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Economics and Government in the Colonies

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1 Economics and Government in the Colonies
Unit 1, Lesson 4

2 Essential Idea The Southern and New England colonies developed differently socially, economically, and in government.

3 Southern Society The Southern Colonies:
Include BOTH Chesapeake and Southern colonies Southern Geography: Warm, lots of fertile land, good for agriculture Southern Economy: Growing cash crops for export, especially tobacco, rice, and cotton

4 Southern Social Structure
Top: Wealthy planters were the smallest group, but owned the most wealth and land near the coast Held the most influence in government and could afford private education for their children Middle: Small farmers were the biggest group, but had little wealth and little land Practiced subsistence farming and lived in the “backcountry” Bottom: Indentured servants and African slaves, who owned no land and usually worked for wealthy planters

5 Indentured Servants Indentured Servants:
Poor Englishmen who agreed to work for a wealthy planter in exchange for transportation to America Indentured servants worked 4-7 years and were given food, shelter, and clothing Headright system: The English government gave wealthy planters 50 acres for each indentured servant they brought to America

6 Indentured Servitude Results for Wealthy Planters:
Got cheap labor for their growing plantations Received large amounts of the best land Results for Indentured Servants: Often worked extremely hard, were treated badly, and many died before the end of their contract If they finished their contract, there was little or no good or Indian-free land left for them

7 Bacon’s Rebellion Causes:
Virginia’s governor was Sir William Berkeley and wealthy planters dominated the government (in the House of Burgesses) They passed laws that hurt small farmers and ex-indentured servants, revoking their voting rights When small farmers and ex-indentured servants fought Indians for land, the government sided with Indians They were also frustrated by the lack of women

8 Bacon’s Rebellion Bacon’s Rebellion
In 1676, Nathaniel Bacon led a militia of poor farmers to attack the Indians Next , the militia turned on the Virginia government, civil war broke out, and Jamestown was burned Bacon got sick and died, causing the rebellion to fall apart and end

9 From Indentured Servitude to African Slavery
Effects: Wealthy planters began to stop using indentured servants and turned to African slaves for labor Unlike indentured servants, slaves would never be free and never need land Slaves would be less likely and less able to rebel The Southern economy would become dependent on FARMING, based on SLAVERY for labor The Evolution from Indentured Servitude to African Slavery

10 New England (Northern) Society
New England Geography: Colder, rocky soil, not good for agriculture New England Economy: Based on SMALL farms (subsistence) Based on fishing, lumber, and shipbuilding

11 New England Society Social Structure:
New England society was based on TOWNS Puritans lived close together so they could regulate moral behavior and earn God’s favor Towns were centered around church, school, and the marketplace


13 New England Culture Culture
Puritans were very religious, worked hard, and watched over each others’ moral behavior Education was heavily emphasized and most towns had schools Literacy rates were very high, largely so Puritans could read the Bible

14 New England Government
Town meetings gradually replaced the General Court At town meetings, local issues were discussed and local officials were elected By contrast, Southern colonial government was less involved in people’s lives because they lived far apart Town meetings gave residents a feeling of self-government Belief in the right to self-government would eventually help lead to the American Revolution New England Society

15 Setting the Stage for the Civil War
Future Tension: Different geography caused northern and southern parts of America to develop differently North: 1. Economy based on business and manufacturing 2. Desire for pro-business and pro-manufacturing government 3. Little need for slavery

16 Seeds of the Civil War South: 1. Economy based on agriculture
2. Desire for pro-agriculture government 3. Strong need for slavery Future Result: PARTLY due to geography, tension would grow between the North and South because each section of the country had different needs (sectionalism) This tension would eventually cause the American Civil War

17 Triangular Trade 1. New England colonies sent Africa manufactured goods and rum 2. Africa sent slaves to the West Indies (Carribbean) This “middle passage” was very difficult for slaves, and many died 3. Sugar plantations in the West Indies sent sugar and molasses to the colonies, where they were turned into rum Slaves who survived in the West Indies were often sent to the colonies too The Middle Passage


19 The Colonies Grow Other Trade:
The colonies also sent raw materials to England like tobacco, fish, lumber, etc. Impact of Trade on Colonies: Port cities like New York, Boston, Philadelphia, and Charlestown grew


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