With dim prospects and a thirst for the unknown, European explorers set out to discover the New World, undoubtedly one of the most important events in human history. Building bridges between the two continents, these early voyages led to the establishment of permanent European settlements on American soil. In this article, we will retrace the footsteps of the first explorers and explore the historical sites where the new American society was born.
Christopher Columbus and the first short-term settlement: Santa Maria and San Salvador
In 1492, Christopher Columbus, a Spanish navigator, traveled west, hoping to reach India, but instead discovered America. His three ships, the Santa Maria, Pinta, and Niña, made the remarkable Atlantic crossing. Their first landing place on the new land was the island of San Salvador, now in the Bahamas. This is the first short-lived European settlement on American soil and marks the beginning of cultural interaction between the old and new worlds.
Colonial Heritage: San Augustine, Florida
San Augustine, Florida is considered the oldest continuous European settlement on U.S. territory. Founded by the Spanish in 1565, this city served as an important trading and military post during colonial America. In San Augustine, you can see numerous architectural monuments and forts that bear witness to the region’s long history.
The first settlements on Plymouth Rock, Massachusetts
In 1620, a group of Puritans from England seeking religious freedom traveled on the Mayflower ship and established a settlement on Plymouth Rock, Massachusetts. This settlement, named Plymouth, became the first permanent European settlement in the New England territory. Travel to these historic lands and learn about the amazing interactions between pioneers and local Native American tribes.
Jamestown and the origins of colonial America
In 1607, the first permanent English settlement was established in Jamestown, Virginia. This place was the starting point for the establishment of Anglo-American colonization and trade links with Europe. Travel to Jamestown and see reconstructions of the original structures and artifacts that will help you understand the hardships and challenges faced by the early colonists.
The discovery of the New World brought huge changes to world history, and these historic sites play a role as key milestones in this amazing journey. By visiting them, we revive the memory of the origins of American civilization and marvel at the courage and perseverance of the early explorers who crossed oceans to discover new lands.