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John Cabot

             Of all the new world explorers, John Cabot could be the most famous, and .
             John Cabot was an Italian navigator exploring for England.
             He is known for his fantastic voyages to the eastern shores of North America. Cabot .
             opened up the door for the "Northwest Passage," a northern route to Asia.
             John Cabot was born in 1450 in Genoa, Spain. In 1473, he moved to .
             Venice, Italy. While he was in Valencia in 1493, he decided to be a merchant.
             He believed that he could get to Asia by a Northern route. In 1495, he went to England.
             to convince King Henry VII to allow him to explore for this "Northwest Passage.".
             On March 5, 1496, the King issued "letters of patent" that essentially allowed him .
             to explore wherever he wanted. Consequently, he gathered up a crew and 5 ships to go .
             with him on his voyage. Sadly, he failed almost immediately because he was low on .
             food, there was bad weather, and there were problems with the crew. On May 20, 1497, .
             he sailed again for Bristol on a small ship called the Matthew, along with a crew of 20 .
             and his son Sebastian. He finally reached on of the islands off of the coast of Maine on .
             June 24. Then he traveled north to Nova Scotia. After this voyage he came to England .
             on August 6, saw the King on August 11, and returned home to his wife and kids by .
             August 23. Cabot was able to secure support from the king for a new expedition with 5 .
             ships and a larger crew. He sailed again from Bristol, Ireland in May of 1498. This .
             voyage was called the "Lost Voyage" because Cabot and his crew were lost and never .
             returned. Although the reason is unknown, it is believed that they were killed by hostile .
             Indians, were thrown overboard by a storm, or died from the lack of food and water in the .
             year of 1499.
             At this time in history, navigation tools, such as the compass were invented.
             making travel and exploration a lot easier. The cross-staff and astrolabe were used for.
             finding latitude.

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