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Travis Michaels 9-8-07

A.P History-Chapters 1+2

4th Hour
Chapter 1 Summary:
The Great frozen era known as the Ice Age not only changed the geological shape of North
America’s landscape, but it also contributed to where humans settled down. Because the massive Ice Age
glaciers congealed much of the world’s oceans into ice-pack glaciers it lowered the sea tremendously. Once
the sea had dropped low enough there was a land-bridge that was exposed. This land-bridge connected
Eurasia with North America. It connected where the present day Bering Sea is located and also between
Siberia and Alaska. The land-bridge was crossed for almost 250 centuries. This slowly started fill up parts of
the American Continents.

54 million people had inhabited the two American continents by 1492; then over the next centuries
they split into many, many, tribes. These tribes evolved more than 2,000 diverse cultures, religions, and
languages. 3 of those thousands of cultures are some of the smartest to may ever walk the planet. These 3
tribes were the Mayans, Incas, and the Aztecs. They were the most advanced three cultures of there time.
They were advanced in all aspects of their lives; their main advancement was in their agriculture,
specifically their maize, otherwise known as corn.

Corn was the most popular food back then; nearly 20 million people in Mexico lived off of maize
alone. Over in the northwestern woodlands in the 16th century a leader by the name of Hiawatha had a group
that was inspired by him, known as the Iroquois. They created the political and organizational skills needed
to sustain a good military alliance. While this was happening, over in Europe, an Italian explorer by the
name of Marco Polo and just returned from what he thought to be China; which in reality was the
discovered New World. Many Europeans were very interested and thrilled from what Marco Polo had told
them about the New World. The Portuguese were then building up their own systematic traffic of slaves who
worked in the sugar plantations which they established on the African coastal islands of Madeira. The
Portuguese were also in constant search for the water route to Asia.

Then in the year of 1492, Columbus set sail with 3 sturdy ships and a load of men out into the ocean
blue. They sailed in caravels. Caravels were the best advancement at the time for sailing ships. They were
much faster, and could go in shallower waters. When Columbus and his men reached the new natives they
had not only brought new technology but also many diseases, such as yellow fever, malaria, and smallpox.
This whipped out 1 Million natives to about 200. Then Ferdinand Magellan sailed from 1519 – 1522, from
Spain, all the way down and around southern South America and continued west across the Pacific ocean.
Spanish conquistadores, or conquerors, fanned out all over the Caribbean and they eventually landed on the
mainland of the American Continents. As they started to settle down, they started to store their items and
goods in the West Indies, and they then came up with a technique known as encomienda. Encomienda
allowed the government to give Indians to certain colonists in return for the promise to try to Christianize

The Military conquest of a lot of territories and land were responsible from Hernán Cortes. The
Spanish empire kept constantly growing; with the advancement in weapons etc. they were able to get many
more people under the Spanish flag. They then started to over power the Indians. In New Mexico the Roman
Catholic mission became the central institution; until the missionaries’ efforts to stop native religious
customs provoked an Indian uprising. This uprising was known as Pope’s Rebellion in the year of 1680.

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