America, the New World

America, the New World

The crusading spirit of the Renaissance in which Europeans were looking for new enterprises, new trade routes and the possibility of spreading Christianity among indigenous peoples. The countries of Europe were also looking to build Empires. Competition to acquire new lands in America, the New World was strongly fought by the following powerful European countries:

  1. England (which became Great Britain)
  2. Spain
  3. France
  4. Netherlands

Spain

The motivation for conquest and the approach of Spain to exploiting the riches of America, the New World were:

  1. To convert the indigenous population, the Native American Indians, to Christianity and the Roman Catholic religion
  2. Spain granted Spanish settlers encomiums, the right to demand taxes or labor (tribute) from the land. Spanish soldiers and priests imposed a harsh forced-labor system called Encomium, which resembled slavery – the Spanish exploited the Native American Indians
  3. Lands and villages were granted to the Spanish aristocracy who set up missions and contributed to the wealth of the Spanish Empire
  4. The Spanish wanted to maintain control over its colonies from Spain

The result of the Spanish approach to conquering America, the New World was major conflicts with the Indians including the Pueblo Revolt

France

The motivation for conquest and the approach of France to exploiting the riches of America, the New World were:

  1. France was interested in acquiring wealth through trade – especially the lucrative fur trade see Colonial Times
  2. The Native American Indians were valued by the French as trading partners. They formed alliances with the Indians
  3. France made little effort to settle the lands of America – their focus was in Canada, which they called New France
  4. Religion – The French, like Spain, wanted to convert the Native American Indians, to Christianity and the Roman Catholic religion

The result of the French approach to conquering America, the New World was major conflicts with the Indians including the French Indian War

Netherlands (Holland)

The motivation for conquest and the approach of the Netherlands to exploiting the riches of America, the New World were:

  1. The Netherlands, like the French, were interested in acquiring wealth through trade – especially the lucrative fur trade
  2. The Native American Indians were valued by the French as trading partners. They formed alliances with the Indians
  3. The Dutch encouraged the colonization of the New World. New Netherlands was established as the colonial province of the Republic of the Seven United Netherlands on the East Coast of North America

England, Great Britain

The motivation for conquest and the approach of England to exploiting the riches of America, the New World were:

  1. The British encouraged the colonization of the New World
  2. The English were not really interested in making alliances with the Native American Indians
  3. The British monarchy wanted to assert its authority in the thirteen colonies
  4. Great Britain appoints royal governors who oversee colonial affairs
  5. Parliament in Great Britain passes laws to regulate trade in North America

The ultimate lack of British imperial authority allowed its American colonists to construct the foundations of an independent country which led to the American Revolution (1775- 1783)  and the Declaration of Independence .

1754 Land Claims

The 1754 Map of North America shows the lands claimed by the different countries of Europe.

British claims in North America
French claims in North America
Spanish claims in North America
Russian claims in North America
Disputed Lands claims in America

Slavery

The European colonies established in America began running out of the labor which they needed to exploit the wealth of new territories.  Highly lucrative crops such as sugar, tobacco and cotton saw the expansion of the system of Slave plantations. Economic growth was dependent on the plantations becoming increasingly profitable. The labor supply in the colonies was first addressed by England with the employment of Indentured servants but this quickly moved on to looking towards the financial benefits of the transatlantic slave trade. Slavery was introduced into the conies, especially the Southern colonies that housed the plantations.

Military Conflicts

Political rivalries and military conflicts in Europe spilled across the Atlantic and into Colonial America. European laws were introduced to America and the profits made from the natural resources of America and trading opportunities contributed to wealth of England, France and Spain. The massive influx of European colonists led to increased tension and hostilities with the Native American Indians. The Indian Wars were fueled by the colonists and settlers looking for a better life in America the New World which sparked bloody wars and conflicts with Indian tribes for control of North American lands.

European Political Policies

The history of the colonization of America the New World was dictated by the political policies and beliefs of the countries of Europe. These political policies encompassed the concepts of Expansion, Capitalism, Imperialism, Colonialism and Mercantilism to the benefit of the Europeans and the total detriment of the Native American Indians.

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Justin McKinney
Advocate of American & Native heritage perseverance, seeking an independent and unbiased perspective of our ancestors whom built this nation. Civil War enthusiast.