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English led expedition to North America in 1499

A led from Henry VII may be evidence of a previously unknown expedition to North America.

Dr Evan Jones, a historian at Bristol University, has discovered that a Bristol merchant, William Weston, undertook a voyage to the ‘New Found Land’ in 1499 just two years after Venetian explorer John Cabot ‘discovered’ North America.

Cabot led a second, larger, expedition the following year to explore the new land, with support from King Henry VII, but a third expedition undertaken by Weston in 1499 with the support of the King, has remained unknown until now.

One thought on “English led expedition to North America in 1499

  1. Not surprising. There was a very interesting book a few years ago that made the case that the fishing captains of Bristol had travelled to the new world since the 1300s but kept it secret. They were making a fortune on cod and did not want competition. It makes sense that once the news got out (because of Cabot’s initial voyage), they would contact the king, probably hoping to get special rights and privileges to the fishing and any other profitable opportunities in the New Found Land.

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