Questions tagged [colonial-america]

Colonial America refers to the period of American history (roughly late 15th century to the mid-19th century) when European states exercised political control over indigenous Americans and European settlers in the Americas. Colonial powers in the Americas included the Spanish, British, French, Portuguese, Dutch, Swedes, and Russians. The term is sometimes taken to refer to pre-Revolution British colonies that would eventually become the United States.

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16
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3answers
1k views

Did Britain look into taking California?

The Spanish colonized California in part to forestall the expansion of other empires. The territory was in danger of invasion throughout the Spanish and Mexican eras (1769-1846). Visitors and ...
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Were there actually slaves in Georgia while slavery was banned there?

Wikipedia reports that "The Georgia Experiment [from 1735 to 1751] was the colonial-era policy prohibiting the ownership of slaves in the Georgia Colony," and that this was done in order to &...
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What group is identified by the term “Egyptians” in the Flushing Remonstrance?

I am reading about the Flushing Remonstrance and its significance in the history of freedom of religion in the United States. An article by the Social Science Research Council indicates it was ...
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Did any Moors accompany Hernando de Soto in his exploration of Mississippi?

I was reading about Hernando de Soto and saw William Powell's painting (Relevant bit cropped and added below): The odd thing (Marked with a red arrow) is the man who looks Moorish and is dressed in ...
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Which Irishman worked at Mission Santa Cruz?

Kirill Khlebnikov was a Russian business agent who made several visits to Alta California. His "Travel Notes" from 1820 describe negotiations to buy grain from the Franciscan priest in charge of ...
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How was religious diversity represented in the Thirteen Colonies?

I understand that many settlers of the original thirteen English colonies in America were Protestants (or Puritans, specifically) who left Europe in search for better religious freedom. However, since ...
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228 views

Is there basis in saying Venezuela was Aragonese?

So... This sounds like a silly question even to me, but this is the background. In the recent TV show, Bolivar, there is an Inspector of Weights and Measures for Caracas who comes in to weigh a ...
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1answer
203 views

Why did Iturbide choose Fernández for the mission to California?

After Mexican independence, Emperor Agustín I took power. During his short reign he understandably sent a representative to the Californias to procure and check on their loyalty. The representative, a ...
6
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522 views

Why did the Dutch West India Company allow Quakers in the New Netherlands?

In 1657 a group of English Quakers arrived in New Amsterdam (the Dutch colonial town that became modern New York City). They were persecuted by the colonial government there for their religion. Then ...
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Why did not Spain manage to keep any colonial possessions in the new world?

It is well known that Spain had a huge presence in the colonisation and discovery of the new world. The Spanish empire is one of the largest in history and held vast territory in the Americas. Still ...
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What sort of boat transported transport the French colonial Governors of New Orleans?

I am writing a description of the changeover of the French colonial Governors of New Orleans in 1753, from Vaudreuil to Kerlérec. There is mention of a Governor's boat used to take important guests to ...
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Colonial intelligence during the pirate age

Watching the Black Sails series, there are several references on La Casa de Contratación, and characters say that, among other things, it was dedicated to colonial intelligence. I think there were a ...
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Looking for colonial era evidence of Jesuit missions from San Martin Peru up to the Pastaza river

if there are any Peruvian colonial era history experts out there, I'm looking for a citable source of some kind for the following scenario. In my research I've noticed an interesting discrepancy in ...
9
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1answer
439 views

When did Europeans realize Native Americans had weaker immunity to Old World diseases?

The question is fairly simple: when did Europeans come to a general knowledge that the Native Americans had weak immunity specifically to Old World diseases? I'm looking for the first person to ...
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How did American colonial rights and conditions compare to those within the British Isles?

A major point of contention between American colonists and British administrators was that the American colonists, being the descendants of Englishmen, allegedly should have been entitled to ...
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1answer
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Do we know who graduated from the University of Mexico in the 1700s?

The Royal and Pontifical University of Mexico was the country's first and foremost university in the colonial period. According to George I. Sánchez, by 1776 it had awarded 29,882 bachelor's and 1,162 ...
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Any truth to this story of Native American journeying to England?

In "A New Voyage to Carolina", John Lawson, British Surveyor-General of North Carolina, asserts that some natives once attempted to journey themselves all the way to England as an attempt to cut out ...
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Who was the first retailer in Monterey, California?

There were no businesses in the Spanish presidio at Monterey. Trade goods from the missions and passing ships came through, but there wasn't much to buy. Outside the fort, what was the first fixed-...
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How much did Spanish California officials earn?

It is my understanding that in Alta California, priests and natives in Missions earned no cash salary, but Spanish army officials would have. From the governor down to a junior soldier, what did they ...
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For who or what was Cojo Creek named?

Cojo Creek (Cañada del cojo) is the boundary between the Rancho Punta de la Concepción and the Rancho Nuestra Señora del Refugio. The anchorage at the mouth of this creek was a prime smuggling spot in ...
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Did other British colonies at the time have seats in parliament [duplicate]

I know the American colonies didn’t have a seat, but what about the other British colonies. Did some have it. Like Australia, and the places in Africa.
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1answer
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How long to travel from Ireland or England in 1680 to Plymouth in the Massachusetts Bay Colony?

I'm writing a historical fiction romance novel and I'm trying to gain a perspective of the travel times. The story is set in 1692, but the hero and his family arrived around 1680 from Ireland.
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Did early American settlers have to buy their land from the government?

During the early English settlement period in North America, did settlers buy their land from the government, or did they simply find some land and build a home there? To be more specific, I'm ...
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Why did a young George Washington sign a document admitting to assassinating a French military officer?

On May 28, 1754, a young Lt. Colonel named George Washington ambushed a French force at Jumonville Glen with assistance from a Iroquois leader named Tanacharison. One of the casualties was the French ...
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1answer
166 views

What were the rules of the migration to the Louisiana Territory in USA?

To my best knowledge, at the point of Louisiana Purchase, the area was inhabited mostly by Native Americans. At the time there existed some legislation regarding how the settlement should look like. ...
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1answer
135 views

Gregorian dating in the Julian time period?

William Penn wrote about his friend and my 9th great grandfather, Cuthbert Hayhurst, dying in 1682. I have seen the letter in Penn's writing. How is it that he dated the death in 1682 when the ...
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Was the Somerset Decision in 1772 in England the real underlying cause of the American Revolutionary war?

I had a discussion with a Brit the other day and naturally the topic drifted to our historic break from the UK in 1776 and I boasted of our noble fight for liberation and freedom. The Brit was amused ...
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What could explain the myth (or truth) of drunken defenders during the battle of the plains of Abraham?

I have come across popular references towards the sodden or sozzled state of the French and Canadien defenders of Quebec City during the Battle of the Plains of Abraham. Mostly, these references are ...
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1answer
138 views

William Penn and the Frame of Government of Pennsylvania

William Penn wrote three different frames of government documents. All three are different, so therefore which one do we go by? How do we read them? And which one is the final document that PA uses?
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How was the “backcountry” underrepresented, eventually leading to Bacon's Rebellion?

"Backcountry" generally means the rural parts (of Virginia, where this all happened) or the lesser-known parts. They were newer settlement areas, and generally had a far larger population than the ...
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1answer
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To what extent has the United States become (in 1870) the nation that it originally set out to be? [closed]

I was thinking about this for a while. I know that the US never intended to abolish slavery at that time, but it still happened. Is that even relevant? Some of the things I thought that they ...
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Did the Vatican punish France for rejecting Tordesillas?

The Treaty of Tordesillas (1494) divided up all new discoveries between Portugal and Castile, so establishing the position of Brazil. Pope Alexander VI's deal excluded the other Catholic states. ...
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2answers
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Was Pablo Vicente de Solá married?

Solá, a Basque, was the last Spanish governor of Alta California, serving from 1815–1822 at the Presidio of Monterey. Did he have a wife and family, there or elsewhere?
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Did the Governor of Virginia in 1786 have the authority to veto laws passed by the Virginia General Assembly?

I believe that the Act for Establishing Religious Freedom was passed by the Virginia General Assembly on January 16, 1786. Did the Governor of Virginia at the time have the right to veto it?
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Did the Tlingits benefit from resisting the Russians more than other Alaskan tribes?

The Russian-American Company had ongoing problems with the Tlingit (Kolosh) people living near its colonial headquarters. In other words, the Tlingits resisted incursion more effectively than other ...
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1answer
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What happened to the British convicts transported to America after the American Revolution?

From the early 1600s until the American Revolution of 1776, the British colonies in North America received transported British criminals for, what I have read, a term of 6 to 14 years. I have read (...
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136 views

Who issued the passports for travel to Russian America?

Employees of the Russian-American Company were supposed to have seven-year passports to travel from Russia to the Company's colonies. Officials endeavored to stay in compliance, though it's clear that ...
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When were differing hemispheric seasons first understood?

When did people - scientists or philosophers - first realise/discover/understand that the seasons in the southern hemisphere were the opposite to those in the northern hemisphere? Additionally, when ...
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How long did it take to sail from Philadelphia to Boston in the 1700s?

How long did it usually take to sail from Philadelphia to Boston in the 1700s? I've been able to find lots of sources talking about sailing time between England and the colonies, but I haven't found ...
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1answer
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How did Pocahontas die?

The Wikipedia says the following about the death of Pocahantas: In March 1617, Rolfe and Pocahontas boarded a ship to return to Virginia; the ship had only sailed as far as Gravesend on the river ...
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1answer
173 views

What is the number of slaves imported from Africa to the Americas by non-British countries?

From 1526 to approximately 1870, slave ships from various countries loaded slaves from Africa and took them to somewhere in the Americas. (Note, in this question, I use "America" and "Americas" to ...
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1answer
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Why did the Portuguese colonies stay united whereas the Spanish ones split up? [duplicate]

Why did the South-American Portuguese colonies unite into one country, Brazil, whereas the South-American Spanish colonies split into many different countries, i.e. Argentina, Peru, Chile, etc?
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Why didn't Portugal found universities in its colonies like Spain?

Imperial Spain and Portugal conquered and developed huge empires. Both monarchies were Catholic and seized huge amounts of land in the 1500s. Both European motherlands had numerous universities, but ...
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1answer
121 views

How far did climate affect civilisation development in the Americas?

The shapes and orientations of Eurasia and Africa result in the former having larger regions of similar climate. This video discusses the hypothesis that: regions of similar climate can more readily ...
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78 views

What taxes were assessed on people in Alta California?

Countries and their churches extract rents from their citizens or subjects through various taxes. What taxes were individual Alta Californians required to pay in the Spanish and Mexican periods?
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Is the scarlet letter 'A' a real historical thing?

I've heard someone say something like: It's not a scarlet letter, it's not a mark on your forehead you keep for life. Obviously this was said in terms of permanency of a badge of shame, or ...
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213 views

Ports with ships in the commercial Halifax trade, late 18th Century

Halifax, Nova Scotia, was founded by the British in 1749; I am interested in the commercial trade during the French Revolutionary Wars, 1792 thru 1798, which is the period of the First Coalition. The ...
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1answer
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Location of Hagemeister's six-language diaries

Leontii A. Hagemeister (or Gagemeister) was a Baltic German navigator of the Russian navy and briefly governor of the Russian-American company. The best work on him in English is by Richard Pierce, ...
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243 views

Does any library hold the archives of the Russian-American Company?

I am researching Russian visits to Alta California during the Mexican War of Independence, which were mostly or all projects of the Russian-American Company. There is a collection of Company documents ...
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1answer
112 views

What was the commandant of Okhotsk's involvement in Russian-American Company hiring?

The Russian-American Company was a privately funded concern which obtained a royal monopoly on exploration and settlement in America. It sponsored and managed the Russian presence from the Aleutians ...