Land of the Brave

Juan Ponce de Leon Facts

Juan Ponce de Leon Explorer

Juan Ponce de Leon Explorer


Facts about Juan Ponce de Leon

The following Fact File contains fast information about the life of Ponce de Leon.

Interesting facts and an overview and description of the life and times and his involvement in the Exploration and the discovery of the New World leading to the colonization of America.

Why was Juan Ponce de Leon famous and what part of America did he explore? Ponce de Leon was famous for sailing around the southern end of Florida and back to the West Indies in 1513. In 1521 he visited Florida again but was wounded by a Native Indian arrow, and returned home to die.

When was Juan Ponce de Leon born? He was born c.1460

What was his country of origin and where was Ponce de Leon born? He was born in Santervas, Spain

Ponce de Leon was born to a wealthy noble Spanish family and was well educated. He served as a page at the Spanish court

Ponce de Leon undertook voyages as a Privateer, attacking ships belonging to the Moors

25 September 25, 1493: He joined the fleet on the Second voyage of Christopher Columbus. They departed from Cadiz, with 16 ships and 1500 men and travel to Hispaniola (Jamaica) and Haiti

In 1508 he founded the first settlement in Puerto Rico

February 23, 1512: King Charles V grants Juan Ponce de Leon a patent authorizing him to explore the Bahamas. He was given the title of Adelantado and had total jurisdiction.

March 3, 1513: Ponce sets out from Puerto Rico with three ships, fitted out at his own expense

27 March 27, 1513 Juan Ponce de Leon comes within sight of the coast of Florida

April 2, 1513: Juan Ponce de Leon took possession of Florida whichhe named "Pascua de Florida" (Feast of Flowers) because they first spotted land on Palm Sunday

Juan Ponce de Leon thought that Florida was just an island

He obtained a second grant to settle the Island of Bimini and the 'Island' of Florida

In 1521 he set sail with 2 ships ready to colonise Florida.

Whilst building houses in the new colony on Pine Island Ponce de Leon and his party were attacked by a tribe of the Calusa Indians

Juan Ponce de Leon was injured by a poisoned arrow

He returned to Havana, Cuba, where he died of his wounds in 1521

His tomb is in the cathedral in Old San Juan

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