During colonial times

During colonial times -...

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During colonial times, the Commonwealth of Virginia was an empire within a larger  empire, maintaining claims to various portions of the American continent, and populated  by a small cadre of powerful landowners who furthered their economic interests through  the use of chattel slavery. Gradually, an established aristocracy entrenched itself in the  agriculturally rich Tidewater region. This was the Virginia that Thomas Jefferson was  born into. As a frontier youth of sorts, Jefferson had a clear sense of the vast American canvas  that the several European powers were struggling to control. The British did much to  advance their claims in America with a victory in the Seven Years War, but incurred  severe debts in the process. With a floundering enterprise in India also depleting 
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