Chesapeake Vs the New England Colonies


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During the late 16th century and into the 17th century two colonies emerged from England. The two colonies were called the Chesapeake and New England colonies. Even though the two areas were govern by the English, the colonies had similarities as well as differences. The Chesapeake and New England colonies grew into obviously distinct establishments. Difference in colonial motivation, religious, political structures, socio-economic, and race relation, were responsible for molding the territories.

In the Chesapeake the motivation for colonization was largely due to economic issue. The colony were owned by royalty, corporate, and proprietary people who were looking to find fame or fortune. Thinking they would find gold or silver to bring back to England, instead they discover a different treasure. Tobacco was the cash crop that brought them wealth. Up north in the New England colony the motivation for colonization was to escaped religious persecution and set up a haven for people of their faith. Pilgrims and the Puritan was the main people that inhabit the land. The New England colonies also wanted to be financially stable but the main reason was to be free from the Church of England

The political characteristics in the Chesapeake resemble much of the mother country. We had the royal governor (somewhat like the king), Virginian Royal Council, and the House of Burgesses (acted like Parliament) which was more of an aristocracy. Now in the New England colony the Americans were able to form the first democracy. Instead of having someone appointed to govern they had an election to appoint people to govern. The political characteristics included a governor, the General Court, and the town meeting which on consisted of selectman.

The socio-economic in the Chesapeake consist of the plantation which farmed the cash crop of the Chesapeake. Tobacco, wheat, and rice was the cash crop that made the Chesapeake very wealthy. Along with the plantation that also had indentured servitude and later on they would have slavery to take place of indentured servants. The New England colonies socio-economic characteristics included agriculture, a diversified economy, and a social structure that set it apart from the Chesapeake.

In the early part of the Chesapeake colonization the men and women had a very unbalanced ratio of men to women. There were ten men to one women, which made it very difficult to start a family.

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In the New England the ratio was more equal for the men and women. So people would actually have a lot more of family organization there than they would in the Chesapeake.

The differences between the Chesapeake colonies and the New England colonies are numerous and varied. However if all of the colonies established in the new world had the same culture it is far less likely that our ancestors would have been as successful in their bid to change the way civilization operates. They accomplished this with the American Revolution, which relied heavily on different characteristics from each of the thirteen colonies and has been more than successful in blending the very different values and beliefs of the Chesapeake Bay


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