Life in the Thirteen Colonies

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How did transportation impact American colonial regions differently?

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Transportation impacted the American colonial regions in two major ways. First, most of the major settlements were located at deep water harbors or along rivers. This was similar to the development of European and ancient civilizations. Waterways and harbors were necessary for commerce because the absence of quick and reliable overland transport forced many merchants to rely on either oceans or rivers for the transportation of goods. This led most merchants to locate their businesses either in harbor towns or along rivers. Businesses that sold goods also tended to situate themselves in these areas in order to lower the transportation costs that would need to be paid for goods prior to resale. For convenience, this led many individuals to locate themselves in these areas both for ease of obtaining goods and because most of the non-agricultural jobs were located in these areas.

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