The Official Account of the Portola Expedition of 1769-1770
Publisher: University of California Press
15 pages with frontispiece. Royal octavo (9 1/2" x 6") issued in wrappers. Publications of the Academy of Pacific Coast History, volume 1, number 2. First edition.
The Portolï¿½ Expedition was led by Gaspar de Portolï¿½ from July 14, 1769 to January 24, 1770. It was the first recorded Spanish (and European) land entry and exploration of present day California, United States. In Portolï¿½'s era it was known as the first venture by land into the mainland upper area of the Province of Las Californias in New Spain. California had been seen from the Pacific Ocean and claimed for the Spanish Empire by Juan Rodrï¿½guez Cabrillo in 1542. Sebastiï¿½n Vizcaï¿½no had sailed to Monterey and the mouth of the Russian River. Both explorers had passed by but not seen the existence of the San Francisco Bay.In 1769 King Charles III of Spain sent the expedition of Junï¿½pero Serra and Gaspar de Portolï¿½ to Alta California in Las Californias of New Spain. He wanted to establish a strong Spanish presence in Las Californias to forestall Russian Empire expansion (via the Russian-American Company) from Alaska. It was another step in the Spanish colonization of the Americas. The expedition consisted of 64 men in all, and approximately 200 horses and mules. They departed from newly founded San Diego on July 14 and returned there on January 24, 1770. Expedition diaries were kept by Father Juan Crespï¿½ and engineer Miguel Costansï¿½.
A near fine copy.
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