There was significant political, economic, and social democracy in colonial America. Political evidence of democracy can be seen in the representative assemblies and voter alliances. Economically, America was mostly independent farmers, who own their own land. Socially, life in the colonies reflected the physical geography of the settlements.
During this period of salutary neglect the colonists began to develop their own forms of government. In Virginia, the House of Burgesses developed as a representative democracy in which elected officials served as the voice of their regions within the state. In Massachusetts, many towns relied upon New England style town meetings in which all white, land-holding men were allowed to participate. The Mayflower Compact of 1620 and Fundamental Orders of Connecticut are also examples of the efforts of colonial Americans to use democratic practices in government.
Waves of evangelical revivalism touched every colony at different times, democratizing and personalizing religion, Christianizing the unchurched everywhere. Newly rich merchants, great planters, and lawyers received similar educations, built mansions in the English manner, and indulged in conspicuous consumption far beyond the reach of middling farmers. Puritans and Pilgrims in Massachusetts, QUAKERS in Pennsylvania, and Catholics in Maryland represented the growing RELIGIOUS DIVERSITY in the colonies. Rhode Island was founded as a colony of RELIGIOUS FREEDOM in reaction to zealous Puritans. As a result, many different faiths coexisted in the colonies.
The American colonies were farming land. The New England Colonies were largely farming and fishing communities. Crops like corn and wheat grew in large numbers, and much was shipped to England. The Middle Colonies were part agriculture, part industrial. Wheat and other grains grew on farms in Pennsylvania and New York. Factories in Maryland produced iron, and factories in Pennsylvania produced...
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