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Survey of American History mid-term exam

Identify the significance of the following people:

Pocahontas
Pocahontas was famous for her romantic relationship with John Smith. They met when he settled in Jamestown and she invoked magic to learn English, resulting in the famous couple. Well, except maybe not. As she was actually 10 years old at the time, any stories of sexual relations between her and John Smith are mostly apocryphal. However, she was notable for maintaining a lengthy stretch of peacetime between the tribe, headed by her enormous father Powhatan, and the settlers. She served a role that would today be considered ambassadorial — she frequently visited both settlements and kept communications strong, so few violent misunderstandings were had. This peacetime was named after her: the brilliantly original “Pocahantas’ Peace”. The story had a happy ending when she married John Rolfe, moved to England, and died immediately. Rabies, you know how it is.

The Puritans
The puritans were a sour bunch. Puritanism, once defined as “the haunting fear that somebody, somewhere, might be happy” sprang up in the wake of King Charles I, a Catholic who was quite displeased with this ‘Protestant’ hooliganism. He began persecuting the shit out of them, so they left for the New World (the “Great Migration”). They greatly valued “religious freedom” — their own, anyway. Once there, they established churches as the centre of everything and tolerated no religious dissent whatsoever. If people didn’t want to go to church, they were exiled or executed. This solved all their problems and their colony was ultimately very successful (in the sense that they didn’t all die) because they all worked together and actually made an effort to feed themselves.

Robert Carter III
Robert Carter III was a wealthy statesman and proprietor of the revolutionary age, and a member of the New Swedish Church. He suffered from a sort of mid-life crisis when he realized his god probably wouldn’t be okay with his ownership and abuse of some 500 slaves. So he freed them and felt better. In today’s dollars, the move cost him millions upon millions and nearly all of his estate. It was the largest single emancipation of slaves (until the civil war) as well as a huge “fuck you” to George Washington and Thomas Jefferson, who still hadn’t freed any of theirs. He was forgotten by history, probably because he made the Founding Fathers look like chumps.

John Malcolm
John Malcolm was an English sea captain and taxman, sent to the New World to keep the colonies under control. He enjoyed his work far more than any tax collector should, and everybody hated him — they gave him a ‘nice’ tarring and feathering (i.e. he got to keep his clothes on). One day, when he was just casually yelling at a child in the street, George Hewes had the nerve to interfere. When told not to interfere with gentlemen’s work, Hewes made a fowl joke about his past. So he smacked that bitch-ass commoner with his cane. Later that day, Bostonians from all over (Boston) came to get him and gave him the Rebel Special: tarring and feathering, for reals this time. The humiliated and greatly annoyed Malcolm went back to England, but it turned out nobody liked him there either — he spent the rest of his life trying to get elected into Parliament so he could crack down on those traitorous Americans.

George R. T. Hewes
George Robert Twelves Hewes was an ordinary shoemaker, too short to join the army (his dream job). He personally delivered a pair of shoes to John Hancock, governor of Massachusetts, the highest honour a shoemaker could achieve at the time. Fifteen years later, John Hancock was his bitch. Hewes  was present at the Boston Massacre as well as a participant in the Boston Tea Party. He famously told John Malcolm to suck a dick and got his face bashed in as a result. He probably would have been forgotten, except that for the longest time, he just refused to die. He lived to be nearly 100 years old and easily outlived any of the other revolutionaries. In the 1830s, people became interested in his story and started work on his biographies. And in all that time, all Hancock managed to do was write his name really, really big, like a first-grader.

Written by Likes to Ramble

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