History and American West

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No Settlement, No Conquest: A History of the Coronado Entrada

Richard Flint

Between 1539 and 1542, two thousand indigenous Mexicans, led by Spanish explorers, made an armed reconnaissance of what is now the American Southwest. The Spaniards’ goal was to seize control of the people of the region and convert them to the religion, economy, and way of life of sixteenth-century Spain. The new followers were expected to recognize don Francisco Vázquez de Coronado as their leader. The area’s unfamiliar terrain and hostile natives doomed the expedition. The surviving Spaniards returned to Nueva España, disillusioned and heavily in debt with a trail of destruction left in their wake that would set the stage for Spain’s conflicts in the future.

Flint incorporates recent archaeological and documentary discoveries to offer a new interpretation of how Spaniards attempted to conquer the New World and insight into those who resisted conquest.


Richard Flint is the coeditor of The Coronado Expedition:From the Distance of 460 Years, and The Latest Word from 1540: Peoples, Places, and Portrayals of the Coronado Expedition and the author of Great Cruelties Have Been Reported: The 1544 Investigation of the Coronado Expedition (all UNM Press).


"In this well-written and engaging volume...Flint uses a wide range of individual accounts that, taken together, provide an amazingly personal description of the Coronado expedition and the responses of indigenous peoples to the encounter....This book is a much needed and fascinating look into one of the most turbulent times in the Americas....Richard Flint has achieved a rare goal in historical writing; he has produced an accessible and enjoyable book that reexamines a topic we though we knew and prompts us to look deeper."


Montana the Magazine of Western History

"To date, there has been no better-written capsule history of this expedition."


New Mexico Magazine

"Well written and informative, ( No Settlement, No Conquest) demands the attention of readers interested in the history of the American Southwest and northwestern Mexico."


Spanish Traces

"Well-written and detailed, this text offers readers a close look at an often misunderstood moment in Spanish colonial history."


Southern California Quarterly

"...(a) superb volume...it belongs in every college and university library and on the book shelves of all historians of Texas and the Southwest."


Southwestern Historical Quarterly

"The Harvard scholar Richard Marius once wrote that good historical writing gives the impression that the author has worked tremendously hard to learn something and is giving an authoritative guided tour of the knowledge he has attained. This is exactly what Richard Flint's narrative of the Coronado expedition does.... No Settlement, No Conquest is...a vibrant, thought-provoking portrait of a colonial society in transition and it deserves the attention of students and scholars alike."


Hispanic American Historical Review

"Flint's commendable work on the Coronado entrada has gone a long way toward clearing up the sixteenth-century Spanish effort in North America."


The Journal of Southern History

" No Settlement, No Conquest is an enjoyable read for the clarity of the prose and the many fascinating details that Flint offers with respect to the participants in the Coronado expedition and how the expedition unfolded, leaving mostly a trail of destruction in its wake."


New Mexico Historical Review

"For those interested in early colonial history, Flint provides and accessible and engaging narrative of the difficulties that plagued this large undertaking and how it shaped the history of the Southwest."


SMRC Revista

"(Flint) deftly takes the reader through the expedition's background and its immediate preparations before telling the story of the entrada itself and tracing its aftermath...(an) essential work."


Boletín, the Journal of the California Mission Studies Association

" No Settlement, No Conquest is thoroughly researched...and...skillfully written....Flint has written a definitive history of the Coronado entrada and with it has made a vital contribution to the historiography of the Greater Southwest."


Journal of American History

6 x 9 in. 376 pages 7 maps