Crossing the Continent 1527-1540: The Story of the First by Robert Goodwin

By Robert Goodwin

The real tale of America's first nice explorer and adventurer—an African slave named Esteban Dorantes

Crossing the Continent takes us on an epic trip from Africa to Europe and the US as Dr. Robert Goodwin chronicles the remarkable adventures of the African slave Esteban Dorantes (1500-1539), the 1st pioneer from the previous international to discover the whole thing of the yankee south and the 1st African-born guy to die in North the US approximately whom something is understood. Goodwin's groundbreaking study in Spanish data has resulted in an intensive new interpretation of yank history—one during which an African slave emerges because the nation's first nice explorer and adventurer.

Nearly 3 centuries earlier than Lewis and Clark's epic trek to the Pacific coast, Esteban and 3 Spanish noblemen survived shipwreck, famine, affliction, and local American hostility to make the 1st crossing of North the USA in recorded historical past. Drawing on modern debts and long-lost files, Goodwin recounts the extreme tale of Esteban's sixteenth-century odyssey, which all started in Florida and wound via what's now Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, Texas, New Mexico, and Arizona, so far as the Gulf of California. Born in Africa and captured at a tender age through slave investors, Esteban used to be serving his proprietor, a Spanish captain, whilst their disastrous sea voyage to the recent international approximately claimed his existence. ultimately he emerged because the chief of the few survivors of this day trip, guiding them on a rare eight-year march westward to safety.

On the group's go back to the Spanish imperial capital at Mexico urban, the viceroy appointed Esteban because the army commander of a non secular day trip despatched to set up an enduring Spanish direction into Arizona and New Mexico. yet in this new event, as Esteban driven deeper and deeper into the unknown north, Spaniards some distance to the south started to pay attention unusual rumors of his loss of life at Zuni Pueblo in New Mexico.

Filled with stories of actual patience, ordinary calamities, geographical wonders, unusual discoveries, and Esteban's nearly mystical dealings with local american citizens, Crossing the Continent demanding situations the normal telling of our nation's early heritage, putting an African and his courting with the Indians he encountered on the middle of a brand new ancient checklist.

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During this skirmish one of his men was shot through the head, first casualty for the Army of the Potomac. Throughout his Civil War service Custer was brought into contact repeatedly with those who were to have a bearing on his Plains service. He was serving under General Hancock in the Williamsburg campaign and it was to be under this same commander that he received his introduction to Indian warfare. General George B. McClellan was commander-in-chief of the Army of the Potomac. This was the same McClellan who, a s a young engineer, had made the first survey of the north fork of Red River past the Wichita Mountains and on to the Staked Plains of Texas with the Marcy expedition of 1853.

It is one chapter all historians would have spared the story of the winning of the West; but faithfulness to fact demands that it be included. Black Kettle earned his right to be regarded the greatest chief the Cheyennes possessed, one of the greatest Indian leaders that ever roamed the plains, the most influential in his day from the Dominion t o the Rio Grande. He had earned undying fame on the warpath long before Custer was born. Eighteen years prior to the Battle of the Washita he was one of the most celebrated of Cheyenne war chiefs.

That their recollections might be more vivid and their disclosures accurate, they were taken by the writer, on more than one occasion, to the historic battlefield. There their revelations were made. - 20 - INTRODUCTION From Chief Magpie were obtained countless disclosures of heretofore unchronicled incidents connected with major events-the Sand Creek Massacre of 1864 from which Black Kettle miraculously escaped; the Washita Battle in which Black Kettle was killed and Magpie was wounded; how the Cheyennes applied the Sacred Arrow ceremony to Custer on the Sweetwater; happenings a t the Battle of the Little Big Horn, whither Magpie had accompanied a band of Cheyennes which had followed Custer for seven years to avenge the Sacred Arrows and their martyred contemporaries.

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