Lecture 1: The Settlement of Virginia
Lecture 1: The Settlement of Virginia HI 1063
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This 4 page Class Notes was uploaded by Grey Garris on Friday August 28, 2015. The Class Notes belongs to HI 1063 at Mississippi State University taught by Andrew Lang in Fall 2015. Since its upload, it has received 360 views. For similar materials see Early US History in History at Mississippi State University.
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Date Created: 08/28/15
HI 1063 Lecture 1 The Settlement of Virginia Details This Lecture includes the Course Reader Section 22 Review of the reading is included at the end in these notes but the reading itself is not I Introduction Virginia and the American Tradition Summary A 1607 first American settlement by the English Jamestown colony B Virginia would eventually become one of the most if not the most powerful of the american colonies C Founded for the sole purpose of profit D KEY QUESTIONS 1 Why was Virginia founded 2 Did the Jamestown colonv succeed or fail at its primarv purpose 3 How do we see the principles of liberty arise as well as slaverv ll Private Enterprise Capitalism Private Companies for profit A Elizabeth I 1558 1603 1 Queen of England Fascinated by the Western world itself and English interests in it Gave charters to businesses that wished to make money off of the New World B Sir Walter Raleigh 1 One of the first colonists of Virginia territory Ships landed in an area near North Carolina and named the land Virginia after the virgin queen Elizabeth 2 Created a colony that failed miserably due to poor conditions weather and illness The Lost Colony 15871590 disappeared and Sir Raleigh lost his entire fortune in the process C Joint Stock Company Modern Corporation 1 A group of investors that pooled their money with the idea that more money and more investors would increase a colony s chances of surviving 2 James 16031625 a Successor to Elizabeth I Granted charters Rights of Exploration to two JSCs 1 Virginia Company of Plymouth settled Plymouth MA 2 Virginia Company of London a Settled Jamestown Planned to reinvest all profits into the company for 7 years before pulling profits as their own D Jamestown Colony 1607 1 Situated on the Chesapeake Bay Primary intention was to make money for the company via trade and natural resources Secondary intentions existed in that England would gain a foothold in the Americas 2 Problems a The governing body of the Jamestown colony The Royal Council remained in London They had no direct oversight of the colony s daytoday affairs b The colonists were largely hired hands that had no money in the game and as a result did not care too much about the success of the colony c Communication was extremely difficult and it was impossible to make changes to daytoday functions of the colony from across the Atlantic d Climate and landscape was drastically different from England Hot humid mosquitoes The ocean water and river water mixed together in the lake they used which caused salt poisoning which made the colonists sluggish e Relationships with the Native Americans were decent at first no actively antagonizing each other Eventually the relationship became hostile and the estimated 14000 Natives stood against the mere 200 or so colonists The sides tolerated one another at this point but both viewed the other as savage E Years of Survival 1 John Smith a After a year in the fledgling colony there was still no leadership that worked well and the colonists were failing to work for the common good John Smith rose up as the leader of the colony and began to get order into the situation He established a relative peace with the Native Americans and was able to get the colonists to work 2 The Starving Time a The winter of 1609 was the worst the colonists had ever seen in the colony or in England John Smith had returned to England due to severe injury and the settlement was left without leadership again At the beginning of the winter there were around 490 colonists By its end only 60 were left The remaining settlers then packed up and sat on the beach waiting for the next ship so they could return to England They declared Jamestown a failure b The ships that came however did not bring them back Instead they said that new colonists and positive changes were coming F Charter of 1609 1 Brought changes to the function of the Virginia Company of London and the Jamestown Colony itself 2 Reforms a Anyone who wished to invest in the company was allowed to do so 1 An element of self government was added this way b The Royal Council was now composed of members elected by the Stockholders for the sole purpose of getting the Jamestown colony to succeed c Jamestown was given a governor 1 Lord De La Warr Came with the new ships Jamestown s first governor was militaristic and harshly punished any who broke the laws Ex ordered a man tied to a tried and a stake drove through his tongue because the man stole food G Charter of 1612 1 Further amended the Charter of 1609 a Stockholders now met 4 times a year H Results of the Jamestown Colony 1 The Jamestown Colony was able to survive 2 The Virginia Company of London was failing miserably 3 England gained a foothold in the Americas lll Final Years of the London Company 16161624 A Reforms of 16161619 1 Final set of reforms to try and save the dying company 2 Had a great impact on American tradition 3 Headright System Any person who paid their own way to Jamestown would be granted 50 acres regardless of the fact that Natives might be living on the land by the divine right of the King 4 Diversified Economy The colony would now base its profit margin on multiple crops and resources instead of a single one of either 5 General Assembly A Bicameral legislature that oversaw the functioning of the Jamestown colony with the governor Composed of the Council wealthy elite landowners more powerful and the House of Burgesses elected common people s body less powerful the General Assembly laid the foundation for the design of the Congress B Discontent with the London Company 1 Though the reforms were effective and made Jamestown significantly better the London Company was failing too badly for it to be saved It had not run any sort of profit no one wanted it anymore and 1A of settlers were killed in a Native raid settlers became disillusioned by the reality of the world they were now in and the wealthy elite and Council members had bought all the good land which began the sharecropping system 2 Result a Due to all the above reasons the King revoked the charter of the Virginia Company of London officially dissolving the Company and repossessed the colony for the crown because he saw the value of the tobacco that had begun to be produced IV Virginia as a Royal Colony 1624 1776 A Continuation of Self Government was allowed by the King so the General Assembly and the Governor remained in their appointed positions Colony kept its right to operate its own daily affairs B Tobacco 1 The crop that made Virginia powerful Tobacco had such a huge demand on the global market and Virginia s soil was so well suited to growing it that it quickly became the backbone of Virginia s economic power 2 lndentured Servitude and the Rise of Slavery a Tobacco production required significant labor forces to cultivate it effectively Originally indentured servants individuals who were indebted to serve for a term of 57 years in order to pay off their debt were used Bacon s Rebellion changed that 1 Bacon s Rebellion a Virginia had become a settler magnet Many of these settlers became indebted to plantation owners and became so in debt that they were indentured for lifequot Dome who made it out of their debt realized that no land was available to them to have so by 1676 1A of all planters were actually landless The problem got worse when Governor Berkeley passed laws that aided the already wealthy and powerful landowners and made life harder for the indebted The poor moved westward in search of better opportunities but they were attacked by the Natives When they asked for aid Berkeley refused them so they turned to Bacon Bacon issued the demands of the settlers and condemned Berkeley s unfair laws and restrictions When this was ignored Bacon and his group stormed the plantations and nearly destroyed te entire colony This illustrated the power that the mobmentality would have as Berkeley conceded This however only allowed slavery to become even more prevalent b As Bacon s Rebellion essentially put an end to the use of indentured servitude plantation owners looked for new cheap labor Slavery was by far their best option and as such the use of slavery quickly became widespread and eventually intrinsic to the point that it laid the foundation for America to become the largest slaveholding empire in the world Course Reading for Lecture 1 This reading focuses on a letter sent from an indentured servant in the Jamestown colony to his father back in England He describes the horrible conditions that he and the others are forced to deal with as colonists such as attacks by Natives stealing of belongings by other colonists scarcity of food and the rarity of any decent food at all He implores his father to paid his way out of his debt and bring him home to escape the terrible conditions
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