Skip to main content

New England Colonies

NEW ENGLAND COLONIES

NEW ENGLAND COLONIES. Settled by Europeans, primarily the English, in the seventeenth century, New England included the Plymouth Colony (1620, absorbed by Massachusetts Bay in 1691), the Massachusetts Bay Colony (1630), Connecticut (1636), New Haven (1640), Rhode Island (1636), and New Hampshire (separated from Massachusetts Bay in 1741). The New England Colonies are best known as the destination for Puritan religious reformers and their followers. Diverse European fishermen, however, had been tapping into the vast resources off Cape Cod since the late 1500s. Religious and economic motivations merged in each New England Colony.

Prompted by just those two motivations, in 1630 approximately one thousand people set sail from England under the auspices of the Puritan-controlled Massachusetts Bay Company. Led by John Winthrop, the Puritan founders of the Massachusetts Bay Colony sought to establish a religious utopia made up of Christians who operated in a strict covenant with God.

Tensions in Massachusetts Bay—the product of disagreements over what would constitute a theocratic community and government, relationships with Native Americans, and the role of wealth, status, and land in the colony—resulted early on in a threat of deportation for Roger Williams, a Puritan minister from Salem who openly challenged both church and government policy. In 1635 Williams fled south with a small band of followers to establish Providence, the first settlement in Rhode Island.

In like manner, Puritans from Massachusetts Bay also migrated to Connecticut, settling in Hartford (under the leadership of Thomas Hooker), New Haven (under John Davenport), and in towns along the Connecticut River Valley.

BIBLIOGRAPHY

Bremer, Francis J. The Puritan Experiment: New England Society from Bradford to Edwards. Rev. ed. Hanover, N.H.: University Press of New England, 1995. The original edition was published in 1976.

Leslie J.Lindenauer

See alsoNew Haven Colony ; Pilgrims ; Providence Plantations, Rhode Island and ; Puritans and Puritanism ; Separatists, Puritan .

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"New England Colonies." Dictionary of American History. . Encyclopedia.com. 18 Aug. 2018 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"New England Colonies." Dictionary of American History. . Encyclopedia.com. (August 18, 2018). http://www.encyclopedia.com/history/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/new-england-colonies

"New England Colonies." Dictionary of American History. . Retrieved August 18, 2018 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/history/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/new-england-colonies

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles

Encyclopedia.com gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, Encyclopedia.com cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use Encyclopedia.com citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

http://www.mla.org/style

The Chicago Manual of Style

http://www.chicagomanualofstyle.org/tools_citationguide.html

American Psychological Association

http://apastyle.apa.org/

Notes:
  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most Encyclopedia.com content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.