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European Colonization of the Americas Timeline

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  • c. 980 CE - c. 1030 CE
    Norse settlement established in Newfoundland, North America, by Leif Erikson.
  • 1453 CE
    The Ottoman Empire closes the overland Silk Road trade routes between Europe and the East, initiating the European Age of Discovery.
  • 1492 CE - 1504 CE
    Christopher Columbus makes four voyages to the New World; opens the way for European colonization of the Americas.
  • 1500 CE
    Brazil is claimed for Portugal by Pedro Álvares Cabral.
  • 1519 CE - 1521 CE
    Hernán Cortés of Spain conquers the Aztec nation of Mexico.
  • 1534 CE - 1535 CE
    North American region of Canada claimed for France by Jacques Cartier.
  • 1572 CE
    The Inca of South America are conquered by Spanish conquistador Francisco Pizarro.
  • 1587 CE - 1590 CE
    English colony of Roanoke in North America established and fails.
  • 1607 CE - 1608 CE
    English Popham colony established in present day state of Maine, North America; fails after 14 months.
  • 1607 CE - 1699 CE
    Colony of Jamestown succeeds as the first permanent English settlement in North America.
  • 1609 CE - 1624 CE
    Hudson River Valley and parts of present-day New York State and Canada claimed by Henry Hudson for the Netherlands.
  • 1620 CE - 1691 CE
    Plymouth Colony established in modern-day Massachusetts, North America; foundational colony of the later United States.
  • 1697 CE
    The conquest of the Maya Civilization completed by the Spanish conquistador Martín de Ursúa.

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