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Early Explorers and Native Americans

            As early as the tenth century, European explorers began colonizing the Americas. Most explorers took great note of their journeys to tell their friends, family, and government about their findings. "Explorers came to the America's in search of vast riches, namely gold, but what they found instead has been a constant companion throughout American history: Native Americans " (Davenport). It is found in their writings that each group of explorers had encounters with Native American peoples. Christopher Columbus, Cabeza de Vaca, and Roger Williams each depicted the Native Americans differently in their expeditions. In Columbus's "Letter to Luis de Santangel Regarding the First Voyage " and "Letter to Ferdinand and Isabella Regarding the Fourth Voyage " he views the natives as useless and takes advantage of them; in de Vaca's "The Relation of Álvar N ñez Cabeza de Vaca " he views the natives as helpful; and in Williams's "A Key into the Language of America " he views the natives as equal to himself. .
             Christopher Columbus is noted the first explorer to discover America. Columbus was granted his expedition with a business contract with Kind Ferdinand and Queen Isabella. Columbus was to find gold and bring it back to Europe. Instead of gold, he found a group of Native Americans. "From his very first contact with native people, Columbus had their domination in mind " ("Christopher Columbus: The Untold Story "). Beginning at the time Columbus met the natives, he planned on using them as slaves. Columbus did not see any use in the Natives except to use them as laborers to find the gold for him. "Columbus wrote in his journal ˜with fifty men they can all be subjugated and made to do what is required of them.' These were not mere words: after his second voyage, Columbus sent back a consignment of natives to be sold as slaves " ("Christopher Columbus: The Untold Story "). The way Columbus treated the natives has started many controversies of whether he should be recognized as a "hero " or not.

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