Pizarro was born in Trujillo, Estremadura, Spain. He sailed to the New World in 1509 and took part in various Spanish missions of exploration and conquest, including Nuñez de Balboa's first trip to the Pacific Ocean at Panama.
Pizarro was killed by the followers of Diego de Almagro, one of the conquistadors, who took part in his campaigns against the Incass. When Almagro revolted against Pizarro, claiming that he had not received his proper share of Inca gold, Pizarro had him killed. This incensed Almagro's supporters, who turned against Pizarro and killed him.