The Colonial Peri12 - the oligarchy of planters not to...

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The Colonial Period Culture and society in the 13 British colonies THE SOUTHERN COLONIES In contrast to New England and the middle colonies, the Southern colonies were  predominantly rural settlements. By the late 17th century, Virginia's and Maryland's economic and social structure rested  on the great planters and the yeoman farmers. The planters of the Tidewater region,  supported by slave labor, held most of the political power and the best land. They built  great houses, adopted an aristocratic way of life, and kept in touch as best they could  with the world of culture overseas. The yeoman farmers, who worked smaller tracts, sat in popular assemblies and found  their way into political office. Their outspoken independence was a constant warning to 
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Unformatted text preview: the oligarchy of planters not to encroach too far upon the rights of free men. The settlers of the Carolinas quickly learned to combine agriculture and commerce, and the marketplace became a major source of prosperity. Dense forests brought revenue: Lumber, tar, and resin from the longleaf pine provided some of the best shipbuilding materials in the world. Not bound to a single crop as was Virginia, North and South Carolina also produced and exported rice and indigo, a blue dye obtained from native plants that was used in coloring fabric. By 1750 more than 100,000 people lived in the two colonies of North and South Carolina. Charleston, South Carolina, was the region’s leading port and trading center....
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