Vasco Nunez De Balboa

By: Marcus Myvett

Background Information

            Vasco Nunez de Balboa was born in 1475, in the town Jerez de los Caballeros, in the province of Extremadura in Castile, Spain. His father was a noble man, but they were not wealthy. He was once governor of Darien, but he then went on his expedition, which was exploring the Pacific Ocean.

Achievements/Discoveries

  • At a time when many people in Spain were seeking their fortunes in the New World, Balboa joined an expedition to South America.
  • After exploring the coast of present-day Colombia, Balboa stayed on the island of Hispaniola (now Haiti and the Dominican Republic).
  • Once he arrived at the settlement, Balboa discovered that most of the colonists had been killed by nearby native peoples. He then convinced the remaining colonists to move to the western side of the Gulf of Uraba. They established the town of DariĆ©n on the Isthmus of Panama, which is a small strip land that connects Central America and South America. Balboa became the interim governor of the settlement.

Impact On The World

           He discovered Haiti, and he was the first European to lead an expedition on the Pacific.  

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