America before Columbus is a documentary on National Geographic that illustrates the pre-Columbus Americas. There is a large contrast between the information in this documentary and that which has been presented in the past about the history of America. Many history books show that the pre-Columbus Americas was an original wilderness that had very few inhabitants that lived peacefully with nature. However, this has been proved otherwise through scientific research as illustrated in the video. It is established that when Columbus arrived in the land in 1492, there were millions of people already inhabiting the land. While it is told in history books that Columbus discovered a New World, this is fallacious because the place was not as new as the literature presents. It can actually be considered as an old world since the inhabitants had already developed the infrastructure, cities, roads, plantations and canals.
The documentary demonstrates that there were, however, several things that the Columbus’ voyages brought to the Americas. The Europeans brought honeybees which pollinated the orchards on the East Coast lane. The introduction of the feral bees also had the effect of proliferating most of the plants that Columbus and his crew brought into the Americas like the peaches and apples. In addition, the European settlers brought weeds such as dandelion and clovers to America. It also comes out from the video that America had not had large animals such as mammoths and ancient horses for many years until Columbus brought the horses. He also brought other animals such as sheep, cows, and pigs among others.
Apart from the things that Columbus brought to Americas from Europe, there were also various changes that came as a result of the influx of the European settlers. Before the arrival of Europeans in America, the Native Americans had very few domesticated animals. The Europeans decided to domesticate the llama and used it as the only available beast of burden. By the 1500s, much of the Americas’ landscape had been enormously transformed because of the new plants and animals that were brought in by the European settlers. However, they are also accused of clearing the vegetation on Chaco Canyon, leaving it barren.
The video illustrates an inception of the exchange processes that occurred between Europe and Americas. Columbus brought in several new things to the Americas and took away others in exchange to Europe. For example, the first European settlers claim that the rivers of America were full of fish. They also found that a large portion of the Americas was covered with the Amazon rainforest. This presented a noble opportunity for trade between the Native Americans and the European settlers. They took away fish, maize, beans, potatoes and timber to Europe in exchange for various other things. The American potatoes that Europeans took away to their land sparked an explosion of their population.
On watching this video, it is clear that a large portion of the content of information in the history books is wrongly reported. The video has shown clearly that by the time Columbus arrived in the Americas, the population of inhabitants may have been equal to that of Europe. The 1st settlers in Americas were the adventures and the sailors. This implies that the concept of New World that Columbus is said to have discovered is a fallacy. On his arrival, Columbus did not find a wilderness in Americas but a populated and managed landscape. Though Columbus initiated the domestication of various animals, the turkey was already domesticated by the natives before he arrived. Columbus found an already developed land with a properly managed and structured landscape. There were cities, roads, plantations, and canals.