Who Really Discovered America Essay

1225 Words Jun 21st, 2006 5 Pages
History Paper
Who discovered America?
By: Deanne Mastrocola

Why is it that American culture today attributes its geographic discovery to a man named Christopher Columbus? Could it be that he was the first European to claim this land as part of an Imperialistic expansion or is it merely out of convenience for the history books? It is known that the American continent was populated by 1000 AD which is long before settlements by Viking fisherman and even longer before the arrival of Columbus. In spite of this fact every October, we as a culture celebrate a holiday in honor of the man who is believed to be "the discoverer" of America. Like so many other aspects of enculturation past down through American families, generation after
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And lastly Viking technology aloud them to sail across harsh seas and reach the Americas before Christopher Columbus. Leif Erickson was the son of Eric the Red, Eric the Red was an explorer that became a leader of a colony in Greenland, the colony that Eric the Red owned was later handed over to his son Leif. Leif Erickson was born in Iceland in the year 980, after Leif was born he was moved to Greenland with his father Eric the Red and some of his brothers. Later in his life around 1000 A.D., about 500 years before Christopher's voyage, Leif set out to discover new lands. Trying to follow Bjarnes tracks Leif Erickson led his Vikings over the Atlantic Ocean to the new land. Leif Erickson had drifted by the wind way out of course and spotted a flat wooded coastline far westward, this was the new world. When Leif got to this new land he founded a place named Vinland, he called it that because of all the grape vines the Vikings found there. It was later named America, after an Italian named Amerigo Vespucci. After a few years the colony in Vinland was abandoned after hostile attack by the native people along with the fact that it got too cold. The settlers moved across the land until their population numbered 3,000. But in the 1400s the climate changed dramatically for the worse and the settlement had disappeared within a few decades. Leif Erickson had opened a new land rich with resources for the Vikings to explore, but for some reason, the Vikings only
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