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HURRYING TO HAVANA

The Veracruz-to-Havana leg was considered the worst in the entire trip. For 1,000 miles (1,069 kilometers) crews sailed against the prevailing easterly winds. The tropical sun beat down mercilessly, and sudden northerly gales were a constant threat.

One delay after another kept the Concepción in Veracruz for more than a year. At home, the government was in dire need of silver to shore up its finances and Admiral de Campos, the fleet commander, had orders to return to Spain as soon as possible. Finally, in July, the Concepción and her companion ships—anxious to avoid sailing any later in hurricane season—hurried toward the rendezvous with the rest of the fleet in Havana.


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