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Key Concept 3.1: British attempts to assert tighter control over its North American colonies and the colonial resolve to pursue self-government led to a colonial independence movement and the Revolutionary War.
British America, 1763.  Image on Wikimedia Commons by Vadac.
British America, 1763. Image on Wikimedia Commons by Vadac.

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For more resources, see

  • Grade 5.11 for material on maritime commerce in Massachusetts and other colonies.
    • See Grade 5.12 for material on the growth of Slavery in Colonial North America.
      • Grade 5.15 for information on the French and Indian War and colonial responses to British imperial policies
        • Grade 5.14 for information on colonial governments

For an overview, see English, French and Spanish Colonies: A Comparison (1585 -1763)

Additional Resources for Teaching and Learning

Transatlantic Trade and the Growth of Seaports

rotating gif.gifFor more on growth of trade and seaports in colonial New England, see Massachusetts Grade 5.11

Triangular Trade
  • The trade routes between Europe, Africa, and the West Indies and the North American colonies. Raw and natural resources such as sugar, tobacco, and cotton were shipped to Europe where they were made into manufactured goods. These goods were then sent to Africa to be traded for Slaves. Slaves were then shipped to the West Indies and the North American colonies, where the trade would begin again.
  • map_icon.jpegMultimedia.pngView an interactive map of the Triangular Trade


Admiralty Courts

Navigation Acts of 1650, 1660, 1663, and 1696
In English history, a series of laws designed to restrict England’s carrying trade to English ships, effective chiefly in the 17th and 18th centuries. The measures, originally framed to encourage the development of English shipping so that adequate auxiliary vessels would be available in wartime, became a form of trade protectionism during an era of mercantilism.

primary_sources.PNGView excerpts from the original Navigation Acts Documents

Rotating_globe-small.gifMr. Tashtego: Native American Whalemen in Antebellum New England, Nancy Shoemaker, Journal of the Early Republic, Spring 2013. Contrary of stereotypes, such as Melville's Tashtego in Moby Dick, Native American men found income and status in the whaling industry that was otherwise inaccessible to men of color in antebellum New England.

Pirates in Colonial North America
Blackbeard the Pirate from A General History of the Pyrates, 1724
Blackbeard the Pirate from A General History of the Pyrates, 1724
external image 200px-Podcast-icon.svg.png Pirate Treasure May Lie in Waters Off Cape Cod is an NPR podcast about efforts to explore the wreck of the Whydah pirate ship which sank in 1717. The Whydah had lotted 54 other ships before sinking in a storm. The ship became as a part of the Slave Trade before it became a pirate ship.
massseal.gifFor more, go to the Whydah Pirate Musuem, located in Provincetown, Massachusetts.

For more on pirates in colonial North America, see The Life and Death of Blackbeard the Pirate from North Carolina Digital History.

Anne Bonney, 18th centrury engraving
Anne Bonney, 18th centrury engraving

Female_Rose.pngFor more general background, see Piracy in the Caribbean (includes links on women pirates Anne Bonny and Mary Read).

For more on women pirates, see If There's A Man Among Ye: The Tale of Pirate Queens Anne Bonny and Mary Read from Smithsonian.com

The Eighteenth Century Back Country

Growth of Plantation Economies and Slave Societies

Multimedia.pngClick here for a PowerPoint presentation on the economies of the colonies from Point Loma High School, San Diego, California.

The Enlightenment and the Great Awakening

Thomas Hobbes, John Locke, Jean-Jacques Rousseau
Thomas Hobbes, John Locke, Jean-Jacques Rousseau

rotating gif.gifSee Massachusetts World History I.35 for material on the Enlightenment and the concept of democratic government.