Unit 1Lesson 3 - The Columbian ExchangeLesson Objective: In this lesson, the student will review the reciprocal impact resulting from early European contact with indigenous peoples.The text of this lesson was reprinted with permission from the Constitutional Rights Foundation. "The Columbian Exchange". Bill of Rights in Action Summer 2009: 6-10. In 1492, Columbus brought the Eastern and Western Hemispheres back together. The resulting swap of Old and New World germs, animals, plants, peoples, and cultures has been called the “Columbian Exchange.”Humans from Asia probably first entered the Western Hemisphere between 20,000 and 30,000 years ago. They could have traveled by foot across a land bridge, by small boats along the bridge coastline, or by both methods.About 10,000 years ago, the sea level rose, submerging the land connection between the two hemispheres. The two hemispheres took separate biological and cultural paths.Christopher Columbus, an Italian sailing for King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella of Spain, landed his three ships on an island in the Caribbean in 1492. Columbus explored several nearby islands, including a large one the Spanish called Hispaniola, shared today by Haiti and the Dominican Republic.On Hispaniola, Columbus found the Taino, a people who grew crops he had never seen before, such as sweet potatoes, manioc, peanuts, and tobacco. The Spanish and Taino traded and enjoyed friendly relations. Columbus noted the Taino possessed small objects made of gold, which they mined on the island.Columbus established a settlement on Hispaniola, Villa de la Navidad, the first European outpost in America. He left about 40 of his men there and headed back to Spain with astounding news.Aboard ship, Columbus wrote a report of his discoveries: “I discovered a great many islands inhabited by people without number, and of them all I have taken possession on behalf of Their Highnesses.” He described strange trees, fruits, birds, and “beautiful thick soil.”Columbus described the Taino people as “very good looking” but “unbelievably fearful.” They had no iron or steel and only bows and arrows for weapons. “They still think I come from heaven,” he wrote with amazement. Columbus declared at the end of his report that in the future he could bring the king and queen gold, spices, cotton, and slaves.