Chesapeake and New England Colonies' Developmental Differences Essay

Submitted By HistoryHelp19
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Pages: 4

Chesapeake and New England Colonies’ Developmental Differences By the 1700s the New England and Chesapeake colonies had vast differences in their societies and in their development, even though they were settled by people of mostly English origin. The colonies had political, economic, social and religious differences as well as differences in their founding and climate that lead to the formation of these two distinct regions. The New England and the Chesapeake colonies were unalike each other in many ways. The first reason for the difference in development between the Chesapeake and New England colonies was that they were founded for entirely opposite purposes and under different climates. The New England colonies were founded for religious purposes. Since the Puritans were unhappy with the slow reform in the Anglican Church in England, a group called the Separatists broke away from the church and founded the Plymouth colony. The goal was to create a new place to worship without being persecuted. Connecticut was also founded in order to create a closer church-government alliance, however Rhode Island was the exception. Rhode Island was founded by Roger Williams to protest against the Puritans and give freedom of worship within the colony.On the other hand, the Chesapeake colonies were founded for economic purposes. Jamestown was founded for the search of gold, and James Rolfe discovered tobacco in Virginia which came to be a staple crop. There were no Puritans, but instead plenty of indentured servants who came to the colonies to start an economic life for themselves. Similar to New England there was one colony within the region that was an exception, in the Chesapeake colonies Maryland was the exception. Maryland was founded to be a safe haven for Catholics, but was also economically geared toward indentured servitude and was a major competitor with Virginia for tobacco. New England’s climate had long winters and rocky soil which was poor for farming, this in turn affected their economy and farm organization. The Chesapeake climate was hot and had fertile soil that was perfect for growing tobacco, because of these great farming conditions their economy was also affected and as well as community organization. Due to the different climates of the two regions, political and economic differences evolved which is the second reason for their differences in development. Because of the fact that New England was colder and had poor farming conditions there were mostly small farms with no plantation owners or slaves. Because there were small scale farms, the region turned to an industry based economy, with more major cities as a result of manufacturing, shipbuilding, fishing, lumber,etc. Compact towns were created and town meetings were often held, making New England more democratic. The Chesapeake economy was based primarily on agriculture. Large plantations and staple crops, such as tobacco, rice and indigo, were a result of this agriculture based economy. With large plantations there was little industry in this region. Because of the small amount of industry Charleston, South Carolina is the only big city that formed in the region. The Chesapeake colonies’ political legislative was owned by aristocrats and there were county governments spread out across the land, which created unhappiness in the backcountry farmers who felt they were being underrepresented. Lastly,…