The first permanent English colony in America was founded on May 14,1607,on a peninsula of the James River in what is now Virginia.A group of roughly 100 members of a joint ventured to the Virginia Company. Virginia was the English name for the entire eastern coast of North America north of Florida they had named if for Elizabeth 1 , the "virgin queen".The new world had unfamiliar climate,brackish water supply,and lack of food. By June 15 ,the fort was completed.Jamestown Island housed military posts during the Revolutionary war and the civil war.In the 16th century the English did attempt to found Roanoke colony, a venture that ended in a disaster.Jamestown became part of James City Shire after they divided Virginia into 8 colonies.Jamestown ceased as a town by the mid 1700's, its legacies are emboided in today's United States.In May 1610,shipwrecked settlers who had been stranded in Bermuda finally arrived in Jamestown.St Augustine ,in Florida ,which was founded by the spanish in 1565 was 1st successful permanent colony in what would be the U.S.
Jamestown was not the first successful permanent European settlement in what would become the United States,the St.Augustine colony was.On July 30,1619 newly appointed In 1619 the first legislative assembly in America was formed in Jamestown.In 1699 the government was moved to Williamsburg.This was the beginning of representative government in what is now the United States of America.
In 1624 the Virginia company's charter was revoked and Virginia became a royal colony controlled by the king.The funding of Jamestown had the blessing of England's King James 1,and the settlement and James River were named in his honor.In 1634 King Charles 1 divided the colony of Virginia into 8 colonies.King James 1 of England financed an expedition of 144 men to travel to America.They traveled on 3 ships named the Susan Constant,the Godspeed,and the Discovery.They set sail on December 20,1606.
Pochantas ,a daughter of Chief Powhatan who had been captured by the settlers and converted to Christianity had gotten married to John Smith on April 5,1614.A period of relative peace followed the marriage in April 1614 of the colonists and tobacco planter John Rolfe and Pochantas .Pochantas's death during a trip to England in 1617 and the death of Powhatan in 1618 strained the already fragile peace between the native Americans and the settlers.
Between 1608 and 1624 aproximately 6,000 people made Jamestown their homes.Only 3,400 of the people who moved between 1608 and 1624 survived.Many of the original colonists were upper-class Englishmen.The colony lacked sufficient laborers and skilled farmers..The men didn't know how to fish ,hunt, or farm.Their lack of basic survival skills would make the first few years very difficult.The colonists dissapeared and were never heard from again when John Smith and the others returned.
The settlers left behind suffered greatly from hunger and illness in 1607.Not long after Captain Newport left, the settlers began to sucumb to a variety of diseases.The settlers hit another low in the winter of 1609-1610,a period that became known as the "starving time".During the starving time ,winter of 1609 settlers began to dig up and consume the recently burried. One man went a step further-he killed his wife and then chopped and cured the meat.After the first winter their were only 38 people alive.The average age of death in Virginia between 1637 and 1664 was 48 years old.One of the diseases that had killed some settlers was dysentery which is a potentially deadly illness,usualy caused by bacterial infection ,causing stomach pain and diarrhea.
A rebellion against the government of the royal governor,Sir Williams Berkley ,swept Virginia in 1676.Nathaniel bacon ,leader of the rebellion attacked Jamestown. Nathaniel Bacon burned Jamestown during the Bacon's Rebellion.It was rebuilt but the Virginia legislature had to move elsewhere until it was ready.Jamestown used the militia during war which was the citizen-army raised to provide defense against Indian attack and foreign invasion.
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