Colonial Labor System In North American Colonies

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Natalie Myren Colonial Labor Systems Essay 10.3.15 The Colonial Period (1600-1763) of the British North American Colonies was a time filled with a surplus of trade. These transAtlantic interactions contributed to maintaining continuity within the North and the South where labor systems were a result of that environment’s family and societal structure, but they also fostered change in the use and source of labor in the South due to a need for goods from the North American colonies and the end of indentured servitude. Throughout the entirety of the Colonial Period, the New England colonists maintained continuity within their labor system. It was a system comprised of free labor, skilled labor, and a wage economy. The population was extremely dense and it was typical of New Englanders to expect large families that could work the fields, thus, there was no…show more content…
Because the families all owned their own family farms, they were small enough that only the members of the family were needed to maintain them. In the New England colonies, there was an abundance of resources, and in England there were shortages in things such as lumber, so the New Englanders exported their raw goods and cash crops to England where manufactured goods were produced and the New Englanders profited. The New England labor system was a continuum because the families were consistently large enough to do all the work themselves and were able to make all of their profit by exporting their raw goods. In the beginning of the Colonial Period, the South and it’s labor system was very continual and similar to the North’s in that the Southerners (including the Chesapeake area) made their profit off of their cash crops. As a result of the rules of primogeniture in England, many young, single, aristocratic gentlemen came to North America in hopes of finding gold to profit off of. When these “second

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