Hunter Waite - Early America




Lief Ericson led an expedition to North America in 1001. They left no permanent settlements because they were attacked by Inuits. The Inuits later defeated the Vikings. This is why we don't see much evidence of them in the New World.

Christopher Columbus


Christopher Columbus set out to find a trade route to Asia in 1492 under the Spanish flag. While searching, he accidentally discovered the Carribean. Native Americans are referred to Indians because Columbus thought he was in the Indies.

Treaty of Tordesailles


Pope Alexander VI created the treaty to cease disputes between Spain and Portugal. Portugal got all the land to the right of the imaginary line the pope drew. Spain got the left. This left Portugal with only the tip of current day Brazil and some islands. This caused Portugal's power to slowly be taken by Spain.

Amerigo Vespucci


He sailed to find an Asian water route after Columbus. When he got back to Europe, he told people he discovered a new land, so they named the New World after Vespucci.

Vasco Balboa


Balboa is a Spanish conquistador who crossed the Isthmus of Panama to the Pacific Ocean in 1513.

Hernan Cortes


He's a Spanish conquistador who is most known for leading to the fall of the Aztec Empire in 1519.

Ferdinand Magellan


He's a Portuguese explorer who became the first person to ever circumnavigate the earth,

Giovanni Verrazzano


He set ou to find a passage to China but was unsuccessful. He was the first person to definitively say they weren't in Asia.

Francisco Pizarro


He's a Spanish conquistador who led a conquest that led to the downfall of the Incan Empire.

Jacques Cartier


Followed in Verrazzano's footsteps and led an expedition to try and find a Northwest Passage, beginning in 1534

Hernando de Soto


He's a Spanish conquistador who explored deep into the U.S. and is the first documented European to cross the Mississippi.

Francisco Coronado


He's a Spanish conquistador who explored Kansas, southwestern states, and Mexico. He also founded an area in current day New Mexico and Arizona for Spain.

Jacques Cartier


He gave up on his search for the Northwest Passage in 1542.

Sir Humphrey Gilbert


He traveled to North America to find gold and a Northwest passage for England. He failed at finding both,



Walter Raleigh went to North America and founded a colony in current day North Carolina. The colony was discovered to be abandoned in 1590. No trace of leaving was left except "Croatoan" carved in a tree.

Spanish Armada


Britain was worried about Spain's rule over the sea and New World so England had Sea Dogs attack Spanish boats. Spain didn't like this so they took their whole armada to an English harbor. Spain was expected to crush England, but against all odds, England won. They had fast boats compared to Spain's giant boats. Luckily for the English, as Spain was regathering, a storm came and destroyed the rest of the boats from the first attack. This defeat led to England becoming a much bigger power of the sea and opening trade for other countries.



Walter Raleigh founded Jamestown for Britain after the failed Roanoke colony. Jamestown was founded in a very bad spot due to natives forcing them into the spot. Many consider Jamestown a failure, they discovered some important things. They discovered that tobacco is very profitable and gave the story of Pocohantus, which was later turned into a Disney movie.

Quebec City


Samuel de Champlain founded Quebec City for France in 1608. He, unlike others, befriended the natives and due to this, he wasn't constantly attacked by natives.

New Amsterdam


Dutch explorer, Henry Hudson set up a trading post on Manhattan Island and named it New Amsterdam. Later on, it was taken over and renamed New York.



In 1682, French explorer, Robert de La Salle followed the Mississippi River down to the Gulf of Mexico. He then chose a spot close by and claimed it for France. It's called Louisiana because, La Salle named it after King Louis.