Before dispatching the embassy ashore, Columbus again tries to establish relations with the local villagers. He sends a Guanahanían captive ashore with instructions to tell the villagers the Europeans are good and harm no one.

The villagers lead the captive inside a nearby bohío (a Taíno house, constructed with wood beams, reed or palm siding, and a thatched roof, as shown on the Contact page of this website) to interrogate him. Encounters Unforeseen dramatizes the captive’s thoughts on escaping into Cuba. The locals soon lose their fear of Columbus’s expedition and canoe out to the ships to trade cotton and other items for small gifts—such as caps and hawk’s bells.

Tuesday, October 30, 1492
Friday, November 2, 1492