The English were one of the European powers that sought to build and empire in the New World in the 1600s. Jamestown and the Virginia Colony were founded by the Virginia Company of London which hoped to benefit economically from their investments. New Hampshire and New York were also founded for commercial reasons. On the other hand, Plymouth Colony and Massachusetts Bay Colony were founded by Separatists and Puritans who hoped to practice their religion freely. Rhode Island and Pennsylvania were founded for similar reasons. It was both the drive for the commercial profit and religious freedom that produced English colonies in America.
The Virginia Company of London was motivated to have their colony economically prosper. They received a patent form King James agreeing that the company had jurisdiction over all their areas. They were to dig, mine, and search for all the riches available. The Voyage was to the Chesapeake region where the settlement of Jamestown was founded. The journey was difficult because it was a winter crossing and 16 people died. Survival in early Jamestown was a struggle. The area was swampy which caused poor settlement conditions. The Virginia Company controlled everything and there was autocratic rule. The winter of 1609-1610 was called the “starving time” The settlers ran out of supplies and resorted to eating leather off their shoes. The survival of Jamestown depended on the crop of tobacco. The Powhatan Indians taught them how to grow it and it would be the biggest success of the colony. John Rolfe exported the tobacco to England and this developed a huge market. Tobacco promoted the plantation system and African slaves were brought to Virginia. The magazine was formed and manufactured goods were sent to England. All of this trading made Virginia’s economy flourish. New York was founded by the Dutch in 1609. Henry Hudson discovered the land and Peter Stuyvesant developed the patroon system. This was the transporting of families to...
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