Technology
 

    The Columbian Exchange influenced technological advances in the late 15th and early 16th centuries. Europe was an economic and technological power compared to the Native Americans they encountered in the New World. Yet, they still benefited from the exchange of ideas and cultures. Native Americans were impacted profoundly by the technological transition. When Europeans crossed the Atlantic and colonized the New World they sparked a flow of changes in Native American culture.
The most notable of these changes were:   

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 A Written Alphabet

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 New Farming Capabilities

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 New Firearm and Weapon Capabilities

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 Architectural Ingenuity

    Alphabet

 

                                           The written alphabet is notable because of how it was used by the Europeans. Since Native Americans had no formal written language, Europeans knew that establishing relations by way of treaties would be difficult. Europeans educated Natives by teaching them to read and write a European language, this would help break down barriers, thus integrating cultures. At first the natives were skeptical about the written language, because Natives never followed a written agreement, blood oaths were their highest form of agreement. Europeans did not just try and teach them language for the purpose of trade. Europeans used their alphabet to "educate" Natives as well, by trying to convert them to Christianity. In a Social Darwinism sense, Europeans believed that Christians were above the barbaric Natives. They believed that unless natives accepted Jesus they would be damned, also a common religious belief among them, would bond them greater then any written code. Religion was a major technological advancement because Europeans believed they were educating and changing natives for the better. Europeans held Christianity to the highest standard in social importance, and considered conversion an evolution. To the left is a key of An early 17th late 16th century Dutch alphabet. Below is a syllabary of an original Cherokee language. This written syllabary is a key step in the technological movement and the intellectual growth of the Native Americans by way of the Columbus Exchange.

               

                                               

Farming

        New Farming equipment like the plow seen to the left ignited the New World economy and improved health on a long term basis. The plow was highly important because it cultivated large areas of land creating a surplus of plants for both Natives and Europeans. Animals such as horses and oxen would pull the plows across the land, this helped to cultivate more land. The vast farming land and rich soil were transformed into crop fields, which then lead to the establishment of towns. Because crops could be grown and the land could be cultivated, towns began to be established near farms. Natives created villages giving evidence of them moving away from the hunter-gatherer society. Europeans experienced greater crop output in the New World because of the rich soil that they did not have in Europe. The plow as seen to the left, was regarded as the main factor in the surge of agricultural output in Colonial America. This specific plow was taken from a Pennsylvania museum, we know that it was built in Europe because of the use of metal and its structure. This specific plow was used to cultivate lands by being pulled by horses and other large animals. 

 

 

 Weapons


Guns and knives facilitated hunting and fishing for the Native Americans. While Natives already had knives, what they used were very malleable because they were made of obsidian and could not be used over and over like the European knives made of steel and iron. Before guns, spears, hatchets and bows and arrows were the most common used weapons of the Native Americans. A bow and arrow allowed for hunting from greater distances, but they did not do the same amount of damage as a gun. Some animals required more than one arrow to be killed. When Natives witnessed the destructiveness of guns they realized that they could use them for hunting larger animals. Natives now because of the migration of Europeans also had horses to ride. Natives could now chase down large herds of animals quicker and with the guns, they could kill them quicker. Weapons had such a profound impact on the Native American culture that they soon became the most widely traded goods between Europeans and Natives.  Natives cherished weapons because of the hunter gatherer society they lived in. Europeans had an abundance of weapons and felt that parting with them for Indian goods such as labor or crops was worth the cost.  Europeans used the natives fascination with firearms and weapons to exploit them. Europeans had such a comparative advantage in manufactured goods, that Natives became dependant on them for stronger weapons, thus allowing the Europeans to receive more for the goods.


 

Architecture

                                                    

     European Architectural ingenuity helped to build new homes, ranches, farms, ports and ships in the new world. The establishment of these architectural structures lead to the establishment of the first colonial and native towns and also the first government buildings in the new world. Towns relocated Indians from their land into villages and towns. They also changed building patterns that used wood and charcoals which in turn led to more deforestation. Tools used for construction were made of steel and iron, this allowed natives to build stronger homes and it allowed for Europeans immigrants to build there homes to the same standard as back in Europe. The wheel played a major role in construction. Large heavy pieces of construction were able to be transported with greater ease with the wheel. The wheel was later used in ships as well. As more and more homes were built towns were established and with them sea ports as well. Europeans used their own ships to model those made in the New World. With the opening of ports and building of ships the New World, was opened to trade and in the near future, the West African Slave trade. The modern map also can attribute its creation to the establishment of ports along the coasts of the New World.  Top left is a drawing of an early New York harbor, you can see two ships in the distance in between the buildings. Top right is a depiction of Boston harbor, this picture is supposed to represent the Harbor after the Boston Tea Party. Looking at the picture you can see the high traffic are that the harbor became,  sailors merchants and immigrants traveled to Boston harbor in great numbers and it became a forefront for transatlantic trade and migration. Below is a picture of The Lendeert Bronck house in Coxsackie NY. This stone and brick building was built in 1670, but the remodeling into brick took place in 1738. This is just another example of European ingenuity.                                               

                                                  

                                                                                       

 

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