Chapter Introduction
Section 1: Exploration and
Section 2: The Atlantic Slave
Section 3: Colonial Latin America
Visual Summary
How are the Americas
linked to Africa?
The demand for enslaved Africans increased
dramatically after Europeans began to settle
in the Americas. The Cape Coast Castle in
Ghana is one of the forts where enslaved
Africans were held until ships arrived to take
them to the Americas. This fort could hold
about 1,500 slaves usually locked in dark,
crowded dungeons for many weeks. Today,
the Cape Coast Castle contains a museum
that allows people to learn about slavery. In
this chapter you will learn about the
exploration of new lands and its global
• Why might people want to visit the Cape
Coast Castle?
• Does slavery occur in any parts of the
world today?
Exploration and
In what ways did European
nations prosper through
exploration in the fifteenth
The Atlantic Slave
How did European
expansion and the slave
trade affect the people of
Colonial Latin America
How did Portugal and
Spain profit from their
colonies in Latin America?
The BIG Idea
Competition Among Countries Europeans began
exploring the world in the 1400s, and several
nations experienced economic heights through
worldwide trade.
Content Vocabulary
• conquistadors
• encomienda
• Columbian Exchange
Academic Vocabulary
• overseas
• percent
People and Places
• Hernán Cortés
• Ferdinand Magellan
• Portugal
• John Cabot
• Vasco da Gama
• Amerigo Vespucci
• Melaka
• Montezuma
• Christopher Columbus
• Francisco Pizarro
• Cuba
Motives and Means (cont.)
• Five European powers, led by Portugal and
Spain, engaged in an age of exploration. All
rose to new economic heights.
• Motives for European exploration include
“God, glory, and gold”
– Economic interests – Europeans wanted
to expand trade and locate spices and
precious metals.
European Voyages of Discovery
Motives and Means (cont.)
– Religious zeal – Explorers such as
Hernán Cortés were interested in sharing
the Catholic faith with native peoples.
– There was an increased desire for
grandeur, glory, and the spirit of adventure.
European Voyages of Discovery
A Race for Riches (cont.)
• Portugal took the lead in European
exploration under the leadership of Prince
Henry the Navigator.
• Portuguese ships traveled along the western
coast of Africa, finding gold and other goods.
• Vasco de Gama traveled around the Cape
of Good Hope, the southern tip of Africa, and
landed in India in 1498.
A Race for Riches (cont.)
• The Portuguese captured the important port
city of Melaka on the Malay Peninsula,
which enabled the Portuguese to control the
spice trade that had been dominated by Arab
• The Portuguese used seamanship, guns,
and treaties to control the spice trade.
However, they did not have the people,
wealth, or desire to expand their empire
in Asia.
A Race for Riches (cont.)
• Christopher Columbus was an explorer
who sailed for Spain. Columbus searched for
a western route to Asia and landed at Cuba
and Hispaniola in 1492.
• The Spanish explorer Ferdinand Magellan
sailed around the tip of South America and
into the Pacific Ocean. Magellan is credited
with being the first person to circumnavigate
the globe.
A Race for Riches (cont.)
• In 1494, Portugal and Spain signed the
Treaty of Tordesillas, separating control of
the newly discovered lands.
• John Cabot, a Venetian, explored the New
England coastline of the Americas for
• The writings of Amerigo Vespucci, a
Florentine mapmaker, led to the use of the
name “America” for the newly discovered
lands in the western hemisphere.
The Spanish Empire (cont.)
• The Spanish conquistadors established an
overseas empire in the Americas.
• In 1519 Hernán Cortés and his Spanish allies
were welcomed into Tenochtitlán by the Aztec
monarch Montezuma. The Spanish were
expelled from the city one year later.
• When the Spaniards left, smallpox devastated
the Aztec capital. The Spanish returned and
captured the city, and the Aztec Empire was
The Spanish Empire (cont.)
• In 1530 Francisco Pizarro led an expedition
into the Inca Empire. Like the Aztec, the
Incas were no match for Spanish disease,
guns, and horses.
• Pizarro established a new capital for the
Spanish colony at Lima.
• The Spanish used a system of colonial
administration called the encomienda
system— the right of landowners to use
Native Americans as laborers.
The Spanish Empire (cont.)
• Spanish landowners could use Native
Americans for labor in return for protection
and converting them to Christianity.
• Native American political and social
structures were torn apart and replaced by
European systems of religion, language, and
• The exchange of plants, animals, and
disease between Europe and the Americas
is known as the Columbian Exchange.
European Rivals (cont.)
• The Dutch formed the East India Company
to compete with the English and Portuguese
for the Indian Ocean trade.
• The Dutch also formed the West India
Company to compete with the Spanish and
Portuguese in the Americas.
• By the early seventeen century, the Dutch
established settlements in North America
such as New Netherland.
European Rivals (cont.)
• In the 1600s, the French colonized parts of
present-day Louisiana and regions of
• The English began to settle the eastern
seaboard of North America and islands in
the Caribbean Sea.
• In 1664, the English seized the harbor of
New Netherland from the Dutch and
renamed it New York.
The BIG Idea
Human Rights European expansion affected Africa
with the dramatic increase of the slave trade.
Content Vocabulary
• colony
• plantations
• mercantilism
• triangular trade
• balance of trade
• Middle Passage
• subsidies
Academic Vocabulary
• transportation
• primary
People and Places
• King Afonso
• Benin
Trade, Colonies, and Mercantilism (cont.)
• The nations of Europe created trading
empires and established colonies in the
Americas and in the East.
• Colonies were an integral part of
mercantilism, an economic theory based
on gold and a limited amount of wealth in
the world.
Trade, Colonies, and Mercantilism (cont.)
• Colonies provided raw materials and
markets for finished goods.
• To bring in more gold, nations tried to have a
favorable balance of trade and export more
goods than they imported.
• To encourage exports, governments granted
subsidies and improved transportation
Trade, Colonies, and Mercantilism (cont.)
• Slavery had existed since ancient times, and
African slaves served as domestic servants
in Southwest Asia.
• The demand for slaves changed dramatically
with the introduction of sugarcane. Labor
was needed to work the plantations where
sugarcane was grown.
Atlantic Slave Trade, 1500–1600s
Trade, Colonies, and Mercantilism (cont.)
• Slaves became an important commodity in
the triangular trade that connected Europe,
Africa, and the Americas.
• As many as 10 million African slaves may
have been brought to the Americas between
1500 and the late 1800s.
Atlantic Slave Trade, 1500–1600s
Trade, Colonies, and Mercantilism (cont.)
• One reason for the high number of exported
slaves was the high mortality rate, especially
during the Middle Passage, the journey
across the Atlantic Ocean.
• The slave trade devastated the population of
African communities near the coastal regions.
• Some African rulers, such as King Afonso,
protested but were ignored by
African and European slave
Atlantic Slave Trade, 1500–1600s
Effects of the Slave Trade (cont.)
• Effects of the slave trade in Africa:
– depopulated areas
– increased warfare
– loss of the strongest and youngest men
and women
Effects of the Slave Trade (cont.)
• Benin was transformed from a brilliant
society into a brutal, war-ravaged region
following the introduction of slavery.
• The use of enslaved Africans was widely
accepted until the Society of Friends began
to condemn it in the 1770s.
• The French abolished slavery in the 1790s;
the English abolished slavery in 1807; and
slavery continued in the United States until
the 1860s.
The BIG Idea
Competition Among Countries Portugal and Spain
reaped profits from the natural resources and products
of their Latin American colonies.
Content Vocabulary
• peninsulares
• mulattoes
• creoles
• mita
• mestizos
Academic Vocabulary
• labor
• draft
People and Places
• Brazil
• Juana Inés de la Cruz
Colonial Empires in Latin America (cont.)
• In the 1500s, Portugal controlled Brazil,
while Spain’s colonial possessions included
parts of North America, Central America, and
most of South America.
• The area of Central and South America
became known as Latin America, and a
unique social class system emerged.
Colonial Latin America to 1750
Colonial Empires in Latin America (cont.)
• Colonial Latin America Social Order:
– Peninsulares: Spanish and Portuguese
officials born in Europe; they held all
important government positions.
– Creoles: Descendants of Europeans who
were born in Latin America; they controlled
business and land.
– Mestizos: The offspring of European and
Native American intermarriage.
Colonial Empires in Latin America (cont.)
– Mulattoes: The offspring of Africans and
– Conquered Native Americans and
enslaved Africans.
Colonial Empires in Latin America (cont.)
• Europeans utilized the Native Americans as
labor. They used the encomienda system
and mita to sustain a viable labor force.
• Gold and silver from the colonies offered
immediate wealth to the Europeans.
Products, such as tobacco, sugar, and
animal hides were traded to Europe in return
for finished products.
Colonial Empires in Latin America (cont.)
• To control their colonial possessions in the
Americas, Portugal and Spain used
governor-generals to develop a bureaucracy
and carry out imperial policies.
• Catholic missionaries were also instrumental
in converting and maintaining order within
the colonial territories.
• The Catholic Church provided an outlet other
than marriage for women. Many nuns like
Juana Inés de la Cruz, urged convents to
educate women on subjects beyond religion.
Africa, India, and the Americas
Motivated by religious zeal, gold,
and glory, Europeans began to
explore distant lands.
The Portuguese sailed east around
Africa to India.
Spanish ships sailed west to the
Spanish conquistadors seized lands
ruled by the Aztec and Inca.
Diseases introduced by Spanish explorers killed much of
the Native American population.
By the late 1600s, the Dutch, French, and English entered
the rivalry for new lands and trade.
Asia, and the Americas
• Before the new exploration, the
primary market for enslaved
Africans had been Southwest Asia.
• The demand for plantation laborers
in the Americas greatly increased
slave trade.
• Enslaved Africans were part of the triangular trade
between Europe, Africa and Asia, and the Americas.
• In Africa, the slave trade led to increased warfare,
depopulation, and the deterioration of society.
• The Portuguese and Spanish
profited from their colonial
empires in Latin America.
• Peninsulares were the top
social class, followed by
creoles, mestizos and
mulattoes, and finally enslaved
Africans and Native Americans.
• Catholic missionaries spread across the Americas
to try to Christianize Native Americans.
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