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Conquest and Settlement Patterns

©    2001 Donald J. Mabry

Rapidity of Exploration

  Conquest Patterns

The Caribbean:


  Guatemala was settled by the Spanish quickly, for there were plenty of sedentary people to put to work. Most of Central America was sparsely populated and contained few precious metals.

South America

The rationale of the settlement pattern

The Spanish were town dwellers. Established towns immediately and laid them out with the latest avant garde town planning and architecture. Used town squares. They segregated the Amerinds into neighborhoods different from their own except, of course, for the live-in servants. Some towns were both Indian and Spanish, such as Mexico City and Cuzco, whereas others, such as Puebla and Lima, were overwhelmingly Spanish. Whenever possible, they sought access to the sea.

    The settlement patterns of the conquest period established the pattern for the colonial period. After that, it was a matter of "filling in"  to meet needs. 

You can read about other topics in colonial Latin American history by buying and reading
Colonial Latin America by Don Mabry.

Click on the book cover or the title to go to Llumina Press.