more terrible by immense trunks of fallen trees, that
were decaying in the water, and sheltered the few but skilful native archers, on the day after St. John
's they came in sight of Apalache, where they had pictured to themselves a populous town, and food and treasure, and found only a hamlet of forty wretched cabins.
Here they remained for five and twenty days,
scouring the country round in quest of silver
, till perishing with hunger and weakened by fierce attacks, they abandoned all hope but of an escape from a region so remote and malign.
Amidst increasing dangers they went onward through deep lagoons and the ruinous forest in search of the sea, till
they came upon a bay,1
which they called Baia de Caballos
, and which now forms the harbor of Saint Mark
's. No trace could be found of their ships; sustaining life, therefore, by the flesh of their horses and by six or seven hundred bushels of maize plundered from the Indians, they beat their stirrups, spurs, crossbows, and other implements of iron into saws axes and nails; and in sixteen days finished five boats each of twenty-two cubits, or more than thirty feet in length.
In caulking their frail craft, films of the pal-
metto served for oakum, and they payed the seams with pitch from the nearest pines.
For rigging, they twisted ropes out of horse hair and the fibrous bark of the palmetto; their shirts were pieced together for sails, and oars were shaped out of savins; skins flayed from horses served for water bottles; it was difficult in the deep sand to find large stones for anchors and ballast.
Thus equipped, on the twenty-second of September about two hundred and fifty men, all of