Material for this assignment can be found on page 59 in the textbook and at the Exploring U.S. History website from George Mason University.


This assignment asks you to look at the lives of indentured servants in Virginia. You have three primary sources for information. One is a letter from 1623 and another is a court document from 1684. You also have examples of typical labor contracts from the period. Using information from a careful reading of the documents and your knowledge about indentured servitude and social developments in 17th century Virginia, answer each question in a well-organized paragraph (maybe two).

Examples of labor contracts for back ground are here:

  1. Describe John Frethorne’s personal situation. What has happened to the colony? Whatare the relationships between colonists? What does Frethorne want from his father?
  2. From the Confession, describe the nature of the servants’ crimes. Who was involved inthe illegal activities? Who was the ringleader? What evidence could you supply to support your choice? Why do you think that indentured servants took part in the crimes?
  3. What do these passages contribute to our understanding of the institution of indentured servitude in seventeenth-century Chesapeake? How do they show changes occurring in the society?

Your finished assignment should be three to five paragraphs. In grading this assignment, I will expect you to:

  1. Answer the questions.
  2. Show that you understand and can use the factual information
  3. Make relevant connections between the documents
  4. Build a persuasive argument about historical causation and change
  5. Support statements of historical change with direct evidence that
    strengthens a point of view
  6. Writewitheffectiveorganization
Punctual Essays
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