2Balboa Reaches the Pacific On September 27, 1513, a group of explorers climbed up a mountain.The group was made up of Spanish and African soldiers, and Native American guides.The mountain was on the west coast of the Isthmus of Panama.
3An isthmus is a narrow strip of land that connects two larger land areas.
4Reaching the TopBalboa quickly climbed the last few feet to reach the peak of the mountain.Balboa became the first European to look out on what would become the eastern shore of the Pacific Ocean.They marched to the shore and formally took possession of the ocean in the name of King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella of Spain.
5Exploring the New Ocean Balboa spent a month on the Pacific shore collecting gold and pearls and visiting the Pearl Islands in the Caribbean Sea.On his return to the other side of the isthmus, Balboa conquered native tribes and took their gold.During the four-month journey, not a single Spanish soldier was killed.
7A New ConclusionBalboa had discovered a huge ocean on the western side of what Columbus thought was Asia.Finding the ocean proved Vespucci was right and Columbus was wrong.Columbus had not reached Asia but had reached a new continent instead.
8A Bitter EndingIn 1514, Balboa’s enemies in Spain, who were jealous of his successes, accused Balboa of treason.They turned the king against him.Balboa was arrested, convicted of treason, and beheaded in January 1519.