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Changing Character of Alien Immigration in Early Modern Period - Essay Example

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This research is being carried out to evaluate and present the alien immigration characterized by mainly European settlement in the Americas. Earliest indications of a particular pattern of immigration into and settlement in America manifest a well-protracted agenda by the settlers…
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Changing Character of Alien Immigration in Early Modern Period
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Changing Character of Alien Immigration in Early Modern Period (1500-1700)
Perhaps one of the most prominent topics of American history is based on the alien immigration characterized by mainly European settlement in the Americas. Earliest indications of a particular pattern of immigration into and settlement in America manifest a well protracted agenda by the settlers. Discovery of the Americas by opened up an excitement among the explorers and rush for a share of the New World emerged, as it was referred to by the explorers and navigators who discovered. Studies of influx of the European settlers into the New World during the Early Modern Period can be characterized to demonstrate shifting commitment to the attraction generated among them. Apparently, the most powerful of European powers ventured into the immigration spree during the Early Modern Period to show specific interests.
Nearly through the entire 16th century, the most explorative and dominant figure of alien immigration into the Americas was undoubtedly Spain. Since the turn of the Century, Spanish interests in the New World were perhaps one of the most organized and resolute. As early as 1513, sections of the continent had been identified for settlement by the Spanish explorers as led by Ponce De Leon (Spartacus, n.d, para.1). Florida was among the settlement areas identified by De Leon, paving way for similar incursions into other American territories by the Spanish. In as much time, Cazabeza de Vaca and his crew had discovered Arizona, New Mexico and Texas in a similar adventure. Discovery and navigation of main American rivers such as Colorado and Mississippi was nigh as exploration continued into the 1500s, soon making it possible to take over Florida and California.
In the meantime, other explorer countries in Europe were preparing to compete with Spain in the venture and English explorers sooner came on board. Despite the fact that much of the discoveries leading to immigration of the Europeans were by chance, they took complete advantage of the discoveries and eventually occupied the New World (Kulikoff 2000, p42). The English explorers for instance were in search of routes to the Indies, making the stumble-upon impact good to their interest in overseas territories. Virginia was taken over in 1607 by the British. The French got interested in the immigration and settlement in 1608 through the assistance of Samuel Champlain in form of identifying and taking over Quebec. By 1670s, interests of expansion of the overseas territory by the French led to exploration and takeover of Louisiana.
Nearly in a tight succession of immigration from the English’s, the Dutch arrived in 1609. A contingency of Dutch settlers was then on its way in the competition to earn a share of the New World. The Dutch government had attractive incentives to families willing to take their chances in establishing Dutch dominance in the overseas territory that was attracting more European immigrants by the year. Other than reasons of demographics, politics prowess and exploration, religion emerged as a factor for immigration into the New World in the 1600s. Administrators such as Lord Calvert were keen to make a settlement of Roman Catholics facing persecution in England by transferring hundreds into a safe haven in Virginia (Kulikoff 2000, p158). It was sooner the turn of the Swedish government to throw in a spanner in the European immigration by offering movement channels for its nationals wishing to settle in the New World which happened in 1638.
In the 1700s, the Expansion theme was perhaps the most dominant, exhibiting conflicts and wars among the Europeans as well as resistance from the native communities. Britain emerged as a power to reckon with in the Americas, which was however challenged by the Spanish who had massive takeovers to the south of the continent (Winsor, p533). Fierce rivalries witnessed tense relations and treaties that led to surrender of some territories to the British from the hands of the Spanish, creating the expansive colony covering the USA and Canada.
Kulikoff, A. (2000) From British peasants to colonial American farmers. Chapel Hill, NC: University of North Carolina Press
Spartacus, (n.d) “Immigrating to the USA,” [Online] Available from [Accessed 28 November 2011]
Winsor, J. (2010) Narrative and critical history of America, vol. 3. New York, NY: Forgotten Books Read More
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