A Pre-Columbian North American Timeline Planning Thread

Discussion in 'Alternate History Discussion: Before 1900' started by Alexander Helios, Jun 15, 2019.


Should I Write This Timeline?

Poll closed Jun 22, 2019.
  1. Yes!

    29 vote(s)
  2. No!

    2 vote(s)
  1. Psychomaker69 Well-Known Member

    Oct 13, 2017
    Speaking of Turkey's, I recall hearing something about them being domesticated three times in complete isolation from eachother North America alone so that's gonna be interesting
  2. Skraea Well-Known Member

    May 29, 2018
    On potential animal domesticates I know a lot of people theorize about the peccary and muskox,but there are other viable alternatives. The Andeans kept guinea pigs and a lot of their kin fit the criteria for domestication;fast breeding,fairly large size,(hell some like the capybara or paca are the size of pigs) are herbivorous and fairly docile. In fact I think the Arawak kept hutias and iguanas. The iguanas likewise are easily tamed,herbivorous,large lizards which would be a good source of protein in both meat and eggs. I believe the Aztec also kept axolotls which might could be exported to places like the Caribbean and Florida. I doubt Aridoamerica unless they develop ponds,but the Axolotl could be beneficial in the Gulf Region and maybe a little farther north like the Carolinas. And if it's possible,maybe a domestication of the rhea for the feathers and meat.
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2019 at 9:01 PM
  3. SenatorErnesto Well-Known Member

    Mar 24, 2017
    It being September and all, I am sure you have planned quite a bit and a lot is likely set in stone, but here are three more domesticate candidates I have thought of:

    Ring-tails - found across oasisamerica, were kept by miners and pioneers since they were easily tame-able and great at catching mice.
    Coatimundi - they are kept as exotic pets today, don't see why they cannot be kept as pets sooner, Im sure they can have some sort of helpful use
    Jaguarundi - perfect candidate for a endemic house cat in the Americas, and had a more northern range than something like the ocelot
  4. Alexander Helios Unofficial Algonkologist

    Jul 2, 2017
    Yes, apparently turkeys were very readily domesticated, although I believe they were only domesticated twice, once in Mesoamerica and once in Oasisamerica. ITTL, we'll see a third domestication in Borealamerica.

    Guinea pigs will spread out of the Andes, and we might see capybaras domesticated in the Caribbean.

    I have hutias as a possible domesticate in the Caribbean, though I'll admit I haven't done much research into iguana domestication. Do you have any species in particular?

    Axolotls are interesting. I'll have to look into it.

    Yeah, I have plans for Rhea domestication in the Pampas.

    They'll serve a good niche in Oasisamerica as verminators, since red foxes (the main verminators in Borealamerica) aren't available in the region.

    Though they can be domesticated, there isn't really a niche for them to serve.

    Could see them being domesticated as a verminator in Central and South America. I'll have to do some more research on them.
    Psychomaker69 and SenatorErnesto like this.
  5. WiLMS7111992 Member

    Aug 1, 2019
    How far north in the North American continent would South American domesticated critters like guinea pigs, capybaras, hutias and jaguarundis spread and common would they be? The deep south has the Mississippi and many other rivers, in addition to wetlands and bayous capybaras could live in, it is wet like the Amazon, but much colder, so how would the Capybaras adapt? Guinea Pigs and hutias are much smaller and could be kept in cages within houses during the colder months, locked and protected from rodent hunting household pets of course.

    Speaking of which, out of the verminators listed, Red foxes, ring-tails, coatis and jaguarundis, which would be the most popular and/or widespread throughout all the Americas? In Eurasia, cats are the most prominent pest control pets, surpassing ferrets in population and popularity within Europe, despite cats originating from Egypt and ferrets being domesticated in Europe. Also, when the Americas and Eurasia do come into contact, how would the verminators and their owners interact or compete? Jaguarundis and cats being felines with the same niche, American red foxes (domesticated and hunts pests) and European red foxes (wild and raids henhouses) being subspecies, etc.
    Alexander Helios likes this.
  6. Glory2Cabinda Well-Known Member

    May 16, 2019
    Axolotl cultivation out side of the Valley of Mexico is very difficult if the water they live in gets hotter then 74 degrees Fahrenheit they will die. How would you transport them carrying across them land in ceramic or wood water vessels is very hard. One adult needs about 20 gallons of water without beast of burden this would be every difficult and they need water colder then 74 degrees this water would go beyond that limit. Boat's solve the transport problem but not the temperature problem.
    Another question why would they go through all this trouble when their much better livestock available like water birds and rodents? and the wild population only live in the Valley of Mexico could they even survive in the wild outside it without the use of human technology?
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2019 at 9:29 PM
  7. Oldbill Well-Known Member

    Jan 2, 2015
    I don't know you need to introduce small mammals such as hutias and jaguaranduis to N. America. Groundhogs (woodchucks) can be kept as easily as pets as either of those, and they are native. It isn't out of the question to domesticate rabbits, and Raccoons have been and still are kept as pets.
  8. Alexander Helios Unofficial Algonkologist

    Jul 2, 2017
    They'll mostly be restricted to the Lower Mississippi Valley and adjacent areas. I can't see hutias spreading too far inland (we'll see them stay on the Gulf Coast), and guinea pigs could potentially spread further along the Eastern Seaboard. Jaguarundis won't make it to the Americas, and if they do, they'll be really uncommon.

    Capybaras in the Mississippi won't be too much of a problem, since they can adapt to this climate as it's not too much of a jump from the Caribbean. There's also records of people raising capybaras in the region in OTL.

    As for houses for animals, we'll see raised indoor pens for microlivestock.

    We'll see red foxes in Borealamerica, ring-tailed cats in Oasisamerica, and jaguarundis in Mesoamerica, Isthmo-Colombia, and the Circum-Caribbean. The coati won't be domesticated ITTL.

    Red foxes won't really interact with their counterparts in Europe as much, so the big competitor will be the cat. At first, cats will be mostly restricted to European settlers, but as they adopt wild rice agriculture, some of them will make the switch to red foxes, as they have been bred specifically for this type of farming for millennia.

    Jaguarundis and cats will be more interchangeable. I could see some jaguarundis making it to Europe as luxury pets.

    Ring-tail cats will be the dominant verminator in Oasisamerica, used by natives and Europeans alike, since they thrive in this climate.

    There'll be more, but that's the jist of what I have.

    Yeah, this basically sums up why widespread axolotl cultivation is improbable. We probably won't axolotls spreading ITTL.

    This is true, though we were mostly discussing domesticates in different areas of the Americas. They won't spread too far into the interior of North America, as they'll have microlivestock themselves.

    As for your suggestions for domesticated animals in the Americas, interesting. Do you have any further information on the domesticability of these animals? I have groundhog down as a possibility, but I haven't been able to find anything.
  9. WiLMS7111992 Member

    Aug 1, 2019
    Will some domesticated red foxes be imported to Europe as well? If so, how popular would foxes and jaguarundis be? Since some specialized breeds of foxes you mentioned have adapted to rice agriculture, do you think they could potentially be more popular in China and Japan where rice is the staple?

    How popular would Eurasian cats be among the natives in N. America, especially since jaguarundis wouldn't be common on the north.
  10. Tomislav Addai Well-Known Member

    May 13, 2017
    *Cannot believe his own eyes* .
    A "planning thread" has eleven pages. Such a space was used to make SIXTY-EIGHT chapters in the Dunes of the Desert timeline. Not mentioning maps and overviews
  11. SwampTiger Well-Known Member

    Aug 14, 2016
    This thread is a great resource for those writing within the general region and time frame. Thus, Alexander Helios has provided the community with a very useful resource, whether or not the planned timeline is completed.
  12. Talus I of Dixie We need to wank Venice

    Jun 17, 2019
    Mesquita-RJ, Brazil
    This thread literally have more pages that each of my two timelines

    Yep, i'll save this page if one day i decide to make my plan of an amazonic TL. But i still too excited to see that timeline posted and completed :rolleyes:
    barbarism and Alexander Helios like this.
  13. Alexander Helios Unofficial Algonkologist

    Jul 2, 2017
    Yes, foxes will catch on as luxury pets, especially among the Tudor aristocracy. Jaguarundis will be popular in Spain (Castile-Aragon), spreading into its possessions in Italy and beyond.

    Could be a possibility. I was referring more to wild rice agriculture specifically, though I could see domesticated red foxes in East Asia.

    There won't be a wide scale adoption of them as verminators, but I could see them being kept as pets by the ruling class.

    Lol. I never expected this thread to gain as much attention as it has either. I'm really glad it did, as everyone's posts have made the planning process much more enjoyable.

    Thanks! XD If anything comes out of this project, I hope it's this. Researching this timeline from scratch was a pain at first, so hopefully this thread can provide a good gateway for anyone wanting to know more about Pre-Columbian history.
  14. Alexander Helios Unofficial Algonkologist

    Jul 2, 2017
    It's crazy, isn't it? On a somewhat related note, can't wait for you to update Vive Les Marquis.

    Let's pray that'll be in the near future! I'm hyped.
    Talus I of Dixie likes this.
  15. Talus I of Dixie We need to wank Venice

    Jun 17, 2019
    Mesquita-RJ, Brazil
    Hehe, i'm actually working on it. The next chapter will be on Spain ;)
    Alexander Helios likes this.
  16. WiLMS7111992 Member

    Aug 1, 2019
    What kind of dog breeds would evolve in each region of the Americas, and how many breeds, how diverse will they be, and will some American native breeds become popular in Europe and vice-verca? In OTL, there were Alaskan malamutes and Salish wool dogs of the northwest, hairless Xolo dogs and chihuahuas of Mesoamerica, Chiribaya dogs and Peruvian hairless dogs of the Andes, as well as many other extinct breeds. Only a few of those breeds survived and became common in the modern era of OTL, meanwhile many standard pedigree "American" breeds (American bulldogs, American cocker spaniel, Labrador retrievers) were evolved from breeds of European origin.

    I had an idea for a dog in southern California and Oasisamerica called a 'snakehound', that have been bred to hunt rattlesnakes and other venomous snakes, or at least to keep them out of the house, would a breed like that be possible?
    Alexander Helios likes this.
  17. SwampTiger Well-Known Member

    Aug 14, 2016
    Given the size of the Carolina Dogs and the Xolos, up to 30 and 25 kg respectively, a larger working breed is possible.

    I would expect a weasel or ring-tail relative becoming the snake catcher. Better yet the peccary.
  18. Skraea Well-Known Member

    May 29, 2018
    On alternate dog breeds,there were the Hare Indian Dog and Tahtlan Bear Dog who are believed to have coyote lineage,some Californian tribes possibly the Chumash may'v domesticated the Gray Fox and the Fuegians kept domesticated warrahs.
    For iguana domestication,there's the green iguana and black spinytail iguana who are farmed and potentially the rock iguanas. The Chuckwalla of the Southwest is another prime candidate and was domesticated by the Seri,(Comcaac).
    Mayans may'v kept peccaries,so if that spreads out,then there's another source of protein.
    Depending on how far back you go,maybe the shrub-ox,an extinct musk-ox could be useful for a beast of burden,wool and of course meat.
    Chinchillas are farmed for their fur and they probably have a decent source of meat.
    Last edited: Sep 15, 2019 at 8:21 AM
    Alexander Helios likes this.
  19. Alexander Helios Unofficial Algonkologist

    Jul 2, 2017
    Good question. I'll try to answer as much as I can without spoiling too much.

    From the OTL species, we'll see Salish wool dogs spread into eastern North America (as part of a slightly different Proto-Algonquian migration). Xolos and techichis (the ancestors of the chihuahua) will spread into the Southeast with the proto-Muskogean migration out of Mesomerica. The Tahltan bear dog can spread into the subartic regions of North America. AFAIK, the Alaskan Malamute was introduced by the Eskimo-Aleut migrations from Siberia, but we will see them in the far North, likely via diffusion from Alaska to the Paleo-Eskimo.

    The most common dog in Borealamerica will be the Carolina dog (technically the domesticated species ancestral to the OTL feral variety, but same thing). Almost all further breeds will be derived from this species.

    On the topic of alternate breeds, we will see breeds specializing in specific tasks, as in the Old World. We'll see hunting dogs, herding dogs, guard dogs and a few more. Nothing too crazy. We'll also see lap dogs, though these species will be derived from the Mesoamerican dog breeds

    Interesting. It's possible, though ring-tail cats would already fill that niche.

    This. Dogs are very flexible when it comes to selective breeding.

    Are peccaries known for hunting snakes? If so, that's cool.

    I read somewhere that the Hare Indian Dog might have been a breed of domesticated coyote. If so, that'd be cool to explore. I do have a species of coydog being bred in the Great Plains.

    I've never heard of Chumash fox domestication, but I have read that they were considered sacred. If anything, we might see some island foxes being kept as pets by the nobility.

    Fuegian dogs will also survive ITTL. I could see them spreading into the Andes.

    Peccary domestication might occur, it's one of the things I go on and off about. We'll have to wait and see.
    They went extinct 11500 BP, which is long before the POD (about 7500 years to be exact, though it's very vague). The modern musk ox will work just fine.

    I have a lot of microlivestock as it is, so I'll leave it at maybe.
  20. Oldbill Well-Known Member

    Jan 2, 2015
    Family lore. I come from a mixed Appalachian/Cherokee background. Dad had a groundhog for a pet as a kid. I had a possum, skunk, a pair of Red Tailed Hawks and assorted dogs, cats and such as a kid. My cousin had Racoons. The Turkey domestication came from both sides of the family.

    EDIT: We had hogs as a kid. To a hog a snake is simply another type of food. They will readily eat Copperheads. Rattlesnakes? I don't know. Copperheads have short fangs, and generally wont penetrate the fat layer of a hog. I'm not sure about Peccaries, you'll need to consult a wildlife biologist or manuals for the SW to find that out.