Due to a severe winter and a type of mange affecting the fur of many European mammals, merchants seek out the rumored land west of Iceland.
They develop a fur business with the Indians, but discover that something they bring with them is killing the Indians ... smallpox. The immunization with cowpox becomes common place and the fur business continues. Colonization is delayed for many years. Many of the fur traders take Indian wives and have children. By the time real colonization takes place, there is a large number of Indian-foreigner adults who refuse to attack the Indians. Accommodations are worked out for the Indians' survival.