Print ISBN: 978-1-63700-458-6
# of Pages: 1000
# of Volumes: 2
Print List Price: $245
e-ISBN: 978-1-63700-462-3
eBook User Price: $245
Free Online Access
Spread the Word

Great Events from History: American History, 1492-1775 Exploration to the Colonial Era

Free Online Access to the Salem Press/Grey House Platform
September 2023


In the popular Great Events from History style, this new addition to the series puts an emphasis on events that shaped early American history. This two-volume set takes readers on a journey across the Atlantic Ocean to discover the New World through the settlement of the first English colonies.

Virtually every schoolchild knows that Christopher Columbus, a Genoan by birth but sailing under the flag of King Ferdinand II of Aragon and Queen Isabella I of Castile, opened the Americas to exploration by European adventurers. His three voyages to the New World were just the start of a massive cultural and economic exchange between the countries of Europe and what would become those of the Americas, including the future United States.

In the roughly two and a half centuries following Columbus’s historic voyages, numerous others from Spain, Portugal, France, and Italy launched exploratory expeditions to what became the United States.

These volumes profile the lives and expeditions of such figures as:

  • Juan Ponce de León in Florida
  • Spanish conquistador Vasco Núñez de Balboa, the first European to see the Pacific Ocean
  • Giovanni da Verrazzano, a Florentine who explored the Atlantic coast
  • Portuguese cartographer Diogo Ribeiro, whose map of the world provided a nearly perfect outline of the East Coast of North America
  • Hernando De Soto, a Spaniard who led the first European expedition into Florida, Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi, and most likely Arkansas
  • René-Robert Cavelier, Sieur de La Salle, who set sail from France to explore the Great Lakes region of the United States and Canada and the entire course of Mississippi River down to the Gulf of Mexico
  • Sir Walter Raleigh, who established the short-lived Roanoke Colony in Virginia in 1585 and numerous other intrepid souls willing to face danger to discover the riches and the majesty of the New World

In addition, this set provides students and readers with in-depth information about the early colonies and the experiences of settlers in the new world such as:

  • In 1639 the Fundamental Orders of Connecticut becomes the first written constitution of the Americas.
  • William Penn is granted a charter for the Province of Pennsylvania in 1681.
  • The Salem witch trials begin in Massachusetts in 1692, leading to the execution of twenty people for witchcraft.
  • The French and Indian War which pitted the North American colonies of the British Empire against those of the French erupts in 1754.
  • In 1765 the British government passes the Stamp Act taxing the colonies.
  • The Boston Massacre occurs in 1770.
  • Bostonian colonists protest the Tea Act with the Boston Tea Party in 1773.
  • The First Continental Congress meets in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1774.
  • The Revolutionary War begins in 1775.

In-depth, yet accessible essays provide a summary of the event and discuss the event’s significance and historical impact. Entries are supplemented with sources for further reading, cross-references, maps, quotations from primary source documents, timelines, and hundreds of photographs and illustrations. Designed for history students at the high school and undergraduate levels, public librarians will also find the set, and the series as a whole, invaluable as a reference tool for students and patrons at all academic levels.

  New!  All images in the print volumes are printed in full color!

Free Online with Print Purchase.

In addition, Great Events from History: American History, 1492-1766 Exploration to the Colonial Era comes with complimentary online access via http://online.salempress.com. A single purchase of the printed version is all it takes to gain access to this important title on the web.


View a Full List of Titles from the Great Events from History Series