Top Ten Groups Most Likely to Have Crossed the Atlantic Before Christopher Columbus

Christopher Columbus is probably the most overrated person in history. He was known for “being the first man to cross the Atlantic” in 1492, and a wise and generous soul. In reality, he was a cruel man who abused his crew mates (on his ship), claimed all the credit, and killed or persecuted the indigenous people he met there. It turns out that he actually wasn’t even the first to cross the Atlantic, which is obvious because how else would North America have been populated when he got there. But who are these people who got there before him? Here are the top ten groups with evidence that they were there before him.
The Top Ten
1 The Vikings

This is perfectly proven, while only a few of the others have absolutely sound proof. It's 100% certain that Vikings reached North America way before Columbus did. A Viking saga (a story) tells how Leif Erikson reached a land after a long journey that he called "Vinland."

Archeological evidence in Newfoundland, Canada, or as they called it, "Vinland," shows that they did actually cross the ocean. They seemingly sailed on longboats from Western Sweden and curved slightly down before reaching Newfoundland. If you live in Boston, you should know the statue of Leif Erikson, and if you haven't but have read the book series Magnus Chase, you'll know it as well.

2 Prehistoric French

Similarities in stone tools and DNA evidence show that French cavemen likely crossed the Atlantic over 15,000 years ago. It seems that they traveled in canoes along the edge of the Arctic Ice Sheet.

While it's very likely that they made it across, there's also a theory that suggests the Indigenous people in North America are descendants of the French, due to similarities in DNA, appearance, and tools (for example, the canoes).

If you think about it, Columbus made it across in 1492. So, the Prehistoric French made it across 14,492 years before he did, which is pretty crazy considering that he only arrived a few hundred years ago.

3 Ancient Romans

This is one of the most interesting ones, and though it's not 100% certain, it's definitely very likely. A clearly Roman ceramic was found near Mexico City in Mexico, and Roman coins were also unearthed in Indiana and Ohio.

Some people speculate that the coins were brought much later, in the past few centuries, but studies have shown that they are, in fact, quite old. Those Romans certainly got around.

I wonder if it's possible that, assuming the Romans did arrive, they spread the stories of their gods, which caused the Indigenous people in that area to believe in their own gods.

4 Ancient Jews
5 The Welsh
6 Kennewick Men

This is one of the ones with the most proof, and yet it's still unclear where they came from. The bones of a man who lived 9,000 years ago were unearthed in Kennewick, Washington, on the banks of the Columbia River, dubbing him the "Kennewick Man."

More bones were found later in a similar area. No one knows where he came from, but reconstruction of his face revealed that he looked more like modern-day Europeans, unlike the other groups who crossed, leading us to believe this group of people was European but not one of the ones already mentioned.

7 German Explorers

In 1473, a couple of decades before Columbus began his travels, a German sea captain called Didrik Pining was sent by the Danish king to lead an expedition to discover a northern route to Asia. It seems he instead reached Labrador, Canada.

His story resembles Columbus quite a bit, and you may be wondering why he didn't receive credit for it. It's because Columbus reported back, whereas Didrik Pining, while he did reach Labrador, never sent word back. For all we know, he died soon after reaching his accidental destination.

8 The Portugese

Technically, they were "Basque" fishermen, not exactly Portuguese. There was a massive codfish die-off in waters close to Europe, and these guys were the best in the world, so they made it all the way over to at least the Grand Banks in their search for codfish.

They had it [codfish] for sale when nobody else had it. There is a bit of evidence that Columbus knew about it too.

A Portuguese sailor named Joao Vaz Corte-Real was given the title "Discoverer of the Land of Codfish" in 1472, one year before Didrik Pining was sent on his mission.

Newfoundland is famous for its cod, and from other evidence and speculation, it's quite likely that he had reached the Canadian coast, or "The Land of the Codfish."

9 English Fishers

Apparently, English fishermen had been fishing off the coast of New England (which, if you didn't know, is the place where the six states of Maine, Vermont, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Connecticut, and Rhode Island reside).

It's very likely that an explorer you may have heard of, who we've already mentioned, named Christopher Columbus, had heard of the existence of North America from these fishers.

I think this is pretty much guaranteed. America was a rumored location because of Vikings and fishermen.

10 Mali Empire

According to Columbus, the Native Americans stated themselves that black people had come all the way from West Africa with gold and many gifts. The Mali Empire is a West African civilization and the only human civilization on record to have made an attempt to "sail past the Atlantic" before Columbus.

They sailed the journey with gold and many gifts (coincidence?). It makes perfect sense that they got there way before Columbus.

The Mali Empire is officially the first civilization to make an attempt to cross the Atlantic. There is a wind that blows sailors from West Africa to Brazil. It is very likely Mali landed in America.

On top of that, Mali could deploy advanced ships as long as 100-200 meters and very wide to accommodate personnel in the thousands. All ships were equipped with sails.

The Contenders
11 Irish Saints

Documents from as far back as the ninth century (800s AD) state that an Irish saint named Saint Brendon crossed the Atlantic in the fifth century on a leather boat.

This may seem extremely far-fetched, but in 1977, a replica boat was built and tested, and amazingly, it proved that everything about the story was possible.

12 Ancient Chinese
13 The Russians
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