For hundreds of years, explorers had heard tales of a city so high that clouds always hid it. In 1911, Yale professor Hiram Bingham found Machu Picchu and later wrote about it in National Geographic. Bingham has often been compared with Indiana Jones in Raiders of the Lost Ark. The “Lost City of the Incas” is now easily reached by railroad. Every year, thousands of tourists flock to what has become the most familiar icon of the Inca civilization.
In 1532, Francisco Pizarro conquered the Incas and claimed their land for Spain. By that time, the glory of the Inca empire had faded. Huayna Capac and his eldest son died only a few days apart in 1527, possibly from smallpox. The European disease had reached the Andes even before the arrival of the first Spanish conquistadors.
The Inca Empire fell into the hands of Huayna Capac’s younger sons, who fought a civil war that weakened the empire. Wracked by disease and divided leadership, the Incas were no match for the guns and cannons of their invaders.
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Lexile Measure 910L
Mean Sentence Length 13.74
Mean Log Word Frequency 3.52
Word Count 632
Mr. Donn has an excellent website that includes a section on Native Americans.