The Middle Colonies

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How did the Middle Colonies and New England colonies differ?

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One difference was their demographic makeup. While both colonies were largely English, the Middle Colonies of Pennsylvania and New York had more nationalities in them due to their religious tolerance. Pennsylvania had a substantial German population even after the Revolutionary War. The colony of New Amsterdam was as religiously tolerant...

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One difference was their demographic makeup. While both colonies were largely English, the Middle Colonies of Pennsylvania and New York had more nationalities in them due to their religious tolerance. Pennsylvania had a substantial German population even after the Revolutionary War. The colony of New Amsterdam was as religiously tolerant as the mother country and boasted many different religions, including Judaism. New England was populated by Calvinists, who disagreed with the Church of England.

Another difference pertained to the economies of the colonies. New York was known for its trade, as the Hudson River provided one of the best ports on the continent. Pennsylvania was known as the breadbasket of the colonies thanks to its Quaker inhabitants' large farms. New England, on the other hand, had a shorter growing season and thinner soil. Farmers practiced subsistence agriculture. More people turned to trade, whaling, fishing, and timber in order to grow the economic future of the colony.

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