whca2 Mr. Skubal
Shawano Community Middle School U.S. History and Psychology Instructor

The exploration and colonization of the Americas by European explorers and settlers provided timely and useful information and wealth to the sponsoring countries. Explorers from Spain, England, France, Portugal and the Netherlands traversed the Americas. Spain was looking for gold, God and glory. They wished to use Middle and South American gold. They wished to convert the Native American to the Catholic religion. And, they wished to maintain their leadership in world control.
France, England and the Netherlands were all looking for the Northwest Passage through these lands and finding a way to the Orient. This not being accomplished, they then looked towards colonization and occupation. Early explorers left a record of their accomplishments of places traveled and things witnessed in their diaries. This research project will put you in place of one of these explorers as they make their epic journey and discoveries.

Phase 1 – Choose an Explorer

You are to select one of the following explorers. After each explorer’s name is a symbol that illustrates which country they explored for. That is (S) for Spain, (E) for England, (F) for France, (N) for Netherlands and (P) for Portugal.

Select one of the following:
1. Cabrillo (S)
2. Cartier (F)
3. Ponce de Leon (S)
4. Champlain (F)
5. LaSalle (F)
6. DeGama (P)
7. Cabral (P)
8. Cabot (E)
9. Hudson (E and N)
10. Jacques Marquette (F)
11. Dias (P)
12. Coronado (S)
13. Cortez (S)
14. Pizzaro (S)

After making your selection, you are to fill out the following chart by using your textbook, a CD on explorers and suggested websites.

1. Explorer Name ________________________________

2. Sponsoring Country _____________________________

3. Dates he explored ____________________________

4. Birth and death dates ________________________

5. Major area explored ______________________________

6. Major discovery if any ______________________

7. Names of others on this exploration (partners, name of ship, etc.)____________________________________________

8. On the back of the page, draw a map showing the route the explorer took. Keep in mind they had little previous knowledge as to where they were or where they were going.

Phase 2 – Diary Entries

You now are going to do a series of diary entries this explorer might have made while on their epic journey. There will be 7 diary entries that cover his complete journey. Use dates that would coincide with possible realistic dates. Four major questions should be answered for each entry – 1) where are we on this date? 2) when is it (date)? 3)why are we here? 4) what specific event or sighting has just occurred?
When doing your diary entries, 2 full paragraphs for each date is minimum expectation. Space the events out to cover the complete expedition. Look through the explorer’s eyes and see what he sees, feel how he feels and experience what he experiences. Use descriptions of physical features, not names of them because places like St. Lawrence River, Niagara Falls, Mississippi River had not been named yet.
Each diary entry should begin with a date (month, day and year) and be concluded with the signature of the explorer. So, if you chose Merriweather Lewis, you diary entries would be spaced out from St. Louis, Missouri up the Missouri River, in a Mandan village, crossing the Rockies, at the Pacific and back. Others participating in the story would be Clark, Sacajawea and others. The passages would demonstrate the difficulties encountered, strange plants and animals encountered, times at the edge of the Pacific and the return home.
The map that you draw would show the Mississippi River, Missouri River, St. Louis, Mandan village, Great Falls of the Missouri, Rockies, Fort Clatsop at the Pacific coast.

Phase  3 – Making Your antique diary

We now are going to prepare the paper. Use typing paper. Cut it in half across the middle. You will only write on one side of the paper, therefore, you need a cover page, 7 pages of diary entries, one map page and one back cover page. This is a total of 9 pages minimum. To make the paper look like it is old (antique) place each sheet into a cake pan partially filled with coffee (cold). Then, place each sheet on paper toweling to dry. To darken further, repeat the process until you have acquired your desired shade. Also, some students spill splotches of coffee on the paper to resemble water stains.
When doing your writing on the pages, use BLACK INK or dark blue. DO NOT use pencil or strange colors. We want this to look authentic. If you know how to use quill pens or other unique methods of  lettering such as calligraphy, talk it over with your teacher first. Also, do not draw lines on the paper as guides for writing.  Once you have completed your writing, each page should look old and worn like a long-lost diary. Put the pages together in the proper order and attach the cover page. When attaching the document, use some creative way of holding it together. They did not have staples in those days.
If you wish, be creative and make an outside cover for the whole document. Place your name on the very back page in small lettering.  For a final dramatic impact, you could burn the edges of each page. BE VERY CAREFUL. You don’t want to lose the whole project due to carelessness. Title your document “The Travels of … “ or, “The Diary of …..”It is now ready to hand in with the list of questions you answered about the explorer.

Web sites –

1. http://www.win.tue.nl/~engels/discovery/alpha.html

2. http://www.kn.pacbell.com/wired/fil/pages/listexplorerel.html

3. http://www.floridashistory..com/index.html#Start

4. http://www.acs.ucalgary.ca/HIST/tutor/eurvoya/

5. http://www.geocities.com:0080/EnchantedForest/Tower/1217/explorers.html
Last updated  2008/09/28 05:13:05 PDTHits  200