In 1492, Christopher Columbus led an expedition sponsored by King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella of Spain to find the passage to the west to the riches of India. Instead, he discovered the islands of present-day Cuba, Haiti, and the Dominican Republic. Columbus's voyage inspired others to venture west to the Americas in search of wealth and exploration. Other expeditions, undertaken by such explorers as Amerigo Vespucci, Vasco Nunez de Balboa, Hernando de Soto, and George Vancouver, changed life in both hemispheres. Discovery of the Americas, 1492-1800, Revised Edition tells the stories of explorers whose travels made major contributions to world history.