Effects of the Spanish Conquest of the Americas / Colombian Exchange

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Effects of the Spanish Conquest of the Americas / Colombian Exchange by Mind Map: Effects of the Spanish Conquest of the Americas / Colombian Exchange

1. Introduced Animals & Plants/Crops

1.1. Immediate Effects

1.1.1. The introduced animals such as pigs, cows, and horses and new crops completely remade the food supply and created a new ecosystem. They were able to breed really quickly. For example, in 1593 Hernando de Soto brought 13 pigs to Florida. Three years later, there were 700 pigs. The amount of meat, abundant land for agriculture and grazing meant that the Europeans in the Americas rarely experienced famine.

1.2. Long Term Effects

1.2.1. These introduced species eventually changed the landscape the Americas once had. We can now no longer see the uniqueness of the land it once looked like before the Colombian Exchange. The plantation of crops where they don't belong has modified and hurt the environment.

1.2.2. The introduced species the Spanish brought, may have been the cause of the extinction for some animals and crops than the usual natural, process, of evolution. Animals such as the Martinique Parrot (1722), Great Auk (1844) and the Carribean Monk Seal (1952) are now no longer a part of our world today.

1.2.3. Large European animals changed the nature of work in the Americas. The primary transportation of the Incas was themselves, as llamas could only carry about 43 kg. Oxens with plows were able to cultivate more land and made transportation easier and efficient. This made some Native Americans to abandon their work in agriculture to instead have a wandering lifestyle.

1.2.4. These introduced animals remade the culture of the Americas. Such as the stereotypical horses and American Indians in outback movies.

1.3. Historical Explanation

1.3.1. When the Spaniards arrived in the Americas, they introduced livestock, new crops and other domestic animals from Europe to the Americas. The introduced animals and crops impacted the environment of the Americas negatively. It transformed the environment and killed many living beings in the Americas.

2. New Goods & Food for European Culture

2.1. Immediate Effects

2.1.1. When new goods and food were shipped to Europe, Europeans started eating more nutritious food and had a healthier diet. This changed their food diet, as the New World had more caloric food than Old World. Goods such as chocolate, tobacco, maize, beans, chilli and potatoes were transported to the Old World.

2.2. Long Term Effects

2.2.1. The spices and crops from the Americas is now a huge part of our life today. Pizza in Italy, potatoes in Ireland and spicy curries in India wouldn't be here today if it wasn't for the Colombian Exchange. The Irish depended on potatoes so much that there was a severe famine in the country after a disease killed potato crops in 1840.

2.2.2. All of the nutritious food triggered a population boom in Europe, doubling the world population between 1650 and 1850. Fewer people have starved since the Colombian Exchange and the quantity and quality of diet increased in its fertility.

2.2.3. Tobacco was one of these goods that came from the Americas. Cigarettes were crafted and were often used back then. Cigarettes are still used in our modern society, although it has been discovered to have many negative effects on the body.

2.3. Historical Explanation

2.3.1. After the arrival of the Spaniards, the Europeans started to have new healthier diets with all the nutritious food that came from the Americas. Crops such as potatoes and peanuts had more efficient farming. Foods such as tomatoes and chilli peppers were an abundant source of vitamins. In the Mediterranean, these foods enriched diets and improved the health of the population.

3. Increased Exploration & Migration

3.1. Immediate Effects

3.1.1. After many Europeans migrated to the Americas, they exchanged different cultural values and beliefs with the Native Americans. When the African slaves were sent to America, they did so too. Everyone became interconnected with each other with America being a central hub of different backgrounds.

3.2. Long Term Effects

3.2.1. New trade routes had been found for Europe since Christopher Columbus' accidental exploration of the Caribbean. The shipment of goods from America, impacted our modern society today and life would be very different if this did not occur.

3.2.2. This interconnection led to a 'world history' with everyone working together. This was before independent histories went around the globe. However, there was an exception for the countries that haven't been 'discovered' which are namely Australia and New Zealand.

3.2.3. This lead to the 'modern era' which included migration, globalisation, trade networks, a wider base of knowledge and challenges to belief systems, which is a part that makes up our world today.

3.3. Historical Explanation

3.3.1. After the Spanish successfully conquered the Americas, many people migrated to the Americas. Approximately 240,000 Spaniards moved to the Americas in the 16th century. Followed by another 500,000 in the following century. With the African slaves arriving in the Caribbean, this led to less diversity of the natives. There were more Spanish and African slaves than the natives who originally lived there.

4. Diseases

4.1. Immediate Effects

4.1.1. The Aztecs were killed in a short period of time since the arrival of the Spaniards. The diseases brought from Europe were unfamiliar to them, as they weren't exposed to this disease in the Americas. They had little contact with people outside of their area, so they possibly weren't even aware of the disease. The Aztecs weren't able to provide treatment and because of this, it resulted for many lives to end.

4.1.2. The diseases also impacted life in Europe. The Spaniards exchanged Smallpox, Measles, Influenza, Chicken Pox and Typhus to the Americas. But in return, the Spaniards may have possibly gotten Syphilis in exchange, when they sailed back to Europe. This showed up in history in around 1493 and impacted European kingdoms to have a difficulty in producing heir which was seen widely across history.

4.2. Long Term Effects

4.2.1. The disease spread through the whole population. By 1568, the population of Central Mexico had shrunk to around 2.6 million. This was just one-tenth of the population when Cortés had arrived. In the Inca Empire, the population had shrunk from 3.3 million to 1.3 million in only a span of 50 years.

4.2.2. Many people died including the Inca leader and son. This lead to an internal war for who would claim the title of the next leader. In the end, another son of the leader took the title but the empire was already weakened. The Aztec leader and his son had a similar story and died of smallpox. This caused some of the smaller Aztec states to rebel and some even fought for the Spaniards.

4.2.3. As people many died, there wasn't anyone to grow crops to those that were still living. So many died because of starvation or had severe malnutrition. This made the survivors more susceptible to disease and be easily infected.

4.3. Historical Explanation

4.3.1. When the Spaniards came to the Americas, the Aztecs had little immunity to the diseases brought along with them. The Europeans had already experienced a huge variety of different diseases and developed an immunity to Smallpox, Measles, Chicken POx, Typhus and Influenza. This was a very chaotic time for the Aztecs and Incas. Millions of people died from these diseases and the Spanish were able to strike in their vulnerable state.

5. Bibliography

5.1. Crash Course 2012, "The Columbian Exchange: Crash Course World History #23" (online), The Columbian Exchange: Crash Course World History #23, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HQPA5oNpfM4, 16 September 2017

5.2. Easton, Mark and Saldais, Maggy 2013, Oxford Big Ideas Australian Curriculum Geography | Humanities 8, Oxford University Press, South Melbourne

6. Link: The Spaniards sent African slaves to the Americas to deal with the demand of the goods and foods. They spread the diseases Malaria and Yellow Fever to the tropical regions in the Caribbean.

7. Link: Many Spaniards migrated to the Americas after colonisation had begun. This lead to less diversity in the gene pool, however it repopulated the New World after the disease devestation. There were more Spanish and African slaves than the natives who originally lived there. This lead to the 'modern era' we know today.

8. Link: Demand in Europe increased and Spaniards established a slave trade to meet these needs. People became more interconnected with each other and many Europeans migrated to the Americas for a new life. This lead to the 'modern era' we know today.

9. Link: Corn, which is a New World food, has been the main source of food for animals for centuries, including today. In 2005, a survey showed that 58% of the corn growth in America went to animals.