From Letter from New Mexico (1599): Juan de Oñate

Topics: Mexico, Spanish colonization of the Americas, New Mexico Pages: 3 (842 words) Published: October 20, 2012
The Infantry
History 1301
Participation Assignment 4
was a famous Mexican explorer, “colonial governor of the New Spain province of New Mexico, and founder of various settlements in the present day American Southwest” (Shi & Mayer, 2010). Juan De Oñate struggled to gain support for his explorations due to his birth background as a criollo. King Phillip II was hesitant to support his expedition at first, but because of Juan De Oñate’s family wealth King Phillip II agreed to support him financially. Oñate acquired his wealth from his father Cristobal de Oñate who was a conquistador/silver baron Spanish explorer from Spain. Some of Oñate’s wealth also came from marrying “Isabel de Tolosa Cortes de Moctezuma,” the granddaughter of the Spanish conqueror and great-granddaughter of the Aztec emperor” (Shi & Mayer, 2010). Juan De Oñate had two children from his marriage with Isabel de Tolosa Cortes de Moctezuma and after her death it motivated his decision to explore and govern New Mexico (“Juan de Oñate,” n.d.). In our opinion, we believe that any man that had great wealth could easily influence the King, particularly when he promised to increase the king’s wealth. As we read in this document Oñate pursues the king, and any wealthy Spaniard, to contribute to his exploration promising the contributors riches and other rewards. Also, everybody wanted a piece of the new world’s wealth as it was a hot commodity to them. Juan De Oñate at first seemed like a good person, but later showed his true colors. In his letter, he mentions all the wealth that someone could gather if they decide to join him. Oñate lets them know that anything that they could ever want would be at their fingers. He also mentions that he would give “liberty and favor to all” (Shi & Mayer, 2010), who decide to join him. He declares that he would make this happen, by opening the door wide open. Have you ever heard the expression, “if it sound too good to be true, then it probable is.”...

References: David E. Shi, H. A. (2010). Juan De Onate From Letter from New Mexico (1599). In H. A. David E. Shi, For The Record (pp. 6-8). New York, NY: W.W. Norton & Company, Inc.
Unknown. (2010, September 08). Juan De Onate. Retrieved September 19, 2012, from Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Juan_de_O%C3%B1ate
Unkown. (n.d.). Juan de Onate Expedition,1598. Retrieved September 19, 2012, from Geni: http://www.geni.com/projects/Juan-de-Oñate-Expedition-1598/5321
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