American Stories
THIRD EDITION
By: Brands •
Chapter
1
New World Encounters
Preconquest‒1608
New World Encounters,
Preconquest‒1608
1.1
Native Americans Before the Conquest
What explains cultural differences among
Native American groups before European
conquest?
1.2
Conditions of Conquest
How did Europeans interact with West
Africans during the fifteenth through
seventeenth centuries?
New World Encounters,
Preconquest‒1608
1.3
Europe on the Eve of Conquest
What factors explain Spain’s central role
in New World exploration and
colonization?
1.4
Spain in the Americas
How did Spanish conquest of Central and
South America transform Native
American cultures?
New World Encounters,
Preconquest‒1608
1.5
The French Claim Canada
What was the character of the French
empire in Canada?
1.6
The English Take Up the Challenge
Why did England not participate in the
early competition for New World
colonies?
Video Series:
Key Topics in U.S. History
1.
2.
3.
4.
A New World: To 1607
The First Americans
The Expansion of Europe
The Protestant Reformation
Home
Diverse Cultures: Cabeza de Vaca’s
Journey Through Native America
• Europeans astonished by the diversity
of Native peoples
• De Vaca shipwrecked in Florida in 1528
• Met and lived among the Indians of twenty
unique cultures
• Expanded New World narrative
• Explorers and conquerors such as de Vaca
• Placed experiences in an interpretative
framework
Home
Home
Native Americans Before the Conquest
• The Environmental Challenge: Food,
Climate, and Culture
• Aztec Dominance
• Eastern Woodland Cultures
Home
Native Americans Before the Conquest
• Peopling of America began thousands
of years ago
• 15,000‒20,000 years ago
• Environmental factors
• Last Ice Age
• Land bridge ‒ Beringia
• Paleo-Indians
• Took place over long time
Native Americans Before the
Conquest
The Environmental Challenge:
Food, Climate, and Culture
• Native Americans enjoyed an abundant
supply of meat
• Rapid population growth
• Indians adjusted to changing
environment
• New food sources - Agricultural
Revolution
• Shift from nomadic hunting and gathering to
permanent villages
Native Americans Before the
Conquest
• Diversity of cultures
Native Americans Before the
Conquest
Aztec Dominance
• More complexity in Mexico and Central
America developed
• Inca – area of Ecuador, Peru, and northern
Chile
• Mayan and Toltec – Central Mexico
• Aztecs - valley of Mexico
Native Americans Before the
Conquest
Native Americans Before the
Conquest
Eastern Woodland Cultures
• Atlantic coast of North America
• Native Americans lived in smaller bands
• Identified by ethnographers as Eastern
Woodland Cultures
• Dispersed in winter, but formed villages
during summer
• Agriculture supplemented by hunting and
gathering
• Likely were the first natives encountered
by English settlers
Native Americans Before the
Conquest
Eastern Woodland Cultures
(continued)
• Algonquian-speaking people
• North Carolina to Maine
• Exploited different resources and had
different dialects
• Shared many cultural values and
assumptions
• Kinship important
• Reciprocal relationships
• Wars rarely very lethal
Native Americans Before the
Conquest
Discussion Question
• What explains cultural differences
among Native American groups before
European conquest?
Native Americans Before the
Conquest
Conditions of Conquest
• West Africa: Ancient and Complex
Societies
• Cultural Negotiations in the Americas
• Threats to Survival: Columbian
Exchange
Home
Conditions of Conquest
• Portuguese exploration
• Fifteenth century
• Sea route – around Africa
• Christopher Columbus
• Sailing for Spain
• Headed west across Atlantic
• Encountered new and ancient cultures
• Experienced change
Conditions of Conquest
West Africa: Ancient and
Complex Societies
• Europeans encountered different
cultures
• Islam
• Political systems
• Portuguese search for gold and slaves
• African trade regulations
• Europeans lacked options
• Slaves
Conditions of Conquest
Conditions of Conquest
Cultural Negotiations in
the Americas
• Arrival of Europeans changed Native
American cultures
• Different rates at different locations
• Native American responses
• Trade
• Exchanged beaver skins for metal items
• Cultural seminars
Conditions of Conquest
Cultural Negotiations in
the Americas (continued)
• Cultural differences
• Language
• “Civilized”
• Indians rejected European values
Conditions of Conquest
Threats to Survival:
Columbian Exchange
• Cooperative encounters fewer over time
• European land use
• Native Americans eager for trade
• Dependent on, indebted to, Europeans
• Native American population declined
• Cause: lack of resistance to disease
• Effects
• Columbian Exchange
• Plants, animals, disease
Conditions of Conquest
Table 1.1 New Opportunities, New
Threats: The Columbian Exchange
Conditions of Conquest
Discussion Question
• How did Europeans and Native
Americans interact during the period of
first contact?
Conditions of Conquest
Europe on the Eve of Conquest
• Spanish Expansion
• The Strange Career of Christopher
Columbus
Home
Europe on the Eve of Conquest
• Tenth century – Vikings in New World
• Eric the Red in Greenland
• Leif Ericson settled “Vinland”
• Outposts difficult to maintain
Europe on the Eve of Conquest
Europe on the Eve of Conquest
Spanish Expansion
• Spain became a world power
• Centralized political authority
• Geographic knowledge
• Religious connection
• Catholic rulers – strongly religious
• Reconquista – conquistadores
• Canary Islands
• Conquered before West Indies
• Models of subjugation
Europe on the Eve of Conquest
The Strange Career of
Christopher Columbus
• Columbus
• Born in Italy, humble parents
• Educated, mastered geography
• Desire to voyage west to reach Cathay
• Portuguese rejected Columbus’s plan
• Spain’s Isabella and Ferdinand financed
trip
Europe on the Eve of Conquest
The Strange Career of
Christopher Columbus (continued)
• Journeys of Columbus
• 1492 - initial voyage
• Three subsequent voyages to find cities of
China
• Never found treasure he was seeking
• 1506 - died clinging to belief he had
reached the Orient
• Amerigo Vespucci
• America named after him
Europe on the Eve of Conquest
Discussion Question
• What factors explain Spain’s central
role in New World exploration and
colonization?
Europe on the Eve of Conquest
Spain in the Americas
• The Conquistadores: Faith and Greed
• From Plunder to Settlement
Home
Spain in the Americas
• Conflict between Portugal and Spain
• Both sought treasure in Asia
• Treaty of Tordesillas
Spain in the Americas
The Conquistadores:
Faith and Greed
• Conquistadores in the Caribbean
• Did not desire permanent society
• Sought instant wealth – gold
• Hernán Cortés
• Conquered Aztec in Mexico
Spain in the Americas
From Plunder to Settlement
• Encomienda system
• Rewarded conquistadores
• Brought them under royal authority
• Large land grants and Indians
• Crown control of colonies
• Correspondence
• Appointed officials answered only to crown
Spain in the Americas
From Plunder to Settlement
(continued)
• Catholic Church
• Dominicans and Franciscans
• Protected Indian rights
• Performed mass conversions
• Virgin of Guadalupe
• Source of precious metals
• Tons of gold and silver
Spain in the Americas
How Did Global Exploration Change
the Old and New Worlds?
• What global trade routes existed in the
Old World prior to the Age of Global
Exploration?
• In what ways were societies in the
Americas interrelated before the arrival
of the Europeans?
• How did the new trans-Atlantic trade
connect different parts of the world?
Spain in the Americas
Spain in the Americas
Spain in the Americas
Spain in the Americas
Spain in the Americas
Discussion Question
• How did Spanish conquest of Central
and South America transform Native
American cultures?
Spain in the Americas
The French Claim Canada
• Jacques Cartier – 1534 exploration
• Saint Lawrence River
• Discouraged by harsh winters
• 1608 – Samuel de Champlain
• Founded Québec
• French in New World
•
•
•
•
Stated goals
Relations with Native Americans
Coureurs de bois
Flaws
Home
Discussion Question
• What was the character of the French
empire in Canada?
The French Claim Canada
The English Take Up the Challenge
• Birth of English Protestantism
• Religion, War, and Nationalism
Home
The English Take Up the Challenge
• John Cabot - 1497
• First recorded transatlantic voyage for
England
• Claimed New World territory under Henry
VIII (r. 1509–1547)
• English interest in New World wanes
• Preoccupied with domestic and religious
concerns at home
The English Take Up the
Challenge
Birth of English Protestantism
• England in late fifteenth century
• Henry VII brought peace from civil war
• Many powerful magnates
• Internal diplomacy
• Protestant Reformation
•
•
•
•
European Protestants against Catholics
Monarchy
Anticlericalism
The English Take Up the
New ideas
Challenge
The English Take Up the
Challenge
Religion, War, and Nationalism
• Elizabeth the symbol of English,
Protestant nationhood
• Sea Dogs’ seizure of Spanish treasure
made them English heroes
• The Spanish Armada
• Philip II – invaded England
• 1588 – Spanish Armada defeated
• Sir Walter Raleigh
• Roanoke
The English Take Up the
Challenge
Discussion Question
• Why did England not participate in the
early competition for New World
colonies?
The English Take Up the
Challenge
Conclusion:
Campaign to Sell America
• By 1600, no English settlements in New
World
• Richard Hakluyt advertised benefits of
American colonization
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