Kids & Teens
Cobblestone American History and Current Events for Kids and Children

Cobblestone American History and Current Events for Kids and Children January 2020

COBBLESTONE is the award-winning and respected leader in the study of American history for young people. COBBLESTONE tells America’s story through a unique mix of captivating articles, lively graphics, historical photographs, primary sources, and maps. Each themed-issue examines historical events in detail making them exciting and relevant to today. A must-have for every history classroom and media center. Grades 5-9.

United States
Cricket Media, Inc.
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9 Issues

in this issue

2 min.
getting started

Did you know that the Spanish arrived in North America more than 100 years before the English settled their first colonies in Virginia and Massachusetts? The Spanish were the first Europeans to explore Florida. They were the first Europeans to walk across Texas. They were the first Europeans to see the Grand Canyon, the Pacific Ocean, and the Pacific Coast. And everything they saw, they claimed for Spain. In fact, Spain once claimed about two thirds of the land that makes up the continental United States. Spain’s explorations of the then-uncharted United States mostly were launched by land from Mexico, which the Spanish conquered in 1521. Spanish expeditions headed northward into the present-day American Southwest. They reached as far north as Northern California. They traveled as far east as Kansas. They…

5 min.
golds’ lure

The promise of gold and a sea route to India. Those were the two main reasons why Spain’s King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella backed Christopher Columbus’s voyages. Columbus made four journeys across the Atlantic Ocean between 1492 and 1502. He didn’t find a trade route to India. Instead, he landed in the Americas. Thinking it was India, he called the land “the Indies” and the people there “Indians.” And he claimed the land for Spain. Columbus also found gold. Gold was discovered in rivers on Hispaniola (present-day Haiti and the Dominican Republic), Cuba, and Puerto Rico. With money replacing barter as a way to do business, Europeans wanted precious metals. Those Caribbean islands on which Columbus first landed supplied Spain with an average of one ton of gold annually for many…

1 min.
a focus on florida

Spain’s expeditions to Florida in the early 1500s made other nations aware of Florida’s existence. In 1562, Jean Ribault sailed from France to attempt to colonize the Americas. He built a fort in present-day South Carolina. It was abandoned within a year. Ribault returned to the Americas two years later and built Fort Caroline in present-day Jacksonville, Florida. Word that the French were attempting to claim Spanish territory spurred the Spanish government into action. Pedro Menéndez de Avilés sailed from Spain in 1565 with settlers and supplies. His orders were to establish a colony and push the French out. He did both. He settled St. Augustine and attacked Fort Caroline, massacring the French defenders. Today, St. Augustine is the oldest continuously inhabited European settlement in the continental United States. Control of Florida…

3 min.
rethinking a holiday

Columbus Day has been an official U.S. holiday since 1937. But some people question the idea of celebrating Christopher Columbus’s arrival in the “New World.” That’s because of what followed that “discovery.” News of Columbus’s voyages spread across Europe. It began the Age of Exploration. It led to many more transatlantic journeys from Europe to the Americas. Contact between Europeans and native people led to deadly conflicts. It also exposed the local inhabitants to European diseases. Native people had no natural immunities to those illnesses. Nor did they understand how the diseases traveled. Their efforts to flee from places filled with dying people ended up spreading the diseases. Just prior to Spanish arrival in 1492, it is believed that an estimated 50–100 million indigenous people lived in the Americas. Disease may have…

1 min.
erikson was first

Christopher Columbus wasn’t the first European to reach the Americas. In 1960, archaeologists found evidence that Vikings had landed in Canada in the late 10th century—in L’Anse aux Meadows, Newfoundland, to be exact. That’s 500 years before Columbus. Led by Leif Erikson, the Vikings sailed in their longboats from Greenland until they saw the northernmost tip of Newfoundland. They called their colony Vinland. They abandoned the colony after about a decade and returned to Greenland. Some stories claim that they found the native people hostile. That hostility may have sprung from the fact that the Vikings killed some natives who were found sleeping under their canoes. Other stories point to evidence of a dramatic drop in temperature as the reason for the Vikings’ departure. It got too cold, making life…

4 min.
the rise of new spain

When Spanish conquistadores explored the land known today as Mexico in 1519, they were dazzled by its riches. They marveled at the majestic stone buildings that graced the cities of the Aztecs who ruled the area. Beyond the cities lay fertile, irrigated fields lush with corn and other crops. And marketplaces brimmed with a great variety of vegetables and textiles. Two years later, Spanish conquistador Hernán Cortés and his men conquered the people and took control of the area in the name of King Charles I of Spain. Cortés initiated the building of Mexico City on the ruins of the Aztec capital of Tenochtitlán. The site that had once been an important Aztec city became the most important European city in the Americas. At the time, Spain was the most powerful nation…