By Lucille Blanche Griffith
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The next day, Iberville sent one of his lieutenants ashore under the pretext of obtaining water and fuel to assess the situation. The Spanish, they discovered, had begun the fort (for it was little more than that) two years earlier and, while they seemed to hold it in contempt, they let the French know they had no intention of handing it over to them. Thereafter, the French, while wary of their European rivals, took great pains to cultivate cordial relations with the Spanish commandant. Their next stop was at the mouth of Mobile Bay on January 31.
That Greek, Doroteo Teodoro said he would go, too. The Governor and others failed to dissuade him. He took along a Negro, and the Indians left two of their number as hostages. It was night when the Indians returned, without water in the containers and without the Christians. When these returning Indians spoke to our two hostages, the latter started to dive into the water; but some of our soldiers held them back in the barge. , 1961), pp. 5051. First published in 1542. Narváez later was lost when he was swept overboard by a storm; but Cabeza de Vaca, after many adventures in the effort to join his compatriots in Mexico, returned home to Spain in 1537.
This book of readings is based on the theory that the most interesting history is that told by contemporary participants or observers. Few secondary accounts give the reader quite the same feeling of being a participant, or at least a close bystander, as do accounts written in the midst of life by the people who were there. Personal accounts, however, by their very nature are the pieces in a jigsaw puzzle which the historian must fit together to make the whole picture. This book is designed to furnish some of the pieces along with the essential framework.