Posted by: unclesamshistory | August 4, 2012

Pennsylvania History

I have just read a really great book, The Seed of a Nation by Darrell Fields. The author has  researched deep into the beginning of Pennsylvania. In the first few chapters he gives the history of William Penn and how he was persecuted in England for his Quaker religious beliefs. Penn was imprisoned a couple of times just because his religious view were not in step with that of the ruling king.

History of the ruling class in England during the seventeenth and eighteenth century lays a base for how Penn ended up with a grant of land in the New World. His family was wealthy and subsidized the Crown on more than one occasion. Although, the history is extremely interesting, the premise on how Penn governed this new colony is fascinating, and something I had never heard of before. As devout Christian Penn followed strict Christian beliefs in drawing up Pennsylvania’s constitution. His treatment of the Native Americans was unheard of, as believed they were equal to the white man who was invading their country. Penn made peace with the natives promising to live together as one people. And, it worked. There were no hostilities until after Penn’s death. His descendants and those governing saw great wealth in the lands the Native Americans occupied. Treaties were broken, land confiscated  and a complete breakdown of the foundation Pennsylvania was built on. War with France in the New World put many of the once loyal Native Americans with the French, raids on settlements became commonplace. The natives wanted their land back.

How different it could have been if only the original plan had been followed. Greed and abuse of power became the norm in government.


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