Canada What Became America
Source: The Library of Congress Country Studies
By 1492 people had lived in the Western Hemisphere for tens of thousands of years. For much of this time it is believed that they experienced virtually no recorded, sustaied contact with other parts of the world -- Europe, Africa, or Asia.
Millions of people lived in an area some five times the size of Europe. In strikingly diverse habitats and climates they developed possibly the most varied and productive agriculture in the world. Their lifestyles and belief systems differed widely and they spoke hundreds of distinct languages.
Throughout the hemisphere, states and centers of high civilization had risen and fallen. The dynamic Mexica (Aztec) and Inca empires were still expanding at this time and internal migration and warfare were common. The peoples did not see themselves as part of an entity. Only later would this area be given a unifying name - America - and the people labeled "Indians" by Europe.
NOTE: The information regarding Canada on this page is re-published from The Library of Congress Country Studies. No claims are made regarding the accuracy of Canada What Became America information contained here. All suggestions for corrections of any errors about Canada What Became America should be addressed to the Library of Congress.