Colonial Differences from North to South

1 January 2017

During the 1700’s, many colonies began to show their true differences with one another. Although the colonies were settled by English origin only, the regions became two distinct societies within years. Of the colonies, the Chesapeake and the New England region were strongly diverse. The Chesapeake and the New England regions differed in the 1700’s because of religious debates that had occurred, different motives that were placed when going to the New World, and the different economies that had developed within the colonies.

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First, religious debates became a huge distinguishing factor in the two regions. During the 1700’s, Maryland was considered to be a Catholic Haven in the Chesapeake region. Founded by Lord Baltimore in 1634, Maryland quickly became the rescue place for Catholic-English men and women whom faced execution from Protestant England. Faced with death, the Catholics of Maryland stood behind the Act of Toleration that was passed in 1649. In John Winthrop’s document, “A model of Christian Charity”, he describes how each man needs to come together for religion.

God Almighty in his most holy and wise providence hath so disposed of the condition of mankind… we must knot together in this work as one man. ”(Document A). In Maryland’s Act of Toleration, the statute guaranteed all toleration to Christians. With the act, Maryland could be Catholic without a word being said. Unlike Maryland, The New England region had nothing to hide with religion. New England was mainly Puritan, spanning out of Calvinism. Predestination and “visible saints” were just two of many popular phrases used in the Puritan religion. Puritans believed in being predestined for heaven or hell when a said person was born.

Also, Puritans had the decision to be Separatists and Non-Separatists. Many Puritans were Non-Separatists, meaning they wanted to reform the Church of England but not completely break away from it. Along with Non-Separatists, Separatists were also common. Separatists were groups of people that wanted to completely break away from the Church of England. One of the most famous groups of Separatists was the Pilgrims. In the end, the colonies were very different religion and the differences in religion molded America’s freedom of religion. Next, another factor that made the two regions different, were the motives that were placed going to the olonies.

In the Chesapeake region, the Virginia Company was immediately put in place when they had arrived in Virginia. The Virginia Company was a joint stock company that had one motive in America; gold. After the defeat of the Spanish Armada, England was craving for outside profit and America was the answer. In John Smith’s document about Virginia, he describes what life was like revolving around gold. “There was no talk, but dig gold, wash gold, refine gold, load gold. ” (Document F). Although the gold process was almost a complete disaster within Jamestown, the colony became the first permanent settlement.

But, in the New England region, the English men and women were migrating to the New World for completely different reasons. First, the Separatists of England that were living in Holland to avoid royal English rule, departed to America. The Separatists, later known as Pilgrims, set off on the Mayflower. The original plan was to land off of the coast of Virginia. However, the Mayflower eventually made land fall in the New England region. Living off the land and poor, the Pilgrims became friends with local Native Americans and later, made their own government and set the foundation for the New England colony.

After the Massachusetts Bay colony was formed, the main motive of the colony was to build it full of life and families. As quoted in the “Articles of Agreement”, “2. We intend that our town shall be composed of forty families, rich and poor. ” (Document D). Known as the “Great Migration”, around twenty thousand Puritans migrated to the New England region from England. John Porter created a large list of Emigrants that were bound for New England.

A family decided to migrate and John Porter recorded it: “1. Joseph Hull, of Somerset, a minister, aged 40 years old. 2. Agnes Hull, his wife, aged 25 years. . Joan Hull, his daughter, aged 15 years old. Etc. ” (Document B). Many young families migrated from England to receive freedom of religion and break away from the clutches of royal England. Between gold, religious freedom and the “Great Migration”, the New England and Chesapeake had many different reasons for migrating to the New World. Lastly, the two regions became two separate worlds when economies began to develop. The Chesapeake region was known for one thing, and that was tobacco. Tobacco was vital to the colony’s economic foundations. A rich man’s crop, tobacco was very labor-demanding.

When indentured servants rebelled, African slaves were put to use and the Chesapeake became home to slaves. As well as labor, tobacco sparked plantations and the need for land. When slaves were imported, this became the splitting factor between the north and south. However, New England, with its’ cooler falls and winters, could never plant tobacco, especially with the historic New England “stony” soil. The “stony” soil prevented any farmers from successfully planting a lot of plants. New England’s economy thrived on shipbuilding, fishing, commerce and trading.

The region also contained dense forests, helping the shipbuilding industry skyrocket. Also, the economy was very organized and everything affected it. In the document of “Wage and Price Regulations in Connecticut”, they discuss the prices and wages being regulated so that the people of the colony can understand their religious callings. “.. in the interim recommends that all tradesmen and laborers consider the religious end of their callings which is that receiving such moderate profit as may enable them to serve God and their neighbors with their arts and trades comfortably.. ”. (Document E).

In the New England colony, everything was interconnected, including religion, economy and politics. The Chesapeake’s hot, humid weather enabled the farms to grow tobacco to form their economy. But, New England’s cooler weather enabled their workers to focus on shipbuilding, trading, and even religion. In conclusion, the two regions faced many differences within their cultures when compared. Their religions, motives, and economies were a few of the distinguishing factors. As the colonies prospered in their own individual ways, the differences grew larger and became two different societies.

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