Hoping to attract French colonists, La Salle returned to France, recruited 280 settlers, and set sail again for Louisiana in 1684. The voyage was disastrous. The ships mistakenly sailed past the mouth of the Mississippi River and La Salle was forced to send the settlers ashore on the barren coast of Texas.
One ship was wrecked; another returned home. La Salle set off with a band of 20 men eastward across the harsh Texas landscape in a desperate bid to find the river. But food ran out, frustration rose, and tempers shortened.
Finally, some of the men revolted and shot La Salle at point blank range, leaving his body to be eaten by vultures.