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What if America was settled West to East?

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Henry Fleischmann View Drop Down
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    Posted: 19 Dec 2012 at 13:23
That is, from Alaska, by the Russians and California by the Chinese.
 
We all know of the Great Chinese Exploring Expedition of the early 14th century which could have easily crossed the Pacific.
 
We also know that Russian traders settled most of Siberia in the 14th through 17th centuries by going from river to river, when they came to the Bering Strait it was just one more and they went straight across. Their motivation, just like the other Europeans, was to find a route to the riches of China, but here it was a land route. It was long and arduous, yes, but no more than the sea avenues, and it had the advantage that it was based partially on the original one which insprired all the others, the one pioneered by the Mongols.
 
What if one/both of these went a good deal further/earlier than they did in our world?  Would Frenchmen run up against Cossacks in Canada? would the British find Chinese settlements over the Appalachians?, and what would happen then?
 


Edited by Henry Fleischmann - 19 Dec 2012 at 14:15
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fusong View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote fusong Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 19 Dec 2012 at 14:29
 I and other alternative history junkies often argue over what would lead China to be motivated to go to North America in the first place, surely Confucians would have regarded North America with scorn only accepting it as a cash cow.  Many alternative histories present the Chinese partially preserving Pre Colombian Civilization by vaccinating the general masses, this would only occur I think however if the Spanish or some other western people were coming to the region at the same time. However if the Chinese discovered the MeasoAmerican before European Exploration they would have likely been conquered quickly by someone. Likely a privet adventure.

Russia would likely be provoked into colonization from Siberia due to Chinese Colonization, that is if the Chinese Colonization did not involve settling coastal Siberia, in which case the Sino Russian wars would be more intense.  Russia might move down to British Columbia, this could lead to more Sino Russian Wars

All the same if the Chinese expand, the Japanese might take an interest in the exploration as well, when a Shougon comes into place we could perhaps see colonies in Tawain, the Philippines and maybe some island chains

I doubt the Chinese would go the Appalachians, most likely by the 18th century they might go as far as the Continental Divide
Every ideology has a kernel of truth and sea of whitewash.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote fantasus Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 19 Dec 2012 at 17:16
Originally posted by Henry Fleischmann Henry Fleischmann wrote:

That is, from Alaska, by the Russians and California by the Chinese.
 
We all know of the Great Chinese Exploring Expedition of the early 14th century which could have easily crossed the Pacific.
 
We also know that Russian traders settled most of Siberia in the 14th through 17th centuries by going from river to river, when they came to the Bering Strait it was just one more and they went straight across. Their motivation, just like the other Europeans, was to find a route to the riches of China, but here it was a land route. It was long and arduous, yes, but no more than the sea avenues, and it had the advantage that it was based partially on the original one which insprired all the others, the one pioneered by the Mongols.
 
What if one/both of these went a good deal further/earlier than they did in our world?  Would Frenchmen run up against Cossacks in Canada? would the British find Chinese settlements over the Appalachians?, and what would happen then?
 
For the russians it is to some degree not alternative history but history, according to my limited knowledge.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Al Jassas Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 19 Dec 2012 at 18:42
Alaska was ruled by the Russians until 1867 and had a presence in the west coast as early as the 18th century. They didn't go with colonisation because there was nothing to gain from the rain forests of Northern California and beyond. Had they known about the central valley and its agricultural wealth one might think they were try to take over California from the Spaniards. But they would face a big problem. They don't have access to warm waters making communications and the ability to sent people there nearly impossible.
 
 
As for the Chinese, there is no historical evidence that they ever went beyond Japan. Nor did they have the technology or the political will to go beyond.
 
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Henry Fleischmann View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Henry Fleischmann Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 19 Dec 2012 at 23:20
Historically, the Chinese had the techonology once, in 1421 http://www.amazon.com/1421-Year-China-Discovered-America/dp/0061564893, not agreeing with the book, just saying they did have the ships.
 
And I'm positing that the Russians took the route they did in our world, only sooner and in greater numbers. The Bering Straits/Alaska route is, admittedly, one of the most hostile on Earth but, to me at least, it beats having to traverse half the world, which is what Spain and Portugal did to get to China and the Indies regularly.
 
Now the agricultural wealth of California's central valley is dependent upon irrigation that didn't exist until the 1930's, isn't it?
 
However, if the Russians had discovered the gold that's there, or in Alaska....
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Cywr Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 19 Dec 2012 at 23:51
Technicly it was, the West Coast USA was once part of the Spanish Empire.

Quote Now the agricultural wealth of California's central valley is dependent upon irrigation that didn't exist until the 1930's, isn't it?


Yes, and water was diverted from further inland.

Regarding theoretical Chinese apathy to 'new world' adventures: The Chinese™ isn't some sort of rigid collective with homogeneous aspirations. Even if China the state turned its nose up at foreign adventures, there is nothing to stop Chinese individuals setting up companies and making a buck in the Americas if they were aware of how to get there easily and could figure out some profitable trade routes.
This is after all, precisely what some Chinese people did around South East Asia at a time when the Chinese state had effective turned in on itself. Its also how the Dutch got their empire, and to a lesser extend England (In Asia but not so much the Americas), private companies VOC, East India Company etc, with the state not taking control until the 1800s.

So for the historical what ifs, let that be fuel for your imaginations. Smile
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote Captain Vancouver Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20 Dec 2012 at 03:30
At one time, the Spanish, British, and Russians all had eyes on your captain's island, and surrounding territory. Without roads or railways, the trek over Siberia was difficult for Russia and penetration into North America was somewhat presumptuous. By the time of Spanish asperations in the area (late 1700's) they were already an empire in decline.
 
There is some fairly strong evidence of Asian contact in the area before the European period. Japanese coins found here have been carbon dated to before that time. Aboriginal legend has stories of shipwrecked sailors, of oriental appearance, landing and being incoporated into tribal life.
 
Some authors, such as Gavin Menzies, have speculated that further contact was made. Some of this is out on a limb, but some is at least thought provoking, including the carbon dating of remnants of what appears to be a ship sunk in San Fransisco Bay in the early 1400's, one larger than European vessels of the age of discovery.
 
I think a lot of it comes down to perception. If one accepts that there are large areas of the earth unexplored, but they are of no interest or use, then, not much  point in going there. If this sort of thing fires the imagination (and the desire for riches), then there is incentive for going, even if it means hardship. I think this tells the story.


Edited by Captain Vancouver - 20 Dec 2012 at 03:31
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote toyomotor Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 24 Apr 2014 at 11:25
Originally posted by Al Jassas Al Jassas wrote:

 
As for the Chinese, there is no historical evidence that they ever went beyond Japan. Nor did they have the technology or the political will to go beyond.
 
Al-Jassas
 
So, all of those phenotypically Chinese people seen in South East Asia are illusions?
 
Or did their ancestors all travel across land to SE Asia?
 
Didn't sea trade play a large part in colonies of Chinese setting up in other countries?
 
 
 I know that Wiki isn't always the most reliable source. but in this case I thinks it's 100%.


Edited by toyomotor - 25 Apr 2014 at 07:45
It's not that I was born in Ireland,
It's the Ireland that was born in me.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote pinguin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25 Apr 2014 at 02:14
What if the Americas had been left alone!

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote toyomotor Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25 Apr 2014 at 02:29
Originally posted by pinguin pinguin wrote:

What if the Americas had been left alone!

 
We wouldn't be corresponding. Would you have liked to miss out on that?
It's not that I was born in Ireland,
It's the Ireland that was born in me.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote toyomotor Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25 Apr 2014 at 07:25
penguin:
There would be no gringos, probably no North Americanos, no Che Gueverra, no Simon Bolivar.
 
You'd all be still pagans speaking a multitude of languages.
 
No Fast Food, no Chinese Take Aways, no Pizza, no Chilli Concarne.
 
All probably living the good life, sitting around the fire chewing on Coca leaves.


Edited by toyomotor - 25 Apr 2014 at 07:26
It's not that I was born in Ireland,
It's the Ireland that was born in me.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote pinguin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 Apr 2014 at 04:19
Yeap. It would be better.

And, by the way, natives settled America from West to East. Wink


Edited by pinguin - 26 Apr 2014 at 04:20
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote toyomotor Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 Apr 2014 at 04:59
Originally posted by pinguin pinguin wrote:

Yeap. It would be better.

And, by the way, natives settled America from West to East. Wink
 
 
Not necessarily.
 
There is evidence of two migratory patterns, one following the west coast, south, and the other through the middle of the USA.
 
Perhaps it was the Asians who went down the coast, and the Europeans who went through the midlands.
 
Btw, just picture yourself running around in a loin cloth, with feathers in your hair and paint on your face.
 
 
It's not that I was born in Ireland,
It's the Ireland that was born in me.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote pinguin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 Apr 2014 at 17:07
Forget it. There weren't Europeans in the early settlement of the Americas. Genetics has been very clear about that point. At least, not Germanic, blond-blue eyed, pink skinned Europeans, that people usually think when you say "European". The first of that kind that arrived to the Americas were the Norse, just a little bit more than a thousand years ago, and only reached to Newfoundland.

Now, if you think in Turks, Russians or other mixed people, it may be... but just may be.






Edited by pinguin - 26 Apr 2014 at 17:08
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toyomotor View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote toyomotor Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 27 Apr 2014 at 02:00
Pinguin wrote:
Forget it. There weren't Europeans in the early settlement of the Americas. Genetics has been very clear about that point.
 
That's still open for debate. Europeans, of whatever description, were in Siberia at the appropriate time.
Let's not talk about genetics for the moment, it was only a few months ago that Clovis was all the rage, but now we find that his ancestors were there before him.
 
At least, not Germanic, blond-blue eyed, pink skinned Europeans, that people usually think when you say "European". The first of that kind that arrived to the Americas were the Norse, just a little bit more than a thousand years ago, and only reached to Newfoundland.
No, probably not sons of the Aryan Nation, but Europeans nevertheless.
 
Now, if you think in Turks, Russians or other mixed people, it may be... but just may be.
 
Well, they were in Siberia, and it was a bit too early to call them anything but Europeans.
 
 
It's not that I was born in Ireland,
It's the Ireland that was born in me.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote franciscosan Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 Feb 2015 at 01:04
The reason why New England was settled by England is that it was on the same latitude as England and so therefore they thought it would have a similar clime.  They didn't understand how the gulf stream warmed England, and cooled New England.  If settlement of North Americas went from West to East.

Kennewick man has genetic similarities to, amongst other groups, the Ainu of Japan.  The Ainu are caucasian in origin.  But, don't tell American Indian groups, and the Army Corp of Engineers, acting on the Indians behalf, literally wanted to cover it up.  Talk about real alternative history.

I believe both Smithsonian and National Geographic have articles of Kennewick man.
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