During the 1200's the Aztecs journeyed from Aztlan to the Valley of Mexico. Other civilizations in the Valley considered the Aztecs to be nomads. Nomads are people that wonder from place to place without a home.
Because they were also considered to be barbarians or uncivilized by others, the Aztecs served as mercenaries in many different city-states.
Legend states that the Aztecs would know where to settle when they saw a sign from the Gods. This sign was and eagle perched on a cactus while eating a serpent. The Aztecs settled in the area and named their city Tenochtitlan.
The land they settled on was a swamp area. The Aztecs used floating gardens called chinampas to grow their crops on. Tenochtitlan was located in the middle of Lake Texcoco.
To get from place to place on the island, the Aztecs built a series of causeways and canals to make it easier to get around the city. The island was split into 4 parts by 4 large causeways leading in to the center of the island.
The Aztecs gained their power through trade. They traded a gooey algae called spirulina, as well as duck, fish, and the larvae of insects. Trading with other civilization helped the Aztecs rise to power.