Read to discover Gaspars travel to find Monterey California

NWR Series

James Nelson

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"Early" Life . . .

Early In Life

Portola was born in 1714. He was a member of a noble family. The only problem he had an older brother who once their mom and dad passed away he would take their family's land and titles for himself. He would not share.


Gaspar De Portola was a good man although he was a soldier that killed people. But that was his job and he did his job well. When Portola was 14 he joined the Regiment of Villaviciosa as a cadet, in the army. He would spend the rest of his life in the army. As he grew he slowly moved up in rank. Finally he became a captain.

A Little Later

After all of the Jesuits moved out,there was two orders that took over their land and their money. Portola was placed in command for the missions. After a little time the Spanish in Mexico had started to plan there ways to get to San Diego and Monterey California plus rule both of them. Portola and his king herd about this and so planed to stop it.

As they planed they though about if they might meat at the same time, so the knew they should bring guns to fight with. They knew it would be a long expedition. But the only thing they weren't so sure about was how bad it is going to be and who should lead the way. Just then Portola volunteered to lead it and so it was, he would lead the way.

The Way To San Diego Bay


It was January 9, 1769 when the expedition had it's started. It was a big hassle that day, many men rushing around. All men were gathering their food, their horses and their guns. It had took a long time to get ready but know they were ready to go. So then Portola shouted "let's go" As he shouted he rode off with his crew.

A Problem

As they headed for 400 miles in a "line" to San Diego bay. They would take very little rests along the way. It would be a long 400 miles on their horses. It was not long until one of the higher ranked men had his leg badly bruised. Portola suggested that he should stay back to rest to wait for his leg to heal. But it was a good NO. He would not be left behind he remarked. It was about 100 mile through they found a doctor who could fix the guy's leg so he could go on with the others. Then they all when along the way again. They still had 300 more miles to go.

Are We There Yet?

It had been long, but one of the men thought they saw water so they ran up the hill in front of them and shouted "we're here". It had been a long 400 miles but finally they had made it to San Diego Bay. But most of the men knew not to run (It wasted most of their energy). They were finally there and that was good news.

Search for Monterey California

Left Behind . . .

There were ships it the sea and the men know what that met they could get some rest and little food. All the men would rest for a little and then get ready to go to California. There horses would be ready to go next. Then off they went off to find California. The next morning they all got ready to go to California. The bad thing was that Portola was about to lose many men that were sick from scurvy. At that time people did not know what scurvy came from. Many men had died on Portola expedition. It was the people that were sick would stay behind it tents board the ship.

Let's Go!

After all the men that were sick were on ship, Portola and his men rode of to find Monterey California. Some of the men with Portola were sick but thought they could make it there. Most of the men were sick so that slowed down Portola passe but he was a little ok with that. No mater what they would not stop until 4 to 5 days. It would take about 4 to 8 weeks or more to get there.

Just A LITTLE Longer ?

It would be a long trip to get there but they would be able to do it. It would be about 440 miles, not that bad to them for how long but he men in his group would get tired along the way. But that would not stop them. They would go on until they found Monterey they said but that was not the truth. And like that they could not find Monterey so they had to know what to do -Go back or Keep going on the expedition.

Give Up?

After all that the men had decided to head back they thought they should still look for Monterey, so they found a hill to see if they were an close but they knew something was not right, they were to far north. They had travel some part in the wrong way. No were close to Monterey California.

For A Last chance

Let's Go!

It was a good morning great for the expedition. So that was the day Portola and his men set of to find Monterey for the last time. So they go their horses with food and guns so they could ride plus sail off to Monterey once more. It would be a long trip but it wouldn't be as bad as before because they had don this before.

Why Scurvy Again

As they go further in to there trip many of the men got a thing called scurvy and most of the men died then. So then again when they got to the ship they had to leave them on the ship in the tents to heal up and they would take the other boat to sail with (to get to Monterey). It would be a much faster mode of transportation.

There Or Not . . .

It was the same trip once more be this time it was much faster because they had already had to do this once so it was easy for him and his group to do it again. They had did it before they'll do it once more and that was right they did it this time. It was when of Portola men shouted "where here" and that was right they were.So they knew to leave the men that had scurvy.

Death in Honor

Death . . .

It was the year 1786 when Portola died. He somehow died from little illness. Portola was burred in a military tomb cause he was in the army. After Portola died he donated all of his possessions to charitable work were he was born.


Portola was not well known but he still got some recognition for all the missions he did for his king. Like there was a valley named Portola Valley for him also some schools were named after him thees places are all in California. But that was about the only things that were named after him. Not that popular he was.

More Honors!

On October 1986 Portola received a ceremonies (cer·e·mo·ny) in honor of his death. Portola was also honor for his seven other expedition he did. Did you know if Portola never did the expedition the state California could belong to a different country like the British or something else?


  • Regiment of Villaviciosa - : a military unit that is usually made of several large groups of soldiers (called battalions)

  • cadet - a student in the army who is preparing to be an officer

  • noble family - belonging to a hereditary class with high social or political status; aristocratic.

  • expedition - a journey or voyage undertaken by a group of people with a particular purpose, especially that of exploration, scientific research, or war

  • scurvy-a disease caused by a deficiency of vitamin C, characterized by swollen bleeding gums and the opening of previously healed wounds, which particularly affected poorly nourished sailors until the end of the 18th century.

  • possession- the state of having, owning, or controlling something

an item of property; something belonging to one

  • recognition-the action or process of recognizing or being recognized, in particular.

Word Cited

  • File:Gaspar de Portolá.jpg
  • Gaspar and his men
  • Portola Valley, California
  • Gaspar Portola Expedition
  • monterey california

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