The years between 1450 and 1550 marked the end of one era in world history and the beginning of another. Most importantly, the focus of global commerce and power shifted from the Mediterranean Sea to the Atlantic Ocean, largely because of the discovery of the New World. The New World was more than a geographic novelty. It opened the way for new human possibilities, possibilities that were first fulfilled by the British colonies of North America, nearly 100 years after Columbus landed in the Bahamas.The Historical Dictionary of Colonial America covers America's history from the first settlements to the end and immediate aftermath of the French and Indian War. This is done through a chronology, an introductory essay, appendixes, an extensive bibliography, and over 400 cross-referenced dictionary entries on the various colonies, which were founded and how they became those which declared independence. Religious, political, economic, and family life; important people; warfare; and relations between British, French, Spanish, and Dutch colonies are also among the topics covered. This book is an excellent access point for students, researchers, and anyone wanting to know more about Colonial America.