The Middle Colonies

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What religions were in the middle colonies?

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The Middle Colonies were the most religiously diverse of the colonies. Religious diversity was most prevalent here for several reasons. First, the land had largely been taken from the Dutch after a Dutch-English war. The Dutch had allowed greater religious liberty in their colonial possessions than England, and that carried over into these new English colonies. Second, New York (as well as parts of New Jersey) were ethnically diverse because of the commercial nature of the colonial port cities. This ethnic diversity required a higher degree of religious tolerance in order to support continued commercial success. Third, Pennsylvania was founded on a belief in religious tolerance that came directly out of the persecution of Quakers.

The religions that existed in the Middle Colonies included Judaism (mostly in New York), Quakerism, Catholicism, Congregationalism, and various branches of Protestantism. Other religions may also have been present, but these were the most prevalent.

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