1993 DBQ Essay
The three G’s: God, Gold and Glory led many explorers rushing in to the new world. Among which were New England and Chesapeake, two society of English origin. Each developed with their own distinct views and principals.
New England a much disciplined, obedient society and Chesapeake much devoted to gold and glory, and both these societies were prodigiously influenced by geographical, social-political, economic and religious needs and moves. Which have had caused both these societies to evolve adversely through their own means. Economy was a crucial factor in leading New England and Chesapeake to develop incongruously.
Chesapeake was vastly devoted to mining gold and exploiting for a better economy. Hence as according to document c almost all the Chesapeake settlers’ were young single men. Whereas New England had a much differentiated purpose in coming to the “New world”. The New England settlers’ came for religious freedom and creating a model city or society for the rest of the new comers, as supported by document a and b; “we must consider that we shall be as a city upon a new hill”. Thus for them to prosper and expand as an exemplary society, most the New England settlers were joint families.
Both New England and Chesapeake settled and expanded in different parts of America. The land and climates in the Chesapeake and New England regions were different, so the societies grew crops which suited their area, which led to differences in their social structures. The Chesapeake area was swampy and not well suited for the typical crops; however, it was discovered 5 years after their arrival that tobacco grew very well, so the economy structured itself around the growth of tobacco. It was exported as a cash crop to England, and as a result, they had much better amends with their mother country.
Also as a result of the growth of tobacco, the Chesapeake colony had a need for cheap labor to work in the fields. They developed a system of indentured slavery; in which a person got free passage to America in return for their work and slavery till the debt is paid off. This later led to slavery as in later time the population grew more demanding and the farms thus needing to expand. The New England colonies include Connecticut, Massachusetts and Rhode Island. The lifestyle of New England’s people was greatly impacted by both its geography and climate.
New England’s economy depended on the environment. Its location near the Atlantic Ocean along the coastlines determined how people would make a living. People in New England made money through fishing, whaling, shipbuilding, trading in its port cities and providing naval supplies. People in New England could not make a living from farming because most of the land was not suited to farming due to the hilly terrain and rocky soil. Another factor that made farming non-profitable was climate; New England experienced moderate summers and cold long winters.
The growing season was simply too short to make farming profitable, so most families had small farms and traded within themselves. Thus the climate and there geographical locations caused New England and Chesapeake to strive in different directions for a much suitable economy. Both Chesapeake and New England had very different purpose and point of views. New England arrived in America with their plans of becoming a “city upon a hill” (document A). Thus as New England wanted to construct a strong obedient society; they valued unity and had a sort of democratic government.
New England lifestyles were very healthy, traditional, structured and family oriented. A woman married in her twenties, raised about eight children, and went on to become a grandmother. If widowed, they were expected to remarry. Men were expected to become part of a church congregation if they wanted to vote, become part of the clergy or work in the shipbuilding, fishing, or trading industry. Children were forced to be educated, in primary and secondary schools, by the government, and men went to college to be trained in the ministry.
The New England settlers viewed all men equal and with brotherly hood care and affection. They equipped ways of helping and fulfilling each others requirements and needs aslong as they remain united and together. (documents a and d). On the other hand Chesapeake life styles were the opposite of New England life styles. They were very non-traditional, unhealthy, unorganized, and family wasn’t important. . Government was made of a self-elected House of Burgesses and didn’t offer much equality or freedom. There was a shortage of women, which meant few families.
Few families and the fact that people were spread thin across the region meant that there was very little unity amongst the few men that inhabited in the Chesapeake colonies. Thus this weak bonding amongst the men in the Chesapeake colonies often lead to miscommunication and many social conflicts like the Bacon’s rebellion. (document H) Bacon’s Rebellion was popular revolt in colonial Virginia in 1676 which summed up the relationship amongst the people in the Chesapeake region. The rebellion was led by Nathaniel Bacon.
High taxes, low prices for tobacco, and resentment against the governor, Sir William Berkley , provided the reasons for the uprising conflict, which was worsened by Berkeley’s failure to defend the frontier against attacks by Native Americans. Bacon commanded two unauthorized but successful expeditions against the tribes and was then elected to the new house of burgesses. Bacon gathered his supporters, marched on Jamestown, and forced Berkley out of Jamestown and continued his campaigns against Native Americans.
Bacon now controlled the colony, but he died suddenly (Oct., 1676), and without his leadership the rebellion collapsed. Unlike New England education in the Chesapeake region was more or less ignored, which summed to uneducated children and less studying or reading of the bible. Women often outlived men; therefore they held more power than in New England. The majorities of men were involved in the tobacco industry and owned slaves, until they died in their 20’s. Here you can see that the social political lives of these people were very different and thus this different point of views and lifestyle affected the way both Chesapeake and New England had developed.
Last but not the least religion, was a crucial factor in the development of both these colonial societies. Migrants to Plymouth and Massachusetts Bay were refugees from religious conflict in England. Calvinists of various persuasions, they wanted to escape Anglican persecution or they wished to “new-model” Christ’s church as an example for Christians everywhere. In New England the lives of the Puritans were ruled by their strict religious beliefs. According to document e and prior knowledge, the puritans believed that free time should be devoted to God and that “fun” activities like dancing would lead to laziness and discourse.
The New Englanders vastly seeked to work for god and make a living out of working for god, for the all mighty would reward them at the end of time. Puritans had a clear vision of what their churches should be like. Only “visible saints” and allowed full membership in the church. In the early seventeenth century, however, few were denied membership since leaving England was considered sufficient proof of spiritual purity. Puritans led their lives based on a group of strong beliefs, one of which was predestination.
They felt that all events are foreknown and foreordained by God and that God chose who was saved and who was damned. This reinforced the Puritan belief that God sent them to cleanse the culture of what they regarded as corrupt, sinful practices. There was no concept of individual “rights” to things such as privacy or freedom of thought and expression. Those that did rebel against the says of the church were either killed or excommunicated. All individuals were expected to conform to the beliefs and practices of the community as defined by the elders.
Because of their devotion to hard work the New England colonies flourished. Whereas Chesapeake on the other hand had no such definite religious views that they seeked for in singular. . Chesapeake primarily did not persecute people of different faiths, focusing more on their crops and disputes with the Natives. The Chesapeake brought along with them the Anglican religion or Protestants of England. Thus the religious similarities between the Chesapeake and England created a better bond among the Chesapeake colonies and its motherland.
Maryland was the only colony under the Chesapeake society that provided a haven for all the persecuted Catholics from England. Thus taking in consideration the different aspects of beliefs, which has had caused these societies to develop differently. As you can see there were many reasons that had caused these societies to develop incongruously. From there religious beliefs, geographical setting, social norms and political views have all contributed in their different development process. Considering all these given facts and reasoning you can agree or asses why these societies had grown differently.