Why so Many Colonists Died at Jamestown

Topics: Jamestown Settlement, Virginia, Pocahontas Pages: 3 (860 words) Published: October 8, 2012
The Virginia Company set out for the new world with three ships and about a hundred men these settlers arrived in America on May 13, 1607. By traveling to the new world ,the settlers were hoping to make a better life for themselves. What the colonists failed to realize was the hardships it would take to make a settlement in a new land. Colonists faced hard ships such as the poor environment, unskilled colonists, and conflicts with the Native Americans

As a result of poor environment several of the Jamestown colonists died. The Virginia company traveled through the Chesapeake Bay and up the James River to an island. This is where the colonists decided to build their settlement. Most of the land on the island was swampy and some areas had standing water on it. Despite these problems, the colonists still decided to build their settlement on the island. The water in Jamestown was undrinkable causing another environment problem. The water became brackish. (This is when salt water and freshwater mix together making the water undrinkable), and made colonists sick if drank (Doc A). The colonists of Jamestown thought it was a good idea to build their settlement near the river but that caused problems of its own. Colonists would dump their trash and waste into the river, but the tides from the Chesapeake Bay pushed the trash and waste back into Jamestown instead of away from it. This caused the river water to become nasty and undrinkable. Another reason for death was because of the drought. From 1607-1611 Jamestown received almost no rainfall at all (Doc B). This drought caused for the crops not to grow, the colonists went through a period called the Starving Time. During the Starving Time colonists began eating pets such as cats and dogs, and even started cannibalism. One Jamestown settler was almost burned at the stake because he tried to kill his pregnant wife and eat her. By the end of the Starving Time more then hundred and ten colonists were dead. The poor...
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