The First Americans:
1492 – 70 million Native Americans lived in N. and S. America
- Crossed the Siberian land bridge 40,000-14,000 years ago
- Mexican, Mayan, Algonquian, Iroquois
- Mayan: build pyramids, temples
- Mexican/Aztecs: built Teotihuacán
- Mounds were used for burial and as temples.
- No private ownership. Women farmed, men cleared land, hunted, and protected.
Shamans – religious leaders
Sachems – heads of kinship, assigned fields for planting, decided where to hunt, managed
trade/diplomacy, judged whether to go to war.
- Believed in private ownership, men “dominated society”
Feme covert – “covered woman”, could not own or manage property, make a contract,
write a will, have custody of children, own a buisiness, or sue in court without her
Feme sole – unmarried woman, not subject to the restrictions of a married woman.
European imports: black pepper, cinnamon, cloves, ginger, other spices, silk, cotton
cloth, perfumes, rubber, ivory, slaves, and precious gems.
European exports: silver, gold, woolen cloth, furs, leather, fruit, wheat, sugar.
Dhows – boats with triangular sails
1420 – Prince Henry of Portugal sends out explorers to (1) increase territory, (2) benefit
economically, (3) to reach Asia, and (4) to spread Christianity and combat Islam.