1-20 of 666 Results  for:

  • Travel and exploration x
Clear all


Abraham (fl. 1826–1845), "Prophet"  

Kenny A. Franks

Abraham (fl. 1826–1845), "Prophet", also known as “Prophet,” was a runaway slave who became a prominent leader among the Seminoles. Nothing is known about his parents or childhood. Fleeing his master, Abraham escaped south into Florida where he was adopted into the Seminole tribe. He enjoyed considerable status among the Seminoles, accompanying a tribal delegation to Washington, D.C., in 1826 and becoming an influential counselor to Micanopy, a leading Seminole headman. The Seminole, or Florida Indians, once were a part of the Muscogee (Creek) Nation that had been driven out of Georgia by the early English colonists, and the Oconee and Yamasee tribes that had been driven out of the Carolinas following the Yamasee uprising of 1715. They had first settled among the Lower Creeks in the Florida Panhandle and created a haven for runaway slaves. In fact, ...


Adair, James (1709-1783), trader and author  

Francis Jennings

Adair, James (1709–1783), trader and author, was born in County Antrim, Ireland. Although his parentage is not certain, he probably was a younger son of Sir Robert Adair, a scion of the “Old English” Fitzgerald family. Having noble connections, but not overburdened with wealth, Adair emigrated to South Carolina in 1735 and immediately began trading with Indians....


Cover Adams, Grizzly (1812-1860)
Grizzly Adams. Illustration from T. H. Hittell, The Adventures of James Capen Adams, Mountaineer and Grizzly Bear Hunter of California, 1860. Courtesy of the Library of Congress (LC-USZ62-92873).


Adams, Grizzly (1812-1860), mountain man and wild animal tamer  

Richard H. Dillon

Adams, Grizzly (22 October 1812–25 October 1860), mountain man and wild animal tamer, was born John Adams in Medway, Massachusetts, the son of Eleazar Adams and Sybil Capen. Adams apparently served an apprenticeship as a cobbler, but when he was twenty-one he began hunting and trapping animals, for showmen, in the woods of Maine, Vermont, and New Hampshire. He delighted in his work, which was cut short when he tried to control an unruly Bengal tiger. In doing this favor for an exhibitor, Adams was badly mangled. When he recovered his health, he went back to making boots and shoes....


Cover Alarcón, Hernando de (fl. 1540–1541)

Alarcón, Hernando de (fl. 1540–1541)  


Hernando de Alarcón. Engraving, c. 1791. Courtesy of the Library of Congress (LC-USZ62-99997).


Alarcón, Hernando de (fl. 1540–1541), Spanish explorer  

Samuel Willard Crompton

Alarcón, Hernando de (fl. 1540–1541), Spanish explorer, , is believed to have been born in Trujillo, Spain. The names of his parents and the circumstances and year of his birth are all unknown. The only documented period of his life is 1540–1541, when he acted in response to the commands of Antonio de Mendoza, the viceroy of New Spain (Mexico). In the spring of 1540 Mendoza directed Alarcón to sail north from Acapulco, Mexico, to support the land explorations of ...


Alden, John (1599?–12 September 1687), farmer and magistrate  

Mark A. Peterson

Alden, John (1599?–12 September 1687), farmer and magistrate, was one of the original settlers of Plymouth Colony, arriving in New England on the Mayflower in 1620. No definite information exists about his birth, parentage, childhood, or education. In 1620 he lived at Southampton, England, where the migrating Pilgrims stopped for provisions on their way from the Netherlands to the New World. There he was hired as the ship’s cooper in charge of its supply of beer and drinking water. Upon landfall, Alden joined in signing the now famous Mayflower Compact. After the colonists’ arrival in Plymouth, Governor ...


Cover Allen, Ethan (1738-1789)
Ethan Allen at Ticonderoga. Reproduction of a painting by E. Percy Moran (1862–1935). Courtesy of the Library of Congress (LC-USZ62-96539).


Allen, Ethan (1738-1789), frontier revolutionary leader and author of the first deistic work by an American  

Michael Bellesiles

Allen, Ethan (10 January 1738–12 February 1789), frontier revolutionary leader and author of the first deistic work by an American, was born in Litchfield, Connecticut, the son of Joseph Allen and Mary Baker, farmers. Allen served briefly in the French and Indian War and in 1762 began operating a productive iron forge in Salisbury, Connecticut. That same year he married Mary Brownson, with whom he would have five children. But Allen’s deism and aggressive personal conduct ruined his early prospects: he was warned out of Salisbury in 1765 and Northampton, Massachusetts, in 1767....


Allen, Ira (1751-1814), frontier entrepreneur and Vermont political leader  

J. Kevin Graffagnino

Allen, Ira (01 May 1751–15 January 1814), frontier entrepreneur and Vermont political leader, was born in Cornwall, Connecticut, the son of Joseph Allen and Mary Baker, farmers. Little is known of his youth, but in 1770 he followed his five elder brothers north to the New Hampshire Grants region and joined the Yankee versus Yorker struggle, which stemmed from the 1764 Crown decree that New York rather than New Hampshire owned the area that would become Vermont. While brother ...


Allerton, Isaac (1586-1659), merchant in the early years of the Plymouth colony  

Francis J. Bremer

Allerton, Isaac (1586– February 1659), merchant in the early years of the Plymouth colony, . Little is known of Allerton’s early life, and nothing is known regarding his education and religious orientation. He was a tailor in London at the time that he moved to Leiden, Holland, in 1608. When the Separatist congregation of John Robinson arrived in 1609 Allerton joined the church. In 1611 he married a fellow member, Mary Norris. In 1614 he became a citizen of the Dutch city....


Alligator (fl. 1832–1846), Seminole war leader  

John K. Mahon

Alligator (fl. 1832–1846), Seminole war leader , famous for resisting attempts of the United States to remove the Indians from Florida, had the Indian name Halpatter Tustenuggee. Nothing is known of his parents or youth except that he migrated with his parents from a Eufala town on the Tallapoosa River. Although not a hereditary chief, Alligator was connected to two important Seminole bands. He was a war leader and adviser to Micanopy, hereditary chief of the Alachua. Micanopy was a brother-in-law to Philip, hereditary leader of the Mikasukis, and Alligator generally collaborated with both Alachua and Mikasuki activities....


Álvarez de Pineda, Alonso (?–1520), ship captain and explorer  

Robert S. Weddle

Álvarez de Pineda, Alonso (?–1520), ship captain and explorer, is presumed to have been born in Spain, although neither his place of birth nor the names of his parents are known. In the spring of 1519 Álvarez de Pineda was commissioned by Francisco de Garay, Spanish governor of Jamaica, to explore the still unknown northern Gulf Coast between the discoveries of ...


Cover Ambler, James Markham Marshall (1848-1881)

Ambler, James Markham Marshall (1848-1881)  


James Markham Ambler. Courtesy of the National Library of Medicine (B01766).


Ambler, James Markham Marshall (1848-1881), naval surgeon and explorer  

Christopher J. Huggard

Ambler, James Markham Marshall (30 December 1848–30 October 1881), naval surgeon and explorer, was born in Markham, Virginia, the son of Richard Cary Ambler, a physician, and Susan Marshall. At age sixteen Ambler became a volunteer in the Twelfth Virginia Cavalry. He studied a premedicine curriculum at Washington College in 1865–1867 and then entered the University of Maryland. After acquiring a medical degree in 1870, he practiced in Baltimore until his appointment as an assistant surgeon in the U.S. Navy. During 1874–1875, he was stationed in the North Atlantic. In 1877 he joined the staff of the Naval Hospital at Norfolk, Virginia....


American Horse (1840?–16 December 1908), Oglala Lakota leader  

Todd M. Kerstetter

American Horse (1840?–16 December 1908), Oglala Lakota leader, known to his people as Waśiču Taśunka, was the son of Sitting Bear, an Oglala chief, and an unknown mother. His birthplace is not known.

The name American Horse carries a complex history. In addition to two unrelated Oglala leaders who lived during the same era, Sitting Bear may also have been called by the name, as was at least one Cheyenne. American Horse the elder, known to Oglalas as Iron Shield or Iron Plume, was born around 1830 and established a reputation as a warrior and leader, probably participating in ...


Andrews, Roy Chapman (1884-1960), explorer and zoologist  

Jan S. Ballard

Andrews, Roy Chapman (26 January 1884–11 March 1960), explorer and zoologist, was born in Beloit, Wisconsin, the son of Charles Ezra Andrews, a wholesale druggist, and Cora May Chapman. As a young boy Andrews resolved “to be an explorer, to work in a natural history museum, and to live out of doors” ( ...


Anza, Juan Bautista de (1736-1788), military commander, explorer, and governor  

Michael Mathes

Anza, Juan Bautista de (07 July 1736–19 December 1788), military commander, explorer, and governor, was born in the presidio of Fronteras, Sonora, Mexico, the son of Juan Bautista de Anza, commandant of the post since 1719, and María Rafaela Becerra Nieto; his grandfather was commandant of Janos presidio, Chihuahua. Anza’s father was killed in combat in 1739, but Anza continued in the family tradition, and on 1 December 1752 entered the militia at Fronteras. On 1 July 1755 he was promoted to lieutenant at Fronteras, and, after participating in Indian campaigns in Sonora, he rose in 1760 to the rank of captain and commander of the presidio at Tubac (in present-day Arizona). On 24 June 1761 he married Ana María Pérez Serrano of Arizpe, Sonora, but no children were born of the union....


Applegate, Jesse (1811-1888), Oregon pioneer and publicist  

Kathryn D. Snavely

Applegate, Jesse (05 July 1811–22 April 1888), Oregon pioneer and publicist, was born in Kentucky, the son of Daniel Applegate, a veteran of the revolutionary war, and Rachel Lindsay. When he was ten his family moved to Missouri, where his father was the village schoolmaster and deputy surveyor general. In 1827 and 1828 Applegate attended Rock Spring Seminary in Shiloh, Illinois, where he showed talent in mathematics and surveying. Later he continued private study of these subjects while teaching school. He then secured a position clerking for the surveyor general’s office in St. Louis and was promoted quickly to deputy surveyor general; he spent much of his time surveying in the western part of Missouri. In 1832 he married Cynthia Parker and settled on a farm in Osage Valley, where the couple lived for twelve years and had several children....


Arapoosh (1789/1794?–1834), Crow Indian chief  

Tim Bernardis

Arapoosh (1789/1794?–1834), Crow Indian chief, whose name is Eelápuash in modern Crow language orthography or Sore Belly (often mistranslated in historical accounts as Rotten Belly) in English, was a River Crow chief well known to early white trappers and traders. Many details of his life are unknown. Described as a fine tall man, Arapoosh as a youth had fasted in the Crazy Mountains in what is now Montana, where he received his medicine (spiritual power), the thunder. The Thunderbird appeared to him in a vision and showed him how to lead a war party as well as how to make war medicine so his trail would be clear. It may have been after this vision that he made his shield, or he may have been given the shield during a vision of the moon on another fast. This shield is said to have had powers of prophecy that aided him in battle. It was used long after his death, even into the reservation period. Eventually it was purchased and placed in a Chicago museum....