Lucy Perligin,


William Penn was born in London on October 24, 1644, the son of Admiral Sir William Penn. Despite high social position and an excellent education, he shocked his upper-class associates by his conversion to the beliefs of the Society of Friends, or Quakers, then a persecuted sect.
In !680, Englishman William Penn made an offer to England's king Charles the 2.

King Charles II owed the Penn family money, instead he gave land to William Penn, he called it "Penn's Woods", he made it for Quakers (which was a religion).
William Penn founded Pennsylvania, his goal was to create a colony that allowed for freedom and protect
himself and other Quakers from persecution. Pennsylvania was found in 1682.
  • The colony was well-advertised and by 1700 was the third biggest and richest colony in the New World.
  • Freedom of worship and religion was granted to all citizens.

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In April 1681, Penn made his cousin William Markham deputy governor of the province and sent him to take control. In England, Penn drew up the First Frame of Government, his proposed constitution for Pennsylvania. Penn's preface to First Frame of Government has become famous as a summation of his governmental ideals.
Most people in Pennsylvania were Quakers but that was not forced just preferred. You were free to be any religion you wished. Many Quakers came here to escape persecution from the Puritans.

Wheat, Rye, Maize Barley, Potatoes, Tobacco were the main cash crops for the Pennsylvania colony.

Later, in October 1682, the Proprietor arrived in Pennsylvania on the ship Welcome. He visited Philadelphia, just laid out as the capital city, created the three original counties, and summoned a General Assembly to Chester on December 4. This first Assembly united the Delaware counties with Pennsylvania, adopted a naturalization act and, on December 7, adopted the Great Law, a humanitarian code that became the fundamental basis of Pennsylvania law and which guaranteed liberty of conscience. The second Assembly, in 1683, reviewed and amended Penn's First Frame with his cooperation and created the Second Frame of Government. By the time of Penn's return to England late in 1684, the foundations of the Quaker Province were well established.

In 1984, William Penn and his wife Hannah Callowhill Penn were made the third and fourth honorary citizens of the United States, by act of Congress. On May 8, 1985, the Penns were granted honorary citizenship of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.
Although William Penn was granted all the land in Pennsylvania by the King, he and his heirs chose not to grant or settle any part of it without first buying the claims of Indians who lived there. In this manner, all of Pennsylvania except the northwestern third was purchased by 1768. The Commonwealth bought the Six Nations' claims to the remainder of the land in 1784 and 1789, and the claims of the Delawares and Wyandots in 1785. The defeat of the French and Indian war alliance by 1760, the withdrawal of the French, the crushing of Chief Pontiac's Indian alliance in 1764, and the failure of all attempts by Indians and colonists to live side by side led the Indians to migrate westward, gradually leaving Pennsylvania.Many Quakers were Irish and Welsh, and they settled in the area immediately outside of Philadelphia. French Huguenot and Jewish settlers, together with Dutch, Swedes, and other groups, contributed in smaller numbers to the development of colonial Pennsylvania. The mixture of various national groups in the Quaker Province helped to create its broad-minded tolerance and cosmopolitan outlook.

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Wars in the 1750s disrupted immigration patterns and cut down on the indentured servant pool. From 1749 to 1754, some 115 ships carrying almost 35,000 German immigrants reached Philadelphia. But in 1755-56 only three ships docked, and only one more arrived before 1763.[1] The French and Indian War also drew indentured male farm workers into the military. The Quakers again began to buy slaves. The importation of slaves into Philadelphia peaked 1759-1765. Pennsylvania's slave population had risen gradually, from about 5,000 in 1721 to an estimated 11,000 in 1754. By 1766, it was believed to number 30,000. But the end of the French and Indian War opened up a fresh flood of European immigration. Slave importation fell off sharply.


Not only was colonial Pennsylvania a slave-owning society, but the lives of free blacks in the colony were controlled by law. The restrictions on slaves were mild, by Northern standards, but those on freemen were comparatively strict. The restrictions had begun almost with the colony itself. After 1700, when Pennsylvania was not yet 20 years old, blacks, free or slave, were tried in special courts, without the benefit of a jury.
For a people who later protested against the fugitive slave laws, Pennsylvanians, when they had slaves themselves as property, used the full power of the law to protect them. "An Act for the better Regulation of Negroes" passed in the 1725-26 session, set especially high penalties for free blacks who harbored runaway slaves or received property stolen from masters. The penalties in such cases were potentially much higher than those applied to whites, and if the considerable fines that might accrue could not be paid, the justices had the power to order a free black person put into servitude.
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Under other provisions of the 1725-26 act, free negroes who married whites were to be sold into slavery for life; for mere fornication or adultery involving blacks and whites, the penalty for the black person was to be sold as a servant for seven years. Whites in such cases faced different or lighter punishment. The law effectively blocked marriage between the races in Pennsylvania, but fornication continued, as the state's burgeoning mulatto population attested.

Pennsylvania was a slaveholding colony from its inception, but it was not as deeply invested in slavery as other Mid-Atlantic colonies. The lack of labor-intensive cash crops in the colony, competition from indentured servants, and the colony’s political economy all prevented the widespread growth of slavery in Pennsylvania.

The slave population likely peaked shortly after independence, at slightly more than 6,800 and was heavily concentrated in two counties: Philadelphia—where slaves typically labored in construction, crafts and trade—and York—where they often engaged in agricultural labor.

Though the institution remained small, it faced significant moral opposition, especially from the Society of Friends (commonly called Quakers). In 1688, a meeting of Friends in Germantown denounced slavery and exhorted fellow Friends to treat all people according to the Golden Rule. Pacifist Quakers worried that slavery encouraged violence, both by masters and rebellious slaves. By the mid-1700s, Friends such as Richard Sandiford, Benjamin Lay and Anthony Benezet, began calling for slavery’s abolition in the colony. Ironically, just as Pennsylvania’s Friends were speaking out against slavery at home, the colony’s growing wheat and rye crops were feeding slaves in the American South and the Caribbean, aiding the institution’s expansion in those regions.

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Pennsylvania’s early history, influenced by the idealism of its founder William Penn, makes it unique among the original thirteen colonies. Religious tolerance, diversity, and representative government became reality here in Pennsylvania.
In 1680, William Penn requested land west of Jersey from the King of England for the Quakers and on March 4, 1681 the King signed the charter making William Penn proprietor of the Slyvania (Latin for woods). King Charles later changed the name to Pennsylvania (Penn’s Woods) in honor of Admiral Sir William Penn, the younger Penn’s father. Penn wanted to design a colony and a government that would showcase his ideals that included representation of the people, religious tolerance and a fair judicial system.

William Penn and other Quakers within the Middle Colonies believed that everyone had to seek God in his or her own way. Penn viewed his new colony as a “Holy Experiment” offering religious tolerance and stronger governments. Other English thinkers in the 1600s shared these ideas but in Pennsylvania, religious tolerance became the law.

Some of the servants at Pennsbury were indentured. What that means is that these men and women worked for a pre-determined period of years in exchange for transport to America and “freedom dues” once their indenture was complete. Many of Pennsylvania’s early leading citizens began their American lives as indentured servants.

An apprenticeship on the other hand was a contract between the master craftsman and the student. The apprentice agreed to work for the master without pay for the term of the contract. Apprentices worked alongside their master and any journeymen in the shop but were free to travel between families and would eventually start his own shop in a different community after the conclusion of the training, approximately 7 years.
Each of the other American colonies had established an official church, but William Penn did not. He sought out religious groups suffering in Europe, and invited them to his colony. Yet religious tolerance did not mean that colonists of all faiths had equal rights. Some of the other sects that made their home in Pennsylvania were the Amish, Mennonites, Catholics, Lutherans and Jews. The most influential religious bodies beside the Quakers were the large congregations of German Reformed and Presbyterians.
William Penn was certainly not the first European to settle in Pennsylvania and make contact with Native Americans already living in the area. The Lenape accepted these first settlers with caution. Trading with the Lenni Lenape tribe began to thrive when William Penn included land as well as goods in their dealings. William Penn’s “memorable treaty with Tamanend” took place just south of Pennsbury in what is the Kensington section of Philadelphia.

“We meet on the broad pathway of good faith and good-will; no advantage shall be taken on either side, but all shall be openness and love. We are the same as if one man’s body was to be divided into two parts; we are of one flesh and one blood."

The land that is now Pennsylvania was actually first claimed by the Swedes under Peter Minuit in 1638. Minuit had agreed to help them establish a colony after having a falling out with Dutch officials. Although the Swedes did colonize the region on the west banks of the Delaware River, known at the time as Nya Sverige, or New Sweden, they were attacked and displaced by the Dutch in 1655. In turn, the British would dispatch the Dutch from the region in 1664. Pennsylvania was founded in 1681 by William Penn. Penn was issued a land grant by King Charles II largely because of a significant debt owed to his father, Admiral Penn. At the time, the grant was one of the largest in terms of area ever known. It was named Pennsylvania, which means Penn’s Woods, after Admiral Penn. Penn quickly established a government based on religious freedom for the Quakers. Quakers did not believe in the strict rules imposed by the Puritan church. They believed that people could have a direct relation with God, rather than one mediated by a minister.The colony’s religious tolerance soon attracted German and Scottish immigrants, and promoted more peaceful relations with local Indians. Furthermore, it helped Philadelphia grow into the most important city in the thirteen colonies, and it helped established Pennsylvania Dutch Country, where German “Deutsh” political and religious refugees formed farming communities.