Appletons' Cyclopædia of American Biography/Ayala, Juan Bautista de

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AYALA, Juan Bautista de, explorer, known only in connection with the early exploration of San Francisco bay in 1775. The bay had been discovered only six years before. Ayala was a Spanish lieutenant, in command of the transport “San Carlos,” and his was the first European vessel to enter the Golden Gate. He remained about forty days, making surveys, and on his return to Monterey reported concerning the excellent character of the harbor. The visit of Sir Francis Drake in the 16th century can not have been actually made to the bay of San Francisco, hence the assured priority of Ayala as explorer in this place.