Hernán Cortés (also spelled Cortez), was a Spanish
adventurer and conquistador who overthrew the Aztec empire
and people and claimed Mexico for Spain Cortes sailed with 11 ships from
Cuba to the Yucatan Peninsula to look for gold, silver, and other treasures.
Hearing rumors of great riches, Cortés traveled inland and "discovered"
Tenochtitlan, the capital of the Aztec empire. He then brutally killed
the Aztec ruler Montezuma and conquered his Aztec Empire of Mexico, claiming
all of Mexico for Spain in 1521. These sapnish exlprers made the Aztecs
work in the mines looking for gold and silver.Treasures from the Aztecs
were brought to Spain, and Cortés was a hero in his homeland. Cortés
was appointed governor of the colony of New Spain, but eventually fell
out of favor with the royals. He then returned to Spain where he died a
few years later.