Before the European’s began to explore the Americas, people were already living in them. Groups such as the Mayas, Olmecs, and Incas lived in these lands. Their civilizations made many major achievements. Like all creatures, the peoples had to adapt to their surroundings. They found ways to live in demanding environments. The Moche lived in the dry Peruvian desert, which is broken by rivers. The Moche built a very elaborate system of irrigation canals that took the water from these rivers to their dry land. This made the soil fertile, and easy to plant on.
This achievement gave the Moche peoples food such as corn, avacado, and peanuts to survive on. After the Moche empire fell, the Inca came into power. The Inca brought the Andes together by building stone highways. Over 10, 000 miles of roads were built by these people. Every day 150 miles would be built. These highways along with Inca rulers helped keep the Inca empire together for a long time, but nothing great can last forever. After the decline of the Incas, the Olmec came into power. Once the Olmecs lost power a very prosperous group by the name of the Mayas came into power. The Mayas made many important accomplishments.
Other than building 80 great cities, the Maya created a calendar, very similar to the one we use today. This 365-day solar calendar was very practical. It was used for electing new leaders, such as we do, and also used to figure out the best time to plant crops, such as we use seasons. While studying ancient history, we often tend to focus on Europe, and Europe only. It is important to learn the achievements of other people. While everything in Europe was going on, other people in other parts of the world were making accomplishments of their own. These accomplishments have contributed much to the way we live today.