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  • Jamestown

    The first permanent English settlement in America is established by the London Company in southeast Virginia.
  • First Tobacco Crop Planted

    First Tobacco Crop Planted
    Tobacco saved the Jamestown colony and opened the door to future British settlement. The struggling colony had been unable to find a means of wealth by which to support themselves. Tobacco was planted by John Rolfe in the colony, and soon became a large-scale export to European countries. The wealth of tobacco also brought more colonists to the area and replenished the population
  • Slavery

    The first African slaves are brought to Jamestown.
  • Smallpox

    The smallpox epidemic wipes out 90% of the Native Americans in the Massachusetts Bay area.
  • The House of Burgesses

    The House of Burgesses
    The first representative assembly in America meets for the first time in Virginia.
  • Plymouth Colony

    Plymouth Colony
    The Plymouth Colony in Massachusetts is established by Pilgrims from England.
  • Mayflower Compact

    Mayflower Compact
    Before disembarking from their ship, the Mayflower, 41 male passengers signed the Mayflower Compact, an agreement that forms the basis of the colony's government.
  • Thanksgiving

    The first Thanksgiving celebration is held in the autumn for three days between the Pilgrims and members of the Wampanoag tribe, who had helped them settle and plant the colony's land.
  • Indian Massacre

    Indian Massacre
    The Indian Massacre of 1622 occurs when Chief Opchanacanough and the Powhatan Confederacy tried to rid the colony of settlers. One-third of the colony at the time, three hundred people, were killed.
  • Massachusetts Bay Colony

    Massachusetts Bay Colony
    The first vessels of Winthrop's eleven ship fleet, eventually totaling seven hundred aboard, leaves England for the Puritan colony already established in Salem, establishing the foundation of the Massachusetts Bay Colony.
  • Maryland

    Maryland is founded as a Catholic colony promoting religious tolerance. The subsequent state is named for Queen Henrietta Maria, wife of England's Charles I.
  • Rhode Island

    Rhode Island
    Providence, Rhode Island is founded as a colony by Roger Williams two years after his banishment from the Massachusetts Bay Colony. Its charter would be granted eight years later as a democratic colony believing in the separation of church and state.
  • Pequot War

    Pequot War
    Pequot War begins between the Pequot tribe and their alliance against Massachusetts, Plymouth, and Saybrook colonies. War ended on September 21, 1638, with the Treaty of Hartford. Only two hundred Pequot tribe members remained.
  • Harvard College

    Harvard College
    Harvard College is founded in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
  • First Book

    Printed in North America, the Bay Psalm Book.
  • Witchcraft

    Witchcraft is made a capital crime in English law. The Massachusetts colony becomes the first colony to legalize slavery.
  • Attack on Jamestown

    In the last Indian rebellion in the region, Opchanacanough and the Powhatan Indians attack the English at Jamestown, but their effort is repulsed and proves unsuccessful.
  • General Assembly

    General Assembly
    The constitution of the General Assembly of Rhode Island is drafted, under the values of separating church and state, as well as permitting public referendums and initiatives in legislation.
  • Legalization of Slavery

    Slavery is legalized in Connecticut and recognized in the American colonies.
  • Peach Tree War

    Peach Tree War
    Peach Tree War begins with attack on New Amsterdam and Pavonia along Hudson (North) River by Susquehannock Indians and their allies as retaliation for the loss of New Sweden to the Dutch. Indian victory forced many Dutch settlers back to Fort Amsterdam.
  • The Navigation Act

    The Navigation Act is passed by the British Parliament to control colonial commerce in the New World.
  • The Colony of Carolina

    The Colony of Carolina
    Eight English noblemen gave the charter to establish the Colony of Carolina by Charles II after their assistance in restoring him to the throne three years earlier.
  • English seize New Amsterdam

    English seize New Amsterdam
    Three hundred British troops seize New Netherlands from the Dutch in a peaceful takeover. The Duke of York, brother to Charles II, is granted the Dutch province and city of New Amsterdam, renaming them New York.
  • Johann Lederer expedition

    Johann Lederer expedition
    Johann Lederer leads an expedition from the York River into the Appalachian Mountains at the behest of Colonial Governor Sir William Berkeley, who believed a passage to the west and the Indian Ocean only a few weeks away. Lederer expedition is the first Europeans to crest the Blue Ridge Mountains and see the Shenandoah Valley.
  • New York Captured

    Dutch forces recapture the colony of New York (New Amsterdam) from the British, but would only be able to hold power in the area for one year.
  • Kind Philip's War

    Kind Philip's War
    Beginning of King Philip's War in New England with Metacom Indian forces attacking colonial settlements due to encroachment on the land. Considered the costliest war for European Settlements in relation to population with Indian success during the first year halted later when their alliances fell apart. Twelve towns destroyed.
  • Indian War Ends

    The Indian War between the Narragansett Indians and the colonists in New England ends.
  • Bacon's Rebellion

    Bacon's Rebellion
    Bacon's Rebellion causes the burning of Jamestown. Nathanial Bacon leads the rebellion of planters against Governor Berkeley. Bacon would perish and twenty-three others were executed.
  • The Pueblo Rebellion

    The Pueblo Rebellion
    Pueblo Rebellion of indigenous Pueblo people against the Spanish colony of Santa Fe kills four hundred and forces the remaining two thousand from their land. It would take twelve years before the Spanish attempted to recolonize.
  • France Takes Over

    France claims the lower Mississippi River valley, Louisiana, when Robert Cavelier, Sieur de LaSalle explores the region.
  • Pennsylvania

    The colony of Pennsylvania is established when William Penn signs a treaty with the Delaware Indians and pays for Pennsylvania lands.
  • Publick Occurrences

    Publick Occurrences
    The first newspaper issued in the United States publishes in Boston, Public Occurrences. It was suppressed after its initial issue and the publication of a regular newspaper would not begin again until 1704.
  • Plymouth Colony Joins Massachusetts

    The Plymouth colony, which had remained independent since its founding in 1620, joins the Massachusetts Bay Colony.
  • The Salem Witch Trials

    The Salem Witch Trials
    The Salem witch hunts, spurred by preaching, results in the arrest of one hundred and fifty people and the death of nineteen. These trials were held in Essex, Suffolk, and Middlesex counties.
  • The End of Jamestown

    The End of Jamestown
    Jamestown is abandoned after the statehouse is burned in 1698 with the colonial government moving to Middle Plantation, renamed soon after as Williamsburg.