In any event, colonization and the grant of lands were provincial matters.
Each colony became accustomed to planting new settlements and to claiming new boundaries.
In each colony in 1750 were to be found two sets of governing organizations, - the local and the general.
The growth of constitutional government, as we now understand it, was promoted by the establishment of two different sets of machinery for making laws and carrying on government.
In some of the middle colonies the towns and counties were both active and had a relation with each other which was the forerunner of the present system of local government in the Western States.
Everywhere among the English-speaking race criminal justice was rude, and punishments were barbarous; but the tendency was to do away with special privileges and legal exemptions.
On March 10, 1764, preliminary resolutions passed the House of Commons looking towards the Stamp Act.
England and France were rivals, not only on the continent, but in the West Indies, in India, and in Europe.
Besides paid white laborers, there was everywhere a class of white servants bound without wages for a term of years, and a more miserable class of Negro slaves.
More emphasis was thus thrown upon the local governments than in England.
The residence of the Plymouth settlers in the Netherlands, and the later conquest of the Dutch colonies, had brought the Americans into contact with the singularly wise and free institutions of the Dutch.
The Stuart sovereigns of England steadily attempted to strengthen their power, and the resistance to that effort caused an immense growth of Parliamentary influence.
In 1763 the English were the most powerful nation in the world.
One of the strongest and most persistent elements in national development has been that inheritance of political traditions and usages which the new settlers brought with them.
The old charters of Massachusetts, Virginia, and the Carolinas had given title to strips of territory extending from the Atlantic westward to the Pacific.