Reasons for discovery: Prosperity in Europe, Growing European populations, Desire for a shorter trade route, Advances in sailing, renaissance, Christianize the heathen, consolidation of European monarchies. Ferdinand and Isabella sent Columbus on 8-3-1492 and made 4 voyages.
Spanish Empire chief features- Highways for the exchange of goods and the movement of people. Exceeded in size the Roman Empire of the Ancient World. Stretching from the Andes Mountains in South America through present day Mexico eventually through the southwestern United States. Columbian Exchange. Catholic Church played a key role in society.
Hernan Cortes ( The first explorer to encounter a major American civilization in 1519 arrived at Tenochtitlan, nerve of the Aztec empire.) Cortez arrives in the New World with the Spanish army which instantly creates hostility between Aztecs and Spanish. He defeats the Aztecs in 1521. Why?- Conquest was inspired by search for wealth, national glory, and a desire to spread Christianity. Francisco Pizarro beat the Incas in 1535. Disease helped them and they were searching for gold and to spread their religion. Late 16th century exploration in US southwest bc looking for gold. They didn’t find 7 cities of gold in a huge group. A torturous trip in two years they went all the way up to Nebraska.
French were the next people who decided to explore and colonize- out of jealousy of the Spanish. The French traded native americans for the fur. Alliances were built for a time between French and Iroquois. Tensions grew. got attacked by the Iroquois but King Louis of France sent soldiers and won (1665). Then the settlement of Louisiana 1699. French in many ways were the first main settlers. Afraid to run into the Spanish. Dutch are interested in making claims as well. Around the same time all this shit was happening, Henry Hudson( English) was hired by Dutch to find the Northwest passage- the shorter way to China. Ended up settling New Amsterdam.
Despite the decline in the native population, the Spanish enslaved ten thousands of Indians to work in gold and silver mines, which supplies the empire’s wealth.
The Indians were forced to stay six months away at work; later the time extended to eight months and this was called a shift. The Indians were allowed to go home, a few days’ journey on foot. However, they couldn’t rest because the farming lands had gone to weeds during the time they were away. They continued to work to provide the needs of their family. A bare 10 percent survived to start the journey home. Once a week, they were fed the meat the size of walnut per individual. They were working in a cruel conditions.
French and dutch empires: claimed the entire Mississippi river valley for france, more humane policy towards the Indians, they brought disease and conflict over fur trade, Some of the French also mixed their communities with the natives and even bred with them. 3. What did Bartolome de las Casas say about the Spanish conquest?
Bartolome de las casas described the atrocities done to the Indians in his book Short Account of the Destruction of the Indies.
In 1542, Spain promulgated the New Laws, commanding that Indians no longer be enslaved.
In 1550, the government established the partimiento system, whereby the residents of Indian villages remained legally free and entitled to wages, but were still required to perform a fixed amount of labor each year. But, since the requirement that they work for the Spanish remained, it still allowed for many abuses by Spanish landlords and by priest.
Las Casas’s writing became the basis for the Black Legend, the image of Spain uniquely cruel empire. This provided a potent justification for other European powers to