Monday, April 25, 2011

One of the Seven Cities of Gold

I found it!!
I found one of the Seven Cities of Gold!!!

(Taken Friday at a nearby store that was glowing in "gold"!!)

It's that time of year when the whole city is bathed in"gold" - the "gold" of the Palo Verde trees and their blossoms. Sometimes it just takes my breath away and I wonder what our pioneer ancestors thought. I love to see the blossoms scattered on sidewalks, across the streets and floating on the breeze. It truly looks like a city of gold!

Where does all of this talk about a City of Gold come from?
I found this in a school textbook:

There were many rumors or stories about treasure in the land north of Mexico. When the Spaniards heard these stories, they sent expeditions to search for the gold. One famous story told about the Seven Cities of Gold.

The story begins when four men survived a shipwreck off the coast of what is today known as Texas. They were three Spaniards, and a North African named Esteban. After the shipwreck, the four men walked across Mexico until they arrived in Mexico City in 1536. During their journey, they heard stories along the way about seven cities rich in gold, silver and jewels.

When the four men arrived in Mexico City, they told the story of the Seven Cities of Gold to the Spanish leaders. In 1539, the leaders of the city sent Esteban and a priest named Marcos de Niza to investigate the rumor. Esteban was killed by Indians during the expedition. But Marcos de Niza returned to Mexico City. He lied and reported he had seen the golden city.

In 1540, Francisco Coronado and more than 1,000 soldiers set out to find the Seven Cities of Gold. They traveled north out of Mexico into the present-day states of Arizona, New Mexico, Texas, Oklahoma and parts of Kansas. They never saw any traces of the Seven Cities of Gold. Coronado then took the long trip home. The route he took back toward Mexico would later become known as the Santa Fe Trail. In 1542, Coronado returned to Mexico with only 100 of his soldiers. Coronado never found the Seven Cities of Gold. However, he did claim the lands he had traveled through for Spain.

We are so enmeshed in the history of this area. Many of our local High Schools are named after these discoverers, several of the cities in southern Arizona house statues to several of these men, and local legends still abound.

But I found it this week.
Who knew it was at WalMart?!?!.

1 comment:

Alyce said...

Yep, I never would have guessed it was at Wal-Mart either. :) It looks gorgeous though - makes me wish I could see it in person. And I love it when flower petals pile up like that too (that happens with cherry blossoms here).