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Colonial Unity Dbq

Essay by   •  December 20, 2010  •  975 Words (4 Pages)  •  1,850 Views

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Many colonists held a stronger loyalty to their American Colonies than to England by the eve of the Revolution. The battles and trials that they endured gave them an identity and a unity, they had survived through many hardships and any group that does that had some sort of bond. The unique combining of cultures, geography, and the many political ordeals that American colonists had endured provided them with a sense of identity and unity.

There was a combining of culture in America that was unique and this mixing that occurred throughout the colonies made it so that the majority could not identify, fully, with the term "Englishmen" but identified themselves as Americans. In Europe most would call themselves French, Dutch, Irish, ect., but in the colonies there were so many people immigrating from not only England, but most other European countries and in America they were marrying and reproducing in a way that did not happen as often in Europe so they identified with the term "American" because they no longer could identify with only one European country. The descendents of an Irish woman and a French man born in America could not identify solely with the term Irish or French, and they were not born in Europe so the term European could not apply to them, but the word American described these unique people perfectly. The American was a mixture of many cultures and could identify with living in America and being a part of large web of different backgrounds. Hector St. John Crиvecoer explained this concept of an American in his "Letters from an American Farmer," composed in the 1770's. Here he explains that the descendent of many different cultures "is an American, who leaving behind him all his ancient prejudices and manners, receives new ones from the new mode of life he has embraced." Crиvecoer goes on to say that America is a place that people of many different races are combined and "melted into a new race of man," a race of man that will cause many changes throughout the world. This description of a melting pot is now heard frequently in America to describe its citizens. The cultural assimilation that occurred in the colonies of the New World gave the people a great sense of identity and the unity as all being Americans.

Geography was a large part of the disloyalty and disconnection that the colonists felt toward England before the Revolution. England was an entire ocean away, and a government that holds power from thousands of miles away can not be the most effective or efficient. This might have best been said in The Famous Mather Byles: The noted Boston Tory Preacher "which is better, to be ruled by a tyrant three thousand miles away, or three thousand tyrants one mile away." The simple fact that England was on the other side of the Atlantic Ocean, not a journey that was made easily, made it clear to colonists that they could not reach their potential with a government that could not attend to them quickly and accurately. That is when they took it upon themselves in developing an identity as a separate country that had to be governed by a leader that was at least on the same continent. As Edmund Burke stated in his "Notes for Speech in Parliament. 3 February 1766": "The eternal Barriers of Nature forbid that the colonies should be blended or coalesces into the Mass ... of this Kingdom." Burke also states in the same document that Parliament

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