One of first explorations of North America by Spain. The Coronado Expedition began in Mexico in April of 1540 and crossed into Texas at or near present-day Parmer County. The party, led by Francisco Vazquez de Coronado, was sent to investigate reports of great wealth among the native peoples. In one city, Quivira, the ruler reputedly ate from gold plates. After entering Texas, Coronado and 36 men separated from the main group and journeyed north. In August, 1541, on the present Kansas-Nebraska line, Coronado found Quivira—an ordinary Native American village. After the winter of 1541-42, the group returned to Mexico.