Q:

Who found North America?

A:

Quick Answer

Many people think Christopher Columbus discovered North America in 1492. However, archaeological evidence surfaced in 1960 that proved that the Vikings, specifically an explorer named Leif Eriksson, discovered North America nearly 500 years prior, in 1,000 A.D.

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Full Answer

At L’Anse aux Meadows in Newfoundland, Canada, archaeological evidence, including several clearly Icelandic-style house foundations and Viking and Norse artifacts, were discovered. This proved that Vikings had found and briefly settled the area. This discovery is echoed in Icelandic legends regarding Lief Eriksson. In the legends, he was said to have discovered North America either by accidentally veering off course while returning to his home in Norway, or on purpose by setting sail for the "strange lands" witnessed by the Icelandic trader Bjarni Herjolfsson.

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