Middle School Workshops Session IV Craig Benjamin. History and Geography of the Ancient Americas. What was different about the history of the American ‘world zone’?. What challenges did the environment and geography of the Americas create for the first human migrants?.
What was different about the history of the American ‘world zone’?
What challenges did the environment and geography of the Americas create for the first human migrants?
What were some of the earliest cultures that appeared in the Americas?
Describe and differentiate defining characteristics of early civilization and pastoral societies, where they emerged, and how they spread
W2.1 Early Civilizations and Early Pastoral SocietiesDescribe the characteristics of early Western Hemisphere civilizations and pastoral societies.
6 – W2.1.1 Explain how the environment favored hunter gatherer, pastoral, and small scale agricultural ways of life in different parts of the Western Hemisphere.
6 – W2.1.2 Describe how the invention of agriculture led to the emergence of agrarian civilizations
6 – W2.1.3 Use multiple sources of evidence to describe how the culture of early peoples of North America reflected the geography and natural resources available E.g.
6 – W2.1.4 Use evidence to identify defining characteristics of early civilizations and early pastoral nomads
Comparing the American, World History
Australasian & Pacific Zones:
The Americas, Australasia & the Pacific World History
4 Major Differences:
13,000 Ys ago World History
Many new technologies required
40,000 Ys ago
New hunting techniques; adaptations to cold
60,000 Ys ago
Early humansThe 1st Difference: Later Settlement
Humans may have arrived earlier, but they certainly reached the Americas by 13,000 years ago, traveling either by sea, along the W. Coast, or inland between the great ice sheets
E-W axis World History
N-S axisThe 2nd Difference: Geographical Orientation
The Biologist, Jared Diamond has pointed out that:
E-W Travel different environments
N-S TravelN. America: Climates
Traveling E-W you encounter less climatic variety
Traveling N-S you pass through many different climate zones
E-W Travel different environments
N-S TravelS. Americas: Climates
Mississippi valley different environments
Papua New Guinea
AndesThe 3rd Difference: Agriculture appears later
Phase 3: after 4,000 BCE
Phase 2: 7,000-4,000 BCE
Phase 1: 9,000-7,000 BCE
The Potato, a native of Peru different environments
Turkey, domesticated by the Aztecs
Quinine comes from the bark of the Cinchona tree
Wild CavyMajor American Domesticates?
Modern varieties of maize are larger and much more nutritious; but they took a long time to get that way
Teosinte, the ancestor of maize, is small, weedy and not too nutritious, but it can survive in the wildMaize was less ‘pre-adapted’ for domestication than wheat
included potential domesticates
Horses evolved in the Americas, but were hunted to extinction there.
Species of elephants, including mastodon and mammoth, were hunted to extinction.
Many species of camelids evolved in the Americas, such as this guanaco. Some survived.
= Zones of Agrarian Civilization nutritious; but they took a long time to get that way
4th Difference: Agrarian Civilizations arrived later in the Americas
Chichen even though there was no contact between them
site in the southern Mexican
state of Oaxaca
Pyramid Temple at Monte Alban
At its height, 200,000 people may have lived in Teotihuacan.
It traded over a large area of Mesoamerica
Chichen Itza Mexico Between 500 BCE and 500 CE
TikalRegions of Mayan Civilization
Like all monumental architecture, these pyramids almost certainly had deep religious significance
Mayan King acknowledges his people who are probably lesser lords in this scene of royal Maya court life
torture and public sacrifice
may have limited their
effectiveness, although the
warriors fought ferociously
enough with obsidian-bladed
Bonampak frescoes, c. 792 CE. Battle scene above Mayan warriors guard prisoners of war (r)
Overgrown Mayan ruins,
sculptors, objects, buildings, places, and food
in stone and wood on Maya monuments and
architecture, or painted on paper,
plaster walls and pottery
Aztec Calendar Stone
22.214.171.124.6 is the Long Count date.
3 Cimi is the Tzolkin date.
4 Zotz is the Haab date.
Pyramid of Kukulkan c. 1050