Spaniards came once upon a prairie that was broken
neither by rocks, nor hills, nor trees, nor shrubs, nor any thing which could arrest the eye as it followed the sea of grass to the horizon.
In the hollow ravines there were trees, which could be seen only by approaching the steep bank; the path for descending to the water was marked by the tracks of the bison.
Here some of the Teyas nation from the valley of the Del Norte
were found hunting.
The governor, sending back the most of his men, with a chosen band journeyed on for forty-two days longer; having no food but the meat of buffaloes, and no fuel but their dung.
At last he reached the province, which, apparently from some confusion of names, he was led to call Quivira,1
and which lay in forty degrees north latitude, unless he may have erred one or two degrees in his observations.
It was well watered by brooks and rivers, which flowed to what the Spaniards then called the Espiritu Santo
; the soil was the best strong, black mould, and bore plums like those of Spain
, nuts, grapes, and excellent mulberries.
The inhabitants were savages, having no culture but of maize; no metal but copper; no lodges but cabins of straw or of bison skins; no clothing but buffalo robes
Here on the bank of a great tributary of the Mississippi
, a cross was raised with this inscription: ‘Thus far came Francisco Vasquez de Coronado
, general of an expedition.’
After a still further search for rich kingdoms, and after the Del Norte
had been explored by parties from the army for twenty leagues above the river Jemez
, and for an uncertain distance below El Paso
, the general, after his return to Tiguex, on the twentieth