Antonio de Ulloa

Jan 12, 1716 - Jul 3, 1795

Antonio de Ulloa y de la Torre-Giralt, FRS, FRSA, KOS was a Spanish naval officer, scientist, and administrator. At the age of nineteen, he joined the French Geodesic Mission to what is now the country of Ecuador. That mission took more than eight years to complete its work, during which time Ulloa made many astronomical, natural, and social observations in South America. The reports of Ulloa's findings earned him an international reputation as a leading savant. Those reports include the first published observations of the metal platinum, later identified as a new chemical element. Ulloa was elected as a Fellow of the Royal Society of London in 1746, and as a foreign member of the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences in 1751.
Ulloa served the Spanish Crown as governor of Huancavelica, in Perú, and superintendent of the quicksilver mines in the region. Following the defeat of France in the Seven Years' War, Ulloa was appointed as the first Spanish governor of Louisiana in 1766. His rule was strongly resisted by the French Creole colonists in New Orleans, who expelled him from the city in the Louisiana Rebellion of 1768.
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