A triumph of historical detective work, Crossing the Continent is the remarkable, never-before-told story of the first black explorer and adventurer in America , Esteban Dorantes. An African slave, Dorantes led an eight-year journey from Florida to California in the early sixteenth century—three hundred years before Lewis and Clark ventured west. An extraordinary true-life saga of courage, trials, and discovery that the Philadelphia Inquirer calls, “an adventure story more thrilling than Defoe or Melville could have imagined,” Crossing the Continent breaks new ground as it challenges the traditional view of American history.
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Nearly three centuries before Lewis and Clark's epic trek to the Pacific coast, an African slave named Esteban Dorantes became America's first great explorer and adventurer—the first pioneer from the Old World to explore the entirety of the American South. Shipwrecked off the Florida coast, Esteban guided a small band of survivors on an incredible, eight-year-long journey westward—enduring famine, disease, and Native American hostility as the company made their way across what is now Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, Texas, New Mexico, and Arizona, traveling as far as the Gulf of California.
Drawing on contemporary accounts, long-lost records, and Dr. Robert Goodwin's groundbreaking research in Spanish archives, Crossing the Continent is a riveting true story of physical endurance, natural calamities, geographical wonders, and strange discoveries—a remarkable chronicle that offers a radical new interpretation of American history.About the Author:
Robert Goodwin is a Visiting Research Fellow at King's College London. He has also studied at the School of Oriental and African Studies at University College London, and in Spain at the universities of Granada and Seville. Goodwin lives in London.
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