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Wealth In Colonial America

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Most people would define wealth as the accumulation of some sort of precious possession(s), or more specifically, just plain money. However, like most concepts, wealth can be observed differently, or it may be completely foreign, in another cultural group. In the early colonization of the New World, two cultural groups, the Northeastern Indians and the English settlers, began to interact more frequently for various purposes such as the purchasing of land. How could two seemingly different societies be able to share a large stretch of land without any conflict? Well, they did not. Their different cultural backgrounds, political structures, and languages made cultural misunderstandings, failed negotiations, and confrontations regular incidents. One of the biggest disagreements the colonists and indigenous populations consistently had was over property and wealth. Fueled by differing understandings on wealth and property, conflict ensued between the Indians and the English colonists as the two societies consistently found differences over attitudes towards land ownership and trade.
Both of the societies held some concept of wealth and political power, but there was a vast difference in what the two cultural groups deemed to be wealth. During the early colonization of America,
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As mentioned by Franklin, “In short, the way to wealth, if you desire it, is as plain as the way to market. It depends chiefly on two words, industry and frugality…” (Franklin 18). The English settlers emphasized the significance of wealth as well as the effort put towards gaining that wealth. Franklin advocated investing your money as well as putting one’s time to use as mentioned in his famous quote: “Time is money” (Franklin 18). This was vastly different from the way the natives perceived the accumulation of
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