The Image Of North America To European Invaders

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United States of America is known as one of the most prominent and powerful country holding the greatest impact in trading and commercialization in Asia and worldwide in today’s generation. Seen as the most victorious and leading country in the world holds a significant history. However, not known to everyone, the story behind the American character and its successful growth towards globalization is mostly brought by the European colonization.

Engulfed with vast European influences, it all started with one voyage of the British explorer John Cabot.

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John Cabot was the first discoverer of North America since the Northmen’s voyages almost five centuries earlier. Moreover, he gave England its American title (p. 42, II John Cabot’s Voyages, 1497 – 1498).

Research studies into Cabot’s life and voyages have been profoundly dissatisfying with no accurate and definite results. Indeed, most of the historians disagree and discard Cabot’s insufficient evidences. Even his first momentous voyage was nowhere to be found as well as his second voyage, except for the fact that it departed in May 1498 and failed to get its way back to Europe.

There are many allegations, however, such in Juan de La Cosa’s mappemonde dated 1500 that historians believed to be the proof of Cabot’s second voyage. De La Cosa shows a series of English royal standards planted along a coast which appears to stretch from the Labrador to Florida (p. 72, II John Cabot’s Voyages, 1497 – 1498). Nonetheless, John Cabot’s voyage paved way to the discovery of English empire in North America.

In the latter part of 1500s, after Cabot’s second voyage, there was a particular refusal to northern voyages to America as they were filled with doubts to a successful discovery. However, it is not the same case for southern voyages In fact, in 1948, Columbus sailed his third voyage and discovered the South American continent and opened the pearl fisheries. Vicente Yáñez Pinzón for Spain, and Pedro Alvanes Cabral for Portugal, bracketed the great country of Brazil in the same year (p. 75, III Voyages to the Labrador and Newfoundland, 1500 – 1536).

In the sixteenth century, English empire leads its way to the top by immigrating other countries especially America and gradually learning their norms. Entering the service of the East India Company, Patrick Copland made its way to England together with a talented naïve youth whom he had taught chiefly by signs, “to speake, to reade, and write the English tongue and hand, both Romane and Secretary, within less than the space of a year” (p. 106, Chapter VII: First Fruits of English Missions). This incident created hope to England for a wide array of religious conversion through Copland’s supervision as teacher to Americans. The Virginia Company can attest to this as they were the first to take steps relative to the establishment of schools in the English colonies of America (p. 111, Chapter VIII, Copland’s Services to Virginia Company).

According to, the thirteen colonies constituted provinces of New York, Pennsylvania, New Hampshire, Georgia, Delaware Colony, Colony of Virginia, province of Massachusetts Bay, Connecticut Colony, Province of North Carolina, Colony of Rhode Island, province of Maryland, South Carolina, and the province of New Jersey were once under the British rule from 1607 to 1776.

Colonial Latin America made a lot of changes in the past. During this time colonials rule almost the whole state and fight against each other to win and expand their territories. Every colonizer had their own agenda and motive why they want to colonizes the state, while some just do it for the sake of the mass of land they want to have.

There is a cultural exchange called “New World” and the “Old World”. It is also referred as Columbian Exchange which started when the European encountered and colonized the Americans. Due to encounters like this, colonizers like Spain, Portugal, France, and Netherlands made sure that anything that can be cultivated from this land be used for their growth and development.

The Columbian Exchange refers to the exchange of diseases, ideas, food crops, and populations between the New World and the Old World crops, and populations between the New World and the Old World following the voyage to the Americas by Christopher Columbus in 1492. (p. 163, The Columbian Exchange: A History of Disease, Food, and Ideas)

The colonizers saw the South America as a source of agricultural product that can only be made and get from the land like tomatoes, corn, potatoes, and chocolate. Source of raw materials like gold, silver, and copper for the development of their technologies, military weapons, economic buildings, and jewelry. But they didn’t saw this land just as that, they saw the Native Americans (indigenous people of the United States) (p.3, Two-spirit People: Native American Gender Identity, Sexuality, and Spirituality) as slaves that made them forced labor for the sake of those resources and they used their religion to spread the ideology that they want to put to the minds of the people that has the capability or wealth that they can’t be slaves and used the Christian education in exchange tribute for free labor.

For a long time, colonizers continued to spread their beliefs, culture, and education to them until some become superior and inferior to other colonizers. The strong became stronger and some strong became weak and the weak became weaker and disappeared in this colonial group of Latin America.

Central America is usually considered part of the North American continent and was home to many Indians before the Europeans colonized the area. The Netherlands (Dutch), Great Britain (English), and France (French) created colonies in the United States, but Spain dominated Central America.

The goal of Spanish colonization was to conquer gold and silver from the Americas in order to strengthen the Spanish economy and make Spain a stronger country. European colonists have created work systems, such as the Encomienda system, to extract natural resources from the Americas. Encomienda system is a labor system which gave a Spanish settler the right to demand taxes or labor from the people living on the land. In theory the Natives’ rights were to bw protected but it turned into force labor on farms or in mines.

Moreover, Spain also wanted to convert the American Indians to Christianity. The Spanish invaders sought to integrate the American Indians into Spanish culture, making them Catholics and integrating them into Spanish culture. Some natives adopted aspects of Spanish culture, while others decided to revolt. Pueblo rebellions demonstrate the successful efforts of the Indians to restore the religion, culture and practice of the land.        


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