Home » People & Society » 90% of the population of the Americas died after first contact, making it the largest mass death in history with 10% of the global population dying.

90% of the population of the Americas died after first contact, making it the largest mass death in history with 10% of the global population dying.

European colonization of the Americas killed 10 percent of world population and caused global cooling

While Europe was in the early days of the Renaissance, there were empires in the Americas sustaining more than 60 million people. But the first European contact in 1492 brought diseases to the Americas which devastated the native population, and the resultant collapse of farming in the Americas was so significant that it may have even cooled the global climate.

The number of people living in North, Central and South America when Christopher Columbus arrived is a question that researchers have been trying to answer for decades. Unlike in Europe and China, no records on the size of Indigenous societies in the Americas before 1492 are preserved. To reconstruct population numbers, researchers rely on the first accounts from European eyewitn… Continue Reading (4 minute read)

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