Thirteen Colonies - Economic Activity, Trade & Differences between the Regions
There were considerable differences between the 3 regions. Economic activities were dependant of the environment in which the Colonists lived - see Colonial Times. The geography and climate and other important factors in the Thirteen Colonies impacted the economic activities of each of the 3 regions of the Thirteen Colonies - the Northern Colonies of New England concentrated in manufacture focussing on town life and industries such as ship building and the manufacture and export of rum. The Southern Colonies concentrated on agriculture and developed the Slave Plantations exporting tobacco, cotton, indigo, rice, sugar, corn, vegetables, grain, fruit and livestock. The Middle Colonies also exported agricultural products and natural resources but were also able to manufacture iron ore products like plows, tools, kettles, nails and large blocks of iron which they exported to England. Refer to Triangular Trade for additional facts about trade.
New England Ship Building
Thirteen Colonies - Trade: Imports (goods brought in) and Exports (goods sent out)
The Thirteen Colonies imported and exported goods and resources within the colonies and there was also a brisk trade between the colonists and Europe. The colonists made ships from the timber that was available in the vast forests which the English bought and then these ships took exports from Colonial America back to Europe.
Thirteen Colonies - Differences in Religion
The types of religion and religious practices varied greatly between the three regions of the Thirteen Colonies. The religion practised in New England was strictly Puritan and they did not tolerate any other religions - refer to Pilgrims and Puritans. The Middle and Southern 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 Anglicans and Baptists in the Southern regions. Refer to Religion in the Colonies
Thirteen Colonies - Government
There were various systems of government used within the Thirteen Colonies refer to Colonial Government. All of the systems of government in the Thirteen colonies elected their own legislature (parliament). They were all democratic. They all had a governor, governor's court, and a court system. The various government systems of the first Thirteen Colonies were Royal Colonies, Charter Colonies, and Proprietary Colonies:
- Royal Government: The Royal Colonies were ruled directly by the English monarchy
- Proprietary Government: The King granted land to people in North America, who then formed Proprietary Colonies
- Charter Government: The Charter Colonies were generally self-governing, and their charters were granted to the colonists.
See the Lords Proprietors and the Charter of Carolina
The First Thirteen Colonies
Discover interesting facts and information about the history of the First Thirteen starting with the arrival of the Mayflower in Plymouth in 1620 and the people who immigrated to Colonial America. For a history timeline detailing specific events relating to the First Thirteen refer to the 13 Colonies Timeline. A comprehensive history timeline reference relating to the era can be viewed via the Colonial America Time Period.