Chesapeake Bay vs. Massachusetts Bay Colonies

Topics: Chesapeake Bay, Slavery, Virginia Pages: 2 (654 words) Published: November 5, 2012
Spencer Dennis
Mr. Reagan
AP United States History
13 September 2012
Compare and Contrast: New England and Chesapeake Settlements The founding of the economic and social footprints in America began before it was even a country during the period of colonization before 1700. These colonies were split up into two main portions, New England and the Chesapeake Bay areas. And though these areas share a few of the same characteristics, the key differences between New England and the Chesapeake Bay are what made each region unique. While New England was formed for religious purposes, Chesapeake Bay settlements were formed mainly for economic gains. Both of which led to contrasting social identities between the two regions.

The formation of New England began with the arrival of the Pilgrims at Plymouth Bay in current day Massachusetts. These settlers moved to North America with one purpose in mind: to escape the religious prosecution in Europe. This set up the foundation of their settlement as a strictly “religion based” society, with the church being the center of all their daily functions. However, this was not the case for the Chesapeake Bay region, whose first prospering settlement was Jamestown. This settlement set the foundation for the Chesapeake Bay area, as well as the entire south for being an agricultural society looking to make a profit off the land. These settlers learned how to farm tobacco and corn from the native Powhatan Indian tribe, and expanded upon it, creating many large farms and plantations. While religion was still an important part of life in the Chesapeake Bay area, the structure of society did not rely on the church as it did in New England. This was because the Chesapeake area was majority Anglican Christian, while New England was predominantly Puritan. New England also had certain divisions such as Separatists and Calvinists, which fueled the rapidly expanding region; compared to the Chesapeake area, which expanded due to the desire...
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