Conquest of Chile facts for kids

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Pedro de Valdivia(2)
Pedro de Valdivia

The Conquest of Chile is a period in the history of Chile that starts when Pedro de Valdivia went to Chile in 1541 and ends with the death of Martín García Óñez de Loyola, in the Battle of Curalaba in 1598 or alternatively with the Destruction of the Seven Cities.

The Juan Bautista Pastene expedition to southern Chile in 1544

During this period, Spaniards founded cities and they established the Kingdom of Chile. Some cities were founded after the War of Arauco: Santiago (1541), La Serena (1544), Concepción (1551), La Imperial, Valdivia, Villarrica (1552), Los Confines (1553), Cañete (1557), Osorno (1558), Arauco (1566), Castro (1567), Chillán (1580) and Santa Cruz de Oñez (1595).

This period ended with the death of Loyola and the loss of their seven cities in Araucanía. The War of Arauco continued but the Spanish were never able to recover their control in the Araucanía, at the south of the River of Bío Bío.

Timeline of events

Year Date Event
1540 December Pedro de Valdivia takes possession of Chile in the name of the King of Spain.
1541 February 12 Santiago is founded.
September 11 Michimalonco leads a Picunche attack on Santiago, the city is severely damaged but the attack is repelled.
1544 September 4 La Serena is founded by Juan Bohón.
1549 January 11 La Serena is destroyed by natives.
August 26 La Serena is refounded.
1551 October 5 Concepción is founded.
1552 San Felipe de Rauco, La Imperial and Villarrica are founded.
February 9 The city of Valdivia is founded by Pedro de Valdivia.
1553 Los Confines is founded.
December 25 The battle of Tucapel takes place, governor Pedro de Valdivia is killed after the battle.
1554 February 23 The battle of Marihueñu takes place, Concepción is abandoned and destroyed.
October 17 Jerónimo de Alderete is appointed governor of Chile in Spain by the king but dies on his journey to Chile.
1557 April 1 Francisco de Villagra defeats the Mapuches and kills their leader Lautaro at the battle of Mataquito.
April 23 The new governor García Hurtado de Mendoza arrives in La Serena.
June García Hurtado de Mendoza arrives in the bay of Concepcion and builds a fort at Penco, then defeats the Mapuche army trying to dislodge him.
October 10 García Hurtado de Mendoza defeats the Mapuche army in the Battle of Lagunillas.
November 7 García Hurtado de Mendoza defeats Caupolicán in the Millarupe.
1558 January 11 Cañete founded by Mendoza.
February 5 Pedro de Avendaño captured the Mapuche toqui Caupolicán, later executed by impalement in Cañete.
March 27 Osorno is founded.
December 13 Battle of Quiapo, Mendoza defeats the Mapuche and San Felipe de Araucan rebuilt.
1559 January 6 Concepción is refounded.
1561 Francisco de Villagra succeeds García Hurtado de Mendoza as governor.
1563 Cañete is abandoned.
July 22 Francisco de Villagra dies and is succeeded as governor by his cousin Pedro de Villagra. San Felipe de Araucan is soon abandoned.
August 29 The territories of Tucumán are separated from the Captaincy General of Chile and transferred to the Real Audiencia of Charcas.
1564 February Concepción is unsuccessfully sieged by native Mapuches.
1565 A Real Audiencia is established in Concepción.
1566 January San Felipe de Araucan is refounded.
1567 With the founding of Castro the dominions of the Captaincy General of Chile are extended into Chiloé Archipelago.
1570 February 8 The 1570 Concepción earthquake affects all of south-central Chile.
1575 The Real Audiencia of Concepción is abolished.
December 16 The 1575 Valdivia earthquake affects all of southern Chile.
1576 April Valdivia is flooded by a Riñihuazo caused by the 1575 Valdivia earthquake.
1578 December 5 Valparaíso is plundered by Francis Drake, the first corsair in Chilean waters.
1580 June 26 Chillán is founded.
1584 March 25 Rey Don Felipe is founded in the Straits of Magellan by Pedro Sarmiento de Gamboa.
1587 Thomas Cavendish finds Rey Don Felipe as a ruin city.
1594 May Fort of Santa Cruz de Oñez is founded and becomes the city of Santa Cruz de Coya the following year.
1598 December 21 The battle of Curalaba takes place, governor Martín García Óñez de Loyola is killed during the battle.
1599 Los Confines, Santa Cruz de Coya and Valdivia are destroyed.
The Real Situado, an annual payment to finance the Arauco War, is established.
1600 La Imperial is destroyed.
1602 Villarrica is destroyed.
March 13 A fort is established in the ruins of Valdivia.
1603 February 7 The last inhabitants of Villarrica surrender to the Mapuches and became captives.
1604 Arauco and Osorno are destroyed.
February 3 The fort at Valdivia is abandoned.

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