America Essay, Research Paper
There are many people who are curious on the history of North America. We often wonder about this continent and its origins. Many books give loads of information that would overwhelm an individual with countless amounts of history. David Weber gives the students a definitive book covering specifically, the Spanish Frontier in North America. His Purpose is to educate students on specific accounts that happened in historic Spanish America. From the first encounters of Native Americans in the summer of 1540, led by Francisco Vazquez de Coronado, into the Zuni Village. To the overview of Spanish influence on the present North American continent. David Weber shows each student a different perspective to Spanish-American History.
David J. Weber, a history Professor at Southern Methodist University, used a countless number of scholars and professors from various colleges and universities around the nation to critique his book. A detailed review of each chapter from different professors gave Weber the opportunity to put together a book that would teach a new lesson of Spanish-American history. His use of these various scholars gave him sufficient knowledge to write a creditable book. He depended mostly on the research, critiques and countless questions and answers he received during his writing process.
A father of two, Weber appreciated the success of his children, Scott and Amy, as other parents would for their own. By them growing up, leaving home, and turning into resourceful, independent adults, it made it easier for Weber to continue writing this book. He received special encouragement from his wife who supported and help critique him in his single project while she took on many tasks herself, which includes receiving a Law degree and passing the Bar exam. (xvii)
The theme David Weber presents in this book is quite clear. It gives a detailed look at the various influences of Spanish frontiers in North America. The transformation of American culture from such influences is obvious, but how those changes came about is not quite clear to many people. Weber tries to make each student understand the huge impact that Spanish culture had on what is now the culture of the North American continent. “The Spanish Frontier in North America offers a fresh overview that reflects the concerns of current scholarship as well as the sound conclusions of earlier generations.” (Pp. 8) Weber tries to explain Spain’s impact on the lives, institutions, and environments of native peoples in North America, and the impact of North America on the lives and institutions of those Spaniards who explored and settled what has now become the Untied States (8). He explains to students that North American natives and Spaniards who met on North American frontiers failed to understand one another, because they came from different worlds. But, the people of the twentieth century have become more open minded to the cultural differences that exist between native Americans and the descendants of European newcomers.
David Weber brings out many significant points in Spanish-American history. Starting off with the explorations of central America, led by Francisco Vazquez de Coronado, into the Zuni village in the early 1500’s as seen on the front cover of book. Coronado’s explorations of the New World gave them an advantage in a variety of circumstances. These circumstances became a potent mixture when blended with the powerful motives of Spaniards who journeyed to numerous places to pursue particular religious, imperial, and personal goals. Because of this, Spaniards began to transform the New World, even as it began to transform them.
This Map shows many of the Spanish Explorations during the 1500’s into what is now the United States. The book highlights many fascinating accounts of Spanish exploration into uncharted lands. The huge impact of these frontiers has been felt by much of the North American continent through archaeological sites and artifacts left by those first explorers. Many famous people walked the lands of North America. Hernando de Soto, Francisco Vazquez de Coronado, and Cabeza de Vaca are among the few who have walked the vast terrain of the North American continent. Juan Ponce De Leon, also among these travelers who sailed from the Caribbean islands and explored the lands south of the English thirteen colonies, which we today know as the state of Florida, looking for the fountain of youth.
Through clever placement of significant topics, David Weber is able achieve his purpose and show its importance through this book. He brings a different light to Spanish-American history without being biased to either side of the storyboard, meaning the opinions of other cultures and their influence. His writing style is very informative, but somewhat told in a storybook style. Weber is able to bring life to each moment in history by making the reader feel like they are involved in that point in history. Each topic that Weber tries to make clear is brought out in order of how it happened during that particular time period.
Weber makes it clear that he wants each reader to learn from his book and not have thoughtless information thrown out at them. His maps and illustrations were used at the right moment needed to ensure that the reader understood fully. Many students in the history field should take advantage of the resources in this book, since it is a fundamentally useful text.
The Spanish Frontier in North America is a great text, since it can be used to teach Spanish-American culture and the rich history it offers.