Massachusetts Bay

Massachusetts Bay

Massachusetts Bay is a country located in the south-west of the Atlantic Ocean and extending from Cape Ann on the northern part and Plymouth harbor to the southern part covering a distance of 42 miles (68km). The land was inhabited by Puritan separatists who had defected from the Church of England led by William Brewster and William Bradford in early 1620. After arriving in the bay, they quickly put in place a government under mayflower compact. Before coming to Massachusetts, they had set on a voyage to northern Virginia but failed in their mission since the majority of them almost half the population that had left on voyage died due to general debility while some just died of scurvy, after a few seasons William Bradford became their governor.[1]

Their success in surviving and been able to proclaim the Mayflower compact which is the act of self- governance prompted a huge migration of Puritan of the 1630s.

[2] The promoters of the voyage pumped in another 200000 pounds, and this was led by John Winthrop, a Puritan whose main objective was to sanctify the church in England. Their first expedition was in March 1630 with 500 men, children and women and practiced cattle domestication and growing of Indian corn and vegetables.

Winthrop was much concerned about the holiness of his territory and not the traders who came to buy goods from his colony despite trading ships to the Roman Catholics and Virginian who adopted slave trade especially the native farmers who had big plantations that needed free and cheap labor

.[3] Despite the fact that the colony was based on theocracy and oligarchy they adopted trial through the jury and the freedom from self-incrimination for his people. Those who were poor to raised Levis and taxes were exempted from paying taxes of any form making him liked by his people.

Religion adherence was mandatory, and those who violated it were subjected to death as stipulated by the penal law of the colony. Practicing witchcraft was also punishable by death especially after the death of Winthrop

.[4] By this time around 1637, civil wars had broken out in neighboring countries making more puritans consider Massachusetts as the safe place.

In 1685 there ascend a new king called King James the second who had ascended to the English throne under his order of business Massachusetts was given a new administrator, but this didn’t stop the civil wars that were now ravaging through the land until the treaty of Ryswick by

[1] Chapter: 31 in A Comprehensive Outline of World History by Jack E. Maxfield

[2] Smith, P. (1976). A new age now begins. New York: McGraw-Hill.

[3] Merk, F. (1985). History of the westward movement. New York: Alfred A. Knopf.

[4] Belloc, H. (1967). On. Freeport, N.Y.: Books for Libraries Press.

 

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