How Geography Shaped the Development of the New World

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Chandler Monk
Mr. Gibbs
AP U.S. History
16 September 2012
North America was greatly affected by many European goods, diseases, technology, and ideas, but what influence did America have on the English settlers? Disease led to great death tolls in both Indians and settlers, but the effectiveness of the diseases was decided solely by one influence. Goods played a key role in boosting the colonies’ economy, but goods and crops could not be produced if it were not for a single factor, making America so vital. Ideas and technology helped with relations between them and the Indians’ but these products did them no good if the Indians did not allow them to have the most important key they needed for their settlements to survive. The development of the British colonies throughout America was determined by a number of factors such as religion, trade, and Indians, but all of these ultimately share one underlying theme, which is the influence of geographical location on the settlers.

Geography includes and controls climate, soil fertility, and locations of resources such as waterways. Climate plays a massive role in the shaping of America because certain crops could only be grown in specific areas and flourish in different temperatures and landscapes. For instance sugar, is grown in the West Indies colony because it requires a very warm temperature. Sugar also requires three times more workers per mile than tobacco, therefore much more slaves are shipped to the West Indies than to Virginia at that time. Tobacco, on the other hand, required less workers and a lower temperature than sugar. Due to the fertile soil in the Chesapeake colonies Tobacco was a prime crop to grow here, finally providing Virginia with the saving grace of a cash crop for income. Tobacco is a large part of why the Jamestown settlement survived, hence keeping the American dream alive. Disease is dependent on the climate also, because in the New England and Middle Colonies disease is less of an...
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