English seaman Francis Drake returns to Plymouth, England, in the Golden Hind, becoming the 1st British navigator to sail the planet earth.
On December 13, 1577, Drake lay out from England with five ships on a mission to raid Spanish holdings on the Pacific coast of the New World. After crossing the Atlantic, Drake abandoned two of his ships in South America and sailed in to the Straits of Magellan with the rest of the 3. A number of devastating storms besieged his expedition in the treacherous straits, wrecking an individual ship and forcing yet another to come back to England. Only the Golden Hind reached the Pacific Ocean, but Drake continued undaunted up the western coast of South America, raiding Spanish settlements and capturing a rich Spanish treasure ship.
Drake then continued up the western coast of North America, searching for a achievable northeast passage back again to the Atlantic. Reaching as far north as present-day Washington right before turning back, Drake paused near San Francisco Bay in June 1579 to correct his ship and plan a journey over the Pacific. Calling the land “Nova Albion,” Drake claimed the territory for Queen Elizabeth I.
In July, the expedition tripped over the Pacific, visiting several islands before rounding Africa’s Cape of Good Hope and time for the Atlantic Ocean. On September 26, 1580, the Golden Hind returned to Plymouth, England, bearing its wealthy captured treasure and worthwhile information regarding the world’s wonderful oceans. In 1581, Queen Elizabeth I knighted Drake throughout a stop by at his ship. The most renowned of the Elizabethan seamen, he later played a crucial function in the defeat of the Spanish Armada. The explorer died 1596 at age 56.