Massachusetts

by Heather

 

The Massachusetts Colony was important because it let Pilgrims practice their religion freely. Massachusetts was the second colony to form. The first governor was John Carver and the second was William Bradford. Both came on the Mayflower to find the new colony. It was John Carver, William Bradford, and Miles Standish who left the Mayflower at Provincetown and scouted out the area for the new colony. The people settled in Massachusetts because they wanted their own land and wanted to practice their own Puritan religion. Massachusetts got its name from the Algonquin Indians who camped on a big hill which they called "Mesatuset." Someone translated this into the name Massachusetts.

Massachusetts was a land of plenty. There were plenty of trees for making houses and boats. There were lots of coves where the Puritans could fish. The land was good for farming especially when the Puritans used the Indian crops like corn and squash. The land was somewhat rocky which meant that in some places it wasn't good for farming. They also made stone walls with the many rocks. The climate was moderate and this meant there were four seasons which meant that you had one season for growing and one season for harvesting. It was a very comfortable place for people to live most of the time.

The colonists built their houses out of logs, sticks, and mud. They couldn't make big houses because their resources were limited and they had to share them with other people. The religion of the Massachusetts Colony was Puritan. The first people who came over were all Separatists. They were people who separated from the Church of England. All the Puritans did was work and go to church. Sometimes the younger children played marbles. They had to walk everywhere they went. They ate corn, berries, squash, cornbread, and meat like venison, wild turkey, and goose. From the bay, they ate fish that they caught and lobster and clams.

Many famous things happened in Massachusetts. There was the settling of Plimoth Plantation, which was the beginning of this second colony called Massachusetts. The first Thanksgiving is when the Indians helped the Puritans grow and harvest their first crop. The Puritans were very thankful. The Salem Witch Trials happened in Salem, Massachusetts. Here they accused a lot of women of being witches. They would dunk a woman they suspected of being a witch under water. If she lived they would hang her. If she died, they would write a sincere apology. The Boston Tea Party is also a well known event. Radicals threw the King's tea into the water because they didn't want to pay his taxes on tea. They wanted him to know they were mad.

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