command under himself. When the Indians of the province of Mayci were reduced under subjection, Velasquez distributed them among the Spaniards as had formerly been done in Hispaniola by Obando, taking the inhabitants of five Indian towns to himself. He likewise founded a town at a harbour on the north side of the island, called Barracoa by the natives, which was the first Spanish colony in this island. From this place Velasquez sent Narvaez with thirty men to reduce the province of Bayamo, about 50 leagues from Barracoa, a fine open country, very fertile and agreeable. Of this company, Narvaez alone was mounted, all the rest marching on foot. The natives of the country came out submissively to meet Narvaez, bringing him provisions, as they had no gold, and were very much astonished at the sight of the mare on which Narvaez rode. The Spaniards took up their residence in a town belonging to the Indians, who, seeing the small number of their invaders, resolved to rid themselves of them by surprise. Narvaez was by no means sufficiently watchful, yet had his mare along with him in the house where he lay, and a guard posted during the night. Near seven thousand Indians had assembled from all parts of the province, armed with bows and arrows, who had resolved to fall upon Narvaez and the Spaniards after midnight, though it was unusual for them to fight during the night. They gave the assault in two places at once, and found the centinels asleep on their posts; but being more eager to plunder the Spaniards than to kill them, as they had always anxiously wished for clothing ever since they saw the Christians, they did not observe the time previously concerted, but began their several attacks at different times, and one of the parties, which was the most forward, even entered the town shouting. Narvaez awoke in great consternation, and the Spaniards, who were astonished at the noise, knew not well what to do in their fright. At length, the Indians whom Narvaez had brought with him from Jamaica, lighted some fire-brands, by which the Spaniards were enabled to see their danger; and Narvaez, though wounded by a stone, found means to come at his mare, which he mounted, and rallied his Spaniards to their defence. At that time part of the horse furniture used by the Spaniards was hung with bells; and on hearing the sound of these, and seeing Narvaez coming towards them at a round trot, with his sword drawn, they lost heart, and not only abandoned the enterprize, but fled out of the country, some of them to the distance of 50 leagues, leaving none but their old and decrepid people behind. After this Velasquez sent a reinforcement to Narvaez, who became absolute master of the country.
The Strange Expedition of Juan Ponce de Leon to Discover the Fountain of Youth, in which he Discovered Florida and the Bahama Channel.