Middle Colonies

History of the Colonization of America and the original 13 Colonies

 The Middle Colonies: The Establishment and Settlement of the 13 original colonies

Farming in the Middle Colonies

Farming in the Middle Colonies

This article about the Middle Colonies provides facts and information at a glance in respect of:

  • Religion in the Middle Colonies
  • Government in the Middle Colonies
  • Trade and Economic activity in the Middle Colonies - see Triangular Trade
  • History Timeline of the Middle Colonies
  • Maps of the Middle Colonies
New England ColoniesSouthern Colonies
American Colonies IndexFirst 13 Colonies

Map of the Middle Colonies
The Middle Colonies shown on this Map are composed of Pennsylvania, Delaware, New York, and New Jersey.

Middle Colonies Map

Map of the Middle Colonies

Delaware ColonyPennsylvania ColonyNew York ColonyNew Jersey Colony

Middle Colonies Chart
The Middle Colonies chart provides important information and interesting facts about each of the Middle Colonies including the date the colony was established, the systems of Colonial government, religion, major towns in the Middle Colonies and the names of famous people associated with the founding and establishment each colony. The Middle Colonies chart  provides the ability to see at a glance the differences between the regions on a chart.

Middle Colonies Chart

DateName of Colony
or Settlement
RegionGovernment
in 1775
ReligionMajor TownsFamous
People
1626New York ColonyMiddleRoyalQuakers, Catholics, Lutherans, Jewish
and others
New York City and AlbanyPeter Minuit
Peter Stuyvesant
1638Delaware ColonyMiddleProprietaryQuakers, Catholics, Lutherans, Jewish
and others
Wilmington & GeorgetownPeter Minuit
1664New Jersey ColonyMiddleRoyalQuakers, Catholics, Lutherans, Jewish
and others
Trenton and PrincetonLord Berkeley
 George Carteret
1682Pennsylvania ColonyMiddleProprietaryQuakers, Catholics, Lutherans, Jewish
and others
Philadelphia, Lancaster and YorkWilliam Penn
Middle Colonies Chart

Information and Facts about the Middle Colonies
The four Middle Colonies of Colonial America consisted of a mix of both northern and southern features and its early settlement was dominated by non-English Europeans, mostly Dutch and German, the English colonists were in the minority. Facts about the Middle Colonies of Colonial America:

  • Fact 1 - Geography: The geography of the Middle Colonies had a mix of the New England and Southern features but had fertile soil and land that was suited to farming
  • Fact 2 - Natural Resources: Good farmland, timber, furs and coal. Iron ore was a particularly important natural resource
  • Fact 3 - Religion: Not dominated by a specific religion which gave way to religious freedom for Quakers, Catholics, Lutherans, Jews and others.
  • Fact 4 - Climate: The Middle Colonies had a mild climate with warm summers and mild winters
  • Fact 5 - Trade / Exports: The Middle Colonies were the big food producing region that included corn and wheat and livestock including beef and pork. Other industries included the production of iron ore, lumber, textiles, furs and shipbuilding - refer to Colonial Times and Colonial Society.

Middle Colonies - Economic Activity & Trade
There were considerable differences between the New England, Middle and Southern regions. Economic activities and trade were dependant of the environment in which the Colonists lived. The geography and climate impacted the trade and economic activities of Middle Colonies. The Middle Colonies exported agricultural products and natural resources. The Middle colonies are often called the breadbasket colonies because they grew so many crops, especially wheat. The Middle colonies built flour mills where wheat was ground into flour, then shipped to England. A typical farm was 50 to 150 acres consisting of a house, barn, yard and fields. The Middle Colonies were also able to manufacture iron ore products such as plows, tools, kettles, nails and large blocks of iron which they exported to England.

A Reverberatory furnace OF 1647 used to melt iron

A Reverberatory furnace of 1647 used to melt iron

Middle Colonies Government
All of the systems of government in the Middle Colonies elected their own legislature, they were all democratic, they all had a governor, governor's court, and a court system. Government in the Middle Colonies was mainly Proprietary, but New York started as a Royal Colony. Definitions of both of the government systems are as follows:

  • Royal Government: The Royal Colonies were ruled directly by the English monarchy
  • Propriety Government: The King granted land to people in North America, who then formed Proprietary Colonies

For additional facts and information refer to Colonial Government.

Middle Colonies Religion
The Middle Colonies were not dominated by a single religion which gave way to more liberal attitudes and some religious freedom. There were Quakers, Catholics, Lutherans, Jews and others in the Middle regions and colonies. For additional facts an d information about religion refer to Pilgrims and Puritans or our comprehensive article on Religion in the Colonies.

Original Names of the Middle Colonies
The original names of the Middle Colonies were the Province of New York, later New York and Vermont, the Province of New Jersey, later New Jersey, the Province of Pennsylvania, later Pennsylvania and the Delaware Colony (before 1776, the Lower Counties on Delaware), later Delaware.

Map of Middle Colonies

Map of the 13 Colonies

New England Colonies

Middle Colonies

Southern Colonies
  

Colonial America - The Land of the Brave

  

Middle Colonies Timeline
Discover interesting  information and facts about the history of the Middle Colonies. For a more comprehensive history timeline detailing specific events relating to all of the 13 Colonies refer to
Colonial America Time Period. This Middle Colonies Timeline provides a list detailing key events and dates of this amazing period in Colonial history. The Middle Colonies were composed of Pennsylvania, Delaware, New York, and New Jersey. A comprehensive list of the key events which are important to the Middle Colonies Timeline.

Middle Colonies Timeline
Middle Colonies Timeline

1623New Netherlands, which became New York, was settled by the Dutch New Netherlands refer to Peter Stuyvesant and Peter Minuit. In 1664, King Charles II granted New Netherland to his brother James, Duke of York who took a fleet to the area. The Dutch surrendered New Netherlands without a fight and it was renamed New York.
 

1630The Great Migration - Mass migration of thousands of English people to the Americas that took place between 1630 and 1640.
 

1638Delaware was settled. The Duke of York combined New Netherland and New Sweden and renamed the area Delaware. This region became part of Pennsylvania until 1703 when it created its own legislature.
 

1640The Quakers, or Society of Friends, was a Protestant sect founded in England whose members believed that salvation was available to all people
 

16511651 1660 1663 The Navigation Acts. The colonies represent a lucrative source of wealth and trade. Navigation Acts regulate colonial trade and enable England to collect duties (taxes)
 

1664New Jersey was settled. The Duke of York granted some land to Sir George Carteret and Lord John Berkeley who named their colony New Jersey. They provided grants of land and religious freedom in the colony. The two parts of the colony were not united into a royal colony until 1702
 

1673The Plantation Duty Act
 

1675The Lords of Trade are appointed in England to enforce the new mercantile system and maximize potential profits for England
 

1682Quakers Settle in Pennsylvania. The Quakers were persecuted in England and looked to have a colony in America with religious freedom. William Penn received a grant, which the King called Pennsylvania. The first settlement was Philadelphia.
 

1686Formation of New England - King James II combines the colonies of Connecticut, Massachusetts Bay Colony, Plymouth, Rhode Island, New York, New Hampshire, East Jersey and West Jersey into a single colony: The Dominion of New England.
 

1688King James II appoints Sir Edmund Andros to serve as Captain General and Governor in Chief of New England. Sir Edmund Andros causes dissension with the colonists as he does not have to answer to any elected assembly
 

16881688 - 1763 The French and Indian Wars between France and Great Britain for lands in North America
 

1689Feb 13, 1689 The Glorious Revolution. The Protestant William III and Mary II officially replace the Catholic James II as monarchs of England. The English Bill of Rights which enables Parliament to control laws and taxes
 

1689Mar 1689 Glorious Revolution Sparks Revolt in the colonies. Boston militiamen seize Governor-in-Chief Andros and put him in jail. The New England colonies begin to re-establish governments. Jacob Leisler (1640-1691) was a German immigrant who led the insurrection against local colonial officials from 1689 to 1691 in colonial New York
 

16961696 Salutary Neglect. The British government establishes the Board of Trade to oversee colonial policies practicing a policy of "Salutary Neglect," in which it gives the colonies considerable freedom in economic matters.
 

1702New Jersey. The two parts of the colony of New Jersey were united into a royal colony until 1702
 

1703Delaware. The Duke of York gained New Netherland and New Sweden which had been founded by Peter Minuit. He renamed the whole region as Delaware. This area became part of Pennsylvania until 1703 when Delaware created its own legislature
 

17071707 The Union between England and Scotland created the 'United Kingdom of Great Britain' and the term British, as opposed to English, is then used in reference to the colonists in North America.
 

1763The Royal Proclamation of 1763 was issued October 7, 1763 bringing the introduction of the massive boundary, which was the Proclamation Line between the colonies and Indian Territories
 

1764Sugar Act
 

17651765 The Stamp Act of 1765 

1765The Sons of Liberty was an an organization (a secret society) formed by American Patriots who opposed British measures against the colonists, and agitated for resistance
 

17671767 Townshend Acts
 

1773Tea Act
 

1775The American Revolution (1775- 1783) ended the Colonial America Time Period
 

1776A document declaring the US to be independent of the British Crown was signed on July 4, 1776, by the congressional representatives of the 13 Colonies
 
Middle Colonies Timeline
Middle Colonies Timeline - 1607 to 1696

Middle Colonies
The Middle Colonies article provides important information and interesting facts at a glance about the Middle Colonies including the date the colonies were established, the systems of government, religions, details of trade and the economic activities in the Middle Colonies. The names of important people associated with the founding and establishment of the Middle Colonies. A helpful, illustrated educational resource for teachers, kids and children.

 

Middle Colonies

  • Interesting Facts and information via the Middle Colonies
  • Middle Colonies history timeline
  • Fast Facts and info with the Middle Colonies
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  • Social Studies Homework help for kids on Middle Colonies

Colonial America - The Land of the Brave

 

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