Presentation on theme: "Thesis “The Puritan vision of “progress” was rooted in a religious doctrine that held that they, alone, were God’s chosen people, and were destined to."— Presentation transcript:
Thesis “The Puritan vision of “progress” was rooted in a religious doctrine that held that they, alone, were God’s chosen people, and were destined to advance across the frontier, spreading the Gospel and creating a strict theocratic society.” “A City Upon a Hill” The Puritan Vision of “Progress”
Characteristics of the Puritan Vision of Progress 1.Relative social equality and even limited Democracy, but absolute intolerance of religious dissent and social non- conformity. 2.A land hunger that drove colonists to seek the elimination of Native Americans in a series of bloody wars.
“For the natives, they are neere all dead of small Poxe, so as the Lord hathe cleared our title to what we possess.” -John Winthrop, May 22, 1634 [W]ee shall finde that the God of Israell is among us […] when hee shall make us a prayse and glory, that men shall say of succeeding plantacions: the lord make it like that of New England: for wee must Consider that wee shall be as a Citty upon a Hill, the eies of all people are uppon us; soe that if wee shall deale falsely with our god in this worke wee have undertaken and soe cause him to withdrawe his present help from us, wee shall be made a story and a byword through the world. -John Winthrop, A City Upon a Hill, 1630 John Winthrop First Governor of Mass. Bay John Winthrop Leads Massachusetts Bay
King Philip’s War (1670) War w/ Wampanoag confederacy over land 10% of male colonists killed Entire towns destroyed Bloodiest war in American history proportional to pop. Per capita income did not recover until 1770s Even more costly for Native Americans… land lost, tribe annihilated
Conclusions The Puritans enjoyed much more social equality than their counterparts in England and the other colonies, BUT… the price was stifling social conformity. They allowed limited Democracy, BUT law and government were strictly based on religion, AND religious dissent was not tolerated. Since Native Americans were not a part of the Puritan vision, they were obstacles to be eliminated. The Puritan vision of “progress,” by combining religion, an early form of nationalism, and aggressive expansionism, provided the foundation for what would later be known as Manifest Destiny.