How were the Jamestown settlers different from those in Salem?

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Ashley Kannan eNotes educator| Certified Educator

I think that one primary difference between the two groups might come down to why they each migrated to the new world.  Jamestown was driven for profit.  The discovery of Jamestown was commissioned by a British company, the Virginia Company of England, sought to establish a new colony in North  America.  The discovery of tobacco and other cash crops helped to drive industry and wealth for the company.  The establishment of materialist motives behind colonization emerged from this.  At the same time, the founding of areas such as Plymouth and Salem were done so for a pursuit of religious freedom.  This became the driving force behind why the Puritans came to the new world and why they practiced a brand of religious worship that was so dogmatic and driven by spiritual impurity and the castigation of the human soul into original sin.  In this vacuum, between economic and political control alongside spiritual and religious pursuit of the good, Miller's play takes place, reflecting both in the Witchcraft Trials.

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