Unfortunately, the slave trade, in which all of the colonies were complicit, contributed to the monetary enrichment of colonial society. The direct benefit to landowners in the South was obviously that the system of slavery enabled them to avoid paying wages to the laborers who worked their land. Though this financial "advantage" of not paying for work wasn't as important to employers north of the Mason and Dixon line, slavery was legal in all of the colonies before independence, and the so-called "golden triangle" of the slave trade enriched businessmen in both Britain and the northern colonies. (For an allusion in twentieth-century popular culture to this phenomenon, see the song "Molasses to Rum" in the musical 1776.)
The increasing wealth of the colonies, however, could be said to have caused the eventual, much-delayed destruction of slavery, which began with the passing of gradual abolition laws in the North after 1776. Money enabled Americans to become educated, to read books, and to become acquainted with the changes in thinking taking place in Europe during the Enlightenment. North American society thus matured in parallel with the European world, where serfdom was being gradually eliminated. At the same time, the constant flow of immigrants from the Old World to the New resulted in the continued movement westward of European settlement and the occupation of more and more land previously populated solely by Native Americans. The immigrants had the unending dream of having one's own homestead, unlike in Europe where labor was done by tenant farmers who owned nothing but the clothes on their backs.
These facts in the New World of both living on a frontier and owning property resulted in an independence of thought among the colonists that was something new for the great masses of the people. As more land was claimed by the settlers and cultivated, the major cities, all of them at this time close to the Atlantic coast, were able to become increasingly self-sufficient. That the colonies were settled to a large extent by religious dissenters from Britain and elsewhere in Europe also accounts for the overall independence of spirit in colonial life. It's perhaps a paradox that Americans were more religious and more likely to be affected by Enlightenment ideals than were their counterparts back in Europe. The diversity of the population, with many people having come from Germany and other countries in addition to Great Britain, was another factor in the maturation of American society. By 1775, when war broke out, Americans were poised to become a new nation. It's both unfortunate and tragic that much of this maturation process occurred at the expense of enslaved people of African descent, and of the Native Americans.