The Enterprise of Florida: Pedro Menendez de Aviles and the Spanish Conquest Of, 1565-1568
Adelantado: A Spanish or Spanish colonial official, appointed to represent the King's interest in frontier areas in return for grants of authority and certain revenues and exemptions. --from the glossary of The Enterprise of Florida This biography of Pedro Men ndez de Avil s, described as "magisterial" by Florida Historical Quarterly, explicates the role of private conquerors in Spanish expansion. Using primary materials in Spanish and Florida archives, many studied for the first time, Eugene Lyon refutes the claim that the Spanish contract to settle Florida was signed with Men ndez in response to news of the French foothold at Fort Caroline. Not merely an expedition of military dominance or even of religious zeal, the Florida enterprise was primarily a joint commercial venture between Men ndez and the Crown, with the adelantado assuming most of the risks. Men ndez negotiated contracts for opening trade and agricultural centers, and he exploited family ties, particularly with his Asturian kinship group, who supported the adventure with men, ships, and money.
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