Sections: Pre-Contact America | Explorations and Encounters | Aftermath of the Encounter 

Christopher Columbus’s voyages began a centuries-long series of encounters between peoples of the Americas and Europe. The Kislak Collection includes a selection of dramatic objects and records that reflect this complicated and extraordinary epoch. This section presents materials from the voyages of exploration of Christopher Columbus (1451–1506), Hernán Cortés (1485–1547), and Francisco Pizarro (ca. 1475–1541) and material about the natives of the Americas they encountered. It also features the Conquest of Mexico paintings, created in the seventeenth century, which depict the cataclysmic encounter between Cortés and the conquistadors and Moctezuma and his people.