The first European exploration of the Verde Valley was in 1583, when Antonio de Espejo searched for gold. In 1598, Marcos Farfan de los Godas also came searching for gold. There is no evidence that either visited the greater Sedona area. They did try some prospecting in Jerome, but found only copper. The area was in the hands of Spain until Mexico gained its independence in 1821. With the treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo in 1848, the Arizona Territory became part of the United States.