Malaria outbreaks have been cited as having a vast influence upon the death rates of the Chesapeake area. One of the more common forms of malaria, caused by the parasite, was accompanied by mortality rates anywhere from 5-25% (Rutman, 34). Upon arrival in colonial Chesapeake most if not all people went through a period of "seasoning," the common term for the first exposure to malaria. Those who were fortunate enough to survive their "seasoning" would most likely suffer from a lifetime of chronic sickness and poor health (Menard, 226).
Consider the Powhatans of Virginia. As I mentioned earlier, Stannardcitesestimates that the population was 100,000 before contact. In the sameparagraph, he states that European depredations and disease had reducedthispopulation to a mere 14,000 by the time the English settled Jamestownin 1607. Now, come on; should we really blame the English for 86,000deaths that occuredbefore they even arrived? Sure, he hints at pre-Jamestown"depredations",but he doesn't actually list any. As far as I can tell, the handful ofEuropeanventures into the Chesapeake region before 1607 were too small to domuchdepredating, and in what conflicts there were, the Europeans often gotthe worstof it. [see and and]
New England vs. Chesapeake - Term Paper
Religiosity in general was not as prevalent in the colonial Chesapeake as it was in New England. Nonetheless, religion was constantly intertwined with daily life in general and with the ideas of death and mortality in particular.