American Life

American Life

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American Life

American Life

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Excerpt

The year 1892 will see the four hundredth anniversary of the Discovery of America. In the far-off time, when Christopher Columbus landed on the Bahamas, thinking to have reached the further end of the Indies, assuredly no one foresaw the important part this New World has been called upon to play.

When the brave explorer retured from his first expedition and made his triumphal entry into Barcelona, undoubtedly there must have been great enthusiasm at the Court of Ferdinand and Isabella. An admiration of his happy genius took hold of everyone; the men of science joyfully saw the bounds of human knowledge suddenly extended; the statesmen dreamt to base the supremacy of their country on great conquests; the merchants already counted up the vast profits the exploitation of a new country would pour into their coffers. But there were none who imagined that the West Indies would be anything for Europe but a magnificent prey.

This first impression was sustained by the series of discoveries which continued up to the eighteenth cen tury-

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