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anita n asked in Arts & HumanitiesHistory · 1 decade ago

How was Capitain John Smith helpful in the second year of jamestown's settelment?

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  • 1 decade ago
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    John Smith stepped up to the plate pretty early on with a "you don't work, you don't eat" policy. The Jamestown settlers were a bunch of rich adventurers who were ill-prepared to make it in the New World. To be fair, the Virginia Company had promised them that food was plentiful and that houses were ready for them and gold was everywhere. The settlers focused mostly on finding gold, not very successfully either. After a few changes in leadership, Smith (who almost was executed on arrival for causing rebellion on the ship over) took over and forced people to grow food instead of looking for gold. The colony thus survived a tough winter. Unfortunately, Smith was injured in a gunpowder explosion, and had to return to England. The situation deteriorated while he was gone, and there was a lot of starvation. What ultimately saved the colony (to some extent) was the planting of tobacco. It gave people a better reason to do some sort of work. Of course, food remained a problem for a while.

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