuba, the Santiago de Cuba that was
  surrendered to the American forces in the summer of 1898.

  [11] Vasco Porcallo de Figueroa afterward became De Soto's
  lieutenant-general in Florida, but returned to Cuba early in the
  history of the expedition.

  [12] On the southern coast, longitude 80°.

  [13] Now Cabo Cruz, longitude 77° 40'.

  [14] One Juan Pantoja, captain of crossbowmen and Lord of
  Ixtlahuaca, accompanied Narvaez on his first expedition to
  Mexico. If the same as the present Pantoja, which seems likely,
  he was killed by Sotomayor in a quarrel. See ch. 17.

We having arrived with the two vessels at the port of Trinidad,
Captain Pantoja went with Vasco Porcalle (_sic_) to the town, a
league off, to receive the provisions, while I remained at sea with
the pilots, who said we ought to go thence with the greatest despatch
possible, for it was a very bad port in which many vessels were lost.
As what there occurred to us was very remarkable, it appears to me
not foreign to the purpose with which I write this, to relate it here.

The next morning began to give signs of bad weather; rain commenced
falling, and the sea ran so high, that, although I gave the men
permission to go on shore, many of them returned to the ship to avoid
exposure to the wet and cold, and because the town was a league away.
In this time a canoe came off, bringing me a letter from a resident
of the place, asking me to come for the needed provisions that were
there; from which request I excused myself, saying that I could not
leave the ships. At noon the canoe returned with another letter, in
which I was solicited again with much urging, and a horse was brought
for me to ride. I gave the same answer as before, that I could not
leave the ships; but the pilots and the people entreated me to go, so
that I might hasten the provisions as fast as possible, and we might
join the fleet where it lay, for they had great fear lest remaining
long in this port, the ships should be lost. For these reasons,
I determined to go to the town; but first I left orders with the
pilots, that if the south wind, which often wrecks vessels there,
came on to blow, and they should find themselves in much danger, to
put the ships on shore at some place where the men and horses could
be saved. I wished to take some of the men with me for company; but
they said the weather was too rainy and cold, and the town too far
off; that to-morrow, which was Sunday, they would come, with God's
help, and hear mass.

An hour after I left, the sea began to rise very high, and the north
wind was so violent that neither the boats dared come to land, nor
could the vessels be let drive on shore, because of the head wind,
so that the people remained severely laboring against the adverse
weather, and under a heavy fall of water all that day and Sunday
until dark. At this time, the rain and the tempest had increased to
such a degree, there was no less agitation in the town than on the
sea; for all the houses and churches fell, and it was necessary in
order to move upright, that we should go seven or eight holding on
to each other that the wind might not blow us away; and walking in
the groves, we had no less fear of the trees than of the houses, as
they too were falling and might kill us under them. In this tempest
and danger we wandered all night, without finding place or spot where
we could remain a half-hour in safety. During the time, particularly
from midnight forward, we heard much tumult and great clamor of
voices, the sound of timbrels, flutes, and tambourines, as well as
other instruments, which lasted until the morning, when the tempest
ceased. Nothing so terrible as this storm had been seen in those
parts before. I drew up an authenticated account of it, and sent the
testimony to your Majesty.

On Monday morning we went down to the harbor, but did not find the
ships. The buoys belonging to them were floating on the water; whence
we knew the ships were lost, and we walked along the shore to see
if any thing could be found of them. As nothing was discovered, we
struck into the woods, and, having travelled about a quarter of a
league in water, we found the little boat of a ship lodged upon some
trees. Ten leagues thence, along the coast, two bodies were found,
belonging to my ship, and some lids of boxes; but the persons were
so disfigured by beating against the rocks that they could not be
recognized. A cloak too was seen, also a coverlet rent in pieces,
and nothing more. Sixty persons were lost in the ships, and twenty
horses. Those who had gone on shore the day of our arrival, who may
have been as many as thirty, were all the survivors of both ships.
During some days we were struggling with much hardship and hunger;
for the provisions and subsistence were destroyed, and some herds.
The country was left in a condition piteous to behold; the trees
prostrate, the woods parched, there being neither grass nor leaf.

Thus we lived until the fifth of November, when the Governor arrived
with four ships, which had lived through the great storm, having run
into a place of safety in good time. The people who came in them,
as well as those on shore, were so intimidated by what had passed,
that they feared to go on board in the winter, and they besought the
Governor to spend it there. Seeing their desire and that it was also
the wish of the townspeople, he staid through the season. He gave the
ships and people into my charge, that I might go with them to pass
the winter at the port of Xagua,[15] twelve leagues thence, where I
remained until the twentieth day of February.

  [15] The present Jagua, at the entrance to the bay of Cienfuegos.

Chapter 2

_The coming of the Governor to the Port of Xagua and with a pilot._

At this time, the Governor arrived with a brigantine bought in
Trinidad, and brought with him a pilot named Miruelo, who was
employed because he said he knew the position of the River Palmas,
and had been there, and was a thorough pilot for all the coast of
the North. The Governor had also purchased and left on the shore
of Havana another vessel, of which Alvaro de la Cerda remained in
charge, with forty infantry and twelve cavalry.

The second day after arrival the Governor set sail with four hundred
men and eighty horses, in four ships and a brigantine. The pilot
being again on board, put the vessels among the shoals they call
Canarreo,[16] and on the day following we struck: thus we were
situated fifteen days, the keels of our vessels frequently touching
bottom. At the end of this time, a tempest from the south threw
so much water upon the shoals that we could get off, although not
without danger. We left this place and arrived at Guaniguanico, where
another storm overtook us, in which we were at one time near being
lost. At Cape Corrientes[17] we had still another, which detained
us three days. These places being passed, we doubled Cape Sant
Anton,[18] and sailed with head winds until we were within twelve
leagues of Havana. Standing in the next day to enter the harbor, a
wind came from the south which drove us from the land towards the
coast of Florida. We came in sight on Tuesday, the twelfth day of
April, and sailed along the coast. On Holy Thursday we anchored near
the shore in the mouth of a bay[19] at the head of which we saw some
houses or habitations of Indians.[20]

  [16] Evidently one of the numerous keys between Xagua Bank and
  the Isle of Pines.

  [17] Southwestern Cuba.

  [18] The westernmost point of the island.

  [19] The place of landing is identified as having been about
  St. Clement's Point, on the peninsula west of Tampa Bay, on
  the western coast of Florida. See Woodbury Lowery, _Spanish
  Settlements_, 1513-1561 (New York, 1901), p. 177, and App. J.

  [20] These were Indians belonging to the Timuquanan, or Timucuan
  family, now entirely extinct. The Seminoles were comparatively
  recent intruders in the peninsula, except in the extreme northern

Chapter 3

_Our arrival in Florida._

On the same day[21] the comptroller, Alonzo Enrriquez, landed on an
island in the bay. He called to the Indians, who came and remained
with him some time; and in barter gave him fish and several pieces of
venison. The day following, which was Good Friday,[22] the governor
debarked with as many of the people as the boats he brought could
contain. When we came to the _buhíos_,[23] or houses that we had
seen, we found them vacant and abandoned, the inhabitants having fled
at night in their canoes. One of the buhíos was very large; it could
hold more than three hundred persons. The others were smaller. We
found a tinklet of gold among some fish nets.

  [21] April 14, 1528.

  [22] April 15, 1528

  [23] An Arawak term for house, referring specifically to a
  dwelling with an open shed attached. The Spaniards became
  acquainted with the word in Santo Domingo. For descriptions of
  these habitations see Fewkes, "The Aborigines of Porto Rico and
  Neighboring Islands," _Twenty-fifth Annual Report of the Bureau
  of American Ethnology_, 1906.

The next day[24] the Governor raised ensigns for your Majesty, and
took possession of the country in your royal name.[25] He made known
his authority, and was obeyed as governor, as your Majesty had
commanded. At the same time we laid our commissions before him, and
he acknowledged them according to their tenor. Then he ordered that
the rest of the people and the horses should land. Of the beasts
there were only forty-two; by reason of the great storms and the
length of time passed at sea, the rest were dead. These few remaining
were so lean and fatigued that for the time we could have little
service from them. The following day the Indians of the town came and
spoke to us; but as we had no interpreter we could not understand
what they meant. They made many signs and menaces, and appeared to
say we must go away from the country. With this they left us and went
off, offering no interruption.

  [24] April 16, 1528.

  [25] For the interesting if farcical formula used in taking
  possession of a country in the name of Spain, see Buckingham
  Smith, _Relation of Alvar Nuñez Cabeça de Vaca_ (ed. 1871), App.
  III., 215-217, and Lowery, _op. cit._, pp. 178-180.

Chapter 4

_Our entrance into the country._

The day following, the Governor resolved to make an incursion to
explore the land, and see what it might contain. With him went the
commissary, the assessor, and myself, with forty men, among them six
cavalry, of which we could make little use. We took our way towards
the north,[26] until the hour of vespers, when we arrived at a very
large bay that appeared to stretch far inland.[27] We remained there
that night, and the next day we returned to the place where were our
ships and people. The Governor ordered that the brigantine should
sail along the coast of Florida and search for the harbor that
Miruelo, the pilot, said he knew (though as yet he had failed to find
it, and could not tell in what place we were, or where was the port),
and that if it were not found, she should steer for Havana and seek
the ship of which Alvaro de la Cerda was in command,[28] and, taking
provisions, together, they should come to look for us.

  [26] Really northeast.

  [27] The western arm of Tampa Bay, known as Old Tampa Bay.

  [28] With forty men and a dozen horses.

After the brigantine left, the same party, with some persons more,
returned to enter the land. We kept along the shores of the bay we
had found, and, having gone four leagues, we captured four Indians.
We showed them maize, to see if they had knowledge of it, for up to
that time we had seen no indication of any. They said they could take
us where there was some; so they brought us to their town near by,
at the head of the bay, and showed us a little corn not yet fit for

There we saw many cases, such as are used to contain the merchandise
of Castile, in each of them a dead man, and the bodies were covered
with painted deer-skins. This appeared to the commissary to be a kind
of idolatry, and he burned the cases with the bodies. We also found
pieces of linen and of woollen cloth, and bunches of feathers which
appeared like those of New Spain.[29] There were likewise traces of
gold. Having by signs asked the Indians whence these things came,
they motioned to us that very far from there, was a province called
Apalachen,[30] where was much gold, and so the same abundance in
Palachen[31] of everything that we at all cared for.

  [29] In the letter addressed by the survivors to the Audiencia
  of Santo Domingo (Oviedo, _Historia General y Natural de las
  Indias_, III., cap. i. 583, Madrid, 1853), it is stated that when
  the natives were asked whence came these intrusive articles,
  which included also some pieces of shoes, canvas, broadcloth,
  and iron, they replied by signs that they had taken them from a
  vessel that had been wrecked in the bay. Compare also cap. VII.
  615. It has been suggested that possibly the objects may have
  come from the vessel which Lucas Vazquez de Ayllon lost in 1526,
  but as this wreck occurred at the mouth of Cape Fear River, on
  the southern coast of North Carolina, it does not seem likely
  that they could have been derived from this source. That natives
  of the West Indies had intercourse by canoe with Florida, and
  that an Arawakan colony was early established on the southwest
  coast of the peninsula, is now well established.

  [30] The Apalachee were one of the Muskhogean tribes that
  occupied northwestern Florida from the vicinity of Pensacola
  eastward to Ocilla River, their chief seats being in the
  vicinity of Tallahassee and St. Marks. In 1655 they numbered six
  or eight thousand, but about the beginning of the eighteenth
  century they were warred against by the Creeks, instigated by
  the English of Carolina, and in 1703 and 1704 expeditions by
  English troops, reinforced by Creek warriors, resulted in the
  capture and enslavement of about fourteen hundred Apalachee
  and in practically exterminating the remainder. The town of
  Apalachicola, on the Savannah River, was inhabited by Apalachee
  refugees colonized later by the Carolina government, but these
  were finally merged with the Creeks. Appalachee Bay and the
  Appalachian Mountains derive their names from this tribe.

  [31] "Apalachen," as above, in the edition of 1542 (Bandelier

Taking these Indians for guides, we departed, and travelling ten or
twelve leagues[32] we came to a town of fifteen houses. Here a large
piece of ground was cultivated in maize then ripe, and we likewise
found some already dry. After staying there two days, we returned to
where the comptroller tarried with the men and ships, and related to
him and the pilots what we had seen, and the information the natives
had given.

  [32] The Spanish league varied greatly, but in these early
  narratives the judicial league, equivalent to 2.634 English
  miles, is usually meant. Distances, however, while sometimes
  paced, were generally loose guesses, as is often shown by the
  great disparity in the figures given by two or more chroniclers
  of the same journey.

The next day, the first of May, the Governor called aside the
commissary, the comptroller, the assessor, myself, a sailor named
Bartolomé Fernandez, and a notary, Hieronymo Alaniz.[33] Being
together he said that he desired to penetrate the interior, and that
the ships ought to go along the coast until they should come to the
port which the pilots believed was very near on the way to the River
Palmas. He asked us for our views.

  [33] "Jerónimo de Albaniz" in the edition of 1542 (Bandelier

I said it appeared to me that under no circumstances ought we to
leave the vessels until they were in a secure and peopled harbor;
that he should observe the pilots were not confident, and did not
agree in any particular, neither did they know where we were; that,
more than this, the horses were in no condition to serve us in such
exigencies as might occur. Above all, that we were going without
being able to communicate with the Indians by use of speech and
without an interpreter, and we could but poorly understand ourselves
with them, or learn what we desired to know of the land; that we
were about entering a country of which we had no account, and had
no knowledge of its character, of what there was in it, or by what
people inhabited, neither did we know in what part of it we were; and
beside all this, we had not food to sustain us in wandering we knew
not whither; that with regard to the stores in the ships, rations
could not be given to each man for such a journey, more than a pound
of biscuit and another of bacon; that my opinion was, we should
embark and seek a harbor and a soil better than this to occupy, since
what we had seen of it was desert and poor, such as had never before
been discovered in those parts.

To the commissary[34] every thing appeared otherwise. He thought we
ought not to embark; but that, always keeping the coast, we should
go in search of the harbor, which the pilots stated was only ten or
fifteen leagues from there, on the way to Pánuco; and that it was not
possible, marching ever by the shore, we should fail to come upon
it, because they said it stretched up into the land a dozen leagues;
that whichever might first find it should wait for the other; that
to embark would be to brave the Almighty after so many adversities
encountered since leaving Spain, so many storms, and so great losses
of men and ships sustained before reaching there; that for these
reasons we should march along the coast until we reached the harbor,
and those in the ships should take a like direction until they
arrived at the same place.

  [34] Fray Juan Xuarez.

This plan seemed the best to adopt, to the rest who were present,
except the notary, who said that when the ships should be abandoned
they ought to be in a known, safe haven, a place with inhabitants;
that this done the Governor might advance inland and do what might
seem to him proper.

The Governor followed his own judgment and the counsel of others.
Seeing his determination, I required him in behalf of your Majesty,
not to quit the ships before putting them in port and making them
secure; and accordingly I asked a certificate of this under the hand
of the notary. The Governor responded that he did but abide by the
judgment of the commissary, and of the majority of the officers, and
that I had no right to make these requirements of him. He then asked
the notary to give him a certificate, that inasmuch as there was no
subsistence in that country for the maintenance of a colony, nor
haven for the ships, he broke up the settlement he had placed there,
taking its inhabitants in quest of a port and land that should be
better. He then ordered the people who were to go with him to be
mustered, that they might be victualled with what was needed for the
journey. After they had been provided for, he said to me, in the
hearing of those present, that since I so much discouraged and feared
entering the land, I should sail in charge of the ships and people in
them, and form a settlement, should I arrive at the port before him;
but from this proposal I excused myself.

After we had separated, the same evening, having said that it did
not appear to him that he could entrust the command to any one else,
he sent to me to say that he begged I would take it; but finding,
notwithstanding he so greatly importuned me, that I still refused,
he asked me the cause of my reluctance. I answered that I rejected
the responsibility, as I felt certain and knew that he was never more
to find the ships, nor the ships him, which might be foreseen in the
slender outfit we had for entering the country; that I desired rather
to expose myself to the danger which he and the others adventured,
and to pass with them what he and they might go through, than to
take charge of the ships and give occasion for it to be said I had
opposed the invasion and remained behind from timidity, and thus my
courage be called in question. I chose rather to risk my life than
put my honor in such position. Seeing that what he said to me availed
nothing, he begged many persons to reason with me on the subject
and entreat me. I answered them in the same way I had him; so he
appointed for his lieutenant of the ships an alcalde he had brought
with him, whose name was Caravallo.

Chapter 5

_The Governor leaves the ships._

On Saturday,[35] first of May, the date of this occurrence, the
Governor ordered to each man going with him, two pounds of biscuit
and half a pound of bacon; and thus victualled we took up our march
into the country. The whole number of men was three hundred:[36]
among them went the commissary, Friar Juan Xuarez, and another
friar, Juan de Palos, three clergymen and the officers. We of the
mounted men consisted of forty. We travelled on the allowance we had
received fifteen days, without finding any other thing to eat than
palmitos,[37] which are like those of Andalusia. In all that time
we saw not an Indian, and found neither village nor house. Finally
we came to a river,[38] which we passed with great difficulty, by
swimming and on rafts. It detained us a day to cross because of the
very strong current. Arrived on the other side, there appeared as
many as two hundred natives, more or less. The Governor met them,
and conversing by signs, they so insulted us with their gestures,
that we were forced to break with them.[39] We seized upon five or
six, and they took us to their houses half a league off. Near by we
found a large quantity of maize in a fit state to be gathered. We
gave infinite thanks to our Lord for having succored us in this great
extremity, for we were yet young in trials, and besides the weariness
in which we came, we were exhausted from hunger.

  [35] Buckingham Smith has "Sunday," translating _Sábado_
  ("Sabbath") literally; the Christian Sabbath is the Spanish

  [36] The Letter (Oviedo, 584) says two hundred and sixty men
  afoot and forty horsemen. References to the Letter to the
  Audiencia of Santo Domingo will henceforth be cited simply as
  Oviedo, in whose work it appears (see the Introduction).

  [37] Buckingham Smith says: "This is the dwarf fan-palm, not
  the cabbage-palm, to which we often inadvertently apply the
  diminutive termination _ito_, mispelled _etto_." Smith lived in
  Florida for many years.

  [38] Evidently the Withlacoochee, which enters the Gulf at
  latitude 29°.

  [39] The Spaniards were still among the Timucuan tribes.

On the third day after our arrival, the comptroller, the assessor,
the commissary and I met, and together besought the Governor to
send to look for the sea, that if possible we might find a port,
as the Indians stated there was one not a very great way off. He
said that we should cease to speak of the sea, for it was remote;
but as I chiefly importuned him, he told me to go and look for it,
and seek a harbor, to take forty men and to travel on foot. So the
next day[40] I left with Captain Alonzo del Castello[41] and forty
men of his company. We marched until noon, when we arrived at some
sea sands that appeared to lie a good ways inland. Along this sand
we walked for a league and a half,[42] with the water half way up
the leg, treading on oysters, which cut our feet badly and made us
much trouble, until we reached the river[43] we had before crossed,
emptying into this bay. As we could not cross it by reason of our
slim outfit for such purpose, we returned to camp and reported what
we had discovered. To find out if there was a port and examine the
outlet well, it was necessary to repass the river at the place where
we had first gone over; so the next day the Governor ordered a
captain, Valençuela by name, with sixty men[44] and six cavalry, to
cross, and following the river down to the sea, ascertain if there
was a harbor. He returned after an absence of two days, and said he
had explored the bay, that it was not deeper any where than to the
knee, and that he found no harbor. He had seen five or six canoes of
Indians passing from one shore to the other, wearing many plumes.

  [40] May 18, 1528.

  [41] Castillo.

  [42] Two leagues, according to Oviedo, _op. cit._, 585.

  [43] The Withlacoochee.

  [44] Forty men according to Oviedo, 585.

With this information, we left the next day, going ever in quest
of Apalache, the country of which the Indians told us, having for
our guides those we had taken. We travelled without seeing any
natives who would venture to await our coming up with them until the
seventeenth day of June, when a chief approached, borne on the back
of another Indian, and covered with a painted deer-skin. A great many
people attended him, some walking in advance, playing on flutes of
reed.[45] In this manner he came to where the Governor stood, and
spent an hour with him. By signs we gave him to understand that we
were going to Apalachen, and it appeared to us by those he made that
he was an enemy to the people of Apalachen, and would go to assist us
against them. We gave him beads and hawk-bells, with other articles
of barter; and he having presented the Governor with the skin he
wore, went back, when we followed in the road he took.

  [45] When Hernando de Soto passed through this country eleven
  years later he also was met by Indians playing flutes.

That night we came to a wide and deep river with a very rapid
current.[46] As we would not venture to cross on rafts, we made a
canoe for the purpose, and spent a day in getting over. Had the
Indians desired to oppose us, they could well have disputed our
passage; for even with their help we had great difficulty in making
it. One of the mounted men, Juan Velazquez by name, a native of
Cuellar, impatient of detention, entered the river, when the violence
of the current casting him from his horse, he grasped the reins of
the bridle, and both were drowned. The people of that chief, whose
name was Dulchanchellin, found the body of the beast; and having told
us about where in the stream below we should find the corpse, it was
sought for. This death caused us much regret, for until now not a man
had been lost. The horse afforded supper to many that night.

  [46] The Suwannee.

Leaving that spot, the next day we arrived at the town of the chief,
where he sent us maize. During the night one of our men was shot at
in a place where we got water, but it pleased God that he should not
be hit. The next day we departed, not one of the natives making his
appearance, as all had fled. While going on our way a number came in
sight, prepared for battle; and though we called to them, they would
not return nor await our arrival, but retired following us on the
road. The Governor left some cavalry in ambush, which sallying as the
natives were about to pass, seized three or four, who thenceforth
served as guides. They conducted us through a country very difficult
to travel and wonderful to look upon. In it are vast forests, the
trees being astonishingly high. So many were fallen on the ground
as to obstruct our way in such a manner that we could not advance
without much going about and a considerable increase of toil. Many
of the standing trees were riven from top to bottom by bolts of
lightning which fall in that country of frequent storms and tempests.

We labored on through these impediments until the day after
Saint John's,[47] when we came in view of Apalachen, without the
inhabitants being aware of our approach. We gave many thanks to God,
at seeing ourselves so near, believing true what had been told us
of the land, and that there would be an end to our great hardships,
caused as much by the length and badness of the way as by our
excessive hunger; for although we sometimes found maize, we oftener
travelled seven and eight leagues without seeing any; and besides
this and the great fatigue, many had galled shoulders from carrying
armor on the back; and even more than these we endured. Yet, having
come to the place desired, and where we had been informed were much
food and gold, it appeared to us that we had already recovered in
part from our sufferings and fatigue.

  [47] Saint John the Baptist's Day, June 24. They had been
  travelling through the jungle for four or five days.

Chapter 6

_Our arrival at Apalache._

When we came in view of Apalachen, the Governor ordered that I should
take nine cavalry with fifty infantry and enter the town. Accordingly
the assessor[48] and I assailed it; and having got in, we found only
women and boys there, the men being absent; however these returned
to its support, after a little time, while we were walking about,
and began discharging arrows at us. They killed the horse of the
assessor, and at last taking to flight, they left us.

  [48] The assessor, or inspector, it will be recalled, was Alonzo
  de Solis.

We found a large quantity of maize fit for plucking, and much dry
that was housed; also many deer-skins, and among them some mantelets
of thread, small and poor, with which the women partially cover their
persons. There were numerous mortars for cracking maize. The town
consisted of forty small houses, made low, and set up in sheltered
places because of the frequent storms. The material was thatch. They
were surrounded by very dense woods, large groves and many bodies
of fresh water, in which so many and so large trees are fallen, that
they form obstructions rendering travel difficult and dangerous.

Chapter 7

_The character of the country._

The country where we came on shore to this town and region of
Apalachen is for the most part level, the ground of sand and stiff
earth. Throughout are immense trees and open woods, in which are
walnut, laurel, and another tree called liquid-amber,[49] cedars,
savins, evergreen oaks, pines, red-oaks, and palmitos like those of
Spain. There are many lakes, great and small, over every part of it;
some troublesome of fording, on account of depth and the great number
of trees lying throughout them. Their beds are sand. The lakes in
the country of Apalachen are much larger than those we found before
coming there.[50]

  [49] The sweet-gum, copalm, or alligator tree (_Liquidambar

  [50] Seemingly the lake country in the northern part of Leon and
  Jefferson counties, Florida. "Apalachen" town was perhaps on
  Miccosukee Lake.

In this province are many maize fields; and the houses are scattered
as are those of the Gelves. There are deer of three kinds, rabbits,
hares, bears, lions, and other wild beasts. Among them we saw an
animal with a pocket on its belly,[51] in which it carries its
young until they know how to seek food, and if it happen that they
should be out feeding and any one come near, the mother will not
run until she has gathered them in together. The country is very
cold.[52] It has fine pastures for herds. Birds are of various kinds.
Geese in great numbers. Ducks, mallards, royal-ducks, fly-catchers,
night-herons and partridges abound. We saw many falcons, gerfalcons,
sparrow-hawks, merlins, and numerous other fowl.[53]

  [51] The opossum. This is probably the first allusion to this
  animal. The name is derived from the Algonquian language of
  Virginia, having first been recorded by Captain John Smith.

  [52] As it was now late in June, this is not explicable, unless
  the season was an unusual one.

  [53] Buckingham Smith thinks it strange that the turkey and the
  alligator are not particularly mentioned among the fauna of the

Two hours after our arrival at Apalachen, the Indians who had fled
from there came in peace to us, asking for their women and children,
whom we released; but the detention of a cacique by the Governor
produced great excitement, in consequence of which they returned for
battle early the next day, and attacked us with such promptness and
alacrity that they succeeded in setting fire to the houses in which
we were. As we sallied they fled to the lakes near by, because of
which and the large maize fields we could do them no injury, save in
the single instance of one Indian, whom we killed. The day following,
others came against us from a town on the opposite side of the lake,
and attacked us as the first had done, escaping in the same way,
except one who was also slain.

We were in the town twenty-five days, in which time we made three
incursions, and found the country very thinly peopled and difficult
to travel for the bad passages, the woods and lakes. We inquired of
the cacique we kept and the natives we brought with us, who were
the neighbors and enemies of these Indians, as to the nature of the
country, the character and condition of the inhabitants, of the
food and all other matters concerning it. Each answered apart from
the rest, that the largest town in all that region was Apalachen;
the people beyond were less numerous and poorer, the land little
occupied, and the inhabitants much scattered; that thenceforward
were great lakes, dense forests, immense deserts and solitudes. We
then asked touching the region towards the south, as to the towns
and subsistence in it. They said that in keeping such a direction,
journeying nine days, there was a town called Aute,[54] the
inhabitants whereof had much maize, beans, and pumpkins, and being
near the sea they had fish, and that those people were their friends.

  [54] Most authorities agree that this place was at or near the
  site of St. Marks, south-southeast of Tallahassee, although the
  distance seems too short for nine days' travel, as will be seen.

In view of the poverty of the land, the unfavorable accounts of
the population and of everything else we heard, the Indians making
continual war upon us, wounding our people and horses at the places
where they went to drink, shooting from the lakes with such safety to
themselves that we could not retaliate, killing a lord of Tescuco,
named Don Pedro,[55] whom the commissary brought with him, we
determined to leave that place and go in quest of the sea, and the
town of Aute of which we were told.

  [55] See Buckingham Smith, _Relation of Alvar Nuñez Cabeça de
  Vaca_, 1871, p. 42, note 7, regarding this Aztec prince of the

At the termination of the twenty-five days[56] after our arrival
we departed,[57] and on the first day got through those lakes and
passages without seeing any one, and on the second day we came to a
lake difficult of crossing, the water reaching to the paps, and in it
were numerous logs. On reaching the middle of it we were attacked by
many Indians from behind trees, who thus covered themselves that we
might not get sight of them, and others were on the fallen timbers.
They drove their arrows with such effect that they wounded many men
and horses, and before we got through the lake they took our guide.
They now followed, endeavoring to contest the passage; but our coming
out afforded no relief, nor gave us any better position; for when
we wished to fight them they retired immediately into the lake,
whence they continued to wound our men and beasts. The Governor,
seeing this, commanded the cavalry to dismount and charge the Indians
on foot. Accordingly the comptroller[58] alighting with the rest,
attacked them, when they all turned and ran into the lake at hand,
and thus the passage was gained.

  [56] "Twenty-six days." Oviedo, 586. The edition of 1542
  (Bandelier trans., p. 30) says: "And so we left, arriving there
  five days after. The first day we travelled across lagunes and
  trails without seeing a single Indian."

  [57] July 19-20, 1528.

  [58] Alonzo Enrriquez.

Some of our men were wounded in this conflict, for whom the good
armor they wore did not avail. There were those this day who swore
that they had seen two red oaks, each the thickness of the lower part
of the leg, pierced through from side to side by arrows; and this is
not so much to be wondered at, considering the power and skill with
which the Indians are able to project them. I myself saw an arrow
that had entered the butt of an elm to the depth of a span.

The Indians we had so far seen in Florida are all archers. They go
naked, are large of body, and appear at a distance like giants. They
are of admirable proportions, very spare and of great activity and
strength. The bows they use are as thick as the arm, of eleven or
twelve palms in length, which they will discharge at two hundred
paces with so great precision that they miss nothing.

Having got through this passage, at the end of a league we arrived
at another of the same character, but worse, as it was longer, being
half a league in extent. This we crossed freely, without interruption
from the Indians, who, as they had spent on the former occasion their
store of arrows, had nought with which they dared venture to engage
us. Going through a similar passage the next day, I discovered the
trail of persons ahead, of which I gave notice to the Governor, who
was in the rear-guard, so that though the Indians came upon us, as
we were prepared they did no harm. After emerging upon the plain
they followed us, and we went back on them in two directions. Two we
killed, and they wounded me and two or three others. Coming to woods
we could do them no more injury, nor make them further trouble.

In this manner we travelled eight days. After that occurrence we were
not again beset until within a league of the place to which I have
said we were going. There, while on our way, the Indians came about
us without our suspicion, and fell upon the rear-guard. A hidalgo,
named Avellaneda, hearing the cries of his serving boy, went back
to give assistance, when he was struck by an arrow near the edge of
his cuirass; and so severe was the wound, the shaft having passed
almost entirely through his neck, that he presently died. The corpse
was carried to Aute, where we arrived at the end of nine days'[59]
travel from Apalache. We found all the inhabitants gone and the
houses burned. Maize, beans, and pumpkins were in great plenty,
all beginning to be fit for gathering. Having rested two days, the
Governor begged me to go and look for the sea, as the Indians said
it was near; and we had before discovered it, while on the way, from
a very large stream, to which we had given the name of River of the

  [59] "Eight or nine days." Oviedo, 587.

  [60] St. Marks River, which flows into St. Marks Bay, at the head
  of which Aute was situated.

Accordingly, I set out the next day after, in company with the
commissary, Captain Castillo, Andrés Dorantes, seven more on
horseback, and fifty on foot. We travelled until the hour of vespers,
when we arrived at a road or entrance of the sea. Oysters were
abundant, over which the men rejoiced, and we gave thanks to God that
he had brought us there. The following morning[61] I sent twenty men
to explore the coast and ascertain its direction. They returned the
night after, reporting that those creeks and bays were large, and lay
so far inland as made it difficult to examine them agreeably to our
desires, and that the sea shore was very distant.

These tidings obtained, seeing our slender means, and condition for
exploring the coast, I went back to the Governor. On our arrival we
found him and many others sick. The Indians had assaulted them the
night before, and because of the malady that had come upon them, they
had been pushed to extremity. One of the horses had been killed. I
gave a report of what I had done, and of the embarrassing nature of
the country. We remained there that day.

  [61] August 1, 1528.

Chapter 8

_We go from Aute._

The next morning[62] we left Aute, and travelled all day before
coming to the place I had visited. The journey was extremely
arduous. There were not horses enough to carry the sick, who went on
increasing in numbers day by day, and we knew of no cure. It was
piteous and painful to witness our perplexity and distress. We saw
on our arrival how small were the means for advancing farther. There
was not anywhere to go; and if there had been, the people were unable
to move forward, the greater part being ill, and those were few who
could be on duty. I cease here to relate more of this, because any
one may suppose what would occur in a country so remote and malign,
so destitute of all resource, whereby either to live in it or go out
of it; but most certain assistance is in God, our Lord, on whom we
never failed to place reliance. One thing occurred, more afflicting
to us than all the rest, which was, that of the persons mounted, the
greater part commenced secretly to plot, hoping to secure a better
fate for themselves by abandoning the Governor and the sick, who were
in a state of weakness and prostration. But, as among them were many
hidalgos and persons of gentle condition, they would not permit this
to go on, without informing the Governor and the officers of your
Majesty; and as we showed them the deformity of their purpose, and
placed before them the moment when they should desert their captain,
and those who were ill and feeble, and above all the disobedience
to the orders of your Majesty, they determined to remain, and that
whatever might happen to one should be the lot of all, without any
forsaking the rest.

  [62] August 3, 1528.

After the accomplishment of this, the Governor called them all to
him, and of each apart he asked advice as to what he should do to get
out of a country so miserable, and seek that assistance elsewhere
which could not here be found, a third part of the people being
very sick, and the number increasing every hour; for we regarded it
as certain that we should all become so, and could pass out of it
only through death, which from its coming in such a place was to us
all the more terrible. These, with many other embarrassments being
considered, and entertaining many plans, we coincided in one great
project extremely difficult to put in operation, and that was to
build vessels in which we might go away. This appeared impossible to
every one; we knew not how to construct, nor were there tools, nor
iron, nor forge, nor tow, nor resin, nor rigging; finally, no one
thing of so many that are necessary, nor any man who had a knowledge
of their manufacture; and, above all, there was nothing to eat,
while building, for those who should labor. Reflecting on all this,
we agreed to think of the subject with more deliberation, and the
conversation dropped from that day, each going his way, commending
our course to God, our Lord, that he would direct it as should best
serve Him.

The next day it was His will that one of the company should come
saying that he could make some pipes out of wood, which with
deer-skins might be made into bellows; and, as we lived in a time
when anything that had the semblance of relief appeared well, we
told him to set himself to work. We assented to the making of nails,
saws, axes, and other tools of which there was such need, from the
stirrups, spurs, crossbows, and the other things of iron there were;
and we laid out for support, while the work was going on, that we
would make four entries into Aute, with all the horses and men that
were able to go, and that on every third day a horse should be killed
to be divided among those who labored in the work of the boats and
the sick. The incursions were made with the people and horses that
were available, and in them were brought back as many as four hundred
fanegas[63] of maize; but these were not got without quarrels and
contentions with the Indians. We caused many palmitos to be collected
for the woof or covering, twisting and preparing it for use in the
place of tow for the boats.

  [63] About six hundred and forty bushels.

We commenced to build on the fourth, with the only carpenter in
the company, and we proceeded with so great diligence that on the
twentieth day of September five boats were finished, twenty-two
cubits in length, each caulked with the fibre of the palmito. We
pitched them with a certain resin, made from pine trees by a Greek,
named Don Theodoro; from the same husk of the palmito, and from
the tails and manes of the horses we made ropes and rigging, from
our shirts, sails, and from the savins growing there we made the
oars that appeared to us requisite. Such was the country into which
our sins had cast us, that only by very great search could we find
stone for ballast and anchors, since in it all we had not seen one.
We flayed the horses, taking the skin from their legs entire, and
tanning them to make bottles wherein to carry water.

During this time some went gathering shell-fish in the coves and
creeks of the sea, at which employment the Indians twice attacked
them and killed ten men in sight of the camp, without our being able
to afford succor. We found their corpses traversed from side to side
with arrows; and for all some had on good armor, it did not give
adequate protection or security against the nice and powerful archery
of which I have spoken. According to the declaration of our pilots
under oath, from the entrance to which we had given the name Bahía de
la Cruz[64] to this place, we had travelled two hundred and eighty
leagues[65] or thereabout. Over all that region we had not seen a
single mountain, and had no information of any whatsoever.

  [64] Tampa Bay.

  [65] In reality they could not have travelled much more than as
  many miles in a straight line from Tampa Bay.

Before we embarked there died more than forty men of disease and
hunger, without enumerating those destroyed by the Indians. By
the twenty-second of the month of September, the horses had been
consumed, one only remaining; and on that day we embarked in the
following order: In the boat of the Governor went forty-nine men; in
another, which he gave to the comptroller and the commissary, went
as many others; the third, he gave to Captain Alonzo del Castillo
and Andrés Dorantes, with forty-eight men; and another he gave to
two captains, Tellez and Peñalosa, with forty-seven men. The last
was given to the assessor and myself, with forty-nine men. After the
provisions and clothes had been taken in, not over a span of the
gunwales remained above water; and more than this, the boats were so
crowded that we could not move: so much can necessity do, which drove
us to hazard our lives in this manner, running into a turbulent sea,
not a single one who went having a knowledge of navigation.[66]

  [66] Consult Garcilasso de la Vega, _La Florida_, 78, 1723, for
  the finding of the relics of Narvaez by De Soto's expedition in
  1539, and see the De Soto narration of the Gentleman of Elvas,
  later in the present volume.

Chapter 9

_We leave the Bay of Horses._

The haven we left bears the name of Bahía de Caballos.[67] We passed
waist deep in water through sounds without seeing any sign of the
coast, and at the close of the seventh day, we came to an island
near the main. My boat went first, and from her we saw Indians
approaching in five canoes, which they abandoned and left in our
hands, finding that we were coming after them. The other boats passed
ahead, and stopped at some houses on the island, where we found many
dried mullet and roes, which were a great relief in our distress.
After taking these we went on, and two leagues thence, we discovered
a strait the island makes with the land,[68] which we named Sant
Miguel, for having passed through it on his day.[69] Coming out we
went to the coast, where with the canoes I had taken, we somewhat
improved the boats, making waist-boards and securing them, so that
the sides rose two palms above the water. This done we returned to
move along the coast in the direction of the River Palmas,[70] our
hunger and thirst continually increasing; for our scant subsistence
was getting near the end, the water was out, and the bottles made
from the legs of the horses having soon rotted, were useless.
Sometimes we entered coves and creeks that lay far in, and found them
all shallow and dangerous. Thus we journeyed along them thirty days,
finding occasionally Indian fishermen, a poor and miserable lot.

  [67] "Bay of Horses": St. Marks Bay of Appalachee Bay.

  [68] The conditions are applicable to the mouth of St. Marks Bay,
  the two small islands, and the strait between them and the coast.

  [69] St. Michael's Day, September 29, 1528.

  [70] That is, in a southwesterly direction.

At the end of this time, while the want of water was great, going
near the coast at night we heard the approach of a canoe, for which,
so soon as it was in sight, we paused; but it would not meet us,
and, although we called, it would neither come nor wait for us. As
the night was dark, we did not follow, and kept on our way. When the
sun rose we saw a small island, and went to it to find water; but
our labor was vain, as it had none. Lying there at anchor, a heavy
storm came on, that detained us six days, we not daring to go to sea;
and as it was now five days since we had drunk, our thirst was so
excessive that it put us to the extremity of swallowing salt water,
by which some of the men became so crazed that three or four suddenly
died. I state this so briefly, because I do not believe there is any
necessity for particularly relating the sufferings and toils amidst
which we found ourselves; since, considering the place where we were,
and the little hope we had of relief, every one may conceive much of
what must have passed.

Although the storm had not ceased, as our thirst increased and
the water killed us, we resolved to commend ourselves to God our
Lord, and adventure the peril of the sea rather than await the end
which thirst made certain. Accordingly we went out by the way we
had observed the canoe go the night we came. On this day we were
ourselves many times overwhelmed by the waves, and in such jeopardy
that there was not one who did not suppose his death inevitable.
Thanks be to Him, that in the greatest dangers, He was wont to show
us his favor; for at sunset doubling a point made by the land, we
found shelter with much calm.[71]

  [71] Pensacola Bay. The Indians were Choctaws or a closely
  related tribe.

Many canoes came off with Indians who spoke with us and returned,
not being disposed to await our arrival. They were of large stature
and well formed: they had no bows and arrows. We followed them to
their houses near by, at the edge of the water, and jumped on shore.
Before their dwellings were many clay pitchers with water, and a
large quantity of cooked fish, which the chief of these territories
offered to the Governor and then took him to his house. Their
dwellings were made of mats, and so far as we observed, were not
movable. On entering the house the cacique gave us fish, and we gave
him of the maize we brought, which the people ate in our presence.
They asked for more and received it, and the Governor presented the
cacique with many trinkets. While in the house with him, at the
middle hour of night, the Indians fell suddenly upon us, and on those
who were very sick, scattered along the shore.[72] They also beset
the house in which the Governor was, and with a stone struck him
in the face. Those of our comrades present seized the cacique; but
his people being near liberated him, leaving in our hands a robe of

  [72] "Killing three men." Oviedo, p. 589.

These skins are the best, I think, that can be found; they have a
fragrance that can be equalled by amber and musk alone, and even at a
distance is strongly perceptible. We saw there other skins, but none
comparable to these.

Those of us around, finding the Governor wounded, put him into
his boat; and we caused others of our people to betake themselves
likewise to their boats, some fifty remaining to withstand the
natives. They attacked us thrice that night, and with so great
impetuosity, that on each occasion they made us retire more than a
stone's cast. Not one among us escaped injury: I was wounded in the
face. They had not many arrows, but had they been further provided,
doubtless they would have done us much harm. In the last onset, the
Captains Dorantes, Peñalosa, and Tellez put themselves in ambuscade
with fifteen men, and fell upon the rear in such manner that the
Indians desisted and fled.

The next morning[73] I broke up more than thirty canoes, which were
serviceable for fuel in a north wind in which we were kept all day
suffering severe cold, without daring to go to sea, because of the
rough weather upon it. This having subsided, we again embarked,
and navigated three days.[74] As we brought little water and the
vessels were few, we were reduced to the last extremity. Following
our course, we entered an estuary, and being there we saw Indians
approaching in a canoe. We called to them and they came. The
Governor, at whose boat they first arrived, asked for water, which
they assented to give, asking for something in which they might bring
it, when Dorotheo Theodoro, a Greek spoken of before, said that he
wished to go with them. The Governor tried to dissuade him, and so
did others, but were unable; he was determined to go whatever might
betide. Accordingly he went, taking with him a negro, the natives
leaving two of their number as hostages. At night the Indians
returned with the vessels empty and without the Christians; and when
those we held were spoken to by them, they tried to plunge into the
sea. Being detained by the men, the Indians in the canoe thereupon
fled, leaving us sorrowful and much dejected for our loss.[75]

  [73] October 28, 1528.

  [74] "Three or four days." Oviedo, p. 589.

  [75] Biedma's Narrative (_Publications of the Hakluyt Society_,
  IX. 1-83, 1851) says of the De Soto expedition in 1539: "Having
  set out for this village [Mavila, Mauvila, Mobile], we found a
  large river which we supposed to be that which falls into the
  bay of Chuse [Pensacola Bay]; we learned that the vessels of
  Narvaez had arrived there in want of water, and that a Christian
  named Teodoro and an Indian had remained among these Indians: at
  the same time they showed us a dagger which had belonged to the

  Chapter 10

  _The assault from the Indians._

  The morning having come, many natives arrived in canoes who
  asked us for the two that had remained in the boat. The Governor
  replied that he would give up the hostages when they should
  bring the Christians they had taken. With the Indians had come
  five or six chiefs,[76] who appeared to us to be the most comely
  persons, and of more authority and condition than any we had
  hitherto seen, although not so large as some others of whom we
  have spoken. They wore the hair loose and very long, and were
  covered with robes of marten such as we had before taken. Some
  of the robes were made up after a strange fashion, with wrought
  ties of lion skin, making a brave show. They entreated us to go
  with them, and said they would give us the Christians, water, and
  many other things. They continued to collect about us in canoes,
  attempting in them to take possession of the mouth of that
  entrance; in consequence, and because it was hazardous to stay
  near the land, we went to sea, where they remained by us until
  about mid-day. As they would not deliver our people, we would not
  give up theirs; so they began to hurl clubs at us and to throw
  stones with slings, making threats of shooting arrows, although
  we had not seen among them all more than three or four bows.
  While thus engaged, the wind beginning to freshen, they left us
  and went back.

  [76] "Three or four," according to the Letter (Oviedo, p. 589),
  which also gives the number of canoes as twenty.

We sailed that day until the middle of the afternoon, when my boat,
which was the first, discovered a point made by the land, and against
a cape opposite, passed a broad river.[77] I cast anchor near a
little island forming the point, to await the arrival of the other
boats. The Governor did not choose to come up, and entered a bay near
by in which were a great many islets. We came together there, and
took fresh water from the sea, the stream entering it in freshet.[78]
To parch some of the maize we brought with us, since we had eaten
it raw for two days, we went on an island; but finding no wood we
agreed to go to the river beyond the point, one league off. By no
effort could we get there, so violent was the current on the way,
which drove us out, while we contended and strove to gain the land.
The north wind, which came from the shore, began to blow so strongly
that it forced us to sea without our being able to overcome it. We
sounded half a league out, and found with thirty fathoms[79] we could
not get bottom; but we were unable to satisfy ourselves that the
current was not the cause of failure. Toiling in this manner to fetch
the land, we navigated three days, and at the end of this time, a
little before the sun rose, we saw smoke in several places along the
shore. Attempting to reach them, we found ourselves in three fathoms
of water, and in the darkness we dared not come to land; for as we
had seen so many smokes, some surprise might lie in wait, and the
obscurity leave us at a loss how to act. We determined therefore to
stop until morning.

  [77] According to the Letter they travelled two days more before
  reaching this point of land.

  [78] The Mississippi, the waters of which were now seen by white
  men fourteen years before the "discovery" of the stream by De

  [79] The present normal depth at this distance from the delta is
  about sixty feet.

When day came, the boats had lost sight of each other. I found myself
in thirty fathoms. Keeping my course until the hour of vespers,
I observed two boats, and drawing near I found that the first I
approached was that of the Governor. He asked me what I thought
we should do. I told him we ought to join the boat which went in
advance, and by no means to leave her; and, the three being together,
we must keep on our way to where God should be pleased to lead. He
answered saying that could not be done, because the boat was far to
sea and he wished to reach the shore; that if I wished to follow him,
I should order the persons of my boat to take the oars and work, as
it was only by strength of arm that the land could be gained. He
was advised to this course by a captain with him named Pantoja, who
said that if he did not fetch land that day, in six days more they
would not reach it, and in that time they must inevitably famish.
Discovering his will I took my oar, and so did every one his, in my
boat, to obey it. We rowed until near sunset; but the Governor having
in his boat the healthiest of all the men, we could not by any means
hold with or follow her. Seeing this, I asked him to give me a rope
from his boat, that I might be enabled to keep up with him; but he
answered me that he would do much, if they, as they were, should be
able to reach the land that night. I said to him, that since he saw
the feeble strength we had to follow him, and do what he ordered,
he must tell me how he would that I should act. He answered that it
was no longer a time in which one should command another; but that
each should do what he thought best to save his own life; that he so
intended to act; and saying this, he departed with his boat.[80]

  [80] The selfishness and incompetence of Narvaez, shown
  throughout the narration, are here further exemplified. His
  life had more than once been spared through the self-sacrifice
  of his men, yet he now thought more of saving himself, with the
  aid of his hardy crew, than of lending a hand to his weakened

As I could not follow him, I steered to the other boat at sea,
which waited for me, and having come up, I found her to be the one
commanded by the Captains Peñalosa and Tellez.

Thus we continued in company, eating a daily allowance of half a
handful of raw maize, until the end of four days, when we lost
sight of each other in a storm; and such was the weather that only
by God's favor we did not all go down. Because of winter and its
inclemency, the many days we had suffered hunger, and the heavy
beating of the waves, the people began next day to despair in such a
manner that when the sun sank, all who were in my boat were fallen
one on another, so near to death that there were few among them in a
state of sensibility. Of the whole number at this time not five men
were on their feet; and when night came, only the master and myself
were left, who could work the boat. Two hours after dark, he said
to me that I must take charge of her as he was in such condition he
believed he should die that night. So I took the paddle, and going
after midnight to see if the master was alive he said to me he was
rather better, and would take the charge until day. I declare in that
hour I would more willingly have died than seen so many people before
me in such condition. After the master took the direction of the
boat, I lay down a little while; but without repose, for nothing at
that time was farther from me than sleep.

Near the dawn of day, it seemed to me I heard the tumbling of the
sea; for as the coast was low, it roared loudly. Surprised at this,
I called to the master, who answered me that he believed we were
near the land. We sounded and found ourselves in seven fathoms. He
advised that we should keep to sea until sunrise; accordingly I took
an oar and pulled on the land side, until we were a league distant,
when we gave her stern to the sea. Near the shore a wave took us,
that knocked the boat out of water the distance of the throw of a
crowbar,[81] and from the violence with which she struck, nearly all
the people who were in her like dead, were roused to consciousness.
Finding themselves near the shore, they began to move on hands and
feet, crawling to land into some ravines. There we made fire, parched
some of the maize we brought, and found rain water. From the warmth
of the fire the people recovered their faculties, and began somewhat
to exert themselves. The day on which we arrived was the sixth of
November [1528].

  [81] _Juego de herradura_, a game played with an iron bar, often
  a crowbar, which is grasped at the middle and cast as far as

Chapter 11

_Of what befell Lope de Oviedo with the Indians._

After the people had eaten, I ordered Lope de Oviedo, who had more
strength and was stouter than any of the rest, to go to some trees
that were near by, and climbing into one of them to look about and
try to gain knowledge of the country. He did as I bade, and made out
that we were on an island.[82] He saw that the land was pawed up in
the manner that ground is wont to be where cattle range, whence it
appeared to him that this should be a country of Christians; and thus
he reported to us. I ordered him to return and examine much more
particularly, and see if there were any roads that were worn, but
without going far, because there might be danger.

  [82] See p. 57, note 2.

He went, and coming to a path, took it for the distance of half a
league, and found some huts, without tenants, they having gone into
the field.[83] He took from these an earthen pot, a little dog,
some few mullets, and returned. As it appeared to us he was gone a
long time, we sent two men that they should look to see what might
have happened. They met him near by, and saw that three Indians
with bows and arrows followed and were calling to him, while he,
in the same way, was beckoning them on. Thus he arrived where we
were, the natives remaining a little way back, seated on the shore.
Half an hour after, they were supported by one hundred other Indian
bowmen,[84] who if they were not large, our fears made giants of
them. They stopped near us with the first three. It were idle to
think that any among us could make defence, for it would have been
difficult to find six that could rise from the ground. The assessor
and I went out and called to them, and they came to us. We endeavored
the best we could to encourage them and secure their favor. We gave
them beads and hawk-bells, and each of them gave me an arrow, which
is a pledge of friendship. They told us by signs that they would
return in the morning and bring us something to eat, as at that time
they had nothing.[85]

  [83] As this was the root-digging season, the word _campo_ in the
  original evidently refers to the digging "grounds" in the shoal
  water, and not to "woods" as Mr. Smith interpreted it.

  [84] "Two hundred archers with holes in their ears in which were
  joints of cane." Oviedo, p. 590.

  [85] For an account of these Indians, see ch. 14, p. 50, 51.

Chapter 12

_The Indians bring us food._

At sunrise the next day, the time the Indians appointed, they came
according to their promise, and brought us a large quantity of fish
with certain roots, some a little larger than walnuts, others a
trifle smaller, the greater part got from under the water and with
much labor. In the evening they returned and brought us more fish
and roots. They sent their women and children to look at us, who
went back rich with the hawk-bells and beads given them, and they
came afterwards on other days, returning as before. Finding that we
had provision, fish, roots, water, and other things we asked for, we
determined to embark again and pursue our course. Having dug out our
boat from the sand in which it was buried, it became necessary that
we should strip, and go through great exertion to launch her, we
being in such a state that things very much lighter sufficed to make
us great labor.

Thus embarked, at the distance of two crossbow shots in the sea
we shipped a wave that entirely wet us. As we were naked, and the
cold was very great, the oars loosened in our hands, and the next
blow the sea struck us, capsized the boat. The assessor[86] and two
others held fast to her for preservation, but it happened to be far
otherwise; the boat carried them over, and they were drowned under
her. As the surf near the shore was very high, a single roll of the
sea threw the rest into the waves and half drowned upon the shore
of the island, without our losing any more than those the boat took
down. The survivors escaped naked as they were born, with the loss
of all they had; and although the whole was of little value, at that
time it was worth much, as we were then in November, the cold was
severe, and our bodies were so emaciated the bones might be counted
with little difficulty, having become the perfect figures of death.
For myself I can say that from the month of May passed, I had eaten
no other thing than maize, and sometimes I found myself obliged to
eat it unparched; for although the beasts were slaughtered while the
boats were building, I could never eat their flesh, and I did not
eat fish ten times. I state this to avoid giving excuses, and that
every one may judge in what condition we were. Besides all these
misfortunes, came a north wind upon us, from which we were nearer
to death than life. Thanks be to our Lord that, looking among the
brands we had used there, we found sparks from which we made great
fires. And thus were we asking mercy of Him and pardon for our
transgressions, shedding many tears, and each regretting not his own
fate alone, but that of his comrades about him.

  [86] Alonzo de Solis.

At sunset, the Indians thinking that we had not gone, came to seek
us and bring us food; but when they saw us thus, in a plight so
different from what it was before, and so extraordinary, they were
alarmed and turned back. I went toward them and called, when they
returned much frightened. I gave them to understand by signs that
our boat had sunk and three of our number had been drowned. There,
before them, they saw two of the departed, and we who remained were
near joining them. The Indians, at sight of what had befallen us,
and our state of suffering and melancholy destitution, sat down
among us, and from the sorrow and pity they felt, they all began to
lament so earnestly that they might have been heard at a distance,
and continued so doing more than half an hour. It was strange to
see these men, wild and untaught, howling like brutes over our
misfortunes. It caused in me as in others, an increase of feeling and
a livelier sense of our calamity.

The cries having ceased, I talked with the Christians, and said that
if it appeared well to them, I would beg these Indians to take us to
their houses. Some, who had been in New Spain, replied that we ought
not to think of it; for if they should do so, they would sacrifice
us to their idols. But seeing no better course, and that any other
led to a nearer and more certain death, I disregarded what was
said, and besought the Indians to take us to their dwellings. They
signified that it would give them delight, and that we should tarry
a little, that they might do what we asked. Presently thirty men
loaded themselves with wood and started for their houses, which were
far off,[87] and we remained with the others until near night, when,
holding us up, they carried us with all haste. Because of the extreme
coldness of the weather, lest any one should die or fail by the way,
they caused four or five very large fires to be placed at intervals,
and at each they warmed us; and when they saw that we had regained
some heat and strength, they took us to the next so swiftly that they
hardly let us touch our feet to the ground. In this manner we went as
far as their habitations, where we found that they had made a house
for us with many fires in it. An hour after our arrival, they began
to dance and hold great rejoicing, which lasted all night, although
for us there was no joy, festivity nor sleep, awaiting the hour they
should make us victims. In the morning they again gave us fish and
roots, showing us such hospitality that we were reassured, and lost
somewhat the fear of sacrifice.

  [87] As he does not speak of crossing water, the dwellings of
  these Indians were doubtless those seen by Lope de Oviedo on
  the island, where they lived from October until March, for the
  purpose of obtaining the roots from the shoal water, as well as
  fish and oysters.

Chapter 13

_We hear of other Christians._

This day I saw a native with an article of traffic I knew was not
one we had bestowed; and asking whence it came, I was told by signs
that it had been given by men like ourselves who were behind. Hearing
this I sent two Indians, and with them two Christians to be shown
those persons. They met near by,[88] as the men were coming to look
after us; for the Indians of the place where they were, gave them
information concerning us. They were Captains Andrés Dorantes and
Alonzo del Castillo, with all the persons of their boat. Having come
up they were surprised at seeing us in the condition we were, and
very much pained at having nothing to give us, as they had brought no
other clothes than what they had on.

  [88] This would seem to indicate that Dorantes' boat was cast
  ashore on the same island.

Thus together again, they related that on the fifth day of that
month,[89] their boat had capsized a league and a half[90] from
there, and they escaped without losing any thing. We all agreed to
refit their [our] boat, that those of us might go in her who had
vigor sufficient and disposition to do so, and the rest should remain
until they became well enough to go, as they best might, along the
coast until God our Lord should be pleased to conduct us alike to a
land of Christians. Directly as we arranged this, we set ourselves
to work. Before we threw the boat out into the water, Tavera, a
gentleman of our company, died; and the boat, which we thought to
use, came to its end, sinking from unfitness to float.

  [89] November, 1528. Dorantes' boat was therefore cast ashore the
  day before the landing of Cabeza de Vaca's party.

  [90] About four miles.

As we were in the condition I have mentioned, the greater number of
us naked, and the weather boisterous for travel, and to cross rivers
and bays by swimming, and we being entirely without provisions or
the means of carrying any, we yielded obedience to what necessity
required, to pass the winter in the place where we were. We also
agreed that four men of the most robust should go on to Panunco,[91]
which we believed to be near, and if, by Divine favor, they should
reach there, they could give information of our remaining on that
island, and of our sorrows and destitution. These men were excellent
swimmers. One of them was Alvaro Fernandez, a Portuguese sailor and
carpenter, the second was named Mendez, the third Figueroa, who was a
native of Toledo, and the fourth Astudillo, a native of Çafra. They
took with them an Indian of the island of Auia.[92]

  [91] Pánuco, previously referred to.

  [92] The edition of 1542 omits the last two words. _Auia_ has
  been regarded as the native name of Malhado Island, but this
  is seemingly an error, otherwise Cabeza de Vaca would in all
  probability have mentioned the nativity of the Indian in later
  speaking (ch. 17) of his death from cold and hunger. Herrera
  says: "the island of Cuba," which seems more probable.

Chapter 14

_The departure of four Christians._

The four Christians being gone, after a few days such cold and
tempestuous weather succeeded that the Indians could not pull up
roots, the cane weirs in which they took fish no longer yielded any
thing, and the houses being very open, our people began to die.
Five Christians, of a mess [quartered] on the coast, came to
such extremity that they ate their dead; the body of the last one
only was found unconsumed. Their names were Sierra, Diego Lopez,
Corral, Palacios and Gonçalo Ruiz. This produced great commotion
among the Indians giving rise to so much censure that had they known
it in season to have done so, doubtless they would have destroyed
any survivor, and we should have found ourselves in the utmost
perplexity. Finally, of eighty men who arrived in the two instances,
fifteen only remained alive.

After this, the natives were visited by a disease of the bowels, of
which half their number died. They conceived that we had destroyed
them,[93] and believing it firmly, they concerted among themselves to
dispatch those of us who survived. When they were about to execute
their purpose, an Indian who had charge of me, told them not to
believe we were the cause of those deaths, since if we had such power
we should also have averted the fatality from so many of our people,
whom they had seen die without our being able to minister relief,
already very few of us remaining, and none doing hurt or wrong, and
that it would be better to leave us unharmed. God our Lord willed
that the others should heed this opinion and counsel, and be hindered
in their design.

  [93] That is, the Indians believed the Christians to be sorcerers.

To this island we gave the name Malhado.[94] The people[95] we found
there are large and well formed; they have no other arms than bows
and arrows, in the use of which they are very dexterous. The men
have one of their nipples bored from side to side, and some have
both, wearing a cane in each, the length of two palms and a half, and
the thickness of two fingers. They have the under lip also bored,
and wear in it a piece of cane the breadth of half a finger. Their
women are accustomed to great toil. The stay they make on the island
is from October to the end of February. Their subsistence then is
the root I have spoken of, got from under the water in November and
December. They have weirs of cane and take fish only in this season;
afterwards they live on the roots. At the end of February, they go
into other parts to seek food; for then the root is beginning to grow
and is not food.

  [94] "Misfortune," "ill-fate."

  [95] The Capoques, or Cahoques, and the Hans. See ch. 26.

Those people love their offspring the most of any in the world, and
treat them with the greatest mildness.[96] When it occurs that a son
dies, the parents and kindred weep as does everybody; the wailing
continuing for him a whole year. They begin before dawn every day,
the parents first and after them the whole town. They do the same at
noon and at sunset. After a year of mourning has passed, the rites
of the dead are performed; then they wash and purify themselves from
the stain of smoke. They lament all the deceased in this manner,
except the aged, for whom they show no regret, as they say that
their season has passed, they having no enjoyment, and that living
they would occupy the earth and take aliment from the young. Their
custom is to bury the dead, unless it be those among them who have
been physicians. These they burn. While the fire kindles they are all
dancing and making high festivity, until the bones become powder.
After the lapse of a year the funeral honors are celebrated, every
one taking part in them, when that dust is presented in water for the
relatives to drink.[97]

  [96] This is characteristic of all Indians, who punish their
  children very rarely.

  [97] Nevertheless these same people were so horrified by the
  uncanny action of the Spaniards who ate their dead companions
  that they sought to put them to death. It should be noted that
  the Attacapan and probably the Karankawan tribes of the Texas
  coast, to which the people of Malhado Island may have belonged,
  were reputed to be cannibals.

Every man has an acknowledged wife. The physicians are allowed more
freedom: they may have two or three wives, among whom exist the
greatest friendship and harmony. From the time a daughter marries,
all that he who takes her to wife kills in hunting or catches in
fishing, the woman brings to the house of her father, without daring
to eat or take any part of it, and thence victuals are taken to the
husband. From that time neither her father nor mother enters his
house, nor can he enter theirs, nor the houses of their children; and
if by chance they are in the direction of meeting, they turn aside,
and pass the distance of a crossbow shot from each other, carrying
the head low the while, the eyes cast on the ground; for they hold
it improper to see or to speak to each other.[98] But the woman has
liberty to converse and communicate with the parents and relatives of
her husband. The custom exists from this island the distance of more
than fifty leagues inland.

  [98] Tabu of the mother-in-law by a young man is quite common
  among the Indians, but refusal to see or to speak to the wife's
  father is very rare.

There is another custom, which is, when a son or brother dies, at the
house where the death takes place they do not go after food for three
months, but sooner famish, their relatives and neighbors providing
what they eat. As in the time we were there a great number of the
natives died, in most houses there was very great hunger, because
of the keeping of this their custom and observance; for although
they who sought after food worked hard, yet from the severity of the
season they could get but little; in consequence, the Indians who
kept me, left the island, and passed over in canoes to the main,
into some bays where are many oysters. For three months in the year
they eat nothing besides these, and drink very bad water.[99] There
is great want of wood: mosquitos are in great plenty. The houses are
of mats, set up on masses of oyster shells, which they sleep upon,
and in skins, should they accidentally possess them. In this way we
lived until April [1529], when we went to the seashore, where we ate
blackberries all the month, during which time the Indians did not
omit to observe their _areitos_[100] and festivities.

  [99] On their food, compare Oviedo, p. 592.

  [100] An _areito_, or _areyto_, was a dance ceremony of the
  Arawak Indians of the West Indies in which their traditions were
  recounted in chants. Like _buhío_, previously mentioned, the word
  was now carried to the continent.

Chapter 15

_What befell us among the people of Malhado._

On an island of which I have spoken, they wished to make us
physicians without examination or inquiring for diplomas. They cure
by blowing upon the sick, and with that breath and the imposing of
hands they cast out infirmity. They ordered that we also should do
this, and be of use to them in some way. We laughed at what they
did, telling them it was folly, that we knew not how to heal. In
consequence, they withheld food from us until we should practise
what they required. Seeing our persistence, an Indian told me I knew
not what I uttered, in saying that what he knew availed nothing; for
stones and other matters growing about in the fields have virtue,
and that passing a pebble along the stomach would take away pain and
restore health, and certainly then we who were extraordinary men must
possess power and efficacy over all other things. At last, finding
ourselves in great want we were constrained to obey; but without fear
lest we should be blamed for any failure or success.

Their custom is, on finding themselves sick to send for a physician,
and after he has applied the cure, they give him not only all
they have, but seek among their relatives for more to give. The
practitioner scarifies over the seat of pain, and then sucks about
the wound. They make cauteries with fire, a remedy among them in
high repute, which I have tried on myself and found benefit from it.
They afterwards blow on the spot, and having finished, the patient
considers that he is relieved.

Our method was to bless the sick, breathing upon them, and recite
a Pater-noster and an Ave-Maria, praying with all earnestness to
God our Lord that he would give health and influence them to make
us some good return. In his clemency he willed that all those for
whom we supplicated, should tell the others that they were sound
and in health, directly after we made the sign of the blessed cross
over them. For this the Indians treated us kindly; they deprived
themselves of food that they might give to us, and presented us with
skins and some trifles.

So protracted was the hunger we there experienced, that many times I
was three days without eating. The natives also endured as much; and
it appeared to me a thing impossible that life could be so prolonged,
although afterwards I found myself in greater hunger and necessity,
which I shall speak of farther on.

The Indians who had Alonzo del Castillo, Andrés Dorantes, and the
others that remained alive, were of a different tongue and ancestry
from these,[101] and went to the opposite shore of the main to eat
oysters, where they staid until the first day of April, when they
returned. The distance is two leagues in the widest part. The island
is half a league in breadth and five leagues in length.[102]

  [101] These were evidently the Hans, of whom he speaks later.

  [102] See p. 57, note 2.

The inhabitants of all this region go naked. The women alone have
any part of their persons covered, and it is with a wool[103] that
grows on trees. The damsels dress themselves in deer-skin. The people
are generous to each other of what they possess. They have no chief.
All that are of a lineage keep together. They speak two languages;
those of one are called Capoques, those of the other, Han.[104] They
have a custom when they meet, or from time to time when they visit,
of remaining half an hour before they speak, weeping;[105] and, this
over, he that is visited first rises and gives the other all he has,
which is received, and after a little while he carries it away, and
often goes without saying a word. They have other strange customs;
but I have told the principal of them, and the most remarkable, that
I may pass on and further relate what befell us.

  [103] Spanish moss.

  [104] Important as it is in affording evidence of the route of
  Cabeza de Vaca and his companions, it is not possible, with our
  present knowledge of the former tribes of the coast region of
  Texas, to identify with certainty the various Indians mentioned
  by the narrator. Whether the names given by him are those
  which the natives applied to themselves or are those given
  by other tribes is unknown, and as no remnant of this once
  considerable coast population now exists, the only hope of the
  ultimate determination of these Indians lies in the historical
  archives of Texas, Mexico, and Spain. The two languages and
  stocks represented on the island of Malhado--the Capoque and
  the Han--would seem to apply to the Karankawan and Attacapan
  families respectively. The Capoques (called Cahoques on p. 87)
  are seemingly identical with the Cocos who lived with the Mayayes
  on the coast between the Brazos and Colorado Rivers in 1778, and
  with the Cokés, who as late as 1850 are described as a branch of
  the Koronks (Karankawa). Of the Han people nothing more definite
  is known than that which is here recorded.

  [105] Compare Barcia, _Ensayo_, 263, 1723, and Gatschet in
  _Archaeological and Ethnological Papers of the Peabody Museum_,
  Harvard University, 1891, for references to these "weepers."

Chapter 16

_The Christians leave the island of Malhado._

After Dorantes and Castillo returned to the island, they brought
together the Christians, who were somewhat separated, and found them
in all to be fourteen. As I have said, I was opposite on the main,
where my Indians had taken me, and where so great sickness had come
upon me, that if anything before had given me hopes of life, this
were enough to have entirely bereft me of them.

When the Christians heard of my condition, they gave an Indian the
cloak of marten skins we had taken from the cacique, as before
related, to pass them over to where I was that they might visit
me. Twelve of them crossed; for two were so feeble that their
comrades could not venture to bring them. The names of those who
came were Alonzo del Castillo, Andrés Dorantes, Diego Dorantes,
Valdevieso,[106] Estrada, Tostado, Chaves, Gutierrez, Asturiano a
clergyman, Diego de Huelva, Estevanico the black, and Benitez; and
when they reached the main land, they found another, who was one of
our company, named Francisco de Leon. The thirteen together followed
along the coast. So soon as they had come over, my Indians informed
me of it, and that Hieronymo de Alvaniz[107] and Lope de Oviedo
remained on the island. But sickness prevented me from going with my
companions or even seeing them.

  [106] Diego Dorantes and Pedro de Valdivieso were cousins of
  Andrés Dorantes. See p. 69.

  [107] Called also Alaniz--the notary.

I was obliged to remain with the people belonging to the island[108]
more than a year, and because of the hard work they put upon me and
the harsh treatment, I resolved to flee from them and go to those of
Charruco, who inhabit the forests and country of the main, the life I
led being insupportable. Besides much other labor, I had to get out
roots from below the water, and from among the cane where they grew
in the ground. From this employment I had my fingers so worn that
did a straw but touch them they would bleed. Many of the canes are
broken, so they often tore my flesh, and I had to go in the midst of
them with only the clothing on I have mentioned.

  [108] The Capoques.

Accordingly, I put myself to contriving how I might get over to the
other Indians, among whom matters turned somewhat more favorably for
me. I set to trafficking, and strove to make my employment profitable
in the ways I could best contrive, and by that means I got food and
good treatment. The Indians would beg me to go from one quarter
to another for things of which they have need; for in consequence
of incessant hostilities, they cannot traverse the country, nor
make many exchanges. With my merchandise and trade I went into the
interior as far as I pleased, and travelled along the coast forty
or fifty leagues. The principal wares were cones and other pieces
of sea-snail, conchs used for cutting, and fruit like a bean of the
highest value among them, which they use as a medicine and employ in
their dances and festivities. Among other matters were sea-beads.
Such were what I carried into the interior; and in barter I got
and brought back skins, ochre with which they rub and color the
face, hard canes of which to make arrows, sinews, cement and flint
for the heads, and tassels of the hair of deer that by dyeing they
make red. This occupation suited me well; for the travel allowed me
liberty to go where I wished, I was not obliged to work, and was not
a slave. Wherever I went I received fair treatment, and the Indians
gave me to eat out of regard to my commodities. My leading object,
while journeying in this business, was to find out the way by which
I should go forward, and I became well known. The inhabitants were
pleased when they saw me, and I had brought them what they wanted;
and those who did not know me sought and desired the acquaintance,
for my reputation. The hardships that I underwent in this were long
to tell, as well of peril and privation as of storms and cold.
Oftentimes they overtook me alone and in the wilderness; but I came
forth from them all by the great mercy of God our Lord. Because of
them I avoided pursuing the business in winter, a season in which
the natives themselves retire to their huts and ranches, torpid and
incapable of exertion.

I was in this country nearly six years,[109] alone among the Indians,
and naked like them. The reason why I remained so long, was that I
might take with me the Christian, Lope de Oviedo, from the island;
Alaniz, his companion, who had been left with him by Alonzo del
Castillo, and by Andrés Dorantes, and the rest, died soon after
their departure; and to get the survivor out from there, I went over
to the island every year, and entreated him that we should go, in
the best way we could contrive, in quest of Christians. He put me
off every year, saying in the next coming we would start. At last I
got him off, crossing him over the bay, and over four rivers in the
coast,[110] as he could not swim. In this way we went on with some
Indians, until coming to a bay a league in width, and everywhere
deep. From the appearance we supposed it to be that which is called
Espiritu Sancto. We met some Indians on the other side of it, coming
to visit ours, who told us that beyond them were three men like us,
and gave their names. We asked for the others, and were told that
they were all dead of cold and hunger; that the Indians farther on,
of whom they were, for their diversion had killed Diego Dorantes,
Valdevieso, and Diego de Huelva,[111] because they left one house for
another; and that other Indians, their neighbors with whom Captain
Dorantes now was, had in consequence of a dream, killed Esquivel
and Mendez.[112] We asked how the living were situated, and they
answered that they were very ill used, the boys and some of the
Indian men being very idle, out of cruelty gave them many kicks,
cuffs, and blows with sticks; that such was the life they led.

  [109] From 1528 to 1533.

  [110] The identification of Malhado Island is a difficult
  problem. On general principles Galveston Island would seem to
  supply the conditions, in that it more likely would have been
  inhabited by two distinct tribes, perhaps representing distinct
  linguistic families, as it is known to have been occupied by
  Indians (the Karankawa) at a later period, besides having the
  smaller island or islands behind it. But its size and the other
  conditions are not in favor of the identification, for its
  length is at least twice as great as that of Malhado, as given
  in the narrative, and it is also more than two leagues from
  its nearest end to the first stream that the Spaniards crossed
  after departing from the island (Oviedo, p. 593). Mr. James
  Newton Baskett suggests that the so-called Velasco Island, next
  south of Galveston Island, better fulfils the requirements, as
  indeed it does topographically, except for the fact that it
  is really a peninsula. Aside from this, it possesses all the
  physical features,--length and width, distance from the first
  stream to the southward, and having the necessary island or
  islands (Mud and San Luis) off its northern shore. Accepting
  Mr. Baskett's determination, it is not difficult to account for
  the four streams, "very large and of rapid current," one of
  which flowed directly into the gulf. Following the journey of
  the Spaniards from the island, down the coast, in April, when
  the streams were swollen by flood, the first river was crossed
  in two leagues after they had reached the mainland. This was
  evidently Oyster Creek. Three leagues farther was another river,
  running so powerfully that one of the rafts was driven to sea
  more than a league. This fully agrees with the Brazos, which
  indeed is the only large stream of the landlocked Texas coast
  that flows directly into the gulf. Four leagues still farther
  they reached another river, where the boat of the comptroller and
  the commissary was found. From this fact it may be assumed that
  this stream also flowed into the open gulf, a condition satisfied
  by Caney Creek. The San Bernardo may well have escaped notice in
  travelling near the coast, from the fact that it flows into Cedar
  Lake. Five or six leagues more brought them to another large
  river (the Colorado), which the Indians carried them across in a
  canoe; and in four days they reached the bay of Espíritu Santo
  (La Vaca Bay?). "The bay was broad, nearly a league across. The
  side toward Pánuco [the south] forms a point running out nearly
  a quarter of a league, having on it some large white sand-stacks
  which it is reasonable to suppose can be descried from a distance
  at sea, and were consequently thought to mark the River Espíritu
  Santo." After two days of exertion they succeeded in crossing the
  bay in a broken canoe; and at the end of twelve leagues they came
  to a small bay not more than the breadth of a river. Here they
  found Figueroa, the only survivor of the four who had attempted
  to return to Mexico. The distance from Malhado Island is given as
  sixty leagues, consequently the journey from the Colorado to the
  bay now reached, which seems to be no other than San Antonio Bay,
  covered thirty-two to thirty-three leagues. Lofty sand dunes,
  such as those seen on what we regard as perhaps La Vaca Bay,
  occur on San Antonio Bay. See _United States Coast Survey Report_
  for 1859, p. 325. The western shore of the bay is a bluff or bank
  of twenty feet. "At one place on this side, a singular range of
  sand-hills, known as the Sand-mounds, approaches the shore. The
  highest peak is about seventy-five feet above the bay."

  [111] These were all members of Dorantes' party who visited
  Cabeza de Vaca when he was ill on the mainland. See p. 55.

  [112] Esquivel was one of the party under Enrriquez the
  comptroller; Mendez was one of the good swimmers who started from
  the island in the hope of reaching Pánuco.

We desired to be informed of the country ahead, and of the
subsistence: they said there was nothing to eat, and that it was thin
of people, who suffered of cold, having no skins or other things
to cover them. They told us also if we wished to see those three
Christians, two days from that time the Indians who had them would
come to eat walnuts a league from there on the margin of that river;
and that we might know what they told us of the ill usage to be
true, they slapped my companion and beat him with a stick, and I was
not left without my portion. Many times they threw lumps of mud at
us, and every day they put their arrows to our hearts, saying that
they were inclined to kill us in the way that they had destroyed
our friends. Lope Oviedo, my comrade, in fear said that he wished
to go back with the women of those who had crossed the bay with us,
the men having remained some distance behind. I contended strongly
against his returning, and urged my objections; but in no way could I
keep him. So he went back, and I remained alone with those savages.
They are called Quevenes,[113] and those with whom he returned,

  [113] _Guevenes_ in the edition of 1542 (Bandelier translation).
  There is reason to believe that these people may have been
  identical with the Cohani, who lived west of the Colorado River
  of Texas in the first quarter of the nineteenth century.

  [114] _Doguenes_ in ch. 26.

Chapter 17

_The coming of Indians with Andrés Dorantes, Castillo, and

Two days after Lope de Oviedo left, the Indians who had Alonzo del
Castillo and Andrés Dorantes, came to the place of which we had been
told, to eat walnuts. These are ground with a kind of small grain,
and this is the subsistence of the people two months in the year
without any other thing; but even the nuts they do not have every
season, as the tree produces in alternate years. The fruit is the
size of that in Galicia; the trees are very large and numerous.

An Indian told me of the arrival of the Christians, and that if I
wished to see them I must steal away and flee to the point of a wood
to which he directed me, and that as he and others, kindred of his,
should pass by there to visit those Indians, they would take me with
them to the spot where the Christians were. I determined to attempt
this and trust to them, as they spoke a language distinct from that
of the others. I did so, and the next day they left, and found me in
the place that had been pointed out, and accordingly took me with

When I arrived near their abode, Andrés Dorantes came out to see
who it could be, for the Indians had told him that a Christian was
coming. His astonishment was great when he saw me, as they had for
many a day considered me dead, and the natives had said that I was.
We gave many thanks at seeing ourselves together, and this was a day
to us of the greatest pleasure we had enjoyed in life. Having come
to where Castillo was, they inquired of me where I was going. I told
them my purpose was to reach the land of Christians, I being then in
search and pursuit of it. Andrés Dorantes said that for a long time
he had entreated Castillo and Estevanico to go forward; but that they
dared not venture, because they knew not how to swim, and greatly
dreaded the rivers and bays they should have to cross, there being
many in that country. Thus the Almighty had been pleased to preserve
me through many trials and diseases, conducting me in the end to the
fellowship of those who had abandoned me, that I might lead them over
the bays and rivers that obstructed our progress. They advised me on
no account to let the natives know or have a suspicion of my desire
to go on, else they would destroy me; and that for success it would
be necessary for me to remain quiet until the end of six months, when
comes the season in which these Indians go to another part of the
country to eat prickly pears.[115] People would arrive from parts
farther on, bringing bows to barter and for exchange, with whom,
after making our escape, we should be able to go on their return.
Having consented to this course, I remained. The prickly pear is the
size of a hen's egg, vermillion and black in color, and of agreeable
flavor. The natives live on it three months in the year, having
nothing beside.

  [115] The fruit of the _Opuntia_ cactus, of which there are about
  two hundred species.

I was given as a slave to an Indian, with whom was Dorantes. He
was blind of one eye, as were also his wife and sons, and likewise
another who was with him; so that of a fashion they were all blind.
These are called Marians;[116] Castillo was with another neighboring
people, called Yguases.[117]

  [116] _Mariames_ in ch. 26, and in the edition of 1542. These
  people are not identified. They were possibly of Karankawan or
  Coahuiltecan affinity, but there is no direct evidence of this.

  [117] _Iguaces_ in the edition of 1542.

While here the Christians related to me how they had left the
island of Malhado, and found the boat in which the comptroller and
the friars had sailed, bottom up on the seashore; and that going
along crossing the rivers, which are four,[118] very large and of
rapid current, their boats[119] were swept away and carried to sea,
where four of their number were drowned; that thus they proceeded
until they crossed the bay, getting over it with great difficulty,
and fifteen leagues thence they came to another. By the time they
reached this, they had lost two companions in the sixty leagues they
travelled, and those remaining were nearly dead, in all the while
having eaten nothing but crabs and rockweed.[120] Arrived at this
bay, they found Indians eating mulberries, who, when they saw them,
went to a cape opposite. While contriving and seeking for some means
to cross the bay, there came over to them an Indian, and a Christian
whom they recognized to be Figueroa, one of the four we had sent
forward from the island of Malhado. He there recounted how he and
his companions had got as far as that place, when two of them and
an Indian[121] died of cold and hunger, being exposed in the most
inclement of seasons. He and Mendez were taken by the Indians, and
while with them his associate fled, going as well as he could in the
direction of Pánuco, and the natives pursuing, put him to death.

  [118] See p. 57, note 2.

  [119] Rafts built for the purpose of crossing the streams.

  [120] _Yerba pedrera_: "Of which glass is made in Spain." Oviedo,
  p. 593. Doubtless kelp. It was burned and from the product glass
  and soap were formerly manufactured. It is still a source of
  manufacture of carbonate of soda and iodine.

  [121] Alvaro Fernandez, the Portuguese sailor and carpenter;
  Astudillo, the native of Zafra; and the Indian from the island of
  "Auia" (Cuba).

While living with these Indians, Figueroa learned from them that
there was a Christian among the Mariames, who had come over from the
opposite side, and he found him among the Quevenes. This was Hernando
de Esquivel, a native of Badajoz, who had come in company with the
commissary. From him Figueroa learned the end to which the Governor,
the comptroller, and the others had come. Esquivel told him that the
comptroller and the friars had upset their boat at the confluence
of the rivers,[122] and that the boat of the Governor, moving along
the coast, came with its people to land. Narváez went in the boat
until arriving at that great bay, where he took in the people, and,
crossing them to the opposite point, returned for the comptroller,
the friars, and the rest. And he related that being disembarked, the
Governor had recalled the commission the comptroller held as his
lieutenant, assigning the duties to a captain with him named Pantoja:
that Narváez stayed the night in his boat, not wishing to come on
shore, having a cockswain with him and a page who was unwell, there
being no water nor anything to eat on board; that at midnight, the
boat having only a stone for anchor, the north wind blowing strongly
took her unobserved to sea, and they never knew more of their

  [122] The Mississippi delta.

The others then went along the coast, and as they were arrested by a
wide extent of water, they made rafts with much labor, on which they
crossed to the opposite shore. Going on, they arrived at a point of
woods on the banks of the water where were Indians, who, as they saw
them coming, put their houses[123] into their canoes and went over to
the opposite side. The Christians, in consideration of the season,
for it was now the month of November, stopped at this wood, where
they found water and fuel, some crabs and shell-fish. They began, one
by one, to die of cold and hunger; and, more than this, Pantoja, who
was Lieutenant-Governor, used them severely, which Soto-Mayor (the
brother of Vasco Porcallo, of the island of Cuba), who had come with
the armament as camp-master, not being able to bear, had a struggle
with him, and, giving him a blow with a club, Pantoja was instantly

  [123] Doubtless consisting of mats fastened to a framework.

Thus did the number go on diminishing. The living dried the flesh of
them that died; and the last that died was Soto-Mayor, when Esquivel
preserved his flesh, and, feeding on it, sustained existence until
the first of March, when an Indian of those that had fled, coming to
see if they were alive, took Esquivel with him. While he was in the
possession of the native, Figueroa saw him, and learned all that had
been related. He besought Esquivel to come with him, that together
they might pursue the way to Pánuco; to which Esquivel would not
consent, saying that he had understood from the friars that Pánuco
had been left behind:[124] so he remained there and Figueroa went to
the coast where he was accustomed to live.

  [124] That is, he supposed that he was then somewhere on the
  coast of central Mexico.

Chapter 18

_The story Figueroa recounted from Esquivel._

This account was all given by Figueroa, according to the relation he
received from Esquivel, and from him through the others it came to
me; whence may be seen and understood the fate of the armament, and
the individual fortunes of the greater part of the people. Figueroa
said, moreover, that if the Christians should at any time go in that
direction, it were possible they might see Esquivel, for he knew that
he had fled from the Indian with whom he was, to the Mariames, who
were neighbors. After Figueroa had finished telling the story, he and
the Asturian made an attempt to go to other Indians farther on; but
as soon as they who had the Christians discovered it, they followed,
and beating them severely, stripped the Asturian and shot an arrow
through his arm. They finally escaped by flight.

The other Christians remained, and prevailed on the Indians to
receive them as slaves. In their service they were abused as slaves
never were, nor men in any condition have ever been. Not content with
frequently buffeting them, striking them with sticks, and pulling
out their beard for amusement, they killed three of the six for only
going from one house to another. These were the persons I have named
before: Diego Dorantes, Valdivieso, and Diego de Huelva: and the
three that remained looked forward to the same fate. Not to endure
this life, Andrés Dorantes fled, and passed to the Mariames, the
people among whom Esquivel tarried. They told him that having had
Esquivel there, he wished to run away because a woman dreamed that a
son of hers would kill him; and that they followed after, and slew
him. They showed Dorantes his sword, beads, and book, with other
things that had been his.[125]

  [125] See the extracts from the letter of the survivors
  (preserved by Oviedo) appended to this chapter.

Thus in obedience to their custom they take life, destroying even
their male children on account of dreams. They cast away their
daughters at birth, and cause them to be eaten by dogs. The reason of
their doing this, as they state, is because all the nations of the
country are their foes; and as they have unceasing war with them,
if they were to marry away their daughters, they would so greatly
multiply their enemies that they must be overcome and made slaves;
thus they prefer to destroy all, rather than that from them should
come a single enemy. We asked why they did not themselves marry
them; and they said it would be a disgustful thing to marry among
relatives, and far better to kill than to give them either to their
kindred or to their foes.

This is likewise the practice of their neighbors the Yguazes, but of
no other people of that country. When the men would marry, they buy
the women of their enemies: the price paid for a wife is a bow, the
best that can be got, with two arrows: if it happens that the suitor
should have no bow, then a net a fathom in length and another in
breadth. They kill their male children, and buy those of strangers.
The marriage state continues no longer than while the parties are
satisfied, and they separate for the slightest cause. Dorantes was
among this people, and after a few days escaped.

Castillo and Estevanico went inland to the Yguazes. This people are
universally good archers and of a fine symmetry, although not so
large as those we left. They have a nipple and a lip bored.[126]
Their support is principally roots, of two or three kinds, and they
look for them over the face of all the country. The food is poor
and gripes the persons who eat it. The roots require roasting two
days: many are very bitter, and withal difficult to be dug. They are
sought the distance of two or three leagues, and so great is the
want these people experience, that they cannot get through the year
without them. Occasionally they kill deer, and at times take fish;
but the quantity is so small and the famine so great, that they eat
spiders and the eggs of ants, worms, lizards, salamanders, snakes,
and vipers that kill whom they strike; and they eat earth and wood,
and all that there is, the dung of deer, and other things that I omit
to mention; and I honestly believe that were there stones in that
land they would eat them. They save the bones of the fishes they
consume, of snakes and other animals, that they may afterwards beat
them together and eat the powder. The men bear no burthens, nor carry
anything of weight; such are borne by women and old men who are of
the least esteem. They have not so great love for their children as
those we have before spoken of.[127] Some among them are accustomed
to sin against nature. The women work very hard, and do a great deal;
of the twenty-four hours they have only six of repose; the rest of
the night they pass in heating the ovens to bake those roots they
eat. At daybreak they begin to dig them, to bring wood and water to
their houses and get in readiness other things that may be necessary.
The majority of the people are great thieves; for though they are
free to divide with each other, on turning the head, even a son or a
father will take what he can. They are great liars, and also great
drunkards, which they became from the use of a certain liquor.[128]

  [126] Evidently for the insertion of canes, as was the custom of
  the Capoques and Hans of the island of Malhado.

  [127] The Capoques of Malhado Island.

  [128] It is not improbable that the liquor was made from the
  peyote, or mescal button, still used by the Kiowa, Comanche, and
  others to produce stupefaction. See Mooney in _Seventeenth Report
  of the Bureau of American Ethnology_, 1898.

These Indians are so accustomed to running, that without rest or
fatigue they follow a deer from morning to night. In this way they
kill many. They pursue them until tired down, and sometimes overtake
them in the race. Their houses are of matting, placed upon four
hoops. They carry them on the back, and remove every two or three
days in search of food. Nothing is planted for support. They are a
merry people, considering the hunger they suffer; for they never
cease, notwithstanding, to observe their festivities and _areytos_.
To them the happiest part of the year is the season of eating prickly
pears; they have hunger then no longer, pass all the time in dancing,
and eat day and night. While these last, they squeeze out the juice,
open and set them to dry, and when dry they are put in hampers like
figs. These they keep to eat on their way back. The peel is beaten to

It occurred to us many times while we were among this people, and
there was no food, to be three or four days without eating, when
they, to revive our spirits, would tell us not to be sad, that soon
there would be prickly pears when we should eat a plenty and drink
of the juice, when our bellies would be very big and we should be
content and joyful, having no hunger. From the time they first told
us this, to that at which the earliest were ripe enough to be eaten,
was an interval of five or six months; so having tarried until the
lapse of this period, and the season had come, we went to eat the

We found mosquitos of three sorts, and all of them abundant in every
part of the country. They poison and inflame, and during the greater
part of the summer gave us great annoyance. As a protection we made
fires, encircling the people with them, burning rotten and wet wood
to produce smoke without flame. The remedy brought another trouble,
and the night long we did little else than shed tears from the smoke
that came into our eyes, besides feeling intense heat from the many
fires, and if at any time we went out for repose to the seaside and
fell asleep, we were reminded with blows to make up the fires. The
Indians of the interior have a different method, as intolerable, and
worse even than the one I have spoken of, which is to go with brands
in the hand firing the plains and forests within their reach, that
the mosquitos may fly away, and at the same time to drive out lizards
and other like things from the earth for them to eat.

They are accustomed also to kill deer by encircling them with fires.
The pasturage is taken from the cattle by burning, that necessity may
drive them to seek it in places where it is desired they should go.
They encamp only where there are wood and water; and sometimes all
carry loads of these when they go to hunt deer, which are usually
found where neither is to be got. On the day of their arrival, they
kill the deer and other animals which they can, and consume all the
water and all the wood in cooking and on the fires they make to
relieve them of mosquitos. They remain the next day to get something
to sustain them on their return; and when they go, such is their
state from those insects that they appear to have the affliction
of holy Lazarus. In this way do they appease their hunger, two or
three times in the year, at the cost I have mentioned. From my own
experience, I can state there is no torment known in this world that
can equal it.

Inland are many deer, birds, and beasts other than those I have
spoken of. Cattle[129] come as far as here. Three times I have seen
them and eaten of their meat. I think they are about the size of
those in Spain. They have small horns like the cows of Morocco; the
hair is very long and flocky like the merino's. Some are tawny,
others black. To my judgment the flesh is finer and fatter than that
of this country. Of the skins of those not full grown the Indians
make blankets, and of the larger they make shoes and bucklers. They
come as far as the sea-coast of Florida, from a northerly direction,
ranging through a tract of more than four hundred leagues; and
throughout the whole region over which they run, the people who
inhabit near, descend and live upon them, distributing a vast many
hides into the interior country.

  [129] This is the first printed reference to the bison.

       *       *       *       *       *

[Buckingham Smith introduces the following translation from the
_Letter_ (Oviedo, pp. 594-598) as throwing important light on the
occurrences related in the foregoing chapter. F. W. H.]

     "Thus ended the account of Figueroa, without his being able
     to add more to it, than that Esquivel was about there in the
     possession of some natives, and they might see him in a little
     while; but a month afterwards, it was known that he no longer
     lived, for having gone from the natives, they had followed after
     and put him to death. Figueroa tarried a few moments, long
     enough to relate the sad news. The Indian who brought him would
     not permit him to remain. Asturiano, the clergyman, and a young
     man being the only ones who could swim, accompanied them for
     the purpose of returning with fish which they were promised, as
     likewise that they should be brought back over that bay; but
     when the Indians found them at their houses, they would neither
     bring them nor let them return; on the contrary, they put their
     houses into their canoes and took the two Christians with them,
     saying that they would soon come back....

     "The eight companions remained that day to appease their hunger,
     and the next morning they saw two Indians of a rancho coming
     over the water to place their dwellings on the hither side. The
     purpose was to live on blackberries that grow in some places
     along the coast, which they seek at a season they know full
     well, and although precarious, they promise a food that supports
     life. They called to the Indians, who came as to persons they
     thought lightly of, taking some part of what they possessed
     almost by force. The Christians besought the natives to set them
     over, which they did in a canoe, taking them to their houses
     near by, and at dark gave them a small quantity of fish. They
     went out the next day for more, and returned at night, giving
     them a part of what they had caught. The day following they
     moved off with the Christians and never after were the two seen
     whom the other Indians had taken away.

     "At last the natives, weary of seeking food for their guests,
     turned away five, that they should go to some Indians who they
     said were to be found in another bay, six leagues farther on.
     Alonzo del Castillo went there with Pedro de Valdivieso, cousin
     of Andrés Dorantes, and another, Diego de Huelva, where they
     remained a long time; the two others went down near the coast,
     seeking relief, where they died, as Dorantes states, who found
     the bodies, one of whom, Diego Dorantes, was his cousin. The two
     hidalgos and the negro remaining in that rancho, sufficed for
     the use of the natives, to bring back-loads of wood and water as
     slaves. After three or four days however, these likewise were
     turned off, when for some time they wandered about lost, without
     hope of relief; and going naked among marshes, having been
     previously despoiled one night of their clothing, they came upon
     those dead.

     "They continued the route until they found some Indians, with
     whom Andrés Dorantes remained. A cousin of his, one of the three
     who had gone on to the bay where they stopped, came over from
     the opposite shore, and told him that the swimmers who went
     from them had passed in that direction, having their clothes
     taken from them and they much bruised about the head with sticks
     because they would not remain; still though beaten and stripped,
     they had gone on for the sake of the oath they had taken, never
     to stop even if death stood in the path, before coming to a
     country of Christians. Dorantes states that he saw in the rancho
     where he was, the clothes belonging to the clergyman and to one
     of the swimmers, with a breviary or prayer book. Valdivieso
     returned, and a couple of days afterwards was killed, because he
     wished to flee, and likewise in a little time Diego de Huelva,
     because he forsook one lodge-house for another.

     "The Christians were there made slaves, forced with more cruelty
     to serve than the Moor would have used. Besides going stark
     naked and bare-footed over the coast burning in summer like
     fire, their continual occupation was bringing wood and water on
     the back, or whatever the Indians needed, and dragging canoes
     over inundated grounds in hot weather.

     "These natives eat nothing the year round but fish, and of
     that not much. They experience far less hunger however, than
     the inhabitants inland among whom the Spaniards afterwards
     lived. The food often fails, causing frequent removals, or
     otherwise they starve.... They have finger nails that for any
     ordinary purpose are knives, and are their principal arms among

     "The Spaniards lived here fourteen months, from May to the May
     ensuing of the year 1530, and to the middle of the month of
     August, when Andrés Dorantes, being at a point that appeared
     most favorable for going, commended himself to God, and went off
     at mid-day.... Castillo tarried among that hard people a year
     and a half later, until an opportunity presented for starting;
     but on arriving he found only the negro; Dorantes, finding these
     Indians unbearably cruel, had gone back more than twenty leagues
     to a river near the bay of Espíritu Sancto, among those who had
     killed Esquivel, the solitary one that had escaped from the
     boats of the Governor and Alonzo Enrriques, slain, as they were
     told, because a woman had dreamed some absurdity. The people of
     this country have belief in dreams, their only superstition. On
     account of them they will even kill their children; and this
     hidalgo Dorantes states, that in the course of four years he
     had been a witness to the killing or burying alive of eleven or
     twelve young males, and rarely do they let a girl live....

     "Andrés Dorantes passed ten months among this people, enduring
     much privation with continual labor, and in fear of being

Chapter 19

_Our separation by the Indians._

When the six months were over, I had to spend with the Christians to
put in execution the plan we had concerted, the Indians went after
prickly pears, the place at which they grew being thirty leagues
off;[130] and when we approached the point of flight, those among
whom we were, quarrelled about a woman. After striking with fists,
beating with sticks and bruising heads in great anger, each took
his lodge and went his way, whence it became necessary that the
Christians should also separate, and in no way could we come together
until another year.

  [130] In an article on the wanderings of Cabeza de Vaca, by
  Ponton and McFarland (_Texas Historical Association Quarterly_,
  I. 176, map, 1898), the northern limit of the cactus belt is
  placed on a line extending irregularly westward from the mouth of
  the Colorado River of Texas.

In this time I passed a hard life, caused as much by hunger as ill
usage. Three times I was obliged to run from my masters, and each
time they went in pursuit and endeavored to slay me; but God our Lord
in his mercy chose to protect and preserve me; and when the season
of prickly pears returned, we again came together in the same place.
After we had arranged our escape, and appointed a time, that very day
the Indians separated and all went back. I told my comrades I would
wait for them among the prickly-pear plants until the moon should be
full. This day was the first of September,[131] and the first of the
moon; and I said that if in this time they did not come as we had
agreed, I would leave and go alone. So we parted, each going with his
Indians. I remained with mine until the thirteenth day of the moon,
having determined to flee to others when it should be full.

  [131] 1534. Cabeza de Vaca had evidently lost his reckoning
  (perhaps during his illness), as the date of the new moon in this
  year was September 8.

At this time Andrés Dorantes arrived with Estevanico and informed
me that they had left Castillo with other Indians near by, called
Lanegados;[132] that they had encountered great obstacles and
wandered about lost; that the next day the Indians, among whom we
were, would move to where Castillo was, and were going to unite with
those who held him and become friends, having been at war until then,
and that in this way we should recover Castillo.

  [132] _Anagados_ in the 1542 edition. The tribe cannot be
  identified, although it may be well known under some other name.
  _Anegado_ is Spanish for "overflowed," "inundated," but it is by
  no means certain that the Spaniards applied this name to them.
  Buckingham Smith suggests that they may have been the Nacadoch
  (Nacogdoches), but this does not seem probable, as the latter
  tribe lived very far to the northeast of the point where the
  Spaniards now were, that is, some thirty leagues inland from the
  coast between latitude 28° and 29°. The name sounds more like
  _N[)a]dáko_, the designation which the Anadarcos give themselves.
  This Caddoan tribe, when first known, lived high up on the Brazos
  and the Trinity, but in 1812 their village was on the Sabine.
  They are now incorporated with the Caddo in Oklahoma.

We had thirst all the time we ate the pears, which we quenched with
their juice. We caught it in a hole made in the earth, and when it
was full we drank until satisfied. It is sweet, and the color of
must. In this manner they collect it for lack of vessels. There are
many kinds of prickly pears, among them some very good, although they
all appeared to me to be so, hunger never having given me leisure to
choose, nor to reflect upon which were the best.

Nearly all these people drink rain-water, which lies about in
spots. Although there are rivers, as the Indians never have fixed
habitations, there are no familiar or known places for getting water.
Throughout the country are extensive and beautiful plains with good
pasturage; and I think it would be a very fruitful region were it
worked and inhabited by civilized men. We nowhere saw mountains.

These Indians told us that there was another people next in advance
of us, called Camones,[133] living towards the coast, and that they
had killed the people who came in the boat of Peñalosa and Tellez,
who arrived so feeble that even while being slain they could offer no
resistance, and were all destroyed. We were shown their clothes and
arms, and were told that the boat lay there stranded. This, the fifth
boat, had remained till then unaccounted for. We have already stated
how the boat of the Governor had been carried out to sea, and that of
the comptroller and the friars had been cast away on the coast, of
which Esquevel[134] narrated the fate of the men. We have once told
how the two boats in which Castillo, I, and Dorantes came, foundered
near the Island of Malhado.

  [133] _Camoles_ in ch. 26. They evidently lived toward the
  northeast, north of Malhado Island; unidentified.

  [134] Esquivel.

Chapter 20

_Of our escape._

The second day after we had moved, we commended ourselves to God and
set forth with speed, trusting, for all the lateness of the season
and that the prickly pears were about ending, with the mast which
remained in the woods [field], we might still be enabled to travel
over a large territory. Hurrying on that day in great dread lest
the Indians should overtake us, we saw some smokes, and going in
the direction of them we arrived there after vespers, and found an
Indian. He ran as he discovered us coming, not being willing to wait
for us. We sent the negro[135] after him, when he stopped, seeing him
alone. The negro told him we were seeking the people who made those
fires. He answered that their houses were near by, and he would guide
us to them. So we followed him. He ran to make known our approach,
and at sunset we saw the houses. Before our arrival, at the distance
of two crossbow shots from them, we found four Indians, who waited
for us and received us well. We said in the language of the Mariames,
that we were coming to look for them. They were evidently pleased
with our company, and took us to their dwellings. Dorantes and the
negro were lodged in the house of a physician,[136] Castillo and
myself in that of another.

  [135] Estévanico.

  [136] A shaman, or "medicine-man."

These people speak a different language, and are called
Avavares.[137] They are the same that carried bows to those with whom
we formerly lived,[138] going to traffic with them, and although
they are of a different nation and tongue, they understand the other
language. They arrived that day with their lodges, at the place where
we found them. The community directly brought us a great many prickly
pears, having heard of us before, of our cures, and of the wonders
our Lord worked by us, which, although there had been no others,
were adequate to open ways for us through a country poor like this,
to afford us people where oftentimes there are none, and to lead us
through immediate dangers, not permitting us to be killed, sustaining
us under great want, and putting into those nations the heart of
kindness, as we shall relate hereafter.

  [137] _Chavavares_ in ch. 26, in which it is said that they
  joined the Mariames. Their affinity is unknown. The statement
  that the Spaniards are again among these tribes suggests that
  they were now pursuing a northerly direction.

  [138] The Mariames. See note to ch. 26, respecting these tribes.

Chapter 21

_Our cure of some of the afflicted._

That same night of our arrival, some Indians came to Castillo and
told him that they had great pain in the head, begging him to cure
them. After he made over them the sign of the cross, and commended
them to God, they instantly said that all the pain had left, and went
to their houses bringing us prickly pears, with a piece of venison,
a thing to us little known. As the report of Castillo's performances
spread, many came to us that night sick, that we should heal them,
each bringing a piece of venison, until the quantity became so great
we knew not where to dispose of it. We gave many thanks to God, for
every day went on increasing his compassion and his gifts. After
the sick were attended to, they began to dance and sing, making
themselves festive, until sunrise; and because of our arrival, the
rejoicing was continued for three days.

When these were ended, we asked the Indians about the country farther
on, the people we should find in it, and of the subsistence there.
They answered us, that throughout all the region prickly-pear plants
abounded; but the fruit was now gathered and all the people had gone
back to their houses. They said the country was very cold, and there
were few skins. Reflecting on this, and that it was already winter,
we resolved to pass the season with these Indians.

Five days after our arrival, all the Indians went off, taking us with
them to gather more prickly pears, where there were other peoples
speaking different tongues. After walking five days in great hunger,
since on the way was no manner of fruit, we came to a river[139]
and put up our houses. We then went to seek the product of certain
trees, which is like peas. As there are no paths in the country, I
was detained some time. The others returned, and coming to look for
them in the dark I got lost. Thank God I found a burning tree, and
in the warmth of it I passed the cold of that night. In the morning,
loading myself with sticks, and taking two brands with me, I returned
to seek them. In this manner I wandered five days, ever with my fire
and load; for if the wood had failed me where none could be found,
as many parts are without any, though I might have sought sticks
elsewhere, there would have been no fire to kindle them. This was all
the protection I had against cold, while walking naked as I was born.
Going to the low woods near the rivers, I prepared myself for the
night, stopping in them before sunset. I made a hole in the ground
and threw in fuel which the trees abundantly afforded, collected in
good quantity from those that were fallen and dry. About the whole
I made four fires, in the form of a cross, which I watched and made
up from time to time. I also gathered some bundles of the coarse
straw that there abounds, with which I covered myself in the hole. In
this way I was sheltered at night from cold. On one occasion while
I slept, the fire fell upon the straw, when it began to blaze so
rapidly that notwithstanding the haste I made to get out of it, I
carried some marks on my hair of the danger to which I was exposed.
All this while I tasted not a mouthful, nor did I find anything
I could eat. My feet were bare and bled a good deal. Through the
mercy of God, the wind did not blow from the north in all this time,
otherwise I should have died.

  [139] This may have been the San Antonio or the San

At the end of the fifth day I arrived on the margin of a river,[140]
where I found the Indians, who with the Christians, had considered me
dead, supposing that I had been stung by a viper. All were rejoiced
to see me, and most so were my companions. They said that up to that
time they had struggled with great hunger, which was the cause of
their not having sought me. At night, all gave me of their prickly
pears, and the next morning we set out for a place where they were
in large quantity, with which we satisfied our great craving, the
Christians rendering thanks to our Lord that He had ever given us His

  [140] Presumably the river last mentioned, where they had erected
  their shelters.

Chapter 22

_The coming of other sick to us the next day._

The next day morning, many Indians came, and brought five persons
who had cramps and were very unwell. They came that Castillo might
cure them. Each offered his bow and arrows, which Castillo received.
At sunset he blessed them, commending them to God our Lord, and we
all prayed to Him the best we could to send health; for that He knew
there was no other means, than through Him, by which this people
would aid us, so we could come forth from this unhappy existence.
He bestowed it so mercifully, that, the morning having come, all
got up well and sound, and were as strong as though they never had
a disorder. It caused great admiration, and inclined us to render
many thanks to God our Lord, whose goodness we now clearly beheld,
giving us firm hopes that He would liberate and bring us to where we
might serve Him. For myself I can say that I ever had trust in His
providence that He would lead me out from that captivity, and thus I
always spoke of it to my companions.

The Indians having gone and taken their friends with them in health,
we departed for a place at which others were eating prickly pears.
These people are called Cuthalchuches[141] and Malicones, who speak
different tongues. Adjoining them were others called Coayos and
Susolas, who were on the opposite side, others called Atayos,[142]
who were at war with the Susolas, exchanging arrow shots daily. As
through all the country they talked only of the wonders which God our
Lord worked through us, persons came from many parts to seek us that
we might cure them. At the end of the second day after our arrival,
some of the Susolas came to us and besought Castillo that he would go
to cure one wounded and others sick, and they said that among them
was one very near his end. Castillo was a timid practitioner, most
so in serious and dangerous cases, believing that his sins would
weigh, and some day hinder him in performing cures. The Indians told
me to go and heal them, as they liked me; they remembered that I
had ministered to them in the walnut grove when they gave us nuts
and skins, which occurred when I first joined the Christians. So I
had to go with them, and Dorantes accompanied me with Estevanico.
Coming near their huts, I perceived that the sick man we went to heal
was dead. Many persons were around him weeping, and his house was
prostrate, a sign that the one who dwelt in it is no more.[143] When
I arrived I found his eyes rolled up, and the pulse gone, he having
all the appearances of death, as they seemed to me and as Dorantes
said. I removed a mat with which he was covered, and supplicated our
Lord as fervently as I could, that He would be pleased to give health
to him, and to the rest that might have need of it. After he had been
blessed and breathed upon many times, they brought me his bow, and
gave me a basket of pounded prickly pears.

  [141] Cultalchulches in ch. 26 (q. v.), and in the edition of

  [142] These were possibly the Adai, or Adaize, although their
  country was in northeastern Texas, about Red River and the
  Sabine; nevertheless they may have wandered very far during the
  prickly-pear season. There is evidence that in 1792, fourteen
  families of the Adai migrated to a region south of San Antonio de
  Béjar, where they were merged with the tribes living thereabout.
  The main body, although greatly reduced, did not leave their old
  home until the nineteenth century, when the remnant, who had been
  missionized, were incorporated with their kindred the Caddo.

  [143] It is not uncommon for all the possessions of an Indian,
  including his dwelling, to be destroyed at the time of his death.
  In recent times this custom has had the tendency, as among the
  Navahos, for example, to cause them to adhere to their simple
  aboriginal form of dwellings instead of to go to the trouble of
  erecting substantial houses that might have to be demolished.

The natives took me to cure many others who were sick of a stupor,
and presented me two more baskets of prickly pears, which I gave to
the Indians who accompanied us. We then went back to our lodgings.
Those to whom we gave the fruit tarried, and returned at night to
their houses, reporting that he who had been dead and for whom I
wrought before them, had got up whole and walked, had eaten and
spoken with them and that all to whom I had ministered were well and
much pleased. This caused great wonder and fear, and throughout the
land the people talked of nothing else. All to whom the fame of it
reached, came to seek us that we should cure them and bless their

When the Cuthalchuches, who were in company with our Indians, were
about to return to their own country, they left us all the prickly
pears they had, without keeping one: they gave us flints of very
high value there, a palm and a half in length, with which they cut.
They begged that we would remember them and pray to God that they
might always be well, and we promised to do so. They left, the most
satisfied beings in the world, having given us the best of all they

We remained with the Avavares eight months, reckoned by the number
of moons. In all this time people came to seek us from many parts,
and they said that most truly we were children of the sun. Dorantes
and the negro to this time had not attempted to practise; but because
of the great solicitation made by those coming from different parts
to find us, we all became physicians, although in being venturous
and bold to attempt the performance of any cure, I was the most
remarkable. No one whom we treated, but told us he was left well;
and so great was the confidence that they would become healed if we
administered to them, they even believed that whilst we remained none
of them could die. These and the rest of the people behind, related
an extraordinary circumstance, and by the way they counted, there
appeared to be fifteen or sixteen years since it occurred.

They said that a man wandered through the country whom they called
Badthing; he was small of body and wore beard, and they never
distinctly saw his features. When he came to the house where they
lived, their hair stood up and they trembled. Presently a blazing
torch shone at the door, when he entered and seized whom he chose,
and giving him three great gashes in the side with a very sharp
flint, the width of the hand and two palms in length, he put his
hand through them, drawing forth the entrails, from one of which
he would cut off a portion more or less, the length of a palm, and
throw it on the embers. Then he would give three gashes to an arm,
the second cut on the inside of an elbow, and would sever the limb.
A little after this, he would begin to unite it, and putting his
hands on the wounds, these would instantly become healed. They said
that frequently in the dance he appeared among them, sometimes in the
dress of a woman, at others in that of a man; that when it pleased
him he would take a buhío,[144] or house, and lifting it high, after
a little he would come down with it in a heavy fall. They also stated
that many times they offered him victuals, but that he never ate:
they asked him whence he came and where was his abiding place, and
he showed them a fissure in the earth and said that his house was
there below. These things they told us of, we much laughed at and
ridiculed; and they seeing our incredulity, brought to us many of
those they said he had seized; and we saw the marks of the gashes
made in the places according to the manner they had described. We
told them he was an evil one, and in the best way we could, gave
them to understand, that if they would believe in God our Lord, and
become Christians like us, they need have no fear of him, nor would
he dare to come and inflict those injuries, and they might be certain
he would not venture to appear while we remained in the land. At this
they were delighted and lost much of their dread. They told us that
they had seen the Asturian and Figueroa with people farther along the
coast, whom we had called those of the figs.[145]

  [144] See page 19, note 5.

  [145] See chap. 26.

They are all ignorant of time, either by the sun or moon, nor do they
reckon by the month or year; they better know and understand the
differences of the seasons, when the fruits come to ripen, where the
fish resort,[146] and the position of the stars, at which they are
ready and practised. By these we were ever well treated. We dug our
own food and brought our loads of wood and water. Their houses and
also the things we ate, are like those of the nation from which we
came, but they suffer far greater want, having neither maize, acorns,
nor nuts. We always went naked like them, and covered ourselves at
night with deer-skins.

  [146] Buckingham Smith prefers this meaning for _i en tiempo que
  muere el Pescado_ to "by the time when the fish die," or "at
  times at which the fishes die."

Of the eight months we were among this people, six we supported in
great want, for fish are not to be found where they are. At the
expiration of the time, the prickly pears began to ripen,[147] and
I and the negro went, without these Indians knowing it, to others
farther on, a day's journey distant, called Maliacones.[148] At
the end of three days, I sent him to bring Castillo and Dorantes,
and they having arrived, we all set out with the Indians who
were going to get the small fruit of certain trees on which they
support themselves ten or twelve days whilst the prickly pears are
maturing. They joined others called Arbadaos,[149] whom we found to
be very weak, lank, and swollen, so much so as to cause us great
astonishment. We told those with whom we came, that we wished to stop
with these people, at which they showed regret and went back by the
way they came; so we remained in the field near the houses of the
Indians, which when they observed, after talking among themselves
they came up together, and each of them taking one of us by the hand,
led us to their dwellings. Among them we underwent greater hunger
than with the others; we ate daily not more than two handfuls of the
prickly pears, which were green and so milky they burned our mouths.
As there was lack of water, those who ate suffered great thirst. In
our extreme want we bought two dogs, giving in exchange some nets,
with other things, and a skin I used to cover myself.

  [147] That is, until the summer of 1535.

  [148] See ch. 27: "By the coast live those called Quitoks, and in
  front inward on the main are the Chavavares, to whom adjoin the
  Maliacones, the Cultalchulches and others called Susolas and the
  Comos." This would seem to indicate that he was journeying in a
  generally northward or north-westward direction.

  [149] The name suggests the Bidai, a Caddoan tribe that lived at
  a later period west of the Trinity, about latitude 31°, but this
  locality does not agree with the narrative.

I have already stated that throughout all this country we went naked,
and as we were unaccustomed to being so, twice a year we cast our
skins like serpents. The sun and air produced great sores on our
breasts and shoulders, giving us sharp pain; and the large loads we
had, being very heavy, caused the cords to cut into our arms. The
country is so broken and thickset, that often after getting our wood
in the forests, the blood flowed from us in many places, caused by
the obstruction of thorns and shrubs that tore our flesh wherever
we went. At times, when my turn came to get wood, after it had cost
me much blood, I could not bring it out either on my back or by
dragging. In these labors my only solace and relief were in thinking
of the sufferings of our Redeemer, Jesus Christ, and in the blood
He shed for me, in considering how much greater must have been the
torment He sustained from the thorns, than that I there received.

I bartered with these Indians in combs that I made for them and
in bows, arrows, and nets. We made mats, which are their houses,
that they have great necessity for; and although they know how to
make them, they wish to give their full time to getting food, since
when otherwise employed they are pinched with hunger. Sometimes the
Indians would set me to scraping and softening skins; and the days of
my greatest prosperity there, were those in which they gave me skins
to dress. I would scrape them a very great deal and eat the scraps,
which would sustain me two or three days. When it happened among
these people, as it had likewise among others whom we left behind,
that a piece of meat was given us, we ate it raw; for if we had put
it to roast, the first native that should come along would have taken
it off and devoured it; and it appeared to us not well to expose it
to this risk; besides we were in such condition it would have given
us pain to eat it roasted, and we could not have digested it so well
as raw. Such was the life we spent there; and the meagre subsistence
we earned by the matters of traffic which were the work of our hands.

Chapter 23

_Of our departure after having eaten the dogs._

After eating the dogs, it seemed to us we had some strength to go
forward; and so commending ourselves to God our Lord, that He would
guide us, we took our leave of the Indians. They showed us the way
to others, near by, who spoke their language. While on our journey,
rain fell, and we travelled the day in wet. We lost our way and went
to stop in an extensive wood. We pulled many leaves of the prickly
pear, which we put at night in an oven we made, and giving them much
heat, by the morning they were in readiness. After eating, we put
ourselves under the care of the Almighty and started. We discovered
the way we had lost. Having passed the wood, we found other houses,
and coming up to them, we saw two women with some boys walking in the
forest, who were frightened at the sight of us and fled, running into
the woods to call the men. These arriving, stopped behind trees to
look at us. We called to them, and they came up with much timidity.
After some conversation they told us that food was very scarce with
them; that near by were many houses of their people to which they
would guide us. We came at night where were fifty dwellings. The
inhabitants were astonished at our appearance, showing much fear.
After becoming somewhat accustomed to us, they reached their hands to
our faces and bodies, and passed them in like manner over their own.

We stayed there that night, and in the morning the Indians brought us
their sick, beseeching us that we would bless them. They gave us of
what they had to eat, the leaves of the prickly pear and the green
fruit roasted. As they did this with kindness and good will, and were
happy to be without anything to eat, that they might have food to
give us, we tarried some days. While there, others came from beyond,
and when they were about to depart, we told our entertainers that we
wished to go with those people. They felt much uneasiness at this,
and pressed us warmly to stay: however, we took our leave in the
midst of their weeping, for our departure weighed heavily upon them.

Chapter 24

_Customs of the Indians of that country._

From the Island of Malhado to this land, all the Indians whom we saw
have the custom from the time in which their wives find themselves
pregnant, of not sleeping with them until two years after they have
given birth. The children are suckled until the age of twelve years,
when they are old enough to get support for themselves. We asked
why they reared them in this manner; and they said because of the
great poverty of the land, it happened many times, as we witnessed,
that they were two or three days without eating, sometimes four, and
consequently, in seasons of scarcity, the children were allowed to
suckle, that they might not famish; otherwise those who lived would
be delicate, having little strength.

If any one chance to fall sick in the desert, and cannot keep up
with the rest, the Indians leave him to perish, unless it be a son
or a brother; him they will assist, even to carrying on their back.
It is common among them all to leave their wives when there is no
conformity, and directly they connect themselves with whom they
please. This is the course of the men who are childless; those who
have children remain with their wives and never abandon them. When
they dispute and quarrel in their towns, they strike each other with
the fists, fighting until exhausted, and then separate. Sometimes
they are parted by the women going between them; the men never
interfere. For no disaffection that arises do they resort to bows and
arrows. After they have fought, or had out their dispute, they take
their dwellings and go into the woods, living apart from each other
until their heat has subsided. When no longer offended and their
anger is gone, they return. From that time they are friends as if
nothing had happened; nor is it necessary that any one should mend
their friendships, as they in this way again unite them. If those
that quarrel are single, they go to some neighboring people, and
although these should be enemies, they receive them well and welcome
them warmly, giving them so largely of what they have, that when
their animosity cools, and they return to their town, they go rich.

They are all warlike, and have as much strategy for protecting
themselves against enemies as they could have were they reared in
Italy in continual feuds. When they are in a part of the country
where their enemies may attack them, they place their houses on the
skirt of a wood, the thickest and most tangled they can find, and
near it make a ditch in which they sleep. The warriors are covered
by small pieces of stick through which are loop-holes; these hide
them and present so false an appearance, that if come upon they
are not discovered. They open a very narrow way, entering into the
midst of the wood, where a spot is prepared on which the women and
children sleep. When night comes they kindle fires in their lodges,
that should spies be about, they may think to find them there; and
before daybreak they again light those fires. If the enemy comes to
assault the houses, they who are in the ditch make a sally; and from
their trenches do much injury without those who are outside seeing
or being able to find them. When there is no wood in which they can
take shelter in this way, and make their ambuscades, they settle on
open ground at a place they select, which they invest with trenches
covered with broken sticks, having apertures whence to discharge
arrows. These arrangements are made for night.

While I was among the Aguenes,[150] their enemies coming suddenly
at midnight, fell upon them, killed three and wounded many, so that
they ran from their houses to the fields before them. As soon as
these ascertained that their assailants had withdrawn, they returned
to pick up all the arrows the others had shot, and following after
them in the most stealthy manner possible, came that night to their
dwellings without their presence being suspected. At four o'clock
in the morning the Aguenes attacked them, killed five, and wounded
numerous others, and made them flee from their houses, leaving their
bows with all they possessed. In a little while came the wives of the
Quevenes[151] to them and formed a treaty whereby the parties became
friends. The women, however, are sometimes the cause of war. All
these nations, when they have personal enmities, and are not of one
family, assassinate at night, waylay, and inflict gross barbarities
on each other.

  [150] Elsewhere called Doguenes.

  [151] Guevenes in the edition of 1542.

Chapter 25

_Vigilance of the Indians in war._

They are the most watchful in danger of any people I ever knew. If
they fear an enemy they are awake the night long, each with a bow
at his side and a dozen arrows. He that would sleep tries his bow,
and if it is not strung, he gives the turn necessary to the cord.
They often come out from their houses, bending to the ground in such
manner that they cannot be seen, looking and watching on all sides to
catch every object. If they perceive anything about, they are at once
in the bushes with their bows and arrows, and there remain until day,
running from place to place where it is needful to be, or where they
think their enemies are. When the light has come, they unbend their
bows until they go out to hunt. The strings are the sinews of deer.

The method they have of fighting, is bending low to the earth, and
whilst shot at they move about, speaking and leaping from one point
to another, thus avoiding the shafts of their enemies. So effectual
is their manoeuvring that they can receive very little injury from
crossbow or arquebus; they rather scoff at them; for these arms are
of little value employed in open field, where the Indians move
nimbly about. They are proper for defiles and in water; everywhere
else the horse will best subdue, being what the natives universally
dread.[152] Whosoever would fight them must be cautious to show no
fear, or desire to have anything that is theirs; while war exists
they must be treated with the utmost rigor; for if they discover
any timidity or covetousness, they are a race that well discern the
opportunities for vengeance, and gather strength from any weakness of
their adversaries. When they use arrows in battle and exhaust their
store, each returns his own way, without the one party following the
other, although the one be many and the other few, such being their
custom. Oftentimes the body of an Indian is traversed by the arrow;
yet unless the entrails or the heart be struck, he does not die but
recovers from the wound.

  [152] Cabeza de Vaca is now evidently recalling the experience of
  Narvaez's men in Florida.

I believe these people see and hear better, and have keener senses
than any other in the world. They are great in hunger, thirst, and
cold, as if they were made for the endurance of these more than other
men, by habit and nature.

Thus much I have wished to say, beyond the gratification of that
desire men have to learn the customs and manners of each other,
that those who hereafter at some time find themselves amongst these
people, may have knowledge of their usages and artifices, the value
of which they will not find inconsiderable in such event.

Chapter 26

_Of the nations and tongues._

I desire to enumerate the natives and tongues that exist from those
of Malhado to the farthest Cuchendados there are. Two languages are
found in the island; the people of one are called Cahoques,[153]
of the other, Han. On the tierra-firme, over against the island,
is another people, called Chorruco, who take their names from the
forests where they live. Advancing by the shores of the sea, others
inhabit who are called the Doguenes, and opposite them others by
the name of Mendica. Farther along the coast are the Quevenes, and
in front of them on the main, the Mariames; and continuing by the
coast are other called Guaycones; and in front of them, within on
the main, the Yguazes. At the close of these are the Atayos; and in
their rear others, the Acubadaos, and beyond them are many in the
same direction. By the coast live those called Quitoks, and in front
inward on the main are the Chavavares, to whom adjoin the Maliacones,
the Cultalchulches and others called Susolas, and the Comos; and
by the coast farther on are the Camoles; and on the same coast in
advance are those whom we called People of the Figs.

  [153] In the 1542 edition these tribal names are similarly
  spelled except in the case of Capoques, Charruco, Deguenes,
  Yeguaces, Decubadaos (for Acubadaos), Quitoles (for Quitoks),
  Chauauares, and Camolas. None of these Indians have thus far been
  conclusively identified with later historical tribes, with the
  possible exception of the Atayos and the Quevenes. See p. 76,
  note 2, and p. 59, note 1.

They all differ in their habitations, towns and tongues. There is a
language in which calling to a person, for "look here" they say "Arre
aca," and to a dog "Xo."[154] Everywhere they produce stupefaction
with a smoke, and for that they will give whatever they possess.
They drink a tea made from leaves of a tree like those of the oak,
which they toast in a pot; and after these are parched, the vessel,
still remaining on the fire, is filled with water. When the liquor
has twice boiled, they pour it into a jar, and in cooling it use the
half of a gourd. So soon as it is covered thickly with froth, it is
drunk as warm as can be supported; and from the time it is taken
out of the pot until it is used they are crying aloud: "Who wishes
to drink?" When the women hear these cries, they instantly stop,
fearing to move; and although they may be heavily laden, they dare do
nothing further. Should one of them move, they dishonor her, beating
her with sticks, and greatly vexed, throw away the liquor they have
prepared; while they who have drunk eject it, which they do readily
and without pain. The reason they give for this usage is, that when
they are about to drink, if the women move from where they hear the
cry, something pernicious enters the body in that liquid, shortly
producing death. At the time of boiling, the vessel must be covered;
and if it should happen to be open when a woman passes, they use no
more of that liquid, but throw it out. The color is yellow. They are
three days taking it, eating nothing in the time, and daily each one
drinks an arroba and a half.[155]

  [154] In the 1542 edition, as given by Mrs. Bandelier, "Among
  them is a language wherein they call men _mira aca_, _arraca_,
  and dogs _xo_." Compare _háka_, "sit down," in Karankawa
  (Gatschet, _Karankawa Indians_, Cambridge, Mass., 1891, p. 80).
  In the above it would appear as if the Spanish _mira_ had been
  regarded as a part of the Indian exclamation.

  [155] The tree from which the so-called "black drink" is made
  is _Ilex cassine_, and the custom of preparing and partaking
  of the liquid (known also as Carolina tea) was general among
  the tribes of the South, including the Gulf coast. The drink
  was known among the Catawbas as _yaupon_, among the Creeks as
  _ássi-lupútski_, the latter signifying "small leaves," commonly
  abbreviated _ássi_, whence the name of the celebrated Seminole
  chief _Osceola_, _i.e._, "Black-drink Hallooer," or "Black-drink
  Singer." The partaking of the black drink was an important part
  of the _puskita_, or _busk_, ceremony among the Creeks.

When the women have their indisposition, they seek food only for
themselves, as no one else will eat of what they bring. In the time I
was thus among these people, I witnessed a diabolical practice; a man
living with another, one of those who are emasculate and impotent.
These go habited like women, and perform their duties, use the bow,
and carry heavy loads. Among them we saw many mutilated in the way
I describe. They are more muscular than other men, and taller: they
bear very weighty burthens.

Chapter 27

_We moved away and were well received._

After parting with those we left weeping,[156] we went with the
others to their houses and were hospitably received by the people
in them. They brought their children to us that we might touch their
hands, and gave us a great quantity of the flour of mezquiquez.[157]
The fruit while hanging on the tree, is very bitter and like unto the
carob; when eaten with earth it is sweet and wholesome. The method
they have of preparing it is this: they make a hole of requisite
depth in the ground, and throwing in the fruit, pound it with a club
the size of the leg, a fathom and a half in length, until it is well
mashed. Besides the earth that comes from the hole, they bring and
add some handfuls, then returning to beat it a little while longer.
Afterward it is thrown into a jar, like a basket, upon which water is
poured until it rises above and covers the mixture. He that beats it
tastes it, and if it appears to him not sweet, he asks for earth to
stir in, which is added until he finds it sweet. Then all sit round,
and each putting in a hand, takes out as much as he can. The pits
and hulls are thrown upon a skin, whence they are taken by him who
does the pounding, and put into the jar whereon water is poured as at
first, whence having expressed the froth and juice, again the pits
and husks are thrown upon the skin. This they do three or four times
to each pounding. Those present, for whom this is a great banquet,
have their stomachs greatly distended by the earth and water they
swallow. The Indians made a protracted festival of this sort on our
account, and great _areitos_[158] during the time we remained.

  [156] The Arbadaos or Acubadaos. See chs. 22, 23.

  [157] The mesquite (_Prosopis juliflora_). The beans are still
  extensively used as food by the Indians of southern Arizona and
  northern Mexico.

  [158] See p. 52, note 3.

When we proposed to leave them, some women of another people came
there who lived farther along. They informed us whereabout were
their dwellings, and we set out for them, although the inhabitants
entreated us to remain for that day, because the houses whither we
were going were distant, there was no path to them, the women had
come tired, and would the next day go with us refreshed and show us
the way. Soon after we had taken our leave, some of the women, who
had come on together from the same town, followed behind us. As
there are no paths in the country we presently got lost, and thus
travelled four leagues, when, stopping to drink, we found the women
in pursuit of us at the water, who told us of the great exertion
they had made to overtake us. We went on taking them for guides,
and passed over a river towards evening, the water reaching to the
breast. It might be as wide as that at Seville; its current was very

  [159] Probably the Colorado River. Buckingham Smith remarks that
  the Guadalquivir at Seville is about a hundred paces in width.

At sunset we reached a hundred Indian habitations. Before we arrived,
all the people who were in them came out to receive us, with such
yells as were terrific, striking the palms of their hands violently
against their thighs. They brought us gourds bored with holes
and having pebbles in them, an instrument for the most important
occasions, produced only at the dance or to effect cures, and which
none dare touch but those who own them. They say there is virtue in
them, and because they do not grow in that country, they come from
heaven; nor do they know where they are to be found, only that the
rivers bring them in their floods.[160] So great were the fear and
distraction of these people, some to reach us sooner than others that
they might touch us, they pressed us so closely that they lacked
little of killing us; and without letting us put our feet to the
ground, carried us to their dwellings. We were so crowded upon by
numbers, that we went into the houses they had made for us. On no
account would we consent that they should rejoice over us any more
that night. The night long they passed in singing and dancing among
themselves; and the next day they brought us all the people of the
town, that we should touch and bless them in the way we had done to
others among whom we had been. After this performance they presented
many arrows to some women of the other town who had accompanied

  [160] The Pueblo Indians of New Mexico have cultivated gourds for
  use as rattles and receptacles, especially dippers, from time
  immemorial. If the Pecos were the stream, or one of the streams,
  whence the gourds were derived, they might have come from the
  pueblo of Pecos, southeast of the present Santa Fé; if from the
  Rio Grande, they might have come from various villages along that
  river and its tributaries in the north. See p. 95, note 1.

The next day we left, and all the people of the place went with us;
and when we came to the other Indians we were as well received as
we had been by the last. They gave us of what they had to eat, and
the deer they had killed that day. Among them we witnessed another
custom, which is this: they who were with us took from him who came
to be cured, his bow and arrows, shoes and beads if he wore any, and
then brought him before us, that we should heal him. After being
attended to, he would go away highly pleased, saying that he was
well. So we parted from these Indians, and went to others by whom we
were welcomed. They brought us their sick, which, we having blessed,
they declared were sound; he who was healed, believed we could cure
him; and with what the others to whom we had administered would
relate, they made great rejoicing and dancing, so that they left us
no sleep.

Chapter 28

_Of another strange custom._

Leaving these Indians, we went to the dwellings of numerous others.
From this place began another novel custom, which is, that while
the people received us very well, those who accompanied us began to
use them so ill as to take their goods and ransack their houses,
without leaving anything. To witness this unjust procedure gave us
great concern, inflicted too on those who received us hospitably;
we feared also that it might provoke offence, and be the cause of
some tumult between them; but, as we were in no condition to make it
better, or to dare chastise such conduct, for the present we had to
bear with it, until a time when we might have greater authority among
them. They, also, who lost their effects, noticing our dejection,
attempted to console us by saying that we should not be grieved on
this account, as they were so gratified at having seen us, they held
their properties to be well bestowed, and that farther on they would
be repaid by others who were very rich.

On all the day's travel we received great inconvenience from the many
persons following us. Had we attempted to escape we could not have
succeeded, such was their haste in pursuit, in order to touch us. So
great was the importunity for this privilege, we consumed three hours
in going through with them that they might depart. The next day all
the inhabitants were brought before us. The greater part were clouded
of an eye, and others in like manner were entirely blind, which
caused in us great astonishment. They are a people of fine figure,
agreeable features, and whiter than any of the many nations we had
seen until then.

Here we began to see mountains; they appeared to come in succession
from the North Sea, and, according to the information the Indians
gave us, we believe they rise fifteen leagues from the sea.[161] We
set forth in a direction towards them with these Indians, and they
guided us by the way of some kindred of theirs; for they wished to
take us only where were their relations, and were not willing that
their enemies should come to such great good, as they thought it
was to see us. After we arrived they that went with us plundered
the others; but as the people there knew the fashion, they had
hidden some things before we came; and having welcomed us with great
festivity and rejoicing, they brought out and presented to us what
they had concealed. These were beads, ochre, and some little bags of
silver.[162] In pursuance of custom, we directly gave them to the
Indians who came with us, which, when they had received, they began
their dances and festivities, sending to call others from a town near
by, that they also might see us.

  [161] Probably the escarpment that extends from Austin to Eagle
  Pass. The Colorado (which was probably the wide, deep stream
  previously encountered) was crossed seemingly below the present
  Austin. It should be remembered that the information regarding
  the point at which the mountains commenced to rise was given by
  Indians whose language the Spaniards could not understand. At any
  rate, the fact that the latter believed the mountains to rise
  fifteen leagues from the sea would tend to indicate that the
  direction they had been following was a northerly one. See the
  statement in the following paragraph of the text.

  [162] According to Oviedo (p. 617): "This is an error of the
  printer, and should read 'little bags of margarite [pearl-mica],'
  instead of silver." Buckingham Smith translates Oviedo's
  _margarita_, "pearls," and Cabeza de Vaca's _margarita_ (ch. 29)
  as "marquesite." It may be added that magnetic iron ore of the
  highest quality occurs in Mason County, Texas.

In the afternoon they all came and brought us beads and bows, with
trifles of other sort, which we also distributed. Desiring to leave
the next day, the inhabitants all wished to take us to others,
friends of theirs, who were at the point of the ridge, stating that
many houses were there, and people who would give us various things.
As it was out of our way, we did not wish to go to them, and took
our course along the plain near the mountains, which we believed
not to be distant from the coast[163] where the people are all evil
disposed, and we considered it preferable to travel inland;[164]
for those of the interior are of a better condition and treated
us mildly, and we felt sure that we should find it more populous
and better provisioned. Moreover, we chose this course because in
traversing the country we should learn many particulars of it, so
that should God our Lord be pleased to take any of us thence, and
lead us to the land of Christians, we might carry that information
and news of it. As the Indians saw that we were determined not to go
where they would take us, they said that in the direction we would
go, there were no inhabitants, nor any prickly pears nor other thing
to eat, and begged us to tarry there that day; we accordingly did
so. They directly sent two of their number to seek for people in the
direction that we wished to go; and the next day we left, taking
with us several of the Indians. The women went carrying water, and
so great was our authority that no one dared drink of it without our

  [163] In the face of such an assertion it is difficult to
  conceive that the Spaniards had been journeying directly
  westward, away from the coast.

  [164] That is, they decided to change their course from northward
  to a more westward direction.

Two leagues from there we met those who had gone out, and they
said that they had found no one; at which the Indians seemed
much disheartened, and began again to entreat us to go by way
of the mountains. We did not wish to do so, and they, seeing our
disposition, took their leave of us with much regret, and returned
down the river to their houses, while we ascended along by it. After
a little time we came upon two women with burthens, who put them down
as they saw us, and brought to us, of what they carried. It was the
flour of maize. They told us that farther up on that river we should
find dwellings, a plenty of prickly pears and of that meal. We bade
them farewell: they were going to those whom we had left.

We walked until sunset, and arrived at a town of some twenty houses,
where we were received with weeping and in great sorrow; for they
already knew that wheresoever we should come, all would be pillaged
and spoiled by those who accompanied us. When they saw that we were
alone, they lost their fear, and gave us prickly pears with nothing
more. We remained there that night, and at dawn, the Indians who had
left us the day before, broke upon their houses. As they came upon
the occupants unprepared and in supposed safety, having no place in
which to conceal anything, all they possessed was taken from them,
for which they wept much. In consolation the plunderers told them
that we were children of the sun and that we had power to heal the
sick and to destroy; and other lies even greater than these, which
none knew how to tell better than they when they find it convenient.
They bade them conduct us with great respect, advised that they
should be careful to offend us in nothing, give us all they might
possess, and endeavor to take us where people were numerous; and that
wheresoever they arrived with us, they should rob and pillage the
people of what they have, since this was customary.

Chapter 29

_The Indians plunder each other._

After the Indians had told and shown these natives well what to do,
they left us together and went back. Remembering the instruction,
they began to treat us with the same awe and reverence that the
others had shown. We travelled with them three days, and they took us
where were many inhabitants. Before we arrived, these were informed
of our coming by the others, who told them respecting us all that
the first had imparted, adding much more; for these people are all
very fond of romance, and are great liars, particularly so where they
have any interest. When we came near the houses all the inhabitants
ran out with delight and great festivity to receive us. Among other
things, two of their physicians gave us two gourds, and thenceforth
we carried these with us, and added to our authority a token highly
reverenced by Indians.[165] Those who accompanied us rifled the
houses; but as these were many and the others few, they could not
carry off what they took, and abandoned more than the half.

  [165] The possession of one of these "medicine" rattles was not
  improbably one of the causes of the death of Estévanico at the
  hands of the Zuñis of Cibola in 1539. See the Introduction, and
  compare p. 90, note 2; p. 117, note 2.

From here we went along the base of the ridge, striking inland more
than fifty leagues, and at the close we found upwards of forty
houses. Among the articles given us, Andrés Dorantes received a
hawk-bell of copper, thick and large, figured with a face, which the
natives had shown, greatly prizing it. They told him that they had
received it from others, their neighbors; we asked them whence the
others had obtained it, and they said it had been brought from the
northern direction, where there was much copper, which was highly
esteemed. We concluded that whencesoever it came there was a foundry,
and that work was done in hollow form.[166]

  [166] See p. 97, note 1.

We departed the next day, and traversed a ridge seven leagues in
extent. The stones on it are scoria of iron.[167] At night we arrived
at many houses seated on the banks of a very beautiful river.[168]
The owners of them came half way out on the road to meet us,
bringing their children on their backs. They gave us many little bags
of margarite[169] and pulverized galena,[170] with which they rub the
face. They presented us many beads, and blankets of cowhide, loading
all who accompanied us with some of every thing they had. They eat
prickly pears and the seed of pine. In that country are small pine
trees,[171] the cones like little eggs; but the seed is better than
that of Castile, as its husk is very thin, and while green is beaten
and made into balls, to be thus eaten. If the seed be dry, it is
pounded in the husk, and consumed in the form of flour.

  [167] See pp. 92-93, note 2, regarding the occurrence of magnetic
  iron in Mason County, where it is found in great quantities, but
  is yet unworked.

  [168] Perhaps the Llano, a branch of the Colorado, or possibly
  they had met the Colorado again. See p. 90, note 1.

  [169] See p. 92, note 2. In the edition of 1542 the text here
  says _silver_.

  [170] Lead is found in Texas in the trans-Pecos region. The
  mineral resources of the state have not yet been well exploited.

  [171] Doubtless the nut pine (_Pinus edulis_). Cabeza de Vaca
  evidently here aims to describe the character of this tree and
  its fruit without necessarily asserting that the tree was found
  growing very far east of the Pecos. In the valley of the latter
  stream it is more or less prolific.

Those who there received us, after they had touched us went running
to their houses and directly returned, and did not stop running,
going and coming, to bring us in this manner many things for support
on the way. They fetched a man to me and stated that a long time
since he had been wounded by an arrow in the right shoulder, and
that the point of the shaft was lodged above his heart, which, he
said, gave him much pain, and in consequence, he was always sick.
Probing the wound I felt the arrow-head, and found it had passed
through the cartilage. With a knife I carried, I opened the breast
to the place, and saw the point was aslant and troublesome to take
out. I continued to cut, and, putting in the point of the knife, at
last with great difficulty I drew the head forth. It was very large.
With the bone of a deer, and by virtue of my calling, I made two
stitches that threw the blood over me, and with hair from a skin I
stanched the flow. They asked me for the arrow-head after I had taken
it out, which I gave, when the whole town came to look at it. They
sent it into the back country that the people there might view it.
In consequence of this operation they had many of their customary
dances and festivities. The next day I cut the two stitches and the
Indian was well. The wound I made appeared only like a seam in the
palm of the hand. He said he felt no pain or sensitiveness in it
whatsoever. This cure gave us control throughout the country in all
that the inhabitants had power, or deemed of any value, or cherished.
We showed them the hawk-bell we brought, and they told us that in
the place whence that had come, were buried many plates of the same
material; it was a thing they greatly esteemed, and where it came
from were fixed habitations.[172] The country we considered to be on
the South Sea, which we had ever understood to be richer than the one
of the North.

  [172] The allusion is probably to Mexico rather than to a
  northern country, as previously asserted by the Indians. See the
  second preceding paragraph.

We left there, and travelled through so many sorts of people, of
such diverse languages, the memory fails to recall them. They ever
plundered each other, and those that lost, like those that gained,
were fully content.[173] We drew so many followers that we had not
use for their services. While on our way through these vales, every
Indian carried a club three palms in length, and kept on the alert.
On raising a hare, which animals are abundant, they surround it
directly and throw numerous clubs at it with astonishing precision.
Thus they cause it to run from one to another; so that, according to
my thinking, it is the most pleasing sport which can be imagined,
as oftentimes the animal runs into the hand. So many did they give
us that at night when we stopped we had eight or ten back-loads
apiece.[174] Those having bows were not with us; they dispersed about
the ridge in pursuit of deer; and at dark came bringing five or six
for each of us, besides quail, and other game. Indeed, whatever
they either killed or found, was put before us, without themselves
daring to take anything until we had blessed it, though they should
be expiring of hunger, they having so established the rule, since
marching with us.

  [173] Of this exchange of gifts, or perhaps we may call it
  plunder, there was an echo a few years later, when Coronado and
  his army were traversing the eastern part of the Staked Plain,
  under the guidance of the "Turk," in search of Quivira, in 1541.
  Before sending the army back, and while among the ravines of
  western Texas, Rodrigo Maldonado was sent forward to explore, and
  in four days reached a deep ravine in the bottom of which was a
  village that Cabeza de Vaca had visited, on which account (see
  p. 332) "they presented Don Rodrigo with a pile of tanned skins
  and other things." An unfair distribution being threatened, the
  men rushed upon the skins and took possession without further
  ado. "The women and some others were left crying, because they
  thought that the strangers were not going to take anything, but
  would bless them as Cabeza de Vaca and Dorantes had done _when
  they passed through here_." Captain Jaramillo does not mention
  this occurrence in his narrative (_Fourteenth Report of the
  Bureau of American Ethnology_, p. 588), but he speaks of reaching
  a settlement of Indians, in advance of that, according to the
  narrations, of which Castañeda speaks, "among whom there was an
  old blind man with a beard, who gave us to understand by signs
  which he made, that he had seen four others like us many days
  before, whom he had seen near there and rather more toward New
  Spain [Mexico], and we so understood him, and presumed that it
  was Dorantes and Cabeza de Vaca and those whom I have mentioned."
  Although we do not have here conclusive evidence that Cabeza de
  Vaca actually visited the village or villages mentioned, there is
  no question that he must have been in this vicinity, and as the
  evidence is strong that the Rio Colorado was the ravined stream
  alluded to, there is little likelihood that Cabeza de Vaca's
  route lay far below that river.

  [174] The Pueblo Indians of New Mexico have similar communal
  rabbit-hunts, in which the animals are killed with a curved stick
  shaped somewhat like a boomerang.

The women carried many mats, of which the men made us houses, each of
us having a separate one, with all his attendants. After these were
put up, we ordered the deer and hares to be roasted, with the rest
that had been taken. This was done by means of certain ovens made for
the purpose. Of each we took a little and the remainder we gave to
the principal personage of the people coming with us, directing him
to divide it among the rest. Every one brought his portion to us,
that we might breathe upon and give it our benediction; for not until
then did they dare eat any of it. Frequently we were accompanied by
three or four thousand persons, and as we had to breathe upon and
sanctify the food and drink for each, and grant permission to do the
many things they would come to ask, it may be seen how great was the
annoyance. The women first brought us prickly pears, spiders, worms,
and whatever else they could gather; for even were they famishing,
they would eat nothing unless we gave it them.

In company with these, we crossed a great river coming from the
north,[175] and passing over some plains thirty leagues in extent,
we found many persons coming a long distance to receive us, who met
us on the road over which we were to travel, and welcomed us in the
manner of those we had left.

  [175] Evidently the Pecos. This is the first stream mentioned as
  flowing from the north.

Chapter 30

_The fashion of receiving us changes._

From this place was another method of receiving us, as respects the
pillage. Those who came out in the ways to bring us presents were not
plundered; but on our coming into their houses, themselves offered us
all they had, as well as the houses. We gave the things to the chief
personages who accompanied us, that they should divide them; those
who were despoiled always followed us until coming to a populous
country, where they might repair their loss. They would tell those
among whom we came, to retain everything and make no concealment,
as nothing could be done without our knowledge, and we might cause
them to die, as the sun revealed everything to us. So great was their
fear that during the first days they were with us, they continually
trembled, without daring even to speak, or raise their eyes to the
heavens. They guided us through more than fifty leagues of desert,
over rough mountains, which being dry were without game, and in
consequence we suffered much from hunger.[176]

  [176] Eighty leagues would probably be a reasonable estimate
  of the distance from the Pecos to the Rio Grande, which the
  travellers had now reached. It would seem strange that no mention
  is made of the cañon of the latter stream (which hereabouts flows
  through a territory four thousand feet above sea level), were
  it not for the fact that they had become thoroughly inured to
  suffering and hard travelling; nevertheless, the terribly rough
  country through which they had just been guided from stream to
  stream is commented on, while the fact that the Rio Grande here
  "flows between some ridges" is mentioned farther on.

At the termination we forded a very large river, the water coming up
to our breasts. From this place, many of the people began to sicken
from the great privation and labor they had undergone in the passage
of those ridges, which are sterile and difficult in the extreme. They
conducted us to certain plains at the base of the mountains, where
people came to meet us from a great distance, and received us as the
last had done, and gave so many goods to those who came with us, that
the half were left because they could not be carried. I told those
who gave, to resume the goods that they might not lie there and be
lost; but they answered they could in no wise do so, as it was not
their custom after they had bestowed a thing to take it back;[177] so
considering the articles no longer of value, they were left to perish.

  [177] An assertion quite contrary to the popular belief in
  "Indian gifts."

We told these people that we desired to go where the sun sets; and
they said inhabitants in that direction were remote. We commanded
them to send and make known our coming; but they strove to excuse
themselves the best they could, the people being their enemies, and
they did not wish to go to them. Not daring to disobey, however,
they sent two women, one of their own, the other a captive from that
people; for the women can negotiate even though there be war. We
followed them, and stopped at a place where we agreed to wait. They
tarried five days; and the Indians said they could not have found

We told them to conduct us towards the north; and they answered, as
before, that except afar off there were no people in that direction,
and nothing to eat, nor could water be found.[178] Notwithstanding
all this, we persisted, and said we desired to go in that course.
They still tried to excuse themselves in the best manner possible.
At this we became offended, and one night I went out to sleep in
the woods apart from them; but directly they came to where I was,
and remained all night without sleep, talking to me in great fear,
telling me how terrified they were, beseeching us to be no longer
angry, and said that they would lead us in the direction it was our
wish to go, though they knew they should die on the way.

  [178] The Indians were evidently endeavoring to compel the
  Spaniards to remain among them as long as possible.

Whilst we still feigned to be displeased lest their fright should
leave them, a remarkable circumstance happened, which was that on the
same day many of the Indians became ill, and the next day eight men
died. Abroad in the country, wheresoever this became known, there was
such dread that it seemed as if the inhabitants would die of fear at
sight of us. They besought us not to remain angered, nor require that
more of them should die. They believed we caused their death by only
willing it, when in truth it gave us so much pain that it could not
be greater; for, beyond their loss, we feared they might all die, or
abandon us of fright, and that other people thenceforward would do
the same, seeing what had come to these. We prayed to God, our Lord,
to relieve them; and from that time the sick began to get better.

We witnessed one thing with great admiration, that the parents,
brothers, and wives of those who died had great sympathy for them
in their suffering; but, when dead, they showed no feeling, neither
did they weep nor speak among themselves, make any signs, nor dare
approach the bodies until we commanded these to be taken to burial.

While we were among these people, which was more than fifteen days,
we saw no one speak to another, nor did we see an infant smile: the
only one that cried they took off to a distance, and with the sharp
teeth of a rat they scratched it from the shoulders down nearly to
the end of the legs. Seeing this cruelty, and offended at it, I asked
why they did so: they said for chastisement, because the child had
wept in my presence. These terrors they imparted to all those who had
lately come to know us, that they might give us whatever they had;
for they knew we kept nothing, and would relinquish all to them. This
people were the most obedient we had found in all the land, the best
conditioned, and, in general, comely.

The sick having recovered, and three days having passed since we came
to the place, the women whom we sent away returned, and said they
had found very few people; nearly all had gone for cattle, being
then in the season. We ordered the convalescent to remain and the
well to go with us, and that at the end of two days' journey those
women should go with two of our number to fetch up the people, and
bring them on the road to receive us. Consequently, the next morning
the most robust started with us. At the end of three days' travel we
stopped, and the next day Alonzo del Castillo set out with Estevanico
the negro, taking the two women as guides. She that was the captive
led them to the river which ran between some ridges,[179] where was a
town at which her father lived; and these habitations were the first
seen, having the appearance and structure of houses.[180]

  [179] _The_ river was the Rio Grande, to which they had now
  returned. The description of the topography is in accordance with
  the facts.

  [180] The substantial character of the houses was noted also
  by Antonio de Espejo, toward the close of 1582, on his journey
  northward to New Mexico. Espejo speaks of these Indians, the
  Jumanos, or Patarabueyes, as occupying five villages from about
  the junction of the Conchos northward up the Rio Grande for
  twelve days' journey, and as numbering ten thousand souls--but
  Espejo's estimates of population are always greatly exaggerated.
  More important is his statement that the Jumanos knew something
  of Christianity which they had gleaned years before from three
  Christians and a negro, whom he naturally believed to have been
  "Alvaro Nuñez Cabeza de Vaca, y Dorantes, y Castillo Maldonado,
  y un negro," who had made their escape from Narvaez's fleet.
  This is one of the few definite points of the narrative that can
  be established without question. See _Coleccion de Documentos
  Inéditos relativos ... de América y Oceanía_, XV. 107 (1871).

Here Castillo and Estevanico arrived, and, after talking with the
Indians, Castillo returned at the end of three days to the spot where
he had left us, and brought five or six of the people. He told us
he had found fixed dwellings of civilization, that the inhabitants
lived on beans and pumpkins,[181] and that he had seen maize. This
news the most of anything delighted us, and for it we gave infinite
thanks to our Lord. Castillo told us the negro was coming with all
the population to wait for us in the road not far off. Accordingly
we left, and, having travelled a league and a half, we met the negro
and the people coming to receive us. They gave us beans, many
pumpkins, calabashes,[182] blankets of cowhide and other things. As
this people and those who came with us were enemies,[183] and spoke
not each other's language, we discharged the latter, giving them
what we received, and we departed with the others. Six leagues from
there, as the night set in we arrived at the houses, where great
festivities were made over us. We remained one day, and the next set
out with these Indians. They took us to the settled habitations of
others,[184] who lived upon the same food.

  [181] _Melones_ in the edition of 1542. Bandelier has no doubt
  that a species of squash is meant.

  [182] ... "beans and many squashes to eat, gourds to carry water
  in" (ed. of 1542, Bandelier translation).

  [183] That is, the Jumanos and probably the Tobosos respectively.
  The captive woman evidently belonged to the latter tribe.

  [184] Apparently other settlements of the Jumanos, as mentioned
  in the above note. The Spaniards were now going up the Rio Grande.

From that place onward was another usage. Those who knew of our
approach did not come out to receive us on the road as the others had
done, but we found them in their houses, and they had made others for
our reception. They were all seated with their faces turned to the
wall, their heads down, the hair brought before their eyes, and their
property placed in a heap in the middle of the house. From this place
they began to give us many blankets of skin; and they had nothing
they did not bestow. They have the finest persons of any people we
saw, of the greatest activity and strength, who best understood us
and intelligently answered our inquiries. We called them the Cow
nation, because most of the cattle killed are slaughtered in their
neighborhood, and along up that river for over fifty leagues they
destroy great numbers.[185]

  [185] Although they resided in permanent habitations at this
  time, the Jumanos lived east of the Rio Grande, in New Mexico,
  a century later and practised the habits of the buffalo-hunting
  plains tribes rather than those of sedentary Indians. The
  "neighborhood" was evidently not the immediate vicinity, and the
  stream alluded to seems much more likely to have been the Pecos
  than the Rio Grande, the former having been named Rio de las
  Vacas by Espejo in 1583. On this point see the opening paragraph
  of the following chapter.

They go entirely naked after the manner of the first we saw. The
women are dressed with deer-skin, and some few men, mostly the aged,
who are incapable of fighting. The country is very populous. We asked
how it was they did not plant maize. They answered it was that they
might not lose what they should put in the ground; that the rains
had failed for two years in succession, and the seasons were so dry
the seed had everywhere been taken by the moles, and they could not
venture to plant again until after water had fallen copiously. They
begged us to tell the sky to rain, and to pray for it, and we said we
would do so. We also desired to know whence they got the maize, and
they told us from where the sun goes down; there it grew throughout
the region, and the nearest was by that path. Since they did not wish
to go thither, we asked by what direction we might best proceed,
and bade them inform us concerning the way; they said the path was
along up by that river towards the north, for otherwise in a journey
of seventeen days we should find nothing to eat, except a fruit
they call _chacan_, that is ground between stones, and even then it
could with difficulty be eaten for its dryness and pungency,--which
was true. They showed it to us there, and we could not eat it. They
informed us also that, whilst we travelled by the river upward, we
should all the way pass through a people that were their enemies, who
spoke their tongue, and, though they had nothing to give us to eat,
they would receive us with the best good will, and present us with
mantles of cotton, hides, and other articles of their wealth.[186]
Still it appeared to them we ought by no means to take that course.

  [186] The Pueblo Indians of New Mexico are here referred to.
  Later Spanish explorers found cotton garments in abundance in
  their country. The statement here that the Jumanos spoke the same
  tongue as some of the Pueblos is significant, and accounts in a
  measure for the affiliation of the Jumanos with the Piros when
  missions were established by the Franciscans among these two
  tribes east of the Rio Grande, in New Mexico, in 1629.

Doubting what it would be best to do, and which way we should
choose for suitableness and support, we remained two days with
these Indians, who gave us beans and pumpkins for our subsistence.
Their method of cooking is so new that for its strangeness I desire
to speak of it; thus it may be seen and remarked how curious and
diversified are the contrivances and ingenuity of the human family.
Not having discovered the use of pipkins, to boil what they would
eat, they fill the half of a large calabash with water, and throw
on the fire many stones of such as are most convenient and readily
take the heat. When hot, they are taken up with tongs of sticks and
dropped into the calabash until the water in it boils from the fervor
of the stones. Then whatever is to be cooked is put in, and until it
is done they continue taking out cooled stones and throwing in hot
ones. Thus they boil their food.[187]

  [187] This was not an uncommon practice, especially among the
  non-sedentary tribes who could not readily transport pottery from
  place to place. The name _Assiniboin_, meaning "stone Sioux,"
  abbreviated to "Stonies," is derived from this custom. Tightly
  woven baskets and wooden bowls were also used for the purpose.

Chapter 31

_Of our taking the way to the maize._

Two days being spent while we tarried, we resolved to go in search
of the maize. We did not wish to follow the path leading to where
the cattle are, because it is towards the north, and for us very
circuitous, since we ever held it certain that going towards the
sunset we must find what we desired.

Thus we took our way, and traversed all the country until coming
out at the South Sea. Nor was the dread we had of the sharp hunger
through which we should have to pass (as in verity we did, throughout
the seventeen days' journey of which the natives spoke) sufficient
to hinder us. During all that time, in ascending by the river, they
gave us many coverings of cowhide; but we did not eat of the fruit.
Our sustenance each day was about a handful of deer-suet, which we
had a long time been used to saving for such trials. Thus we passed
the entire journey of seventeen days, and at the close we crossed the
river[188] and travelled other seventeen days.

  [188] Probably the Rio Santa Maria, in Chihuahua.

As the sun went down, upon some plains that lie between chains
of very great mountains,[189] we found a people who for the third
part of the year eat nothing but the powder of straw, and, that
being the season when we passed, we also had to eat of it, until
reaching permanent habitations, where was abundance of maize brought
together.[190] They gave us a large quantity in grain and flour,
pumpkins, beans, and shawls of cotton. With all these we loaded our
guides, who went back the happiest creatures on earth. We gave thanks
to God, our Lord, for having brought us where we had found so much

  [189] The Sierra Madre.

  [190] The numerous villages of the Opata and cognate tribes of

Some houses are of earth, the rest all of cane mats. From this
point we marched through more than a hundred leagues of country,
and continually found settled domicils, with plenty of maize and
beans. The people gave us many deer and cotton shawls better than
those of New Spain, many beads and certain corals found on the South
Sea, and fine turquoises that come from the north. Indeed they gave
us every thing they had. To me they gave five emeralds[191] made
into arrow-heads, which they use at their singing and dancing. They
appeared to be very precious. I asked whence they got these; and they
said the stones were brought from some lofty mountains that stand
toward the north, where were populous towns and very large houses,
and that they were purchased with plumes and the feathers of parrots.

  [191] Bandelier (p. 156) believes that there may have been

Among this people the women are treated with more decorum than in
any part of the Indias we had visited. They wear a shirt of cotton
that falls as low as the knee, and over it half sleeves with skirts
reaching to the ground, made of dressed deer-skin.[192] It opens
in front and is brought close with straps of leather. They soap
this with a certain root[193] that cleanses well, by which they are
enabled to keep it becomingly. Shoes are worn. The people all came to
us that we should touch and bless them, they being very urgent, which
we could accomplish only with great labor, for sick and well all
wished to go with a benediction. Many times it occurred that some of
the women who accompanied us gave birth; and so soon as the children
were born the mothers would bring them to us that we should touch and
bless them.

  [192] For the clothing of the Opata Indians, see Castañeda's
  narration in this volume.

  [193] Amole, the root of the yucca.

These Indians ever accompanied us until they delivered us to others;
and all held full faith in our coming from heaven. While travelling,
we went without food all day until night, and we ate so little as
to astonish them. We never felt exhaustion, neither were we in fact
at all weary, so inured were we to hardship. We possessed great
influence and authority: to preserve both, we seldom talked with
them. The negro was in constant conversation; he informed himself
about the ways we wished to take, of the towns there were, and the
matters we desired to know.

We passed through many and dissimilar tongues. Our Lord granted us
favor with the people who spoke them, for they always understood us,
and we them. We questioned them, and received their answers by signs,
just as if they spoke our language and we theirs; for, although we
knew six languages, we could not everywhere avail ourselves of them,
there being a thousand differences.

Throughout all these countries the people who were at war immediately
made friends, that they might come to meet us, and bring what they
possessed. In this way we left all the land at peace, and we taught
all the inhabitants by signs, which they understood, that in heaven
was a Man we called God, who had created the sky and the earth; Him
we worshipped and had for our master; that we did what He commanded
and from His hand came all good; and would they do as we did, all
would be well with them. So ready of apprehension we found them that,
could we have had the use of language by which to make ourselves
perfectly understood, we should have left them all Christians. Thus
much we gave them to understand the best we could. And afterward,
when the sun rose, they opened their hands together with loud
shouting towards the heavens, and then drew them down all over their
bodies. They did the same again when the sun went down. They are a
people of good condition and substance, capable in any pursuit.

Chapter 32

_The Indians give us the hearts of deer._

In the town where the emeralds were presented to us the people gave
Dorantes over six hundred open hearts of deer. They ever keep a
good supply of them for food, and we called the place Pueblo de los
Corazones.[194] It is the entrance into many provinces on the South
Sea. They who go to look for them, and do not enter there, will be
lost. On the coast is no maize: the inhabitants eat the powder of
rush and of straw, and fish that is caught in the sea from rafts, not
having canoes. With grass and straw the women cover their nudity.
They are a timid and dejected people.[195]

  [194] Town of the Hearts, at or near the present Ures, on the Rio
  Sonora. The place became celebrated in 1540, when Coronado's army
  passed through the country. See the Castañeda narration in this

  [195] These were the Seri, Guaymas, Upanguaymas, and Tepoca
  tribes. The Seri particularly have ever been noted for their
  warlike character, but Cabeza de Vaca does not here speak from
  personal knowledge.

We think that near the coast by way of those towns through which
we came are more than a thousand leagues of inhabited country,
plentiful of subsistence. Three times the year it is planted with
maize and beans. Deer are of three kinds; one the size of the young
steer of Spain. There are innumerable houses, such as are called
_bahíos_.[196] They have poison from a certain tree the size of the
apple. For effect no more is necessary than to pluck the fruit and
moisten the arrow with it, or, if there be no fruit, to break a twig
and with the milk do the like. The tree is abundant and so deadly
that, if the leaves be bruised and steeped in some neighboring water,
the deer and other animals drinking it soon burst.[197]

  [196] That is, in the West Indies, see p. 19, note 5.

  [197] See the Castañeda narration, p. 326, _post_; and compare
  the _Rudo Ensayo_ (_ca._ 1763), p. 64, 1863, which says: "_Mago_,
  in the Opata language, is a small tree, very green, luxuriant,
  and beautiful to the eye; but it contains a deadly juice which
  flows upon making a slight incision in the bark. The natives rub
  their arrows with it, and for this reason they call it arrow
  herb; but at present they use very little."

We were in this town three days. A day's journey[198] farther was
another town,[199] at which the rain fell heavily while we were
there, and the river became so swollen we could not cross it, which
detained us fifteen days. In this time Castillo saw the buckle of a
sword-belt on the neck of an Indian and stitched to it the nail of
a horseshoe. He took them, and we asked the native what they were:
he answered that they came from heaven. We questioned him further,
as to who had brought them thence: they all responded that certain
men who wore beards like us had come from heaven and arrived at that
river, bringing horses, lances, and swords, and that they had lanced
two Indians. In a manner of the utmost indifference we could feign,
we asked them what had become of those men. They answered us that
they had gone to sea, putting their lances beneath the water, and
going themselves also under the water; afterwards that they were
seen on the surface going towards the sunset. For this we gave many
thanks to God our Lord. We had before despaired of ever hearing more
of Christians. Even yet we were left in great doubt and anxiety,
thinking those people were merely persons who had come by sea on
discoveries. However, as we had now such exact information, we made
greater speed, and, as we advanced on our way, the news of the
Christians continually grew. We told the natives that we were going
in search of that people, to order them not to kill nor make slaves
of them, nor take them from their lands, nor do other injustice. Of
this the Indians were very glad.

  [198] Twelve leagues, and the same distance from the Gulf of
  California, according to the last paragraph of this chapter.

  [199] Perhaps at or in the vicinity of the present Hermosillo,
  Sonora, although the distance is greater than that given later.

We passed through many territories and found them all vacant: their
inhabitants wandered fleeing among the mountains, without daring
to have houses or till the earth for fear of Christians. The sight
was one of infinite pain to us, a land very fertile and beautiful,
abounding in springs and streams, the hamlets deserted and burned,
the people thin and weak, all fleeing or in concealment. As they did
not plant, they appeased their keen hunger by eating roots and the
bark of trees. We bore a share in the famine along the whole way;
for poorly could these unfortunates provide for us, themselves being
so reduced they looked as though they would willingly die. They
brought shawls of those they had concealed because of the Christians,
presenting them to us; and they related how the Christians at other
times had come through the land, destroying and burning the towns,
carrying away half the men, and all the women and the boys, while
those who had been able to escape were wandering about fugitives. We
found them so alarmed they dared not remain anywhere. They would not
nor could they till the earth, but preferred to die rather than live
in dread of such cruel usage as they received. Although these showed
themselves greatly delighted with us, we feared that on our arrival
among those who held the frontier, and fought against the Christians,
they would treat us badly, and revenge upon us the conduct of their
enemies; but, when God our Lord was pleased to bring us there, they
began to dread and respect us as the others had done, and even
somewhat more, at which we no little wondered. Thence it may at once
be seen that, to bring all these people to be Christians and to the
obedience of the Imperial Majesty, they must be won by kindness,
which is a way certain, and no other is.

They took us to a town on the edge of a range of mountains, to which
the ascent is over difficult crags. We found many people there
collected out of fear of the Christians. They received us well,
and presented us all they had. They gave us more than two thousand
back-loads of maize, which we gave to the distressed and hungered
beings who guided us to that place. The next day we despatched four
messengers through the country, as we were accustomed to do, that
they should call together all the rest of the Indians at a town
distant three days' march. We set out the day after with all the
people. The tracks of the Christians and marks where they slept were
continually seen. At mid-day we met our messengers, who told us
they had found no Indians, that they were roving and hiding in the
forests, fleeing that the Christians might not kill nor make them
slaves; the night before they had observed the Christians from behind
trees, and discovered what they were about, carrying away many people
in chains.

Those who came with us were alarmed at this intelligence; some
returned to spread the news over the land that the Christians were
coming; and many more would have followed, had we not forbidden
it and told them to cast aside their fear, when they reassured
themselves and were well content. At the time we had Indians with us
belonging a hundred leagues behind, and we were in no condition to
discharge them, that they might return to their homes. To encourage
them, we stayed there that night; the day after we marched and slept
on the road. The following day those whom we had sent forward as
messengers guided us to the place where they had seen Christians. We
arrived in the afternoon, and saw at once that they told the truth.
We perceived that the persons were mounted, by the stakes to which
the horses had been tied.

From this spot, called the river Petutan,[200] to the river to
which Diego de Guzmán came,[201] where we heard of Christians, may
be as many as eighty leagues; thence to the town where the rains
overtook us, twelve leagues, and that is twelve leagues from the
South Sea.[202] Throughout this region, wheresoever the mountains
extend, we saw clear traces of gold and lead, iron, copper, and other
metals. Where the settled habitations are, the climate is hot; even
in January the weather is very warm. Thence toward the meridian, the
country unoccupied to the North Sea is unhappy and sterile. There we
underwent great and incredible hunger. Those who inhabit and wander
over it are a race of evil inclination and most cruel customs. The
people of the fixed residences[203] and those beyond regard silver
and gold with indifference, nor can they conceive of any use for them.

  [200] Petatlan; so also in the edition of 1542. This is the Rio
  Sinaloa. See Castañeda's narration of the Coronado expedition,
  part 2, ch. 2, _post_.

  [201] See the note on Guzman in the Castañeda relation. The
  narrative is here slightly confused, as the town at which
  they first heard of Christians was the one in which they were
  overtaken by the rain, according to Cabeza de Vaca's previous
  statement in this chapter.

  [202] The Gulf of California. As he did not go to the coast,
  however, his estimate is considerably below the actual distance.

  [203] The Jumanos, previously mentioned.

Chapter 33

_We see traces of Christians._

When we saw sure signs of Christians, and heard how near we were to
them, we gave thanks to God our Lord for having chosen to bring us
out of a captivity so melancholy and wretched. The delight we felt
let each one conjecture, when he shall remember the length of time
we were in that country, the suffering and perils we underwent. That
night I entreated my companions that one of them should go back three
days' journey after the Christians who were moving about over the
country, where we had given assurance of protection. Neither of them
received this proposal well, excusing themselves because of weariness
and exhaustion; and although either might have done better than I,
being more youthful and athletic, yet seeing their unwillingness, the
next morning I took the negro with eleven Indians, and, following the
Christians by their trail, I travelled ten leagues, passing three
villages, at which they had slept.

The day after I overtook four of them on horseback, who were
astonished at the sight of me, so strangely habited as I was, and
in company with Indians.[204] They stood staring at me a length of
time, so confounded that they neither hailed me nor drew near to make
an inquiry. I bade them take me to their chief: accordingly we went
together half a league to the place where was Diego de Alcaraz, their

  [204] There were twenty horsemen according to the _Letter_
  (Oviedo, p. 612).

  [205] Alcaraz later served as a lieutenant under Diaz in the
  Coronado expedition. Castañeda characterizes him as a weakling.

After we had conversed, he stated to me that he was completely
undone; he had not been able in a long time to take any Indians; he
knew not which way to turn, and his men had well begun to experience
hunger and fatigue. I told him of Castillo and Dorantes, who were
behind, ten leagues off, with a multitude that conducted us. He
thereupon sent three cavalry to them, with fifty of the Indians who
accompanied him. The negro returned to guide them, while I remained.
I asked the Christians to give me a certificate of the year, month,
and day I arrived there, and of the manner of my coming, which they
accordingly did. From this river[206] to the town of the Christians,
named San Miguel,[207] within the government of the province called
New Galicia, are thirty leagues.

  [206] Evidently the Rio Sinaloa.

  [207] San Miguel Culiacan. See Castañeda's narration.

Chapter 34

_Of sending for the Christians._

Five days having elapsed, Andrés Dorantes and Alonzo del Castillo
arrived with those who had been sent after them. They brought more
than six hundred persons of that community, whom the Christians had
driven into the forests, and who had wandered in concealment over the
land. Those who accompanied us so far had drawn them out, and given
them to the Christians, who thereupon dismissed all the others they
had brought with them. Upon their coming to where I was, Alcaraz
begged that we would summon the people of the towns on the margin of
the river, who straggled about under cover of the woods, and order
them to fetch us something to eat. This last was unnecessary, the
Indians being ever diligent to bring us all they could. Directly we
sent our messengers to call them, when there came six hundred souls,
bringing us all the maize in their possession. They fetched it in
certain pots, closed with clay, which they had concealed in the
earth. They brought us whatever else they had; but we, wishing only
to have the provision, gave the rest to the Christians, that they
might divide among themselves. After this we had many high words with
them; for they wished to make slaves of the Indians we brought.

In consequence of the dispute, we left at our departure many bows
of Turkish shape we had along with us and many pouches. The five
arrows with the points of emerald were forgotten among others, and
we lost them. We gave the Christians a store of robes of cowhide and
other things we brought. We found it difficult to induce the Indians
to return to their dwellings, to feel no apprehension and plant
maize. They were willing to do nothing until they had gone with us
and delivered us into the hands of other Indians, as had been the
custom; for, if they returned without doing so, they were afraid
they should die, and, going with us, they feared neither Christians
nor lances. Our countrymen became jealous at this, and caused their
interpreter to tell the Indians that we were of them, and for a long
time we had been lost; that they were the lords of the land who must
be obeyed and served, while we were persons of mean condition and
small force. The Indians cared little or nothing for what was told
them; and conversing among themselves said the Christians lied: that
we had come whence the sun rises, and they whence it goes down; we
healed the sick, they killed the sound; that we had come naked and
barefooted, while they had arrived in clothing and on horses with
lances; that we were not covetous of anything, but all that was given
to us we directly turned to give, remaining with nothing; that the
others had the only purpose to rob whomsoever they found, bestowing
nothing on any one.

In this way they spoke of all matters respecting us, which they
enhanced by contrast with matters concerning the others, delivering
their response through the interpreter of the Spaniards. To other
Indians they made this known by means of one among them through whom
they understood us. Those who speak that tongue we discriminately
call Primahaitu, which is like saying Vasconyados.[208] We found
it in use over more than four hundred leagues of our travel,
without another over that whole extent. Even to the last, I could
not convince the Indians that we were of the Christians; and only
with great effort and solicitation we got them to go back to their
residences. We ordered them to put away apprehension, establish their
towns, plant and cultivate the soil.

  [208] Evidently intended for _Pimahaitu_, through
  misunderstanding. These tribes who lived in permanent
  habitations, from the village of the Corazones (Hearts) to
  Culiacan, were all of the Piman family, and consequently spoke
  related languages. The Pima do not call themselves _Pima_, but
  _O-otam_, "men," "people." _Pima_ means "no"; _pimahaitu_, "no
  thing." The term _Vasconyados_, or _Vascongados_, refers to the

From abandonment the country had already grown up thickly in trees.
It is, no doubt, the best in all these Indias, the most prolific
and plenteous in provisions. Three times in the year it is planted.
It produces great variety of fruit, has beautiful rivers, with many
other good waters. There are ores with clear traces of gold and
silver. The people are well disposed: they serve such Christians as
are their friends, with great good will. They are comely, much more
so than the Mexicans. Indeed, the land needs no circumstance to make
it blessed.

The Indians, at taking their leave, told us they would do what we
commanded, and would build their towns, if the Christians would
suffer them; and this I say and affirm most positively, that, if they
have not done so, it is the fault of the Christians.

After we had dismissed the Indians in peace, and thanked them for the
toil they had supported with us, the Christians with subtlety sent
us on our way under charge of Zebreros, an alcalde, attended by two
men. They took us through forests and solitudes, to hinder us from
intercourse with the natives, that we might neither witness nor have
knowledge of the act they would commit. It is but an instance of how
frequently men are mistaken in their aims; we set about to preserve
the liberty of the Indians and thought we had secured it, but the
contrary appeared; for the Christians had arranged to go and spring
upon those we had sent away in peace and confidence. They executed
their plan as they had designed, taking us through the woods, wherein
for two days we were lost, without water and without way. Seven of
our men died of thirst, and we all thought to have perished. Many
friendly to the Christians in their company were unable to reach
the place where we got water the second night, until the noon of
next day. We travelled twenty-five leagues, little more or less, and
reached a town of friendly Indians. The alcalde left us there, and
went on three leagues farther to a town called Culiacan where was
Melchior Diaz, principal alcalde and captain of the province.[209]

  [209] For the later career of this officer, see Castañeda's
  narration. Melchior Diaz was a man of very different stamp to
  Guzman, Alcaraz, and Zebreros (or Cebreros), so far as his
  treatment of the Indians is concerned.

Chapter 35

_The chief alcalde receives us kindly the night we arrive._

The _alcalde mayor_ knew of the expedition, and, hearing of our
return, he immediately left that night and came to where we were.
He wept with us, giving praises to God our Lord for having extended
over us so great care. He comforted and entertained us hospitably.
In behalf of the Governor, Nuño de Guzman and himself, he tendered
all that he had, and the service in his power. He showed much regret
for the seizure, and the injustice we had received from Alcaraz and
others. We were sure, had he been present, what was done to the
Indians and to us would never have occurred.

The night being passed, we set out the next day for Anhacan. The
chief alcalde besought us to tarry there, since by so doing we could
be of eminent service to God and your Majesty; the deserted land was
without tillage and everywhere badly wasted, the Indians were fleeing
and concealing themselves in the thickets, unwilling to occupy their
towns; we were to send and call them, commanding them in behalf of
God and the King, to return to live in the vales and cultivate the

To us this appeared difficult to effect. We had brought no native
of our own, nor of those who accompanied us according to custom,
intelligent in these affairs. At last we made the attempt with two
captives, brought from that country, who were with the Christians
we first overtook. They had seen the people who conducted us, and
learned from them the great authority and command we carried and
exercised throughout those parts, the wonders we had worked, the sick
we had cured, and the many things besides we had done. We ordered
that they, with others of the town, should go together to summon the
hostile natives among the mountains and of the river Petachan,[210]
where we had found the Christians, and say to them they must come
to us, that we wished to speak with them. For the protection of the
messengers, and as a token to the others of our will, we gave them
a gourd of those we were accustomed to bear in our hands, which had
been our principal insignia and evidence of rank,[211] and with this
they went away.

  [210] Petatlan--the Rio Sinaloa.

  [211] Evidently one of those obtained in Texas and which the
  Indians there so highly regarded. See p. 90, note 2; p. 95, note

The Indians were gone seven days, and returned with three chiefs of
those revolted among the ridges, who brought with them fifteen men,
and presented us beads, turquoises, and feathers. The messengers
said they had not found the people of the river where we appeared,
the Christians having again made them run away into the mountains.
Melchior Diaz told the interpreter to speak to the natives for us;
to say to them we came in the name of God, who is in heaven; that
we had travelled about the world many years, telling all the people
we found that they should believe in God and serve Him; for He was
the Master of all things on the earth, benefiting and rewarding the
virtuous, and to the bad giving perpetual punishment of fire; that,
when the good die, He takes them to heaven, where none ever die, nor
feel cold, nor hunger, nor thirst, nor any inconvenience whatsoever,
but the greatest enjoyment possible to conceive; that those who will
not believe in Him, nor obey His commands, He casts beneath the earth
into the company of demons, and into a great fire which is never
to go out, but always torment; that, over this, if they desired to
be Christians and serve God in the way we required, the Christians
would cherish them as brothers and behave towards them very kindly;
that we would command they give no offence nor take them from their
territories, but be their great friends. If the Indians did not do
this, the Christians would treat them very hardly, carrying them away
as slaves into other lands.[212]

  [212] Among the Indians of this region who were carried away into
  captivity were the Yaqui, who have been hostile to the whites to
  this day.

They answered through the interpreter that they would be true
Christians and serve God. Being asked to whom they sacrifice and
offer worship, from whom they ask rain for their corn-fields and
health for themselves, they answered of a man that is in heaven. We
inquired of them his name, and they told us Aguar; and they believed
he created the whole world, and the things in it. We returned to
question them as to how they knew this; they answered their fathers
and grandfathers had told them, that from distant time had come their
knowledge, and they knew the rain and all good things were sent to
them by him. We told them that the name of him of whom they spoke we
called Dios; and if they would call him so, and would worship him as
we directed, they would find their welfare. They responded that they
well understood, and would do as we said. We ordered them to come
down from the mountains in confidence and peace, inhabit the whole
country and construct their houses: among these they should build one
for God, at its entrance place a cross like that which we had there
present; and, when Christians came among them, they should go out to
receive them with crosses in their hands, without bows or any arms,
and take them to their dwellings, giving of what they have to eat,
and the Christians would do them no injury, but be their friends; and
the Indians told us they would do as we had commanded.

The captain having given them shawls and entertained them, they
returned, taking the two captives who had been used as emissaries.
This occurrence took place before the notary, in the presence of many

Chapter 36

_Of building churches in that land._

As soon as these Indians went back, all those of that province who
were friendly to the Christians, and had heard of us, came to visit
us, bringing beads and feathers. We commanded them to build churches
and put crosses in them: to that time none had been raised; and we
made them bring their principal men to be baptized.

Then the captain made a covenant with God, not to invade nor consent
to invasion, nor to enslave any of that country and people, to whom
we had guaranteed safety; that this he would enforce and defend until
your Majesty and the Governor Nuño de Guzman, or the Viceroy in your
name, should direct what would be most for the service of God and
your Highness.

When the children had been baptized, we departed for the town of San
Miguel. So soon as we arrived, April 1, 1536, came Indians, who told
us many people had come down from the mountains and were living in
the vales; that they had made churches and crosses, doing all we had
required. Each day we heard how these things were advancing to a full

Fifteen days of our residence having passed, Alcaraz got back with
the Christians from the incursion, and they related to the captain
the manner in which the Indians had come down and peopled the plain;
that the towns were inhabited which had been tenantless and deserted,
the residents, coming out to receive them with crosses in their
hands, had taken them to their houses, giving of what they had, and
the Christians had slept among them over night. They were surprised
at a thing so novel; but, as the natives said they had been assured
of safety, it was ordered that they should not be harmed, and the
Christians took friendly leave of them.

God in His infinite mercy is pleased that in the days of your
Majesty, under your might and dominion, these nations should come to
be thoroughly and voluntarily subject to the Lord, who has created
and redeemed us. We regard this as certain, that your Majesty is he
who is destined to do so much, not difficult to accomplish; for in
the two thousand leagues we journeyed on land, and in boats on water,
and in that we travelled unceasingly for ten months after coming out
of captivity, we found neither sacrifices nor idolatry.

In the time, we traversed from sea to sea; and from information
gathered with great diligence, there may be a distance from one to
another at the widest part, of two thousand leagues; and we learned
that on the coast of the South Sea there are pearls and great riches,
and the best and all the most opulent countries are near there.

We were in the village of San Miguel until the fifteenth day of
May.[213] The cause of so long a detention was, that from thence to
the city of Compostela, where the Governor Nuño de Guzman resided,
are a hundred leagues of country, entirely devastated and filled
with enemies, where it was necessary we should have protection.
Twenty mounted men went with us for forty leagues, and after that six
Christians accompanied us, who had with them five hundred slaves.
Arrived at Compostela, the Governor entertained us graciously and
gave us of his clothing for our use. I could not wear any for some
time, nor could we sleep anywhere else but on the ground. After ten
or twelve days we left for Mexico, and were all along on the way well
entertained by Christians. Many came out on the roads to gaze at us,
giving thanks to God for having saved us from so many calamities.
We arrived at Mexico on Sunday, the day before the vespers of Saint
Iago,[214] where we were handsomely treated by the Viceroy and
the Marquis del Valle,[215] and welcomed, with joy. They gave us
clothing and proffered whatsoever they had. On the day of Saint Iago
was a celebration, and a joust of reeds with bulls.

  [213] 1536.

  [214] The day of Saint James the Apostle--July 25, 1536.

  [215] The Viceroy Mendoza and Cortés.

Chapter 37

_Of what occurred when I wished to return._

When we had rested two months in Mexico, I desired to return to these
kingdoms;[216] and being about to embark in the month of October, a
storm came on, capsizing the ship, and she was lost. In consequence I
resolved to remain through the winter; because in those parts it is
a boisterous season for navigation. After that had gone by, Dorantes
and I left Mexico, about Lent, to take shipping at Vera Cruz. We
remained waiting for a wind until Palm Sunday, when we went on board,
and were detained fifteen days longer for a wind. The ship leaked so
much that I quitted her, and went to one of two other vessels that
were ready to sail, but Dorantes remained in her.

  [216] Spain.

On the tenth day of April,[217] the three ships left the port, and
sailed one hundred and fifty leagues. Two of them leaked a great
deal; and one night the vessel I was in lost their company. Their
pilots and masters, as afterwards appeared, dared not proceed with
the other vessels so, and without telling us of their intentions, or
letting us know aught of them, put back to the port they had left.
We pursued our voyage, and on the fourth day of May we entered the
harbor of Havana, in the island of Cuba. We remained waiting for the
other vessels, believing them to be on their way, until the second
of June, when we sailed, in much fear of falling in with Frenchmen,
as they had a few days before taken three Spanish vessels. Having
arrived at the island of Bermuda, we were struck by one of those
storms that overtake those who pass there, according to what they
state who sail thither. All one night we considered ourselves lost;
and we were thankful that when morning was come, the storm ceased,
and we could go on our course.

  [217] 1537.

At the end of twenty-nine days after our departure from Havana, we
had sailed eleven hundred leagues, which are said to be thence to the
town of the Azores. The next morning, passing by the island called
Cuervo,[218] we fell in with a French ship. At noon she began to
follow, bringing with her a caravel captured from the Portuguese, and
gave us chase. In the evening we saw nine other sail; but they were
so distant we could not make out whether they were Portuguese or of
those that pursued us. At night the Frenchman was within shot of a
lombard from our ship, and we stole away from our course in the dark
to evade him, and this we did three or four times. He approached so
near that he saw us and fired. He might have taken us, or, at his
option could leave us until the morning. I remember with gratitude to
the Almighty when the sun rose, and we found ourselves close with the
Frenchman, that near us were the nine sail we saw the evening before,
which we now recognized to be of the fleet of Portugal. I gave thanks
to our Lord for escape from the troubles of the land and perils of
the sea. The Frenchman, so soon as he discovered their character,
let go the caravel he had seized with a cargo of negroes and kept as
a prize, to make us think he was Portuguese, that we might wait for
him. When he cast her off, he told the pilot and the master of her,
that we were French and under his convoy. This said, sixty oars were
put out from his ship, and thus with these and sail he commenced to
flee, moving so fast it was hardly credible. The caravel being let
go, went to the galleon, and informed the commander that the other
ship and ours were French. As we drew nigh the galleon, and the fleet
saw we were coming down upon them, they made no doubt we were, and
putting themselves in order of battle, bore up for us, and when near
we hailed them. Discovering that we were friends, they found that
they were mocked in permitting the corsair to escape, by being told
that we were French and of his company.

  [218] Corvo.

Four caravels were sent in pursuit. The galleon drawing near, after
the salutation from us, the commander, Diego de Silveira, asked
whence we came and what merchandise we carried, when we answered
that we came from New Spain, and were loaded with silver and gold.
He asked us how much there might be; the captain told him we carried
three thousand _castellanos_. The commander replied: "In honest truth
you come very rich, although you bring a very sorry ship and a still
poorer artillery. By Heaven, that renegade whoreson Frenchman has
lost a good mouthful. Now that you have escaped, follow me, and do
not leave me that I may, with God's help, deliver you in Spain."

After a little time, the caravels that pursued the Frenchman
returned, for plainly he moved too fast for them; they did not like
either, to leave the fleet, which was guarding three ships that came
laden with spices. Thus we reached the island of Terceira, where we
reposed fifteen days, taking refreshment and awaiting the arrival of
another ship coming with a cargo from India, the companion of the
three of which the armada was in charge. The time having run out, we
left that place with the fleet, and arrived at the port of Lisbon on
the ninth of August, on the vespers of the day of our master Saint
Lawrence,[219] in the year one thousand five hundred and thirty-seven.

  [219] The day of Saint Lawrence (San Lorenzo) is August 10.

That what I have stated in my foregoing narrative is true, I
subscribe with my name.


The narrative here ended is signed with his name and arms.

Chapter 38

_Of what became of the others who went to Indias._

Since giving this circumstantial account of events attending the
voyage to Florida, the invasion, and our going out thence until the
arrival in these realms, I desire to state what became of the ships
and of the people who remained with them. I have not before touched
on this, as we were uninformed until coming to New Spain, where we
found many of the persons, and others here in Castile, from whom we
learned everything to the latest particular.

At the time we left, one of the ships had already been lost on the
breakers, and the three others were in considerable danger, having
nearly a hundred souls on board and few stores. Among the persons
were ten married women, one of whom had told the Governor many things
that afterwards befell him on the voyage. She cautioned him before he
went inland not to go, as she was confident that neither he nor any
going with him could ever escape; but should any one come back from
that country, the Almighty must work great wonders in his behalf,
though she believed few or none would return. The Governor said
that he and his followers were going to fight and conquer nations
and countries wholly unknown, and in subduing them he knew that
many would be slain; nevertheless, that those who survived would be
fortunate, since from what he had understood of the opulence of that
land, they must become very rich. And further he begged her to inform
him whence she learned those things that had passed, as well as
those she spoke of, that were to come; she replied that in Castile a
Moorish woman of Hornachos had told them to her, which she had stated
to us likewise before we left Spain, and while on the passage many
things happened in the way she foretold.

After the Governor had made Caravallo, a native of Cuenca de Huete,
his lieutenant and commander of the vessels and people, he departed,
leaving orders that all diligence should be used to repair on board,
and take the direct course to Pánuco, keeping along the shore closely
examining for the harbor, and having found it, the vessels should
enter there and await our arrival. And the people state, that when
they had betaken themselves to the ships, all of them looking at that
woman, they distinctly heard her say to the females, that well,
since their husbands had gone inland, putting their persons in so
great jeopardy, their wives should in no way take more account of
them, but ought soon to be looking after whom they would marry, and
that she should do so. She did accordingly: she and others married,
or became the concubines of those who remained in the ships.

After we left, the vessels made sail, taking their course onward; but
not finding the harbor, they returned. Five leagues below the place
at which we debarked, they found the port, the same we discovered
when we saw the Spanish cases containing dead bodies, which were of
Christians.[220] Into this haven and along this coast, the three
ships passed with the other ship that came from Cuba, and the
brigantine, looking for us nearly a year, and not finding us, they
went to New Spain.

  [220] Tampa Bay, Florida.

The port of which we speak is the best in the world. At the entrance
are six fathoms of water and five near the shore. It runs up into the
land seven or eight leagues. The bottom is fine white sand. No sea
breaks upon it nor boisterous storm, and it can contain many vessels.
Fish is in great plenty. There are a hundred leagues to Havana, a
town of Christians in Cuba, with which it bears north and south. The
north-east wind ever prevails and vessels go from one to the other,
returning in a few days; for the reason that they sail either way
with it on the quarter.

As I have given account of the vessels, it may be well that I state
who are, and from what parts of these kingdoms come, the persons whom
our Lord has been pleased to release from these troubles. The first
is Alonzo del Castillo Maldonado, native of Salamanca, son of Doctor
Castillo and Doña Aldonça Maldonado. The second is Andrés Dorantes,
son of Pablo Dorantes, native of Béjar, and citizen of Gibraleon. The
third is Alvar Nuñez Cabeça de Vaca, son of Francisco de Vera, and
grandson of Pedro de Vera who conquered the Canaries, and his mother
was Doña Tereça Cabeça de Vaca, native of Xeréz de la Frontera. The
fourth, called Estevanico, is an Arabian black, native of Açamor.


The present tract was imprinted in the very magnificent, noble and
very ancient City of Zamora, by the honored residents Augustin de Paz
and Juan Picardo, partners, printers of books, at the cost and outlay
of the virtuous Juan Pedro Musetti, book merchant of Medina del
Campo, having been finished the sixth day of the month of October, in
the year one thousand five hundred and forty-two of the birth of our
Saviour Jesus Christ.[221]

  [221] Colophon of the first edition.



In the early annals of the exploration, conquest, and settlement
of the territory of the United States none are to be found to
which more interest is attached than to the expedition of Hernando
de Soto through the Gulf States. History, tradition, and poetry
are indissolubly linked with his name. Counties, towns, and lakes
have been named after him, and tradition attaches his name to many
localities far removed from the line of his march.

In the narrative of the expedition we get our first geographical
knowledge of the interior of the states of Florida, Georgia, North
and South Carolina, Tennessee, Alabama, Mississippi, Arkansas,
Texas, and the Indian Territory. The Spaniards while on their minor
expeditions among the Indians may also have entered the states of
Missouri and Louisiana, but of this there is no certainty.

The earliest history of the great Indian tribes or nations residing
in the above-named states is related by these narratives, the
expedition having traversed the territory of the Timuguas, Cherokees,
the various divisions or tribes of the Muskogee or Creek confederacy,
the Choctaws, Chickasaws, Quapaws or Arkansas, several branches
of the great Pani nation, and some other tribes that are not so
easily identified. In the narratives are also to be found the first
descriptions of the habits, manners, and customs of the native tribes
met with. Their towns, villages, houses, temples, granaries, bridges,
canoes, banners, arms, wearing apparel, and culinary implements are
also described.

The first published narrative was written by a gentleman from
the town of Elvas, in Portugal, who joined the expedition and
participated in its trials and privations, and in the weary but
memorable march through what was then known as Florida. If he was one
of those Portuguese who are named in the book as having started from
Elvas, the inference may be drawn from the wording of the narrative
that he was named Alvaro Fernandez. His narrative was written after
his return from the expedition, and is evidently not based upon a
diary, or even field-notes, but seemingly was drawn entirely from
memory. His descriptions are somewhat vague, the localities sometimes
indefinite, the distances sometimes confused, and there are some
palpable errors. The lengthy addresses of the caciques belong to
romance rather than to history; at least, they are open to grave
suspicion that they were manufactured for the occasion. Nevertheless,
when the narrative is considered as a whole, it is decidedly the
best full account that has been handed down to us. It records the
first discovery and navigation of the Mississippi River, the death
of its discoverer, De Soto, the building of the first sea-going
vessels--brigantines--by Moscoso, the first voyage down "the great
river," and the arrival in Mexico of the remnants of the once
powerful expedition. The narrative, taken in connection with that
of Ranjel, preserved in Oviedo's _Historia General y Natural de las
Indias_ (Seville, 1547), supplies almost a daily record of the events
as they occurred.

The Gentleman of Elvas having been an eye-witness, and his narrative
being the best one that has been preserved, it must be taken as a
basis for laying down the route of the expedition. The abridged
journal of Ranjel, De Soto's private secretary, should also be
accepted as a standard, especially as to dates and the order in which
the towns and provinces are named. The narrative of Biedma, the
factor of the expedition,[222] although written after his arrival
in Mexico, supplies some additional information. It furnishes the
only clue as to the direction pursued by Moscoso, after leaving
Guachoya, and therefore contains valuable auxiliary evidence. The
account written by Garcilaso de la Vega, "the Inca," _Florida del
Ynca_ (Lisbon, 1605), is principally based upon the oral statements
of a noble Spaniard who accompanied Soto as a volunteer, and the
written but illiterate reports of two common soldiers, Alonzo
de Carmona and Juan Coles. After eliminating all the overdrawn,
flowery, and fanciful portions of the account, there is a residue
consisting, in part, of misplaced towns, provinces, and events,
together with occasional duplications of descriptions. Of the
remainder, only such portions as conform to, or do not conflict
with, the other narratives are worthy of consideration. By combining
the geographical, topographical, and descriptive portions of the
narratives, and exploring the probable and possible sections of the
route, the present writer has succeeded in identifying a number of
points visited by Soto and his followers. A detailed description
of the places identified will be found in the _Publications of the
Mississippi Historical Society_ (VI. 449-467); and the relative value
of the narratives, together with the minor documents, is discussed in
the same series (VII. 379-387).

  [222] First printed by Buckingham Smith in his _Coleccion de
  varios Documentos para la Historia de la Florida_ (London, 1857).

The Gentleman of Elvas, unlike Ranjel, does not put himself forward,
but was so modest that only once does he refer to himself while on
the march through Florida, and that was on the occasion of the death
of some relatives while at Aminoya. Seemingly he did not take an
active part at the front or in the advances, but was always with the
main army.

The Narrative of the Gentleman of Elvas was first published at
Evora, Portugal, in 1557. It was reprinted at Lisbon in 1844 by
the Royal Academy, and again in 1875. The first French edition
appeared in 1685, and an English translation from this edition was
published in 1686. The first English version, by Hakluyt, entitled
_Virginia richly valued by the Description of the Mainland of
Florida_, appeared in 1609, and a reprint entitled _The worthye and
famous Historie of the Travailles, Discovery, and Conquest of Terra
Florida_, in 1611. A reprint from the latter, edited by William
B. Rye, was published by the Hakluyt Society in 1851. The version
of 1611 is included in Force's _Tracts_, Volume IV., 1846, and in
French's _Historical Collections of Louisiana_, Part 2. The English
translation by Buckingham Smith, which was published by the Bradford
Club in 1866, in a volume entitled _The Career of Hernando de Soto in
the Conquest of Florida_, is the latest and most authentic version.
It is this which is followed in the present volume. A reprint of
Smith's translation, edited by Professor Edward G. Bourne, was
published in 1904.



     _True relation of the vicissitudes that attended the Governor
     Don Hernando de Soto and some nobles of Portugal in the
     discovery of the Province of Florida now just given by a Fidalgo
     of Elvas. Viewed by the Lord Inquisitor._[223]

  [223] From the title page of the original.

     Fernando da Silveira, Senhor da Serzedas, great Poet and very
     Illustrious, respecting the Material of this Book, and in Praise
     of the Author.


    He who would see the New World,
    The Golden Pole,[224] the second,
    Other seas, other lands,
    Achievements great, and wars,
    And such things attempted
    As alarm and give pleasure,
    Strike terror and lend delight;--
    Read of the author this pleasing story,
    Where nothing fabulous is told,
    All worthy of being esteemed,
    Read, considered, used.

  [224] We inhabit the Northern Arctic Pole, and that people
  inhabit the Southern Antarctic Pole. Golden Pole is used because
  the region is rich. (Footnote in the original.)


  [225] The printer.

Aristotle writes that all, or at least most men, are given or prone
to look at and listen to novelties, especially when they are of
foreign or remote countries. These things, he says, enliven the
heavy while they give recreation to delicate and subtile minds, that
propensity moving men not only to see and hear, but, if possible,
to take part in occurrences. This desire exists in the Lusitanians
more than in any other people,--for two reasons: the one, because
they are very ingenious and warlike; the other, because they are by
nature great navigators, having discovered more land, with wider
sailing, than all the nations of the earth beside. So, it appearing
to me that I could do some little service to those who should read
this book, I resolved to imprint it, assured, beyond its being in the
Portuguese, that it is composed by a native, and likewise because
citizens of Elvas took part in the discovery, as the narrative will
itself disclose. What he has written I undoubtingly credit: he tells
no tales, nor speaks of fabulous things; and we may believe that
the author--having no interest in the matter--would not swerve from
truth. We have his assurance besides, that all he has set down passed
before him. Should the language, by chance, appear to you careless,
lay not the fault on me; I imprint and do not write. God be your


     _Relation of the toils and hardships that attended Don Hernando
     de Soto, governor of Florida, in the conquest of that country;
     in which is set forth who he was, and also who were others
     with him; containing some account of the peculiarities and
     diversities of the country, of all that they saw and of what
     befell them._

Chapter 1

     _Who Soto was, and how he came to get the government of Florida._

Hernando de Soto was the son of an esquire of Xeréz de Badajóz, and
went to the Indias of the Ocean Sea, belonging to Castile, at the
time Pedrárias Dávila was the Governor. He had nothing more than
blade and buckler: for his courage and good qualities Pedrárias
appointed him to be captain of a troop of horse, and he went by his
order with Hernando Pizarro to conquer Peru.[226] According to the
report of many persons who were there, he distinguished himself
over all the captains and principal personages present, not only at
the seizure of Atabalípa, lord of Peru, and in carrying the City
of Cuzco, but at all other places wheresoever he went and found
resistance. Hence, apart from his share in the treasure of Atabalípa,
he got a good amount, bringing together in time, from portions
falling to his lot, one hundred and eighty thousand cruzados, which
he brought with him to Spain. Of this the Emperor borrowed a part,
which was paid; six hundred thousand reales[227] in duties on the
silks of Granada, and the rest at the Casa de Contratacion.[228]

  [226] In 1531.

  [227] Span. _real_, the eighth of a silver dollar.

  [228] The India House, or Board of Trade, at Seville.

In Seville, Soto employed a superintendent of household, an usher,
pages, equerry, chamberlain, footmen, and all the other servants
requisite for the establishment of a gentleman. Thence he went to
Court, and while there was accompanied by Juan de Añasco of Seville,
Luis Moscoso de Alvarado, Nuño de Tobár, and Juan Rodriguez Lobillo.
All, except Añasco, came with him from Peru; and each brought
fourteen or fifteen thousand cruzados. They went well and costly
apparelled; and Soto, although by nature not profuse, as it was the
first time he was to show himself at Court, spent largely, and went
about closely attended by those I have named, by his dependents, and
by many others who there came about him. He married Doña Ysabel de
Bobadilla, daughter of Pedrárias Dávila, Count of Puñonrostro. The
Emperor made him Governor of the Island of Cuba and Adelantado of
Florida, with title of Marquis to a certain part of the territory he
should conquer.

Chapter 2

     _How Cabeça de Vaca arrived at Court, and gave account of the
     country of Florida; and of the persons who assembled at Seville
     to accompany Don Hernando de Soto._

After Don Hernando had obtained the concession, a fidalgo[229]
arrived at Court from the Indias, Cabeça de Vaca by name, who had
been in Florida with Narvaez; and he stated how he with four others
had escaped, taking the way to New Spain; that the Governor had been
lost in the sea, and the rest were all dead. He brought with him a
written relation of adventures, which said in some places: Here I
have seen this; and the rest which I saw I leave to confer of with
His Majesty: generally, however, he described the poverty of the
country, and spoke of the hardships he had undergone. Some of his
kinsfolk, desirous of going to the Indias, strongly urged him to
tell them whether he had seen any rich country in Florida or not;
but he told them that he could not do so; because he and another (by
name Orantes,[230] who had remained in New Spain with the purpose of
returning into Florida) had sworn not to divulge certain things which
they had seen, lest some one might beg the government in advance of
them, for which he had come to Spain; nevertheless, he gave them to
understand that it was the richest country in the world.

  [229] Gentleman.

  [230] Dorantes.

Don Hernando de Soto was desirous that Cabeça de Vaca should go with
him, and made him favorable proposals; but after they had come upon
terms they disagreed, because the Adelantado would not give the money
requisite to pay for a ship that the other had bought. Baltasar
de Gallegos and Cristóbal de Espindola told Cabeça de Vaca, their
kinsman, that as they had made up their minds to go to Florida, in
consequence of what he had told them, they besought him to counsel
them; to which he replied, that the reason he did not go was because
he hoped to receive another government, being reluctant to march
under the standard of another; that he had himself come to solicit
the conquest of Florida, and though he found it had already been
granted to Don Hernando de Soto, yet, on account of his oath, he
could not divulge what they desired to know; nevertheless, he would
advise them to sell their estates and go--that in so doing they would
act wisely.

As soon as Cabeça de Vaca had an opportunity he spoke with the
Emperor; and gave him an account of all that he had gone through
with, seen, and could by any means ascertain. Of this relation,
made by word of mouth, the Marquis of Astorga was informed. He
determined at once to send his brother, Don Antonio Osorio; and with
him Francisco and Garcia Osorio, two of his kinsmen, also made ready
to go. Don Antonio disposed of sixty thousand reales income that he
received of the Church, and Francisco of a village of vassals he
owned in Campos. They joined the Adelantado at Seville, as did also
Nuño de Tobár, Luis de Moscoso, and Juan Rodriguez Lobillo. Moscoso
took two brothers; there went likewise Don Carlos, who had married
the Governor's niece, and he carried her with him. From Badajóz went
Pedro Calderon, and three kinsmen of the Adelantado: Arias Tinoco,
Alonso Romo, and Diego Tinoco.

As Luis de Moscoso passed through Elvas,[231] André de Vasconcelos
spoke with him, and requested him to speak to Don Hernando de Soto
in his behalf; and he gave him warrants, issued by the Marquis of
Vilareal, conferring on him the captaincy of Ceuta, that he might
show them; which when the Adelantado saw, and had informed himself of
who he was, he wrote to him that he would favor him in and through
all, and would give him a command in Florida. From Elvas went André
de Vasconcelos, Fernan Pegado, Antonio Martinez Segurado, Men Royz
Pereyra, Joam Cordeiro, Estevan Pegado, Bento Fernandez, Alvaro
Fernandez; and from Salamanca, Jaen, Valencia, Albuquerque, and
other parts of Spain, assembled many persons of noble extraction in
Seville; so much so that many men of good condition, who had sold
their lands, remained behind in Sanlúcar for want of shipping, when
for known countries and rich it was usual to lack men: and the cause
of this was what Cabeça de Vaca had told the Emperor, and given
persons to understand who conversed with him respecting that country.
He went for Governor to Rio de la Plata, but his kinsmen followed

  [231] In eastern Portugal, near the Spanish border.

Baltasar de Gallegos received the appointment of chief castellan, and
took with him his wife. He sold houses, vineyards, a rent of wheat,
and ninety geiras of olive-field in the Xarafe of Seville. There went
also many other persons of mark. The offices, being desired of many,
were sought through powerful influence: the place of factor was held
by Antonio de Biedma, that of comptroller by Juan de Añasco, and that
of treasurer by Juan Gaytan, nephew of the Cardinal of Ciguenza.

Chapter 3

     _How the Portuguese went to Seville and thence to Sanlúcar; and
     how the captains were appointed over the ships, and the people
     distributed among them._

The Portuguese left Elvas the 15th day of January, and came to
Seville on the vespers of Saint Sebastian.[232] They went to the
residence of the Governor; and entering the court, over which
were some galleries in which he stood, he came down and met them
at the foot of the stairs, whence they returned with him; and he
ordered chairs to be brought, in which they might be seated. André
de Vasconcelos told him who he was, and who the others were; that
they had all come to go with him, and aid in his enterprise. The
Adelantado thanked him, and appeared well pleased with their coming
and proffer. The table being already laid, he invited them to sit
down; and while at dinner, he directed his major-domo to find
lodgings for them near his house.

  [232] January 20.

From Seville the Governor went to Sanlúcar, with all the people that
were to go. He commanded a muster to be made, to which the Portuguese
turned out in polished armor, and the Castilians very showily, in
silk over silk, pinked and slashed. As such luxury did not appear
to him becoming on such occasion, he ordered a review to be called
for the next day, when every man should appear with his arms; to
which the Portuguese came as at first; and the Governor set them in
order near the standard borne by his ensign. The greater number of
the Castilians were in very sorry and rusty shirts of mail; all wore
steel caps or helmets, but had very poor lances. Some of them sought
to get among the Portuguese. Those that Soto liked and accepted of
were passed, counted, and enlisted; six hundred men in all followed
him to Florida. He had bought seven ships; and the necessary
subsistence was already on board. He appointed captains, delivering
to each of them his ship, with a roll of the people he was to take
with him.

Chapter 4

     _How the Adelantado with his people left Spain, going to the
     Canary Islands, and afterward arrived in the Antillas._

In the month of April, of the year 1538 of the Christian era, the
Adelantado delivered the vessels to their several captains, took
for himself a new ship, fast of sail, and gave another to André de
Vasconcelos, in which the Portuguese were to go. He passed over the
bar of Sanlúcar on Sunday, the morning of Saint Lazarus, with great
festivity, commanding the trumpets to be sounded and many charges of
artillery to be fired. With a favorable wind he sailed four days,
when it lulled, the calms continuing for eight days, with such
rolling sea that the ships made no headway.

The fifteenth day after our departure we came to Gomera, one of
the Canaries, on Easter Sunday, in the morning. The Governor of the
Island was apparelled all in white, cloak, jerkin, hose, shoes, and
cap, so that he looked like a governor of Gypsies. He received the
Adelantado with much pleasure, lodging him well and the rest with him
gratuitously. To Doña Ysabel he gave a natural daughter of his to be
her waiting-maid. For our money we got abundant provision of bread,
wine, and meats, bringing off with us what was needful for the ships.
Sunday following, eight days after arrival, we took our departure.

On Pentecost we came into the harbor of the city of Santiago, in
Cuba of the Antillas. Directly a gentleman of the town sent to the
seaside a splendid roan horse, well caparisoned, for the Governor to
mount, and a mule for his wife; and all the horsemen and footmen in
town at the time came out to receive him at the landing. He was well
lodged, attentively visited and served by all the citizens. Quarters
were furnished to every one without cost. Those who wished to go into
the country were divided among the farm-houses, into squads of four
and six persons, according to the several ability of the owners, who
provided them with food.

Chapter 5

     _Of the inhabitants there are in the city of Santiago and other
     towns of the island,--the character of the soil and of the

The city of Santiago consists of about eighty spacious and
well-contrived dwellings. Some are built of stone and lime, covered
with tiles: the greater part have the sides of board and the roofs
of dried grass. There are extensive country seats, and on them many
trees, which differ from those of Spain. The fig-tree bears fruit as
big as the fist, yellow within and of little flavor: another tree
with a delicious fruit, called anane, is of the shape and size of a
small pine-apple, the skin of which being taken off, the pulp appears
like a piece of curd. On the farms about in the country are other
larger pines, of very agreeable and high flavor, produced on low
trees that look like the aloe. Another tree yields a fruit called
mamei, the size of a peach, by the islanders more esteemed than any
other in the country. The guayaba is in the form of a filbert, and
is the size of a fig. There is a tree, which is a stalk without any
branch, the height of a lance, each leaf the length of a javelin, the
fruit of the size and form of a cucumber, the bunch having twenty or
thirty of them, with which the tree goes on bending down more and
more as they grow: they are called plantanos in that country, are of
good flavor, and will ripen after they are gathered, although they
are better when they mature on the tree. The stalks yield fruit but
once, when they are cut down, and others, which spring up at the
butt, bear in the coming year. There is another fruit called batata,
the subsistence of a multitude of people, principally slaves, and
now grows in the island of Terceira, belonging to this kingdom of
Portugal. It is produced in the earth, and looks like the ynhame,
with nearly the taste of chestnut. The bread of the country is made
from a root that looks like the batata, the stalk of which is like
alder. The ground for planting is prepared in hillocks; into each are
laid four or five stalks, and a year and a half after they have been
set the crop is fit to be dug. Should any one, mistaking the root for
batata, eat any of it, he is in imminent danger; as experience has
shown, in the case of a soldier, who died instantly from swallowing
a very little. The roots being peeled and crushed, they are squeezed
in a sort of press; the juice that flows has an offensive smell; the
bread is of little taste and less nourishment. The fruit from Spain
are figs and oranges, which are produced the year round, the soil
being very rich and fertile.

There are numerous cattle and horses in the country, which find
fresh grass at all seasons. From the many wild cows and hogs, the
inhabitants everywhere are abundantly supplied with meat. Out of the
towns are many fruits wild over the country; and, as it sometimes
happens, when a Christian misses his way and is lost for fifteen or
twenty days, because of the many paths through the thick woods made
by the herds traversing to and fro, he will live on fruit and on
wild cabbage, there being many and large palm-trees everywhere which
yield nothing else available beside.

The island of Cuba is three hundred leagues long from east to
southeast, and in places thirty, in others forty leagues from north
to south. There are six towns of Christians, which are Santiago,
Baracoa, the Báyamo, Puerto Principe, Sancti Spiritus, and Havana.
They each have between thirty and forty householders, except Santiago
and Havana, which have some seventy or eighty dwellings apiece.
The towns have all a chaplain to hear confession, and a church in
which to say mass. In Santiago is a monastery of the order of Saint
Francis; it has few friars, though well supported by tithes, as the
country is rich. The Church of Santiago is endowed, has a cura, a
prebend, and many priests, as it is the church of the city which is
the metropolis.

Although the earth contains much gold, there are few slaves to seek
it, many having destroyed themselves because of the hard usage they
receive from the Christians in the mines. The overseer of Vasco
Porcallo, a resident of the island, having understood that his slaves
intended to hang themselves, went with a cudgel in his hand and
waited for them in the place at which they were to meet, where he
told them that they could do nothing, nor think of any thing, that he
did not know beforehand; that he had come to hang himself with them,
to the end that if he gave them a bad life in this world, a worse
would he give them in that to come. This caused them to alter their
purpose and return to obedience.

Chapter 6

     _How the Governor sent Doña Ysabel with the ships from Santiago
     to Havana, while he with some of the men went thither by land._

The Governor sent Don Carlos with the ships, in company with Doña
Ysabel, to tarry for him at Havana, a port in the eastern end of the
island, one hundred and eighty leagues from Santiago. He and those
that remained, having bought horses, set out on their journey, and at
the end of twenty-five leagues came to Báyamo, the first town. They
were lodged, as they arrived, in parties of four and six, where their
food was given to them; and nothing was paid for any other thing than
maize for the beasts; because the Governor at each town assessed tax
on the tribute paid, and the labor done, by the Indians.

A deep river runs near Báyamo, larger than the Guadiana, called
Tanto. The monstrous alligators do harm in it sometimes to the
Indians and animals in the crossing. In all the country there are
no wolves, foxes, bears, lions, nor tigers: there are dogs in the
woods, which have run wild from the houses, that feed upon the swine:
there are snakes, the size of a man's thigh, and even bigger; but
they are very sluggish and do no kind of injury. From that town to
Puerto Principe there are fifty leagues. The roads throughout the
island are made by cutting out the undergrowth, which if neglected to
be gone over, though only for a single year, the shrubs spring up in
such manner that the ways disappear; and so numerous likewise are the
paths made by cattle, that no one can travel without an Indian of the
country for a guide, there being everywhere high and thick woods.

From Puerto Principe the Governor went by sea in a canoe to the
estate of Vasco Porcallo, near the coast, to get news of Doña Ysabel,
who, at the time, although not then known, was in a situation of
distress, the ships having parted company, two of them being driven
in sight of the coast of Florida, and all on board were suffering
for lack of water and subsistence. The storm over, and the vessels
come together, not knowing where they had been tossed, Cape San
Antonio was described, an uninhabited part of the island, where they
got water; and at the end of forty days from the time of leaving
Santiago, they arrived at Havana. The Governor presently received the
news and hastened to meet Doña Ysabel. The troops that went by land,
one hundred and fifty mounted men in number, not to be burdensome
upon the islanders, were divided into two squadrons, and marched to
Sancti Spiritus, sixty leagues from Puerto Principe. The victuals
they carried was the caçabe[233] bread I have spoken of, the nature
of which is such that it directly dissolves from moisture; whence
it happened that some ate meat and no bread for many days. They
took dogs with them, and a man of the country, who hunted as they
journeyed, and who killed the hogs at night found further necessary
for provision where they stopped; so that they had abundant supply,
both of beef and pork. They found immense annoyance from mosquitos,
particularly in a lake called Bog of Pia, which they had much ado in
crossing between mid-day and dark, it being more than half a league
over, full half a bow-shot of the distance swimming, and all the rest
of the way the water waist deep, having clams on the bottom that
sorely cut the feet, for not a boot nor shoe sole was left entire at
half way. The clothing and saddles were floated over in baskets of
palm-leaf. In this time the insects came in great numbers and settled
on the person where exposed, their bite raising lumps that smarted
keenly, a single blow with the hand sufficing to kill so many that
the blood would run over the arms and body. There was little rest at
night, as happened also afterwards at like seasons and places.

  [233] Cassava.

They came to Sancti Spiritus, a town of thirty houses, near which
passes a little river. The grounds are very fertile and pleasant,
abundant in good oranges, citrons, and native fruit. Here one half
the people were lodged; the other half went on twenty-five leagues
farther, to a town of fifteen or twenty householders, called
Trinidad. There is a hospital for the poor, the only one in the
island. They say the town was once the largest of any; and that
before the Christians came into the country a ship sailing along the
coast had in her a very sick man, who begged to be set on shore,
which the captain directly ordered, and the vessel kept on her way.
The inhabitants, finding him where he had been left, on that shore
which had never yet been hunted up by Christians carried him home,
and took care of him until he was well. The chief of the town gave
him a daughter; and being at war with the country round about,
through the prowess and exertion of the Christian he subdued and
reduced to his control all the people of Cuba. A long time after,
when Diego Velasquez went to conquer the island, whence he made the
discovery of New Spain, this man, then among the natives, brought
them, by his management, to obedience, and put them under the rule of
that Governor.

From Trinidad they travelled a distance of eighty leagues without
a town, and arrived at Havana in the end of March. They found the
Governor there, and the rest of the people who had come with him from
Spain. He sent Juan de Añasco in a caravel, with two pinnaces and
fifty men, to explore the harbor in Florida, who brought back two
Indians taken on the coast. In consequence, as much because of the
necessity of having them for guides and interpreters, as because they
said, by signs, that there was much gold in Florida, the Governor and
all the company were greatly rejoiced, and longed for the hour of
departure--that land appearing to them to be the richest of any which
until then had been discovered.

Chapter 7

     _How we left Havana and came to Florida, and what other matters
     took place._

Before our departure, the Governor deprived Nuño de Tobár of the
rank of captain-general, and conferred it on a resident of Cuba,
Vasco Porcallo de Figueroa, which caused the vessels to be well
provisioned, he giving a great many hogs and loads of caçabe bread.
That was done because Nuño de Tobár had made love to Doña Ysabel's
waiting-maid, daughter of the Governor of Gomera; and though he had
lost his place, yet, to return to Soto's favor, for she was with
child by him, he took her to wife and went to Florida. Doña Ysabel
remained, and with her the wife of Don Carlos, of Baltasar de
Gallegos, and of Nuño de Tobár. The Governor left, as his lieutenant
over the island, Juan de Rojas, a fidalgo of Havana.

On Sunday, the 18th day of May, in the year 1539, the Adelantado
sailed from Havana with a fleet of nine vessels, five of them ships,
two caravels, two pinnaces; and he ran seven days with favorable
weather. On the 25th of the month, being the festival of Espiritu
Santo,[234] the land was seen, and anchor cast a league from shore,
because of the shoals. On Friday, the 30th, the army landed in
Florida, two leagues from the town[235] of an Indian chief named
Ucita. Two hundred and thirteen horses were set on shore, to unburden
the ships, that they should draw the less water; the seamen only
remained on board, who going up every day a little with the tide, the
end of eight days brought them near to the town.

  [234] Whitsunday.

  [235] Ucita or Oçita. This first town was on the point at the
  mouth of Charlotte Harbor, Florida.

So soon as the people were come to land, the camp was pitched on the
sea-side, nigh the bay, which goes up close to the town. Presently
the captain-general, Vasco Porcallo, taking seven horsemen with him,
beat up the country half a league about, and discovered six Indians,
who tried to resist him with arrows, the weapons they are accustomed
to use. The horsemen killed two, and the four others escaped, the
country being obstructed by bushes and ponds, in which the horses
bogged and fell, with their riders, of weakness from the voyage. At
night the Governor, with a hundred men in the pinnaces, came upon
a deserted town; for, so soon as the Christians appeared in sight
of land, they were descried, and all along on the coast many smokes
were seen to rise, which the Indians make to warn one another. The
next day, Luis de Moscoso, master of the camp, set the men in order.
The horsemen he put in three squadrons--the vanguard, battalion, and
rearward; and thus they marched that day and the next, compassing
great creeks which run up from the bay; and on the first of June,
being Trinity Sunday, they arrived at the town of Ucita,[236] where
the Governor tarried.

  [236] The name of this town was Hirriga, according to the Inca,
  and it seems to have been located on the northeast arm of the

The town was of seven or eight houses, built of timber, and covered
with palm-leaves. The chief's house stood near the beach, upon a very
high mount made by hand for defence; at the other end of the town
was a temple, on the top of which perched a wooden fowl with gilded
eyes, and within were found some pearls of small value, injured by
fire, such as the Indians pierce for beads, much esteeming them, and
string to wear about the neck and wrists. The Governor lodged in the
house of the chief, and with him Vasco Porcallo and Luis de Moscoso;
in other houses, midway in the town, was lodged the chief castellan,
Baltasar de Gallegos, where were set apart the provisions brought in
the vessels. The rest of the dwellings, with the temple, were thrown
down, and every mess of three or four soldiers made a cabin, wherein
they lodged. The ground about was very fenny, and encumbered with
dense thicket and high trees. The Governor ordered the woods to be
felled the distance of a crossbow-shot around the place, that the
horses might run, and the Christians have the advantage, should the
Indians make an attack at night. In the paths, and at proper points,
sentinels of foot-soldiers were set in couples, who watched by turns;
the horsemen, going the rounds, were ready to support them should
there be an alarm.

The Governor made four captains of horsemen and two of footmen: those
of the horse were André de Vasconcelos, Pedro Calderon of Badajóz,
and the two Cardeñosas his kinsmen (Arias Tinoco and Alfonso Romo),
also natives of Badajóz; those of the foot were Francisco Maldonado
of Salamanca, and Juan Rodriguez Lobillo. While we were in this town
of Ucita, the Indians which Juan de Añasco had taken on that coast,
and were with the Governor as guides and interpreters, through the
carelessness of two men who had charge of them, got away one night.
For this the Governor felt very sorry, as did every one else; for
some excursions had already been made, and no Indians could be
taken, the country being of very high and thick woods, and in many
places marshy.

Chapter 8

     _Of some inroads that were made, and how a Christian was found
     who had been a long time in the possession of a Cacique._

From the town of Ucita the Governor sent the chief castellan,
Baltasar de Gallegos, into the country, with forty horsemen and
eighty footmen, to procure an Indian if possible. In another
direction he also sent, for the same purpose, Captain Juan Rodriguez
Lobillo, with fifty infantry: the greater part were of sword and
buckler; the remainder were crossbow and gun men. The command of
Lobillo marched over a swampy land, where horses could not travel;
and, half a league from camp, came upon some huts near a river. The
people in them plunged into the water; nevertheless, four women were
secured; and twenty warriors, who attacked our people, so pressed us
that we were forced to retire into camp.

The Indians are exceedingly ready with their weapons, and so
warlike and nimble, that they have no fear of footmen; for if
these charge them they flee, and when they turn their backs they
are presently upon them. They avoid nothing more easily than the
flight of an arrow. They never remain quiet, but are continually
running, traversing from place to place, so that neither crossbow nor
arquebuse can be aimed at them. Before a Christian can make a single
shot with either, an Indian will discharge three or four arrows;
and he seldom misses of his object. Where the arrow meets with no
armor, it pierces as deeply as the shaft from a crossbow. Their bows
are very perfect; the arrows are made of certain canes, like reeds,
very heavy, and so stiff that one of them, when sharpened, will pass
through a target. Some are pointed with the bone of a fish, sharp
and like a chisel; others with some stone like a point of diamond:
of such the greater number, when they strike upon armor, break at
the place the parts are put together; those of cane split, and will
enter a shirt of mail, doing more injury than when armed.

Juan Rodriguez Lobillo got back to camp with six men wounded, of whom
one died, and he brought with him the four women taken in the huts,
or cabins. When Baltasar de Gallegos came into the open field, he
discovered ten or eleven Indians, among whom was a Christian, naked
and sun-burnt, his arms tattooed after their manner, and he in no
respect differing from them. As soon as the horsemen came in sight,
they ran upon the Indians, who fled, hiding themselves in a thicket,
though not before two or three of them were overtaken and wounded.
The Christian, seeing a horseman coming upon him with a lance, began
to cry out: "Do not kill me, cavalier; I am a Christian! Do not slay
these people; they have given me my life!" Directly he called to the
Indians, putting them out of fear, when they left the wood and came
to him. The horsemen took up the Christian and Indians behind them
on their beasts, and, greatly rejoicing, got back to the Governor at
nightfall. When he and the rest who had remained in camp heard the
news, they were no less pleased than the others.

Chapter 9

     _How the Christian came to the land of Florida, who he was, and
     of what passed at his interview with the Governor._

The name of the Christian was Juan Ortiz, a native of Seville, and of
noble parentage. He had been twelve years among the Indians, having
gone into the country with Pánphilo de Narvaez, and returned in the
ships to the island of Cuba, where the wife of the Governor remained;
whence, by her command, he went back to Florida, with some twenty
or thirty others, in a pinnace; and coming to the port in sight of
the town, they saw a cane sticking upright in the ground, with a
split in the top, holding a letter, which they supposed the Governor
had left there, to give information of himself before marching into
the interior. They asked it, to be given to them, of four or five
Indians walking along the beach, who, by signs, bade them come to
land for it, which Ortiz and another did, though contrary to the
wishes of the others. No sooner had they got on shore, when many
natives came out of the houses, and, drawing near, held them in such
way that they could not escape. One, who would have defended himself,
they slew on the spot; the other they seized by the hands, and took
him to Ucita, their chief. The people in the pinnace, unwilling to
land, kept along the coast and returned to Cuba.

By command of Ucita, Juan Ortiz was bound hand and foot to four
stakes, and laid upon scaffolding, beneath which a fire was kindled,
that he might be burned; but a daughter of the chief entreated that
he might be spared. Though one Christian, she said, might do no good,
certainly he could do no harm, and it would be an honor to have one
for a captive; to which the father acceded, directing the injuries to
be healed. When Ortiz got well, he was put to watching a temple, that
the wolves, in the night-time, might not carry off the dead there,
which charge he took in hand, having commended himself to God. One
night they snatched away from him the body of a little child, son
of a principal man; and, going after them, he threw a dart at the
wolf that was escaping, which, feeling itself wounded, let go its
hold, and went off to die; and he returned, without knowing what he
had done in the dark. In the morning, finding the body of the little
boy gone, he became very sober; and Ucita, when he heard what had
happened, determined he should be killed; but having sent on the
trail which Ortiz pointed out as that the wolves had made, the body
of the child was found, and a little farther on a dead wolf; at which
circumstance the chief became well pleased with the Christian, and
satisfied with the guard he had kept, ever after taking much notice
of him.

Three years having gone by since he had fallen into the hands of
this chief, there came another, named Mocoço,[237] living two days'
journey distant from that port, and burnt the town, when Ucita fled
to one he had in another seaport, whereby Ortiz lost his occupation,
and with it the favor of his master. The Indians are worshippers of
the Devil, and it is their custom to make sacrifices of the blood and
bodies of their people, or of those of any other they can come by;
and they affirm, too, that when he would have them make an offering,
he speaks, telling them that he is athirst, and that they must
sacrifice to him. The girl who had delivered Ortiz from the fire,
told him how her father had the mind to sacrifice him the next day,
and that he must flee to Mocoço, who she knew would receive him with
regard, as she had heard that he had asked for him, and said he would
like to see him: and as he knew not the way, she went half a league
out of town with him at dark, to put him on the road, returning early
so as not to be missed.

  [237] The town of Mocoço was located west of Miakka River (Macaco
  of the old maps), which enters the northwest arm of the harbor.

Ortiz travelled all night, and in the morning came to a river, the
boundary of the territory of Mocoço, where he discovered two men
fishing. As this people were at war with those of Ucita, and their
languages different, he did not know how he should be able to tell
them who he was, and why he came, or make other explanation, that
they might not kill him as one of the enemy. It was not, however,
until he had come up to where their arms were placed that he was
discovered, when they fled towards the town; and though he called out
to them to wait, that he would do them no injury, they only ran the
faster for not understanding him. As they arrived, shouting, many
Indians came out of the town, and began surrounding, in order to
shoot him with their arrows, when he, finding himself pressed, took
shelter behind trees, crying aloud that he was a Christian fled from
Ucita, come to visit and serve Mocoço. At the moment, it pleased God
that an Indian should come up, who, speaking the language, understood
him and quieted the others, telling them what was said. Three or
four ran to carry the news, when the cacique, much gratified, came
a quarter of a league on the way to receive him. He caused the
Christian immediately to swear to him, according to the custom of
his country, that he would not leave him for any other master; and,
in return, he promised to show him much honor, and if at any time
Christians should come to that land, he would let him go freely, and
give him his permission to return to them, pledging his oath to this
after the Indian usage.

Three years from that time, some people fishing out at sea, three
leagues from land, brought news of having seen ships; when Mocoço,
calling Ortiz, gave him permission to depart, who, taking leave,
made all haste possible to the shore, where, finding no vessels, he
supposed the story to be only a device of the cacique to discover
his inclination. In this way he remained with him nine years, having
little hope of ever seeing Christians more; but no sooner had the
arrival of the Governor in Florida taken place, when it was known to
Mocoço, who directly told Ortiz that Christians were in the town of
Ucita. The captive, thinking himself jested with, as he had supposed
himself to be before, said that his thoughts no longer dwelt on
his people, and that his only wish now was to serve him. Still the
cacique assured him that it was even as he stated, and gave him leave
to go, telling him that if he did not, and the Christians should
depart, he must not blame him, for he had fulfilled his promise.

Great was the joy of Ortiz at this news, though still doubtful of
its truth; however, he thanked Mocoço, and went his way. A dozen
principal Indians were sent to accompany him; and on their way to
the port, they met Baltasar de Gallegos, in the manner that has been
related. Arrived at the camp, the Governor ordered that apparel be
given to him, good armor, and a fine horse. When asked if he knew
of any country where there was either gold or silver, he said that
he had not been ten leagues in any direction from where he lived;
but that thirty leagues distant was a chief named Paracoxi, to whom
Mocoço, Ucita, and all they that dwelt along the coast paid tribute,
and that he perhaps had knowledge of some good country, as his land
was better than theirs, being more fertile, abounding in maize.
Hearing this, the Governor was well pleased, and said he only
desired to find subsistence, that he might be enabled to go inland
with safety; for that Florida was so wide, in some part or other of
it, there could not fail to be a rich country. The cacique of Mocoço
came to the port, and calling on the Governor, he thus spoke:


     Though less able, I believe, to serve you than the least of
     these under your control, but with the wish to do more than even
     the greatest of them can accomplish, I appear before you in the
     full confidence of receiving your favor, as much so as though I
     deserved it, not in requital of the trifling service I rendered
     in setting free the Christian while he was in my power, which I
     did, not for the sake of my honor and of my promise, but because
     I hold that great men should be liberal. As much as in your
     bodily perfections you exceed all, and in your command over fine
     men are you superior to others, so in your nature are you equal
     to the full enjoyment of earthly things. The favor I hope for,
     great Lord, is that you will hold me to be your own, calling on
     me freely to do whatever may be your wish.

The Governor answered him, that although it were true, in freeing
and sending him the Christian, he had done no more than to keep his
word and preserve his honor, nevertheless he thanked him for an act
so valuable, that there was no other for him that could be compared
to it, and that, holding him henceforth to be a brother, he should in
all, and through all, favor him. Then a shirt and some other articles
of clothing were directed to be given to the chief, who, thankfully
receiving them, took leave and went to his town.

Chapter 10

     _How the Governor, having sent the ships to Cuba, marched
     inland, leaving one hundred men at the port._

From the port of Espiritu Santo, where the Governor was, he sent the
chief castellan, with fifty cavalry and thirty or forty infantry, to
the province of Paracoxi, to observe the character of the country,
to inquire of that farther on, and to let him hear by message of
what he should discover; he also sent the vessels to Cuba, that,
at an appointed time, they might return with provisions. As the
principal object of Vasco Porcallo de Figueroa in coming to Florida
had been to get slaves for his plantation and mines, finding, after
some incursions, that no seizures could be made, because of dense
forest and extensive bogs, he determined to go back to Cuba; and
in consequence of that resolution, there grew up such a difference
between him and Soto, that neither of them treated nor spoke to the
other kindly. Still, with words of courtesy, he asked permission of
him to return, and took his leave.

Baltasar de Gallegos having arrived at Paracoxi, thirty Indians
came to him on the part of the absent cacique, one of whom said:
"King Paracoxi, lord of this province, whose vassals we are, sends
us to ask of you what it is you seek in his country, and in what he
can serve you;" to which the chief castellan replied, that he much
thanked the cacique for his proffer, and bade them tell him to return
to his town, where they would talk together of a peace and friendship
he greatly desired to establish. They went off, and came again the
next day, reporting that as their lord could not appear, being very
unwell, they had come in his stead to see what might be wanted. They
were asked if they had knowledge or information of any country where
gold and silver might be found in plenty; to which they answered yes;
that towards the sunset was a province called Cale, the inhabitants
of which were at war with those of territories where the greater
portion of the year was summer, and where there was so much gold,
that when the people came to make war upon those of Cale, they wore
golden hats like casques.

As the cacique had not come, Gallegos, reflecting, suspected the
message designed for delay, that he might put himself in a condition
of safety; and fearing that, if those men were suffered to depart,
they might never return, he ordered them to be chained together,
and sent the news to camp by eight men on horseback. The Governor,
hearing what had passed, showed great pleasure, as did the rest who
were with him, believing what the Indians said might be true. He left
thirty cavalry and seventy infantry at the port, with provisions
for two years, under command of Captain Calderon, marching with the
others inland to Paracoxi; thence, having united with the force
already there, he passed through a small town named Acela, and came
to another called Tocaste,[238] whence he advanced with fifty of
foot and thirty horse towards Cale;[239] and having gone through an
untenanted town, some natives were seen in a lake, to whom having
spoken by an interpreter, they came out and gave him a guide. From
there he went to a river of powerful current, in the midst of which
was a tree, whereon they made a bridge. Over this the people passed
in safety, the horses being crossed swimming to a hawser, by which
they were drawn to the other bank, the first that entered the water
having been drowned for the want of one.

  [238] Tocaste was on an island in the marsh at the first crossing
  of "the great marsh," so graphically described by the Inca.

  [239] This was the river or marsh of Cale, and the Inca's second
  crossing of the great marsh.

The Governor sent two men on horseback, with word to those in the
rear that they should advance rapidly, for that the way was becoming
toilsome and the provisions were short. He came to Cale and found
the town abandoned; but he seized three spies, and tarried there
until the people should arrive, they travelling hungry and on bad
roads, the country being very thin of maize, low, very wet, pondy,
and thickly covered with trees.[240] Where there were inhabitants,
some watercresses could be found, which they who arrived first would
gather, and, cooking them in water with salt, eat them without other
thing; and they who could get none, would seize the stalks of maize
and eat them, the ear, being young, as yet containing no grain.
Having come to the river, which the Governor had passed, they got
cabbage from the low palmetto growing there, like that of Andalusia.
There they were met by the messengers, who, reporting a great deal
of maize in Cale, gave much satisfaction.

  [240] They had now reached the higher country, which begins in
  the southern part of Polk County.

While the people should be coming up, the Governor ordered all the
ripe grain in the fields, enough for three months, to be secured.
In gathering it three Christians were slain. One of two Indians who
were made prisoners stated that seven days' journey distant was a
large province, abounding in maize, called Apalache. Presently, with
fifty cavalry and sixty infantry, he set out from Cale, leaving Luis
de Moscoso, the master of the camp,[241] in command, with directions
not to move until he should be ordered. Up to that time, no one had
been able to get servants who should make his bread; and the method
being to beat out the maize in log mortars with a one-handed pestle
of wood, some also sifting the flour afterward through their shirts
of mail, the process was found so laborious, that many, rather than
crush the grain, preferred to eat it parched and sodden. The mass
was baked in clay dishes, set over fire, in the manner that I have
described as done in Cuba.

  [241] An officer somewhat like an adjutant-general.

Chapter 11

     _How the Governor arrived at Caliquen, and thence, taking
     the cacique with him, came to Napetaca, where the Indians,
     attempting to rescue him, had many of their number killed and

On the eleventh day of August, in the year 1539, the Governor left
Cale, and arrived to sleep at a small town called Ytara, and the
next day at another called Potano, and the third at Utinama, and
then at another named Malapaz. This place was so called because one,
representing himself to be its cacique, came peacefully, saying that
he wished to serve the Governor with his people, and asked that he
would cause the twenty-eight men and women, prisoners taken the night
before, to be set at liberty; that provisions should be brought,
and that he would furnish a guide for the country in advance of
us; whereupon, the Governor having ordered the prisoners to be let
loose, and the Indian put under guard, the next day in the morning
came many natives close to a scrub surrounding the town, near which
the prisoner asked to be taken, that he might speak and satisfy them,
as they would obey in whatever he commanded; but no sooner had he
found himself close to them, than he boldly started away, and fled
so swiftly that no one could overtake him, going off with the rest
into the woods. The Governor ordered a bloodhound, already fleshed
upon him, to be let loose, which, passing by many, seized upon the
faithless cacique, and held him until the Christians had come up.

From this town the people went to sleep at that of Cholupaha, which,
for its abundance of maize, received the name of Villafarta; thence,
crossing a river before it, by a bridge they had made of wood, the
Christians marched two days through an uninhabited country.

On the seventeenth day of August they arrived at Caliquen, where
they heard of the province of Apalache, of Narvaez having been there
and having embarked, because no road was to be found over which to
go forward, and of there being no other town, and that water was on
all sides. Every mind was depressed at this information, and all
counselled the Governor to go back to the port, that they might not
be lost, as Narvaez had been, and to leave the land of Florida; that,
should they go further, they might not be able to get back, as the
little maize that was yet left the Indians would secure: to which
Soto replied, that he would never return until he had seen with his
own eyes what was asserted, things that to him appeared incredible.
Then he ordered us to be in readiness for the saddle, sending word to
Luis de Moscoso to advance from Cale, that he waited for him; and,
as in the judgment of the master of the camp, and of many others,
they should have to return from Apalache, they buried in Cale some
iron implements with other things. They reached Caliquen through
much suffering; for the land over which the Governor had marched lay
wasted and was without maize.

All the people having come up, a bridge was ordered to be made over
a river that passed near the town, whereon we crossed, the tenth day
of September, taking with us the cacique. When three days on our
journey, some Indians arrived to visit their lord; and every day they
came out to the road, playing upon flutes, a token among them that
they come in peace. They stated that further on there was a cacique
named Uzachil, kinsman of the chief of Caliquen, their lord, who
waited the arrival of the Governor, prepared to do great services;
and they besought him to set their cacique free, which he feared to
do, lest they should go off without giving him any guides; so he got
rid of them from day to day with specious excuses.

We marched five days, passing through some small towns, and arrived
at Napetaca on the fifteenth day of September, where we found
fourteen or fifteen Indians who begged for the release of the cacique
of Caliquen, to whom the Governor declared that their lord was no
prisoner, his attendance being wished only as far as Uzachil. Having
learned from Juan Ortiz, to whom a native had made it known, that
the Indians had determined to assemble and fall upon the Christians,
for the recovery of their chief, the Governor, on the day for which
the attack was concerted, commanded his men to be in readiness, the
cavalry to be armed and on horseback, each one so disposed of in his
lodge as not to be seen of the Indians, that they might come to the
town without reserve. Four hundred warriors, with bows and arrows,
appeared in sight of the camp; and, going into a thicket, they sent
two of their number to demand the cacique: the Governor, with six men
on foot, taking the chief by the hand, conversing with him the while
to assure the Indians, went towards the place where they were, when,
finding the moment propitious, he ordered a trumpet to be sounded:
directly, they who were in the houses, foot as well as horse, set
upon the natives, who, assailed unexpectedly, thought only of their
safety. Of two horses killed, one was that of the Governor, who was
mounted instantly on another. From thirty to forty natives fell by
the lance; the rest escaped into two very large ponds, situated some
way apart, wherein they swam about; and, being surrounded by the
Christians, they were shot at with crossbow and arquebuse, although
to no purpose, because of the long distance they were off.

At night, one of the lakes was ordered to be guarded, the people
not being sufficient to encircle both. The Indians, in attempting
to escape in the dark, would come swimming noiselessly to the
shore, with a leaf of water-lily on the head, that they might pass
unobserved; when those mounted, at sight of any ruffle on the
surface, would dash into the water up to the breasts of the horses,
and the natives would again retire. In such way passed the night,
neither party taking any rest. Juan Ortiz told them that, as escape
was impossible, they would do well to give up; which they did, driven
by extreme chillness of the water; and one after another, as cold
overpowered, called out to him, asking not to be killed--that he was
coming straightway to put himself in the hands of the Governor. At
four o'clock in the morning they had all surrendered, save twelve
of the principal men, who, as of more distinction and more valiant
than the rest, preferred to die rather than yield: then the Indians
of Paracoxi, who were going about unshackled, went in after them,
swimming, and pulled them out by the hair. They were all put in
chains, and, on the day following, were divided among the Christians
for their service.

While captives, these men determined to rebel, and gave the lead to
an interpreter, one reputed brave, that when the Governor might come
near to speak with him, he should strangle him; but no sooner was the
occasion presented, and before his hands could be thrown about the
neck of Soto, his purpose was discovered, and he received so heavy
a blow from him in the nostrils, that they gushed with blood. The
Indians all rose together. He who could only catch up a pestle from
a mortar, as well as he who could grasp a weapon, equally exerted
himself to kill his master, or the first one he met; and he whose
fortune it was to light on a lance, or a sword, handled it in a
manner as though he had been accustomed to use it all his days. One
Indian, in the public yard of the town, with blade in hand, fought
like a bull in the arena, until the halberdiers of the Governor,
arriving, put an end to him. Another got up, with a lance, into a
maize crib, made of cane, called by Indians barbacoa, and defended
the entrance with the uproar of ten men, until he was stricken down
with a battle-axe. They who were subdued may have been in all two
hundred men: some of the youngest the Governor gave to those who
had good chains and were vigilant; all the rest were ordered to
execution, and, being bound to a post in the middle of the town yard,
they were shot to death with arrows by the people of Paracoxi.

Chapter 12

     _How the Governor arrived at Palache, and was informed that
     there was much gold inland._

On the twenty-third day of September the Governor left Napetaca, and
went to rest at a river, where two Indians brought him a deer from
the cacique of Uzachil; and the next day, having passed through a
large town called Hapaluya, he slept at Uzachil. He found no person
there; for the inhabitants, informed of the deaths at Napetaca, dared
not remain. In the town was found their food, much maize, beans, and
pumpkins, on which the Christians lived. The maize is like coarse
millet; the pumpkins are better and more savory than those of Spain.

Two captains having been sent in opposite directions, in quest of
Indians, a hundred men and women were taken, one or two of whom were
chosen out for the Governor, as was always customary for officers to
do after successful inroads, dividing the others among themselves and
companions. They were led off in chains, with collars about the neck,
to carry luggage and grind corn, doing the labor proper to servants.
Sometimes it happened that, going with them for wood or maize, they
would kill the Christian, and flee, with the chain on, which others
would file at night with a splinter of stone, in the place of iron,
at which work, when caught, they were punished, as a warning to
others, and that they might not do the like. The women and youths,
when removed a hundred leagues from their country, no longer cared,
and were taken along loose, doing the work, and in a very little time
learning the Spanish language.

From Uzachil the Governor went towards Apalache, and at the end of
two days' travel arrived at a town called Axille. After that, the
Indians having no knowledge of the Christians, they were come upon
unawares, the greater part escaping, nevertheless, because there were
woods near town. The next day, the first of October, the Governor
took his departure in the morning, and ordered a bridge to be made
over a river which he had to cross. The depth there, for a stone's
throw, was over the head, and afterward the water came to the waist,
for the distance of a crossbow-shot, where was a growth of tall and
dense forest, into which the Indians came, to ascertain if they could
assail the men at work and prevent a passage; but they were dispersed
by the arrival of crossbowmen, and some timbers being thrown in, the
men gained the opposite side and secured the way. On the fourth day
of the week, Wednesday of St. Francis,[242] the Governor crossed over
and reached Uitachuco, a town subject to Apalache, where he slept. He
found it burning, the Indians having set it on fire.

  [242] St. Francis's day is the fourth of the month (October), but
  it was not Wednesday in 1539. Ranjel says that the crossing was
  finished on Friday, October 3.

Thenceforward the country was well inhabited, producing much corn,
the way leading by many habitations like villages. Sunday, the
twenty-fifth of October,[243] he arrived at the town of Uzela,[244]
and on Monday at Anhayca Apalache, where the lord of all that country
and province resided. The camp-master, whose duty it is to divide and
lodge the men, quartered them about the town, at the distance of half
a league to a league apart. There were other towns which had much
maize, pumpkins, beans, and dried plums of the country, whence were
brought together at Anhayca Apalache what appeared to be sufficient
provision for the winter. These _ameixas_[245] are better than those
of Spain, and come from trees that grow in the fields without being

  [243] This should be Sunday, October 5. October 25, 1539, came on

  [244] Calahuchi, according to Ranjel. The modern name may be

  [245] This word means plums, but when applied to the American
  fruit, it has reference to the persimmon.

Informed that the sea was eight leagues distant, the Governor
directly sent a captain thither, with cavalry and infantry, who found
a town called Ochete, eight leagues on the way; and, coming to the
coast, he saw where a great tree had been felled, the trunk split
up into stakes, and with the limbs made into mangers. He found also
the skulls of horses. With these discoveries he returned, and what
was said of Narvaez was believed to be certain, that he had there
made boats,[246] in which he left the country, and was lost in them
at sea. Presently Juan de Añasco made ready to go to the port of
Espiritu Santo, taking thirty cavalry, with orders from the Governor
to Calderon, who had remained there, that he should abandon the town,
and bring all the people to Apalache.

  [246] The bay where Narvaez built his brigantines was known to
  the Spaniards as Bahia de Caballos, or Horse Bay. The modern name
  is Bay Ocklockonee.

In Uzachill, and other towns on the way, Añasco found many people who
had already become careless; still, to avoid detention, no captures
were made, as it was not well to give the Indians sufficient time
to come together. He went through the towns at night, stopping at a
distance from the population for three or four hours, to rest, and at
the end of ten days arrived at the port. He despatched two caravels
to Cuba, in which he sent to Doña Ysabel twenty women brought by
him from Ytara and Potano, near Cale; and, taking with him the
foot-soldiers in the brigantines, from point to point along the coast
by sea, he went towards Palache. Calderon with the cavalry, and some
crossbowmen of foot, went by land. The Indians at several places
beset him, and wounded some of the men. On his arrival, the Governor
ordered planks and spikes to be taken to the coast for building a
piragua, into which thirty men entered well armed from the bay, going
to and coming from sea, waiting the arrival of the brigantines, and
sometimes fighting with the natives, who went up and down the estuary
in canoes. On Saturday, the twenty-ninth of November, in a high wind,
an Indian passed through the sentries undiscovered, and set fire
to the town, two portions of which, in consequence, were instantly

On Sunday, the twenty-eighth of December, Juan de Añasco arrived;
and the Governor directed Francisco Maldonado, captain of infantry,
to run the coast to the westward with fifty men, and look for an
entrance; proposing to go himself in that direction by land on
discoveries. The same day, eight men rode two leagues about the
town in pursuit of Indians, who had become so bold that they would
venture up within two crossbow-shot of the camp to kill our people.
Two were discovered engaged in picking beans, and might have escaped,
but a woman being present, the wife of one of them, they stood to
fight. Before they could be killed, three horses were wounded, one
of which died in a few days. Calderon going along the coast near
by, the Indians came out against him from a wood, driving him from
his course, and capturing from many of his company a part of their
indispensable subsistence.

Three or four days having elapsed beyond the time set for the going
and return of Maldonado, the Governor resolved that, should he not
appear at the end of eight days, he would go thence and wait no
longer; when the captain arrived, bringing with him an Indian from
a Province called Ochus, sixty leagues from Apalache, and the news
of having found a sheltered port with a good depth of water. The
Governor was highly pleased, hoping to find a good country ahead; and
he sent Maldonado to Havana for provisions, with which to meet him at
that port of his discovery, to which he would himself come by land;
but should he not reach there that summer, then he directed him to go
back to Havana and return there the next season to await him, as he
would make it his express object to march in quest of Ochus.

Francisco Maldonado went, and Juan de Guzman remained instead,
captain of his infantry. Of the Indians taken in Napetuca, the
treasurer, Juan Gaytan, brought a youth with him, who stated that he
did not belong to that country, but to one afar in the direction of
the sun's rising, from which he had been a long time absent visiting
other lands; that its name was Yupaha, and was governed by a woman,
the town she lived in being of astonishing size, and many neighboring
lords her tributaries, some of whom gave her clothing, others gold in
quantity. He showed how the metal was taken from the earth, melted,
and refined, exactly as though he had seen it all done, or else the
Devil had taught him how it was; so that they who knew aught of
such matters declared it impossible that he could give that account
without having been an eye-witness; and they who beheld the signs he
made, credited all that was understood as certain.

Chapter 13

     _How the Governor went from Apalache in quest of Yupaha, and
     what befell him._

On Wednesday, the third of March, in the year 1540, the Governor
left Anhaica Apalache to seek Yupaha. He had ordered his men to go
provided with maize for a march through sixty leagues of desert. The
cavalry carried their grain on the horses, and the infantry theirs
on the back; because the Indians they brought with them for service,
being naked and in chains, had perished in great part during the
winter. On the fourth day of the journey they arrived at a deep
river,[247] where a piragua was made; and, in consequence of the
violence of the current, a cable of chains was extended from shore to
shore, along which the boat passed, and the horses were drawn over,
swimming thereto, by means of a windlass to the other side.

  [247] Probably Flint River.

A day and a half afterwards, they arrived at a town by the name of
Capachiqui, and on Friday, the eleventh,[248] the inhabitants were
found to have gone off. The following day, five Christians, going
in the rear of the camp to search for mortars, in which the natives
beat maize, went to some houses surrounded by a thicket, where many
Indians lurked as spies, an equal number of whom, separating from
the rest, set upon our men, one of whom fled back, crying out to
arms. When they who could first answer to the call reached the spot,
they found one of the Christians killed, and the three others badly
wounded, the Indians fleeing into a sheet of water, full of woods,
into which the horses could not go. The Governor left Capachiqui,
passing through a desert; and on Wednesday, the twenty-first[249] of
the month, came to Toalli.

  [248] This should be Thursday the eleventh, which was the day on
  which they arrived at the first town in Capachiqui. Capachiqui
  was the second town in that province, according to Ranjel.

  [249] Wednesday was the twenty-fourth, but they arrived at Toalli
  early on the morning of the twenty-third, according to Ranjel.

The houses of this town were different from those behind, which were
covered with dry grass; thenceforward they were roofed with cane,
after the fashion of tile. They are kept very clean: some have their
sides so made of clay as to look like tapia.[250] Throughout the cold
country every Indian has a winter house, plastered inside and out,
with a very small door, which is closed at dark, and a fire being
made within, it remains heated like an oven, so that clothing is not
needed during the night-time. He has likewise a house for summer,
and near it a kitchen, where fire is made and bread baked. Maize is
kept in a barbacoa, which is a house with wooden sides, like a room,
raised aloft on four posts, and has a floor of cane. The difference
between the houses of the masters, or principal men, and those of the
common people is that, besides being larger than the others, they
have deep balconies on the front side, with cane seats, like benches;
and about are many barbacoas, in which they bring together the
tribute their people give them of maize, skins of deer, and blankets
of the country. These are like shawls, some of them made from the
inner bark of trees, and others of a grass resembling nettle, which,
by treading out, becomes like flax. The women use them for covering,
wearing one about the body from the waist downward, and another over
the shoulder, with the right arm left free, after the manner of the
Gypsies: the men wear but one, which they carry over the shoulder
in the same way, the loins being covered with a _bragueiro_ of
deer-skin, after the fashion of the woollen breech-cloth that was
once the custom of Spain. The skins are well dressed, the color being
given to them that is wished, and in such perfection, that, when of
vermilion, they look like very fine red broadcloth; and when black,
the sort in use for shoes, they are of the purest. The same hues are
given to blankets.

  [250] Mud walls.

The Governor left Toalli on the twenty-fourth day of March, and
arrived on Thursday, in the evening, at a little stream[251] where a
small bridge was made, and the people passed to the opposite side.
Benito Fernandes, a Portuguese, fell off from it, and was drowned. So
soon as the Governor had crossed, he found a town, a short way on,
by the name of Achese, the people of which, having had no knowledge
of the Christians, plunged into a river; nevertheless, some men
and women were taken, among whom was found one who understood the
youth, the guide to Yupaha, which rather confirmed what he stated, as
they had come through regions speaking different languages, some of
which he did not understand. By one of the Indians taken there, the
Governor sent to call the cacique from the farther side of the river,
who, having come to him, thus spoke:


     The things that seldom happen bring astonishment. Think, then,
     what must be the effect on me and mine, of the sight of you and
     your people, whom we have at no time seen, astride the fierce
     brutes, your horses, entering with such speed and fury into
     my country, that we had no tidings of your coming--things so
     altogether new, as to strike awe and terror to our hearts, which
     it was not nature to resist, so that we should receive you with
     the sobriety due to so kingly and famous a lord. Trusting to
     your greatness and personal qualities, I hope no fault will be
     found in me, and that I shall rather receive favors, of which
     one is that with my person, my country, and my vassals, you will
     do as with your own things; and another, that you tell me who
     you are, whence you come, whither you go, and what it is you
     seek, that I may the better serve you.

  [251] Before arriving at this stream they crossed a very broad
  river, according to Ranjel, which Biedma says was the first river
  flowing to the east. This was the Ocmulgee River.

The Governor responded, that he greatly thanked him for his
good-will, as much so as though he had given him a great treasure. He
told him that he was the child of the Sun, coming from its abode, and
that he was going about the country, seeking for the greatest prince
there, and the richest province. The cacique stated that farther on
was a great lord, whose territory was called Ocute. He gave him a
guide, who understood the language, to conduct him thither; and the
Governor commanded his subjects to be released. A high cross, made of
wood, was set up in the middle of the town-yard; and, as time did not
allow more to be done, the Indians were instructed that it was put
there to commemorate the suffering of Christ, who was God and man;
that he had created the skies and the earth, and had suffered for the
salvation of all, and therefore, that they should revere that sign;
and they showed by their manner that they would do so.

The Governor set out on the first day of April, and advanced
through the country of the chief, along up a river, the shores of
which were very populous. On the fourth he went through the town
of Altamaca,[252] and on the tenth arrived at Ocute. The cacique
sent him a present, by two thousand Indians, of many rabbits and
partridges, maize bread, many dogs, and two turkeys. On account
of the scarcity of meat, the dogs were as much esteemed by the
Christians as though they had been fat sheep. There was such want
of meat and salt that oftentimes, in many places, a sick man had
nothing for his nourishment, and was wasting away to bone, of some
ail that elsewhere might have found a remedy; and would die of pure
debility, saying: "Now, if I had but a slice of meat, or only a few
lumps of salt, I should not thus die."

  [252] Altamaha, according to Ranjel. Before arriving at this
  place they crossed a great river which was either the Oconee or
  the Altamaha River.

The Indians never lacked meat. With arrows they get abundance of
deer, turkeys, rabbits, and other wild animals, being very skilful
in killing game, which the Christians were not; and even if they
had been, there was not the opportunity for it, they being on the
march the greater part of their time; nor did they, besides, ever
dare to straggle off. Such was the craving for meat, that when the
six hundred men who followed Soto arrived at a town, and found there
twenty or thirty dogs, he who could get sight of one and kill him,
thought he had done no little; and he who proved himself so active,
if his captain knew of it, and he forgot to send him a quarter, would
show his displeasure, and make him feel it in the watches, or in any
matter of labor that came along, with which he could bear upon him.

On Monday, the twelfth of April, the Governor took his departure, the
cacique of Ocute giving him four hundred tamemes, the Indians that
carry burdens. He passed through a town, the lord of which was called
Cofaqui, and came to the province of another, named Patofa, who,
being at peace with the chief of Ocute and other neighboring lords,
had heard of the Governor for a long time, and desired to see him. He
went to call on him, and made this speech:


     Not without reason, now, will I ask that some light mishap
     befall me, in return for so great good fortune, and deem my lot
     a happy one; since I have come to what I most wished in life, to
     behold and have the opportunity in some way to serve you. Thus
     the tongue casts the shadow of the thought; but I, nevertheless,
     am as unable to produce the perfect image of my feelings as to
     control the appearances of my contentment. By what circumstance
     has this your land, which I govern, deserved to be seen by one
     so superior and excellent that all on earth should obey and
     serve him [Soto] as a prince? And those who here inhabit being
     so insignificant, how can they forget, in receiving this vast
     enjoyment, that, in the order of things, will follow upon it
     some great adversity? If we are held worthy of being yours,
     we can never be other than favored, nor less than protected
     in whatsoever is reasonable and just; for they that fail of
     deserving either, with the name of men can only be considered
     brutes. From the depth of my heart, and with the respect due to
     such a chief, I make mine offer; and pray that, in return for so
     sincere good-will, you dispose of me, my country, and my vassals.

The Governor answered that his offers and good-will, shown in works,
would greatly please him, and that he should ever bear them in memory
to honor and favor him as he would a brother. From this province of
Patofa, back to the first cacique we found at peace, a distance of
fifty leagues, the country is abundant, picturesque, and luxuriant,
well watered, and having good river margins; thence to the harbor of
Espiritu Santo, where we first arrived, the land of Florida, which
may be three hundred leagues in length, a little more or less, is
light, the greater part of it of pine-trees, and low, having many
ponds; and in places are high and dense forests, into which the
Indians that were hostile betook themselves, where they could not be
found; nor could horses enter there, which, to the Christians, was
the loss of the food they carried away, and made it troublesome to
get guides.

Chapter 14

     _How the Governor left the province of Patofa, marching into a
     desert country, where he, with his people, became exposed to
     great peril and underwent severe privation._

In the town of Patofa, the youth, whom the Governor brought with
him for guide and interpreter, began to froth at the mouth, and
threw himself on the ground as if he were possessed of the Devil. An
exorcism being said over him, the fit went off. He stated that four
days' journey from there, towards the sunrise, was the province he
spoke of: the Indians at Patofa said that they knew of no dwellings
in that direction, but that towards the northwest there was a
province called Coça, a plentiful country having very large towns.
The cacique told the Governor that if he desired to go thither he
would give him a guide and Indians to carry burdens, and if he would
go in the direction pointed out by the youth, he would furnish him
with everything necessary for that also.

With words of love, and tendering each other services, they parted,
the Governor receiving seven hundred tamemes. He took maize for the
consumption of four days, and marched by a road that, gradually
becoming less, on the sixth day disappeared. Led by the youth, they
forded two rivers,[253] each the breadth of two shots of a crossbow,
the water rising to the stirrups of the saddles, and passing in a
current so powerful, that it became necessary for those on horseback
to stand one before another, that they on foot, walking near, might
cross along above them: then came to another[254] of a more violent
current, and larger, which was got over with more difficulty, the
horses swimming for a lance's length at the coming out, into a
pine-grove. The Governor menaced the youth, motioning that he would
throw him to the dogs for having lied to him in saying that it was
four days' journey, whereas they had travelled nine, each day of
seven or eight leagues; and that the men and horses had become very
thin, because of the sharp economy practised with the maize. The
youth declared that he knew not where he was. Fortunately for him,
at the time, there was not another whom Juan Ortiz understood, or he
would have been cast to the dogs.

  [253] The Great Ohoopee and Cannouchee rivers.

  [254] The Ogeechee River.

The Governor, leaving the camp among the pine-trees, marched that
day, with some cavalry and infantry, five or six leagues, looking
for a path, and came back at night very cast down, not having found
any sign of inhabitants. The next day there was a variety of opinion
about the course proper to take, whether to return or do otherwise.
The country through which they had come remained wasted and without
maize; the grain they had so far brought with them was spent; the
beasts, like the men, were become very lean; and it was held very
doubtful whether relief was anywhere to be found: moreover, it was
the opinion that they might be beaten by any Indians whatsoever who
should venture to attack them, so that continuing thus, whether by
hunger or in strife, they must inevitably be overcome. The Governor
determined to send thence in all directions on horseback, in quest
of habitations; and the next day he despatched four captains to as
many points, with eight of cavalry to each. They came back at night
leading their beasts by the bridle, unable to carry their masters, or
driven before them with sticks, having found no road, nor any sign of
a settlement. He sent other four again the next day, with eight of
cavalry apiece, men who could swim, that they might cross any ponds
and rivers in the way, the horses being chosen of the best that were;
Baltasar de Gallegos ascending by the river, Juan de Añasco going
down it, Alfonso Romo and Juan Rodriguez Lobillo striking into the

The Governor had brought thirteen sows to Florida, which had
increased to three hundred swine; and the maize having failed for
three or four days, he ordered to be killed daily, for each man, half
a pound of pork, on which small allowance, and some boiled herbs, the
people with much difficulty lived. There being no food to give to
the Indians of Patofa, they were dismissed, though they still wished
to keep with the Christians in their extremity, and showed great
regret at going back before leaving them in a peopled country. Juan
de Añasco came in on Sunday, in the afternoon, bringing with him a
woman and a youth he had taken, with the report that he had found a
small town twelve or thirteen leagues off; at which the Governor and
his people were as much delighted as though they had been raised from
death to life.

On Monday, the twenty-sixth of April, the Governor set out for Aymay,
a town to which the Christians gave the name of Socorro. At the foot
of a tree, in the camp, they buried a paper, and in the bark, with a
hatchet, they cut these words: "Dig here; at the root of this pine
you will find a letter;" and this was so fixed that the captains,
who had gone in quest of an inhabited country, should learn what the
Governor had done and the direction he had taken. There was no other
road than the one Juan de Añasco had made moving along through the

On Monday the Governor arrived at the town, with those the best
mounted, all riding the hardest possible; some sleeping two leagues
off, others three and four, each as he was able to travel and his
strength held out. A barbacoa was found full of parched meal and some
maize, which were distributed by allowance. Four Indians were taken,
not one of whom would say anything else than that he knew of no other
town. The Governor ordered one of them to be burned; and thereupon
another said, that two days' journey from there was a province called

  [255] From the wording of the Ranjel narrative, Aymay was on the
  east side of the Savannah River and Cutifachiqui on the west
  side. The latter town was not at Silver Bluff, South Carolina, as
  commonly thought, but further down the river. Cofitachequi (as
  Ranjel spells it) is proper Creek, and means Dog-wood Town.

On Wednesday the three captains came up: they had found the letter
and followed on after the rest. From the command of Juan Rodriguez
two men remained behind, their horses having given out, for which the
Governor reprimanded him severely, and sent him to bring them. While
they should be coming on he set out for Cutifachiqui, capturing three
Indians in the road, who stated that the mistress of that country
had already information of the Christians, and was waiting for them
in a town. He sent to her by one of them, offering his friendship
and announcing his approach. Directly as the Governor arrived, four
canoes came towards him, in one of which was a kinswoman of the
Cacica, who, coming near, addressed him in these words:


     My sister sends me to salute you, and to say, that the reason
     why she has not come in person is, that she has thought to
     serve you better by remaining to give orders on the other
     shore; and that, in a short time, her canoes will all be here,
     in readiness to conduct you thither, where you may take your
     repose and be obeyed.

The Governor thanked her, and she returned to cross the river. After
a little time the Cacica came out of the town, seated in a chair,
which some principal men having borne to the bank, she entered a
canoe. Over the stern was spread an awning, and in the bottom lay
extended a mat where were two cushions, one above the other, upon
which she sate; and she was accompanied by her chief men, in other
canoes, with Indians. She approached the spot where the Governor was,
and, being arrived, thus addressed him:


     Be this coming to these your shores most happy. My ability can
     in no way equal my wishes, nor my services become the merits of
     so great a prince; nevertheless, good wishes are to be valued
     more than all the treasures of the earth without them. With
     sincerest and purest good-will I tender you my person, my lands,
     my people, and make you these small gifts.

The Cacica presented much clothing of the country, from the shawls
and skins that came in the other boats; and drawing from over her
head a large string of pearls, she threw them about his neck,
exchanging with him many gracious words of friendship and courtesy.
She directed that canoes should come to the spot, whence the Governor
and his people passed to the opposite side of the river. So soon as
he was lodged in the town, a great many turkeys were sent to him.
The country was delightful and fertile, having good interval lands
upon the streams; the forest was open, with abundance of walnut and
mulberry trees. The sea was stated to be distant two days' travel.
About the place, from half a league to a league off, were large
vacant towns, grown up in grass, that appeared as if no people had
lived in them for a long time. The Indians said that, two years
before, there had been a pest in the land, and the inhabitants had
moved away to other towns. In the barbacoas were large quantities of
clothing, shawls of thread, made from the bark of trees, and others
of feathers, white, gray, vermilion, and yellow, rich and proper for
winter. There were also many well-dressed deer-skins, of colors drawn
over with designs, of which had been made shoes, stockings, and hose.
The Cacica, observing that the Christians valued the pearls, told
the Governor that, if he should order some sepulchres that were in
the town to be searched, he would find many; and if he chose to send
to those that were in the uninhabited towns, he might load all his
horses with them. They examined those in the town, and found three
hundred and fifty pounds' weight of pearls, and figures of babies and
birds made of them.

The inhabitants are brown of skin, well formed and proportioned.
They are more civilized than any people seen in all the territories
of Florida, wearing clothes and shoes. This country, according to
what the Indians stated, had been very populous. It appeared that
the youth who was the guide had heard of it; and what was told him
he declared to have seen, and magnified such parts as he chose, to
suit his pleasure. He told the Governor that they had begun to enter
upon the country he had spoken to him about, which, because of its
appearance, with his being able to understand the language of the
people, gained for him some credit. He wished to become a Christian,
and asked to be baptized, which was done, he receiving the name of
Pedro; and the Governor commanded the chain to be struck off that he
had carried until then.

In the town were found a dirk and beads that had belonged to
Christians, who, the Indians said, had many years before been in
the port, distant two days' journey. He that had been there was the
Governor-licentiate Ayllon, who came to conquer the land, and, on
arriving at the port, died, when there followed divisions and murders
among the chief personages, in quarrels as to who should command; and
thence, without knowing any thing of the country, they went back to

To all it appeared well to make a settlement there, the point being
a favorable one, to which could come all the ships from New Spain,
Peru, Sancta Marta, and Tierra-Firme, going to Spain; because it is
in the way thither, is a good country, and one fit in which to raise
supplies; but Soto, as it was his object to find another treasure
like that of Atabalípa, lord of Peru, would not be content with good
lands nor pearls, even though many of them were worth their weight in
gold (and if the country were divided among Christians, more precious
should those be the Indians would procure than these they have, being
bored with heat, which causes them to lose their hue): so he answered
them who urged him to make a settlement, that in all the country
together there was not support for his troops a single month; that
it was necessary to return to Ochus, where Maldonado was to wait;
and should a richer country not be found, they could always return
to that who would, and in their absence the Indians would plant
their fields and be better provided with maize. The natives were
asked if they had knowledge of any great lord farther on, to which
they answered, that twelve days' travel thence was a province called
Chiaha, subject to a chief of Coça.

The Governor then resolved at once to go in quest of that country,
and being an inflexible man, and dry of word, who, although he liked
to know what the others all thought and had to say, after he once
said a thing he did not like to be opposed, and as he ever acted as
he thought best, all bent to his will; for though it seemed an error
to leave that country, when another might have been found about it,
on which all the people could have been sustained until the crops had
been made and the grain gathered, there were none who would say a
thing to him after it became known that he had made up his mind.

Chapter 15

     _How the Governor went from Cutifachiqui in quest of Coça, and
     what occurred to him on the journey._

On the third day of May,[256] the Governor set out from Cutifachiqui;
and, it being discovered that the wish of the Cacica was to leave the
Christians, if she could, giving them neither guides nor tamemes,
because of the outrages committed upon the inhabitants, there never
failing to be men of low degree among the many, who will put the
lives of themselves and others in jeopardy for some mean interest,
the Governor ordered that she should be placed under guard and took
her with him. This treatment, which was not a proper return for the
hospitable welcome he had received, makes true the adage, For well
doing, etc.; and thus she was carried away on foot with her female

  [256] This should be May 13, according to Ranjel.

This brought us service in all the places that were passed, she
ordering the Indians to come and take the loads from town to town.
We travelled through her territories a hundred leagues, in which,
according to what we saw, she was greatly obeyed, whatsoever she
ordered being performed with diligence and efficacy. Pedro, the
guide, said she was not the suzeraine, but her niece, who had come to
that town by her command to punish capitally some principal Indians
who had seized upon the tribute; but to this no credit was given,
because of the falsehoods in which he had been taken, though all
was put up with, from the necessity of having some one whereby to
understand what the Indians said.

In seven days the Governor arrived at the province of Chalaque,[257]
the country poorest off for maize of any that was seen in Florida,
where the inhabitants subsisted on the roots of plants that they
dig in the wilds, and on the animals they destroy there with their
arrows. They are very domestic people, are slight of form, and go
naked. One lord brought the Governor two deer-skins as a great gift.
Turkeys were abundant; in one town they presented seven hundred,
and in others brought him what they had and could procure. He was
detained in going from this province to that of Xualla[258] five
days, where they found little grain, but remained two days, because
of the weariness of the men and the leanness of the horses.

  [257] In two days, according to Ranjel.

  [258] This town is the Choualla of the Inca and the old Cherokee
  town of Qualla, which was located above the junction of the
  Tuckaseegee and Oconna-Luftee Rivers, in Swain County, North
  Carolina. From Cofitachequi the army took a northerly course,
  probably following the old Indian and traders' trail to old Fort
  Prince George, in Jackson County, South Carolina, and from there
  to Xualla.

From Ocute to Cutifachiqui are one hundred and thirty leagues, of
which eighty are desert; from Cutifa to Xualla are two hundred and
fifty of mountainous country; thence to Guaxule, the way is over very
rough and lofty ridges.

One day while on this journey, the Cacica of Cutifachi, whom the
Governor brought with him, as has been stated, to the end of taking
her to Guaxule, the farthest limit of her territories, conducted
by her slaves, she left the road, with an excuse of going into a
thicket, where, deceiving them, she so concealed herself that for
all their search she could not be found. She took with her a cane
box, like a trunk, called petaca, full of unbored pearls, of which
those who had the most knowledge of their value said they were very
precious. They were carried for her by one of the women; and the
Governor, not to give offence, permitted it so, thinking that in
Guaxulle he would beg them of her when he should give her leave to
depart; but she took them with her, going to Xualla, with three
slaves who had fled from the camp. A horseman, named Alimamos, who
remained behind, sick of a fever, wandering out of the way, got lost;
and he labored with the slaves to make them leave their evil design.
Two of them did so, and came on with him to the camp. They overtook
the Governor, after a journey of fifty leagues, in a province called
Chiaha; and he reported that the Cacica remained in Xualla, with a
slave of André de Vasconcelos, who would not come with him, and that
it was very sure they lived together as man and wife, and were to go
together to Cutifachiqui.

At the end of five days the Governor arrived at Guaxulle.[259] The
Christians being seen to go after dogs, for their flesh, which the
Indians do not eat, they gave them three hundred of those animals.
Little maize was found there, or anywhere upon that route. The
Governor sent a native with a message to the cacique of Chiaha,
begging that he would order some maize to be brought together at
his town, that he might sojourn there some time. He left Guaxulle,
and after two days' travel arrived at Canasagua, where twenty men
came out from the town on the road, each laden with a basket of
mulberries. This fruit is abundant and good, from Cutifachiqui to
this place, and thence onward in other provinces, as are the walnut
and the plum (persimmon); the trees growing about over the country,
without planting or pruning, of the size and luxuriance they would
have were they cultivated in orchards, by hoeing and irrigation.
Leaving Canasagua, he marched five days through a desert.

  [259] The second day after leaving Xualla they camped at the
  junction of two rivers, according to Ranjel. This was probably at
  the junction of the Little Tennessee and Oconna-Luftee rivers.

Two leagues before he came to Chiaha, fifteen men met the Governor,
bearing loads of maize, with word from the cacique that he waited
for him, having twenty barbacoas full; that, moreover, himself, his
lands, and his vassals, were subject to his orders. On the fifth day
of July[260] the Governor entered Chiaha.[261] The cacique received
him with great pleasure, and, resigning to him his dwellings for his
residence, thus addressed him:--


     Fortunate am I that you will make use of my services. Nothing
     could happen that would give me so great contentment, or which I
     should value more. From Guaxule you sent to have maize for you
     in readiness to last two months: you have in this town twenty
     barbacoas full of the choicest and the best to be found in all
     this country. If the reception I give is not worthy of so great
     a prince, consider my youth, which will relieve me of blame, and
     receive my good-will, which, with true loyalty and pure, shall
     ever be shown in all things that concern your welfare.

  [260] It should be June 5, according to Ranjel.

  [261] Chiaha was evidently on the island at the junction of
  the Little Tennessee and Tennessee Rivers, in Loudon County,

The Governor answered him, that his gifts and his kindness pleased
him greatly, and that he should ever consider him to be his brother.

There was abundance of lard in calabashes, drawn like olive oil,
which the inhabitants said was the fat of bear. There was likewise
found much oil of walnuts, which, like the lard, was clear and of
good taste; and also a honey-comb, which the Christians had never
seen before, nor saw afterwards, nor honey, nor bees, in all the

The town was isolated, between two arms of a river, and seated near
one of them. Above it, at the distance of two crossbow-shot, the
water divided, and united again a league below. The vale between,
from side to side, was the width in places of a crossbow-shot,
and in others of two. The branches were very wide, and both were
fordable: along their shores were very rich meadow-lands, having many

As the Indians remained at home, no houses were taken save those
of the chief, in which the Governor lodged; the people lived out,
wherever there happened to be shelter, each man having his tree.
In this manner the army lay, the men out of order and far apart.
The Governor passed it over, as the Indians were peaceful, and the
weather very calm: the people would have suffered greatly had they
been required to do differently. The horses arrived so worn out, that
they could not bear their riders from weakness; for they had come
all the way with only a little maize to live on, travelling, hungry
and tired, even from beyond the desert of Ocute; so, as the greater
part of them were unfit to be mounted, even in the necessary case of
battle, they were turned out at night to graze, about a quarter of a
league from the camp. The Christians were greatly exposed, so much so
that if at that time the Indians had set upon them, they would have
been in bad way to defend themselves.

The duration of the sojourn was thirty days, in which time, the soil
being covered with verdure, the horses fattened. At the departure,
in consequence of the importunity of some who wanted more than was
in reason, the Governor asked thirty women of the chief for slaves,
who replied that he would confer with his principal men; when one
night, before giving an answer, all went off from the town with their
women and children. The next day, he having made up his mind to go
in search of them, the cacique arrived, and, approaching, thus
addressed him:--


     Because of my shame, and out of fear of you, discovering that
     my subjects, contrary to my wishes, had chosen to absent
     themselves, I left without your permission; but, finding the
     error of my way, I have returned like a true vassal, to put
     myself in your power, that you may do with my person as shall
     seem best to you. My people will not obey me, nor do any thing
     that an uncle of mine does not command: he governs this country,
     in my place, until I shall be of mature age. If you would pursue
     and punish them for disobedience, I will be your guide, since my
     fate at present forbids me doing more.

The Governor then, with thirty mounted men and as many footmen, went
in search of the people. Passing by the towns of some of the chiefs
who had gone off, he cut down and destroyed the great maize-fields;
and going along up the stream where the natives were, on an islet, to
which the cavalry could not go, he sent word to them, by an Indian,
that they should put away all their fears, and, returning to their
abodes, give him tamemes, as had been done all the way along, since
he did not wish to have women, finding how very dear they were to
them. The Indians judged it well to come and make their excuses to
him, so they all went back to the town.

A cacique of Acoste, who came to see the Governor, after tendering
his services, and they had exchanged compliments and proffers of
friendship, was asked if he had any information of a rich land; he
answered yes: that towards the north there was a province called
Chisca, and that a forge was there for copper, or other metal of
that color, though brighter, having a much finer hue, and was to
appearances much better, but was not so much used, for being softer;
which was the statement that had been given in Cutifachiqui, where
we had seen some chopping-knives that were said to have a mixture
of gold. As the country on the way was thinly peopled, and it was
said there were mountains over which the beasts could not go, the
Governor would not march directly thither, but judged that, keeping
in an inhabited territory, the men and animals would be in better
condition, while he would be more exactly informed of what there was,
until he should turn to it through the ridges and a region which he
could more easily travel. He sent two Christians to the country of
Chisca, by Indians who spoke the language, that they might view it,
and were told that he would await their return at Chiaha for what
they should have to say.

Chapter 16

     _How the Governor left Chiaha, and, having run a hazard of
     falling by the hands of the Indians, at Acoste, escaped by his
     address: what occurred to him on the route, and how he came to

When the Governor had determined to move from Chiaha towards
Coste,[262] he sent for the cacique to come before him, and with
kind words took his leave, receiving some slaves as a gift, which
pleased him. In seven days the journey was concluded. On the
second day of July, the camp being pitched among the trees, two
crossbow-shot distant from the town, he went with eight men of his
guard toward where the cacique was, who received him evidently with
great friendship. While they were conversing, some infantry went
into the town after maize, and, not satisfied with what they got,
they rummaged and searched the houses, taking what they would; at
which conduct the owners began to rise and arm; some of them, with
clubs in their hands, going at five or six men who had given offence,
beat them to their satisfaction. The Governor, discovering that they
were all bent upon some mischief, and himself among them with but
few Christians about him, turned to escape from the difficulty by a
stratagem much against his nature, clear and reliable as it was, and
the more unwillingly as it grieved him that an Indian should presume,
either with or without cause, to offer any indignity to a Christian:
he seized a stave and took part with the assailants against his own
people, which while it gave confidence, directly he sent a message
secretly to the camp, that armed men should approach where he was;
then taking the chief by the hand, speaking to him with kind words,
drew him with some principal men away from the town, out into an open
road in sight of the encampment, where cautiously the Christians
issued and by degrees surrounded them. In this manner they were
conducted within the tents; and when near his marquee the Governor
ordered them to be put under guard. He told them that they could not
go thence without giving him a guide and Indians for carrying loads,
nor until the sick men had arrived whom he had ordered to come down
by the river in canoes from Chiaha, and so likewise those he had
sent to the province of Chisca. He feared that both the one and the
other had been killed by the Indians. In three days they that went
to Chisca got back, and related that they had been taken through a
country so scant of maize, and with such high mountains, that it was
impossible the army should march in that direction; and finding the
distance was becoming long, and that they should be back late, upon
consultation they agreed to return, coming from a poor little town
where there was nothing of value, bringing a cow-hide as delicate as
a calf-skin the people had given them, the hair being like the soft
wool on the cross of the merino with the common sheep.

  [262] This place was located on one of the islands in the
  Tennessee River, just above Chattanooga.

The cacique having furnished the guide and tamemes, by permission of
the Governor he went his way. The Christians left Coste the ninth day
of July, and slept that night at Tali.[263] The cacique had come from
the town to meet the Governor on the road, and made him this speech:--


     Worthy are you of being served and obeyed by all the princes
     of the world, for by the face can one judge far of the inner
     qualities. Who you are I knew, and also of your power, before
     your coming here. I wish not to draw attention to the lowliness
     in which I stand before you, to make my poor services acceptable
     and agreeable, since, where the strength fails, the will should
     instead be praised and taken. Hence, I dare to ask that you will
     only consider and attend to what you will command me to do here
     in your country.

  [263] Tali was located in the bend of the Tennessee River, just
  below Chattanooga. Here they left the river.

The Governor answered, that his good-will and offer pleased him as
much as though he had tendered him all the treasures of the earth:
that he would always be treated by him as a true brother, favored and
esteemed. The cacique ordered provision to be brought for two days'
use, the time the Governor should be present; and on his departure,
gave him the use of two men and four women, who were wanted to carry

They travelled six days, passing by many towns subject to the
cacique of Coça; and, as they entered those territories, numerous
messengers came from him on the road every day to the Governor, some
going, others coming, until they arrived at Coça,[264] on Friday,
the sixteenth of July. The cacique came out to receive him at the
distance of two crossbow-shot from the town, borne in a litter on the
shoulders of his principal men, seated on a cushion, and covered with
a mantle of marten-skins, of the size and shape of a woman's shawl:
on his head he wore a diadem of plumes, and he was surrounded by
many attendants playing upon flutes and singing. Coming to where the
Governor was, he made his obeisance, and followed it by these words:--


     Although I come but now to meet you, it is a long time since
     I have received you in my heart. That was done the first day
     I heard of you, with so great desire to serve, please, and
     give you contentment, that this, which I express, is nothing
     in comparison with that which is within me. Of this you may be
     sure, that to have received the dominion of the world would not
     have interested me so greatly as the sight of you, nor would
     I have held it for so great a felicity. Do not look for me to
     offer you that which is your own--this person, these lands,
     these vassals. My only desire is to employ myself in commanding
     these people, that, with all diligence and befitting respect,
     they conduct you hence to the town in festivity of voices and
     with flutes, where you will be lodged and waited upon by me and
     them, where all I possess you will do with as with your own, and
     in thus doing you will confer favor.

  [264] Coça may not have been the Coosa of the last century, which
  was located some two miles north of Childersburg, in Talladega
  County, Alabama.

The Governor gave him thanks, and with mutual satisfaction they
walked on toward the place conferring, the Indians giving up their
habitations by order of their cacique, and in which the General and
his men took lodging. In the barbacoas was a great quantity of maize
and beans: the country, thickly settled in numerous and large towns,
with fields between, extending from one to another, was pleasant, and
had a rich soil with fair river margins. In the woods were many plums
(persimmons), as well those of Spain as of the country; and wild
grapes on vines growing up into the trees, near the streams; likewise
a kind that grew on low vines elsewhere, the berry being large and
sweet, but, for want of hoeing and dressing, had large stones.

It was the practice to keep watch over the caciques that none
should absent themselves, they being taken along by the Governor
until coming out of their territories; for by thus having them the
inhabitants would await their arrival in the towns, give a guide, and
men to carry the loads, who before leaving their country would have
liberty to return to their homes, as sometimes would the tamemes,
so soon as they came to the domain of any chief where others could
be got. The people of Coça, seeing their lord was detained, took it
amiss, and, going off, hid themselves in the scrub, as well those
of the town of the cacique as those of the towns of the principal
men his vassals. The Governor despatched four captains in as many
directions to search for them: many men and women were taken who were
put in chains. Seeing how much harm they received, and how little
they gained by going off, they came in, declaring that they desired
to serve in all that was possible. Of the prisoners, some of the
chiefs, whom the cacique interceded for, were let go; of the rest,
each one took away with him as slaves those he had in chains, none
returning to their country save some whose fortune it was to escape,
laboring diligently to file off their irons at night; or, while on
the march, could slip out of the way, observing the carelessness of
those who had them in charge, sometimes taking off with them in their
chains the burdens and the clothing with which they were laden.

Chapter 17

     _Of how the Governor went from Coça to Tascaluça._

The Governor rested in Coça twenty-five days. On Friday, the
twentieth of August, he set out in quest of a province called
Tascaluça, taking with him the cacique of Coça. The first day he
went through Tallimuchase, a great town without inhabitants, halting
to sleep half a league beyond, near a river-bank. The following day
he came to Ytaua, a town subject to Coça. He was detained six days,
because of a river near by that was then swollen: so soon as it could
be crossed he took up his march, and went towards Ullibahali. Ten
or twelve chiefs came to him on the road, from the cacique of that
province, tendering his service, bearing bows and arrows and wearing
bunches of feathers.

The Governor having arrived at the town with a dozen cavalry and
several of his guard, he left them at the distance of a crossbow-shot
and entered the town. He found all the Indians with their weapons,
and, according to their ways, it appeared to him in readiness for
action: he understood afterwards that they had determined to wrest
the cacique of Coça from his power, should that chief have called on
them. The place was enclosed, and near by ran a small stream. The
fence, which was like that seen afterwards to other towns, was of
large timber sunk deep and firmly into the earth, having many long
poles the size of the arm, placed crosswise to nearly the height of
a lance, with embrasures, and coated with mud inside and out, having
loop-holes for archery.[265] The Governor ordered all his men to
enter the town. The cacique, who at the moment was at a town on the
opposite shore, was sent for, and he came at once. After some words
between him and the Governor, proffering mutual service, he gave the
tamemes that were requisite and thirty women as slaves. Mançano, a
native of Salamanca, of noble ancestry, having strayed off in search
of the grapes, which are good here, and plenty, was lost.

  [265] Ranjel applies a similar description to an old town on the
  road, three days' march from Toasi or Tuasi.

The Christians left, and that day they arrived to sleep at a town
subject to the lord of Ullibahali, and the next day they came to
pass the night at the town of Toasi, where the inhabitants gave
the Governor thirty women and the tamemes that were wanted. The
amount of travel usually performed was five or six leagues a day,
passing through settled country; and when through desert, all the
haste possible was made, to avoid the want of maize. From Toasi,
passing through some towns subject to the lord of the province of
Tallise,[266] he journeyed five days, and arrived at the town the
eighteenth day of September.

  [266] This is probably not the modern town of that name,
  which was located above the elbow of the Tallapoosa River, in
  Tallapoosa County.

Tallise was large, situated by the side of a great river, other towns
and many fields of maize being on the opposite shore, the country on
both sides having the greatest abundance of grain. The inhabitants
had gone off. The Governor sent to call the cacique, who, having
arrived, after an interchange of kind words and good promises, lent
him forty men. A chief came to the Governor in behalf of the cacique
of Tastaluça,[267] and made the following address:


     The grand cacique of Tascaluça, my master, sends me to salute
     you. He bids me say, that he is told how all, not without
     reason, are led captive by your perfections and power; that
     wheresoever lies your path you receive gifts and obedience,
     which he knows are all your due; and that he longs to see you
     as much as he could desire for the continuance of life. Thus,
     he sends me to offer you his person, his lands, his subjects;
     to say, that wheresoever it shall please you to go through his
     territories, you will find service and obedience, friendship
     and peace. In requital of this wish to serve you, he asks that
     you so far favor him as to say when you will come; for that the
     sooner you do so, the greater will be the obligation, and to him
     the earlier pleasure.

  [267] Tascaluça is correct Creek (meaning Black Warrior),
  and Tastaluça, there can be little doubt, is a misspelling;
  nevertheless we think it better to present all the native names
  in the spellings of the Portuguese original.

The Governor received and parted with the messenger graciously,
giving him beads (which by the Indians are not much esteemed) and
other articles, that he should take them to his lord. He dismissed
the cacique of Coça, that he might return to his country: he of
Tallise gave him the tamemes that were needed; and, having sojourned
twenty days, the Governor set out for Tastaluça. He slept the night
at a large town called Casiste, and the next day, passing through
another, arrived at a village in the province of Tastaluça; and the
following night he rested in a wood, two leagues from the town where
the cacique resided, and where he was then present. He sent the
master of the camp, Luis de Moscoso, with fifteen cavalry, to inform
him of his approach.

The cacique was at home, in a piazza. Before his dwelling, on a
high place, was spread a mat for him, upon which two cushions were
placed, one above another, to which he went and sat down, his men
placing themselves around, some way removed, so that an open circle
was formed about him, the Indians of the highest rank being nearest
to his person. One of them shaded him from the sun with a circular
umbrella, spread wide, the size of a target, with a small stem, and
having deer-skin extended over cross-sticks, quartered with red
and white, which at a distance made it look of taffeta, the colors
were so very perfect. It formed the standard of the chief, which he
carried into battle. His appearance was full of dignity: he was tall
of person, muscular, lean, and symmetrical. He was the suzerain of
many territories, and of a numerous people, being equally feared by
his vassals and the neighboring nations. The master of the camp,
after he had spoken to him, advanced with his company, their steeds
leaping from side to side, and at times towards the chief, when he,
with great gravity, and seemingly with indifference, now and then
would raise his eyes, and look on as in contempt.

The Governor approached him, but he made no movement to rise; he took
him by the hand, and they went together to seat themselves on the
bench that was in the piazza. The cacique addressed him these words:--


     Your lordship is very welcome. With the sight of you I receive
     as great pleasure and comfort as though you were an own brother
     whom I dearly loved. It is idle to use many words here, as it is
     not well to speak at length where a few may suffice. The greater
     the will the more estimable the deed; and acts are the living
     witnesses of truth. You shall learn how strong and positive is
     my will, and how disinterested my inclination to serve you. The
     gifts you did me the favor to send I esteem in all their value,
     but most because they were yours. See in what you will command

The Governor satisfied the chief with a few brief words of kindness.
On leaving he determined, for certain reasons, to take him along. The
second day on the road he came to a town called Piache;[268] a great
river ran near, and the Governor asked for canoes. The Indians said
they had none, but that they could have rafts of cane and dried wood,
whereon they might readily enough go over, which they diligently set
about making, and soon completed. They managed them; and the water
being calm, the Governor and his men easily crossed.

  [268] From Ranjel's description of this place it is not
  improbable that Piachi was located on the north side of the Black
  Warrior River.

From the port of Espiritu Santo to Palache, a march of about a
hundred leagues, the course was west; from Apalache to Cutifachiqui,
which may be four hundred and thirty leagues, it was northeast; from
thence to Xualla, two hundred and fifty leagues, it was towards the
north; and thence to Tastaluça, which may be some other two hundred
and fifty leagues, one hundred and ninety of them were toward the
west, going to the province of Coça, and the sixty southwardly, in
going thence to Tastaluça.

After crossing the river of Piache, a Christian having gone to look
after a woman gotten away from him, he had been either captured
or killed by the natives, and the Governor pressed the chief to
tell what had been done; threatening, that should the man not
appear, he would never release him. The cacique sent an Indian
thence to Mauilla, the town of a chief, his vassal, whither they
were going, stating that he sent to give him notice that he should
have provisions in readiness and Indians for loads; but which, as
afterwards appeared, was a message for him to get together there all
the warriors in his country.

The Governor marched three days, the last one of them continually
through an inhabited region, arriving on Monday, the eighteenth day
of October, at Mauilla.[269] He rode forward in the vanguard, with
fifteen cavalry and thirty infantry, when a Christian he had sent
with a message to the cacique, three or four days before, with orders
not to be gone long, and to discover the temper of the Indians, came
out from the town and reported that they appeared to him to be making
preparation; for that while he was present many weapons were brought,
and many people came into the town, and work had gone on rapidly to
strengthen the palisade. Luis de Moscoso said that, since the Indians
were so evil disposed, it would be better to stop in the woods; to
which the Governor answered, that he was impatient of sleeping out,
and that he would lodge in the town.

  [269] Mauilla or Mabila may have been located on the prairie
  north of the Black Warrior and east of the Tombigbee River, in
  Greene County, Alabama.

Arriving near, the chief came out to receive him, with many Indians
singing and playing on flutes, and after tendering his services,
gave him three cloaks of marten-skins. The Governor entered the town
with the caciques, seven or eight men of his guard, and three or
four cavalry,[270] who had dismounted to accompany them; and they
seated themselves in a piazza. The cacique of Tastaluça asked the
Governor to allow him to remain there, and not to weary him any more
with walking; but, finding that was not to be permitted, he changed
his plan, and, under pretext of speaking with some of the chiefs, he
got up from where he sate, by the side of the Governor, and entered
a house where were many Indians with their bows and arrows. The
Governor, finding that he did not return, called to him; to which the
cacique answered that he would not come out, nor would he leave that
town; that if the Governor wished to go in peace, he should quit at
once, and not persist in carrying him away by force from his country
and its dependencies.

  [270] "Only forty horsemen," according to Ranjel.

Chapter 18

     _How the Indians rose upon the Governor, and what followed upon
     that rising._

The Governor, in view of the determination and furious answer of the
cacique, thought to soothe him with soft words; to which he made no
answer, but, with great haughtiness and contempt, withdrew to where
Soto could not see nor speak to him. The Governor, that he might send
word to the cacique for him to remain in the country at his will, and
to be pleased to give him a guide, and persons to carry burdens, that
he might see if he could pacify him with gentle words, called to a
chief who was passing by. The Indian replied, loftily, that he would
not listen to him. Baltasar de Gallegos, who was near, seized him by
the cloak of marten-skins that he had on, drew it off over his head,
and left it in his hands; whereupon, the Indians all beginning to
rise, he gave him a stroke with a cutlass, that laid open his back,
when they, with loud yells, came out of the houses, discharging their

The Governor, discovering that if he remained there they could not
escape, and if he should order his men, who were outside of the town,
to come in, the horses might be killed by the Indians from the houses
and great injury done, he ran out; but before he could get away he
fell two or three times, and was helped to rise by those with him.
He and they were all badly wounded: within the town five Christians
were instantly killed. Coming forth, he called out to all his men to
get farther off, because there was much harm doing from the palisade.
The natives discovering that the Christians were retiring, and some,
if not the greater number, at more than a walk, the Indians followed
with great boldness, shooting at them, or striking down such as they
could overtake. Those in chains having set down their burdens near
the fence while the Christians were retiring, the people of Mauilla
lifted the loads on to their backs, and, bringing them into the
town, took off their irons, putting bows and arms in their hands,
with which to fight. Thus did the foe come into possession of all
the clothing, pearls, and whatsoever else the Christians had beside,
which was what their Indians carried. Since the natives had been at
peace as far as to that place, some of us, putting our arms in the
luggage, had gone without any; and two, who were in the town, had
their swords and halberds taken from them, and put to use.

The Governor, presently as he found himself in the field, called for
a horse, and, with some followers, returned and lanced two or three
of the Indians; the rest, going back into the town, shot arrows from
the palisade. Those who would venture on their nimbleness came out a
stone's throw from behind it, to fight, retiring from time to time,
when they were set upon.

At the time of the affray there was a friar, a clergyman, a servant
of the Governor, and a female slave in the town, who, having no time
in which to get away, took to a house, and there remained until after
the Indians became masters of the place. They closed the entrance
with a lattice door; and there being a sword among them, which the
servant had, he put himself behind the door, striking at the Indians
that would have come in; while, on the other side, stood the friar
and the priest, each with a club in hand, to strike down the first
that should enter. The Indians, finding that they could not get in
by the door, began to unroof the house: at this moment the cavalry
were all arrived at Mauilla, with the infantry that had been on the
march, when a difference of opinion arose as to whether the Indians
should be attacked, in order to enter the town; for the result was
held doubtful, but finally it was concluded to make the assault.

Chapter 19

     _How the Governor set his men in order of battle and entered the
     town of Mauilla._

So soon as the advance and the rear of the force were come up, the
Governor commanded that all the best armed should dismount, of which
he made four squadrons of footmen. The Indians, observing how he
was going on arranging his men, urged the cacique to leave, telling
him, as was afterwards made known by some women who were taken in
the town, that as he was but one man, and could fight but as one
only, there being many chiefs present very skilful and experienced
in matters of war, any one of whom was able to command the rest,
and as things in war were so subject to fortune, that it was never
certain which side would overcome the other, they wished him to put
his person in safety; for if they should conclude their lives there,
on which they had resolved rather than surrender, he would remain to
govern the land: but for all that they said, he did not wish to go,
until, from being continually urged, with fifteen or twenty of his
own people he went out of the town, taking with him a scarlet cloak
and other articles of the Christians' clothing, being whatever he
could carry and that seemed best to him.

The Governor, informed that the Indians were leaving the town,
commanded the cavalry to surround it; and into each squadron of foot
he put a soldier, with a brand, to set fire to the houses, that the
Indians might have no shelter. His men being placed in full concert,
he ordered an arquebuse to be shot off: at the signal the four
squadrons, at their proper points, commenced a furious onset, and,
both sides severely suffering, the Christians entered the town. The
friar, the priest, and the rest who were with them in the house,
were all saved, though at the cost of the lives of two brave and
very able men who went thither to their rescue. The Indians fought
with so great spirit that they many times drove our people back
out of the town. The struggle lasted so long that many Christians,
weary and very thirsty, went to drink at a pond near by, tinged with
the blood of the killed, and returned to the combat. The Governor,
witnessing this, with those who followed him in the returning
charge of the footmen, entered the town on horseback, which gave
opportunity to fire the dwellings; then breaking in upon the Indians
and beating them down, they fled out of the place, the cavalry and
infantry driving them back through the gates, where, losing the hope
of escape, they fought valiantly; and the Christians getting among
them with cutlasses, they found themselves met on all sides by their
strokes, when many, dashing headlong into the flaming houses, were
smothered, and, heaped one upon another, burned to death.

They who perished there were in all two thousand five hundred, a few
more or less: of the Christians there fell eighteen, among whom was
Don Carlos, brother-in-law of the Governor; one Juan de Gamez, a
nephew; Men. Rodriguez, a Portuguese; and Juan Vazquez, of Villanueva
de Barcarota, men of condition and courage; the rest were infantry.
Of the living, one hundred and fifty Christians had received seven
hundred wounds from the arrow; and God was pleased that they should
be healed in little time of very dangerous injuries. Twelve horses
died, and seventy were hurt. The clothing the Christians carried with
them, the ornaments for saying mass, and the pearls, were all burned
there; they having set the fire themselves, because they considered
the loss less than the injury they might receive of the Indians from
within the houses, where they had brought the things together.

The Governor learning in Mauilla that Francisco Maldonado was waiting
for him in the port of Ochuse, six days' travel distant, he caused
Juan Ortiz to keep the news secret, that he might not be interrupted
in his purpose; because the pearls he wished to send to Cuba for
show, that their fame might raise the desire of coming to Florida,
had been lost, and he feared that, hearing of him without seeing
either gold or silver, or other thing of value from that land, it
would come to have such reputation that no one would be found to go
there when men should be wanted: so he determined to send no news of
himself until he should have discovered a rich country.

Chapter 20

     _How the Governor set out from Mauilla to go to Chicaça, and
     what befell him._

From the time the Governor arrived in Florida until he went from
Mauilla, there died one hundred and two Christians, some of sickness,
others by the hand of the Indians. Because of the wounded, he stopped
in that place twenty-eight days, all the time remaining out in the
fields. The country was a rich soil, and well inhabited: some towns
were very large, and were picketed about. The people were numerous
everywhere, the dwellings standing a crossbow-shot or two apart.

On Sunday, the eighteenth of November,[271] the sick being found
to be getting on well, the Governor left Mauilla, taking with him
a supply of maize for two days. He marched five days through a
wilderness, arriving in a province called Pafallaya, at the town
Taliepataua; and thence he went to another, named Cabusto,[272] near
which was a large river, whence the Indians on the farther bank
shouted to the Christians that they would kill them should they come
over there. He ordered the building of a piragua within the town,
that the natives might have no knowledge of it; which being finished
in four days, and ready, he directed it to be taken on sleds half
a league up stream, and in the morning thirty men entered it, well
armed. The Indians discovering what was going on, they who were
nearest went to oppose the landing, and did the best they could; but
the Christians drawing near, and the piragua being about to reach the
shore, they fled into some cane-brakes. The men on horses went up the
river to secure a landing-place, to which the Governor passed over,
with the others that remained. Some of the towns were well stored
with maize and beans.

  [271] This should be the fourteenth, according to Ranjel.

  [272] According to Ranjel they crossed a large river at a
  town called Moçulixa which was located one-half league from
  Taliepataua, and recrossed the river at Cabusto. Apparently
  Cabusto was above the Sipsey River and west of the Tombigbee
  River, while Moçulixa was below the former and east of the latter

Thence towards Chicaça the Governor marched five days through a
desert, and arrived at a river,[273] on the farther side of which
were Indians, who wished to arrest his passage. In two days another
piragua was made, and when ready he sent an Indian in it to the
cacique, to say, that if he wished his friendship he should quietly
wait for him; but they killed the messenger before his eyes, and
with loud yells departed. He crossed the river the seventeenth of
December, and arrived the same day at Chicaça, a small town of twenty
houses.[274] There the people underwent severe cold, for it was
already winter, and snow fell: the greater number were then lying in
the fields, it being before they had time to put up habitations. The
land was thickly inhabited, the people living about over it as they
do in Mauilla; and as it was fertile, the greater part being under
cultivation, there was plenty of maize. So much grain was brought
together as was needed for getting through with the season.

  [273] The east side of the Tombigbee River, and probably in the
  northern part of Monroe County, Mississippi.

  [274] This town was located about one mile northwest of Redland,
  in Pontotoc County, Mississippi.

Some Indians were taken, among whom was one the cacique greatly
esteemed. The Governor sent an Indian to the cacique to say, that he
desired to see him and have his friendship. He came, and offered him
the services of his person, territories, and subjects: he said that
he would cause two chiefs to visit him in peace. In a few days he
returned with them, they bringing their Indians. They presented the
Governor one hundred and fifty rabbits, with clothing of the country,
such as shawls and skins. The name of the one was Alimamu, of the
other Nicalasa.

The cacique of Chicaça came to visit him many times: on some
occasions he was sent for, and a horse taken, on which to bring and
carry him back. He made complaint that a vassal of his had risen
against him, withholding tribute; and he asked for assistance,
desiring to seek him in his territory, and give him the chastisement
he deserved. The whole was found to be feigned, to the end that,
while the Governor should be absent with him, and the force divided,
they would attack the parts separately--some the one under him,
others the other, that remained in Chicaça. He went to the town where
he lived, and came back with two hundred Indians, bearing bows and

The Governor, taking thirty cavalry and eighty infantry, marched to
Saquechuma,[275] the province of the chief whom the cacique said
had rebelled. The town was untenanted, and the Indians, for greater
dissimulation, set fire to it; but the people with the Governor being
very careful and vigilant, as were also those that had been left
in Chicaça, no enemy dared to fall upon them. The Governor invited
the caciques and some chiefs to dine with him, giving them pork to
eat, which they so relished, although not used to it, that every
night Indians would come up to some houses where the hogs slept,
a crossbow-shot off from the camp, to kill and carry away what
they could of them. Three were taken in the act: two the Governor
commanded to be slain with arrows, and the remaining one, his hands
having first been cut off, was sent to the cacique, who appeared
grieved that they had given offence, and glad that they were punished.

  [275] This province was located on the lower Tallahatchie River,
  and the town burned by the Indians, as mentioned by Ranjel, was
  probably located in Tallahatchie County.

This chief was half a league from where the Christians were, in an
open country, whither wandered off four of the cavalry: Francisco
Osorio, Reynoso, a servant of the Marquis of Astorga, and two
servants of the Governor,--the one Ribera, his page, the other
Fuentes, his chamberlain. They took some skins and shawls from
the Indians, who made great outcry in consequence, and abandoned
their houses. When the Governor heard of it, he ordered them to
be apprehended, and condemned Osorio and Fuentes to death, as
principals, and all of them to lose their goods. The friars, the
priests, and other principal personages solicited him to let Osorio
live, and moderate the sentence; but he would do so for no one. When
about ordering them to be taken to the town-yard to be beheaded,
some Indians arrived, sent by the chief to complain of them. Juan
Ortiz, at the entreaty of Baltasar de Gallegos and others, changed
their words, telling the Governor, as from the cacique, that he had
understood those Christians had been arrested on his account; that
they were in no fault, having offended him in nothing, and that if
he would do him a favor, to let them go free: then Ortiz said to the
Indians, that the Governor had the persons in custody, and would
visit them with such punishment as should be an example to the rest.
The prisoners were ordered to be released.

So soon as March had come, the Governor, having determined to leave
Chicaça, asked two hundred tamemes of the cacique, who told him that
he would confer with his chiefs. Tuesday, the eighth, he went where
the cacique was, to ask for the carriers, and was told that he would
send them the next day. When the Governor saw the chief, he said to
Luis de Moscoso that the Indians did not appear right to him; that
a very careful watch should be kept that night, to which the master
of the camp paid little attention. At four o'clock in the morning
the Indians fell upon them in four squadrons, from as many quarters,
and directly as they were discovered, they beat a drum. With loud
shouting, they came in such haste, that they entered the camp at the
same moment with some scouts that had been out; of which, by the time
those in the town were aware, half the houses were in flames. That
night it had been the turn of three horsemen to be of the watch,--two
of them men of low degree, the least value of any in the camp, and
the third a nephew of the Governor, who had been deemed a brave man
until now, when he showed himself as great a coward as either of the
others; for they all fled, and the Indians, finding no resistance,
came up and set fire to the place. They waited outside of the town
for the Christians, behind the gates, as they should come out of the
doors, having had no opportunity to put on their arms; and as they
ran in all directions, bewildered by the noise, blinded by the smoke
and the brightness of the flame, knowing not whither they were going,
nor were able to find their arms, or put saddles on their steeds,
they saw not the Indians who shot arrows at them. Those of the horses
that could break their halters got away, and many were burned to
death in the stalls.

The confusion and rout were so great that each man fled by the way
that first opened to him, there being none to oppose the Indians: but
God, who chastiseth his own as he pleaseth, and in the greatest wants
and perils hath them in his hand, shut the eyes of the Indians, so
that they could not discern what they had done, and believed that the
beasts running about loose were the cavalry gathering to fall upon
them. The Governor, with a soldier named Tapia, alone got mounted,
and, charging upon the Indians, he struck down the first of them he
met with a blow of the lance, but went over with the saddle, because
in the haste it had not been tightly drawn, and he fell. The men on
foot, running to a thicket outside of the town, came together there:
the Indians imagining, as it was dark, that the horses were cavalry
coming upon them, as has been stated, they fled, leaving only one
dead, which was he the Governor smote.

The town lay in cinders. A woman, with her husband, having left a
house, went back to get some pearls that had remained there; and when
she would have come out again the fire had reached the door, and she
could not, neither could her husband assist her, so she was consumed.
Three Christians came out of the fire in so bad plight, that one of
them died in three days from that time, and the two others for a long
while were carried in their pallets, on poles borne on the shoulders
of Indians, for otherwise they could not have got along. There died
in this affair eleven Christians, and fifty horses. One hundred of
the swine remained, four hundred having been destroyed, from the
conflagration of Mauilla.

If, by good luck, any one had been able to save a garment until then,
it was there destroyed. Many remained naked, not having had time to
catch up their skin dresses. In that place they suffered greatly
from cold, the only relief being in large fires, and they passed
the night long in turning, without the power to sleep; for as one
side of a man would warm, the other would freeze. Some contrived
mats of dried grass sewed together, one to be placed below, and the
other above them: many who laughed at this expedient were afterwards
compelled to do the like. The Christians were left so broken up, that
what with the want of the saddles and arms which had been destroyed,
had the Indians returned the second night, they might, with little
effort, have been overpowered. They removed from that town to the one
where the cacique was accustomed to live, because it was in the open
field.[276] In eight days' time they had constructed many saddles
from the ash, and likewise lances, as good as those made in Biscay.

  [276] Chicacilla of the Inca, which was probably located about
  three and one-half miles north of Chicaça.

Chapter 21

     _How the Indians returned to attack the Christians, and how the
     Governor went to Alimamu, and they tarried to give him battle in
     the way._

On Wednesday,[277] the fifteenth day of March, in the year 1541,
eight days having passed since the Governor had been living on a
plain, half a league from the place where he wintered, after he had
set up a forge, and tempered the swords which in Chicaça had been
burned, and already had made many targets, saddles, and lances, on
Tuesday, at four o'clock in the morning, while it was still dark,
there came many Indians, formed in three squadrons, each from a
different direction, to attack the camp, when those who watched
beat to arms. In all haste he drew up his men in three squadrons
also, and leaving some for the defence of the camp, he went out to
meet them. The Indians were overthrown and put to flight. The ground
was plain, and in a condition advantageous to the Christians. It
was now daybreak; and but for some disorder, thirty or forty more
enemies might have been slain. It was caused by a friar raising great
shouts in the camp, without any reason, crying, "To the camp! To the
camp!" In consequence the Governor and the rest went thither, and the
Indians had time to get away in safety.

  [277] This should be Tuesday.

From some prisoners taken, the Governor informed himself of the
region in advance. On the twenty-fifth day of April he left Chicaça
and went to sleep at a small town called Alimamu. Very little maize
was found; and as it became necessary to attempt thence to pass a
desert, seven days' journey in extent, the next day the Governor
ordered that three captains, each with cavalry and foot, should take
a different direction, to get provision for the way. Juan de Añasco,
the comptroller, went with fifteen horse and forty foot on the course
the Governor would have to march, and found a staked fort,[278] where
the Indians were awaiting them. Many were armed, walking upon it,
with their bodies, legs, and arms painted and ochred, red, black,
white, yellow, and vermilion in stripes, so that they appeared
to have on stockings and doublet. Some wore feathers, and others
horns on the head, the face blackened, and the eyes encircled with
vermilion, to heighten their fierce aspect. So soon as they saw the
Christians draw nigh they beat drums, and, with loud yells, in great
fury came forth to meet them. As to Juan de Añasco and others it
appeared well to avoid them and to inform the Governor, they retired
over an even ground in sight, the distance of a crossbow-shot from
the enclosure, the footmen, the crossbowmen, and targeteers putting
themselves before those on horseback, that the beasts might not
be wounded by the Indians, who came forth by sevens and eights to
discharge their bows at them and retire. In sight of the Christians
they made a fire, and, taking an Indian by the head and feet,
pretended to give him many blows on the head and cast him into the
flames, signifying in this way what they would do with the Christians.

  [278] This fort and ford were on the Tallahatchie River, and
  probably at or near New Albany, in Union County, Mississippi.
  From here the army turned to the westward.

A message being sent with three of the cavalry to the Governor,
informing him of this, he came directly. It was his opinion that they
should be driven from the place. He said that if this was not done
they would be emboldened to make an attack at some other time, when
they might do him more harm: those on horseback were commanded to
dismount, and, being set in four squadrons, at the signal charged the
Indians. They resisted until the Christians came up to the stakes;
then, seeing that they could not defend themselves, they fled through
that part near which passed a stream, sending back some arrows from
the other bank; and because, at the moment, no place was found where
the horses might ford, they had time to make their escape. Three
Indians were killed and many Christians wounded, of whom, after a
few days, fifteen died on the march. Every one thought the Governor
committed a great fault in not sending to examine the state of the
ground on the opposite shore, and discover the crossing-place before
making the attack; because, with the hope the Indians had of escaping
unseen in that direction, they fought until they were broken; and it
was the cause of their holding out so long to assail the Christians,
as they could, with safety to themselves.

Chapter 22

     _How the Governor went from Quizquiz, and thence to the River

Three days having gone by since some maize had been sought after,
and but little found in comparison with the great want there was of
it, the Governor became obliged to move at once, notwithstanding the
wounded had need of repose, to where there should be abundance. He
accordingly set out for Quizquiz, and marched seven days through
a wilderness, having many pondy places, with thick forests, all
fordable, however, on horseback, except some basins or lakes that
were swum. He arrived at a town of Quizquiz without being descried,
and seized all the people before they could come out of their houses.
Among them was the mother of the cacique; and the Governor sent word
to him, by one of the captives, to come and receive her, with the
rest he had taken. The answer he returned was, that if his lordship
would order them to be loosed and sent, he would come to visit and do
him service.

The Governor, since his men arrived weary, and likewise weak, for
want of maize, and the horses were also lean, determined to yield
to the requirement and try to have peace; so the mother and the
rest were ordered to be set free, and with words of kindness were
dismissed. The next day, while he was hoping to see the chief, many
Indians came, with bows and arrows, to set upon the Christians, when
he commanded that all the armed horsemen should be mounted and in
readiness. Finding them prepared, the Indians stopped at the distance
of a crossbow-shot from where the Governor was, near a river-bank,
where, after remaining quietly half an hour, six chiefs arrived at
the camp, stating that they had come to find out what people it might
be; for that they had knowledge from their ancestors that they were
to be subdued by a white race; they consequently desired to return to
the cacique, to tell him that he should come presently to obey and
serve the Governor. After presenting six or seven skins and shawls
brought with them, they took their leave, and returned with the
others who were waiting for them by the shore. The cacique came not,
nor sent another message.

There was little maize in the place, and the Governor moved to
another town, half a league from the great river,[279] where it was
found in sufficiency. He went to look at the river, and saw that near
it there was much timber of which piraguas might be made, and a good
situation in which the camp might be placed. He directly moved,
built houses, and settled on a plain a crossbow-shot from the water,
bringing together there all the maize of the towns behind, that at
once they might go to work and cut down trees for sawing out planks
to build barges. The Indians soon came from up the stream, jumped on
shore, and told the Governor that they were the vassals of a great
lord, named Aquixo, who was the suzerain of many towns and people on
the other shore; and they made known from him, that he would come
the day after, with all his people, to hear what his lordship would
command him.

  [279] The Mississippi.

The next day the cacique arrived, with two hundred canoes filled with
men, having weapons. They were painted with ochre, wearing great
bunches of white and other plumes of many colors, having feathered
shields in their hands, with which they sheltered the oarsmen on
either side, the warriors standing erect from bow to stern, holding
bows and arrows. The barge in which the cacique came had an awning
at the poop, under which he sate; and the like had the barges of
the other chiefs; and there, from under the canopy, where the chief
man was, the course was directed and orders issued to the rest. All
came down together, and arrived within a stone's cast of the ravine,
whence the cacique said to the Governor, who was walking along the
river-bank, with others who bore him company, that he had come to
visit, serve, and obey him; for he had heard that he was the greatest
of lords, the most powerful on all the earth, and that he must see
what he would have him do. The Governor expressed his pleasure, and
besought him to land, that they might the better confer; but the
chief gave no reply, ordering three barges to draw near, wherein was
great quantity of fish, and loaves like bricks, made of the pulp of
plums (persimmons), which Soto receiving, gave him thanks and again
entreated him to land.

Making the gift had been a pretext, to discover if any harm might
be done; but, finding the Governor and his people on their guard,
the cacique began to draw off from the shore, when the crossbowmen
who were in readiness, with loud cries shot at the Indians, and
struck down five or six of them. They retired with great order,
not one leaving the oar, even though the one next to him might have
fallen, and covering themselves, they withdrew. Afterwards they came
many times and landed; when approached, they would go back to their
barges. These were fine-looking men, very large and well formed; and
what with the awnings, the plumes, and the shields, the pennons, and
the number of people in the fleet, it appeared like a famous armada
of galleys.

During the thirty days that were passed there, four piraguas were
built, into three of which, one morning, three hours before daybreak,
the Governor ordered twelve cavalry to enter, four in each, men in
whom he had confidence that they would gain the land notwithstanding
the Indians, and secure the passage, or die: he also sent some
crossbowmen of foot with them, and in the other piragua, oarsmen, to
take them to the opposite shore. He ordered Juan de Guzman to cross
with the infantry, of which he had remained captain in the place of
Francisco Maldonado; and because the current was stiff, they went up
along the side of the river a quarter of a league, and in passing
over they were carried down, so as to land opposite the camp; but,
before arriving there, at twice the distance of a stone's cast, the
horsemen rode out from the piraguas to an open area of hard and even
ground, which they all reached without accident.

So soon as they had come to shore the piraguas returned; and when
the sun was up two hours high, the people had all got over.[280] The
distance was near half a league: a man standing on the shore could
not be told, whether he were a man or something else, from the other
side. The stream was swift, and very deep; the water, always flowing
turbidly, brought along from above many trees and much timber, driven
onward by its force. There were many fish of several sorts, the
greater part differing from those of the fresh waters of Spain, as
will be told hereafter.

  [280] The crossing was made either at Council Bend or Walnut
  Bend, in Tunica County, Mississippi, in a straight line some
  twenty-five to thirty-eight miles below Memphis.

Chapter 23

     _How the Governor went from Aquixo to Casqui, and thence to
     Pacaha; and how this country differs from the other._

The Rio Grande being crossed, the Governor marched a league and a
half, to a large town of Aquixo, which was abandoned before his
arrival. Over a plain thirty Indians were seen to draw nigh, sent
by the cacique to discover what the Christians intended to do, but
who fled directly as they saw them. The cavalry pursued, killed ten,
and captured fifteen. As the town toward which the Governor marched
was near the river, he sent a captain, with the force he thought
sufficient, to take the piraguas up the stream. As they frequently
wound about through the country, having to go round the bays that
swell out of the river, the Indians had opportunity to attack those
in the piraguas, placing them in great peril, being shot at with bows
from the ravines, while they dared not leave the shore, because of
the swiftness of the current; so that, as soon as the Governor got
to the town, he directly sent crossbowmen to them down the stream,
for their protection. When the piraguas arrived, he ordered them to
be taken to pieces, and the spikes kept for making others, when they
should be needed.

The Governor slept at the town one night, and the day following he
went in quest of a province called Pacaha, which he had been informed
was nigh Chisca, where the Indians said there was gold. He passed
through large towns in Aquixo, which the people had left for fear
of the Christians. From some Indians that were taken, he heard that
three days' journey thence resided a great cacique, called Casqui.
He came to a small river, over which a bridge was made, whereby he
crossed.[281] All that day, until sunset, he marched through water,
in places coming to the knees; in others, as high as the waist.
They were greatly rejoiced on reaching the dry land; because it had
appeared to them that they should travel about, lost, all night in
the water. At mid-day they came to the first town of Casqui, where
they found the Indians off their guard, never having heard of them.
Many men and women were taken, much clothing, blankets, and skins;
such they likewise took in another town in sight of the first, half a
league off in the field, whither the horsemen had run.

  [281] This was Fifteen-Mile Bayou, and the crossing-place was
  probably near the southeast corner of St. Francis County,

This land is higher, drier, and more level than any other along
the river that had been seen until then. In the fields were many
walnut-trees, bearing tender-shelled nuts in the shape of acorns,
many being found stored in the houses. The tree did not differ in any
thing from that of Spain, nor from the one seen before, except the
leaf was smaller. There were many mulberry-trees, and trees of plums
(persimmons), having fruit of vermilion hue, like one of Spain, while
others were gray, differing, but far better. All the trees, the year
round, were as green as if they stood in orchards, and the woods were

The Governor marched two days through the country of Casqui, before
coming to the town[282] where the cacique was, the greater part of
the way lying through fields thickly set with great towns, two or
three of them to be seen from one. He sent word by an Indian to the
cacique, that he was coming to obtain his friendship and to consider
him as a brother; to which he received for answer, that he would be
welcomed; that he would be received with special good-will, and all
that his lordship required of him should be done; and the chief sent
him on the road a present of skins, shawls, and fish. After these
gifts were made, all the towns into which the Governor came were
found occupied; and the inhabitants awaited him in peace, offering
him skins, shawls, and fish.

  [282] This place was probably located near the mouth of Tyronza

Accompanied by many persons, the cacique came half a league on the
road from the town where he dwelt to receive the Governor, and,
drawing nigh to him, thus spoke:


     I greet your coming. So soon as I had notice of you, your power
     and perfections, although you entered my territory capturing
     and killing the dwellers upon it, who are my vassals, I
     determined to conform my wishes to your will, and hold as right
     all that you might do, believing that it should be so for a good
     reason, providing against some future event, to you perceptible
     but from me concealed; since an evil may well be permitted to
     avoid another greater, that good can arise, which I trust will
     be so; for from so excellent a prince, no bad motive is to
     be suspected. My ability is so small to serve you, according
     to your great merit, that though you should consider even my
     abundant will and humility in proffering you all manner of
     services, I must still deserve little in your sight. If this
     ability can with reason be valued, I pray you receive it, and
     with it my country and my vassals, of me and them disposing at
     your pleasure; for though you were lord of the earth, with no
     more good-will would you be received, served, and obeyed.

The Governor responded appropriately in a few words which satisfied
the chief. Directly they fell to making each other great proffers,
using much courtesy, the cacique inviting the Governor to go and take
lodging in his houses. He excused himself, the better to preserve
peace, saying that he wished to lie in the field; and, because the
heat was excessive, he pitched the camp among some trees, quarter of
a league from the town. The cacique went to his town, and returned
with many Indians singing, who, when they had come to where the
Governor was, all prostrated themselves. Among them were two blind
men. The cacique made an address, of which, as it was long, I will
give the substance in a few words. He said, that inasmuch as the
Governor was son of the Sun, he begged him to restore sight to those
Indians: whereupon the blind men arose, and they very earnestly
entreated him to do so. Soto answered them, that in the heavens above
there was One who had the power to make them whole, and do whatever
they could ask of Him, whose servant he was; that this great Lord
made the sky and the earth, and man after His image; that He had
suffered on the tree of the true cross to save the human race, and
risen from the grave on the third day,--what of man there was of Him
dying, what of divinity being immortal; and that, having ascended
into heaven, He was there with open arms to receive all that would
be converted to Him. He then directed a lofty cross of wood to be
made and set up in the highest part of the town, declaring to the
cacique that the Christians worshipped that, in the form and memory
of the one on which Christ suffered. He placed himself with his
people before it, on their knees, which the Indians did likewise; and
he told them that from that time thenceforth they should thus worship
the Lord, of whom he had spoken to them, that was in the skies,
asking Him for whatsoever they stood in need of.

The chief being asked what was the distance to Pacaha, he answered
that it was one day's journey, and said that on the extreme of his
territory there was a lake, like an estuary, that entered into the
Rio Grande, to which he would send persons in advance to build a
bridge, whereby they might pass over it. The night of the day the
Governor left, he slept at a town of Casqui; and the next day he
passed in sight of two other towns, and arrived at the lake, which
was half a crossbow-shot over, of great depth and swiftness of
current.[283] The Indians had just got the bridge done as he came up.
It was built of wood, in the manner of timber thrown across from tree
to tree; on one side there being a rail of poles, higher than the
rest, as a support for those who should pass. The cacique of Casqui
having come with his people, the Governor sent word by an Indian
to the cacique of Pacaha, that though he might be at enmity with
him of Casqui, and that chief be present, he should receive neither
injury nor insult, provided that he attended in peace and desired his
friendship, for as a brother would he treat him. The Indian went as
he was bid, and returned, stating that the cacique took no notice of
the message, but that he fled out of the town, from the back part,
with all his people. Then the Governor entered there, and with the
cavalry charged in the direction the Indians were running, and at
another town, a quarter of a league off, many were taken. As fast
as they were captured, the horsemen delivered them to the Indians
of Casqui, who, from being their enemies, brought them with great
heed and pleasure to the town where the Christians were, greatly
regretting that they had not the liberty to kill them. Many shawls,
deer-skins, lion and bear-skins, and many cat-skins were found in the
town. Numbers who had been a long time badly covered, there clothed
themselves. Of the shawls they made mantles and cassocks; some made
gowns and lined them with cat-skins, as they also did the cassocks.
Of the deer-skins were made jerkins, shirts, stockings, and shoes:
and from the bear-skins they made very good cloaks, such as no water
could get through. They found shields of raw cowhide out of which
armor was made for the horses.

  [283] Tyronza River.

Chapter 24

     _Of how the cacique of Pacaha came in peace, and he of Casqui
     having absented himself, returned to excuse his conduct; and how
     the Governor made friendship between the chiefs._

On Wednesday, the nineteenth day of June, the Governor entered
Pacaha,[284] and took quarters in the town where the cacique was
accustomed to reside. It was enclosed and very large. In the towers
and the palisade were many loopholes. There was much dry maize, and
the new was in great quantity, throughout the fields. At the distance
of half a league to a league off were large towns, all of them
surrounded with stockades.

  [284] It was on Wednesday, June 29, that they entered Pacaha.
  This place was probably located in the vicinity of Osceola,
  Mississippi County, Arkansas, but not further northward.

Where the Governor stayed was a great lake, near to the enclosure;
and the water entered a ditch that well-nigh went round the town.
From the River Grande to the lake was a canal, through which the
fish came into it, and where the chief kept them for his eating and
pastime. With nets that were found in the place, as many were taken
as need required; and however much might be the casting, there was
never any lack of them. In the many other lakes about were also many
fish, though the flesh was soft, and none of it so good as that
which came from the river. The greater number differ from those in
the fresh water of Spain. There was a fish called bagre, the third
part of which was head, with gills from end to end, and along the
sides were great spines, like very sharp awls. Those of this sort
that lived in the lake were as big as pike; in the river were some
that weighed from one hundred to one hundred and fifty pounds. Many
were taken with the hook. There was one in the shape of barbel;
another like bream, with the head of a hake, having a color between
red and brown, and was the most esteemed. There was likewise a kind
called peel-fish, the snout a cubit in length, the upper lip being
shaped like a shovel. Another fish was like a shad. Except the bagres
and the peel, they were all of scale. There was one, called pereo,
the Indians sometimes brought, the size of a hog, and had rows of
teeth above and below.

The cacique of Casqui many times sent large presents of fish, shawls,
and skins. Having told the Governor that he would deliver into his
hands the cacique of Pacaha, he went to Casqui, and ordered many
canoes to ascend the river, while he should march by land, taking
many of his warriors. The Governor, with forty cavalry and sixty
infantry, was conducted by him up stream; and the Indians who were
in the canoes discovered the cacique of Pacaha on an islet between
two arms of the river. Five Christians entered a canoe, of whom was
Don Antonio Osorio, to go in advance and see what number of people
the cacique had with him. There were five or six thousand souls, of
whom, directly as they saw the people, taking the Indians who went in
the canoes to be Christians also, the cacique and as many as could
get into three canoes that were there, fled to the opposite bank; the
greater part of the rest, in terror and confusion, plunging into the
river to swim, many, mostly women and infants, got drowned. Then the
Governor, who was on land, without knowing what was passing with Don
Antonio and those who accompanied him, ordered the Christians, in
all haste, to enter the canoes with the Indians of Casqui, and they
directly joining Don Antonio on the islet, many men and women were
taken, and much clothing.

Many clothes, which the Indians had in cane hurdles and on rafts to
carry over, floated down stream, the people of Casqui filling their
canoes with them; and, in fear that the Christians might take these
away, their chief went off with them down the river to his territory,
without taking leave. At this the Governor became indignant, and
directly returning to Pacaha, two leagues on the road, he overran the
country of Casqui, capturing twenty or thirty of its men. The horses
being tired, and there remaining no time that day to go farther, he
went on to Pacaha, with the intention of marching in three or four
days upon Casqui, directly letting loose a man of Pacaha, sending
word by him to its chief, that should he wish his friendship he
should come to him, and together they would go to carry war upon
Casqui: and immediately there arrived many people of Pacaha, bringing
as the chief an Indian, who was exposed by a prisoner, brother of
the cacique. The Governor told them that their lord must come; that
he well knew that Indian was not he; for that nothing could be done
without its being known to him before they so much as thought of it.
The cacique came the next day, followed by many Indians, with a large
gift of fish, skins, and shawls. He made a speech, that all were glad
to hear, and concluded by saying, that although his lordship had
causelessly inflicted injury on his country and his subjects, he did
not any the less cease to be his, and was always at his command. The
Governor ordered his brother to be let go, and some principal men he
held captives. That day a messenger arrived from Casqui, saying that
his master would come early on the morrow to excuse the error he had
committed in going away without his licence; to which the Governor
bade him say, in return, to the cacique, that if he did not come
himself in person he would go after him, and inflict the punishment
he deserved.

The chief of Casqui came the next day, and after presenting many
shawls, skins, and fish, he gave the Governor a daughter, saying that
his greatest desire was to unite his blood with that of so great
a lord as he was, begging that he would take her to wife. He made
a long and discreet oration, full of praise of Soto; and concluded
by asking his forgiveness, for the love of that cross he had left,
for having gone off without his permission; that he had done so
because of the shame he felt for what his people had done without his
consent. The Governor said that he had taken a good sponsor; that he
had himself determined, if the cacique had not come to apologize, to
go after him and burn his towns, kill him and his people, and lay
waste his country. To this the chief replied:


     I and mine belong to you; and my territory is yours, so that you
     will destroy it, if you will, as your own, and your people you
     will slay. All that falls from your hand I shall receive as from
     my lord's, and as merited chastisement. Know, that the service
     you have done me in leaving that cross has been signal, and more
     than I have deserved; for, you know, of great droughts the maize
     in our fields was perishing, and no sooner had I and mine thrown
     ourselves on our knees before it, asking for water, than the
     want was supplied.

The Governor made friendship between the chiefs of Casqui and Pacaha,
and placed them at the table, that they should eat with him. They
had a difficulty as to who should sit at his right hand, which the
Governor quieted by telling them that among the Christians the
one seat was as good as the other; that they should so consider
it, and while with him no one should understand otherwise, each
taking the seat he first came to. Thence he sent thirty horsemen
and fifty footmen to the province of Caluça,[285] to see if in that
direction they could turn back towards Chisca, where the Indians
said there was a foundry of gold and copper. They travelled seven
days through desert, and returned in great extremity, eating green
plums (persimmons) and maize-stalks, which they had found in a
poor town of seven or eight houses. The Indians stated that thence
towards the north, the country, being very cold, was very thinly
populated; that cattle were in such plenty, no maize-field could be
protected from them, and the inhabitants lived upon the meat. Seeing
that the country was so poorly off for maize that there could be no
support, the Governor asked the Indians in what direction there were
most inhabitants; and they said that they had knowledge of a large
province and a country of great abundance, called Quiguate, that lay
in the southern direction.

  [285] It was from Chicaça that the expedition was sent. This
  province was probably located in the northeastern part of
  Mississippi, extending from Baldwyn, Prentiss County, to the
  Tennessee River, in Tishomingo County.

Chapter 25

_How the Governor went from Pacaha to Aquiguate and to Coligoa, and
came to Cayas._

The Governor rested in Pacaha forty days, during which time the two
caciques made him presents of fish, shawls, and skins, in great
quantity, each striving to outdo the other in the magnitude of the
gifts. At the time of his departure, the chief of Pacaha bestowed
on him two of his sisters, telling him that they were tokens of
love, for his remembrance, to be his wives. The name of one was
Macanoche, that of the other Mochila. They were symmetrical, tall,
and full: Macanoche bore a pleasant expression; in her manners and
features appeared the lady; the other was robust. The cacique of
Casqui ordered the bridge to be repaired; and the Governor, returning
through his territory, lodged in the field near his town. He brought
there much fish, exchanged two women for as many shirts with two
of the Christians, and furnished a guide and tamemes. The Governor
marched to one of his towns, and slept, and the next night came to
another that was near a river,[286] where he ordered him to bring
canoes, that he might cross over. There taking his leave, the chief
went back.

  [286] St. Francis River.

The Governor travelled towards Aquiguate,[287] and on the fourth
day of August came to the residence of the cacique, who, although
he had sent him a present, on the road, of many shawls and skins,
abandoned the place through fear on his arrival. That town was the
largest seen in Florida: one-half of it was occupied by the Governor
and his people; and, after a few days, discovering that the Indians
were dealing in falsehoods, he ordered the other part to be burned,
that it might not afford them cover should they attack him at night,
nor be an embarrassment to his cavalry in a movement to repel them.
An Indian having come, attended by a multitude, declaring himself to
be the cacique, the Governor delivered him over to be looked after
by his body-guard. Many of the Indians went off, and returned with
shawls and skins; but, finding small opportunity for carrying out
their evil plan, one day the pretended cacique, walking out of the
house with the Governor, ran away with such swiftness that not one of
the Christians could overtake him; and plunging into the river, at
the distance of a crossbow-shot from the town, he made for the other
shore, where many Indians, giving loud shouts, began to make use
of their arrows. The Governor directly crossed over to attack them
with horse and foot; but they dared not await him: following them
up, he came to a town that was abandoned, before which there was a
lake[288] the horses could not pass over, and on the other side were
many females. The footmen having crossed, capturing many of them,
took much clothing. Returning to the camp early in the night, the
sentinels seized a spy, who assenting to the request to lead to where
the cacique was, the Governor directly set out with twenty cavalry
and fifty infantry in quest of him. After travelling a day and a
half, they found him in a thick wood; and a soldier, ignorant of who
he was, having struck him on the head with a cutlass, he called out
not to kill him, that he was the chief; so he was captured, and with
him one hundred and forty of his people.

  [287] This place was on the west side of the St. Francis River,
  in the northern part of Lee County or the southern part of St.
  Francis County, Arkansas.

  [288] This may have been Lake Michigamia of the French maps,
  which ceased to exist after the New Madrid earthquakes.

The Governor, returning to Quiguate, directed him to tell his people
to come and serve the Christians; but, after waiting some days,
in the hope of their arrival, and finding that they did not come,
he sent two captains, each on an opposite side of the river, with
infantry and cavalry, whereby many of both sexes were made prisoners.
The Indians, seeing the harm that they received for their rebellious
conduct, waited on the Governor to take his commands, coming and
going often, bringing with them presents of fish. The cacique and two
of his wives being at their liberty in the quarters of the Governor,
which were guarded by his halberdiers, he asked them what part of the
country was most inhabited; to which they replied, that to the south,
or down the river, where were large towns, and the caciques governed
wide territories, with numerous people; and that to the northwest was
a province, near some mountains, called Coligoa. He, with the others,
deemed it well to go thither first; saying that the mountains,
perhaps, would make a difference in the soil, and that silver and
gold might afterward follow.

The country of Aquiguate, like that of Casqui and Pacaha, was level
and fertile, having rich river margins, on which the Indians made
extensive fields. From Tascaluça to the River Grande may be three
hundred leagues; a region very low, having many lakes: from Pacaha
to Quiguate there may be one hundred and ten leagues. There he left
the cacique in his own town; and an Indian guided them through an
immense pathless thicket of desert for seven days, where they slept
continually in ponds and shallow puddles.[289] Fish were so plentiful
in them that they were killed with blows of cudgels; and as the
Indians travelled in chains, they disturbed the mud at the bottom, by
which the fish, becoming stupefied, would swim to the surface, when
as many were taken as were desired.

  [289] They crossed four swamps, according to Ranjel, which were
  the L'Anguille River, Big Creek, Bayou de Vue, and Cache River.

The inhabitants of Coligoa had never heard of the Christians, and
when these got so near their town as to be seen, they fled up stream
along a river that passed near by there; some throwing themselves
into the water, whence they were taken by their pursuers, who, on
either bank, captured many of both sexes, and the cacique with the
rest. Three days from that time came many Indians, by his order, with
offerings of shawls, deer-skins, and two cowhides: they stated that
at the distance of five or six leagues towards the north were many
cattle, where the country, being cold, was thinly inhabited; and
that, to the best of their knowledge, the province that was better
provisioned than any other, and more populous, was one to the south,
called Cayas.

About forty leagues from Quiguate stood Coligoa,[290] at the foot of
a mountain, in the vale of a river of medium size, like the Caya, a
stream that passes through Estremadura. The soil was rich, yielding
maize in such profusion that the old was thrown out of store to
make room for the new grain. Beans and pumpkins were likewise in
great plenty: both were larger and better than those of Spain: the
pumpkins, when roasted, have nearly the taste of chestnuts. The
cacique continued behind in his own town, having given a guide for
the way to Cayas.

  [290] Coligoa was in the valley of Little Red River, and before
  arriving there, they crossed White River below the mouth of
  Little Red River, in Woodruff County, Arkansas.

We travelled five days, and came to the province of Palisema.[291]
The house of the cacique was canopied with colored deer-skins,
having designs drawn on them, and the ground was likewise covered in
the same manner, as if with carpets. He had left it in that state
for the use of the Governor, a token of peace, and of a desire for
friendship, though still he did not dare to await his coming. The
Governor, finding that he had gone away, sent a captain with horse
and foot to look after him; and though many persons were seen,
because of the roughness of the country, only a few men and boys
were secured. The houses were few and scattered: only a little maize
was found.

  [291] According to Ranjel, before arriving at this place they
  passed through Calpista, where there was a flowing salt spring.
  This spring was on the bank of Little Red River, in Cleburne

Directly the Governor set forward and came to Tatalicoya,[292] whence
he took the cacique, who guided him to Cayas, a distance of four
days' journey from that town. When he arrived and saw the scattered
houses, he thought, from the information he had received of the great
populousness of the country, that the cacique was lying to him--that
it was not the province; and he menaced him, bidding him tell where
he was. The chief, as likewise the other Indians taken near by,
declared that to be in Cayas,[293] the best town in all the province;
and that although the houses were far apart, the country occupied
being extensive, it had numerous people and many maize-fields. The
town was called Tanico.[294] The camp was placed in the best part
of it, nigh a river. On the day of arrival, the Governor, with some
mounted men, went a league farther, but found no one, and only some
skins, which the cacique had put on the road to be taken, a sign of
peace, by the usage of the country.

  [292] After leaving Tatalicoya they came to a great river,
  according to Ranjel. This was White River.

  [293] This province was in the region of northwestern Arkansas
  and the Indian Territory.

  [294] Tanico was located on the east side of Grand or Neosho
  River, in the Indian Territory.

Chapter 26

_How the Governor went to visit the province of Tulla, and what
happened to him._

The Governor tarried a month in the province of Cayas. In this time
the horses fattened and throve more than they had done at other
places in a longer time, in consequence of the large quantity of
maize there, The blade of it, I think, is the best fodder that grows.
The beasts drank so copiously from the very warm and brackish lake,
that they came having their bellies swollen with the leaf when they
were brought back from watering. Till they reached that spot the
Christians had wanted salt: they now made a quantity and took it
with them. The Indians carry it into other parts, to exchange for
skins and shawls.

The salt is made along by a river, which, when the water goes down,
leaves it upon the sand. As they cannot gather the salt without a
large mixture of sand, it is thrown together into certain baskets
they have for the purpose, made large at the mouth and small at the
bottom. These are set in the air on a ridge-pole; and water being
thrown on, vessels are placed under them wherein it may fall; then,
being strained and placed on the fire, it is boiled away, leaving
salt at the bottom.

The lands on the shores of the river were fields, and maize was in
plenty. The Indians dared not cross the river to where we were. Some
appearing, were called to by the soldiers who saw them, and having
come over were conducted by them before the Governor. On being asked
for the cacique, they said that he was peaceful but afraid to show
himself. The Governor directly sent them back to tell him to come,
and, if he desired his friendship, to bring an interpreter and a
guide for the travel before them; that if he did not do so he would
go in pursuit, when it would be the worse for him. The Governor
waited three days, and finding that the cacique did not come, he went
in pursuit and brought him there a captive, with one hundred and
fifty of his people. He asked him if he had knowledge of any great
cacique, and in what direction the country was most inhabited. The
Indian stated, that the largest population about there was that of a
province lying to the southward, thence a day and a half's travel,
called Tulla; that he could give him a guide, but no interpreter;
that the tongue of that country was different from his, and that he
and his ancestors had ever been at war with its chiefs, so that they
neither conversed together nor understood each other.

Then the Governor, with cavalry and fifty infantry, directly set out
for Tulla, to see if it were such a land as he might pass through
with his troops. So soon as it became known that he had reached
there, the inhabitants were summoned; and as they gathered by fifteen
and twenty at a time, they would come to attack the Christians.
Finding that they were sharply handled, and that in running the
horses would overtake them, they got upon the house-tops, where they
endeavored to defend themselves with their bows and arrows. When
beaten off from one roof, they would get up on to another; and while
the Christians were going after some, others would attack them from
an opposite direction. The struggle lasted so long that the steeds,
becoming tired, could not be made to run. One horse was killed and
others were wounded. Of the Indians fifteen were slain, and forty
women and boys made prisoners; for to no one who could draw a bow and
could be reached was his life spared him.

The Governor determined at once to go back, before the inhabitants
should have time to come together. That afternoon, he set out, and
travelling into the night, he slept on the road to avoid Tulla, and
arrived the next day at Cayas. Three days later he marched to Tulla,
bringing with him the cacique, among whose Indians he was unable to
find one who spoke the language of that place. He was three days on
the way, and at his arrival found the town abandoned, the inhabitants
not venturing to remain for him. But no sooner did they know that
he was in the town, than, at four o'clock on the morning of the
first night, they came upon him in two squadrons, from different
directions, with bows and arrows and with long staves like pikes. So
soon as they were felt, both cavalry and infantry turned out. Some
Christians and some horses were injured. Many of the Indians were

Of those made captive, the Governor sent six to the cacique, their
right hands and their noses cut off, with the message, that, if he
did not come to him to apologize and render obedience, he would go in
pursuit, and to him, and as many of his as he might find, would he do
as he had done to those he sent. He allowed him three days in which
to appear, making himself understood by signs, in the best manner
possible, for want of an interpreter. At the end of that time an
Indian, bearing a back-load of cow-skins from the cacique, arrived,
weeping with great sobs, and coming to where the Governor was, threw
himself at his feet. Soto raised him up, and the man made a speech,
but there was none to understand him. The Governor, by signs, told
him to return and say to the cacique, that he must send him some one
who could speak with the people of Cayas. Three Indians came the next
day with loads of cow-skins, and three days afterward came twenty
others. Among them was one who understood those of Cayas. After a
long oration from him, of apologies for the cacique and in praise of
the Governor, he concluded by saying, that he with the others had
come, in behalf of the chief, to inquire what his lordship would
command, for that he was ready to serve him.

At hearing these words the Governor and the rest were all rejoiced;
for in no way could they go on without a guide. He ordered the man to
be safely kept, and told the Indians who came with him to go back to
the cacique and say, that he forgave him the past and greatly thanked
him for the interpreter and the presents; that he should be pleased
to see him, and to come the next day, that they might talk together.
He came at the end of three days, and with him eighty Indians. As
he and his men entered the camp they wept,--the token of obedience
and the repentance of a past error, according to the usage of that
country. He brought a present of many cow-skins, which were found
very useful; the country being cold, they were taken for bed-covers,
as they were very soft and the wool like that of sheep.[295] Near by,
to the northward, are many cattle. The Christians did not see them,
nor go where they were, because it was a country thinly populated,
having little maize. The cacique of Tulla made an address to the
Governor, in which he apologized and offered him his country, his
vassals, and his person. The speech of this cacique--like those of
the other chiefs, and all the messengers in their behalf who came
before the Governor--no orator could more elegantly phrase.

  [295] Buffalo skins are meant.

Chapter 27

_How the Governor went from Tulla to Autiamque, where he passed the

The Governor informed himself of the country in every direction. He
ascertained that toward the west there was a thin population, and to
the southeast were great towns, principally in a province, abundant
of maize, called Autiamque, at the distance of about eighty leagues,
ten days' journey from Tulla. The winter was already come. The cold,
rain, and snow did not permit the people to travel for two or three
months in the year, and the Governor feared to remain among that
sparse population, lest his force could not be subsisted for that
length of time. Moreover, the Indians said that near Autiamque was
a great water, which, from their account, appeared to him to be an
arm of the sea. Hence, he determined to winter in that province, and
in the following summer to go to the sea-side, where he would build
two brigantines,--one to send to Cuba, the other to New Spain, that
the arrival of either might bear tidings of him. Three years had
elapsed since he had been heard of by Doña Ysabel, or by any person
in a civilized community. Two hundred and fifty men of his were
dead, likewise one hundred and fifty horses. He desired to recruit
from Cuba of man and beast, calculating, out of his property there,
to refit and again go back to advance, to discover and to conquer
farther on towards the west, where he had not reached, and whither
Cabeça de Vaca had wandered.

Having dismissed the caciques of Tulla and Cayas, the Governor took
up his course, marching five days over very sharp mountains,[296]
and arrived in a peopled district called Quipana. Not a native could
be captured, because of the roughness of the country, and the town
was among ridges. At night an ambuscade was set, in which two men
were taken, who said that Autiamque was six days' journey distant,
and that there was another province toward the south, eight days'
travel off, called Guahate, very abundant in maize and very populous.
However, as Autiamque was nearer, and most of the Indians spoke of
it, the Governor continued on his journey thither.[297]

  [296] The Boston Mountains.

  [297] According to Ranjel they entered the plains on the second
  day after leaving Quipana. Before doing so, they crossed the
  Arkansas River, probably at the old ford, located some fifteen
  miles above Fort Smith.

At the end of three days he came to a town called Anoixi. Having sent
a captain in advance, with thirty horse and fifty foot, they came
suddenly upon the inhabitants, taking many of both sexes. On the
second day afterwards, the Governor arrived at another town, called
Catamaya, and slept in the adjacent fields. Two Indians coming to
him from the cacique, with the pretext of a message, in order to
ascertain his business, he told them to say to their master, that
he wished to speak with him; but they came no more, nor was other
word returned. The next day the Christians went to the town, which
was without people, and having taken what maize they needed, that
night they reached a wood to rest, and the day following arrived at

  [298] This town was located within thirty miles east of Fort
  Smith, and on the south side of the Arkansas River.

They found in store much maize, also beans, walnuts, and dried plums
(persimmons) in large quantities. Some Indians were taken while
gathering up their clothing, having already carried away their wives.
The country was level and very populous. The Governor lodged in the
best portion of the town, and ordered a fence immediately to be put
up about the encampment, away from the houses, that the Indians
without might do no injury with fire. Measuring off the ground by
pacing, he allotted to each his part to build, according to the
Indians he possessed; and the timber being soon brought by them, in
three days it was finished, made of very high trees sunk deep in the
ground, and traversed by many pieces.

Near by passed a river of Cayas, the shores of it well peopled, both
above and below the town. Indians appeared on the part of the cacique
with a present of shawls and skins, and a lame chief, the lord of a
town called Tietiquaquo,[299] subject to the cacique of Autiamque,
came frequently to visit the Governor, and brought him gifts of the
things he possessed. The cacique sent to the Governor to inquire what
length of time he would remain in his territory; and hearing that he
was to be there more than three days, he sent no more messages nor
Indians, but treated with the lame chief to rise in revolt. Numerous
inroads were made, in which many persons of both sexes were taken,
and among the rest that chief, whom the Governor, having reprehended
and admonished, set at liberty, in consideration of the presents he
had made, giving him two Indians to bear him away on their shoulders.

  [299] This place was located in the province of Chaguate.

The cacique of Autiamque, desiring to drive the strangers out of his
territory, ordered spies to be set about them. An Indian, coming at
night to the entrance of the palisade, was noticed by a soldier on
guard, who, putting himself behind the door as he entered, struck him
down with a cutlass. When taken before the Governor, he was asked why
he came, but fell dead without utterance. The next night the Governor
sent a soldier to beat the alarm, and cry out that he saw Indians, in
order to ascertain how fast the men would hasten to the call. This
was done also in other places, at times when it appeared to him they
were careless, that he might reprove those who were late in coming;
so that for danger, as well as for doing his duty, each one on such
occasion would strive to be the first.

The Christians stayed three months in Autiamque, enjoying the
greatest plenty of maize, beans, walnuts, and dried plums
(persimmons); also rabbits, which they had never had ingenuity enough
to ensnare until the Indians there taught them. The contrivance is
a strong spring, that lifts the animal off its feet, a noose being
made of a stiff cord to run about the neck, passing through rings
of cane, that it may not be gnawed. Many of them were taken in the
maize-fields, usually when it was freezing or snowing. The Christians
were there a month in snow, when they did not go out of town, save
to a wood, at the distance of two crossbow-shots, to which, whenever
fuel was wanted, a road was opened, the Governor and others, on
horseback, going to and returning from it many times, when the fuel
was brought from there by those on foot. In this time many rabbits
were killed with arrows by the Indians, who were now allowed to go at
large in their shackles. The animal is of two sorts; one of them like
that of Spain, the other of the color, form, and size of the great
hare, though longer even, and having bigger loins.

Chapter 28

_How the Governor went from Autiamque to Nilco, and thence to

On Monday, the sixth day of March, of the year 1542 of the Christian
era, the Governor set out from Autiamque to seek Nilco, which the
Indians said was nigh the River Grande, with the purpose, by going
to the sea, to recruit his forces. He had not over three hundred
efficient men, nor more than forty horses. Some of the beasts were
lame, and useful only in making out the show of a troop of cavalry;
and, from the lack of iron, they had all gone a year without shoes,
though, from the circumstance of travelling in a smooth country, they
had little need of them.

Juan Ortiz died in Autiamque, a loss the Governor greatly regretted;
for, without an interpreter, not knowing whither he was travelling,
Soto feared to enter the country, lest he might get lost. Thenceforth
a lad, taken in Cutifachiqui, who had learned somewhat of the
language of the Christians, served as the interpreter. The death was
so great a hindrance to our going, whether on discovery or out of the
country, that to learn of the Indians what would have been rendered
in four words, it became necessary now to have the whole day: and
oftener than otherwise the very opposite was understood of what was
asked; so that many times it happened the road that we travelled one
day, or sometimes two or three days, would have to be returned over,
wandering up and down, lost in thickets.

The Governor went to a province called Ayays,[300] arriving at a town
near the river that passed by Cayas, and by Autiamque, from which
he had been ten days in coming. He ordered a piragua to be built,
in which he crossed;[301] and, having arrived on the other shore,
there set in such weather that marching was impossible for four days,
because of snow. When that ceased to fall, he travelled three days
through desert, a region so low, so full of lakes and bad passages,
that at one time, for the whole day, the travel lay through water up
to the knees at places, in others to the stirrups; and occasionally,
for the distance of a few paces, there was swimming. And he came
to Tutelpinco,[302] a town untenanted, and found to be without
maize, seated near a lake that flowed copiously into the river with
a violent current. Five Christians, in charge of a captain, in
attempting to cross, by order of the Governor, were upset; when some
seized hold of the canoe they had employed, others of trees that grew
in the water, while one, a worthy man, Francisco Bastian, a native of
Villanueva de Barcarota, became drowned. The Governor travelled all
one day along the margin of the lake, seeking for a ford, but could
discover none, nor any way to get over.

  [300] This province should not be confounded with the province of
  Aays, which was located to the southward of Red River, in Texas.

  [301] This crossing-place was to the northward of Pine Bluff, and
  probably in Jefferson County.

  [302] This place was on Big Bayou Meto, near the southeast corner
  of town 6, range 5, east, in Jefferson County.

Returning to Tutelpinco at night, the Governor found two friendly
natives, who were willing to show him the crossing, and the road
he was to take. From the reeds and timber of the houses, rafts and
causeways were made, on which the river was crossed. After three
days' marching, at Tianto, in the territory of Nilco, thirty Indians
were taken, among whom were two chiefs of the town. A captain,
with infantry and cavalry, was directly despatched to Nilco, that
the inhabitants might not have time to carry off their provisions.
In going through three or four large towns, at the one where the
cacique resided, two leagues from where the Governor stayed, many
Indians were found to be in readiness, with bows and arrows, who,
surrounding the place, appeared to invite an onset; but so soon as
they saw the Christians drawing nigh to them without faltering, they
approached the dwelling of the cacique, setting fire to it, and, by a
pond near the town, through which the horses could not go, they fled.

The following day, Wednesday, the twenty-ninth of March, the Governor
arrived at Nilco,[303] making his quarters, and those of his people,
in the town of the cacique, which was in an open field, that for a
quarter of a league over was all inhabited; and at the distance of
from half a league to a league off were many other large towns, in
which was a good quantity of maize, beans, walnuts, and dried plums
(persimmons). This was the most populous of any country that was
seen in Florida, and the most abundant in maize, excepting Coça and
Apalache. An Indian, attended by a party, arrived at the camp, and,
presenting the Governor with a cloak of marten-skins and a string of
pearls, he received some margaridetas (a kind of bead much esteemed
in Peru) and other trinkets, with which he was well pleased. At
leaving, he promised to be back in two days, but did not return. In
the night-time, however, the Indians came in canoes, and carrying
away all the maize they could take, set up their huts on the other
side of the river, among the thickest bushes. The Governor, finding
that the Indians did not arrive within the time promised, ordered an
ambuscade to be placed at some cribs, near the lake, to which the
Indians came for maize. Two of them were taken, who told him that
the person who had come to visit him was not the cacique, but one
sent by him, pretending to be he, in order to observe what might be
the vigilance of the Christians, and whether it was their purpose to
remain in that country, or to go farther. Directly a captain, with
men on horseback and foot, were sent over to the other shore; but, as
their crossing was observed, only ten or a dozen Indians, of both
sexes, could be taken; and with these the Christians returned to camp.

  [303] Nilco was located a few miles southeast of Arkansas Post,
  on section 30, town 8, south, range 2, west, in Desha County,
  where there is a large mound.

This river, passing by Anilco, is the same that flows by Cayas and
Autiamque, and falls into the River Grande, which flows by Pacaha and
Aquixo, near the province of Guachoya, the lord of which ascended in
canoes to carry war upon him of Nilco. In his behalf a messenger came
to the Governor, saying that the cacique was his servant, desiring to
be so considered, and that in two days from that time he would come
to make his salutation. He arrived in season, accompanied by some of
his principal men, and with great proffers and courtesy, he presented
many shawls and deer-skins. The Governor gave him some articles of
barter, showing him much attention, and inquired what towns there
might be on the river below. He replied that he knew of none other
than his own; that opposite was the province of a cacique called
Quigaltam; then, taking his leave, returned to his town.

The Governor determined to go to Guachoya within a few days, to
learn if the sea were near, or if there were any inhabited territory
nigh it, where he might find subsistence whilst those brigantines
were building, that he desired to send to a country of Christians.
As he crossed the River of Nilco, there came up Indians in canoes
from Guachoya, who, when they saw him, thinking that he was in their
pursuit, to do them harm, they returned down the river, and informed
the cacique, when he took away from the town whatsoever his people
could carry, and passed over with them, all that night, to the other
bank of the River Grande. The Governor sent a captain with fifty men,
in six canoes, down the river to Guachoya;[304] while he, with the
rest, marched by land, arriving there on Sunday, the seventeenth day
of April.[305] He took up his quarters in the town of the cacique,
which was palisaded, seated a crossbow-shot from the stream, that is
there called the River Tamaliseu, Tapatu at Nilco, Mico at Coça, and
at its entrance is known as The River.

  [304] Guachoya was in the vicinity of Arkansas City, in Desha
  County, and possibly at or near the large mound one mile to the

  [305] Sunday was the sixteenth of April.

Chapter 29

_The message sent to Quigaltam, and the answer brought back to the
Governor, and what occurred the while._

So soon as the Governor arrived in Guachoya, he ordered Juan de
Añasco, with as many people as could go in the canoes, to ascend the
river; for while they were coming from Anilco they saw some cabins
newly built on the opposite shore. The comptroller went, and brought
back the boats laden with maize, beans, dried plums (persimmons),
and the pulp of them made into many loaves. The same day an Indian
arrived from Guachoya, and said that the cacique would come on the
morrow. The next day, many canoes were seen ascending the river;
and the people in them remained for an hour on the opposite side of
the River Grande, in consultation, as to whether they should come
to us or not; but finally they concluded to come, and crossed the
river, among them being the cacique of Guachoya with many Indians,
bringing much fish, many dogs, skins, and blankets. So soon as they
had landed, they went to the lodging of the Governor in the town, and
having presented him with the offerings, the cacique thus spoke:


     I entreat you to forgive me the error I committed in going away
     from this town, and not waiting to greet and to obey you; since
     the occasion should have been for me, and is, one of pride; but
     I dreaded what I should not have feared, and did consequently
     what was out of reason; for error comes of haste, and I left
     without proper thought. So soon as I had reflected, I resolved
     not to follow the inclination of the foolish, which is to
     persist in his course, but to take that of the discreet and the
     wise: thus have I changed my purpose, coming to see in what it
     is you will bid me serve you, within the farthermost limits of
     my control.

The Governor received him with much pleasure, thanking him for the
proffers and gift. Being asked if he had any information of the sea,
he said, none, nor of any other inhabited country below on that
side of the river, except a town two leagues distant, belonging to
a chief subject to him; nor on the other shore, save three leagues
down, the province of Quigaltam, the lord of which was the greatest
of that country. The Governor, suspecting that the cacique spoke
untruthfully, to rid his towns of him, sent Juan de Añasco with
eight of cavalry down the river, to discover what population might
be there, and get what knowledge there was of the sea. He was gone
eight days, and stated, when he got back, that in all that time he
could not travel more than fourteen or fifteen leagues, on account
of the great bogs that came out of the river, the canebrakes and
thick scrubs there were along the margin, and that he had found no
inhabited spot.

The Governor sank into a deep despondency at sight of the
difficulties that presented themselves to his reaching the sea;
and, what was worse, from the way in which the men and horses were
diminishing in numbers, he could not sustain himself in the country
without succor. Of that reflection he pined: but, before he took
to his pallet, he sent a messenger to the cacique of Quigaltam, to
say that he was the child of the Sun, and whence he came all obeyed
him, rendering their tribute; that he besought him to value his
friendship, and to come where he was; that he would be rejoiced to
see him; and in token of love and his obedience, he must bring him
something from his country that was in most esteem there. By the same
Indian, the chief returned this answer:

     As to what you say of your being the son of the Sun, if you will
     cause him to dry up the great river, I will believe you: as to
     the rest, it is not my custom to visit any one, but rather all,
     of whom I have ever heard, have come to visit me, to serve and
     obey me, and pay me tribute, either voluntarily or by force.
     If you desire to see me, come where I am; if for peace, I will
     receive you with special good-will; if for war, I will await you
     in my town; but neither for you, nor for any man, will I set
     back one foot.

When the messenger returned, the Governor was already low, being very
ill of fevers. He grieved that he was not in a state to cross the
river at once, and go in quest of the cacique, to see if he could
not abate that pride; though the stream was already flowing very
powerfully, was nearly half a league broad, sixteen fathoms in depth,
rushing by in furious torrent, and on either shore were many Indians;
nor was his power any longer so great that he might disregard
advantages, relying on his strength alone.

Every day the Indians of Guachoya brought fish, until they came to be
in such plenty that the town was covered with them.

The Governor having been told by the cacique, that on a certain
night, the chief of Quigaltam would come to give him battle, he
suspected it to be a fiction of his devising to get him out of his
country, and he ordered him to be put under guard, and from that
night forth the watch to be well kept. When asked why the chief did
not come, he said that he had, but that, finding the Governor in
readiness, he dared not adventure; and he greatly importuned him to
send the captains over the river, offering to supply many men to
go upon Quigaltam; to which the Governor said, that so soon as he
got well he would himself go to seek that cacique. Observing how
many Indians came every day to the town, and how populous was that
country, the Governor fearing that they would plot together, and
practise on him some perfidy, he permitted the gates in use, and
some gaps in the palisade that had not yet been closed up, to remain
open, that the Indians might not suppose he stood in fear, ordering
the cavalry to be distributed there; and the night long they made
the round, from each squadron going mounted men in couples to visit
the scouts, outside the town, at points in the roads, and to the
crossbowmen that guarded the canoes in the river.

That the Indians might stand in terror of them, the Governor
determined to send a captain to Nilco, which the people of Guachoya
had told him was inhabited, and, treating the inhabitants there
severely neither town would dare to attack him: so he commanded
Captain Nuño de Tobar to march thither with fifteen horsemen, and
Captain Juan de Guzman, with his company of foot, to ascend the river
by water in canoes. The cacique of Guachoya ordered canoes to be
brought, and many warriors to come, who went with the Christians. Two
leagues from Nilco, the cavalry, having first arrived, waited for the
foot, and thence together they crossed the river in the night. At
dawn, in sight of the town, they came upon a scout, who, directly as
he saw the Christians, set up loud yells, and fled to carry the news
to those in the place. Nuño de Tobar, and those with him, hastened on
so rapidly, that they were upon the inhabitants before they could all
get out of town. The ground was open field; the part of it covered by
the houses, which might be a quarter of a league in extent, contained
five or six thousand souls. Coming out of them, the Indians ran from
one to another habitation, numbers collecting in all parts, so that
there was not a man on horseback who did not find himself amidst
many; and when the captain ordered that the life of no male should be
spared, the surprise was such, that there was not a man among them
in readiness to draw a bow. The cries of the women and children were
such as to deafen those who pursued them. About one hundred men were
slain; many were allowed to get away badly wounded, that they might
strike terror into those who were absent.

Some persons were so cruel and butcher-like that they killed all
before them, young and old, not one having resisted little nor
much; while those who felt it their duty to be wherever there might
be resistance, and were esteemed brave, broke through the crowds
of Indians, bearing down many with their stirrups and the breasts
of their horses, giving some a thrust and letting them go, but
encountering a child or a woman would take and deliver it over to the
footmen. To the ferocious and bloodthirsty, God permitted that their
sin should rise up against them in the presence of all--when there
was occasion for fighting showing extreme cowardice, and in the end
paying for it with their lives.

Eighty women and children were captured at Nilco, and much clothing.
The Indians of Guachoya, before arriving at the town, had come to a
stop, and from without watched the success of the Christians over the
inhabitants; and when they saw that these were scattered, that the
cavalry were following and lancing them, they went to the houses for
plunder, filling the canoes with clothing; and lest the Christians
might take away what they got, they returned to Guachoya, where they
came greatly astonished at what they had seen done to the people of
Nilco, which they, in great fear, recounted circumstantially to their

Chapter 30

_The death of the Adelantado, Don Hernando de Soto, and how Luys
Moscoso de Alvarado was chosen Governor._

The Governor, conscious that the hour approached in which he should
depart this life, commanded that all the King's officers should be
called before him, the captains and the principal personages, to whom
he made a speech. He said that he was about to go into the presence
of God, to give account of all his past life; and since He had been
pleased to take him away at such a time, and when he could recognize
the moment of his death, he, His most unworthy servant, rendered
Him hearty thanks. He confessed his deep obligations to them all,
whether present or absent, for their great qualities, their love and
loyalty to his person, well tried in the sufferance of hardship,
which he ever wished to honor, and had designed to reward, when the
Almighty should be pleased to give him repose from labor with greater
prosperity to his fortune. He begged that they would pray for him,
that through mercy he might be pardoned his sins, and his soul be
received in glory: he asked that they would relieve him of the charge
he held over them, as well of the indebtedness he was under to them
all, as to forgive him any wrongs they might have received at his
hands. To prevent any divisions that might arise, as to who should
command, he asked that they would be pleased to elect a principal
and able person to be governor, one with whom they should all be
satisfied, and, being chosen, they would swear before him to obey:
that this would greatly satisfy him, abate somewhat the pains he
suffered, and moderate the anxiety of leaving them in a country, they
knew not where.

Baltasar de Gallegos responded in behalf of all, consoling him with
remarks on the shortness of the life of this world, attended as it
was by so many toils and afflictions, saying that whom God earliest
called away, He showed particular favor; with many other things
appropriate to such an occasion: And finally, since it pleased the
Almighty to take him to Himself, amid the deep sorrow they not
unreasonably felt, it was necessary and becoming in him, as in them,
to conform to the Divine Will: that as respected the election of a
governor, which he ordered, whomsoever his Excellency should name to
the command, him would they obey. Thereupon the Governor nominated
Luys Moscoso de Alvarado to be his captain-general; when by all those
present was he straightway chosen and sworn Governor.

The next day, the twenty-first of May, departed this life the
magnanimous, the virtuous, the intrepid captain, Don Hernando de
Soto, Governor of Cuba and Adelantado of Florida. He was advanced
by fortune, in the way she is wont to lead others, that he might
fall the greater depth: he died in a land, and at a time, that could
afford him little comfort in his illness, when the danger of being no
more heard from stared his companions in the face, each one himself
having need of sympathy, which was the cause why they neither gave
him their companionship nor visited him, as otherwise they would have

Luys de Moscoso determined to conceal what had happened from the
Indians; for Soto had given them to understand that the Christians
were immortal; besides, they held him to be vigilant, sagacious,
brave; and, although they were at peace, should they know him to be
dead, they, being of their nature inconstant, might venture on making
an attack; and they were credulous of all that he had told them,
for he made them believe that some things which went on among them
privately, he had discovered without their being able to see how,
or by what means; and that the figure which appeared in a mirror he
showed, told him whatsoever they might be about, or desired to do;
whence neither by word nor deed did they dare undertake any thing to
his injury.

So soon as the death had taken place, Luys de Moscoso directed the
body to be put secretly into a house, where it remained three days;
and thence it was taken at night, by his order, to a gate of the
town, and buried within. The Indians, who had seen him ill, finding
him no longer, suspected the reason; and passing by where he lay,
they observed the ground loose, and, looking about, talked among
themselves. This coming to the knowledge of Luys de Moscoso, he
ordered the corpse to be taken up at night, and among the shawls
that enshrouded it having cast abundance of sand, it was taken out
in a canoe and committed to the middle of the stream. The cacique
of Guachoya asked for him, saying: "What has been done with my
brother and lord, the Governor?" Luys de Moscoso told him that he
had ascended into the skies, as he had done on many other occasions;
but as he would have to be detained there some time, he had left him
in his stead. The chief, thinking within himself that he was dead,
ordered two well-proportioned young men to be brought, saying, that
it was the usage of the country, when any lord died, to kill some
persons, who should accompany and serve him on the way, on which
account they were brought; and he told him to command their heads to
be struck off, that they might go accordingly to attend his friend
and master. Luys de Moscoso replied to him, that the Governor was
not dead, but only gone into the heavens, having taken with him of
his soldiers sufficient number for his need, and he besought him to
let those Indians go, and from that time forward not to follow so
evil a practice. They were presently ordered to be let loose, that
they might return to their houses; but one of them refused to leave,
alleging that he did not wish to remain in the power of one who,
without cause, condemned him to die, and that he who had saved his
life he desired to serve as long as he should live.

Luys de Moscoso ordered the property of the Governor to be sold at
public outcry. It consisted of two male and three female slaves,
three horses, and seven hundred swine. For each slave, or horse, was
given two or three thousand cruzados, to be paid at the first melting
of gold or silver, or division of vassals and territory, with the
obligation that should there be nothing found in the country, the
payment should be made at the end of a year, those having no property
to pledge to give their bond. A hog bought in the same way, trusted,
two hundred cruzados. Those who had left anything at home bought more
sparingly, and took less than others. From that time forward most
of the people owned and raised hogs; they lived on pork, observed
Fridays and Saturdays, and the vespers of holidays, which they had
not done before; for, at times, they had passed two or three months
without tasting any meat, and on the day they got any, it had been
their custom to eat it.

Chapter 31

_How the Governor Luys de Moscoso left Guachoya and went to Chaguete,
and from thence to Aguacay._

Some were glad of the death of Don Hernando de Soto, holding it
certain that Luys de Moscoso, who was given to leading a gay life,
preferred to see himself at ease in a land of Christians, rather than
continue the toils of war, discovering and subduing, which the people
had come to hate, finding the little recompense that followed. The
Governor ordered that the captains and principal personages should
come together, to consult and determine upon what they would do; and,
informed of the population there was on all sides, he found that
towards the west the country was most inhabited, and that descending
the stream, after passing Quigaltam, it was desert and had little
subsistence. He besought them all to give him their opinion in
writing, signed with their names, that, having the views of every
one, he might determine whether to follow down the river or enter the

To every one it appeared well to march westwardly, because in that
direction was New Spain, the voyage by sea being held more hazardous
and of doubtful accomplishment, as a vessel of sufficient strength
to weather a storm could not be built, nor was there captain nor
pilot, needle nor chart, nor was it known how distant might be the
sea; neither had they any tidings of it, or if the river did not take
some great turn through the land, or might not have some fall over
rocks where they might be lost. Some, who had seen the sea-card,
found that by the shore, from the place where they were to New Spain,
there should be about five hundred leagues; and they said that by
land, though they might have to go round about sometimes, in looking
for a peopled country, unless some great impassable wilderness
should intervene, they could not be hindered from going forward that
summer; and, finding provision for support in some peopled country
where they might stop, the following summer they should arrive in a
land of Christians; and that, going by land, it might be they should
discover some rich country which would avail them. Moscoso, although
it was his desire to get out of the land of Florida in the shortest
time, seeing the difficulties that lay before him in a voyage by sea,
determined to undertake that which should appear to be the best to

Monday, the fifth of June, the Governor left Guachoya, receiving
a guide from the cacique who remained in his town. They passed
through a province called Catalte; and, going through a desert six
days' journey in extent, on the twentieth of the month they came to
Chaguate.[306] The cacique of the province had been to visit the
Governor, Don Hernando de Soto, at Autiamque, where he took him
presents of shawls, skins, and salt. The day before Luys de Moscoso
arrived, a sick Christian becoming missed, whom the Indians were
suspected to have killed, he sent word to the cacique to look for
and return him--that in so doing he would continue to be his friend;
if otherwise, the cacique should not hide from him anywhere, nor he
nor his, and that he would leave his country in ashes. The chief
directly came, and, bringing the Christian, with a large gift of
shawls and skins, he made this speech:


     I would not deserve that opinion you have of me for all the
     wealth of the world. Who impelled me to visit and serve that
     excellent lord, the Governor, your father, in Autiamque, which
     you should have remembered, where I offered myself, with all
     loyalty, truth, and love, to serve and obey his lifetime: or
     what could have been my purpose, having received favors of
     him, and without either of you having done me any injury,
     that I should be moved to do that which I should not? Believe
     me, no outrage, nor worldly interest, could have been equal
     to making me act thus, or could have so blinded me. Since,
     however, in this life, the natural course is, after one pleasure
     should succeed many pains, fortune has been pleased with your
     indignation to moderate the joy I felt in my heart at your
     coming, and have failed where I aimed to hit, in pleasing this
     Christian, who remained behind lost, treating him in a manner of
     which he shall himself speak, thinking that in this I should do
     you service, and intending to come with and deliver him to you
     at Chaguate, serving you in all things, to the extent possible
     in my power. If for this I deserve punishment from your hand, I
     shall receive it, as coming from my master's, as though it were

  [306] This province was probably on Saline River, in Saline
  County. From here they turned to the south-southeast.

The Governor answered, that because he had not found him in Chaguete
he was incensed, supposing that he had kept away, as others had
done; but that, as he now knew his loyalty and love, he would ever
consider him a brother, and would favor him in all matters. The
cacique went with him to the town where he resided, the distance of
a day's journey. They passed through a small town where was a lake,
and the Indians made salt: the Christians made some on the day they
rested there, from water that rose near by from springs in pools.
The Governor was six days in Chaguete, where he informed himself of
the people there were to the west. He heard that three days' journey
distant, was a province called Aguacay.

On leaving Chaguete, a Christian remained behind, named Francisco
de Guzman, bastard son of a gentleman of Seville, who, in fear of
being made to pay for gaming debts in the person of an Indian girl,
his concubine, he took her away with him; and the Governor, having
marched two days before he was missed, sent word to the cacique to
seek for and send him to Aguacay, whither he was marching, but the
chief never did. Before arriving at this province, they received five
Indians, coming with a gift of skins, fish, and roasted venison,
sent on the part of the cacique. The Governor reached his town on
Wednesday, the fourth day of July,[307] and finding it unoccupied,
lodged there. He remained in it a while, making some inroads, in
which many Indians of both sexes were captured. There they heard of
the South Sea. Much salt was got out of the sand, gathered in a vein
of earth like slate, and was made as they make it in Cayas.

  [307] The fourth of July was Tuesday.

Chapter 32

     _How the Governor went from Aguacay to Naguatex, and what
     happened to him._

The day the Governor left Aguacay he went to sleep near a small town,
subject to the lord of that province. He set the encampment very nigh
a salt lake,[308] and that afternoon some salt was made. He marched
the next day, and slept between two mountains, in an open grove; the
next after, he arrived at a small town called Pato; and on the fourth
day of his departure from Aguacay he came to the first inhabited
place, in a province called Amaye. There they took an Indian, who
said that thence to Naguatex was a day and a half's journey, all the
way lying through an inhabited region.

  [308] This town and lake were on the west side of Quachita River,
  about two miles south of Arkadelphia, in Clark County.

Having passed out of Amaye, on Saturday, the twentieth of July,[309]
between that place and Naguatex, at mid-day, along a clump of
luxuriant woods,[310] the camp was seated. From thence Indians being
seen, who had come to espy them, those on horseback went in their
pursuit, killed six, and captured two. The prisoners being asked by
the Governor why they had come, they said, to discover the numbers
he had, and their condition, having been sent by their lord, the
chief of Naguatex; and that he, with other caciques, who came in his
company and his cause, had determined on giving him battle that day.

  [309] The twentieth of July was Thursday.

  [310] Probably on Prairie de Roane, near Hope.

While thus conferring, many Indians advanced, formed in two
squadrons, who, so soon as they saw that they were descried, giving
whoops, they assailed the Christians with great fury, each on a
different quarter; but finding how firm was the resistance, they
turned, and fleeing, many lost their lives; the greater part of
the cavalry pursuing them, forgetful of the camp, when those that
remained were attacked by other two squadrons, that had lain in
concealment, who, in their turn, having been withstood, paid the
penalty that the first had done.

When the Christians came together, after the Indians fled, they
heard loud shouting, at the distance of a crossbow-shot from where
they were; and the Governor sent twelve cavalry to see what might be
the cause. Six Christians were found amidst numerous Indians, two,
that were mounted, defending four on foot, with great difficulty;
and they, as well as those who went to their succor, finally ended
by killing many. They had got lost from those who followed after
the first squadrons, and, in returning to the camp, fell among
them with whom they were found fighting. One Indian, brought back
alive, being asked by the Governor who they were that had come to
give him battle, said the cacique of Naguatex, the one of Maye, and
another of a province called Hacanac, lord of great territories and
numerous vassals, he of Naguatex being in command. The Governor,
having ordered his right arm to be cut off, and his nose, sent him
to the cacique, with word that he would march the next day into
his territory to destroy it, and that if he wished to dispute his
entrance to await him.

The Governor stopped there that night, and the following day he
came to the habitations of Naguatex, which were much scattered, and
having asked for the town of the cacique, he was told that it stood
on the opposite side of a river near by. He marched thitherward;
and coming to the river,[311] on the other bank he saw many Indians
awaiting him, set in order to defend the passage; but, as he did not
know whether it might be forded or not, nor whereabouts it could be
crossed, and having some wounded men and horses, he determined to
repose for some time in the town where he was, until they should be

  [311] Little River, in Hempstead County.

In consequence of the great heats that prevailed, he pitched his camp
a quarter of a league from the river, in a fine open grove of high
trees, near a brook, close to the town. Some Indians taken there,
having been asked if the river was fordable, said yes, at times it
was, in certain places; on the tenth day he sent two captains, each
with fifteen cavalry, one up and the other down the stream, with
guides to show where they might get over, to see what towns were to
be found on the opposite side. They were both opposed by the Indians,
who defended the passages the best they could; but these being taken
notwithstanding, on the other shore they found many habitations, with
much subsistence; and having seen this, the detachments went back to
the camp.

Chapter 33

     _How the cacique of Naguatex came to visit the Governor, and how
     the Governor went thence, and arrived at Nondacao._

From Naguatex, where the Governor was, he sent a message to the
cacique, that, should he come to serve and obey him, he would pardon
the past; and if he did not, he would go to look after him, and would
inflict the chastisement he deserved for what he had done. At the
end of two days the Indian got back, bringing word that to-morrow
the cacique would come. The day before his arrival, the chief sent
many Indians in advance of him, among whom were some principal men,
to discover in what mood the Governor was, and determine whether
he would himself come or not. They went back directly as they had
announced his approach, the cacique arriving in a couple of hours
afterward, well attended by his people. They came one before another,
in double file, leaving an opening through the midst, where he
walked. They arrived in the Governor's presence weeping, after the
usage of Tula (thence to the eastward not very distant), when the
chief, making his proper obeisance, thus spoke:


     I venture to appear before you, after having been guilty of
     so great and bad an act, that, for only having thought of it,
     I merit punishment. Trusting in your greatness, although I do
     not deserve pardon, yet for your own dignity you will show me
     mercy, having regard to my inferiority in comparison with you,
     forgetting my weakness, which to my sorrow, and for my greater
     good, I have come to know.

     I believe that you and yours must be immortal; that you are
     master of the things of nature; since you subject them all,
     and they obey you, even the very hearts of men. Witnessing the
     slaughter and destruction of my men in battle, which came of my
     ignorance, and the counsel of a brother of mine, who fell in the
     action, from my heart did I repent the error that I committed,
     and directly I desired to serve and obey you: wherefore have I
     come, that you may chastise and command me as your own.

The Governor replied, that the past would be forgiven; and that,
should he thenceforward do his duty, he would be his friend, favoring
him in all matters.

At the end of four days Luys de Moscoso set forward, and arrived at a
river he could not pass,[312] it ran so full, which to him appeared
wonderful at the time, more than a month having gone by since there
had been rain. The Indians said, that it often increased in that
manner, without there being rain anywhere, in all the country. It was
supposed to be caused by the sea entering in; but he learned that the
water always flowed from above, and that the Indians nowhere had any
information of the sea.

  [312] Red River.

The Governor returned back to where he had been the last days; and,
at the end of eight more, understanding that the river might then be
crossed, he left, and passed over to the other bank,[313] where he
found houses, but no people. He lodged out in the fields, and sent
word to the cacique to come where he was, and to give him a guide
to go on with. After some days, finding that the cacique did not
come, nor send any one, he despatched two captains, each of them
in a different direction, to set fire to the towns, and seize the
people that might be found. They burned much provision, and captured
many Indians. The cacique, seeing the damage his territories were
receiving, sent five principal men to Moscoso, with three guides, who
understood the language farther on, whither he would go.

  [313] This ford was located about three miles east of the line
  between Texas and Arkansas, in the latter state, and is known as
  White Oak Shoals.

Directly the Governor set out from Naguatex, arriving, on the third
day, at a hamlet of four or five houses, belonging to the cacique of
the poor province named Nissohone, a thinly peopled country, having
little maize. Two days' journey on the way, the Indians who guided
the Governor, in place of taking him to the west, would lead him to
the east, and at times they went through heavy thickets, out of the
road: in consequence, he ordered that they should be hanged upon a
tree. A woman, taken in Nissohone, served as the guide, who went back
to find the road.

In two days' time the Governor came to another miserable country,
called Lacane. An Indian was taken, who said the land of Nondacao was
very populous, the houses much scattered, as in mountainous regions,
and there was plenty of maize. The cacique came with his Indians,
weeping, as those of Naguatex had done, which is, according to their
custom, significant of obedience; and he made a present of much
fish, offering to do whatsoever might be required of him. He took his
departure, leaving a guide for the province of Soacatino.

Chapter 34

     _How the Governor marched from Nondacao to Soacatino and Guasco,
     passing through a wilderness, whence, for want of a guide and
     interpreter, he retired to Nilco._

The Governor set out from Nondacao for Soacatino, and on the fifth
day came to a province called Aays.[314] The inhabitants had never
heard of the Christians. So soon as they observed them entering the
territory the people were called out, who, as fast as they could get
together, came by fifties and hundreds on the road, to give battle.
While some encountered us, others fell upon our rear; and when we
followed up those, these pursued us. The attack continued during the
greater part of the day, until we arrived at their town. Some men
were injured, and some horses, but nothing so as to hinder travel,
there being not one dangerous wound among all. The Indians suffered
great slaughter.

  [314] This was apparently to the southward of Gainesville, Texas,
  the town being located just west of the "Lower Cross Timbers," on
  the prairie.

The day on which the Governor departed, the guide told him he had
heard it said in Nondacao, that the Indians of Soacatino had seen
other Christians; at which we were all delighted, thinking it might
be true, and that they could have come by the way of New Spain; for
if it were so, finding nothing in Florida of value, we should be able
to go out of it, there being fear we might perish in some wilderness.
The Governor, having been led for two days out of the way, ordered
that the Indian be put to the torture, when he confessed that his
master, the cacique of Nondacao, had ordered him to take them in
that manner, we being his enemies, and he, as his vassal, was bound
to obey him. He was commanded to be cast to the dogs, and another
Indian guided us to Soacatino,[315] where we came the following day.

  [315] This place was apparently located in the "Upper Cross
  Timbers." The Spaniards here turned to the southward.

The country was very poor, and the want of maize was greatly
felt. The natives being asked if they had any knowledge of other
Christians, said they had heard that near there, towards the south,
such men were moving about. For twenty days the march was through
a very thinly peopled country, where great privation and toil were
endured; the little maize there was, the Indians having buried in the
scrub, where the Christians, at the close of the day's march, when
they were well weary, went trailing, to seek for what they needed of
it to eat.

Arrived at a province called Guasco,[316] they found maize, with
which they loaded the horses and the Indians; thence they went to
another settlement, called Naquiscoça, the inhabitants of which said
that they had no knowledge of any other Christians. The Governor
ordered them put to torture, when they stated that farther on, in the
territories of another chief, called Naçacahoz,[317] the Christians
had arrived, and gone back toward the west, whence they came. He
reached there in two days, and took some women, among whom was one
who said that she had seen Christians, and, having been in their
hands, had made her escape from them. The Governor sent a captain
with fifteen cavalry to where she said they were seen, to discover
if there were any marks of horses, or signs of any Christians having
been there; and after travelling three or four leagues, she who
was the guide declared that all she had said was false; and so it
was deemed of everything else the Indians had told of having seen
Christians in Florida.

  [316] Waco. The town was evidently located on the Brazos River,
  near old Fort Belknap, in Young County, Texas.

  [317] These two provinces were to the southeast of Guasco, in the
  Brazos valley.

As the region thereabout was scarce of maize, and no information
could be got of any inhabited country to the west, the Governor went
back to Guasco. The residents stated, that ten days' journey from
there, toward the sunset, was a river called Daycao,[318] whither
they sometimes went to drive and kill deer, and whence they had seen
persons on the other bank, but without knowing what people they were.
The Christians took as much maize as they could find, to carry with
them; and journeying ten days through a wilderness,[319] they arrived
at the river of which the Indians had spoken. Ten horsemen sent in
advance by the Governor had crossed; and, following a road leading up
from the bank, they came upon an encampment of Indians living in very
small huts, who, directly as they saw the Christians, took to flight,
leaving what they had, indications only of poverty and misery.
So wretched was the country, that what was found everywhere, put
together, was not half an alqueire of maize.[320] Taking two natives,
they went back to the river, where the Governor waited; and on coming
to question the captives, to ascertain what towns there might be to
the west, no Indian was found in the camp who knew their language.

  [318] Probably the Double Mountain fork of Brazos River. The
  crossing was probably made at the south angle of the river, in
  the northwestern part of Fisher County, Texas.

  [319] A continuous forest extends from old Fort Belknap to the
  eastern slope of the "Staked Plains," and is the only one through
  which they could have marched for ten days to the westward.

  [320] _I.e._, less than a peck.

The Governor commanded the captains and principal personages to be
called together that he might determine now by their opinions what
was best to do. The majority declared it their judgment to return
to the River Grande of Guachoya, because in Anilco and thereabout
was much maize; that during the winter they would build brigantines,
and the following spring go down the river in them in quest of the
sea, where having arrived, they would follow the coast thence along
to New Spain,--an enterprise which, although it appeared to be one
difficult to accomplish, yet from their experience it offered the
only course to be pursued. They could not travel by land, for want of
an interpreter; and they considered the country farther on, beyond
the River Daycao, on which they were, to be that which Cabeça de Vaca
had said in his narrative should have to be traversed, where the
Indians wandered like Arabs, having no settled place of residence,
living on prickly pears, the roots of plants, and game; and that
if this should be so, and they, entering upon that tract, found no
provision for sustenance during winter, they must inevitably perish,
it being already the beginning of October; and if they remained any
longer where they were, what with rains and snow, they should neither
be able to fall back, nor, in a land so poor as that, to subsist.

The Governor, who longed to be again where he could get his full
measure of sleep, rather than govern and go conquering a country so
beset for him with hardships, directly returned, getting back from
whence he came.

Chapter 35

     _How the Christians returned to Nilco, and thence went to
     Minoya, where they prepared to build vessels in which to leave

When what had been determined on was proclaimed in the camp, many
were greatly disheartened. They considered the voyage by sea to be
very hazardous, because of their poor subsistence, and as perilous
as was the journey by land, whereon they had looked to find a rich
country, before coming to the soil of Christians. This was according
to what Cabeça de Vaca told the Emperor, that after seeing cotton
cloth, would be found gold, silver, and stones of much value, and
they were not yet come to where he had wandered; for before arriving
there, he had always travelled along the coast, and they were
marching far within the land; hence by keeping toward the west they
must unavoidably come to where he had been, as he said that he had
gone about in a certain region a long time, and marched northward
into the interior. Now, in Guasco, they had already found some
turquoises, and shawls of cotton, which the Indians gave them to
understand, by signs, were brought from the direction of the sunset;
so that they who should take that course must approach the country of

There was likewise much other discontent. Many grieved to go back,
and would rather have continued to run the peril of their lives
than leave Florida poor. They were not equal, however, to changing
what was resolved on, as the persons of importance agreed with the
Governor. There was one, nevertheless, who said afterwards that he
would willingly pluck out an eye, to put out another for Luys de
Moscoso, so greatly would he grieve to see him prosper; with such
bitterness did he inveigh against him and some of his friends, which
he would not have dared to do, only he knew that in a couple of days
from that time the government would have to be relinquished.

From Daycao, where they were, to the Rio Grande, was a distance of
one hundred and fifty leagues, which they had marched, toward that
place, always westwardly; and, as they returned over the way, with
great difficulty could they find maize to eat; for, wheresoever they
had passed, the country lay devastated, and the little that was left,
the Indians had now hidden. The towns they had burned in Naguatex, of
which they had repented, they found already rebuilt, and the houses
full of maize. That country is populous and abundant. Pottery is made
there of clay, little differing from that of Estremoz or Montemor.

To Chaguete, by command of the cacique, the Indians came in peace,
and said, that the Christian who had remained there would not come.
The Governor wrote to him, sending ink and paper, that he might
answer. The purport of the letter stated his determination to leave
Florida, reminded him of his being a Christian, and that he was
unwilling to leave him among heathen; that he would pardon the error
he had committed in going to the Indians, should he return; and
that if they should wish to detain him, to let the Governor know by
writing. The Indian who took the letter came back, bringing no other
response than the name and rubric of the person written on the back,
to signify that he was alive. The Governor sent twelve mounted men
after him; but, having his watchers, he so hid himself that he could
not be found. For want of maize the Governor could not tarry longer
to look for him; so he left Chaguete, crossed the river at Aays,[321]
and following it down, he discovered a town which they had not seen
before, called Chilano.

  [321] This name should be Ayays,--the old crossing-place on the
  Arkansas River, above Pine Bluff.

They came to Nilco, where the Governor found so little maize, that
there was not enough to last while they made the vessels; for during
seed-time, while the Christians were in Guachoya, the Indians, in
fear of them, had not dared to come and plant the grounds; and no
other land about there was known to have maize, that being the most
fertile region of the vicinity, and where they had the most hope of
finding sustenance. Everybody was confounded.

Many thought it bad counsel to have come back from the Daycao, and
not to have taken the risk of continuing in the way they were going
by land; as it seemed impossible they should escape by sea, unless a
miracle might be wrought for them; for there was neither pilot nor
sea-chart; they knew not where the river entered the sea, nor of the
sea could they get any information; they had nothing out of which to
make sails, nor for rope a sufficiency of enequen (a grass growing
there, which is like hemp), and what they did find was saved for
calk; nor was there wherewith to pitch them. Neither could they build
vessels of such strength that any accident might not put them in
jeopardy of life; and they greatly feared that what befell Narvaez,
who was lost on the coast, might happen to them also. But the most of
all they feared was the want of maize; for without that they could
not support themselves, or do anything they would. All were in great

The Christians chose to commend themselves to God for relief, and
beseech Him to point them out a way by which they might be saved. By
His Goodness He was pleased that the people of Anilco should come
peacefully, and state that two days' journey thence, near the River
Grande, were two towns of which the Christians had not heard, in a
fertile country named Aminoya; but whether it then contained maize
or not, they were unable to tell, as they were at war with those
places; they would nevertheless be greatly pleased to go and destroy
them, with the aid of the Christians. The Governor sent a captain
thither, with horsemen and footmen, and the Indians of Anilco.
Arriving at Aminoya,[322] he found two large towns in a level, open
field, half a league apart, in sight of each other, where he captured
many persons, and found a large quantity of maize. He took lodging
in one of the towns, and directly sent a message to the Governor
concerning what he had found, with which all were well content. They
set out from Anilco in the beginning of December, and on that march,
as well as before coming there from Chilano, they underwent great
exposure; for they passed through much water, and rain fell many
times, bringing a north wind, with severe cold, so that when in the
field they had the water both above and below them; and if at the
end of a day's journey they found dry ground to lie upon, they had
occasion to be thankful. In these hardships nearly all the Indians in
service died, and also many Christians, after coming to Aminoya; the
greater number being sick of severe and dangerous diseases, marked
with inclination to lethargy. André de Vasconcelos died there, and
two Portuguese brothers of Elvas, near of kin to him, by the name of

  [322] The town was located above the mouth of the Arkansas River,
  in Desha County, Arkansas.

The Christians chose for their quarters what appeared to be the best
town: it was stockaded, and stood a quarter of a league distant from
the Rio Grande. The maize that lay in the other town was brought
there, and when together the quantity was estimated to be six
thousand fanegas.[323] For the building of ships better timber was
found than had been seen elsewhere in all Florida; on which account,
all rendered many thanks to God for so signal mercy, encouraging the
hope in them, that they should be successful in their wish to reach a
shore of Christians.

  [323] The fanega of Lisbon was somewhat more than a pint.

Chapter 36

     _How seven brigantines were built, and the Christians took their
     departure from Aminoya._

So soon as the Christians arrived in Aminoya, the Governor commanded
the chains to be collected which every one brought along for Indians,
the iron in shot, and what was in the camp. He ordered a furnace
to be set up for making spikes, and likewise timber to be cut down
for the brigantines. A Portuguese, of Ceuta, had learned to saw
lumber while a captive in Fez; and saws had been brought for that
purpose, with which he taught others, who assisted him. A Genoese,
whom God had been pleased to spare (as without him we could not have
gone away, there being not another person who knew how to construct
vessels), built the brigantines with the help of four or five
Biscayan carpenters, who hewed the plank and ribs for him; and two
calkers, one a Genoese, the other a Sardinian, closed them up with
the oakum, got from a plant like hemp, called enequen, of which I
have before spoken; but from its scarcity the flax of the country
was likewise used, as well as the ravellings of shawls. The cooper
sickened to the point of death, and there was not another workman;
but God was pleased to give him health, and notwithstanding he was
very thin, and unfit to labor, fifteen days before the vessels
sailed, he had made for each of them two of the half-hogsheads
sailors call quartos, four of them holding a pipe of water.

The Indians of a province called Tagoanate, two days' journey up the
river, likewise those of Anilco and Guachoya, and other neighboring
people, seeing the vessels were building, thought, as their places of
concealment were by the water's side, that it was the purpose to come
in quest of them; and because the Governor had asked for shawls, as
necessary out of which to make sails, they came often, and brought
many, as likewise a great deal of fish.

Of a verity, it did appear that God chose to favor the Christians
in their extreme need, disposing the Indians to bring the garments;
otherwise, there had been no way but to go and fetch them. Then the
town where they were, as soon as the winter should set in, would
become so surrounded by water, and isolated, that no one could travel
from it by land farther than a league, or a league and a half, when
the horses could no longer be used. Without them we were unable to
contend, the Indians being so numerous; besides, man to man on foot,
whether in the water or on dry ground, they were superior, being more
skilful and active, and the conditions of the country more favorable
to the practice of their warfare.

They also brought us ropes; and the cables needed were made from the
bark of the mulberry-trees. Anchors were made of stirrups, for which
others of wood were substituted. In March, more than a month having
passed since rain fell, the river became so enlarged that it reached
Nilco, nine leagues off; and the Indians said, that on the opposite
side it also extended an equal distance over the country.

The ground whereon the town stood was higher, and where the going was
best, the water reached to the stirrups. Rafts were made of trees,
upon which were placed many boughs, whereon the horses stood; and
in the houses were like arrangements; yet, even this not proving
sufficient, the people ascended into the lofts; and when they went
out of the houses it was in canoes, or, if on horseback, they went in
places where the earth was highest.

Such was our situation for two months, in which time the river did
not fall, and no work could be done. The natives, coming in canoes,
did not cease to visit the brigantines. The Governor, fearing they
would attack him in that time, ordered one of those coming to the
town to be secretly seized, and kept until the rest were gone; which
being done, he directed that the prisoner should be tortured, in
order to draw out from him any plotting of treason that might exist.
The captive said, that the caciques of Nilco, Guachoya, Taguanate,
and others, in all some twenty, had determined to come upon him,
with a great body of people. Three days before they should do so,
the better to veil their evil purpose and perfidy, they were to
send a present of fish; and on the day itself, another present was
to be sent in advance of them, by some Indians, who, with others in
the conspiracy, that were serving, should set fire to the houses,
after getting possession of the lances placed near the doors of the
dwellings, when the caciques, with all their people, being concealed
in the thicket nigh the town, on seeing the flame, should hasten to
make an end of them.

The Governor ordered the Indian to be put in a chain; and on the
day that was stated, thirty men having come with fish, he commanded
their right hands to be cut off, sending word by them to the cacique
of Guachoya, whose they were, that he and his might come when they
pleased, he desired nothing better, but they should learn that they
could not think of a thing that he did not know their thought before
them. At this they were all greatly terrified; the caciques of Nilco
and Taguanate came to make excuses, and a few days after came the
cacique of Guachoya, with a principal Indian, his vassal, stating
that he had certain information of an agreement between the caciques
of Nilco and Taguanate to come and give the Christians battle.

So soon as some Indians arrived from Nilco, the Governor questioned
them, and they confirming what was said, he delivered them at once to
the principal Indian of Guachoya, who took them out of the town and
killed them. The next day came others from Taguanate, who likewise
having confessed, the Governor commanded that their right hands and
their noses should be cut off, and he sent them to the cacique. With
this procedure the people of Guachoya were well satisfied, and often
came with presents of shawls and fish, and of hogs, which were the
breeding of some sows lost there the year before. Having persuaded
the Governor to send people to Taguanate, so soon as the waters fell,
they brought canoes, in which infantry went down [up] the river, and
a captain proceeded by land with cavalry; and having guided them
until they came to Taguanate,[324] the Christians assaulted the
town, took many men and women, and shawls, which, with what they had
already, sufficed for their want.

  [324] This province was on White River, and the town was probably
  in the southern part of Monroe County, Arkansas, possibly at
  Indian Bay.

In the month of June the brigantines were finished, and the Indians
having stated that the river rose but once in the year, which was
with the melting of snow, that had already passed, it being now
summer, and a long time since rain had fallen, God was pleased that
the water should come up to the town, where the vessels were, whence
they floated into the river; for had they been taken over ground,
there would have been danger of tearing open the bottoms, thereby
entirely wrecking them, the planks being thin, and the spikes made
short for the lack of iron.

In the time that the Christians were there, the people of Aminoya
came to offer their service, being compelled by hunger to beg some
ears of that corn which had been taken from them. As the country was
fertile, they were accustomed to subsist on maize; and as all that
they possessed had been seized, and the population was numerous, they
could not exist. Those who came to the town were weak, and so lean
that they had not flesh on their bones, and many died near by, of
clear hunger and debility. The Governor ordered, under pain of heavy
punishments, that maize should not be given to them; still, when it
was seen that they were willing to work, and that the hogs had a
plenty, the men, pitying their misery and destitution, would share
their grain with them; so that when the time arrived for departure,
there was not enough left to answer for what was needed. That which
remained was put into the brigantines and the great canoes, which
were tied together in couples. Twenty-two horses were taken on board,
being the best there were in the camp; the flesh of the rest was
jerked, as was also that of the hogs that remained. On the second day
of July, of the year one thousand five hundred and forty-three, we
took our departure from Aminoya.

Chapter 37

     _How the Christians, on their voyage, were attacked in the
     river, by the Indians of Quigualtam, and what happened._

The day before the Christians left Aminoya, it was determined to
dismiss the men and women that were serving, with the exception of
some hundred slaves, more or less, put on board by the Governor,
and by those he favored. As there were many persons of condition,
whom he could not refuse what he allowed to others, he made use of
an artifice, saying, that while they should be going down the river
they might have the use of them; but on coming to the sea they would
have to be left, because of the necessity for water, and there were
but few casks; while he secretly told his friends to take the slaves,
that they would carry them to New Spain. All those to whom he bore
ill-will, the greater number, not suspecting his concealment from
them, which after a while appeared, thought it inhuman for so short
service, in return for so much as the natives had done, to take them
away, to be left captives out of their territories, in the hands
of other Indians, abandoning five hundred males and females, among
whom were many boys and girls who understood and spoke Spanish. The
most of them wept, which caused great compassion, as they were all
Christians of their own free will, and were now to remain lost.

In seven brigantines went three hundred and twenty-two Spaniards from
Aminoya. The vessels were of good build, except that the planks were
thin, on account of the shortness of the spikes; and they were not
pitched, nor had they decks to shed the water that might enter them,
but planks were placed instead, upon which the mariners might run to
fasten the sails, and the people accommodate themselves above and

The Governor appointed his captains, giving to each of them his
brigantine, taking their word and oath to obey him until they should
come to the land of Christians. He chose for himself the brigantine
he liked best. On the day of his departure they passed by Guachoya,
where the Indians, in canoes, were waiting for them in the river,
having made a great arbor on the shore, to which they invited him,
but he made excuse, and passed along. They accompanied him until
arriving where an arm of the river extends to the right,[325] near
which they said was Quigualtam; and they importuned him to go and
make war upon it, offering their assistance. As they told him there
were three days' journey down the river to that province, suspecting
they had arranged some perfidy, he dismissed them there; then,
submitting himself to where lay the full strength of the stream, went
his voyage, driven on rapidly by the power of the current and aid of

  [325] This was a channel connecting the Mississippi River with
  Bayou Macon, and was located in the northern part of Chicot
  County, Arkansas.

On the first day they came to land in a clump of trees, by the left
bank, and at dark they retired to the vessels. The following day they
came to a town, where they went on shore, but the occupants dared not
tarry for them. A woman who was captured, being questioned, said the
town was that of a chief named Huhasene, a subject of Quigualtam,
who, with a great many people, was waiting for them. Mounted men went
down the river, and finding some houses, in which was much maize,
immediately the rest followed. They tarried there a day, in which
they shelled and got ready as much maize as was needed. In this time
many Indians came up the river in canoes; and, on the opposite side,
in front, somewhat carelessly put themselves in order of battle.
The Governor sent after them the crossbowmen he had with him, in
two canoes, and as many other persons as they could hold, when the
Indians fled; but, seeing the Spaniards were unable to overtake them,
returning, they took courage, and, coming nearer, menaced them with
loud yells. So soon as the Christians retired, they were followed by
some in canoes, and others on land, along the river; and, getting
before them, arrived at a town near the river's bluff,[326] where
they united, as if to make a stand. Into each canoe, for every
brigantine was towing one at the stern for its service, directly
entered some men, who, causing the Indians to take flight, burned the
town. Soon after, on the same day, they went on shore in a large open
field, where the Indians dared not await their arrival.

  [326] From the time and distance travelled, this place was at the
  Vicksburg Bluffs.

The next day a hundred canoes came together, having from sixty to
seventy persons in them, those of the principal men having awnings,
and themselves wearing white and colored plumes, for distinction.
They came within two crossbow-shot of the brigantines, and sent a
message in a small canoe, by three Indians, to the intent of learning
the character of the vessels, and the weapons that we use. Arriving
at the brigantine of the Governor, one of the messengers got in,
and said that he had been sent by the cacique of Quigaltam, their
lord, to commend him, and to make known that whatever the Indians of
Guachoya had spoken of him was falsely said, they being his enemies;
that the chief was his servant, and wished to be so considered. The
Governor told him that he believed all that he had stated to be true;
to say so to him, and that he greatly esteemed him for his friendship.

With this the messengers went to where the others, in the canoes,
were waiting for them; and thence they all came down yelling, and
approached the Spaniards with threats. The Governor sent Juan de
Guzman, captain of foot, in the canoes, with twenty-five men in
armor, to drive them out of the way. So soon as they were seen
coming, the Indians, formed in two parts, remained quietly until
they were come up with, when, closing, they took Juan de Guzman, and
those who came ahead with him, in their midst, and, with great fury,
closed hand to hand with them. Their canoes were larger than his, and
many leaped into the water--some to support them, others to lay hold
of the canoes of the Spaniards, to cause them to capsize, which was
presently accomplished, the Christians falling into the water, and,
by the weight of their armor, going to the bottom; or when one by
swimming, or clinging to a canoe, could sustain himself, they with
paddles and clubs, striking him on the head, would send him below.

When those in the brigantines who witnessed the defeat desired to
render succor, the force of the stream would not allow them to
return. One brigantine, which was that nighest to the canoes, saved
four men, who were all of those that went after the Indians who
escaped. Eleven lost their lives; among whom was Juan de Guzman and
a son of Don Carlos, named Juan de Vargas. The greater number of
the others were also men of consideration and of courage. Those who
escaped by swimming said, that they saw the Indians get into the
stern of one of their canoes with Juan de Guzman, but whether he was
carried away dead or alive, no one could state.

Chapter 38

     _How the Christians were pursued by the Indians._

The natives, finding they had gained a victory, took so great
encouragement that they proceeded to attack the brigantines, which
they had not dared to before. They first came up with one in the
rear-guard, commanded by Calderon, and at the first volley of arrows
twenty-five men were wounded. There were only four on board in
armor, who went to the side of the vessel for its defence. Those
unprotected, finding how they were getting hurt, left the oars,
placing themselves below under the cover; and the brigantine,
beginning to swing about, was going where the current of water
chanced to take her, when one of the men in armor, seeing this,
without waiting the captain's order, made one of the infantry take
the oar and steer, while he stood before to cover him with his
shield. The Indians afterwards came no nearer than bow-shot, whence
they could assail without being assaulted, or receiving injury, there
being in each brigantine only a single crossbow much out of order; so
that the Christians had little else to do than to stand as objects to
be shot at, watching for the shafts. The natives, having left this
brigantine, went to another, against which they fought for half an
hour: and one after another, in this way they ran through with them

The Christians had mats with them to lie upon of two thicknesses,
very close and strong, so that no arrow could pierce them, and these,
when safety required, were hung up; and the Indians, finding that
these could not be traversed, directed their shafts upward, which,
exhausted, fell on board, inflicting some wounds. Not satisfied
with this, they strove to get at the men with the horses; but the
brigantines were brought about the canoes in which they were, to
give them protection, and in this position conducted them along.
The Christians, finding themselves thus severely tried, and so worn
out that they could bear up no longer, determined to continue their
journey in the dark, thinking that they should be left alone on
getting through the region of Quigualtam. While they proceeded and
were least watchful, supposing themselves to be left, they would
be roused with deafening yells near by; and thus were they annoyed
through the night and until noon, when they got into another country,
to the people of which they were recommended for a like treatment,
and received it.

Those Indians having gone back to their country, these followed the
Christians in fifty canoes, fighting them all one day and night.
They sprang on board a brigantine of the rear-guard, by the canoe
that floated at the stern, whence they took out an Indian woman, and
wounded from thence some men in the brigantines. The men with the
horses in the canoes, becoming weary with rowing day and night, at
times got left behind, when the Indians would directly set upon them,
and those in the brigantines would wait until they should come up:
so that in consequence of the slow way that was made, because of the
beasts, the Governor determined to go on shore and slaughter them.
So soon as any befitting ground for it was seen, a landing was made,
the animals were butchered, and the meat cured and brought on board.
Four or five horses having been let go alive, the Indians, after the
Spaniards had embarked, went up to them, to whom being unused, they
were alarmed, running up and down, neighing in such a way that the
Indians took fright, plunging into the water; and thence entering
their canoes, they went after the brigantines, shooting at the people
without mercy, following them that evening and the night ensuing,
until ten o'clock the next day, when they returned upstream.

From a small town near the bank, there came out seven canoes that
pursued the Christians a short distance, shooting at them; but
finding, as they were few, that little harm was done, they went back.
From that time forth the voyage, until near the end, was unattended
by any misadventure; the Christians in seventeen days going down a
distance of two hundred and fifty leagues,[327] a little more or
less, by the river. When near the sea, it becomes divided into two
arms, each of which may be a league and a half broad.

  [327] The Inca gives the distance as being seven hundred and
  fifty leagues. The real distance was about seven hundred and
  twenty miles.

Chapter 39

     _How the Christians came to the sea, what occurred then, and
     what befell them on the voyage._

Half a league before coming to the sea, the Christians cast anchor,
in order to take rest for a time, as they were weary from rowing.
They were disheartened also, many days having gone by since they had
eaten other thing than maize, parched and then boiled, given out in
daily rations of a casque by strike to a mess of three.

While riding at anchor, seven canoes of natives came to attack those
we had brought in the canoes along with us. The Governor ordered
men to enter ours in armor, to go after the Indians and drive them
away. There also came some by land, through thicket and bog, with
staves, having very sharp heads of fish-bone, who fought valiantly
those of us who went out to meet them. Such as were in the canoes,
awaited with their arrows the approach of those sent against them;
and presently, on the engaging of these, as well as those on land,
they wounded some on our side in both contests. When we on shore drew
nigh to them they would turn their backs, running like fleet steeds
before infantry, making some turns without ever getting much beyond
the flight of an arrow, and, returning again, they would shoot
without receiving any injury from us, who, though we had some bows,
were not skilled to use them; while the Indians on the water, finding
their pursuers unable to do them harm, though straining at the oars
to overtake them, leisurely kept within a circle, their canoes
pausing and returning, as in a skirmish. The men discovered that the
more successful their efforts to approach, the greater was their own
injury; so, when they succeeded simply in driving them off, they went
back to the brigantines.

After remaining two days, the Christians went to where that branch of
the river enters the sea; and having sounded there, they found forty
fathoms depth of water. Pausing then, the Governor required that each
should give his opinion respecting the voyage, whether they should
sail to New Spain direct, by the high sea, or go thither keeping
along from shore to shore. There were different opinions upon this,
in which Juan de Añasco, who was very presumptuous, valuing himself
much upon his knowledge of navigation, with other matters of the sea
of which he had little experience, influenced the Governor; and his
opinion, like that of some others, was, that it would be much better
to put out to sea, and cross the Gulf by a passage three-fourths
less far, than going from shore to shore, which was very circuitous,
because of the bend made by the land. He said that he had seen the
sea-chart; that whence they were the coast ran west to the River of
Palmas, and thence south to New Spain; consequently, that keeping in
sight of land, there would be wide compassing, with long detention,
and risk of being overtaken by the winter before coming to the
country of Christians; while, with a fair wind, in ten or twelve
days' time they should arrive there, by keeping a straight course.

The majority were not of that way of thinking, and said there was
more safety in going along the coast, though it might take longer;
the vessels being frail, and without decks, a light storm might
suffice to wreck them; and in consequence of the little room they had
for water, if calm or head wind should occur, or adverse weather,
they would also run great hazard; but even were the vessels so
substantial that they might venture in them, there being neither
pilot nor sea-card to show the way, it was not wise to traverse the
sea. This, the opinion of the greater number, was approved; and it
was decided to go along from one to another shore.

When they were about to depart, the brigantine of the Governor
parted her cable, the anchor attached to it remaining in the river;
and, notwithstanding she was near the shore, the depth was so great
that, although it was industriously sought for by divers, it could
not be found. This gave much anxiety to the Governor and the others
on board. With a stone for crushing maize, and the bridles that
remained, belonging to some of the fidalgos and gentlemen who rode,
they made a weight that took the place of the anchor.

On the eighteenth day of July the vessels got under way, with fair
weather, and wind favorable for the voyage. The Governor, with Juan
de Añasco, put to sea in their brigantines, and were followed by all
the rest, who, at two or three leagues out, having come up with the
two, the captains asked the Governor why he did not keep the land;
and told him that if he meant to leave it he should say so, though
he ought not to do that without having the consent of the rest,
otherwise they would not follow his lead, but each would do as he
thought best. The Governor replied that he would do nothing without
consulting them; he desired to get away from the shore to sail the
better, and with the greater safety at night; that in the morning,
when time served, he would return. With a favorable wind they sailed
all that day in fresh water, the next night, and the day following
until vespers, at which they were greatly amazed; for they were very
distant from the shore, and so great was the strength of the current
of the river, the coast so shallow and gentle, that the fresh water
entered far into the sea.[328]

  [328] At that time the Atchafalaya probably formed the lower
  course of Red River, the latter not having cut through to the
  Mississippi, and it was its current that they encountered.

That afternoon, on the starboard bow, they saw some kays, whither
they went, and where they reposed at night. There Juan de Añasco,
with his reasoning, concluded by getting all to consent, and deem
it good, that they should go to sea, declaring, as he had before
said, that it would be a great gain, and shorten their voyage. They
navigated two days, and when they desired to get back in sight of
land they could not, because the wind came off from it: and on
the fourth day, finding that the water was giving out, fearing
extremity and peril, they all complained of Juan de Añasco, and of
the Governor, who had listened to his advice: and all the captains
declared they would run no farther out, and that the Governor might
go as he chose.

It pleased God that the wind should change a little; and, at the
end of four days from the time of their having gone out to sea, by
strength of arm they arrived, in want of fresh water, in sight of
the coast, and with great labor gained it on an open beach. That
afternoon, the wind came round from the south, which on that coast
is a side wind, and so stiff that it threw the brigantines on to the
land, the anchors bending in their slenderness, and dragging. The
Governor ordered all to leap into the water, on the larboard side,
to hold them, and when each wave had passed they would launch the
brigantines to seaward, sustaining them in this manner until the wind
went down.

Chapter 40

     _How the brigantines lost sight of each other in a storm, and
     afterwards came together at a kay._

The tempest having passed off from the beach where the brigantines
were riding, the people went on shore. With mattocks they dug holes
there, into which the water having flowed, they thence filled their
pipkins. The next day they left; and sailing two days, they entered
a basin, like a cove, which afforded shelter against a high wind
that blew from the south. There they tarried, unable to leave, until
the fourth day, when the sea subsided and they went out by rowing.
They sailed until near evening; the wind then freshened, driving
them in such manner upon the land, that they regretted having left
the harbor; for no sooner was it nightfall than the storm began to
rise on the sea, and with its approach the wind gradually increased.
The brigantines separated. The two that were farthest out entered
an arm of the sea, a couple of leagues beyond the place where the
others found themselves at dark. The five that were astern remained
from half a league to a league apart, along an exposed beach, upon
which the winds and waves were casting them, without one vessel's
knowing the fate of another. The anchors having yielded, the vessels
were dragging them: the oars, at each of which seven and eight were
pulling seaward, could not hold the vessels; the rest of the men,
leaping into the water, with the utmost diligence, after the wave had
passed that drove them to the shore, would launch the brigantine;
while those on board, before another wave could come, baled out with
bowls the water that came in upon them.

While thus engaged, in great fear of being lost, from midnight
forward they suffered the intolerable torment of a myriad of
mosquitos. The flesh is directly inflamed from their sting, as though
it had received venom. Towards morning the wind lulled, and the
sea went down; but the insects continued none the less. The sails,
which were white, appeared black with them at daylight; while the
men could not pull at the oars without assistance to drive away the
insects. Fear having passed off with the danger of the storm, the
people observing the swollen condition of each other's faces, and
the marks of the blows they had given and received to rid them of
the mosquitos, they could but laugh. The vessels came together in a
creek, where lay the two brigantines that preceded them. Finding a
scum the sea casts up, called copee, which is like pitch, and used
instead on shipping, where that is not to be had, they payed the
bottoms of their vessels with it.

After remaining two days they resumed their voyage; and having
run likewise two days, they entered an arm of the sea and landed.
Spending there a couple of days, they left; six men on the last day
having gone up the bay in a canoe without finding its head. The
brigantines went out in a head-wind blowing from the south, which
being light, and the people having a strong desire to hasten the
voyage, they pulled out by strength of arm to sea with great toil,
and making little headway for two days, they entered by an arm of
the sea behind an islet which it encircles, where followed such bad
weather, that they were not unmindful to give thanks for that good
shelter. Fish abounded there. They were taken in nets and with the
line. A man having thrown out a cord made fast to his arm, a fish
caught at the hook and drew him into the water up to the neck, when,
remembering a knife that he had providentially kept, he cut himself

At the close of the fourteenth day of their stay, the Almighty having
thought proper to send fair weather, the Christians very devoutly
formed a procession for the return of thanks, in which, moving along
the beach, they supplicated Him that He would take them to a land in
which they might better do Him service.

Chapter 41

     _How the Christians arrived at the river Panico._

Wheresoever the people dug along the shore they found fresh water.
The jars being filled, and the procession concluded, they embarked;
and, going ever in sight of land, they navigated for six days. Juan
de Añasco said it would be well to stand directly out to sea; for
that he had seen the card, and remembered that, from Rio de Palmas
onward, the coast ran south, and up to that time they had gone
westwardly. According to his opinion, by the reckoning he kept, the
river could not be distant from where they were.

That night they ran out, and in the morning they saw palm-trees
rising above the water, the coast trending southwardly; and from
midday forward great mountains appeared, which had nowhere been seen
until then; for to that place, from the port of Espiritu Santo, where
they had entered Florida, was a low, level shore, not discoverable
at sea until very near. From what they observed, they thought that
during the night they had passed the Rio de Palmas, sixty leagues
distant from Panico, in New Spain. So they consulted together.

Some were of opinion that it would not be well to sail in the dark,
lest they should overrun the Rio de Panico; others, that they could
not be so near as to run by it that night, and that it would not be
well to lose a favorable wind; so they agreed to spread half the
sails and keep on their way. Two of the brigantines, which ran with
all sail up, at daylight passed the river without seeing it: of
the five that remained behind, the first that arrived was the one
Calderon commanded, from which, when a quarter of a league off, and
before the entrance had been discovered, the water was observed to
be thick and found to be fresh. Coming opposite the river, they saw
where the waves broke upon a shoal, at the entrance into the sea;
and, not any one knowing the place, they were in doubt whether they
should go in there or pass by; but finally, having agreed to enter,
they approached the shore without getting into the current, and went
in the port, where no sooner had they come, than they saw Indians
of both sexes in the apparel of Spain. Asking in what country they
were, they received the answer in their own language, that it was the
Rio de Panico,[329] and that the town of the Christians was fifteen
leagues inland. The pleasure that all received at this news cannot
be sufficiently expressed: they felt as though a life had been newly
given them. Many, leaping on shore, kissed the ground; and all, on
bended knees, with hands raised above them, and their eyes to heaven,
remained untiring in giving thanks to God.

  [329] Or Pánuco. A Mexican river which flows into the Gulf about
  a hundred and fifty miles north of Vera Cruz.

Those who were coming astern, when they saw that Calderon with his
brigantine had anchored in the river, directly steered to enter the
port. The other two, which had gone by, tried to run to sea, that
they might put about and join the rest, but could not, the wind
being adverse and the sea fretful; so, fearing that they might be
lost, they came nigh the land and cast anchor. A storm came up, and
finding that they could not sustain themselves there, much less at
sea, they determined to run on shore; and as the brigantines were
small, drawing but little water, and the beach sandy, the force of
the wind on the sails carried them up dry, without injury to any one.

If those who gained the haven at that time were made happy, these
were oppressed by a double weight of gloom, not knowing what had
happened to their companions, nor in what country they were, fearing
likewise that it might be one of a hostile people. They had come
upon the coast two leagues below the port. So soon as they found
themselves clear of the sea, each took on the back what he could
carry of his things, and, travelling inland, they found Indians, who
told whence they were, and changed what was sorrow into joy. The
Christians rendered many thanks to God for having rescued them from
those numberless perils.

Chapter 42

     _How the Christians came to Panico, and of their reception by
     the inhabitants._

From the time the Christians left the River Grande, to come by sea
from Florida to the River of Panico, were fifty-two days. On the
tenth day of September, of the year 1543, they entered the Panico,
going up with the brigantines. In the many windings taken by the
stream, the light wind was often unfavorable, and the vessels in
many places made slow headway, having to be towed with much labor
against a strong current; so that, after having sailed four days, the
people, discovering themselves greatly retarded in the desire to get
among Christians, and of taking part in the divine offices, which
for a long season had not been listened to by them, they gave up the
brigantines to the sailors, and went on by land to Panico.

Just as the Christians arrived at the town, in their clothing of
deer-skin, dressed and dyed black, consisting of frock, hose, and
shoes, they all went directly to the church, to pray and return
thanks for their miraculous preservation. The townspeople, having
already been informed of their coming by the Indians, and now knowing
of the arrival, invited some to their houses, and entertained them
for acquaintance sake, or for having heard of them, or because
they came from the same parts of country with themselves. The
alcalde-mayor took the Governor home with him: the rest, as they came
up, he directed to be lodged by sixes and tens, according to the
means of individuals, who provided their guests with abundance of
fowls and maizen-bread, and with the fruits of the country, which are
like those of Cuba, already described.

The town of Panico might contain some seventy housekeepers. The
dwellings were chiefly of stone and mortar; some were of poles, and
all of them thatched with grass. The country is poor. No gold or
silver is to be found. Residents have the fullest supply both of food
and servants. The most wealthy have not an income above five hundred
cruzados annually, which is tribute paid by their Indian vassals, in
cotton clothing, fowls, and maize.

Of the persons who got back from Florida, there landed at that port
three hundred and eleven Christians. The alcalde-mayor directly sent
a townsman by post to inform the Viceroy, who resided in Mexico,
of the arrival of three hundred of the men who had gone with Don
Hernando de Soto in the discovery and conquest of Florida; and, for
their being in the service of the King, that he would make provision
for their support. Don Antonio de Mendoza[330] was greatly amazed
at this news, as were all others of that city; for the people
having entered far into Florida, they had been considered lost,
nothing being heard from them in a long while; and it appeared to
him to be a thing impossible, that without a fortress to which they
might betake themselves, or support of any sort, they should have
sustained themselves for such a length of time among the heathen. He
immediately gave an order, directing that subsistence should be given
them wheresoever it might be needed, and the Indians found requisite
for carrying their burdens; and, should there be refusal, to take by
force, without incurring any penalty, whatsoever should be necessary.
The mandate was so well obeyed, that on the road, before the people
had arrived at the towns, the inhabitants went out to receive them,
bringing fowls and provisions.

  [330] The viceroy.

Chapter 43

     _The favor the people found in the Viceroy and residents of

From Panico to the great city of Mestitam (Mexico), there are sixty
leagues, and as many leagues from each to the port of Vera Cruz,
which is where the embarkations take place for Spain, and where those
who go hence to New Spain arrive. These three towns, equidistant, are
inhabited by Spaniards, and form a triangle: Vera Cruz on the south,
Panico on the east, and Mexico, which is inland, on the west. The
country is so populous, that the Indian towns farthest apart are not
more than half a league to a league from each other.

Some of the people who came from Florida remained in Panico, reposing
a month, others fifteen days, or such time as each pleased; for no
one turned a grudging face to his guest, but, on the contrary, gave
him of every thing he had, and appeared sad at his leave-taking;
which may well enough be believed, for the provision the natives
brought in payment of their tribute more than sufficed for
consumption, so that there was no one in that town to buy or to sell,
and few Spaniards being there, the inhabitants were glad of company.
All the clothing in the custody of the alcalde-mayor, paid to him
there as the Emperor's tax, he divided among those that would go to
receive any.

He who had a coat of mail was happy, since for it a horse might be
had in exchange. Some got mounted, and those not able to get beasts,
who were the greater number, took up the journey on foot. They were
well received by the Indians, and better served than they could have
been at their own homes, particularly in respect of everything to
eat; for, if an Indian was asked for a fowl, he would bring four; and
if for any sort of fruit, though it might be a league off, some one
would run to fetch it; and were a Christian ill, the people would
carry him, in a chair, from their own to the next town. Wheresoever
they came, the cacique of the place, through an Indian who bears a
rod of justice in his hand they call tapile (which is equivalent to
saying meirinho), ordered provisions to be brought, and men for the
loads of such things as there were, and the others necessary to carry
the invalids.

The Viceroy sent a Portuguese to them, twenty leagues from Mexico,
with quantity of confections, raisins, pomegranates, and other
matters proper for the sick, should they need them; and, in advance,
ordered that all should be clothed at the royal charge. The news of
their approach being known to the citizens, they went out on the
highway to receive them, and with great courtesy entreated for their
companionship as favor, each one taking to his house as many as he
dared, giving them for raiment all the best he could, the least well
dressed wearing clothes worth thirty cruzados and upward. Clothing
was given to those who chose to go for it to the residence of the
Viceroy, and the persons of condition ate at his board: at his house
was a table for all those of less rank that would eat there. Directly
he informed himself of the quality of each one, that he might show
him the consideration that was his due. Some of the conquistadores
placed them all down to table together, fidalgos and boors,
oftentimes seating the servant and his master shoulder to shoulder;
which was done mostly by artisans and men of mean condition, those
better bred asking who each one was, and making a difference in

Nevertheless, all did the best they could with good will, telling
those they had under their roofs that they could bring no
impoverishment, nor should they hesitate to receive whatsoever they
offered; since they had found themselves in like condition when
others had assisted them, such being the fortunes of the country.
God reward them: and those whom He saw fit should escape, coming out
of Florida to tread the soil of Christians, be He pleased that they
live to serve Him; and to the dead, and to all those who believe
in Him, and confess that in Him is their faith, grant, through His
compassion, the glory of paradise. Amen.

Chapter 44

     _Which sets forth some of the diversities and peculiarities of
     Florida; and the fruit, birds, and beasts of the country._

From the port of Espiritu Santo, where the Christians went on shore,
to the province of Ocute, which may be a distance of four hundred
leagues, a little more or less, the country is very level, having
many ponds, dense thickets, and, in places, tall pine-trees: the soil
is light, and there is not in it a mountain nor a hill.

The land of Ocute is more strong and fertile than the rest, the
forest more open; and it has very good fields along the margins
of the rivers. From there to Cutifachiqui are about one hundred
and thirty leagues, of which eighty leagues are of desert and pine
forests, through which run great rivers. From Cutifachiqui to Xuala
there may be two hundred and fifty leagues, and all a country of
mountains: the places themselves are on high level ground, and have
good fields upon the streams.

Thence onward, through Chiaha, Coça, and Talise, the country of which
is flat, dry, and strong, yielding abundance of maize, to Tascaluça,
may be two hundred and fifty leagues; and thence to Rio Grande, a
distance of about three hundred leagues, the land is low, abounding
in lakes. The country afterward is higher, more open, and more
populous than any other in Florida; and along the River Grande, from
Aquixo to Pacaha and Coligoa, a distance of one hundred and fifty
leagues, the land is level, the forest open, and in places the fields
very fertile and inviting.

From Coligoa to Autiamque may be two hundred and fifty leagues of
mountainous country; thence to Guacay may be two hundred and thirty
leagues of level ground; and the region to Daycao, a distance of one
hundred and twenty leagues, is continuously of mountainous lands.

From the port of Espiritu Santo to Apalache they marched west and
northeast; from Cutifachiqui to Xuala, north; to Coça, westwardly;
and thence to Tascaluça and the River Grande, as far as the provinces
of Quizquiz and Aquixo, to the westward; from thence to Pacaha
northwardly, to Tula westwardly, to Autiamque southwardly, as far as
the province of Guachoya and Daycao.

The bread that is eaten all through Florida is made of maize, which
is like coarse millet; and in all the islands and Indias belonging
to Castile, beginning with the Antillas, grows this grain. There
are in the country many walnuts likewise, and plums (persimmons),
mulberries, and grapes. The maize is planted and picked in, each
person having his own field; fruit is common for all, because it
grows abundantly in the woods, without any necessity of setting
out trees or pruning them. Where there are mountains the chestnut
is found, the fruit of which is somewhat smaller than the one of
Spain. Westward of the Rio Grande the walnut differs from that which
is found before coming there, being of tenderer shell, and in form
like an acorn; while that behind, from the river back to the port
of Espiritu Santo, is generally rather hard, the tree and the nut
being in their appearance like those of Spain. There is everywhere
in the country a fruit, the produce of a plant like _ligoacam_, that
is propagated by the Indians, having the appearance of the royal
pear, with an agreeable smell and taste; and likewise another plant,
to be seen in the fields, bearing a fruit like strawberry, near to
the ground, and is very agreeable. The plums (persimmons) are of two
sorts, vermilion and gray, of the form and size of walnuts, having
three or four stones in them. They are better than any plums that are
raised in Spain, and make much better prunes. The grapes appear only
to need dressing; for, although large, they have great stones; the
other fruits are all in great perfection, and are less unhealthy than
those of Spain.

There are many lions and bears in Florida, wolves, deer, jackals,
cats, and rabbits; numerous wild fowl, as large as pea-fowl; small
partridges, like those of Africa, and cranes, ducks, pigeons,
thrushes, and sparrows. There are blackbirds larger than sparrows and
smaller than stares; hawks, goshawks, falcons, and all the birds of
rapine to be found in Spain.

The Indians are well proportioned: those of the level country are
taller and better shaped of form than those of the mountains; those
of the interior enjoy a greater abundance of maize and clothing than
those of the coast, where the land is poor and thin, and the people
along it more warlike.

The direction from the port of Espiritu Santo to Apalache, and thence
to Rio de las Palmas, is from east to west; from that river towards
New Spain, it is southwardly; the sea-coast being gentle, having many
shoals and high sand-hills.


       *       *       *       *       *

This Relation of the Discovery of Florida was printed in the house of
Andree de Burgos, Printer and Cavalleiro of the house of the Senhor
Cardinal Iffante.[331]

  [331] Henry, cardinal archbishop of Evora, uncle of King John
  III., great uncle of King Sebastian, and himself King of Portugal
  from 1578 to 1580.

It was finished the tenth day of February, of the year one thousand
five hundred and fifty-seven, in the noble and ever loyal city of



From the time of the appearance in Mexico, in 1536, of Alvar Nuñez
Cabeza de Vaca of the ill-fated Narvaez expedition of nine years
before, with definite news of the hitherto unknown north, there
had been a strong desire to explore that region, but nothing of
importance was accomplished until 1539. In that year Fray Marcos of
Nice, the Father Provincial of the Franciscan order in New Spain,
with Estévan, the negro companion of Cabeza de Vaca, as a guide,
penetrated the country to the northwest as far as the Seven Cities of
Cibola, the villages of the ancestors of the present Zuñi Indians in
western New Mexico. Estévan, preceding Fray Marcos by a few days and
accompanied by natives whom he gathered en route, reached Hawikuh,
the southernmost of the seven towns, where he and all but three of
his Indian followers were killed. The survivors of this massacre fled
back to Fray Marcos, whose life was now threatened by those who had
lost their kindred at the hands of the Zuñis; but the friar, fearful
that the world would lose the knowledge of his discoveries, appeased
the wrath of his Indians by dividing among them the goods he had
brought and induced them to continue until he reached a mesa from
which was gained a view of the village in which Estévan had met his
fate. Here Fray Marcos erected a cross, took possession of the region
in the name of Spain, and hastened back to Mexico "with more fear
than victuals."

The glowing accounts which the friar gave of what he had seen, and
particularly of what he believed the Indians intended to communicate
to him, resulted in another expedition in the following year (1540).
This was planned by the Viceroy Don Antonio de Mendoza, and the
command was given to Francisco Vazquez de Coronado.

The elaborate expedition of Coronado is the subject of the narrative
of a private soldier in his army, Pedro de Castañeda, a native of
Nájera, in the province of Logroño, in the upper valley of the Ebro,
in Old Castile. Of the narrator little is known beyond the fact that
he was one of the colonists who settled at San Miguel Culiacan,
founded by Nuño de Guzman in 1531, where he doubtless lived when
Coronado's force reached that point in its northward journey, and
where, more than twenty years later, he wrote his account of the
expedition and its achievements. The dates of Castañeda's birth
and death are not known, but he was born probably between 1510 and
1518. In 1554, according to a document published in the _Coleccion
de Documentos Inéditos del Archivo de Indias_ (XIV. 206), his wife,
María de Acosta, with her four sons and four daughters, filed a claim
against the treasury of New Spain for payment for the service the
husband and father had rendered in behalf of the King.

As a rhetorician and geographer Castañeda was not a paragon, as he
himself confesses; but although his narration leaves the impression
that its author was somewhat at odds with the world, it bears every
evidence of honesty and a sincere desire to tell all he knew of the
most remarkable expedition that ever traversed American soil--even
of exploits in which the writer did not directly participate.
Castañeda's narration is by far the most important of the several
documents bearing on the expedition, and in some respects is one of
the most noteworthy contributions to early American history.

The accompanying translation, by Mr. George Parker Winship of the
John Carter Brown Library, was first published, together with other
documents pertaining to the expedition, in the _Fourteenth Annual
Report of the Bureau of Ethnology_ (Washington, 1896), now out of
print. Barring a few corrections, most of which were communicated to
the present writer by Mr. Winship in 1899, the translation is here
printed as it first appeared.

Mr. Winship's translation of Castañeda, together with the letters and
the other narratives pertaining to the expedition, was reprinted,
with an introduction, under the title _The Journey of Coronado,
1540-1542, from the City of Mexico to the Grand Cañon of the Colorado
and the Buffalo Plains of Texas, Kansas, and Nebraska_, as a volume
of the "Trail Makers" series (New York, 1904).

The original manuscript of Castañeda is not known to exist, the
Winship translation being that of a manuscript copy made at Seville
in 1596. This copy, which is now in the Lenox branch of the New
York Public Library, was first translated into French by Henri
Ternaux-Compans, who found it in the Uguina collection in Paris and
published it in Volume IX. of his _Voyages_ (Paris, 1838).

In addition to Castañeda's narration there are several letters and
reports that shed important light on the route traversed by the
expedition, the aborigines encountered, and other noteworthy details
which the student should consult. These are as follows:

1. The Relation by Fray Marcos of his _entrada_ during the preceding
year (1539), Coronado following the same route as far as the first of
the Seven Cities of Cibola with Marcos as both guide and spiritual
adviser. A brief bibliography of this narration is given in a note on
p. 290.

2. A letter from the viceroy, Don Antonio de Mendoza, to the King,
dated Jacona (Mexico), April 17, 1540, in which is set forth the
progress of Coronado's expedition from Culiacan, and containing
extracts from a report by Melchior Diaz, who had been sent forward in
November, 1539, to explore the route from Culiacan to Chichilticalli,
in the valley of the present Gila River, Arizona, for the purpose
of verifying the reports of Fray Marcos. This letter appears in the
_Documentos Inéditos de Indias_, II. 356, and in English in Winship's
memoir in the _Fourteenth Annual Report of the Bureau of Ethnology_,
p. 547, as well as in his _Journey of Coronado_, p. 149.

3. An important and extended letter from Coronado to Mendoza, written
at Granada (as Coronado called Hawikuh, the first of the Seven
Cities of Cibola), August 3, 1540. This letter appears in Italian in
Ramusio's _Terzo Volume delle Navigationi et Viaggi_ (ed. 1556),
fol. 359, translated by Hakluyt, _Voyages_, IX. 145-169 (ed. 1904);
reprinted in _Old South Leaflets,_ Gen. Ser., No. 20. A translation
from Ramusio into English appears in both of Mr. Winship's works on
the expedition. It should perhaps here be mentioned that the Hakluyt
translations of the Coronado documents, at least, are so unreliable
as to warrant careful use.

4. The _Traslado de las Nuevas_, an anonymous "Copy of the Reports
and Descriptions that have been received regarding the Discovery
of a City which is called Cibola, situated in the New Country."
This important document was written evidently by a member of the
expedition while the Spaniards were at Cibola. It appears in Spanish
in the _Documentos Inéditos de Indias_, XIX. 529, from which it was
translated into English by Mr. Winship and printed in each of his

5. The important letter of Coronado to the King, dated Tiguex (the
present Bernalillo, New Mexico), October 20, 1541, after the return
of the expedition from Quivira. Printed in the _Documentos Inéditos
de Indias_, III. 363; XIII. 261; in French in Ternaux-Compans'
_Voyages_, IX. 355; translated into English by Mr. Winship and
printed in each of his memoirs, as well as in _American History
Leaflets_, No. 13.

6. The _Relación Postrera de Síbola, y de mas de Cuatrocientas
Leguas Adelante_ (the "Latest Account of Cibola, and of more than
Four Hundred Leagues Beyond"). This important anonymous account,
written apparently in New Mexico in 1541 by one of the Franciscans
who accompanied the expedition, was published, both in Spanish and in
English, for the first time, in Mr. Winship's _Coronado Expedition_
(_Fourteenth Annual Report of the Bureau of Ethnology_, pp. 566-571).
In his _Journey of Coronado_ only the translation appears (pp.

7. The anonymous _Relación del Suceso_, an "Account of what happened
on the Journey which Francisco Vazquez made to discover Cibola."
First printed, in Spanish, in Buckingham Smith's _Colección de Varios
Documentos para la Historia de la Florida_ (1857), I. 147; it appears
also, under the erroneous date 1531, in the _Documentos Inéditos
de Indias_, XIV. 318, whereas the account was written apparently in
1541 or early in 1542. An English translation appears in each of Mr.
Winship's works, and also in _American History Leaflets_, No. 13.

8. "Account given by Captain Juan Jaramillo of the Journey which he
made to the New Country, on which Francisco Vazquez Coronado was the
General." Next to Castañeda's narration this is the most important
document pertaining to the expedition, inasmuch as it contains many
references to directions, distances, streams, etc., that are not
noted in the other accounts. The Jaramillo narration was written long
after the events transpired, and is based on the keen memory of the
writer. It is printed in Spanish in Buckingham Smith's _Coleccion_,
I. 154, and in the _Documentos Inéditos_, XIV. 304. A French
translation is given by Ternaux-Compans, IX. 364, and an English
translation in both of Mr. Winship's works.

9. "Account of what Hernando de Alvarado and Friar Juan de Padilla
discovered going in Search of the South Sea." A brief account of the
journey of Alvarado from Hawikuh (Coronado's Granada) to the Rio
Grande pueblos in 1540. Printed in Spanish in Buckingham Smith's
_Coleccion_, I. 65, and in the _Documentos Inéditos_, III. 511. An
English translation by Mr. Winship is included in each of his works
on the expedition, and was printed also in the _Boston Transcript_,
October 14, 1893. The title of this document is a misnomer, as
Alvarado did not go in search of the Pacific.

10. "Testimony concerning those who went on the Expedition with
Francisco Vazquez Coronado." This testimony is printed in the
_Documentos Inéditos de Indias_, XIV. 373, and an abridgment, freely
translated, is included in Mr. Winship's works.

11. Although the account of the voyage of the fleet under Hernando
de Alarcon does not directly concern us, reference should perhaps be
made to the sources of information regarding it. These are: Herrera's
_Historia General_, dec. VI., lib. IX., cap. XIII. (1601-1615), and
in various subsequent editions; Ramusio's _Navigationi et Viaggi_
(1556), III., fol. 363-370; Hakluyt's _Voyages_, IX. 279-318 (1904);
Ternaux-Compans' Voyages, IX. 299-348; _Coleccion de Documentos
Inéditos para la Historia de España_, IV. 218-219.

The Coronado expedition was of far-reaching importance from a
geographical point of view, for it combined with the journey of De
Soto in giving to the world an insight into the hitherto unknown
vast interior of the northern continent and formed the basis of
the cartography of that region. It was the means also of making
known the sedentary Pueblo tribes of our Southwest and the hunting
tribes of the Great Plains, the Grand Cañon of the Colorado and the
lower reaches of that stream, and the teeming herds of bison and
the absolute dependence on them by the hunting Indians for every
want. But alas for the Spaniards, the grand pageant resulted in
disappointment for all, and its indefatigable leader ended his days
practically forgotten by his country for which he had accomplished so

  F. W. HODGE.


     _Account of the Expedition to Cibola which took place in the
     year 1540, in which all those settlements, their ceremonies
     and customs, are described. Written by Pedro de Castañeda, of

  [332] For information concerning the author of this narrative,
  see the Introduction.


To me it seems very certain, my very noble lord, that it is a worthy
ambition for great men to desire to know and wish to preserve for
posterity correct information concerning the things that have
happened in distant parts, about which little is known. I do not
blame those inquisitive persons who, perchance with good intentions,
have many times troubled me not a little with their requests that I
clear up for them some doubts which they have had about different
things that have been commonly related concerning the events and
occurrences that took place during the expedition to Cibola, or
the New Land, which the good viceroy--may he be with God in His
glory--Don Antonio de Mendoza,[333] ordered and arranged, and on
which he sent Francisco Vazquez de Coronado as captain-general. In
truth, they have reason for wishing to know the truth, because most
people very often make things of which they have heard, and about
which they have perchance no knowledge, appear either greater or
less than they are. They make nothing of those things that amount to
something, and those that do not they make so remarkable that they
appear to be something impossible to believe. This may very well have
been caused by the fact that, as that country was not permanently
occupied, there has not been any one who was willing to spend his
time in writing about its peculiarities, because all knowledge was
lost of that which it was not the pleasure of God--He alone knows
the reason--that they should enjoy. In truth, he who wishes to
employ himself thus in writing out the things that happened on the
expedition, and the things that were seen in those lands, and the
ceremonies and customs of the natives, will have matter enough to
test his judgment, and I believe that the result can not fail to be
an account which, describing only the truth, will be so remarkable
that it will seem incredible.

  [333] Mendoza was first viceroy of New Spain (Mexico), serving
  from 1535 to 1550, when he was ordered to Peru as its second
  viceroy. He reached Lima in September, 1551, and died July 21 of
  the year following.

And besides, I think that the twenty years and more since that
expedition took place[334] have been the cause of some stories which
are related. For example, some make it an uninhabitable country,
others have it bordering on Florida, and still others on Greater
India, which does not appear to be a slight difference. They are
unable to give any basis upon which to found their statements.
There are those who tell about some very peculiar animals, who are
contradicted by others who were on the expedition, declaring that
there was nothing of the sort seen. Others differ as to the limits
of the provinces and even in regard to the ceremonies and customs,
attributing what pertains to one people to others. All this has had
a large part, my very noble lord, in making me wish to give now,
although somewhat late, a short general account for all those who
pride themselves on this noble curiosity, and to save myself the
time taken up by these solicitations. Things enough will certainly
be found here which are hard to believe. All or the most of these
were seen with my own eyes, and the rest is from reliable information
obtained by inquiry of the natives themselves. Understanding as I do
that this little work would be nothing in itself, lacking authority,
unless it were favored and protected by a person whose authority
would protect it from the boldness of those who, without reverence,
give their murmuring tongues liberty, and knowing as I do how great
are the obligations under which I have always been, and am, to your
grace, I humbly beg to submit this little work to your protection.
May it be received as from a faithful retainer and servant. It will
be divided into three parts, that it may be better understood. The
first will tell of the discovery and the armament or army that was
made ready, and of the whole journey, with the captains who were
there; the second, of the villages and provinces which were found,
and their limits, and ceremonies and customs, the animals, fruits,
and vegetation, and in what parts of the country these are; the
third, of the return of the army and the reasons for abandoning the
country, although these were insufficient, because this is the best
place there is for discoveries--the marrow of the land in these
western parts, as will be seen. And after this has been made plain,
some remarkable things which were seen will be described at the
end, and the way by which one might more easily return to discover
that better land which we did not see, since it would be no small
advantage to enter the country through the land which the Marquis of
the Valley, Don Fernando Cortes, went in search of under the Western
star, and which cost him no small sea armament. May it please our
Lord to so favor me that with my slight knowledge and small abilities
I may be able by relating the truth to make my little work pleasing
to the learned and wise readers, when it has been accepted by your
grace. For my intention is not to gain the fame of a good composer or
rhetorician, but I desire to give a faithful account and to do this
slight service to your grace, who will, I hope, receive it as from a
faithful servant and soldier, who took part in it. Although not in
a polished style, I write that which happened--that which I heard,
experienced, saw, and did.

  [334] Castañeda is supposed to have been writing at Culiacan, in
  western Mexico, about 1565.

I always notice, and it is a fact, that for the most part when we
have something valuable in our hands, and deal with it without
hindrance, we do not value or prize it so highly as if we understood
how much we should miss it after we had lost it, and the longer we
continue to have it the less we value it; but after we have lost it
and miss the advantages of it, we have a great pain in the heart, and
we are all the time imagining and trying to find ways and means by
which to get it back again. It seems to me that this has happened to
all or most of those who went on the expedition which, in the year
of our Savior Jesus Christ 1540, Francisco Vazquez Coronado led in
search of the Seven Cities.[335] Granted that they did not find the
riches of which they had been told, they found a place in which to
search for them and the beginning of a good country to settle in, so
as to go on farther from there. Since they came back from the country
which they conquered and abandoned, time has given them a chance to
understand the direction and locality in which they were, and the
borders of the good country they had in their hands, and their hearts
weep for having lost so favorable an opportunity. Just as men see
more at the bullfight when they are upon the seats than when they are
around in the ring, now when they know and understand the direction
and situation in which they were, and see, indeed, that they can
not enjoy it nor recover it, now when it is too late they enjoy
telling about what they saw, and even of what they realize that they
lost, especially those who are now as poor as when they went there.
They have never ceased their labors and have spent their time to no
advantage. I say this because I have known several of those who came
back from there who amuse themselves now by talking of how it would
be to go back and proceed to recover that which is lost, while others
enjoy trying to find the reason why it was discovered at all. And now
I will proceed to relate all that happened from the beginning.

  [335] The Seven Cities of Cibola. See p. 287, note 1; p. 300,
  note 1.


Chapter 1

     _Which treats of the way we first came to know about the Seven
     Cities, and of how Nuño de Guzman made an expedition to discover

In the year 1530 Nuño de Guzman, who was President of New Spain,[336]
had in his possession an Indian, a native of the valley or valleys of
Oxitipar, who was called Tejo by the Spaniards. This Indian said he
was the son of a trader who was dead, but that when he was a little
boy his father had gone into the back country with fine feathers to
trade for ornaments, and that when he came back he brought a large
amount of gold and silver, of which there is a good deal in that
country. He went with him once or twice, and saw some very large
villages, which he compared to Mexico and its environs. He had seen
seven very large towns which had streets of silver workers. It took
forty days to go there from his country, through a wilderness in
which nothing grew, except some very small plants about a span high.
The way they went was up through the country between the two seas,
following the northern direction. Acting on this information, Nuño
de Guzman got together nearly 400 Spaniards and 20,000 friendly
Indians of New Spain, and, as he happened to be in Mexico, he crossed
Tarasca, which is in the province of Michoacan, so as to get into
the region which the Indian said was to be crossed toward the North
Sea, in this way getting to the country which they were looking for,
which was already named "The Seven Cities." He thought, from the
forty days of which the Tejo had spoken, that it would be found to
be about 200 leagues, and that they would easily be able to cross
the country. Omitting several things that occurred on this journey,
as soon as they had reached the province of Culiacan, where his
government ended, and where the New Kingdom of Galicia is now, they
tried to cross the country, but found the difficulties very great,
because the mountain chains which are near that sea are so rough that
it was impossible, after great labor, to find a passageway in that
region. His whole army had to stay in the district of Culiacan for
so long on this account that some rich men who were with him, who
had possessions in Mexico, changed their minds, and every day became
more anxious to return. Besides this, Nuño de Guzman received word
that the Marquis of the Valley, Don Fernando Cortes, had come from
Spain with his new title,[337] and with great favors and estates, and
as Nuño de Guzman had been a great rival of his at the time he was
president, and had done much damage to his property and to that of
his friends, he feared that Don Fernando Cortes would want to pay him
back in the same way, or worse. So he decided to establish the town
of Culiacan there and to go back with the other men, without doing
anything more. After his return from this expedition, he founded
Xalisco, where the city of Compostela is situated, and Tonala, which
is called Guadalaxara, and now this is the New Kingdom of Galicia.
The guide they had, who was called Tejo, died about this time, and
thus the name of these Seven Cities and the search for them remains
until now, since they have not been discovered.[338]

  [336] Nuño Beltrán de Guzman was appointed governor of Pánuco,
  Mexico, in 1526, assuming the office in May, 1527. In December
  he became president of the Audiencia, the administrative and
  judicial board which governed the province, and in the following
  year participated in the trial of Cortés, his personal and
  political enemy, for strangling his wife to death in 1522.
  Guzman's barbarous cruelty, especially to the natives, whom
  he enslaved and bartered for his personal gain, resulted in a
  protest to the crown by Bishop Zumárraga, and in the hope of
  finding new fields for the gratification of his avarice he raised
  a large force, including 10,000 Aztecs and Tlascaltecs, and
  started from Mexico late in 1529 to explore the northwest (later
  known as Nueva Galicia), notwithstanding Cortés had already
  penetrated the region.

  He conquered the territory through which he passed, laying waste
  the settlements and fields and inflicting unspeakable punishment
  on the native inhabitants. Guzman built a chapel at Tonalá, which
  formed the beginning of the settlement of the present city of
  Guadalajara, named from his native town in Spain; he also founded
  the towns of Santiago de Compostela and San Miguel Culiacan,
  in Tepic and Sinaloa respectively, and started on his return
  journey late in 1531. Meanwhile a new Audiencia had arrived in
  New Spain, and Guzman was summoned to appear at the capital. This
  he refused to do, and when Luis de Castilla was sent by Cortés,
  the captain-general of the province, to subdue him, Guzman
  captured him and his force of 100 men by a ruse. In May, 1533,
  the king commanded him to submit to the provincial authorities;
  many of his friends and adherents deserted him, and he was
  stripped of his title as governor of Pánuco. In 1536 (March
  17) the licentiate Diego Perez de la Torre was appointed _juez
  de residencia_, an officer whose duty was to conduct a rigid
  investigation of the accounts and administration of governmental
  officials--this time with special reference to Guzman. By Torre's
  order, Guzman was arrested and confined in jail until 1538, when
  his case was appealed to Spain; but from this he received no
  comfort. He was banished to Torrejon de Velasco, where he died in
  1544, penniless and despised.

  [337] Marqués del Valle de Oaxaca y Capitan General de la Nueva
  España y de la Costa del Sur. He arrived at Vera Cruz in July,

  [338] The best discussion of the stories of the Seven Caves and
  the Seven Cities is in A. F. Bandelier's _Contributions to the
  History of the Southwestern Portion of the United States_, in
  _Papers of the Archaeological Institute of America_, American
  Series, V. (Cambridge, 1890).

Chapter 2

     _Of how Francisco Vazquez Coronado came to be governor, and the
     second account which Cabeza de Vaca gave._

Eight years after Nuño de Guzman made this expedition, he was put
in prison by a juez de residencia, named the licentiate Diego de la
Torre, who came from Spain with sufficient powers to do this. After
the death of the judge, who had also managed the government of that
country himself, the good Don Antonio de Mendoza, viceroy of New
Spain, appointed as governor of that province Francisco Vazquez de
Coronado, a gentleman from Salamanca, who had married a lady in the
city of Mexico, the daughter of Alonso de Estrada, the treasurer and
at one time governor of Mexico, and the son, most people said, of His
Catholic Majesty Don Ferdinand, and many stated it as certain. As I
was saying, at the time Francisco Vazquez was appointed governor, he
was travelling through New Spain as an official inspector, and in
this way he gained the friendship of many worthy men who afterward
went on his expedition with him. It happened that just at this time
three Spaniards, named Cabeza de Vaca, Dorantes, and Castillo
Maldonado, and a negro [Estévan], who had been lost on the expedition
which Pamfilo de Narvaez led into Florida, reached Mexico. They came
out through Culiacan, having crossed the country from sea to sea, as
anyone who wishes may find out for himself by an account which this
same Cabeza de Vaca wrote and dedicated to Prince Don Philip, who
is now King of Spain and our sovereign.[339] They gave the good Don
Antonio de Mendoza an account of some large and powerful villages,
four and five stories high, of which they had heard a great deal
in the countries they had crossed, and other things very different
from what turned out to be the truth. The noble viceroy communicated
this to the new governor, who gave up the visits he had in hand, on
account of this, and hurried his departure for his government, taking
with him the negro [Estévan] who had come [with Cabeza de Vaca] with
the three friars of the order of Saint Francis, one of whom was named
Friar Marcos of Nice, a regular priest, and another Friar Daniel,
a lay brother, and the other Friar Antonio de Santa Maria. When he
reached the province of Culiacan he sent the friars just mentioned
and the negro, who was named Estevan, off in search of that country,
because Friar Marcos offered to go and see it, because he had been in
Peru at the time Don Pedro de Alvarado went there overland. It seems
that, after the friars I have mentioned and the negro had started,
the negro did not get on well with the friars, because he took the
women that were given him and collected turquoises, and got together
a stock of everything. Besides, the Indians in those places through
which they went got along with the negro better, because they had
seen him before. This was the reason he was sent on ahead to open up
the way and pacify the Indians, so that when the others came along
they had nothing to do except to keep an account of the things for
which they were looking.

  [339] See the narrative of Alvar Nuñez Cabeza de Vaca in the
  present volume.

Chapter 3

     _Of how they killed the negro Estevan at Cibola, and Friar
     Marcos returned in flight._

After Estevan had left the friars, he thought he could get all
the reputation and honor himself, and that if he should discover
those settlements with such famous high houses, alone, he would be
considered bold and courageous. So he proceeded with the people
who had followed him, and attempted to cross the wilderness which
lies between the country he had passed through and Cibola. He was
so far ahead of the friars that, when these reached Chichilticalli,
which is on the edge of the wilderness, he was already at Cibola,
which is eighty leagues beyond. It is 220 leagues from Culiacan to
the edge of the wilderness, and eighty across the desert, which
makes 300, or perhaps ten more or less. As I said, Estevan reached
Cibola loaded with the large quantity of turquoises they had given
him and some beautiful women whom the Indians who followed him and
carried his things were taking with them and had given him. These
had followed him from all the settlements he had passed, believing
that under his protection they could traverse the whole world without
any danger. But as the people in this country were more intelligent
than those who followed Estevan, they lodged him in a little hut
they had outside their village, and the older men and the governors
heard his story and took steps to find out the reason he had come
to that country. For three days they made inquiries about him and
held a council. The account which the negro gave them of two white
men who were following him, sent by a great lord, who knew about
the things in the sky, and how these were coming to instruct them
in divine matters, made them think that he must be a spy or a guide
from some nations who wished to come and conquer them, because it
seemed to them unreasonable to say that the people were white in the
country from which he came and that he was sent by them, he being
black. Besides these other reasons, they thought it was hard of him
to ask them for turquoises and women, and so they decided to kill
him. They did this, but they did not kill any of those who went with
him, although they kept some young fellows and let the others, about
sixty persons, return freely to their own country. As these, who were
badly scared, were returning in flight, they happened to come upon
the friars in the desert sixty leagues from Cibola, and told them
the sad news, which frightened them so much that they would not even
trust these folks who had been with the negro, but opened the packs
they were carrying and gave away everything they had except the holy
vestments for saying mass. They returned from here by double marches,
prepared for anything, without seeing any more of the country except
what the Indians told them.[340]

  [340] See the account of this journey by Marcos de Niza in
  _Coleccion de Documentos Inéditos de Indias_, III. 325-351;
  Ramusio, _Terzo Volume delle Navigationi_ (Venice, 1556);
  Hakluyt, _Voyages_, IX. 125-144 (1904); Ternaux-Compans,
  _Voyages_, IX. 249-284 (1838); and an English translation by
  Fanny Bandelier in _The Journey of Alvar Nuñez Cabeza de Vaca_
  (1905). _Cf._ also A. F. Bandelier, "The Discovery of New Mexico
  by Fray Marcos of Nizza," in _Magazine of Western History_, IV.
  659-670 (Cleveland, 1886).

Chapter 4

     _Of how the noble Don Antonio de Mendoza made an expedition to
     discover Cibola._

After Francisco Vazquez Coronado had sent Friar Marcos of Nice and
his party on the search already related, he was engaged in Culiacan
about some business that related to his government, when he heard
an account of a province called Topira,[341] which was to the north
of the country of Culiacan. He started to explore this region with
several of the conquerors and some friendly Indians, but he did not
get very far, because the mountain chains which they had to cross
were very difficult. He returned without finding the least signs of
a good country, and when he got back, he found the friars who had
just arrived, and who told such great things about what the negro
Estevan had discovered and what they had heard from the Indians, and
other things they had heard about the South Sea[342] and islands and
other riches, that, without stopping for anything, the governor set
off at once for the City of Mexico, taking Friar Marcos with him, to
tell the viceroy about it. He made the things seem more important
by not talking about them to anyone except his particular friends,
under promise of the greatest secrecy, until after he had reached
Mexico and seen Don Antonio de Mendoza. Then it began to be noised
abroad that the Seven Cities for which Nuño de Guzman had searched
had already been discovered, and a beginning was made in collecting
an armed force and in bringing together people to go and conquer
them. The noble viceroy arranged with the friars of the order of
Saint Francis so that Friar Marcos was made father provincial, as
a result of which the pulpits of that order were filled with such
accounts of marvels and wonders that more than 300 Spaniards and
about 800 natives of New Spain collected in a few days. There were so
many men of such high quality among the Spaniards, that such a noble
body was never collected in the Indies, nor so many men of quality in
such a small body, there being 300 men. Francisco Vazquez Coronado,
governor of New Galicia, was captain-general, because he had been the
author of it all. The good viceroy Don Antonio did this because at
this time Francisco Vazquez was his closest and most intimate friend,
and because he considered him to be wise, skillful, and intelligent,
besides being a gentleman. Had he paid more attention and regard to
the position in which he was placed and the charge over which he was
placed, and less to the estates he left behind in New Spain, or, at
least, more to the honor he had and might secure from having such
gentlemen under his command, things would not have turned out as they
did. When this narrative is ended, it will be seen that he did not
know how to keep his position nor the government that he held.

  [341] Bandelier, _Papers of the Archaeological Institute of
  America_, Am. ser., V. (1890), p. 104, says this was Topia, in
  Durango, a locality since noted for its rich mines.

  [342] The Pacific.

Chapter 5

     _Concerning the captains who went to Cibola._

When the viceroy, Don Antonio de Mendoza, saw what a noble company
had come together, and the spirit and good will with which they had
all presented themselves, knowing the worth of these men, he would
have liked very well to make every one of them captain of an army;
but as the whole number was small he could not do as he would have
liked, and so he issued the commissions and captaincies as he saw
fit, because it seemed to him that if they were appointed by him,
as he was so well obeyed and beloved, nobody would find fault with
his arrangements. After everybody had heard who the general was,
he made Don Pedro de Tovar ensign-general, a young gentleman who
was the son of Don Fernando de Tovar, the guardian and lord high
steward of the Queen Doña Juana,[343] our demented mistress--may she
be in glory--and Lope de Samaniego, the governor of the arsenal at
Mexico,[344] a gentleman fully equal to the charge, army-master. The
captains were Don Tristan de Arellano; Don Pedro de Guevara, the son
of Don Juan de Guevara and nephew of the Count of Oñate; Don Garcia
Lopez de Cardenas; Don Rodrigo Maldonado, brother-in-law of the
Duke of the Infantado; Diego Lopez, alderman of Seville, and Diego
Gutierres, for the cavalry. All the other gentlemen were placed under
the flag of the general, as being distinguished persons, and some of
them became captains later, and their appointments were confirmed
by order of the viceroy and by the general, Francisco Vazquez. To
name some of them whom I happen to remember, there were Francisco de
Barrionuevo, a gentleman from Granada; Juan de Saldivar, Francisco
de Ovando, Juan Gallego, and Melchior Diaz--a captain who had been
mayor of Culiacan, who, although he was not a gentleman, merited the
position he held. The other gentlemen who were prominent, were Don
Alonso Manrique de Lara; Don Lope de Urrea, a gentleman from Aragon;
Gomez Suarez de Figueroa, Luis Ramirez de Vargas, Juan de Sotomayor,
Francisco Gorbalan, the commissioner Riberos, and other gentlemen,
men of high quality, whom I do not now recall. The infantry captain
was Pablo de Melgosa of Burgos, and of the artillery, Hernando de
Alvarado of the mountain district. As I say, since then I have
forgotten the names of many gentlemen. It would be well if I could
name some of them, so that it might be clearly seen what cause I
had for saying that they had on this expedition the most brilliant
company ever collected in the Indies to go in search of new lands.
But they were unfortunate in having a captain who left in New Spain
estates and a pretty wife, a noble and excellent lady, which were not
the least causes for what was to happen.

  [343] Daughter of Ferdinand and Isabella, wife of Philip I., and
  mother of Charles V.

  [344] In a letter of the Viceroy Mendoza to the King, April 17,
  1540, Samaniego is mentioned as the warden of a fortress.

Chapter 6

     _Of how all the companies collected in Compostela and set off on
     the journey in good order._

When the viceroy Don Antonio de Mendoza had fixed and arranged
everything as we have related, and the companies and captaincies had
been arranged, he advanced a part of their salaries from the chest
of His Majesty to those in the army who were in greatest need. And
as it seemed to him that it would be rather hard for the friendly
Indians in the country if the army should start from Mexico, he
ordered them to assemble at the city of Compostela, the chief city
in the New Kingdom of Galicia, 110 leagues from Mexico, so that they
could begin their journey there with everything in good order. There
is nothing to tell about what happened on this trip, since they all
finally assembled at Compostela by Shrovetide, in the year (fifteen
hundred and) forty-one.[345] After the whole force had left Mexico,
he ordered Don Pedro de Alarcon[346] to set sail with two ships that
were in the port of La Natividad on the South Sea coast, and go to
the port of Xalisco[347] to take the baggage which the soldiers were
unable to carry, and thence to sail along the coast near the army,
because he had understood from the reports that they would have to
go through the country near the seacoast, and that we could find the
harbors by means of the rivers, and that the ships could always get
news of the army, which turned out afterward to be false, and so
all this stuff was lost, or, rather, those who owned it lost it, as
will be told farther on.[348] After the viceroy had completed all
his arrangements, he set off for Compostela, accompanied by many
noble and rich men. He kept the New Year of (fifteen hundred and)
forty-one at Pasquaro, which is the chief place in the bishopric of
Michoacan, and from there he crossed the whole of New Spain, taking
much pleasure in enjoying the festivals and great receptions which
were given him, till he reached Compostela, which is, as I have said,
110 leagues. There he found the whole company assembled, being well
treated and entertained by Christobal de Oñate, who had the whole
charge of that government[349] for the time being. He had had the
management of it and was in command of all that region when Francisco
Vazquez was made governor. All were very glad when he arrived, and
he made an examination of the company and found all those whom we
have mentioned. He assigned the captains to their companies, and
after this was done, on the next day, after they had all heard mass,
captains and soldiers together, the viceroy made them a very eloquent
short speech, telling them of the fidelity they owed to their general
and showing them clearly the benefits which this expedition might
afford, from the conversion of those peoples as well as in the profit
of those who should conquer the territory, and the advantage to His
Majesty and the claim which they would thus have on his favor and
aid at all times. After he had finished, they all, both captains and
soldiers, gave him their oaths upon the Gospels in a missal that they
would follow their general on this expedition and would obey him in
everything he commanded them, which they faithfully performed, as
will be seen. The next day after this was done, the army started off
with its colors flying. The viceroy, Don Antonio, went with them for
two days, and there he took leave of them, returning to New Spain
with his friends.

  [345] The correct date is 1540. Castañeda carries the error
  throughout his narration, although he gives the year correctly in
  the preface.

  [346] An error for _Hernando_ de Alarcon.

  [347] That is, from a point on the Pacific coast in latitude 19°
  to another in latitude 21° 30´.

  [348] See Alarcon's narrative translated by Hakluyt in his
  _Voyages_, IX. 279-318 (ed. 1904), and also Buckingham Smith,
  _Coleccion de Varios Documentos para la Historia de la Florida_
  (1857), p. 1.

  [349] The province of Nueva Galicia, explored under Guzman's
  direction. See p. 285, note 1.

Chapter 7

     _Of how the army reached Chiametla, and the killing of the
     army-master, and the other things that happened up to the
     arrival at Culiacan._

After the viceroy Don Antonio left them, the army continued its
march. As each one was obliged to transport his own baggage and all
did not know how to fasten the packs, and as the horses started off
fat and plump, they had a good deal of difficulty and labor during
the first few days, and many left many valuable things, giving them
to anyone who wanted them, in order to get rid of carrying them.
In the end necessity, which is all powerful, made them skillful,
so that one could see many gentlemen become carriers, and anybody
who despised this work was not considered a man. With such labors,
which they then thought severe, the army reached Chiametla, where
it was obliged to delay several days to procure food. During this
time the army-master, Lope de Samaniego, went off with some soldiers
to find food, and at one village, a crossbowman having entered it
indiscreetly in pursuit of the enemies, they shot him through the
eye and it passed through his brain, so that he died on the spot.
They also shot five or six of his companions before Diego Lopez, the
alderman from Seville, since the commander was dead, collected the
men and sent word to the general. He put a guard in the village and
over the provisions. There was great confusion in the army when this
news became known. He was buried here. Several sorties were made, by
which food was obtained and several of the natives taken prisoners.
They hanged those who seemed to belong to the district where the
army-master was killed.

It seems that when the general Francisco Vazquez left Culiacan with
Friar Marcos to tell the viceroy Don Antonio de Mendoza the news, as
already related, he left orders for Captain Melchior Diaz and Juan
de Saldivar to start off with a dozen good men from Culiacan and
verify what Friar Marcos had seen and heard. They started and went
as far as Chichilticalli,[350] which is where the wilderness begins,
220 leagues from Culiacan, and there they turned back, not finding
anything important. They reached Chiametla just as the army was ready
to leave, and reported to the general. Although it was kept secret,
the bad news leaked out, and there were some reports which, although
they were exaggerated, did not fail to give an indication of what the
facts were. Friar Marcos, noticing that some were feeling disturbed,
cleared away these clouds, promising that what they would see should
be good, and that he would place the army in a country where their
hands would be filled, and in this way he quieted them so that they
appeared well satisfied. From there the army marched to Culiacan,
making some detours into the country to seize provisions. They were
two leagues from the town of Culiacan at Easter vespers, when the
inhabitants came out to welcome their governor and begged him not to
enter the town till the day after Easter.[351]

  [350] For this locality see p. 299, note 1.

  [351] Culiacan, or San Miguel Culiacan, as it was named by
  Guzman, is in central Sinaloa. Castañeda was a resident of this
  town and evidently joined the expedition there.

Chapter 8

     _Of how the army entered the town of Culiacan and the reception
     it received, and other things which happened before the

When the day after Easter came, the army started in the morning to
go to the town and, as they approached, the inhabitants of the town
came out on to an open plain with foot and horse drawn up in ranks
as if for a battle, and having its seven bronze pieces of artillery
in position, making a show of defending their town. Some of our
soldiers were with them. Our army drew up in the same way and began
a skirmish with them, and after the artillery on both sides had been
fired they were driven back, just as if the town had been taken by
force of arms, which was a pleasant demonstration of welcome, except
for the artilleryman who lost a hand by a shot, from having ordered
them to fire before he had finished drawing out the ramrod. After
the town was taken, the army was well lodged and entertained by the
townspeople, who, as they were all very well-to-do people, took all
the gentlemen and people of quality who were with the army into their
own apartments, although they had lodgings prepared for them all
just outside the town. Some of the townspeople were not ill repaid
for this hospitality, because all had started with fine clothes and
accoutrements, and as they had to carry provisions on their animals
after this, they were obliged to leave their fine stuff, so that
many preferred giving it to their hosts instead of risking it on the
sea by putting it in the ship that had followed the army along the
coast to take the extra baggage, as I have said. After they arrived
and were being entertained in the town, the general, by order of
the viceroy Don Antonio, left Fernandarias de Saabedra, uncle of
Hernandarias de Saabedra, count of Castellar, formerly mayor of
Seville, as his lieutenant and captain in this town. The army rested
here several days, because the inhabitants had gathered a good
stock of provisions that year and each one shared his stock very
gladly with his guests from our army. They not only had plenty to
eat here, but they also had plenty to take away with them, so that
when the departure came they started off with more than six hundred
loaded animals, besides the friendly Indians and the servants--more
than a thousand persons. After a fortnight had passed, the general
started ahead with about fifty horsemen and a few foot soldiers and
most of the Indian allies, leaving the army, which was to follow him
a fortnight later, with Don Tristan de Arellano in command as his

At this time, before his departure, a pretty sort of thing happened
to the general, which I will tell for what it is worth. A young
soldier named Trugillo (Truxillo) pretended that he had seen a vision
while he was bathing in the river. Feigning that he did not want to,
he was brought before the general, whom he gave to understand that
the devil had told him that if he would kill the general, he could
marry his wife, Doña Beatris, and would receive great wealth and
other very fine things. Friar Marcos of Nice preached several sermons
on this, laying it all to the fact that the devil was jealous of the
good which must result from this journey and so wished to break it
up in this way. It did not end here, but the friars who were in the
expedition wrote to their monasteries about it, and this was the
reason the pulpits of Mexico proclaimed strange rumors about this

The general ordered Truxillo to stay in that town and not to go on
the expedition, which was what he was after when he made up that
falsehood, judging from what afterward appeared to be the truth. The
general started off with the force already described to continue his
journey, and the army followed him, as will be related.

Chapter 9

     _Of how the army started from Culiacan and the arrival of the
     general at Cibola, and of the army at Señora and of other things
     that happened._

The general, as has been said, started to continue his journey from
the valley of Culiacan somewhat lightly equipped, taking with him
the friars, since none of them wished to stay behind with the army.
After they had gone three days, a regular friar who could say mass,
named Friar Antonio Victoria, broke his leg, and they brought him
back from the camp to have it treated. He stayed with the army
after this, which was no slight consolation for all. The general
and his force crossed the country without trouble, as they found
everything peaceful, because the Indians knew Friar Marcos and some
of the others who had been with Melchior Diaz when he went with
Juan de Saldibar to investigate. After the general had crossed the
inhabited region and came to Chichilticalli, where the wilderness
begins, and saw nothing favorable, he could not help feeling somewhat
downhearted, for, although the reports were very fine about what
was ahead, there was nobody who had seen it except the Indians who
went with the negro, and these had already been caught in some lies.
Besides all this, he was much affected by seeing that the fame of
Chichilticalli was summed up in one tumbledown house without any
roof, although it appeared to have been a strong place at some former
time when it was inhabited, and it was very plain that it had been
built by a civilized and warlike race of strangers who had come from
a distance. This building was made of red earth.[352] From here they
went on through the wilderness, and in fifteen days came to a river
about eight leagues from Cibola which they called Red River,[353]
because its waters were muddy and reddish. In this river they found
mullets like those of Spain. The first Indians from that country were
seen here--two of them, who ran away to give the news. During the
night following the next day, about two leagues from the village,
some Indians in a safe place yelled so that, although the men were
ready for anything, some were so excited that they put their saddles
on hind-side before; but these were the new fellows. When the
veterans had mounted and ridden round the camp, the Indians fled.
None of them could be caught because they knew the country.

  [352] Chichilticalli, or the "Red House," was so named by the
  Aztec Indians on account of its color. It was doubtless situated
  on or near the Rio Gila, east of the mouth of the San Pedro,
  probably not far from the present Solomonsville in southern

  [353] The Zuñi River, within the present Arizona. Its waters are
  very muddy in springtime, which is the only time of the year that
  it flows into the Little Colorado.

The next day they entered the settled country in good order, and when
they saw the first village, which was Cibola, such were the curses
that some hurled at Friar Marcos that I pray God may protect him from

It is a little, crowded village,[354] looking as if it had been
crumpled all up together. There are haciendas in New Spain which
make a better appearance at a distance. It is a village of about
two hundred warriors, is three and four stories high, with the
houses small and having only a few rooms, and without a courtyard.
One yard serves for each section.[355] The people of the whole
district had collected here, for there are seven villages in the
province, and some of the others are even larger and stronger than
Cibola. These folks waited for the army, drawn up by divisions
in front of the village. When they refused to have peace on the
terms the interpreters extended to them, but appeared defiant, the
Santiago[356] was given, and they were at once put to flight. The
Spaniards then attacked the village, which was taken with not a
little difficulty, since they held the narrow and crooked entrance.
During the attack they knocked the general down with a large stone,
and would have killed him but for Don Garcia Lopez de Cardenas and
Hernando de Alvarado, who threw themselves above him and drew him
away, receiving the blows of the stones, which were not few. But the
first fury of the Spaniards could not be resisted, and in less than
an hour they entered the village and captured it. They discovered
food there, which was the thing they were most in need of. After this
the whole province was at peace.

  [354] This was the Zuñi Indian pueblo of Hawikuh, one of their
  seven villages, from which Coronado wrote to the Viceroy Mendoza,
  dating his letter "from the province of Cevola, and this city of
  Granada, the 3d of August, 1540." (See Winship's translation in
  _Fourteenth Report of the Bureau of Ethnology_, pp. 552-563.)
  Hawikuh, or "Granada," was situated about fifteen miles southwest
  of the present Zuñi, near the Zuñi River, in New Mexico, and its
  ruins are still to be seen. This was the pueblo in which Estévan
  doubtless lost his life the year before, and which was viewed
  from an adjacent height by Fray Marcos. Hawikuh was the seat of a
  mission established by the Franciscans in 1629; it was abandoned
  in 1670 after having been raided by the Apaches and its priest
  killed. The name "Cibola," now and later applied to Hawikuh, is
  believed to be a Spanish form of _Shiwina_, the Zuñi name for
  their tribal range. _Cibolo_ later became the term by which the
  Spaniards of Mexico designated the bison.

  [355] The houses were built in terrace fashion, one above the
  other, the roof of one tier forming a sort of front yard for the
  tier of houses next above it.

  [356] The war cry or "loud invocation addressed to Saint James
  before engaging in battle with the Infidels."--Captain John
  Stevens's _Dictionary_.

The army which had stayed with Don Tristan de Arellano started to
follow their general, all loaded with provisions, with lances on
their shoulders, and all on foot, so as to have the horses loaded.
With no slight labor from day to day, they reached a province which
Cabeza de Vaca had named Hearts (Corazones), because the people here
offered him many hearts of animals.[357] He founded a town here and
named it San Hieronimo de los Corazones (Saint Jerome of the Hearts).
After it had been started, it was seen that it could not be kept up
here, and so it was afterward transferred to a valley which had been
called Señora. The Spaniards call it Señora,[358] and so it will be
known by this name.

  [357] See Cabeza de Vaca's narrative in the present volume. The
  place was at or near the present Ures, on the Rio Sonora in
  Sonora, Mexico.

  [358] Whence the name of the present state of Sonora.

From here a force went down the river to the seacoast to find the
harbor and to find out about the ships. Don Rodrigo Maldonado, who
was captain of those who went in search of the ships, did not find
them, but he brought back with him an Indian so large and tall that
the best man in the army reached only to his chest.[359] It was said
that other Indians were even taller on that coast. After the rains
ceased the army went on to where the town of Señora was afterward
located,[360] because there were provisions in that region, so that
they were able to wait there for orders from the general.

  [359] Evidently a Seri Indian. The Seri are a wild tribe speaking
  an independent language and occupying the island of Tiburon and
  the adjacent Sonora coast of the Gulf of California. They are
  noted for their stature. For an account of this people, see McGee
  in _Seventeenth Report of the Bureau of American Ethnology_, pt.
  1 (1898).

  [360] Believed to be in the present Sonora valley, where it opens
  out into a broader plain a number of miles above Ures.

About the middle of the month of October,[361] Captains Melchior Diaz
and Juan Gallego came from Cibola, Juan Gallego[362] on his way to
New Spain and Melchior Diaz to stay in the new town of Hearts, in
command of the men who remained there. He was to go along the coast
in search of the ships.

  [361] This should be September.

  [362] It is not without interest to record here the finding, in
  1886, in western Kansas, of a sword-blade, greatly corroded,
  but still bearing sufficient trace of the name "Juan Gallego"
  to enable its determination, as well as the inscription "_No me
  saques sin razon. No me embaines sin honor_." See W. E. Ritchey
  in _Mail and Breeze_, Topeka, Kansas, July 26, 1902.

Chapter 10

     _Of how the army started from the town of Señora, leaving it
     inhabited, and how it reached Cibola, and of what happened to
     Captain Melchior Diaz on his expedition in search of the ships
     and how he discovered the Tison (Firebrand) River._

After Melchior Diaz and Juan Gallego had arrived in the town of
Señora, it was announced that the army was to depart for Cibola;
that Melchior Diaz was to remain in charge of that town with eighty
men; that Juan Gallego was going to New Spain with messages for the
viceroy, and that Friar Marcos was going back with him, because he
did not think it was safe for him to stay in Cibola, seeing that his
report had turned out to be entirely false, because the kingdoms that
he had told about had not been found, nor the populous cities, nor
the wealth of gold, nor the precious stones which he had reported,
nor the fine clothes, nor other things that had been proclaimed
from the pulpits. When this had been announced, those who were to
remain were selected and the rest loaded their provisions and set off
in good order about the middle of September on the way to Cibola,
following their general.

Don Tristan de Arellano stayed in this new town with the weakest
men, and from this time on there was nothing but mutinies and
strife, because after the army had gone Captain Melchior Diaz took
twenty-five of the most efficient men, leaving in his place one Diego
de Alcaraz, a man unfitted to have people under his command. He took
guides and went toward the north and west in search of the seacoast.
After going about 150 leagues, they came to a province of exceedingly
tall and strong men--like giants. They are naked and live in large
straw cabins built underground like smoke-houses, with only the
straw roof above ground. They enter these at one end and come out at
the other. More than a hundred persons, old and young, sleep in one
cabin. When they carry anything, they can take a load of more than
three or four hundred weight on their heads. Once when our men wished
to fetch a log for the fire, and six men were unable to carry it, one
of these Indians is reported to have come and raised it in his arms,
put it on his head alone, and carried it very easily. They eat bread
cooked in the ashes, as big as the large two-pound loaves of Castile.
On account of the great cold, they carry a firebrand (_tison_) in
the hand when they go from one place to another, with which they
warm the other hand and the body as well, and in this way they keep
shifting it every now and then.[363] On this account the large river
which is in that country was called Rio del Tison (Firebrand River).
It is a very great river and is more than two leagues wide at its
mouth; here it is half a league across. Here the captain heard that
there had been ships at a point three days down toward the sea. When
he reached the place where the ships had been, which was more than
fifteen leagues up the river from the mouth of the harbor, they found
written on a tree: "Alarcon reached this place; there are letters at
the foot of this tree." He dug up the letters and learned from them
how long Alarcon had waited for news of the army and that he had gone
back with the ships to New Spain, because he was unable to proceed
farther, since this sea was a bay, which was formed by the Isle of
the Marquis, which is called California, and it was explained that
California was not an island, but a point of the mainland forming the
other side of that gulf.[364]

  [363] These were evidently the Cocopa, a Yuman tribe, whose
  descendants still inhabit the lower Rio Colorado, which is the
  Rio del Tison of this narrative. The Cocopa now number perhaps

  [364] It had been supposed that Lower California, the "Isle of
  the Marquis" (Cortés), was an island, yet notwithstanding its
  determination as a peninsula it appeared as an island on maps of
  a much later period.

After he had seen this, the captain turned back to go up the river,
without going down to the sea, to find a ford by which to cross to
the other side, so as to follow the other bank. After they had gone
five or six days, it seemed to them as if they could cross on rafts.
For this purpose they called together a large number of the natives,
who were waiting for a favorable opportunity to make an attack on
our men, and when they saw that the strangers wanted to cross, they
helped make the rafts with all zeal and diligence, so as to catch
them in this way on the water and drown them or else so divide them
that they could not help one another. While the rafts were being
made, a soldier who had been out around the camp saw a large number
of armed men go across to a mountain, where they were waiting till
the soldiers should cross the river. He reported this, and an Indian
was quietly shut up, in order to find out the truth, and when they
tortured him he told all the arrangements that had been made. These
were, that when our men were crossing and part of them had got over
and part were on the river and part were waiting to cross, those who
were on the rafts should drown those they were taking across and the
rest of their force should make an attack on both sides of the river.
If they had had as much discretion and courage as they had strength
and power, the attempt would have succeeded.[365]

  [365] The rafts, or _balsas_, referred to, were made by tying
  together a large number of reeds. The vessel was wide at the
  middle and pointed at the ends, and was very buoyant.

When he knew their plan, the captain had the Indian who had confessed
the affair killed secretly, and that night he was thrown into the
river with a weight, so that the Indians would not suspect that they
were found out. The next day they noticed that our men suspected
them, and so they made an attack, shooting showers of arrows, but
when the horses began to catch up with them and the lances wounded
them without mercy and the musketeers likewise made good shots, they
had to leave the plain and take to the mountain, until not a man of
them was to be seen. The force then came back and crossed all right,
the Indian allies and the Spaniards going across on the rafts and
the horses swimming alongside the rafts, where we will leave them to
continue their journey.

To relate how the army that was on its way to Cibola got on:
Everything went along in good shape, since the general had left
everything peaceful, because he wished the people in that region
to be contented and without fear and willing to do what they were
ordered. In a province called Vacapan there was a large quantity
of prickly pears, of which the natives make a great deal of
preserves.[366] They gave this preserve away freely, and as the men
of the army ate much of it, they all fell sick with a headache and
fever, so that the natives might have done much harm to the force if
they had wished. This lasted regularly twenty-four hours. After this
they continued their march until they reached Chichilticalli. The
men in the advance guard saw a flock of sheep one day after leaving
this place. I myself saw and followed them. They had extremely large
bodies and long wool; their horns were very thick and large, and when
they run they throw back their heads and put their horns on the ridge
of their back. They are used to the rough country, so that we could
not catch them and had to leave them.[367]

  [366] Vacapan was apparently an Opata pueblo, or rather two
  pueblos, on a branch of the Rio Yaqui, which the Spaniards passed
  through shortly before reaching Corazones (Ures) on the Rio
  Sonora. The preserved cactus fruit is regarded highly by all the
  Indians of the general region even to-day, and in season they
  subsist largely upon it. The saguara (_Cereus giganteus_), or
  great columnar cactus, furnishes the chief supply.

  [367] The well-known Rocky Mountain sheep. As late as twenty
  years ago some of the mountain ranges of southeastern Arizona,
  especially the Catalina Mountains, were noted for this animal.

Three days after we entered the wilderness we found a horn on the
bank of a river that flows in the bottom of a very steep, deep gully,
which the general had noticed and left there for his army to see,
for it was six feet long and as thick at the base as a man's thigh.
It seemed to be more like the horn of a goat than of any other
animal. It was something worth seeing. The army proceeded and was
about a day's march from Cibola when a very cold tornado came up in
the afternoon, followed by a great fall of snow, which was a bad
combination for the carriers. The army went on till it reached some
caves in a rocky ridge, late in the evening. The Indian allies, who
were from New Spain, and for the most part from warm countries, were
in great danger. They felt the coldness of that day so much that it
was hard work the next day taking care of them, for they suffered
much pain and had to be carried on the horses, the soldiers walking.
After this labor the army reached Cibola, where their general was
waiting for them, with their quarters all ready, and here they were
reunited, except some captains and men who had gone off to discover
other provinces.

Chapter 11

     _Of how Don Pedro de Tovar discovered Tusayan or Tutahaco[368]
     and Don Garcia Lopez de Cardenas saw the Firebrand River, and
     the other things that had happened._

  [368] Compare Chapter 13. These two groups of pueblos were not
  the same.

While the things already described were taking place, Cibola being
at peace, the general, Francisco Vazquez, found out from the people
of the province about the provinces that lay around it, and got them
to tell their friends and neighbors that Christians had come into
the country, whose only desire was to be their friends, and to find
out about good lands to live in, and for them to come to see the
strangers and talk with them. They did this, since they know how to
communicate with one another in these regions, and they informed him
about a province with seven villages of the same sort as theirs,
although somewhat different. They had nothing to do with these
people. This province is called Tusayan. It is twenty-five leagues
from Cibola. The villages are high and the people are warlike.

The general had sent Don Pedro de Tovar to these villages with
seventeen horsemen and three or four foot-soldiers.[369] Juan de
Padilla, a Franciscan friar, who had been a fighting man in his
youth, went with them. When they reached the region, they entered the
country so quietly that nobody observed them, because there were no
settlements or farms between one village and another and the people
do not leave the villages except to go to their farms, especially
at this time, when they had heard that Cibola had been captured
by very fierce people, who travelled on animals which ate people.
This information was generally believed by those who had never seen
horses, although it was so strange as to cause much wonder. Our men
arrived after nightfall and were able to conceal themselves under
the edge of the village, where they heard the natives talking in
their houses. But in the morning they were discovered and drew up
in regular order, while the natives came out to meet them, with
bows, and shields, and wooden clubs, drawn up in lines without any
confusion. The interpreter was given a chance to speak to them and
give them due warning, for they were very intelligent people, but
nevertheless they drew lines and insisted that our men should not
go across these lines toward their village.[370] While they were
talking, some men acted as if they would cross the lines, and one of
the natives lost control of himself and struck a horse a blow on the
cheek of the bridle with his club. Friar Juan, fretted by the time
that was being wasted in talking with them, said to the captain:
"To tell the truth, I do not know why we came here." When the men
heard this, they gave the Santiago so suddenly that they ran down
many Indians and the others fled to the town in confusion. Some
indeed did not have a chance to do this, so quickly did the people
in the village come out with presents, asking for peace. The captain
ordered his force to collect, and, as the natives did not do any
more harm, he and those who were with him found a place to establish
their headquarters near the village. They had dismounted here when
the natives came peacefully, saying that they had come to give in
the submission of the whole province and that they wanted him to be
friends with them and to accept the presents which they gave him.
This was some cotton cloth, although not much, because they do not
make it in that district.[371] They also gave him some dressed skins
and cornmeal, and pine nuts[372] and corn and birds of the country.
Afterward they presented some turquoises,[373] but not many. The
people of the whole district came together that day and submitted
themselves, and they allowed him to enter their villages freely to
visit, buy, sell, and barter with them.

  [369] Castañeda speaks as a member of the "army," not of the
  advance guard. See the preceding chapter.

  [370] These lines were drawn in corn meal and must not be
  crossed. To this day similar lines of meal are made across a
  trail when certain ceremonies are being performed. The Spaniards
  were now at the pueblo of Awatobi, the first village of the Hopi
  (Moqui) people of Tusayan, in northeastern Arizona, reached
  in coming from the southward. It was destroyed by the other
  Hopi villagers in 1700, because the Awatobi people favored the
  re-establishment of the Spanish mission that had been destroyed
  in the great Pueblo revolt of 1680.

  [371] Castañeda, speaking from hearsay with respect to the
  Tovar expedition, errs in this statement, as the Hopi were the
  principal cotton growers and weavers of all the Pueblos. Later
  Spanish accounts all agree on this point. Indeed, even now the
  Hopi cotton kilts, sashes, and ceremonial robes are bartered
  throughout the Pueblo region.

  [372] Piñon nuts.

  [373] Obtained by trade with the Rio Grande Pueblos, who mined
  them in the Cerillos, southeast of Santa Fé, New Mexico. It is
  from the same deposits that much of the "matrix turquoise" of our
  present-day commerce is derived.

It is governed like Cibola, by an assembly of the oldest men. They
have their governors and generals. This was where they obtained the
information about a large river, and that several days down the river
there were some people with very large bodies.[374]

  [374] See the reference to the Cocopa Indians met by Melchior
  Diaz, in Chapter 10.

As Don Pedro de Tovar was not commissioned to go farther, he returned
from there and gave this information to the general, who dispatched
Don Garcia Lopez de Cardenas with about twelve companions to go to
see this river. He was well received when he reached Tusayan and was
entertained by the natives, who gave him guides for his journey.
They started from here loaded with provisions, for they had to go
through a desert country before reaching the inhabited region, which
the Indians said was more than twenty days' journey. After they had
gone twenty days they came to the banks of the river, which seemed
to be more than three or four leagues in an air line across to the
other bank of the stream which flowed between them.[375] This country
was elevated and full of low twisted pines, very cold, and lying
open toward the north, so that, this being the warm season, no one
could live there on account of the cold. They spent three days on
this bank looking for a passage down to the river, which looked from
above as if the water was six feet across, although the Indians said
it was half a league wide. It was impossible to descend, for after
these three days Captain Melgosa and one Juan Galeras and another
companion, who were the three lightest and most agile men, made an
attempt to go down at the least difficult place, and went down until
those who were above were unable to keep sight of them. They returned
about four o'clock in the afternoon, not having succeeded in reaching
the bottom on account of the great difficulties which they found,
because what seemed to be easy from above was not so, but instead
very hard and difficult. They said that they had been down about a
third of the way and that the river seemed very large from the place
which they reached, and that from what they saw they thought the
Indians had given the width correctly. Those who stayed above had
estimated that some huge rocks on the sides of the cliffs seemed to
be about as tall as a man, but those who went down swore that when
they reached these rocks they were bigger than the great tower of
Seville.[376] They did not go farther up the river, because they
could not get water. Before this they had had to go a league or two
inland every day late in the evening in order to find water, and the
guides said that if they should go four days farther it would not be
possible to go on, because there was no water within three or four
days, for when they travel across this region themselves they take
with them women loaded with water in gourds, and bury the gourds of
water along the way, to use when they return, and besides this, they
travel in one day over what it takes us two days to accomplish.

  [375] The Grand Cañon of the Colorado, now visited and described
  by white men for the first time.

  [376] The Giralda, or celebrated bell-tower of the Cathedral of
  Seville, which is 275 feet high.

This was the Tison (Firebrand) River, much nearer its source than
where Melchior Diaz and his company crossed it. These were the same
kind of Indians, judging from what was afterward learned. They came
back from this point and the expedition did not have any other
result. On the way they saw some water falling over a rock and
learned from the guides that some bunches of crystals which were
hanging there were salt. They went and gathered a quantity of this
and brought it back to Cibola, dividing it among those who were
there. They gave the general a written account of what they had seen,
because one Pedro de Sotomayor had gone with Don Garcia Lopez [de
Cardenas] as chronicler for the army. The villages of that province
[of Tusayan] remained peaceful, since they were never visited again,
nor was any attempt made to find other peoples in that direction.

Chapter 12

     _Of how people came from Cicuye to Cibola to see the Christians,
     and how Hernando de Alvarado went to see the cows._

While they were making these discoveries, some Indians came to Cibola
from a village which was seventy leagues east of this province,
called Cicuye. Among them was a captain who was called Bigotes
(Whiskers) by our men, because he wore a long mustache. He was a
tall, well-built young fellow, with a fine figure. He told the
general that they had come in response to the notice which had been
given, to offer themselves as friends, and that if we wanted to go
through their country they would consider us as their friends. They
brought a present of tanned hides and shields and head-pieces, which
were very gladly received, and the general gave them some glass
dishes and a number of pearls and little bells which they prized
highly, because these were things they had never seen. They described
some cows which, from a picture that one of them had painted on his
skin, seemed to be cows, although from the hides this did not seem
possible, because the hair was woolly and snarled so that we could
not tell what sort of skins they had. The general ordered Hernando de
Alvarado to take twenty companions and go with them, and gave him a
commission for eighty days, after which he should return to give an
account of what he had found.[377]

  [377] The report of Alvarado, translated by George Parker
  Winship, is published in the _Fourteenth Annual Report of the
  Bureau of Ethnology_ (Washington, 1896).

Captain Alvarado started on this journey and in five days reached a
village which was on a rock called Acuco[378] having a population of
about two hundred men. These people were robbers, feared by the whole
country round about. The village was very strong, because it was up
on a rock out of reach, having steep sides in every direction, and so
high that it was a very good musket that could throw a ball as high.
There was only one entrance by a stairway built by hand, which began
at the top of a slope which is around the foot of the rock.[379]
There was a broad stairway for about two hundred steps, then a
stretch of about one hundred narrower steps, and at the top they had
to go up about three times as high as a man by means of holes in the
rock, in which they put the points of their feet, holding on at the
same time by their hands. There was a wall of large and small stones
at the top, which they could roll down without showing themselves, so
that no army could possibly be strong enough to capture the village.
On the top they had room to sow and store a large amount of corn,
and cisterns to collect snow and water.[380] These people came down
to the plain ready to fight, and would not listen to any arguments.
They drew lines on the ground and determined to prevent our men from
crossing these, but when they saw that they would have to fight
they offered to make peace before any harm had been done. They went
through their forms of making peace, which is to touch the horses and
take their sweat and rub themselves with it, and to make crosses with
the fingers of the hands. But to make the most secure peace they put
their hands across each other, and they keep this peace inviolably.
They made a present of a large number of [turkey-] cocks with very
big wattles, much bread, tanned deerskins, pine [piñon] nuts, flour
[cornmeal], and corn.

  [378] This is the pueblo of Acoma, about fifty miles east of
  Zuñi. It occupies the summit of the same rocky mesa, 357 feet
  high, that it did in Coronado's time. The name here given is
  doubtless an attempt to give the Zuñi designation, _Hákukia_,
  from _Ako_, the name by which it is known to the Acoma people.
  The present population is 650. Acoma has the distinction of being
  the oldest continuously occupied settlement in the United States.

  [379] The slope referred to is an immense sand-dune. The horse
  trail did not exist in Coronado's time, having been built by Fray
  Juan Ramirez, who established a mission at Acoma in 1629.

  [380] The Acomas still obtain their water supply from this source.

From here they went to a province called Triguex,[381] three days
distant. The people all came out peacefully, seeing that Whiskers
was with them. These men are feared throughout all those provinces.
Alvarado sent messengers back from here to advise the general to come
and winter in this country. The general was not a little relieved to
hear that the country was growing better. Five days from here he came
to Cicuye,[382] a very strong village four stories high. The people
came out from the village with signs of joy to welcome Hernando de
Alvarado and their captain, and brought them into the town with drums
and pipes something like flutes, of which they have a great many.
They made many presents of cloth and turquoises, of which there are
quantities in that region.[383] The Spaniards enjoyed themselves
here for several days and talked with an Indian slave, a native of
the country toward Florida, which is the region Don Fernando de
Soto discovered. This fellow said that there were large settlements
in the farther part of that country. Hernando de Alvarado took him
to guide them to the cows; but he told them so many and such great
things about the wealth of gold and silver in his country that they
did not care about looking for cows, but returned after they had
seen some few, to report the rich news to the general. They called
the Indian "Turk," because he looked like one. Meanwhile the general
had sent Don Garcia Lopez de Cardenas to Tiguex with men to get
lodgings ready for the army, which had arrived from Señora about this
time, before taking them there for the winter; and when Hernando de
Alvarado reached Tiguex, on his way back from Cicuye, he found Don
Garcia Lopez de Cardenas there, and so there was no need for him to
go farther. As it was necessary that the natives should give the
Spaniards lodging places, the people in one village had to abandon
it and go to others belonging to their friends, and they took with
them nothing but themselves and the clothes they had on. Information
was obtained here about many towns up toward the north, and I believe
that it would have been much better to follow this direction than
that of the Turk, who was the cause of all the misfortunes which

  [381] Tiguex. See p. 317, note.

  [382] Pecos. See p. 329, note 2.

  [383] See p. 308, note 3.

Chapter 13

     _Of how the general went toward Tutahaco with a few men and left
     the army with Don Tristan, who took it to Tiguex._

Everything already related had happened when Don Tristan de Arellano
reached Cibola from Señora. Soon after he arrived, the general,
who had received notice of a province containing eight villages,
took thirty of the men who were most fully rested and went to see
it, going from there directly to Tiguex with the skilled guides
who conducted him. He left orders for Don Tristan de Arellano to
proceed to Tiguex by the direct road, after the men had rested twenty
days. On this journey, between one day when they left the camping
place and mid-day of the third day, when they saw some snow-covered
mountains, toward which they went in search of water, neither the
Spaniards nor the horses nor the servants drank anything. They were
able to stand it because of the severe cold, although with great
difficulty. In eight days they reached Tutahaco,[384] where they
learned that there were other towns down the river. These people
were peaceful. The villages are terraced, like those at Tiguex, and
of the same style. The general went up the river from here, visiting
the whole province, until he reached Tiguex, where he found Hernando
de Alvarado and the Turk. He felt no slight joy at such good news,
because the Turk said that in his country there was a river in the
level country which was two leagues wide, in which there were fishes
as big as horses, and large numbers of very big canoes, with more
than twenty rowers on a side, and that they carried sails, and that
their lords sat on the poop under awnings, and on the prow they had
a great golden eagle. He said also that the lord of that country
took his afternoon nap under a great tree on which were hung a great
number of little gold bells, which put him to sleep as they swung in
the air. He said also that everyone had their ordinary dishes made of
wrought plate, and the jugs and bowls were of gold. He called gold
_acochis_. For the present he was believed, on account of the ease
with which he told it and because they showed him metal ornaments and
he recognized them and said they were not gold, and he knew gold and
silver very well and did not care anything about other metals.[385]

  [384] This name has always been a problem to students of the
  expedition, and various attempts have been made to determine
  its application. Jaramillo, one of Coronado's captains, applies
  the name to Acoma, and indeed its final syllables are the same
  as the native name of Acoma. In the heading to Chapter 11
  Castañeda erroneously makes Tutahaco synonymous with Tusayan. The
  description indicates that the Tigua village of Isleta and others
  in its vicinity on the Rio Grande in the sixteenth century were

  [385] This Eldorado is seemingly a combination of falsehood and
  misinterpretation. The Turk's only means of communication were
  signs; and we shall see later on that he deliberately deceived
  the Spaniards for the purpose of leading them astray. The name
  _acochis_ here given is an aid in the identification of the
  mysterious province of Quivira. See p. 337, note 1.

The general sent Hernando de Alvarado back to Cicuye to demand some
gold bracelets which this Turk said they had taken from him at the
time they captured him. Alvarado went, and was received as a friend
at the village, and when he demanded the bracelets they said they
knew nothing at all about them, saying the Turk was deceiving him and
was lying. Captain Alvarado, seeing that there were no other means,
got the captain Whiskers and the governor to come to his tent, and
when they had come he put them in chains. The villagers prepared to
fight, and let fly their arrows, denouncing Hernando de Alvarado, and
saying that he was a man who had no respect for peace and friendship.
Hernando de Alvarado started back to Tiguex, where the general
kept them prisoners more than six months. This began the want of
confidence in the word of the Spaniards whenever there was talk of
peace from this time on, as will be seen by what happened afterward.

Chapter 14

     _Of how the army went from Cibola to Tiguex and what happened to
     them on the way, on account of the snow._

We have already said that when the general started from Cibola,
he left orders for Don Tristan de Arellano to start twenty days
later. He did so as soon as he saw that the men were well rested and
provided with food and eager to start off to find their general. He
set off with his force toward Tiguex, and the first day they made
their camp in the best, largest, and finest village of that (Cibola)
province.[386] This is the only village that has houses with seven
stories. In this village certain houses are used as fortresses; they
are higher than the others and set up above them like towers, and
there are embrasures and loopholes in them for defending the roofs
of the different stories, because, like the other villages, they
do not have streets, and the flat roofs are all of a height and are
used in common. The roofs have to be reached first, and these upper
houses are the means of defending them. It began to snow on us there,
and the force took refuge under the wings of the village, which
extend out like balconies, with wooden pillars beneath, because they
generally use ladders to go up to those balconies, since they do not
have any doors below.[387]

  [386] This was Matsaki, at the northwestern base of Thunder
  Mountain, about three miles east of the present Zuñi and eighteen
  miles northeast of Hawikuh, where the advance force had encamped.
  The ruins may still be seen, but no standing walls are visible.

  [387] The first-story rooms were entered by means of hatchways
  through the roof. As the necessity for defence no longer exists,
  the rooms of the lower stories of Zuñi houses are provided with
  doors and windows.

The army continued its march from here after it stopped snowing, and
as the season had already advanced into December, during the ten
days that the army was delayed, it did not fail to snow during the
evenings and nearly every night, so that they had to clear away a
large amount of snow when they came to where they wanted to make a
camp. The road could not be seen, but the guides managed to find it,
as they knew the country. There are junipers and pines all over the
country, which they used in making large brushwood fires, the smoke
and heat of which melted the snow from two to four yards all around
the fire. It was a dry snow, so that although it fell on the baggage,
and covered it for half a man's height, it did not hurt it. It fell
all night long, covering the baggage and the soldiers and their beds,
piling up in the air, so that if anyone had suddenly come upon the
army nothing would have been seen but mountains of snow. The horses
stood half buried in it. It kept those who were underneath warm
instead of cold. The army passed by the great rock of Acuco,[388] and
the natives, who were peaceful, entertained our men well, giving them
provisions and birds, although there are not many people here, as I
have said. Many of the gentlemen went up to the top to see it, and
they had great difficulty in going up the steps in the rock, because
they were not used to them, for the natives go up and down so easily
that they carry loads and the women carry water, and they do not seem
even to touch their hands, although our men had to pass their weapons
up from one to another.

  [388] The army passed from Cibola by way of the present farming
  village of Pescado, Inscription Rock or El Morro (thirty miles
  east of Zuñi), and over the Zuñi Mountains to Acoma. Alvarado
  followed an almost impassable trail eastward from Hawikuh, across
  a great lava flow, to reach Acoma.

From here they went on to Tiguex, where they were well received and
taken care of, and the great good news of the Turk gave no little joy
and helped lighten their hard labors, although when the army arrived
we found the whole country or province in revolt, for reasons which
were not slight in themselves, as will be shown, and our men had also
burnt a village the day before the army arrived, and returned to the

Chapter 15

     _Of why Tiguex revolted, and how they were punished, without
     being to blame for it._

It has been related how the general reached Tiguex,[389] where he
found Don Garcia Lopez de Cardenas and Hernando de Alvarado, and how
he sent the latter back to Cicuye, where he took the captain Whiskers
and the governor of the village, who was an old man, prisoners. The
people of Tiguex did not feel well about this seizure. In addition
to this, the general wished to obtain some clothing to divide among
his soldiers, and for this purpose he summoned one of the chief
Indians of Tiguex, with whom he had already had much intercourse
and with whom he was on good terms, who was called Juan Aleman by
our men, after a Juan Aleman who lived in Mexico, whom he was said
to resemble. The general told him that he must furnish about three
hundred or more pieces of cloth, which he needed to give his people.
He said that he was not able to do this, but that it pertained to
the governors; and that besides this, they would have to consult
together and divide it among the villages, and that it was necessary
to make the demand of each town separately. The general did this, and
ordered certain of the gentlemen who were with him to go and make the
demand; and as there were twelve villages, some of them went on one
side of the river and some on the other. As they were in very great
need, they did not give the natives a chance to consult about it, but
when they came to a village they demanded what they had to give, so
that they could proceed at once. Thus these people could do nothing
except take off their own cloaks and give them to make up the number
demanded of them. And some of the soldiers who were in these parties,
when the collectors gave them some blankets or cloaks which were not
such as they wanted, if they saw any Indian with a better one on,
they exchanged with him without more ado, not stopping to find out
the rank of the man they were stripping, which caused not a little
hard feeling.

  [389] Tiguex (pronounced Tee-guaysh') is the name of a group
  of Pueblo tribes, now consisting of Isleta, Sandia, Taos, and
  Picuris, speaking the Tigua language, as it is now designated.
  Their principal village in Coronado's time was also called Tiguex
  by the Spaniards; this was the Puaray of forty years later
  (1583), the first time the native name was recorded. It was
  situated at the site of Bernalillo, on the Rio Grande, and was
  inhabited up to the time of the Pueblo rebellion of 1680, when it
  contained two hundred Tiguas and Spaniards.

Besides what I have just said, one whom I will not name, out of
regard for him, left the village where the camp was and went to
another village about a league distant, and seeing a pretty woman
there he called her husband down to hold his horse by the bridle
while he went up; and as the village was entered by the upper story,
the Indian supposed he was going to some other part of it. While he
was there the Indian heard some slight noise, and then the Spaniard
came down, took his horse, and went away. The Indian went up and
learned that he had violated, or tried to violate, his wife, and so
he came with the important men of the town to complain that a man had
violated his wife, and he told how it happened. When the general made
all the soldiers and the persons who were with him come together, the
Indian did not recognize the man, either because he had changed his
clothes or for whatever other reason there may have been, but he said
that he could tell the horse, because he had held his bridle, and
so he was taken to the stables, and found the horse, and said that
the master of the horse must be the man. He denied doing it, seeing
that he had not been recognized, and it may be that the Indian
was mistaken in the horse; anyway, he went off without getting any
satisfaction. The next day one of the Indians, who was guarding the
horses of the army, came running in, saying that a companion of his
had been killed, and that the Indians of the country were driving
off the horses toward their villages. The Spaniards tried to collect
the horses again, but many were lost, besides seven of the general's

  [390] Antonio de Espejo learned of this occurrence at "Puala"
  (Puaray) when the place was visited by him in 1583 (see
  _Documentos Inéditos de Indias_, XV. 175).

The next day Don Garcia Lopez de Cardenas went to see the villages
and talk with the natives. He found the villages closed by palisades
and a great noise inside, the horses being chased as in a bull fight
and shot with arrows. They were all ready for fighting. Nothing could
be done, because they would not come down on to the plain and the
villages are so strong that the Spaniards could not dislodge them.
The general then ordered Don Garcia Lopez de Cardenas to go and
surround one village with all the rest of the force. This village was
the one where the greatest injury had been done and where the affair
with the Indian woman occurred. Several captains who had gone on in
advance with the general, Juan de Saldivar and Barrionuevo and Diego
Lopez and Melgosa, took the Indians so much by surprise that they
gained the upper story, with great danger, for they wounded many of
our men from within the houses. Our men were on top of the houses
in great danger for a day and a night and part of the next day, and
they made some good shots with their crossbows and muskets. The
horsemen on the plain with many of the Indian allies from New Spain
smoked them out from the cellars[391] into which they had broken, so
that they begged for peace. Pablo de Melgosa and Diego Lopez, the
alderman from Seville, were left on the roof and answered the Indians
with the same signs they were making for peace, which was to make a
cross. They then put down their arms and received pardon. They were
taken to the tent of Don Garcia, who, according to what he said, did
not know about the peace and thought that they had given themselves
up of their own accord because they had been conquered. As he had
been ordered by the general not to take them alive, but to make an
example of them so that the other natives would fear the Spaniards,
he ordered two hundred stakes to be prepared at once to burn them
alive. Nobody told him about the peace that had been granted them,
for the soldiers knew as little as he, and those who should have
told him about it remained silent, not thinking that it was any of
their business. Then when the enemies saw that the Spaniards were
binding them and beginning to roast them, about a hundred men who
were in the tent began to struggle and defend themselves with what
there was there and with the stakes they could seize. Our men who
were on foot attacked the tent on all sides, so that there was great
confusion around it, and then the horsemen chased those who escaped.
As the country was level, not a man of them remained alive, unless it
was some who remained hidden in the village and escaped that night
to spread throughout the country the news that the strangers did
not respect the peace they had made, which afterward proved a great
misfortune. After this was over, it began to snow, and they abandoned
the village and returned to the camp just as the army came from

  [391] The pueblos are not provided with cellars. The underground
  ceremonial chambers, or _kivas_, are doubtless here meant.

Chapter 16

     _Of how they besieged Tiguex and took it and of what happened
     during the siege._

As I have already related, it began to snow in that country just
after they captured the village, and it snowed so much that for the
next two months[392] it was impossible to do anything except to go
along the roads to advise them to make peace and tell them that
they would be pardoned and might consider themselves safe, to which
they replied that they did not trust those who did not know how to
keep good faith after they had once given it, and that the Spaniards
should remember that they were keeping Whiskers prisoner and that
they did not keep their word when they burned those who surrendered
in the village. Don Garcia Lopez de Cardenas was one of those who
went to give this notice. He started out with about thirty companions
and went to the village of Tiguex to talk with Juan Aleman. Although
they were hostile, they talked with him and said that if he wished
to talk with them he must dismount and they would come out and talk
with him about a peace, and that if he would send away the horsemen
and make his men keep away, Juan Aleman and another captain would
come out of the village and meet him. Everything was done as they
required, and then when they approached they said that they had no
arms and that he must take his off. Don Garcia Lopez did this in
order to give them confidence, on account of his great desire to get
them to make peace. When he met them, Juan Aleman approached and
embraced him vigorously, while the other two who had come with him
drew two mallets[393] which they had hidden behind their backs and
gave him two such blows over his helmet that they almost knocked him
senseless. Two of the soldiers on horseback had been unwilling to go
very far off, even when he ordered them, and so they were near by and
rode up so quickly that they rescued him from their hands, although
they were unable to catch the enemies because the meeting was so near
the village that of the great shower of arrows which were shot at
them one arrow hit a horse and went through his nose. The horsemen
all rode up together and hurriedly carried off their captain, without
being able to harm the enemy, while many of our men were dangerously
wounded. They then withdrew, leaving a number of men to continue the
attack. Don Garcia Lopez de Cardenas went on with a part of the force
to another village about half a league distant, because almost all
the people in this region had collected into these two villages. As
they paid no attention to the demands made on them except by shooting
arrows from the upper stories with loud yells, and would not hear of
peace, he returned to his companions whom he had left to keep up the
attack on Tiguex. A large number of those in the village came out and
our men rode off slowly, pretending to flee, so that they drew the
enemy on to the plain, and then turned on them and caught several of
their leaders. The rest collected on the roofs of the village and the
captain returned to his camp.

  [392] The altitude of Bernalillo is 5260 feet, and snowstorms are
  sometimes severe.

  [393] Wooden war-clubs.

After this affair the general ordered the army to go and surround
the village. He set out with his men in good order, one day, with
several scaling ladders. When he reached the village, he encamped his
force near by, and then began the siege; but as the enemy had had
several days to provide themselves with stores, they threw down such
quantities of rocks upon our men that many of them were laid out, and
they wounded nearly a hundred with arrows, several of whom afterward
died on account of the bad treatment by an unskillful surgeon who was
with the army. The siege lasted fifty days, during which time several
assaults were made. The lack of water was what troubled the Indians
most. They dug a very deep well inside the village, but were not able
to get water, and while they were making it, it fell in and killed
thirty persons. Two hundred of the besieged died in the fights. One
day when there was a hard fight, they killed Francisco de Obando, a
captain who had been army-master all the time that Don Garcia Lopez
de Cardenas was away making the discoveries already described, and
also Francisco Pobares, a fine gentleman. Our men were unable to
prevent them from carrying Francisco de Obando inside the village,
which was regretted not a little, because he was a distinguished
person, besides being honored on his own account, affable and much
beloved, which was noticeable. One day, before the capture was
completed, they asked to speak to us, and said that, since they knew
we would not harm the women and children, they wished to surrender
their women and sons, because they were using up their water. It
was impossible to persuade them to make peace, as they said that
the Spaniards would not keep an agreement made with them. So they
gave up about a hundred persons, women and boys, who did not want to
leave them. Don Lope de Urrea rode up in front of the town without
his helmet and received the boys and girls in his arms, and when all
of these had been surrendered, Don Lope begged them to make peace,
giving them the strongest promises for their safety. They told him to
go away, as they did not wish to trust themselves to people who had
no regard for friendship or their own word which they had pledged. As
he seemed unwilling to go away, one of them put an arrow in his bow
ready to shoot, and threatened to shoot him with it unless he went
off, and they warned him to put on his helmet, but he was unwilling
to do so, saying that they would not hurt him as long as he stayed
there. When the Indian saw that he did not want to go away, he shot
and planted his arrow between the fore feet of the horse, and then
put another arrow in his bow and repeated that if he did not go away
he would really shoot him. Don Lope put on his helmet and slowly rode
back to where the horsemen were, without receiving any harm from
them. When they saw that he was really in safety, they began to shoot
arrows in showers, with loud yells and cries. The general did not
want to make an assault that day, in order to see if they could be
brought in some way to make peace, which they would not consider.

Fifteen days later they decided to leave the village one night,
and did so, taking the women in their midst. They started about
the fourth watch, in the very early morning, on the side where the
cavalry was. The alarm was given by those in the camp of Don Rodrigo
Maldonado. The enemy attacked them and killed one Spaniard and a
horse and wounded others, but they were driven back with great
slaughter until they came to the river,[394] where the water flowed
swiftly and very cold. They threw themselves into this, and as the
men had come quickly from the whole camp to assist the cavalry,
there were few who escaped being killed or wounded. Some men from the
camp went across the river next day and found many of them who had
been overcome by the great cold. They brought these back, cured them,
and made servants of them. This ended that siege, and the town was
captured, although there were a few who remained in one part of the
town and were captured a few days later.

  [394] The Rio Grande, which is near by.

Two captains, Don Diego de Guevara and Juan de Saldivar, had captured
the other large village after a siege. Having started out very early
one morning to make an ambuscade in which to catch some warriors
who used to come out every morning to try to frighten our camp,
the spies, who had been placed where they could see when they were
coming, saw the people come out and proceed toward the country. The
soldiers left the ambuscade and went to the village and saw the
people fleeing. They pursued and killed large numbers of them. At the
same time those in the camp were ordered to go over the town, and
they plundered it, making prisoners of all the people who were found
in it, amounting to about a hundred women and children. This siege
ended the last of March, in the year '42 [1541]. Other things had
happened in the meantime, which would have been noticed, but that it
would have cut the thread. I have omitted them, but will relate them
now, so that it will be possible to understand what follows.

Chapter 17

     _Of how messengers reached the army from the valley of Señora,
     and how Captain Melchior Diaz died on the expedition to the
     Firebrand River._

We have already related how Captain Melchior Diaz crossed the
Firebrand River [Rio Colorado] on rafts, in order to continue his
discoveries farther in that direction. About the time the siege
ended, messengers reached the army from the city of San Hieronimo
with letters from Diego de Alarcon,[395] who had remained there in
the place of Melchior Diaz. These contained the news that Melchior
Diaz had died while he was conducting his search, and that the force
had returned without finding any of the things they were after. It
all happened in this fashion:

After they had crossed the river they continued their search for the
coast, which here turned back toward the south,[396] or between south
and east, because that arm of the sea enters the land due north, and
this river, which brings its waters down from the north, flowing
toward the south, enters the head of the gulf.[397] Continuing in
the direction they had been going, they came to some sandbanks of
hot ashes which it was impossible to cross without being drowned as
in the sea. The ground they were standing on trembled like a sheet
of paper, so that it seemed as if there were lakes underneath them.
It seemed wonderful and like something infernal, for the ashes to
bubble up here in several places. After they had gone away from this
place, on account of the danger they seemed to be in and of the
lack of water, one day a greyhound belonging to one of the soldiers
chased some sheep which they were taking along for food. When the
captain noticed this, he threw his lance at the dog while his horse
was running, so that it stuck up in the ground, and not being able to
stop his horse he went over the lance so that it nailed him through
the thighs and the iron came out behind, rupturing his bladder.
After this the soldiers turned back with their captain, having to
fight every day with the Indians, who had remained hostile. He lived
about twenty days, during which they proceeded with great difficulty
on account of the necessity of carrying him. They returned in good
order without losing a man, until he died, and after that they were
relieved of the greatest difficulty. When they reached Señora,
Alcaraz despatched the messengers already referred to, so that the
general might know of this and also that some of the soldiers
were ill-disposed and had caused several mutinies, and that he had
sentenced two of them to the gallows, but they had afterward escaped
from the prison.

  [395] Should be Alcaraz. See Chapter 10.

  [396] That is, the west coast of the Gulf of California.

  [397] During 1905 the waters of the Rio Colorado were diverted
  westward below Yuma and are now (1906) flowing into the Salton
  Sink, or Imperial Valley, in southern California, forming an
  immense lake.

When the general learned this, he sent Don Pedro de Tovar to that
city to sift out some of the men. He was accompanied by messengers
whom the general sent to Don Antonio de Mendoza the viceroy, with
an account of what had occurred and with the good news given by
the Turk. When Don Pedro de Tovar arrived there, he found that the
natives of that province had killed a soldier with a poisoned arrow,
which had made only a very little wound in one hand.[398] Several
soldiers went to the place where this happened to see about it, and
they were not very well received. Don Pedro de Tovar sent Diego de
Alcaraz with a force to seize the chiefs and lords of a village in
what they call the Valley of Knaves (_de los Vellacos_), which is in
the hills. After getting there and getting these men prisoners, Diego
de Alcaraz decided to let them go in exchange for some thread and
cloth and other things which the soldiers needed. Finding themselves
free, they renewed the war and attacked them, and as they were strong
and had poison, they killed several Spaniards and wounded others so
that they died on the way back. They retired toward the town, and if
they had not had Indian allies from the country of the Hearts, it
would have gone worse with them. They got back to the town, leaving
seventeen soldiers dead from the poison. They would die in agony from
only a small wound, the bodies breaking out with an insupportable
pestilential stench. When Don Pedro de Tovar saw the harm done, and
as it seemed to them that they could not safely stay in that city, he
moved forty leagues toward Cibola into the valley of Suya,[399] where
we will leave them, in order to relate what happened to the general
and his army after the siege of Tiguex.

  [398] Doubtless the Opatas, whose poisoned arrows are often
  alluded to by later Spanish writers. See, for example, the
  _Rudo Ensayo_ (ca. 1762), (San Augustin, 1863); also Guiteras's
  translation in _Records of the American Catholic Historical
  Society_, V. No. 2 (Philadelphia, June, 1894).

  [399] The upper part of the Rio San Pedro (which rises in
  northern Sonora), according to recent studies by Mr. James Newton

Chapter 18

     _Of how the general managed to leave the country in peace so as
     to go in search of Quivira, where the Turk said there was the
     most wealth._

During the siege of Tiguex the general decided to go to Cicuye and
take the governor with him, in order to give him his liberty and
to promise them that he would give Whiskers his liberty and leave
him in the village, as soon as he should start for Quivira. He was
received peacefully when he reached Cicuye, and entered the village
with several soldiers. They received their governor with much joy
and gratitude. After looking over the village and speaking with the
natives he returned to his army, leaving Cicuye at peace, in the hope
of getting back their captain Whiskers.

After the siege was ended, as we have already related, he sent a
captain to Chia,[400] a fine village with many people, which had sent
to offer its submission. It was four leagues distant to the west
of the river.[401] They found it peaceful and gave it four bronze
cannon, which were in poor condition, to take care of. Six gentlemen
also went to Quirix, a province with seven villages.[402] At the
first village, which had about a hundred inhabitants, the natives
fled, not daring to wait for our men; but they headed them off by
a short cut, riding at full speed, and then they returned to their
houses in the village in perfect safety, and then told the other
villagers about it and reassured them. In this way the entire region
was reassured, little by little, by the time the ice in the river
was broken up and it became possible to ford the river and so to
continue the journey. The twelve villages of Tiguex, however, were
not repopulated at all during the time the army was there, in spite
of every promise of security that could possibly be given to them.

  [400] The present Sia, a small pueblo on the Rio Jemez. In 1583
  Sia was one of a group of five pueblos which Antonio de Espejo
  called Cunames or Punames. It suffered severely by the Pueblo
  revolt a century later, and is now reduced to about a hundred
  people who have great difficulty in gaining a livelihood, owing
  to lack of water for irrigation.

  [401] That is, the Rio Grande.

  [402] The "province" occupied by the Queres or Keresan Indians,
  consisting of the pueblos of Cochiti, San Felipe, and Santo
  Domingo, of to-day--all on the Rio Grande. Sia and Santa Ana are
  and were also Queres villages in Coronado's time, but as these
  were not on the Rio Grande, they may not have been included in
  Castañeda's group. When Espejo visited the Queres in 1583, they
  occupied only five pueblos on the Rio Grande; now only the three
  above mentioned are inhabited.

And when the river, which for almost four months had been frozen over
so that they crossed the ice on horseback, had thawed out, orders
were given for the start for Quivira,[403] where the Turk said there
was some gold and silver, although not so much as in Arche[404] and
the Guaes.[405] There were already some in the army who suspected
the Turk, because a Spaniard named Servantes, who had charge of him
during the siege, solemnly swore that he had seen the Turk talking
with the devil in a pitcher of water, and also that while he had him
under lock so that no one could speak to him, the Turk had asked him
what Christians had been killed by the people at Tiguex. He told him
"nobody," and then the Turk answered: "You lie; five Christians are
dead, including a captain." And as Cervantes knew that he told the
truth, he confessed it so as to find out who had told him about it,
and the Turk said he knew it all by himself and that he did not need
to have anyone tell him in order to know it. And it was on account
of this that he watched him and saw him speaking to the devil in the
pitcher, as I have said.

  [403] See p. 337, note 1.

  [404] Evidently the Harahey of other chroniclers, which has been
  identified with the Pawnee country of southern Nebraska.

  [405] Possibly the Kansa or Kaw tribe, after whom the state of
  Kansas is named.

While all this was going on, preparations were being made to start
from Tiguex. At this time people came from Cibola to see the general,
and he charged them to take good care of the Spaniards who were
coming from Señora with Don Pedro de Tovar. He gave them letters to
give to Don Pedro, informing him what he ought to do and how he
should go to find the army, and that he would find letters under the
crosses which the army would put up along the way. The army left
Tiguex on the fifth of May[406] and returned to Cicuye, which, as I
have said, is twenty-five marches, which means leagues, from there,
taking Whiskers with them.[407] Arrived there, he gave them their
captain, who already went about freely with a guard. The village was
very glad to see him, and the people were peaceful and offered food.
The governor and Whiskers gave the general a young fellow called
Xabe, a native of Quivira, who could give them information about the
country. This fellow said that there was gold and silver, but not
so much of it as the Turk had said. The Turk, however, continued to
declare that it was as he had said. He went as a guide, and thus the
army started off from here.

  [406] In his letter to the King, dated Tiguex October 20, 1541,
  Coronado says that he started April 23. See Winship's translation
  in _Fourteenth Report of the Bureau of Ethnology_ (1896), p. 580.

  [407] Cicuye is Pecos, as above mentioned. The direction is north
  of east and the distance forty miles in an air line, or fifteen
  Spanish judicial leagues. By rail, which follows almost exactly
  the old trail, the distance is sixty-five miles, or almost
  precisely twenty-five leagues.

Chapter 19

     _Of how they started in search of Quivira and of what happened
     on the way._

The army started from Cicuye, leaving the village at peace and, as it
seemed, contented, and under obligations to maintain the friendship
because their governor and captain had been restored to them.
Proceeding toward the plains, which are all on the other side of
the mountains, after four days' journey they came to a river with a
large, deep current, which flowed from toward Cicuyc, and they named
this the Cicuyc river. They had to stop here to make a bridge so as
to cross it.[408] It was finished in four days, by much diligence
and rapid work, and as soon as it was done the whole army and the
animals crossed. After ten days more they came to some settlements of
people who lived like Arabs and who are called Querechos[409] in that
region. They had seen the cows[410] for two days. These folks live
in tents made of the tanned skins of the cows. They travel around
near the cows, killing them for food. They did nothing unusual when
they saw our army, except to come out of their tents to look at us,
after which they came to talk with the advance guard, and asked who
we were. The general talked with them, but as they had already talked
with the Turk, who was with the advance guard, they agreed with what
he had said. That they were very intelligent is evident from the fact
that although they conversed by means of signs they made themselves
understood so well that there was no need of an interpreter.[411]
They said that there was a very large river over toward where the
sun came from, and that one could go along this river through an
inhabited region for ninety days without a break from settlement to
settlement. They said that the first of these settlements was called
Haxa,[412] and that the river was more than a league wide and that
there were many canoes on it.[413] These folks started off from here
next day with a lot of dogs which dragged their possessions. For two
days, during which the army marched in the same direction as that in
which they had come from the settlements--that is, between north and
east, but more toward the north--they saw other roaming Querechos
and such great numbers of cows that it already seemed something
incredible. These people gave a great deal of information about
settlements, all toward the east from where we were. Here Don Garcia
broke his arm and a Spaniard got lost who went off hunting so far
that he was unable to return to the camp, because the country is very
level. The Turk said it was one or two days to Haya (Haxa).[414] The
general sent Captain Diego Lopez with ten companions lightly equipped
and a guide to go at full speed toward the sunrise for two days and
discover Haxa, and then return to meet the army, which set out in the
same direction next day. They came across so many animals that those
who were on the advance guard killed a large number of bulls. As
these fled they trampled one another in their haste until they came
to a ravine. So many of the animals fell into this that they filled
it up, and the rest went across on top of them. The men who were
chasing them on horseback fell in among the animals without noticing
where they were going. Three of the horses that fell in among the
cows, all saddled and bridled, were lost sight of completely.

  [408] The Rio Pecos. The bridge was doubtless built across the
  stream somewhere near Puerto de Luna. The Ms. here reads Cicuyc
  for Cicuye.

  [409] The name by which the eastern Apaches, or Apaches Vaqueros
  of later times, were known to the Pecos Indians. The first
  Querechos were met near the eastern boundary of New Mexico.

  [410] Wherever "cows" are mentioned, bison are of course meant.
  Herds of these animals ranged as far as the Pecos, which was
  known as the Rio de las Vacas later in the century.

  [411] All the Indians of the great plains were expert in the sign
  language, as their spoken languages were many and diverse.

  [412] The place has not been identified with certainty.

  [413] This river, if it existed at all, was in all probability
  the lower Arkansas or the Mississippi, hundreds of miles away.

  [414] The Turk was evidently lying, at least so far as the
  distance was concerned. The Texas Indians were not canoeists. The
  army was now in the western part of the staked plains of Texas,
  but had changed its course from northeasterly to south of east.
  The country is greatly broken by the cañons of the streams which
  take their rise in these parts.

As it seemed to the general that Diego Lopez ought to be on his way
back, he sent six of his companions to follow up the banks of the
little river, and as many more down the banks, to look for traces of
the horses at the trails to and from the river. It was impossible to
find tracks in this country, because the grass straightened up again
as soon as it was trodden down. They were found by some Indians from
the army who had gone to look for fruit. These got track of them a
good league off, and soon came up with them. They followed the river
down to the camp, and told the general that in the twenty leagues
they had been over they had seen nothing but cows and the sky. There
was another native of Quivira with the army, a painted Indian named
Ysopete. This Indian had always declared that the Turk was lying, and
on account of this the army paid no attention to him, and even now,
although he said that the Querechos had consulted with him, Ysopete
was not believed.

The general sent Don Rodrigo Maldonado, with his company, forward
from here. He travelled four days and reached a large ravine like
those of Colima, in the bottom of which he found a large settlement
of people. Cabeza de Vaca and Dorantes had passed through this
place,[415] so that they presented Don Rodrigo with a pile of tanned
skins and other things, and a tent as big as a house, which he
directed them to keep until the army came up. He sent some of his
companions to guide the army to that place, so that they should not
get lost, although he had been making piles of stones and cow-dung
for the army to follow. This was the way in which the army was guided
by the advance guard.

  [415] See Cabeza de Vaca's narration in this volume, p. 97.

When the general came up with the army and saw the great quantity
of skins, he thought he would divide them among the men, and placed
guards so that they could look at them. But when the men arrived and
saw that the general was sending some of his companions with orders
for the guards to give them some of the skins, and that these were
going to select the best, they were angry because they were not going
to be divided evenly, and made a rush, and in less than a quarter of
an hour nothing was left but the empty ground.

The natives who happened to see this also took a hand in it. The
women and some others were left crying, because they thought that
the strangers were not going to take anything, but would bless them
as Cabeza de Vaca and Dorantes had done when they passed through
here. They found an Indian girl here who was as white as a Castilian
lady,[416] except that she had her chin painted like a Moorish woman.
In general they all paint themselves in this way here, and they
decorate their eyes.

  [416] Probably an albino is here referred to.

Chapter 20

     _Of how great stones fell in the camp, and how they discovered
     another ravine, where the army was divided into two parts._

While the army was resting in this ravine, as we have related, a
tempest came up one afternoon with a very high wind and hail, and in
a very short space of time a great quantity of hailstones, as big
as bowls, or bigger, fell as thick as raindrops, so that in places
they covered the ground two or three spans or more deep. And one hit
the horse--or I should say, there was not a horse that did not break
away, except two or three which the negroes protected by holding
large sea nets over them, with the helmets and shields which all the
rest wore; and some of them dashed up on to the sides of the ravine
so that they got them down with great difficulty. If this had struck
them while they were upon the plain, the army would have been in
great danger of being left without its horses, as there were many
which they were not able to cover. The hail broke many tents, and
battered many helmets, and wounded many of the horses, and broke all
the crockery of the army, and the gourds, which was no small loss,
because they do not have any crockery in this region. They do not
make gourds, nor sow corn, nor eat bread, but instead raw meat--or
only half cooked--and fruit.[417]

  [417] Castañeda here refers to the buffalo-hunting Indians in
  contrast to the Pueblo tribes which the Spaniards had left.

From here the general sent out to explore the country, and they
found another settlement four days from there[418].... The country
was well inhabited, and they had plenty of kidney beans and prunes
like those of Castile, and tall vineyards. These village settlements
extended for three days. This was called Cona. Some Teyas,[419] as
these people are called, went with the army from here and travelled
as far as the end of the other settlements with their packs of dogs
and women and children, and then they gave them guides to proceed
to a large ravine where the army was. They did not let these guides
speak with the Turk, and did not receive the same statements from
these as they had from the others. These said that Quivira was toward
the north, and that we should not find any good road thither. After
this they began to believe Ysopete. The ravine which the army had
now reached was a league wide from one side to the other, with a
little bit of a river at the bottom, and there were many groves of
mulberry trees near it, and rosebushes with the same sort of fruit
that they have in France. They made verjuice from the unripe grapes
at this ravine, although there were ripe ones. There were walnuts
and the same kind of fowls as in New Spain, and large quantities of
prunes like those of Castile. During this journey a Teya was seen
to shoot a bull right through both shoulders with an arrow, which
would be a good shot for a musket. These people are very intelligent;
the women are well made and modest. They cover their whole body.
They wear shoes and buskins made of tanned skin. The women wear
cloaks over their small under petticoats, with sleeves gathered up
at the shoulders, all of skin, and some wore something like little
_san-benitos_[420] with a fringe, which reached half-way down the
thigh over the petticoat.

  [418] "_A manera de alixares._" The margin reads _Alexeres_, a
  word meaning "threshing floor."

  [419] These were evidently the Indians later called Tejas,
  or Texas, from which the state took its name. The name was
  indiscriminately applied by various later writers, but always to
  one of the Caddoan tribes or group of tribes.

  [420] "We were brought into the Church, every one with a S.
  Benito upon his backe, which is a halfe a yard of yellow cloth,
  with a hole to put in a mans head in the middest, and cast over
  a mans head: both flaps hang one before, and another behinde,
  and in the middest of every flap, a S. Andrewes crosse, made
  of red cloth, sowed on upon the same, and that is called S.
  Benito."--Robert Tomson, "Voyage into Nova Hispania," 1555, in
  Hakluyt, _Voyages_, IX. 348 (1904).

The army rested several days in this ravine and explored the country.
Up to this point they had made thirty-seven days' marches, travelling
six or seven leagues a day.[421] It had been the duty of one man to
measure and count his steps. They found that it was 250 leagues to
the settlements.[422] When the general Francisco Vazquez realized
this, and saw that they had been deceived by the Turk heretofore, and
as the provisions were giving out and there was no country around
here where they could procure more, he called the captains and
ensigns together to decide on what they thought ought to be done.
They all agreed that the general should go in search of Quivira with
thirty horsemen and half a dozen foot-soldiers, and that Don Tristan
de Arellano should go back to Tiguex with all the army. When the men
in the army learned of this decision, they begged their general not
to leave them to conduct the further search, but declared that they
all wanted to die with him and did not want to go back. This did not
do any good, although the general agreed to send messengers to them
within eight days saying whether it was best for them to follow him
or not, and with this he set off with the guides he had and with
Ysopete. The Turk was taken along in chains.

  [421] The league is equivalent to 2.63 English miles. This
  Spanish judicial league is still used in Mexico.

  [422] The Tiguex villages on the Rio Grande are often referred to
  as the region where the settlements were.

Chapter 21

     _Of how the army returned to Tiguex and the general reached

The general started from the ravine with the guides that the Teyas
had given him. He appointed the alderman Diego Lopez his army-master,
and took with him the men who seemed to him to be most efficient, and
the best horses. The army still had some hope that the general would
send for them, and sent two horsemen, lightly equipped and riding
post, to repeat their petition.

The general arrived--I mean, the guides ran away during the first few
days and Diego Lopez had to return to the army for guides, bringing
orders for the army to return to Tiguex to find food and wait there
for the general. The Teyas, as before, willingly furnished him with
new guides. The army waited for its messengers and spent a fortnight
here, preparing jerked beef to take with them. It was estimated that
during this fortnight they killed 500 bulls. The number of these that
were there without any cows was something incredible. Many fellows
were lost at this time who went out hunting and did not get back to
the army for two or three days, wandering about the country as if
they were crazy, in one direction or another, not knowing how to get
back where they started from, although this ravine extended in either
direction so that they could find it. Every night they took account
of who was missing, fired guns and blew trumpets and beat drums and
built great fires, but yet some of them went off so far and wandered
about so much that all this did not give them any help, although it
helped others. The only way was to go back where they had killed an
animal and start from there in one direction and another until they
struck the ravine or fell in with somebody who could put them on the
right road. It is worth noting that the country there is so level
that at midday, after one has wandered about in one direction and
another in pursuit of game, the only thing to do is to stay near the
game quietly until sunset, so as to see where it goes down, and even
then they have to be men who are practised to do it. Those who are
not, had to trust themselves to others.[423]

  [423] The point of separation of the army was in all probability
  the upper waters of the Rio Colorado in Texas. See the narration
  of Cabeza de Vaca, p. 97, note 2.

The general followed his guides until he reached Quivira, which took
forty-eight days' marching, on account of the great detour they had
made toward Florida.[424] He was received peacefully on account of
the guides whom he had. They asked the Turk why he had lied and had
guided them so far out of their way. He said that his country was
in that direction and that, besides this, the people at Cicuye had
asked him to lead them off on to the plains and lose them, so that
the horses would die when their provisions gave out, and they would
be so weak if they ever returned that they could be killed without
any trouble, and thus they could take revenge for what had been done
to them. This was the reason why he had led them astray, supposing
that they did not know how to hunt or to live without corn, while
as for the gold, he did not know where there was any of it. He said
this like one who had given up hope and who found that he was being
persecuted, since they had begun to believe Ysopete, who had guided
them better than he had, and fearing lest those who were there might
give some advice by which some harm would come to him. They garroted
him, which pleased Ysopete very much, because he had always said that
Ysopete was a rascal and that he did not know what he was talking
about and had always hindered his talking with anybody. Neither gold
nor silver nor any trace of either was found among these people.
Their lord wore a copper plate on his neck and prized it highly.[425]

  [424] That is, toward the southeast. At a somewhat later period
  Florida included everything from the peninsula northward.

  [425] For additional details respecting the route pursued
  by Coronado after the main army was sent back, consult the
  narrative of Jaramillo, the _Relacion del Suceso_, and other
  documents pertaining to the expedition, in Winship's _Coronado
  Expedition_ (1896) and _Journey of Coronado_ (1904), and in
  connection therewith a discussion of the route by F. W. Hodge,
  in J. V. Brower's _Memoirs of Explorations in the Basin of the
  Mississippi_, II. (St. Paul, 1899). Continuing due north from the
  upper waters of the Rio Colorado of Texas, Coronado's immediate
  force in thirty days' march, according to the _Relacion del
  Suceso_ (or "more than thirty days' march, although not long
  marches," according to Jaramillo), reached the river of St. Peter
  and St. Paul the last of June, 1541. This was the "river of
  Quivira" of the _Relacion del Suceso_, the present Arkansas River
  in Kansas, which was crossed at its southern bend, just east of
  the present Dodge City. The party continued thence northeast,
  downstream, and in thirty leagues, or six or seven days' march,
  reached the first of the Quivira settlements. This was at or
  near the present Great Bend, Kansas, before reaching the site of
  which the Turk was "made an example of." That the inhabitants
  of Quivira were the Wichita Indians there can be no reasonable
  doubt. The Quivira people lived in grass or straw lodges,
  according to the Spaniards, a fact that was true of the Wichitas
  only of all the northern plains tribes. The habitations of their
  congeners and northern neighbors, the Pawnee (who may be regarded
  as the inhabitants of the province of Harahey), were earth
  lodges. The word _acochis_, mentioned by Castañeda as the Quivira
  term for "gold," is merely the Spanish adaptation of _hakwichis_,
  which signifies "metal," for of gold our Indians knew nothing
  until after the advent of the white man. After exploring Quivira
  for twenty-five leagues, Coronado sent "captains and men in many
  directions," but they failed to find that of which they went in
  search. There is no reason to suppose that Coronado's party went
  beyond the limits of the present state of Kansas.

The messengers whom the army had sent to the general returned, as
I said, and then, as they brought no news except what the alderman
had delivered, the army left the ravine and returned to the Teyas,
where they took guides who led them back by a more direct road. They
readily furnished these, because these people are always roaming over
this country in pursuit of the animals and so know it thoroughly.
They keep their road in this way: In the morning they notice where
the sun rises and observe the direction they are going to take,
and then shoot an arrow in this direction. Before reaching this
they shoot another over it, and in this way they go all day toward
the water where they are to end the day. In this way they covered
in twenty-five days what had taken them thirty-seven days going,
besides stopping to hunt cows on the way. They found many salt
lakes on this road, and there was a great quantity of salt. There
were thick pieces of it on top of the water bigger than tables, as
thick as four or five fingers. Two or three spans down under water
there was salt which tasted better than that in the floating pieces,
because this was rather bitter. It was crystalline. All over these
plains there were large numbers of animals like squirrels[426] and
a great number of their holes. On its return the army reached the
Cicuye river more than thirty leagues below there--I mean below the
bridge they had made when they crossed it, and they followed it up
to that place.[427] In general, its banks are covered with a sort
of rose bushes, the fruit of which tastes like muscatel grapes.
They grow on little twigs about as high up as a man. It has the
parsley leaf. There were unripe grapes and currants(?) and wild
marjoram. The guides said this river joined that of Tiguex more
than twenty days from here, and that its course turned toward the
east. It is believed that it flows into the mighty river of the Holy
Spirit (Espiritu Santo), which the men with Don Hernando de Soto
discovered in Florida.[428] A painted Indian woman ran away from
Juan de Saldibar and hid in the ravines about this time, because she
recognized the country of Tiguex where she had been a slave. She fell
into the hands of some Spaniards who had entered the country from
Florida to explore it in this direction.[429] After I got back to New
Spain I heard them say that the Indian told them that she had run
away from other men like them nine days, and that she gave the names
of some captains; from which we ought to believe that we were not far
from the region they discovered, although they said they were more
than 200 leagues inland. I believe the land at that point is more
than 600 leagues across from sea to sea.

  [426] Prairie-dogs.

  [427] This would make the point at which the army reached Pecos
  River about eighty miles below Puerto de Luna, or not far from
  the present town of Roswell.

  [428] Castañeda is writing about twenty years later. De Soto's
  army was exploring the eastern country as Coronado was traversing
  the buffalo plains. The Espiritu Santo is the Mississippi.

  [429] See the Gentleman of Elvas in the second part of the
  present volume.

As I said, the army followed the river up as far as Cicuye, which it
found ready for war and unwilling to make any advances toward peace
or to give any food to the army. From there they went on to Tiguex
where several villages had been reinhabited, but the people were
afraid and left them again.

Chapter 22

     _Of how the general returned from Quivira and of other
     expeditions toward the North._

After Don Tristan de Arellano reached Tiguex, about the middle of
July, in the year '42,[430] he had provisions collected for the
coming winter. Captain Francisco de Barrionuevo was sent up the river
toward the north with several men. He saw two provinces, one of
which was called Hemes[431] and had seven villages, and the other
Yuqueyunque.[432] The inhabitants of Hemes came out peaceably and
furnished provisions. At Yuqueyunque the whole nation left two very
fine villages which they had on either side of the river entirely
vacant, and went into the mountains, where they had four very strong
villages in a rough country, where it was impossible for horses to
go.[433] In the two villages there was a great deal of food and some
very beautiful glazed earthenware with many figures and different
shapes.[434] Here they also found many bowls full of a carefully
selected shining metal with which they glazed the earthenware. This
shows that mines of silver would be found in that country if they
should hunt for them.

  [430] As usual Castañeda gives a date a year later than the
  actual one.

  [431] The pueblos occupied by the Jemez people. Only one of these
  now exists; this is on the Rio Jemez, a western tributary of the
  Rio Grande, which enters the latter stream above Bernalillo, New
  Mexico. See p. 359, note 2.

  [432] This was Yukiwingge, on the site of the present small
  village of Chamita, at the mouth of the Rio Chama, opposite San
  Juan pueblo. The other one of the two villages was doubtless San
  Juan. Both of these were occupied by Tewa Indians. At Yukiwingge
  was established, in 1598, by Juan de Oñate, the colonizer of New
  Mexico, the settlement of San Gabriel de los Españoles, which
  was occupied until the spring of 1605, when the seat of the
  provincial government was moved to Santa Fé, founded for the
  purpose in that year. See p. 359, note 4.

  [433] These may have been the pueblos, now in ruins, in and north
  of the Pajarito Park, one of which, called Puye, gives evidence
  of occupancy in post-Spanish times.

  [434] It is not known definitely whether actually glazed pottery
  or merely the black, highly polished earthenware characteristic
  of the Tewa Indians of the neighborhood is here meant. The
  ancient Pueblos manufactured a ware with decoration in what
  appears to be a salt glaze. Specimens of this have been gathered
  in the Pajarito Park, at Zuñi, among the Hopi of Arizona, and
  from ancient ruins around Acoma, but the art seems to have been
  lost. There is abundant evidence that this form of decoration was
  prehistoric. The finding of the "shining metal" (called antimony
  in Pt. 2, chap. 4) would seem to indicate that the polished
  rather than the glazed ware was here meant.

There was a large and powerful river, I mean village, which was
called Braba, twenty leagues farther up the river, which our men
called Valladolid.[435] The river flowed through the middle of it.
The natives crossed it by wooden bridges, made of very long, large,
squared pines. At this village they saw the largest and finest hot
rooms or estufas that there were in the entire country, for they had
a dozen pillars, each one of which was twice as large around as one
could reach and twice as tall as a man. Hernando de Alvarado visited
this village when he discovered Cicuye. The country is very high and
very cold.[436] The river is deep and very swift, without any ford.
Captain Barrionuevo returned from here, leaving the province at peace.

  [435] This was the pueblo of Taos, which stood near the site of
  the present village of the same name, on both sides of the little
  stream (Taos River). The present Taos has 425 inhabitants. The
  swift and deep river without the ford, here referred to, must
  have been the Rio Grande in the neighborhood of Taos, rather than
  the Rio de Taos, which is insignificant except in seasons of
  freshet. Castañeda was evidently not one of Barrionuevo's party.

  [436] The altitude of Taos is 6983 feet; of Taos Peak, 13,145

Another captain went down the river in search of the settlements
which the people at Tutahaco had said were several days distant
from there. This captain went down eighty leagues and found four
large villages which he left at peace.[437] He proceeded until he
found that the river sank into the earth, like the Guadiana in
Estremadura.[438] He did not go on to where the Indians said that it
came out much larger, because his commission did not extend for more
than eighty leagues' march. After this captain got back, as the time
had arrived which the captain had set for his return from Quivira,
and as he had not come back, Don Tristan selected forty companions
and, leaving the army to Francisco de Barrionuevo, he started with
them in search of the general. When he reached Cicuye the people came
out of the village to fight, which detained him there four days,
while he punished them, which he did by firing some volleys into the
village. These killed several men, so that they did not come out
against the army, since two of their principal men had been killed
on the first day. Just then word was brought that the general was
coming, and so Don Tristan had to stay there on this account also,
to keep the road open. Everybody welcomed the general on his arrival,
with great joy. The Indian Xabe, who was the young fellow who had
been given to the general at Cicuye when he started off in search of
Quivira, was with Don Tristan de Arellano and when he learned that
the general was coming he acted as if he was greatly pleased, and
said, "Now when the general comes, you will see that there are gold
and silver in Quivira, although not so much as the Turk said." When
the general arrived, and Xabe saw that they had not found anything,
he was sad and silent, and kept declaring that there was some. He
made many believe that it was so, because the general had not dared
to enter into the country on account of its being thickly settled
and his force not very strong, and that he had returned to lead
his army there after the rains, because it had begun to rain there
already, as it was early in August when he left. It took him forty
days to return, travelling lightly equipped. The Turk had said when
they left Tiguex that they ought not to load the horses with too much
provisions, which would tire them so that they could not afterward
carry the gold and silver, from which it is very evident that he was
deceiving them.

  [437] Seemingly the Piros villages on the Rio Grande south of
  Isleta. They are now extinct, having been finally abandoned
  during the revolt in 1680, the inhabitants fleeing with Governor
  Otermin to El Paso. Senecu and Socorro (taking their names from
  former villages) were afterward established below El Paso, where
  the few survivors of the Piros, almost entirely Mexicanized,
  still reside.

  [438] This rendering, doubtless correct, is due to Ternaux.
  The Guadiana, however, reappears above ground some time before
  it begins to mark the boundary of the Spanish province of
  Estremadura. The Castañeda family had its seat in quite the other
  end of the peninsula. (Winship.)

The general reached Cicuye with his force and at once set off
for Tiguex, leaving the village more quiet, for they had met him
peaceably and had talked with him. When he reached Tiguex, he made
his plans to pass the winter there, so as to return with the whole
army, because it was said that he brought information regarding large
settlements and very large rivers, and that the country was very much
like that of Spain in the fruits and vegetation and seasons. They
were not ready to believe that there was no gold there, but instead
had suspicions that there was some farther back in the country,
because, although this was denied, they knew what the thing was and
had a name for it among themselves--_acochis_.[439] With this we end
this first part, and now we will give an account of the provinces.

  [439] See p. 337, note 1.


     _Which treats of the high villages and provinces and of their
     habits and customs, as collected by Pedro de Castañeda, native
     of the city of Najara._

_Laus Deo_

It does not seem to me that the reader will be satisfied with having
seen and understood what I have already related about the expedition,
although that has made it easy to see the difference between the
report which told about vast treasures, and the places where nothing
like this was either found or known. It is to be noted that in place
of settlements great deserts were found, and instead of populous
cities villages of 200 inhabitants and only 800 or 1000 people in
the largest. I do not know whether this will furnish grounds for
pondering and considering the uncertainty of this life. To please
these, I wish to give a detailed account of all the inhabited region
seen and discovered by this expedition, and some of their ceremonies
and habits, in accordance with what we came to know about them, and
the limits within which each province falls, so that hereafter it may
be possible to understand in what direction Florida lies and in what
direction Greater India; and this land of New Spain is part of the
mainland with Peru, and with greater India or China as well, there
not being any strait between to separate them. On the other hand,
the country is so wide that there is room for these vast deserts
which lie between the two seas, for the coast of the North sea beyond
Florida stretches toward the Bacallaos[440] and then turns toward
Norway, while that of the South sea turns toward the west, making
another bend down toward the south almost like a bow and stretches
away toward India, leaving room for the lands that border on the
mountains on both sides to stretch out in such a way as to have
between them these great plains which are full of cattle and many
other animals of different sorts, since they are not inhabited, as I
will relate farther on. There is every sort of game and fowl there,
but no snakes, for they are free from these. I will leave the account
of the return of the army to New Spain until I have shown what
slight occasion there was for this. We will begin our account with
the city of Culiacan, and point out the differences between the one
country and the other, on account of which one ought to be settled by
Spaniards and the other not. It should be the reverse, however, with
Christians, since there are intelligent men in one, and in the other
wild animals and worse than beasts.

  [440] The Newfoundland region.

Chapter I

     _Of the province of Culiacan and of its habits and customs._

Culiacan is the last place in the New Kingdom of Galicia, and was
the first settlement made by Nuño de Guzman when he conquered this
kingdom.[441] It is 210 leagues west of Mexico.[442] In this province
there are three chief languages, besides other related dialects. The
first is that of the Tahus, who are the best and most intelligent
race. They are now the most settled and have received the most light
from the faith. They worship idols and make presents to the devil of
their goods and riches, consisting of cloth and turquoises. They do
not eat human flesh nor sacrifice it. They are accustomed to keep
very large snakes, which they venerate. Among them there are men
dressed like women who marry other men and serve as their wives.
At a great festival they consecrate the women who wish to live
unmarried, with much singing and dancing, at which all the chiefs of
the locality gather and dance naked, and after all have danced with
her they put her in a hut that has been decorated for this event and
the chiefs adorn her with clothes and bracelets of fine turquoises,
and then the chiefs go in one by one to lie with her, and all the
others who wish, follow them. From this time on these women can not
refuse anyone who pays them a certain amount agreed on for this.
Even if they take husbands, this does not exempt them from obliging
anyone who pays them. The greatest festivals are on market days.
The custom is for the husbands to buy the women whom they marry, of
their fathers and relatives at a high price, and then to take them
to a chief, who is considered to be a priest, to deflower them and
see if she is a virgin; and if she is not, they have to return the
whole price, and he can keep her for his wife or not, or let her be
consecrated, as he chooses. At these times they all get drunk.

  [441] See p. 285, note 1.

  [442] Castañeda, like many other early Spanish chroniclers,
  is careless in his directions. It will be observed that he
  frequently says west, east, etc., when he means westwardly,
  eastwardly. This has led one writer on the Coronado expedition
  seriously astray. Culiacan is decidedly _northwest_ of Mexico

The second language is that of the Pacaxes, the people who live in
the country between the plains and the mountains. These people are
more barbarous. Some of them who live near the mountains eat human
flesh. They are great sodomites, and have many wives, even when these
are sisters. They worship painted and sculptured stones, and are much
given to witchcraft and sorcery.

The third language is that of the Acaxes, who are in possession of
a large part of the hilly country and all of the mountains. They
go hunting for men just as they hunt animals. They all eat human
flesh, and he who has the most human bones and skulls hung up around
his house is most feared and respected. They live in settlements
and in very rough country, avoiding the plains. In passing from one
settlement to another, there is always a ravine in the way which
they can not cross, although they can talk together across it. At
the slightest call 500 men collect, and on any pretext kill and eat
one another. Thus it has been very hard to subdue these people, on
account of the roughness of the country, which is very great.

Many rich silver mines have been found in this country. They do not
run deep, but soon give out. The gulf of the sea[443] begins on the
coast of this province, entering the land 250 leagues toward the
north and ending at the mouth of the Firebrand (Tizon) River. This
country forms its eastern limit, and California[444] the western.
From what I have been told by men who had navigated it, it is thirty
leagues across from point to point, because they lose sight of this
country when they see the other. They say the gulf is over 150
leagues broad (or deep), from shore to shore. The coast makes a turn
toward the south at the Firebrand River, bending down to California,
which turns toward the west, forming that peninsula which was
formerly held to be an island, because it was a low sandy country.
It is inhabited by brutish, bestial, naked people who eat their own
offal. The men and women couple like animals, the female openly
getting down on all fours.[445]

  [443] The Gulf of California.

  [444] Lower California is of course meant.

  [445] For an account of the Indians of Lower California in the
  eighteenth century, see the translation of Father Jacob Baegert's
  narrative, by Charles Rau, in the _Report of the Smithsonian
  Institution_ for 1863 and 1864.

Chapter 2

     _Of the province of Petlatlan and all the inhabited country as
     far as Chichilticalli._

Petlatlan is a settlement of houses covered with a sort of mats made
of plants. These are collected into villages, extending along a river
from the mountains to the sea.[446] The people are of the same race
and habits as the Culuacanian Tahues. There is much sodomy among
them. In the mountain district there is a large population and more
settlements. These people have a somewhat different language from the
Tahues, although they understand each other. It is called Petlatlan
because the houses are made of petates or palm-leaf mats. Houses
of this sort are found for more than 240 leagues in this region,
to the beginning of the Cibola wilderness.[447] The nature of the
country changes here very greatly, because from this point on there
are no trees except the pine, nor are there any fruits except a few
tunas,[448] mesquites, and pitahayas.[449]

  [446] The Rio Petlatlan is the present Rio Sinaloa. The name
  Sinaloa is synonymous in application with Cahita, a group of
  tribes including the present Yaqui and Mayo.

  [447] That is, as far northward as the Rio Gila.

  [448] The fruit of the prickly-pear cactus.

  [449] The giant cactus. See p. 305, note 1.

Petlatlan is twenty leagues from Culiacan, and it is 130 leagues from
here to the valley of Señora. There are many rivers between the two,
with settlements of the same sort of people--for example, Sinoloa,
Boyomo, Teocomo, Yaquimi, and other smaller ones. There is also the
Corazones (Hearts), which is in our possession, down the valley of

  [450] Sonora. See p. 301, notes 1 and 2.

Señora is a river and valley thickly settled by able-bodied people.
The women wear petticoats of tanned deerskin, and little san benitos
reaching half way down the body.[451] The chiefs of the villages
go up on some little heights they have made for this purpose, like
public criers, and there make proclamations for the space of an
hour, regulating those things they have to attend to. They have some
little huts for shrines, all over the outside of which they stick
many arrows, like a hedgehog. They do this when they are eager for
war. All about this province toward the mountains there is a large
population in separate little provinces containing ten or twelve
villages. Seven or eight of them, of which I know the names, are
Comupatrico, Mochilagua, Arispa,[452] and the Little Valley. There
are others which we did not see.

  [451] See p. 334, note 1.

  [452] This was Arizpe, on the upper waters of the Rio Sonora.
  Jaramillo calls it Ispa.

It is forty leagues from Señora to the valley of Suya.[453] The town
of San Hieronimo was established in this valley, where there was a
rebellion later, and part of the people who had settled there were
killed, as will be seen in the third part. There are many villages in
the neighborhood of this valley. The people are the same as those in
Señora and have the same dress and language, habits, and customs,
like all the rest as far as the desert of Chichilticalli. The women
paint their chins and eyes like the Moorish women of Barbary. They
are great sodomites.[454] They drink wine made of the pitahaya, which
is the fruit of a great thistle which opens like the pomegranate. The
wine makes them stupid. They make a great quantity of preserves from
the tuna; they preserve it in a large amount of its sap without other
honey. They make bread of the mesquite, like cheese, which keeps good
for a whole year. There are native melons in this country so large
that a person can carry only one of them. They cut these into slices
and dry them in the sun. They are good to eat, and taste like figs,
and are better than dried meat; they are very good and sweet, keeping
for a whole year when prepared in this way.[455]

  [453] See p. 326, note 2.

  [454] These are, from the south northward, the Pimas Bajos or
  Nevome, Opatas, Papagos, and Pimas. The older Pima women still
  paint their faces in fine lines and also are tattooed, but the
  custom is becoming a thing of the past. The Opatas are almost
  entirely Mexicanized.

  [455] These were doubtless cantaloupes The southwestern Indians
  still slice and dry them in a manner similar to that here

In this country there were also tame eagles, which the chiefs
esteemed to be something fine.[456] No fowls of any sort were seen
in any of these villages except in this valley of Suya, where fowls
like those of Castile were found. Nobody could find out how they came
to be so far inland, the people being all at war with one another.
Between Suya and Chichilticalli there are many sheep and mountain
goats with very large bodies and horns. Some Spaniards declare that
they have seen flocks of more than a hundred together, which ran so
fast that they disappeared very quickly.

  [456] The Pueblo Indians, particularly the Zuñi and the Hopi,
  keep eagles for their feathers, which are highly prized because
  regarded as sacred and are much used in their ceremonies.

At Chichilticalli the country changes its character again and the
spiky vegetation ceases. The reason is that the gulf reaches as far
up as this place, and the mountain chain changes its direction at
the same time that the coast does. Here they had to cross and pass
through the mountains in order to get into the level country.[457]

  [457] Probably Dragoon Pass, through the Dragoon and Galiuro
  Mountains of southeastern Arizona, thence between the Pinaleño
  and Chiricahua mountains to the plains of San Simon.

Chapter 3

     _Of Chichilticalli and the desert, of Cibola, its customs and
     habits, and of other things._

Chichilticalli is so called because the friars found a house at this
place which was formerly inhabited by people who separated from
Cibola. It was made of colored or reddish earth.[458] The house
was large and appeared to have been a fortress. It must have been
destroyed by the people of the district, who are the most barbarous
people that have yet been seen. They live in separate cabins and not
in settlements.[459] They live by hunting. The rest of the country
is all wilderness, covered with pine forests. There are great
quantities of the pine nuts. The pines are two or three times as high
as a man before they send out branches. There is a sort of oak with
sweet acorns, of which they make cakes like sugar plums with dried
coriander seeds. It is very sweet, like sugar. Watercress grows in
many springs, and there are rosebushes, and pennyroyal, and wild

  [458] This ruin is supposed to have been in the vicinity of
  the present Solomonsville, Graham County. The name is Aztec
  (_chichiltic_ "red," _calli_ "house"). Writers have endeavored
  to identify it with the celebrated Casa Grande farther to the
  northwest, but this is inconsistent with the directions recorded
  in the narratives, and all students of the subject have now
  abandoned this theory.

  [459] These people are not identifiable with certainty. If
  the Apaches of Arizona, it is the only mention of them and is
  contrary to all other testimony. The Sobaipuris lived on the
  upper Rio San Pedro and on the Gila near the mouth of the former
  stream, until the latter part of the eighteenth century.

There are barbels and picones,[460] like those of Spain, in the
rivers of this wilderness.[461] Gray lions and leopards were
seen.[462] The country rises continually from the beginning of the
wilderness until Cibola is reached, which is eighty leagues, going
north. From Culiacan to the edge of the wilderness the route had kept
the north on the left hand.

  [460] Picones are catfish.

  [461] The "wilderness," or uninhabited region, extended from the
  Gila in central Graham County to the crossing of the New Mexico
  boundary by Zuñi River, where Cibola began.

  [462] These are the mountain lion and the wildcat.

Cibola[463] is seven villages. The largest is called Maçaque.[464]
The houses are ordinarily three or four stories high, but in Maçaque
there are houses with four and seven stories. These people are very
intelligent. They cover their privy parts and all the immodest parts
with cloths made like a sort of table napkin, with fringed edges and
a tassel at each corner, which they tie over the hips. They wear long
robes of feathers and of the skins of hares, and cotton blankets. The
women wear blankets, which they tie or knot over the left shoulder,
leaving the right arm out.[465] These serve to cover the body. They
wear a neat well-shaped outer garment of skin. They gather their hair
over the two ears, making a frame which looks like an old-fashioned

  [463] See p. 300, note 1.

  [464] See p. 315, note 1.

  [465] Identical with the dress of the Zuñi women of to-day.
  Rabbit-skin robes have been replaced by woollen blankets, like
  those woven by the Navaho, who learned the art from the Pueblos.
  The rabbit-skin robes are now manufactured chiefly by the
  Paiutes, the Pueblos having almost ceased to make them.

  [466] This custom has been abandoned except by the Hopi maidens,
  who still wear their hair in picturesque whorls, one on each side
  of the head, until married.

The country is a valley between ridges resembling rocky mountains.
They plant in holes. Maize does not grow high; ears from a stalk
three or four to each cane, thick and large, of eight hundred grains,
a thing not seen in these parts. There are large numbers of bears in
this province, and lions, wildcats, deer, and otter. There are very
fine turquoises, although not so many as was reported.[467] They
collect the pine nuts[468] each year, and store them up in advance.
A man does not have more than one wife. There are estufas or hot
rooms[469] in the villages, which are the courtyards or places
where they gather for consultation. They do not have chiefs as in
New Spain, but are ruled by a council of the oldest men. They have
priests who preach to them, whom they call papas.[470] These are the
elders. They go up on the highest roof of the village and preach to
the village from there, like public criers, in the morning while the
sun is rising, the whole village being silent and sitting in the
galleries to listen.[471] They tell them how they are to live, and
I believe that they give certain commandments for them to keep, for
there is no drunkenness among them nor sodomy nor sacrifices, neither
do they eat human flesh nor steal, but they are usually at work. The
estufas belong to the whole village.[472] It is a sacrilege for the
women to go into the estufas to sleep. They make the cross as a sign
of peace. They burn their dead, and throw the implements used in
their work into the fire with the bodies.[473]

  [467] See p. 308, note 3. This entire description is
  characteristic of the present Zuñi country, except that game is
  not so abundant.

  [468] Piñon nuts, which are still gathered in large quantities.

  [469] The _kivas_, or ceremonial chambers, of which there are
  usually several in each pueblo. It is in these that most of the
  secret rites are performed.

  [470] _Pápa_ is a true Zuñi word, signifying "elder brother," as
  distinguished from sú-e, "younger brother." These terms allude
  both to age and to rank.

  [471] All public announcements are still made in this way.

  [472] Rather to the religious societies. Some of them belong
  exclusively to the women.

  [473] Excavations made at Halona, one of the Seven Cities of
  Cibola, yielded only skeletons that had been interred within the
  houses, beneath the floors. In the Salt River and Gila valleys,
  southern Arizona, this method was also practised, but in addition
  remains were cremated and deposited in earthen vessels in mounds
  near by.

It is twenty leagues to Tusayan,[474] going northwest. This is a
province with seven villages, of the same sort, dress, habits, and
ceremonies as at Cibola. There may be as many as 3,000 or 4,000 men
in the fourteen villages of these two provinces.[475] It is forty
leagues or more to Tiguex, the road trending toward the north. The
rock of Acuco, which we described in the first part, is between these.

  [474] See p. 307, note 1; p. 358, note 3.

  [475] This would indicate a population of 10,500 to 14,000, which
  is doubtless an excessive estimate for the sixteenth century. The
  present population of Zuñi is 1514; of the Hopi villages, about

Chapter 4

     _Of how they live at Tiguex, and of the province of Tiguex and
     its neighborhood._

Tiguex is a province with twelve villages on the banks of a large,
mighty river; some villages on one side and some on the other.[476]
It is a spacious valley two leagues wide, and a very high, rough,
snow-covered mountain chain lies east of it.[477] There are seven
villages in the ridges at the foot of this--four on the plain and
three situated on the skirts of the mountain.

  [476] The Rio Grande, as previously described.

  [477] The Sandia Mountains.

There are seven villages seven leagues to the north, at Quirix,
and the seven villages of the province of Hemes are forty leagues
northeast [northwest]. It is forty leagues north or east to
Acha,[478] and four leagues southeast[479] to Tutahaco, a province
with eight villages. In general, these villages all have the same
habits and customs, although some have some things in particular
which the others have not. They are governed by the opinions of the
elders. They all work together to build the villages, the women being
engaged in making the mixture and the walls, while the men bring
the wood and put it in place. They have no lime, but they make a
mixture of ashes, coals, and dirt which is almost as good as mortar,
for when the house is to have four stories, they do not make the
walls more than half a yard thick. They gather a great pile of twigs
of thyme [sagebrush] and sedge grass and set it afire, and when it
is half coals and ashes they throw a quantity of dirt and water on
it and mix it all together. They make round balls of this, which
they use instead of stones after they are dry, fixing them with the
same mixture, which comes to be like a stiff clay. Before they
are married the young men serve the whole village in general, and
fetch the wood that is needed for use, putting it in a pile in the
courtyard of the villages, from which the women take it to carry to
their houses.[480]

  [478] The pueblo of Picuris, about twenty miles south of Taos.
  This is a Tigua village of about 125 inhabitants.

  [479] Compare the previous reference to Tutahaco (p. 314). Both
  the distance and the direction here given seem to be erroneous.

  [480] This would indicate the existence of a true communal system
  that does not prevail at the present time.

The young men live in the estufas, which are in the yards of the
village. They are underground, square or round, with pine pillars.
Some were seen with twelve pillars and with four in the centre as
large as two men could stretch around. They usually had three or four
pillars. The floor was made of large, smooth stones, like the baths
which they have in Europe. They have a hearth made like the binnacle
or compass box of a ship, in which they burn a handful of thyme at
a time to keep up the heat, and they can stay in there just as in a
bath. The top was on a level with the ground. Some that were seen
were large enough for a game of ball. When any man wishes to marry,
it has to be arranged by those who govern. The man has to spin and
weave a blanket and place it before the woman, who covers herself
with it and becomes his wife.[481] The houses belong to the women,
the estufas to the men. If a man repudiates his woman, he has to go
to the estufa. It is forbidden for women to sleep in the estufas,
or to enter these for any purpose except to give their husbands or
sons something to eat. The men spin and weave. The women bring up the
children and prepare the food. The country is so fertile that they
do not have to break up the ground the year round, but only have to
sow the seed, which is presently covered by the fall of snow, and
the ears come up under the snow. In one year they gather enough for
seven. A very large number of cranes and wild geese and crows and
starlings live on what is sown, and for all this, when they come to
sow for another year, the fields are covered with corn which they
have not been able to finish gathering.

  [481] See Voth, "Oraibi Marriage Customs," _American
  Anthropologist_, II. 238 (1900).

There are a great many native fowl in these provinces, and cocks
with great hanging chins.[482] When dead, these keep for sixty days,
and longer in winter, without losing their feathers or opening, and
without any bad smell, and the same is true of dead men.

  [482] The American turkey cocks.

The villages are free from nuisances, because they go outside to
excrete, and they pass their water into clay vessels, which they
empty at a distance from the village.[483] They keep the separate
houses where they prepare the food for eating and where they grind
the meal, very clean. This is a separate room or closet, where they
have a trough with three stones fixed in stiff clay. Three women
go in here, each one having a stone, with which one of them breaks
the corn, the next grinds it, and the third grinds it again.[484]
They take off their shoes, do up their hair, shake their clothes,
and cover their heads before they enter the door. A man sits at the
door playing on a fife while they grind, moving the stones to the
music and singing together. They grind a large quantity at one time,
because they make all their bread of meal soaked in warm water, like
wafers. They gather a great quantity of brushwood and dry it to use
for cooking all through the year. There are no fruits good to eat
in the country, except the pine nuts. They have their preachers.
Sodomy is not found among them. They do not eat human flesh nor make
sacrifices of it. The people are not cruel, for they had Francisco
de Ovando in Tiguex about forty days, after he was dead, and when
the village was captured, he was found among their dead, whole and
without any other wound except the one which killed him, white as
snow, without any bad smell. I found out several things about them
from one of our Indians, who had been a captive among them for a
whole year. I asked him especially for the reason why the young
women in that province went entirely naked, however cold it might be,
and he told me that the virgins had to go around this way until they
took a husband, and that they covered themselves after they had known
man. The men here wear little shirts of tanned deerskin and their
long robes over this. In all these provinces they have earthenware
glazed with antimony and jars of extraordinary labor and workmanship,
which were worth seeing.[485]

  [483] A custom still common at Zuñi and other pueblos. Before the
  introduction of manufactured dyes the Pueblos used urine as a

  [484] See Mindeleff's "Pueblo Architecture," in the _Eighth
  Annual Report of the Bureau of Ethnology_, p. 208; also Cushing,
  "Zuñi Breadstuff," in _The Millstone_ (Indianapolis, 1884-1885).

  [485] A number of memoirs on the pottery of the ancient Pueblos
  may be consulted in the _Annual Reports_ of the Bureau of
  American Ethnology.

Chapter 5

     _Of Cicuye and the villages in its neighborhood, and of how some
     people came to conquer this country._

We have already said that the people of Tiguex and of all the
provinces on the banks of that river were all alike, having the same
ways of living and the same customs. It will not be necessary to say
anything particular about them. I wish merely to give an account of
Cicuye and some depopulated villages which the army saw on the direct
road which it followed thither, and of others that were across the
snowy mountains near Tiguex, which also lay in that region above the

Cicuye[486] is a village of nearly five hundred warriors, who are
feared throughout that country. It is square, situated on a rock,
with a large court or yard in the middle, containing the estufas.
The houses are all alike, four stories high. One can go over the
top of the whole village without there being a street to hinder.
There are corridors going all around it at the first two stories, by
which one can go around the whole village. These are like outside
balconies, and they are able to protect themselves under these. The
houses do not have doors below, but they use ladders, which can be
lifted up like a drawbridge, and so go up to the corridors which
are on the inside of the village. As the doors of the houses open
on the corridor of that story, the corridor serves as a street. The
houses that open on the plain are right back of those that open on
the court, and in time of war they go through those behind them. The
village is enclosed by a low wall of stone. There is a spring of
water inside, which they are able to divert.[487] The people of this
village boast that no one has been able to conquer them and that they
conquer whatever villages they wish. The people and their customs are
like those of the other villages. Their virgins also go nude until
they take husbands, because they say that if they do anything wrong
then it will be seen, and so they do not do it. They do not need to
be ashamed because they go around as they were born.

  [486] This is Pecos, the largest pueblo of New Mexico in the
  sixteenth century and for a long time after. Its people belonged
  to the Tanoan family, although their language was understood only
  by the Jemez villagers, their nearest kindred. It was the scene
  of the missionary labors of Fray Luis Descalona, who remained
  behind when Coronado returned to Mexico in 1542, but he was
  probably killed before the close of that year. Pecos became the
  seat of an important Franciscan mission early in the seventeenth
  century, but it began to decline after the revolt of 1680-1692,
  and in 1838 the half-dozen survivors removed to Jemez, where
  one of them still (1906) lives. Cicuye is the Isleta, or Tigua,
  name for Pecos, while "Pecos" itself is the Keresan, or Queres,
  appellation, with the Spanish-English plural. The ruins of the
  town are plainly visible from the Santa Fé Railway. See Bandelier
  in _Papers of the Archaeological Institute of America_, Amer.
  ser., I. (1881); Hewett in _American Anthropologist_, n. s., VI.
  No. 4, 1904.

  [487] The spring was "still trickling out beneath a massive ledge
  of rocks on the west sill" when Bandelier (_op. cit._) sketched
  it in 1880.

There is a village, small and strong, between Cicuye and the province
of Quirix, which the Spaniards named Ximena,[488] and another village
almost deserted, only one part of which is inhabited.[489] This
was a large village, and judging from its condition and newness it
appeared to have been destroyed. They called this the village of the
granaries (_silos_), because large underground cellars were found
here stored with corn. There was another large village farther on,
entirely destroyed and pulled down, in the yards of which there were
many stone balls, as big as twelve-quart bowls, which seemed to have
been thrown by engines or catapults, which had destroyed the village.
All that I was able to find out about them was that, sixteen years
before, some people called Teyas[490] had come to this country in
great numbers and had destroyed these villages. They had besieged
Cicuye but had not been able to capture it, because it was strong,
and when they left the region, they had made peace with the whole
country. It seems as if they must have been a powerful people, and
that they must have had engines to knock down the villages. The only
thing they could tell about the direction these people came from was
by pointing toward the north. They usually call these people Teyas
or brave men, just as the Mexicans say chichimecas or braves,[491]
for the Teyas whom the army saw were brave. These knew the people
in the settlements, and were friendly with them, and they (the
Teyas of the plains) went there to spend the winter under the wings
of the settlements. The inhabitants do not dare to let them come
inside, because they can not trust them. Although they are received
as friends, and trade with them, they do not stay in the villages
over night, but outside under the wings. The villages are guarded
by sentinels with trumpets, who call to one another just as in the
fortresses of Spain.

  [488] The former Tanos pueblo of Galisteo, a mile and a half
  northeast of the present town of the same name.

  [489] According to Mota Padilla, _Historia de la Conquista_, 1742
  (Mexico, 1870), this was called Coquite.

  [490] These Indians were seen by Coronado during his journey
  across the plains. See p. 333, note 3.

  [491] The name applied in Mexico at the time to any warlike,
  unsubdued tribe.

There are seven other villages along this route, toward the snowy
mountains,[492] one of which has been half destroyed by the people
already referred to. These were under the rule of Cicuye. Cicuye is
in a little valley between mountain chains and mountains covered with
large pine forests. There is a little stream[493] which contains
very good trout and otters, and there are very large bears and good
falcons hereabouts.

  [492] The mountains to the north, in which the Rio Pecos has its

  [493] The Rio Pecos, still noted for trout.

Chapter 6

     _Which gives the number of villages which were seen in the
     country of the terraced houses, and their population._

Before I proceed to speak of the plains, with the cows and
settlements and tribes there, it seems to me that it will be well for
the reader to know how large the settlements were, where the houses
with stories, gathered into villages, were seen, and how great an
extent of country they occupied.[494] As I say, Cibola is the first:

  Cibola, seven villages.[495]
  Tusayan, seven villages.[496]
  The rock of Acuco, one.[497]
  Tiguex, twelve villages.[498]
  Tutahaco, eight villages.[499]
  These villages were below the river.[500]
  Quirix, seven villages.[501]
  In the snowy mountains, seven villages.[502]
  Ximena, three villages.[503]
  Cicuye, one village.[504]
  Hemes, seven villages.[505]
  Aguas Calientes, or Boiling Springs, three villages.[506]
  Yuqueyunque, in the mountains, six villages.[507]
  Valladolid, called Braba, one village.[508]
  Chia, one village.[509]

  [494] Only the pueblos of Acoma and Isleta occupy their
  sixteenth-century sites, all the other villages having shifted
  their locations after the great revolt of 1680-1692, when the
  Spaniards granted specific tracts of land, usually a league
  square, later confirmed to the Indians by Congress under the
  provisions of the treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo.

  [495] Zuñi, including the pueblos of Halona, Matsaki, Kiakima,
  Hawiku, Kyanawe, and two others which have not been identified
  with certainty.

  [496] The Hopi villages, among them being Awatobi (destroyed
  at the beginning of the eighteenth century), Oraibi, Walpi,
  Mishongnovi, Shongopovi, and Shupaulovi. The remaining pueblo
  has not been determined absolutely. Sichomovi and Hano are
  comparatively modern.

  [497] Acoma. See p. 311, note 2.

  [498] The Tigua pueblos; see p. 312, note 2.

  [499] See p. 314, note 1.

  [500] Meaning that the provinces of Tiguex and Tutahaco were
  those farthest down the valley.

  [501] The pueblos of the Queres, or Keresan, family. See p. 327,
  note 3.

  [502] Toward the north, in the direction of Santa Fé.

  [503] Ximena itself was Galisteo. The others were "Coquite" and
  the "Pueblo de los Silos." See p. 356, notes 2 and 3.

  [504] Pecos. See p. 355, note 2.

  [505] Jemez, including Giusiwá, Amushungkwá, Patoqua, and
  Astyalakwá. There are many ruins in the vicinity, including those
  of a large Spanish church at Giusiwá. Evidently some of the Sia
  villages are here included.

  [506] The Jemez villages about the Jemez Hot Springs, above the
  present Jemez pueblo. Castañeda here duplicates his provinces
  somewhat, as the Aguas Calientes pueblos were Jemez, Giusiwá
  being one of the most prominent.

  [507] See p. 340, note 1. This group of Tewa villages doubtless
  included San Juan, Santa Clara, San Ildefonso, Tesuque, Nambe,
  Pojoaque, and Yukiwingge. Jacona, Cuyamunque, and others were
  also occupied by the Tewas during this period, no doubt, but
  these may have been included in Castañeda's province of the Snowy

  [508] Taos. See p. 340, note 4.

  [509] Sia, a Queres pueblo, probably included, with Santa Ana, in
  his "Quirix" group, above.

In all, there are sixty-six villages.[510] Tiguex appears to be in
the centre of the villages. Valladolid is the farthest up the river
toward the northeast. The four villages down the river are toward the
southeast, because the river turns toward the east.[511] It is 130
leagues--ten more or less--from the farthest point that was seen down
the river to the farthest point up the river, and all the settlements
are within this region. Including those at a distance, there are
sixty-six villages in all, as I have said, and in all of them there
may be some 20,000 men, which may be taken to be a fair estimate of
the population of the villages.[512] There are no houses or other
buildings between one village and another, but where we went it is
entirely uninhabited. These people, since they are few, and their
manners, government, and habits are so different from all the nations
that have been seen and discovered in these western regions, must
come from that part of Greater India, the coast of which lies to
the west of this country, for they could have come down from that
country, crossing the mountain chains and following down the river,
settling in what seemed to them the best place. As they multiplied,
they have kept on making settlements until they lost the river when
it buried itself underground, its course being in the direction
of Florida. It [the Rio Grande] comes down from the northeast,
where they [Coronado's army] could certainly have found signs of
villages. He [Coronado] preferred, however, to follow the reports
of the Turk, but it would have been better to cross the mountains
where this river rises. I believe they would have found traces of
riches and would have reached the lands from which these people
started, which from its location is on the edge of Greater India,
although the region is neither known nor understood, because from the
trend of the coast it appears that the land between Norway and China
is very far up. The country from sea to sea is very wide, judging
from the location of both coasts, as well as from what Captain
Villalobos discovered when he went in search of China by the sea to
the west,[513] and from what has been discovered on the North Sea
concerning the trend of the coast of Florida toward the Bacallaos, up
toward Norway.[514]

  [510] Castañeda lists seventy-one, probably having added others
  without altering the total here given.

  [511] The trend of the Rio Grande is really southwestward until
  after the southern limit of the old Pueblo settlements is passed.
  Perhaps Castañeda had in mind the southeastward course of the
  stream farther south "toward Florida," as mentioned later in this
  paragraph. He is probably here speaking from hearsay, as the
  exploration downstream was not made by the main body.

  [512] This would give a total Pueblo population of about 70,000,
  whereas it could scarcely have much exceeded Castañeda's
  estimated number of men alone.

  [513] Ruy Lopez de Villalobos sailed from Acapulco, Mexico, in
  command of four vessels, in 1542, discovered the Caroline and
  Pelew archipelagos and sighted Caesarea Caroli, believed to be
  Luzon, of the Philippine group. Later he established a colony on
  an island which he called Antonio or Saragan. Supplies failing,
  he despatched three of the vessels to Mexico, but these were
  wrecked. Forced by hunger to flee to Amboina, Villalobos was
  imprisoned by the Portuguese. One of his men, escaping, carried
  the news to Mexico in 1549.

  [514] "The Spanish text," remarks Mr. Winship, "fully justifies
  Castañeda's statement that he was not skilled in the arts of
  rhetoric and geography."

To return then to the proposition with which I began, I say that the
settlements and people already named were all that were seen in a
region seventy leagues wide and 130 long, in the settled country
along the river Tiguex.[515] In New Spain there are not one but
many establishments containing a larger number of people. Silver
metals[516] were found in many of their villages, which they use for
glazing and painting their earthenware.

  [515] Castañeda here contradicts himself, as Pecos, Acoma, and
  the Zuñi and Tusayan groups of pueblos are not in the valley of
  the Rio Grande.

  [516] Previously called antimony. See p. 355, note 1.

Chapter 7

     _Which treats of the plains that were crossed, of the cows, and
     of the people who inhabit them._

We have spoken of the settlements of high houses which are situated
in what seems to be the most level and open part of the mountains,
since it is 150 leagues across before entering the level country
between the two mountain chains which I said were near the North
Sea and the South Sea, which might better be called the Western Sea
along this coast. This mountain series is the one which is near
the South Sea. In order to show that the settlements are in the
middle of the mountains, I will state that it is eighty leagues from
Chichilticalli, where we began to cross this country, to Cibola; from
Cibola, which is the first village, to Cicuye, which is the last on
the way across, is seventy leagues; it is thirty leagues from Cicuye
to where the plains begin. It may be we went across in an indirect or
roundabout way, which would make it seem as if there was more country
than if it had been crossed in a direct line,[517] and it may be more
difficult and rougher. This can not be known certainly, because the
mountains change their direction above the bay at the mouth of the
Firebrand (Tizon) River.[518]

  [517] After leaving Cicuye (Pecos) the army marched down the
  river for four days, crossed the stream over a bridge that
  they had built, and then reached the Staked Plain of Texas by
  travelling first a northeasterly then a southeasterly course. See
  Pt. 1, chap. 19.

  [518] The Rio Colorado.

Now we will speak of the plains. The country is spacious and level,
and is more than 400 leagues wide in the part between the two
mountain ranges--one, that which Francisco Vazquez Coronado crossed,
and the other that which the force under Don Fernando de Soto
crossed, near the North Sea, entering the country from Florida. No
settlements were seen anywhere on these plains.[519]

  [519] That is, if the writer overlooks the settlements (one of
  them called Cona) in the ravines of the headwaters of the Texas
  streams, about the eastern escarpment of the Staked Plain,
  previously mentioned.

In traversing 250 leagues, the other mountain range was not seen, nor
a hill nor a hillock which was three times as high as a man. Several
lakes were found at intervals; they were round as plates, a stone's
throw or more across, some fresh and some salt.[520] The grass grows
tall near these lakes; away from them it is very short, a span or
less. The country is like a bowl, so that when a man sits down, the
horizon surrounds him all around at the distance of a musket shot.
There are no groves of trees except at the rivers, which flow at the
bottom of some ravines where the trees grow so thick that they were
not noticed until one was right on the edge of them. They are of dead
earth. There are paths down into these, made by the cows when they
go to the water, which is essential throughout these plains. As I
have related in the first part, people follow the cows, hunting them
and tanning the skins to take to the settlements in the winter to
sell, since they go there to pass the winter, each company going to
those which are nearest, some to the settlements at Cicuye, others
toward Quivira, and others to the settlements which are situated
in the direction of Florida. These people are called Querechos and
Teyas. They described some large settlements, and judging from what
was seen of these people and from the accounts they gave of other
places, there are a good many more of these people than there are
of those at the settlements. They have better figures, are better
warriors, and are more feared. They travel like the Arabs, with their
tents and troops of dogs loaded with poles[521] and having Moorish
pack-saddles with girths. When the load gets disarranged, the dogs
howl, calling some one to fix them right. These people eat raw flesh
and drink blood. They do not eat human flesh.[522] They are a kind
people and not cruel. They are faithful friends. They are able to
make themselves very well understood by means of signs.[523] They dry
the flesh in the sun, cutting it thin like a leaf,[524] and when dry
they grind it like meal to keep it and make a sort of sea soup of
it to eat. A handful thrown into a pot swells up so as to increase
very much. They season it with fat, which they always try to secure
when they kill a cow.[525] They empty a large gut and fill it with
blood, and carry this around the neck to drink when they are thirsty.
When they open the belly of a cow, they squeeze out the chewed grass
and drink the juice that remains behind, because they say that this
contains the essence of the stomach. They cut the hide open at the
back and pull it off at the joints, using a flint as large as a
finger, tied in a little stick, with as much ease as if working
with a good iron tool. They give it an edge with their own teeth.
The quickness with which they do this is something worth seeing and

  [520] The salt lakes near the Texas-New Mexico boundary. Further
  allusion to these salt lakes is made in Pt. 1, chap. 21.

  [521] The well-known travois of the plains tribes. The poles were
  those used to support the tents, or tipis, and were usually of

  [522] Some of the tribes of Texas, however, especially the
  Attacapa and the Tonkawa, were noted as cannibals.

  [523] The sign language was in general use among the tribes
  of the great plains, rendered necessary by the diversity of
  languages. See Mallery, _Introduction to the Study of Sign
  Language_ (Washington, 1880); Clark, _Indian Sign Language_

  [524] The "jerked beef" of the later frontiersmen.

  [525] The _pemmican_ of the Indians.

There are very great numbers of wolves on these plains, which go
around with the cows. They have white skins. The deer are pied with
white. Their skin is loose, so that when they are killed it can
be pulled off with the hand while warm, coming off like pigskin.
The rabbits, which are very numerous, are so foolish that those
on horseback killed them with their lances. This is when they are
mounted among the cows. They fly from a person on foot.

Chapter 8

     _Of Quivira, of where it is and some information about it._

Quivira is to the west[526] of those ravines, in the midst of the
country, somewhat nearer the mountains toward the sea, for the
country is level as far as Quivira, and there they began to see some
mountain chains. The country is well settled. Judging from what was
seen on the borders of it, this country is very similar to that of
Spain in the varieties of vegetation and fruits. There are plums like
those of Castile, grapes, nuts, mulberries, oats, pennyroyal, wild
marjoram, and large quantities of flax, but this does not do them any
good, because they do not know how to use it.[527] The people are of
almost the same sort and appearance as the Teyas. They have villages
like those in New Spain. The houses are round, without a wall, and
they have one story like a loft, under the roof, where they sleep and
keep their belongings. The roofs are of straw.[528] There are other
thickly settled provinces around it containing large numbers of men.
A friar named Juan de Padilla remained in this province, together
with a Spanish-Portuguese and a negro and a half-blood and some
Indians from the province of Capothan,[529] in New Spain. They killed
the friar because he wanted to go to the province of the Guas,[530]
who were their enemies. The Spaniard escaped by taking flight on a
mare, and afterward reached New Spain, coming out by way of Panuco.
The Indians from New Spain who accompanied the friar were allowed by
the murderers to bury him, and then they followed the Spaniard and
overtook him. This Spaniard was a Portuguese, named Campo.[531]

  [526] Castañeda is sometimes confused in his directions. In
  this instance unless "west" (_poniente_) is a slip of the pen,
  he evidently forgot that the army travelled for weeks to the
  north, "by the needle," after journeying for some distance toward
  sunrise from the ravines of western Texas.

  [527] This flora is characteristic of the upper plains generally,
  and the passage has been quoted by students of the route to show
  that Quivira lay both in Kansas and in Nebraska.

  [528] Note the character of the houses as one of the chief means
  of determining the inhabitants of Quivira. See p. 337, note 1.

  [529] The Jaramillo narrative says Capottan or Capotean.

  [530] Possibly the Kaw or Kansa Indians. See Pt. 3, chap. 4.

  [531] Compare Herrera, _Historia General_, dec. vi., lib. ix.,
  cap. xii., Vol. III., p. 207 (ed. 1730); Gomara, _Historia
  General_, cap. CCXIIII. (1553); Mota Padilla, _Historia de la
  Conquista_, 1742, p. 167 (1870); and specially Bandelier in
  _American Catholic Quarterly Review_, XV. 551-565 (Philadelphia,
  July, 1890).

The great river of the Holy Spirit (Espiritu Santo),[532] which Don
Fernando de Soto discovered in the country of Florida, flows through
this country. It passes through a province called Arache,[533]
according to the reliable accounts which were obtained here. The
sources were not visited, because, according to what they said, it
comes from a very distant country in the mountains of the South
Sea, from the part that sheds its waters onto the plains. It flows
across all the level country and breaks through the mountains of the
North Sea, and comes out where the people with Don Fernando de Soto
navigated it. This is more than 300 leagues from where it enters
the sea.[534] On account of this, and also because it has large
tributaries, it is so mighty when it enters the sea that they lost
sight of the land before the water ceased to be fresh.[535]

  [532] The Missouri-Mississippi.

  [533] The Harahey of Jaramillo's account--evidently the Pawnee
  country, about the Platte River, Nebraska. The "Relacion
  del Suceso," _Fourteenth Report of the Bureau of Ethnology_
  (Washington, 1896), spells it Harale.

  [534] The North and the South seas are the Atlantic and the
  Pacific oceans respectively.

  [535] See Cabeza de Vaca's narrative in the present volume.

This country of Quivira was the last that was seen, of which I am
able to give any description or information. Now it is proper for
me to return and speak of the army, which I left in Tiguex, resting
for the winter, so that it would be able to proceed or return in
search of these settlements of Quivira, which was not accomplished
after all, because it was God's pleasure that these discoveries
should remain for other peoples and that we who had been there should
content ourselves with saying that we were the first who discovered
it and obtained any information concerning it, just as Hercules knew
the site where Julius Cæsar was to found Seville or Hispales. May
the all-powerful Lord grant that His will be done in everything.
It is certain that if this had not been His will Francisco Vazquez
[Coronado] would not have returned to New Spain without cause or
reason, as he did, and that it would not have been left for those
with Don Fernando de Soto to settle such a good country, as they
have done, and besides settling it to increase its extent, after
obtaining, as they did, information from our army.[536]

  [536] Mr. Winship calls attention to Mota Padilla's reasons
  for the failure of the expedition: "It was most likely the
  chastisement of God that riches were not found on this
  expedition, because, when this ought to have been the secondary
  object of the expedition, and the conversion of all those heathen
  their first aim, they bartered with fate and struggled after the
  secondary; and thus the misfortune is not so much that all those
  labors were without fruit, but the worst is that such a number
  of souls have remained in their blindness." _Historia de la
  Conquista_, 1742, p. 166 (repr. 1870).


     _Which describes what happened to Francisco Vazquez Coronado
     during the winter, and how he gave up the expedition and
     returned to New Spain._

_Laus Deo_

Chapter 1

     _Of how Don Pedro de Tovar came from Señora with some men, and
     Don Garcia Lopez de Cardenas started back to New Spain._

At the end of the first part of this book, we told how Francisco
Vazquez Coronado, when he got back from Quivira, gave orders to
winter at Tiguex, in order to return, when the winter was over, with
his whole army to discover all the settlements in those regions. Don
Pedro de Tovar, who had gone, as we related, to conduct a force from
the city of San Hieronimo, arrived in the meantime with the men whom
he had brought. He had not selected the rebels and seditious men
there, but the most experienced ones and the best soldiers--men whom
he could trust--wisely considering that he ought to have good men in
order to go in search of his general in the country of the Indian
called Turk. Although they found the army at Tiguex when they arrived
there, this did not please them much, because they had come with
great expectations, believing that they would find their general in
the rich country of the Indian called Turk. They consoled themselves
with the hope of going back there, and lived in anticipation of
the pleasure of undertaking this return expedition which the army
would soon make to Quivira. Don Pedro de Tovar brought letters from
New Spain, both from the viceroy, Don Antonio de Mendoza, and from
individuals. Among these was one for Don Garcia Lopez de Cardenas,
which informed him of the death of his brother, the heir, and
summoned him to Spain to receive the inheritance. On this account
he was given permission, and left Tiguex with several other persons
who received permission to go and settle their affairs.[537] There
were many others who would have liked to go, but did not, in order
not to appear fainthearted. During this time the general endeavored
to pacify several villages in the neighborhood which were not well
disposed, and to make peace with the people at Tiguex. He tried also
to procure some of the cloth of the country, because the soldiers
were almost naked and poorly clothed, full of lice, which they were
unable to get rid of or avoid.

  [537] According to the _Relacion del Suceso_: "Don Garcia Lopez
  de Cardenas started off for Mexico, who, besides the fact
  that his arm was very bad, had permission from the viceroy on
  account of the death of his brother. Ten or twelve who were sick
  went with him, and not a man among them all who could fight."
  Cardenas, it will be recalled, had broken his arm. See Pt. 1,
  chap. 19.

The general, Francisco Vazquez Coronado, had been beloved and obeyed
by his captains and soldiers as heartily as any of those who have
ever started out in the Indies. Necessity knows no law, and the
captains who collected the cloth divided it badly, taking the best
for themselves and their friends and soldiers, and leaving the rest
for the soldiers, and so there began to be some angry murmuring on
account of this. Others also complained because they noticed that
some favored ones were spared in the work and in the watches and
received better portions of what was divided, both of cloth and food.
On this account it is thought that they began to say that there was
nothing in the country of Quivira which was worth returning for,
which was no slight cause of what afterward happened, as will be seen.

Chapter 2

     _Of the general's fall, and of how the return to New Spain was

After the winter[538] was over, the return to Quivira was announced,
and the men began to prepare the things needed. Since nothing in this
life is at the disposition of men, but all is under the ordination
of Almighty God, it was His will that we should not accomplish
this, and so it happened that one feast day the general went out on
horseback to amuse himself, as usual, riding with the captain Don
Rodrigo Maldonado. He was on a powerful horse, and his servants had
put on a new girth, which must have been rotten at the time, for it
broke during the race and he fell over on the side where Don Rodrigo
was, and as his horse passed over him it hit his head with its hoof,
which laid him at the point of death, and his recovery was slow and

  [538] Of 1541-1542.

During this time, while he was in his bed, Don Garcia Lopez de
Cardenas, who had started to go to New Spain, came back in flight
from Suya, because he had found that town deserted and the people and
horses and cattle all dead.[539] When he reached Tiguex and learned
the sad news that the general was near his end, as already related,
they did not dare to tell him until he had recovered, and when he
finally got up and learned of it, it affected him so much that he
had to go back to bed again. He may have done this in order to bring
about what he afterward accomplished, as was believed later. It was
while he was in this condition that he recollected what a scientific
friend of his in Salamanca had told him, that he would become a
powerful lord in distant lands, and that he would have a fall from
which he would never be able to recover. This expectation of death
made him desire to return and die where he had a wife and children.
As the physician and surgeon who was doctoring him, and also acted as
a talebearer, suppressed the murmurings that were going about among
the soldiers, he treated secretly and underhandedly with several
gentlemen who agreed with him. They set the soldiers to talking
about going back to New Spain, in little knots and gatherings, and
induced them to hold consultations about it, and had them send papers
to the general, signed by all the soldiers, through their ensigns,
asking for this. They all entered into it readily, and not much
time needed to be spent, since many desired it already. When they
asked him, the general acted as if he did not want to do it, but all
the gentlemen and captains supported them, giving him their signed
opinions, and as some were in this, they could give it at once,
and they even persuaded others to do the same. Thus they made it
seem as if they ought to return to New Spain, because they had not
found any riches, nor had they discovered any settled country out of
which estates could be formed for all the army. When he had obtained
their signatures, the return to New Spain was at once announced, and
since nothing can ever be concealed, the double dealing began to
be understood, and many of the gentlemen found that they had been
deceived and had made a mistake. They tried in every way to get
their signatures back again from the general, who guarded them so
carefully that he did not go out of one room, making his sickness
seem very much worse, and putting guards about his person and room,
and at night about the floor on which he slept. In spite of all this,
they stole his chest, and it is said that they did not find their
signatures in it, because he kept them in his mattress; on the
other hand, it is said that they did recover them. They asked the
general to give them sixty picked men, with whom they would remain
and hold the country until the viceroy could send them support, or
recall them, or else that the general would leave them the army and
pick out sixty men to go back with him. But the soldiers did not
want to remain either way, some because they had turned their prow
toward New Spain, and others because they saw clearly the trouble
that would arise over who should have the command. The gentlemen, I
do not know whether because they had sworn fidelity or because they
feared that the soldiers would not support them, did what had been
decided on, although with an ill-will, and from this time on they did
not obey the general as readily as formerly, and they did not show
any affection for him. He made much of the soldiers and humored them,
with the result that he did what he desired and secured the return of
the whole army.

  [539] Cardenas had "reached the town of the Spaniards and found
  it burned and two Spaniards and many Indians and horses dead,
  and he returned to the river on this account." (_Relacion del

Chapter 3

     _Of the rebellion at Suya and the reasons the settlers gave for

We have already stated in the last chapter that Don Garcia Lopez de
Cardenas came back from Suya in flight, having found that country
risen in rebellion. He told how and why that town was deserted,
which occurred as I will relate. The entirely worthless fellows were
all who had been left in that town, the mutinous and seditious men,
besides a few who were honored with the charge of public affairs
and who were left to govern the others. Thus the bad dispositions
of the worthless secured the power, and they held daily meetings
and councils and declared that they had been betrayed and were not
going to be rescued, since the others had been directed to go through
another part of the country, where there was a more convenient route
to New Spain, which was not so, because they were still almost on the
direct road. This talk led some of them to revolt, and they chose one
Pedro de Avila as their captain. They went back to Culiacan, leaving
the captain, Diego de Alcaraz, sick in the town of San Hieronimo,
with only a small force. He did not have anyone whom he could send
after them to compel them to return. They killed a number of people
at several villages along the way. Finally they reached Culiacan,
where Hernando Arias de Saabedra,[540] who was waiting for Juan
Gallego to come back from New Spain with a force, detained them by
means of promises, so that Gallego could take them back. Some who
feared what might happen to them ran away one night to New Spain.
Diego de Alcaraz, who had remained at Suya with a small force, sick,
was not able to hold his position, although he would have liked to,
on account of the poisonous herb which the natives use.[541] When
these noticed how weak the Spaniards were, they did not continue to
trade with them as they formerly had done. Veins of gold had already
been discovered before this, but they were unable to work these,
because the country was at war. The disturbance was so great that
they did not cease to keep watch and to be more than usually careful.

  [540] Compare the spelling of this name on p. 297.

  [541] That is, to poison their arrows.

The town was situated on a little river.[542] One night they suddenly
saw fires which they were not accustomed to, and on this account
they doubled the watches, but not having noticed anything during
the whole night, they grew careless along toward morning, and the
enemy entered the village so silently that they were not seen until
they began to kill and plunder. A number of men reached the plain as
well as they could, but while they were getting out the captain was
mortally wounded. Several Spaniards came back on some horses after
they had recovered themselves and attacked the enemy, rescuing some,
though only a few. The enemy went off with the booty, leaving three
Spaniards killed[543] besides many of the servants and more than
twenty horses.

  [542] The San Pedro, in Sonora near the Arizona boundary. The
  Indians who made this attack may have been the Sobaipuri.

  [543] See p. 368, note 2.

The Spaniards who survived started off the same day on foot, not
having any horses. They went toward Culiacan, keeping away from the
roads, and did not find any food until they reached Corazones where
the Indians, like the good friends they have always been, provided
them with food. From here they continued to Culiacan, undergoing
great hardships. Hernandarias de Saabedra, the mayor, received them
and entertained them as well as he could until Juan Gallego arrived
with the reinforcements which he was conducting, on his way to find
the army. He was not a little troubled at finding that post deserted,
when he expected that the army would be in the rich country which had
been described by the Indian called Turk, because he looked like one.

Chapter 4

     _Of how Friar Juan de Padilla and Friar Luis remained in the
     country and the army prepared to return to Mexico._

When the general, Francisco Vasquez, saw that everything was now
quiet, and that his schemes had gone as he wished, he ordered that
everything should be ready to start on the return to New Spain by the
beginning of the month of April, in the year 1543 [1542].

Seeing this, Friar Juan de Padilla, a regular brother of the lesser
order, and another, Friar Luis,[544] a lay brother, told the general
that they wanted to remain in that country--Friar Juan de Padilla in
Quivira, because his teachings seemed to promise fruit there, and
Friar Luis at Cicuye. On this account, as it was Lent at the time,
the father made this the subject of his sermon to the companies one
Sunday, establishing his proposition on the authority of the Holy
Scriptures. He declared his zeal for the conversion of these peoples
and his desire to draw them to the faith, and stated that he had
received permission to do it, although this was not necessary. The
general sent a company to escort them as far as Cicuye, where Friar
Luis stopped, while Friar Juan went on back to Quivira with the
guides who had conducted the general, taking with him the Portuguese,
as we related, and the half-blood, and the Indians from New Spain.
He was martyred a short time after he arrived there, as we related
in the second part, Chapter 8. Thus we may be sure that he died a
martyr, because his zeal was holy and earnest.

  [544] Fray Luis Descalona, or De Escalona, or De Ubeda. For
  references on these friars, see p. 365, note 1. See also p. 355,
  note 2.

Friar Luis remained at Cicuye. Nothing more has been heard about him
since, but before the army left Tiguex some men who went to take him
a number of sheep that were left for him to keep, met him as he was
on his way to visit some other villages, which were fifteen or twenty
leagues from Cicuye, accompanied by some followers. He felt very
hopeful that he was liked at the village and that his teaching would
bear fruit, although he complained that the old men were falling away
from him. I, for my part, believe that they finally killed him. He
was a man of good and holy life, and may Our Lord protect him and
grant that he may convert many of those peoples, and end his days in
guiding them in the faith. We do not need to believe otherwise, for
the people in those parts are pious and not at all cruel. They are
friends, or rather, enemies of cruelty, and they remained faithful
and loyal friends.[545]

  [545] Gen. W. W. H. Davis, in his _Spanish Conquest of New
  Mexico_, p. 231, gives the following extract, translated from an
  old Spanish MS. at Santa Fé: "When Coronado returned to Mexico,
  he left behind him, among the Indians of Cibola, the father Fray
  Francisco Juan de Padilla, the father Fray Juan de la Cruz, and
  a Portuguese named Andres del Campo. Soon after the Spaniards
  departed, Padilla and the Portuguese set off in search of the
  country of the Grand Quivira, where the former understood there
  were innumerable souls to be saved. After travelling several
  days, they reached a large settlement in the Quivira country. The
  Indians came out to receive them in battle array, when the friar,
  knowing their intentions, told the Portuguese and his attendants
  to take to flight, while he would await their coming, in order
  that they might vent their fury on him as they ran. The former
  took to flight, and, placing themselves on a height within view,
  saw what happened to the friar. Padilla awaited their coming upon
  his knees, and when they arrived where he was they immediately
  put him to death. The same happened to Juan de la Cruz, who was
  left behind at Cibola, which people killed him. The Portuguese
  and his attendants made their escape, and ultimately arrived
  safely in Mexico, where he told what had occurred." In reply to
  a request for further information regarding this manuscript,
  General Davis stated that when he revisited Santa Fé, a few
  years ago, he learned that one of his successors in the post
  of governor of the territory, having despaired of disposing of
  the immense mass of old documents and records deposited in his
  office, by the slow process of using them to kindle fires, had
  sold the entire lot--an invaluable collection of material bearing
  on the history of the Southwest and its early European and native
  inhabitants--as junk. (Winship.) The governor referred to was
  Rev. William A. Pile, appointed by President Grant and serving in

After the friars had gone, the general, fearing that they might be
injured if people were carried away from that country to New Spain,
ordered the soldiers to let any of the natives who were held as
servants go free to their villages whenever they might wish. In my
opinion, though I am not sure, it would have been better if they had
been kept and taught among Christians.

The general was very happy and contented when the time arrived and
everything needed for the journey was ready, and the army started
from Tiguex on its way back to Cibola. One thing of no small note
happened during this part of the trip. The horses were in good
condition for their work when they started, fat and sleek, but more
than thirty died during the ten days which it took to reach Cibola,
and there was not a day in which two or three or more did not die. A
large number of them also died afterward before reaching Culiacan, a
thing that did not happen during all the rest of the journey.

After the army reached Cibola, it rested before starting across the
wilderness, because this was the last of the settlements in that
country. The whole country was left well disposed and at peace, and
several of our Indian allies remained there.[546]

  [546] When Antonio de Espejo visited Cibola, or Zuñi, in 1583,
  he found three Indians, natives of Mexico, who had been left by
  Coronado but who had forgotten their mother tongue. He also found
  crosses that had been erected by Coronado.

Chapter 5

     _Of how the army left the settlements and marched to Culiacan,
     and of what happened on the way._

Leaving astern, as we might say, the settlements that had been
discovered in the new land, of which, as I have said, the seven
villages of Cibola were the first to be seen and the last that were
left, the army started off, marching across the wilderness. The
natives kept following the rear of the army for two or three days,
to pick up any baggage or servants, for although they were still at
peace and had always been loyal friends, when they saw that we were
going to leave the country entirely, they were glad to get some of
our people in their power, although I do not think that they wanted
to injure them, from what I was told by some who were not willing to
go back with them when they teased and asked them to. Altogether,
they carried off several people besides those who had remained of
their own accord, among whom good interpreters could be found to-day.
The wilderness was crossed without opposition, and on the second
day before reaching Chichilticalli Juan Gallego met the army, as he
was coming from New Spain with reenforcements of men and necessary
supplies for the army, expecting that he would find the army in the
country of the Indian called Turk. When Juan Gallego saw that the
army was returning, the first thing he said was not, "I am glad you
are coming back," and he did not like it any better after he had
talked with the general. After he had reached the army, or rather
the quarters, there was quite a little movement among the gentlemen
toward going back with the new force which had made no slight
exertions in coming thus far, having encounters every day with the
Indians of these regions who had risen in revolt, as will be related.
There was talk of making a settlement somewhere in that region
until the viceroy could receive an account of what had occurred.
Those soldiers who had come from the new lands would not agree to
anything except the return to New Spain, so that nothing came of
the proposals made at the consultations, and although there was some
opposition, they were finally quieted. Several of the mutineers who
had deserted the town of Corazones came with Juan Gallego, who had
given them his word as surety for their safety, and even if the
general had wanted to punish them, his power was slight, for he had
been disobeyed already and was not much respected. He began to be
afraid again after this, and made himself sick, and kept a guard. In
several places yells were heard and Indians seen, and some of the
horses were wounded and killed, before Batuco[547] was reached, where
the friendly Indians from Corazones came to meet the army and see the
general. They were always friendly and had treated all the Spaniards
who passed through their country well, furnishing them with what
food they needed, and men, if they needed these. Our men had always
treated them well and repaid them for these things. During this
journey the juice of the quince was proved to be a good protection
against the poison of the natives, because at one place, several days
before reaching Señora, the hostile Indians wounded a Spaniard called
Mesa, and he did not die, although the wound of the fresh poison is
fatal, and there was a delay of over two hours before curing him with
the juice. The poison, however, had left its mark upon him. The skin
rotted and fell off until it left the bones and sinews bare, with
a horrible smell. The wound was in the wrist, and the poison had
reached as far as the shoulder when he was cured. The skin on all
this fell off.

  [547] There were two settlements in Sonora bearing this name, one
  occupied by the Eudeve and the other by the Tegui division of the
  Opata. The latter village, which was probably the one referred
  to by Castañeda, was situated on the Rio de Oposura, a western
  tributary of the Yaqui, eight leagues east of San José Matape. It
  became the seat of the Jesuit mission of Santa María in 1629.

The army proceeded without taking any rest, because the provisions
had begun to fail by this time. These districts were in rebellion,
and so there were not any victuals where the soldiers could get them
until they reached Petlatlan, although they made several forays into
the cross country in search of provisions. Petlatlan is in the
province of Culiacan, and on this account was at peace, although they
had several surprises after this.[548] The army rested here several
days to get provisions. After leaving here they were able to travel
more quickly than before, for the thirty leagues of the valley of
Culiacan, where they were welcomed back again as people who came with
their governor, who had suffered ill treatment.

  [548] See pp. 346, 347. Petatlan is an Aztec word signifying
  "place of the petates," or mats, referring to the character of
  the native dwellings.

Chapter 6

     _Of how the general started from Culiacan to give the viceroy an
     account of the army with which he had been intrusted._

It seemed, indeed, as if the arrival in the valley of Culiacan had
ended the labors of this journey, partly because the general was
governor there and partly because it was inhabited by Christians.
On this account some began to disregard their superiors and the
authority which their captains had over them, and some captains even
forgot the obedience due to their general. Each one played his own
game, so that while the general was marching toward the town, which
was still ten leagues away, many of the men, or most of them, left
him in order to rest in the valley, and some even proposed not to
follow him. The general understood that he was not strong enough
to compel them, although his position as governor gave him fresh
authority. He determined to accomplish it by a better method, which
was to order all the captains to provide food and meat from the
stores of several villages that were under his control as governor.
He pretended to be sick, keeping his bed, so that those who had any
business with him could speak to him or he with them more freely,
without hindrance or observation, and he kept sending for his
particular friends in order to ask them to be sure to speak to the
soldiers and encourage them to accompany him back to New Spain, and
to tell them that he would request the viceroy, Don Antonio de
Mendoza, to show them especial favor, and that he would do so himself
for those who might wish to remain in his government. After this
had been done, he started with his army at a very bad time, when
the rains were beginning, for it was about Saint John's day,[549]
at which season it rains continuously. In the uninhabited country
which they passed through as far as Compostela there are numerous
very dangerous rivers, full of large and fierce alligators. While the
army was halting at one of these rivers, a soldier who was crossing
from one side to the other was seized, in sight of everybody, and
carried off by an alligator without its being possible to help him.
The general proceeded, leaving the men who did not want to follow
him all along the way, and reached Mexico with less than 100 men.
He made his report to the viceroy, Don Antonio de Mendoza, who did
not receive him very graciously, although he gave him his discharge.
His reputation was gone from this time on. He kept the government of
New Galicia, which had been entrusted to him, for only a short time,
when the viceroy took it himself, until the arrival of the court,
or audiencia, which still governs it. And this was the end of those
discoveries and of the expedition which was made to these new lands.

  [549] June 24, 1542.

It now remains for us to describe the way in which to enter the
country by a more direct route, although there is never a short cut
without hard work. It is always best to find out what those know
who have prepared the way, who know what will be needed. This can
be found elsewhere, and I will now tell where Quivira lies, what
direction the army took, and the direction in which Greater India
lies, which was what they pretended to be in search of, when the army
started thither. Today, since Villalobos[550] has discovered that
this part of the coast of the South Sea trends toward the west, it
is clearly seen and acknowledged that, since we were in the north,
we ought to have turned to the west instead of toward the east, as
we did. With this, we will leave this subject and will proceed to
finish this treatise, since there are several noteworthy things of
which I must give an account, which I have left to be treated more
extensively in the two following chapters.

  [550] See p. 360, note 2.

Chapter 7

     _Of the adventures of Captain Juan Gallego while he was bringing
     reenforcements through the revolted country._

One might well have complained when in the last chapter I passed in
silence over the exploits of Captain Juan Gallego with his twenty
companions. I will relate them in the present chapter, so that in
times to come those who read about it or tell of it may have a
reliable authority on whom to rely. I am not writing fables, like
some of the things which we read about nowadays in the books of
chivalry. If it were not that those stories contained enchantments,
there are some things which our Spaniards have done in our own day
in these parts, in their conquests and encounters with the Indians,
which, for deeds worthy of admiration, surpass not only the books
already mentioned, but also those which have been written about the
twelve peers of France, because, if the deadly strength which the
authors of those times attributed to their heroes and the brilliant
and resplendent arms with which they adorned them, are fully
considered, and compared with the small stature of the men of our
time and the few and poor weapons which they have in these parts, the
remarkable things which our people have undertaken and accomplished
with such weapons are more to be wondered at to-day than those of
which the ancients write, and just because, too, they fought with
barbarous naked people, as ours have with Indians, among whom there
are always men who are brave and valiant and very sure bowmen, for
we have seen them pierce the wings while flying, and hit hares while
running after them. I have said all this in order to show that some
things which we consider fables may be true, because we see greater
things every day in our own times, just as in future times people
will greatly wonder at the deeds of Don Fernando Cortes, who dared
to go into the midst of New Spain with 300 men against the vast
number of people in Mexico, and who with 500 Spaniards succeeded in
subduing it, and made himself lord over it in two years.

The deeds of Don Pedro de Alvarado in the conquest of Guatemala, and
those of Montejo in Tabasco, the conquests of the mainland and of
Peru, were all such as to make me remain silent concerning what I now
wish to relate; but since I have promised to give an account of what
happened on this journey, I want the things I am now going to relate
to be known as well as those others of which I have spoken.

The captain Juan Gallego, then, reached the town of Culiacan with a
very small force. There he collected as many as he could of those who
had escaped from the town of Hearts, or, more correctly, from Suya,
which made in all twenty-two men, and with these he marched through
all of the settled country, across which he travelled 200 leagues
with the country in a state of war and the people in rebellion,
although they had formerly been friendly toward the Spaniards, having
encounters with the enemy almost every day. He always marched with
the advance guard, leaving two-thirds of his force behind with the
baggage. With six or seven Spaniards, and without any of the Indian
allies whom he had with him, he forced his way into their villages,
killing and destroying and setting them on fire, coming upon the
enemy so suddenly and with such quickness and boldness that they did
not have a chance to collect or even to do anything at all, until
they became so afraid of him that there was not a town which dared
wait for him, but they fled before him as from a powerful army;
so much so, that for ten days, while he was passing through the
settlements, they did not have an hour's rest. He did all this with
his seven companions, so that when the rest of the force came up
with the baggage there was nothing for them to do except to pillage,
since the others had already killed and captured all the people they
could lay their hands on and the rest had fled. They did not pause
anywhere, so that although the villages ahead of him received some
warning, they were upon them so quickly that they did not have a
chance to collect. Especially in the region where the town of Hearts
had been, he killed and hung a large number of people to punish them
for their rebellion. He did not lose a companion during all this,
nor was anyone wounded, except one soldier, who was wounded in the
eyelid by an Indian who was almost dead, whom he was stripping. The
weapon broke the skin and, as it was poisoned, he would have had to
die if he had not been saved by the quince juice; he lost his eye
as it was. These deeds of theirs were such that I know those people
will remember them as long as they live, and especially four or five
friendly Indians who went with them from Corazones, who thought that
they were so wonderful that they held them to be something divine
rather than human.[551] If he had not fallen in with our army as he
did, they would have reached the country of the Indian called Turk,
which they expected to march to, and they would have arrived there
without danger on account of their good order and the skill with
which he was leading them, and their knowledge and ample practice in
war. Several of these men are still in this town of Culiacan, where I
am now writing this account and narrative, where they, as well as I
and the others who have remained in this province, have never lacked
for labor in keeping this country quiet, in capturing rebels, and
increasing in poverty and need, and more than ever at the present
hour, because the country is poorer and more in debt than ever before.

  [551] The Indians of this vicinity had a similar regard for
  Cabeza de Vaca and his companions. See the narrative in the
  present volume.

Chapter 8

     _Which describes some remarkable things that were seen on the
     plains, with a description of the bulls._

My silence was not without mystery and dissimulation when, in Chapter
7 of the second part of this book, I spoke of the plains and of
the things of which I will give a detailed account in this chapter,
where all these things may be found together; for these things were
remarkable and something not seen in other parts. I dare to write of
them because I am writing at a time when many men are still living
who saw them and who will vouch for my account. Who could believe
that 1,000 horses and 500 of our cows and more than 5,000 rams and
ewes and more than 1,500 friendly Indians and servants, in travelling
over those plains, would leave no more trace where they had passed
than if nothing had been there--nothing--so that it was necessary to
make piles of bones and cow-dung now and then, so that the rear guard
could follow the army. The grass never failed to become erect after
it had been trodden down, and, although it was short, it was as fresh
and straight as before.

Another thing was a heap of cow bones, a crossbow shot long, or a
very little less, almost twice a man's height in places, and some
eighteen feet or more wide, which was found on the edge of a salt
lake in the southern part, and this in a region where there are no
people who could have made it. The only explanation of this which
could be suggested was that the waves which the north winds must make
in the lake had piled up the bones of the cattle which had died in
the lake, when the old and weak ones who went into the water were
unable to get out. The noticeable thing is the number of cattle that
would be necessary to make such a pile of bones.

Now that I wish to describe the appearance of the bulls, it is to
be noticed first that there was not one of the horses that did not
take flight when he saw them first, for they have a narrow, short
face, the brow two palms across from eye to eye, the eyes sticking
out at the side, so that, when they are running, they can see who is
following them. They have very long beards, like goats, and when they
are running they throw their heads back with the beard dragging on
the ground. There is a sort of girdle round the middle of the body.
The hair is very woolly, like a sheep's, very fine, and in front of
the girdle the hair is very long and rough like a lion's. They have
a great hump, larger than a camel's. The horns are short and thick,
so that they are not seen much above the hair. In May they change the
hair in the middle of the body for a down, which makes perfect lions
of them. They rub against the small trees in the little ravines to
shed their hair, and they continue this until only the down is left,
as a snake changes his skin. They have a short tail, with a bunch of
hair at the end. When they run, they carry it erect like a scorpion.
It is worth noticing that the little calves are red and just like
ours, but they change their color and appearance with time and age.

Another strange thing was that all the bulls that were killed had
their left ears slit, although these were whole when young. The
reason for this was a puzzle that could not be guessed. The wool
ought to make good cloth on account of its fineness, although the
color is not good, because it is the color of buriel.[552]

  [552] The kersey, or coarse woollen cloth out of which the habits
  of the Franciscan friars were made. Hence the name Grey Friars.
  (Winship.) Various attempts were made to manufacture the hair
  into garments, especially stockings, but the ventures did not
  prove profitable. See Hornaday, "The Extinction of the American
  Bison," _Report of the United States National Museum_ for

Another thing worth noticing is that the bulls travelled without cows
in such large numbers that nobody could have counted them, and so far
away from the cows that it was more than forty leagues from where we
began to see the bulls to the place where we began to see the cows.
The country they travelled over was so level and smooth that if one
looked at them the sky could be seen between their legs, so that if
some of them were at a distance they looked like smooth-trunked pines
whose tops joined, and if there was only one bull it looked as if
there were four pines. When one was near them, it was impossible to
see the ground on the other side of them. The reason for all this was
that the country seemed as round as if a man should imagine himself
in a three-pint measure, and could see the sky at the edge of it,
about a crossbow shot from him, and even if a man only lay down on
his back he lost sight of the ground.

I have not written about other things which were seen nor made
any mention of them, because they were not of so much importance,
although it does not seem right for me to remain silent concerning
the fact that they venerate the sign of the cross in the region where
the settlements have high houses. For at a spring which was in the
plain near Acuco they had a cross two palms high and as thick as
a finger, made of wood with a square twig for its crosspiece, and
many little sticks decorated with feathers around it, and numerous
withered flowers, which were the offerings.[553] In a graveyard
outside the village at Tutahaco there appeared to have been a recent
burial. Near the head there was another cross made of two little
sticks tied with cotton thread, and dry withered flowers.[554] It
certainly seems to me that in some way they must have received some
light from the cross of Our Redeemer, Christ, and it may have come by
way of India, from whence they proceeded.

  [553] The cross is common to the Indians and always has been. It
  often is symbolic of the morning and the evening stars. Those
  referred to as having been seen by Coronado's men at Acoma were
  characteristic prayer-sticks, the downy feathers representing
  the breath of life. Such are still in common use by the Pueblo

  [554] Probably dried corn-husk.

Chapter 9

     _Which treats of the direction which the army took, and of how
     another more direct way might be found, if anyone was to return
     to that country._

I very much wish that I possessed some knowledge of cosmography or
geography, so as to render what I wish to say intelligible, and so
that I could reckon up or measure the advantage those people who
might go in search of that country would have if they went directly
through the centre of the country, instead of following the road the
army took. However, with the help of the favor of the Lord, I will
state it as well as I can, making it as plain as possible.

It is, I think, already understood that the Portuguese, Campo, was
the soldier who escaped when Friar Juan de Padilla was killed at
Quivira, and that he finally reached New Spain from Panuco,[555]
having travelled across the plains country until he came to cross the
North Sea mountain chain, keeping the country that Don Hernando de
Soto discovered all the time on his left hand, since he did not see
the river of the Holy Spirit (Espiritu Santo) at all.[556] After he
had crossed the North Sea mountains, he found that he was in Panuco,
so that if he had not tried to go to the North Sea, he would have
come out in the neighborhood of the border land, or the country of
the Sacatecas,[557] of which we now have some knowledge.

  [555] The northeastern province of New Spain.

  [556] That is, he travelled from the Quivira province, in the
  present Kansas, southwestwardly to Mexico.

  [557] Zacatecas.

This way would be somewhat better and more direct for anyone going
back there in search of Quivira, since some of those who came
with the Portuguese are still in New Spain to serve as guides.
Nevertheless, I think it would be best to go through the country of
the Guachichules,[558] keeping near the South Sea mountains all the
time, for there are more settlements and a food supply, for it would
be suicide to launch out on to the plains country, because it is so
vast and is barren of anything to eat, although, it is true, there
would not be much need of this after coming to the cows. This is
only when one goes in search of Quivira, and of the villages which
were described by the Indian called Turk, for the army of Francisco
Vazquez Coronado went the very farthest way round to get there, since
they started from Mexico and went 110 leagues to the west, and then
100 leagues to the northeast, and 250 to the north, and all this
brought them as far as the ravines where the cows were, and after
travelling 850 leagues they were not more than 400 leagues distant
from Mexico by a direct route. If one desires to go to the country
of Tiguex, so as to turn from there toward the west in search of the
country of India, he ought to follow the road taken by the army,
for there is no other, even if one wished to go by a different way,
because the arm of the sea which reaches into this coast toward the
north does not leave room for any. But what might be done is to have
a fleet and cross this gulf and disembark in the neighborhood of the
Island of Negroes[559] and enter the country from there, crossing the
mountain chains in search of the country from which the people at
Tiguex came, or other peoples of the same sort. As for entering from
the country of Florida and from the North Sea, it has already been
observed that the many expeditions which have been undertaken from
that side have been unfortunate and not very successful, because that
part of the country is full of bogs and poisonous fruits, barren,
and the very worst country that is warmed by the sun. But they might
disembark after passing the river of the Holy Spirit, as Don Hernando
de Soto did. Nevertheless, despite the fact that I underwent much
labor, I still think that the way I went to that country is the best.
There ought to be river courses, because the necessary supplies can
be carried on these more easily in large quantities. Horses are the
most necessary things in the new countries, and they frighten the
enemy most.... Artillery is also much feared by those who do not know
how to use it. A piece of heavy artillery would be very good for
settlements like those which Francisco Vazquez Coronado discovered,
in order to knock them down, because he had nothing but some small
machines for slinging and nobody skilful enough to make a catapult
or some other machine which would frighten them, which is very

  [558] This wild tribe inhabited chiefly the region of the present
  state of San Luis Potosí, Mexico. They were known also as
  Cuachichiles and Quachichiles.

  [559] The dictionary of Dominguez says: "Isla de negros; ó isla
  del Almirantazgo, en el grande Océano equinoccial; grande isla
  de la América del Norte, sobre la costa oeste." Apparently the
  location of this island gradually drifted westward with the
  increase of geographical knowledge, until it was finally located
  in the Philippine group. (Winship.)

  [560] This would indicate that the bronze cannon which Coronado
  left at Sia pueblo were worthless.

I say, then, that with what we now know about the trend of the coast
of the South Sea, which has been followed by the ships which explored
the western part, and what is known of the North Sea toward Norway,
the coast of which extends up from Florida, those who now go to
discover the country which Francisco Vasquez entered, and reach the
country of Cibola or of Tiguex, will know the direction in which
they ought to go in order to discover the true direction of the
country which the Marquis of the Valley, Don Hernando Cortes, tried
to find, following the direction of the gulf of the Firebrand (Tizon)

  [561] The Gulf of California (which had been navigated by Cortés)
  and the Rio Colorado.

This will suffice for the conclusion of our narrative. Everything
else rests on the powerful Lord of all things, God Omnipotent, who
knows how and when these lands will be discovered and for whom He has
guarded this good fortune.

                             _Laus Deo._

Finished copying, Saturday the 26th of October, 1596, in Seville.



  Aays, not to be confounded with Ayas, 225 n.;
    Moscoso at, 243;
    Indians of, give battle, 243.
    _See also_ Ayas.

  Açamor, mentioned, 126.

  Acaxes, Indians of Culiacan, 345.

  Acela, town of, 155.

  Acha, _see_ Picuris.

  Achese, cacique of, addresses De Soto, 166-167.

  Acochis, Indian name for gold, 314, 337 n., 342.

  Acoma, identification of Acuco with, 311 n.;
    visit of Alvarado to, 311;
    description of, 311-312;
    visited by Arellano, 316;
    route to, 316;
    mentioned, 358;
    worship of cross at, 384.

  Acoma Indians, water supply of, 312.

  Acosta, Maria de, wife of Pedro Castañeda, 276.

  Acoste, cacique of, comes to De Soto, 180.

  Acubadaos Indians, 87.

  Acuco, _see_ Acoma.

  Adai Indians, 76 n.

  Adobe, making of, described, 352.

  Aguacay, mentioned, 237;
    Moscoso at, 238.

  Aguar, Indian deity, 118.

  Aguas Calientes, pueblos of, 359;
    identification of, 359 n.

  Aguenes Indians, 84, 85.

  Alabama, 183 n.

  Alaniz, Hieronymo, notary, with Narvaez, 22;
    objects to abandonment of ships, 23;
    death of, 57.

  Alarcon, Diego de, confusion of, with Alcaraz, 324 n.

  Alarcon, Hernando de, expedition of by sea, 294;
    narrative of, 279, 294 n.;
    message of, found by Diaz, 303.

  Alarcon, Pedro de, 294 n.

  Albino, Indian, 332 n.

  Alcaraz, Diego de, meeting with Cabeza de Vaca, 112-113;
    his need of food, 113;
    returns from incursion, 119;
    lieutenant of Diaz, 303, 324;
    inefficiency of, 326;
    death of, 371.

  Aleman, Juan, name given Indian of Tiguex, 317, 321.

  Alimamos, overtakes De Soto, 177.

  Alimamu, an Indian chief, 195, 200.

  Alligators, do harm to Indians, 143;
    in rivers of New Galicia, 378.

  Almirantazgo, or Isle of Negroes, 386 n.

  Altamaca, _see_ Altamaha.

  Altamaha, 167 n.

  Altamaha River, 167 n.

  Alvarado, Hernando de, appointed captain, 293;
    protects Coronado at Cibola, 301;
    expedition of, to Rio Grande, 311;
    report of, 279, 311 n.;
    visits Acoma, 311;
    imprisons Pecos chiefs, 315;
    route of, 316 n.;
    at Braba, 341.

  Alvarado, Pedro de, expedition of, to Peru, 288;
    deeds of, 380.

  Alvarez, death of, 6.

  Amaye, Moscoso at, 238.

  Aminoya, Spaniards hear of, 248;
    take quarters at, 249;
    brigantines built at, 250.

  Amushungkwa, a Jemez pueblo, 359 n.

  Anagados Indians, 71 n.

  Anane, a fruit, 140.

  Añasco, Juan de, 135;
    sent by De Soto to explore harbor in Florida, 145;
    goes to Espiritu Santo, 162;
    sent in quest of habitations, 171;
    finds a town twelve leagues off, 171;
    makes road through the woods, 172;
    sent on a reconnoissance, 200, 228, 229;
    advises Moscoso to put out to sea, 260;
    and does so with him, 261;
    meets with opposition from those with him, 261-262;
    again advises putting out to sea, 264.

  Anguille River, 215 n.

  Anhayca Apalache, De Soto at, 161, 162, 164.

  Anhocan, Cabeza de Vaca at, 116.

  Anilco, 227, 228, 245, 248, 249.
    _See also_ Nilco.

  Animals, of Apalachen, 29;
    of Florida, mentioned by the Gentleman of Elvas, 271-272.

  Anoixi, De Soto takes many inhabitants of, 222.

  Antonio de Santa Maria, Franciscan friar, 288.

  Antonio Victoria, friar, accident of, 299.

  Apalache, mentioned, 161;
    has much maize, 156, 226;
    distance from, to Cutifachiqui, 188;
    direction and distance of, from Espiritu Santo, 271, 272.
    _See also_ Apalachen.

  Apalachee Indians, war against, by Creeks, 21 n.;
    by English, 21 n.;
    overcome by Cabeza de Vaca, 28;
    attack the Spaniards, 30, 31;
    eastern tribes of, 330 n.;
    mentioned, 349 n.

  Apalachen, indicated to Narvaez as source of gold, 21-22;
    taken by the Spanish, 28;
    region of, described, 29-30;
    climate of, is cold, 29;
    animals of, 29.

  Apalachicola, town on Savannah River, 21 n.

  Appalachian Mountains, origin of name of, 21 n.

  Appalachee Bay, origin of name of, 21 n.

  Aquiguate, largest town seen by De Soto in Florida, 214;
    De Soto returns to, 215;
    country of, described, 215.

  Aquixo, 227, 270;
    direction of, 271.

  Aquixo, cacique of, comes to De Soto, 203;
    loses five or six of his men, shot by crossbowmen, 203;
    and ten, killed by De Soto's cavalry, 205.

  Arache, province of, 365.

  Arawakan Indians, 21;
    dance ceremony of, 52 n.

  Arbadaos Indians, 80.

  Arche, _see_ Harahey.

  Areitos, among Indians of Malhado,
    held in honor of Cabeza de Vaca, 89.

  Arellano, Tristan de, appointment of, as captain, 292;
    lieutenant to Coronado, 298, 335;
    at Corazones, 301, 303;
    arrives at Cibola, 313;
    route of, 315 n.;
    at Tiguex, 317, 339;
    attacks Cicuye, 341.

  Arispe, _see_ Arizpe.

  Aristotle, quoted, 134.

  Arizpe, 347 n.

  Arkadelphia, 238 n.

  Arkansas city, 227 n.

  Arkansas Post, 226 n.

  Arkansas River, 222 n., 248 n., 249 n.

  Artillery, at Culiacan, 297;
    used by Indians, 357;
    usefulness of, in exploration, 386.

  Astorga, Marquis of, learns what Cabeza de Vaca relates
        to the Emperor regarding New Spain, 137.

  Astudillo, a native of Çafra, to seek Panuco, 49.

  Asturian, the, with Figueroa, 61, 64;
    seen by the Avavares, 79.

  Asturiano, a clergyman, 68, 69.

  Astyalakwa, a Jemez pueblo, 359 n.

  Atabalipa, lord of Peru, 135, 175.

  Atayos Indians, 76, 87.

  Atchafalaya, lower course of Red River, 261 n.

  Attacapan Indians, 51 n., 363 n.

  Audiencia, definition of, 285 n.

  Audiencia of Española, report to, 8;
    edition of report by Oviedo, 8, 10.

  Auia, island of, 49;
    probably not Malhado Island, 49 n.

  Aute, town south of Apalachen, 30, 31;
    reached by Narvaez, 32.

  Autiamque, mentioned, 221, 225, 227, 237;
    De Soto winters at, 222-224;
    distance to Guacay, 270;
    direction of, 271.

  Avavares Indians, receive Cabeza de Vaca, 73;
    healed by him, 6-7, 78;
    ignorant of time, 79.

  Avellaneda, killed by an Indian, 32.

  Avila, Pedro de, leader in rebellion at Suya, 370.

  Awatobi, Hopi pueblo, 307 n., 358 n.

  Axille, De Soto at, 161.

  Ayas, Moscoso crosses river at, 248.

  Ayays, not to be confounded with Aays, 225 n.;
    De Soto at, 225.

  Ayllon, Governor-licentiate, death of, 174.

  Aymay, named Socorro, 171;
    De Soto at, 172;
    location of, 172 n.

  Azores, mentioned, 122.

  Bacallaos, Spanish name for Newfoundland, 343 n., 360.

  Badthing, story of, 78-79.

  Baegert, Father Jacob, on Indians of lower California, 346 n.

  Bahíos, 108.
    _See also_ Buhíos.

  Baldwyn, Mississippi, 212 n.

  Bandelier, A. F., researches on the Seven Cities, 287 n.;
    on Topira, 290 n.;
    on Cicuye, 355 n.

  Bandelier, A. F. and Fanny, _Journey of Nuñez Cabeza de Vaca_,
        cited, 22 n., 59, 87 n., 102 n., 103 n.

  Baracoa, town in Cuba, 142.

  Barbacoa, a store house for maize, 165.

  Barbels, native American fish, 349.

  Barrionuevo, Francisco de, companion of Coronado, 292;
    at Tiguex, 319;
    explorations of, 339-340.

  Baskett, James Newton, investigations of, 326 n.

  Bastian, Francisco, drowning of, 225.

  Batuco, identification of, 376 n.

  Báyamo, town in Cuba, 142, 143.

  Bayou de Vue, 215 n.

  Bayou Macon, 255 n.

  Bears, in pueblo region, 357.

  Béjar, mentioned, 125.

  Bermuda, Cabeza de Vaca at, 121.

  Bernalillo, settlement on site of Tiguex, 278, 317 n.

  Bidai Indians, 80 n.

  Biedma, narrative of, cited, 40 n.;
    referred to, 130 n.

  Big Bayou Meto, 225.

  Big Creek, 21, 215 n.

  Bigotes, _see_ Whiskers.

  Birds, mentioned, 29-30, 272.

  Biscayan Indians, 115 n.

  Bison, first printed reference to, 68 n.;
    described by Cicuye Indians, 311;
    hunted by plains Indians, 330, 362, 363;
    stampede of, 331;
    Coronado's army supplied with meat of, 336;
    piles of bones of, 382;
    Castañeda's description of, 382-383.

  Black Warrior River, 188 n., 189 n.

  Blankets, of cotton, 350.

  Blizzard, experienced by Coronado, 333.

  Bog of Pia, breeds mosquitos, 144.

  Boston Mountains, 221 n.;
    crossed by De Soto, 221.

  Boyomo, settlement of, 347.

  Braba, _see_ Taos.

  Brazos River, 58 n., 244 n., 245 n.

  Bread, maize, 271;
    Indian, 303, 340, 340 n.

  Bridge, built by Spaniards across Cicuye River, 329;
    Indian, across Rio Grande, 340.

  Brigantines, built by Spaniards at Aminoya, 250;
    become separated in the Gulf of Mexico, 263.

  Buffalo, _see_ Bison.

  Buhíos, Arawak word, 19, 79.
    _See also_ Bahíos.

  Burgos, André de, printer, 134, 272.

  Buriel, cloth used by Franciscan friars, 383 n.

  Burning of Indians at stake by Spaniards, 320.

  Caballos, Bahia de, 37, 162 n.
    _See also_ Horses, Bay of.

  Cabeza de Vaca, Alvar Nuñez, narrative of, 1-126;
    birth and parentage, 3;
    significance of name, 3;
    trades and heals among the Indians, 6-7;
    line of travel, 7;
    character of his chronicle, 7;
    his accomplishment, 8;
    report to Audiencia of Española, 8;
    appointed governor of provinces of Rio de la Plata, 8;
    dies, 9;
    bibliography of the _Relacion_, 10-11;
    salutation to Charles V., 12;
    duration of his wandering, 13;
    his idea of the value of his narrative, 13;
    leaves San Lúcar de Barrameda, 4, 14;
    is treasurer and high-sheriff, 4, 14;
    reaches Santo Domingo, 14;
    proceeds to Trinidad and is overtaken by a terrible
          storm, 15-17;
    passes winter at Jagua, 17;
    explores mainland of Florida, with Narvaez, 4, 20;
    believes it wiser to return to vessels, 22-23;
    refuses to sail in charge of them, preferring to share
          risks of march into the country, 24;
    goes with forty men to seek a harbor, 25-26;
    enters Apalachen, 28;
    goes from Aute to find the sea, 33;
    embarks in open boat, 36;
    sufferings of his men, 38-40;
    is assaulted by Indians, 41;
    deserted by Narvaez, 42;
    lands on an island among friendly Indians, 5, 44-45;
    loses three men, in endeavor to re-embark, 46;
    destitute condition of the survivors, 46;
    aid given by Indians, 47-48;
    is overtaken by Dorantes and Alonzo del Castillo, 48;
    agrees that four of the party shall try to reach Panuco, 49;
    learns Indians believe the Christians are sorcerers, 50;
    names island Malhado, 50;
    heals the sick by breathing on them, and by prayer, 53;
    on the mainland, 52, 55;
    his party now numbers fourteen, 55;
    suffers great hardships, 56;
    trafficks among the Indians, 56-57;
    rescues Oviedo from Malhado, 57;
    is left by him, 59;
    finds Dorantes, Castillo, and Estevanico, 59-60;
    waits six months before attempting to escape, 60, 61, 70;
    is made a slave, 61;
    is forced to postpone escape another year, 71;
    succeeds at last, 73;
    works more cures among the Indians, 74, 77, 78;
    goes naked, 80, 81;
    goes among the Maliacones, 80;
    eats dogs, 80, 81;
    barters with Indians, 81;
    performs more cures, 91;
    reaches a mountainous country, 92;
    receives presents from the Indians, 92-93;
    cuts an arrow head out of a wounded native, 96-97;
    reaches the Rio Grande, 99;
    is feared by the Indians because of deaths among them, 101;
    heals the sick, 101;
    goes among the Jumanos, 102;
    calls them the Cow nation, 103;
    starts in search of maize, 105;
    touches and blesses both sick and well, 106-107;
    teaches Christian religion, 107;
    finds news of Christians, 109;
    checks fear among his Indian companions, 111;
    is taken to Diego de Alcaraz, 112;
    joins party of Diego and dismisses his Indian
          followers, 114-115;
    is received by Melchior Diaz, 116;
    arrives at Mexico, 120;
    at Havana, 121;
    at Lisbon, 123;
    mentioned as a survivor of Narvaez's party, 125;
    disagrees with De Soto, 136;
    mentioned by the Gentleman of Elvas, 136, 221, 246;
    returns from expedition, 288;
    narrative of, 288;
    in Corazones valley, 301;
    traces of, found by Coronado, 332;
    regard of Indians for, 381 n.

  Cabeza de Vaca, Teresa, mother of Nuñez Cabeza de Vaca, 3, 125.

  Cabo Cruz, 15 n.

  Cabo de Santa Cruz, 15.

  Cabusto, 194.

  Caçabe bread, _see_ Cassava bread.

  Cache River, 215 n.

  Cactus belt, northern limit of, 70 n.

  Cahita, synonymous with Sinaloa, 346 n.

  Cahoques Indians, 87.

  Calahuchi, 161 n.

  Calderon, Captain, 155;
    at Espiritu Santo, 162;
    commands a brigantine, 265.

  Cale, province of, reported to be abundant in gold, 154;
    mentioned, 162.

  California, Gulf of, 109 n.;
    explored, 304, 346;
    natives of peninsula of, 346, 346 n.

  Caliquen, reached by De Soto, 157.

  Calpista, mentioned by Ranjel, 216 n.

  Caluça, in northeastern part of Mississippi, 212.

  Camolas Indians, 87 n.

  Camones Indians, are reported to have killed Peñalosa and
        Tellez, 72.

  Campo, Andres del, Portuguese companion of Padilla, 365, 373, 385;
    returns to New Spain, 385.

  Canarreo shoals, 18.

  Canasagua, De Soto at, 178.

  Caney creek, 58 n.

  Cannibalism in Culiacan, 345.

  Cannouchee River, 170 n.

  Cantaloupes, as food of Indians, 348.

  Capachiqui, De Soto at, 165.

  Capoques Indians, 54 n., 55 n., 65 n., 66 n., 87 n.

  Capothan, province of New Spain, 364.

  Caravallo, appointed lieutenant to sail with ships of Narvaez, 24;
    mentioned, 124.

  Cardenas, Garcia Lopez, appointed captain, 292;
    protects Coronado at Cibola, 301;
    visit of, to Colorado River, 309;
    attacks Indian village, 319;
    treachery of Indians towards, 321;
    accident to, 331;
    summoned to Spain, 367;
    flight of, from Suya, 369, 370.

  Carlos, leaves his wife at Havana, 145;
    is killed at Manilla, 193.

  Carmona, Alonzo de, 131.

  Casa de Contratación, at Seville, 135 n.

  Cases, with dead bodies, burned by Xuarez, 21.

  Casiste, De Soto at, 187.

  Casqui, cacique of, 205;
    speeches of, to De Soto, 206-207;
    kneels before the cross, 208;
    directs De Soto to Pacaha, 208;
    makes many presents to De Soto, 210;
    gives his daughter to the governor, 211;
    begs forgiveness for absenting himself without permission, 212;
    accepts friendship of the cacique of Pacaha, 212.

  Cassava bread, 144, 145.

  Castañeda, Pedro de, narrative of Coronado's expedition by,
        276, 281-387;
    facts of life of, 276;
    value of narrative of, 276;
    manuscript of, in Lenox library, 277;
    translations of, 276-277;
    date of narrative, 282 n.;
    joins expedition at Culiacan, 296 n.

  Castile, mentioned, 124.

  Castillo, Doctor, father of Alonzo de Castillo Maldonado, 125.

  Castillo Maldonado, Alonzo del, with Cabeza de Vaca, 4, 6;
    joins in report to Audiencia of Española, 8;
    returns to New Spain, 9;
    goes with Cabeza de Vaca to find a harbor, 26;
    again goes on the same errand, 33;
    embarks in open boat, 36;
    loses his boat and overtakes Cabeza de Vaca, 48;
    on the mainland, 54;
    returns to Malhado, 55;
    accompanies Indians to find walnuts, and meets with Cabeza
          de Vaca, 59-60;
    stay of, with the Yguazes, 65;
    mentioned, 72;
    mentioned by Oviedo, 69, 70;
    among Lanegados, 71;
    escapes, 73;
    cures afflicted Indians, 74, 76, 77;
    goes to the Maliacones, 80;
    makes reconnoissance towards Rio Grande, 102;
    finds evidence of visit by Europeans, 109;
    rejoins Cabeza de Vaca and attaches himself to a Spanish
          exploring party, 113;
    returns to Spain, 125;
    mentioned by Castañeda, 288.

  Catalte, 236.

  Catamaya, De Soto at, 222.

  Caya River, 216.

  Cayas, De Soto at, 217, 219;
    mentioned, 225, 227, 238;
    cacique of, is dismissed, 221.

  Cebreros, _see_ Zebreros.

  Cedar Lake, 58 n.

  Cerda, Alvaro de la, left by Narvaez in charge of a vessel,
        18, 20.

  Cervantes, Spanish soldier, 328.

  Chacan, a fruit, 104.

  Chaguate, province of, mentioned, 223 n., 236;
    cacique of, addresses Moscoso, 237.

  Chaguete, 237;
    Indians come to, in peace, 247;
    Moscoso leaves, 248.
    _See also_ Chaguate.

  Chalaque, province of, 176.

  Charles V, emperor, 12 n.

  Charruco, Cabeza de Vaca determines to seek, 56.

  Charrucos Indians, 87 n.

  Chattahuchi, 161 n.

  Chattanooga, 181 n., 182 n.

  Chauauares Indians, 87 n.
   _See_ Chavavares Indians.

  Chavavares Indians, 73 n., 80 n., 87.

  Chia, _see_ Sia.

  Chiaha, province of, 175, 177, 178;
    nature of the country of, 270;
    speech of cacique of, 178;
    cacique of, surrenders himself to De Soto, 180.

  Chiametla, death of Samaniego at, 295.

  Chicaça, De Soto at, 195, 212 n.;
    Indians of, make an attack, 197-199.

  Chicacilla, 199 n.

  Chichilticalli, visited by Fray Marcos, 289;
    by Diaz, 298;
    location of, 299 n., 349 n.;
    Coronado's first view of, 299;
    description of, 349.

  Chichimecas, Mexican name for braves, 357.

  Chicot County, Arkansas, 255 n.

  Chihuahua, 105 n.

  Chilano, mentioned, 249.

  Childersburg, 183 n.

  Children of sun, Spaniards called, 94.

  China, belief in its connection with America, 343, 360.

  Chisca, a gold-bearing country, 180, 181, 212;
    mentioned, 205.

  Choctaw Indians, 38 n.

  Cholupaha, town of, 157;
    called Villafarta, 157.

  Choualla, _see_ Xualla.

  Christianity, taught to the Indians, 107, 117;
    churches to be built by them, 119.

  Churches, to be built by Indians, 119.

  Chuse, Bay of, 40 n.

  Cibola, reached by expedition of Fray Marcos, 275, 289;
    Guzman's expedition to, 286;
    description of, 300;
    captured by Coronado, 301;
    army arrives at, 306;
    Castañeda's description of, 350;
    pueblos of, 358.

  Cicuyc, _see_ Cicuye.

  Cicuye, synonymous with Pecos, 329 n.
    _See_ Pecos.

  Cienfuegos, Bay of, 17 n.

  Civet-marten skins described by Cabeza de Vaca, 39.

  Clark, on Indian sign language, 363 n.

  Clark County, 238 n.

  Cleburne County, 216 n.

  Clothing of Indians, 318, 334, 347, 350, 355.

  Coahuiltecan affinities, 61 n.

  Coayos Indians, 76.

  Coça, province of, 170, 175, 228;
    speech of cacique of, 183-184;
    inhabitants of, seized by De Soto, 184;
    cacique of, taken, 185;
    is dismissed, 187;
    distance to Tastaluça, 189;
    has more maize than Nilco, 226;
    nature of the country, 270;
    direction of, 271.

  Cocopa Indians, a Yuman tribe, 303 n.

  Cocos Indians, 54 n.

  Cofaqui, 168.

  Cofitachequi, _see_ Cutifachiqui.

  Cohani Indians, 59 n.

  Coké Indians, 54 n.

  Coles, Juan, 131.

  Coligoa, De Soto at, 215-216; distance to Autiamque, 270;
    nature of the country, 270.

  Colima, ravines of, 332.

  Colorado River, 58 n., 90 n.;
    visited by Diaz, 303;
    by Cardenas, 309.

  Comos Indians, 80 n., 87.

  Compostela, in a hostile country, 120;
    mentioned, 285 n., 287;
    rendezvous of Coronado's army, 293;
    departure of Coronado from, 295.

  Comupatrico, settlement of, 347.

  Cona, settlement of plains Indians, 333.

  Coosa, 183 n.

  Copee, used in paying the bottoms of Moscoso's vessels, 263.

  Copper, found at Quivira, 337.

  Coquite, pueblo of, 356 n., 358 n.

  Corazones, Pueblo de los, 108, 115 n.;
    Coronado's army at, 301;
    valley of, 347;
    friendliness of Indians of, 372, 376.
    _See_ Hearts, town of.

  Corn, description of, 350;
    method of grinding, 354;
    stores of, kept by Indians, 356.
    _See also_ Maize.

  Coronado, Francisco Vazquez de, on Stake Plains, 7;
    expedition inspired by journey of Cabeza de Vaca, 8;
    memoirs of George P. Winship on, 276-277;
    bibliography of accounts of expedition of, 277-279;
    Castañeda's narrative of expedition of, 276, 281-387;
    testimony of companions of, 279;
    expedition of, mentioned, 97 n., 284, 362 n.;
    appointed governor of New Galicia, 287;
    marriage of, 287;
    accompanies Fray Marcos to Culiacan, 288;
    makes expedition to Topira, 290;
    returns to Mexico, 291;
    friendship of Mendoza for, 291;
    receives command from Mendoza, 275, 281, 291;
    Castañeda's criticism of, 291, 293;
    appointments confirmed by, 292;
    departure of, from Compostela, 295;
    receives report of Diaz, at Chiametla, 296;
    at Culiacan, 297-298;
    Truxillo brought before, 298;
    arrives at Chichilticalli, 299;
    discouragement of, 299;
    reaches Cibola, 300;
    letter to Mendoza, 277, 300 n.;
    attacks Cibola, 300;
    wounded at Cibola, 301;
    mention of, 294, 302, 305, 319;
    finds horn of mountain goat, 306;
    joined by Arellano, 306;
    sends Tovar to Tusayan, 307;
    sends Cardenas to Colorado River, 308;
    receives report of Cardenas, 310;
    gifts to, from Cicuye Indians, 311;
    sends Alvarado to Cicuye, 311;
    receives message from Alvarado, 312;
    departure of, for Tiguex, 313;
    arrives at Tutahaco, 314;
    at Tiguex, 314;
    sends Alvarado to Cicuye, 315;
    joined by army, 317;
    demands cloth of Indians, 317-318;
    gives Cardenas orders to attack Indians, 319;
    orders of, concerning prisoners, 320;
    besieges Tiguex, 322;
    attempts of, to make peace, 323;
    receives news of death of Diaz, 325;
    sends Tovar to San Hieronimo, 326;
    messengers from, to Mendoza, 326;
    letter of, to king, 278, 329 n.;
    pacifies Cicuye, 329;
    departure of, for Quivira, 329;
    bison seen by, 330, 331;
    experiences blizzard, 333;
    divides army, 335;
    arrives at Quivira, 336;
    route of, 337 n.;
    returns from Quivira, 338;
    crosses route of De Soto, 339;
    reaches Cicuye and Tiguex, 342;
    winters at Tiguex, 342, 366;
    receives letters from Mendoza, 367;
    accident to, 368;
    schemes of, to return home, 369;
    request of soldiers to, 370;
    preparations of, for return, 372, 373;
    arrives at Cibola, 374;
    meets Gallego with re-enforcements, 375;
    feigns illness, 376, 377;
    at Culiacan, 377;
    promises of, 378;
    returns to Mexico, 378;
    reports to Mendoza, 378;
    coolness of Mendoza towards, 378;
    deprived of governorship of New Galicia, 378;
    route of, 385;
    inadequacy of equipment of, 386.

  Coronado expedition, memoirs of George Parker Winship on, 276-277;
    Castañeda's narrative of, 276, 281-387;
    bibliography of other accounts of, 277-280;
    importance of, 280;
    date of, 293 n.;
    reasons given by Mota Padilla for failure of, 366 n.

  Corral, death of, 49.

  Corrientes, Cape, storm at, 18.

  Cortes, Hernando, receives Cabeza de Vaca, 121;
    mentioned, 283;
    trial for murder of wife 285 n.;
    given new title, 286 n.;
    feats of, 380.

  Corvo, mentioned, 122 n.

  Coste, speech of cacique of, 182.

  Cotton, garments of, presented to Cabeza de Vaca, 104;
    noted by him, 106;
    cloth of, made at Tusayan, 308;
    blankets of, 350.

  Council Bend, suggested as the place of De Soto's crossing of
        the Mississippi, 204 n.

  Cow nation, Indians so named by Cabeza de Vaca, 103.
    _See_ Jumanos Indians.

  Cows, _see_ Bison.

  Creek Indians, 21 n.

  Cremation among Zuñi, 351.

  Cross, raised at Casqui, 208;
    sign of, among the Zuñis, 351;
    venerated by Indians, 384.

  Cruz, Bahia de la, 36.
    _See also_ Tampa Bay.

  Cuachichiles, _see_ Guachichules.

  Cuba, De Soto in, 141-145.

  Cuchendados Indians, 86.

  Cuenca de Huete, mentioned, 124.

  Culiacan, mentioned, 115 n.;
    Cabeza de Vaca at, 116.

  Culiacan, San Miguel de, foundation of, by Guzman, 276,
        286, 344;
    arrival of Cabeza de Vaca at, 288;
    location of, 296 n.;
    Castañeda's description of, 344;
    return of Coronado to, 377.

  Cultalchulches Indians, 76, 78, 80 n., 87.

  Cures among Indians wrought by Cabeza de Vaca, 6-7, 53, 73,
        74, 76, 77, 78, 91, 101, 106-107, 117;
    by Alonzo del Castillo, 74, 76, 77.

  Cushing, F. H., on Zuñi breadstuff, 354 n.

  Cutifachiqui, 172 n., 178, 180;
    Indians of, 173-174;
    speech of kinswoman of the cacica of, 172-173;
    speech of cacica of, 173;
    cacica of, furnishes pearls, 174;
    cacica of, is made a slave, 176;
    escape of cacica of, 177;
    distance of, to Xualla, 188, 270;
    lad of, acts as interpreter, 224;
    nature of the country of, 270;
    direction of, 271.

  Cuyamunque, a Tewa pueblo, 359 n.

  Cuzco, city of, 135.

  Dances of the Tahus, 344.

  Daniel, Franciscan friar, 288.

  Dávila, Pedrárias, governor, 135, 136.

  Davis, W. W. H., on the fate of Padilla, 373 n.

  Daycao, distance of, to Rio Grande, 247;
    direction of, 271.

  Daycao River, 245, 246.

  Dead bodies, eaten by members of party with Cabeza de Vaca, 49;
    Soto-Mayor eaten by Esquivel, 63.

  Deaguanes Indians, 59.

  Decubadaos Indians, 87 n.

  Deer, 350, 363.

  Deer-suet, 105.

  Deguenes Indians, 87 n.

  Descalona, Fray Luis, settles at Cicuye, 365 n., 373.

  Desha County, 227 n., 249 n.

  Diaz, Melchior, 116 n.;
    explains to the natives the coming of Cabeza de Vaca, 117;
    reports of Fray Marcos investigated by, 277, 296;
    companion of Coronado, 292;
    position of, 292;
    reference to, 299;
    in command at Corazones, 302;
    exploration of, 303, 324;
    death of, 325.

  Divorce among Indians, 353.

  Dogs, eaten by De Soto's men, 167;
    used by Indians, 330, 334, 362.

  Doguenes Indians, 59 n., 84, 87.

  Dorantes, Pablo, father of Andrés Dorantes, 125.

  Dorantes de Carrança, Andrés, with Cabeza de Vaca, 4, 6;
    joins in report to Audiencia of Española, 8;
    later years and death of, 9;
    goes to find the sea, 33;
    embarks in open boat, 36;
    repulses Indians, 39;
    loses his boat and overtakes Cabeza de Vaca, 48;
    on the mainland, 54, 55;
    returns to Malhado, 55;
    accompanies Indians to find walnuts and meets with Cabeza
          de Vaca, 59-60;
    escapes from slavery, 64;
    escapes from the Yguazes, 65;
    mentioned by Oviedo, 69, 70;
    joins Cabeza de Vaca in escape from Indians, 71, 73;
    mentioned, 72;
    performs cures among Avavares, 78;
    goes to the Maliacones, 80;
    receives a hawk-bell of copper, 95;
    is presented with over six hundred open hearts of deer, 108;
    rejoins Cabeza de Vaca and attaches himself to a Spanish
          exploring party, 113;
    returns to Spain, 121, 125;
    swears not to divulge certain things he has seen in New
          Spain, 136;
    a survivor of Narvaez's expedition, 288;
    traces of, found by Coronado, 332.

  Dorantes, Diego, killed by Indians, 58, 64, 69.

  Double Mountain fork, 245 n.

  Dragoon pass, location of, 349 n.

  Dreams, respected by the Indians, 64;
    citation from Oviedo regarding, 70.

  Dulchanchellin, Indian chief, 27.

  Eagles, tame, kept by Indians, 348, 348 n.

  Earthquakes, near Colorado River, 325.

  Elvas, Gentleman of, narrative by, 127-272;
    may have been Alvaro Fernandez, 130;
    related narratives, 130-131;
    bibliography of the Narrative, 131-132.

  Emeralds presented to Cabeza de Vaca, 106, 108.

  Enequen, used in making rope, 248.

  Enriquez, Alonso, comptroller of Narvaez's fleet, 14;
    lands on island off Florida coast, 19;
    joins conferences regarding inland exploration, 22;
    embarks with Xuarez in open boat, 36;
    boat of, found bottom up, 61;
    rescued by Narvaez and loses his commission, 62;
    is cast away on the coast, 72;
    is mentioned by Oviedo, 70.

  Espejo, Antonio de, on the Rio Grande, 7;
    cited, 102 n.;
    Mexican Indians at Cibola found by, 374 n.

  Espíritu Santo, Bay, 58 n.;
    mentioned by Oviedo, 70.

  Espiritu Santo, port, 153;
    adjacent country described, 169;
    distance to Palache, 188;
    direction from Apalache, 271;
    distance to Ocute, 270;
    land between the two places, 270;
    direction to Apalache and Rio de las Palmas, 272.

  Espiritu Santo River identified with Mississippi, 339 n.

  Esquivel, Hernando de, among Indians, 62;
    informs Figueroa of fate of Narvaez and the others, 62-63;
    feeds on flesh of Soto-Mayor, 63;
    is slain because of a dream, 58, 64, 68;
    mentioned, 72;
    mentioned by Oviedo, 70.

  Estévanico, with Cabeza de Vaca, 4, 6;
    with Fray Marcos de Niza, 9;
    put to death by Zuñis, 9;
    brought by Indians, with Dorantes and Castillo, and meets
          with Cabeza de Vaca, 59;
    stay of, with the Yguazes, 65;
    escapes from Indians, 71, 73;
    performs cures among Avavares, 78;
    goes to the Maliacones, 80;
    cause of death of, 95 n.;
    accompanies Alonzo de Castillo on reconnoissance towards
          Rio Grande, 102;
    is useful in securing information from the Indians, 107;
    accompanies Cabeza de Vaca in search of Spanish exploring
          party, 112;
    acts as guide, 113;
    mentioned as a survivor of Narvaez's party, 126, 288;
    guide for Fray Marcos, 275, 288-289;
    death of, 275, 290.

  Estrada, Alonzo de, treasurer for New Spain, 287.

  Estremadura, 216, 341.

  Estufas, at Braba, 341;
    at Cibola, 350, 350 n.;
    description of, 353.

  Evora, 272.

  Feathers, trade in, 286;
    use of, in dress, 350;
    symbolism of, 384 n.

  Ferdinand, king of Spain, 287.

  Fernandes, Benito, drowned, 166.

  Fernandez, Alvaro, a Portuguese sailor to seek Panuco, 49.

  Fernandez, Alvaro, may have been the Gentleman of Elvas, 130.

  Fernandez, Bartolomé, sailor, 22.

  Fewkes, _Aborigines of Porto Rico_, cited, 19 n.

  Fifteen-Mile Bayou, 205 n.

  Figueroa, a native of Toledo, to seek Panuco, 49;
    found by the fugitives from Malhado, 58 n., 61;
    relates his experiences, 62-63, 68;
    escapes by flight, 64;
    seen by the Avavares, 79.

  Figueroa, Gomez Suarez de, companion of Coronado, 293.

  Figueroa, Vasco Porcallo de, _see_ Porcallo de Figueroa, Vasco.

  Firebrand, use of, by Indians in travelling, 303.

  Firebrand River, _see_ Colorado.

  Fish, taken by De Soto, 209-210.

  Fisher County, Texas, 245 n.

  Fleet of Narvaez, size of, 14;
    visited by hurricane on southern coast of Cuba, 3-4, 15-17;
    brigantine bought in Trinidad, 18;
    another vessel purchased, 18.

  Flint River, 164 n.

  Florida, eastern limit of grant to Narvaez, 3, 14;
    fleet of Narvaez sights, 18;
    grains, fruits, and nuts of, 271;
    bad character of country of, 386.

  Flowers, use of, in Indian ceremonials, 384.

  Food of Indians, 312, 333, 348, 354.

  Fort Belknap, 244 n., 245 n.

  Fort Prince George, 176 n.

  Fort Smith, 222 n.

  Fowls, domestic, among the Indians, 348, 354.

  Franciscans, with Narvaez, 14;
    in Cuba, 142;
    in New Spain, 288;
    elect Marcos de Niza father provincial, 291.

  Fruits of Florida, 271;
    of the great plains, 364.

  Fuentes, De Soto's chamberlain, condemned to death, 197.

  Galena, 96 n.

  Galeras, Juan, explores Grand Cañon, 309.

  Galicia, New Kingdom of, in New Spain, 285 n., 286.

  Galisteo, pueblo of, 356, 358 n.

  Gallego, Juan, companion of Coronado, 292;
    messenger from Coronado to Mendoza, 302;
    sword of, found in Kansas, 302 n.;
    messenger to Coronado, 371, 372;
    meets Coronado on his return, 375;
    exploits of, 380.

  Gallegos, Baltasar de, is chief castellan, 138;
    leaves his wife at Havana, 146;
    at the town of Ucita, 147;
    sent into the country, 148;
    returns with a survivor of the party of Narvaez, 149;
    is sent to the province of Paracoxi, 154;
    hears speech on part of the absent cacique, asks where
          gold may be found, 154;
    sent in quest of habitations, 171;
    in affray with Indians at Mauilla, 190;
    responds to De Soto's dying speech, 233.

  Galveston Island, resembles Malhado, in certain particulars, 57 n.

  Gamez, Juan de, killed at Mauilla, 193.

  Gaytan, Juan, takes an Indian boy of Yupaha, 164.

  Giant Indians, 302, 304.

  Gibraleon, mentioned, 125.

  Gifts, exchange of, on Cabeza de Vaca's line of march, 97 n.

  Giralda, great tower of Seville, 309 n.

  Giusiwá, a Jemez pueblo, 359 n.

  Goat, mountain, seen by Spaniards, 304, 305, 348.

  Gold, sought by the Spaniards, 21-22, 145, 154, 164, 180, 181,
        205, 212;
    traces of, found, 19, 21, 111;
    tales of, at Quivira, 328, 329;
    discovered at Suya, 371.

  Gomera, one of the Canary Islands, 139.

  Gorbalan, Francisco, companion of Coronado, 293.

  Government of Indians, 308, 347, 351.

  Granada, Coronado's name for Hawikuh, 277, 300 n.

  Grand or Neosho River, 217 n.

  Grand Cañon, discovery of, 309.

  Grande River, 201, 202, 205, 208, 209, 215, 224, 227, 245,
        246, 247, 248, 249, 270, 271.
    _See also_ Mississippi River.

  Grapes, wild, found by Coronado, 334, 338.

  Graves, at Tutahaco, 384.

  Great plains, Spaniards lost on, 336;
    description of, 362.

  Great River, the, 202.
    _See_ Mississippi River and Grande River.

  Greene County, Alabama, 189 n.

  Grey Friars, origin of name, 385 n.

  Guacay, distance of, to Daycao, 270-271;
    nature of the country, 271.

  Guachichules, Indians, 385.

  Guachoya, De Soto reaches, 227;
    cacique of, comes to him, 227;
    makes an address, 228;
    and assists in attack of Nilco, 231;
    death of De Soto at, 233;
    Spaniards leave, 236;
    mentioned, 245, 248;
    cacique of, plots against Moscoso, 251;
    exposes plot of caciques of Nilco and Taguanate, 252;
    and kills Indians of Nilco, 252;
    direction of, 271.

  Guadalajara, beginning of, 285 n., 287.

  Guadalaxara, _see_ Guadalajara.

  Guadiana, Spanish river, 341.

  Guaes, province near Quivira, 328, 328 n., 364.

  Guahate, province, mentioned, 222.

  Guaniguanico, storm at, 18.

  Guasco, _see_ Waco.

  Guatemala, conquered by Alvarado, 380.

  Guaxulle, De Soto at, 177;
    mentioned, 178.

  Guayaba tree, 141.

  Guaycones Indians, 87.

  Guaymas Indians, 108 n.

  Guevara, Diego de, captures Indian village, 324.

  Guevara, Juan de, appointment of son of, 292.

  Guevara, Pedro de, appointed captain, 292.

  Guevenes Indians, 59 n.

  Gutierres, Diego, appointed captain, 292.

  Gutierrez, Juan, _see_ Xuarez, Juan, and 14 n.

  Guzman, Diego de, 111.

  Guzman, Francisco de, goes away with his Indian concubine, 238.

  Guzman, Juan de, made captain of infantry, 164;
    crosses Mississippi with infantry, 204;
    sent against Indians, 231, 256;
    is taken by them, 257.

  Guzman, Nuño de, position of, in New Spain, 285;
    career of, 285 n.;
    cruelty to natives, 285 n.;
    expedition of, to the Seven Cities, 286;
    Culiacan settled by, 276, 287;
    imprisonment of, 287.

  Hacanac, cacique of, gives battle, 239.

  Hailstones, in Coronado's camp, 333.

  Hair dress, of pueblo women, 350.

  Halona, Zuñi pueblo, 358 n.;
    excavations at, 351 n.

  Hano, Hopi pueblo, 358 n.

  Hans Indians, 54, 87.

  Hapaluya, De Soto passes, 160.

  Harahey, identification of, 328 n., 365 n.

  Havana, fleet of Narvaez nears, 18;
    Miruelo to return to, if harbor is not found, 20;
    Cabeza de Vaca at, 121, 122;
    mentioned, 125, 142.

  Hawikuh, scene of Estévan's death, 275;
    called Granada by Coronado, 277, 300 n.;
    history of, 300 n., 358 n.

  Haxa or Haya, settlement near Mississippi River, 330, 331.

  Hearts, town of, 7, 108 n.
    _See_ Corazones, Pueblo de los.

  Hearts of animals, as food, 301.

  Hearts Valley, _see_ Corazones.

  Hemes, _see_ Jemez.

  Hempstead County, 240 n.

  Henry, cardinal, archbishop of Evora, 272.

  Hermosillo, 109 n.

  Hewett, on Pecos, 355 n.

  Hirriga, town of Ucita, 147 n.

  Hodge, F. W., 11, 280;
    on route of Coronado, 337 n.

  Hope, camp near, 239 n.

  Hopi, tribal name of Indians at Tusayan, 307 n.;
    as cotton growers, 308 n.;
    pottery of, 340 n.;
    tame eagles of, 348 n.;
    hair dress of women, 350 n.;
    population of pueblos of, 351 n.;
    pueblos of, 358 n.

  Hornachos, mentioned, 124.

  Hornaday, W. T., on wool of bison, 383 n.

  Horseflesh, eaten by Spaniards, 27, 35, 36, 253.

  Horses, Bay of, 37 n., 162 n.
    _See also_ Caballeros, Bahia de.

  Horses, fear of Indians of, 386.

  Houses of Indians, 165, 346, 350, 356, 364.

  Huelva, Diego de, killed by Indians, 58, 64.

  Huhasene, an Indian chief, 255.

  Iguaces Indians, 61 n.

  Inca, the, _see_ Vega, Garcilaso de la.

  India, believed to be connected with America, 343, 360.

  Indian Bay, 253 n.

  "Indian giving," 100 n.

  Indians, stature and proportions of, 32;
    fine archery of, 32;
    customs of, at Malhado, 54;
    weeping of, 54 n.;
    as a sign of obedience, 241, 242-243;
    barter among, 56-57;
    subsist on walnuts, 59-60;
    eat prickly pears three months of the year, 60-61;
    kill even their male children, 64, 70;
    have great reverence for dreams, 70;
    call Spaniards children of the sun, 78;
    marriage relations of, 83;
    methods of warfare of, 84-86;
    nations and tongues of, beyond Malhado, 86;
    peculiar customs of, in drinking a tea of certain leaves, 87-88;
    method of, in preparing flour of mesquite, 89;
    plunder those who welcome Cabeza de Vaca, 91, 92;
    and plunder one another, 97;
    rabbit hunts of, 98;
    eat spiders and worms, 98;
    offer all they have to Cabeza de Vaca, 99;
    women of, may negotiate in war, 100, 102;
    chastise children for weeping, 101;
    have fixed dwellings, 102;
    go naked, 103;
    eat powder of straw, 106;
    languages of, 107;
    believe Spaniards are from heaven, 107;
    women of, wear grass and straw, 108;
    worship the sun, 107-108;
    promise to be Christians, 118;
    and to build churches, 119;
    worship the devil with blood sacrifices, 151;
    approach, playing on flutes, 158, 183, 189;
    costumes of, 166;
    have abundance of meat at Ocute, 168;
    description of, at Cutifachiqui, 173-174;
    mortuary customs of, 234, 351;
    described by the Gentleman of Elvas, 272;
    use poisoned arrows, 326, 371.

  Intoxication, among Indians, 66.

  Iron, 93 n., 95 n.

  Isleta, 358 n.

  Jacona, 359 n.

  Jagua, Cabeza de Vaca at, 17 n.;
    Narvaez reaches with a pilot, 18.

  Jaramillo, Juan, narrative of, 279, 337 n., 365 n.

  Jefferson County, 225 n.

  Jemez, pueblos of, 339 n., 352, 359 n.;
    visited by Barrionuevo, 339.

  Jeréz de la Frontera, 3.

  John III., king, 272 n.

  Juamanos Indians, 102 n., 103 n.;
    know something of Christianity, 102 n.;
    the Cow nation, 103;
    method of cooking among, 104-105;
    have fixed residences, 112.

  Juana, Queen of Spain, 292.

  Kansas, description of, 364.

  Karankawan Indians, 51 n., 57 n., 61 n.

  Kaw or Kansa Indians, 328 n., 364 n.

  Kiakima, Zuñi pueblo, 358 n.

  Kyanawe, Zuñi pueblo, 358 n.

  Lacane, Moscoso at, 242.

  Lake Michigamia, 214 n.

  Lakes, near Apalachen, 29.

  Lanegados Indians, hold Castillo captive, 71.

  Lara, Alonso Manrique de, companion of Coronado, 293.

  Las Navas de Tolosa, battle of, 3.

  La Vaca, Bay, 58 n.

  League, Spanish, 22 n.

  Lee County, Arkansas, 214 n.

  Lenox Library, manuscript of Castañeda in, 277.

  Leopard, _see_ Wildcat.

  Lewis, T. Hayes, 132.

  Lions, _see_ Mountain lions.

  Lisbon, 123.

  Little Red River, 216 n.

  Little River, 240 n.

  Little Tennessee River, 177 n.

  Little Valley, settlement of, 347.

  Llano River, 95 n.

  Lobillo, Juan Rodriguez, at court, 135;
    sent by De Soto into the country, 148;
    returns with four Indian women, 149;
    sent in quest of habitations, 171;
    overtakes De Soto, 172.

  Lopez, Diego, death of, 49.

  Lopez, Diego, appointed captain, 292;
    succeeds Samaniego, 296;
    adventure of, at Tiguex, 319;
    visits Haxa, 331.

  Lopez de Cardenas, G., _see_ Cardenas.

  Lowery, Woodbury, _Spanish Settlements_, 1513-1561, cited, 19 n.

  Luis, Friar, _see_ Descalona.

  Lusitanians, characterized, 134.

  Mabila, _see_ Mauilla.

  Macaco, 150 n.

  Macanoche, presented to De Soto, 213.

  Maçaque, _see_ Matsaki.

  McGee, W. J., account of Seri Indians, 301 n.

  Magdalena River, 33.

  Mago, a poisonous tree, 108 n.

  Maize, shown by Indians to Narvaez, 21;
    found under cultivation, 22, 25;
    little seen by Cabeza de Vaca on march to Apalachen, 28;
    is found growing in that place, 28, 29;
    secured with difficulty from Indians, 35;
    mentioned, 94, 96, 102, 103, 104, 105, 108, 110, 113, 114,
          247, 248, 271.
    _See also_ Corn.

  Malapaz, town, 156.

  Maldonado, Doña Aldonça, 125.

  Maldonado, Alonzo del Castillo, _see_ Castillo Maldonado, Alonzo del.

  Maldonado, Francisco, ordered to the coast, 163;
    sent to Havana, 163;
    at Ochuse, 193;
    mentioned, 175, 204.

  Maldonado, Rodrigo, appointed captain, 292;
    visits seacoast, 301;
    Indians attack camp of, 323;
    receives gift of buffalo skins, 332;
    horse of, injures Coronado, 368.

  Malhado Island, Spaniards at, 5-6;
    named by Cabeza de Vaca, 50;
    identification of, 57 n.;
    Christians leave, losing a part of their number, 61;
    mentioned, 72.

  Maliacones Indians, 80, 87.
    _See also_ Malicones Indians.

  Malicones Indians, 76 n.
    _See also_ Maliacones Indians.

  Mallery, Garrick, on sign language, 363 n.

  Mallets, use of, as weapons by Indians, 321.

  Mamei, a fruit, 141.

  Mançano, is lost, 186.

  Mantelets of thread, found at Apalachen, 28.

  Marcos, Fray, _see_ Niza.

  Margaridetos, a kind of bead, 226.

  Mariames Indians, kill even their male children and cast
        away their daughters, 64;
    mentioned, 87.

  Marian Indians, 61.

  Marjoram, wild, 338, 349, 364.

  Marquis, Isle of the, name of, given to lower California,
        304, 304 n.

  Marriage, among the Tahus, 344;
    at Cibola, 350;
    at Tiguex, 353.

  Mats, used in building houses, 346, 357 n.

  Matsaki, Zuñi pueblo, 315 n.;
    description of, 315-316, 350;
    mentioned, 358 n.

  Mauilla, De Soto at, 189;
    encounter with the Indians at, 190-193;
    mentioned, 195.

  Mayayes Indians, 54 n.

  Maye, cacique of, gives battle, 239.

  Mayo Indians, 346 n.

  Meal, sacred, use of, 307 n.

  Meat, scarcity of, among De Soto's men, 167-168.

  Meirinho, _see_ Tapile.

  Melgosa, Pablo de, appointed captain, 293;
    explores Colorado River Cañons, 309;
    at Tiguex, 319.

  Melons, native American, 348.

  Memphis, near place of De Soto's crossing of the Mississippi, 204 n.

  Mendez, to seek Panuco, 49;
    taken by Indians, 58, 62.

  Mendica Indians, 87.

  Mendoza, Antonio de, first viceroy of New Spain, 121 n., 281 n.;
    learns of the arrival of De Soto's men at Panuco, 267;
    receives them at Mexico, 269;
    appoints Coronado governor of New Galicia, 287;
    plans expedition to Cibola, 275, 281;
    gives command to Coronado, 275, 281, 291;
    names Compostela as rendezvous, 293;
    addresses soldiers at Compostela, 294;
    returns to New Spain, 295;
    mentioned, 296, 297, 302, 326;
    letter of, relating progress of expedition, 277;
    Coronado receives messages from, 367;
    mentioned, 377;
    disappointment of, over failure of expedition, 378.

  Mesa, Spanish soldier, 538.

  Mesquite flour, 89.

  Mestitam, Mexico, 268.

  Mexico, 97 n.;
    Cabeza de Vaca at, 120, 121;
    Moscoso at, 269.

  Miakka River, 150 n.

  Michoacan, province in New Spain, 286;
    journey of Mendoza through, 294.

  Mico River, 228.

  Mills, at Tiguex, 354.

  Mindeleff, V., on pueblo architecture, 354 n.

  Miruelo, pilot, 18, 20.

  Mishongnovi, Hopi pueblo, 358 n.

  Mississippi River, reached by Narvaez and Cabeza de Vaca, 41;
    the Great River, 202;
    De Soto crosses, 204;
    nature of country of, from Aquixo to Pacaha and Coligoa, 270;
    described by Indians, 330;
    reference to, 339;
    description of, 365;
    mentioned, 385, 386.
    _See also_ Grande River, Great River, and Espiritu Santo River.

  Mobile, 40 n.

  Mochilagua, settlement of, 347.

  Mochilla, presented to De Soto, 213.

  Mocoço, town of, 150 n.;
    speech of cacique of, to De Soto, 153.

  Moçulixa, 194 n.

  Monroe County, Arkansas, 253 n.

  Monroe County, Mississippi, 195.

  Montejo, feats of, in Tabasco, 380.

  Mortar, substitute for, among Indians, 352.

  Moscoso de Alvarado, Luis, direction pursued by, 131;
    mentioned, 135;
    joins De Soto at Seville, 137;
    is master of the camp, 146;
    lodges with Ucita, 147;
    at Cale, 156;
    overtakes De Soto, 157;
    sent forward to Tastaluça, 187;
    advises a halt, 189;
    fails to keep a careful watch over the Indians at Chicaça, 197;
    succeeds De Soto as governor, 233;
    holds a conference, 235-236;
    leaves Guachoya, 236;
    at Chaguate, 236-237;
    at Aguacay, 238;
    at Naguatex, 240-242;
    reaches the Red River, 241;
    hangs his Indian guides, 242;
    marches from Nondaco, 243;
    encounter with Indians at Aays, 243;
    hears of other Europeans seen by the Indians of Soacatino, 243;
    decides that reports are false, 244;
    holds a council and decides to return to Nilco, 245-246;
    causes resentment among his followers, 247;
    reaches Nilco, 248;
    goes to Aminoya, 249;
    directs the building of brigantines, 250;
    learns of Indian plot, 251;
    commands that right hands of thirty Indians be cut off, 252;
    mutilates other Indians, 252;
    proceeds against Taguanate, 253;
    embarks with his followers, 253-254;
    is attacked by Indians, 255-259;
    puts out to sea, 261;
    is separated from the other brigantines, 263;
    after fifty-two days reaches the river Panico, 265-266;
    is received at the town of the same name, 267;
    and at Mexico, 269.

  Mosquitos, 67, 263.

  Meta Padilla, M. de la, cited, 356 n., 365 n., 366 n.

  Mountain lions, in Chichilticalli, 349;
    in Cibola, 350.

  Mountains seen by Cabeza de Vaca, 92 n.

  Mud Island, 57 n.

  Mulberries, wild, 334, 364.

  Musetti, Juan Pedro, book merchant, 126.

  Musical instruments of Indians, 312, 354.

  Muskhogean tribes, 21 n.

  Naçacahoz, Moscoso at, 244.

  Naguatex, mentioned, 238;
    Indian advance at, 239;
    cacique of, addresses Moscoso, 241;
    found full of maize, 247;
    pottery made at, 247.

  Najera, birthplace of Castañeda, 276.

  Nambe, Tewa pueblo, 359 n.

  Napetaca, engagement at, between De Soto and the Indians, 158.

  Naquiscoça, Moscoso at, 244.

  Narvaez, Pámfilo de, receives grant, 3;
    sets sail, 3, 14;
    failure of his expedition, 7;
    size of his fleet, 14;
    reaches Santo Domingo where one hundred and forty men desert, 14;
    arrives at Santiago de Cuba, 15;
    loses ten of his ships and sixty men in storm at Trinidad, 3-4, 15-17;
    major portion of his fleet reach Trinidad and winter there, 17;
    at Xagua, 17;
    sights Florida, 18;
    reaches the mainland, 19;
    takes possession of country in the royal name, 4, 19-20;
    explores inland, 20, 21;
    holds conference regarding further penetration of interior, 22;
    takes up march into country, with three hundred men, 4, 25;
    accepts Indian allies against the Apalachees, 26-27;
    takes Apalachen, 28;
    departs for Aute, 31;
    attacked by Indians, 31;
    reaches Aute, 32;
    departs from Aute, 33;
    calls a council, which decides to build vessels in which to get
          away, 34-36;
    loses ten men killed by Indians, and forty, who die of
          disease, 36;
    leaves Bay of Horses, and meets with many privations, 37-38;
    lands and is wounded by Indians, 38-39;
    embarks once more and proceeds along the coast, 39-41;
    reaches the Mississippi, 41;
    exhibits selfishness in saving his life, 42;
    fate of, narrated by Esquivel, 62;
    mentioned by Oviedo, 70;
    is carried out to sea, 72;
    fate of his voyage foretold, 124;
    his Panuco fleet, 124-125;
    mentioned, 157, 288;
    skulls of his horses found at Ochete, 162;
    his disaster frightens the followers of Moscoso, 248;
    survivors of his expedition return to New Spain, 288.

  Natividad, departure of Alarcon from, 294.

  Nebraska, description of, 364.

  Negroes, island of, 386.

  Negroes, with Coronado, 333.

  Neosho River, 217 n.

  New Albany, 200 n.

  Newfoundland, Spanish name for, 343 n., 360.

  New Galicia, province of New Spain, 113, 285 n., 286, 344;
    Coronado appointed governor of, 287;
    Coronado deprived of governorship of, 378.

  New Spain, mentioned, 124, 254;
    direction from Rio de las Palmas, 272.

  Nicalasa, an Indian chief, 195 n.

  Nilco, mentioned, 224, 225, 228, 230, 231;
    De Soto at, 226;
    most populous town that was seen in Florida, 226;
    attacked, by orders of De Soto, 230-232;
    cacique of, plots against Moscoso, 251;
    and comes to make excuses, 252.

  Nilco, river of, De Soto crosses, 227.

  Nissohone, a poor province, 242;
    a woman of, acts as guide to Moscoso, 242.

  Niza, Marcos de, expedition of, to Cibola, 9, 275, 288-290;
    narrative of, 277, 290 n.;
    reports of, verified by Diaz, 277, 296;
    made father provincial of Franciscans, 291;
    sermon of, 298;
    mentioned, 300;
    return of, to Mexico, 302.

  Nondacao, reported to have plenty of maize, 242;
    mentioned, 243.

  North Carolina, 176 n.

  Nuñez Cabeza de Vaca, Alvar. _See_ Cabeza de Vaca, Alvar Nuñez.

  Nuño de Guzman, 116, 119, 120.

  Nut pine, 96.

  Nuts, 271.

  Oaxaca, Marqués del Valle de, title given to Cortes, 286 n.

  Ochete, skulls of horses found at, 162.

  Ochus, province, 163;
    mentioned, 175.

  Ochuse, Maldonado at, 193.

  Ocilla River, boundary of Muskhogean territory, 21 n.

  Oçita, _see_ Ucita.

  Ocmulgee River, 166 n.

  Oconna-Luftee River, 176 n., 177 n.

  Oconee River, 167 n.

  Ocute, described to De Soto, 167;
    De Soto at, 167, 168;
    mentioned, 179;
    land is fertile, 270;
    distance to Cutifachiqui, 270.

  Ogechee River, 170 n.

  Ohoopee River, 170 n.

  Oñate, Christobal de, governor of New Galicia, entertains
        Coronado, 294.

  Oñate, Count of, nephew of, appointed captain, 292.

  Oñate, Juan de, settlement made at Yukiwingge by, 340 n.

  Opata Indians, 305 n., 348 n.;
    poisoned arrows of, 326 n.;
    mentioned, 376 n.

  Opossum, first allusion to, 29 n.

  Oraibi, Hopi pueblo, 358 n.

  Ortiz, Juan, rescued by De Soto, 10;
    found by De Gallegos, 149;
    his adventures among the Indians, 149-152;
    reports Indian plan to attack De Soto, 158;
    acts as interpreter, 170;
    not to speak of Maldonado's proximity, 193;
    secures release of Osorio and Fuentes, 197;
    dies at Autiamque, 224.

  Osorio, Antonio, ascends river at Pacaha with five men, 210, 211.

  Osorio, Francisco, condemned to death by De Soto, 197.

  Otter, 350, 357.

  Ovando, Francisco de, companion of Coronado, 292;
    treatment of, by Indians, 354.

  Oviedo, Gonzalo Fernández de, edits report to Audiencia of
        Española, 8, 10;
    edition cited, 21 n., 25 n., 31 n., 39 n., 68-70, 92 n., 112 n.

  Oviedo, Lope de, at Malhado, 6;
    deserts, 6;
    among the Indians, 44-45;
    rescued by Cabeza de Vaca, 57;
    returns, through fear, 59.

  Oxitipar, district of, in New Spain, 285.

  Oyster creek, 57 n.

  Oysters, found by Cabeza de Vaca, 33.

  Pacaha, sought by De Soto for its gold, 205, 208;
    probably to be located in the vicinity of Osceola, in
          Arkansas, 209 n.;
    De Soto at, 209-213;
    cacique of, flees from De Soto, 210;
    is brought to the governor and submits to him, 211;
    and accepts friendship of the cacique of Casqui, 212;
    distance to Aquiguate, 215;
    mentioned, 227, 270;
    direction of, 271.

  Pacaxes, a tribe in Culiacan, 345.

  Padilla, Juan de, companion of Alvarado, 279;
    accompanies Tovar to Tusayan, 307;
    remains in Quivira, 372;
    death of, 364, 373, 385.

  Pafalya, 194.

  Pajarito Park, 340 n.

  Palachen, 22 n.

  Palacios, death of, 49.

  Palisema, De Soto in, 216.

  Palmas, Rio de las, western limit of grant to Narvaez, 3, 14;
    mentioned, 22, 260, 264, 265, 266;
    direction from, to New Spain, 272;
    direction of, from Espiritu Santo, 272.

  Palmitos, sustenance of Narvaez and his men, 25.

  Palos, Juan de, friar, with Narvaez, 25.

  Panico, 268.
    _See also_ Panuco.

  Pantoja, Juan, ordered by Narvaez to proceed to Trinidad, 15;
    possibly the Pantoja killed by Soto-Mayor, 15 n.;
    advises Narvaez, 42;
    made lieutenant, 62;
    killed by Soto-Mayor, 63.

  Pánuco, Narvaez orders ships to find, 4;
    mentioned, 63;
    to be sought by four men of Cabeza de Vaca's party, 49;
    Guzman, governor of, 285 n.;
    mention of, 385.
    _See also_ Panico.

  Pánuco River, 265 n.

  Papa, title given priests at Zuñi, 351.

  Papagos, tribe of Sonora, 348 n.

  Paracoxi, province, 153, 154, 155.

  Partidos, seduce one hundred and forty men from Narvaez, 14.

  Pasquaro, visited by Mendoza, 294.

  Patent, to Narvaez, 3.

  Pato, Moscoso at, 238.

  Patofa, speech of, 168-169.

  Patoqua, Jemez pueblo, 359 n.

  Pawnee Indians, mention of, 328 n., 337 n., 365 n.

  Paz, Augustin de, printer, 126.

  Peace, form of making, at Acoma, 312;
    at Tiguex, 319.

  Pearls, found by De Soto, 174;
    burned at Mauilla, 193.

  Pecos, identification of Cicuye with, 329 n.;
    visit of Indians from, 310;
    visited by Alvarado, 312;
    visit of Coronado to, 327;
    siege of, 341;
    route of army to, 361 n.;
    description of, 355-356;
    history of, 355 n.;
    mention of, 359.

  Pecos River, crossed by Spaniards, 99 n., 329, 338.

  Pedro, Don, lord of Tescuco, killed, 31.

  Pedro, Indian guide, is baptized, 174;
    regarded with suspicion, 176.

  Pemmican, used by Indians, 363.

  Peñalosa, embarks in open boat, 36;
    repulses Indians, 39;
    overtaken by Cabeza de Vaca, 43;
    reported killed by the Camones, 72.

  Pensacola, Muskhogean territory, 21 n.

  Pensacola Bay, 38 n., 40 n.
    _See also_ Chuse, Bay of.

  People of the Figs, 79, 87.

  Peru, exploration of, 380.

  Petachan River, _see_ Petlatlan.

  Petates, or mats used for houses, 346, 377 n.

  Petlatlan, description of Indian settlement of, 346;
    houses at, 346, 377 n.;
    mention of, 376.

  Petlatlan, Rio, identification of, with Rio Sinaloa, 346 n.

  Petutan River, 111, 117 n.

  Philip II., king of Spain, 288.

  Philippine Islands, location of isle of negroes in, 386 n.

  Piache, _see_ Piachi.

  Piache River, 188, 189.

  Piachi, 188 n.

  Picardo, Juan, printer, 126.

  Picones, catfish, 349 n.

  Picuris, pueblo of, 352 n.

  Pima Indians, 115 n., 348 n.

  Pimahaitu Indians, 115 n.

  Pine Bluff, 225 n., 248 n.

  Pine nuts, used as food, 96, 349, 350.

  Piraguas, built by De Soto, 225.

  Piros Indians, 104 n.;
    villages of, 341 n.

  Pizarro, Hernando, mentioned, 135.

  Plot, against Narvaez, 34.

  Pobares, Francisco, death of, 322.

  Pojoaque, Tewa pueblo, 359 n.

  Pontotoc county, Mississippi, 195.

  Porcallo de Figueroa, Vasco, offers provisions to Narvaez, 15;
    keeps his slaves from hanging themselves, 142;
    mentioned, 143;
    is made captain-general, by De Soto, 145;
    is resisted by Indians, 146;
    lodges with Ucita, 147;
    is unable to make seizures of Indians, as slaves, 154;
    and returns to Cuba, 154.

  Pork, allowance of, to De Soto's men, 171.

  Portuguese, with Hernando de Soto, leave Elvas, 138;
    Spanish seek to get among the Portuguese, 139.

  Potano, town, 156, 162.

  Pottery, glazed, of Indians, 340;
    where found, 340 n.;
    made by
    Indians, 355, 361.

  Prairie de Roane, 239 n.

  Prairie dogs, seen by Coronado on great plains, 338.

  Prentiss County, Mississippi, 212 n.

  Prickly pears, 61 n., 66-67, 70, 71, 72, 73, 74, 75-76, 77,
        78, 80, 81, 93, 94, 96, 246.
    _See also_ Tuna.

  Primahaitu Indians, 114.

  Prostitution among the Tahus, 344-345.

  Puaray, settlement upon site of Tiguex, 317 n.

  Pueblo Indians, 90 n., 104 n.;
    rabbit hunts among, 98 n.;
    ceremonials of, 384.

  Pueblos, method of building, 352.

  Puerto de Luna, 338 n.

  Puerto Principe, town in Cuba, 142, 143, 144.

  Puje, ruin of pueblo of, 340 n.

  Quachichiles, _see_ Guachichules.

  Quachita River, 238 n.

  Qualla, _see_ Xualla.

  Querechos Indians, mode of life of, 330;
    description of, 362-363.

  Queres, pueblos of, 327 n., 352, 358 n.

  Quevenes Indians, 59, 62, 85, 87.

  Quigaltam, 227;
    cacique of, sends message to De Soto, 229;
    arouses the latter's suspicions, 230;
    mentioned, 235.

  Quigualtam, Indians of, attack Moscoso, 255.

  Quiguate, 213, 215, 216.
    _See_ Aquiguate.

  Quince juice, use of, as poison antidote, 376, 381.

  Quipana, near plains, 222 n.

  Quirex, province of, visited by Spaniards, 327.

  Quitok Indians, 80 n., 87 n.

  Quitoles Indians, 87 n.

  Quivira, stories of, told by Turk, 313, 314;
    mention of, 327;
    departure of Coronado for, 328;
    stories of Xabe of, 329;
    arrival of Coronado at, 336;
    route to, 337 n.;
    Indians of, identified with Wichita Indians, 337 n.;
    Coronado returns from, 341, 342;
    description of, reference to, 362, 365, 366, 367;
    return to, planned, 368;
    Padilla remains in, 372, 373 n.;
    death of Padilla at, 385;
    route to, 378, 385.

  Quizquiz, De Soto at, 202;
    Indians of, present skins and shawls, 202;
    direction of, 271.

  Rabbits, on the great plains, 363;
    skins of, used for garments, 350.

  Rafts, use of, in crossing Colorado River, 304;
    method of making, 304.

  Ramirez, Fray Juan, establishes mission at Acoma, 311 n.

  Ranjel, Narrative by, 130;
    cited, 161 n., 165 n., 166 n., 167 n., 172 n., 175 n., 177 n.,
          178 n., 185 n., 188 n., 189 n., 194 n., 215 n., 216 n.,
          217 n., 222 n.

  Rau, Charles, translator of Baegert's narrative, 346 n.

  Redland, 195.

  Red River, 225 n., 261 n.;
    Moscoso at, 241 n.;
    identification of, with Zuñi River, 299 n.

  _Relación del Suceso_, 278;
    cited, 337 n., 365 n., 367 n.

  _Relación Postrera de Síbola_, 278.

  Riberos, el Factor, companion of Coronado, 293.

  Rio Grande, 99 n., 102, 103 n., 104 n.;
    Indians attempt to cross, 323;
    pueblos near, 327 n., 335 n.;
    disappearance underground of, 341;
    mention of, 339 n., 340 n.;
    direction of, 359 n., 360.

  Ritchey, W. E., cited, 302.

  River, the, 228.

  River Grande, _see_ Grande River.

  Rodriguez, Men., killed at Mauilla, 193.

  Rojas, Juan de, made governor's lieutenant of Cuba, 146.

  Romo, Alfonso, sent in quest of habitations, 171;
    overtakes De Soto, 172.

  Ruiz, Gonçalo, death of, 49.

  Saabedra, Fernandarias de, appointment of, 297.

  Saabedra, H. de, mayor of Culiacan, 297, 371, 372.

  Sacatecas, _see_ Zacatecas.

  St. Clement's Point, landing of Narvaez at, 19 n.

  St. Francis County, Arkansas, 205 n., 214 n.

  St. Francis River, 213 n., 214 n.

  St. Marks, seat of the Apalachee, 21 n., 30 n.

  St. Marks Bay, 33 n., 37 n.

  St. Marks River, 33 n.

  Saline County, 236 n.

  Saline River, 236 n.

  Salt, made by Spaniards, 218, 238;
    natural crystals of, in Arizona, 310;
    lakes of, on great plains, 338, 362.

  Salvidar, Juan de, companion of Coronado, 292;
    explorations of, 296;
    mentioned, 299;
    at Tiguex, 319;
    captures Indian village, 324;
    escape of Indian woman from, 339.

  Samaniego, Lope de, appointed army-master, 292;
    death of, 295.

  San Antonio Bay, 58 n.

  San Antonio Cape, 143.

  San Antonio River, 74 n.

  San Bernardo River, 58 n.

  Sanbenitos, described, 334 n., 347.

  Sancti Spiritus, town in Cuba, 142, 144.

  Sandia Mountains, 352.

  San Gabriel de los Españoles, settlement of, 340 n.

  San Hieronimo de los Corazones, founding of, 301;
    dispatches from, 324;
    disturbance in, 326;
    transferred to Suya, 301, 326.

  San Ildefonso, Tewa pueblo, 359 n.

  San Juan, Tewa pueblo, 340 n., 359 n.

  Sanlúcar, Bay of, 139.

  Sanlúcar, muster of De Soto's forces at, 139.

  San Lúcar de Barrameda, port in Spain, 3, 14 n.

  San Luis, island, 57 n.

  San Marcos-Guadalupe River, 74 n.

  San Miguel, village, 120.

  San Miguel Culiacan, 113 n.

  San Pedro, river in Sonora, 371 n.

  Sant Anton, Cape, westernmost point of Cuba, 18 n.

  Santa Clara, Tewa pueblo, 359 n.

  Santa Fé, seat of provincial government, 340 n.

  Santa Maria, Rio, 105 n.

  Santander River, called Rio de los Palmas, 14 n.

  Santiago, use of, as war cry, 300 n., 308.

  Santiago de Cuba, described by the Gentleman of Elvas, 140-141;
    bread there made of a root, 141;
    natural products of, 141.

  Sant Miguel, strait, 37.

  Santo Domingo, Narvaez reaches, 14;
    mentioned, 19 n.

  Saquechuma, burned by Indians to deceive De Soto, 196.

  Savannah River, 21 n., 172 n.

  Sebastian, king, 272 n.

  Seminole Indians, 19 n.

  Senora, _see_ Sonora.

  Seri Indians, 108 n., 301 n.

  Seven Cities, _see_ Cibola.

  Sheep, Rocky Mountain, 305, 348.

  Shongopovi, Hopi pueblo, 358 n.

  Shupaulovi, Hopi pueblo, 358 n.

  Sia, identification of, 327 n., 359 n.;
    mention of, 359.

  Sichomovi, Hopi pueblo, 358 n.

  Sierra, dies, 49.

  Sierra Madre Mountains, 106 n.

  Sign language, used by Querechos, 330;
    by plains Indians, 363, 363 n.

  Silos, Pueblo de los, 356, 358 n.

  Silveira, Fernando da, epigram by, 133.

  Silver, reports of, at Quivira, 313, 314, 329;
    use of, in glazing, 340, 355, 361;
    mine of, at Culiacan, 345.

  Silver Bluff, 172 n.

  Sinaloa, settlement of, 347.

  Sinaloa River, 113, 117 n., 346.

  Sipsey River, 194 n.

  Slavery, Spanish, among the Indians, 64;
    Indian, among the Spaniards, 110, 114, 116, 312, 329, 339;
    Indians sought by Vasco Porcallo de Figueroa, 154;
    taken by De Soto, 160, 181, 184-185, 186, 195, 205, 206, 208,
          209, 215, 216, 217, 218, 219, 222, 223, 225, 227, 232;
    by Moscoso, 238, 239, 242, 254;
    five hundred men and women abandoned, 254.

  Smith, Buckingham, _Relation of Alvar Nuñez Cabeza de Vaca_, cited,
        19 n., 24 n., 25 n., 30 n., 31 n., 71 n., 79 n., 90 n., 92 n.;
    translation of Oviedo's _Letter_, 68-70;
    _Coleccion de varios Documentos para la Historia de la Florida_,
          edited by, 130.

  Snakes, worship of, 344.

  Soacatino, guide to, furnished to Moscoso, 243;
    Indians of, report seeing Europeans, 243;
    Moscoso at, 244.

  Sobaipuri, 349 n., 371 n.

  Socorro, _see_ Aymay.

  Sodomy, among Pacaxes, 345;
    at Petlatlan, 346;
    at Suya, 348;
    absence of, at Cibola, 351.

  Solis, Alonso de, distributor and assessor, with Narvaez, 14;
    enters Apalachen, 28;
    embarks in open boat, 36;
    is drowned, 46.

  Sonora, Spanish settlement in valley of, 301, 302;
    San Hieronimo abandoned for, 301, 326;
    description of, 347;
    rebellion at, 370-371.

  Sonora Indians, 106 n.

  Sorcery, among Pacaxes, 345.

  Soti, brothers, die at Aminoya, 249.

  Soto, Hernando de, wishes services of Cabeza de Vaca, 8, 136;
    Narrative of expedition of, by the Gentleman of Elvas, 127-272;
    geographical knowledge afforded by the Narrative, 129;
    Indian tribes described, 129;
    places mentioned, 129;
    parentage of, 135;
    captain of horse in Peru, 135;
    marries Doña Ysabel de Bobadilla, 136;
    is made governor of Cuba, and Adelantado of Florida, 136;
    members of his company, 136-138;
    sails with six hundred men and seven ships, 139;
    reaches Santiago de Cuba, 140;
    goes to Havana by land, 143;
    lands in Florida, 146;
    lodges with Ucita, 147;
    loses his Indian interpreters, 147;
    sends vessels to Cuba for provisions, 154;
    moves toward Cale, in search of gold, 155;
    finds the town abandoned, 155;
    orders all the ripe grain in the fields to be secured, 156;
    loses three men, 156;
    reaches Caliquen and hears of the distress that overtook Narvaez
          at Apalache, but decides to go onward, 157;
    takes cacique, and is attacked by Indians at Napetaca, 158;
    divides some of the captives among his men and orders execution of
          the rest, 160;
    seizes a hundred Indian men and women, 160;
    starts in search of gold, reported to be at Yupaha, 164;
    tells the cacique of Achese that he is the child of the Sun, 167;
    plants a cross, 167;
    receives four hundred tamemes from the cacique of Ocute, 168;
    leaves the province of Patofa, 169;
    an exorcism cures his guide, 169;
    receives seven hundred tamemes, 170;
    suffers many privations, 171-172;
    orders an Indian burned, 172;
    hears speech of a kinswoman of the cacica of Cutifachiqui,
    hears speech of the cacica, 173;
    leaves Cutifachiqui, 175;
    takes the cacica as a slave, 176;
    distances traversed, 177;
    begs maize of the cacique of Chiaha, 178;
    hears speech of cacique of that place, 178;
    sends men to see if there is gold at Chisca, 181;
    hears speech of cacique of Coste, 182-183;
    and speech of cacique of Coça, 183-184;
    rests at Coça twenty-five days, 185;
    hears speech at Tallisi, 186-187;
    hears speech of cacique of Tastaluça, 188;
    distances traversed to Tastaluça, 188-189;
    wounded in encounter with Indians at Mauilla, 191;
    hears that Maldonado is at Ochuse, 193;
    his losses in the Florida expedition, 194;
    leaves Mauilla, 194;
    reaches Chicaça and takes some Indians, 195;
    cuts off an Indian's hands for theft, 196;
    repulses Indians, 197-199;
    leaves Chicaça and sustains two more attacks made by the natives,
    sets out for Quizquiz, 202;
    crosses the Mississippi, 204;
    hears speeches of the cacique of Casqui, 206-207;
    preaches Christianity to the Indians, 207-208;
    finds many shawls and skins at Pacaha, 209;
    makes friendship between the caciques of Casqui and Pacaha, 212;
    burns part of Aquiguate, 214;
    takes one hundred and forty-one Indians, 215;
    makes other captures at Coligoa, 216;
    at Tanico, 217;
    subdues cacique of Tulla, 218-220;
    has now been gone three years, 221;
    has lost two hundred and fifty men, 221;
    winters at Autiamque, 222-224;
    goes to Nilco, 226;
    and thence to Guachoya, 227;
    sends a message to cacique of Quigaltam, 229;
    is taken ill, 230;
    sends expedition against Nilco, 230-231;
    farewell speech to his men, 232-233;
    names Moscoso to be his successor, 233;
    dies, 233;
    and is secretly buried, 234;
    sale of his property, 235;
    reference to discoveries of, 313, 339, 365;
    crosses route of Coronado, 339;
    mentioned, 362, 366;
    route of, 386.

  Soto-Mayor, Juan de, companion of Coronado, 293.

  Soto-Mayor, kills Juan Pantoja, 15 n., 63;
    dies and is eaten by Esquivel, 63.

  Soto-Mayor, Pedro de, chronicler of Cardenas' expedition, 310.

  South Carolina, 176 n.

  South Sea, 105, 108, 111, 238.
    _See also_ California, Gulf of.

  Staked Plains, 7, 97 n., 245 n., 361 n., 362 n.

  Stevens, John, dictionary of, 300 n.

  Susola Indians, 76, 80 n., 87.

  Suwannee, river, crossed by Narvaez, 27 n.

  Suya, _see_ Sonora.

  Swain County, 176 n.

  Tabasco, mention of, 380.

  Tabu, among Indians of Malhado, 51-52.

  Taguanate, cacique of, plots against Moscoso, 251;
    comes to make excuses, 252;
    town assaulted by Moscoso, 252-253.

  Tahu Indians, a tribe in Culiacan, 344.

  Tali, De Soto at, 182;
    speech of cacique of, 182-183.

  Taliepataua, 194.

  Talise, nature of the country, 270.
    _See also_ Tallise.

  Talladega County, 183 n.

  Tallahassee, seat of the Apalachee, 21 n.

  Tallahatchie River, 200 n.

  Tallapoosa County, 186.

  Tallapoosa River, 186.

  Tallimuchose, without inhabitants, 185.

  Tallise, 186;
    cacique of, lends forty men to De Soto, 186;
    presents the tamemes needed, 187.
    _See also_ Talise.

  Tamemes, Indians who carry burdens, 168, 170, 176, 182, 184, 186,
        187, 213.

  Tampas Bay, reached by Narvaez, 20;
    mentioned, 36 n., 125 n.

  Tanico, De Soto at, 217.

  Tanto River, 143.

  Taos, identification with Braba, 340 n.;
    visit of Spaniards to, 340;
    Valladolid Spanish name for, 340;
    mention of, 359.

  Tapatu River, 228.

  Tapile, equivalent of meirinho, 269.

  Tarasca, a district in Michoacan, 286.

  Tascaluça, De Soto seeks, 185;
    cacique of, addresses De Soto, 186-187;
    distance to Mississippi, 215;
    nature of the country, 270;
    direction of, 271.
    _See also_ Tastaluça.

  Tastaluça, cacique of, sends a chief to De Soto, 186-187;
    dwelling of, 187;
    speech to De Soto, 188;
    is taken by De Soto, 188;
    asks to be allowed to remain, 189;
    at Mauilla, 189.
    _See also_ Tascaluça.

  Tatalicoya, De Soto at, 217.

  Tattooing, among Indians, 348 n.

  Tavera, one of Cabeza de Vaca's party, death of, 48-49.

  Tejas, _see_ Teyas.

  Tejo, stories told by, 285-286;
    death of, 287.

  Tellez, captain, embarks in open boat, 36;
    repulses Indians, 39;
    overtaken by Cabeza de Vaca, 43;
    reported killed by the Camones, 72.

  Tennessee River, 181 n., 212 n.

  Teocomo, settlement of, 347.

  Tepoca Indians, 108 n.

  Terceira, island, 123;
    produces batata, 141.

  Ternaux-Compans, Henri, translation of Castañeda by, 277,
        290 n., 341 n.

  Tesuque, Tewa pueblo, 359 n.

  Tewa Indians, pottery of, 340 n.;
    pueblos of, 359 n.

  Teyas, tribe of plains Indians, 333;
    identification with Tejas, or Texas, 333 n.;
    guides of Coronado to Quivira, 335, 338;
    Cicuye besieged by, 357;
    name of, synonymous with braves, 357;
    mentioned, 362;
    cannibalism among, 363 n.

  Theodoro, a Greek, makes resin, 35;
    deserts, 40.

  Tietiquaquo, chief of, comes to De Soto, 223.

  Tiguas, 317 n.;
    pueblos of, 358 n.

  Tiguex, visited by Alvarado, 312;
    identification of, 317 n.;
    demands of Spaniards at, 318;
    revolt of Indians of, 319;
    Indians of, distrust Spaniards, 321, 328;
    siege of, 322;
    description of, 352;
    pueblos of, 358.

  Timucuan Indians, 19 n., 25 n.

  Timuquanan or Timucuan Indians, 19 n., 25 n.

  Tishomingo County, Mississippi, 212 n.

  Tison, Rio del, reason for name of, 301.
    _See_ Colorado River.

  Toalli, De Soto at, 165, 166;
    houses made of grass, 165.

  Toasi, 185 n.;
    De Soto at, 186.

  Tobar, Nuño de, at court, 135;
    accompanies De Soto, 137;
    is deprived of his rank as captain-general, 145;
    leaves his wife at Havana, 146;
    sent against Nilco, 231.

  Tobosos Indians, 103 n.

  Tocaste, town, 155 n.

  Tombigbee River, 189 n., 194 n., 195 n.

  Tomson, Robert, cited, 334 n.

  Tonala, settlement of, 287.

  Tonkawa Indians, Texas tribe, 363 n.

  Topia or Tapira in Durango, 290 n.

  Topira, expedition of Coronado to, 290.

  Torre, Diego Perez de la, replaces Guzman, 287.

  Torrejon de Velasco, death of Guzman at, 285 n.

  Tovar, Fernando de, position of, 292.

  Tovar, Pedro de, appointed ensign-general, 292;
    visits Tusayan, 307;
    sent to San Hieronimo, 326;
    joins Coronado at Tiguex, 367.

  _Traslado de las Nuevas_, 278.

  Travois, dog saddles used by plains Indians, 362.

  Trees, near Apalachen, 29;
    of Santiago de Cuba, 140-141;
    named by Gentleman of Elvas, 206.

  Trigeux, _see_ Tiguex.

  Trinidad, storm at, 15-17;
    town in Cuba, 144, 145.

  Truxillo, adventure of, 298.

  Tuasi, _see_ Toasi.

  Tuckaseegee River, 176 n.

  Tula, direction of, 271.

  Tulla, De Soto's encounter with Indians at, 218-219;
    cacique of, offers presents, 220;
    is dismissed, 221.

  Tuna, native American fruit, 347;
    preserves made from, by Indians, 305 n., 348.

  Tunica County, Mississippi, 204 n.

  Turk, Indian slave at Pecos, 313, 372;
    stories of, 314;
    bracelets of, 315;
    mentioned, 326, 329, 330, 331;
    Spaniards grow suspicious of, 328, 334;
    put in chains, 335;
    motive of, in misleading Spaniards, 336-337.

  Turkeys in pueblo regions, 354.

  Turquoises, presented to Cabeza de Vaca, 106,117;
    found at Waco, 246;
    collected by Estevanico, 288, 289:
    how obtained by Indians, 308 n.;
    gifts of, made by Indians, 308, 312;
    of pueblo Indians, 350.

  Tusayan, description of, by Zuñi Indians, 307;
    visited by Tovar, 307;
    cotton cultivated at, 308 n.;
    description of, 351;
    names of pueblos of, 358 n.

  Tutahaco, visit of Coronado to, 314;
    problem of name of, 314 n.;
    eight pueblos of, 358.

  Tutelpinco, De Soto at, 225.

  Tyronza River, 206 n., 208 n.

  Ucita, an Indian chief, 146 n.;
    town of, 146, 147;
    temple thrown down, 147.

  Uitachuco, burned by Indians, 161.

  Ullibahali, chiefs of, approach De Soto, 185;
    a fenced town, 185;
    cacique of, offers tamemes to De Soto, 186.

  Union County, Mississippi, 200 n.

  Upanguayma Indians, 108.

  "Upper Cross Timbers," 244 n.

  Urine, use of, as a mordant, 354 n.

  Urrea, Lope de, companion of Coronado, 293;
    envoy of peace to Indians, 323.

  Utinama, town, 156.

  Uzachil, much food found at, 160.

  Uzachil, cacique of, sends embassy to De Soto, 158;
    presents him with deer, 160.

  Uzela, De Soto at, 161.

  Vaca, Cabeza de, _see_ Cabeza de Vaca.

  Vacapan, province crossed by Coronado, 305.

  Vacas, Rio de las, 103 n.

  Valdevieso, killed by Indians, 58, 64;
    mentioned by Oviedo, 69.

  Valençuela, captain, ordered by Narvaez to follow river to
        the sea, 26.

  Valladolid, Spanish name of Braba, 340, 359.

  Valley of Knaves, rebellion of Indians in, 326.

  Vargas, Juan de, killed by Indians, 257.

  Vargas, Luis Ramierez de, companion of Coronado, 293.

  Vasconcelos, André de, of Elvas, 137, 138;
    commands a ship in De Soto's expedition, 139;
    slave of, espouses cacica of Cutifachiqui, 177;
    dies at Aminoya, 249.

  Vasconyados Indians, 115 n.

  Vazquez, Juan, killed at Mauilla, 193.

  Vazquez de Ayllon, Lucas, 21 n.

  Vega, Garcilaso de la, "the Inca," author of _Florida del
        Yunca_, 131;
    gives distance of Moscoso's journey down the Mississippi, 259 n.

  Vegetation of the great plains, 362.

  Velasco, island, possibly to be identified with Malhado, 57 n.

  Velazquez, Juan, first man of Narvaez' exploring party to be
        lost, 27;
    his horse affords supper to many, 27.

  Venison, a thing little known, 74.

  Vera, Francisco de, father of Nuñez Cabeza de Vaca, 3, 125.

  Vera, Pedro de, conqueror of the Canaries, grandfather of Nuñez
        Cabeza de Vaca, 3, 13 n., 125.

  Vera Cruz, Cabeza de Vaca at, 121;
    mentioned, 265 n., 268.

  Vessels, built by men under Narvaez, 34-36;
    by Spaniards at Aminoya, 250.

  Vicksburg Bluffs, 255 n.

  Villafarta, named by De Soto, 157.

  Villalobos, R. L. de, voyage of, 360, 360 n., 378.

  Virgins, treatment of, 355, 356.

  Voth, H. R., studies on Oraibi marriage customs, 353 n.

  Waco, Moscoso at, 244 n., 245;
    turquoises and shawls of cotton found at, 246.

  Walnut Bend suggested as the place of De Soto's crossing the
        Mississippi, 204 n.

  Walnuts, found by Coronado, 334.

  Walpi, Hopi pueblo, 358 n.

  Watercress, native American, 349.

  Whiskers, captain of Cicuye Indians, 310, 312;
    taken prisoner by Alvarado, 315;
    release of, 329.

  White Oak shoals, Red River, 242 n.

  White River, 216 n., 217 n., 253 n.

  Wichita Indians, identified with Indians of Quivira, 337 n.

  Wildcat, native American, 349, 350.

  Wine, of pitahaya, 348.

  Winship, George Parker, memoirs on the Coronado expedition, 276-277,
        337 n., 341 n., 360 n., 366 n., 374 n., 386 n.

  Witchcraft practised by Pacaxes, 345.

  Withlacoochee River crossed by Narvaez, 25 n.

  Wolves on great plains, 363.

  Women, work of, in pueblo building, 352;
    functions of, 353.

  Woodruff County, Arkansas, 216 n.

  Xabe, Indian from Quivira, with Coronado, 329, 342.

  Xagua, _see_ Jagua.

  Xalisco, establishment of, 287;
    Alarcon's destination at, 294.

  Xeréz de Badajóz, 135.

  Xeréz de la Frontera, 126.

  Ximena, _see_ Galisteo.

  Xuala, direction of, 271.

  Xualla, mentioned, 176 n., 177;
    distance to Tastaluça, 188;
    distance to Coça, 189.

  Xuarez, Juan, commissary of Narvaez' fleet, 14;
    burns cases containing dead men, 21;
    approves the plan for Spanish to continue inland exploration, 23;
    joins inland march, 25;
    one of party that goes to look for the sea, 33.

  Yaqui Indians, 118 n., 346 n.

  Yaqui River, 376 n.

  Yaquimi, settlement of, 347.

  Yeguaces Indians, 87 n.

  Yguases Indians, _see_ Yguazes Indians.

  Yguazes Indians, 61, 87;
    manners and customs of, 65-66;
    marriage among, 65.

  Young County, Texas, 244 n.

  Ysabel de Bobadilla, wife of Hernando de Soto, 136;
    receives a waiting-maid from the governor of Gomera, 140;
    and a mule from a gentleman of Santiago de Cuba, 140;
    sails for Havana, 142;
    is in much danger, 143;
    remains in Havana, 145;
    receives twenty women, sent by Añasco, 162;
    has not heard from De Soto in three years, 221.

  Ysopete, Indian of Quivira, with Coronado, 331;
    supplants Turk in confidence of Coronado, 334, 337.

  Ytara, town, 156, 162.

  Ytaua, De Soto at, 185.

  Yukiwingge, visited by Barrionuevo, 340;
    location of, 340 n.;
    pueblos of, 359 n.

  Yuma Indians, description of, 303.

  Yupaha, governed by a woman, 164;
    reported to have much gold, 164.

  Yuqueyunque, _see_ Yukiwingge.

  Zacatecas, Mexican province, 385.

  Zamora, printing press at, 126.

  Zebreros, an alcalde, acts as guide to Cabeza de Vaca, 115;
    goes to Culiacan, 116.

  Zuñi Indians, pueblos of, 300, 358 n.;
    pottery of, 340 n.;
    tame eagles of, 348 n.;
    dress of women of, 350 n.;
    population of pueblos of, 351 n.
    _See also_ Cibola.

  Zuñi River, crossed by Coronado, 299.

       *       *       *       *       *

Transcriber's note:

Text enclosed by underscores is in italics (_italics_).

Small capital text has been replaced with all capitals.

Variations in spelling, punctuation and hyphenation have been
retained except in obvious cases of typographical error, and in the
following cases: Castaneda has been changed to Castañeda and Relacion
to Relación.

The cover for the eBook version of this book was created by the
transcriber and is placed in the public domain.

Page 71: N[)a]dáko indicates breve over "a".

In the index for Mesa, "Spanish soldier", the transcriber has
changed the page number 538 to 376.

*** End of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Original Narratives of Early American History - Spanish Explorers in the Southern United States 1528-1543. - The Narrative of Alvar Nunez Cabeca de Vaca. The Narrative - Of The Expedition Of Hernando De Soto By The Gentleman Of - Elvas" ***

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