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Verrazano, in his letters to King Francis, had a great deal to say about the shores, the wild people, the forests, the fruits, the flowers; he declared that he had explored 700 leagues of coast, moving from a southern latitude northward, but strange to say, the "River of the Steep Hills" is the only stream he mentions.
He is said to have made a second voyage, with the view of colonizing the country. In 1529 a map appeared, drawn by his brother Jerome, from the navigator's charts, and on this map, at the mouth of the River of the Steep Hills, we find the name of "San Germano." The Palace of St.
The waters received the names of the clans hunting on their shores.
All of a sudden, as is wont to happen to navigators, a violent contrary wind blew in from the sea, and forced us to return to our ship, greatly regretting to leave this region, which seemed so commodious and delightful, and which we supposed must also contain great riches, as the hills showed many indications of minerals." Here we have, without doubt, the earliest sketch, by a European hand, of the mouth of one of the most important rivers of the country.The greatest rivers of this wonderful hemisphere appear to have flowed over a grand, lonely course to the ocean during thousands of years.The names these streams bear to-day they have received, as a general rule, from the European race. The Father of Waters would seem to have been known to many tribes by names more or less similar to that which it bears to-day.There were no Argonauts among them; there were no sea-kings to lead their clans afloat.Short voyages from isle to isle, from continent to Gulf Island, made up their nautical life. Their great migrations were nomadic, by land, in armed tribes, like those of Central Asia in the Middle Ages.