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The Discovery of the American Nation and the Origin of the
American Peoples was a result of some consequential
activities of man in Europe. The scientific revolution had broken
out in Europe, and man was desperately curious to seek
knowledge beyond its immediate environment. With the spread of
this revolution, came the need for the acquisition of territories by
European powers hence Europe developed a two-pronged
mentality approach which was geared towards ‘exploration and
conquest’. As to this regards, most ships that sailed for distant
lands had not just military comrades but also scientists, keen to
make scientific discoveries. Charles Darwin who propounded the
theory of evolution was a beneficiary of these expeditions by
European powers.

The Discovery of the American Nation and the Origin of the American Peoples

Charles Darwin

Many expeditions of these nature were undertaken but that which
led to the discovery of the ‘new world’, was the expedition of
Christopher Columbus in 1492.

The Discovery of the American Nation and the Origin of the American Peoples

Christopher Columbus

Columbus appealed before the Spanish monarch of King Ferdinand and Isabella to grant him the
necessary support to seek a new route to East Asia. Columbus
thus set sail and on the 12th of October 14th and at about 2 am,
Columbus expedition collided with an unknown continent. But the
thought of him having discovered a new continent was
inconceivable for him. And for thousands of years before him
many great scholars and thinkers even the infallible scriptures
had known only Europe, Africa, and Asia. Columbus being a
medieval man never thought what he saw as a new discovery
rather he felt it was an extension of Asia. It is pertinent to know at
this point, that in reality, the discovery of this new world was not
by Columbus himself. There had been explorers who had sailed
across the Atlantic thousands of years earlier the Norse men in
particular from Norway had crossed this region but because their
expeditions had different dimensions and purpose, it was of little
significance to them. Aside from these Norse men, there had been other
explorers from Europe but they bore no implication to what
they saw.
The first modern man who had an extensive thought to what he
had discovered was an Italian sailor named Amerigo Vespucci.

The Discovery of the American Nation and the Origin of the American Peoples

Amerigo Vespucci

He took part in several expeditions to this region in the years 1499-
1504. Two texts describing the expeditions were published in
Europe and were attributed to Vespucci, disclaiming Columbus’
claim that what he discovered was not an extension of Asia, but
rather a newly found continent unknown to Europeans. Thus in
1507, a respected mapmaker named Martin Waldseemuller
published an updated world map, showing where Europe’s west
wardships first landed as a separate continent. Waldseemuller
having been erroneously convinced by Vespucci’s text named the
continent in his honor-America. These events showed how the
name America came into being.
The period of Columbus’ discovery of America, which was largely
unknown to Europe, had witnessed millions of Indians occupying
what is today America. These Native Americans /Paleo Indians had
crossed a land bridge that existed between Asia and Alaska
before the period of the Ice Age. The exact period of migration is
still being debated, but the evidence gotten so far indicates that it
began 12 thousand years ago while some records states it dates
back to 30-40 thousand years. These Indians settled in favorable
conditions and established distinct cultures and civilizations.
Some of these cultures include Pueblos, Mississippians, Aztecs,
Mayans, Incas, Toltecs, Chibchas and many more.

The Discovery of the American Nation and the Origin of the American Peoples

The European discovery under the auspices of King Ferdinand and Isabella of
Spain led to the Spanish invasion and conquest of most parts of
America thus subduing the Native Americans with their superior
firepower and technology.

The Discovery of the American Nation and the Origin of the American Peoples

King Ferdinand & Queen Isabella

Spain colonized these areas but Spanish domination was soon to be washed off, due to the
outbreak of the Protestant Reformation in Europe which spread so
much like a wildfire. Spain’s final collapse of authority came in
the Armada defeat in which Protestant England defeated Catholic
Spain to pave the way for England’s rise and domination in the
Americas.
England’s effort to colonize America began with sir Humphreal
Gilbert and his half-brother Sir Walter Raleigh. Queen Elizabeth
granted them a royal charter to establish a colony in America.
This first attempt was largely unsuccessful as Sir Gilbert died
leaving only sir Raleigh who approached the queen to renew the
charter and thus moved to settle at Roanoke Island which he
named Virginia in honor of the childless queen Elizabeth ‘’the
virgin queen’’. This settlement was to later vanish in mysterious
circumstances and was thus termed the ‘lost colony’.
The next wave of English Migration could simply be categorized
as the ‘push-pull’ effect. The push effect were the deteriorating
circumstances in England which made life unfavorable to the
populace while the pull factors were the attractive conditions in
the new continent that endeared the English population.
Amongst these push factors were the chronic unemployment,
the scarcity of land and resources, pestilence diseases and unrest
while the pull factors consisted of the availability of land and
resources in America. But in all, those who left were in search for
better lives for themselves and in some cases were prisoners who
were offered a chance to go to America in lieu of a prison sentence
and some as indentured servants.
With this, came the granting of charters to companies to set up
colonies in America and send back in taxes and dues back to the
crown in England. These charters led to the establishment of
colonies like Massachusetts Bay, Connecticut Rhode Island, New
Hampshire, Maryland, New York Delaware, Pennsylvania Carolina
Georgia, and many more. These settlements differed in religious
views and ideology and in some instances conflicts in some
colonies led to the creation of entirely new colonies. As stated
earlier, these colonies were subjected to the British monarch and
this was to pave way for the inevitable American Revolution in
1775
British desire to tighten dominion over the American colonies
became more fervent as the years passed by but the colonists
were beginning to become more independent minded. Hence
conflicting interests ensued between the mother country and her
colonies thus culminating into the American Revolution, which led
to the severance of the relationship between England and her
colonies but this was not a peaceful end of ties, as wars were
fought from 1775 ending in 1783 with the Paris treaty which
conferred independence on a new nation, rejecting every form of
British hegemony from flag to language culture and system of
government.
The new nation thus modeled itself around the ideas of
republicanism and became the purveyor of modern democracy
around the globe.
References
US History 1: United States History 1607-1865 Northern Virginia
community college Extended learning institute Third edition by
Associate professor Henry J sage
A people and a Nation. Ninth edition By Norton Sheriff, Blight
Chudacoff, Logevall Bailey.
America, A Narrative History by George Brown Tindall and David
Emory Shipping
A Brief History of Human kind Sapiens by Yuval Noah Harari

 

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