This Day in History September 27, 1514

By Ruth on September 26, 2011 in history
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I really could use what was not discovered by the explorer associated with this day in history.  Ever hear of Juan Ponce de Leon? He was the explorer from Spain who set out to discover the Fountain of Youth.  It was on this day in 1514 that he was granted a second patent to settle the islands of Bimini and Florida.  His first patent had expired, and that is when he discovered and populated Bimini.  He had already founded modern day St. Augustine in Florida.  He truly thought he had discovered the mythical islands of Bimini and thus the fountain of youth.  Too bad it was not the case.

And here’s the rest of the story.  He landed near Charlotte Harbor on the west coast of Florida.  He and his party were attacked, and Ponce de Leon was wounded by an arrow.  He returned to Cuba, and he died from an infection that resulted from that injury later on that year.  Interesting to note that if he had never gone back, he wouldn’t have been injured and died in the way he did.

It is an interesting story surrounding the Fountain of Youth.  The myth was a European story which said that in Asia there was a fountain that was supposedly in the Garden of Eden.  To the Spaniards, America was Asia.  He related the story to the “Indians,” but indeed this mythical fountain was never discovered.  It was supposed to refresh and revitalize whomever drank from it. I bet if he had discovered it, it would have been drained in no time!  But then again, who really wants to remain young the rest of their lives?  Let’s agree to grow old gracefully!

For more information, check out:
http://memory.loc.gov/ammem/today/sep27.html
http://www.notablebiographies.com/Pe-Pu/Ponce-de-Le-n-Juan.html

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