Halfway Covenant (1662)
The Congregationalist Church (the Puritans) gave partial membership to the non-converted - what they called the ______. The main reason for the change in doctrine was that younger generations of Puritans were not entering church service and because of this, their children could not be baptized. The church was losing membership like a sieve. The shows a move away from a strictly religious society towards a growing secular one.
Act of Toleration (1649)
This was passed by the Maryland legislature allowed Catholics a safe haven to worship and to escape the persecution of Puritans and other Protestant groups who sought to wipe out Catholics in the new world.
Mayflower Compact (1620)
Drafted by Pilgrims on their way to the "new world," this set up a secular government to govern the new colony. It established later stated ideas like the separation of church and state and majority rule
Old Deluder Act (1647)
Using a term used to describe Satan and referring to Satan's desire to keep humans from knowledge, the Massachusetts colonial government dictated, in this, that any town with more than 50 households should require primary education. If a town has more than 100 households, a grammar school is to be established to teach children to the point of being prepared for, and by a teacher capable of preparing the students for, university instruction. This is the first example of compulsory education in the American colonies.
New England Confederation (1643)
This established as an attempt to create a military alliance against future native attacks. It was conceived in light of the Pequot war where colonial action was disorganized and ineffective. It led to greater colonial self-leadership and distanced the colonies further from the mother country.