Were the English Colonists of the 17th Century Motivated More by the Pursuit of Wealth or Faith in Their Struggle to Create a New Society in the American Colonies?

Topics: England, Massachusetts, English people Pages: 2 (599 words) Published: October 12, 2009
Question: Were the English colonists of the 17th century motivated more by the pursuit of wealth or faith in their struggle to create a new society in the American colonies?

The English colonists of the 17th century came to the American colonies for many different reasons. The one that motivated them the most was their pursuit of wealth because, despite the early colonists saying that it was their mission as children of God to go to the new world and spread Christianity to more people, the whole idea of going to the new world was to make a profit for England and themselves. This colonization affected many people and eventually led to a war between two very powerful countries. The first colonists came over and landed in Jamestown and ran it as business enterprise, exporting cash crops, rather that growing food to try and survive for a long time there. The people of Jamestown tried to replicate the English way, which was every man for himself, and people weren’t very involved in the community. The colonists focused on growing tobacco, indigo, and sugar to export back to England for a profit, and if one was lucky enough to be a planter, he would manage his own fields of cash crops and export them back to England. This was a sign that the early colonists came to the new world to pursue individual wealth, and an increase in social status, rather than trying to live in the new world and convert the natives to Christianity. While the early English colonists in Virginia had found economic success growing strictly tobacco exporting it back to England, the Plymouth colony used a different tactic to make a profit. They traded with the Indians for goods that were unique and foreign to the English people. These items sold for a large sum across the sea in England, and the Plymouth Colony benefited largely from these trades. Growing cash crops and trading with the natives was easy for the Plymouth colony because when they settled at Plymouth, they found...
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