Before Columbus - St. John Vianney High School

Before Columbus - St. John Vianney High School

North America Before Columbus Native Americans Traditional History vs. New History Traditional history = White men, fleeing from rigid customs, social hierarchies, and the constrained resources of Europe to a land of

opportunity Old History vs. New History New history = Many colonists failed to prosper due to disease, crop problems, predators, and hostile Native Americans; those who did do well did so at the expense of Indians, indentured servants, and slaves

Go West? Not all of America was the English going west Spanish were heading north from Mexico Russians coming east from Siberia French coming south through the Great

Lakes and down the Mississippi River We cannot simply say there were Europeans, Africans, and Indians converging together because it was far more complex than that. When thrown together in the New World, each had to find a new commonality to aid in their survival in the new world.

All three groupsEuropeans, Africans, & Indians were in a flux when they encountered each other in the colonies. Settlement Paleo-Indians Hunters, Gatherers, Small tribal communities, simple

tools and weapons. Archaic Indians Still hunting and gathering, use of fire, more permanent settlements. Still using simple tools and weapons Agriculture Agriculture evolved over generations from the

practices of gathering wild plants Indians developed hybrids of increasing reliability and productivity They developed the three great crops of North Americans agriculture: maize, squash, and beans As plants became more important in their diet, less time was devoted to hunting, gathering, and fishing.

Hohokam & Anasazi Hohokam Complex Civilization in Southwest USA. -Organized irrigation system -Built group dwellings in cliffs and canyons

-Prodigious Farmers -Highly Advanced Anasazi -Southwest America -Built pueblo style houses -Great pottery

Mound Builders -Constructed various styles of earthen mounds for religious and ceremonial, burial, and elite residential purposes. -Cahokia Indians (near Collinvsville IL) Indians in America

Beliefs Indians had a more complex understanding of the interdependent relationship between the natural and the supernatural. Indians believed that they lived within a contentious world of spiritual power that sometimes demanded human restraint and at

other times offered opportunities for exploitation. Native Population in the Americas in 1491 Difficult to estimate because of wide spread populations By 1990s, scholars estimate between 50-100

million natives In North America, estimates are 9-20 million (Dobyns, 1983) Biggest Empires were Aztecs in Mexico (15 million) and Inca in S. American (6 million). Population in Europe

About 60 million Farmland was worn out Grazing land was worn out

Forests were torn down Major domesticated animals in Europe in 1491: horse, cow, pig, sheep, goat, chicken, camel, oxen, cat, dog Columbian Exchange The Columbian Exchange was a widespread exchange of animals, plants, culture, human populations (including African Slaves), disease (smallpox,

measles), and ideas between the American and Afro-Eurasian hemispheres following the voyage to the Americas by Columbus in 1492. Estimated population of Europe in 1492: about 60 million Estimated population of the Americas in 1492: 50-100 million Estimated population of Europe in 1800: 150 million Estimated population of the Americas in 1800: 25 million (the vast majority of whom were of European or African descent


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