American History Lecture Three:
Virginia and Maryland, 1607-1676
• By the end of the 1500s, England, Spain, Netherlands, Portugal, and
France have all colonized in the new world, and it seems like a new
beginning for the falling apart Europe.
• The rivalry among the states for land and economic control fueled this
conquest. Although Spain sponsored Columbus and technically got to the
new world first, England would end up dominating because of this
competition. In fact, the Spain and Portuguese rivalry sparked Columbus
leaving. Because of this, Spain becomes the richest and most powerful
nation at the end of the 1500s.
• When European explorers show up, disease plagues the natives of the
land because they were never introduced to things as illness as little as
the common cold. 40-60 Million died from just illness alone. The Spanish
also enslaved many Native Americans. This was a very traumatic
• There is a collision over land use (mentioned in the last lecture). Land to
the Aboriginals was shared amongst everyone, and land to the Europeans
was property. This made it easy for Europeans to oppress the Native
The Virginia Company
• Founded in 1607, it is one of the first main English colony. The south
(Virigina, Maryland) becomes the slave and production region. They
produced crops for an export market on scattered plantations using forced
labor. This became a pattern.
• Tobacco, Cotton, Indigo, etc. were all common crops on plantations.
Workers started out as indentured servants, and then moved to slaves
from Africa. Virginia was the start of slavery in the US.
• The road to this plantation life was rough though. It barely survived the
first few years