May 29, 2012
The Three Settlement Areas
of the Early Americas
The three settlement areas of the early Americas, the North, the Middle, and the Southern colonies were somewhat similar, but had major differences. When looking at the similarities shared amongst the three colonies we can compare their language, issues with the natives, English common law and the form of democratic societies in each of the colonies. Contrasting the differences of the colonies we can look at slavery and other ethical standards in each society such as where women stand in society compared to men, economies and agriculture, and the government in each of the colonies.
There are many similarities between the three settlement areas. Firstly, all of the colonies shared the English language. Secondly, with expansion in all of the colonies, issues with the natives occurred. Thirdly, the English system was strong and throughout the colonies English common law was shared. Lastly, each of the colonies displayed a characteristic of a democratic society.
Along with their similarities each of the settlement areas contrasted major differences. The Southern colonies were well known for slavery, where 1 in every 4 citizens was a slave. Also, women were looked at as very much inferior to men and their purpose was to be child bearers. Whereas, in the Middle colonies equity between male and female was believed in, and although slavery did exist it was not extensive. The economies and agriculture of the colonies represent huge differences in the settlement areas. The Southern colonies had large tobacco plantations run by wealthy plantation owners who controlled the House of Burgesses (their local government), these wealthy plantation owners became known as the “Tidewater planters”, the elite of society. Whereas the Middle colonies had mixed farming of such crops as wheat and corn, but because of the climate tobacco couldn’t be grown, and their farms were small scale, much...