The American Revolutionary War and United States' independence pushed them further west.In the 1860s, the United States government sent most Lenape remaining in the eastern United States to the Indian Territory (present-day Oklahoma and surrounding territory) under the Indian removal policy.Penn named the city Philadelphia, which is Greek for brotherly love (from philos, "love" or "friendship", and adelphos, "brother").As a Quaker, Penn had experienced religious persecution and wanted his colony to be a place where anyone could worship freely.In 1681, in partial repayment of a debt, Charles II of England granted Penn a charter for what would become the Pennsylvania colony.Despite the royal charter, Penn bought the land from the local Lenape to be on good terms with the Native Americans and ensure peace for his colony.
Europeans came to the Delaware Valley in the early 17th century, with the first settlements founded by the Dutch, who in 1623 built Fort Nassau on the Delaware River opposite the Schuylkill River in what is now Brooklawn, New Jersey.
The Dutch considered the entire Delaware River valley to be part of their New Netherland colony.
In 1638, Swedish settlers led by renegade Dutch established the colony of New Sweden at Fort Christina (present-day Wilmington, Delaware) and quickly spread out in the valley.
These societies developed and financed new industries, attracting skilled and knowledgeable immigrants from Europe. The city remained the young nation's largest until the late 18th century, being both a financial and a cultural center for America.
Philadelphia's importance and central location in the colonies made it a natural center for America's revolutionaries. In 1816, the city's free black community founded the African Methodist Episcopal Church (AME), the first independent black denomination in the country, and the first black Episcopal Church.