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100 Years Ago

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Immigrants Cross the Bering Strait
First Immigrants Arrive in 20,000 B.C.

In the beginning...the earth was devoid of life as it took its place in the vastness of the Milky Way Galaxy. Positioned in a tiny solar system, located in one of the galaxy’s spiraling arms, it rushed through space, revolving around the galaxy’s center every 200,000,000 years. Thus, the earth began its journey through time up to five billion years ago.

As our planet cooled and developed an atmosphere that could sustain living fauna, flora and eventually humans, the emigration phenomena was born as animals and humans desirous of new food, water, hunting and economic sources, ventured beyond their known environments to become new immigrants in undiscovered faraway places. beringsea.gif (30037 bytes)

Today, the aboriginal peoples of the Americas, the American Indians, are considered by the rest of us as the only truly indigenous inhabitants of North and South America. Yet, they, too, were immigrants to these bountiful areas, crossing the Bering Strait from northern Asia around 20,000 B.C.

Their movememammothcrossing.gif (27433 bytes)nt through both continents blazed trails through deserts, mountains and dense forests, routes that their Indian descendants used for centuries before the arrival of America’s second wave of immigrants, the Europeans.

The Vikings explored North America’s northern coastal regions approximately 1,000 years ago, and, according to many historians, actually established a settlement. Nearly five hundred years later, in the late 15th and early 16th century, explorers, adventurers, and fortune seekers, such as Christopher Columbus (pictured at right), came, eager to strike it rich before returning to their homelands to spread the news of this...America.

The first great migration of Europeans to the Americas occurred during the 16th and 17th centuries. It brought essential features of western European civilization, and is commonly referred to as the ‘colonizing period’.

christophercolumbus.gif (30886 bytes)

Christopher Columbus


'Immigration' segment written in November, 1997 by David Lodge


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