History of the United States

APUSH study guide


Ice Age

33000 BC - 8000 BC

the great Ice Age led to the formation of an ice bridge between Siberia and Alaska, which led to the peopling of the Americas. This land bridge disappeared in around 8000BC


Columbus arrives


the Reinassance ended, so Columbus had money to go find a trade route to India, and found America instead(super successful failure)

Columbian Exchange


New World Contributions: gold, silver, corn, potatoes, pineapples, tomatoes, beans, vanilla, chocolate, and syphillis

Old World contributions: wheat, sugar, rice, coffee, horses, cows, pigs, smallpox, measles, plague, flu, typhus, scarlet fever

of the 54 million natives, 90% were killed by disease

Treaty of Tordesillas


secured Columbus's claims on the New World

Ferdinand Magellan


his ships circumnavigated the world, credited for proving the earth was round.(tip of S. America is named after him)

also, Vasco Nuniez Balboa = basically discovered the Pacific Ocean

Spanish Visitors

conquistadores/ missionaries

Juan Ponce de Leon

1513 - 1521

explored Florida(looking for gold, not the fabled fountain of youth), went on to Arizona, New Mexico, and even Kansas...he discovered the Grand Canyon and the colorado river

Hernan Cortez


Demanded gold and silver tributes from the Aztecs, which led to their downfall. Their leader = Moctezuma

Francisco Pizarro


he basically crushed the Incas

Hernando de Soto

1539 - 1542

Hernando de soto: looked for gold + crossed Mississippi river, brutally mistreated Indians

encomienda system: would give indians colonies if they would be Christianized - basically slavery

mestizo= half European half indian

American Indians

tribes, culture, treaties, wars

three sister farming


beans squash and corn all planted together

Main tribes/ civilizations


Incas: Peru, were brought down by Francisco Pizarro
Aztecs: Mexico, human sacrifices for Gods, capital at Tenochitlan, brought down by Cortez
Mayans: Central America
Pueblo: from Rio Grande, irrigation systems, very advanced multistory buildings
Mound builders: built large mounds in Ohio River Valley
Anasazi: desert people of the Southwest, built big pueblo of 600 interconnected buildings
Iriquois: created a military alliance, politically organized