New Explorations

Around mid November, another fleet commanded by Antonio Torres arrived with provisions and good news from the Monarchs, who encouraged Columbus with his difficulties and communicated that Portugal had forced the move of the Atlantic line of demarcation to 370 leagues west of Cape Verde with the Treaty of Tordesillas, giving the Portuguese Monarchs the right to own lands they had secretly discovered in Brazil. The Catholic Monarch, logically worried about loosing territory, asked Columbus to return to Spain so that he could help define, with the Portuguese, the new real lines navigating charts in the Atlantic.

The Admiral doesn't obey the order immediately, and instead decides to personally confirm the information gathered by the previous year's expedition, looking to be better informed in the negotiations with cartographers and Portuguese navigators. The dates of this trip are not confirmed, but it appears that it was towards the end of November through mid January of 1495. Columbus using the ships that brought the news, and probably accompanied by the Florentine cosmographer, Americo Vespuccio, explores the northeast coast of South America almost reaching the Amazons, where the Spanish jurisdiction ended according to the new treaty. After navigating up the Orinoco river in present day Venezuela, he arrives at the Paria gulf where he discovers islands rich in pearls. He takes as much as he can and returns to Hispaniola, stopping in the Samana Bay, where he captures a handful of Ciguayo Indians to keep as slaves.

In February, Columbus dispatches Antonio Torres's fleet with a shipment of over 500 slaves. With the more favorable information from Antonio Torres and Diego Columbus, the Monarchs accept Columbus' new demands and ask Diego to return with his brother. In the meantime, the Admiral Governor and his other brother had decided to bring order to the settlements and militarily end the Indian resistance.