The states of New England form the northeastern-most
section of the United States. In 1614, Captain John Smith named the
region when he explored its shores.
The Pilgrim settlers who journeyed to New England in
1620 found a hilly, forested region with a long, irregular
coastline. Several mountain ranges and river valleys separate
uplands. Early farmers had to remove rocks before they could work
the soil. Many of the stone walls they built still stand.
Early settlers in New England showed a strong desire for
religious freedom and the right to speak, think, and write as they
pleased. The region became known as "the hotbed of the American
Revolution." New England states played a major role between
1765 and 1777 in defining the issues and hastening the actual hostilities
of the Revolutionary War.