The Quarterly of the Texas State Historical Association, Volume 4, July 1900 - April, 1901 Page: 2
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2 Texas Historical Association Quarterly.
of heaven, calling him the messenger of God, touching and kissing
his habit. They went on following him from day to- day, some times
two hundred, others three hundred, and as many as four hundred
persons. Some of them left the road near midday to hunt hares,
rabbits, and deer for their support and that of the religious teacher, to
whom they first gave what was necessary. In this way they traveled
more than two hundred leagues, until they were told that the country
farther in was populated by clothed people and that they had flat-
roofed houses of many stories and garrets, and that there were other
nations on the banks of a great river, where there were many walled
towns, and that passing the river there were other very large towns
of richer people, and that there were cows and other animals different
from those of Castile, from where the natives of this land brought
many things necessary for their sustenance, because they went at
times to labor in that country.
"Before that, on account of some confused stories, there had gone
out large fleets by sea and some armies by land to discover such coun-
tries, but God was not willing that it should be done except by a San
Franciscan friar, ragged and patched, before anyone else, who having
endured the greatest labors, hunger, and misfortunes of so long a
road, returned to Mexico and gave an account thereof to his prelate,
who was the Father Fray de Niza, previously commissary-general of
the Indies, a learned man and very religious, who was then provin-
cial of the province of the Holy Evangelist; and he also gave account
to the viceroy, Don (Antonio de Mendoza."
Here we have a part of the origin of the excitement about the
Seven Cities and lands of great wealth; and it is not impossible that
some wandering Indians may have crossed the country from the
buffalo range to Sonora and spread the stories of houses, cattle, and
other wealth, which accounts were seized upon and exaggerated and
finally attributed to the survivors of the Narvaez expedition. But
Mendoza had a basis on which to erect the fabric of fiction with which
to interest Charles V in .an expedition to the north.
But Tello goes on to say: "The holy father Fray Marcos de Niza,
to assure himself of what that religious teacher had related, de-
termined to go and see it, and undertook the journey on foot bare-
1Tello, Oap. XCII.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Quarterly of the Texas State Historical Association, Volume 4, July 1900 - April, 1901, periodical, 1901; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101018/m1/8/: accessed June 22, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.