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During the seventeenth century, there were many differences between the Spanish settlements in the Southwest and the English colonies in New England.

The Spanish settlements in the southwest really had no comparison to the eastern side of the nation. Economically, New Mexico’s land was unfertile and resulted in very little agricultural success. It was also too far away from the Pacific coast to be of any real use to. The Spanish colonies lacked natural resources, thus resulting in slow economic development. In religious aspects, the Spanish settlers were catholic. They came as conquerors, resulting in a political system that was entirely autocratic and solely devoted on the furthering of the motherland. Spain gave its colonies little self-rule. Instead, Spanish rulers dictated all the policies of its new world territories. They looted large amounts of gold, silver, and other valuables. This tradition continued into the seventeenth century as Spanish ships would come annually to bring gold and other valuables back to Spain. The Spanish colonies developed economically by using the Encomienda System. In this system, Spanish lords exploited and manipulated Native Americans, using them to do manual labor on the land.

On the other hand, the English colonies had abundant natural resources. Their economy prospered in the fur trade, fishing, lumbering, farming and other industries that produced raw materials. This abundance of natural resources stimulated trade into the colonies, as developed industries in Europe, required raw materials to convert into refined goods. The New England colonists were largely Puritans who led very strict lives. The middle colonists were a mixture of religions, including Quakers (led by William Penn), Catholics, Lutherans, Jews, and others. The southern colonists had a mixture of religions as well, including Baptists and Anglicans. Englishmen migrated to the New World not as conquerors but rather because they wanted independence,...
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