Saturday, September 15, 2018

Irish in the Americas, Mexico and Guatemala Go To War, and French Protestant South Africa

More goodies from the alternate history forum. Although I've been self-banned from posting for the last three years--all the better to focus on my writing--I still go by every so often to see if there's something interesting.

And behold, here are some new alternate-history scenarios!

In this one, the seagoing Irish monk St. Brendan makes his way to what would become Canada (much like how the Vikings did later on) and kicks off Irish settlement of the New World many centuries in advance. A trans-Atlantic trade in exotic furs is enough to fund everything and we start seeing Britons fleeing the oncoming Saxons traveling across the seas as well as Irish. Although the Native Americans are still vulnerable to European diseases, the Irish settlement is on a much smaller scale and is much less organized, so they still have a fighting chance.

(Yes, I know it sounds absolutely insane, but someone actually built the kind of boat St. Brendan would have used and sailed to Canada from Ireland. Think Thor Heyerdahl and the Kon-Tiki Expedition to show the Polynesians could have traveled to South America or South Americans could have traveled to Polynesia.)

 And this discussion here features a war breaking out between Mexico and Guatemala in the late 1950s. I'm not really familiar with Latin American history from that period, but it seems plausible and well-researched. And in real life El Salvador and Honduras got into a shooting war over soccer, so it's not like wars in the region haven't been started over less.

Finally, here's a timeline I found the other day featuring French Protestants colonizing South Africa. I'm not familiar with the French Wars of Religion beyond some of the different noble houses involved and how the Protestants essentially won but their leader converted to Catholicism in order to actually govern, but it seems pretty legitimate and detailed. The Huguenots (French Protestants) seem generally more decent to the natives than the Boers were (hiring them as free laborers on their farms rather than enslaving them), so perhaps the region's racial history will be a bit more pleasant.

So if you're wondering how history could have gone differently and you want something a little more exotic than "what if the South won the Civil War" and "what if Hitler won WWII," come check these out. They're fun.

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