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New Englander's Issues During The Colonial Period

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Autor:   •  March 7, 2011  •  345 Words (2 Pages)  •  580 Views

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The most important issues facing the New Englanders, during the colonial period, were religious change and protecting themselves both by the law and from the Indians. John Cotton is given much credit for "organizing New England society and government." When Cotton came to America he was welcomed with open arms. But the greatness of John Cotton as a religious man was tested several times. The religious atmosphere in New England was punctuated with the introduction of radicals such as Anne Hutchinson and Roger Williams. Anne Hutchinson brought in the idea of antinomianism, which stated that the saved people of God did not have to follow man's law or God's law. This outraged the Puritans because this went against the basic principles of Puritan doctrine, because if one person sinned, it was believed that all would be damned. Roger Williams also brought about change in that he challenged the church's ability to control civil affairs, basic separation of church and state. Both Anne Hutchinson and Roger Williams were eventually exiled and started the colony of Rhode Island. But what was more dangerous than religious changes were the wars waged with the Indians. In New England there were two major wars that killed over 2,500 colonists and many cities were destroyed at the hands of Indians. After the Pequot wars, the New England colonies attempted to form their own defensive borders by creating the New England Confederation. This alliance though was ripped apart through the creation of the Dominion of New England, which was imposed by King James II. But the colonists were worried also about their rights as citizens of the colonies and wanted to have these rights secured. The Massachusetts Body of Liberties was written to protect these "inalienable" rights. This document also set up the modern Constitution and many of the rights that we have as citizens in America. The protection of rights, property, and the religious change


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