The first colonies that branched off of Britain have drastically changed throughout the years. After the colonies began to show signs of splitting from Britain, many people began to call it the American experiment, as no one has done it before. During the experiment from 1620, when America was forming its first colonies, up to 1787, where the Constitution was created, America has shaped its own ideas and principals. The roots of the American culture have been what formed the identity of it. Though the American identity is ever-changing, the brave roots and controversial beliefs of 1620 through 1787 are what ultimately formed what America is today.
America first formed as colonies under British rule from 1620 to 1660. The first colonies were established to spread Christianity and gather new land for the monarchy. The Mayflower Compact was written to establish what the followers of the king left to share with the new world. It stated, “Advancement of the Christian Faith, and the Honour of our King and Country” (Bradford 1). The original colonists of America were sent there to spread Christianity and claim new land for the king’s monarchy. After years of being taxed by a ruler who was not even nearby, the colonists grew tired. They began to show signs a want for separation from the British rule between 1660 and 1750. Since no one had completely separated from the British rule previously, many saw them as crazy and rebellious, as many believed the plan would not work. They began to conjure up their own form of government in which the people got a say in how the country was run.
Their new form of government was a democracy consisting of three branches. The three branches were the Executive who carried out the laws, judicial who enforced the laws, and legislative who made the laws. Each of these branches had been given equal power and would maintain the other branches through the system of checks and balances, established during the constitution. These branches were created to ensure no one group of people would hold too much power in the government and make sure the democracy stayed a democracy. The Constitution also begins with the words “We the people…” which shows that in the established democracy, all of the power would go to the people through elected representatives (Madison 3). One of America’s main principles that contributed to their experiment was equality in representation, this led to America being unique in the way it was run with the government power in the hands of the people.
Many people also broke away from British sovereignty because they believed that all men are created equal. With the king having been born with more power through hereditary succession, this breaks many people’s beliefs. In the Declaration of Independence, it is even stated that “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness” (Jefferson 1). Since many wanted to believe that all were created equal, without one person being born with a large leverage, the American democracy was created. This idea that everyone was equal also led back to the idea of equality of people.
The American Identity has been established through the years through the outlandish ideas that many believed to be insane as they thought the risk would not work. The first colonists first sparked the ideas from separating from Britain as they discovered that there was a better way to live than under the rule of the monarchy. After the colonies began to separate themselves from the mother country, they began to form their own government. This government was a representative democracy in which the people had government power and would be treated equally. The American identity has been dictated not by the race, religion, or power of people, but by the mutual agreement for freedom and equality.