APUSH period 1: 1491-1607

maize cultivation

Transformed societies, less emphasis on hunting and gathering, led to an increase in population. Helped hunting and gathering nomads settle down and create settled agricultural villages

hunter-gatherer economy

In places where Maize had not reached North America yet, people often used the hunter-gatherer economy which is one where the women of the society would collect natural growing food such as berries and fruits while the men went to hunt game. These economi

Western Hemisphere

Land West of the Prime Meridian. Known in this context as the "Old World

plantation-based agriculture

With the Portugese discovery of slave trafficking in West Africa their thirst for slaves became greater. Slaves were used to farm large-scale commercial agriculture known as plantations


Economic system characterized by private property, generally free trade, and open and accessible markets. European colonization of the Americas, and in particular, the discovery of vast bullion deposits, helped bring about Europe's transition to capitalis

Columbian Exchange

Exchange of goods, ideas, diseases, and people between the Americas, Africa, and Europe. Each region was significantly impacted as a result of trade and contact.

cultural autonomy (Examples of Africans seeking to preserve cultural autonomy)

Freedom to express ones own culture and lifestyle without oppression. Many Africans oppressed and couldn't celebrate their culture. Examples: Autonomy means independent or to have some form of self-government. Africans ran away and formed maroon communiti

Great Basin

Bounded by the Rockies on the east and the Sierra and Cascade ranges on the west. Located in the central/western portion of the US; a lack of natural resources led Natives to live a nomadic lifestyle in the region.

agricultural economy

The cultivation and trading of crops. This economy gave maize a huge significance in the Americas in the 1500s

Spanish exploration and role of traders

Spain became the leading super-power of exploration and conquest in the 1500's. Spain discovered much of North and South America. Claimed most of the land in the Americas from the Treaty of Tordesillas. Traders settled heavily in South America, reached We

encomienda system

Spanish government's policy to "commend," or give, Indians to certain colonists in return for the promise to Christianize them. Part of a broader Spanish effort to subdue Indian tribes in the West Indies and on the North American mainland

empire building

The pinnacle and most extreme level of the pyramid of bureaucracy. It occurs when one group attempts to regain or enhance its self-sufficiency by encroachment or by expanding its span of control even when that is not in the best interest of the organizati

white superiority

When the Spanish were colonizing the Americas they had the power to subdue and patronize the Natives. They made themselves superior also because of the belief that they were civil and the natives were savages

European goods that transformed Native life

Horses - improved hunting and warfare for Natives (especially in the Great Plains and Basin), weapons and alcohol helped increase the destructiveness of warfare

Great Plains

Midwest United States. The Sioux tribe was originally from here. A lack of natural resources led Natives to live a nomadic lifestyle in the region.

permanent villages

Due to the cultivation of maize in the Americas hunter-gatherer societies were able to move from a nomadic lifestyle to a more stable lifestyle. People were able to settle down in one spot and create communities because of this surplus of food

Portuguesse exploration and role of traders

First country to investigate Africa's Sub-Saharan land. Also first country to round the southern tip of Africa and find a trade route to the Indies.

slave labor

Slaves were taken from West Africa and deported to the New World and Europe. Slaves worked on large plantations for commercial crop use. Many slaves were deported from Africa because this source of labor was very cheap


The political system where slaves worked the land for their superiors in exchange for their protection and food. The Europeans made slaves work their plantations and they gave them just enough food and water to survive

political autonomy

Freedom to set up government on a communities own terms

American goods that transformed European life

Maize, potatoes, and other crops - helped increase European population and the shift from feudalism to capitalism

European subjugation of Africans & Natives

White racial superiority, bible, view of groups as "savages