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Rhode Island was first settled from the province of Massachusetts; and this settlement arose from religious persecution. Mr. Roger Williams, a clergyman, who had fixed at Salem in 1630, differing in opinion with some of his brethren, was charged with holding dangerous sentiments, and unjustly banished from the colony. In 1685, Mr. Williams, accompanied by twenty other persons, fixed at the Indian town of Mooshausick, near the head of Narraganset-bay, and called the place Providence, the name which it still bears. From this small beginning has arisen the present interesting state of Rhode Island. New Jersey was in part settled by Dutch emigrants from New York, as early as the year 1615. Twelve years afterwards, a number of Swedes and Finns settled on both sides the River Delaware, and with the Dutch kept possession of the country for many years. In 1664, James Duke of York, brother to King Charles II. obtained a grant of what is now called New Jersey, which then formed a part of the extensive territory named New Netherlands. In the year 1662, the Earl of Clarendon and seven other persons, obtained from Charles II. nearly the whole of the present states of North Carolina, South Carolina, and Georgia. In 1664, the king granted them a new charter, enlarging their boundaries, and investing them with power to form a code of laws for their new possession. In 1667, an endeavour to establish a settlement in this country proved wholly unsuccessful; and no further attempt was made until two years afterwards, when Williamsayle was appointed first governor, and established a colony on a neck of land between Ashley and Cooper Rivers, the very spot where Charleston now stands. Thus commenced the settlement of Carolina. In 1681, William Penn, son of the celebrated Admiral Penn, obtained a grant of Pennsylvania from Charles II. The year following, he embarked with a colony from England, which he fixed at Chester, fifteen miles from Philadelphia, where the first assembly in the province of
Pennsylvania was held on the 4th of December, 1682. Mr. Penn officiated as governor for nearly two years, and was succeeded by Thomas Lloyd, as president. Thus William Penn, a Quaker by profession, had the distinguished honour of laying the foundation of the present populous and very flourishing state of Pennsylvania. The government of Carolina, as vested in the original
proprietors, continued for fifty years from its establishment
in 1669. During this period, the colonists were continually involved in disputes and dissensions of so serious a nature, that in 1719 the British Parliament took the province under its own direction ; and in 1728, the proprietors, with the exception of Lord Granville, received 5822,500 for the property and legal authority of the country. His Lordship's share, which formed a part of the present state of North Carolina, amounted to one eighth of the whole territory originally granted, and remained vested in his family until the revolution in 1776 separated the British Colonies from the mother country. In 1729, the extensive region conveyed by the royal charter to Lord Clarendon and his partners, was divided into North and South Carolina; which remained separate governments under the crown until they became inde
In 1732, a number of humane and public spirited individuals in Great Britain, formed a plan for establishing a colony between the Rivers Savannah and Altamaha, with a view to the relief of many poor people of Britain and Ireland, and for better securing the possession of Carolina. Having procured a patent from George II. who was friendly to the plan, in honour of the King, they named the province Georgia. In November of that year, General Oglethorpe, with 114 persons, sailed for Georgia, and landed at a place called Yamacraw. In traversing the country, they found an agreeable spot of ground, upon an elevated situation, near the banks of a mavigable river. Here they laid the foundation of a town, which, from the Indian name of the river, they called Savannah. From this period may be dated the settlement of Georgia.
That portion of country called Vermont, before the revolutionary war, was claimed by the adjoining states of New Hampshire and New York. But the Green Mountain Boys, as the martial inhabitants were then called, wishing it to become an independent state, took a most active part in the war; and from the year 1777 may be considered as possessing a separate jurisdiction and distinct government. But it was not until 1791 that their claim of independence was allowed by congress, when they were admitted, a fourteenth state, into the Union.
That extensive region lying north-west of the river Ohio, within the limits of the United States, and containing 41 1,000 square miles, equal to 220,000,000 of acres, was, by an act of congress passed in 1797, erected into one district, for the purpose of temporary government; but subject to division when circumstances should render it necessary. It has since been divided into states and territories: a description of each will be found under their respective heads.
Having thus given a compendious narrative of the first discoveries and progressive settlement of North America in chronological order, the following recapitulation is added, whereby the reader may comprehend the whole at one view :—
Names of places. When settled. By whom. Virginia 1610 By flord De la War New York and New Jersey 1614 By the Dutch New Hampsbire 1623 By an English colony near Piscataqua River Delaware and Pennsylvania 1627 By the Swedes and Finlanders Massachusetts 1628 By Captain John Endicot and company . Maryland 1635. By Lord Baltimore, with a Catholic colony Connecticut 1635. By Mr. Fenwick, at Saybrook Hhode Island 1635. By R. Williams, and persecuted brethren New Jersey (final settlement) 1664 Granted to the Duke of York by Charles II South Carolina 1669. By Governer Sayle Pennsylvania (final settlement) 1683 By W. Penn, with a colony of Quakers North Carolina 1729 Erected into a separate government Georgia 1732 By General Oglethorpe Kentucky 1773 By Colonel Daniel Boon Vermont 1777 By Emigrants from Connecticut, &c.
Region N.W. of the Ohio 1787 By the Ohio and other companies
The states which constituted the American republic on the ratification of the treaty of peace with Great Britain, in September, 1783, were the following:—New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Georgia.-These states, in their fullest extent, comprise eighteen degrees of latitude, and thirty-three degrees of longitude ; being about 1250 miles in length, and 1040 in breadth: reaching from 31 deg. to 49 deg. north, and from 51 deg. to 84 deg. west from Greenwich.-But as the Americans had at that time fixed their meridian at Philadelphia, the extent and longitude from that city is from 8 deg. east to 24 deg. west.—Since the removal of congress from Philadelphia to Washington, in the year 1800, the meridian of the United States has been fixed at the latter city. The principal geographer to the American Government has computed, that the surface contained within the boundaries so described, is 1,000,000 of square miles, which comprehends 640 millions of acres; and he comutes that of these, fifty-one millions are water, or about 2-25ths of the whole.—The land, therefore, within the United States at their separation from the mother country, amounted to 589 millions of acres; about 3-5ths of which is comprised in the thirteen original states; the remaining 220 millions, which lie west of the northern and middle states, and north-west of the river Ohio, extending to the Mississippi River, with an extensive region south of the Ohio, originally ceded to the Union by North Carolina, South Carolina, and Georgia, were intended by congress to be divided into
ten new states; to be called Washington, Mesopotamia, Pesilippi, Michigania, Illinois, Chersonesus, Saratoga, Sylvania, Assenipi, and Polopotamia.
At the present time (1818) the United States, in which is included the whole of Louisiana as it existed under France and Spain, extends from east to west 2700 miles, and from north to south 1650; comprehending an area of 2,379,350 square miles, or 1,522,784,000 acres.—The population of the last census, 1810, was 7,239,903; being less than three persons to each square mile of territory, so that to every inhabitant there is nearly 200 acres of land. But to enable the reader, at one view, to form a correct judgment upon this important branch of political economy, the following table is subjoined :-
America. Inhab. ". sqr. mile. Europe. Inhab, per sqr. mile.
Connecticut, Italy, 222
It appears from the foregoing statement, that were the whole of the United States only as well inhabited as Pennsylvania, they would contain above thirty-eight millions of people; with a population equal to Connecticut, nearly 143 millions; equal to England, upwards of 430 millions; and equal to Italy, they would contain more than 528 millions of human beings. Supposing the population to increase in the small ratio as it has done during the last hundred years, the result would be nearly as follows:—
In 1818 9,457,473 In 1870 47,527,165 1820 10,098,177 1880 64,779,525 1830 13,769,726 1890 88,294,394 1840 18,769,567 1900 120,345,394 1850 25,582,919 1910 164,030,772 1860 34,869,520 1918 21 1,665,486
So that according to this ratio, the whole country would be equally populous with Pennsylvania, about the year 1863.−About 1905, it would equal Connecticut; and in 1944, it would be as populous as England is at present.