Americas Europe and Asia
1502 Columbus sails on his fourth and last voyage to the New World (Honduras and Panama)
1509 Beginnings of slave trade to New World
1513 Balboa crosses the Isthmus of Panama and "discovers" Pacific Ocean
Ponce de Leon "discovers" Florida
1514 Appointment of Juan Ponce de Leon as Adelantado of Florida
1519 Cortes enters Tenochtitlan, capital of Mexico, and is received by the Aztec ruler, Montezuma
Cortes brings Arabian horses from Spain to North American continent
1520 Magellan passes through the Straits of Magellan (South America) into the Pacific Ocean and sails for the Philippines
Chocolate brought from Mexico to Spain
1521 Cortes assumes control of Mexico after destruction of Aztec state
Magellan assumes control of Mexico after destruction of Aztec state
1522 First slave revolt in America occurs in Hispaniola
1524 Giovanni da Verrazano "discovers" New York Bay and the Hudson River
1527 Exploration of Alvar Nunez by Cabeza de Vaca
1530 Portuguese colonize Brazil
Pizarro leads expedition from Panama to Peru
1533 Pizarro executes the Inca of Peru
1534 Jacques Cartier sights coast of Labrador
1535 Cartier's second voyage to new World: St. Lawrence River, Quebec, Montreal
1538 Spain annexes Cuba
Hernando de Soto explores Florida
The name "America" used for the first time
1540 De Soto explores southeast
1541 Coronado leads expedition from New Mexico across Texas, Oklahoma, and eastern Kansas
De Soto "discovers" Mississippi River
1542 Death of De Soto
1549 Jesuit missionaries in South America
1552 Las Casas publishes his account of the oppression of the South American Indians
1562 John Hawkins makes his first journey to the New World: begins slave trade between Guinea and West Indies
1564 Spanish occupy Philippines and build Manila
1565 Creation of Spanish Florida
Spanish annexation of the Carolina Outer Banks
1566 Two million Indians die in South America of typhoid fever
1570 The Jesuit Mission on Chesapeake Bay
1573 Francis Drake sees Pacific Ocean for the first time
1582 First English colony in Newfoundland started
Two attempts to establish a colony on Roanoke Island are organized by Sir Walter Raleigh. The second disappears without a trace.
1595 Sir Walter Raleigh explores 300 miles up the Orinoco River in South America
1600 English East India Company founded
Population: France 16 million; England and Ireland 5 million
James I becomes King of England.
1603 Elizabeth I dies; succeeded by
cousin James I
Sir Walter Raleigh imprisoned for treason
Outbreak of plague in England
1604 Universities of Oxford and Cambridge granted representation in Parliament
1605 Santa Fe, New Mexico founded
April: James I issues a charter to the Virginia Company for tract of land along the mid-Atlantic coast.
December 20: Admiral Christopher Newport leaves London with the Godspeed, Discovery, and Susan Constant bound for Virginia.
1606 Guy Fawkes sentenced to death for attempting to blow up Parliament
Rembrandt, Dutch painter, born
May 13: 104 male settlers arrive at site they name James Cittie and establish the first permanent English settlement in the New World.
May 26: Paspahegh Indians attack the colonists, killing two and wounding ten.
June 15: James Fort is completed.
September 10: The Council accuses Councilor George Kendall of causing discord, and he is placed under arrest on the Discovery. He is later executed.
September 12: The Council finds President Edward M. Wingfield guilty of libel and he is deposed; John Ratcliffe takes his place.
December 10: Capt. John Smith leads expedition up the Chickahominy in search of food and is captured.
December 29: John Smith is brought before Powhatan; Smith believes that Pocahontas, Powhatan's daughter, saves his life.
1608 Champlain founds French settlement at Quebec
January 1: Smith returns to James Fort to find a desperate situation; only 38 of the original 104 settlers remain.
January 2: Smith is accused of causing the deaths of his men on the expedition, tried, and condemned to be hung. Christopher Newport returns on the John and Francis with the "first supply" of food and additional settlers; Newport halts the Smith execution.
February: Smith takes Christopher Newport up the York River to meet Powhatan. Smith works out an exchange of beads for provisions; "sons" are also exchanged: Thomas Savage goes to live with the Indians and Namontack with the English; they will act as interpreters and liaisons between the two peoples.
September (?): The "second supply" with 70 new immigrants arrives on the Mary and Margaret, including an Elizabethan bed for Powhatan, a five-piece barge to explore the Richmond Falls, and two women, Mrs. Thomas Forrest and her maid Anne Burras.
November: Jamestown's first wedding: Anne Burras marries John Laydon, a carpenter.
1608 John Milton, English poet, born
May: James I issues the second charter to the Virginia Company; the "third supply" of nine ships and 500 immigrants leave England bound for Virginia.
July 24: A hurricane sinks one ship; the flag ship Sea Venture (with Thomas Gates, George Somers, John Rolfe) is tossed about for four days before lodging on a reef in Bermuda; all 150 on board and the supplies are saved; the colonists begin rebuilding two boats from the wreckage.
August: Seven remaining vessels arrive in James Cittie with 200-300 passengers;
September: Captain John Smith is wounded in a gunpowder explosion and forced to return to England.
September: President Ratcliffe rows up the Pamunkey to bargain with Powhatan for desperately needed food; he is captured by Indian women and tortured to death.
September-May 1610: The "starving time" reduces the population to 60 gaunt survivors from the previous fall's population of 500-600
1609 Tea from China shipped for first time to Europe by Dutch East India Co.
1610 Henry Hudson explores Hudson Bay
May 23: Sir Thomas Gates, George Somers, William Strachey and 100 new settlers arrive in two ships, Deliverance and Patience.
May 24: Lieutenant Governor Sir Thomas Gates proclaims martial law.
June 8: Lord De La Warr arrives and prevents Gates and 250 (?) settlers from returning to England.
1611 Earliest colonization of Bermudas from Virginia May: Sir Thomas Dale arrives with 300 new settlers. 1611 Authorized version of King James Bible published
John Rolfe tries a crop of tobacco to help save the Jamestown settlement.
Lord De La Warr and the Council issues the legal code "Lawes Divine, Morall and Martial" (1612) which governs the colony until 1619.
June 4: Captain Argall captures Pocahontas and brings her to Jamestown as a hostage.
May 24(?): Colonist John Rolfe marries Pocahontas.
June 28: Rolfe ships his first load of tobacco to England.
June 3: Rolfe and Pocahontas (Rebecca) arrive in London.
The Virginia Company institutes the "headright" system, giving 50 acres to anyone who would pay fare and 50 additional acres for each person brought with him.
1617 Raleigh leads expedition to Guiana, South America First cargo of Virginia-grown tobacco reached England.
March 17: Pocahontas dies in Gravesend, England.
The "Great Migration" increases Jamestown's population from 400 to 4,500 but most die from disease, starvation, and Indian attack.
1618 Raleigh executed and buried at St. Margarets Church.
May: Powhatan dies.
October 29: Sir Walter Raleigh executed for treason in England.
July 30: Virginia House of Burgesses meets for first time.
July 30-August 4: The General Assembly meets in the choir of the Jamestown church; its first law requires tobacco to be sold for at least three shillings per pound.
August: Twenty blacks are purchased from a passing Portuguese slave ship bound from Luanda, Angola, to Vera Cruz. They may not have been the first, since some 32 Africans were noted five months earlier in a Virginia census of 1619.
Ninety young women are transported to Virginia to make wives for former tenants; the Virginia Company prices them at "one hundredth and fiftie [pounds] of the best leafe Tobacco". 1620
The Mayflower sails from Holland and England to America (Plymouth)
March 22: The Powhatan Indian Attack kills 347 colonists, setting off a war that lasted a decade.
December 20: The Abigail arrives with no food and an infectious load of passengers (?); plague and starvation reduce the colony to 500 persons; the colonists hold out hope for the arrival of the Seaflower
March 18: In Bermuda, the Seaflower is blown up due to the negligence of the Captain's son.
May: Captain William Tucker concludes peace negotiations with a Powhatan village by proposing a toast with a drink laced with poison prepared by Dr. John Potts; 200 Powhatans die instantly and another 50 are slaughtered.
September: William Strachey makes the last known reference to James Cittie; surveyor William Clayborne lays out the streets of New Towne, a suburb outside the old James Fort.
1624 Dutch settle in New Amsterdam
June: The Virginia Company loses its charter; Virginia becomes a royal province due to mismanagement of the colony.
1624 George Fox, founder of the Society of Friends (Quakers), born
Virginia becomes a royal colony with the governor and council appointed by King James I.
Charles I becomes King of England on the death of James I.
1625 Charles I ascends English throne
1628 Taj Mahal, India, built
1630 John Winthrop, English Puritan leader, founds Boston
John Smith dies in England at age 51 and is buried at St. Sepulchre without Newgate.
1632 Charles I issues charter for colony of Maryland (named in honor of Queen Henrietta Maria 1632 John Locke born
Christopher Wren born
1635 Colonization of Connecticut begins
1636 Roger Williams establishes Providence, Rhode Island and proclaims complete religious freedom
Harvard College founded in Massachusetts
1638 Anne Hutchinson sets up community in Rhode Island
Swedes settle on Delaware River
Evidence (?) of first slave markets in America.
1639 Increase Mather, American clergyman, born
First printing press in North America (Mass.) January 11: King Charles I grants colonists the right to call their General Assembly, thereby setting a precedent of partial self-rule for British colonies.
An estimated 1,000 or more indentured servants arrived each year, some orphans and condemned criminals but mostly the unemployed seeking economic opportunity.
1642 Montreal, Canada founded
February: Sir William Berkeley begins his term as Governor.
1642 English Civil War begins
Isaac Newton born
1643 Louis XIV of France ascends throne
April 18: Chief Opechancanough leads Indians in an attack, killing nearly 500 colonists.
October: A resident in Jamestown shoots Chief Opechancanough, a prisoner, in the back.
1646 English Civil War ends with victory of Puritan Roundheads
1648 George Fox founds Society of Friends (Quakers)
1649 The Iroquois destroy the Hurons and their Jesuit mission
January 31: Charles I is beheaded by Parliamentary forces under Oliver Cromwell. The English Commonwealth is established.
1649 Charles I beheaded; England declared a Commonwealth under Oliver Cromwell
1650 John Churchill, future Duke of Marlborough, born
Rene Descartes dies
First Indian Reservation is created near Richmond, Virginia.
Parliamentary fleet lies off island coast; Berkeley surrenders Virginia; Virginia government dominated by the House of Burgesses until 1660.
1658 Oliver Cromwell dies
1659 Henry Purcell, English composer, born
March 3: The Virginia Assembly elects Berkeley to Governorship.
May 29: The Monarchy is restored in England. Charles II assumes the throne.
1660 Restoration of Charles II and the Anglican Church in England
Virginia institutionalizes slavery with a law that makes the status of the mother determine slave or free status of the child.
1661 Charles II receives Tangier and Bombay as part of dowry from Catherine of Braganza, Portugal
Jamestown's status as mandatory port of entry for Virginia is ended.
1662 The English Book of Common Prayer revised
Louis XIV of France begins Palace of Versailles
The Royal Society receives charter from Charles II
1663 Cotton Mather, Mass. writer, born
Robert (King) Carter born
1664 British annex New Netherlands and rename New Amsterdam, New York 1664 The Trappist Order is founded in Normandy
1665 Great Plague of London begins
1666 Great Fire of London
1667 Milton's Paradise Lost
1669 South Carolina founded
1672 Marquette, Frenchman, explores north of Missouri near present day Chicago
1673 Marquette and Joliet reach headwaters of Mississippi and explore Arkansas
1674 William Byrd II born 1674 Isaac Watts, English hymn writer, born
Sir Christopher Wren begins rebuilding of St. Paul's Cathedral, London
Vivaldi, Italian composer, born
September 19: Nathaniel Bacon leads southside Virginians against the Indians and in violation of Governor Berkeley's wishes. He openly rebels against Berkley and burns Jamestown to the ground before dying of dysentery on October 26.
1677 William of Orange marries Princess Mary, daughter of the Duke of York
1678 La Salle explores Great Lakes
1680 French colonial empire, reaching from Quebec to mouth of Mississippi River is organized
1682 La Salle claims Louisiana territory for France and takes possession of Mississippi Valley
William Penn founds Pennsylvania on the basis of religious toleration
1683 Peace Treaty between William Penn and North American Indians First German immigrants come to North America
1684 Bermuda becomes crown colony
1685 James II ascends English throne
Louis XVI revokes the Edict of Nantes; exiles thousands of French Protestants
J. S. Bach born
Handel born
1687 The Parthenon in Athens badly damaged by Venetian bombardment of Turks on the Acropolis
1688 James II (Roman Catholic) driven from the English throne; William of Orange lands in England
Alexander Pope, English poet, born
1689 William and Mary crowned King and Queen of England
English Declaration of Rights
Peter the Great becomes Czar of Russia
Montesquieu, French philosopher, born
1693 College of William and Mary founded Kingston, Jamaica founded
1694 Queen Mary of England dies Voltaire, French philosopher, born
1697 Last remains of Maya civilization destroyed by Spanish in Yucatan, Mexico 1697 William Hogarth born
October 21: Jamestown's fourth statehouse burns.
The Capitol of Virginia moves from Jamestown to Williamsburg.
Jamestown Island has been given to two large plantations -- the Ambler and the Travis plantations; the bicentennial's focus is the mansion of the Travis plantation.
Association for the Preservation of Virginia's Antiquities (APVA) is created.
The brick church and the Ambler House are all that remains to indicate the past of Jamestown Island.
Mr. and Mrs. Edward E. Barney give 22.5 acres on Jamestown Island to the APVA.
The Tercentennial Celebration of Jamestown is held at Hampton Roads.
The Jamestown Exposition celebrates the 350th anniversary of Jamestown.
In Bermuda, the Sea Venture's contents are recovered and fully documented.
Celebration of the 400th anniversary of the founding of the nation to be held at Jamestown.

Note: The (?) mark beside some entries indicates uncertainty about the date or information. In some cases, sources give conflicting dates.

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