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A Continent on the Move, 1400-1725

0Learning Objectives

After you read and analyze this chapter, you should be able to:

10. Describe some of the economic constraints that pushed European rulers to promote exploration and colonization in North America and understand the political and religious rivalries that influenced European choices regarding New World colonization.

20. Explain the similarities and differences that characterized the choices made by Spanish, French, and Dutch officials in starting their empires in North America and analyze how the choices made by colonists themselves placed constraints on administrative policies.

30. Analyze the constraints environmental changes and the arrival of Europeans placed on Indians as well as the opportunities that the Europeans brought with them and evaluate the social and political choices the Indians made in response to these changes.

40. List the constraints that most affected the lives of the settlers in New Mexico, Louisiana, and New Netherland and analyze how the choices made by settlers and American Indians helped them deal with these constraints.

0Chapter Outline0

I0. The New Europe and the Atlantic World

A0. Spanish Expansion in America

10. The papacy averted potential conflict between Spain and Portugal over which country had the right to explore and settle the Western Hemisphere.

a0) As a result of the line drawn by the pope and the Treaty of Tordesillas, most of the Western Hemisphere fell to Spain, with the exception of Brazil (to Portugal).

20. Spain’s policy for its possessions in the Western Hemisphere included Christianization of the American Indians, expansion of Spain’s holdings, trade, and the discovery of gold and silver.

a0) Columbus was unable to accomplish much in the way of advancing Spain’s policy.

b0) Hernando Cortés expanded Spain’s dominion with the conquest of the Aztecs in Mexico.

c0) Juan Ponce de Leon expanded Spanish control to Florida.

d0) Álvar Núñez Cabeza de Vaca, Hernando de Soto, and Francisco Vásquez de Coronado explored large sections of the south and south-central portions of the later United States.

30. Gold and silver became the main goal of Spain’s conquistadors and royal officials.

a0) Francisco Pizarro conquered the Inca Empire for its gold.

b0) The Spanish turned to slavery to mine the silver and gold that made Spain the richest nation in Europe.

B0. Dreams of an English Eden

10. Spain’s new wealth and the conflict between Catholics and Protestants led to conflict with other nations, especially England, beginning in the reign of Queen Elizabeth.

a0) She supported the rebellion of the Protestants of the Netherlands against Spain.

b0) She authorized attacks by privateers like Francis Drake on Spanish possessions and shipping.

20. Spain’s King Philip II supported plots by Catholics inside England to overthrow Elizabeth.

a0) Mary Queen of Scots plotted to seize the English throne, for which she was executed and which led to greater tension between the two countries.

30. Elizabeth embarked on a policy of establishing English colonies in the New World.

a0) In part, her intention was to deal with a shortage of farmland and to meet the needs of English merchants for greater opportunities.

b0) English expansion there was also another way to oppose Spain.

40. Sir Walter Raleigh established the colony of Roanoke off the coast of Virginia.

a0) It followed an unsuccessful attempt by Sir Humphrey Gilbert to establish a colony off the coast of Newfoundland.

b0) Sir Walter chose a more southern location because it would block the Spanish in Florida.

C0. The Decline of Spanish Power

10. Gold and silver from the Western Hemisphere led to wealth—but also to trouble.

a0) The influx of money caused severe inflation throughout Europe.

b0) Increasing prices created social unrest, which in turn contributed to greater interest in colonization in the Western Hemisphere.

20. Philip II decided to invade England.

a0) The Spanish monarch decided to wage war with England as part of the battle against Protestantism and to block English colonization in the New World.

b0) In 1588, Philip attempted to invade England with the Armada, but he met with disaster.

c0) Though Spanish power would remain great, the Armada disaster effectively brought an end to Spain’s near monopoly over New World colonization.

II0. European Empires in America

A0. The Troubled Spanish Colonial Empire

10. Spain’s New World empire was in decline during the eighteenth century.

a0) It was too large to govern efficiently, and its officials were often corrupt.

b0) Bureaucratic and church interference in the labor system and taxes were continual problems.

B0. The French Presence in America

10. Although France made a number of efforts to compete with Spain’s New World projects, Spanish power was sufficient to prevent any major successes.

20. Only after 1663 did the French crown begin to intervene, and New France became a royal colony in 1674.

30. Robert Cavelier, Sieur de La Salle, recognized the strategic and economic promise in Joliet and Marquette’s discovery of the Mississippi River.

a0) The acquisition of Louisiana was a major accomplishment for La Salle and for France.

C0. The Dutch Enterprise

10. By the 1630s, the Dutch dominated the African slave trade and had conquered a number of Caribbean islands.

20. Henry Hudson’s search for the Northwest Passage gave Holland its first serious claim to American territory.

30. New Netherland attracted a diverse population and offered patroonships to any company stockholder willing and able to bring 50 colonists at his own expense.

III0. Indians and the European Challenge

A0. The Indian Frontier in New Spain

10. Indian assistance had been crucial to Spain’s victories over the Aztecs and Incas.

20. The 1598 Oñate Expedition executed and enslaved Indians who resisted the Spanish incursion.

a0) Oñate’s excesses led to his removal, and some of his company founded Santa Fe in 1609.

b0) The 1680 Pueblo Revolt overthrew the Spanish, but they returned to Santa Fe in 1693.

B0. The Indian World in the Southeast

10. Since access to gold and easy enslavement of Indians was not possible here, the conquistadors moved on.

20. Although Spanish presence in the region was minor, the impact of Spanish diseases on the Indians was enormous.

30. The Creek Confederacy balanced the competing demands of European powers and took advantage of the competition between them.

C0. The Indian World in the Northeast

10. The Hurons and their allies aligned themselves with the French; the Iroquois League sided with the English.

20. Enthusiastic about trade with the Dutch, the Iroquois soon wiped out fur supplies in their own territory and began an even more serious push to acquire new lands.

a0) Non-Iroquois Indians resented the Dutch presence.

D0. The New Indian World of the Plains

10. The same forces of climate change, the pressure of shifting populations, and novel European goods created a new culture and economy among the Plains Indians.

a0) Before 1400, Plains Indians rarely strayed from riverways that form the Missouri River drainage.

b0) The Ice Age greatly increased the number of buffalo on the plains.

c0) Some Caddo Indian groups abandoned their agricultural villages in exchange for a mobile hunting lifestyle.

d0) The increase in buffalo also served as a magnet to draw new groups into the area.

e0) Introduced by the Spanish, horses became a mainstay of the southern plains buffalo hunting culture.

20. The continual demand for horses, accompanied by the pressure for hunting ranges created a new dynamic on the plains and set a new economy into motion.

IV0. Conquest and Accommodation in a Shared World

A0. New Spain’s Northern Frontiers

10. The most attractive economic enterprise was still ranching.

20. New Mexicans looked northward for trading opportunities, since they were largely removed from the imperial economy centered around Mexico City.

B0. Life in French Louisiana

10. Despite the territory’s strategic location, its fertile soils, and large populations of fur-bearing animals, few Frenchmen showed any interest in settlement.

a0) In spite of the Choctaw alliance, which guaranteed ample food supplies and made territorial acquisition possible, Louisiana remained unattractive to French farmers.

C0. The Dutch Settlements

10. As an alternative to patroonships, the West India Company offered to grant a tract of land to any free man who agreed to farm it.


Identify the following items and explain the significance of each. While you should include any relevant historical terms, using your own words to write these definitions will help you better remember these items for your next exam.

10. Bartolomé de Las Casas

20. Council of Valladolid

30. Treaty of Tordesillas

40. Hernando Cortés

50. decimation

60. conquistadors

70. Francisco Vásquez de Coronado

80. Álvar Núñez Cabeza de Vaca

90. Stuart kings

100. the Netherlands/Holland/Dutch

110. privateer

120. Elizabeth I

130. Sir Walter Raleigh

140. Roanoke Island

150. inflation

160. armada

170. cabildo secular

180. feudal

190. encomienda system

200. serfs

210. Saint Augustine

220. Samuel de Champlain

230. New France

240. Company of New France

250. coureurs du bois

260. Community of Habitants of New France

270. Cardinal Richelieu

280. Company of the West

290. Robert Cavelier, Sieur de La Salle

300. Louisiana

310. Henry Hudson

320. Northwest Passage

330. Dutch West India Company

340. patroonship

350. burghers

360. New Netherland

370. Don Juan de Oñate

380. Ácoma pueblo

390. Hopi Indians

400. Santa Fe

410. ascetic

420. katsina dolls

430. Pueblo Revolt

440. missionaries

450. Creek Confederacy

460. Fort Orange

470. Mohicans

480. buffalo

490. Caddoan

500. Lakotas/Dakotas

510. subsistence farming

520. Natchez Indians

530. Chickasaw Indians

540. Choctaw Indians

550. Creole

560. bosch loopers

570. Dutch Reform Church

580. “brown gold”

0Multiple-Choice Questions

Select the correct answer.

10. The papacy’s potential to play a major part in the colonization of the New World was demonstrated by

a0. Henry VIII’s break from Rome.

b0. the destruction of the Spanish Armada.

c0. the Treaty of Tordesillas.

d0. the excommunication of King Philip II by the pope.

20. The conquest of the Aztecs in Mexico demonstrated the importance of

a0. military help provided by the Portuguese to the Spanish.

b0. epidemic diseases in overwhelming Native American populations.

c0. very large armies of conquistadors.

d0. African slave labor in supporting Spanish armies.

30. Attempts at colonization by the English during the reign of Queen Elizabeth

a0. were a consequence of her anti-Spanish foreign policy.

b0. succeeded in Newfoundland.

c0. floundered and failed when the English sought to seize Mexico.

d0. were undermined by Sir Walter Raleigh.

40. Tension between the Catholic Church and settlers in Spanish America could be traced in part to

a0. a tendency among the settlers to revert to paganism.

b0. the fact that the church had to pay taxes but colonists did not.

c0. the church’s efforts to protect Native Americans from outright exploitation for their labor.

d0. the church’s monopoly of all government positions.

50. Despite the existence of many problems in the governance of Spain’s colonies, the Spanish Empire flourished because of

a0. the immense wealth it produced.

b0. its control of all lands along the Mississippi River.

c0. the Treaty of Tordesillas.

d0. None of these

60. France’s claim to the vast region of Louisiana was based on

a0. a grant of it by the papacy to the king of France.

b0. the French military victory over the Spanish at the Battle of Santa Fe.

c0. the discovery and traverse of the Mississippi River by French explorers.

d0. a French alliance with the English against the Netherlands.

70. French settlement in the New World remained small and limited in part because

a0. French colonists preferred fur trapping to agriculture.

b0. warfare on the frontier was a constant threat to life and limb.

c0. the French crown never showed any interest in its possessions in America.

d0. France’s possessions always remained small in size.

80. To cope with changing conditions, Native Americans like the Creeks

a0. chose to abandon their homelands and migrate westward.

b0. turned to alliances and diplomacy.

c0. took their lives in order to appease the gods.

d0. enacted laws proscribing any contact with Europeans.

90. To shore up their respective positions, French and Dutch competitors in the Northeast

a0. united in common against the Spanish.

b0. signed a great treaty in which they divided up the entire region.

c0. quickly transported thousands of new colonists to their respective regions.

d0. forged alliances with Indians who were in competition with each other.

100. The Little Ice Age caused many Plains Indians to

a0. shift to a more mobile way of life.

b0. abandon the region for the warmer, drier climate of the Southwest.

c0. quickly convert to Christianity since their own gods seemed to have failed them.

d0. turn to warfare against the French.

110. The Pueblo Revolt led to

a0. a decision by the Spanish to permanently abandon the New Mexico region.

b0. a mass uprising by Native Americans against Europeans throughout North America.

c0. the spread of a new economy based on horse transport.

d0. a new religion formulated by Indian shamans.

120. Bosch loopers most resembled the

a0. coureurs du bois.

b0. Plains Indians.

c0. encomenderos.

d0. patroons.

130. Spanish settlers in the New Mexico region concentrated economically on

a0. raising cactus for export to Mexico City as a food supply.

b0. ranching.

c0. mining gold and silver.

d0. buffalo herding.

140. Santa Fe and New Netherland were similar in that

a0. trade with Europe was the economic mainstay in both cases.

b0. French invaders periodically threatened them.

c0. each had a multicultural population.

d0. both had large populations of enslaved Indians.

150. Settlers in New Mexico and in Louisiana were alike in that both

a0. extensively married Native American women.

b0. shared the Protestant faith.

c0. depended on sheep ranching.

d0. had to cope with significant population growth as new settlers from Europe rushed to their colonies.

0Essay Questions

10. In their empire, the Spanish played havoc with the Native Americans with whom they came in contact. Do you agree?

DEVELOPING YOUR ANSWER: One element that you may wish to stress is the effect of diseases introduced by the Spanish to the Native American population. Native Americans who survived the epidemics that followed their first contact with the Spaniards then found themselves forced to work for them; some became the equivalent of serfs under the encomienda system, while others faced outright enslavement. Also, you should include discussion of the conditions that led Native Americans to rebel against the Spanish and the terrible consequences that often ensued.

You should also describe efforts by the church to intervene on behalf of Native Americans—and the way in which the conquistadors got around the church.

20. One of the overriding facts of life in the French and Dutch empires in North America was the small number of settlers their respective colonies attracted. Analyze the impact of the colonies’ inability to grow on their internal development.

DEVELOPING YOUR ANSWER: In the case of the French Empire, you should discuss the role that religion played in curtailing immigration, with the result that France’s possessions did not become culturally diverse. Furthermore, the absence of female French immigrants led to marriage with the Native American population and the rise of a Creole population, particularly in Louisiana. You might also describe the effects of an insufficient food supply (another result of too few settlers) on economic and diplomatic relations with such Native Americans as the Natchez and Choctaws. Finally, explain how the perennial shortage of labor led to reliance on slaves who were imported from Africa.

In the case of New Netherland, show how, in contrast to France’s possessions, a culturally diverse population developed as a result of efforts to attract more settlers to the Dutch colony. You might also discuss how, in turn, the population’s complexity hindered efforts to administer the colony efficiently.

30. Both climate and contact with Europeans altered and reshaped the cultures of the Plains Indians. Do you agree?

DEVELOPING YOUR ANSWER: Because the climate cooled, the Plains Indians shifted away from agriculture to reliance on buffalo hunting and a nomadic style of life. Moreover, the region’s population grew, as tribes from farther north found it necessary to migrate to the plains because of severe winters.

Coupled with these changes attributable to climatic conditions, contact with Europeans brought the horse to the plains. You should discuss not only the economic effects of this critically important change but also the increased level of warfare among Native Americans, as well as the conflicts with Spanish settlers that ensued. You might also note the exchange of enslaved Indians for horses between Plains Indians and Spanish settlers.

0Map Exercises

10. Analyze the information presented in Map 2.1. How did the geography of each region contribute to its respective Indian economies?

20. Using the information from this chapter, pick significant turning points in European exploration of the New World. Using a blank outline map, develop a “snapshot” of at least one of these important years. Think of what generalizations you could draw about the European power situation based on each of the maps you develop.

0Individual Choices

0Bartolomé de Las Casas

To answer the following questions, consult the Individual Choices section at the beginning of the chapter.

10. What was the central issue of the 1550 council ordered by Spanish church officials?

20. What historical evidence indicates that Las Casas was successful as a conquistador?

30. For what reasons might Las Casas have begun advocating Christian rights for conquered Indians? Why could each have played a role in this change?

40. How did Las Casas use history to support his views?

50. Identify the significance of the Leyes Nuevas.

60. What new position did Las Casas assume? Was he effective in this post? Why or why not?

70. Identify the significance of the Council of Valladolid and Juan Ginés de Sepúlveda.

80. Why was Las Casas’s official victory not a victory in fact?

0Individual Voices

0Examining a Primary Source: Bartolomé de Las Casas Argues for the American Indians

To answer the following questions, consult the Individual Voices section at the end of the chapter.

10. The introduction to this selection indicates that most witnesses were lacking what important characteristic?

20. What, exactly, is Las Casas asserting in this sentence (the first sentence)? How does this set up the rest of his argument?

30. What does the reference to writings by Saint Thomas tell us about Las Casas’s view of human nature? How does it refute Sepúlveda’s claims concerning Indians?

40. Judging from the brief excerpt from Las Casas’s argument, why do you suppose he won the debate? Why would the Catholic Church have chosen to endorse and publicize his views and not Sepúlveda’s?

RUBRIC: This exploration of the Spanish debate over the treatment of the Indians in their jurisdiction is a good starting point for further exploration of how Europeans viewed the inhabitants of North America. Using information from this and related chapters, identify significant Indian groups and explain how each of the major European nations dealt with them. As you complete this rubric, think about how important religion and religious beliefs were to the official and unofficial policies of each nation.





















0Answers to Multiple Choice Questions

1. c. The pope drew the treaty line that established where Spain and Portugal were to colonize. See page 34.

a. This had no effect on New World settlement. In fact, Henry’s concerns were primarily domestic. See page 36.

b. While Spain’s loss of the Armada had implications for colonization, the papacy was not directly connected. See pages 37-38.

d. Philip II of Spain was staunchly anti-Protestant; he was not excommunicated. See page 37.

2. b. See pages 34-35.

a. The Spanish relied on help from Indians in Mexico. See pages 34-35.

c. The conquerors numbered 600 Spanish soldiers. See pages 34-35.

d. See pages 34-35.

3. a. See pages 36-37.

b. The effort by Sir Humphrey Gilbert there ended because of adverse environmental conditions. See pages 38-39.

c. They did no such thing. See pages 36-37.

d. On the contrary, he established a colony on Roanoke Island. See page 38.

4. c. See pages 38-39.

a. See pages 38-39.

b. See pages 38-39.

d. For example, the secular government appointed the viceroys. See pages 38-39.

5. a. That wealth was in the form of gold, silver, and copper. See pages 38-39.

b. The reason was the great wealth they produced. See pages 38-39.

c. The treaty merely divided areas of colonization between Spain and Portugal. See page 34.

d. The correct answer is 5a.

6. c. The explorers were Louis Joliet, Jacques Marquette, and Robert Cavelier, Sieur de La Salle. See page 41.

a. The pope assigned most of the New World to Spain and the remainder to Portugal. France was not involved. See page 34.

b. The Spanish and French did not go to war in the New World. (Santa Fe was in New Mexico, a Spanish province. See page 45.

d. In any case, England supported the Netherlands. See page 37.

7. a. See pages 40-41.

b. In fact, the French intermarried with the Indians and entered into alliances with many, such as the Hurons. See pages 40-41.

c. Although the Crown at first showed little interest, its involvement after 1663 increased markedly. See pages 40-41 and 51-53.

d. They spread across Canada and down the Mississippi to the Gulf of Mexico, where they established Louisiana. See pages 40-41 and 51-53.

8. b. See page 46-47.

a. When they did abandon their homes, they left their cities to reside in villages. See page 46-47.

c. See page 46-47.

d. They not only traded with them but, in some cases, entered into alliances with them. See pages 46-47.

9. d. See page 46.

a. Not only did they not do this, but also their differences over religion (the French were Catholics, the Dutch Protestants) would have tended to preclude this.

b. They did no such thing.

c. The French failed to attract many settlers; and colonists in New Netherland as a rule migrated there on their own.

10. a. The connection was through the multiplication of the buffalo, a roving animal population. See pages 47-48.

b. On the contrary, new Indian groups moved in. See pages 47-48.

c. There is no evidence for this.

d. There is no evidence for this.

11. c. As a result of the revolt, thousands of Spanish horses escaped and ran free. The Plains Indians became dependent on them as a consequence. See pages 47-48.

a. After they defeated the revolt, Spanish settlers returned to New Mexico. See page 45.

b. Such never occurred.

d. In fact, the rebellion began as an attempt to retain their existing religion. See page 45.

12. a. Both lived in the woods and trapped fur-bearing animals. See pages 42 and 50.

b. These Indians depended on buffalo hunted on the open plains. The bosch loopers collected furs in the northeastern woods. See pages 47-48 and 50.

c. Encomenderos were Spaniards who worked their Indians on the land and in the mines. The bosch loopers were fur trappers in New Netherland. See pages 39 and 52.

d. While both resided in New Netherland, a patroon was a large landowner. The bosch loopers hunted furs. See pages 43 and 52.

13. b. See pages 43 and 49-50.

a. See13b. See pages 43 and 49-50.

c. The region did not have gold or silver. See pages 43 and 49-50.

d. The buffalo resided to the north on the Great Plains. See page 47.

14. c. See pages 40 and 42.

a. See pages 40 and 42.

b. Santa Fe was in the Spanish province of New Mexico, far from French bases of operation. See pages 40 and 42.

d. In the Santa Fe region, the encomienda system with its near enslavement of Indians did not arise. In New Netherland, the Dutch had little control over the Indians. See pages 40 and 42.

15. a. See pages 50-52.

b. Both were Catholic. See pages 50-52.

c. While true in New Mexico, this was not true in Louisiana. See pages 50-52.

d. Louisiana remained under populated; New Mexico did not have silver and gold to attract large-scale settlement. See pages 50-52.

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