Discovery and Exploration 1492-1607
The New World[edit | edit source]
In 1564 the French Protestants (Huguenots) attempted to colonize North America, building a colony nearby the modern day Jacksonville, Florida. The Spanish had already staked claim in that locality and soon rid the area of the French The London Company sent out explorers in 1606. Prior to this the Basque, English and French fishing fleets were frequenting the coasts from Cape Cod to Newfoundland.
Timeline[edit | edit source]
- 1492: Christopher Columbus sails across the Atlantic Ocean and reaches an island in the Bahamas in the Caribbean Sea.
- 1498: John Cabot sailed the Eastern Shore near present day Worcester County.
- 1507: The name "America" is first used in a geography book referring to the New World with Amerigo Vespucci getting credit for the discovery of the continent.
- 1513: Juan Ponce de León explores the Florida coast.
- 1524: Giovanni da Verrazano explores the coast from Carolina north to Nova Scotia, enters New York harbor.
- 1540: Francisco Vásquez de Coronado explores the Southwest.
- 1541: Hernando de Soto of Spain discovers the Mississippi River.
- 1585: First English settlement in American established at Roanoke Island, North Carolina.
- 1565: St. Augustine, Florida, the first town established by Europeans in America is founded by the Spanish. Later burned by the English in 1586. 
- 1588: In Europe, the defeat of the Spanish Armada by the English results in Great Britain replacing Spain as the dominant world power and leads to a gradual decline of Spanish influence in the New World and the widening of English imperial interests.
- 1600: Many nations turn their interests towards this developing country.
- 1606: King James I granted a charter to the Virginia Company to establish a colony in America.
Websites[edit | edit source]
- American Origins 1600 to 1900 presentation by the Smithsonian.
- Basque Americans site gives an overview of the Basque people's origins and settlement patterns.
- Christopher Columbus main-page lists the crew, log, navigation, and much more.
- Experiences of the French Huguenots in America - The King's Refugees is a document written in about 1908. It contains information about French Huguenots and their flight to America. It also features several of the earliest French Huguenot immigrants and their descendants.
- The London Company was set up with the purpose of establishing colonial settlements in North America.
Sources[edit | edit source]
- Summers, Lewis Preston Summer. History of Southwest Virginia 1746-1786, Washington County 1777-1870 Edition: illustrated. Published by The Overmountain Press, 1989. ISBN 0932807437, 9780932807434. 921 pages; page 12. Full text available at Google Books
- George Rainsford Fairbanks, Andrew Ellicott Douglass, Solomon Alofsen, The history and antiquities of the city of St. Augustine, Florida, founded A.D. 1565. Museum of the American Indian, Heye Foundation, Huntington Free Library. Published by C.B. Norton, 1858. Original from Oxford University. Digitized Dec 6, 2006. 200 pages. Full text can be found at Google Books