Early American History
Vocabulary
Boston
charter
John Endecott, 1628
John Winthrop, 1630
Massachusetts Bay
Massachusetts Bay Company, 1629
Key Concepts
In England, the Puritans were a religious group. They wanted to change the Church of England. They did not want to separate from the Church like the Pilgrims. The Puritans wanted to make the Church of England more "pure." They wanted to remove the ceremony and music. In 1628, a group of Puritans formed the New England Company. The King of England gave them a charter to make a settlement along the Massachusetts Bay.

The first group of Puritan settlers was led by John Endecott. They began the settlement Salem, Massachusetts. The next year, the company name was changed to the Massachusetts Bay Company. In 1630, a much larger group of Puritans came to the settlement. John Winthrop led a group of 1,000 Puritans on 15 ships. John Winthrop became the governor of the Puritan colony. The Puritans built small villages around their main town of Boston.

The Puritans were allowed to make their own laws. At the center of each Puritan village was a meeting house. At the meeting house, the men of the
village met to make the laws and settle the problems of the community. The Puritans wanted every child to read the bible. So they passed a law requiring parents to teach their children to read. Another Puritan law required every village with 50 or more families to have a school. Puritan children were taught how to read, write and do arithmetic. In villages with less than 50 families, children went to schools run by women in their homes. These schools were called Dame Schools. Harvard College was a Puritan College. It was the first college in America. It was named after a Puitan from Boston, John Harvard. He donated 400 books to start the school.

Freedom of Religion was not the law in the Massachusetts Bay Colony. The Puritans came to America so they could practice their religion as they pleased. However, they did not allow other settlers the same religious freedom. Settlers who did not follow the Puritan ways were not allowed to own land in the colony, and were often sent away.

The Massachusetts Bay Colony
Europeans Settle Throughout
North America
Massachusetts Bay Colony
meetinghouse
New England
New England Company, 1628
Puritans, 1628
Salem
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Additional Information

charter- A charter is a document that gives permission to do something. The companies were given the King's permission to operate a colony.

Puritans - The Puritans were dissatisfied with the Church of England. They thought the Church of England was too much like the Catholic Church. They wanted to "purify" the church.

Harvard College - The Puritans were not allowed to attend college in England because of their religious beliefs. It was important for Harvard College to succeed.

John Winthrop - John Winthrop was from a wealthy family. He was a lawyer in England. Because he was a Puritan, he lost his job as a lawyer.

larger group - The Puritans were not an extreme religious group like the Pilgrim Separatists. The Puritans were educated. They were professionals and tradesmen. The Pilgrims were laborers. They had less education than the Puritans.

school - In 1647, the Puritans passed a law requiring public schools in towns with 50 families or more.

Pilgrims - The Pilgrims were separatists. They were sometimes called "Saints." They wanted to do more than "purify" the Church of England. They wanted to separate completely from the church. They believed there was no need to have priests or bishops. Members of the church could speak directly to God.

villages - Between the years 1630 and 1640, about 20,000 Puritan settlers arrived in New England.

Credits

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