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America's History in the Making

Mapping Initial Encounters

Sioux Dog Feast

Columbus’s arrival launched an era of initial encounters between Europeans, Native Americans, and Africans that continued for nearly 300 years. This unit examines how these contacts began the phenomenon now known as the Columbian Exchange, profoundly altering the way of life of peoples around the globe. Start Here

Themes

Jacques Cartier discovering and going up-stream the Saint Lawrence river in Canada in 1535

Early encounters between Native Americans, Europeans, and Africans expanded existing trade practices, uniting previously isolated regions and initiating the Columbian Exchange. More

Drawing of Captain Cooks's visit to the village of Waimea, Atooi [Kauai]

Initial encounters occurred over three centuries and a vast geographic region. More

Narbona Panel detail canyon de chelly

A wide variety of historical records illustrate how differing experiences and expectations shaped initial encounters. More

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