The winds and waves are always on the side of the ablest navigators.(Edward Gibbon)
These territories are either dominions, commonwealths, colonies, territories or protectorates. Their administration varies from fully autonomous with home rule to directly administered.
Under Lord Protector Oliver Cromwell (1653-1658) the Commonwealth already had several American colonies; Virginia (1607), Newfoundland (1610), Bermuda (1623), Leeward Islands (consolidated in 1664), Barbados (1627), Massachusetts Bay (1628), Plymouth (1628, Maryland (1932), Connecticut (1636), Rhode Island (1636), New Heaven (1638), Bahamas (1648). It gained from France Nova Scotia (1654), and Spain the Colony of Colony of Jamaica (1655) the later by the Western Design campaign. The most important and populated colonies and more mature ones in their society were Virginia, Maryland and the ones of New England. The later providing men on the side of Parliament during the British Civil Wars (1636-1651).
In times of Henry Cromwell (1658-1696) the several colonies of North America were consolidated in the Dominion of New England (1675) under a Governor-General named by the Lord Protector. It was under his rule that the East India Company secured its foothold in India in Bombay, Calcutta and Madras. Hudson's Bay Company (HBC) was given the administration of Borealia in North America becoming one of the main suppliers of fur for Europe. Under Henry Cromwell's administration the base of colonial administration was established and the Navigation Acts regulated commerce.
The British in expansion in India was done by means of a private venture, the East India Company until the crisis of the Clive-Dupleix Agreement (1761) that began the direct control of India by the Commonwealth.
After Seven Years' War (1756-1763) and by the Treaty of Paris (1763) the Commonwealth gained in North America from France the Colony of Quebec and the Northwest Territories of which were carved out of the colonies and Indian territories of Illinois Country, Ohio and Tennessee.
Administration and Government
Colonies and territories can be distinguished in the following groups according to their patent letters, charters and acts of Parliament and orders of Protector-in-Council.
- Charter Colonies sometimes called dominions or commonwealths. The governor and an assembly are elected by the colonists. The Protector has reserved powers like organizing and appointing the judiciary, name Colonial Commissioners with specific instructions that can include the suspension of the colonial charter or nominate a Provisional Council or name a military commander. The oldest charter colonies are Virginia and Maryland;
- Commonwealth colonies, the former Crown colonies, in which the governor is appointed by the Protector and has an elected legislative assembly. Their home rule is determined by Charters. Examples are Barbados and New Arcadia.
- Proprietary Colonies, are the colonies whose administration and property is granted to a lord or lords proprietors, that hold the authority by virtue of a charter. Authority is usually exercised in a way that they are almost an independent sovereign;
- Company Colonies, are the territories directly administered by a chartered company, such as the ones in Asia, Africa and America by the East India Company, Hudson's Bay Company, Adventurers Trading to Africa, etc.;
- Presidencies of India, the administrative divisions, similar to a province, of British governance in India; and
- Protectorates, indirectly ruled with most of the government functions are in hands of the local rulers and the British Commonwealth administrators direct foreign relations, the treasury and the military.
Long established colonies usually have a Governor (named either by the Protector, the proprietary, the Chartered company, or the colonists), an executive council, and a legislative council (elected or partially named). Law courts are usually created and named by the Governor or directly named by the Protector.
The directives of the colonial policy and administration reside in the Lord Protector and the Commonwealth Council of State. Though most and everyday issues are derived or resolved by the Council for Foreign Plantations and Council of Trade, both permanent bodies of the State Council.
For example, across the Atlantic Ocean it has several colonies in the Caribbean and North America. These are:
- United Colonies of New England, commonly known as the New England Confederation, it includes Massachusetts Bay Colony (established 1628), Plymouth Colony (1628), Colony of Connecticut (1636), and New Haven Colony (1638-1662 merged to Connecticut). Abolished in 1675 on the formation of the Dominion of New England.
Colony or Territory
|Establishment /||Political Status||Region|
|Virginia||1607 to date||Commonwealth (former Crown) Colony -> Charter Colony 1663 to date.||Southern Colonies (Chesapeake Colonies)|
|Capital Jamestown. First permanent colony in North America. Fourth Charter of 1663.|
|Newfoundland||1610 to date||Proprietary Colony 1610 to date||Canada|
|Capital St. John's. Administered by the Gulf of Saint Lawrence Trade and Fishing Company.|
|Bermuda||1612 to date||Company Colony||West Indies|
|Capital Saint George's Town. Administered by the Somers Isles Company.|
|Leeward Islands Colony||1623 to date||Commonwealth (former Crown) Colony||West Indies|
|Capital Basseterre (Saint Christopher Island). Includes Antigua (1632), Barbuda (1684), Montserrat (1632), Saint Kitts (1623), Nevis (1628), and Anguilla (1650). Act for Leeward Caribbean Island Government of 1664.|
|Barbados||1627 to date||Proprietary Colony 1627 - Commonwealth Colony 1652 to date.||West Indies|
|Massachusetts Bay||1628-1675||Charter Colony||New England|
|Capital Boston. Former member of the New England Confederation (1643). Became part of the Dominion of New England in 1675.|
|Plymouth||1628-1675||Charter Colony||New England|
|Capital Plymouth. Former member of the New England Confederation (1643). Became part of the Dominion of New England in 1675.|
|Maryland||1632 to date||Proprietary Colony 1632 - Charter Colony 1662 to date.||Southern Colonies (Chesapeake Colonies)|
|Capital Annapolis. Funding charter provides toleration to all Christian groups. Maryland Charter of 1661.|
|Connecticut||1636-1675||Charter Colony||New England|
|Capital Hartford. Former member of the New England Confederation (1643). Became part of the Dominion of New England in 1675.|
|Rhode Island and Providence Plantations||1636-1675||Charter Colony||New England|
|Capital Providence. Freedom of religion among rights of colonial charters. Became part of the Dominion of New England in 1675.|
|New Haven||1638-1662 merged to Connecticut||Charter Colony||New England|
|Capital New Heaven. Former member of the New England Confederation (1643).|
|Bahamas||1648 to date||Company Colony||West Indies|
|Capital New Providence. Administered by the Eleutherian Adventurers. Freedom of religion among rights of colonial charters.|
|Nova Scotia||1654 to date||Proprietary Colony||Canada|
|Capital Alexandria. Administered by the Gulf of Saint Lawrence Trade and Fishing Company.|
|Jamaica||1655 to date||Commonwealth Colony||West Indies|
|Capital Cagway (until 1692), Port Oliver (since 1692)|
|Borealia||1670 to date||Company Colony||Canada|
|Capital Fort Rupert. Administered by the Hudson's Bay Company (HBC).|
|Dominion of New England||1675 to date||Commonwealth Colony||New England|
|Capital Boston. Acts of New England Dominion Charter (1675 and 1704)|
|Quebec||1763 to date||Commonwealth Colony||Canada|
|Capital Québec. Former part of French Canada.|
|Ontario Lands||1763 to date||Commonwealth Colony and Indian Territory||Canada|
|Capital Toronto. Former part of French Canada.|
|Illinois||1763-1838||Commonwealth Colony and Indian Territory||Northwest Territories|
|Capital Chicago. Former part of French Canada. Later part of Indiana.|
|Ohio||1766-1838||Commonwealth Colony and Indian Territory||Northwest Territories|
|Capital New Lancaster. Former part of French Canada. Later part of Indiana.|
|Tennessee||1768-1838||Commonwealth Colony and Indian Territory||Northwest Territories|
|Capital Fort Loudoun. Former part of French Canada. Later part of Indiana.|
|Dominion of Indiana||1838 to date||Commonwealth Colony and Indian Territory||Northwest Territories|
|Capital Chicago. Merger of Ohio, Illinois Country and Tennessee (by Commonwealth Charter Establishing the Dominion of Indiana, 1838)|
Colony or Territory
|Saint Helena||1659 to date||Company Colony (1659-1804), Commonwealth Colony (1804 to date)||South Atlantic Ocean|
|Capital Castle of St John. Administered by the East India Company, chartered in 1657. Military naval base. It consists of the island of Saint Helena, Ascension Island and the archipelago of Tristan da Cunha.|
|Senegambia||1664 to date||Commonwealth Colony and Protectorate||Western Africa|
|Coastal settlements of Guinea and Gold Coast||1665 to date||Coastal settlements and protectorates||Western Africa|
|Capital Cape Castle. Administered by the Company of Adventurers Trading to Africa (CATA).|
|British West Africa||Commonwealth Colony and Protectorate||Western Africa|
|Consolidation of various forts and trade posts of the CATA.|
|Natal||Commonwealth Colony||Southern Africa|
|Capital Natal. Former Boer state of Natalia|
- India before the Carnatic Wars
- Presidency of Bombay
- Presidency of Calcutta
- Presidency of Madras
- Territories in India after the Carnatic Wars
Pitt's India Act of 1803 transferred political and diplomatic affairs to the Government of the Commonwealth ending Company rule. The Board of Control (for the administration of British India 1764-1804) was replaced by the Board of Commissioners for the Affairs of India (1804 to date).
Colony or Territory
|Establishment /||Political Status||Region|
|Presidency of Bantam||1634 to 1683||Presidency of British India.||Java.|
|Capital Bantam. Ceded to the Netherlands.|
|Presidency of Pryaman||1685 to date||Presidency of British India||Sumatra|
- Malta (capital Valletta). Briefly occupied by France (1798–1800, 1803-1805) and Commonwealth (1800-1802, 1805-1810). The Treaty of Amiens awarded Malta to the Kingdom of Sicily (1802-1810) under protection of the Commonwealth. Treaty of Vienna (1810) awards Malta to the Commonwealth for perpetuity.
- St. Mary's City (1632-1695), Annapolis (1695 to date)
- OTL Port Royal
- OTL Port Royal
- OTL Kingston
- Kaskaskia (1768-1772), Chicago (1772 to date)
- Logstown (1766-1773), New Lancaster (1773 to date)
- According to the Clive-Dupleix Agreement (France and Britain) of 1761