During 1607-1611 of Early Jamestown, Why Were So Many Colonists Dead?
King James I sent 110 people over for a new start of life. The Englishmen arrived to Jamestown believing that they would find gold and a new way of freedom with government and religion. Most of the colonist died during the early years of 1607-1611. No skills for the New World later made the colonist have a hostile relationship with the Native Americans and the environment that they weren’t immune for lead to their deaths.
Many colonists died because they had no skills to survive in a new place. According to the “First and Second Jamestown Ship List” in Document C, 47 of the 110 colonist were Gentlemen in May 1607. These Gentlemen came to Jamestown with the belief that they would find wealth. The Gentlemen, including other colonists, didn’t know how to farm or hunt. They traded with the Powhatan Confederacy for food but that got old, and the Indians later put a stop to the trade for the Englishmen to “Starving Time” in 1609. Also, there was only 1 doctor. Therefore, if someone got sick they would have a way bigger chance of dying than seeing that 1 doctor. The evidences helped explain why so many colonists died because the inexperience of the colonist led to them not being able to support themselves. The Native Americans were antagonistic to the colonists. “The Virginia Adventures” in document D says, “Though West was able to load his (small ship) with grain, the success involved some harsh and Crewell dealinge by cutting towe of the Salvages heads and other extremetyes.” Instead of the colonist finding and growing their own food they killed 2 Indians. This was probably one reason why the Indians would attack the colonists. On document E, “Chronology of English Mortality in Virginia, 1607-1610” there was a first ever Indian attack at Fort James and 2 people died. If the colonists and the Indians had a different start of relationship, there wouldn’t be that many people dead. The...
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