William K Hartmann will be at Atalanta's this Sunday.
The University of Arizona Press has just published an interesting new book, Searching for Golden Empires by William K. Hartmann, about the Native American’s first encounters with the Cortes and Coronado expeditions. Mr. Hartmann will be speaking at Atalanta’s Music & Books, 38 Main Street in Bisbee, on Sunday January 18th at 1:00 PM.
Recent research has shown that the Coronado expedition passed through SE Arizona. Dr. Hartmann will discuss evidence that they came up the Rio Sonora Valley (mentioning Arispe) and traveled north a few days along the San Pedro, then turned east toward the Chiricahua Mountains. One camp site was at the west base of the Chiricahuas, probably near Turkey Creek. They then most likely crossed through Apache pass, and headed north just east of the New Mexico border.
Much has been written about the Cortes and Coronado expeditions, but not much attention has been paid to the indigenous populations along their route. Mr. Hartmann treats the conquistadors and the natives equally, describing, for example, the well-developed long distance communications network that the Native Americans operated.
Hartmann will discuss also the larger context and reasons for Spanish exploration in the 1500s, into what is now the U.S.A. --- all the way to Kansas.
This lively book recounts the explorations of the first generations of Spanish conquistadors and their Native allies. Author William K. Hartmann brings readers along as the explorers probe from Cuba to the Aztec capital of Mexico City, and then northward through the borderlands to New Mexico, the Grand Canyon, southern California, and as far as Kansas. Characters include Hernan Cortés, the conqueror; the Aztec ruler Montezuma; Francisco Vasquez de Coronado, a famous expedition leader; Marcos de Niza, an explorer-priest doomed to disgrace; and Viceroy Antonio Mendoza, the king's representative who tried to keep the explorers under control.
Recounting eyewitness experiences that the Spaniards recorded in letters and memoirs, Hartmann describes ancient lifeways from Mexico to the western United States, Aztec accounts of the conquest, discussions between Aztec priests and Spanish priests about the nature of the universe, Cortés's lifelong relationship with his famous Native mistress, Malinche (not to mention the mysterious fate of his wife), lost explorers who wandered from Florida to Arizona, and Marcos de Niza's controversial reports of the "Seven Cities of Cíbola."
Searching for Golden Empires describes how, even after the conquest of Mexico, Cortés remained a "wildcat" competitor with Coronado in a race to see who could find the "next golden empire," believed to lie in the north. Searching for Golden Empires is an exciting history of the shared story of the United States and Mexico, unveiling episodes both tragic and uplifting.
William K. Hartmann is internationally known as a scientist, writer, and painter. He has published widely on aspects of the Southwest, including his book Desert Heart, and a novel, Cities of Gold. He received the first Carl Sagan medal, given by the American Astronomical Society for popular presentation of scholarly research.