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Ch 2: Settling North America (1497-1732)

About This Chapter

Watch U.S. history video lessons and learn about the failed colonies, successful colonies and the settlers who came to live in them during the period of 1497-1732. Each lesson is accompanied by a short multiple-choice quiz you can use to check your understanding of these topics.

Settling North America

The early settlement of what would become the United States was rocky at best. Even the pilgrims coming across on the Mayflower had their troubles. After much trial and error, people were able to thrive here and the 13 colonies were formed. From those original colonies, a nation was born.

In the beginning, explorers from Spain, France and England were coming to North America to try to establish colonies in the name of their country. Many of these colonies failed, but England happened to do well with the Jamestown colony. Learn through the lessons how Jamestown was developed, the failures and challenges that the colonists faced and the ultimate successes of this English colony. You'll also study the roles of the French, Swedish and Dutch in establishing colonies. Lessons will cover the goals these explorers had and what eventually happened to their colonies.

Chances are that you've heard about the Mayflower and Plymouth Rock. This page in U.S. history will be explored, and you'll discover the Puritans who traveled on this ship. Learn what they were determined to do when they landed in this new territory. You'll also learn how Plymouth soon merged with other colonies and grew to eventually form the states of Rhode Island, New Hampshire and Connecticut.

The lessons will also expand, as the country did, into the southern colonies; you'll find out how they were established and how they grew to become Virginia, Georgia and the Carolinas. You'll also learn what made the southern colonies different from the northern ones. As you continue to explore through the first 13 colonies, you'll learn how things went in the middle colony areas of what would become New York, Delaware, New Jersey and Pennsylvania.

After learning the history and the path it took to create the original 13 colonies, you'll begin to study life in the colonies. These lessons will include a look at economics, politics and social aspects. You'll see how slavery was introduced and how overseas trade affected the colonies. You'll also be introduced to the government and political system.

If you ever wanted to learn more about how the U.S. was first settled and what shaped this country's beginnings, then these lessons will help you. Thanks for watching!

11 Lessons in Chapter 2: Settling North America (1497-1732)
North American Exploration & Failed Colonies of France & England

1. North American Exploration & Failed Colonies of France & England

Between 1497 and 1607, the rulers and leading citizens of European nations fought to establish their own empires in North America, as Spain had been doing for 100 years in South America. Learn about influential explorers and their failed attempts to establish their own New World colonies.

The Settlement of Jamestown Colony

2. The Settlement of Jamestown Colony

In 1607, the London Company settled the colony of Jamestown. The settlers overcame many odds to become the first permanent, English settlement in North America. In this lesson, learn about the failures and successes of Jamestown before it was taken over by the Crown.

New France, New Netherlands & New Sweden: North American Settlements

3. New France, New Netherlands & New Sweden: North American Settlements

Spain and England weren't the only European nations trying to establish colonies in the New World. The French had a foothold for more than a century, and the Dutch and Swedish fought for their own places in America.

The Mayflower and the Plymouth Rock Settlement

4. The Mayflower and the Plymouth Rock Settlement

Find out how much you know about the Pilgrims and their voyage. In this lesson, you'll learn about the misplaced Plymouth Colony, its escaped indentured servants, and the Wampanoag Indians who saved their lives.

The Puritans and the Founding of the New England Colonies

5. The Puritans and the Founding of the New England Colonies

Learn about the people and motives that led to the founding of Massachusetts Bay Colony, as well as the growth and internal dissent that led to the establishment of Rhode Island, Connecticut and New Hampshire.

The Southern Colonies: Settlement and Growth

6. The Southern Colonies: Settlement and Growth

What led to the use of slavery and the creation of different colonies? In this lesson, learn about the unique purposes and patterns of settlement, growth and society in the southern colonies (Virginia, Maryland, the Carolinas, and Georgia).

The Middle Colonies: New York, Delaware, New Jersey & Pennsylvania

7. The Middle Colonies: New York, Delaware, New Jersey & Pennsylvania

Learn about the unique identity and diversity of the middle colonies that led America to be called a melting pot. English control of the middle colonies began with the takeover of New Netherland, from which all of the other middle colonies can trace their beginnings.

The 13 Colonies: Life in Early America

8. The 13 Colonies: Life in Early America

What was it like to live in America during the colonial period? Just like today, it depended where you were. Learn about the factors that categorized all of the American colonies, as well as the differences between the northern, middle and southern colonies.

Rise of Slave Trade: Black History in Colonial America

9. Rise of Slave Trade: Black History in Colonial America

In this lesson, you'll learn a little about the slave trade, the growth and characteristics of slavery in the colonial period - including laws regulating the institution and the population of free blacks in the English colonies.

The 13 Colonies: Developing Economy & Overseas Trade

10. The 13 Colonies: Developing Economy & Overseas Trade

England's intention had always been for the colonies to make them rich. The plan worked, but it became more difficult for England to make sure things stayed that way. And even with regulation, the colonies prospered, too.

The 13 Colonies: World Events that Influenced Colonial America

11. The 13 Colonies: World Events that Influenced Colonial America

How come New York seems like part of the Northeast instead of a Middle colony? Where did the Amish come from? What gave colonists the idea that they had a right to representation when there was a king? What's the difference between England and Great Britain? If these were English colonies, how come so many Americans say they have Scottish or Scots-Irish ancestry? This lesson answers these questions and other mysteries of American history.

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