A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels — Volume 03 eBook

Robert Kerr (writer)
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 756 pages of information about A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels — Volume 03.
and would by no means listen to any peace or intercourse.  Having used all possible methods to allure them to peace and submission, pursuant to his instructions, he had also orders to declare war and make slaves of them, in case of their proving obstinate.  He had at first endeavoured to procure gold from these natives in exchange for Spanish toys; but as they were fierce and refractory, Cosa recommended that they should establish their colony at the bay of Uraba, where the natives were more gentle, after which they could return to Carthagena better provided to overcome the resistance of the natives.  Hojeda, having been engaged in many quarrels and encounters, both in Spain and Hispaniola, in all of which he had come off without hurt, was always too resolute and fool hardy, and would not listen to the salutary advice of his companion.  He therefore immediately fell upon the natives who were preparing to attack him, killed many, seized others, and made booty of some gold in their habitations.  After this, taking some of his prisoners as guides, he marched to an Indian town, four leagues up the country, to which the natives had fled from the skirmish at the shore, and where he found them on their guard in greater numbers, armed with targets, swords of an extraordinary hard wood, sharp poisoned arrows, and a kind of javelins or darts.  Shouting their usual war cry, St Jago, the Spaniards fell furiously upon them, killing or taking all they met, and forcing the rest to fly into the woods.  Eight of the natives who were not so expeditious as their fellows, took shelter in a thatched hut, whence they defended themselves for some time, and killed one of the Spaniards.  Hojeda was so much incensed at this, that he ordered the house to be set on fire, in which all these Indians perished miserably.  Hojeda took sixty prisoners at this town, whom he sent to the ships, and followed after the Indians who had fled.  Coming to a town called Yarcabo, he found it deserted by the Indians, who had withdrawn to the woods and mountains with their wives, children, and effects, on which the Spaniards became careless, and dispersed themselves about the country, as if they had no enemies to fear.  Observing the careless security of the Spaniards, the Indians fell upon them by surprise while they were dispersed in small parties, and killed and wounded many of them with their poisoned arrows.  Hojeda, with a small party he had drawn together, maintained the fight a long while, often kneeling that he might the more effectually shelter himself under his target; but when he saw most of his men slain, he rushed through the thickest of the enemy, and running with amazing speed into the woods, he directed his course, as well as he could judge, towards the sea where his ships lay.  John de la Cosa got into a house which had no thatch, where he defended himself at the door till all the men who were with him were slain, and himself so sore wounded with poisoned arrows that he could no longer stand.  Looking about him in this extremity, he noticed one man who still fought with great valour, whom he advised to go immediately to Hojeda and inform him of what had happened.  Hojeda and this man were all that escaped of the party, seventy Spaniards being slaughtered in this rash and ill-conducted enterprize.

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A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels — Volume 03 from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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