American History Homework One Answers - Student Twelve

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Duncan B. 9/11/08

1. The Spanish, English, and French, in that order, were the first to colonize the New World.


2. Columbus’ most inspiring trait was his courage to hold to his beliefs through scorn and criticism. Many others, under pressure from critics, have retracted their beliefs. Not Columbus.


3. Early settlements in America failed for a number of reasons. Probably the most important was overdependence on the mother country; if the ship-borne supplies did not arrive, starvation could result. Other reasons included being based on a “get-rich-quick” ideology and not endeavoring to establish good relationships with Native Americans.


4. The principal motivation for the Massachusetts settlements was to establish a church free of the semi-Catholic Anglicanism of England. The minority of Puritans who went to Massachusetts to cast off the Church of England were called Pilgrims. The mainstream Puritans, though, felt that leaving was not the answer; they wanted to clean up the Church from within.


5. William Penn believed in religious freedom for all at a time when virtually none thought that way. He furthermore believed that the Native Americans were not just savages to be converted to Christianity or killed.

Overstated a bit. Roger Williams believed in religious freedom before Penn did. See Roger Williams. (Minus 1).

6. A proprietary colony was given to one or more men by the King. The recipient then was its lord. Maryland was such a colony, given to Lord Baltimore by Charles I.

Charter colonies were amounts of land granted to someone who then governed it under a royal charter. Examples are Rhode Island and Connecticut.

A joint-stock colony was founded by private investors (in the way of capitalism) who hoped to get something out of their money; one such colony was Virginia.

A royal colony was founded by or taken over by the King of England. Many colonies started out as one of the first three and later were taken over.

Good. You might have added a specific example of a royal colony. (Minus 1).

7. Christopher Columbus was an extremely religious man. When he discovered the Americas, it was in the “name of God and the King of Spain” that he claimed it. With all the anti-Christian fervor now, many would want to denude him of his glory—discovering the Americas—and credit a non-Christian with it. They have, with claims that the Vikings and even the Irish landed there first.

Excellent, though the more precise point is not to credit a non-Christian (some claim Leif Ericson was a Christian) but rather to take credit away from an extraordinary and prominent Christian hero in any way possible.

H3. In the early 1000s A.D., the Vikings founded a small settlement in Newfoundland. The purpose of this settlement was probably to trade with the Native Americans for furs and the like, as well as general exploration. The Vikings could have established settlements in Greenland and North America because the climate in the early part of the 11th and 12th centuries was very mild. (There were records of grape vines growing in England!) The settlement was probably abandoned for one of two reasons: 1. It was discovered to be an unprofitable colony. 2. With the constant climate fluctuations, in about 150 years, it would have become far colder. It is more likely that the Vikings found that it was hard enough to support a settlement so far away and stopped supplying it. Thus, the colony gradually died out.

Could be, but I'm skeptical.

H4. Mercantilism is a system of trade between colonies and the mother country. The mother state tries to limit imports of goods from all but colonies and maximize imports to all other states, including the colonies. The setup during the 17th and 18th centuries meant that the colonies supplied raw goods (such as cotton, corn, indigo, or tobacco) to the parent state (e.g., England.) England’s factories would make the raw materials into finished goods, which could then be sold abroad and at home. Thus, by minimizing imports and maximizing exports, the parent country becomes rich. The central problem with this setup is that it makes the colonies mere suppliers, to be used as the mother country desires.

Tremendous explanation!

H5. Nearly all history textbooks teach that a “triangular trade” between Europe, Africa, and America controlled trading from approximately 1650. The way this trade is said to have been run is ships in Africa would load slaves and take them to the New World. There the vessels would drop off the slaves and load raw goods such as molasses or tobacco. After reloading, ships would go to Europe and exchange the raw materials for finished goods. Then some of the finished goods would be sold to African chiefs and European slave-traders in exchange for more slaves.

This theory has been called into question. What, the skeptics say, would Europe have to send back to Africa? What they overlook is the fact that in the 1600s-1700s, Africa was beginning to be colonized and explored. One of the most valued goods by the Africans—not just for the purchase of slaves—was rum. This was used by all traders as a trading unit, and large quantities would be sent there. It is true, however, that the leg to Africa would be the least profitable part of the trip. Most of the finished goods would not be sold in Africa.

Superb start: score 98/100.--Aschlafly 17:22, 11 September 2008 (EDT)