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Juan Ponce de León (Ponce-De-Leon-Juan)

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Born: 1460? AD
Died: 1521 AD.

Nationality: Spanish
Categories: Explorer

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1460 - Born in Tierra de Campos Palencia.

1493 - He began his career of exploration as part of Christopher Columbus' second expedition to the New World.

1502 - He was in the West Indies as a captain serving under Nicolás de Ovando, governor of Hispaniola.

1508-1509 - Explored and settled that island, founding the colony's oldest settlement, Caparra, near what is now San Juan.

1513 - He led a privately outfitted expedition from Puerto Rico in March and in April of that year landed on the coast of Florida near the site of modern St. Augustine.

1514 - He then returned to Puerto Rico and thence to Spain, where he secured the title in  of military governor of Bimini and Florida with permission to colonize those regions.

1521 - He sailed again for Florida with two ships and 200 men, landing near Charlotte Harbor.

1521 - He died after being returned to Cuba. Puerto Rico's third largest city, Ponce, is named in his honour.

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Page last updated: 3:57pm, 15th Mar '07