History: Life in the Colonies – Chapter 4
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From Europe – colonists brought English political traditions and the ideas of the Enlightenment that guaranteed basic freedoms.
From Africa, merchants brought slaves.
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What happened to enslaved Africans when they got to America?
They worked on plantations.
The physical environment.
Living with people from diverse backgrounds.
Laws and traditions from the parent country.
The idea that everyone has political rights was tooted in English history.
Magna Carter: Placed restrictions on English ruler’s power;
Needed to consult the Nobles to levy taxes; protected the right to own private property; guaranteed trial by jury.
Parliament: A two house legislature
Define the term “Legislature”
A group of people who have the power to make laws.
Describe the English House of Lords
Made up of Nobles, most of whom inherited their titles.
Describe the English House of Commons
Describe the English Parliament
House of Lords and House of Commons. It’s greatest power was the right to approve new taxes. “Power of the Purse” – gave Parliament control over the monarch.
A written list of freedoms that a government promises to protect.
What is a Bill of Rights?
Was issued under William and Mary in 1689. It guaranteed the powers of Parliament and the basic rights of English citizens.
What is the principle of Habeas Corpus?
The principle that a person cannot be held in prison without being charged for a specific crime.
The monarch needed Parliament’s permission to raise taxes or an army. Parliament was allowed to meet regularly.
In 1619 The House of Burgesses became the first colonial legislature. The Virginia Company allowed the House of Burgesses to make laws for the Jamestown Colony.
The legislature created by Massachusetts colonists in 1629.
More than half of the white males were permitted to vote, but women, Native Americans and African Americans could not vote.
The governor, William Penn was giving ownership of Pennsylvania. He made laws and his assembly could accept or reject. In 1701, the colonists forced Penn to agree to a General Assembly.
So, before 1701, the governor and a council made all of the laws in Pennsylvania, while in the other colonies legislatures of elected delegates made laws.
What is “freedom of the press”?
The right of journalists to publish the truth without restriction or penalty.
Publishing of statements that damage a person’s reputation
Who was John Peter Zenger and what did he do?
He was the publisher of the New York Weekly Journal and was arrested for printing a series of articles that criticized the governor. He was charged with libel.
What is the fundamental principle of democracy?
A democracy depends on well-informed citizens. The press has a right and responsibility to keep the public informed of the truth. This is called Freedom of the Press.
Why was the Zenger case important?
The trial established the principle that the press has both the right and the responsibility to inform the public of the truth.
He was found not guilty because what he published was true.
Why was mercantilism bound to lead to conflict between the parent country and its colonies?
The theory that colonies exist to serve the parent country put colonists at an economic disadvantage.
What was “Mercantilism”?
The theory that the colonies existed to serve the economic needs of their parent country. They were a source of raw materials and a place to sell the home country’s goods.
What were the “Navigation Acts”?
A series of Acts that restricted colonial trade so that the colony would benefit the parent country. It ensured a market for goods shipped from North America and contributed to the growth of New England’s shipbuilding industry.
In 1651 the English Parliament passed the first of several Navigation Acts to support mercantilism.
1- Shipments from Europe to English colonies had to go through England first
2- Any imports to England from the colonies had to come in ships guild and owned by British subjects
3- The colonies could sell key products such as tobacco and sugar only to England. This helped create jobs for English workers.
Why did many colonists resent the Navigation Acts?
The colonists believe the acts hurt them economically.
What political rights had England’s citizens won by 1688?
The right to a trial by jury and to wind private property. The king’s power to raise taxes was also limited by Parliament.
What were freedoms of English citizens that colonists wanted to have?
Right to vote
Input into lawmaking
Representation in the Parliament or local legislature
What is an “extended family”?
Extended family is a family that includes, in addition to the parents and their children, other members such as grandparents, aunts, uncles, and cousins.
Where did most colonists live?
On farms, where large families were considered an advantage. Many hands were needed to operate a farm.
Why was a large family useful on a farm?
Members of a large family could each perform some of the many tasks that had to be done on a large farm.
What was it like living in the towns?
Easier for single people to sustain themselves, but family ties were still very important.
Describe the divisions of labor between men, women, and children in colonial times.
Men’s jobs included carpentry, butchering meat, farming, representing the family publicly.
Women’s jobs included childcare, cooking, laundry and domestic responsibilities.
Young people’s choruses included household and farming.
Having to do with the house or household, pertaining to a country’s internal affairs.
Who was Mary Musgrove Matthews?
The daughter of an English trader and a Creek mother. She served as Oglethorpe’s interpreter for 10 years which led to the founding of Savannah, Georgia.
What is an “apprentice”?
Someone who learns a trade by working for someone in that trade for a certain period of time.
Boys tended to field work with men, and girls usually did housekeeping work alongside women. Boys sometimes also lived away from home as apprentices to learn a trade. Girls sometimes became servants in wealthy households.
Describe the responsibilities that children in colonial times were expected to meet.
Colonial children were expected to contribute to the work and train for the work they would do as adults.
Identify social classes in colonial society.
The gentry, the middle class, indentured servants, and free African Americans.
Gentry were the upper class of colonial society.
Define “Middle Class”
Middle class were made up of small planters, independent farmers, and artisans. Middle class men could vote, and some held office.
Define “Indentured Servants”
An indentured servant signed a contract to work from 4 to 10 years in the colonies for anyone who would pay for his or her ocean passage to the Americas. They were promised a land claim at the end of their term, so they would have the opportunity to begin anew and rise in wealth and social class. They could own a farm or become an artisan.
How did slavery develop in the colonies and affect colonial life?
Slavery started as a way to provide labor, especially on plantations. It became restricted to Africans; and developed into a system in which slaves and their descendants were bound for life.
What was “triangular trade”?
A three-way trade between the colonies, the islands of the Caribbean, and Africa.
1- Ships from New England carried fish, lumber, etc. to the Caribbean and purchased sugar and molasses.
2- Ships from New England carried run, guns, etc. to West Africa and traded for enslaved Africans. Also called the Middle Passage.
3 – Ships took human cargo (enslaved Africans) to West Indies for sale and purchased more molasses.
Why did slavery take root?
The Plantation system – tobacco and rice allowed for much profits if enslaved Africans could work the fields.
Planters preferred slaves over servants. Indentured servants were temporary, not permanent. As the need for cheap labor grew, colonies made slavery permanent. First passed in Maryland in 1639, a law was passed saying baptism did not lead to liberty, meaning that people could be enslaved for life.
The belief that one race is superior to another.
What are slave codes?
Strict laws that restricted the rights and activities of slaves.
What was the purpose of slave codes?
The slave codes were designed to restrict travel and communication among enslaved people. The codes were intended to prevent slave revolts.
What is “Gullah”?
A special dialect that was created on the west coast of Africa during slave times. This dialect blended English and several African languages. It allowed enslaved people from different regions who spoke different languages a way to communicate with each other.
They needed a way to communicate with each other and understand the instructions of the whites for whom they worked.
Africans brought language, skill in crafts, musical styles, and other cultural influences to America.
Conditions in England were improving.
Enslaved Africans in the South were much more likely to work on plantations and be enslaved for life, while slaves in the North typically worked in trades and had some opportunity to buy their freedom.
New ideas about religion and government strengthened democratic ideas among the colonists.
What role did religion play in colonial schools?
Schools were sponsored by religious groups and religion was taught.
1-Education was paid for by both public and private sources in Massachusetts
2-Schools from the elementary to the college level were opened.
Massachusetts laws were the beginning of public schools.
Define “public school”
A school supported by taxes.
Colonial schools included religious instruction.
What were “dame schools?
Schools that women opened in their hoes to teach girls and boys to read and write.
What effect have Puritan ideas about education had on the United States today?
The Puritans’ commitment to education led to our modern system of public schools.
Most colonial schools were sponsored by religious groups. The Dutch Reformed Church operated schools in New York and Quakers operated schools in Pennsylvania.
Boys received more education than girls and studied a wider variety of subjects.
Elementary school, grammar school (high school), college. The first colleges were founded to educate the ministry. The Puritan general council financed Harvard college in 1638, the first college in the colonies.
Who was Anne Bradstret?
The first colonial poet
About what subjects did Boston poet Anne Bradstreet write?
She wrote about life in Puritan New England.
Who was Phillis Wheatley?
An enslaved African poet in Boston. Her first poem was published in the 1760’s.
How did Ben Franklin contribute to American literature?
He published a newspaper, an almanac, and a popular autobiography.
A period of religious revival in the 1730’s and 1740’s.
To revive religious feeling
The number of churches with different kinds of services increased, and this diversity fostered toleration of differences.
Who was Jonathan Edwards?
A Massachusetts preacher that called on people to examine their lives and commit themselves to God.
Who was George Whitefield?
An English minister that made several tours of the colonies and provided a broad religious revival.
What was the impact of the Great Awakening?
The rise of many new churches.Methodists, Baptists, Presbyterian, Dutch Reformed, and Congregationalist churches spilt. This allowed for more tolerance of religious differences in the colonies.
How did the Great Awakening affect American society?
The Great Awakening reinforced democratic ideas by encouraging people to make their own decisions about religion and politics.
What was the Enlightenment?
Believed that all problems could be solved by human reason. “Natural laws”
Who was John Locke?
John Locke argued that people have certain natural rights, or rights that belong to every human being from birth. These include rights to life, liberty and property. These rights are inalienable, or cannot be taken away. Locke challenged the idea of ‘devine right’, believing natural rights come from God.
Define “devine right”
The belief that monarchs get their authority to rule directly from God.
Because government exists to protect the rights of the people, if a monarch violates those rights, the people have a right to overthrow the monarch.
They wanted to solve problems by applying reason to discover the “natural laws” that governed the universe.
What did Montesquieu suggest?
That government should be divided into three branches, a legislative branch to make laws; an executive branch to enforce the laws; and a judicial branch to make judgments based on the law.
Dislike intensly. “Some loathsome insect”, and the description of being “worthy” only of being “cast onto the fire”.
Who is Montesequieu?
A french thinker that influenced American ideas in a book “The Spirit of the Laws” in 1748, suggesting separation of powers in government.
To publish the newspaper under the name Benjamin Franklin.
The brothers often argued and Benjamin was unhappy being his brother’s apprentice.
What did Benjamin Franklin learn as an apprentice?
About printing, and how to run a newspaper. He learned that it was important to b able to express opinions freely in print.
How did Benjamin Franklin become a printer?
His father apprenticed him to his brother James and he ran the paper while James was imprisoned. The paper continued to be published under the name Benjamin Franklin after James was released.