Changing Demographics

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A.P. US History
Assigned DBQ

In the 1600s, Great Britain’s North American colonies were mostly white, English, and Protestant. However, in the 1700s this changed. Great Britain’s colonies had become remarkably more diverse. The New World was home to many people who sought religious freedom; therefore new forces of race, ethnicity, and religion affected that society.

Protestantism became the main religion in England after they won the religious struggle. To escape religious persecution, the Roman Catholics immigrated to the New World. The Roman Catholic, Cecilius Calvert, also called Lord Baltimore; set out to find protection for his followers. Therefore, he founded Maryland. However, the Catholics were not safe here from the Protestant immigrants. A law was passed that mandated religious freedom and no one who be punished for their religious beliefs (Doc A). This coexistence of the Roman Catholics and the English Protestants shows how religion has affected colonial society.

Native Indians were already in control of most of the New World’s lands when the Europeans arrived. In the eyes of the Europeans, the Natives were unwanted annoyances. Vicious war attacks quickly broke out with the attempt of wiping out the other race. One of the worst attacks was Bacon’s Rebellion. His rebellion was stopped when an English Governor hung some of Bacon’s men to prove a point (Doc B). This shows that colonists of all different races and ethnicities are able to come together and unite.

The main occupation for the new colonies in North America was agricultural due to the warm temperature and good soil. Jamestown profited well from the growing and selling of tobacco. However, large tobacco fields required a lot of manual labor to keep up with the demands. Most of the men working on the tobacco fields were indentured servants, Europeans who went to the new world for free to work for a certain amount of time. Indentured servants were extremely useful and...
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