Colonies 2 Essay, Research Paper
The Middle and Southern settlements were as different as night and day. Established for different economical and social reasons, these two colonial areas share very few similarities. Reasons for their migration and their final destinations greatly influenced the outcome of each society.
First, the Southern Colonies were formed by aristocratic Europeans who came to the New World in search of land. These wealthy people brought Europeans and African servants. In their new home, the aristocrats produced a society in which only the wealthy had power. They tried and at some times forced their servants to convert to Christianity. They were constantly battling the Native Americans and had little respect for them. On the other hand, unhappy New England colonists and Europeans wanting complete freedom settled the middle colonies. The settlement of these lands was mainly started by William Penn. Penn, received land for the King for debts owed to his father. It was Penn s goal to create a society in which all people were equal. There was no slavery in the Middle Colonies, unlike the Southern Colonies, and by law, all men could own land. Also, they respected the natives and even employed them from time to time. They remarked on how it wasn t necessary to bare weapons around these people. Although the goal of these settlements was complete religious toleration, it wasn t totally feasible.
In addition, the colonies in the south were supported economically mainly be large plantations. The aristocratic class owned large plots of land in which they forced their workers to produce a cash crop, tobacco for the most part. Very little land was owned in these areas by anyone but the wealthy. As for the Middle Colonies, privately owned farms were run by their owners and occasionally paid workers. Slaves and even servants were quite uncommon for these colonies. The farms produced what they needed plus a surplus for trade.
Lastly, the two settlement regions differed politically. In the south, as previously mentioned, aristocratic whites controlled everything. These men had a good deal of power and money from their families. The majority of the landowners in the south were related to wealthy landowner is Europe. After years of indentured servitude, the aristocratic class was forced to enslave the entire lower class as a result of fear of rebellion and being overthrown. This drastic action produced southern colonies with drastic class differences. To the north, in the Middle Colonies, although all people were supposed to be equal, Jews and Catholics couldn t hold a position in office. For the most part, this area was democratic. In addition, there were not as definite differences in class. In fact, there was really no difference in class. Land was reasonably easy to obtain and there were few restrictions to who could buy it.
Besides the obvious fact that the founders of the Southern Colonies and the Middle Colonies were predominantly Europeans, there are few characteristics these two colonial regions have in common. One was mainly Christian, and one was religiously diverse. One had strict class distinctions, and the other had the opinion all people were equal. The two were completely different and it is amazing they could exist next to each other.