previous next
[55] numbers of the natives, for punishment or intimida-
Chap. II.} 1541
tion;1 while the young cavaliers, from desire of seeming valiant, ceased to be merciful, and exulted in cruelties and carnage. The guide who was unsuccessful, or who purposely led them away from the settlements of his tribe, would be seized and thrown to the hounds. Sometimes a native was condemned to the flames. Any trifling consideration of safety would induce the governor to set fire to a hamlet. He did not delight in cruelty; but the happiness, the life, and the rights of the Indians, were held of no account. The approach of the Spaniards was heard with dismay; and their departure hastened by the suggestion of wealthier lands at a distance.

In the spring of the following year, Soto determined

1542 Mar. 6.
to descend the Washita to its junction, and to get tidings of the sea. As he advanced, he was soon lost amidst the bayous and marshes which are found along the Red River and its tributaries. Near the Mississippi, he came upon the country of Nilco, which was well peopled. The river was there larger than the Guadalquivir at Seville. At last, he arrived at the
April 17.
province where the Washita, already united with the Red River, enters the Mississippi.2 The province was called Guachoya. Soto anxiously inquired the distance to the sea; the chieftain of Guachoya could not tell. Were there settlements extending along the river to its mouth? It was answered that its lower banks were an uninhabited waste. Unwilling to believe so disheartening a tale, Soto sent one of his men, with eight

1 Calveto, from Benzo, Hist. N. Orbis N. l. II. c. XIII. in De Bry, v. 47.

2 McCulloh places Guachoya near the Arkansas. He does not make sufficient allowance for an exaggeration of distances, and for delays on the Mississippi during the night time; 529—531. Nuttall, Martin, and others, agree with the statement in the text.

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.

hide Places (automatically extracted)

View a map of the most frequently mentioned places in this document.

Sort places alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a place to search for it in this document.
Seville (Spain) (1)

Download Pleiades ancient places geospacial dataset for this text.

hide People (automatically extracted)
Sort people alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a person to search for him/her in this document.
Ferdinand De Soto (3)
N. Orbis (1)
Nuttall (1)
McCulloh (1)
Martin (1)
N. Y. Hist (1)
hide Dates (automatically extracted)
Sort dates alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a date to search for it in this document.
1542 AD (1)
April 17th (1)
March 6th (1)
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: