Thus he came at length to stand on the verge of the Indian Ocean; " gazing upon it," a writer has said, " with as much delight as Balboa, when he crossed the Isthmus of Darien from the Atlantic to the Pacific."
In 1508 Alonso de Ojeda obtained the government of the coast of South America from Cabo de la Vela to the Gulf of Darien; Ojeda landed at Cartagena in 1510, and sustained a defeat from the natives, in which his lieutenant, Juan de la Cosa, was killed.
After another reverse on the east side of the Gulf of Darien Ojeda returned to Hispaniola and died there.
The Spaniards in the Gulf of Darien were left by Ojeda under the command of Francisco Pizarro, the future conqueror of Peru.
Vasco Nunez, the new commander, entered upon a career of conquest in the neighbourhood of Darien, which ended in the discovery of the Pacific Ocean on the 25th of September 1513.
The first Spanish settlement in Hispaniola spread to the mainland by the adventure of Alonso de Ojeda and Diego de Nicuesa in Darien in 1509.
In 1513, Vasco Nunez de Balboa crossed the isthmus of Darien and saw the South Sea (Pacific).
In 1519 Pedrarias Davila transferred the Darien settlement to Panama.
The city is served by the New York, New Haven & Hartford railway (which has other stations in the township at Glenbrook, Springdale and Talmadge Hill), by electric railway to Darien, Greenwich, &c., and by two lines of steamboats to New York City and ports on the Sound.
Means of transportation for these products are furnished by the rivers, which are generally navigable as far north as the " fall line " passing through Augusta, Milledgeville, Macon and Columbus; by ocean steamship lines which have piers at St Mary's, Brunswick, Darien and Savannah; and by railways whose mileage in January 1909 was 6,871.8 m.
The chief point of interest in his account is that he speaks of the species having been already taken from New Spain (Mexico) to the islands and to Castilla del Oro (Darien), where it bred in a domestic state among the Christians.
It soon became the centre of trade for Middle Georgia; in 1833 a steamboat line to Darien was opened, and in the following year 69,000 bales of cotton were shipped by this route.
It committed William to conditions which might readily produce a great naval war with Spain, for Paterson's real design was to establish an entrepot in Panama, at Darien, within the undeniable sphere of Spanish influence.
Scotland was to have forty-five members and sixteen elected peers at Westminster; the holders of Darien stock were compensated; as a balance to equality of taxation a pecuniary equivalent was to be paid, the kirk and Scottish courts of justice were safeguarded (final appeal being to the British House of Lords), and Scots shared English facilities and privileges of trade, in name, for many years passed before Scotland really began to enjoy the benefits.
In 1508 Ojeda obtained from the Spanish crown a grant of the district from Cape Vela westward to the Gulf of Darien, while the rest of the country from the Gulf of Darien to Cape Gracias-a-Dios was bestowed on his fellow-adventurer, Nicuessa.
In 1680 a body of marauders over 300 strong, well armed and provisioned, landed on the shore of Darien and struck across the country; and the cruelty and mismanagement displayed in the policy of the Spaniards towards the Indians were now revenged by the assistance which the natives eagerly rendered to the adventurers.
In 1698 the sailing of the first Darien expedition created great excitement.
The Isthmus of Panama, coextensive with the republic, is the whole neck of land between the American continents; in another use the term " Isthmus of Panama " is applied to the narrow crossing between the cities of Colon and Panama, the other narrow crossings, further east, being the Isthmus of San Blas (31 m.) and the Isthmus of Darien (46 m.).
The Mesquite Gulf is to the N.W., the Gulf of Darien to the N.E., and on the N.
Darien Harbour, formed by the Tuira and Savannah rivers, is a part of the Gulf of San Miguel and is 11 m.
The largest is that of the Tuira (formerly called Rio Darien), whose headwaters are near the Caribbean and which empties into the Pacific in the Gulf of San Miguel.
On the eastern boundary of the republic is the Serrania del Darien, an Andean range, partly in Colombia.
Gold is mined to a small extent; the most productive mines are about Darien and in Cocle province.
In 1510 Martin Fernandez de Enciso, following Alonso de Ojeda to the New World, took the survivors of Ojeda's colony of Nueva Andalucia (near the present Cartagena and east of Panama) and founded on the Tuira river the colony of Santa Maria la Antigua del Darien (commonly called Darien).