THE AMERICAN
NATION
12th Edition
Pearson Education, Inc. © 2006
Prologue
Mark C. Carnes
John A. Garraty
©2006 Pearson Education, Inc.
BEGINNINGS
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• Cro-Magnon Man (50,000 years
ago)
– Stone tools
– Complex Languages
– Migration
• Moved north into Siberia
following receding supply of
large mammals, especially
mammoths
PASSAGE TO ALASKA
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• About 12,000 years
ago, perhaps earlier,
these hunters
moved into Alaska
across the Bering
Strait land bridge
created by the
lowered sea levels
during the
Pleistocene (Ice
Age)
INTO THE
CONTINENT
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• The hunters then
moved into the
continent along an
ice free corridor
beginning in
Calgary, Canada,
and extending into
the Great Plains
where vast herds of
giant mammals
roamed
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DEMISE OF BIG MAMMALS
• Clovis hunters had developed divided
spears tipped with sharp stone points
(Clovis points named after location in New
Mexico where first found)
• Another stress on the big mammals was a
warming climate that caused deserts and
forests to expand while grasslands shrank
• By 9,000 BCE nearly three-fourths of large
mammals were extinct
WHO KILLED BIG MAMMALS?
• CLOVIS HUNTERS
– Paul Martin estimates that several hundred thousand
Clovis hunters hunted 93 billion pounds of animals to
extinction
– But were they really such effective hunters or were
they primarily scavengers?
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• CLIMATE CHANGE
– After 11,000 BCE climate became warmer and drier
damaging the ecosystem on which mammals
depended
– Climate change was not so drastic as to adversely
impact other species and large mammals had
survived previous climate changes so why a problem
now?
ARCHAIC PERIOD
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9000-1000 BCE
• Clovis period ends with death of large
mammals and humans are forced to find
new sources of clothing, food, and shelter
• EARLY ARCHAIC (a hundred human
generations) was a time of scarcity
• Hunted small animals, bison and other
game for which they hunted continuously
ARCHAIC PERIOD
9000-1000 BCE
• MIDDLE ARCHAIC
– Increasingly settled
– Development of far-ranging trade networks
– Discovered edible plants
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• LATER ARCHAIC
– Around 2500BCE seeds were planted in
Midwest and Archaic peoples supplemented
their hunting with primitive agriculture
ARCHAIC PERIOD
9000-1000 BCE
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• Period saw steady population growth
but it was slow
– Diet low in fats and carbohydrates,
delaying menses
– Diet unsuited to infants resulting in 2-3
years of breastfeeding thereby delaying
next pregnancy
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FIRST SEDENTARY COMMUNITIES
1000 BCE
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• COASTAL AREAS
– Pacific Northwest & Alaska:
developed nets, fishhooks, and boats
from skins and bark
– Coast of New England: lived primarily
on shellfish
FIRST SEDENTARY COMMUNITIES
1000 BCE
• Poverty Point, LA (founded 1000
BCE)
– Supplemented fishing with agriculture
– Built large mounds that totaled over 1
million cubic yards of dirt
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• What do mounds mean?
– Must have had decent supply of food to
spend so much time building mounds
– Likely that their society was
hierarchical (unlike usual egalitarian
societies of Archaic peoples)
• Deserted after about 500 years
MOUND
BUILDERS
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• ADENA (Mississippi &
Ohio River valleys)
– Hierarchical hunting
and agricultural society
– Extensive trade
– Lasted several
hundred years
• HOPEWELL (200 BCE
– 500 CE in Ohio &
Illinois)
CORN TRANSFORMS THE
SOUTHWEST
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• About 2000 years ago, Teotihuacán, a city of
100,000, flourished 40 miles north of what is
now Mexico City
• Basis for large, thriving civilizations was
cultivation of CORN which led to a NEOLITHIC
revolution—transformation to farming life by
2000 BCE
CORN TRANSFORMS THE
SOUTHWEST
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• Corn culture spread north to the Hohokam and
Mogollon people of Arizona and New Mexico
and the Anasazi of the Coloraldo Plateau
• Their culture came to revolve around corn
– Built irrigation canals
– Sun and water became center of religious beliefs
– Astronomers measured seasons to ensure the best
harvest
– Corn Mother symbolism dominated
– Corn surplus was key to political power
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CORN TRANSFORMS THE
SOUTHWEST
• Corn cultivating peoples increased in number
after 800 CE especially among the Anasazi in the
Chaco Canyon region
• Anasazi carved cities into the cliffs and built
elaborate road systems
• The Hohokam constructed an irrigation canal
system over hundreds of miles and a Hohokam
village 250 miles west of modern Phoenix had a
population of several thousand
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DIFFUSION OF CORN
• Corn spread to southeast but
then slowed due to weather
conditions and social disdain—it
was work for women
• But it was so good as a food
base, especially combined with
squash and beans that by 700 it
was around St. Louis and in
southern Wisconsin by 900.
• By 1000 CE corn had become
king
POPULATION GROWTH AFTER 800
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• An acre of woodlands fed two or three
hunters while the same area fed 200
people when planted with corn and as a
result
– had more children because started
menstruating and weaning earlier
– infants could be protected from weather and
were less bothersome than when mobile
• Needing more land, the larger population
expanded often pushing hunters out of the
way
CAHOKIA:
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The Hub of Mississippian Culture
• Located near St. Louis, it was a center of
trade, shops, religion, and politics by 1000,
reaching its height at 1150
– Location of a variety of mounds including largest
in North America
– Highly stratified society
– May have practiced sacrifice
– City surrounded by palisade suggesting conflict
though rulers maintained power due to religious
roles not military
– Culture spread even to southern Wisconsin
where Aztalan was built
COLLAPSE OF URBAN CENTERS
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• By 1200 Cahokia’s population down from
over 15,000 to several thousand and the
town was deserted by 1350
• In Southwest the Anasazi pueblos were
empty by 1200
• Why the decline?
– Protracted droughts during 1200s and 1300s
– Environmental damage
– Decline in crop yields
– Endemic warfare
AMERICAN BEGINNINGS IN
EURASIA & AFRICA
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• Neolithic revolution earlier and more
complete
– Wheat in SW Asia after 9000 BCE
– Rice from China around same time
– Diffusion of these crops soon followed by
variety of others
• Shift of African climate around 6000BCE
hindered flow of crops
ANIMAL DOMESTICATION
• Domesticated horses, pigs, cows, goats, sheep,
oxen
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–
–
–
–
–
Protein rich meat
Dairy products
Field work
Fertilizer
Transportation (when combined with wheels)
• All this led to increase in population
• By 1500, China and India each over 100 million
people, Europe around 80 million, Africa about
40 million (compared to maybe 10 million in
what is now the U.S.)
• Domesticated animals also brought disease
leading to recurrent plagues
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WEST AFRICA
• Grassy savannah south of Sahara became
home of herding peoples
• Cities emerged in response to transSaharan trade
• Conflict over trade routes lead to great
kingdoms though disease kept them from
penetrating farther south
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EUROPE IN FERMENT
• During the 1400s European population
increased by a third, often leading to
scarcity, migration, and the search for a
scapegoat
• New ideas gave rise to challenges to
tradition such as the Protestant Revolution
• Nearly constant warfare led to advances in
military technology which made war more
expensive and required creation of nation
states
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WEBSITES
• Pre-Contact and Colonial Maps
http://www.lib.utexas.edu/maps/americas
• Ancient Mesoamerican Civilization
http://www.angelfire.com/ca/humanorigins/in
dex.html
• National Museum of the American Indian
http://www.si.edu/nmai
• Cahokia Mounds
http://medicine.wustel/edu/!mckinney/cahoki
a/cahokia.html
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THE AMERICAN NATION 12th Edition