English Colonies in Chesapeake vs. New England Essay

October 14, 2020 by Essay Writer

The United States of America is a multicultural country, and it is often referred to as a nation of cultural contrasts and diversity (Berkin et al. 42). The development of multinational society is related to the presence of representatives of different nations in American society. For instance, English colonies in Chesapeake and New England vehemently affected American culture, religion, and social norms. Despite having a substantial contribution to the development of modern society, both English colonies had different reasons for founding their settlements, various cultural and religious dogmas, and expressed dissimilar attitudes towards Native Americans. Consequently, the primary goal of this paper is to compare and contrast English colonies located in Chesapeake (Jamestown) and New England (Plymouth).

In the first place, the colonies had different reasons for their establishment in the United States. For instance, the development of the colony in Virginia pertains to the desire of the company in London to expand its operations and transfer its employees to a new continent (“Jamestown and Plymouth” par. 3). On the contrary, Pilgrims founded the colony in Plymouth, as they were seeking religious and political freedoms (“Jamestown and Plymouth” par. 3). In this case, settlements in Plymouth and Jamestown had dissimilar reasons for the formation of the colonies, as the first one occurred due to the cultural factors while the settlers of Virginia wanted to ensure the financial prosperity of their company.

As for the culture, the colonists in Jamestown supported the official church in England, but Pilgrims’ wish for religious freedom determined the presence of Puritanism in their lives (“Jamestown and Plymouth” par. 3). It could be said that this difference is highly related to the reasons for the development of the settlements, as Pilgrims’ need for equality and freedom defined their change in religion. Speaking of other cultural elements, it could be said that these English colonies had an equal contribution to the celebration of Thanksgiving and the creation of American folklore. For instance, the idea of Thanksgiving was reflected in stories of both settlements (“Jamestown and Plymouth” par. 3).

Lastly, one cannot underestimate the importance of relationships with Native Americans. The settlers of Jamestown experienced substantial difficulties with the native population of the American continent (“Jamestown and Plymouth” par. 3). It could be said that two nations with contrasting cultures were not able to find the compromises. As for colonists in Plymouth, they did not have to face the aggression of the native population, as the indigenous people were exhausted by epidemics (“Jamestown and Plymouth” par. 3). In this case, Native Americans collaborated with the colonists and helped them build their settlements (“Jamestown and Plymouth” par. 3). Based on the factors provided above, it could be said that this difference in attitudes is related to the colonization during different historical periods.

In the end, this essay helped me understand the differences between colonies in Jamestown and Plymouth. Virginian colonists arrived to expand the international opportunities for their business, and Pilgrims were seeking religious freedom. In turn, these English colonies had different relationships with Native Americans. For instance, the settlers of Jamestown had to face the confrontation while the colonists of Plymouth were able to establish trusting relationships with the native population of the continent. It could be said that these differences were linked to different historical, social, and economic factors such as epidemics in America. Nonetheless, despite the described dissimilarities, both colonies had a positive impact on the culture and history of the United States of America. For instance, they contributed to the development of Thanksgiving as a tradition.

Works Cited

Berkin, Carol, Christopher Miller, Robert Cherny, and James Gormly. Making America a History of the United States: Volume 1. Stamford: South-Western Cengage Learning 2014. Print.

Jamestown and Plymouth. 2016. Web.

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