Another reason for migration was the idea of primogeniture, which allowed the eldest son to inherit the wealth; leaving others desperate and in hopes of finding riches overseas. Also, many fled to America to escape peonage or prison. These social concerns in England ended up populating the colonies because people believed they would find a better life in America. The second major way that England shaped the colonies were the English politics. At some points, colonists seemingly were allowed plenty of freedom, while other times they were under strict English rule.
The English were mostly Puritans and pilgrims. The pilgrims wanted to separate from Protestantism, so they came over to the New World. The Puritans wanted to change ideas within the Anglican Church because they felt it was too similar to Catholicism. The Puritans came to the New World and had a huge influence. Unlike the Spanish, the English never forced their religious beliefs onto the Indians.
The Jamestown and Plymouth colonies were established with different economic intentions, leadership, and survival tactics. While Jamestown settlers had Gold and other economical gains on their mind establishing their colony, the Pilgrims sought after religious freedom as they established their colony in Plymouth. Jamestown colonists were outrageous adventurers: “Economic motives prompted colonization in Virginia” (National Park Service). The Plymouth colonists, however, sought America for a different purpose: Freedom from religious persecution motivated the Pilgrims to leave England and settle in Holland, where there was more religious freedom. However, after a number of years the Pilgrims felt that their children were being corrupted by the liberal Dutch lifestyle and were losing their English heritage.
Virginia and Massachusetts are considered to be two of the most well known colonies that resulted from European expansion and conquest. Although economic development in both colonies began around the same time, the way they were “brought up” created various distinguishable differences between them. The differing religions and views of the people who began these two colonies' development led to their very different political and economic systems. Although both colonies were established at the same time, Massachusetts and Virginia developed to be two very different places. The Virginia Companies was not as successful as Massachusetts because Massachusetts' success came through smart decisions regarding food and planning.
It was religion that drove the New England colony and Middle Atlantic colony down two starkly opposite paths, but one was a religion of uniformity and government by God, and the other, a religion promising exactly the opposite. The doxology, or lack thereof, practiced in these two neighboring settlements was the basis for their entire beginnings, and the foundation for every facet of life within, the New England colonies standing united by a common faith, and the Middle Atlantic colonies in which freedom was the only common religion. These two settlements were hugely contrary but both began, and were fueled by the religion that they employed. The hand of European religious persecution ignited the spark of immigration to the new world of America. The New England colonies, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Maryland were conceived and established as "holy experiments" by the puritans.
Thus separation of church and state came into play, with hopes of keeping public morality and avoiding corrupting embrace from the government. Throughout the new nation people had started disestablishing their churches that had deprived peoples from public funding and special legal privileges. The revolution enhanced the different types of American Christianity and widely expanded the idea of religious liberty. This gave people of different beliefs a safe and nonjudgmental environment to express their religion but also threatened the rights of those who undermined church
As the colonists wanted to develop their own form of government, they also wanted to pursue their own form of religion. Religious freedom was one of the main goals of the settlers coming to the colonies. The Church of England was very controlling when the settlers lived in England, and many colonists wanted to get away from a tightness of the Church of England's grip. Many of them wanted to go to the colonies to worship freely on how they wanted to. Although many different religions were explored in the colonies such as the many Protestant religions, the Anglican dominance stayed amongst in the colonies.
So, they immigrated to America to follow their ideals, which are expressed in Document A. They also tried to set up a democracy to show that religion was more important than money, as seen in Documents D and E. The colonists that settled in the Chesapeake region, however, were not as religious and lacked a similar aim. Document C describes the settlers of Virginia as older single men and a few older women. Based on this information, it can be concluded that the Virginian colonists were not planning on staying long in the New World and they were not there to create a democracy. Their main purpose was to dig gold, wash gold, refine gold, load gold, and they would treat the other colonials as slaves to get it (document F).
The New England’s population settles for freedom from religious prosecution. The people that were prosecuting them were the Puritans. The Puritans only gave religious freedom to people they wanted to give it to. The rigid Puritan control added greater regional difference between the north and the south. In two of the documents written in New England, there were religious issues mentioned.
They broke away from the persecution of church leadership and the King to come to America. The immigration of the Pilgrims to New England occurred in stages. The Pilgrims, fleeing religious persecution, broke away from the Church of England because they felt the Church violated biblical principles of true Christians. ‘Opposed to the Episcopal jurisdiction and the rites and discipline of the Church of England, the group had formed as a separatist church by 1606’, Pilgrims (2008) They committed themselves to a life based on the Bible. Evangelical Christianity in the 18th century represented something new but not in the sense of a creation out of nothing.