Archaeology Magazine Archive

A publication of the Archaeological Institute of America

Special Introductory Offer!
Images of Conquest Volume 50 Number 4, July/August 1997
by Geoffrey Conrad, John Foster, Charles Beeker, Lynn Uhls, Mark Brauner, Marcio Veloz Maggiolo, and Elpidio Ortega

[image]A pictograph from the José Maria Cave in the Dominican Republic may represent a Spanish caravel. (Courtesy Charles Beeker) [LARGER IMAGE]

The Indians who welcomed Christopher Columbus to the island of Hispaniola have become known as the Taíno, after a word that meant "good" or "noble" in their own language. Columbus wrote of them that there were "in all the world no better people." Despite his words of admiration, relations between Europeans and Indians soon deteriorated, and by 1525 the Taíno had been wiped out by disease and warfare. New investigations at a large Columbus-period Taíno settlement and a number of caves with rock art and evidence of habitation are expected to add significantly to our understanding of this extinct culture.

* Abstract of companion article: "Medieval Foothold in the Americas," by Kathleen Deagan and José M. Cruxent

© 1997 by the Archaeological Institute of America