Disease ravages the native americans european

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DISEASE RAVAGES THE NATIVEAMERICANSEuropean settlersbrought deadly diseases such asmeasles, mumps, chicken pox,smallpox, and typhus, which dev-astated Native Americans, who had not developed any naturalimmunity to these diseases. They died by the thousands.According to one estimate, nearlyone-third of Hispaniola’s estimated300,000 inhabitants died duringColumbus’s time there. By 1508,fewer than 100,000 survivors livedon the island. Sixty years later,only two villages were left. Theseillnesses would soon spread to therest of the Americas. More surelythan any army, disease conqueredregion after region. 28CHAPTER1In this series of drawings from an Aztec codex, or book (c. 1575), amedicine man takes care of an Aztec with smallpox, a deadly diseasebrought to the Americas by Europeans. MAIN IDEAMAIN IDEABSummarizingWhere didEuropeans firstexperiment withthe plantationsystem?MAIN IDEAMAIN IDEACAnalyzingEffectsHow did thearrival of Europeansettlers affectNative Americansocieties?B. AnswerThey experi-mented with theplantation sys-tem in Lebanonduring theCrusades andon islands offthe coast ofAfrica duringthe 1400s.C. AnswerEuropean settlers broughtdiseases thatdevastatedNativeAmerican societies.p0026-31aspe-0101s5 10/16/02 3:47 PM Page 28
DThree Worlds Meet29The Slave Trade BeginsWith disease reducing the native work force, European settlers turned to Africa forslaves. In the coming years, European slave ships would haul hundreds of thou-sands of Africans across the Atlantic to toil in the Americas.A NEW SLAVE LABOR FORCEThe enslavement of Native Americans was a con-troversial issue among the Spaniards. Unfortunately, the Spanish saw the use ofAfricans as a possible solution to the colonies’ labor shortage. Advised Las Casas,“The labor of one . . . [African] . . . [is] more valuable than that of four Indians;every effort should be made to bring many . . . [Africans] from Guinea.”As more natives died of disease, the demand for Africans grew. The price ofenslaved Africans rose, and more Europeans joined the slave trade. African slaverywas becoming an essential part of the European-American economic system.AFRICAN LOSSESThe Atlantic slave trade would devastate many African soci-eties, which lost many of their fittest members. Before the slave trade ended inthe 1800s, it would drain Africa of at least 12 million people.The Impact on Europeans Columbus’s voyages had profound effects on Europe as well. Merchants and mon-archs saw an opportunity to increase their wealth and influence. Ordinary peoplesaw a chance to live in a new world, relatively free of social and economic con-straints. Within a century, thousands of Europeans began crossing the Atlantic inwhat became one of the biggest voluntary migrations in history.THE COLUMBIAN EXCHANGEThe voyages of Columbus and others led to theintroduction of new plants and animals to Europe, Africa, and the Americas. Shipstook plants and animals from the Americas back to Europe and to Africa andbrought items from the Eastern Hemisphere to the Western Hemisphere. Thisglobal transfer of living things, called the Columbian Exchange,began with

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