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Beginnings– The ‘Old World’ Colonization of the ‘New World’

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Presentation on theme: "Beginnings– The ‘Old World’ Colonization of the ‘New World’"— Presentation transcript:

1 Beginnings– The ‘Old World’ Colonization of the ‘New World’

2 I. Two Worlds Before Columbus, the peoples of the Eastern and Western Hemispheres were unaware of each other Pre-1492 world map made in Europe

3 People had originally spread from Asia to the Americas across a land bridge, which had long since been covered up by a post- ice age rise in sea level

4 These places are often referred to as the –‘Old World’ = Europe, Africa, and Asia –‘New World’ = the Americas –(no one cares about Australia… just forget it!)

5 II. Two Worlds Collide After the fall of the Roman Empire (in the 5 th century AD, but you don’t have to know this ) Europe experienced a period of relative backwardness –think Middle Ages, Black Plague, castles, etc. Then, in the 14 th century (1300s), Europe experienced a Renaissance –Rebirth of culture –In other words, because of a boom in trade and wealth, Europeans began to advance culturally (art, architecture, science, etc.)


7 One important part of this cultural explosion was the Age of Exploration You already know this  Columbus, Magellan, De Gama, etc. Europeans rediscovered the New World –In fact, the name ‘New World’ was a European term meant to show that these two new continents were new to them

8 European powers competed to grab as much of the new land as possible The Native American inhabitants were helpful- they agreed to have very low immunities to European diseases and to die off, leaving the land free to be conquered –The Native American plagues killed 90% of the native population of the New World  at least twice as devastating as the black plague in Europe. –Immunities story (if time)

9 Successful colonists were the Spanish, French, English, and Portuguese –How could you have guessed these countries? –Germans, Poles, Swedes, Italians… not so much

10 III. Life in European-controlled America Scramble for wealth –Some countries yielded immediate sources of wealth Gold, Silver, etc. –Others had slower, longer-term wealth Farming, timber, etc. –The original 13 American colonies, controlled by Britain, were in the latter category (no gold/silver)

11 Willing Colonization –Many of the Europeans who came to the Americas were social outcasts e.g., the poor or those who wanted to practice unaccepted religions Think about it  if you are a wealthy person in Europe, you don’t leave to go to a frontier with hostile Indians and few modern luxuries

12 Unwilling Colonization  Slavery –Not a ton of slavery in Europe already crowded plenty of people willing to work for cheap no need for slaves –New World means land on an unimaginable scale –Intense need for workers to do crappy jobs  clearing land, picking cotton, pulling weeds, etc.

13 –African slaves Why Africans? –Native Americans have died off –Europeans have trouble dealing with malaria which exists in most farmable areas; Africans have much stronger immunities The Middle Passage –Harsh and terrible transportation of Africans to the New World –Millions of Africans brought  may have a tiny bit of importance to later American history


15 IV. Who is in Charge in the New World: Europeans or their Colonists? Europeans own the colonies However, it is often impractical for decisions about colonial issues to be made in Europe. Why? –6 week voyage across the ocean British colonists in American colonies already have an independent streak. That’s what caused them to move to the New World British colonists develop a tradition of independence and local authority, despite being officially ruled by Britain

16 There is a quiz to test comprehension of this lecture in the tests file.

17 HansenName _____________________ U.S. History Period _________ Beginnings- The ‘Old World’ Colonization of the ‘New World’ Note-Taking Guide One important part of this cultural explosion was … European powers competed to grab as much of the new land as possible. Successful colonists… I. Two Worlds Before Columbus … People had originally spread to the Americas from Asia… “Old World” v “New World” II. Two Worlds Collide After the fall of the Roman Empire… Then, in the 14 th century, Europe experienced a Renaissance...

18 (cont.) IV. Who is in charge of the New World- Europeans or their colonists? I. Life in European-Controlled America Scramble for wealth… Willing Colonization… Unwilling colonization…

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