The Expedition of Pdnfilo de Narvd ez
THE EXPEDITION OF PANFILO DE NARVAEZ
GONZALO FERNANDEZ OVIEDO Y VALDEZ
EDITED BY I-IARBERT DAVENPORT
In which is told the many hardships ands deprivations endured
by Governor Pdnfilo de Narvdez and his companions; how they
built five boats to carry them to settlements; how the Governor
was hit by a stone; how they found robes of beautiful marten
skins; how two other boats were lost, with the death of the In-
spector and others, and many another doleful tale.-In the pre-
ceding chapter I have already told how these people resolved to
depart for Aute; and with much labor they did so, and after leav-
ing Apalache, they marched eight or nine days until they arrived
at Aute. In the difficult passes and lakes that they found, the
Indians attacked them, killed one Spaniard and wounded five or
six, and some horses. They reached Aute and found all the houses
burned and many fields of maize that was ready to eat were burned
After two days the Governor ordered that the treasurer, Cabeza
de Vaca, and Andr6s Dorantes and Alonso del Castillo, with nine
horsemen and fifty footmen should go in search of the sea.1 He
'Comparison of the several chronicles of the Narvdez and De Soto ex-
peditions leaves no doubt but that Cabeza de Vaca's Apalache, Ranjel's
Iviahica, Biedma's Iniahica and the Gentleman of Elvas' Anhayea Apalache,
were one and the same place, and the head town of the tribes the Spaniards
called Apalache. Ochete, or Aute, was eight or nine leagues distant, in a
southerly direction; and this latter town in turn was about two leagues,
or say five miles, from the shallow inlet of the sea on which Narvaez
built his boats. From this place the sea could be reached, by water, within
three leagues. Yet all the Narvaez, or rather, Cabeza de Vaca, narratives
state that Narvez's boats navigated seven days in these shallow inlets
before reaching the sea for the first time at the pass between the mainland
an'd the little island they called San Miguel.
A logical explanation of this apparent discrepancy is that Narvaez'
Bahia de las Caballos was Ocklockonee Bay; that Narvaez built his boats
three leagues inland from its eastern entrance; but, after embarking in
the frail boats, navigated westward through the extension of Ocklockonee
Bay, which receives Ocklockonee River and New River and opens into St.
George's Channel near Carrabelle; thence westward through St. George's
Channel and Appalachicola Bay, entering the Gulf at the western margin
of Appalachicola Bay. Otherwise we cannot account for a seven days'
Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 27, July 1923 - April, 1924. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101086/. Accessed July 13, 2014.