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Volume Listing > Volume 76 > The Columbian mosaic in colonial America

Axtell, James "The Columbian mosaic in colonial America"


The Columbian Mosaic in Colonial America: This article examines the ethnic composition of colonial America and concludes that by 1790 “newly independent America was a triracial, multicultural society.” Using sources as diverse as descriptions by travelers and statistics from European emigration authorities, the author reviews who came, when, how, and why they came, and how between 1490 and 1790 the population of North America was dramatically altered. He discusses not only the English colonies but also those of the French and Spanish, and the impact of all three “invasions” (his term) on Indian communities. He also offers unflinching perspectives on slavery, genocide, and the temptation to let modern ideas of moral and political correctness intrude on discovering facts about the past. (13 pages)

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Citation: Axtell, James "The Columbian mosaic in colonial America" Wisconsin Magazine Of History. Volume: 76 /Issue: 2 (1992-1993)

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