WILBUR F. GORDY
SPAIN AND ENGLAND IN THE NEW WORLD
BEFORE taking up the account of the life of the people in colonial days, let us briefly recall a few of the essential facts outlined in "Stories of American Explorers," the first book of this series. By so doing we shall be able to form a clearer picture of the difficulties and dangers our forefathers had to meet when they began to build homes in the forest wilds of the New World.
You will remember that Columbus, in command of a Spanish fleet, -discovered America, although on his first voyage he saw only some of the islands of the West Indies. But he was not the first to reach the mainland. That honor belongs to John Cabot, who, sailing in the interests of England, landed on the coast of Labrador. In consequence of these discoveries, both Spain and England laid claim to North America.
At that time Spain was much stronger than England. In fact, she was the greatest nation in the world, and was eager to increase her wealth and extend her power. To this end she sent out daring navigators with the purpose of finding, in the unknown lands, rich mines of gold and silver. Two of the most successful of these explorers were Cortez, the conqueror of Mexico, and Pizarro, the conqueror of Peru.
Out of Mexico and Peru Spain took gold and silver which some have thought would now be worth five thousand million dollars. But all this money did the
Battle between the English Fleet and the Spanish Armada.
Spaniards more harm than good. It strengthened in them a dangerous inclination to try to get something for nothing. It weakened them morally. It unfitted them for hard work and honest effort. In fact, the more gold and silver they discovered, the less willing they were to settle down to the patient labor that is required for successful colony-planting. You will not be surprised, then, to learn that, in the part of North America now known as the United States, Spain failed totally as a colonizing power.
The Crushing Defeat of Spain
Much of the enormous treasure which came from the gold and silver mines of Mexico and Peru was used by Spain in carrying on wars with other countries of Europe. Being a Catholic country, she had serious trouble with England and the Netherlands, which were Protestant. For a long time the Netherlands were subject to Spain, but in 1567 they revolted against Spanish rule and for forty years there was war between the countries.
Great though she was, Spain found the struggle a constant drain on her strength. The many battles on land and sea gradually weakened her, until finally the crushing defeat by England of the "Invincible Armada," in 1588, proved to the world England's superiority over Spain as a naval power. From that time Spain's greatness waned.
Bold English Sea=rovers
When it became known that Spain was getting large quantities of gold and silver from Mexico and Peru, and that she depended largely upon this wealth for the support of her armies, bold English sea-captains like Drake and Hawkins began to scour the seas in search of Spanish vessels laden with the rich treasures from the mines, and lost no opportunity to attack Spanish settlements and plunder Spanish ships.
Among these sea-rovers was Sir Humphrey Gilbert. Ten years before the defeat of the " Invincible Armada" he tried to plant a settlement on the coast of Labrador, his thought being that from this military post English ships might sally forth to make attacks upon Spanish fleets. Although his scheme failed, it suggested to other Englishmen the idea of making settlements in the
Within the next ten years Gilbert's half-brother, Sir Walter Raleigh, at great personal expense sent out two colonies, with the purpose of planting a New England in America. The undertaking cost him what would be in our money a million dollars, and both colonies were complete failures. Yet the venture was by no means a useless one, since it called attention to a new idea, namely, that the real value of America did not lie in its mines of silver and gold, and that the best way to secure a hold upon the new country was to plant permanent colonies in it.
At the end of the sixteenth century, however, the outlook for England in America was not bright, for while Spain was in control of much territory in the New World, including Mexico and Peru, England had not the tiniest settlement to call her own. Yet she had not been idle; for English voyagers had been growing familiar with the sea and with distant lands, and the results of their labors ere long resulted in the settlements of Jamestown and Plymouth. These bold sailors had been teaching the following generation how to find out more about America and how to use this knowledge in establishing homes for themselves and for others.
England's Need of America
It was fortunate that such opportunity for homemaking was open to England, for her population, though at that time but five millions, was greater than could he cared for. The wool trade had become so profitable that many of the large landholders were now raising sheep instead of cultivating the soil for wheat and barley, and much land that formerly had been used for tillage was given over to sheep-farming. Where once a number of men had been required to till the soil, one man alone was now sufficient to watch a large number of sheep. This threw many out of employment.
Moreover, when Henry VIII did away with the monasteries, many people who had received support from them were cast adrift and had nothing to do. Thousands of idle men were begging for bread. The country was overrun with paupers, and sometimes, in desperation, beggars turned criminals. The jails were full of men who, in their effort to save themselves from suffering and want, had committed some crime.
Such a condition of affairs compelled England to look for some outlet for this surplus population, and to America she eagerly turned as a place where thousands who had been thrown out of work could begin life over again with new opportunity and new hope.
THE SETTLEMENT OF JAMESTOWN
WHEN Raleigh found that his private fortune was not ample enough for planting colonies, he assigned his interests to a number of merchants and rich men, who secured a charter from King James in 1606 and organized two companies for the purpose of colonizing America.
One of the companies was composed of London merchants and was called the London Company. The other was composed of men living in the west of England and was called the Plymouth Company. The London Company was to occupy the land between 34 degrees and 38 degrees north latitude, extending from Cape Fear to the mouth of the Potomac River; the Plymouth Company, between 41 degrees and 45 degrees, extending from the mouth of the Hudson River to New Brunswick. The area lying between 38 and 41 degrees either company might occupy provided it came no nearer than one hundred miles to a settlement which had been made by the other company.
The most important provision of the charter was that the colonists as citizens in America should have the same rights and privileges as were enjoyed by citizens
of England. In addition to the charter, the emigrants received from King James and the London Company rigid instructions as to what they should do when they reached Virginia. The Church of England was to be maintained, and the authority of King James was to be supreme. The king wished the colonists to understand that they were under his absolute control.
Another of his instructions was very unwise and, as we shall see later, almost ruined the colony. In substance it was as follows: For five years after the settlement in Virginia no colonist was to have any land of his own; all were to work together and put the products of their labor into a common storehouse, out of which every colonist should have his needs supplied.
The members of the London Company, being merchants, were dreaming, as De Soto, Cortez, and other Spaniards had dreamed years before, of the gold and silver to be found in America. With the hope, therefore, of making themselves rich by finding quantities of precious metals and developing a large trade, they decided to send a colony to the New World. It was easy to persuade men to join this gold-hunting venture.
The Colonists Sail for the New World
On New Year's Day, 1607, a fleet of three frail vessels, bearing one hundred and five colonists, sailed from England. More than half called themselves "gentlemen," or men unused to labor; the others were laborers, tradesmen, and mechanics. They were all illfitted for the hardship of life in a new country. Instead of going straight across the Atlantic, they followed the coast of France and Spain down to the Canaries, and thence made their way
to the West India Islands. Here they stopped for some time before completing their voyage.
It was their intention to land at Roanoke Island, but in a severe storm they lost their reckoning and arrived at the entrance of Chesapeake Bay. Sighting a headland, they named it Cape Charles, after one of the sons of the English King. On April 26th a small party of the Colonists, landing here, Jamestown and the Surrounding Country.
was attacked by unfriendly Indians, who wounded two of the men with arrows.
But the tribes were not all hostile. At another landing-place, according to the account taken from an early narrative, the Indians were very amiable. The chief, at the head of feathered and painted warriors, welcomed the newcomers with music on a reed flute. As he came nearer, the white men must have been amused, if not startled, by his grotesque figure. His body was painted crimson and his face blue. His fantastic costume included two feathers in his hair, birds' claws set with copper hanging from his ears and from his neck a string of shell beads.
As the colonists sailed up the river, which they called James, in honor of the King of England, they were deeply impressed by the beauty of the scenery. It was early May. The dogwood and other trees were in full bloom, and the ground along the river-side was brilliant with sweet-scented flowers of many colors. To the tired voyagers it all seemed like fairy-land.
The Colonists Settle at Jamestown
About fifty miles from the mouth of the river they selected a place for their settlement. It was a peninsula, connected with the shore by a narrow neck of sand, thus affording some advantages in case of an attack from the land. Moreover, the river at this point was so deep that vessels could be moored close to the banks and tied to tree trunks. But the land was low and damp, and the air malarial.
The colonists at once set about building a fort. Upon the ramparts they planted cannon in such a way as to command the approaches to the settlement, because they feared attacks from the Indians. Their first dwellings were either rough cabins with roofs of sedge or bark, tents made of old sails, or simply holes dug in the ground, according to the ability or thrift of the colonist in providing his shelter.
Their first church was equally simple in structure. For a reading-desk they nailed a board to two trees, for seats they used logs of wood, and to protect the congregation from sun and rain they stretched overhead an old sail-cloth. In this primitive place of worship they held religious services twice every Sunday.
Such was the crude beginning of the first permanent English settlement in the New World�a settlement which the colonists named Jamestown in honor of King James.
Immediately after landing, on May I3th, the members of the Council, with the exception of John Smith, proceeded to elect a president. The choice fell upon Edward Wingfield.
King James had appointed councillors before the colony sailed from England, but instead of making known who they were, he gave strict orders that their names should be placed in a sealed box, not to be opened till the colony reached America. Curiously enough, when John Sm1th
the names were taken from the box, there was found among them that of John Smith, who, during the voyage over, had been put in irons on a foolish charge of plotting mutiny; but for some weeks he was not allowed to take his seat with the Council.
John Smith was, in some respects, a remarkable man. By his own account, which some historians think is highly colored, his experience had been a romantic one. He was born in 1579, and was left an orphan at an early age. Being of a restless and roving nature, he went in youth and early manhood to foreign lands, where he passed through many dangers, more than once barely escaping death. Thrice he engaged in single combat, each time with a powerful Turkish captain, and each time he killed his adversary. Whatever may be thought of the account he gave of his adventures, there is good reason to believe, as our story will make plain, that he was a brave man. But for his courage and good sense, all of the Jamestown colonists must have perished.
The Little Colony in Distress
Troubles were already threatening when the colonists settled in their new home. The roundabout voyage by which they had crossed the Atlantic had taken over four months, and during that time much of the food, intended for the first few weeks on land, had been consumed. To make a bad matter worse, instead of promptly returning to England for more supplies, Captain Newport delayed until June 22d, a period of fifty days, in order that he might go with John Smith on what proved to be a fruitless exploring expedition up the James River.
By the time Newport left for England, the supply of provisions had run so low that the colonists were put upon short rations. The allowance, per day, for each man was one pint of wheat or barley, already spoiled, of which porridge was made by boiling it in the muddy water of the James River.
When we remember that the colonists had no sheep nor cattle, and hence were without mutton and beef and milk and butter, we realize how slender was their diet. They had a few chickens, but not enough to use for food. Famine soon overtook them. Nor was that their only misfortune. The sultry midsummer heat and the dampness of their surroundings helped to bring on fevers and other diseases.
To add to their distress, the Indians frequently attacked the settlement. Every third night, therefore, each man had to take his turn, whatever the weather might be, in keeping watch. During the tedious hours of sentinel duty the men lay upon the bare ground and, already weakened by lack of food and by the intense heat, many fell ill. Sometimes three or four died in a single night. The time came when there were not enough able-bodied persons to care for the sick, and by the close of September nearly half of the Jamestown settlers had passed away.
The Indians Capture John Smith
Autumn, however, brought better conditions. With cool weather wild fowl flocked to the rivers, fish became abundant, and the ripened corn furnished good material for bread. As the outlook became better, Smith decided to go up the Chickahominy River on a voyage of exploration. He was in search of the South Sea, as the Pacific Ocean was called, which at that time was believed to be at no great distance west of Jamestown.
On a bitter cold day, early in December, with nine white men and two Indians, he ascended the Chickahominy River in a barge. When a point had been reached where the stream was too shallow for them to
proceed farther, they landed. There Smith left seven Englishmen behind to guard the barge, and with the remaining two white men and the two Indians continued the journey in a canoe.
They had not gone far when suddenly they were set
upon by some two hundred Indians, who killed the two white men and pressed hard upon Smith. Although he fought with desperate bravery and with his pistol killed two of his assailants, in a short time he had to surrender.
The Indians tied their captive to a tree, and it looked as though Smith were never to see his friends again. But immediately, with great presence of mind, he began to divert the savages with an ivory compass which he took out of his pocket. The red men tried to touch the trembling needle, and when they could not on account of the glass that protected it, they wondered exceedingly. Playing upon their simplicity and superstition, Smith pointed to the stars to indicate that there was some mysterious connection between the compass and these heavenly bodies.
Perhaps the Indians at first believed he had superhuman power. At all events, instead of putting him to death, they journeyed with him from village to village and exhibited him among their people as a prize. This experience was of much value to Smith, for it gave him a knowledge of Indian life and character, which aided him on many occasions afterward in managing the redmen
Pocahontas Saves Smith's Life
In the course of their travel they came to an Indian village, Werowocomoco, on the north bank of the York River, about fifteen miles in a bee-line from Jamestown. Here lived the leading chief of the tribe, Powhatan, who received his guest with great formality.
On being ushered into Powhatan's presence, Smith beheld a crafty old savage, tall, thin, and sour-looking, clad in a cloak made of raccoon skins with all the tails attached. He was seated on a sort of bench covered with skins, in front of the fire. At the right and left of the chief were Indian maidens, and ranged along the sides of the long wigwam were squaws whose faces and bare shoulders, painted a deep red, vividly set forth the strings of white shell-beads which hung about their necks. In front of the women stood the grim warriors in dignified silence.
One squaw brought water to Smith with which to wash his hands, and another a bunch of feathers on which to dry them. He was then feasted, and a council was called. The Indians seem to have been divided in their opinion of Smith, but after some discussion they put an end to his suspense. For they forced him to lay his head upon two stones, beside which stood Indian warriors with upraised clubs ready to dash out his brains. At such a prospect even his stout heart must have quailed.
Just at this critical moment Powhatan's favorite daughter, Pocahontas, a maiden twelve or thirteen years old, rushed up and threw herself upon Smith's body, putting her arms about his neck. Now mystery was added to suspense. But by her action the little Indian girl simply indicated her wish, according to an Indian custom, that the prisoner's life should be spared, and that he should be adopted as a member of the tribe. When this is understood, there is really nothing mysterious or even romantic in the behavior of Pocahontas. To Powhatan and the other Indians the incident was commonplace enough, and the old chief yielded to his daughter's wish in allowing the prisoner to live.
Having passed safely through this ordeal, Smith, after two or three days, was put through the second stage of tribal adoption. By Powhatan's orders he was led into a long wigwam out in the woods, and left on a mat before the fire. The chief himself passed into an adjoining room and uttered a succession of the most doleful sounds.
Returning to Smith's presence, he went through further strange ceremonial, and told Smith that he might return to Jamestown. At the same time he added that if Smith would send from Jamestown two cannon and a grindstone he should receive a tract of land and should become the old chief's son. All this indicated that the rescued prisoner had been adopted into Powhatan's tribe.
Smith Again at Jamestown
Smith returned to the settlement on January 8, 1608, after an absence of about four weeks. On the same day Captain Newport also arrived from England. With him came one hundred and twenty new colonists. These, added to the thirty-eight who alone remained of the original one hundred and five, brought the number up to one hundred and fifty-eight. This meant more mouths to feed, and food was still scarce. It was well for the colony that Smith had been adopted into the Indian tribe, for Pocahontas, who had become his warm
friend, often came to the settlement with corn and venison and wild fowl for the needy settlers.
In the following summer Smith went out again in search of the Pacific, this time exploring the Potomac River and Chesapeake Bay. Of course he did not find the Pacific, but he sailed three thousand miles, making accurate maps of the country.
Jamestown in 1622.
In September Captain Newport, who had again sailed to England for supplies, returned with seventy new colonists. He reported that the London Company was complaining because the colonists had found no precious metals. He had been warned, he said, not to return to England without finding a lump of gold or discovering the passage leading to the Pacific.
He also brought directions that Powhatan was to be crowned. As the old chief refused to come to Tames
town, Newport and Smith had to go to him at his village on the York River. When they requested him to kneel and receive his crown, he refused. It was doubtless with amusement that the two white men forced the chief upon his knees and placed the crown upon his head. When he arose they gave him a pitcher, a basin, a bed, and a scarlet robe, while he in turn handed them his old coat of raccoon skins as a present for King James. On Newport's sailing to England a short time afterwards, the colonists made Smith president. He was their natural leader, because he knew so well how to manage not only the Indians but also the unruly colonists.
Smith Gets Corn from the Indians
Soon after his election as president the colony was facing a new danger. Ever since Powhatan had adopted Smith as a son the Indians had been supplying the settlers with food. But late in the autumn of 1608 the Indians refused to bring anything more. Corn must be had from the red men, however, or the colonists would starve. Decisive action was necessary, and Smith determined, if persuasion failed, to use force.
With twenty-seven men he started down the James in a pinnace, on the way to Werowocomoco, Powhatan's village. When they landed they took possession of an empty house not far from the village and remained there for the night. The next day, when Powhatan came to visit them, he rudely asked, "How long are you going to stay, and why have you come ? I did not invite you, and I surely have no corn for you. But I think I can fill forty baskets if for each of them you will give me an English sword."
Smith boldly answered, "We have no swords for you. Of course we can get corn with our weapons if we wish, but we are your friends, and we shall not use force with you unless you compel us to do so."
The crafty old chief then promised that in two days corn should be brought. But he said the Indians felt some misgivings about bringing the corn, because the white men had their weapons with them. He urged Smith to send them to his boat.
The next day Powhatan returned to the white men's house and again requested that they should not keep their guns with them. But Smith knew well that the Indians were planning mischief. When, later in the day, he detected signs of treachery, he at once sent for his men, most of whom were on board the pinnace.
Meanwhile he and only one other white man were left in a house with Powhatan and some squaws. The old chief quietly stole out of the building. Soon the purpose of this sudden move was made plain, for in a few minutes scores of armed warriors had surrounded the house to cut off escape.
Aware of the danger, Smith and his companion, with drawn swords, rushed out of the door and so startled the red men that they almost fell over each other in their frantic effort to get out of the way. As soon as possible Smith gathered his whole force about him, every man of whom was ready with loaded gun for anything that might happen. With grim determination he compelled the Indians to carry basket after basket of corn down to the English barge while the white men stood looking on.
When the corn was all loaded, the tide was so low
The White Men stood looking on while the Indians carried Basket after Basket of Corn down to the Englishmen's linrge.
that the barge was stranded. As they had to wait for high water, it was necessary to call upon the Indians for supper. Before food could be brought, however, Pocahontas came and told Smith that he must get away as soon as possible, because the Indians were planning either to kill them all while at supper, or to surprise them later in the night. Here again, as in other cases, Pocahontas saved the settlers' lives.
Upon leaving Werowocomoco the colonists went up the York River to the village of Powhatan's brother to get more corn. They were shortly surrounded by several hundred warriors; but Smith, rushing into a wigwam, dragged out the chief, and, putting a pistol to his breast, shouted, "Corn or your life!" Smith got
Smith's Able Leadership
In this dangerous expedition, when the Indians in overwhelming numbers were thirsting for the white men's blood, Smith was complete master of the situation. His readiness and boldness in moments of extreme peril made a deep impression upon the Indians and greatly increased his power over them. They looked upon him as a superior being. Never again, therefore, while he remained in the colony, did they give the settlers further trouble.
Smith had also won the confidence of the settlers, who now had the highest respect for his authority. Before his election as president of the colony from twenty to thirty men were doing the work of the entire company of two hundred, most of whom were lazy and shiftless and unwilling to do anything but seek adventure and look for gold. Truly had Smith declared, in speaking of the men who came to Jamestown, "A hundred good workmen are worth a thousand such gallants."
To bring about a better state of affairs, Smith called the settlers together one day and said, in substance, " I am your president, and I expect you to obey the regulations I make for the good of the colony. Hereafter he who will not work shall not eat." This became a law. Soon after this law was made everybody was busy -with some useful occupation. But some of the colonists hated rough labor so much that they were likely to swear when it hurt their hands. That was bad for their morals, and, to put an end to the swearing, Smith ordered that for every oath that escaped a man a can of cold water should be poured down the sleeve of the offender's uplifted right arm. Smith's exacting law and rigid discipline brought about a much better state of affairs in Jamestown.
Smith Returns to England
Although the outlook was more hopeful than it had been before, Smith felt that the good of the settlement would be served by removing to a more healthful location. He therefore sailed up the James River in September, 1609, and near the present site of Richmond selected, and bought from the Indians, a tract of land among the hills.
But he was not destined to build up the colony in this new location, for during his return trip to Jamestown a bag of gunpowder on the boat exploded and seriously wounded him. His condition was so critical that he was obliged to go back to England for skilled medical treatment. Although, after recovering his health, some years later, he came again to America and explored the coasts of New England, he never visited Jamestown again.
Smith's departure was a grievous loss to the colony. His great courage and energy had carried them through many dangers, and could he have remained with them during the following winter they might have been spared the horrors which history has had to relate.
When Smith left for England, Jamestown had five hundred settlers and fifty or sixty houses, and was strongly defended with palisades. The colony had twenty pieces of cannon, and three hundred guns, with horses, cattle, and about six hundred swine.
It is safe to say that the strong, manly qualities and the practical common sense of John Smith saved Jamestown from destruction in the early years of its existence.
The Wretched Condition of the Colony
WHEN Smith returned to England (1609), he left the Virginia colony without a leader. No longer held in check by his vigorous hand, the Indians now began to rob and plunder the settlement, and in a little while the winter cold, together with disease and famine, reduced the colonists to a pitiable condition.
In the absence of proper food they were obliged to eat roots and herbs, and later their brood hogs, their dogs, and their horses. Having consumed all these, they resorted to rats and mice, and finally, in the extremity of their distress, they devoured the bodies of their own dead. At the close of that terrible winter, which has ever since been called the "starving time," barely sixty of the five hundred that Smith had left in the colony were alive.
Early in May two belated English vessels reached Jamestown in time to rescue the miserable remnant. The captains of the vessels, Gates and Somers, were dismayed to find conditions so desperate. Men, women, and children, with ghost-like faces, were staggering from weakness. There was no food, nor was any one able to work.
With provisions on board for a month only, the captains knew it would be impossible to get through the summer, and therefore decided to return at once to England. The settlers had no regret at abandoning the place which to them had been no home. "None dropped a tear, for none had enjoyed one day of happiness." They wished even to set fire to the buildings, as if to forget in flames the memory of their great suffering.
It was different, however, with their leaders, who were depressed with the sense of defeat. Another failure was being added to the record which Raleigh had begun, for since his day every attempt to settle Virginia had failed. There was but one course to follow, however, and crowding the colonists into four small vessels, they all sailed slowly down the James.
Lord Delaware Governor of the Colony
But as darkness precedes dawn, so this dismal experience was the forerunner of brighter days. Before the departing colonists could reach the sea, Lord Delaware, the new governor, with three ships bearing men and supplies, sailed into Hampton Roads. Of course the fugitives turned about and went back to Jamestown. The new emigrants, full of hope, brought much good cheer, and were excellent material with which to re-settle the colony.
Lord Delaware made wise laws and the colonists took hold in earnest. They built houses and did the other work required of them, tilling the soil and building forts. The colony now began to prosper, but the
following winter was a hard one, and Lord Delaware's health began to fail. His heavy burden of care and the hot, moist climate made him so ill that he was obliged to return to England, leaving Sir Thomas Dale in control
Sir Thomas Dale a Stern Ruler
Dale was a stern ruler, even more so than Smith had been. But vigorous measures were necessary, for in the following spring another company of emigrants was sent out from England, the worst that had yet come to the colony. Dale, having served as a soldier in -the Netherlands, was accustomed to severe rules, and he put the colony under military law. He had no mercy on those who resisted, and if any complained at his methods, he flogged them or branded them with hot irons. In one case he sentenced a man to death by starvation.
Improvements in the Life of the Colony
A condition of good order at length having been brought about'by these severe measures, he proceeded to introduce a much-needed reform. Ever since Jamestown had been settled the foolish plan of having a common storehouse had been kept up. By this method thirty or forty of the more energetic men did all the work. The others, good-for-nothing shirks, lazy and shiftless, had no incentive to exert themselves, because they could get all their needs supplied without labor on their part.
Dale quickly saw that before the colony could prosper he must make every man do his part of the work. Accordingly he gave each one his own plot of ground, consisting of two or three acres. He required only that six bushels of corn be turned into the common stock as a kind of tax. The rest of the crop belonged to the owner, to use as he pleased. The new plan was successful from the first, for the idle were compelled to work or starve, and the thrifty could profit by their industry and energy. The culture of tobacco had already become immensely profitable, and henceforth it was the leading source of wealth to the settlers.
There was reform, also, of another kind. Up to 1619 people had had little or no voice in the making of their own laws. This they did not like, for it was quite contrary to the custom in England. In 1619, however, a new charter was granted, which provided for a representative assembly, with two delegates from each of the eleven settlements. Inasmuch as these settlements were called boroughs, the assembly was called the House of Burgesses. The government now consisted of three parts, the governor, the council, and the assembly. This was modelled after the English Government, which consisted of the King, the House of Lords, and the House of Commons.
Now that each man owned his own land and had a voice in the government, a better class of settlers was attracted to Virginia. Men with families began to come. Within one year from the time the new charter went into effect the population increased from six hundred to four thousand.
In the same year that they received their charter they joyfully welcomed another increase of good fortune. The London Company sent over ninety young women to become the wives of settlers. Before any eager suitor could marry the woman of his choice he had first to win her consent, and then pay one hundred and twenty pounds of tobacco to defray the expense of her passage from England. This has been called "buying a wife." As the men greatly outnumbered the women every woman had a choice of suitors, who must undoubtedly have been on their good behavior while urging their suits.
Tobacco, Slavery, and the Plantation
These several improvements in the general life of the community wrought marvellous changes, and Virginia continued to prosper. As tobacco culture increased in importance there was a greater demand for laborers to cultivate the soil. At first this demand was met by bringing over indentured servants, poor boys and girls who were bound to service until of age. Later adult servants were secured who worked for a period of years to pay for their passage. As the colony grew larger and the need of laborers became even more pressing, men were kidnapped and forced on board vessels sailing for Virginia.
But still the supply was not sufficient. Moreover, it often happened that the indentured servant, having served his time, became free and, turning planter himself, needed laborers of his own. As the demand grew, another and more certain source of supply became necessary. It was found in the African slave-trade, which began about this time. Negroes, bought in Africa for a few shillings, were brought over much like cattle and sold for about the price of a good horse. This trade was very profitable, both to the slave-trader and to the planter.
With private ownership in land, self-government, and a bettersupplyof laborers, the culture of tobacco grew rapidly. But then another difficulty arose, for tobacco raising soon exhausts the soil; hence large areas were needed for the cultivation of a staple crop. Of course this meant large plantations. A Virginia Planter
Each planter tried to secure land facing upon some river, so that he might have his own wharf. Thus vessels could take his tobacco directly to England and bring in return manufactured goods. As a result, towns, or distributing and collecting centers, were not required, and therefore life was largely rural.
Charles II Makes Trouble for the Colony
After Charles II became King of England, in 1660, navigation laws were passed. These laws brought severe injury to the Virginia colony, as can be readily shown. They required the planters to send all their tobacco to England in English vessels, and to buy from England the furniture, cooking utensils, and other manufactured goods that might be needed, and bring them over in English vessels. This meant that the planters had to sell their tobacco to English merchants, and had to buy from English merchants all their manufactured goods. It meant more; namely, that the colonists had to sell their tobacco.
A little later the English king imposed heavy local taxes on colonial trade, and when in the course of years the price of tobacco fell, the planters found the returns for their labor exceedingly small. This was a matter of serious consequence.
Nor were these the only troubles experienced by the Virginia planters, for, in 1673, without consulting or considering the colony, the king actually gave away all
of Virginia for thirty-one years to two of his favorite courtiers. This made the colonists uncertain about even the titles to their land.
Tyranny of Governor Berkeley
But troubles more alarming still were involved in the tyranny of Governor Berkeley, who became governor for the second time in 1660, when Charles II ascended the English throne. An aristocrat by nature, Berkeley cared very little for the rights of the plain people.
An Old Virginia Mansion.
He lived in style at his country residence at Green Spring, where he had a large retinue of servants, and kept seventy fine horses in his stables. Here he entertained lavishly, and was no doubt popular with a small number of men who thought and lived very much as he did, and who were as careless as he for the rights of the people.
Having secured,' in 1660, the election in the assembly of men of his own liking, he kept these men in power for fifteen years by simply adjourning the assembly from year to year. In the meantime the people, whose rights were despised, endured one tyranny after another until they were driven to desperation.
They reached the limit of their endurance in the winter of 1676, when the Indians gave them much trouble on the frontier. In the following March a force of five hundred men was raised to subdue the Indians, but Berkeley sent these men to their homes because he did not wish to interrupt the fur-trade with the Indians, which brought him considerable profit.
Meanwhile the Indians continued to burn the homes and slaughter the women and children of the planters. In one day thirty-six people were murdered within a radius of ten miles, and in seventeen days sixty plantations were laid waste. The colonists were so enraged at the attack of the Indians and the injustice of the governor that they collected a large body of troops and urged Nathaniel Bacon to lead them against the Indians.
Bacon Takes the Side of the People
Nathaniel Bacon was a young man of eight and twenty, a planter of much influence, who once had been a member of the Governor's Council. He was tall and lithe, dignified in bearing and brave in spirit, hottempered, and at times subject to violent fits of passion. His sympathies were with the suffering people, and he resolved to take their side in their struggle with the tyrannical governor.
About this time the Indians tomahawked his overseer and a favorite servant. This quickened his anger. When, therefore, a little later several hundred of his friends gathered together, to seek redress, he hotly exclaimed, "The governor is not our friend. He is not a friend of the people. He has deeply wronged us, and persists in refusing to protect our families and our firesides against the murderous redskins. Let us right our wrongs." Continuing, he asked, "Are you ready to join me in an attack upon the Indians?" "Yes," they shouted, "and we choose you as our leader!"
Bacon then sent a messenger to Berkeley for a commission; but, as he expected, the governor refused to send him one. Nevertheless Bacon was determined to march against the Indians, commission or no commission. He did attack them and he defeated them, killing many and putting the rest to rout.
Berkeley, indignant at this rebellious procedure, placed himself at the head of a body of mounted men and started out in search of Bacon and his band of traitors, as he called them. But the people were on Bacon's side. In fact, there was danger of a public uprising in his behalf. Seeing this, Berkeley promised the Virginians a new assembly, and to it Bacon was elected as a member.
Bacon Seeks a Commission to Fight the Indians
On his way to Jamestown to take his seat Bacon was joined by thirty or forty friends, who boarded his sloop in order to protect him against attack. On arriving at Jamestown he was summoned before the governor to answer for his disloyalty. Berkeley was very severe in his attitude toward the people's young leader. Bacon was cool. "I am willing to apologize," he said, "if the governor will give me a commission to go out and fight against the Indians." The governor promised to do so, but failed to keep his word.
That night, while Bacon was staying at a house in Williamsburg, he was secretly informed of a plan to take his life. Hastily mounting a horse, under cover of darkness he sought refuge among his friends. Determined, however, not to give up his commission, he got together a body of five hundred mounted men and returned to Jamestown.
Early one June afternoon he reached the State House green, and halting his troops, sent word to the governor that he had returned for his commission. The governor, then a white-haired man of sixty-eight, came to the door and, in dramatic fashion, laid bare his bosom, crying out in wrathful excitement, "Here, shoot me� shoot!" Bacon simply advanced toward him and, bowing low, said, "No, may it please your Honor, we will not hurt a hair of your head, nor any man's. We have come for a commission to save our lives from the Indians, which you have so often promised, and now we will have it before we go." The governor had to yield, and Bacon and his followers then mounted their horses and marched against the Indians.
Berkeley at once set about gathering an army with which to attack Bacon and his followers. His disappointment must have been great, for he found the people were on Bacon's side and would not rally to his support. He therefore decided to retreat to Accomac County across Chesapeake Bay, a safe distance from Jamestown; but, before withdrawing, he proclaimed Bacon and his followers rebels.
Bacon Leads His Troops Against Berkeley
Bacon returned to Jamestown, and at Middle Plantation, the present site of Williamsburg, he induced a number of his followers to bind themselves to support him in securing the rights of Virginia. He sent a fleet of seventeen ships and one thousand men to capture Berkeley, but his force was betrayed, and Berkeley, seizing it, sailed to Jamestown. Bacon, gathering new troops by the way, went by land to Jamestown, where he found Berkeley already fortified. He began at once to throw up earthworks, and for protection to his men he forced the wives of some of the prominent followers of Berkeley to stand in front of his men while they were digging the trenches.
In the engagement that followed, Berkeley was utterly defeated, and was obliged to withdraw all his forces to Accomac by night. Bacon then burned Jamestown, which consisted of less than twenty houses, so that it might no longer "harbor the rogues."
The End of Bacon's Rebellion
It had been a hard summer for Bacon, and in the toil and heat of it, he had contracted malarial fever; yet, in spite of the protest of friends, he persisted in leaving Jamestown, in order to settle matters in other parts of Virginia. He became rapidly worse, and on October 1st died at the home of a friend. He was
buried secretly, lest Berkeley should find his body and have it hanged. With his death the Rebellion, left without a leader, quickly ended.
Berkeley hunted down Bacon's leading followers and soon filled the jails with them. In fact he did not stop until he had put to death twenty-three of the leaders. When the king heard of Berkeley's cruelty, he said, "As I live, the old fool has put to death in that naked country more than I did here for the murder of my father." Displeased with the Virginia governor, the king recalled him to England, where the aged man soon died.
In its immediate purpose, Bacon's rebellion may be looked upon as unsuccessful. But in a large sense it was worth all it cost, for it taught the Virginia colonists to struggle for their rights, and it gave them a broader intelligence as to what those rights should be. Without doubt Bacon's rebellion in 1676 prepared the people of Virginia for the heroic part they played in that great movement of the American people in 1776, when, on July 4th, through their representatives, they declared themselves independent of England.
Lord Baltimore the Leader of the Colony
TWENTY-SIX years after the settlement of Jamestown, religious troubles in England moved some Catholics of that country to plant a colony on the banks of the Potomac River. The leader of this colony was George Calvert, first Lord Baltimore. He was a man of broad interests and generous impulses, who recently had become a Roman Catholic. The Catholics were having a hard time in England, and while no definite statement was made that the new settlement was for them, people in general understood that it was to be a place of refuge for the persecuted of that faith.
Baltimore was of good birth and education. He had held office under the crown, and had long felt an interest in schemes of colony planting. Being a personal friend of Charles I, it was easy for him to secure a patent. He first tried to settle Newfoundland, his attention having been drawn to this region by the enthusiastic reports of an earlier explorer. But the climate was so severe that after the first winter he abandoned the settlement and obtained from the king another patent for land in the unoccupied wilds of Virginia.
Before the charter could be issued, however, George Calvert, the first Lord Baltimore, died, and the grant was made out to his eldest son, Cecil Calvert. It lay in the region north of the Potomac River and covered the present States of Maryland and Delaware, and a part of the present States of Pennsylvania and West Virginia. By the king's request, the colony was named Maryland, in honor of the queen, Henrietta Maria.
The Liberal Charter
The charter was the most liberal that had ever been granted by an English king. Calvert as proprietor Georgc Calvert (Lord Ballim"re>was made absolute lord. He was given almost as much power in Maryland as King Charles had in England, and was only required, as a sign of allegiance to the crown, to send to the king every year two Indian arrows and one-fifth of all the gold and silver that might be found.
This liberal charter aroused bitter resentment on the part of the Virginians, for they had recently lost their own charter, and were envious because the king seemed to be favoring Maryland. Moreover, they asserted that the grant to that colony covered land which had once been given to them.
The Colony Reaches the Potomac River
These claims by the Virginia Company made it necessary for Baltimore to remain in England to protect his rights; but he sent out his colony in care of his younger brothers, Leonard and George, both excellent men, making Leonard governor. In November, 1633, the company, consisting of twenty gentlemen and about three hundred laborers, started in two ships, the Ark and the Dove. They were well provided with supplies and implements, Lord Baltimore himself bearing most
of the cost, which was equal to nearly a million dollars of our present money. As the purpose of the founder was a religious one, we are not surprised that two Jesuit fathers were members of the company.
The Indians, too, were Friendly and Crowded to the River Banks.
After a voyage of about three months they arrived at Point Comfort, Virginia, where they rested eight or nine days, and then sailed north to the Potomac. March 25, 1634, on a little wooded island near the mouth of the river, the new colonists celebrated mass for the first time.
They were charmed with the beauty of the land, the broad rivers, the fertile plains, and the wooded hills. The strange trees, the wild grape-vines, the flocks of wild turkeys, and the bright-colored birds appealed to their fancy. Friendly Indians crowded to the riverbank, gazing at the ships and wondering, no doubt, where the trees could have grown to make such huge canoes. They must have supposed that, like their own canoes, these ships were the scooped and hollowed trunks of trees.
Friendly Relations with the Indians
At the mouth of the St. Mary's, about twelve miles up the Potomac, they found a good harbor and bought from the Indians a tract of land for which they paid with axes, hoes, and cloth.
The time and place of settlement was fortunate, so far as relations with the Indians were concerned, for the natives of that region were a peaceful tribe belonging to the Algonquin family, and of late had been so persecuted by the warlike Susquehannas and Iroquois to the north that they welcomed the strangers as men of a stronger race. Indeed, they even gave up to the white
men a part of their village, and kept the other part only until they should gather their harvests.
As soon as possible after landing a guardhouse and general storehouse were built, and Father White consecrated the chief's cabin as a church. The Indians worked cheerfully side by side
The Maryland Settlement.
with the white men, and the squaws taught the white women how to make bread of pounded corn.
At a later date, when the Indians came to the settlement with wild turkey and venison to sell, they received a fair price and often spent the night with the colonists without fear on either side. Jesuit missionaries went freely among them, teaching and converting with their usual zeal. In 1640 the leading Indian chief of that region was baptized and married according to the Christian rite, and to emphasize the importance of the event to the colony Governor Calvert paid a visit to the chief and was present at the ceremony. The Susquehannas, though warlike, gave little trouble, and finally joined the colonists in treaties to assist each other against the fierce Iroquois of the north.
Troubles between Maryland and Virginia
Although the Indians gave no trouble, misfortunes of another kind began to distress the settlers. Their nearest neighbors, the Virginians, from whom they should naturally have expected help and sympathy, were their bitter enemies. As we have already seen, the Virginians were angered because the Maryland grant covered part of the territory once given to them. Then there was a fear, not unusual in those times, of having a Catholic community for such close neighbors.
Troubles between the two colonies began early, and although the king instructed Governor Harvey of Virginia to protect the Marylanders in all ways, the governor had no influence with his people. They were so bitter that, when Harvey wanted to sell provisions to the sister colony, the Virginians loudly protested that they would rather "knock their cattle on the head" than sell them to Maryland.
The centre around which the quarrel raged was Kent Island. Here William Clayborne, who was prominent in the affairs of Virginia, had established trading-posts for traffic with the Indians. He had been given a license from Charles I to trade in that region before Lord Baltimore received his charter, and was unwilling to come under the authority of the new governor.
He tried to stir up the Indians against the colonists, and for a while succeeded; but they soon became friendly again. Then followed an engagement between Kent Island traders and Baltimore's men, in which Kent Island lost three men and Maryland one. Clayborne was worsted in this encounter and carried his complaint to England, but receiving no satisfaction, he returned again to Virginia and waited his chance for vengeance.
Reasons for the Prosperity of the Colony
These petty annoyances did not seriously interfere with the prosperity of the colony. The climate was mild, the soil fertile, game abundant, and Cecil Calvert had provided well for the common needs. Another advantage was the liberal system of giving out land. Every settler who came with the first company and brought five laborers was given two thousand acres, with a rent of but four hundred pounds of wheat a year. Colonists coming later received generous allotments, with rents as low. Those who came out as servants paid for their passage by short terms of service� from three to five years�and then, becoming freemen, took up land themselves.
But more than the favorable climate or the liberal system of giving out land, the spirit of religious freedom attracted settlers. People of all Christian faiths were welcome, and they came not only from the Old World but from the other colonies of the New World. Among them were many Puritans, who were whipped and imprisoned in Virginia, and those who were persecuted in New England. Soon Maryland became one of the most prosperous of all the colonies.
Quarrels between the Puritans and the Catholics
The tolerant spirit, however, while increasing population, was the cause of much strife, for those Puritans who had fled from persecution in other colonies were themselves intolerant, and brought to Maryland the spirit of their persecutors. Before many years they formed a powerful party, and when civil war broke out in England, between the king and the Puritans (1642), they turned against the government that had befriended them.
Clayborne improved this opportunity to recover Kent Island and to stir up a rebellion. The Puritans drove the Catholics out of office and carried things with a high hand. Finally Governor Calvert was obliged to take refuge with Governor Berkeley in Virginia, where he remained for two years. Then, at the head of a large force, he returned, and affairs became settled again.
But the Protestant party continued to grow, and it became necessary to protect the Catholics. In 1649, therefore, the Toleration Act was passed. It provided freedom of worship to all persons professing to be Christians. Hitherto freedom of worship had been a privilege, now it became a law by which all Christians were protected.
Again, during the time of the "Commonwealth" in England (1649-1660), there were quarrels between the Puritans and the Catholics, and Clayborne was a leader of the Puritans. Once more the Puritans got the upper hand and deprived the Catholics of the right to vote. But after six years of civil strife Lord Baltimore was restored to his rights, and toleration as before was adopted.
Now came a long period of peace, during which the wealth and population of the colony greatly increased. But in 1689 there were again troubles in Maryland connected with the revolution in England, and for a period of years the colony became a royal province governed by the king.
Other Grievances of the Colonists
Besides these troubles, the colonists had other grievances. For example, in their representative assemblies they insisted upon proposing all the laws, while the proprietor declared that to be his right. Although not agreeing with them, he allowed them to have their way. Then there were the Navigation Laws, which Maryland resisted just as stubbornly as did her Virginia neighbors. For, as you remember, these laws compelled the planter to sell his tobacco in England and buy his manufactured articles from English merchants only. This made it possible for the merchants to set a low price on tobacco and a high price on their goods. Of course, it was a great disadvantage to the colonists to be obliged to trade in this way, for not only was tobacco their chief staple, but it was used as money also. Taxes, fines, and salaries were paid in it, and when tobacco fell in value the people were made poor because it required so much tobacco to pay for what they
But notwithstanding many drawbacks the colony grew and prospered. As in Virginia, nearly all the people lived on plantations, where life was social and hospitable. Most of the plantations were connected by water, and neighborly intercourse was kept up by canoes, pinnaces, and other
Water-Craft which Travel b? ^"d was on Horses along Bridie-Paths.
were constantly plying back and forth. Travel by land was by horses. There were no carriages; everybody rode and, although highways were scarce, there were plenty of bridle-paths. Yet so wild was the country through which these bridle-paths ran that lonely travellers sometimes got lost and had to spend the night in the woods. Under such conditions there was no chance for towns to grow. St. Mary's, the capital, was the only town till near the close of the century, and although its commanding position and fine harbor should have made it a great commercial centre, it had the appearance of a poor, straggling settlement, with about thirty houses, most of them built of wood, though a few of the better sort were of brick. Generally, in the settled parts, there were "not more than fifty dwellings in-the space of thirty miles."
Towns were not needed, however, for the creeks, inlets, and countless river-mouths which indented the shores of Chesapeake Bay made communication easy. The large plantations lay along these waterways, and ships from London, Boston, or the West Indies brought to the planter's door wines, salt fish, sugar, and such staples as he required. In exchange for fine furniture, china, linen, beautiful silver, fashionable clothing, and other commodities brought from England, the planters gave tobacco and corn. From the inland plantations, where the ships could not go, tobacco was brought to the river-front over rolling roads.
For the culture of tobacco much cheap labor was needed, and this, as in Virginia, was supplied by slaves and indentured servants. In Maryland, however, indentured servants were more numerous than slaves, for indentured servants came in larger numbers to this colony than to any other, probably on account of the agreeable climate.
Lord Baltimore a Wise Ruler
Lord Baltimore lived until 1675. Under him the colony of three hundred, "sheltered in Indian wigwams at the mouth of St. Mary's River, had increased to a colony of from sixteen to twenty thousand, living in ten counties, with civil and military organization." Although Baltimore never saw the colony, he proved a wise and broad-minded ruler, governing in the interests of the people. Three times the colonists put on record resolutions of gratitude for " his unwearied care to preserve them in full enjoyment of their lives, liberties, and fortunes." We shall do well to remember that he was the first ruler to establish a government with religious toleration.
THE PILGRIMS AT PLYMOUTH
The Puritans and the Separatists
THIRTEEN years after the settlement of Jamestown, and fourteen years before the settlement of Maryland, a company of Englishmen planted a small colony at Plymouth. The Plymouth colonists, unlike the settlers of Jamestown, were not seeking for gold and adventure. Nor were they like the settlers of Maryland in seeking only a refuge from religious oppression. Their purpose was a larger one, for they came to the New World in order to build up a church and a state according to their own aims and ideals. What those aims and ideals were, we can best understand by going back some years to see how these men lived in England. Nowadays one may go to any church he likes and worship God as he chooses; but three hundred years ago it was not so. The English King, James I, tried to compel his people to attend what was called the Established Church, the service of which resembled somewhat closely that of the Episcopal Church of to-day. There was a great deal of form and ceremony. This form and ceremony, however, was disliked by not a few, who wished very much to do away with it, or, as they expressed it, to "purify" the service; and for that reason they were called Puritans.
The Puritans were quite willing to remain members of the church if they could but bring about this one reform, or " purification." Another party, however, called the Separatists, not only disliked the ceremonial, but believed that the affairs of the church should be directed by its members, rather than by bishops and archbishops whom the king appointed.
In the early part of King James's reign a number of these Separatists, living in the village of Scrooby, England, decided to form a church after their own ideas. They used to meet for worship once a week in the home of William Brewster, one of its members.
When the king heard what they were doing, he was angry. He seemed to think that all the people of England should do as he commanded. These Englishmen of Scrooby, to his thinking, were rebels, and therefore should be made suffer for their unruly conduct. So they were hunted down, thrown into prison, beaten, and even hanged.
The Pilgrims in Holland
But the Separatists believed that they were right. They bravely decided that, if necessary, they would leave their homes and their country forever rather than be denied the privilege of worshipping God in their own way. Accordingly, in 1608, after a number of unsuccessful efforts, they finally set sail for Holland, where religious freedom might be enjoyed. Because of their wanderings these people were called Pilgrims.
They remained in Holland twelve years. During this time they showed themselves to be worthy, hardworking people, and won the respect of their Dutch neighbors by their uprightness and by the diligence they showed in learning and practising the various trades.
But they were not happy. They regretted to see the young people growing up in Dutch ways and speaking the Dutch language. England's king had not treated them kindly, yet they still treasured the memories of English customs, traditions, and ways of life. It troubled them to think of their boys and girls becoming anything but English in language, thought, and feeling. They longed to go to a new country where they could bring up their children to be God-fearing, liberty-loving men and women.
Map Illustrating the Pilgrims in England and Holland.
The Pilgrims Leave Holland
It was quite natural that they should turn their eyes toward Virginia, of which they had heard much, and to Virginia they finally decided to go. But there were serious difficulties in the way. In the first place, King James, bearing in mind the trouble they had given him in England, was by no means willing that they should again make their home in a country under his authority. So he refused to grant them a charter. At length, however, he told them that he would not interfere with their plans if they gave him no trouble.
There was still another obstacle to be met. Although the Pilgrims were men of strong will and noble purpose, and therefore willing to endure the hardship of their great undertaking, they were so poor that they could not defray the expense. Finally, however, they succeeded in getting money, although on hard terms, and set sail in the Speedwell from Delfthaven, a port in Holland, for Plymouth, a town on the southern coast of England. Thence they were to start on their long voyage across the Atlantic. At Plymouth they were joined by the Mayflower.
Twice after leaving port they had to return on account of accident to the Speedwell, which finally was declared unseaworthy. This circumstance permitted some who were faint-hearted to give up the voyage.
The Mayflower Reaches "the Bleak New England Shore"
But at last, on the 6th of September, 1620, the now historic Mayflower set sail alone. Besides her crew she carried one hundred and two passengers, only eighty of whom can properly be called Pilgrim colonists. Thirty-four of these were men, eighteen of whom had their wives with them. Twenty were boys, and eight were girls. The other twenty-two passengers consisted of servants�fourteen men, three women, and five halfgrown boys.
As we read of the trying experiences through which these brave colonists passed during the long weeks and months that followed their farewell to friends in England and Holland, it is easy to imagine ourselves with them on the May-flower. At times the tempest-driven Pilgrim boys and girls long for the simple home comforts they have left behind in Holland. Day after day the furious storm tosses the little vessel about as if she were
The Mayflower in a Storm.
a feather. The sails become rent, joints and timbers are strained. But she passes safely on until Saturday, November 21st, when Cape Cod is rounded and the anchor is safely dropped in what is now the harbor of Provincetown. How good it was to see land again! The Mayflower had required sixty-four days to cross the Atlantic. Our floating palaces make the voyage in about a week.
Before going ashore the men gathered in the cabin and solemnly agreed to make and obey such laws as
might in the future seem best for the colony. Then they elected John Carver governor and Miles Standish
On Land Once More
Miles Standish�Captain Standish, as his men called him was born in Lancashire, England, in 1584. Though not a Pilgrim, he cheerfully joined their company, either on account of his sympathy with the Pilgrims, or because of his love of adventure. He was now thirty-six years old, small of stature, hot-tempered, stout-hearted, and fearless in the face of gravest peril. In fact he was a brave soldier and proved himself a military chief of great value.
On the very day anchor was cast, a visit was made to the neighboring shore, which was found to be not a good place for settlement. At the close of the first Saturday, Miles Standish and his men returned to the May-flower with a report by no means encouraging. The barren land on the "bleak New England shore," at that time covered with heavy snow, seemed to offer an unfriendly greeting to the travel-spent colonists. The next day being Sunday, all the company remained on board the Mayflower and devoutly listened to a sermon preached by William Brewster, the Pilgrim minister.
On Monday morning the women were set on shore. The men had to carry them, because the water was too shallow for the boat. So bitterly cold was it that the men's clothing was soon covered with ice. At once fires were lighted; and while the women busied themselves boiling water and washing clothes, the men, with muskets in hand, stood ready to ward off any danger that might threaten them either from wild beasts or from the natives.
Two Exploring Expeditions
The colonists had brought with them in the Mayflower a shallop, or small sloop. While this was being repaired, Captain Standish and his men started out the following Wednesday on an exploring expedition by land. Dressed in their heavy armor, they were quite unlike the soldiers of to-day. Their steel helmets, iron breastplates, and quilted coats of mail were worn to protect them from Indian arrows. Some, Standish among them, wore swords at their side, and all carried matchlock or flintlock muskets so big and heavy that before the men could fire them off they had to rest them upon supports stuck in the ground for that purpose.
After marching about a mile they saw some Indians, who fled on their approach. Continuing their journey,
Miles Standish in Armor.
they found a patch of land cleared for corn, and in a deserted hut discovered a large iron kettle. They also came upon a number of mounds, in some of which were bows and arrows. Believing the mounds to be graves, the explorers would not remove the Indian weapons. Digging into others, however, they found baskets of corn, yellow, blue, red, and speckled, which the Indians had stored for future need. In fact, the Indians used these mounds much as we do barns, as storing places for food. First a hole was dug, then lined with mats, and into this snug receptacle were put the baskets filled with corn. The colonists took some of the grain for seed, but were careful to pay the Indians a fair price for it later.
While returning home, William Bradford, who was a leader of the colony and afterwards its governor for nearly thirty years, had an accident. Picking his way through the underbrush, his foot was caught in a deer trap�a noose suspended from a bent sapling. Suddenly he was jerked upward and held, dangling helplessly, by one leg in mid-air. He must have cut a ludicrous figure in the eyes of his companions, who no doubt were greatly amused�far more so very likely than the victim, though he was soon released from the snare and easily let down without any bodily injury. The company returned to the Mayflower after two days, but without having found a good site for a settlement.
Ten days later a party of thirty-four started in the shallop on a second exploring trip which lasted three days. This, too, was unsuccessful. The disappointment was keen, for after the wearisome voyage and two weeks of tedious waiting, life on the Mayflower was getting monotonous. The Pilgrims longed for a fixed abode, and some discouraged hearts must have yearned for home. The situation called for prompt action.
A Dangerous Experience
Accordingly, on the afternoon of December 16th, a company of ten picked men, including Governor Carver, William Bradford, and Miles Standish, set out again in the shallop. The weather was so bitterly cold that the spray which the wind blew upon their clothing immediately froze to a coating of ice. But they pushed bravely forward.
The second night, like the first, they spent on shore, As a protection from the weather and as a means of defence against the Indians, who might prove unfriendly, they first built a barricade of logs, stakes, and boughs. This was five or six feet high, and open on the leeward side. Then a roaring fire was kindled, which they kept burning during the night. With their cloaks wrapped about them, and their feet turned toward the fire, all but the watchful sentinel lay down to sleep, with the great trees of the forest for their only shelter. About midnight a piercing cry called them to their feet, but as nothing came of it they lay down again to rest.
Next morning at five o'clock all were astir, ready for the stubborn work of another day. While some were preparing breakfast and others putting the supplies in the shallop, again was heard a strange cry like that which aroused them at midnight. Instantly a voice shouted, "Indians! Indians!"
Scarcely were the words uttered when a shower of arrows fell about the barricade. The Englishmen were divided into two bands, five being at the boat and five at the barricade. Against some thirty or forty redskins they held their ground, each party calling to the other from time to time. Very soon Standish wounded a leader of the Indians, whereupon the attacking party made their escape, dodging from tree to tree to protect themselves against bullets.
This early encounter proved to be but the beginning of a perilous day. Late in the afternoon a furious storm of snow and rain caught them and threatened to batter the shallop to fragments. It was with great difficulty that the desperate voyagers managed to keep afloat. At last, just before dark, a huge wave almost engulfed the boat and swept away the rudder. As if this were not enough, an angry gust of wind struck the mast and snapped it into three pieces. They weathered the gale, however, found shelter on an island, and there kindled a fire to dry their drenched clothing and warm their numb limbs.
The Pilgrims Land at Plymouth
Sunday, as usual, was made a day of rest; but on Monday, December 21st, they landed at a spot where they "found divers cornfields and little running brooks, a place very good for situation." Here they decided to make a settlement. On the same day, December 2ist,
which has since been known as Forefathers' Day, the Mayflower entered the harbor and the colonists landed. It had been just one month since the first exploring party had stepped ashore on Cape Cod. They named the place Plymouth after the English port from which they had sailed.
There were several reasons why the Pilgrims selected Plymouth for their settlement. Besides a good harbor and pure drinking water from a running stream, there was near at hand a hill where they could locate a fort. More- Map IllustratinK lhc pilRrim settlement, over, there were several acres of land " the divers cornfields"which the Indians had cleared some years
The Pilgrims at Work
As soon as the settlers landed they set diligently to work. All were busy, the men and boys with building, and the women and girls with household duties kindling fires, washing clothes, and cooking food.
First a common house was built, twenty feet square, to be used for a shelter and as a storehouse for provisions, furniture, and other movable property. Within a few days they put cannon on the hill near by, in order to protect themselves against the Indians. During the first winter they built also a hospital, a meeting-house,
William Bradford's Chair.
and seven dwellings. For safety, these buildings were placed in two rows, with a street running between them and extending from -the hill to the harbor.
The houses, though rude structures and all alike, must have cost a deal of labor. We can -easily imagine how busy the boys and men were, some chopping \ down trees, others sawing the i' trunks into logs of proper length, and still others dragging them to where they were to be used; for there were no horses to do the work; indeed, the colonists brought with them no domestic animals except a dog or two. The logs were laid one upon another to form the walls of the buildings, then the crevices were filled with straw and mud; and the roofs were covered with reeds. The chimneys were made of stone, and for windows oiled paper took the place of glass.
The Pilgrims brought
with them arm-chairs, A puKrim cradle,
wooden settles, high-posted beds, truckle beds for the children, and cradles for the babies. They knew nothing of electric lights and gas lights, but read their Bibles at night by the glow of pine-knots blazing in the spacious fireplace. Having no matches, they had to kindle a fire by striking sparks into a tinder box, and to keep the fire from going out they covered it at night with ashes.
Sufferings During the First Winter
During that first winter their food was plain and scanty. They ate mostly bread made of wheat, rye, or barley. Once in a while, when a hunter was fortunate enough to kill a deer or a wild fowl, they enjoyed the luxury of meat. We must remember that, like the Jamestown colonists, they had no chickens and no cows. Cold water, of course, took the place of milk, tea, coffee, or chocolate.
In addition to scanty food of poor quality, the colonists suffered much from exposure to the cold. For a few weeks after the landing at Plymouth, while their dwellings were being built, some of them slept on board the Mayflower.
The unfavorable conditions under which they all lived brought on much suffering and disease. At one time only Elder Brewster, Captain Standish, and five others were well enough to take care of the sick. Standish, who had a gentle and tender nature, made an excellent nurse, and cheerfully helped in cooking, washing, and in performing other household duties. At times there was a death daily, and during the first terrible winter just one-half of the settlers died. In spite of the bitter experience, however, when in the spring the Mayflower sailed back to England not a Pilgrim was willing to leave Plymouth.
The Pilgrims and the Indians
Although the settlers had many difficulties to contend with, one thing was greatly in their favor. They were not seriously troubled by the Indians. The reason for this can be told in a few words. About four years before the Pilgrims came to New England, the Indians living at Plymouth had killed some white men, the crew of a French vessel. The Frenchmen told them they should not escape punishment. A little later a plague broke out and swept away whole villages. Believing the white men had sent this plague as a punishment for the murders they had committed, the Indians were quite willing to let the Pilgrims alone.
It was, therefore, nearly three months before any Indians ventured to show themselves at the settlement. The first visit was sudden and unexpected. One day in March a dusky stranger was seen coming down the street. He was Samoset, and introduced himself with the cheerful words, "Welcome, Englishmen!"
A week later he returned and announced the approach of Massasoit, a chief living at Mount Hope, some forty miles southwest of Plymouth. As a token of the friendly attitude of the Pilgrims, Captain Standish and his men marched out to meet the chief and escorted him to an unfinished house. Here, on a green carpet, cushions had been placed for Massasoit. As soon as he was seated, amid the beating of drums and the blowing of trumpets Governor Carver entered. The tall and stately Indian arose, and the governor kissed his handThe chief responded by offering him the pipe of peace. This they smoked together, and entered upon a treaty which remained unbroken for more than fifty years.
But not all the neighboring Indians were so friendly as Massasoit. One day a Narragansett brave came to Plymouth and threw into the governor's house a bundle of arrows tied up in a rattlesnake skin. This was a declaration of war. The Pilgrims promptly met the challenge by sending back the skin stuffed with powder and bullets. Canonicus, the Narragansett chief, was much impressed by this expression of fearlessness, and quickly gave up all notion of making war.
The Pilgrims thought it wise, however, to prepare for attacks. So they surrounded Plymouth by a palisade of posts ten to twelve feet high, and also built on " Burial
They Surrounded Plymouth by a Palisade of Posts.
Hill" a large square block-house. The lower part of this they used for a meeting-house. - '
Hard Work Brings Success
With the coming of summer the Pilgrims had an ].'easier time; for they could get abundant supplies of fish, wild fowl, and fruits. When they had stored their food for the winter and laid in a good supply of fuel, Governor Bradford appointed a day for thanksgiving. This was the first Thanksgiving ever celebrated in New England.
But the Pilgrims spent little time in feasting, and none at all in merry-making. They were so serious that they considered out-door sports a foolish waste of time. Moreover, they owed so much money when they reached New England that they had to work almost without ceasing to pay off the debt. This they succeeded in doing at the end of six years, by trading with the Indians for furs and by exporting fish, which they caught in abundance.
Such people are bound to meet with success. They were poor in material goods, but they were rich in manhood and womanhood. Their numbers grew slowly, however. At the end of four years the colony had only one hundred and eighty souls and thirtytwo houses.
The Pilgrims a Religious People
Hard work did not absorb all their time and thought, for they were a deeply religious people. Their Sabbath began at sunset on Saturday and lasted until sunset on Sunday. A large part of the day they devoted to religious worship.
The signal for starting to church on Sunday morning was the drum-beat. Promptly after the signal was given, all the congregation met in front of Captain Standish's house, from which they marched three abreast, followed by the governor arrayed in a long
Pilgrims Going to Church.
robe, with Elder Brewster on his right and the doughty captain on his left.
Behind the men came the women, and in the extreme rear marched the children and the servants. On entering the meeting-house, they divided into groups. The old men sat together in one part of the room, the young men in a second, the boys in a third, mothers with their little children in a fourth, and the young women in a fifth.
The services lasted all the morning, and, after a noon intermission, began again and lasted during the entire afternoon. This was true even in the coldest weather,
although there was no heat in the church except what was furnished by foot-stoves. But in spite of this discomfort it was not easy to keep awake during the long services, and the constable was always on hand to keep
his watchful eyes upon the drowsy members of the congregation. If a boy was unfortunate enough to fall asleep, the constable woke him up by giving him a smart rap with the end of a wand. A nodding woman was aroused by being gently brushed with a hare's foot, which was on the other end of the wand.
In the meeting-house, too, were held the town meetings, in which all the freemen of the colony made the laws and levied the taxes. It was here that the people gathered to elect the governor and his assistants. But after several towns had grown up in the colony it was not convenient for all the voters to come together. Each town then sent representatives to a general lawmaking body, called a General Court.
Such was the daily life of these sincere and earnest people. They little knew how helpful to the rest of the world was their loyalty to worthy ideals. But not one of these true-hearted men and women was a better example to the rest of us than was William Bradford. So highly did the Pilgrims esteem this able and heroic man that for nearly thirty years they made him their governor. We may well be grateful to him not only for what he was but for the interesting and truthful account he left us in his journal, which tells of the doings of the colony. In this journal, as well as in Longfellow's beautiful poem, "The Courtship of Miles Standish," we may share the joys and sorrows of those noble Pilgrim men and women, whose lives are to us an inspiring memory.
THE PURITANS IN MASSACHUSETTS
Charles I and the Puritans
FROM time to time news of the free life of the Pilgrims at Plymouth reached the Puritans in England, where the Stuart king, Charles I, was oppressing the people. Charles, like his father, James I, seemed to think that England and the English people were his personal property. He believed in "divine right," which was another way of saying that his will was law and should be obeyed regardless of the wishes of the people. When Parliament would not accept his will as law, and refused to obey him, he dissolved it, and determined to rule alone.
What most exasperated the people was his attempt to tax them without their consent. Many of his subjects stubbornly opposed this act of tyranny. "We are not willing to pay taxes," they said, "unless they are levied by our representatives in Parliament." The Puritans, in particular, were deeply aroused, the more so since the king was determined not only to tax them without their consent, but to make them conform to all the ceremonials of the Established Church. Charles had no patience with such a rebellious spirit, and when they refused to pay the illegal taxes which he imposed, threw them into prison.
The Puritans in Nqw England
Under such conditions it was natural that the Puritans should turn their eyes toward New England, where many of their own faith had already found
refuge. In 1628 some of their leaders organized a trading company with the hope of gaining a foothold in the New World. From the Plymouth Company they bought a tract of iand on the Massachusetts coast, extending three miles south of the Charles River and three miles north of the Merrimac. Without delay they sent out a body of colonists under Endicott as leader to occupy it. These men made a settlement at Salem.
In the following year, 1629, this trading company, with increased numbers, obtained from the king a charter which incorporated it as the "Governor and Company of Massachusetts Bay." This was so liberal that it left the company free to manage its own affairs pretty much as it pleased. It provided that all freemen in the company should vote and elect the governor, his deputy, and a council of eighteen assistants.
Since nothing was said about the place where the government should reside, nor where the elections should
The Settlement of Massachusetts Bay Colony and Rhode Island.
be held, the Puritan leaders voted to transfer both the charter and the government to New England. "There," they thought, "we shall be so far from the king that it will not be easy for him to interfere with our plans."
You may be surprised that the king should have been so liberal with the Puritans at this time, when they had made themselves so disagreeable to him. But perhaps for that very reason he was glad to have them leave England. For the Puritans, you must know, were men of wealth and influence. Among them were successful merchants, graduates of Oxford and Cambridge Universities, distinguished for their learning and ability, and some were connected with the most powerful families of the realm. But whatever the king's feeling, they were ready to bid good-by to their native land and go to a new country where they might build up a church and state according to their own ideas.
A Large Puritan Emigration
In 1630, under the able leadership of John Winthrop, who had been chosen their governor, about one thousand persons, in eleven vessels, with horses, cattle, and various kinds of stores, sailed for 'Massachusetts. Upon arriving they had intended to settle in one large fortified town, but conditions compelled them to alter their plan. They were bitterly disappointed that the settlers who had come out the previous year under Endicott had not made some preparation for them.
But sickness and misfortune had held back the Salem settlement, and even now it was in a weak condition. On this account, therefore, the newcomers settled in small groups, representing distinct congregations, and made the beginnings of several towns. The more important ones were Boston, Charlestown, Dorchester, Maiden, and Watertown. Each settlement was a parish and at the same time a township, the boundaries of parish and township being the same, and, as a rule, including from forty to sixty square miles.
The Church and the Government
Gov. John Winthrop. Ail i i
Although they were not separatists, like the Pilgrims, yet when they reached New England the Puritans established Independent, or Congregational, churches, and also a democratic form of government. At first the freemen from the various townships met with the Governor, his deputy, and the council of assistants, in order to make such laws and transact such business as pertained to the welfare of all the towns in common. But later, when as in the Plymouth Colony the number of freemen and towns had increased so much as to make it difficult for all the freemen to meet in one place, each town began to send representatives to the legislature, or General Court, as it was called, and to hold town meetings of its own. You will remember that the Virginia colonists provided for a representative assembly when they established the House of Burgesses.
A Year of Bitter Hardship
Although this body of Puritans was much stronger in numbers and wealth than the Pilgrims who had landed at Plymouth ten years earlier, their first year was one of bitter hardship. They arrived late in June, after a trying voyage of eighty-four days, and immediately had to face a distressing situation. There were many mouths to feed and but a scanty supply of food. Moreover, to provide shelter before the coming of winter was no small task.
But all�Governor Winthrop himself setting a noble example�worked with energy, cutting down trees and building log huts, which they thatched with grass. As in Virginia and in Plymouth, however, the toilsome exertion and the exposure, amid new and unhealthful conditions, told heavily on those who were not accustomed to such a strain, and by December some two hundred had died. "It may be said," wrote one of the Puritan leaders, "almost as of the Egyptians, that there is not a house where there is not one dead."
As winter approached, famine threatened them. The advance colony had not been able to do the spring planting, and the newcomers had to depend on the fish they could catch, the clams and the mussels they could pick up on the wind-swept shore, the acorns and ground nuts they could dig from under the snow, and the small amount of corn they could obtain from the Indians. "Bread was so very scarce," wrote Captain Clapp in his memoirs, "that sometimes I thought the very crusts
from my father's table would have been very sweet to me. When I could have meal and water and salt boiled together, it was so good who could wish for better ?"
But the Puritans were fortunate in having for their leader such a man as John Winthrop. His brave spirit and unselfish devotion during that distressing winter kept courage alive in the colony, and until his death, nineteen years later, he never ceased to labor earnestly and faithfully for its welfare.
The Puritan Village and Home
With the coming of spring, conditions improved. Ploughing, planting, and building kept the people busy,
and the little villages took on an appearance of order. Usually, two rows of houses faced each other on a long street, and back from this lay the farms. The simple dwellings stood close together, either for A Block-House. convenience of worship or
perhaps for defence against the Indians.
In the centre of the village stood the meeting-house, used both for religious meetings and for town meetings. Often it was on a hill, and was sometimes built in two stories, the upper story being used as a block-house. In such cases cannon were placed upon the flat roof and the meeting-house was surrounded by a palisade of pointed sticks from ten to twelve feet high. The first meeting-houses were rectangular and built of logs, about thirty-six feet long and twenty feet wide. Later this
There was a Big Seat in the Fireplace.
simple structure was replaced by a square wooden building, with a roof in the form of a pyramid. The earlier type had for pews wooden benches without backs, while at one end of the room was a chair and perhaps a table for the minister.
The Puritan home consisted of two rooms, one a living room and the other a kitchen. The more cheerful and homelike of the two was the kitchen. It had a huge fireplace, sometimes large enough to accommodate a back-log five or six feet long and two or three feet thick.
A fire was so difficult to kindle that the housewife
A Settler's Child Bringing a Burning Stick to Kindle a Fire.
tried to keep it going all the time. If it went out, a child was often sent to a neighboring house for coals or a burning stick to relight it, for there were no friction matches. There was a big seat in the fireplace where the children often sat at night. Across the top of the room were poles with strings of peppers, dried apples, and dried pumpkins. The gun or fowling- piece rested on hooks over the mantle.
The Puritans and Education
The school-house in those days was a rude log hut, with scanty equipment. There were no black-boards, maps, nor pencils, and paper was so scarce that, in doing their sums, the children used birch bark. But however simple it might be, a school-house of some sort was regarded as necessary; for, next to religious training, the Puritan put the education of his children. Six years after the great Puritan emigration Harvard College was established at Cambridge (1636). Less than a dozen years later a law provided that every town of fifty families should have a school-house where children should learn to read and write, and every town of one hundred families should maintain a grammar
A Lonely Life
In this simple way did the Puritans begin their life in the new land. They came not for worldly prosperity, but for civil and religious freedom, and this they had in large measure. But for the most part they lived a gloomy, lonely life. There was very little intercourse among the separate communities, for modes of travel were slow. Most of the settlements being either on the coast or on rivers, travel was by means of dugouts, or along the coast in small boats. There were no roads across the country, but the Puritan sometimes made use of the Indian trail, either riding on horseback or walking. When occasion required, his wife and children rode on a pillion behind him.
The Puritan and Religion
The supreme interest, however, of the earnest Puritan was his religion. His Sabbath, like that of the Pilgrims, lasted from sunset on Saturday to sunset on Sunday. At the sound of the drum, horn, or bell, about nine o'clock on Sunday morning, each family started for the meeting-house, the father and mother walking in front of their children. The worshippers were seated according to rank, the men on one side of the room, the women on the other, and the boys and girls in separate groups. During the services a sentinel stood at the door to keep watch against an Indian surprise.
Even in the coldest winter weather the services lasted a great part of the day, although the meeting-house was not warm. The only heat in the room was furnished by foot-stoves, small metal boxes containing burning coals taken from the fireplace on starting for church. The sermon was sometimes two or three hours long, and during the tedious service the sexton kept the run of the time by turning the sand in the hour-glass at the end of every hour; for in these early colonial days there were neither clocks nor watches. Time was told at home by "noon marks" on the floor or window-seats, and by the sun-dial.
Everybody in the Massachusetts Bay Colony was expected to attend church every Sabbath, if he was well enough to leave his home. The tithing man looked after all absentees. If a man was absent for a month without a satisfactory excuse, he was compelled to stand in the pillory, sit in the stocks, or take his place in a wooden cage. The pillory, stocks, and wooden cage usually stood near the meetinghouse, where the culprit was in plain sight of people going to and from meeting, to punish evil-doers.
Stocks and Whipping-Post.
The ducking-stool was also used
The Coming of Roger Williams
The Puritans believed in a close union between the Church and the State. You will remember that by the terms of the charter all freemen were allowed to vote, but when the Puritans held their first elections they passed a law that none but church members should be regarded as freemen. Their set purpose of compelling every one to attend their church, whatever his religious belief, and of allowing none but church members to vote, was certain to invite challenge. The challenge came soon (1631), in Roger Williams, a preacher of Salem, who stirred up these straight-laced Puritans for many years. He was about thirty-two years old�a man of gentle and noble character, who had been trained at
Oxford, and was one of many who had been driven from England because of his Puritan principles.
After landing at Boston, he went to Salem where he remained a short time and then made his way to Plymouth. For two years he lived with the colony at Plymouth, and there became deeply interested in the Indians. Although so poor that he had to earn his living by farming and fishing, he devoted much of his time to the red men, studying their language. "God," he wrote, "was
pleased to give me a painful, patient spirit with them, to lodge with them in their filthy, smoky holes, to gain their tongue." Not only was he kind to them; he gave them presents, and became well acquainted with Massasoit and Canonicus. In a word, he loved the Indians and the Indians loved him.
The Puritans Banish Roger Williams
When later he returned to Salem he soon got into trouble with the Puritans. He spoke openly of many things which were quite contrary to their way of thinking. For instance, he declared that they did not own the land which they were occupying. He said that their only title to it was through the King of England, and that the King of England had no right to give away what was not his own.
Moreover, he declared that the First Meeting House at SalemPuritans had no right to tax people to support a church to which they did not belong, nor to compel people to attend church services. He exasperated them when he said, "A man's faith is his own affair, and no one else can decide for him in any question of religious belief." In other words, he pleaded for religious toleration.
The Puritans severely denounced Roger Williams and finally put him on trial for his attitude toward their church and State. He was called before the General Court, and in October, 1635, was sentenced to banishment. He was told, however, that he might remain in
the colony for six weeks.
In the meantime his health gave way and his friends urged that he be allowed to remain during the winter. This the Puritan leaders agreed to do. But Williams had many warm admirers in Salem, who gathered at his house from time to time and listened to his words. Moreover, twenty of them planned to join him the fol
Rogcr Williams Fleeing through the Woods in Midwinter, lowing SDrinP' and
make a settlement not very far away from the Massachusetts Bay Colony. On hearing of this, the magistrates decided to send him at once to England. They did not wish him for so near a neighbor, where his false teachings might still corrupt the people.
But Williams, privately warned by his friend, Governor Winthrop, escaped them. Bidding farewell to his wife and two children, he set out alone, with only a compass for guide, and a hatchet to blaze the way through the trackless forest. It was January. Long afterwards he wrote, " I was sorely tossed for one fourteen weeks in a bitter winter season, not knowing what bed or bread did mean." But he found his way to the wigwam of his dusky Indian friends, just as he had, years before, found his way to their hearts. They received him kindly and cared for him as one of their
The Settlement of Rhode Island
In the spring he obtained land from the Indians and began to build and plant at Seekonk; but being again warned by Governor Winthrop that the spot he had selected was within the territory of the Massachusetts Bay Colony, he withdrew. With five companions he embarked in a canoe and went down a small stream until they came to a place suitable for a settlement. Here he landed and named the spot Providence, in token of God's tender care for him in his days of wandering. A little later Williams was joined by his wife and family.
The colony thus begun was founded on the principle of religious toleration. To Providence, people of all faiths were welcomed. It was said that a man who had lost his religion might find it by going to Providence. Rhode Island was more liberal than Maryland, even, for in Maryland toleration was granted only to all forms of Christian religion, while in Rhode Island no limit was placed on what a man might believe.
Later, Williams showed his generous and forgiving
spirit by saving the colonists from a deadly Indian war; for when the Pequots endeavored to form a league with the Narragansetts to drive out the white men from New England, Williams, with much toil and danger, travelled to the village of Canonicus, and there used his powers of persuasion in preventing the league.
Why the Quakers Came to Massachusetts
Another way in which the intolerant spirit of the Puritans expressed itself was in the persecutions of the Quakers, or Friends, a religious sect which sprang up in England about the middle of the century. In 1656 the coming of two Quaker women from the Barbadoes to Boston set aflame the spirit of Puritan intolerance. So bitter was the feeling against them that they were at once seized and locked up in a jail, and their books were burned in public. As if this were not enough, boards were nailed over their windows to prevent them from communicating with any one outside, and there they were kept until the ship which had brought them to Boston was ready to sail on her return trip�a period of five weeks. During all this time they were allowed scarcely enough food to keep them alive; then they were sent back to the Barbadoes. Not long after this incident there came from London eight other Quakers, who also were arrested and put in jail.
These facts lead us to ask why the Quakers came to Massachusetts, and why the Puritans persecuted them so bitterly after they had come.
The first question is easily answered. The Quakers came in a missionary spirit. They were ready to go anywhere and endure any suffering, if in doing so they were guided by what they called the "inner light," or conscience, as we term it. In this manner, according to their belief, God revealed himself to each human soul, and they felt that they should obey the "light," though it might lead to punishment or even death.
You can readily see why this point of view aroused the bitter opposition of the Puritan clergy and other Puritan leaders. For while they believed that the Bible alone revealed the Divine will and told not only what the religious life should be, but the political as well, the Quakers regarded the "inner light" as the supreme authority and held in small esteem the teachings of the Bible.
Why the Puritans Persecuted the Quakers
The Puritans abhorred such a religion. They disapproved quite as much the Quakers' ideas of government, for the Quakers believed in the complete separation of Church and State. They also refused to take the oath of allegiance to the State, to pay taxes in its support, or to go to war in its defence.
Such men, thought the Puritans, are not only disloyal to the commonwealth but a positive danger to the community. It was as if they were infected with a grievous disease, and must not, therefore, be allowed to spread the malady by coming in contact with other people. So the Puritans threw the Quakers into jail just as to-day we quarantine people sick with small-pox.
They believed that in this way they were safeguarding the welfare of the community. For, according to their idea, its safety depended on keeping the control of affairs of State in the hands of church members. Otherwise they could never build up a commonwealth which would represent their lofty ideals. " If other men, like Roger Williams and the Quakers, do not agree with us," said the Puritan leaders, " they can and should go elsewhere. There is plenty of room in the world at large for such people, but there is not room enough in Massachusetts for both them and us."
From the Puritan stand-point, the success of the Quakers meant the overthrow of all that was nearest and dearest to the Puritan heart. We cannot be surprised, then, that the clergy and other leaders considered it right to punish them with the greatest severity.
Acting upon their faith, in 1657 they passed laws banishing all Quakers and declaring that, should any return, they should be put to death. Notwithstanding these harsh laws, however, the followers of the "inner light" continued to go to Massachusetts. In 1659 two men and one woman, on going to Boston, were banished with the full understanding that if they should come back they would be put to death. Quite indifferent to the threat, they all returned," because," they said, they were "commanded to do so by the inner light." According to the sentence passed upon them, they all were hanged in Boston Common. When they mounted the platform the victims tried to speak to the crowd standing around, but the beating of drums prevented their words from being heard.
It was most unfortunate that, in a spirit of defiance,
The Victims Tried to Speak to the Crowd Standing Around.
some of the early comers of this faith showed their contempt for the Puritan State by unseemly conduct. They would shout derisively at the governor as he passed along the streets, and would sometimes interrupt the church service with loud remarks that were an insult to the congregation. One who was especially bold entered the Old South Meeting House, on one occasion, holding in each hand a glass bottle. These he knocked together with such force as to break them into fragments; then he cried out, "Thus will the Lord break you all in pieces."
But all this occurred at a time when there were many others besides Puritans in Massachusetts, and some of these people did not approve of the oppression. Moreover, complaints had been carried to England, and in 1661 Charles I wrote a letter to the Massachusetts government, ordering all Quaker prisoners released. From that time the cases of punishment by fines, imprisonments, and whippings grew more and more rare, although they did not entirely cease for something like twenty years. The last Quaker to be executed was William Leddra, who was put to death in the spring of 1661 upon his returning to Massachusetts after having been banished.
The Puritans Make Many Enemies
Roger Williams and the Quakers were not the only ones who suffered from the severity of the Puritans. In their attempt to keep the control of affairs in their own hands, and to punish those who dared to disagree with them, they made many enemies. Besides those who differed in their religious views were others who could get no voice in the government. Men who were not members of the church were dissatisfied because they
were not allowed to vote. "We pay our share of the taxes," they said, " and we are ready to do our duty in defending the colony in case of war. Then why should we not have our share in making laws and in levying taxes ?"
This was a fair argument, and especially so because in 1679 the men who did not attend the Congregational Church greatly outnumbered the Puritans who did. It is thought that at that time the Puritan voters did not number more than one-fifth of the men of voting age in Massachusetts.
Then, too, some of the bitter and powerful enemies of the Puritans who had returned to England made themselves heard in the English Court. "The Puritans in Massachusetts are rebels," they told the King. There were three accusations that gave special offence: (1) the breaking of the Navigation Laws by allowing foreign vessels from France, Spain, and other countries to enter the ports of the colony; (2) the sheltering of two of the judges who had sentenced to death Charles I, the king's father, and who had afterwards escaped to Massachusetts; (3) the coining of money.
All these accusations stirred up the King so much that finally the Massachusetts charter was annulled in 1684, and the government and company of Massachusetts Bay no longer existed.
The Despotic Rule of Andros
In the following year Charles II died, and James II, who was self-willed and despotic, ascended the throne. The plan of the new King was to do away with all local government in America, and combine the various colonies into one large province, under a single governor, who should be the King's servant, and strictly obey the personal wishes of his royal master.
In the working out of this scheme New York, New Jersey, and New England were made a single province under the rule of Governor Andros. He was a dullwitted man, lacking in refined feeling and tact. But he was honest, high-minded, and loyal to his King. He did not like the New England people, and seemed to take special pleasure in robbing them of their rights as freemen.
When the charter was annulled, according to the King's idea, all the land in Massachusetts came again into his possession. Landowners could no longer hold their property unless they paid a quit-rent to the King. In some cases, when they refused to do this, their land was taken away and given to the friends of the Governor.
Nor was this all; for both the General Court and the town meetings of Massachusetts were done away with. The Governor and his council made the laws and levied the taxes. This must have been bitter medicine to people who loved their own freedom as did the Puritans. Chief-Justice Dudley said, "The people now have no further privileges left them than not to be sold as slaves," and this was not far from the truth.
But these oppressive laws did not continue long, for in the spring of 1689 the glad news came to Boston that James II was driven out of England. Without ceremony the people seized Andros, as he was trying to make his escape disguised in woman's clothing, and sent him to England. They were overjoyed at being rid of the despotic governor.
The New Charter
Three years later (1692) Massachusetts received another charter. In accordance with its provisions the people were to have their own legislature, make their own laws, and levy their own taxes. But the right to vote was not restricted to church members, nor were the people allowed any longer to elect their own governor. Massachusetts had become a royal colony, which meant that its governor should be appointed by the King.
Although this change in the charter keenly disappointed the people, it did not prevent the spirit of freedom and the love of liberty from growing steadily year by year. The struggle with Andros, like the struggle with Berkeley in Virginia, was a good preparation for a much greater struggle that was to come later between all the English colonies and England. It was fortunate that the people of Massachusetts, the leading colony of New England, and the people of Virginia, the leading colony of the South, should have had a similar experience in fighting for the rights of freemen. For when the trying days of the American Revolution came the two colonies stood shoulder to shoulder in a united effort to secure the independence which they and all the other English colonies coveted.
The English at Windsor and Saybrook
BEFORE the Massachusetts Colony was firmly rooted to the new soil, rumors of the Connecticut valley began to attract attention. Pioneers by land and by water, who had visited the region, brought home glowing reports of its beauty and its fertile soil. Indians living there invited the English to come and settle among them, and even offered to give each immigrant eighty beaver skins a year and supply him with corn.
Among the early pioneers of 1633 was a company of Plymouth traders under William Holmes, who sailed up the river, taking with them the frame of a tradinghouse and a few men to put it up. The Dutch, who were already occupying the present site of Hartford, threatened to fire upon the Plymouth men if they should go farther. But Holmes's men called back to them to fire away, and proceeded to sail on up the river until they reached the present site of Windsor. Here they erected their trading-house. Strongly as the Dutch resented this intrusion upon what they considered their territory, the disrespectful salute of the Plymouth men seems to have silenced their guns, for no further objection was offered.
It seemed best to the Dutch, however, to strengthen
the post at Hartford, and, in order to make it secure, to build another at the mouth of the river. This they attempted to do the following year, but upon arriving there they found that the English were ahead of them. John Winthrop, son of the Massachusetts Governor, acting as agent for Lord Say and Sele and Lord Brook, who held a grant of this land along the shore, arrived on the spot just in time to drive the Dutch away.
The Settlement of Connecticut
Here Winthrop built a fort which he named, after his patrons, Saybrook.
Why Settlers from Massachusetts Migrated to
Settlers from Massachusetts soon began to arrive, and their number increased rapidly for several reasons. In the first place, they were attracted by the good reports of the fertile country. Then, too, the settlers in three of the towns in Massachusetts declared that there was not enough land for pasturing their cattle. These same colonists also expressed the fear that the Dutch would enter the Connecticut valley, force out the English, and then get control of a part of the country which was too valuable for the English to lose.
Probably the real reason why many colonists were glad to leave Massachusetts was that they disliked the method of conducting public affairs there. As we have already learned, the ruling class in that colony believed that the
only way to have good government was to put it into the hands of a few, and to bring this about had passed a law that none but church members should vote or hold office. Many persons who desired a voice in making the laws were denied it and bewinthrop, jr. came dissatisfied.
Among those who strongly objected to this strict regulation was the learned and eloquent Thomas Hooker, pastor of the church at Newton (Cambridge). He is described as a man of majestic and noble presence, and of gentle and loving spirit, whose life was a beautiful illustration of what he believed. He had firm faith in government "by the people and for the people," and he built up a government on this principle. In doing this he performed a great work for Connecticut and for the world.
In Watertown and in Dorchester also, as well as in Newton, were many more of the same mind. They believed that a man should not be compelled to become a church member in order to vote. They believed that both the Church and the State would be better if they were managed separately, and that people would be much happier if they all had a voice in making their laws. To put their belief into practice, their plan was to found a new settlement -elsewhere. Many of the Massachusetts Puritans opposed the plan, fearing that their own colony would thus be weakened. After much earnest discussion, however, the General Court permitted Thomas Hooker and those of like mind to go.
Settlements at Wethersfield, Windsor, and Hartford
Meantime, in 1635, a few pioneers from Dorchester made their way through the wilderness as far as the fort which the Plymouth men had built at Windsor, while a party from Watertown pushed beyond Hartford and settled at Wethersfield. In the autumn they were joined by a larger party, about sixty men, women, and children, who settled at Windsor. They brought not only their household goods, but their cattle, horses, and swine.
Before they could get their log huts built, however, an early winter had overtaken them, and with cold and famine staring theni in the face, many of them lost heart and returned to Massachusetts. The few who remained had little to live on�at first, corn from distant Indians, then what they could get by hunting, and finally only ground-nuts and acorns found beneath the snow. The loss in cattle alone was about ten thousand dollars. With brave hearts, however, they lived the winter through, and in the spring many of those who had gone back to Massachusetts returned and gave strength to the colony.
In June of the following year (1636) the Newton congregation, led by their pastor, Thomas Hooker, made the journey overland through the woods. Having sold their houses to a new party from England, one hundred or more men, women, and children, with one hundred and sixty cattle, started out for the new settlement. With no guide but their compass, they travelled
Thomas Hooker's Party on the Way to Connecticut.
the trackless wilderness for more than one hundred miles. Through swamps and thickets, over hills and across rivers, they pushed their way toward the Connecticut settlement. Mrs. Hooker, too ill to walk, was taken on a litter. Carrying their packs, arms,
and utensils, they journeyed in this way for two weeks.
But at that season of the year the experience could not have been altogether a hardship; for the trees were in full foliage, and the beauty and fragrance of wildflowers and the songs of birds must have lent a charm to the woods to which even the tired pilgrims could hardly be indifferent. And we know beyond doubt that when they reached their journey's end, at the place now called Hartford, they were delighted with the inviting prospect. The verdant meadow-land, the trees, the silver ribbon of river, the wigwams, the settlers' cabins�all combined to form a beautiful picture.
Not long after Hooker's pilgrimage, the congregations of Dorchester and Watertown came, the former settling at Windsor, the latter at Wethersfield. The Connecticut colony, now consisting of Hartford, Wethersfield, and Windsor, steadily increased in size, for there had recently come to Massachusetts English ships bearing three thousand passengers, not a few of whom soon followed the trail blazed by Hooker and his companions. By May, 1637, there were eight hundred living in the three towns.
The colony of Connecticut, like that of Massachusetts Bay, was planted not by individuals but by whole communities united under their pastors. These communities were towns from the start and did not have to wait to grow up. For one year, a Board of Commissioners from Massachusetts governed the new towns; after that, each town chose its own representatives and held a General Court at Hartford.
The Pequot War
Almost the first business of the General Court was to prepare for war against the Pequot Indians. They were the most warlike of this region, and their depredations had become unbearable. They had attacked the pioneer traders and settlers repeatedly, both by sea and by land, and were now falling upon the outlying farms, murdering and burning with alarming frequency. But the settlement, though feeble, faced its danger bravely, and so completely broke the power of the Indians that the tribe perished in a day. The Indians being crushed, settlers again began to join the colony, and prosperity became general throughout the valley.
Connecticut's Liberal Constitution
In 1639 the three towns adopted a constitution to which Massachusetts agreed, thus giving up all claim of authority over them. This was the first written constitution known to history on which a government was built up. It contained no reference to the king or to . any authority outside of itself. It was simply an agreement between the colonists of the neighboring towns as to how they. should manage their local and general affairs.
It provided for a governor and six magistrates to be elected by the whole body of freemen. There was no religious restriction on the voting. Only the governor had to be a church member, and he could not serve two years in succession. Thus the government was more liberal and democratic than that of Massachusetts. It served as a model for many of the American states, and is largely the same plan as that adopted about two hundred and fifty years later by our National Government. Under this constitution, Connecticut from the first was an independent republic. John Haynes was the first governor, and he and Edward Hopkins held the office in turn for the next fifteen years. But the credit of its liberal government was due to Thomas Hooker more than to any other man. He was the leading spirit. He believed that the authority of government rested in the free consent of the people, and that they would cheerfully obey those whom they chose to honor. This was a very advanced idea in 1638.
The New Haven Colony
While the Connecticut colonists were laying claim to their country, and establishing a liberal government, another settlement was springing up in the southern part of the State. This was the New Haven Colony, under the leadership of John Davenport, a minister, and Theophilus Eaton, a wealthy London merchant.
In the autumn of 1637 they arrived at Boston, where they spent a few months. Although urged to stay, they preferred to go where they could form a separate community and be entirely free to worship and govern in their own way. The place they selected for a settlement was a large bay on the coast of Connecticut, at a place called Quinnipiac, thirty miles west of the Connecticut River. There, in the spring of 1638, under the shade of a spreading oak, Davenport preached his first sermon.
For a year they were without any fixed government, agreeing only to live by the Scripture. Then, in October, 1639, they met in a barn and drew up a constitution which provided for a governor and four magistrates elected by the freemen. As in Massachusetts, none but church members were considered freemen, or allowed to vote. They made no laws, but simply agreed to live by the word of God. Eaton was their first governor, and he was re-elected every year for twenty years till his death. Other towns sprang up in the neighborhood, most of the settlers being very strict in their views, though some were more liberal, like the Connecticut colonies.
By 1643 there were five towns in the New Haven colony, the whole number of householders being one hundred and twenty-one. As these towns were built on the New Haven model, they formed a union with the mother town and each sent deputies to a General Court in which sat the governor, the deputy governor, and assistants, elected by the whole body of freemen. The local magistrates seven in each town were known as pillars of the church. The seven pillars were the principal men of these towns, and the colonial affairs were mostly managed by those important in the church. By the close of the century, New Haven was very prosperous and was noted for the wealth of all inhabitants and for its fine houses. Education was encouraged, and Yale College was founded in 1701; but the restricted suffrage finally caused dissatisfaction.
The New England Union
Although life in the new country afforded the Puritans much freedom of control in the affairs of their government, it was not without its drawbacks. Many dangers beset the colonists and taxed to the utmost their courage and their strength. The Dutch threatened them on the west, the French on the north, and the Indians on every side.
" In union we shall find our greatest strength," was their thought. At intervals during the early years of the settlement Connecticut had made efforts to have a general union for purposes of defense. Finally, in 1643, at the suggestion of Connecticut, representatives from Massachusetts, Plymouth, New Haven, and Connecticut, met in Boston and formed what was called the New England Union. It bound the colonies in a league of friendship for mutual safety and welfare, but did not interfere in any way with the regulation of affairs within the borders of the separate colonies. Each remained free to make its own laws and levy its own taxes. The management of the affairs of the confederation was placed in the hands of eight commissioners, two from each colony, all of whom had to be church members. These commissioners had control of relations with the Indians and foreign countries, but their power was largely advisory. They could suggest what they
thought was desirable for each colony in the Union to do, but they could not compel any one of them to follow the advice.
Although this weakness was in some respects to be regretted, the Union served two excellent purposes: (1) It enabled the colonies to unite to better advantage in the Colonial Wars; (2) it taught them how to work together, and prepared them for those larger unions that were to come later, such as the Albany Congress, the Continental Congress, and our own national Congress to-day. It was the first experience of the colonies in federation.
Prosperity and Rapid Growth of the Colony
Notwithstanding occasional trouble with the Indians, the Dutch, and the French, the Connecticut Colony prospered and rapidly increased in size. New towns continued to be planted, settlers coming from England, from Massachusetts, and some from other New England towns. Many were of gentle birth�university graduates, clergymen, and men who had won distinction before coming to the New World. They were earnest, serious people, in search not of material betterment, but of religious and civil freedom. Having found it, they showed no spirit of persecution, but rather a desire to practise their religious beliefs �n their daily life. Education was looked after from the first. In every town and village there was "a scholar to their minister."
All were industrious and there were no marked
differences in living conditions. The majority of the people were of humble means. Their homes were busy, but there was much good cheer. Although shipping interests grew, farming was the leading pursuit. While the people were without A colonial Plough,
the steam-engine and other machinery such as we have to-day, many of the trades and household arts were practised in every home. The women, when not engaged in other household duties, were kept busy at the spinning-wheel. The family clothing, from dressing
the flax to the finished garment, was the work of the women, while the common furniture of the household, and the family utensils, were made by the farmer and his son.
A degree of fun and frolic mingled with the serious life, and simple pleasures were enoid spinning-wheei. joyed with keen relish. Their
annual Thanksgiving Day, when they gave God thanks for all his blessings, was one of their most joyous occasions.
Winthrop Obtains a Liberal Charter
With the increase of population and the planting of new towns arose questions of boundaries and land titles.
At the close of the war with the Pequots, Connecticut had tried to secure her right to the land which they had occupied, but there was some uncertainty as to her claim.
For that land was included in the grant given to Lord Say and Sele and Lord Brook, and in a few years, under the leadership of John Winthrop, the fort at Say brook had grown into a settlement quite independent of the other towns. Connecticut, therefore, wishing to strengthen her claim, had bought out the Saybrook Colony with the expectation of receiving all the land included in the Saybrook grant. The papers, however, were never transferred, and this made Connecticut anxious.
When, therefore, the Stuarts were restored to the throne in England, Connecticut, wishing to confirm her rights to the soil and secure her free government, sent John Winthrop to England to see if he could get a charter (1662). Winthrop was a scholarly gentleman of gracious manner, and easily made friends at Court. When presented to the King, Charles II, he gave him a ring which had been presented by the King's father, Charles I, to Winthrop's father. By this little act of courtesy, doubtless, the King's favor was won and Winthrop obtained a charter whose terms were most liberal.
This charter granted to Connecticut all the territory, including Hartford, New Haven, and the other settlements. It satisfied the people so well that it afterwards became the State Constitution and remained in force until 1818.
Andros and the Charter
There was but one short interval during this period when the colony was not governed according to the charter. That was when Sir Edmund Andros was made the Royal Governor of New England and New York. In 1687 he came to Hartford from Boston and demanded the charter. The discussion was long and heated. It lasted into the evening. According to tradition, the lights were suddenly put out, and the charter was snatched from the table and hidden in a tree ever after to be known as the Charter Oak. When the lights were restored the charter had disappeared and could not be surrendered.
Nevertheless the colonists were obliged to give up their charter rights, and to acknowledge Andros as Royal Governor; that is, a Governor appointed by the King instead of elected by the people. In less than two years, however, when James II was driven from
The Charter Oak.
the English throne, and Andros was sent back to England, the charter government was resumed.
The people in Connecticut were prosperous and contented, partly because they had a voice in making their laws and regulating the affairs of the colony. But the main reason for their success and happiness was their earnest moral purpose and their willingness to choose men of high character and ability to fill positions of trust and responsibility.
THE PEQUOT WAR
The Settlers and the Indians
ONE of the dangers common to all the colonies in the early days was the hostility of the Indians. In the preceding chapter we have briefly referred to the troubles of the Connecticut Colony with the Pequot Indians. But the Pequot War had such an important bearing upon the future of the colony that we may well discuss it in detail.
These Indians, the most warlike of New England, were settled in the south-east part of what is now Connecticut. Probably they were not of the same blood as the other tribes of Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and Connecticut. It is supposed that they came from New York a little while before the English arrived on these shores.
They were unfriendly not only to the white settlers but to all the surrounding tribes, and were constantly making war upon them. It was partly on that account that Roger Williams was able to persuade the Narragansetts, their neighbors on the east, to make a treaty of peace with the English settlers of Massachusetts Bay. For while the Narragansetts were a powerful tribe, they were not so fierce as the Pequots, and stood somewhat in fear of them.
Other Indians on the west of the Pequots were also friendly to the English, for they felt the need of protection. Sachems from some of these tribes appeared before the governors of Massachusetts and Plymouth to persuade them to settle in the Connecticut valley, describing the country as rich and beautiful, abounding in corn and game, and, as we have already observed, even offering beaver skins and wampum as further inducements.
Although Sassacus, Sachem of the Pequots, was unfriendly to the whites, he did not oppose their coming, and made a treaty of peace with Governor Winthrop, of Massachusetts Bay, permitting the English to colonize and trade in the Connecticut country.
But peaceable relations did not long continue; for an unfortunate incident occurred which aroused the tribe against the English. John Oldham, a trader from Massachusetts, had sailed from the Pequot country to Block Island, where he was killed and his vessel captured by island Indians.
Before his murderers could get away with their prize, another Englishman, John Gallop, who was sailing eastward from Long Island Sound, came upon Oldham's vessel in their hands. He fired at them, rammed the vessel, and all but three of the crew were killed or drowned. The three who escaped drifted ashore with the wrecked vessel.
When Governor Vane of Massachusetts heard of Oldham's fate, he sent an expedition of three, vessels under Endicott to punish the Block Islanders and also the Pequots, because the latter were supposed to have harbored the murderers. Endicott first laid waste the Block Island settlement, burning wigwams and sinking canoes. Then he crossed to the Pequot country and demanded the murderers and a large quantity of wampum. Not getting what he asked for, he attacked and killed about twenty of the Indians, burned their wigwams, and seized or ruined their crops. After satisfying their wrath, the party returned to Boston.
The Pequots Attack English Settlements
The Pequots bitterly resented the injury done them, and determined upon vengeance. They tried to get the Narragansetts to join them in a scheme to lay waste the English settlements. But as we have learned, Roger Williams not only prevented that but secured a treaty of peace between the Narragansetts and the English. So the Pequots determined to make war alone. Since the Connecticut settlements were nearest at hand, they fell upon them. The Connecticut men complained bitterly to Massachusetts. "You raise these wasps around us," they said, "and then flee away."
The Expedition against the Pequots
The Pequots first attacked the fort at Saybrook, and having captured several men, put them to torture. During the whole winter of 1636-37 they waylaid and captured parties in and about the fort as they went to and from work. In the spring they opened war in the upper part of the valley. One man was burned alive. Then Wethersfield was attacked and a number of people killed and two girls captured. In sailing past the fort at Saybrook after this expedition, the Pequots flaunted the clothes of their victims and displayed the two captive girls. These wanton acts could not be ignored. They were, indeed, the beginning of war.
Accordingly, on May i, 1637, the General Court at Hartford decided to send an expedition against the Pequots, and asked Massachusetts and Plymouth to help them. Ninety men were drafted from the three towns, Hartford, Windsor, and Wethersfield, and supplies of food were arranged for. -On May 10th,nine days after the decision of the Court, these men, under the command of Captain John Mason, started in three small vessels down the Connecticut River, and seventy friendly Mohegans under Uncas eagerly joined them. As the voyage by boat was very uncomfortable to the Indians, they very soon begged to go by land, and received permission to do so.
After five days of tedious sailing, the boats arrived at Saybrook, where Uncas rejoined Mason and his men. Uncas was very much elated over a battle which he and his men had already had with the Pequots. He had killed seven of his enemy and captured one. As this captive had been a spy in the English settlement, no mercy was shown him. He was tortured and roasted and finally eaten by the savages. Such conduct must have shocked the English, but we are not told that they
found fault with the Indians. Perhaps at the outset of their expedition it would have been unsafe to have any misunderstandings with them.
Having spent the night in prayer, the next day they
Mason's Expedition Against the Pcquots. �
again took up their journey by boat toward the Pequot country. But they had decided, contrary to the orders received before they left home, to sail straight to the Narragansett country and then march west to attack their foes. Mason believed this method would give the white men the advantage of a surprise, and he was
not mistaken. For when the Pequots, whose sharpeyed scouts were ever on the lookout, saw the English pass the only landing-place on their shore, they supposed their foes were too much in fear of them to make an attack. They were in high glee and, thrown completely off their guard, gave themselves up too soon to the joy of victory.
Meanwhile Mason arrived in the country of the Narragansetts, landing in bright moonlight near Point Judith. Although he urged them to join him, they thought the English were too few to meet in battle such fierce warriors. But the chief gave the white men permission to pass through his country, and about two hundred Indians joined the troops on their march. These warriors went to look on, however, rather than to fight.
The March against the Pequot Fort
By waiting a few days, Mason's force could have been strengthened by a body of Massachusetts troops under Captain Patrick; but Mason believed he had more to gain by a surprise. So he moved on without delay. Thirteen men were sent back with the vessels to meet him with the main body when he should arrive at the Pequot River.
For two days the English marched through the woods without incident. They were beginning to believe they had been misled by their guides, when they came upon a freshly planted corn-field. The Narragansetts told them they were now close to one of the two great Pequot forts, just north of the present town of Stonington. The other, the principal residence of Chief Sassacus, was several hours' journey away.
They camped for the night, pushing their outposts so close to the Indian fort that they could easily hear the revelry of the garrison, which lasted until midnight. The soldiers slept on their arms and before daybreak were again on the march. A trail of two miles brought them to the foot of Pequot Hill, near what is now
Calling Uncas to his side, Mason inquired, "Where is the fort, and what has become of the Indian allies ?" "The fort," replied Uncas, "is at the top of the hill before us, and the Narragansetts are at the rear. They are very much afraid." Thereupon Mason said to him, "Tell them not to fly, but to stand behind at what distance they please and see whether Englishmen will fight."
Mason with part of the men on one side of the hill, and Underbill with the rest on the opposite side, cautiously mounted to the top, until they were within a few rods of the palisades, surrounding the fort, an enclosure two or three acres in area. No sound came from the garrison. Finally the bark of an Indian dog broke the silence. Not until the English fired through the palisade, however, were the Indians roused from their heavy sleep. Then they answered with a terrific yell.
By throwing aside the brush which had been piled up to bar the entrance, the English easily made their way through the two narrow openings of the palisade. Even then, as Mason looked down through the Indian street, bordered on either side by a row of lightly thatched
The Leaders of Mason's Company Forced Their Way Inside and a Hand-to-Hand Conflict Began.
wigwams, there was not an Indian in sight. Panicstricken with fear, the red men waited for an attack within the wigwams. The leaders of Mason's company forced their way inside, and a hand-to-hand conflict began. Had such, warfare continued, it would have brought disaster to the English. So Mason, realizing their peril, called out, "We must burn them!" Seizing a firebrand from the hearth of one of the huts, he set fire to the mats which covered the roofs. Underbill, who had entered the stockade at the opposite side, assisted with gunpowder, and a strong north-east wind rapidly spread the flames. The English made haste to flee from the fort, and then surrounded it to prevent the escape of any of the Indians.
It was a shocking death that the Indians suffered. From four to six hundred were burned alive, seven were taken captive, and seven escaped. To the last the Indians crept up to the palisade and shot their useless arrows at their foes. Only two of Mason's men were killed and about twenty wounded.
Having witnessed the end of this fearful massacre, Mason began his retreat to the shore (now New London), where his boats were just arriving on their return from the Narragansett country. By this time the news of the attack had spread, and the Pequot warriors from the distant fort had reached the scene of desolation, where their comrades lay in death, and thek hoarded treasure of wampum and supplies in ruin. They stamped and raged and tore their hair, then turned upon
Indian Stone Maul.
the track of their enemy. They could accomplish nothing by making an attack. They were helpless, and on finding they could do no more they tried to escape.
Destruction of the Tribe
The English then retreated to the shore, where Captain Patrick had arrived from Massachusetts to help them. Putting their wounded aboard, the others re
A New England Indian Village.
turned by land to Saybrook. The remnant of the Pequots burned their villages and crops and set out to escape by way of the Long Island Sound, hoping by that route to avoid the English settlements. But Mason and Uncas were hot on their trail.
After a perilous chase a disastrous swamp fight occurred near Greenfield Hill. From this only about seventy of the enemy escaped, and in the pursuit which followed many of these were found dead. Sassacus, with a party of thirty or forty, had separated from the main body and made his way to the Mohawks by anothe trail. But even here no quarter was allowed. Th< Mohawks promptly put the whole party to death and
sent their scalps to the English at Boston Those who were capt ured in the pursuit were made slaves. Indian pipe. Some were kept in Con
necticut and Massachusetts, and others were sent to the West Indies; but being used to a life of freedom, the captives soon died.
About two hundred Pequots survived the war and were apportioned among the Mohegans and Narragansetts, who adopted them as members of their tribes. In 1638 it was agreed by treaty with the "chiefs of the two tribes that Connecticut should have all the territory formerly occupied by the Pequots. Thus was settled for all future time the supremacy of the English in Connecticut. The red men who had been lords of the land now disappeared and left the white strangers in control.
KING PHILIP'S WAR
The New England Colonists and the Indians
A^TER the destruction of the Pequots (1638) the New England colonists were free from Indian attacks for nearly forty years. But further trouble was certain to come in time, for the Indians felt that the white men were getting possession of their land' and in the end would drive the red men from their hunting-grounds. This feeling was the real cause of all the Indian wars, not only in New England but in the other English colonies. It especially stirred the heart of an able chief whose leading ambition was to crush the white strangers in New England. This chief wasKing Philip, the central figure in King Philip's War.
You will recall the meeting between Governor Carver and Massasoit, head chief of the Wampanoags in the early days at Plymouth, and the treaty of peace they signed. The Indian was quite willing to sign the treaty and acknowledge himself a subject of the King of England, for at that time he needed the protection of the whites. His tribe was not strong enough to defend itself against the fierce Pequots in Connecticut and the terrible Mohawks in New York. During the life of Massasoit, therefore, the treaty between him and the Plymouth settlers remained unbroken.
When he died, in 1660, the whites living in New England numbered something like fifty thousand, and the Indians thirty thousand. The three strongest tribes -were the Mohegans of Connecticut, the Nipmucks of
King Philip's War.
Massachusetts, and the Narragansetts, living on the west shore of Narragansett Bay.
Why King Philip Wished to Destroy the Whites
In the year following the death of Massasoit, his son Alexander, who succeeded him as Sachem of the
Wampanoags, was summoned to Plymouth and accused of organizing an alliance with the Narragansetts against the whites. He cleared himself of the charge, but unfortunately, on his homeward journey, not far from Plymouth, a burning fever seized him, and he died. His death may have been caused by a severe cold, but his younger brother, Philip, who now became head of the tribe, firmly believed that Alexander had been poisoned by the people at Plymouth.
This belief was intensified by other wrongs which he felt his people had suffered at the hands of the palefaces. He saw the
fields and hunting-grounds of the Indians slipping away and gradually becoming the property of the white men. He knew every foot of land had been paid for, and that furs, corn, and vegetables sold to the colonists had received a fair price. Sometimes, too, when the Indian was in need of food the white man fed him. Still there was dissatisfaction. The white men were rapidly increasing in numbers and power, and were ever prompt to assert their authority.
All these things rankled in the breast of the proud chief, whom the white men called King Philip. Disturbed by the gloomy outlook, and believing that the welfare of the Indians would best be served by driving out the white strangers, he sought for means to destroy their power.
For thirteen years, however, there was no outbreak. All this time Philip kept himself under restraint. Again and again the Plymouth people suspected him of plotting mischief, yet each time they accused him he succeeded in overcoming their suspicions. On being called to trial in 1671 he even agreed to give up all his fire-arms, but "all" in this case was only seventy muskets.
Two years later John Sausamon, a friendly Indian who was accustomed to go freely between the Indian villages and the English settlements, informed the Plymouth authorities that Philip was plotting against them. But again, when summoned from Mount Hope to Plymouth, Philip stoutly denied the charges brought against him. He evidently considered Sausamon unsafe, however, for shortly after his return to Mount Hope the dead body of Sausamon was found hidden beneath the ice in a pond. The English did not allow this murder to go unpunished. Several months later three Wampanoag warriors, suspected of the crime, were tried, convicted, and hanged at Plymouth.
The Indians were much excited. Knowing they were found out, open war was only a question of time. King Philip, in spite of his denials, had probably long since plotted with the Nipmucks and Narragansetts to fall upon the white settlers and drive them out.
Outbreak of the War
The cloud broke upon the little village of Swansea, a group of forty houses not far from Philip's home. On June 24, 1675, while the people were gathered in the meeting-house to pray that war might be averted, a band of Indians stole into the town, set fire to the houses, slew the people, and carried off their property. As soon as word reached Boston of this savage attack, soldiers were sent, and in three days they drove Philip from his home at Mount Hope. Driven from Mount Hope he sought refuge among the Nipmucks, who then began to attack the settlements of Massachusetts.
Meantime another troop of savages fell upon Dartmouth, killing and torturing in fiendish glee. Other villages in the Plymouth group suffered in the same way. This must have been especially grievous to the Plymouth men, for they had worked hard to make the Indians Christians, and at this time there were probably six or seven hundred "praying Indians" within their boundaries.
In August the General Court of Massachusetts, wishing to protect her border settlements on the Connecticut, sought to make peace with the Nipmucks. A conference at Brookfield was arranged; but when the colonial party, under Captain Hutchinson, arrived, no Indians were there. Going out in search of them, Hutchinson and eight of his men were set upon from an ambush and slain.
The Indians Attack Brookfield, Hadley, and Deerfield
The rest of the party returned to Brookfield, and three days later the settlement was attacked by three hundred savages. The inhabitants took refuge in a minister's house, which was a large building. Here the Indians held them for two days while the fight continued. On the third they attempted to set the house on fire by rolling against it a cart filled with blazing hemp and
People of Hadley in Church Attacked by Indians.
flax. Just as they were about to accomplish their purpose, a heavy shower put out the fire, and soon troops from Boston came and drove the Indians away.
But they were not easily frightened. Their plans were deep-laid, and on September 1st they marched against Deerfield and Hadley at the same time. The people at Hadley were at church, when suddenly the service was interrupted by hideous yells. Seizing their guns they rushed out and beheld the village-green swarming with painted and feathered warriors. When they faced
the savages, they were panic-stricken. Then, weirdly, as if by magic, so tradition tells us, a strange old man with long, white, flowing beard and commanding pres
An Old House, Deerfield, Mass. ence, appeared in
their midst, rallied them, and led them in a furious charge upon the Indians. The superstitious red men were overcome with fear and fled. When the colonists looked about for their leader, he had disappeared. It is supposed that the mysterious stranger was William Goffe, the regicide, then in hiding in the neighborhood. Deerfield was in such danger that it had to be abandoned, and in the sudden flight a quantity of unthreshed grain was left behind. To secure it, the farmers, with eighteen wagons, under an escort of eighty men, returned to Deerfield. Having threshed out the grain and loaded the wagons, they started for their homes. After travelling all night, at seven in the morning they were fording a shallow stream, shaded by woods, when without warning they were attacked by seven hundred Nipmucks in ambush. A bloody battle followed, in which each party fought from behind trees, but the colonists, being greatly outnumbered, were badly defeated, only eight escaping. The place where this slaughter took place has ever since been known as Bloody Brook.
The Narragansetts Attacked in their Stronghold
Thus far the war had been one of defence on the part of the whites, and on the part of the Indians a series of ambuscades and surprises. The redskins would steal out of the forest, make a dash upon single houses or small villages, would murder, burn, plunder, and disappear. They would surprise workmen in the field, mothers in their homes, families on the way to church, and in all these ways they made life wretched for the settlers.
Something had to be done to improve this unbearable condition, and something of an emphatic nature. It was known that the Narragansetts were in league with Philip, that they had furnished him with powder, that they had sent warriors to join his forces, and that they were harboring some of his people. Moreover, it was learned that they were making preparations to join Philip the coming spring in an active campaign.
The Narragansetts lived in the present town of South Kingston, R. I., but had retired for the winter to a fort that stood on a rising ground in the midst of an almost impassable swamp. The fort, which occupied five or six acres, was surrounded by high palisades, one within the other, to a thickness of twelve feet. Within were about two thousand warriors, with women and children. In the autumn of 1675 the united colonies had raised one thousand men to attack these Indians in their stronghold, and in December they started.
The little army found themselves, one Saturday night, about eighteen miles from the fort, and, although the following day was Sunday, they decided that they must make an attack, for provisions were growing scarce. At five o'clock the next morning they started on the march, wading through deep snow until about one o'clock in the afternoon, when they came in sight of the fort. To reach the entrance, the men would have to go in single file, and be exposed to a withering fire from a block-house occupied by sharpshooters.
At first they were unsuccessful. It had been about forty years since the Pequot War, and the Indians were no longer unused to fire-arms. Well supplied with muskets and skilful in the use of them, they were a dangerous foe. As the men forced themselves into the enclosure, the leaders were cut down by Indian bullets, and the rest driven back by overwhelming numbers. A little later some of the Connecticut soldiers found a weak place in the palisades at the rear of the fort, and cut their way into the enclosure. Once inside, they set fire to the wigwams.
A terrible battle followed. The Indians fought desperately, but the white men's bullets and the flames together were too much for them. One thousand warriors perished, and the rest were driven off". The whites then burned six hundred wigwams and all the stores of corn. The chief, Canonochet, and several hundred warriors escaped.
About nightfall the white men started on their homeward march. They had lost about a quarter of their entire force, but they had accomplished their purpose. This defeat was a severe blow to the Narragansetts, and meant much for the future success of the colonists. It was not, however, the last of the troubles with the Indians.
Indian Attack upon Lancaster
In February of the following year Philip, with Nipmuck allies, entered the beautiful village of Lancaster, Massachusetts, at sunrise, and at once set fire to several houses and began to tomahawk women and children. Forty-two people found shelter in the minister's house, but this was finally set on fire and all the inmates driven out. Only one escaped; the others were slain or taken captive.
As the minister's wife, Mrs. Rawlinson, was passing through the door, her six-year-old daughter, whom she was carrying in her arms, was struck by a bullet. They were both among the captives. The child soon died, but the mother was compelled to follow the Indians through the snow, and was reduced to eating frogs, rattlesnakes, nuts, and acorns. She was finally ransomed for twenty pounds.
The End of the War
During the spring of the same year the Plymouth Colony was overrun by Indians, and the houses in nearly every town were burned. But in the following summer every man able to handle a musket was called into service by the colonial authorities. In the meantime the strength of the Indians had been weakened. Both the Nipmucks and the Narragansetts had lost so heavily that they had very little fighting strength left. Their fields were laid waste by the whites, and they suffered from famine. The Indians, therefore, began to lose courage, and not a few gave themselves up.
Finally Captain Church was put at the head of a large force. He understood Indian warfare and was a match for the Indian in cunning. From that time on, Philip was hunted from one hiding-place to another until he finally decided to return to Mount Hope, the home of his childhood. Here Captain Church surprised his camp, killed one hundred or more of his followers, and took his wife and son captive. Philip himself barely escaped with his life. "My heart breaks," he bitterly exclaimed; "now I am ready to die!"
He found shelter in a swamp, but his case was so hopeless that one of his warriors advised him to give himself up. The brave Indian chief, enraged at this cowardly proposal, seized his tomahawk and struck the Indian dead. But Philip's rash deed was fatal to himself, for the brother of his victim went at once to Captain Church's camp and told the Captain where Philip lay concealed. Philip's only way of escape was over a narrow isthmus which Captain Church had closely guarded. At daybreak Philip's camp was startled by a shot. The hunted chief sprang to his feet and made a desperate effort to escape. But in his flight he ran near a tree behind which were concealed a white man and an Indian. The white man's gun missed fire, but the Indian's took effect. Philip "fell upon his face in the mud and water, with his gun under him."
Thus ended King Philip's War, which had wrought such ruin among the settlements. Twelve or thirteen towns had been destroyed, six hundred houses burned, and nearly a thousand men, chiefly young men, slain. One in every twenty able-bodied men had fallen, and one family in twenty had been burned out. But King Philip's tribe was destroyed. Those who were not slain were sold as slaves, among them being King Philip's wife and only child, a boy of nine years of age.
For three years (1675-1678) the Indians had kept New England in terror, but King Philip's War closed forever that chapter of New England history. Except for border raids during the Intercolonial Wars, which we shall hear of later, New England had no more to fear, for the New England tribes had ceased to exist.
THE SALEM WITCHCRAFT
A Gloomy Outlook
\ LTHOUGH King Philip's War brought much dis_Z\_ tress upon the people of Massachusetts, less than twenty years later they passed through another experience almost as trying and serious. But before we discuss this experience, let us glance for a moment at the conditions which partly explain it, or, at all events, made it possible.
Many things united at this time to give the Massachusetts Colony a gloomy outlook on life. There were pirates by sea and Indians by land. The people's taxes were heavy. An epidemic of small-pox had reduced their numbers, and, worse than all, their charter had been taken away, and they were in doubt as to what their condition would be under the new charter. In the midst of many hardships they became discouraged, and their stern religion, which strengthened them to bear suffering, did not help much to keep them cheerful. No doubt all these various causes combined to put the people in just the right mood to catch whatever evil should float their way, and nothing more frightful in its consequences than the witchcraft delusion could possibly have befallen them.
What was Witchcraft and how did it happen to break out in Salem ?
What Witchcraft Was
It certainly was not a new thing. People of all ages have known about it and, in a general way, have believed in it. At the time of which we are writing it was a part of the accepted faith of Christian people, for the Bible seemed to teach it. But it was something they believed might occur in other times or other places, and not a thing expected to happen to themselves. In France, in Germany, in England, and in other European countries, thousands of supposed witches had been tortured and put to death by hanging and burning during the early part of the seventeenth century.
The word "witch" has come to mean in our day something quite unlike the witch of the seventeenth century. To call a mischievous child or a person with an especially clever touch "a witch" is to express an idea which gives pleasure. But to our fathers a witch was something very different. He was a person who had made an agreement with the devil to become his faithful subject, in return for which the devil agreed to bestow upon him a portion of his power.
According to belief, the power of the witches was indeed wonderful. They could raise terrific storms at sea, sweep the land with tornadoes, unroof houses, demolish churches, or scourge the land with plague and pestilence. They could afflict with bodily injury, could pinch, throttle, burn, and even deprive of reason or take life. In all this they delighted, and in the performance of these black arts they were practising what was known as witchcraft.
To accomplish evil, it was not even necessary that the witches should be present in person. They could go in "shape," or send representatives in the form of some animal, as a dog, black cat, hog, or yellow bird, the latter being a frequent messenger of evil in Salem. Witches were supposed to travel on broomsticks. One of the marks set upon them by the devil was certain callous or dead spots, which could be pricked or cut without pain.
It seems hardly credible to us that the great and the good, the people of power and influence, could ever put their faith in such fancies. But such an eminent judge as Sir Matthew Hale of England, and such learned men as Increase Mather, the President of Harvard College, and his scholarly son, Cotton Mather, lent their influence to the delusion.
Although the epidemic raged furiously in England and on the continent of Europe, it had broken out but lightly and in only a few instances in the colonies.
How Witchcraft Broke Out in Salem
In Salem it appeared first in the family of the minister, Mr. Samuel Parris. He had been a merchant in the West Indies in early life and seems to have been a man of very worldly nature. At any rate, he is said to have been grasping in agreements pertaining to salary, and he seems to have been the occasion of some of the disagreements and dissensions in his parish. Perhaps a man of more spiritual character might have stamped out the evil before it gained such a foothold, or at least have checked its wild advance. In his family were two servants�negro or Indian, probably of mixed blood�whom he had brought with him from the West Indies. These were John Indian and his wife Tituba. Coming from a superstitious country where sorcery prevailed, Tituba probably had many weird tales to tell the young people, tales which fired their imaginations and added to the air of superstition already abroad.
During the winter of 1691 and 1692, for amusement a few of the young people of the village formed a "circle," or, as we should call it to-day, a "club," to practise palmistry and other magic arts. It met at the house of Mr. Parris, and included his daughter, his niece, and several others, varying in age from nine to twenty years.
Later on, the children began putting into practice the tricks they had learned. They would creep into holes, and under benches and chairs, fall down in terrible fits, go through agonizing tortures, and utter loud, ridiculous sounds which nobody could understand.
Of course their families were very much alarmed, other people became excited, and finally the doctor was sent for. He did not understand the case, and, true to the superstition of the times, he pronounced it witchcraft. As witchcraft was something nobody understood, the doctor was not contradicted.
The "Afflicted Children"
The parents now tried prayer and fasting, when the rod, perhaps, would have been much better. Other ministers were called in and the children began to perform before them. Of course the ministers were horrorstricken and agreed with the doctor. From this time the children were called "afflicted children" and were believed to be under the influence of Satan.
The girls grew bold by reason of the attention they attracted, and soon began to perform on public occasions. On Sunday, March 2, 1692, just as Mr. Lawson, who was occupying the pulpit that day, was about to rise to preach, one of the girls cried out, "Now stand up and name your text." A little later another exclaimed, "There is a yellow bird sitting on the minister's hat." These unseemly interruptions intensified the excitement and increased the sympathy for the "afflicted children." There was more praying and fasting and interviews with the children. It was a clear case of witchcraft, and people began to whisper, "Who can it be that has bewitched them ?" When the children were asked, they did not at first answer, but being urged, pronounced the names, "Good""Osborne""Ti
Witchcraft Trials and Punishments
No time was lost. These were humble folk, without influence, and it required no great courage to arrest them. They were charged with "certain detestable arts called witchcraft," by which the persons named were "tortured, afflicted, pined, consumed, wasted, and tormented." Those who examined them were all men of influence and good character, and the judges who tried them were distinguished men in the community. When the court met, the crowd was so great that they adjourned to the meeting house. There, with much pomp and circumstance, and amidst great excitement, the examinations went on. It was of no avail for the accused to assert their innocence, nor to declare, in answer to the Court's questions, that they did not hurt the children nor make contracts with the devil. For the judges had made up their minds beforehand, and no matter what the accused said, it was turned against them.
The children were always present as witnesses, and when called upon to say whether this one or that-one hurt them, they would always answer yes, and would presently be "tormented." Of the three accused, Tituba was the only one who would make " confession." She said she hurt the children, that the devil made her do it, but that she was sorry and would do it no more. When Tituba began to confess, her "shape" no longer tormented the children and she began to be tortured herself, before the Court. This helped her out amazingly with the judges. It was said afterward that the reason Tituba gave for the weird stories she told in court was that her master beat her and otherwise abused her to make her confess and accuse the other women.
They were all condemned to jail. Tituba escaped death by her confession, but Sarah Good was hanged as a witch, and Sarah Osborne, who was ill when arrested, died in jail before the day of execution arrived.
The excitement was now intense. The knowledge that there were witches in the community was sufficient to give terrible alarm to the fearful, and yet there were always some whose calm, clear reason did not approve of what was done. One of these, Martha Corey, was a good woman, of excellent standing in the church. She had no patience with the hysterical proceedings and did not hesitate to express her mind. This gave offence to the ruling powers, and soon it was rumored that persons professing great piety were shining marks for the shafts of the evil one.
Presently, Martha Corey was arrested and tried. The same foolish questions were put to her as to the others. Her answers, "I am an innocent person," "I am a gospel woman," were of no avail. Even her husband appeared against her. In her presence the children were pinched, bitten, and otherwise tormented. "If you will all go hang me," she finally exclaimed, "how can I help it!" She was, of course, sent to jail, and afterward was executed.
Another shining mark of piety was Rebecca Nurse, a woman of beautiful character and belonging to a prominent and prosperous family, against whom Parris bore a grudge. Amazement fell upon friends and neighbors when she was included among the number accused. Strenuous efforts were made to secure her release, but in vain. The jury at first brought in a verdict of acquittal, but the Court sent them out again, and they returned and gave a sentence of "guilty." So this beautiful and saintly woman of more than seventy years was led to her death on Gallows Hill.
By May, 1692, when Phipps, the new Governor, came from England, over one hundred accused witches were in jail. He appointed a special commission of seven to try the cases. Among the many noted ones were that of Bridget Bishop, who wore a scarlet bodice and was therefore in league with Satan; George Burroughs, a Harvard graduate and minister in Wells, Maine, who could lift, unaided, a barrel of cider and, therefore, had Satanic aid, though more to the point was the fact that he had formerly been a rival of Parris in Salem; and Giles Corey, a man over eighty and the husband of Martha Corey, who refused to plead and was pressed to death.
End of Witchcraft Delusion
Many others were brought, by means of torture, to confess that they were witches, and they were saved. By October, twenty persons had been put to death, fifty-five tortured or terrified into confession, one hundred and fifty persons awaited trial, and two hundred more were accused or suspected.
The children began to get ambitious. People of prominence were accused; for example, Mrs. Hale, wife of the minister of Beverly, Lady Phipps, the Governor's wife, and the minister of the Old South Church. The Court felt that these accusations were too close to be comfortable. The flame was getting near enough to scorch. A reaction set in. The General Court met October I2th, and a remonstrance came from the people of Andover against the proceedings of the witch tribunal. A new Court was established and its opening delayed until the following January.
During this interval of time the public mind had
greatly changed. When the Court sat, only three were found guilty, and these were pardoned. No more executions took place. Parris was driven from Salem. Old Judge Sewall, who served on the commission during the trials, stood up in the Old South Church and
read a public recantation. Many connected with the movement, especially the bewitched, confessed and repented.
Thus passed the witchcraft delusion from Massachusetts, although for fifty years longer it still hung over the countries of Europe. It had scattered death and misery on its way, but had left the minds of the people free. No such superstition could ever again hold them in thrall.
Occupations of the People of New England
Before passing from New England it may be well to make brief mention of its leading industries in comparison with those of Virginia and Maryland. As we
have seen, the fertile soil and warm climate of the South favored the growth of tobacco, and large plantations were the rule. But in New England neither the rocky soil nor the cold climate favored this kind of living. The people dwelt largely in towns and, in most cases, especially in Massachusetts, not far from the coast. Near the towns were the farms of those who tilled the soil.
Moreover, while in Virginia the many slow-moving rivers made it easy for vessels to reach the planter's wharves, in hilly New England the swift-running streams were not suitable for navigation. But they were useful in turning the wheels of mills and factories. We can therefore see why manufacturing began in a small way in the early days of New England. Not only saw-mills and weaving-mills sprang up, but also factories for making salt, gunpowder, and glassware. Off the coast there was good fishing, and extensive forests supplied a rich abundance of lumber for shipbuilding and commerce.
THE DUTCH AND NEW NETHERLAND
THE people who first settled New York were quite different from any others about whom we have studied. They came not for freedom of worship nor for any special kind of government. They had no particular grievance at home, nor any social, political or religious ideals to set up in the new country. They were simply traders who wanted to make money in an ordinary sort of way.
You remember that when what we now know as New York Harbor and Hudson River were first explored in 1609 by Henry Hudson, he was in the employ of the Dutch East India Company, and was looking for a north-west passage to India. Of course he did not find the north-west passage, and the trading company were angry. But the value of his discovery was far greater than all that the Dutch East India Company had spent upon the voyage, and the new possessions were at no distant time to become one of the most flourishing and attractive colonies in the New World.
The Beginnings of New Netherland
This did not happen all at once, however. For many years the Dutch maintained only a single trading post,
which was on Manhattan Island at the mouth of the
river. In 1614 a second post, Fort Nassau, was established a little below the present site of Albany, and in the years following still others sprang up. But not until 1623 was there any
attempt to found a colony. In that year the project was started by the Dutch West India Company, a body of merchants who, two years before, had received their charter, giving them liberty to plant colonies and granting almost unlimited power in governing them. The Dutch called the country they were to occupy New Netherland.
A company of Walloons� Protestants from Belgium�were the first to be sent over. A part of these settled on Manhattan Island, while others sailed up the Hudson River and built a fort, Fort Orange, on the present site of Albany. Eighteen families settled in this neighborhood.
Some months later a second Fort Nassau was built on the east bank of the Delaware River, opposite what is now Philadelphia. Another party started a fort on the Connecticut River where Hartford now is, but did not complete it for several years. They called it Fort Good Hope. Still another group of families visited Long Island, and settled at Wallabout Bay, on the present site of Brooklyn. The purpose of settling in these scattered
The Settlement of New Netherland
localities was to make good their claim to the land, for the English King had objected to their coming. He said that all the country belonged to him.
Peter Minuit made Governor
In 1625 there arrived in New Amsterdam two large ships loaded with cattle, horses, swine, and sheep. Other emigrants came, and soon the colony numbered two hundred. During the first few years the company managed their local affairs through agents, but in 1626 Peter Minuit was appointed governor, or director-general, as the office was called. He was a good and just man, and he knew how to keep the Indians friendly and the people contented. Although he had almost absolute power under the company, he governed wisely, and allowed many religions and languages in the young colony.
The land for settlements was bought from the Indians, but no great sum was given. For the whole island of Manhattan, containing about twenty-two thousand acres, he paid only twenty-four dollars. Having secured his land, Minuit built a fort at the lower end of the island. It was very simple, consisting of a block-house, surrounded by large red cedar palisades, which were banked with earthworks inside. It was called Fort Amsterdam. Just east along the river were the thirty or more log-cabins of the settlers. Besides the fort, Minuit built a warehouse, a brewery, a bakery, and a horse-mill.
The Dutch and the Indians
The little colony, thus staunchly begun, was for a time in the midst of a primitive wilderness. Bears, panthers, and wolves were frequent visitors, and often after nightfall prowled about the settlement. But from the Indians the Dutch had nothing to fear. Hudson had won their good-will; and as the Dutch never treated the Indians unfairly, the Indians continued friendly to the Dutch.
But friendship alone would not explain the red men's good behavior, especially that of the Iroquois, who lived in the interior. It happened that, in the very year in which Hudson sailed up the Hudson River from the south, Champlain, a French explorer, approached the same region from the north. He came down from Canada as an ally of the Algonquin Indians, and on the shores of Lake Champlain met in battle their deadly enemy, the Iroquois.
Up to that time the Iroquois were masters of the interior, but the Frenchmen used strange and fearful weapons, which struck terror to the hearts of the Indians, and drove them in panic from the field. From that time the Iroquois bitterly hated the French and stubbornly opposed their progress in the New World.
So it was the Iroquois' hatred of the French, rather than his love for the Dutch�and later for the English� which kept him on good terms with the settlers of New Netherland. The Dutch had fire-arms like those of the French, and the Iroquois Indians were eager to exchange furs for these weapons, in order that they might in turn defeat the French.
Trade in furs flourished in New Netherland. Ships found their way along all the rivers and bays where peltries could be had in exchange for fire-arms and such trifles as the Indians fancied. But, notwithstanding the growth of trade and the friendship of the Iroquois, the colony of New Netherland did not prosper. The population consisted largely of restless and shifting traders. Perhaps the better class of Dutch people were so happy at home that they needed more than an ordinary promise of reward to leave Holland. At all events, the West India Company seemed to think so, for in 1629 they issued their famous charter which gave special privileges to all who would come and settle permanently in New Netherland.
This charter offered a large grant of land to any member of the company who, within the next four years, would take to New Netherland fifty grown-up persons and settle them in towns along the Hudson or other near-by rivers which would admit ships. The
estate might extend along the river for sixteen miles on one side, or for eight miles on both sides, and could run as far back as was desired. The owner, who was to
pay the Indians for the land, was called a patroon, or lord of the manor.
The patroon was to provide his tenants with house and land, and stock each little farm with tools and cattle. The colonist, on his part, was required to pay a certain rent and compelled to keep a fixed place of living. He had to grind all his corn at the patroon's mill, and could not hunt or fish without the patroon's special permission. Thus a kind of feudal system, such as Europe had in the Middle Ages, was to be built up in New Netherland.
Among the few general provisions there were two of importance. The first was that a parson and a schoolmaster must be provided on each estate; and the second, that no traffic in furs was to be permitted with the Indians. For the West India Company was unwilling to allow any but its own agents to engage in this trade.
An Indian Fur-trader.
The privileges held out under this charter seemed to attract the patroons more than it did the peasants. This was natural, for it greatly increased the power and importance of the Dutch merchant who started out from Holland with his fifty dependents. But there was not so much for the Dutch farmer to gain, and in leaving his country he really gave up a large measure of personal freedom.
Walter Van Twiller, the Second Dutch Governor
Under this system the wealth of the West India Company in New Netherland increased in time to a vast importance. But disputes soon arose between the patroons and the company, mostly on account of the fur trade; and as the company thought Minuit was favoring the patroons, they recalled him. In his place they put a weak and irresolute man, Walter Van Twiller.
During his time of service Walter Van Twiller did little credit to himself or to the West India Company. In person he was not attractive. He was so large and fat that Washington Irving, in his " Knickerbocker's History of New York," said in jest that "he was exactly five feet six inches in height and six feet five inches in circumference." His temper was bad. He quarrelled with merchants, shippers, and magistrates, and kept up a constant bickering with the English on the Connecticut frontier and on the Delaware River. He soon proved himself incompetent. But he managed affairs in such a way as to favor the patroons; for, at the expense of the company, he had become a large landowner
himself, and, in fact, had grown rich while in their service.
Some things, however, must be counted to his credit. He held the friendship of the Indians, and, in spite of his quarrels with the English, carried on a brisk commerce with them and with the West Indies. Salt and tobacco were sent from Manhattan to Boston, and horses and oxen of all the finest breeds were brought there directly from Holland.
Some progress was made in farming, too, and a few new buildings were put up. Fort Good Hope, on the Connecticut River, was finished, and in New Amsterdam were built a number of yellow brick houses, a brewery, a church and parsonage, a few shops, and windmills for sawing wood.
Slow Growth of New Netherland
But even so, New Netherland was as yet little more than a trading station, with here and there small groups of settlers; and the character of the settlers was not good. They were largely of the rough or adventurous sort. The thrifty people had not yet come out from the home land. To the great manors tenants would not come in large numbers, and the patroons felt more interest in the fur trade than in farming.
This condition was in striking contrast to that which prevailed in the English colonies of New England and Virginia. The population of New England had grown in twelve years from nothing to twenty-six hundred, and in Virginia at this time there were four thousand settlers. During nearly the same period the population of New Netherland had not increased beyond three hundred. The West India Company were very much dissatisfied. Evil reports of Van Twiller reached their ears; and as he was finally charged with taking money from the company for his own use, he was recalled.
William Kieft, the Third Dutch Governor
His successor, William Kieft, the third Dutch Governor, was a man of good education and bustling activity; but he was domineering, and so easily and often angered that he won for himself the title of "William the Testy." He was utterly lacking in tact when dealing with his neighbors, and he excited the Indians to such a pitch of anger and bitterness that they came near to putting an end to the settlement. He was also petty and autocratic in his governing. Surely this was not the sort of man to build up a colony.
The West India Company were greatly alarmed, for not only were their receipts falling off, but their commercial reputation was suffering. Something had to be done. The patroons were working at cross-purposes to the company, and they were turning to their own use the profits which the company considered should be coming to them.
A New Policy
In 1638, therefore, a policy was adopted, which marked a new era in the growth of New Netherland. Trade and the right to cultivate the land were thrown open to the whole world, and new encouragements to settlers were offered. Farmers with their families were brought across the Atlantic without cost to themselves, and each was provided with a farm, a house, a barn, and also with horses, cows, sheep, swine, and tools. Moreover, it was made easy for these new settlers to make the farms their own at the end of six years.
As a result of these liberal terms, men of excellent quality came not only from Holland but from the English colonies. In 1639 the farms of Manhattan had increased in number from seven to thirty. Besides single farmers, there came also large parties, each led by some wealthy man. Among these companies was one under DeVries, who settled upon Staten Island and became an important man in the affairs of the colony. Some came from Virginia and planted fields of tobacco and orchards of peach trees and cherry trees. Many came from Massachusetts also, to escape its rigid government, among them Captain Underhill of Pequot fame, who brought several families with him. All were given equal rights, and nothing was required except the oath of allegiance.
War with the Indians
Now at last it seemed as if prosperity would smile upon the Dutch settlement. But, notwithstanding its growth, it could not keep up with the English colonies, whose settlements upon Long Island were pressing upon the Dutch. And a more threatening danger lurked in Governor Kieft's attitude toward the neighboring Indians.
- The Iroquois had always been friendly with the Dutch, and since the early days had observed their treaty of friendship. But the Indians around New York belonged to another family, the Algonquin, who were enemies of the Iroquois. Thus far the Dutch had managed to keep friendly with both theAlgonquins and the Iroquois. But now came a serious difficulty. The increasing number of farms with their roaming cattle worried the Indians, who should have been dealt with in a friendly way. But instead of treating the red men with tact, as previous governors had done, Kieft used them roughly, and in one case even with treachery.
Besides, these Indians had a real grievance. It related in a way to the Iroquois who, living on the frontier of the colony were so well supplied with fire-arms by traders that they had become a greater scourge than ever to the surrounding tribes, and kept the Algonquins in constant terror. The Algonquins could not understand why the Dutch should supply fire-arms to the Iroquois and not to them.
A Dutch Equipage.
It was against the rules of the West India Company to supply any Indian with fire-arms, but it was only in and about Manhattan that the law could be enforced. This, of course, was not satisfactory to the Algonquins, and when Kieft not only refused arms but levied a tax on the Indians, to help pay for new fortifications in New Amsterdam, their anger was bitter.
About this time a petty theft of some pigs on Staten Island was charged to the Raritan Indians. A party of soldiers was sent against them, several braves were killed, and some crops burned. Thus the torch was lighted which set passions and settlements aflame.
The war which thereupon broke out and brought disaster to both the Dutch and the Indians lasted four years. It was finally ended by Captain Underbill, who, with one hundred and fifty Dutch soldiers, advanced upon the Algonquin stronghold. At midnight, by the light of the moon, he set fire to their village, and before daybreak seven hundred Indians lay dead in their fortress. The Dutch lost fifteen men. During the entire war sixteen hundred Indians were slaughtered, border settlements were laid in ruins, and the growth of the colony severely checked.
Before beginning the Indian war, Kieft found it necessary to call together for advice a council of twelve men chosen by the people. This was the first representative body of New York. After it had served his purpose he dismissed it, but he had to call a similar council a little later. This council was so disgusted
with Kieft's conduct that its members sent an address to the West India Company asking for his recall.
Stuyvesant made Governor
Kieft's successor was Peter Stuyvesant, the fourth and last Dutch Governor to serve New Netherland under the Dutch West India Company. He presented a striking figure. He was a man of gigantic stature, with a dark complexion and a haughty, commanding look. He
Stuyvesant's House in the Bowery.
dressed with extreme care, wearing the rich costume which Dutchmen of high rank wore at that time. He is described as strutting about "like a peacock, as if he were the Czar of Muscovy." As a soldier he had won admiration for bravery, having lost a leg on the battlefield, and as governor he displayed much courage and good sense in dealing with his enemies. But he did not know how to manage his own people. When he took control of affairs in New Netherland he told the colonists that he should govern them as a "father does his children." He kept his word by treating them as if they could not think for themselves and had no rights of their own. It was natural that they should object to such treatment and that they should refuse to give him their loyal support.
But in spite of the strained relations between the grim old soldier and the people the colony at length began to grow. Men of all creeds came, and as many as eighteen languages were spoken. In 1653 there were in New Netherland about two thousand people, in eluding eight hundred in New Amsterdam; and by 1664 the Dutch population in the colony was nearly ten thousand, about sixteen hundred of whom were in
A glimpse of the New Amsterdam of that day may not be uninteresting. It occupied that part of Manhattan Island lying south of the present Wall Street, so named from the row of palisades extending as a defence from east to west, and protecting the north side of the town. A gateway in the palisade opened into a wide road, which has become the well-known Broadway of to-day. Within the wall this street divided the town into two nearly equal parts. On the west side stood the dwellings of the leading men, the church, and the gardens belonging to the West India Company. On the east side were the less pretentious dwellings. The larger part of the poorer colonists lived outside on farms or in very small groups of houses.
The log-cabins of the earlier settlers had now given place to houses built of brick covered with red and blue tile, with the gable-ends looking toward the street. Where the Stock Exchange now is, Dutch boys used to slide down hill in winter, and in summer they drove home the cows that pastured nearby. In the marketplace the farmers sold their goods, while their horses pastured on the Common, now Bowling Green. As there was but little coin, wampum and beaver skins were almost wholly used as money. Scattered along the Hudson were farms and villages. These kept up easy communication with the town by shallops and
New Amsterdam in Stuyvesant's Time.
larger craft, which were constantly carrying goods and peltries. Along the Hudson, also, were the large estates of the patroons.
The coming of worshippers of many creeds so disturbed Stuyvesant that he changed the policy of religious toleration which up to this time had prevailed, and began a bitter and shameful persecution of the Baptists and the Quakers. Upon hearing of this persecution the West India Company rebuked him, and he interfered no more.
Stuyvesant also came into conflict with the patroons,
A Dutch Manor.
who had become so powerful that they chose to ignore him. But his troubles were not confined to the people of New Netherland. The English were pressing so close on the east that Stuyvesant went in person to
its terms, Oyster Bay, on Long Island, and Greenwich, on the mainland, were made the boundary limits. Thus the English came off with the lion's share, much to the disgust of New Netherland. On the Delaware he was more successful. The Swedes who had settled there had taken a Dutch fort which, they said, was in their territory. Stuyvesant now re-took the fort and forced the Swedes to acknowledge the Dutch masters of the country.
Meanwhile, the Indians were committing wrongs near New Amsterdam in revenge for an injury done to them. Stuyvesant was sent for and came home. He regained the good-will of the Indians, and after a few months they declared that they would be friendly with the Dutch for all time. But New Netherland, never strong in military defence, was now in a weaker state than ever, for the Delaware campaign had so exhausted the money of the colony that there was not enough left to use in preparing either to fight the Indians or to resist the English fleet, when, a few years later, it appeared in the harhor.
New Netherland Becomes an English Province
The arrival of the English, in 1664, and their demand that the Dutch surrender to them, was a great surprise, for at this time England and Holland were at peace. But England felt a pressing need of New Netherland. In the first place, the Dutch were now, as the Spaniards had been a century before, the great naval and commercial rivals of England, and, of course, England was jealous of Holland. The Dutch, also, held the finest harbor on the Atlantic coast, and the shortest highway, the Hudson River, to the Indian fur trade in the interior. Moreover, the Dutch colonies were wedged in between the English colonies on the north and those on the south, thus completely separating the two groups.
Therefore, after allowing the Dutch to remain for fifty years in the territory they had settled, England suddenly brought forward her claim to the land by the discovery of the Cabots. Accordingly, in 1664, while England and Holland were at peace, Charles II sent over a fleet of three vessels and four or five hundred men, under command of Richard Nicolls, to reduce New Netherland to an English province. The excuse for sending this fleet in time of peace was that Holland had broken the navigation laws.
When Nicolls arrived in the harbor, he demanded immediate surrender. The city was all but defenceless, and Stuyvesant himself was at Fort Orange, whither he had gone to put down an Indian uprising. Returning in haste, he called his council together and urged them to use what means they had to repel the invasion.
We may well imagine the grim old soldier stamping the ground with his wooden leg when he made his frantic appeals to the people. "I would rather be carried to my grave," he cried, "than surrender to the English"; and when his councillors demanded that the letter of the English commander should be read, he angrily tore it to pieces and threw the fragments on the floor. But resistance was useless, and after a little delay the articles of surrender were signed. This was the first step toward making New Netherland New York.
As colonizers the Dutch, like the Spanish, had failed, and for a similar reason. The Spaniards sought gold and adventure; the Dutch, trade. They both failed to do what the English did, put home-making before wealth-getting.
Conditions under English Rule
Nicolls was proclaimed governor, and New Amsterdam was re-named New York. There was no plundering and no disorder. Trade was not interrupted, and the affairs of life went on as usual. The conquered Dutch were very cheerful. They had suffered much under their own rulers, and the new order promised to be at least no worse than the old.
The new laws, modelled after those of the New England colonies, were wise and liberal, and were put into operation gradually. But because the laws did not grant all the rights which the people of Massachusetts and Connecticut enjoyed, the English settlers in New Netherland grumbled. And while for the most part the affairs of the company were managed wisely, as the years passed the people became more dissatisfied. Some of the towns even refused to pay taxes for defence, because the tax was decreed by the governor instead of being voted by the people.
Two English Governors
The forts, therefore, were not put in order, and when, in 1673, war broke out again between England and Holland, the Dutch squadron easily captured the city in four'hours. New York became New Netherland once more, Dutch names replaced English names, and Dutch forms of government took the place of English.* But this condition lasted only fifteen months. At the close of the war in Europe New Netherland was given back to the English, and from that time on New York remained an English colony. Sir Edmund Andros, of whom we hear at a later date in New England, was appointed governor. He ruled the colony wisely, but came in conflict with the new settlement on South River�now called New Jersey�and was recalled.
Under the next governor, Thomas Dongan (1683), the people finally secured the representative government for which they had so long been clamoring. But they did not have it long, for the Duke of York became King James II, and in 1686 took away the new privileges from the people.
* Captain Anthony Colve was appointed governor, and remained in office until New Netherland again became an English province.
Leisler Heads an Uprising of the People
Two years later New York was joined to New England under the rule of Sir Edmund Andros, who was represented in New York by Deputy-Governor Nicholson. When later in the same year news came that James II had been driven from the throne, the people's party, under the leadership of Jacob Leisler, a German shopkeeper, started a revolution of their own. Leisler drove Nicholson out of the colony and took the government into his own hands.
Although he was patriotic in spirit, he was rash in action, and did not give satisfaction to all. In 1691 he was forced to surrender to the royal governor, Colonel Henry Sloughter, whom the new king had sent out. Soon after Sloughter's arrival, while under the influence of drink, he was induced to sign the death-warrant of Leisler.
Growth of New York
Other governors, good and bad, followed, but New York continued to grow. By the close of the century the colony numbered about twenty-five thousand. The prevailing races were Dutch and English, but there were also many French Huguenots and Germans and some Jews. The population dwelt mainly on the islands and shores of New York Bay.
Agriculture was not especially flourishing; but the fur trade, always growing, had spread far into the interior. Moreover, as we have seen, New York had the finest harbor on the American coast, the principal highway to the interior, and was the key which securely locked the possession of North America. These natural advantages counted greatly in her favor. Although for more than a century her growth was slow, yet in the course of time she increased in population, and because of her wealth and power became known as the Empire State.
THE QUAKERS IN PENNSYLVANIA
FIFTY years or more after the Pilgrims, the Puritans, and the Catholics had sought in the New World a refuge from religious persecution in England, another non-conforming sect found their way to the banks of the Schuylkill River, where they planted the first settlement of Pennsylvania. These people called themselves Friends, but were commonly known as Quakers. Their distinguished leader was William
The Quakers a Peculiar People
As we have already learned, in our study of the Quakers in New England (see p. 89), the central doctrine of the Quaker belief was that God reveals himself to every soul through the "inner light," or conscience, as we term it. They believed that everyone should decide religious questions for himself and should stand on an equality with all others before the law. They disapproved of all customs which seemed to assert that one man was better than another, and refused to take off their hats even in the presence of royalty. In addressing each other they used what was then thought the more familiar "thee" and "thou," instead of "you" as we say to-day. They believed in living a simple life, and even went so far as to insist upon wearing plain clothing
of sober colors. They opposed war so strongly that they would not pay taxes in support of it, nor would they take an oath in a court of justice. These new and strange ideas, expressed in their daily life, marked them as a peculiar people.
Young William Penn turns Quaker
Most prominent among the Quakers was William Penn, who was born in London October 14, 1644. His
father, a wealthy man, had distinguished himself as an admiral in the English navy, and through devotion to the Stuart family had won the friendship and confidence of the king, Charles II.
Penn was educated at Oxford University. He was a good scholar, fond of Greek, and spoke easily in Latin, Italian, French, German, and Dutch. He was proficient in out-door sports, also, being an excellent oarsman, a bold horseman, and a skilful swordsman.
While still in Oxford he became so deeply impressed with the eloquence of Thomas Loe, a famous Quaker preacher, that he adopted the Quaker ideas. In company with a number of other students he refused to
The Pennsylvania Settlement.
wear the student gowns or attend religious exercises in the chapel. Such conduct was open rebellion against the authority of the college, and was a serious offence.
Thinking to change the current of his thought and cause him to forget his Quaker notions, Penn's father sent him to Paris. After spending a year or more abroad in study and in travel he returned to London much changed. He had become a cultivated young man, affected in manner and speech. For a time he seemed wuiiam ram.
to have forgotten his Quaker principles, and settled down to the study of law. But the plague of the following year (1666) sobered him again and revived his early religious ideas.
Once more his father sent him away, this time to Ireland, where he served as a volunteer. But while at Cork he again came under the sway of Loe, and in 1667 was among those who were arrested for attending Quaker meetings. When his father heard of this fresh disgrace, he was very angry; but, convinced of his son's sincerity, offered to forgive all his offences if he would only agree to take off his hat to his father, to the Duke of York, and to the King of England. The young man steadily refused. His firmness in doing what he believed to be right, even though it made him appear ridiculous, led to an amusing incident. Coming into the presence of the king one day, Penn stood without removing his hat. The fun-loving Charles at once removed his own. Surprised at this, Penn said, "Why dost thou remove thy hat, friend Charles?" The king answered, " Because where I am it is customary for only one to remain covered."
The stern admiral did not take his son's peculiarities in such good humor. Angered and even exasperated by his obstinate and foolish conduct, he drove the young man from his home. But friends who admired Penn's earnestness and devotion to truth joined their entreaties with his mother's, and the admiral allowed his son to return.
Penn's "Holy Experiment"
Not long after this (1670) Penn's father died and left him a large fortune. During the next ten years he devoted much of his time to writing and speaking in the cause of the Quakers and using his influence at CoUrt to obtain for them more liberal treatment. He was often fined and sometimes thrown into prison. But none of this disturbed his peace of mind, for he was willing to do what be believed was right though death itself should result.
In 1681 William Penn decided upon a course of action which gave him a permanent place among the honored leaders of American history. During these years of persecution in England he had become interested in the Quaker settlements in the Jerseys,* of which he was one of the proprietors. Four hundred Quakers had already come out from England in 1677. They set up a liberal government in which one of the chief features was religious toleration.
* At that time New Jersey was divided into East Jersey and West Jersey.
Penn's purpose now was to provide, from his ample means, a place of refuge for the people of every faith, but especially for the persecuted Quakers whose sufferings he had nobly shared. He decided to plant a colony where the people should govern themselves and should worship according to their own conscience and the teachings of their religious faith. This he called his "Holy Experiment."
At the same time Penn received a charter as proprietor, similar to that granted to Lord Baltimore, but not quite so liberal. For it was now fifty years since the Maryland charter was given, and experience was making the English Government more careful in granting privileges to colonies. The charter gave Penn power to appoint officers and to make laws with the advice and assent of the freemen; but these laws were to be submitted to the. crown within five years for approval.
The king named the province Pennsylvania, or Penn's Woods, in honor of Penn's father, Admiral William Penn, who had distinguished himself in the king's service.
Penn wrote a pamphlet which was widely distributed. In this he gave a description of the new country, the terms of the charter, and his plans of government. He offered land on liberal terms, and Quakers from all directions were attracted by his scheme.
Penn goes to Pennsylvania
During the first year after he received his grant more than twenty ships, carrying three thousand passengers, sailed for the Delaware River. This was in 1681. In October, 1682, Penn himself, leaving his wife and children in England, sailed for Pennsylvania in the ship Welcome, with one hundred passengers. After a two months' passage he reached the colony in West Jersey. It must have done his heart good to hear the shouts of joy that welcomed his arrival, shouts that came not only from the Quakers, but from Swedes and Dutch among whom they had settled.
The following day he took formal possession, receiving from the colonists, in token of allegiance, a clod of earth with a twig stuck in it, and a porringer of water. This ceremony symbolized that Penn had been given supreme power on land and sea in Delaware, or the "territories" as it was called. The "territories" were not included in Penn's charter, but were acquired separately by him from the Duke of York, to whom they had previously been granted. Having taken possession of these, Penn at once sailed up the river to Chester, where he was cordially greeted by herdsmen and farmers who had arrived from England on an earlier ship. Here he was within the boundaries of Pennsylvania, as his grant was called.
Penn's New Government
Penn's first duty was to organize a new government, and for this purpose a convention was called at Chester. Although his grant did not include the land which is now Delaware, at their own request the colonists of that region came under the authority of Penn. The terms of the charter and the laws agreed upon in England were submitted, and accepted together with such other laws as were necessary. "You may amend, alter, or add," he said; "I am ready to settle such foundations as may be for your happiness."
It was provided that the governor should be appointed by the proprietor, but that the council and the assembly should be elected by the people. The laws were very liberal, and were received with gratitude as granting "more than expected liberty." They required (1) that freeholders should believe in one God, (2) that all public officers should be professing Christians, (3) that all children should be taught a trade, (4) that all prisons should be workhouses.
The City of "Brotherly Love"
From Chester Penn sailed up the Delaware River until he came to the mouth of the Schuylkill, where the new city of Philadelphia was to rise. He speaks of it as "a situation not surpassed by one among all the many places " he had seen in the world. Already, in the autumn of 1682, the city had been laid out. Penn called it Philadelphia, the city of " Brotherly Love," for it was to stand as a token of the spirit in which the colony was planted�"a free colony for all mankind," where liberty of conscience and civil freedom should be the common birthright.
The plan of the city was simple. The land was mostly level, and the streets crossed each other at right angles. They were named Pine, Spruce, Chestnut, Cedar, and so on, after the trees that were blazed in the forest, to show where the city streets should lie. The settlers came much faster than houses could be built, and at first some of the colonists
Penn's Slate-Roof House in Philadelphia. WCrC obliged to HvC
in caves along the river bank. By the end of 1683 there were three hundred and fifty-seven houses in the city, some of which were wooden and some of bright red brick. The city grew rapidly. The same year a weekly post was begun, and a teacher of twenty years' experience in England engaged to open a school. Trade of all kinds began to flourish. Vessels were built and woollen manufactories started. The first mill was put up in 1683. Within another year or two the first printing press of the middle colonies was established at Philadelphia. Roads were laid out and bridges built. Land was worth many times what it had cost.
Friendly Relations with the Indians
This rapid growth was possible in Pennsylvania for several reasons, a most important one being the friendly attitude of the Indians. We should expect thar a man with the even temper and kindly nature of this great Quaker leader would win the good-will of the Indians, and such was the case. In 1682, under the spreading branches of the now famous elm tree, William Penn met the Indians and signed a treaty of peace. "The friendship between you and me," he said to them, "I will not compare to a chain, for that might rust; nor to a tree, for the falling tree might break. We are the same as if one man's body were to be divided into two parts. We are all one flesh and blood." The Indians were quite equal to Penn in their expression of friendly feeling. Handing him a wampum belt of peace, they replied, "We will live in love and peace with William Penn as long as the sun and the moon shall endure."
By the terms of" this treaty Penn paid the Indians fairly for the lands that he had secured from them, even though he had already paid King Charles a large sum of money for these same lands. . To the Indians he gave knives, kettles, axes, beads, and various other articles in exchange for the vast forest region that they were willing that he should claim as his own.
Then and always after that time he was kind and honest in his dealings with the red men. He seemed to know just how to appeal to the hearts of the Indians. He showed them a friendly spirit and they in turn showed a friendly spirit to him.
The Mason and Dixon Line
Within the settlement an orderly and prosperous beginning had been made; but, in common with most of the other colonies, Pennsylvania had her boundary disputes. This was owing largely to the uncertain knowledge of the geography of the new land. After Penn's charter had been issued Lord Baltimore objected that the boundaries of Pennsylvania conflicted with those of Maryland. Penn made several efforts to adjust the difficulty and twice talked the matter over with Lord Baltimore. But no agreement could be reached, and the dispute was taken to England, where Penn was obliged to go in 1684 to look after his interests in the matter. The eastern boundary, relating to the sea-coast, was decided in Penn's favor in 1685, but the southern boundary was not settled until many years after, in 1767, by what is now known as the Mason and Dixon line, from the names of the two men who surveyed it.
Penn in England
Upon his return to England, Penn found that affairs were going very badly with the Quakers, and having left his colony in a satisfactory condition he remained to work and plead for the persecuted of his faith. In 1686 by his efforts not less than twelve hundred Friends were liberated from dungeons and prisons in which they had suffered for years. This great work he could accomplish because of the friendship of the Stuart kings. Later he had also to suffer for.that friendship: for when the Stuarts were driven from the throne, Penn was deprived of his colony for two years. Then the new king, convinced of Penn's loyalty, restored it to him. Penn did not, however, return to Pennsylvania until 1699.
The Colony a Disappointment to Penn
When he had left the colony in 1684 it was extremely prosperous. He said of it, "I must, without vanity, say, I have led the greatest colony into America that ever man did upon a private credit." But, notwithstanding these favorable conditions, Penn had not been gone long when troubles arose about the government. A quarrel broke out between the "provinces" and the "territories," which Penn settled by giving the "territories" a separate government. Then petty jealousies arose between the officers whom Penn had appointed and the people. Penn wrote to them from England, " I am sorry from my heart for your animosities. For the love of God, me, and the poor country, be not so governmentish, so noisy and open in your dissatisfactions."
But Penn was unfortunate in his governors, and troubles and disputes continued much as they did in other proprietary colonies. On the whole, however, in material wealth the colony continued to prosper. The climate was good, the soil fertile, timber abundant, and the advantages for trade unusual.
Although Penn returned to America for a brief time in 1699, ne was obliged to leave again soon for England. The colony was a disappointment to him, and had caused him grief, trouble, and poverty. In 1710 he proposed to sell it, but was taken ill before the papers were signed. Pennsylvania, therefore, remained a proprietary colony until the Revolution, when it was sold by Penn's heirs to the government of Pennsylvania.
A Struggle for the World's Commerce
WHILE the various colonies were gaining a foothold in the New World, the mother countries in Europe were busy with their own affairs, and were often coming into conflict with each other. The great bone of contention during the seventeenth century the century we have been studying�was the world's commerce. Each country was eager to lead in trade and thus become supreme in wealth and power. Each nation Spanish, Dutch, French, and English looked to the colonies as a means of accomplishing its end, and the methods which each employed determined its success or failure.
Before the English began to plant colonies the Spanish had lost their leadership. Their mad search for gold had made them indifferent to the human side of the enterprise. The Dutch succeeded them as worthy competitors for the world's commerce. But although they did an immense carrying trade on the sea, their place was closely contested by the English; and, as we have seen, the English drove the Dutch out of New Amsterdam because the Dutch felt a keener interest in trading than in farming and home-building.
With the Spanish and Dutch out of the race, the French and the English alone remained to strive for supremacy. It was a death-struggle for the power of the sea and the trade of the world; and while the two great nations of Europe were measuring their strength on the battlefields of the Old World, their warfare was distinctly echoed in the settlements of the New World.
When the English took New York they came into possession of the finest harbor on the Atlantic coast and the most important highway to Indian trade on the continent.
Both the English and the French had long had their eyes on this important territory. It was the key which unlocked to commerce the fur trade of that vast region stretching north and west to the farthest limit of the Great Lakes. The French claimed all that north-west territory by reason of the explorations of Champlain, Marquette, and Joliet.
From the time when Champlain explored the St. Lawrence (1608) to the time when LaSalle reached the mouth of the Mississippi (1682-83) was a period of some seventy-five years. By reason of discovery, France laid claim to all that immense territory drained by these two rivers and their tributary streams. Here and there throughout its vast extent were stationed the French forts and trading stations as centres through which poured the great traffic in furs.
The French and the Fur Trade
As with the Spanish and Dutch, so with the French; their first thought was trade, and their idea of trade in these American colonies was not to find a market for the goods of their own land, but at the least possible cost to get the native product of furs, the skins of wild animals inhabiting this enormous stretch of forest country.
Since the early days of French occupation French traders had skimmed the rivers and lakes in bark canoes, followed wearisome trails through the unhewn forests, and even made their abiding place for a time amid the filth and squalor of the Indian village, all in the interests of the trade in furs.
The Iroquois Indians Help the English
Their scheme was a stupendous one, and it lacked but one important provision to make it complete�a convenient and ready outlet of their traffic to the sea. The St. Lawrence was frozen a greater part of the year; the Mississippi was too distant. Free transit along the Hudson and over the water-shed from the Great Lakes to the harbor at New York was to them of priceless value. Why had they not, during all these seventyfive years, secured it? We have already learned (see p. 154) that at the start, in the battle of Lake Champlain (1609), the French had incurred the bitter hatred of the Iroquois Indians, "the Romans of the West," who guarded the approach to this coveted outlet. These same Indians had invited the friendship of the Dutch, and of the English who succeeded them in New York, and protected them in the occupation of the Hudson. This friendly attitude of the Iroquois greatly helped the English in their long struggle with the French for control in what is now the United States. Thus matters rested until the close of the century.
The Struggle for New York Between the English and the French
Meanwhile the English, who at the beginning were remote and scattered settlements on the edge of the continent, had grown and multiplied to such an extent that by 1689 they were beginning to press, in places, upon the French claims. Their importance could no longer be ignored. Each nation was jealous and fearful of the other, and when the English got New York they scored heavily against the French.
Yet the French did not despair; and when war broke out between France and England (1689), they seized their opportunity. They were only too eager to make a strike for their coveted harbor at the mouth of the Hudson River. If they should succeed in securing New York, they would have command of the continent, and would be able to drive the English completely from the field. This situation briefly explains the underlying cause of the intercolonial wars, which at given periods from 1689 to 1763 harassed the English colonies
In making mention of the first three of these wars our purpose is to give only a few incidents of the frontier warfare which will suggest their character.
The French made the first attacks. Their method was to incite their Indian allies to approach stealthily, under cover of the night, through the silent forest and fall without warning upon the unsuspecting settlement. In such cases resistance was impossible or useless, and wholesale massacres were the result.
The Attacks upon Schenectady and Salmon Falls
Among the most harrowing of these attacks gfzs that upon Schenectady, New York (February, 1690). Count Frontenac, the new French governor of Canada, sent out three attacking parties of French and Indians against the English settlements, in the hope of gaining the esteem of the Indians and thus winning over the Iroquois to the French side. It was a last despairing effort in a losing game, and so far as securing his end was concerned, a fruitless one. But the settlements suffered terribly.
Schenectady was the most distant outpost of New York, about seventeen miles north-west from Albany. Although surrounded by a stockade and protected by a fort, it was wholly unprepared; no sentinels were on guard; the gates even had been left open. A little before midnight, after a hard march of twenty-two days through melting snows, the attacking party arrived. Silently they entered through the open gate, and, while the town was in heavy sleep, arranged themselves within the stockade.
At a given signal the war-whoop sounded, and in an instant the savages fell upon their terrified and helpless victims. No mercy was shown. At once the village was in a blaze. Sixty were massacred outright, twentyseven old men, women, and children were dragged off as prisoners, and the rest fled, half-naked, through a terrible snow-storm, to Albany. Of these, twenty-five
The Attack on Schenectady.
lost their lives on account of the severe frost. Colonel Schuyler, Mayor of Albany at that time, writing to Massachusetts for help, said: "The cruelties committed no pen nor tongue can express." They are certainly too shocking to relate here.
Another party of fifty-two surprised the settlement of Salmon Falls, New Hampshire. Here, after a "bloody engagement," houses, barns, and cattle were burned, and fifty-four persons, most of whom were women and children, were carried ofF, laden with spoils, from their own homes. A third successful attack of the same kind was made on the settlement in Casco Bay, on the coast of Maine.
Sufferings of Outlying New England Villages
In return for these atrocities on the part of the French, the English sent an expedition by sea, which captured Port Royal, in Acadia, and attempted to conquer Quebec, but met with a repulse. At the same time New York sent a land expedition against Montreal, but that, too, was unsuccessful. After this the Indians continued to harass the frontiers for many years. The settlements of New England had spread northward and eastward to places at present within the boundaries of New Hampshire and Maine, and it was these outlying villages which suffered most severely.
Among the boldest and most noted of these attacks was that on Haverhill, Mass., in 1697, when forty persons were killed or captured and nine burned. Among the captured were Hannah Dustan, with her baby seven days old and her nurse. The baby was dashed against a tree and Mrs. Dustan and her nurse were started on their way to Canada.
After twelve hours' marching the party halted on an Island in the Merrimac River, just north of Concord. There they were placed for the night in a wigwam occupied by two Indian families. When all their captors
were sleeping soundly, the two women, and an English boy, who was a captive from Worcester, rose, seized tomahawks, and killed their savage hosts. With the scalps of ten of their victims, and the gun and toma
Mrs. Dustan and Her Nurse, as Captives, on Their Way to Canada.
hawk of the savage who had killed her child, Mrs. Dustan and her two companions made their way in a bark canoe to an English settlement on the Merrimac. The story of their wonderful escape was listened to with amazement. News of the daring deed spread through all the colonies. Boston voted Mrs. Dustan two hundred and fifty dollars, and even far-away Maryland sent gifts and expressions of appreciation to the heroine of this ghastly victory.
The Deerfield Tragedy
The attack on Haverhill was the last that occurred during the period of war known as King William's War. In 1762, however, hostilities again broke out between France and England and continued until 1713. This was known in America as Queen Anne's War.
In the colonies, throughout the war, savage outbreaks on the border continued to harass the settlements. One which occurred at Deerfield, Mass. (1704), was very distressing. The town was captured by a force of two hundred and fifty French and Indians, the dwellings were set on fire, forty of* the inhabitants were killed, and one hundred and twelve were taken captive and marched through the winter snows to Canada.
John Williams, the minister of Deerfield, and his wife and family were among the captives. Mrs. Williams was not strong. On the second day, as she was unable to keep up with the march, one blow from a tomahawk ended her sorrow. If an infant cried, it was cast out upon the snow, or its head dashed against a stone or tree. Nineteen prisoners were murdered along the way, and two were stoned to death. Mr. Williams arrived at Montreal, where he lived in captivity two and a half years. He was then returned to Massachusetts through an exchange of prisoners. But no offer of ransom could persuade the Indians to part with his daughter Emma, then a child of seven years. She was taken to a village of Indians near Montreal, and when she grew up became the wife of an Indian chief.* The Deerfield tragedy was but one of many such atrocities committed by both the French and the English during this war.
Port Royal Changes Hands
In 1710 Port Royal was captured by the English and its name changed to Annapolis in honor of the Queen. The whole province of Acadia, now Nova Scotia, became an English possession. At the close of this war, however, Port Royal was given back by treaty; so the English colonies had nothing to show for their hardearned victory.
Growth of English and French Settlements
The next thirty years in the colonies was a period of much-needed peace, during which they grew rapidly both in population and importance. The French settlements confined themselves mostly to the St. Lawrence valley between Quebec and Montreal. In the region of the Great Lakes there were a few scattered forts and trading stations, and a weak settlement at Detroit, but nothing which could be called a colony.
* After she had grown to womanhood she visited the place of her childhood, but did not stay long. She was uneasy to get back to her camp life and her pappooses.
Although French explorers pushed westward as far as the Rocky Mountains, and northward beyond Lake Winnipeg, in the Mississippi valley there were no permanent settlements. It was now a half century since La Salle had planted his colony at the mouth of the Mississippi River, and after all those years of occupation the population did not exceed five thousand whites and half as many blacks.
With the English settlements this period had been one of increasing growth and prosperity. The population of the colonies was at least eight hundred thousand. The people became rich through their own industry. Agriculture, commerce, ship-building, mining, and manufacturing all flourished; and it was mainly due to the increase of settlers that this progress was possible. In the midst of prosperity, however, another war broke out between France and England, and was taken up in the colonies. It was known in America as King George's War, and lasted from 1744 to 1748.
New England Mechanics, Farmers, and Fishermen Capture Louisburg
The most important event was the capture of Louisburg, Cape Breton, in 1745. It had been captured in the previous war and given up at its close. France, meantime, had made it a powerful stronghold. It had taken twenty-five years to construct the fortress which had cost nearly seven million five hundred thousand dollars. It had a garrison of six hundred regulars and eight hundred armed inhabitants. French privateers made the place their headquarters and, darting out from there, played havoc with New England trade and fishing.
Although an expedition against so strong a fortress would be costly and hazardous, the New England colonists were eager to undertake it, especially the fishermen, who had been put out of work by the war. In a few weeks four thousand militia were raised, and, under command of a New England merchant named Pepperel, sailed in March, 1745. They were joined by seven English ships of war under Commodore Warren.
The last of April they landed at Cape Breton, taking the garrison completely by surprise. The walls of the fortress were forty feet thick at the base and from twenty to thirty feet high, surrounded by a ditch eighty feet wide, and furnished with one hundred and one cannon. There was also an island battery protecting the harbor, and a royal battery on the shore. The whole fortification was so perfect that it was thought that two hundred men could have defended it against five thousand.
But the works were not in order, and the garrison was in a state of revolt, and although they took up arms and prepared to defend the place, they were easily discouraged. When a ship of sixty-four guns, bearing on board five hundred and sixty soldiers and supplies for the garrison, was captured by the English, the government gave up hope. On June 17th the strongest fortress of North America was surrendered to New England mechanics', farmers, and fishermen.
It was the most successful event of thewar. There was
great joy among the English, and the French were equally cast down. Other expeditions were planned, both by the English and the French, but very little was accomplished, except the desolating raids of the border settlements. Twenty-seven villages were ravaged during the three following years.
The frontier line from Boston to Albany was deserted, the inhabitants being obliged to flee to the inner settlements. In 1748 a treaty of peace was signed and Louisburg given back to France, much to the disgust of those who had toiled to capture it.
Influence of the Intercolonial Wars upon the English
It was said by a Swedish traveller in the colonies in 1748 that, according to public opinion in New York, "There is reason enough for doubting whether the king, if he had the power, would wish to drive the French from their possessions in Canada"; for "the English colonies in this part of the world," he continues, "have increased so much in wealth and population that they will vie with European England." After recounting some of the Colonial grievances, he adds, "I have been told, not only by native Americans, but by English emigrants publicly, that within thirty or fifty years the English colonies in North America may constitute a separate State, entirely independent of England."
Leaving it to later events to prove the truth of these predictions, we will only note that during the period of these wars the colonists were growing stronger, rata more independent of the mother country, and more ind, fc clined to help each other, by reason of their common danger. Although the border warfare was kept up after the close of the war, the colonies continued to prosper and to push their boundaries westward. In a few years another clash of arms was inevitable, and when it came great destinies were at stake.
THE STRUGGLE FOR THE OHIO VALLEY
Conflicting Claims to the Ohio Valley
We have already learned (see p. 188) how the French and the English were obliged to respect the authority of the fierce and brave tribes of the Iroquois, who held their lands as a barrier to the great West. The good-will of these Indians was kept only by leaving them undisturbed in their own possessions.
South and west of the Iroquois country, however, was the fertile valley of the Ohio River and its tributaries. This vast region, rich in game, and inhabited by only a few Indians, both the English and the French were determined to possess. The Iroquois had given it by treaty to the English, but perhaps it did not belong to the Iroquois to give.
However that might be, England claimed that the land was hers because of the discovery of the Cabots, and the English Government had included a part of it in grants to Virginia and Pennsylvania. France, on the other hand, asserted that the whole region belonged to her because Frenchmen�La Salle and others�had been the first to explore it. Apparently the Indians living there had no rights, for without considering them each nation set about making good her claim.
The French and the English in the Ohio Valley
In 1749 the French began to build forts and plant the royal arms throughout the Ohio Valley. In the same year a company of English merchants, called the Ohio Company, received a royal grant of the region and prepared to form settlements. In 1753 they surveyed the land and sent English traders into the disputed territory. The French, who believed the English were trying to deprive them of their trade, drove out the English traders and began to establish trading posts throughout the region. Thus, at last, the French and the English had come so close together in the New World that either the one or the other must give way.
Orders from England had already been received by the Governor of Virginia to put up two forts on the Ohio River and to use force if necessary to drive out the French. But before beginning active measures, Virginia decided to send a trusty messenger to the French commander to demand by what authority he was on English soil. For this important errand a young Virginian, George Washington, was chosen. Besides delivering the message, he was to observe the condition of the French forts, their location, strength, and garrisons, and, if possible, win the friendship of the Indians. Who was this young man, barely twenty-one years of
The French in the Ohio Valley.
The English Colonies and the French Claims in 1754.
age, intrusted with so great a responsibility ? A brief glance at his early life may help us to know him.
Boyhood of George Washington
As a boy he was strong, rugged, and active, with a vigorous will and a love of mastery. He excelled in all
boyish sports, such as running, leaping, and wrestling, and was so fair-minded that his playmates often called upon him to settle their disputes. Nobody ever doubted
George Washington and Lord Fairfax Often Spent their Afternoons
his word, for he was truthful. But, of course, he had his faults. His temper was so violent that perhaps the greatest victories he ever achieved were those in which he gained control of himself.
In his sixteenth year it was his good fortune to win the friendship of Lord Fairfax, an Englishman living near Mount Vernon, which at that time was Washington's home. The tall, slender, white-haired gentleman of sixty and the tall, manly youth of sixteen were much together. They often spent their forenoons in surveying and their afternoons in fox-hunting. Thus, while enjoying the companionship of a courtly and cultured gentleman, Washington was also developing considerable skill in horsemanship and a practical knowledge of surveying.
The Young Surveyor
In the Shenandoah Valley, beyond the Blue Ridge Mountains, Lord Fairfax owned an estate which was so large that it is thought to have covered one-fifth of what is now Virginia. He wished to know its extent and nature, and to secure this valuable information employed his young friend to make a careful survey.
Washington's account of this expedition, preserved for us in his journal, is full of interest. He tells of a night spent in a woodman's cabin with a mat of straw for his bed and a single blanket for cover. At another time he lies down "before the fire with a little hay, straw, fodder, or a bearskin, with man, wife, and children like dogs and cats; and happy is he who gets the berth nearest the fire."
On another occasion he and his companion fell in with a party of painted and feathered warriors whom they fearlessly joined. At night, by the light of blazing logs, they watched the Indians perform their war dance. As the warriors leaped to and fro they chanted their deeds of valor, thumped their deerskin drums, and rattled gourds filled with shot. At another time he writes, "We pitched our tent and made a large fire. Everyone was his own cook. Our spits were forked sticks, and our plates were large' chips." These experiences had their value in making Washington familiar with forest life and accustomed to its hardships; but quite as important was the reputation he was gaining for careful and skilful work. Fairfax was so well
pleased with the report brought back by the young surveyor that he moved into the Shenandoah Valley and built himself a lodge which he called Greenway Court. Here, during the next three years, Washington, who was made public surveyor through the influence of Lord Fairfax, spent much time in company with his old and much-loved friend.
His life as surveyor gave him endurance, patience, courage, self-reliance, and ability to meet perplexing situations. It brought him in touch with Indians, traders, and woodsmen on the one side, and with the most cultivated people of Virginia on the other. In this way he became so well known that when a trusty messenger was needed to go to the French commander in the fort near Lake Erie and demand by what right the French were invading a country which belonged to England, all minds turned to the young surveyor.
Washington's Dangerous Journey to the French Forts
On October 30, 1753, with seven companions, including a French and an Indian interpreter, Washington left Williamsburg and started on the dangerous journey. For a thousand miles, through dense forests and deep snows, in the midst of almost incessant storms, they made their way across swollen streams and over rugged mountains. Many times there was not even an Indian trail nor the path of a wild beast to guide them. It was December when they reached the French fort, about fifteen mileS south of Lake Erie.
They were courteously received, but after delivering his message, and while waiting for an answer, Washington discovered that the French were trying to persuade his Indian guide to desert him. It was with difficulty that he prevented them from carrying out their purpose.
The Return Homeward
Having received a sealed reply, on December I4th he set out to return. The horses were so jaded and weak from their hard journey that he had to leave most of his party to follow slowly, while with a single companion, Christopher Gist, he himself pushed forward on foot to the settlement. Dressed like an Indian, with a pack containing his journal and papers on his back, Wash
The Indian Acting as Guide Suddenly Turned and Shot at Washington.
ington presents an interesting picture as he makes his way, gun in hand, through the lonely forest.
Not far from the French fort he and his companion were joined by some Indians, one of whom consented to
act as their guide. Fearing treachery, the two men were watchful, and were, therefore, not surprised when their guide suddenly turned and shot at Washington. The Indian said that his gun went off by chance, and, although Washington and Gist knew better, it seemed wise to let him go. The two men then hurried forward, to put a safe distance between them and their treacherous foes. For a night and a day they journeyed without stopping.
On reaching the Allegheny River they found great swirling blocks of ice in the stream, which made it impossible for them to cross. With but one hatchet, they spent a day in making a raft. Then, guiding it with long poles, they attempted to cross. It was a dangerous undertaking. They were nearly drowned, but finally succeeded in getting ashore. They spent a night of great suffering, but dared not build a fire for fear of being discovered by the Indians. It was so bitterly cold that Gist's hands and feet were frozen.
About the middle of January, after an absence of eleven weeks, they reached Williamsburg, and Washington delivered to the governor the answer of the French, which was unsatisfactory. They plainly declared that they intended to stay where they were. This looked like war. At once a party of workmen was sent to begin a fort at the forks of the Ohio River, the site of the present city of Pittsburg.
The War Begins
Washington, with the rank of lieutenant-colonel, was given command of two companies. With these he set out in April for the frontier. Just before reaching Wills Creek, now Cumberland, he learned that the French had driven off the workmen who were building the fort, and that the French were themselves building one at the same place. They called it Fort Duquesne in honor of the governor of Canada. When Washington received this information he sent
back for more troops, and he himself moved on to Great Meadows. Here he learned that a party of French were advancing, and that they were planning to lay an ambuscade for his force. With forty chosen men, therefore, he set out at ten o'clock at night, led by an Indian guide, and surprised the Frenchmen, killing ten and taking twenty-two prisoners. Only one escaped. Expecting that the French at Fort Duquesne would soon be on his trail, he retreated to Great Meadows and hastily threw up earthworks, which he called Fort Necessity. Here, on July 36, he was attacked by a force of French twice his own number. During a heavy downpour of rain the battle continued for nine hours, the English standing knee-deep in mud and water. In the evening the French asked for parley, which Washington granted. In accordance with the terms which both parties agreed upon, Washington marched out of the fort the next morning with all his guns.
This was Washington's first experience in war. Although he was defeated, the Virginia House of Burgesses moved a vote of thanks to him and his officers " for their bravery and gallant defence of their country."
Braddock's Slow March
In January, 1755, England sent over two regiments of English soldiers. They were to unite with the Virginia forces in getting control of the Ohio Valley under command of General Braddock, who made his headquarters at Alexandria, eight miles from Mount Vernon. Braddock invited Washington to become a member of his staff and he at once accepted.
Preparations were made with difficulty. Although notice had been given long before, the necessary provisions and other supplies were not collected. There was also a serious lack of horses and wagons. It was a trying situation for Braddock, but aid came in an unexpected way. Benjamin Franklin, postmaster-general of Pennsylvania, having visited the camp and become aware of Braddock's great need, appealed to the Pennsylvania farmers. By his earnest pleading he secured from them in two weeks 150 wagons and a large number of horses.
As the days passed more arrived, and at last the march began. A force of some two thousand started for Fort Cumberland on their tedious march for Fort Duquesne. The advance was so slow that by Washington's advice Braddock selected twelve hundred picked men to press forward before the French could make their defences too strong. But even then the troops halted, "to level every molehill and to erect bridges over every brook, and were four days getting twelve miles."
Washington's patience was severely taxed. He fell ill of fever and had to retire from the front, but he begged General Braddock to let him know before the battle should begin. At one time Washington had ventured to speak of the heavy baggage trains. " If our march is to be regulated by the slow movements of the train," he said, "it will be very tedious indeed." The selfsufficient English general's only answer was a sarcastic smile.
Braddock's Terrible Defeat
On July gth, when they were within eight miles of Fort Duquesne, the van of the army suddenly beheld a man bounding along the pathway just ahead. He was dressed like a soldier, but wore the decoration of a French officer. When he saw the British army he turned and waved his hat. Immediately a threatening body of French soldiers and Indian warriors appeared, and the hideous war-whoop of the red men broke on the still air. Then, suddenly, the enemy were lost to
The Van of the Army suddenly Beheld a Man Bounding Along the Pathway just Ahead.
sight, and from under cover of the woods a rapid fire surprised the startled ranks of the British soldiers. But they held their ground bravely, shouting "God save the King."
The unseen foe shot them down so rapidly that, finally, the English troops broke and ran for shelter. With little sense of the situation, the English general swore at them,and, striking them with his sword,ordered them back to their ranks. They huddled together for a time, and were shot down by squads. Braddock himself, who has well been called a "gallant bulldog," fought valiantly. Washington, so weak from fever that he could scarcely sit in his saddle, with an almost superhuman strength dashed madly from one point to another in his effort to inspire the men with courage. Two horses were shot under him, and four bullets tore through his clothing, but he was unhurt.
The rout was complete. After fighting for two hours the English threw away their guns and fled for their lives. Seven hundred of their number were either killed or wounded, and sixty-two of the eighty-six officers were killed, among them Braddock himself. It was a terrible defeat. Washington, with great courage and ability, managed the retreat, bringing off the dying general, some of the wounded, and the remnant of the army, mostly colonials. Such was the result of the first large movement of the Last French War. The frontier was now left unprotected, and the Indians improved their opportunity to lay waste the settlements in western Virginia, Maryland, and Pennsylvania.
REMOVAL OF THE ACADIANS
Acadia and the Acadians
DURING the same year in which General Braddock was defeated, another important event of the Last French War took place far to the north. This was the removal of the Acadians.
Although England and France did not agree as to the boundaries of Acadia, the name, as generally used, was applied to what we now call Nova Scotia. Acadia was settled by the French early in the seventeenth century, but about one hundred years afterward (1710) was captured by the English. At the time, therefore, when the Acadians were forced into exile (1755), it had been under English rule for forty-five years.
The Acadians were simple-hearted peasants who knew almost nothing of the doings of the great world except what they learned in the narrow routine of their daily lives. Aside from hunting in the winter and a little fishing in summer, they devoted themselves to rude methods of farming. Their houses have been called wretched wooden boxes, and their homespun clothing was made from the flax and wool they raised. Their wants were few and their habits frugal.
After these people came under the control of England,
the French authorities succeeded in keeping them French at heart and loyal to France. In fact France
The Removal of the Acadians.
deeply felt the need of Acadia for two reasons, which will be plain to you if you will consult your map. First, if it could be made French territory, it would serve as' a connecting link between Canada and Cape Breton Island, on which was located the very strong fortress of Louisburg. Second, France could use its fine harbors as naval stations from which to attack English settlements to the south. '
The Acadians French in Language and Feeling
To strengthen her position in Acadia, England made a settlement at Halifax (1749) which, three years later, had a population of more than four thousand. But by that date the Acadians on the peninsula numbered more than nine thousand, all of whom were French in language and feeling. They had shown their sympathy for France in more ways than one. They had refused to sell provisions to the English except at prices that were often three times as high as they would charge the French; they had often disguised themselves and joined Indian war parties, some of which had robbed and even murdered unoffending English settlers not far from Halifax; and they had refused to take the oath of allegiance to England and to bear arms against the French or the Indians.
Such being the attitude of the Acadians, it was evident that, should France attack Acadia, as she was quite likely to do, they would rise as one man to her support. To the English, therefore, it seemed necessary to remove these disloyal people and scatter them among the various English colonies from Massachusetts to Georgia. Most of the Acadians under the English flag lived near the Minas Basin and in the Annapolis Valley. The difficult task of removing them was entrusted to several different commanders, to Lieutenant-Colonel Winslow being assigned those who lived near the Minas Basin.
The Acadians Summoned to the Village Church
About the middle of August (1755), he landed with some three hundred men at the village of Grand Pre. Having directed that the sacred things be removed from the church, he seized it as the only suitable place for keeping his arms and supplies. The soldiers pitched their tents just outside and surrounded their camp with a stockade. Winslow made his headquarters at the house of the priest close by.
It was a peaceful scene that spread out before him. The green meadow-land, the blue expanse of water, and the distant mountains standing like silent witnesses must have impressed him with their beauty, and given him little heart for the disagreeable task before him. He wrote to a brother officer some time later, "This affair is more onerous to me than any service I was ever engaged in."
But without delay he set about his plans which, two weeks later, he was ready to carry out. On September 5th, at three in the afternoon, in answer to his summons the men of Grand Pre assembled in the church to hear the king's orders. We can almost see their anxious faces, sunburnt from the recent' harvest gathering, fixed intently on the speaker. There are four hundred and eighteen, including old men, young men, and boys over ten. As they listen in painful silence, Winslow, glittering in his laced uniform, but carrying in his countenance the keen sense of his unpleasant duty, rises before them to pronounce their doom.
The Acadians Hear the Sad News
Briefly reminding them that for nearly half a century the king has treated them with indulgence of which they have made unfair use, he quietly tells them that now by His Majesty's commands their lands and tenements, their cattle and livestock of all kinds, in fact all their property except money and household goods, are forfeited to the crown, and that they themselves are to be removed from this, his province. Then declaring them prisoners of the king, he withdraws to his quarters at the priest's house.
As if stunned by a thunderbolt, the peasants stood in amazement. They made no protest to the message that had fallen upon their startled ears. To,attempt violence would have been vain, for nearly three hundred armed men stood guard over them. But, after taking counsel together, they begged to be allowed to break the news to their families lest, when they heard, they should be overcome with surprise. In answer to the prisoners' request, twenty were allowed each day to
visit their homes, and daily, also, food was brought to them by their families.
The removal of the Acadians was a harsh proceeding, but gentler methods had failed, and if England was to keep her hold on the province, she must have loyal subjects. Loyal to England the Acadians were not. They were the loyal victims of the French, who, in the time of need, gave them no help. Their fate was, indeed, grievous, and even while we recognize that it was the result of their own folly, their misery awakens in our hearts the deepest sympathy.
The Sad Migration
In his poem, "Evangeline," Longfellow has pictured most vividly the various scenes of the sad migration. He takes us to the church and shows us the Acadian peasants when they hear for the first time the distressing news. Later, through the poet's imagination, we see them embarking on the transports and follow them as they go into distant lands to take their places among strange people.
The first transports sailed on the 8th of October. Winslow hoped to finish the thankless task at an early day, but had to wait until late in December, a period of nearly four months, before the last of the needed boats and supplies were ready. He grouped the exiles according to villages, hoping to keep the members of such groups together on the transports. But he failed, and in some cases even members of the same household were separated, the mother being on one transport and her children on another. Before the Acadians sailed away, their houses and barns were burned, so as not to be of service to any who might have escaped the English and remained behind.
Thus were six thousand Acadians torn from their homes and carried as exiles into strange lands. They were taken to various English colonies from Massachusetts to Georgia, but nowhere did they find a welcome, and their experience was most bitter. A large number found their way to the French settlements in Louisiana, where many of their descendants are living to-day.
THE CAMPAIGN AGAINST QUEBEC
THE struggle in the Last French War was not confined to the Ohio Valley and Acadia. Both the
English and the French believed it of the first importance to control the St. Lawrence River and the watercourse which extended from that river to the mouth of the Hudson and included Lake George and LakeChamplain.* The struggle for the St. Lawrence centred about Quebec, and the hero.of Quebec was James Wolfe, whose brief but brilliant career has won the admiration of the world.
He was born in Westerham, England, on January 2, 1727. His father was an officer of distinction, and at an early age James, though of delicate health and sensitive nature, set his heart upon being a soldier. At sixteen he was serving as adjutant in Flanders and
* There was severe fighting in this lake region in 1756-'57, at Fort Ticonderoga and Fort William Henry.
Map Illustrating Quebec and Surroundings.
proved himself so brave and thorough that by twenty years of age he had been promoted to the rank of lieutenant-colonel.
In 1758, with the rank of brigadier-general, he took a leading part in the siege of Louisburg, where he distinguished himself for his daring and bravery. But the strain upon his health had been so severe that he was obliged to go to Bath, England, for his health. Here he met Miss Catherine Lowther, to whom he became engaged. But he was not permitted to enjoy a long rest. Major-General James Wolfe.
For the great William Pitt, who was now at the head of affairs in. England, had determined to carry on war against the French with renewed energy. A three-fold plan was to be carried out, involving expeditions against Fort Niagara, Ticonderoga and Crown Point, and Quebec. The most important of these expeditions was sent against Quebec, the greatest stronghold in America, possession of which determined the control of the St. Lawrence River. The command of this expedition was assigned to Wolfe, who by this time had been promoted to the rank of major-general.
Wolfe was now thirty-two years of age. If you could have met him you would have seen nothing striking or impressive in his personal appearance. You would have looked in vain for a commanding presence or a soldierly bearing. Instead, you would have seen a man of tall, lank form, with narrow shoulders, long, thin limbs, and red hair, wearing a black, three-cornered hat and a red skirt reaching his knees. His mouth suggested a lack of firmness and decision, his chin and forehead were receding, and his nose had an upward turn; but his luminous, searching eyes gave evidence of the fearless spirit that dwelt within his frail body.
He was a confirmed invalid and suffered much from diseases that had proved to be incurable. He was impatient and irritable, and often gave deep offense to his friends by violent outbursts of temper; yet his kindness, tenderness, and thoughtfulness for others were so marked that he easily won friends, and kept them during all his life. He was a devoted son and was especially fond of his mother, with whom he kept up an intimate correspondence as long as he lived.
In his letters to his mother we catch glimpses of his real personality. At one time he wrote to her, "My utmost desire and ambition is to look steadily upon danger." In another letter he said, "That service is certainly the best in which we are the most useful"; and in still another, "Those who perish in their duty and in the service of their country die honorably."
Wolfe's Army at Quebec
Wolfe sailed from England in February, 1759, with a force of between eight thousand and nine thousand men. On June 21st the vessels anchored in the channel of the St. Lawrence River, just north of the Island of Orleans, about eight miles below Quebec. The night after they reached their anchorage, a heavy storm damaged the transports, and during the storm the French sent down fire-ships to destroy the fleet. But the British sailors seized them with grappling irons and towed them to a safe distance.
Quebec was situated on a rocky cliff two hundred feet above the St. Lawrence River, on a point of land between it and the Charles. For nine miles above the city and eight miles Mar<luis de Montcalmbelow were lines of batteries and natural defenses which made it almost impregnable. During the entire month of July Wolfe tried in vain to get at his enemy. Montcalm, the able French general, was defending Quebec with an army of sixteen thousand men. Many of them, however, were Indians and raw Canadian recruits.
Wolfe's Discouragement and Suffering
After making vain efforts to find a weak place in the defenses of the city, Wolfe decided to try to secure a foothold by attacking the batteries guarding the Montmorenci River near its mouth. He, therefore, crossed this river and captured the French batteries near the foot of the steep ascent. But in charging up the heights he not only met the murderous fire of the French army above but a heavy downpour of rain, which made the grassy slope so slippery that it was almost impossible for the English troops to keep a foothold. The result was that he was driven back with heavy loss.
Moreover, his army was weakened, not only by loss in killed and wounded, but by a still greater number who were disabled by disease, owing to the intense heat and the disagreeable rainy weather. The brave Wolfe, whose feeble body was not equal to the burden he had to carry, was stricken with a severe fever.
He suffered keenly, because it looked as if defeat were staring him in the face. His anxiety grew day by day. He became more and more discouraged, and finally he almost despaired of the capture of Quebec. He wrote to a friend. "My constitution is entirely ruined." To his physician he said, "I know perfectly well you cannot cure me; but pray make me up so that I may be without pain for a few days, and able to do my duty. That is all I want." He feared that his weak body would not be able to keep him alive long enough to enable him to defeat his enemy.
Wolfe's New Plans
He finally decided that the only way to defeat Montcalm was to get the English army north of Quebec, between the French commander and his supplies. He therefore was anxious to find, somewhere north of the city, a good landing-place for his army. On one occasion while, telescope in hand, he was standing on the south bank of the St. Lawrence River, searching for such a point of attack, his keen eye caught sight of a pathway winding up the frowning heights on the opposite side of the St. Lawrence. " Here," he quickly decided, "will I land my men," and at once he began to lay his plans for doing so.
September was now come, and what was to be done must be done quickly, or his supplies would be gone,winter would be upon his army, and it would be impossible for the fleet to remain. On the morning of September 7th the troops, "gay with scarlet uniforms," sailed up the St. Lawrence River, and in the afternoon opened fire as if looking for a landing place. They continued to do this for several days, in order to make Montcalm believe they were planning to force a landing.
By September I2th, Wolfe had thirty-six hundred men on the fleet nine miles above the place where he intended to make the attack. Twelve hundred more on the south shore were to be ready to join him when they were needed on the next morning.
Moreover, Admiral Saunders was in command of a number of war vessels below the city, and, on the night following September I2th, he opened fire upon the French at that point, and filled boats with men as if he were planning to land a force and attack the French
A French Soldier.
batteries there. All this was intended to deceive Montcalm and divert his attention from the real attack, which was to take place two miles above the city, on the Plains of Abraham.
Meanwhile Wolfe had his plans completed. When he saw the pathway leading up the cliff some time before, he had noticed a cluster of tents at the top. Before starting down the river on the fateful evening, twentyfour picked men were selected to lead the way up the cliff when the force should be landed. Seventeen hundred men were placed in boats, and nineteen hundred others were in the ships. Wolfe himself was in one of the foremost boats.
Floating Down Stream with Wolfe
At two o'clock in the morning of September I3th, two lights were raised on the flagship Sutherland, which was a signal for the advance. It was a clear, starlit night, but as there was no moon the darkness concealed the movement of the boats that with the ebbing tide floated quietly down stream.
We may well imagine the feelings of the young commander at this time. A few hours before, while sitting in the cabin of the flag-ship with a friend, an old schoolmate, he had taken out of his bosom the portrait of Miss Lowther, the woman he expected to marry. Handing this over to his friend, he said, " Give this to Miss Lowther when you return to England." And then he added,"I shall die on-the field of battle to-morrow."
English Soldier of Wolfe's Time.
In imagination we may stand by his side as in the silence of the night the procession moves slowly forward. We hear himtalking in lowtones,and this iswhathesays:
boast of heraldry, the pomp of power,
And all that beauty, all that wealth e'er gave,
Await alike the inevitable hour�
The paths of glory lead but to the grave."
We notice that he dwells with especial feeling upon that last line, and then we think of what he said when he handed the portrait to his friend. After he had finished the poem he said, "Gentlemen, I would rather have written those lines than take Quebec."
As they neared the place of landing the sentinels' challenge, "Qui va la ?" suddenly rang out on the night air. One of the men, in a foremost boat, who spoke French replied, "La France." "A quel regiment?" "De la Reine," replied the Englishman. Later, when challenged by another sentry the same English officer said in French, "Provision boats. Don't make a noise the English will hear us." The sentinel, thinking the boats were under the control of Frenchmen carrying provisions to Montcalm, let the English boats pass.
Climbing the Rocky Steeps
On reaching the landing-place, since known as "Wolfe's Cove," the twenty-four volunteers led the way, climbing the rocky steeps in silence. When they were at the top they made a dash for the cluster of tents, surprised the guard, and soon took possession of the French camp stationed there.
In the meantime, as soon as Wolfe and the thousands of men b elo w learned by the loud huzzas that the French camp had been captured, they began the steep ascent. The climb was difficult, for each man, after swinging hig musket
Wolfe and His Army Climbing the Rocky Heights. i - i 1
over his back, found it necessary to pull himself up by roots and bushes. By six o'clock in the morning Wolfe and his army of five thousand picked men were drawn up in line ready for battle.
During the entire night Montcalm was anxiously expecting a landing from the English below Quebec. At this time, as during the previous weeks, he was kept in a state of tense anxiety. Some ten days before this he had written to a friend, "The night is dark; it rains; our troops are in their tents with clothes on, ready for an alarm; I, in my boots; my horse is saddled; in fact this is my usual way. I wish you were here, for I cannot be everywhere though I multiply myself, and have not taken off my clothes since the 2jd of June."
One of the officers who was with Montcalm that night said that he was in great agitation and took no rest. About six o'clock in the morning he heard musket shots and the fire of cannon. So, mounting his black horse, he rode toward Quebec. On crossing the Charles River he saw two miles away the British soldiers drawn up in red ranks. "This," he said, "is serious business." Then, in deep silence, but with a troubled face, he rode forward. When he got nearer he was amazed to see, instead of a squad of soldiers, thousands of British veterans drawn up in line of battle. He hastily despatched a messenger for his army, and as soon as they arrived he rapidly prepared for battle. He thought it best to attack as soon as possible because he feared the English might be reinforced.
Wolfe Defeats the French
All this time Wolfe was waiting anxiously. With him and with his men the battle meant victory or death, because it was impossible for his army to retreat if they were defeated.
While the French were getting ready, the English soldiers were ordered to lie flat upon the ground in order to avoid the shot and shell that came from the muskets of sharp-shooters and from the three cannon which the French began to fire upon the English army.
At ten o'clock Wolfe saw the French advance begin. The tragic moment was near at hand. Ordering his men to rise, he stood ready for the onset. The French moved forward rapidly, shouting loudly as they came. Wolfe ordered his men to wait until the enemy was within forty paces. When the French were not far distant, the English moved forward for a few steps, and paused. A little later the command "Fire!" rang out, and the English poured one volley and then a second into the French army. The French fell by scores and hundreds. Immediately their ranks were thrown into confusion and the army became an angry mob, shouting loudly and cursing bitterly.
Seeing this, Wolfe rushed forward at the head of his men, seeming to forget all else but his desire for victory. A bullet tore through his wrist, but he paid no attention to the wound except to use a handkerchief to stay the flow of blood. A second time he was struck, and then a third bullet, striking him in the breast, brought him to the earth. Four of his men bore him tenderly and lovingly to the rear. They offered to secure a surgeon, but he refused, saying, " There is no need. It is all over with me." A moment later some one said, "They run. See how they run." Then the dying man opened his eyes as if waking from a deep sleep and said, "Who run ?" "The enemy, sir. Egad, they give way everywhere." "Now," said Wolfe, as he breathed his last, "God be praised; I will die in peace."
The Fall of Quebec
As the French retreated in great confusion, their brave commander was borne along with them. He, too, was struck in the side by a shot, but supported by two of his soldiers he kept his saddle as he rode through the town. Hearing a woman cry out, "The Marquis is killed," he said, "It's nothing, it's nothing; don't be troubled for me, my good friends"; and later, when told that he could not live many hours, he said, "So much the better. Thank God I shall not live to see Quebec surrendered." Five days later the great fortress passed out of the hands of the French into the hands of the English.The fall of Quebec meant the loss to France of all her possessions in North America except two small islands used for fishing stations. By the treaty of peace which followed, in 1763, France ceded to Spain all the territory between the Mississippi River and the Rocky Mountains, also the town of New Orleans, which controlled the navigation of the Mississippi. To England she gave Canada and all the territory east of the Mississippi. Thus did the brave Wolfe by a single blow so weaken the hold of France upon North America as to compel her to give up practically all she held there.
THE last war between the English and the French in America ended, as we learned in the preceding chapter, with the defeat of the French. By their victory the English gained control of a vast stretch of territory reaching from the Allegheny Mountains on the east to the Mississippi River on the west, and from the Great Lakes on the north to the Gulf of Mexico on the south.
Much of this solitary waste was covered with forests which had never been inhabited except by the wild life of the woods and by roving tribes of Indians. Here and there were Indian villages, sometimes with cultivated fields, and along the principal rivers and portages were scattered trading posts of the French. These extended throughout the lake region and the Ohio and Mississippi valleys, mostly in what was known as the Ohio and Illinois country.
The French and the Indians
For more than a century the French had traded freely with the Indians. They had treated the red men kindly, had lived with them in their villages, had adopted their customs, and had welcomed them to the French forts. They had also shown great bravery and courage in spreading their religion among them, for the French missionary and trader worked side by side.
On their part, the Indians had gladly exchanged the products of the hunt�pelts and food for firearms, ammunition, and such trinkets as the traders brought for them to the trading posts. When war broke out between the French and the English, it was natural that these Indians should join the French in their expeditions, and that the French, by exaggerating the faults of the English, should excite against them the ill-will of the Indians.
The English and the Indians
When, therefore, the French territory became English territory, the good-will of the Indians did not carry over from the French traders to the English settlers. Having defeated the French, the English still had a subtle enemy to encounter before they could come into possession of what they regarded as their own. The Indians, who seemed to have been ignored in the transfer of the country, were still occupying it and had to be reckoned with.
Moreover, the English came, not as traders, but as forerunners of those who should settle and occupy the land. With the change of relations came change of method. Ammunition and guns were no longer given away, and this was regarded as a great hardship to the Indians, who had become accustomed to hunt with firearms.
They suffered from lack of food and the comforts which their traffic in furs had previously bought. They were keen enough to know also that by settling the country the white man was driving the Indian out from his hunting land, the land of his fathers.
It was true, that when the English advanced, the Indians were forced to retire. Unlike the French, who had mingled with them, and had been so tolerant even of their filthy habits, the English were cold and unsympathetic. Instead of receiving the Indians at their forts and treating them kindly, as the French had done, the English drove them off, sometimes with oaths and blows. It was not long, therefore, before a wide discontent prevailed all over the newly acquired country, and the Indians listened willingly to the boasts of the French that they would soon drive the English out and again occupy the land. It needed only an able leader to focus all this ill feeling and bring on a general uprising. To the dis'advantage of the English, such a leader was found in Pontiac, Chief of the Ottawas.
Pontiac and the English
Pontiac held a position of great influence among all the tribes of the Ohio and Illinois country, and was known even as far as the mouth of the Mississippi River. In appearance, we are told, he was not tall, but muscular and vigorous. His color was dark, his face bold and stern, and his bearing haughty and commanding. Keen and crafty, he was quick to plan, eloquent to persuade, and energetic in carrying out his plans. With all these masterful qualities and a great ambition were combined the savage passions and fierce treachery of his race. On the coming of the English, he at first professed to be friendly, for he hoped that they would recognize him as a great prince with rule over his own tribe, and would aid him in increasing his influence over the other tribes. But, as we have already seen, the English were harsh and inconsiderate. The Indian was personally disgusting to them, and as a race interfered with the settlement of the country. They did not treat him as an ally, as the Frenchmen had done, but as an obstacle that must be roughly thrust out of their pathway. This point of view Pontiac soon had the sagacity to perceive and understand.
Wounded and embittered, he resolved on war. Accordingly, in the autumn of 1762 he sent messengers with war belts to the different nations. The war belts* of wampum were broad and long, to indicate the importance of the message, and the tomahawk which went with them was stained red as a sign of war. Village after village listened eagerly to the message and pledged themselves to take part in the uprising. The plan was to attack all the western forts in the
*This wampum belt when sent as a summons to war was always red or black; the usual color of a peace belt was white.
month of May, 1763, each attack to be made by the nearest tribe. During the winter the Indians still hung about the forts, begging as usual for whiskey, tobacco, and gunpowder. Outside, there was no change of manner, although they were concealing great excitement. This was all to deceive the English. As spring came on, preparations for war were pushed. The chiefs called upon the Great Spirit, magicians consulted their oracles, the warriors feasted and danced, and finally left camp in all the glory of paint, feathers, and scalp-locks. The woods became full of war parties, murdering, burning, and laying waste, while hundreds of traders and terrified families fled to the older settlements. Pontiac reserved for himself the fort at Detroit, as that was close to his summer home on an island in Lake St. Clair. It was the largest and most important of the northwestern settlements. The fertile soil, abundant game, and delightful climate attracted alike white man and savage. Being the key to the upper lake region, it was also a favorable place for traffic in furs. Along both banks of the Detroit River were French farms. The fort itself, situated on the west side of the river, was a stockade twenty or twenty-five feet high, and enclosing about eighty small houses. It had a garrison of one hundred and twenty-five men, eight officers, and forty-five fur traders, under the command of Major Henry Gladwin. Its armament consisted of a few pieces of artillery and two small schooners anchored in the stream. About a mile below the fort lived the Pottowatomies; on the Canadian side of the river, the Wyandots had their village; a little below were the English; and five miles above, the Ottawas.
The Gathering of the Tribes
In this vicinity, not far from Detroit, the gathering of the tribes took place, and on April 2/th a council of the chiefs was called. Pontiac rehearsed the wrongs which the Indians had suffered at the hands of the English. He told with great effect, making of it a long and interesting story, the following tradition: A Delaware Indian who sought the presence of the Great Spirit was told that his race must return to the customs of its forefathers; that they must throw away their guns and ammunition and take up their bows and arrows; and that they must destroy the English, "those dogs dressed in red, who have come to rob you of your hunting grounds and drive away your game."All who listened were eager to join in the attack. It was arranged that Pontiac with a part of his followers should visit the fort, and that during the visit some of the Indians should engage in the calumet dance, while others should observe the strength of the fortification.
Pontiac's Plot Fails
Having succeeded in carrying out this plan, the next step was to demand a council with the commandant of the fort. The day before this council was to be held, however, Major Gladwin received warning from an Indian girl. When, therefore, Pontiac with his sixty warriors, each with a gun concealed under his blanket �the guns had been filed off so that the blankets could
When Pontiac with His Sixty Warriors Appeared at the Fort, He was Surprised to Find the Whole Garrison Under Arms.
cover them�appeared at the fort, he was surprised to find the whole garrison under arms, and Major Gladwin and the officers, with swords and belts at their sides, ready to receive them. "Why," asked Pontiac, "do I see so many of my father's young men standing in the street armed with guns ?" Gladwin replied that it was for exercise. " I have come," declared Pontiac, " to smoke the pipe of peace and brighten the chain of friendship." But the officers watched keenly. Once when Pontiac raised the wampum belt as if to give the fatal signal, there was a sudden clash of arms from the hallway, and the roll of a drum filled the council chamber with its din. Amazed and perplexed, Pontiac sat down. Major Gladwin, calm and serene, said to the chiefs, "You shall have our friendship and protection as long as you deserve it, but for any act of treachery on your part, we promise vengeance." The council abruptly broke up. Enraged and humiliated, the savages left the fort, but only to form fresh plots.
Events of the War
On the 12th of May, Pontiac surrounded the fort, and for two months kept up the siege. Then the garrison was relieved by the arrival of a schooner from Niagara with sixty men, provisions, and ammunition. Meantime the war was raging around the smaller forts, scattered at such great distances that there was no means of quick communication between them. With scarcely an exception the garrisons had no warning. In each instance the Indians would gain admittance on pretence of friendship, and then butcher the garrison or take them captive. Virginia, Indiana, Pennsylvania, all lent aid to protect their own frontiers, but still the siege of Detroit continued. On July 29th, the garrison received another reinforcement from Fort Niagara of two hundred and eighty men, with several cannon, provisions, and ammunition. An immediate attack by night on Pontiac's camp followed; but Pontiac, having been informed by the Canadians, waylaid the party in ambuscade, and killed and wounded fifty-nine of their number.This victory was of no special benefit to Pontiac, for the fort was now strongly garrisoned and supplied, and the Indian allies began to fall away. Moreover, he received a letter from the French commander telling him he could expect no help from the French, for by this time the treaty between the two nations had been signed. In November, therefore, he was obliged to raise the siege.During the winter (1763-64), it was quiet on the frontier, but in the spring war parties again began to ravage the border settlements. In June a force oftwelve hundred men under Bradstreet was sent up the Great Lakes to put down the uprising, and in the autumn the warlike tribes in the south were subdued. Meantime, a great council of two thousand warriors had met in conference at Niagara, with Sir William Johnson of New York, who had great influence with the Indians. At this council several treaties of peace were signed.
Pontiac's Failure and Death
Pontiac, bafHed in his effort to do more at present, was forced to take refuge in the Illinois country. Here he schemed and plotted until 1765. He then returned and made peace with the English, and for three years lived with his squaws and children on the banks of the Maumee. But in 1769, while on a visit to the Illinois, he was assassinated by an Indian who had been bribed
by an English trader. Pontiac had been drinking heavily at an Indian carousal, and the trader regarding his acts with suspicion, bribed the Indian with a barrel of rum to commit the deed.The war practically ended with the siege of Detroit.Although unsuccessful, the uprising had been a great scourge to the English settlements. Eight out of twelve forts had been captured and their garrisons massacred. Several costly expeditions had been destroyed, and many towns on the frontier reduced to ruins. Such was the outcome of Pontiac's War. His defeat was so complete that for many years the Indians of that region gave the English no serious trouble.Although Pontiac, like King Philip, was an able leader, he was no match for the well-organized forces of the English. Both of these chiefs felt that they were battling for the rights of their people. It was plain to each of them that the white strangers were by degrees gaining control of lands once used by the red men as hunting grounds. The Indians, to be sure, had generally received a fair price for the land which they had willingly sold, yet when they realized that their sales meant a permanent loss, they determined to drive the English out or perish in the attempt.With this understanding of the situation, we need feel no surprise that the colonists had to engage in such fierce conflicts as the Pequot War, King Philip's War, and Pontiac's War. But in spite of the persistent opposition of the Indians, the settlers pressed steadily forward, and soon won their way to the heart of the continent.