Increase in Democracy in the United States

Topics: Democracy, Wealth, United States Pages: 2 (755 words) Published: January 3, 2011
Democracy increased in the period from the 1750's to the 1780's, as pertains to Wethersfield, Connecticut. This is evidenced by the changes in property distribution, social structure, politics and religion during this span of time.

When property distribution is considered, there is not much evidence confirming that the country was becoming more democratic (Doc. B,C, D), but it is shown that the land is distributed a little more post-revolution. In pre-revolution America, the wealth was kept within the same families, as in England. There was not much social mobility, and little distribution of the wealth. It is established that the rich get richer during this period, yet the tax burden is shifted to the rich rather than the poor, a revolutionary idea. Silas Deane, a merchant who moved up the social ladder leading up to the revolution, appealed to Patrick Henry to give landholdings in Ohio to the poorer colonists in Connecticut. This exemplifies the country becoming more democratic because Silas Deane appealed for his fellow colonists to a member of the First Continental Congress, rather than the far away government in London (Doc. F). Instead of hoarding all of their citizens in small areas, like Great Britain would have wanted, the colonists tried to create new communities and gather more landholdings farther west.

In regards to social structure, it can be said that there was a major progression in the way society was organized in Wethersfield, Connecticut. Between 1756 and 1774, the amount of slaves decreased and the number of free blacks increased. This shows that there was a more democratic way of thinking in the years leading up to the war (Doc. A). The freemen now had a say in the way that they lived. They volunteered themselves to fight the war for their country, they were able to choose their own officers, and they willingly agreed to obey their orders. This was completely different from the British practice of impressment (Doc. M). Social mobility...
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