Juan Francisco de la Bodega y Quadra .
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Captain Juan Francisco Bodega y Quadra, Marina real, circa 1785. Spanish naval officer an…d explorer Juan Francisco Bodega y Quadra wears the full dress uniform of a captain in the Marina real (the Spanish navy). (Museo Naval, Madrid).
Juan Francisco de la Bodega y Quadra (baptized 3 June 1743 - 26 March 1794) was a Spanish naval officer born in Lima, Peru. Sailing from the Spanish Naval Department at San Blas, in what now is the Mexican state of Nayarit, from 1774 - 1788 this South American navigator explored the Northwest Coast of North America as far north as Alaska..
Juan Francisco de la Bodega y Quadra joined the Spanish Naval Academy in CÃ¡diz at 19, and four years later was commissioned as an officer..
The 1775 expedition .
In 1775 under the command of Lieutenant Bruno de Heceta, the Spanish explored the Pacific Northwest. This followed the first Spanish expedition by Juan PÃ©rez in 1774, who had failed to claim the Northwest Coast for Spain. The expedition consisted of two ships: the Santiago , commanded by Hezeta himself and the schooner Sonora (La SeÃ±ora), commanded by his second in command, Lieutenant Juan Francisco de la Bodega y Quadra. Bodega y Quadra was given the lesser position of second officer on the Sonora despite the fact that he outranked the others. Bodega y Quadra had all the training and qualifications necessary to be considered for a senior officer position, but as a non-native Spaniard he was subject to the class prejudice common to Spain and the colonial Americas during that time. So he was passed over for promotions..
The Spaniards were given orders to explore the coast and to go ashore so that the newly discovered territories would be recognized as Spanish lands. Most important for the expedition was the identification of Russian settlements. The ships left San Blas on 16 March 1775. Illnesses (scurvy), storms, poor sailing capacities of the Sonora, and other incidents slowed their progress. On 14 July 1775, they reached the vicinity of Point Grenville, and moored at what is now known as Destruction Island in the state of Washington. The Indians had been friendly until that point so some sailors were sent ashore to get water, when they were suddenly massacred by some 300 Indians attacking from the woods, all this happening under the horrified gaze of their companions who had remained on board the ships. Bodega y Quadra had them open fire, but his ship was too far away..
Shaken by this disaster, Hezeta decided to return to Mexico, but Bodega y Quadra refused to follow him without having completed the essential mission, which was to locate the Russians. He continued northward on the Sonora and got as far as what is now close to Sitka, Alaska, reaching 59Ë North Latitude on August 15, 1775 1 . Failing to find any Russians, he returned southward. When returning he made sure that he landed once to claim the coast for Spain. This expedition made it clear to the Spanish that the Russians didn't have a large presence in the Pacific Northwest..
The 1779 expedition .
On February 11, 1779 the frigates Princesa and Favorita , under the command of Lieutenant Ignacio de Arteaga and his second in command, Lieutenant Bodega y Quadra, left San Blas again. Their mission was to explore the northwest coast, and not to intervene with the assumed English navigators there. They charted every bay and inlet in search of the Northwest Passage, going north to 58 degrees 30 minutes before turning back from Alaska due to bad weather. They completed the complex process begun earlier of claiming the Pacific Northwest for Spain..
In 1785, Bodega y Quadra was promoted to Captain and returned to Spain..
Nootka Sound .
Quadra was called as an expert witness in the aftermath of the Nootka Sound Incident  . In 1789, he was sent to Mexico, assumed command of the Spanish Northwest, based at San Blas, and sent out several new expeditions of exploration..
In 1791 he was appointed Spanish Commissioner to negotiate and administer the implementation of the Nootka Conventions. At Nootka Sound, he welcomed British Captain George Vancouver in August 1792  . The two commanders swiftly established friendly relations, including joint explorations and the sharing of supplies and information. Vancouver provided the services of his surgeon, Archibald Menzies, to help Quadra with increasingly serious headaches. During their meetings Bodega y Quadra asked Vancouver to name "some port or Island after us both". Since Vancouver had determined that the land upon which Nootka stood was a great island, he proposed that they name it Quadra's and Vancouver's Island . It was thus entered upon the explorer's charts, but this name was soon shortened to Vancouver Island. Some historians have suggested this was a deliberate effort by the later cartographers of the Hudson's Bay Company to erase evidence that the British had not been pre-eminent in the region before any other European power..
However, the two commanders were unable to reconcile the conflicts in the instructions from their respective governments. At issue was whether the Spanish were to hand over only the small plot of land actually built upon by the adventurer John Meares, or the entire West Coast, or something in between. It is scarcely contested that Meares had exaggerated the extent of his discoveries. However, Bodega y Quadra in particular was handicapped by uncertainties as to how far his superiors' wished to maintain Spanish sovereignty in a part of the world that had limited strategic value. The two agreed to refer the points at issue back to their respective governments in Madrid and London; Quadra arranged passage for Vancouver's envoy through Mexico. Eventually, Spain and Great Britain signed an agreement on January 11, 1794 2 , in which they agreed to abandon the region (the third Nootka Convention)..
A fatal seizure cut short Quadra's career while he was in Mexico City..
Bodega y Quadra .
Places named after:.
Â· Bodega Bay in northern California..
Â· Vancouver Island was frequently referred to as "Vancouver's and Quadra's Island" on many nineteenth Century maps..
Â· Quadra Island, an island in British Columbia, Canada. Quadra Island was named after him in 1903.
Â· Boca de Bodega (Mouth of Bodega) is the entrance around Wadleigh Island. It was named by Francisco Antonio Mourelle on May 24, 1779. 3 .
Â· Quadra, SÃ£o Paulo, a Brazilian municipality also named for the explorer.
Â· HMCS Quadra, a Royal Canadian Sea Cadet Summer Training Centre in Comox, BC.
Places he named:.
Â· Bowen Island was called Isla de Apodaca by Quadra but the name was changed a week later by George Vancouver..
Â· He named the Point that we know as Point Grenville, "Punta de los Martires" (Point of the Martyrs)..
Â· Canoa Point (Canoe Point) was named by Bodega/Mourelle in 1775/79. It is a point of land on the northeastern shore of Prince of Wales Island jutting into Trocadero Bay at 133Â° 01' 25" W. 3 .
Â· Discovered and named Bucareli Sound in Alaska..
Â· Unlucky Island (La Desgraciada), a name given by Bodega/Mourelle to an island located at 133Â° 03' 15" W. 3 .
Â· Ladrones Islands were named Islas de Ladrones (Thieves) by Bodega/Mourelle in 1779. These five islands are located at 55Â° 23' N and 133Â° 05' W. 3 .
Â· CaÃ±as Island (Reeds) is an island in Trocadero Bay. Bodega/Mourelle named it Ysla de CaÃ±as. 3 .
1. ^ Naish, John (1996). The Interwoven Lives of George Vancouver, Archibald Menzies, Joseph Whidbey and Peter Puget: The Vancouver Voyage of 1791-1795 . The Edward Mellen Press, Ltd.. ISBN 0-7734-8857-X ..
2. ^ Wing, Robert and Newell, Gordon (1979). Peter Puget: Lieutenant on the Vancouver Expedition, fighting British naval officer, the man for whom Puget Sound was named . Gray Beard Publishing. ISBN 0-933686-00-5 ..
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