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Old Posted Oct 6, 2018, 1:58 PM
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hipster duck hipster duck is offline
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Actually, I wonder how much the lack of large, navigable rivers on the North American continent played a role in the slower advancement of pre-Columbian civilizations in North America.

There are some large rivers that travel quite far inland from the sea, like the Columbia and the Fraser, but they usually have formidable rapids or waterfalls that prevent easy shipment unless a civilization reaches a stage of advancement where they understand how to build a system of locks. It makes sense that the St. Lawrence would have been the site for the first permanent European settlement north of Latin America, and that the Lachine Rapids would have been the point at which those settlers would have elected to give up trying to move inland any further (hence the 150 year history gap west of Montreal and the language border, etc.).

I'm not a determinist when it comes to physical geography dictating civilizational advancement, but it does help a lot. On that front, our hulking land mass of a continent, with few navigable rivers or convenient peninsulas or inlets kind of got screwed.
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