1719 William Trent House

Historic Home and Museum

Some Colonial American History Bits for Children!

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There are quite a few wonderful online places for children to learn about Colonial America.

Here are a few bits that bring information about the subject alive for children (and adults, too!)


The Middle Colonies were part agriculture, part industrial. Wheat and other grains grew on farms in Pennsylvania and New York. Factories in Maryland produced iron, and factories in Pennsylvania produced paper and textiles. Trade with England was plentiful in these colonies as well.





photo from gonomad.com


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Education_in_Colonial_America – excerpt below

The New England Puritans valued education, both for the sake of religious study (which was facilitated by Bible reading) and for the sake of economic success. A 1647 Massachusettsmandated that every town of 50 or more families support an elementary school and every town of 100 or more families support a grammar school, where boys could learn Latin in preparation for college. In practice, some New England towns had difficulty keeping their schools open and staffed, but virtually all New England towns made an effort to provide a school for their children. Both boys and girls attended the elementary schools (though sometimes at different hours or different seasons), and there they learned to read, write, and cipher. In the mid-Atlantic region, private and sectarian schools filled the same niche as the New England “common schools.”


http://www.history.org/Almanack/people/african/ excerpt below

Plantation and farm slaves tend crops and livestock

For slaves working on farms, the work was a little less tedious than tobacco cultivation, but no less demanding. The variety of food crops and livestock usually kept slaves busy throughout the year. Despite the difficult labor, there were some minor advantages to working on a plantation or farm compared to working in an urban setting or household. Generally, slaves on plantations lived in complete family units, their work dictated by the rising and setting of the sun, and they generally had Sundays off. The disadvantages, however, were stark. Plantation slaves were more likely to be sold or transferred than those in a domestic setting. They were also subject to brutal and severe punishments, because they were regarded as less valuable than household or urban slaves.

Slaves preparing a mealIn an interpretation of domestic slave life, a mother and daughter prepare a meal for the family.



Visit the William Trent House Museum!  Beautifully restored to the 1719 condition.





Written by sallykwitt

August 22, 2011 at 5:21 pm

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