In what ways did the expeditions of Ponce de Leon and Cortes differ?
The Governor of Puerto Rico, Juan Ponce de Leon, left this island in 1513, searching for gold and the "fountain of youth." The explorer landed on the island of Bimini and became the first among the Spaniards to step on the mainland of North America. Ponce de Leon declared the area for Spain, naming it "La Florida". In contrast, Hernán Cortez's expedition took place later in 1519 on the coast of the Gulf of Mexico. Cortez pursued the intention of conquering the Aztec empire. To do this, he was gathering allies, particularly indignant people, captured by the Aztecs throughout Mexico. Also, Cortez used the legend of the Aztecs that the invaders could be the messengers of the gods. As a result of a long siege, the capital of the Aztecs, Tenochtitlan, passed to the Spaniards in 1521.