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Explorers Notes. It all started when…. We think the story started with Christopher Columbus setting off to explore and find a faster route to Asia but that isn’t the beginning of the story. There were a few steps before that happened…. The First Phase….

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it all started when
It all started when…
  • We think the story started with Christopher Columbus setting off to explore and find a faster route to Asia but that isn’t the beginning of the story. There were a few steps before that happened…
the first phase
The First Phase…
  • humans traveled over the land bridge around 20,000-12,000 BC. They used the land bridge that connected Siberia to Alaska. These first humans were following herds of animals across the land bridge
the second phase
The Second Phase…
  • Over many years, humans began to migrate farther south and populate the areas in and around Alaska, Canada, and parts of what is today the United States
the third phase
The Third Phase…
  • By 8,000 BC descendants of the original natives make their way to populate the areas of Central and South America
think about question
Think about Question…


  • Why would the groups of Natives keep moving once they have crossed the Bering Straight?
the vikings are coming
The Vikings are coming…
  • For thousands of years these native groups lived completely separate from the other areas of the world. The very first Europeans to make landfall in the new world were the Vikings

Sometime between 800-1000 AD the Vikings led by Leif Erickson headed west from Greenland and Iceland

  • Leif Erickson was searching for new land and he and his men landed on the coast of what is today Newfoundland.
  • They named this land Vinland and spend a winter there
  • They brought back with them grapes and lumber
  • Other Vikings soon returned but because of hostile natives no permanent settlements were established
  • The world did not know of the Vikings part in the discovery of America until years later
now to the part of the story everyone knows
Now to the part of the story EVERYONE knows…
  • 1492, Christopher Columbus sets sail for the country of Spain with three ships, the Nina, the Pinta, and the Santa Maria
  • He sailed WEST to try and find a faster route to Asia
  • After almost two months at sea, Columbus lands on San Salvador in the Caribbean islands
  • Columbus will explore for many weeks claiming land for Spain as he goes
a little more
A little more…
  • He will make a total of 4 voyages
  • Columbus’s initial discovery will cause a chain reaction of the other European nations wanting to claim land and find their own treasures
  • Columbus will go to his grave not convinced he found new land, convinced he had landed in the West Indies
reason and motive for european exploration
Reason and Motive for European Exploration:
  • Curiosity- What’s out there?
  • Wealth- Want to be rich!
  • Fame- What everyone to know who you are
  • National Pride- Want to bring pride to your nation
  • Religion- You want to spread your beliefs to others
  • Foreign Goods- There was demand for the new exotic trade goods like silk, spices, and jewels
  • Faster, Cheaper trade routes – how can we get what we want easier and faster and pay less?
what pushes this exploration along many things
What pushes this exploration along? Many things…
  • Everyone wanted to find a faster route to Asia. The land route took too long and was dangerous and expensive. Maybe they could reach it by sea
  • There was a Monopoly on the routes running through Venice and Genoa, this caused other countries to want to find their own way
  • There were many technological advances that helped explorers in their journeys including the…
  • Astrolabe- determines latitude and longitude
  • Compass- determines direction
  • Caravel- faster, larger ship then others
results of columbus s discovery
Results of Columbus’s Discovery…
  • Columbus’s discovery led to a new understanding of world geography
  • Because of Columbus, other European countries will now send explorers to try and claim land
  • Columbus starts the transatlantic slave trade by bringing the first slaves from the new world back to Europe with him and enslaving the native tribes he found
more results
More Results…
  • The beginning of contact with the Native and Europeans will lead to the destruction of Native Culture and lead to their near disappearance in many areas
  • Along with Ethnocentrism, the idea of racism, discrimination against members of one or more race, becomes a major issue between the different cultures
  • There will now be a race to explore and eventually be the first to circumnavigate (sail completely around) the world. That honor will go to Ferdinand Magellan who will be the first to circumnavigate the new world
  • Goal is to spread the 3 G’s- God, Glory, and Gold
  • Explore many parts of South American and Central America
  • Conquistadors: Spanish soldiers who attacked and destroyed natives in the quest for the 3 G’s
  • Bad relationship with the natives, enslaved Natives
  • Gained a lot of new land, became very wealthy from the gold, and introduced horses to the new world
  • Goal was to discover the Northwest passage
  • Explored mostly Northern parts of America including what is today Canada, St. Lawrence River, Great Lakes and Mississippi river areas
  • Became partners with the natives in the FUR trade
  • Established many permanent settlements
  • Were very FRIENDLY with the natives
england and the netherlands
England and the Netherlands…
  • Both countries wanted to find a Northwest passage
  • Both countries explored the eastern coast of North America
  • Netherlands had luck with Henry Hudson in the area of New York and established a permanent settlement their called New Netherlands
  • England struggled to claim new land and find a northwest passage. During this time period they were basically FAILURES
  • For England, it will not be until almost 100 years later they will find more success in the new world.