How certain are we that our famous European discoverers of America - the Columbuses, Vespuccis and their like - were actually the first discoverers of America? Claims for first discovery of America rightly belong to unnamed people in the prehistoric archaeological record. The arrival of Europeans in America stemmed from centuries of ever-widening circles of Atlantic sailing, led initially by Irish, Norse, and Basque mariners, ensuring that European discoveries of America were an inevitable outcome by the end of the 15th century. Early landfalls on the two American continents were piecemeal, guided significantly by the facts of global latitudes. Final popular accountings of who first discovered America in its diverse continental parts has been driven more by political interest than straightforward geographical and historical facts.