Sir Francis Drake

Age of Exploration

Beginnings and First Expidition

Drake was born in Devonshire England and was born around 1540-1544. In 1560 Drake was the captain of his own ship and sailed to Africa and worked as an illegal slave trader.In 1568 he was caught by Spanish guard, he escaped but this made him hate Spanish crown. In 1572 Drake was commissioned as a privateer by Queen Elizabeth 1. That year drake left on a journey to panama. he planned to attack a Spanish town called Nombre de Dios which was a drop off point for Spanish ships. With a crew of 73 men he captured the town ,but during the battle he was seriously wounded so he and his men fled without much of the town's treasure. When his wounds healed they attacked many more Spanish settlements getting much gold and silver. Then they returned to Plymouth with all his treasure in 1573.

The Second Expodition

In late 1577 Queen Elizabeth 1 sent him out on another expedition to explore the northwestern part of North America. She gave him 5 ships to command and among his men was John Winter and officer Thomas doughty. There was lots of tension between drake and doughty during the trip. When arriving at the coast of Argentina Drake had Doughty arrested for planned mutiny. He was convicted and beheaded. They continued their journey and soon hit a big storm. Winter’s ship turned around and sailed back to England. Drake continued and sailed on his flagship the golden hind. The only remaining vessel from the original squad, plundered a unprotected Spanish ship full of bullion. He landed off the coast of California and claimed it for Elizabeth. After repairing his ship and gathering food he set sail across the pacific and around the cape of good hope back to England landing in the Plymouth in 1580. Drake , the first Englishman to circumnavigate the world, became a wealthy man and was made a knight by Queen Elizabeth 1 in 1581, and was appointed mayor of Plymouth.
Uncharted: Drake's Fortune Trailer

Spanish Raids

Between 1585 and 1586 relationships between England and Spain grew worse. The Queen of England sent Drake on a series of Spain raids that captured many states in north America in the meantime collecting treasure. These successful raids lowered Spain’s morale. These raids is mostly what made the king of Spain ,Philip 2, to invade England. He ordered a vast armada of warships and stocked them with supplies. Drake conducted a raid on the spanish city of Cadiz destroying around 30 of the ships and thousands of supplies. Francis Bacon , an english philosopher, would call this act “singing to the king of Spain’s beard”.

Navy Commander

In 1588 Drake was made vice admiral of the English navy. On July 21, 130 ships of the Spanish armada entered the English channel in a crescent formation. The English fleet sailed out to meet them, relying on long-ranged cannon fire to deal damage to the Spanish armada. On July 27 Alonso Perez de Guzman anchored the armada of the coast of France in hopes to meet up with the Spanish soldiers, who were supposed to be joining in the invasion. The next evening, Lord Howard and Sir Francis Drake organized a fleet that was going to sail and fire right into the Spanish armada. They did very little damage ,but the panic made many Spanish captains cut anchor and scatter. Winds pushed many of the ships into the north sea and the English ships followed in pursuit. At the battle of Gravelines, the English started to get the upper hand and with the Spanish formation scattered. They were easy prey for the English. By late afternoon the English pulled back due to weather and the presence of enemy forces. As the Spanish sailed away strong winds blew ships into Irish rocks, drowning millions. In 1589 Queen Elizabeth ordered drake to take out any remaining Spanish armada and help Lisbon fight off Spanish occupiers. He lost many lives and resources during this expedition and returned home and focused on his duties as mayor of Plymouth.
Big image


In 1595, The queen asked Drake and his cousin Hawkins to go take Spain's treasure supply from panama in hopes of stopping the war. After defeat in Nombre de Dios, Drake moved farther west and anchored off the coast of Portobelo, Panama. There, Drake caught dysentery and died of a fever on January 28, 1956. He was buried in a lead coffin at sea near Portobelo. No one has found the coffin.