Hudson’s quest to find a shorter route to Asia didn’t end with this third failure. He set sail on a fourth expedition in 1610. It would be his last.
On this trip, Hudson and his crew sailed down what is now Hudson Bay to James Bay, where that water route ended. By the frigid winter of 1611, the crew was fed up. They were tired, cold, and starving. They argued with Hudson, who wanted to continue the voyage and refused to return home. The crew wanted to sail back to England. When they got the chance, they did—but not before throwing their captain overboard.
No one knows for sure what happened to Hudson. There are no records of him after the mutiny. Some people think he might have survived by joining up with local Native peoples. But Mancall and other experts say Hudson likely died in the winter of 1611.
Though he never found what he was looking for, Mancall says Hudson was still successful.
“Many people think Hudson was a failure,” says Mancall. “But he was a courageous explorer, willing to take risks.”