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Diego Velázquez de Cuéllar was a Spanish conquistador. He conquered and governed Cuba on behalf of Spain. Diego Velázquez was born in Cuéllar 1465, in the Segovia region of Spain. He fought in Naples before moving to Seville, where he met Bartolomeo Columbus. He first visited the New World with the crew of Christopher Columbus's second voyage in 1493. He settled in Hispaniola, which he helped pacify under the leadership of Governor Nicolás de Ovando.

He then was active in leading the conquest of Cuba in 1511 under orders from Diego Columbus, recently restored as Viceroy of the Indies. He founded a number of new Spanish settlements and cities on the island, first Baracoa in 1511 and then most notably Santiago de Cuba in 1514 and Havana in 1515. Velázquez was appointed governor of Cuba. The new settlers did not wish to be under the personal authority of Diego Columbus, so Velázquez convoked a general cabildo (a local government council) which was duly authorized to deal directly with Spain, and therefore removed Velázquez and the settlers from under the authority of Columbus, their nominal superior. It was a precedent that would come back to haunt him with the Mexican adventures.

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Diego Velázquez de Cuéllar was a Spanish conquistador. He conquered and governed Cuba on behalf of Spain. Diego Velázquez was born in Cuéllar 1465, in the Segovia region of Spain. He fought in Naples before moving to Seville, where he met Bartolomeo Columbus. He first visited the New World with the crew of Christopher Columbus's second voyage in 1493. He settled in Hispaniola, which he helped pacify under the leadership of Governor Nicolás de Ovando.

He then was active in leading the conquest of Cuba in 1511 under orders from Diego Columbus, recently restored as Viceroy of the Indies. He founded a number of new Spanish settlements and cities on the island, first Baracoa in 1511 and then most notably Santiago de Cuba in 1514 and Havana in 1515. Velázquez was appointed governor of Cuba. The new settlers did not wish to be under the personal authority of Diego Columbus, so Velázquez convoked a general cabildo (a local government council) which was duly authorized to deal directly with Spain, and therefore removed Velázquez and the settlers from under the authority of Columbus, their nominal superior. It was a precedent that would come back to haunt him with the Mexican adventures. More...

 
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