Discovering the Americas
The Peoples from Asia
• Cross the land bridge over the Bering
– Disappears when the glaciers covering N.
America melt.
• Brought the first dogs
• Weapons
– Clubs, stone-tipped arrows,
– Killed animals for food and clothing
• Followed the Rocky Mountains southward.
Native Americans
• Early peoples of the
• Tribes- natives divided
into different tribes
speaking over 1000
different languages.
• Culture- way of life
(hunting, fishing, etc.)
• Civilizations- Advanced
cultures (towns)
– People who settle down
and live.
Mayas of Yucatan
• Richest civilization in Central
• City- religious centers with
massive temples.
• Artisans- artists to decorate the
buildings with murals and
• Scholars- developed method
of writing.
• Scientists- used sun to create
a calendar.
• Astronomers- careful
observation of planets and
stars to predict eclipses.
Decline of the Mayas
• Population increased
so fast that there was
not enough food
• Some died, moved, or
joined other tribes.
• Maya civilization
becomes extinct
before the first
Europeans come to
The Incas
• Located in Peru
• Organized a rich and
powerful empire by
neighboring tribes
• Cuzco- capital city
– Located in the Andes
The Incas
• Farmers
• Used llamas and
alpacas for work and
• Used wool for
• Artisans- fashioned
gold and silver from
the mines for jewelry
and religious icons.
Inca organization
The Sun God
Noble class- priests
Farmers, laborers
•All power flowed from
the Inca through the
nobles to the peasants.
The Aztecs
• Located in Central
America from Mexico
to southern North
• Merchants traveled all
over trading precious
stones, cacao beans,
gold, and silver.
• Tenochtitlan- capital
The North American Indians
• Located in U.S. and
• Territory- tribes would
band together for support,
trade, and protection, but
stayed in their own
– An empire crossed over
into other territories.
• Culture area- A region in
which most of the tribes
had same sort of culture.
Southwest Indians
• Pueblo- Spanish for “town”
because of their apartmentstyle homes made of adobe.
– A sun dried brick.
• Navajos- Farmers, weavers,
– Hogan- home made of adobe
and logs.
• Apaches- Wandering hunters
– Hunted deer for food and
– Wickiups- circular huts of
brush that were built in
Plains Indians
• Sioux, Pawnees, Dakotas,
Comanches, Kiowas, and
• Buffalo hunting for food,
clothing, shelter, tools, fuel.
– During the summer months.
– Pishkun- buffalo jump
• Tepee- cone-shaped tents
made of buffalo hide
stretched over lodge poles.
• Chiefs- chosen for specific
– Religious, hunting, warrior
Shoshone, Pima, Nez Perce
• Inhabited the western
Great Plains
– Mountain Indians
• “Seed Gatherers”depended on food of
seeds, berries, and
Mound Builders
• Inhabited the Eastern
United States.
• Built huge ceremonial
mounds in the form of
birds, bears, etc.
Algonquins, Iroquois, Creek, and
Cherokee Indians
• Independent tribes of
Eastern N. America.
• First known organized
form of government in
North America.
• First tribes to
encounter the white
Indian Beliefs
Harmony with Nature
• Heart of social,
economic, and
religious practices.
• A sacred trust existed
between man and
• As long as we care
for nature, it will
supply us w/ all we
• Proud of tribes and
• Very little individualism.
European Exploration
• Renaissance- a time for
European people to turn
to exploration of the sea
and the arts.
• Crusades- allowed
Europeans to discover
the spices and India.
• Trade develops to pay for
– Wool, gold, silver
• Camel caravans carry
products overland.
– Desire to finder faster ways
to move goods.
• Italian merchants create a
– exclusive control of trade.
• Commercial Revolutionexpansion of trade in
Prince Henry “The Navigator”
• Portugal
• Financed many
Portuguese sailors.
• Trade develops with
African nations
– Traded bowls and
beads for fresh water
and food.
Bartolomeu Dias
• Portuguese
• 1487- rounded the
southern tip of Africa.
Vasco da Gama
• Portuguese
• 1498- Sails around
the Cape of Good
Hope, Africa to India.
Christopher Columbus
• Italian sailor
• Gets Spanish money to
sail westward in search of
• Believed the earth was
• Nina, Pinta, Santa Maria
• October 12, 1492- Lands
in Bahamas believing he
has reached India.
• Establishes Spanish
claims in N. America.
Leif Erickson
• Norse- Norwegian
peoples first to reach the
America’s in 1000 BC.
• Eric the Red- discovers
• Leif Erickson- explores
the northeast coast of
North America
– “Vinland”- named for the
grape vines.
John Cabot
• Italian
• 1497- Explores
northeast North
America for England.
• Discovers Nova
• Gives England its first
claim to North
American land.
Giovanni da Verrazano
• French explorer.
• Sets out to find a
“Northwest Passage”
to Asia through N.
Jacques Cartier
French explorer
3 voyages to N.
1. Gulf of St. Lawrence
2. St. Lawrence River
3. St. Lawrence River to
Tries to establish a
settlement, but
Spain and Portugal
• Conquistadors- Spanish soldiers or
• Spain and Portugal leaders in the
exploration of the Americas.
– Spain- conquers the new western lands
– Portugal- explores Africa
Line of Demarcation
• Drawn by Pope
Alexander VI
– All new lands explored
west of the line were
to belong to Spaineast of the line,
• Cabral- Portuguese
explorer gets blown off
course while sailing
around Africa and
discovers Brazil.
Treaty of Tordesillas
Amerigo Vespucci
• Discovers the South
American continent.
• A European geographer
proposes that the new
find be named after
– “America”
Vasco Balboa
• Spanish Explorer
• 1513- Explores the
Isthmus of Panama
and finds another
– “South Sea”=Pacific
Ferdinand Magellan
• Spanish explorer
• Sails around the world.
• Discovers the Strait of
Magellan on the southern
tip of South America.
• Discovers and names the
Pacific Ocean
• Killed in the Philippines
– 18 of the 237 men actually
return to Spain.
Magellan’s Route
Hernando Cortes
• Spanish conquistador
• Conquers the Aztecs.
– They believe him to be
the god, Quetzalcoatl
returning as promised.
– Moctezuma- Aztec
emperor murdered by
Francisco Pizarro
• Spanish conquistador
• 1531- Conquers the
• Kidnaps The Inca,
collects a ransom of
gold and silver, and
then murders the
“Sun God.”
Ponce de Leon
• Spanish conquistador
• Explores Florida in
search of gold and
the “Fountain of
• Finds neither.
Panfilo de Narvaez
• Spanish explorer.
• Expedition of 250 men survive
a major hurricane near Cuba.
• Discover and explore the
western coast of Florida in
– Many men die in attack by
• Ship leaves them stranded.
• Narvaez and crew build 5 rafts
and sail for Mexico.
– 3 rafts sink and Narvaez dies.
• 15 survivors wander
throughout the Southwest for
8 years before arriving in
Mexico City.
Hernando de Soto
• Spanish conquistador
• 1539- Explores the
SE United States
• Found no gold, but
discovers the
Mississippi River.
Francisco Coronado
• Spanish conquistador
• Explores SW United
States in search of
“cities paved with
streets of gold.”- El
• Finds no treasure, but
discovers the Grand
Spanish Colonial Society
• Society
• Colony- land settled by
– Spaniards born in
people from another country
that remains under the
control of the country.
– Creoles- Spanish born
in the New World
– Portugal- Brazil
– Mestizos- Spanish and
– Spain- S. America,
Indian mix
Mexico, Caribbean.
– Indians- natives
– Mulattoes- black and
Spanish mix
– Zambos- Indian and
black mix.
Spanish Colonies
• Bring new plants, seeds,
language, tools, and domestic
• Establish sugar plantations.
• Enslave the native Indians to
work on the plantations.
– Disease wipes out
– Forced to look to Africa for
• Send all gold and silver back to
• Eventual decline in gold/silver
supply leads to decline in
Spanish power.
– Wars and rebellions cost
The Pirates of the Caribbean
• Sea Dogs- English and
Dutch sailors attack Spanish
ships and steal treasures.
• John Hawkins- Used to
transport slaves, but made
more money stealing from
Spanish ships.
• Francis Drake- Sails around
South America and raids
Spanish ships- then sails
around the world.
• Henry Morgan- Amasses a
wealth of over $70,000 in one
Spanish Decline
• King Philip II of Spain
attacks Queen
Elizabeth’s England with
the Spanish Armada.
• 1588- Entire Armada
destroyed in the English
Channel by a fierce
• Replaced by the English
Royal Navy
– “Mistress of the Seas”
English Settling of America
• Sir Walter Raleigh
– 1587- given
permission to start a
colony in Virginia.
– Roanoke- first colony
in America.
– Spanish prevent
supplies getting to
– 1591- supplies arrive,
but colony is gone.
• “Lost Colony”
The Companies
• Charter- official grant
given by kind of
certain rights, powers,
and privileges.
• Plymouth Company
and London (Virginia)
Company given
charters by King
James I in 1606.
• Magna Charta- limits
King James’ powers
and guaranteed
English freedoms.
Started by London
Company in 1606.
3 reasons for bad start
1. Ship blown off course
2. Established on a low
island in a river near
a marsh full of
malaria carrying
3. Had to drink dirty
river water.
3 reasons why
London Company
failed Jamestown
1. Made discovery of
gold a priority.
2. Settlers not allowed
to own anything.
3. Failure to send
workers to develop
the area.
John Smith
• Becomes leader of
• Orders men to dig wells,
build shelters, clear the
land, and plant food.
– Corn from the Indians.
• “No work, no food”
– Smith’s basic rule.
• Winter of 1609-1610- “the
starving time”
– Colonists ready to abandon
by Spring, 1610.
– English ships arrive with
loads of supplies.
Jamestown Survives
• Smoking habit spreads
in England and Europe.
– Tobacco becomes a cash
crop for Jamestown,
• John Rolfe learns to
grow and cure tobacco.
– Gives Jamestown a cash
crop to sell.
– Eventually marries Indian
princess Pocahontas and
returns to England with
Jamestown Government
• House of Burgess
– Becomes the first lawmaking body in
America on July 30,
– First step toward
government in
• African slaves are
brought in to work the
plantations in Virginia.
• 60 unmarried women
sent to the colonists.
• March, 1622- 347
settlers killed by
Indian raid
– Settlers retaliate and
poison 250 Indians.
• 1624- King James I
decides to revoke the
London Company charter
for Jamestown.
• Creates a royal colony
ruled by the king and his
– Governor has power to
reject laws made by the
House of Burgesses.
– Colonists allowed to elect
House members, but not
the governor.

Discovering the Americas