Brave travelers from England
Brave travelers from England, made their journey to North America, not knowing the environment or what to expect, the two societies came with their own ideas of how to establish a colony that resulted in the diversity of the two colonies. The Chesapeake settlers were mostly males seeking to make a profit, and it was very plantation-centered with little community, while New England cared more about community and religion. Although the people of New England and Chesapeake both came from English background by the 1700 they had developed into two different societies.
Unity was encouraged amongst the New Englanders, as stated in Document A. “We must knit together in this work as one man.” Wrote John Winthrop, one of the Puritan founders of New England. Throughout the rest of the document, Winthrop proposes ideas of having community, doing everything for and with one another. He also states that their colony will be one to model after, a paragon colony. “A city upon a hill.” The Chesapeake settlers were far different than that of the New England colonists. Visitors from England, visiting Chesapeake, frequently remarked on the crude conditions of community life.
From looking at Document C, the “Ship’s list of Emmigrants Bound for Virginia,” there’s about 64 men, and only 11 women. The age of these men range from young teens to the majority being in their late twenties. Only a couple were older, being only in their fifties. Young, able-bodied men, meant more profit, more work could be done, almost everyone that was aboard the ship had no relations to other people on the ship, meaning no families. While New England was the complete opposite, in Document B, their list of travelers is made up of mostly families ranging in all ages. From this information, it’s clear to tell that community was more important to the New Englanders, bringing families to the New World. New England had lots of community buildings, like schools and churches, whereas the Chesapeake had relatively few community institutions by 1650.
While the Puritans of New England fled their homeland to find religious freedom and to be free of religious persecution, the Chesapeake settlers were more prompted by rumors of gold, and making money. “The worst among us were the gold diggers,” all they cared about was gold. “dig gold, wash gold, refine gold, load gold.” said John Smith, a traveler to Virginia. Both in climate and in geography, the New England and Chesapeake colonies were very different. Farming was such a profitable industry in the Chesapeake region because the climate of the region was ideal for farmers, especially near rivers because it was possible to have abundant amounts of tobacco and rice crops. These were considered cash crops. The soil of New England lands were not suitable to grow tobacco, but the colonists still had small farms, they fished, and they could produce nutmeg. Since the climate of the New England made the spreading of diseases difficult, the life expectancy of the citizens increased, especially the men. While diseases affected the Chesapeake colonies more.