Question "Although the thirteen American colonies were founded at different times by people with different motives and with different forms of colonial charters and political organization



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Sample Response #2: Fair

The 13 colonies started off being very different indeed. Some colonists came for religious freedom while others came to make money. Each colony had their own ideas about their goals and how they were going to organize themselves. By 1776, though, they were all unified in being Americans.

First let us talk about their economics. All of the colonies became much more stable and economically prosperous over time. Individuals could make money in all kinds of ways, like farming or engaging in trade. During this time the fur trade with the Indians grew greatly. There was also growing trade with England and other places in the world. The Navigation Acts, which applied to all the colonies, also ensured that their economies were pretty similar.

Next, we can discuss how the colonies governed themselves. In the beginning there were several different types of colonial governments, including charter colonies and proprietary colonies. These were governed in different ways. In New England they had town hall meetings, which were very democratic. By the time of the Revolution, however, all of the colonies had become royal colonies directly controlled by the British government. This is an important reason why the American colonists ultimately rebelled against the British -- they were tired of being governed by them in an arbitrary fashion.

Finally, the colonies had become very religiously similar by the time of the Revolution. They were all Christians and they had come to believe in being religiously tolerant and not having government controlled churches. This was a big change from what it had been in the beginning. Places like Massachusetts had been very intolerant of other religions and they insisted upon having only one church, paid for by everyone out of their taxes. Pennsylvania, on the other hand, was very open about other religions right from the beginning. By the time of the Revolution all the colonies pretty much looked like Pennsylvania.

As we can see, the colonies had definitely grown together and become very similar by the time of the Revolution. What they had become was very similar what we have in America today: freedom of religion, democracy, and economic opportunity.

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