1492 Columbus discovers America

1512 - Poncé de Leon explores both sides of the Florida Peninsula. 
1513 - Vasco de Nuñez de Balboa names body of water the "Pacific" ocean. 
1513 - Poncé de León explores Florida coast. 
1514 - Don Pànfilo de Narvàez appointed govenor of Florida. 
1517-1518 - First Spanish effort to colonize mainland Mexico.
1521 - Poncé de León in Florida -effort to establish colony. 

1519-1521 Cortés conquers México  

1540 Vasquéz de Coronado explores California, Kansas, Arizona, New México, Texas, Oklahoma
1565 - Spain established a  small settlement St. Augustine, Florida.
1585 - Sir Walter Raleigh sends a colonizing expedition to Roanoke island,
        most of the settlers  return to England with Sir Francis Drake (1585)

1607 - British settle Jamestown, 

1608 - Champlain founds Quebec, 

1620 - Mayflower - Plymouth, MA

1623 - New Netherlands (now New Jersey)
1624 - Dutch found New Amsterdam (New York)
1628 - The Puritans came to Massachusetts and settled Naumkeag (Salem).
1630 - John Winthrop founded Boston
1633 - Dutch settlement near Hartford
1638 - Delaware (originally New Sweden)
1653 - North Carolina
1655 - The Dutch gained control of Delaware from the Swedish.
1664 - The English obtained Delaware after defeating the Dutch.
1730-1760 - Black labor allows tenfold increase in production of Carolinian rice and Virginian tobacco, ca

1540 Vasquéz de Coronado explores California, Kansas, Arizona, New México, Texas, Oklahoma.

The beginning of this cycle roughly coincides with the English colonization of the Atlantic Coast of North America. Prior to this time there were already Spanish settlements in Florida; the French had colonized in South Carolina and Champlain was contemplating his colony on the St. Lawrence river; De Soto had discovered the Mississippi River and Sir Francis Drake as well as the Spanish had explored the Pacific Coast; and, of course, the Spanish had a large presence in the Caribbean and Southern North America. The products of the new world were already being sampled in Europe as tobacco was introduced by slave traders in England as early as 1565; sugar cane and its by-product, Demon Rum, were being produced in the Caribbean; and fish and furs were being harvested from the Northern continent. By the end of the cycle, a dozen hardy colonies were functioning as a valuable component of the British colonial empire.

1585 - Sir Walter Raleigh sends a colonizing expedition to Roanoke island (1585), most of the settlers in Roanoke return to England with Sir Francis Drake(1585)

John White returns to Roanoke and when he finds no one he leaves another group of settlers (1587), John White's grandchild Virginia Dare is first English child born in America (1587), Manteo is the first American Indian converted to Christianity (1587), Thomas Harriot publishes a book about the Roanoke settlement (1588), the legend of the "Lost Colony" is born when John White returns to Roanoke to find no trace of the settlers he had left (1590), Juan de Onate claims territory in SW North America for Spain (1598), first Englishman to land in New England was Capt. Bartholomew Gosnold in Massachusetts (1602), Champlain sails up the Saint Lawrence and French establish fur trade in New England and Canada (1603), Virginia Company of London and Virginia Company of Plymouth granted Royal Charters (1606), first Plymouth Company expedition waylayed by Spanish in Caribbean (1606), Jamestown ,founded by the London Company, establishes the colony of Virginia (1607), Capt. John Smith saved by Pocahontas (1607), Jamestown faces disaster as hardship and dissention take their toll (1608), Pilgrims flee England to escape religious persecution and end up in The Netherlands (1608), Henry Hudson searches for NW passage (1609), Virginia is incorporated and many new settlers arrive (1609), the Spanish found Santa Fe (1609), Lord Delaware arrives in Jamestown to take control for the Virginia Co. (1610), Dutch settle what will become New York City (1612), tobacco is established as a crop in Virginia by John Rolfe(1612), Sir Samuel Argall attacks Dutch and French settlements in New England (1613), John Rolfe marries Pocahontas (Christian name Rebecca)(1614)

Samuel Champlain discovers Lake Huron for the French (1615), Pocahontas is presented at the Court of King James I (1616), Dutch settle in Albany, NY (1617), Pilgrims granted a charter to settle in Virginia (1619), the Virginia House of Burgesses is elected (1619), first slaves sold in Virginia (1619), Pilgrims land at Plymouth Rock aboard the Mayflower establishing the colony of Massachusetts (1620), Virginia settlers organize the first public library (1620), Pilgrims reach a treaty with Chief Massassoit of the Wampanoag Tribe with Squanto as an interpreter (1621), William Bradford made second Governor of Plymouth when John Carver dies (1621), first Thanksgiving celebrated (1621), Dutch West India Co. formed (1621), [Puritan Awakening] (1621>), in England the lottery is banned and the Virginia Company goes into receivership (1622), first Jamestown massacre (1622), Plymouth neighbor settlement at Wessagusset is abandoned (1623),Pilgrims begin to cultivate corn (1623), laws based on social status instituted in Virginia (1623), Virginia Co. charter revoked and Virginia becomes a royal colony (1624), strong social code dictated in Virginia and Dutch colonies (1624), Peter Minuit buys Manhattan Island for 60 gilders and names it New Amsterdam, later to be known as the colony of New York (1626), Pilgrims buy out their London stockholders (1626), Roger Conant settles Naumkeag(Salem)(1626), John Winthrop arrives in Salem (1628), the Massachusetts Bay Co. is formed in England with John Winthrop as Governor(1629), the Council for New England grants New Hampshire to John Mason and King Charles grants Robert Heath the territory named Carolina (1629), Puritans settle Salem for the Massachusetts Bay Co. (1630>), John Winthrop begins his _History of New England_ (1630), Boston founded (1630), William Bradford begins to write _History of Plymouth Plantation_ (1630), Roger Williams arrives in Boston (1631), Sir Ferdinando Gorges begins settlement of Maine/New Hampshire area (1631), Lord Baltimore is granted the Maryland charter by Charles I (1632), Dutch form first school in New Amsterdam and the first public school (The Boston Latin School) is formed in Boston (1633), the colony of Maryland is settled (1633), boundary disputes erupt between Maryland and Virginia (1635), advocate of religious tolerance Roger Williams banished from Boston to found Rhode Island (1636), the radical mystical religious views of Anne Hutchinson are heard in Boston (1636), Thomas Hooker arrives in Hartford to found the colony of Connecticut (1636), Harvard College founded (1636), Pequot Indian wars heat up (1637), Anne Hutchinson is banished from Massachusetts for sedition (1638), in Hartford Thomas Hooker espouses the radical view that political power should rest on the consent of the governed (1638), Peter Minuet leads a group of Swedish settlers in founding New Sweden which later becomes Delaware (1638), banished from Boston John Wheelwright founds the colony of New Hampshire (1638), the Fundamental orders are enacted in Connecticut giving rise to government by popular consent (1639), Massachusetts adopts the "Body of Liberties" legal code based on the Old Testiment (1641), civil war breaks out in England between the Puritans and supporters of Charles I (1642), Connecticut, Massachusetts, Plymouth and New Hampshire confederate as "United Colonies of New England (1643), Roger Williams receives formal charter for Rhode Island (1644), peace treaties achieved with local Indian tribes (1645), Massachusetts institutes the death penalty for heresy (1646), Peter Stuyvesant arrives in New Amsterdam (1647), Massachusetts requires public education for citizens (1647), Rhode Island formally adopts seperation of Church and State and public inititive (1647).

Margaret Jones hanged for witchcraft in Boston (1648), Swedish and Dutch settlers feud (1648), Massachusetts grants shoemakers first recognition of a labor organization (1648), religious freedom is official in Maryland and Maine (1649), England tries to block Dutch trade from the colonies (1651), Swedish and Dutch colonists feud on the Delaware River (1651), colonial leaders who declare loyalty to Charles II are removed from Authority by English officials (1652), Rhode Island declares slavery illegal (1652), Massachusetts claims Maine (1652), war between English and Dutch effects colonial affairs (1652), Massachusetts Bay Colony proclaims itself independent (1652), settlers from Virginia begin to settle the area that eventually becomes North Carolina (1653), John Eliot publishes _Catechism in the Indian Language_ the first book printed in a native language (1653), first Jewish immigration to North America (1654), Massachusetts continue practice of religious intolerance by beating, imprisoning and banishing Quakers (1656), all woman jury acquits woman charged with abortion in Maryland (1656), following Massachusetts' lead several colonies mistreat and banish Quakers (1657), John Eliot publishes the Bible in the Algonquin Language (1661), Connecticut receives official charter (1662), King Charles II officially designates the colony of Carolina which includes both North and South Carolina (1663), Duke of York obtains a grant that includes all Dutch holdings in North America (1664), New Jersey formed by a grant from the Duke of York (1664), Peter Stuyvesant surrenders to English forces and New Amsterdam is renamed New York (1664), North Carolina adopts _Concessions and Agreements_ as a governmental form (1664), colonies begin passing laws of servitude for slaves to get around English legal precedents which allow freeing of slaves who convert to Christianity (1664), except for the Massachusetts Bay Colony the colonies reluctantly agree to swear allegiance to Crown and allow freedom of religion (1665), _Fundamental Constitutions_ proposed in Carolina (1669), Hudson Bay Company formed (1670), Plymouth officials deal with "King Phillip" (Metacomet) son of Massassoit of the Wampanoag tribe (1671), the Royal Africa Company is granted a monopoly over slave trade (1672), first copyright law passed in Massachusetts (1672), Marquette and Jolliet explore the Mississippi (1673)

French Jesuit explorer Father Marquette establishes mission at site of present Chicago (1674), LaSalle obtains a patent to explore the Mississippi (1674), William Penn begins to obtain rights to land for Quakers (1674), Indian Chief "King Phillip"'s War (1675), Bacon's Rebellion (1676), New Hampshire separates from Massachusetts (1680), Quakers settle Pennsylvania (1682), LaSalle reaches and names the Louisiana Territory (1682), the planning for Philadelphia is begun (1682), William Penn negotiates a treaty with the Indians under the Treaty Elm (1683), Mennonites settle Germantown Pennsylvania (1683), Massachusetts Bay Colony charter revoked (1684), French Protestants (Huguenots) flee Louis IV tosettle Carolinas (1685), James II revokes Charters of Liberty in Colonies that requires consent of governed for taxation (1686), Governor Edmond Andros takes over New England and New York governments in the name of James II to become ruler of the northern colonies, proclaiming Anglican worship (1687), Governor Andros limits town meetings and takes over local militias (1688), Quakers formally disown slavery (1688), ([Glorious Revolution results in deposition of James II and reversal of his harsh policies ] (1689), Royal government is tossed out and colonial self rule is reestablished (1689), Count Frontenac returns to Canada from France with military supplies to conquer the colonies (1689), King William's War begins as French stage attacks on northern colonial towns (1690), Delaware separates from Pennsylvania (1692), Salem witch trials (1692), a system of Colonial post offices is planned (1692), College of William and Mary founded (1693), English colonists form alliances with Iroquois indians (1694), another Navigation act is passed (1696), William Penn proposed an inter colonial congress with a president appointed by the King (1697), King Williams War ends (1697), Captain Kidd the pirate is captured in Boston and sent to England (1699), Massachusetts and New York expel Catholics (1700), population of colonies est. 275,000 (1700).

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last updated 11 Jun 2002