Early Settlers and Native Americans Essay

The entire clash of two different cultures dates back all the way into the beginning of the early European arrival. All the different countries in Europe were all trying to find there own place in the new world by claiming the land for their country. The English were among one of the first Europeans to arrive in the new world; and establish the first permanent settlement called Jamestown. The English later extended their settlements along the Atlantic coast, colonizing Plymouth and Massachusetts Bay. It was not very long after the English arrived, came the French to the new world.

They too were searching to acquire land for themselves. These new settlements claimed by the French in the America’s where later known as “New France”. About the same time the French were colonizing the north, the Spanish colonial empire became the biggest in the Americas. At its peak it included the largest Caribbean islands, all of Mexico and most of Central America, large sections of South America, Florida, and the southwestern quarter of what is now the United States. Every country that was established throughout the new world all in countered hardships and tough times adapting to the new world.

It was not until the Native Americans came into the picture; that the early settlers would start to discover their unique way of survival. The Europeans knew that they had to come to a new world and fight to survive in the wilderness, but not realize that they were going to be crossed by Native Americans that had already been living in those areas the Europeans were trying to settle inn. For each country it was different facing the Native Americans in their region; the French, Spanish, and English all had to learn about the Native background and establish some type of good relationship with one another.

The French were among one of the few countries that establish a good and healthy relationship with the Native Americans right away. The French settlers adjusted their life styles and behaviors to adapt to the Native way. They took a high interest in learning the background of an entirely different culture. The French had made some of the first contacts between the two different types of cultures, and even converted them to Catholicism by the thousands without challenging most of their social customs. French fur traders had to form partnerships with the Indians in order to function.

For them to have a successful partnership, they had to become a part of native society, living among the natives and at times even marrying Indian women. The French and the Indians learned to adjust to each other so that they could interact comfortably without challenging most of their social customs. The French took the time to learn and understand the Native American languages, habits and way of life. By making special contact with the natives it developed a long trust between the two cultures. The French had the best relationship with the natives in the new world compared to the Spanish and English.

Unlike the French, the English relation with the natives was not entirely the same. The English came to the new world with a much different attitude. They came and took what land and things they wanted. Native Americans did not like the English because of this and it often caused out breaks and wars between the two cultures. Native Americans would initially consider the settlers to be allies, and then as time passed, they would be engaged in wars with them in a struggle for control of the land. This process of friendship to enemies seemed to be the basic pattern in the majority of the colonies in the English settlement.

The English just did not only take the land away from the natives. When the settlers way of life was not working out for them they began to starve and become sick. A lot of the English were not surviving, so the English would go and take from the natives, which also lead to even more differences between the two cultures. Despite all the negative sides of the English they did bring positives to the table with the Native Americans. The natives were impressed by all the new technology that was brought by them which then they traded among each other.

These trades are the only thing that kept them in contact with one another. The Spanish on the other hand were the ones that maintained the important land and had to deal and make peace with natives. The Spanish came to the lower new world and face different natives and along the way became friends. The Spanish came to control all of the Florida parishes and all of Louisiana and the Mississippi River. All of the natives in these areas formed a treaty between theses two cultured groups. In Mississippi River Valley region shaped the means of production of these goods for the Spanish and also formed unique way of trade.

The trade routes up and down the Mississippi came to be successful by running such goods; as deer skins, liquors, tools, and foods to develop a well marketplace over many years. Like all good trade routes, came fights and wars between the different countries and the natives. The Mississippi River was a very important aspect to the natives because it was their main source or trade with the Spanish during these times. Natives were known as the “middle men” between all of the countries in the new world for trade. All throughout the new world the Native Americans were treated poorly, because they were different from the Europeans.

They were judged as savages with no social class and culture. Soon to come the Europeans were taking complete control over the new world. The Europeans worked on trying to power out and take strict control over the trade routes and main focus was to cut out those “middle men”. The clash between two complete different backgrounds made it hard for each country to keep up and get along with one another. The Europeans never looked at the way of life through native eyes. The two cultures found their ways together in the new world with honor, hate, wars and friendship.