Geography & History



1,000 Places to See Before You Die Calendars
Travel Calendar

Star Trek - Ships of the Line Calendars
Star Trek - Ships of the Line Calendar

Destinations Calendar


Around the World in a Hundred Years
Around the World
in a Hundred Years:
From Henry the Navigator
to Magellan

Nat'l Geographic World Atlas for Young Explorers
Nat'l Geographic
World Atlas
for Young Explorers

Women of Discovery
Women of Discovery:
A Celebration of
Intrepid Women Who
Explored the World

As Told at the Explorers Club
As Told at
the Explorers Club:
More than Fifty Gripping Tales of Adventure

Explorers South America
Explorers of
South America

Nat'l Geographic's Beyond 2000
Nat'l Geographic's
Beyond 2000

Teacher's Best - The Creative Process

Notable & Famous Explorers Posters “Sm...-Su...-”
for social studies teachers and home schoolers, theme decor in office.

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Explorers ~

Jedediah Smith
Captain John Smith

Sir George Somers
Hernando de Soto

John Hanning Speke
Henry Morgan Stanley

Jedediah Smith, Giclee Print
Jedediah Smith,
Giclee Print

Jedediah Smith
b. 1-6-1799; Jericho (now Bainbridge), NY
d. 5-27-1831; killed on the Santa Fe Trail south of Ulysses, KS

Jedediah Smith was an explorer and trailblazer of the Rocky Mountains, Southwest and West Coast in the early part of the 19th century. He was the first white man to cross overland from Salt Lake to California, then back east across the Sierra Nevada and the Great Basin.

Smith's use of the South Pass, the lowest point on the Continental Divide providing a natural crossing point of the Rockies, made the route widely known. (Robert Stuart, the son of John Jacob Astor's partner had used the pass in 1812.) The pass became the route for emigrants on the Oregon, California, and Mormon trails.

FYI ~ Lewis and Clark crossed the Rockies further north through difficult passes in the Bitteroot Range of Montana because they followed the Missouri River looking for a water route.

Jedediah Smith at Amazon

Captain John Smith 1st Governor of Virginia, 1616, Giclee Print
Captain John Smith
Giclee Print

John Smith
b. 1580; near Alford, Lincolnshire, England
d. 6-21-1631; London, England

Captain John Smith, in addition to his well known roll as a founder and leader of the first English settlement in North America at Jamestown, VA, and his association with Pocahontas, led exploration along the rivers of Virginia, the Chesapeake Bay, and the coastal areas of North America he called New England.

His adventureous life ended peacefully in his home country.

Captain John Smith: A Select Edition of His Writings

Sir George Somers Discovers the Bermudas the Hard Way by Being Wrecked There, Giclee Print
Sir George Somers
Discovers the Bermudas the Hard Way by Being Wrecked There,
Giclee Print

Sir George Somers
b. 1554; Lyme Regis, Dorset, England
d. 11-9-1610; Bermuda

Sir George Somers, in charge of the relief for the struggling Jamestown settlement, was driven off course and wrecked in the Bermudas. The story of the wreck is considered the inspiration for Shakespeare'sThe Tempest”.

Sir George Somers: A Man and His Times

Portrait of Hernando de Soto from "The Narrative and Critical History of America", Giclee Print
Hernando de Soto from
“The Narrative and Critical
History of America”,
Giclee Print

Hernando de Soto
b. c 1497; Jerez de los Caballeros, Badajoz, Spain
d. 5-21-1542; near present day McArthur, Arkansas

Spanish explorer and conquistador Hernando de Soto, from the poverty stricken Extremadura region of Spain, was in search of a passage to China and wealth. He is noted for his hostiity to both the Native Americans and fellow Europeans.

De Soto was a governor of “La Florida” and accompanied Francisco Pizarro on the conquest of Peru,

De Soto was the first European (documented) to have crossed the Mississippi River, and claimed large portions of North America for Spain. His first contact with what is now the southeastern US had the consequences of escaped swine that evolved into razorback pigs, and diseases devestating the indigenous people.

Hernando De Soto: A Savage Quest in the Americas

John Hanning Speke, Traveller in Africa, Photographic Print
John Hanning Speke,
Traveller in Africa,
Photographic Print

John Hanning Speke
b. 5-4-1827; Bideford, Devon, England
d. 9-15-1864; Neston Park, Wiltshire, England

John Hanning Speke, a British Indian army officer, explored Africa with Burton. He found and named Lake Victoria as the source of the Nile River on an expedition through the Great Lakes region of eastern Africa.

The Sad Story of Burton, Speke, and the Nile; or, Was John Hanning Speke a Cad?: Looking at the Evidence

Lady Hester Stanhope, Giclee Print
Lady Hester Stanhope,
Giclee Print

Lady Hester Stanhope
b. 3-12-1776; Chevening, Kent, England
d. 6-23-1839; Joun, near Sidon, Lebanon

Socialite Lady Hester Stanhope left England on a long sea voyage in 1810. She never returned, choosing to travel through Athens and Constantinople before being shipwrecked on Rhodes while enroute to Cairo.

With all her possessions gone she discovered her borrowed Turkish clothing was a most suitable attire and went on to visit the Mediterranean Middle East, not only Cairo but Gibraltar, Malta, the Ionian Islands, the Peloponnese, Damascus, Palestine, Lebanon and Syria.

Stanhope travelled to the city of Palmyra in the Syrian Desert by caravan, dressed as a Bedouin. She finally settling in Lebanon where she was called “Queen of the Desert” and sheltered the refugees of local wars.

Lady Hester Stanhope at Amazon

Henry Morgan Stanley Poster
Henry Morgan Stanley Poster

Mr. Henry Morton Stanley (née John Rowlands)
b. 1-28-1841; Denbigh, Wales
d. 5-10-1904; London

Henry Morton Stanley was a journalist who sent in search of David Livingstone, a medical missionary to Africa. His utterance on 11-10-1871, “Dr. Livingstone, I presume?” is now a famous greeting.

On other expeditions Stanley traced the Congo River, a huge undertaking that lasted from 1874 to 1877; and thinking he was leading a scientific expedition, ended up claiming territory for the ambitious King Leopold II of Belgium. In 1881 he founded Leopoldville in honor of Leopold, it was renamed Kinshasa in 1966.

FYI ~ Stanley fought in the American Civil War on the side of the South.

Into Africa: The Epic Adventures of Stanley and Livingstone

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