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.: July 2006 --> The Spanish conquest of North America

The Spanish conquest of North America

» Tony Horwitz on the early Spanish conquest of what is now the United States.

Two iconic American stories have Spanish antecedents, too. Almost 80 years before John Smith's alleged rescue by Pocahontas, a man by the name of Juan Ortiz told of his remarkably similar rescue from execution by an Indian girl. Spaniards also held a thanksgiving, 56 years before the Pilgrims, when they feasted near St. Augustine with Florida Indians, probably on stewed pork and garbanzo beans.
The early history of Spanish North America is well documented, as is the extensive exploration by the 16th-century French and Portuguese. So why do Americans cling to a creation myth centered on one band of late-arriving English—Pilgrims who weren't even the first English to settle New England or the first Europeans to reach Plymouth Harbor?

 [ 07.10.06 ]


Probably because we do that with most of our other culture we call American. How do you claim something as your own when borrowed from another culture? Is not much of American culture of England's roots? Then the immigrants of Irish, German, Polish, Hungarian, Swedish and so on? Are not the holidays in Christianity eeriely similar to the previously celebrated pagan holidays? Or Jewish holidays? What can be called American that did not come from someplace eles? Rap? Country music? Football?

I am surprised of how every thing that sounds hispanic, catholic or even mexican, it is seen in a very unagreeable manner. I am surprised too of how the "americans" that is to say the anglos of usa, ignore the historical facts of how the hispanic culture is an omnipresent event in their lives. I hope that the new generations of "americans" could receive a little of information about such matters.



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