1. Compare and contrast the New England and middle colonies in terms of motives for founding, religious and social composition, economic foundations, and political development.(Brady)



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1. Compare and contrast the New England and middle colonies in terms of motives for founding, religious and social composition, economic foundations, and political development.(Brady)
The New England and middle colonies had similar and different motives for their founding. The colonies were similar because all the colonists were seeking a better life. Some similarities for their founding is religion. The Puritans found the New England colonies for religious freedom because at that time the only religion that was acceptable in England was Anglicanism. The middle colony of Pennsylvania was also founded for religious freedom. The Quakers were tired of being persecuted by the Puritans. The difference between the New England colonies and the middle colonies is that besides Pennsylvania, the middle colonies were founded mainly for economic purposes. The Swedes found Delaware solely for economic gain. The Dutch founded New York for economical purposes as well. Socially all the colonies were similar in the fact that most colonists were not very wealthy at the start of the colonies. Also the colonies started off at peace with the Native Americans that did not last. The Puritans in the New England colonies eventually started expanding more westward which led to bloody conflicts with the Indians. In the middle colonies the Dutch classed with the Indians. In Pennsylvania the Quakers managed to maintain peace with the Native Americans till more and more people immigrated to Pennsylvania that did not follow the Quaker ways. This also led to conflicts with Indians. The political development of all these colonies were similar because once it became a Royal colony a Royal governor was established. These are the similarities and differences between the New England colonies and the Middle colonies.
2. How did the Puritans’ distinctive religious outlook and church organization shape the politics, society, and culture of Massachusetts Bay and most of the other New England colonies?(Kurt)
The Puritans' outlook on religion was extreme especially in the case of the Separatists and this outlook on religion greatly shaped the politics, society, and culture of Massachusetts Bay and all of the New England colonies. Puritans believed in "Predestination" which stated that stated all men and women born were already chosen to go to Heaven or Hell. The Puritan Reform of the English Church under the rule of King James I along with the harassment of the Separatists by the King was enough to push the Separatists to search for a safe Haven to express their Religious outlook on life. The Separatists first traveled to Holland but left for Virginia because they wanted their children to grow up English instead of Dutch. The Separatists attempted to travel to Virgina but landed off the coast of New England. They then searched for a feasible place to live and found refuge in Plymouth which would eventually become part of the Massachusetts Bay colony. The puritan views on religion largely was instrumental in the shaping of politics in the New England colonies because it was a "Bible Commonwealth" which was a Democracy (much like our own) but was run on "Biblical Principles" but although it was a Democracy, Massachusetts Bay allowed only 40% of it's men to vote and none of its women. This had a great hand in the shaping of the Democratic government used in many New England colonies. The impact on society that was largely due to to the strict religion based laws in the mainly Puritan land were all created to fit Puritans themselves so anyone not practicing anything like Calvinism was very much out of there place which is why many people were exiled from the Massachusetts Bay colony such as Anne Hutchinson, and Roger Williams this social impact helped form the laws in other New England Colonies that allowed for Religious Freedom. The cultural impact that the Puritans had on the New England colonies was great. It included their views on using Native Americans as slaves which they were against. The Massachusetts Bay Puritans had very good "white-Indian" relations for many years until the Pequot War broke out which disbanded almost any trace of friendliness between the two races. The Puritans' religious outlook was a unique one and it pushed many of them, like the Separatists out of there home but they prospered and created many of the cultural, society related, and political views that were used in the New England colonies back then as well as today.
3. “The dissent from Puritanism was as important in the formation of New England as Puritanism itself.” How valid is this statement? Defend your answer. (Shelby)
Answered by: Shelbey Patterson

This statement is valid because the dissent from Puritanism helped shape New England as we know now know it. The dissent resulted in the creation of the rebellion which ensured our freedom from British rule. Also those who dissented led to the discovering of Rhode Island which had a different approach on religious freedom from the allowance and acceptance of religious freedom in Massachusetts. Rhode Island was created mainly for those who were dissenters and longed for freedom. In New England there were colonies that represented the Puritan goal and colonies that did not support Puritanism. In conclusion, I believe that this statement is valid.
4. Did the Puritans really come to America seeking religious freedom? How did they reconcile their own religious dissent from the Church of England with their persecution of dissenters like Hutchinson and Williams? Does their outlook make them hypocrites? (Robert)
The Puritans did leave for America seeking religious freedom. When they came to America, they wanted a church that was rid of all the similarities to Catholicism. They showed how much they were like the Church of England because they persecuted those with radically different beliefs like Hutchinson believing it did not matter if you led a holy life and Williams not believing government should control religion. I do not believe this makes them hypocrites because they left to form their own system so it makes sense to kick out people who would destroy that system. So they did come for freedom, and were protecting themselves from "dangerous" opinions from Williams and Hutchinson.
6.What economic, social, and ethnic conditions typical of the early southern colonies were generally absent in the New England and middle colonies? What characteristics did the middle colonies have that were not generally present in the South?(Alex)
In the southern colonies the economy was based around large one crop plantations growing tobacco, rice and indigo. Socially there were the institutions of indentured servitude and slavery. Ethnically most of the south was English even though there were some Scots and Germans in Georgia along with some other ethnicities. The population later shifted in most of these colonies to be mostly African due to the influx of slaves needed for farming on plantations. The middle colonies were different. Economically most of the people were craftsmen or had trades. Further west in these colonies there was also farming but on smaller scale than plantations. Socially New York maintained a social hierarchy that was rooted in the more powerful English families. In Pennsylvania there was a great amount of toleration for all religions and for a while there was a peaceful relationship between the Pennsylvanians and the Native Americans. There was a large amount of English colonists but there were also some Dutch and Swedes who'd been settled around New York and New Jersey before the English took over. William Penn had Pamphlets made in multiple languages to advertise Pennsylvania to people from different European counties so a great deal of different types of people settled there.
7. Describe and analyze the English government’s relationship with New England and the middle colonies during the course of the seventeenth century. Was an American Revolution, separating the colonies from England, inevitable after the Glorious Revolution had encouraged colonists to end the Dominion of New England, England’s serious attempt at enforcing royal authority? Did England’s “salutary neglect” contribute to future problems in its empire? How might have England been able to successfully enforce its rule on the colonies without causing rebellion? (Laura)
During the seventeenth century, England's relationship with the New England colonies was strained from the beginning of settlement, while England's view of the middle colonies was a lot less strict. The relationship between the monarchs of England and the Puritans who settled in New England was negative, starting when Calvinism shaped the Puritans' thoughts of how church should be conducted. When the Separatists vowed to break from the Church of England, King James I was offended and felt that the group could deny him as a political leader as well a leader of the national religion. When Parliament was dismissed in 1629, a group of the Puritans secured a royal charter to establish a settlement in Massachusetts, although that charter was revoked when Charles II ascended to the throne. He had contempt for these colonies and felt that England needed to have a stricter management of them, which was mostly felt in Massachusetts. Navigation laws also made the colonies' trade tighter with England during the Dominion of New England. In contrast, the middle colonies had a more harmonious relationship with England. Charles II owed William Penn's father money, which led to the settling of Pennsylvania. Pennsylvania's ideas of tolerance of religion spread to New Jersey and Delaware. The American Revolution was inevitable because after the Glorious Revolution, incompetent Englishmen were sent to control the colonies, which resulted with more resentment as the years went on from the colonies. The salutary neglect, which was when royal control over the colonies lessened, resulted in America's more independent thoughts and resentment as the century went on. England could have worked with American political leaders instead of enforcing their rule with corrupt Englishmen that gave the colonists little say in their own government. The relationship between England's government and the colonies during the seventeenth century was one of an inevitable clash as the colonies were not simply a part of England, but a society of different heritages, environment, and ambitions.
8. How does the founding of the New England colonies compare with the origin of the middle colonies? In what ways were New England and the middle colonies each like the South, and in what ways were they different? (Sperl)

The founding of the New England colonies and middle colonies had some similarities but were different in many ways. The founding of the colony of Pennsylvania was similar to the founding of New England as both were founded for religious reasons. Pennsylvania was established as a haven for the Quaker religion while the New England colonies were founded for religious freedoms for the Puritans. The origin of the middle colonies differed from the New England colonies. New England was created by the Puritans for religious freedom. The Puritans only wanted 'visible saints' to attend church service so they split from the Church of England and eventually landed in America. The middle colonies were created for Dutch economic gain. They sent Henry Hudson to explore land in America where he set up a Dutch claim. The Dutch established New Netherland as a quick-profit fur trade. The New England and middle colonies had more differences than similarities with the southern colonies. The New England, middle, and southern colonies were similar in that they all had bad relations with the Native Americans. The New England and middle colonies differed from the southern colonies as the South depended on a one-crop economy, while the New England colonies and middle colonies were industry based. The one-crop economy led to the need for labor which was used by African slaves. The plantation system made the South more scattered. The New England and middle colonies were based on industries where slavery was not needed. These colonies were more close-knit. These colonies were all united under one country but each of the three sections of colonies were very different.


9. How were government and religion—or church and state—related in New England and the middle colonies? How does the colonial view of these matters compare with more recent understandings? (Nick)
Church and state were related in the middle colonies and in New England. This is because the middle colonies and New England started as a refuge for certain religious groups. The people who founded these colonies based there laws on religious principles. Some of the colonies though, were set up to tolerate all religions. In the New England colonies church and state were closely related. For instance, in some New England colonies only members of a religious group could vote and go to town meetings because of laws centered on that religious group. In the middle colonies the relationship between church and state was more separate. You didn't have to be in a certain religious faction to enjoy the rights of others. The colonial view of the matter of church and state helped us set up a government with a separation of the two. We learned from the mistakes of having a too closely related church and state government because with it people would not be equal.
11 . How does the idea of America as a “new world” different from England? Was there a fundamental difference between those Englishmen who essentially tried to re-create their old way of life and those who saw life in America as a radical departure? What tensions might have resulted between these two groups? (Gavin)
Tensions existed in the English colonies between those who wished to maintain the traditional English ways of life and those who wished for a fresh start free from the constraints of English society. This first became evident in the southern colonies, especially in North Carolina. Virginia and South Carolina were colonies defined by large plantations owned by wealthy landholders and possessed a heavily aristocratic atmosphere, much like England. This monopoly on land forced many small farmers to grow their crops elsewhere, much like how the enclosure system in England had forced many farmers to relocate to America in the first place. These displaced farmers, accompanied by religious minorities of varying types, found themselves in North Carolina, where they began growing tobacco as squatters with no legal right to the land in order to escape the lack of opportunity in the aristocratic colonies of the south. Another example of the clash of old vs new in colonial America was Maryland, which was originally founded as a safe haven for English Catholics who were being oppressed in England at the time. Tensions in Maryland began to worsen over time as more Protestants arrived in the colony due to the anger over Catholic control of the colony's affairs and lack of rights for Protestants. This unease eventually forced the increasingly outnumbered Catholics to allow for tolerance towards other sects of Christianity, thus securing an uneasy peace between Catholics and Protestants. Another example of differences between English traditionalists and those seeking a new start in the colonies was Pennsylvania, which was founded as a haven for the Quakers. The Quakers, who were the founders of Pennsylvania, differed greatly from other English colonists in that they were pacifists. This pacifist state of mind led the early Pennsylvanians to seek amiable relations with the local Native American population, ass opposed to the other English colonies which had sought to enslave or obliterate the native tribes in their respective areas. This period of peace with the Native Americans did not last long, as colonists who did not share the Quakers' pacifist views began to enter the colony and quickly began battling the Indians for territory as they spread westward. The English colonies of North America proved to be rife with religious, social and economic tensions as varying ways of life and motivations for colonization found themselves colliding in the New World.
12. Was an American Revolution separating the colonies from England inevitable after the Glorious Revolution had encouraged colonists to end the Dominion of New England, England's serious attempt at enforcing royal authority? Did England's "salutary neglect" contribute to future problems in its empire? How might have England been able to successfully enforce its rule on the colonies without causing rebellion? (Nicole)

An American Revolution separating the colonies from England after the Glorious Revolution, encouraging colonists to end the Dominion of New England was England's serious attempt at enforcing royal authority. Even after King Charles II was over thrown in the Glorious Revolution of 1688-1689, English officials came to the Americas and tried to gain control of the leaders, courts, and positions of political power. England's "salutary neglect" did contribute to future problems in its empire due to the fact that trade with countries not under the English crown was not taken seriously and was weakly enforced after the Glorious Revolution. To prevent a rebellion, England could have not established the Navigation Laws, not made Sir Edmund Andros head of the Dominion of new England, and English officials could have not staffed the courts, preventing any American leader from rising to political power due to their presence. England's attempt at enforcing royal authority was successful due to the colonists being encouraged to over throw Andros because of the English Glorious Revolution and an American Revolution separating the colonies from England.


13 . Dutch colonization efforts in New Amsterdam most closely resembled English colonization efforts in which region: New England, the middle colonies, or the southern colonies? The Dutch had a powerful presence in the East Indies, so why were the Dutch less successful in the West Indies and North America? What is the lasting influence of the Dutch in English North America? (Tommy)
The Dutch began colonization efforts in the New World in 1623-1624 on Manhattan Island and called it New Amsterdam. The colonization efforts of New Amsterdam mostly resemble that of the New England colonies. They are alike because much like the start of the first New England colonies, New Amsterdam did not have many civil rights such as religious toleration, freedom of speech, nor did they like democratic practices. So with this many dissenters were not accepted well and other religions such as the Quakers were brutally treated. Also the Dutch colony, like the New England colonies, did not have good relations with the Indians for the colonists were at the center of gruesome massacres. Now as the Dutch had a huge presence in the East Indies with the East India Company, the West India Company in the West Indies was not as successful. One of the reasons for this is the West India Company was mostly just a side project of the East India Company so not full attention was given to it. Also the Dutch were one of the last countries to put its influence in the New World and in the Caribbean. They had stiff competition with the Spanish and English who were already there in the sugarcane industry, whereas in the East Indies the Dutch were one the only countries with their full focus there while the other countries were in the New World. Also up north in New Netherlands they were focused in fur trapping which did not generate as much profit as agriculture or trading in the East Indies. That's mostly why the West India Company was not as successful. And although the Dutch were only in America for a short time they left an everlasting influence. For example during the time they were on Manhattan island they established patroonships along the Hudson River which gave an aristocratic feel to it that is still noticeable to this day in parts of New York City. Also with patroonships they brought many people to Manhattan which created a melting pot of different ethnicities which is also noticeable to this day. And some smaller things left by the Dutch that still have a major relevance in today are Santa Claus, Golf, Easter Eggs, and much more. So despite their short lived time in the New World the Dutch left an everlasting influence in America.
14. In what ways were the middle colonies of New York more “open” and diverse than New England? In what ways were they less democratic? (Megan)

The middle colonies of New York were more diverse than those of New England, but at the same time were less democratic than their New England counterparts. Not unlike Savannah and Charleston, New Amsterdam's (later NYC) city atmosphere attracted a large array of peoples foreshadowing New York City's distinct nature of being a haven for the persecuted and homeless. The Dutch left their mark on the culture in the colonies of New York even after England claimed New Netherlands as their own. New England was far less diverse due to the strong religious convictions prevalent in this region. Puritans (with the exception of Rhode Island) lived in close communities that shared very similar opinions and any dissenters were forced out such as Anne Hutchinson. The New England colonies, however, were able to be far more democratic than the middle colonies of New York. These close communities held many town meetings that allowed either adult male Puritans or landowners to discuss and vote on issues as well as vote for provincial representatives. After the Dutch were forced out of New Netherlands, they left behind aristocracy and tyrannical leadership. Families who owned immense amounts of land held a much higher status than everyone else. This hindered New York from developing as a democratic society. Religion in New England kept those colonies from being as diverse as the middle colonies of New York, but it also helped them become much more democratic than New York at the same time.


15 . How did different events in England affect the New England and middle colonies in the New World? Which was the most affected and least affected by events in the Old World: New England, middle colonies, or southern colonies? (Mackenzie)
The New England and Middle Colonies in the New World were affected by different events in the Old World. The events in England that affected the New England Colonies were when King Henry VIII broke away from the Roman Catholic Church and made himself the head of the Church of England, the Protestant Reformation changed how some people felt about religion, and King James I threatened to ban Separatists. These events affected the New England Colonies because they gave people reasons to come to the New World and have religious freedom. This shaped religious beliefs in the New England Colonies. The events in England that affected the Middle Colonies were when Quakers refused to pay taxes to support the Church of England and William Penn joined the Quakers and received a land grant for Pennsylvania from the King. This affected the Middle Colonies because it formed Pennsylvania and shaped their religious beliefs as well. The New England Colonies were affected the most because the colonists were driven by wanting to have religious freedom and their separation from the Church caused some Quakers and others to be treated poorly. The Southern Colonies were affected the least because they were driven by wanting to gain wealth and they didn't have or set religious beliefs based on these events in England because they were settled beforehand. Different events in England affected the New England and Middle Colonies in the New World.
17 . “The dissent from Puritanism was as important in the formation of New England as Puritanism itself.” How valid is this statement? Defend your answer. (Hannah)
The statement that " dissent from Puritanism was as important in the formation of New England as Puritanism itself" is valid if we look at the relationship between Puritanism and New England throughout early history. The Puritans that founded the New England colony, although they wanted separate themselves from the Church of England, did not believe in religious freedoms and cast away those who didn't believe in Puritanism. Anne Hutchinson was seen as a threat to Puritans and was banished away from the Massachusetts colony in 1637 for Hersey . This was just the beginning of dissent from the Puritan ways. Roger Williams big idea of separation of church and state landed him in very hot water with the Puritans. Puritanism was based on allegiance of church and state whereas Williams believed in religious freedom. Roger Williams idea was intolerable in Puritan society and he soon was banished. Williams then created Rhode Island in 1636 and exemplified religious freedom in the New World. Many Puritan dissenters migrated to this colony including Anne Hutchinson and were granted with the freedoms they had longed for in the Massachusetts colony. Puritan dissent created and shaped the New England colony we know today.
18. Contrast Puritan New England’s policies toward the Indians with the initial policies of the Quaker settlers in Pennsylvania. Why was Pennsylvania’s Indian policy ultimately unsuccessful? (Jamie)
The Puritans had a complicated relationship with the Indians, while the Quakers had more of a friendlier relationship with them. The Puritans on one hand, appreciated the Native's advice on farming which helped them celebrate the first Thanksgiving after the autumn harvests. As more English settlers arrived, confrontations between Indians and whites altered these peaceful relations. In 1637, hostilities broke out between the settlers and the Pequot tribe. This led to the Pequot War, which annihilated the Pequot tribe and forced Indians off the land. Then the Indians tried converting the rest of the Indians to Christianity. The Quakers bought land from the Indians and went among the Native Americans unarmed. Pennsylvania seemed like a promised land of friendly Indian-white relations. The Quakers had no military defense and allowed religious and immigration freedom, but their policy soon became unsuccessful. They were unsuccessful because their policy was based off of religion. The Quakers believed that everyone was equal and that anyone could be in the colony with different beliefs, but not everybody viewed it like that. Discrimination was caused because not everybody thought that the Indians were equal to them, which led to the Indians and settlers to turn resentful towards each other. The Puritan and Quakers attempted to start fresh with the Indians, but it only ended up in disaster.
19. Analyze the development of religious and political freedom in Massachusetts, Rhode Island, New York, and Pennsylvania. How did the greater degree of such freedoms enjoyed by Rhode Island and Pennsylvania affect life in those colonies? (Alanna)

In these 4 colonies religious and political freedom thrived from the type of people who resided there, and their actions toward Britain in the folowing years.


  • Massachusetts- The colonies already had some political and religious freedom, so they were semi autonomous. However when Charels the II was restored to the throne he wanted to take more control over the colonies, but was suprised when Massachusetts ignored his orders. As a result Massachusetts's charter was revoked. During the dominion of New England tensions rose after Britain enforced the Navigation Acts. At the same time the Glorious Revolution was taking place in England. This resulted in William and Mary being insated to the crowd and causing the collapse of the dominion of New England. Massachusetts then got a new charter, which allowed all land owners to vote. Before, only church members could vote.

  • Rhode Island- In 1636 Rhode Island began without legal standing but finally established rights with a charter given to them by Parliment in 1644. The people of Rhode Island enjoyed more freedom because of thir dislike of social privilage. Over time, Rhode Island became strongly individualistic and stubbornly independent. Rhode Islanders were made up of people who were unwanted everywhere else. They were not all the same but they all longed for political and religious freedom.

  • New York- In 1664 Charels II granted his brother the area that is now New York. Even though England took over the area, New York still retained a lot of its Dutch qualities including an autocratic spirit. This caused fewer English Immigrants to move to the area, and growth slowed down.

  • Pennsylvania- Colonized by William Penn who embraced the quaker faith. People sought freedom of religion here because it was available to everyone except Jews and Catholics. No restrictions were placed on immigration. Pennsylvania attracted a diverse poplulation.

Overall, the life in these colonies had a major effect. These colonies were a sort of refuge for these people because they were unwanted elsewhere. There colonies had political and religious freedom which was what these immigrants longed for.

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