the availability of natural harbors, agriculture, and even the method of colonization followed by Great Britain, which was completely different from Spain and France. Colonies in the north and south developed their own characteristics making them important centers for the mother country, and later the new nation itself. The first settlers arrived in the northern portion of the American continent, and established the first cities along rivers and natural harbors. The British were all about shipping raw materials from the New World back to England, where they were processed into finished goods and then sold back to the colonies for a profit. The need for shopping began the buildup of cities, where goods were stored until a lot of stuff needed to be shipped. New York was not completely developed until it fell into English hands after the Dutch-Anglo Wars ending in 1664. The English developed the harbors around New York and it became a major shipping center of the colonies. Other cities important to the mercantile system were Philadelphia, Boston, Baltimore, and Charleston. While the northern colonies developed into shipping centers for furs, timber, and other natural resources, the south developed into an important center for agriculture, with cotton, rice, indigo, and tea among its most important crops. Agriculture demanded many hands to make it a profitable enterprise and the slave trade became big business for both northern and southern colonies. Movement of goods was a major factor in both north and south, resulting in the major cities lying along rivers or on natural harbors of the sea coast. When French and Spanish lands were acquired, their major cities were also located on major bodies of water as well, adding to the ability to move goods rapidly to market.
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