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Chapter IV-1
Chapter 4: American Life In 17th Century
1607 - 1692
Gen.: “ Being thus passed vast ocean, sea of troubles in preparation… no friends to welcome them, no
Inns to entertain them or refresh them, no houses for security.” – Bradford (of Plymouth)
 After harsh traveling conditions, they didn’t have luxuries to look forward to. There was more
hard work ahead to build shelter and a working society. The struggle was not over yet. They would still need to
work hard to succeed.
A) The Unhealthy Chesapeake
1. Malaria, dysentery and typhoid cut 10 years from peoples lives from England to the Colonies (esp. in the South)
2. Men outnumbered women 6:1 in 1650, This led to competition-over every woman. (Immigration was the main
population increaser)
3. Weak family ties (1/3 of pregnancies unmarried girls)  Were the unmarried pregnant girls banished due to most
colonies strict religious beliefs?
4. Native born formed immunities to diseases
5. Children were rarely raised by two parents. Grandparents were nonexistent b/c of such a low life expectancy.
6. 18th century – VA had most pop. 59,000, MA 2nd, MD 3rd  30,000.
B) The Tobacco Economy
1. Chesapeake area ideal for tobacco (the climate was perfect the soil was good)
2. 1.5 million pounds out of Chesapeake by 1630 (most went to England)
 Almost 40 million pounds by end of century. How was this possible??-Slave labor
3. Used “indentured servants” for labor. They were usually lower class citizens f/ England.(repaid their passage to the US
with work)
4. “Headright System” – whoever paid the passage of a laborer received 50 acres of land. Many took advantage of this
5. 100,000 servants to Chesapeake by 1700  ¾ of population VA & MD (were lower class than the slaves)
6. Indentured servants became resistant due to futile “freedom dues”  ( received) transatlantic passage, barrel of corn,
clothes, small land chunk,
7. Supply UP, Demand DOWN = $(cost) DOWN>Supply and Demand
8. Supply DOWN, Demand UP = $(cost) UP> Supply and Demand
9. Tobacco rid the soil of nutrients
Chapter IV-2
C) Frustrated Freeman & Bacon’s Rebellion
1. VA assembly in 1670 disenfranchised the wandering freemen  made it so they can’t vote?
2. They were impoverished, drifting, single men, who were frustrated by the failure to find women to marry
3. Nathaniel Bacon led revolt of 1,000 VA’s in 1676
a) Resented Berkeley (VA’s governor)(Did not retaliate for deadly native attacks on Virginia settlements) Why
didn’t Berkeley retaliate?
b) Him and his men killed natives (friendly & hostile)
c) Chased Berkeley from Jamestown
d) Burned down the capital
4. Berkeley crushed rebels (hung 20) after Bacon died from disease – but tensions still remained
5. Thoughts of Africa for salves instead of rebellious servants. This was a huge turning point toward slavery.
D) Colonial Slavery
1. 10 million slaves to Americans in 3 centuries  400,000 ended up in North America.
2. The majority arrived after 1700
3. Africans to Jamestown in 1619 on a Dutch trading ship only 12 years after settled. Wow.
4. 1670 – 2,000 in VA out of 35,000 in the use
5. Rising wages in England discouraged English to become indentured servants
6. Mid 1680s blacks outnumbered indentured servants
7. 10,000 slaves to America in 1710s
8. ½ population of VA in 1750
9. South Carolina- 2 slaves: 1 white. Wow! How many indentured servants were there?
10. Most slaves from West Coast  closer to the Americas/known territory
11. “Middle Passage” death rate - 20%-malnutrition and other diseases, suicide.
12. Slaves Codes – slaves and their children (chattels) property of white masters. Most famous was the Barbados Slave
Code, adopted by SC in 1696.
13. Crime to teach slaves to read or write in some colonies. No conversions to Christianity either.
14. A few slaves that did receive edu. were Phyllis Wheatley (poet) and Frederick Douglass (self-taught).
15. Discrimination molded slave trade.
E) Africans In America
1. Southern labor worse: climate harsh & labor was harsh (rice & indigo)
2. Only imported slaves kept the slave population not reproduction due to the high death rate
Chapter IV-3
Chesapeake – a lot easier: less demanding (tobacco fields)
1720 – females on rise = more families = more slaves
Slaves came f/ Angola, Ivory Coast, and other areas of African west coast.
a) Mix of speech, religions & folkways
b) Language developed: Gullah (mix) – words: goober (peanut), gumbo (okra),
Voodoo (witchcraft)
c) Added jazz – banjo & drums (bongo)
d) Jazz stemmed f/ “ringshout”—W. African rel. dance in which slaves danced in a circle and answered the shouts
of a preacher.
6. 1712 – Slave Revolt in NY – 12 whites dead, execution of 21 black slaves (some burned)
7. 1739 – Stono Rebellion-South Carolina slaves revolt: tried to march to Spanish FL but stopped.
8. No slave rebellion in US history matched intensity of Bacon’s rebellion
F) From African to African-American
1. Slaves had difficulty preserving culture in America, but they brought over many traditions- languages, music,
rice-planting techniques.
2. 1st slaves mostly men, legal status not certain at 1st, but slave society emerging as 18th century approached.
Plantation society.
3. Slaves worked long hours doing back-breaking labor. Women had it worse-2X the amount of work as menworked in home.
4. Slaves fused Christianity w/ African beliefs to create their own rel. blend.
“Negro Spirituals”-sang by slaves-helped give hope.G) Southern Society
1. Elite planters ruled regions economy & political power.
2. 70% of leaders in VA legislature came from “FFV’S”
3. Small farmers = largest social group
4. Slaves = society’s basement (lowest group)
5. Few cities in colonial South – due to main focus on plantations & nothing else?
1. Southern Society. As slavery spread so did the gap in the social structure
2. The 18th century was marked with an increase of wealth and status esp in the middle colonies
3. 70% of the leaders of the Virginia legislature came from the “FFV’s”
4. Social Structure went Plantation owners on top, then far below them were the small farmers, next were the landless whites,
then the slaves, then finally the indentured servants
Chapter IV-4
5. There were not many cities in the south, and even fewer urban professional class which included lawyers and
financiersWater ways provide for most of the transportation, roads were usually wretched and in bad weather funeral
parties could not even reach church burial grounds
H) The New England Family
1. Cleaner water
2. Colder temperatures = less germs spreading
3. Settlers in New England added 10 years to life after moving from England (70 average years)
4. Southerners lost 10 years of their lives
5. Family centered
6. Women wed by 20s – had kids very 1 years (that’s a lot of babies!!!!!)
7. New England “invented” grandparents – family longevity
8. Southern men died young leaving women w/ more property rights in South.
9. Women lost property rights when wed.
I) Life In New England Towns
1. Tightly knit society – small towns & farms
2. Basically all Puritan ways – antislavery
3. Chesapeake grew randomly while NE grew orderly
4. Meeting house was the place of worship & town hall (usually the center of the town), village greens and families
received land
5. Towns with more than 50 families had to provide elementary school majority of the adults knew how to read and
6. 1636- Harvard established ---- 1693- VA’s William & Mary School
7. Democratic town meetings in NE
8. The Puritans ran their own churches and democracy in Congregational Church government led logically to democracy
in political government
J) The Half-Way Covenant & The Salem Witch Trials
1. “Jeremiad” (based on Jeremiah) – Puritans?
2. Fewer conversions to the faith – “Half-way Covenant” – membership to those not converted yet. Resentment later on.
3. Salem Witch Trials – 1692 – 20 lynched to death (19 hanged, 1 pressed to death, 2 dogs hanged)
Chapter IV-5
4. Most lynched where mercantile elite – accused by lower class
5. Ended 1693 when the governor’s wife was accused – he stopped all convictions after that.
K) The New England Way of Life
1. Soil ridden w/ rocks made agriculture hard
2. “Penny pinchers”.
3. Less ethnically mixed population due to religion (b/c didn’t believe in slavery?)
4. Extreme weather (had all four seasons)– cash crops couldn’t survive
5. Natives helped preserve the land – settlers destroyed and divided the land
6. Cleared forests due to cattle & herds for grazing (didn’t respect the land as the natives did)
7. Became shipbuilding experts – fishing important (sacred cod in state house)
8. Calvinism, soil & climate = energy, purposefulness, sternness, stubbornness, & resourcefulness.
9. Same kind of towns appeared in several other states.
L) The Early Settler’s Days & Ways
1. Most colonists farmers – planted = spring, tended = summer, harvest = fall, & prepare = winter
2. Women (north/south, free or slave): cooked, cleaned, and cared for children.
3. Men: cleared land, fenced, planted, cut firewood, hunted, livestock.
4. Children: chores & schooling
5. Americas abundant compared to Europe
6. Leisler’s Rebellion – 1689 – 1691 – bloody between landlords & merchants
7. Resentment led to Leisler’s Rebellion – 1651 – MA prohibits poorer folk to wear gold/silver lace.
Chapter 4 Class Notes:
Triangular Trade: (E.A.A.)
- From Europe  Africa: weapons, clothes, & rum
- From Africa (Western)  Americas: slaves (middle passage leg of trip)
- From Americas  Europe: $, sugar, tobacco, molasses, & cotton (Africans traded other Africans)
- Cycle repeats again.
Chapter IV-6
Weapons, clothes &
$, sugar, tobacco,
molasses & cotton
Middle Passage
West Africa
Bacon’s Rebellion
– 1676- during king Philip’s War
-- 1st popular uprising bySlaves
American colonists v. colonial government (Gov. Berkely)
-- Prelude to next revolution
-- Bacon dies – rebellion over.
1. Social life
2. No voting rights
3. Taxed
4. NA received better treatment – gov’t. using fur trade
5. No punishing NA for attacks on frontiersmen (outskirts settlers, hunter, trappers, pelting,
subsistence  loners)
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Anabaptists – Mennonites (1500s) (were the 1set abolitionists)
- Radical
- Baptized when adult & and only adults
- Denied local authority
- Believed society was sinful
- Lived away from society
- Fled to Americas
- Separate church & state
- Sects: Baptists, Amish, & Mennonites (held 1st known protest against slavery)
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Family Life – big difference between North & South
- Family strong in north, weak in south (do to birth and death rates)
Chapter IV-7
- Today – 50% divorced in US, family values ?where did they go?
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Society: Class System
1. Planters
2. Small farmers
3. Landless people
4. Indentured servants
Competed over jobs
5. Slaves
1792 – Denmark – 1st European country to abolish slave trading
1807 – Great Britain abolishes slave trade
1808 – US abolishes slave trade
MA is #1 abolitionist state
NE towns were models for other US layouts – 50+ schools & most adults were literate
1636 – Harvard established – education roots in MA
1693 – William & Mary University in South (as result of Glorious Revolution)
1650 – “Jeremiad”  yelling, halfway covenant = falling #’s, less revelations from God.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------(German) Leisler’s Rebellion – 1689 –1691- In NY, reaction to Glorious Revo.
(Like America’s 1st rev.  overthrew Andros & Dominion of NE & NY/NJ)
1680s- Slavery in US grew
1848 – France emancipated (freed) slaves
1863 – Dutch & US emancipated slaves
Asylum – haven sanctuary
1800 – 893,000 slaves
1865 – 3.9 million slaves
Population doubled every 25 years.
Chapter IV-8
1775 – average age of 16
Jingoism – extreme patriotism
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Mr. L’s Belly Button Theory: is this really what Lev’s belly button looks like
Innie Belly Button
Outtie Belly Button
Immigration – going in
Emigration – going out
Immigrants go into a country
Emigrants leave a country
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- As American colonies diversified (different ethnicities)- they became less connected to English government (significant to
revolution) and became less loyal to England.
Scot-Irish -- not like English government (Paxton Boys – fought Native Americans)
 12 future presidents were Scot-Irish
-- Regulators  insurrectionists, rebel v. unjust practices (A. Jackson)
-- Mostly frontiersmen
Chapter 4 - American Life in the Seventeenth Century
Name of ID
William Berkeley
ID Text
79 He was a British colonial governor of Virginia from 1642-52. He showed that he had favorites in his second term which
Chapter IV-9
Chapter 4 - American Life in the Seventeenth Century
Name of ID
headright system
Middle Passage
ID Text
led to the Bacon's rebellion in 1676 ,which he ruthlessly surpressed. He had poor frontier defense.
81 way to attract immigrants; gave 50 acres of land to anyone who paid their way and/or any plantation owner that paid an
immigrants way; mainly a system in the southern colonies.
82 In the 1600's, Puritan preachers noticed a decline in the religious devotion of second-generation settlers. To combat this
decreasing piety, they preached a type of sermon called the jeremiad. The jeremiads focused on the teachings of Jeremiah,
a Biblical prophet who warned of doom.
83 middle segment of the forced journey that slaves made from Africa to America throughout the 1600's; it consisted of the
dangerous trip across the Atlantic Ocean; many slaves perished on this segment of the journey
84 In 1676, Bacon, a young planter led a rebellion against people who were friendly to the indians. In the process he torched
Jamestown, Virginia and was murdered by indians.
85 1689-1691, an ill- starred bloody insurgency in New York City took place between landholders and merchants.
86 A Puritan church document; In 1662, the Halfway Covenant allowed partial membership rights to persons not yet
converted into the Puritan church; It lessened the difference between the "elect" members of the church from the regular
members; Women soon made up a larger portion of Puritan congregations.
Leisler’s Rebellion
Bacon’s Rebellion
Stono Rebellion
Headright System
1670 VA assembly disfranchises landless freemen
Harvard College Founded
1619 1st Africans
1636 Harvard College founded
Halfway Covenant
Middle Passage
Expansion of slavery
Salem Witch Trials
Chapter IV-10
New York City Revolt
SC slave revot
College of William and Mary Founded
Indentured Servants
Triangular Trade
Headright System
Indentured Servants
Middle Passage