The following two videos show a documentary investigation into claims made by Gavin Menzies in his book, ‘1421 – The Year China Discovered America.’ The book itself is a fascinating read and puts forward an interesting theory which seems to be fairly well contradicted by the evidence brought forth in the documentary. Though the theory cannot be completely rejected based on historical evidence, the evidence that does exist seems to disagree with the theory. Though this is the case there is much historical interest in the documentary, as it presents the story of Admiral Zheng He and the Chinese Treasure Fleet.
On this day in 1787, 11 ships known as the First Fleet left England for Australia. On board were 1487 people, including 778 convicts. Their destination was Botany Bay in what was then known as New Holland. The expedition was under the leadership of Captain Arthur Phillip, soon to be Governor Phillip and later Admiral Phillip. The First Fleet arrived at Botany Bay from the 18th January 1788.
An account of the journey can be found at the Internet Archive. I am currently working on a copy of this work for the Tracing our History website.