Though the United States of America – the USA, the US of A, the US, or just America – is a relatively young nation, it is undeniable that its roots, anthropological origins, and cultural heritage are ancient, extending back tens of thousands of years into history.
As for its “native” people’s origins, the most widely-accepted migration theory suggests that some 30,000 years ago, humans of a northern-Asian origin crossed over a massive ice-land bridge that covered the Bearing strait connecting present day Russia and Alaska, heading east and ultimately south into what has come to be known in only recent centuries as the Americas.
Over many mellenia, it is popularly theorized that these Asian-looking people had gradually spread out and migrated across the vast continents of what today make up the Americas.
As far south as Peru, and in the Amazonian jungles, these Mongloid looking humans ultimately became the founders of Inca Empire; in Central and Meso America, the Mayans; and in present-day USA one of hundreds of “Native American” tribes, be it the Navajo, Cherokee, Seminoles, Mahicans, Apache, etc et al.
And yet, there are a handful of other theories, and debates, that have emerged in recent decades implying other “original inhabitants” or perhaps “cohabitants” of the American continents, which at the very least, deserve more consideration if not scrutiny.
As for verifiable, contemporary history, it is widely accepted that the Norsemen or Vikings, originating from Norway, Denmark and Iceland in Northern Europe – had made it to Greenland and as far as Newfoundland, Canada, in modern day North America by as early as the 11th century, with some evidence suggesting they may have possibly even made it as far as present-day New England and Minnesota.
Other popular, as-of-yet-substantiated theories suggest that ancestors of the Chinese, Japanese and even Mormon and Jewish people had made successful conquests to what we know as the Americas, long before the un-refuted Italian-led Spanish and Portuguese fleets who had finally, formally staked European claims in the so-called “New World” in the late 15th, and early 16th centuries A.D.
While common history books credit the so-called “discovery” of America to the famous voyages of Italian Christopher Columbus in the final decade of the 15th century, the naming legacy would fall to another Italian explorer.
The naming of all three continents, the Americas, derives from the Latin version of the first name of another Italian explorer, Amerigo Vespucci, who following his expeditions at the turn of the 15th century on behalf of both Portugual and Spain, had formally established that these so-called “West Indies” discovered by Columbus, was no where near India, as initially thought, for it was a whole “New World”
The rest, as they say, is history.
The next few centuries in that part of the world were highlighted by the perpetual pursuance of riches, land, freedom, conquer, conquest, and all of the above; the 16th to 19th centuries was a rapid-transformation period for western civilization, characterized by trade, innovation, enlightenment, discovery, expansion and the so-called manifest destiny of the colonial age.
All the major and rising European powers began to flee their crowded and warring home continent in pursuit of something else in another world afar, going on to “set up shop” throughout the world, especially the “New World”, or as it would come to be finally known, the Americas.
The Spanish led the charge, staking vast claims spanning across South America, up throughout Central America, and on to the west and Southwest regions of North America, from the heart of Mexico and Texas, all up and along the Pacific Coast to what we know today as California.
The Portuguese also staked colonial claims in the Americas, but not nealry as aggressively as their neighbors, having, one of their only lasting legacies of the present day being the country of Brazil (who declared Independence on September 7, 1822).
The Dutch had been relatively inactive in the New World for the most part, as they were more actively occupied in colonial claims, trade and politics in places like South, Africa, India, and Indonesia in Southeast Asia. They did have a short episode alongside the English on the US’ east coast, establishing the colony of New Amsterdam (YEAR), which was ultimately ceded to the English, renamed to New York.
The French, meanwhile, established themselves in the eastern part of present-day Canada, as well as in the south part of present day US, founding everlasting colonies near Montreal (YEAR FOUNDED) and New Orleans (YEAR) – places that still uphold strong colonial French heritage.
Meanwhile, the English, had put most of their Colonial New World eggs into a relatively small area along the northeast part of what today is the US, in Virginia and New England, namely.
Fast forward past a whole lot of political power struggling, wars, treaties, and more wars – with and alongside the natives, between and among the English, French and Spanish…
French Indian War
…landing somewhere along the line in the late 18th century, to the beginning of the emancipation of a new republic of colonists who came to organize themselves on the mutual apparatus and strive towards self-governance, its founding fathers declaring independence from the English crown in 1776.
Revolutionary War, Statue of Liberty, French connection
War of 1812
westward expansion, trails, pioneering, homesteading, mountain men,
wild west, politics, industrialization.
Spanish American War
Republic of Texas
Republic of California
Womens Rights Movement
World War I
The Great Depression
Marijuana prohibition lobby
World War II
Covert Operations and CIA: Hungary, Albany, Greece, Iran, Iraq, Koreas, Egypt, Guatemala, Indonesia
Civil Rights Movement
Afghanistan, DEA, Golden Triangle, Narcotics, Opiats
Desert Storm, Kuwait and Iraq
Bio-engineering, Chemical supremacy
Age of Terror and Technology
Marijuana prohibition emancipation