Why Did The First European Settlers Come To America?
|Short & Quick Answer:
1. First Reason: The 16th & 17th Centuries Were The Age of European Colonisation. European Settlers Primarily Came To The Americas To Create New Colonies For Their Mother Countries. Even, Their Kings Or Governments Encouraged Them To Migrate To The New Landmass.
2. Second Reason: Europeans Were Crazy After Wealth. They Believed, The New World Would Be An Inventory of So Many Natural Resources. Especially Gold, Diamonds, Pearls, And Other Precious Metals.
3. Third Reason: Expansion of Religious Ideologies; Especially Christianity. Later, This Radical Religious Mentality Encouraged European Settlers To Kill Millions of Native People In The Americas.
4. Fourth Reason: It Was An Era of Rivalry And Military Conflicts Among European Powers. They Believed The New World Would Be A Great Place For Creating New Military Bases.
5. Fifth Reason: Not All Europeans Were Happy With The Ongoing System of Europe. Most of Them Who Permanently Migrated To The New Landmass Hoped For A Better Life With Peace And Prosperity.
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There are five reasons why did the first (or early) European settlers come to America.
If you don’t know, who the first settlers are then let me tell you that they are Spanish.
So now, let’s break the five reasons down below and see what actually they are:
1. Political Reason – Creating New Colonies For Their Mother Countries
First of all, great European powers like Great Britain, France, Spain, Germany, Portugal always focused on creating new colonies around the world.
These powers were always in competition to be the owner of more and more colonies.
They wanted to make their political influence spread globally, not just get contained in their own land segment.
On the other hand, those powers were like cutthroat rivals of each other. Hence they wanted to make themselves more powerful than their rivals.
Even powers like Great Britain granted various privileges to companies like East India, and Virginia Company to dominate poor and weak countries through trade.
This type of strategy later helped them to colonize those poor countries easily and expand their land areas.
When in 1492, Christopher Columbus discovered the new continents, European governments, and the kings started encouraging their people to migrate and live there.
They knew that without the migration of their own people, they can’t colonize the new lands easily.
So, politics was the first reason, why did those first European settlers come to America.
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2. Economic Reason – In Search of Tremendous Wealth
For the new European settlers, America was like a greedy world, where they expected to get and gain so much wealth. Especially they wondered about gold, silver, diamonds, pearls, and other precious metals.
In search of wealth, the first Spanish settlers went to the new world, then the British, Portuguese, and French one by one.
First Spanish settlers found so much Gold, Silver, Pearls, and other various precious metals.
They also found massive prosperity on the new world’s agricultural side.
Seeing the Spanish people’s success, people from other countries also started migrating here.
Especially, business-minded people brought workers to the new world as laborers.
For this purpose, they also started capturing its native people and importing Black slaves from the African continent.
Over time, the majority of those laborers started living here as it’s permanent residents and became Americans.
[Did You Know? Most White European Settlers Treated The New World’s Native People Like Animals. Europeans Executed Massacres On Them, Millions of Native People Lost Their Lives]
3. Religious Purpose – Expansion of Own Religious Ideologies
European settlers wanted to spread their own religious beliefs around the world.
Mainly, the expansion of Christianity was their primary religious motive.
Even, they succeeded in doing it in various countries.
Especially, in Africa, the impact was already quite intense.
In 1492, when they learned about the existence of the new world, authorities shifted their movements to send Christian missionaries there.
So, expanding religious beliefs was also a reason why did the first European settlers come to America.
[Did You Know? Currently, Only A Few Thousand Natives Follow Their Old Religious Ideologies. More Than 99 Percent of The Native People Nowadays Follow Christianity. Europeans Showed Abominable Brutality For Natives’ Religious Transformation]
4. Military Causes – Why Did The First European Settlers Come To America?
Most European countries were rivals of each other. They were cutthroat enemies.
For this reason, they had to involve in wars from time to time.
Major powers like Great Britain, France, Portugal, Spain were always conscious to create more and more military bases around the world.
Because the higher number of military bases helped them to get an extra advantage over their enemy during wartime.
After the discovery of the Americas, no European country wanted to leave this opportunity to its enemies.
Therefore, as much as possible, they started sending their people to those new continents and colonizing them.
5. With The Hope of A Better Life In The New World
It is also true that most Europeans migrated to these new continents so that they could have an advanced life.
As per history, we have found that most of these people lived a humiliating life in Europe due to the dominance of religion (Christian Catholic) and monarchy.
Without the rule of religion and the feudalist system, here they hoped that they would get a better life with more liberty, equality, and happiness.