By Author [ A  B  C  D  E  F  G  H  I  J  K  L  M  N  O  P  Q  R  S  T  U  V  W  X  Y  Z |  Other Symbols ]
  By Title [ A  B  C  D  E  F  G  H  I  J  K  L  M  N  O  P  Q  R  S  T  U  V  W  X  Y  Z |  Other Symbols ]
  By Language
all Classics books content using ISYS

Download this book: [ ASCII ]

Look for this book on Amazon

We have new books nearly every day.
If you would like a news letter once a week or once a month
fill out this form and we will give you a summary of the books for that week or month by email.

Title: Old Virginia and Her Neighbours, Vol. 1 (of 2)
Author: Fiske, John
Language: English
As this book started as an ASCII text book there are no pictures available.
Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Old Virginia and Her Neighbours, Vol. 1 (of 2)" ***

This book is indexed by ISYS Web Indexing system to allow the reader find any word or number within the document.

Writings of John Fiske

 Suggestive Questions and Directions for Teachers, by FRANK A. HILL.

 TO ITS ORIGINS. With Questions on the Text by FRANK A. HILL, and
 Bibliographical Notes.

 THE WAR OF INDEPENDENCE. In Riverside Literature Series, No. 62.



 THE BEGINNINGS OF NEW ENGLAND or, The Puritan Theocracy in its
 Relations to Civil and Religious Liberty.

 THE SAME. _Illustrated Edition._ Containing Portraits, Maps,
 Facsimiles, Contemporary Views, Prints, and Other Historic Materials.

 THE DUTCH AND QUAKER COLONIES. 2 vols. crown 8vo.


 THE SAME. _Illustrated Edition._ Containing Portraits, Maps,
 Facsimiles, Contemporary Views, Prints, and Other Historic Materials.
 2 vols.


 THE SAME. _Illustrated Edition._ Containing Portraits, Maps,
 Facsimiles, Contemporary Views, Prints, and Other Historic Materials.

 THE DESTINY OF MAN, viewed in the Light of His Origin.

 THE IDEA OF GOD, as affected by Modern Knowledge. A Sequel to "The
 Destiny of Man."


 MYTHS AND MYTH-MAKERS. Old Tales and Superstitions interpreted by
 Comparative Mythology.

 OUTLINES OF COSMIC PHILOSOPHY. Based on the Doctrine of Evolution,
 with Criticisms on the Positive Philosophy.

 THE UNSEEN WORLD, and other Essays.


 DARWINISM, and Other Essays.





                     OLD VIRGINIA

                   AND HER NEIGHBOURS


                     JOHN FISKE

              Οὐ λίθοι, οὐδὲ ξύλα, οὐδὲ
              Τέχνη τεκτόνων αἱ πόλεις εἶσιν
              Ἀλλ' ὅπού ποτ' ἂν ὦσιν ἌΝΔΡΕΣ
              Αὑτοὺς σώζειν εἰδότες,
              Ἐνταῦθα τείχη καὶ πόλεις.

            [Illustration: The Riverside Press]

                   IN TWO VOLUMES

                      VOLUME I

                  BOSTON AND NEW YORK
              The Riverside Press Cambridge

              COPYRIGHT 1897 BY JOHN FISKE

                 ALL RIGHTS RESERVED



                 JOHN KNOWLES PAINE


                I dedicate this book

       "Long days be his, and each as lusty-sweet
           As gracious natures find his song to be;
        May age steal on with softly-cadenced feet
        Falling in music, as for him were meet
           Whose choicest note is harsher-toned than he!"


IN the series of books on American history, upon which I have for many
years been engaged, the present volumes come between "The Discovery
of America" and "The Beginnings of New England." The opening chapter,
with its brief sketch of the work done by Elizabeth's great sailors,
takes up the narrative where the concluding chapter of "The Discovery
of America" dropped it. Then the story of Virginia, starting with
Sir Walter Raleigh and Rev. Richard Hakluyt, is pursued until the
year 1753, when the youthful George Washington sets forth upon
his expedition to warn the approaching Frenchmen from any further
encroachment upon English soil. That moment marks the arrival of a new
era, when a book like the present--which is not a local history nor a
bundle of local histories--can no longer follow the career of Virginia,
nor of the southern colonies, except as part and parcel of the career
of the American people. That "continental state of things," which was
distinctly heralded when the war of the Spanish Succession broke out
during Nicholson's rule in Virginia, had arrived in 1753. To treat
it properly requires preliminary consideration of many points in the
history of the northern colonies, and it is accordingly reserved for a
future work.

It will be observed that I do not call the present work a "History of
the Southern Colonies." Its contents would not justify such a title,
inasmuch as its scope and purpose are different from what such a title
would imply. My aim is to follow the main stream of causation from the
time of Raleigh to the time of Dinwiddie, from its sources down to its
absorption into a mightier stream. At first our attention is fixed
upon Raleigh's Virginia, which extends from Florida to Canada, England
thrusting herself in between Spain and France. With the charter of 1609
(see below, vol. i. p. 145) Virginia is practically severed from North
Virginia, which presently takes on the names of New England and New
Netherland, and receives colonies of Puritans and Dutchmen, with which
this book is not concerned.

From the territory of Virginia thus cut down, further slices are carved
from time to time; first Maryland in 1632, then Carolina in 1663,
then Georgia in 1732, almost at the end of our narrative. Colonies
thus arise which present a few or many different social aspects from
those of Old Virginia; and while our attention is still centred upon
the original commonwealth as both historically most important and
in personal detail most interesting, at the same time the younger
commonwealths claim a share in the story. A comparative survey of the
social features in which North Carolina, South Carolina, and Maryland
differed from one another, and from Virginia, is a great help to the
right understanding of all four commonwealths. To Maryland I find that
I have given 107 pages, while the Carolinas, whose history begins
practically a half century later, receive 67 pages; a mere mention of
the beginnings of Georgia is all that suits the perspective of the
present story. The further development of these southern communities
will, it is hoped, receive attention in a later work.

As to the colonies founded in what was once known as North Virginia,
I have sketched a portion of the story in "The Beginnings of New
England," ending with the accession of William and Mary. The remainder
of it will form the subject of my next work, already in preparation,
entitled "The Dutch and Quaker Colonies in America;" which will
comprise a sketch of the early history of New York, New Jersey,
Delaware, and Pennsylvania, with a discussion of the contributions to
American life which may be traced to the Dutch, German, Protestant
French, and Scotch-Irish migrations previous to the War of Independence.

To complete the picture of the early times and to "make connections"
with "The American Revolution," still another work will be needed,
which shall resume the story of New England at the accession of William
and Mary. With that story the romantic fortunes of New France are
inseparably implicated, and in the course of its development one colony
after another is brought in until from the country of the Wabenaki
to that of the Cherokees the whole of English America is involved in
the mightiest and most fateful military struggle which the eighteenth
century witnessed. The end of that conflict finds thirteen colonies
nearly ripe for independence and union.

The present work was begun in 1882, and its topics have been treated
in several courses of lectures at the Washington University in St.
Louis, and elsewhere. In 1895 I gave a course of twelve such lectures,
especially prepared for the occasion, at the Lowell Institute in
Boston. But the book cannot properly be said to be "based upon"
lectures; the book was primary and the lectures secondary.

The amount of time spent in giving lectures and in writing a schoolbook
of American history has greatly delayed the appearance of this book. It
is more than five years since "The Discovery of America" was published;
I hope that "The Dutch and Quaker Colonies" will appear after a much
shorter interval.

  CAMBRIDGE, _October_ 10, 1897.






    Tercentenary of the Discovery of America, 1792                      1

    The Abbé Raynal and his book                                        2

    Was the Discovery of America a blessing or a curse to
    mankind?                                                            3

    The Abbé Genty's opinion                                            4

    A cheering item of therapeutics                                     4

    Spanish methods of colonization contrasted with English             5

    Spanish conquerors value America for its supply of precious
    metals                                                              6

    Aim of Columbus was to acquire the means for driving the
    Turks from Europe                                                   7

    But Spain used American treasure not so much against Turks
    as against Protestants                                              8

    Vast quantities of treasure taken from America by Spain             9

    Nations are made wealthy not by inflation but by production         9

    Deepest significance of the discovery of America; it opened
    up a fresh soil in which to plant the strongest type of
    European civilization                                              10

    America first excited interest in England as the storehouse
    of Spanish treasure                                                11

    After the Cabot voyages England paid little attention to
    America                                                            12

    Save for an occasional visit to the Newfoundland fisheries         13

    Earliest English reference to America                              13

    Founding of the Muscovy Company                                    14

    Richard Eden and his books                                         15

    John Hawkins and the African slave trade                       15, 16

    Hawkins visits the French colony in Florida                        17

    Facts which seem to show that thirst is the mother of invention    18

    Massacre of Huguenots in Florida; escape of the painter Le
    Moyne                                                              18

    Hawkins goes on another voyage and takes with him young
    Francis Drake                                                      19

    The affair of San Juan de Ulua and the journey of David
    Ingram                                                             20

    Growing hostility to Spain in England                              21

    Size and strength of Elizabeth's England                       21, 22

    How the sea became England's field of war                          22

    Loose ideas of international law                                   23

    Some bold advice to Queen Elizabeth                                23

    The sea kings were not buccaneers                                  24

    Why Drake carried the war into the Pacific Ocean                   25

    How Drake stood upon a peak in Darien                              26

    Glorious voyage of the Golden Hind                             26, 27

    Drake is knighted by the Queen                                     27

    The Golden Hind's cabin is made a banquet-room                     28

    Voyage of the half-brothers, Gilbert and Raleigh                   28

    Gilbert is shipwrecked, and his patent is granted to Raleigh       29

    Raleigh's plan for founding a Protestant state in America
    may have been suggested to him by Coligny                          30

    Elizabeth promises self-government to colonists in America         31

    Amidas and Barlow visit Pamlico Sound                              31

    An Ollendorfian conversation between white men and red men         32

    The Queen's suggestion that the new country be called in
    honour of herself Virginia                                         32

    Raleigh is knighted, and sends a second expedition under
    Ralph Lane                                                         32

    Who concludes that Chesapeake Bay would be better than
    Pamlico Sound                                                      33

    Lane and his party on the brink of starvation are rescued by
    Sir Francis Drake                                                  33

    Thomas Cavendish follows Drake's example and circumnavigates
    the earth                                                          34

    How Drake singed the beard of Philip II.                           34

    Raleigh sends another party under John White                       35

    The accident which turned White from Chesapeake Bay to
    Roanoke Island                                                     35

    Defeat of the Invincible Armada                                36, 37

    The deathblow at Cadiz                                             38

    The mystery about White's colony                               38, 39

    Significance of the defeat of the Armada                       39, 40



    Some peculiarities of sixteenth century maps                       41

    How Richard Hakluyt's career was determined                        42

    Strange adventures of a manuscript                                 43

    Hakluyt's reasons for wishing to see English colonies planted
    in America                                                         44

    English trade with the Netherlands                                 45

    Hakluyt thinks that America will presently afford as good a
    market as the Netherlands                                          46

    Notion that England was getting to be over-peopled                 46

    The change from tillage to pasturage                           46, 47

    What Sir Thomas More thought about it                              47

    Growth of pauperism during the Tudor period                        48

    Development of English commercial and naval marine                 49

    Opposition to Hakluyt's schemes                                    49

    The Queen's penuriousness                                          50

    Beginnings of joint-stock companies                                51

    Raleigh's difficulties                                         52, 53

    Christopher Newport captures the great Spanish carrack             53

    Raleigh visits Guiana and explores the Orinoco River               54

    Ambrosial nights at the Mermaid Tavern                             54

    Accession of James I                                               55

    Henry, Earl of Southampton, Shakespeare's friend, sends
    Bartholomew Gosnold on an expedition                               55

    Gosnold reaches Buzzard's Bay in what he calls North Virginia,
    and is followed by Martin Pring and George
    Weymouth                                                       55, 56

    Performance of "Eastward Ho," a comedy by Chapman and
    Marston                                                            56

    Extracts from this comedy                                       57-59

    Report of the Spanish ambassador Zuñiga to Philip III              59

    First charter to the Virginia Company, 1606                        60

    "Supposed Sea of Verrazano" covering the larger part of the
    area now known as the United States                                61

    Northern and southern limits of Virginia                           62

    The twin joint-stock companies and the three zones             62, 63

    The three zones in American history                                63

    The kind of government designed for the two colonies               64

    Some of the persons chiefly interested in the first colony
    known as the London Company                                     65-67

    Some of the persons chiefly interested in the second colony
    known as the Plymouth Company                                  67, 68

    Some other eminent persons who were interested in western
    planting                                                        68-70

    Expedition of the Plymouth Company and disastrous failure
    of the Popham Colony                                           70, 71

    The London Company gets its expedition ready a little
    before Christmas and supplies it with a list of instructions   71, 72

    Where to choose a site for a town                                  72

    Precautions against a surprise by the Spaniards                    73

    Colonists must try to find the Pacific Ocean                       73

    And must not offend the natives or put much trust in them          74

    The death and sickness of white men must be concealed from
    the Indians                                                        75

    It will be well to beware of woodland coverts, avoid malaria,
    and guard against desertion                                        75

    The town should be carefully built with regular streets        75, 76

    Colonists must not send home any discouraging news                 76

    What Spain thought about all this                              76, 77

    Christopher Newport starts with a little fleet for Virginia        77

    A poet laureate's farewell blessing                             77-79



    One of Newport's passengers was Captain John Smith, a
    young man whose career had been full of adventure                  80

    Many persons have expressed doubts as to Smith's veracity,
    but without good reason                                            81

    Early life of John Smith                                           82

    His adventures on the Mediterranean                                83

    And in Transylvania                                                84

    How he slew and beheaded three Turks                               85

    For which Prince Sigismund granted him a coat-of-arms
    which was duly entered in the Heralds' College                     86

    The incident was first told not by Smith but by Sigismund's
    secretary Farnese                                                  87

    Smith tells us much about himself, but is not a braggart           88

    How he was sold into slavery beyond the Sea of Azov and
    cruelly treated                                                88, 89

    How he slew his master and escaped through Russia and
    Poland                                                         89, 90

    The smoke of controversy                                           90

    In the course of Newport's tedious voyage Smith is accused
    of plotting mutiny and kept in irons                               91

    Arrival of the colonists in Chesapeake Bay, May 13, 1607           92

    Founding of Jamestown; Wingfield chosen president                  93

    Smith is set free and goes with Newport to explore the James
    River                                                          93, 94

    The Powhatan tribe, confederacy, and head war-chief                94

    How danger may lurk in long grass                                  95

    Smith is acquitted of all charges and takes his seat with the
    council                                                            96

    Newport sails for England, June 22, 1607                           96

    George Percy's account of the sufferings of the colonists from
    fever and famine                                                   97

    Quarrels break out in which President Wingfield is deposed
    and John Ratcliffe chosen in his place                             99

    Execution of a member of the council for mutiny                   100

    Smith goes up the Chickahominy River and is captured by
    Opekankano                                                        101

    Who takes him about the country and finally brings him to
    Werowocomoco, January, 1608                                       102

    The Indians are about to kill him, but he is rescued by the
    chief's daughter, Pocahontas                                      103

    Recent attempts to discredit the story                        103-108

    Flimsiness of these attempts                                      104

    George Percy's pamphlet                                           105

    The printed text of the "True Relation" is incomplete        105, 106

    Reason why the Pocahontas incident was omitted in the
    "True Relation"                                              106, 107

    There is no incongruity between the "True Relation" and
    the "General History" except this omission                        107

    But this omission creates a gap in the "True Relation," and
    the account in the "General History" is the more intrinsically
    probable                                                          108

    The rescue was in strict accordance with Indian usage             109

    The ensuing ceremonies indicate that the rescue was an ordinary
    case of adoption                                                  110

    The Powhatan afterward proclaimed Smith a tribal chief            111

    The rescue of Smith by Pocahontas was an event of real historical
    importance                                                        111

    Captain Newport returns with the First Supply, Jan. 8, 1608       112

    Ratcliffe is deposed and Smith chosen president                   113

    Arrival of the Second Supply, September, 1608                     113

    Queer instructions brought by Captain Newport from the
    London Company                                                    113

    How Smith and Captain Newport went up to Werowocomoco,
    and crowned The Powhatan                                          114

    How the Indian girls danced at Werowocomoco                  114, 115

    Accuracy of Smith's descriptions                                  116

    How Newport tried in vain to search for a salt sea behind the
    Blue Ridge                                                        116

    Anas Todkill's complaint                                          117

    Smith's map of Virginia                                           118



    How puns were made on Captain Newport's name                      119

    Great importance of the Indian alliance                           120

    Gentlemen as pioneers                                             121

    All is not gold that glitters                                     122

    Smith's attempts to make glass and soap                           123

    The Company is disappointed at not making more money              124

    Tale-bearers and their complaints against Smith                   124

    Smith's "Rude Answer" to the Company                              125

    Says he cannot prevent quarrels                                   125

    And the Company's instructions have not been wise                 126

    From infant industries too much must not be expected while
    the colonists are suffering for want of food                      127

    And while peculation and intrigue are rife and we are in sore
    need of useful workmen                                            128

    Smith anticipates trouble from the Indians, whose character
    is well described by Hakluyt                                      129

    What Smith dreaded                                                130

    How the red men's views of the situation were changed             131

    Smith's voyage to Werowocomoco                                    132

    His parley with The Powhatan                                      133

    A game of bluff                                                   134

    The corn is brought                                               135

    Suspicions of treachery                                           136

    A wily orator                                                     137

    Pocahontas reveals the plot                                       138

    Smith's message to The Powhatan                              138, 139

    How Smith visited the Pamunkey village and brought Opekankano
    to terms                                                     139, 140

    How Smith appeared to the Indians in the light of a worker
    of miracles                                                       141

    What our chronicler calls "a pretty accident"                     141

    How the first years of Old Virginia were an experiment in
    communism                                                         142

    Smith declares "He that will not work shall not eat," but
    the summer's work is interrupted by unbidden messmates
    in the shape of rats                                              143

    Arrival of young Samuel Argall with news from London         143, 144

    Second Charter of the London Company, 1609                        144

    The council in London                                             145

    The local government in Virginia is entirely changed and
    Thomas, Lord Delaware, is appointed governor for life             146

    A new expedition is organized for Virginia, but still with a
    communistic programme                                        147, 148

    How the good ship Sea Venture was wrecked upon the Bermudas       149

    How this incident was used by Shakespeare in The Tempest          150

    Gates and Somers build pinnaces and sail for Jamestown,
    May, 1610                                                         151

    The Third Supply had arrived in August, 1609                      151

    And Smith had returned to England in October                      152

    Lord Delaware became alarmed and sailed for Virginia              152

    Meanwhile the sufferings of the colony had been horrible          153

    Of the 500 persons Gates and Somers found only 60 survivors,
    and it was decided that Virginia must be abandoned                154

    Dismantling of Jamestown and departure of the colony         154, 155

    But the timely arrival of Lord Delaware in Hampton Roads
    prevented the dire disaster                                       155



    To the first English settlers in America a supply of Indian
    corn was of vital consequence, as illustrated at Jamestown
    and Plymouth                                                      156

    Alliance with the Powhatan confederacy was of the first importance
    to the infant colony                                              157

    Smith was a natural leader of men                                 157

    With much nobility of nature                                      158

    And but for him the colony would probably have perished           159

    Characteristic features of Lord Delaware's administration         160

    Death of Somers and cruise of Argall in 1610                      161

    Kind of craftsmen desired for Virginia                            162

    Sir Thomas Dale comes to govern Virginia in the capacity of
    High Marshal                                                      163

    A Draconian code of laws                                          164

    Cruel punishments                                                 165

    How communism worked in practice                                  166

    How Dale abolished communism                                      167

    And founded the "City of Henricus"                           167, 168

    How Captain Argall seized Pocahontas                              168

    Her marriage with John Rolfe                                      169

    How Captain Argall extinguished the Jesuit settlement at
    Mount Desert and burned Port Royal                                170

    But left the Dutch at New Amsterdam with a warning                171

    How Pocahontas, "La Belle Sauvage," visited London and
    was entertained there like a princess                        171, 172

    Her last interview with Captain Smith                             172

    Her sudden death at Gravesend                                     173

    How Tomocomo tried to take a census of the English                173

    How the English in Virginia began to cultivate tobacco in
    spite of King James and his Counterblast                          174

    Dialogue between Silenus and Kawasha                              175

    Effects of tobacco culture upon the young colony             176, 177

    The London Company's Third Charter, 1612                     177, 178

    How money was raised by lotteries                                 178

    How this new remodelling of the Company made it an important
    force in politics                                                 179

    Middleton's speech in opposition to the charter                   180

    Richard Martin in the course of a brilliant speech forgets
    himself and has to apologize                                      181

    How factions began to be developed within the London Company      182

    Sudden death of Lord Delaware                                     183

    Quarrel between Lord Rich and Sir Thomas Smith, resulting
    in the election of Sir Edwin Sandys as treasurer of the
    Company                                                           184

    Sir George Yeardley is appointed governor of Virginia while
    Argall is knighted                                                185

    How Sir Edwin Sandys introduced into Virginia the first
    American legislature, 1619                                        186

    How this legislative assembly, like those afterwards constituted
    in America, were formed after the type of the
    old English county court                                          187

    How negro slaves were first introduced into Virginia, 1619.       188
    How cargoes of spinsters were sent out by the Company in
    quest of husbands                                                 189

    The great Indian massacre of 1622                            189, 190



    Summary review of the founding of Virginia                    191-194

    Bitter hostility of Spain to the enterprise                       194

    Gondomar and the Spanish match                                    195

    Gondomar's advice to the king                                     196

    How Sir Walter Raleigh was kept twelve years in prison            197

    But was then released and sent on an expedition to Guiana         198

    The king's base treachery                                         199

    Judicial murder of Raleigh                                        200

    How the king attempted to interfere with the Company's
    election of treasurer in 1620                                     201

    How the king's emissaries listened to the reading of the
    charter                                                           202

    Withdrawal of Sandys and election of Southampton                  203

    Life and character of Nicholas Ferrar                         203-205

    His monastic home at Little Gidding                               205

    How disputes rose high in the Company's quarter sessions     206, 207

    How the House of Commons rebuked the king                    207, 208

    How Nathaniel Butler was accused of robbery and screened
    himself by writing a pamphlet abusing the Company                 208

    Some of his charges and how they were answered by Virginia
    settlers                                                          209

    As to malaria                                                     209

    As to wetting one's feet                                          210

    As to dying under hedges                                          211

    As to the houses and their situations                        211, 212

    Object of the charges                                             212

    Virginia assembly denies the allegations                          213

    The Lord Treasurer demands that Ferrar shall answer the
    charges                                                           214

    A cogent answer is returned                                  214, 215

    Vain attempts to corrupt Ferrar                              215, 216

    How the wolf was set to investigate the dogs                      216

    The Virginia assembly makes "A Tragical Declaration"              217

    On the attorney-general's advice a _quo warranto_
    is served                                                    217, 218

    How the Company appealed to Parliament, and the king refused
    to allow the appeal                                          217, 218

    The attorney-general's irresistible logic                         219

    Lord Strafford's glee                                             220

    How Nicholas Ferrar had the records copied                   221, 222

    The history of a manuscript                                  221, 222



    A retrospect                                                      223

    Tidewater Virginia                                                224

    A receding frontier                                          224, 225

    The plantations                                                   225

    Boroughs and burgesses                                            226

    Boroughs and hundreds                                        227, 228

    Houses, slaves, indentured servants, and Indians                  229

    Virginia agriculture in the time of Charles I                     230

    Increasing cultivation of tobacco                                 231

    Literature; how George Sandys entreated the Muses with
    success                                                           232

    Provisions for higher education                                   233

    Project for a university in the city of Henricus cut short by
    the Indian massacre                                               234

    Puritans and liberal churchmen                                    235

    How the Company of Massachusetts Bay learned a lesson
    from the fate of its predecessor, the London Company
    for Virginia                                                  236,237

    Death of James I                                                  238

    Effect upon Virginia of the downfall of the Company           238-240

    The virus of liberty                                              240

    How Charles I. came to recognize the assembly of Virginia     241-243

    Some account of the first American legislature               243, 244

    How Edward Sharpless had part of one ear cut off                  245

    The case of Captain John Martin                                   245

    How the assembly provided for the education of Indians            246

    And for the punishment of drunkards                               246

    And against extravagance in dress                                 246

    How flirting was threatened with the whipping-post                247

    And scandalous gossip with the pillory                            247

    How the minister's salary was assured him                         247

    How he was warned against too much drinking and card-playing      248

    Penalties for Sabbath-breaking                                    248

    Inn-keepers forbidden to adulterate liquors or to charge too
    much per gallon or glass                                          249

    A statute against forestalling                               249, 250

    How Charles I. called the new colony "Our kingdom of
    Virginia"                                                         251

    How the convivial governor Dr. Pott was tried for stealing
    cattle, but pardoned for the sake of his medical services         253

    Growth of Virginia from 1624 to 1642                         253, 254



    The Irish village of Baltimore                                    255

    Early career of George Calvert, first Lord Baltimore         255, 256

    How James I. granted him a palatinate in Newfoundland             256

    Origin of palatinates                                        256, 257

    Changes in English palatinates                               258, 259

    The bishopric of Durham                                      259, 260

    Durham and Avalon                                                 260

    How Lord Baltimore fared in his colony of Avalon in Newfoundland  261

    His letter to the king                                            262

    How he visited Virginia but was not cordially received       263, 264

    How a part of Virginia was granted to him and received the
    name of Maryland                                                  265

    Fate of the Avalon charter                                        266

    Character of the first Lord Baltimore                             267

    Early career of Cecilius Calvert, second Lord Baltimore           268

    How the founding of Maryland introduced into America a
    new type of colonial government                              269, 270

    Ecclesiastical powers of the Lord Proprietor                      271

    Religious toleration in Maryland                                  272

    The first settlement at St. Mary's                                273

    Relations with the Indians                                        274

    Prosperity of the settlement                                      275

    Comparison of the palatinate government of Maryland with
    that of the bishopric of Durham                               275-285

    The constitution of Durham; the receiver-general                  276

    Lord lieutenant and high sheriff                                  276

    Chancellor of temporalities                                       277

    The ancient halmote and the seneschal                             277

    The bishop's council                                              278

    Durham not represented in the House of Commons until
    after 1660                                                        278

    Limitations upon Durham autonomy                                  279

    The palatinate type in America                                    280

    Similarities between Durham and Maryland; the governor            281

    Secretary; surveyor-general; muster master-general; sheriffs      282

    The courts                                                   282, 283

    The primary assembly                                              283

    Question as to the initiative in legislation                      284

    The representative assembly                                  284, 285

    Lord Baltimore's power more absolute than that of any king
    of England save perhaps Henry VIII                                285



    William Claiborne and his projects                                286

    Kent Island occupied by Claiborne                                 287

    Conflicting grants                                                288

    Star Chamber decision and Claiborne's resistance                  289

    Lord Baltimore's instructions                                     290

    The Virginia council supports Claiborne                      290, 291

    Complications with the Indians                               291, 292

    Reprisals and skirmishes                                          293

    Affairs in Virginia; complaints against Governor Harvey      293, 294

    Rage of Virginia against Maryland                            294, 295

    How Rev. Anthony Panton called Mr. Secretary Kemp a
    jackanapes                                                        295

    Indignation meeting at the house of William Warren                296

    Arrest of the principal speakers                                  296

    Scene in the council room                                    296, 297

    How Sir John Harvey was thrust out of the government              297

    How King Charles sent him back to Virginia                        298

    Downfall of Harvey                                                299

    George Evelin sent to Kent Island                                 299

    Kent Island seized by Leonard Calvert                             300

    The Lords of Trade decide against Claiborne                       301

    Puritans in Virginia                                         301, 302

    The Act of Uniformity of 1631                                     303

    Puritan ministers sent from New England to Virginia               303

    The new Act of Uniformity, 1643                                   304

    Expulsion of the New England ministers                            304

    Indian massacre of 1644                                           305

    Conflicting views of theodicy                                     306

    Invasion of Maryland by Claiborne and Ingle                   306-308

    Expulsion of Claiborne and Ingle from Maryland                    308

    Lord Baltimore appoints William Stone as governor                 308

    Toleration Act of 1649                                        309-311

    Migration of Puritans from Virginia to Maryland                   312

    Designs of the Puritans                                           313

    Reluctant submission of Virginia to Cromwell                      314

    Claiborne and Bennett undertake to settle the affairs of
    Maryland                                                          315

    Renewal of the troubles                                           316

    The Puritan Assembly and its notion of a toleration act           316

    Civil war in Maryland; battle of the Severn, 1655                 317

    Lord Baltimore is sustained by Cromwell and peace reigns
    once more                                                         318


  Tidewater Virginia, _from a sketch by the author_

  Michael Lok's Map, 1582, _from Hakluyt's Voyages to America_  60

  The Palatinate of Maryland, _from a sketch by the author_    274




[Sidenote: Tercentenary of the Discovery of America, 1792.]

WHEN one thinks of the resounding chorus of gratulations with which
the four hundredth anniversary of the Discovery of America was lately
heralded to a listening world, it is curious and instructive to
notice the sort of comment which that great event called forth upon
the occasion of its third centenary, while the independence of the
United States was as yet a novel and ill-appreciated fact. In America
very little fuss was made. Railroads were as yet unknown, and the
era of world's fairs had not begun. Of local celebrations there were
two; one held in New York, the other in Boston; and as in 1892, so in
1792, New York followed the Old Style date, the twelfth of October,
while Boston undertook to correct the date for New Style. This work
was discreditably bungled, however, and the twenty-third of October
was selected instead of the true date, the twenty-first. In New York
the affair was conducted by the newly founded political society named
for the Delaware chieftain Tammany, in Boston by the Massachusetts
Historical Society, whose founder, Dr. Jeremy Belknap, delivered a
thoughtful and scholarly address upon the occasion. Both commemorations
of the day were very quiet and modest.[1]

[Sidenote: Abbé Raynal.]

In Europe little heed was paid to America and its discovery, except
in France, which, after taking part in our Revolutionary War, was at
length embarking upon its own Revolution, so different in its character
and fortunes. Without knowing much about America, the Frenchmen of that
day were fond of using it to point a moral and adorn a tale. In 1770
the famous Abbé Raynal had published his "Philosophical and Political
History of the Establishments and Commerce of the Europeans in the
Two Indies," a book in ten volumes, which for a time enjoyed immense
popularity. Probably not less than one third of it was written by
Diderot, and more than a dozen other writers contributed to its pages,
while the abbé, in editing these various chapters and adding more from
his own hand, showed himself blissfully ignorant of the need for any
such thing as critical judgment in writing history. In an indescribably
airy and superficial manner the narrative flits over the whole vast
field of the intercourse of Europeans with the outlying parts of the
earth discovered since the days of Columbus and Gama; and at length,
in the last chapter of the last volume, we are confronted with the
question, What is all this worth? Our author answers confidently,
Nothing! worse than nothing! the world would have been much better off
if America had never been discovered and the ocean route to Asia had
remained unknown!

[Sidenote: Was the discovery of America a blessing or a curse to

[Sidenote: Abbé Genty.]

[Sidenote: Quinine.]

This opinion seems to have been a favourite hobby with the worthy
Raynal; for in 1787, in view of the approaching tercentenary, we find
him proposing to the Academy of Lyons the offer of a prize of fifty
louis for the best essay upon the question whether the discovery of
America had been a blessing or a curse to mankind. It was furthermore
suggested that the essay should discuss the most practicable methods
of increasing the benefits and diminishing the ills that had flowed
and continued to flow from that memorable event. The announcement of
the question aroused considerable interest, and a few essays were
written, but the prize seems never to have been awarded. One of these
essays was by the Marquis de Chastellux, who had served in America as
major-general in the army of Count Rochambeau. The accomplished author
maintains, chiefly on economic grounds, that the discovery has been
beneficial to mankind; in one place, mindful of the triumph of the
American cause in the grand march upon Yorktown wherein he had himself
taken part, he exclaims, "O land of Washington and Franklin, of Hancock
and Adams, who could ever wish thee non-existent for them and for us?"
To this Baron Grimm[2] replied, "Perhaps he will wish it who reflects
that the independence of the United States has cost France nearly two
thousand million francs, and is hastening in Europe a revolutionary
outbreak which had better be postponed or averted." To most of these
philosophers no doubt Chastellux seemed far too much of an optimist,
and the writer who best expressed their sentiments was the Abbé Genty,
who published at Orleans, in 1787, an elaborate essay, in two tiny
volumes, entitled "The Influence of the Discovery of America upon the
Happiness of the Human Race." Genty has no difficulty in reaching the
conclusion that the influence has been chiefly for the bad. Think what
a slaughter there had been of innocent and high-minded red men by
brutal and ruthless whites! for the real horrors described by Las Casas
were viewed a century ago in the light of Rousseau's droll notions as
to the exalted virtues of the noble savage. Think, too, how most of
the great European wars since the Peace of Westphalia had grown out of
quarrels about colonial empire! Clearly Columbus had come with a sword,
not with an olive branch, and had but opened a new chapter in the long
Iliad of human woe. Against such undeniable evils, what benefits could
be alleged except the extension of commerce, and that, says Genty,
means merely the multiplication of human wants, which is not in itself
a thing to be desired.[3] One unqualified benefit, however, Genty and
all the other writers freely admit; the introduction of quinine into
Europe and its use in averting fevers. That item of therapeutics is the
one cheery note in the mournful chorus of disparagement, so long as
our attention is confined to the past. In the future, perhaps, better
things might be hoped for. Along the Atlantic coast of North America
a narrow fringe of English-speaking colonies had lately established
their political independence and succeeded in setting on foot a federal
government under the presidency of George Washington. The success
of this enterprise might put a new face upon things and ultimately
show that after all the discovery of the New World was a blessing to
mankind.[4] So says the Abbé Genty in his curious little book, which
even to-day is well worth reading.

[Sidenote: Spanish and English America.]

If now, after the lapse of another century, we pause to ask the
question why the world was so much more interested in the Western
hemisphere in 1892 than in 1792, we may fairly say that it is because
of the constructive work, political and social, that has been done
here in the interval by men who speak English. Surely, if there were
nothing to show but the sort of work in colonization and nation-making
that characterized Spanish America under its Old Régime, there would
be small reason for celebrating the completion of another century of
such performance. During the present century, indeed, various parts
of Spanish America have begun to take on a fresh political and social
life, so that in the future much may be hoped for them. But the ideas
and methods which have guided this revival have been largely the ideas
and methods of English-speaking people, however imperfectly conceived
and reproduced. The whole story of this western hemisphere since Genty
wrote gives added point to his opinion that its value to mankind would
be determined chiefly by what the people of the United States were
likely to do.

[Sidenote: Precious metals.]

The smile with which one regards the world-historic importance accorded
to the discovery of quinine is an index of the feeling that there are
broad ways and narrow ways of dealing with such questions. To one
looking through a glass of small calibre a great historical problem may
resolve itself into a question of food and drugs. Your anti-tobacco
fanatic might contend that civilized men would have been much better
off had they never become acquainted with the Indian weed. An economist
might more reasonably point to potatoes and maize--to say nothing of
many other products peculiar to the New World--as an acquisition of
which the value can hardly be overestimated. To reckon the importance
of a new piece of territory from a survey of its material productions
is of course the first and most natural method. The Spanish conquerors
valued America for its supply of precious metals and set little store
by other things in comparison. But for the discovery of gold mines
in 1496 the Spanish colony founded by Columbus in Hispaniola would
probably have been abandoned. That was but the first step in the
finding of gold and silver in enormous quantities, and thenceforth for
a long time the Spanish crown regarded its transatlantic territories
as an inexhaustible mine of wealth. But the value of money to mankind
depends upon the uses to which it is put; and here it is worth our
while to notice the chief use to which Spain applied her American
treasure during the sixteenth century.

[Sidenote: Aims of Columbus.]

The relief of the church from threatening dangers was in those days the
noblest and most sacred function of wealth. When Columbus aimed his
prow westward from the Canaries, in quest of the treasures of Asia, its
precious stones, its silk-stuffs, its rich shawls and rugs, its corals
and dye-woods, its aromatic spices, he expected to acquire vast wealth
for the sovereigns who employed him and no mean fortune for himself. In
all negotiations he insisted upon a good round percentage, and could
no more be induced to budge from his price than the old Roman Sibyl
with her books. Of petty self-seeking and avarice there was probably
no more in this than in commercial transactions generally. The wealth
thus sought by Columbus was not so much an end as a means. His spirit
was that of a Crusader, and his aim was not to discover a New World (an
idea which seems never once to have entered his head), but to acquire
the means for driving the Turk from Europe and setting free the Holy
Sepulchre. Had he been told upon his melancholy death-bed that instead
of finding a quick route to Cathay he had only discovered a New World,
it would probably have added fresh bitterness to death.

[Sidenote: Spain and the Protestant revolt.]

But if this lofty and ill-understood enthusiast failed in his search
for the treasures of Cathay, it was at all events not long before
Cortes and Pizarro succeeded in finding the treasures of Mexico and
Peru, and the crusading scheme of Columbus descended as a kind of
legacy to the successors of Ferdinand and Isabella, the magnanimous
but sometimes misguided Charles, the sombre and terrible Philip. It
remained a crusading scheme, but, no longer patterned after that
of Godfrey and Tancred, it imitated the mad folly which had once
extinguished in southern Gaul the most promising civilization of its
age. Instead of a Spanish crusade which might have expelled the most
worthless and dangerous of barbarians from eastern Europe, it became
a Spanish crusade against everything in the shape of political and
religious freedom, whether at home or abroad. The year in which Spanish
eyes first beheld the carved serpents on Central American temples was
the year in which Martin Luther nailed his defiance to the church door
at Wittenberg. From the outworn crust of mediævalism the modern spirit
of individual freedom and individual responsibility was emerging, and
for ninety years all Europe was rent with the convulsions that ensued.
In the doubtful struggle Spain engaged herself further and further,
until by 1570 she had begun to sacrifice to it all her energies. Whence
did Philip II. get the sinews of war with which he supported Alva and
Farnese, and built the Armada called Invincible? Largely from America,
partly also from the East Indies, since Portugal and her colonies were
seized by Philip in 1580. Thus were the first-fruits of the heroic age
of discovery, both to east and to west of Borgia's meridian, devoted
to the service of the church with a vengeance, as one might say, a
lurid vengeance withal and ruthless. By the year 1609, when Spain
sullenly retired, baffled and browbeaten, from the Dutch Netherlands,
she had taken from America more gold and silver than would to-day be
represented by five thousand million dollars, and most of this huge
treasure she had employed in maintaining the gibbet for political
reformers and the stake for heretics. In view of this grewsome fact,
Mr. Charles Francis Adams has lately asked the question whether the
discovery of America was not, after all, for at least a century,
fraught with more evil than benefit to mankind. One certainly cannot
help wondering what might have been the immediate result had such an
immense revenue been at the disposal of William and Elizabeth rather
than Philip.

[Sidenote: Nations are made wealthy, not by inflation but by

Such questions are after all not so simple as they may seem. It is not
altogether clear that such a reversal of the conditions from the start
would have been of unmixed benefit to the English and Dutch. After
the five thousand millions had been scattered to the winds, altering
the purchasing power of money in all directions, it was Spain that
was impoverished while her adversaries were growing rich and strong.
A century of such unproductive expenditure went far toward completing
the industrial ruin of Spain, already begun in the last Moorish wars,
and afterward consummated by the expulsion of the Moriscos. The Spanish
discovery of America abundantly illustrates the truths that if gold
were to become as plentiful as iron it would be worth much less than
iron, and that it is not inflation but production that makes a nation
wealthy. In so far as the discovery of America turned men's minds from
steady industry to gold-hunting, it was a dangerous source of weakness
to Spain; and it was probably just as well for England that the work of
Cortes and Pizarro was not done for her.

[Sidenote: Deepest significance of the discovery of America.]

But the great historic fact, most conspicuous among the consequences of
the discovery of America, is the fact that colonial empire, for England
and for Holland, grew directly out of the long war in which Spain used
American and East Indian treasure with which to subdue the English and
Dutch peoples and to suppress the principles of civil and religious
liberty which they represented. The Dutch tore away from Spain the
best part of her East Indian empire, and the glorious Elizabethan sea
kings, who began the work of crippling Philip II. in America, led the
way directly to the English colonization of Virginia. Thus we are
introduced to the most important aspect of the discovery of America.
It opened up a fresh soil, enormous in extent and capacity, for the
possession of which the lower and higher types of European civilization
and social polity were to struggle. In this new arena the maritime
peoples of western Europe fought for supremacy; and the conquest of so
vast a field has given to the ideas of the victorious people, and to
their type of social polity, an unprecedented opportunity for growth
and development. Sundry sturdy European ideas, transplanted into
this western soil, have triumphed over all competitors and thriven
so mightily as to react upon all parts of the Old World, some more,
some less, and thus to modify the whole course of civilization. This
is the deepest significance of the discovery of America; and a due
appreciation of it gives to our history from its earliest stages an
epic grandeur, as the successive situations unfold themselves and
events with unmistakable emphasis record their moral. In the conflict
of Titans that absorbed the energies of the sixteenth century, the
question whether it should be the world of Calderon or the world of
Shakespeare that was to gain indefinite power of future expansion was a
question of incalculable importance to mankind.

The beginnings of the history of English-speaking America are thus to
be sought in the history of the antagonism between Spain and England
that grew out of the circumstances of the Protestant Reformation. It
was as the storehouse of the enemy's treasure and the chief source of
his supplies that America first excited real interest among the English

[Sidenote: Voyages of the Cabots.]

English ships had indeed crossed the Atlantic many years before this
warfare broke out. The example set by Columbus had been promptly
followed by John Cabot and his young son Sebastian, in the two
memorable voyages of 1497 and 1498, but the interest aroused by those
voyages was very short-lived. In later days it suited the convenience
of England to cite them in support of her claim to priority in
the discovery of the continent of North America; but many years
elapsed before the existence of any such continent was distinctly
known and before England cared to put forth any such claim. All that
contemporaries could see was that the Cabots had sailed westward
in search of the boundless treasures of Cathay, and had come home
empty-handed without finding any of the cities described by Marco
Polo or meeting any civilized men. So little work was found for
Sebastian Cabot that he passed into the service of Spain, and turned
his attention to voyages in the South Atlantic. Such scanty record was
kept of the voyages of 1497 and 1498 that we cannot surely tell what
land the Cabots first saw; whether it was the bleak coast of northern
Labrador or some point as far south as Cape Breton is still a matter of
dispute. The case was almost the same as with the voyage of Pinzon and
Vespucius, whose ships were off Cape Honduras within a day or two after
Cabot's northern landfall, and who, after a sojourn at Tampico, passed
between Cuba and Florida at the end of April, 1498. In the one case, as
in the other, the expeditions sank into obscurity because they found no

[Sidenote: The Newfoundland fisheries.]

The triumphant return of Gama from Hindustan, in the summer of 1499,
turned all men's eyes to southern routes, and little heed was paid to
the wild inhospitable shores visited by John Cabot and his son. The
sole exception to the general neglect was the case of the fisheries on
the banks of Newfoundland. From the beginning of the sixteenth century
European vessels came almost yearly to catch fish there, but at first
Englishmen took little or no part in this, for they had long been wont
to get their fish in the waters about Iceland, and it took them some
years to make the change. On the bright August day of 1527 when Master
John Rut sailed into the bay of St. John, in Newfoundland, he found two
Portuguese, one Breton, and eleven Norman ships fishing there. Basques
also came frequently to the spot. Down to that time it is not likely
that the thought of the western shores of the Atlantic entered the
heads of Englishmen more frequently than the thought of the Antarctic
continent, discovered sixty years ago, enters the heads of men in
Boston to-day.

[Sidenote: Earliest English references to America.]

The lack of general interest in maritime discovery is shown by the
fact that down to 1576, so far as we can make out, only twelve books
upon the subject had been published in England, and these were in
great part translations of works published in other countries. The
earliest indisputable occurrence of the name America in any printed
English document is in a play called "A new interlude and a mery of the
nature of the iiii elements," which was probably published in 1519.[5]
About the same time there appeared from an Antwerp press a small book
entitled "Of the newe landes and of y^e people found by the messengers
of the Kynge of Portugal;" in it occurs the name _Armenica_, which is
probably a misprint for America, since the account of it is evidently
taken from the account which Vespucius gives of the natives of Brazil,
and in its earliest use the name America was practically equivalent to
Brazil. With the exception of a dim allusion to Columbus in Sebastian
Brandt's "Ship of Fools," these are the only references to the New
World that have been found in English literature previous to 1553.

[Sidenote: The Muscovy Company.]

[Sidenote: Richard Eden.]

The youthful Edward VI., who died that year, had succeeded in recalling
Sebastian Cabot from Spain, and under the leadership of that navigator
was formed the joint-stock company quaintly entitled, "The Mysterie and
Companie of the Merchant Adventurers for the Discoverie of Regions,
Dominions, Islands, and Places unknown." It was the first of that
series of sagacious and daring combinations of capital of which the
East India Company has been the most famous. It was afterwards more
briefly known as the Muscovy Company. Under its auspices, on the
21st of May, 1553, an English fleet of exploration, under Sir Hugh
Willoughby, set sail down the Thames while the cheers of thronging
citizens were borne through the windows of the palace at Greenwich to
the ears of the sick young king. The ill-fated expedition, seeking a
northeasterly passage to Cathay, was wrecked on the coast of Lapland,
and only one of the ships got home, but the interest in maritime
adventure grew rapidly. A few days before Edward's death, Richard Eden
published his "Treatyse of the Newe India," which was largely devoted
to the discoveries in America. Two years later, in 1555, Eden followed
this by his "Decades of the Newe World," in great part a version of
Peter Martyr's Latin. This delightful book for the first time made the
English people acquainted with the results of maritime discovery in all
quarters since the great voyage of 1492. It enjoyed a wide popularity;
poets and dramatists of the next generation read it in their boyhood
and found their horizon wondrously enlarged. In its pages doubtless
Shakespeare found the name of that Patagonian deity Setebos, which
Caliban twice lets fall from his grotesque lips. Three years after
Eden's second book saw the light the long reign of Queen Elizabeth
began, and with it the antagonism, destined year by year to wax more
violent and deadly, between England and Spain.

[Sidenote: John Hawkins and the African slave-trade.]

Meanwhile English mariners had already taken a hand in the African
slave-trade, which since 1442 had been monopolized by the Portuguese.
It is always difficult to say with entire confidence just who first
began anything, but William Hawkins, an enterprising merchant of
Plymouth, made a voyage on the Guinea coast as early as 1530, or
earlier, and carried away a few slaves. It was his son, the famous
Captain John Hawkins, who became the real founder of the English trade
in slaves. In this capacity Americans have little reason to remember
his name with pleasure, yet it would be a grave mistake to visit him
with unmeasured condemnation. Few sturdier defenders of political
freedom for white men have ever existed, and among the valiant sea
kings who laid the foundations of England's maritime empire he was one
of the foremost. It is worthy of notice that Queen Elizabeth regarded
the opening of the slave-trade as an achievement worthy of honourable
commemoration, for when she made Hawkins a knight she gave him for
a crest the device of a negro's head and bust with the arms tightly
pinioned, or, in the language of heraldry, "a demi-Moor proper bound
with a cord." Public opinion on the subject of slavery was neatly
expressed by Captain Lok, who declared that the negroes were "a people
of beastly living, without God, law, religion, or commonwealth,"[6]
so that he deemed himself their benefactor in carrying them off to a
Christian land where their bodies might be decently clothed and their
souls made fit for heaven. Exactly three centuries after Captain Lok,
in the decade preceding our Civil War, I used to hear the very same
defence of slavery preached in a Connecticut pulpit; so that perhaps we
are not entitled to frown too severely upon Elizabeth's mariners. It
takes men a weary while to learn the wickedness of anything that puts
gold in their purses.

[Sidenote: Hawkins and Laudonnière.]

It was in 1562 that John Hawkins made his first famous expedition to
the coast of Guinea, where he took three hundred slaves and carried
them over to San Domingo. It was illicit traffic, of course, but the
Spanish planters and miners were too much in need of cheap labour to
scrutinize too jealously the source from which it was offered. The
Englishman found no difficulty in selling his negroes, and sailed
for home with his three ships loaded with sugar and ginger, hides
and pearls. The profits were large, and in 1564 the experiment was
repeated with still greater success. On the way home, early in August,
1565, Hawkins stopped at the mouth of the St. John's River in Florida,
and found there a woebegone company of starving Frenchmen. They were
the party of René de Laudonnière, awaiting the return of their chief
commander, Jean Ribaut, from France. Their presence on that shore was
the first feeble expression of the master thought that in due course of
time originated the United States of America, and the author of that
master thought was the great Admiral Coligny. The Huguenot wars had
lately broken out in France, but already that far-sighted statesman
had seen the commercial and military advantages to be gained by
founding a Protestant state in America. After an unsuccessful attempt
upon the coast of Brazil, he had sent Jean Ribaut to Florida, and the
little colony was now suffering the frightful hardships that were the
lot of most new-comers into the American wilderness. Hawkins treated
these poor Frenchmen with great kindness, and his visit with them was
pleasant. He has left an interesting account of the communal house of
the Indians in the neighbourhood, an immense barn-like frame house,
with stanchions and rafters of untrimmed logs, and a roof thatched
with palmetto leaves. Hawkins liked the flavour of Indian meal, and
in his descriptions of the ways of cooking it one easily recognizes
both "hasty pudding" and hoe-cake. He thought it would have been more
prudent in the Frenchmen if they had raised corn for themselves
instead of stealing it from the Indians and arousing a dangerous
hostility. For liquid refreshment they had been thrown upon their own
resources, and had contrived to make a thousand gallons or more of
claret from the native grapes of the country. A letter of John Winthrop
reminds us that the Puritan settlers of Boston in their first summer
also made wine of wild grapes,[7] and according to Adam of Bremen
the same thing was done by the Northmen in Vinland in the eleventh
century,[8] showing that in one age and clime as well as in another
thirst is the mother of invention.

[Sidenote: Massacre of Huguenots: the painter Le Moine.]

As the Frenchmen were on the verge of despair, Hawkins left them one of
his ships in which to return to France, but he had scarcely departed
when the long expected Ribaut arrived with reinforcements, and soon
after him came that terrible Spaniard, Menendez, who butchered the
whole company, men, women, and children, about 700 Huguenots in all.
Some half dozen escaped and were lucky enough to get picked up by
a friendly ship and carried to England. Among them was the painter
Le Moine, who became a friend of Sir Philip Sidney, and aroused
much interest with his drawings of American beasts, birds, trees,
and flowers. The story of the massacre awakened fierce indignation.
Hostility to Spain was rapidly increasing in England, and the idea of
Coligny began to be entertained by a few sagacious heads. If France
could not plant a Protestant state in America, perhaps England could.
A little later we find Le Moine consulted by the gifted half-brothers,
Humphrey Gilbert and Walter Raleigh.

[Sidenote: Francis Drake.]

[Sidenote: The affair of San Juan de Ulua.]

Meanwhile, in 1567, the gallant Hawkins went on an eventful voyage,
with five stout ships, one of which was commanded by a very capable and
well educated young man, afterwards and until Nelson's time celebrated
as the greatest of English seamen. Francis Drake was a native of
Devonshire, son of a poor clergyman who had been molested for holding
Protestant opinions. The young sea king had already gathered experience
in the West Indies and on the Spanish Main; this notable voyage taught
him the same kind of feeling toward Spaniards that Hannibal cherished
toward Romans. After the usual traffic among the islands the little
squadron was driven by stress of weather to seek shelter in the port
of San Juan de Ulua, at the present site of Vera Cruz. There was
no force there fit to resist Hawkins, and it is droll to find that
pious hero, such a man of psalms and prayers, pluming himself upon
his virtue in not seizing some Spanish ships in the harbour laden
with what we should call five million dollars' worth of silver. The
next day a fleet of thirteen ships from Spain arrived upon the scene.
Hawkins could perhaps have kept them from entering the harbour, but
he shrank from the responsibility of bringing on a battle in time of
peace; the queen might disapprove of it. So Hawkins parleyed with the
Spaniards, a solemn covenant of mutual forbearance was made and sworn
to, and he let them into the harbour. But the orthodox Catholic of
those days sometimes entertained peculiar views about keeping faith
with heretics. Had not his Holiness Alexander VI. given all this
New World to Spain? Poachers must be warned off; the Huguenots had
learned a lesson in Florida, and it was now the Englishmen's turn.
So Hawkins was treacherously attacked, and after a desperate combat,
in which fireships were used, three of his vessels were destroyed.
The other two got out to sea, but with so scanty a larder that the
crews were soon glad to eat cats and dogs, rats and mice, and boiled
parrots. It became necessary to set 114 men ashore somewhere to the
north of Tampico. Some of these men took northeasterly trails, and
mostly perished in the woods, but David Ingram and two companions
actually made their way across the continent and after eleven months
were picked up on the coast of Nova Scotia by a friendly French vessel
and taken back to Europe. About seventy, led by Anthony Goddard, less
prudently marched toward the city of Mexico, and fell into the clutches
of the Inquisition; three were burned at the stake and all the rest
were cruelly flogged and sent to the galleys for life. When the news
of this affair reached England a squadron of Spanish treasure-ships,
chased into the Channel by Huguenot cruisers, had just sought refuge
in English harbours, and the queen detained them in reprisal for the
injury done to Hawkins.

[Sidenote: Growing hostility to Spain in England.]

News had lately arrived of the bloody vengeance wreaked by Dominique de
Gourgues upon the Spaniards in Florida, while the cruelties of Alva
were fast goading the Netherlands into rebellion. Next year, 1570, on
a fresh May morning, the Papal Bull "declaring Elizabeth deposed and
her subjects absolved from their allegiance was found nailed against
the Bishop of London's door,"[9] and when the rash young gentleman who
had put it there was discovered he was taken back to that doorstep
and quartered alive. Two years later came the Paris Matins on the day
of St. Bartholomew, and the English ambassador openly gave shelter
to Huguenots in his house. Elizabeth's policy leaned more and more
decidedly toward defiance of the Catholic powers until it culminated
in alliance with the revolted Netherlands in January, 1578. Meanwhile
the interest in America quickly increased. Those were the years when
Martin Frobisher made his glorious voyages in the Arctic Ocean, soon to
be followed by John Davis. Almost yearly Drake crossed the Atlantic and
more than once attacked and ravaged the Spanish settlements in revenge
for the treachery at San Juan de Ulua. Books and pamphlets about
America began to come somewhat frequently from the press.

[Sidenote: Size and strength of Elizabeth's England.]

[Sidenote: How the sea became England's field of war.]

It is worth our while here to pause for a moment and remark upon
the size and strength of the nation that was so soon to contend
successfully for the mastery of the sea. There is something so dazzling
in the brilliancy of the age of Queen Bess, it is so crowded with
romantic incidents, it fills so large a place in our minds, that we
hardly realize how small England then was according to modern standards
of measurement. Two centuries earlier, in the reign of Edward III., the
population of England had reached about 5,000,000, when the Black Death
at one fell swoop destroyed at least half the number. In Elizabeth's
time the loss had just about been repaired. Her England was therefore
slightly less populous, and it was surely far less wealthy, than either
New York or Pennsylvania in 1890. The Dutch Netherlands had perhaps
somewhat fewer people than England, but surpassed her in wealth. These
two allies were pitted against the greatest military power that had
existed in Europe since the days of Constantine the Great. To many
the struggle seemed hopeless. For England the true policy was limited
by circumstances. She could send troops across the Channel to help
the Dutch in their stubborn resistance, but to try to land a force in
the Spanish peninsula for aggressive warfare would be sheer madness.
The shores of America and the open sea were the proper field of war
for England. Her task was to paralyze the giant by cutting off his
supplies, and in this there was hope of success, for no defensive
fleet, however large, could watch all Philip's enormous possessions
at once. The English navy, first permanently organized under Henry
VIII., grew rapidly in Elizabeth's reign under the direction of her
incomparable seamen; and the policy she adopted was crowned with such
success that Philip II. lived to see his treasury bankrupt.

[Sidenote: Loose ideas of international law.]

[Sidenote: Bold advice to Elizabeth.]

This policy was gradually adopted soon after the fight at San Juan
de Ulua, and long before there was any declaration of war. The
extreme laxness of that age, in respect of international law, made it
possible for such things to go on to an extent that now seems scarcely
comprehensible. The wholesale massacre of Frenchmen in Florida, for
example, occurred at a time of profound peace between France and
Spain, and reprisal was made, not by the French government but by a
private gentleman who had to sell his ancestral estate to raise the
money. It quite suited Elizabeth's tortuous policy, in contending
against formidable odds, to be able either to assume or to disclaim
responsibility for the deeds of her captains. Those brave men well
understood the situation, and with earnest patriotism and chivalrous
loyalty not only accepted it, but even urged the queen to be allowed
to serve her interests at their own risk. In a letter handed to her in
November, 1577, the writer begs to be allowed to destroy all Spanish
ships caught fishing on the banks of Newfoundland, and adds, "If you
will let us first do this we will next take the West Indies from Spain.
You will have the gold and silver mines and the profit of the soil.
You will be monarch of the seas and out of danger from every one. I
will do it if you will allow me; only you must resolve and not delay
or dally--the wings of man's life are plumed with the feathers of
death."[10] The signature to this bold letter has been obliterated, but
it sounds like Sir Humphrey Gilbert, and is believed to be his.

[Sidenote: The sea kings were not buccaneers.]

In connection with this it should be remembered that neither in England
nor elsewhere at that time had the navy become fully a national
affair as at present. It was to a considerable extent supported by
private speculation, and as occasion required a commercial voyage
or a voyage of discovery might be suddenly transformed into a naval
campaign. A flavour of buccaneering pervades nearly all the maritime
operations of that age and often leads modern writers to misunderstand
or misjudge them. Thus it sometimes happens that so excellent a man
as Sir Francis Drake, whose fame is forever a priceless possession
for English-speaking people, is mentioned in popular books as a mere
corsair, a kind of gentleman pirate. Nothing could show a more hopeless
confusion of ideas. In a later generation the warfare characteristic
of the Elizabethan age degenerated into piracy, and when Spain, fallen
from her greatness, became a prey to the spoiler, a swarm of buccaneers
infested the West Indies and added another hideous chapter to the lurid
history of those beautiful islands. They were mere robbers, and had
nothing in common with the Elizabethan heroes except courage. From the
deeds of Drake and Hawkins to the deeds of Henry Morgan, the moral
distance is as great as from slaying your antagonist in battle to
murdering your neighbour for his purse.

[Sidenote: Why Drake carried the war into the Pacific Ocean.]

It was Drake who first put into practice the policy of weakening Philip
II. by attacking him in America. It served the direct purpose of
destroying the sinews of war, and indirectly it neutralized for Europe
some of Spain's naval strength by diverting it into American waters
for self-defence. To do such work most effectively it seemed desirable
to carry the warfare into the Pacific Ocean. The circumstances of its
discovery had made Spanish America almost more of a Pacific than an
Atlantic power. The discoverers happened to approach the great double
continent where it is narrowest, and the hunt for precious metals soon
drew them to the Cordilleras and their western slopes. The mountain
region, with its untold treasures of gold and silver, from New Mexico
to Bolivia, became theirs. In acquiring it they simply stepped into the
place of the aboriginal conquering tribes, and carried on their work
of conquest to completion. The new rulers conducted the government by
their own Spanish methods, and the white race was superposed upon a
more or less dense native population. There was no sort of likeness to
colonies planted by England, but there were some points of resemblance
to the position of the English in recent times as a ruling race in
Hindustan. Such was the kind of empire which Spain had founded in
America. Its position, chiefly upon the Pacific coast, rendered it
secure against English conquest, though not against occasional damaging
attacks. In South America, where it reached back in one or two remote
points to the Atlantic coast, the chief purpose was to protect the
approach to the silver mines of Bolivia by the open route of the river
La Plata. It was this military need that was met by the growth of
Buenos Ayres and the settlements in Paraguay, guarding the entrance
and the lower reaches of the great silver river.

[Sidenote: Drake upon a peak in Darien.]

[Sidenote: Voyage of the Golden Hind.]

[Sidenote: A noble banquet room.]

Soon after the affair of San Juan de Ulua, Drake conceived the idea of
striking at this Spanish domain upon its unguarded Pacific side. In
1573, after marching across the isthmus of Darien, the English mariner
stood upon a mountain peak, not far from where Balboa sixty years
before had stood and looked down upon the waste of waters stretching
away to shores unvisited and under stars unknown. And as he looked,
says Camden, "vehemently transported with desire to navigate that sea,
he fell upon his knees and implored the divine assistance that he might
at some time sail thither and make a perfect discovery of the same." On
the 15th of November, 1577, Drake set sail from Plymouth, on this hardy
enterprise, with five good ships. It was a curious coincidence that in
the following July and August, while wintering on the Patagonia coast
at Port St. Julian, Drake should have discovered symptoms of conspiracy
and felt obliged to behead one of his officers, as had been the case
with Magellan at the same place. By the time he had passed the straits
in his flagship, the Golden Hind,[11] he had quite lost sight of his
consorts, who had deserted him in that watery labyrinth, as Gomez had
stolen away from Magellan. For men of common mould a voyage in the
remote South Sea still had its terrors; but the dauntless captain
kept on with his single ship of twenty guns, and from Valparaiso
northward along the Peruvian coast dashed into seaports and captured
vessels, carrying away enormous treasures in gold and silver and
jewels, besides such provisions as were needed for his crew. With other
property he meddled but little, and no acts of wanton cruelty sullied
his performances. After taking plunder worth millions of dollars,
this corsair-work gave place to scientific discovery, and the Golden
Hind sailed far northward in search of a northeast passage into the
Atlantic. Drake visited a noble bay, which may have been that of San
Francisco, and sailed some distance along that coast, which he called
New Albion. It is probable, though not quite certain, that he saw some
portion of the coast of Oregon. Not finding any signs of a northeast
passage, he turned his prow westward, crossed the Pacific, and
returned home by way of the Cape of Good Hope, arriving at Plymouth in
September, 1580. Some time afterward he went up the Thames to Deptford,
where the queen came to dinner on board the Golden Hind, and knighted
on his own quarter-deck the bold captain who had first carried the
English flag around the world. The enthusiastic chronicler Holinshed
wished that in memory of this grand achievement the ship should be
set upon the top of St. Paul's Cathedral, "that being discerned farre
and neere, it might be noted and pointed at of people with these
true termes: Yonder is the barke that hath sailed round about the
world."[12] A different career awaited the sturdy Golden Hind; for
many a year she was kept at Deptford, a worthy object of popular
admiration, and her cabin was made into a banquet room wherein young
and old might partake of the mutton and ale of merry England; until at
last, when the venerable ship herself had succumbed to the tooth of
Time, a capacious chair was carved from her timbers and presented to
the University of Oxford, where it may still be seen in the Bodleian
Library. In it sat Abraham Cowley when he wrote the poem in which occur
the following verses:--

  "Drake and his ship could not have wished from Fate
   A happier station or more blest estate.
   For lo! a seat of endless rest is given
   To her in Oxford and to him in heaven."

[Sidenote: Voyage of Gilbert and Raleigh.]

[Sidenote: Shipwreck of Gilbert.]

Meanwhile in the autumn of 1578, while the coasts of Chili were
echoing the roar of the Golden Hind's cannon, a squadron of seven
ships sailed from England, with intent to found a permanent colony on
the Atlantic coast of North America. Its captain was one of the most
eminent of Devonshire worthies, Sir Humphrey Gilbert, and one of the
ships was commanded by his half-brother, Walter Raleigh, a young man
of six-and-twenty who had lately returned from volunteer service in
the Netherlands. The destination of the voyage was "Norumbega," which
may have meant any place between the Hudson and Penobscot rivers, but
was conceived with supreme vagueness, as may be seen from Michael
Lok's map of 1582.[13] This little fleet had at least one savage
fight with Spaniards, and returned to Plymouth without accomplishing
anything. In 1583 Gilbert sought a favourable place for settlement on
the southern coast of Newfoundland, probably with a view to driving the
Spaniards away from the fishing grounds, but an ill fate overtook him.
On the American coast his principal vessel crushed its bows against a
sunken rock and nearly all hands were lost. With two small ships the
captain soon set sail for home, but his own tiny craft foundered in a
terrible storm near Fayal. As she sank, Gilbert cheerily shouted over
the tafferel to his consort, "The way to heaven is as near by sea as
by land," a speech, says his chronicler, "well beseeming a soldier
resolute in Jesus Christ, as I can testify he was."

[Sidenote: Gilbert's patent granted to Raleigh.]

It was not Raleigh's fault that he did not share the fate of his
revered half-brother, for the queen's mind had been full of forebodings
and she had refused to let him go on the voyage. It was since the
former disastrous expedition that Raleigh had so quickly risen in
favour at court; that he had thrown down his velvet cloak as a mat for
Elizabeth's feet and had written on a window-pane the well-known verse
which that royal coquette so cleverly capped. He became Captain of the
Queen's Guard and Lord Warden of the Stannaries, and was presented with
the confiscated estates of traitors in England and Ireland. In 1584,
when his late half-brother's patent for land in America expired, it
was renewed in Raleigh's name. On March 25th was sealed the document
that empowered him to "hold by homage remote heathen and barbarous
lands, not actually possessed by any Christian prince, nor inhabited
by Christian people, which he might discover within the next six
years."[14] As had been the custom with Spanish and Portuguese grants
to explorers, one fifth of the gold and silver to be obtained was
to be reserved for the crown. The heathen and barbarous land which
Raleigh had in view was the Atlantic coast of North America so far as
he might succeed in occupying it. He knew that Spain claimed it all as
her own by virtue of the bull of Pope Alexander VI., but Elizabeth had
already declared in 1581 that she cared nothing for papal bulls and
would recognize no Spanish claims to America save such as were based
upon discovery followed by actual possession.[15] Raleigh's attention
had long been turned toward Florida. In youth he had served in France
under Coligny, and had opportunities for hearing that statesman's plan
for founding a Protestant state in America discussed. We have seen
Le Moine, the French artist who escaped from the Florida massacre,
consorting with Raleigh and with Sir Philip Sidney. Upon those men fell
the mantle of Coligny, and the people of the United States may well be
proud to point to such noble figures standing upon the threshold of our

[Sidenote: Promise of self-government.]

One provision in the Gilbert patent, now renewed for Raleigh, is worth
especial mention. It was agreed that the English colonies which should
be planted in America "should have all the privileges of free denizens
and persons native of England, in such ample manner as if they were
born and personally resident in our said realm of England," and that
any law to the contrary should be of no effect; furthermore, that the
people of those colonies should be governed by such statutes as they
might choose to establish for themselves, provided that such statutes
"conform as near as conveniently may be with those of England, and do
not oppugn the Christian faith, or anyway withdraw the people of those
lands from our allegiance." A more unequivocal acknowledgment of the
rights of self-government which a British government of two centuries
later saw fit to ignore, it would be hard to find. Gilbert and Raleigh
demanded and Elizabeth granted in principle just what Patrick Henry and
Samuel Adams demanded and George III. refused to concede.

[Sidenote: Voyage of Amidas and Barlow, 1584.]

The wealthy Raleigh could act promptly, and before five weeks had
elapsed two ships, commanded by Philip Amidas and Arthur Barlow, had
started on a reconnoitring voyage. On the 4th of July, 1584, they
reached the country now known as North Carolina, at some point not
far from Cape Lookout. Thence a northerly run of over a hundred miles
brought them to the New Inlet, through which they passed into Pamlico
Sound and visited Roanoke Island. They admired the noble pine-trees
and red cedars, marvelled at the abundance of game, and found the
native barbarians polite and friendly. Their attempt to learn the
name of the country resulted as not uncommonly in such first parleys
between strange tongues. The Indian of whom the question was asked had
no idea what was meant and uttered at random the Ollendorfian reply,
"Win-gan-da-coa," which signified, "What pretty clothes you wear!" So
when Amidas and Barlow returned to England they said they had visited a
country by the name of Wingandacoa; but the queen, with a touch of the
euphuism then so fashionable, suggested that it should be called, in
honour of herself, Virginia.

[Sidenote: Ralph Lane's expedition, 1585.]

[Sidenote: Rescue of Lane by Sir Francis "the Dragon."]

In the spring of 1585 Raleigh, who had lately been knighted, sent out
a hundred or more men commanded by Ralph Lane, to make the beginnings
of a settlement. They were convoyed by Raleigh's cousin, Sir Richard
Grenville, with seven well-armed ships. They entered Pamlico Sound
through Ocracoke Inlet, and trouble with the natives at once began. One
of the Indians stole a silver cup, and Grenville unwisely retaliated
by setting fire to their standing corn. Having thus sown the seeds of
calamity he set the colonists ashore upon Roanoke Island and went on
his way. The sagacious and energetic Lane explored the neighbouring
mainland for many miles along the coast and for some distance into the
interior, and even tried to find a waterway into the Pacific Ocean. He
made up his mind that the country was not favourable for a new colony,
and he gathered sundry bits of information which seemed to point to
Chesapeake Bay as a much better place. The angry Indians made much
trouble, and after a year had passed the colonists were suffering from
scarcity of food, when all at once Sir Francis Drake appeared on the
scene with a superb fleet of three-and-twenty ships. War between Spain
and England had been declared in July, 1585, when Sidney and Drake
were about ready to execute a scheme that contemplated the founding
of an American colony by Sidney. But the queen interfered and sent
Sidney to the Netherlands, where he was so soon to die a noble death.
The terrible Drake, whom Spaniards, punning upon his name, had begun
to call "Dragon," gave them fresh cause to dread and revile him.
He had captured 20 ships with 250 cannon, he had taken and sacked
Cartagena, St. Domingo, and St. Augustine, and on his way home looked
in at Roanoke Island, in time to take Lane and his starving party on
board and carry them back to England. They had not long been gone
when Grenville arrived with supplies, and was astonished at finding
the island deserted. Knowing nothing of Lane's change of purpose,
and believing that his party must still be somewhere in the adjacent
country, Grenville left a guard of fifteen men on the island, with
ample supplies, and sailed away.

[Sidenote: Cavendish's voyage around the world, 1586-88.]

[Sidenote: Drake "singes the beard" of Philip II.]

The stirring days of the Armada were approaching. When Lane arrived
in England, his services were needed there, and after a while we
find him a member of the Council of War. One of this first American
colonizing party was the wonderful Suffolk boy, Thomas Cavendish,
aged two-and-twenty, who had no sooner landed in England than he
set sail in command of three ships, made his way into the Pacific
Ocean, and repeated the exploits of Drake from Chili to California,
captured one of Spain's finest galleons, and then in two years more
completed the circumnavigation of the globe. While the pupil was thus
nobly acquitting himself, the master in the spring of 1587 outdid all
former achievements. Sailing into the harbour of Cadiz, Drake defeated
the warships on guard there, calmly loaded his own vessels with as
much Spanish spoil as could safely be carried, then set fire to the
storeships and cut their cables. More than a hundred transports, some
of them 1,500 tons in burthen, all laden with stores for the Armada,
became a tangled and drifting mass of blazing ruin, while amid the
thunder of exploding magazines the victor went forth on his way
unscathed and rejoicing. Day after day he crouched under the beetling
crags of Cintra, catching and sinking every craft that passed that
lair, then swept like a tempest into the bay of Coruña and wrought
similar havoc to that of Cadiz, then stood off for the Azores and
captured the great carrack on its way from the Indies with treasure
reckoned by millions. Europe stood dumb with amazement. What manner of
man was it that could thus "singe the King of Spain's beard"? "Philip
one day invited a lady of the court to join him in his barge on the
Lake of Segovia. The lady said she dared not trust herself on the
water, even with his Majesty," for fear of Sir Francis Drake.[16]
Philip's Armada had to wait for another year, while by night and day
the music of adze and hammer was heard in English shipyards.

[Sidenote: White's colony on Roanoke Island, 1587.]

Just as "the Dragon" returned to England another party of Raleigh's
colonists was approaching the American coast. There were about 150,
including 17 women. John White, a man deft with water-colours, who
had been the artist of Lane's expedition, was their governor. Their
settlement was to be made on the shore of Chesapeake Bay, but first
they must stop at Roanoke Island and pick up the fifteen men left on
watch by Grenville. Through some carelessness or misunderstanding or
bad faith on the part of the convoy, the people once landed were left
in the lurch with only one small vessel, and thus were obliged to
stay on that fatal Roanoke Island. They soon found that Grenville's
little guard had been massacred by red men. It was under these gloomy
circumstances that the first child of English parents was born on the
soil of the United States. The governor's daughter Eleanor was wife
of Ananias Dare, and their little girl, born August 18, 1587, was
named Virginia. Before she was ten days old her grandfather found it
necessary to take the ship and return to England for help.

[Sidenote: The Invincible Armada, 1588.]

But the day of judgment for Spain and England was at hand, and lesser
things must wait. Amid the turmoil of military preparation, Sir Walter
was not unmindful of his little colony. Twice he fitted out relief
expeditions, but the first was stopped because all the ships were
seized for government service, and the second was driven back into
port by Spanish cruisers. While the anxious governor waited through
the lengthening days into the summer of 1588, there came, with its
imperious haste, its deadly agony and fury, its world-astounding
triumph, the event most tremendous, perhaps, that mankind have
witnessed since the star of the Wise Men stood over the stable at
Bethlehem. Then you might have seen the sea kings working in good
fellowship together,--Drake and Hawkins, Winter and Frobisher, with
Howard of Effingham in the Channel fleet; Raleigh and Grenville active
alike in council and afield; the two great ministers, Burghley and
Walsingham, ever crafty and vigilant; and in the background on her
white palfrey the eccentric figure of the strangely wayward and wilful
but always brave and patriotic Queen. Even after three centuries it is
with bated breath that we watch those 130 black hulks coming up the
Channel, with 3,000 cannon and 30,000 men on board, among them ninety
executioners withal, equipped with racks and thumbscrews, to inaugurate
on English soil the accursed work of the Inquisition. In camp at
Dunkirk the greatest general of the age, Alexander Farnese, with 35,000
veterans is crouching for a spring, like a still greater general at
Boulogne in later days; and one wonders if the 80,000 raw militia
slowly mustering in the busy little towns and green hamlets of England
can withstand these well-trained warriors.

[Sidenote: Defeat of the Invincible Armada.]

[Sidenote: Battle of Cadiz, 1596.]

In the English fleet there were about as many ships as the enemy
had, much smaller in size and inferior in weight of metal, but at the
same time far more nimble in movement. Of cannon and men the English
had scarcely half as many as the Spaniards, but this disparity was
more than offset by one great advantage. Our forefathers had already
begun to display the inventive ingenuity for which their descendants
in both hemispheres have since become preëminent. Many of their ships
were armed with new guns, of longer range than any hitherto known,
and this advantage, combined with their greater nimbleness, made it
possible in many cases to pound a Spanish ship to pieces without
receiving any serious hurt in return. In such respects, as well as in
the seamanship by which the two fleets were handled, it was modern
intelligence pitted against mediæval chivalry. Such captains as served
Elizabeth were not reared under the blighting shadow of the Escurial.
With the discomfiture of the Invincible Armada before Dunkirk, the
army of Farnese at once became useless for invading England. Then came
the awful discovery that the mighty fleet was penned up in the German
Ocean, for Drake held the Strait of Dover in his iron grip. The horrors
of the long retreat through northern seas have never been equalled
save when Napoleon's hosts were shattered in Russia. In the disparity
of losses, as in the immensity of the issues at stake, we are reminded
of the Greeks and Persians at Salamis; of Spaniards more than 20,000
perished, but scarcely 100 Englishmen. The frightful loss of ships and
guns announced the overthrow of Spanish supremacy, but the bitter
end was yet to come. During the next three years the activity of the
sea kings reached such a pitch that more than 800 Spanish ships were
destroyed.[17] The final blow came soon after the deaths of Drake and
Hawkins in 1596, when Raleigh, with the Earl of Essex and Lord Thomas
Howard, destroyed the Spanish fleet in that great battle before Cadiz
whereof Raleigh wrote that "if any man had a desire to see Hell itself,
it was there most lively figured."[18]

[Sidenote: Mystery of the fate of White's colony.]

It was not until March, 1591, that Governor White succeeded in getting
to sea again for the rescue of his family and friends. He had to go
as passenger in a West Indiaman. When he landed, upon the return
voyage, at Roanoke Island, it was just in time to have celebrated his
little grandchild's fourth birthday. It had been agreed that should
the colonists leave that spot they should carve upon a tree the name
of the place to which they were going, and if they should add to the
name a cross it would be understood as a signal of distress. When
White arrived he found grass growing in the deserted blockhouse. Under
the cedars hard by five chests had been buried, and somebody had
afterwards dug them up and rifled them. Fragments of his own books and
pictures lay scattered about. On a great tree was cut in big letters,
but without any cross, the word CROATAN, which was the name of a
neighbouring island. The captain of the ship was at first willing
to take White to Croatan, but a fierce storm overtook him and after
beating about for some days he insisted upon making for England in
spite of the poor man's entreaties. No more did White ever hear of his
loved ones. Sixteen years afterward the settlers at Jamestown were told
by Indians that the white people abandoned at Roanoke had mingled with
the natives and lived with them for some years on amicable terms until
at the instigation of certain medicine-men (who probably accused them
of witchcraft) they had all been murdered, except four men, two boys,
and a young woman, who were spared by request or order of a chief.
Whether this young woman was Virginia Dare, the first American girl, we
have no means of knowing.[19]

[Sidenote: Significance of the defeat of the Armada.]

Nothing could better illustrate than the pathetic fate of this little
colony how necessary it was to destroy the naval power of Spain before
England could occupy the soil of North America. The defeat of the
Invincible Armada was the opening event in the history of the United
States. It was the event that made all the rest possible. Without it
the attempts at Jamestown and Plymouth could hardly have had more
success than the attempt at Roanoke Island. An infant colony is like
an army at the end of a long line of communications; it perishes if
the line is cut. Before England could plant thriving states in America
she must control the ocean routes. The far-sighted Raleigh understood
the conditions of the problem. When he smote the Spaniards at Cadiz he
knew it was a blow struck for America. He felt the full significance of
the defeat of the Armada, and in spite of all his disappointments with
Virginia, he never lost heart. In 1602 he wrote to Sir Robert Cecil, "I
shall yet live to see it an English nation."

In the following chapters we shall see how Raleigh's brave words came


[1] E. E. Hale, in _Proc. Amer. Antiq. Soc._ N. S. viii. 190-212.

[2] Grimm et Diderot, _Correspondance littéraire_, tom. xv. p. 325.

[3] Genty, _L'influence de la découverte de l'Amérique_, etc., 2^e éd.,
Orleans, 1789, tom. ii. pp. 148-150.

[4] Id. p. 192 ff.

[5] Winsor, _Narr. and Crit. Hist._ iii. 19.

[6] Froude, _History of England_, viii. 439.

[7] _Winsor, Narr. and Crit. Hist._ iii. 61.

[8] See my _Discovery of America_, i. 209.

[9] Froude, _History of England_, x. 59.

[10] _Brown's Genesis of the United States_, i. 9.

[11] Originally the Pelican; see Barrow's _Life of Drake_, pp. 113,
166, 171.

[12] _Barrow's Life of Drake_, p. 167.

[13] See below, p. 61; and compare my _Discovery of America_, ii. 525.

[14] Stebbing's _Sir Walter Ralegh_, p. 43.

[15] Brown's _Genesis_, p. 10.

[16] Froude, _History of England_, xii. 392.

[17] Brown's _Genesis_, i. 20.

[18] Stebbing's _Ralegh_, p. 129.

[19] The fate of White's colony has been a subject for speculation
even to the present day; and attempts have been made to detect its
half-breed descendants among the existing population of North Carolina.
The evidence, however, is too frail to support the conclusions.



[Sidenote: Sixteenth century maps.]

IN all the history of human knowledge there is no more fascinating
chapter than that which deals with the gradual expansion of men's
geographical ideas consequent upon the great voyages of the fifteenth
and sixteenth centuries. It is not a tale so written that he who runs
may read it, but its events have rather to be slowly deciphered from
hundreds of quaint old maps, whereon islands and continents, mountains
and rivers, are delineated with very slight resemblance to what we
now know to be the reality; where, for instance, Gog and Magog show a
strong tendency to get mixed up with Memphremagog, where the capital of
China stands a few hundred miles north of the city of Mexico, and your
eye falls upon a river which you feel sure is the St. Lawrence until
you learn that it is meant for the Yang-tse-Kiang. In the sixteenth
century scarcely any intellectual stimulus could be found more potent
than the sight of such maps, revealing unknown lands, or cities and
rivers with strange names, places of which many marvels had been
recounted and almost anything might be believed.

[Sidenote: Richard Hakluyt.]

One afternoon in the year 1568, the lawyer Richard Hakluyt was sitting
at his desk in the Middle Temple, with a number of such maps and
sundry new books of cosmography spread out before him, when the door
opened and his young cousin and namesake, then a boy of sixteen
studying at Westminster School, came into the room. The elder Richard
opened the Bible at the 107th Psalm, and pointed to the verses which
declare that "they which go downe to the sea in ships and occupy by
the great waters, they see the works of the Lord and his wonders in
the deep;" then he called the lad's attention to the maps, in which
he soon became absorbed. This incident determined the career of the
younger Richard Hakluyt, and led to his playing an important part in
the beginnings of the United States of America. A learned and sagacious
writer upon American history, Mr. Doyle, of All Souls College, Oxford,
has truly said that it is "hard to estimate at its full value the debt
which succeeding generations owe to Richard Hakluyt."[20] In 1570 he
became a student at Christ Church, Oxford, and took his master's degree
in 1577. His book called "Divers Voyages," dedicated to Sir Philip
Sidney, was published in 1582. From 1583 to 1588 he was chaplain of
the English legation at Paris, and before his return he was appointed
canon of Bristol, an office which he held till 1605. Thus for many
years he lived in the city of the Cabots, the cradle of the new era of
maritime adventure. He came to be recognized as one of the foremost
geographers of the age and the greatest living English authority on
matters relating to the New World. The year following the defeat of
the Armada witnessed the publication of his book entitled "Principal
Voyages," which Froude well calls "the prose epic of the modern English
nation."[21] In 1605 he was made a prebendary of Westminster, and
eleven years later was buried with distinguished honours beneath the
pavement of the great Abbey.

[Sidenote: Adventures of a manuscript.]

The book of Hakluyt's which here most nearly concerns us is the
"Discourse of Western Planting," written in 1584, shortly before the
return of the ships of Amidas and Barlow from Roanoke Island. It was
not published, nor was immediate publication its aim. It was intended
to influence the mind of Queen Elizabeth. The manuscript was handed to
her about September, 1584, and after a while was lost sight of until
after a long period of oblivion it turned up in the library of Sir
Peter Thomson, an indefatigable collector of literary treasures, who
died in 1770. It was bought from his family by Lord Valentia, after
whose death it passed into the hands of the famous bibliophile Henry
Stevens, who sold it to Sir Thomas Phillips for his vast collection of
archives at Thirlestane House, Cheltenham. In 1869 a copy of it was
made for Dr. Leonard Woods, President of Bowdoin College, by whom it
was ably edited for the Maine Historical Society; and at length, in
1877, after a sleep of nearly three centuries, it was printed at our
New England Cambridge, at the University Press, and published with
valuable notes by the late Dr. Charles Deane.

[Sidenote: Reasons for planting English colonies in America.]

[Sidenote: English trade with the Netherlands.]

Hakluyt wrote this document at the request of Raleigh, who wished
to persuade the queen to invest money in a colonizing expedition
to the New World. Such an enterprise, he felt, was too great for
any individual purse and needed support from government. No one had
studied the subject so thoroughly as Hakluyt, and so Raleigh enlisted
his services. In twenty-one brief chapters Hakluyt sets forth the
various reasons why England should plant colonies on the coast of
North America. The chief reasons are that such colonies will enlarge
the occasions and facilities for driving Spanish ships from the
Newfoundland fisheries and capturing Spanish treasure on its way from
Mexico and the isthmus of Darien; they will be serviceable as stations
toward the discovery and use of the northwest passage to Cathay; after
a while they will furnish a valuable market for the products of English
industry, especially woollen and linen cloths; they will increase the
royal revenue by customs duties; they will afford new material for
the growth of the navy; and in various ways they will relieve England
of its idlers and vagrants by finding occupation for them abroad. In
his terse quaint way, the writer emphasizes these points. As for the
Spanish king, "if you touche him in the Indies you touche the apple
of his eye; for take away his treasure, which is _nervus belli_, and
which he hath almoste [all] out of his West Indies, his olde bandes
of souldiers will soone be dissolved, his purposes defeated, ... his
pride abated, and his tyranie utterly suppressed." "He shall be left
bare as Æsop's proude crowe." With regard to creating a new market
he says: "Nowe if her Majestie take these westerne discoveries in
hande, and plant there, yt is like that in short time wee shall vente
as greate a masse of clothe yn those partes as ever wee did in the
Netherlandes, and in tyme moche more." In this connection he gives a
striking illustration of the closeness of the commercial ties which
had been knit between England and the Low Countries in the course of
the long alliance with the House of Burgundy. In 1550, when Charles V.
proposed to introduce the Spanish Inquisition into the Netherlands,
it was objected that all English merchants would then quit the
country, and the English trade would be grievously diminished. At this
suggestion, "search was made what profite there came and comoditie
grewe by the haunte of the Englishe marchantes. Then it was founde by
searche and enquirie, that within the towne of Antwerpe alone there
were 14,000 persons fedde and mayneteyned onlye by the workinge of
English commodities, besides the gaines that marchantes and shippers
with other in the said towne did gett, which was the greatest part
of their lyvinge, which were thoughte to be in nomber halfe as many
more; and in all other places of his Netherlandes by the indraping
of Englishe woll into clothe, and by the working of other Englishe
comodities, there were 30,000 persons more mayneteyned and fedd; which
in all amounteth to the nomber of 51,000 persons." When this report
was given to Charles V. it led him to pause and consider, as well it

[Sidenote: An American market.]

[Sidenote: The change from tillage to pasturage.]

[Sidenote: Growth of pauperism.]

According to Hakluyt an English colony in America would soon afford as
good a market for English labour as the Netherlands. He was impressed
with the belief that the population of England was fast outrunning its
means of subsistence. Now if the surplus of population could be drawn
to America it would find occupation in raising the products of that
new soil to exchange for commodities from England, and this exchange
in its turn would increase the demand for English commodities and
for the labour which produced them, so that fewer people in England
would be left without employment. Such is Hakluyt's idea, though he
nowhere states it quite so formally. It is interesting because there
is no doubt that he was not alone in holding such views. There was in
many quarters a feeling that, with its population of about 5,000,000,
England was getting to be over-peopled. This was probably because for
some time past the supply of food and the supply of work had both
been diminishing relatively to the number of people. For more than a
century the wool trade had been waxing so profitable that great tracts
of land which had formerly been subject to tillage were year by year
turned into pastures for sheep. This process not only tended to raise
the price of food, but it deprived many people of employment, since
sheep-farming requires fewer hands than tilling the soil. Since the
accession of Henry VIII. there had been many legislative attempts
to check the conversion of ploughed land into grassy fields, but the
change still continued to go on.[22] The enormous increase in the
quantity of precious metals had still further raised the price of
food, while as people were thrown out of employment the labour market
tended to become overstocked so that wages did not rise. These changes
bore with especial severity upon the class of peasants. The condition
of the freeholding yeomanry was much improved during the sixteenth
century. Stone houses with floors had taken the place of rude cabins
with rushes carpeting the ground; meat was oftener eaten, clothes were
of better quality. But it was otherwise with the peasants who held
by servile tenures. In the abolition of mediæval serfdom which had
been going on for two centuries and was completed in England so much
earlier than in any other part of Europe, it was not all gain for the
lowest grades of labourers. Some through energy and good fortune rose
to recruit the ranks of freeholders, but many others became paupers
and thieves. The change from tillage to pasturage affected this class
more than any other, for it turned many out of house and home; so that,
in the words of an old writer, they "prowled about as idle beggars or
continued as stark thieves till the gallows did eat them."[23] The
sudden destruction of the monasteries by Henry VIII. deprived the
pauper of such scanty support as he had been wont to get from the vast
wealth of the Church, and besides it had let loose upon society a vast
number of persons with their old occupations gone and set aside.[24] In
Elizabeth's reign, therefore, for the various reasons here mentioned,
the growth of pauperism began to attract especial attention as a
lamentable if not formidable evil, and the famous "poor law" of 1601
marks a kind of era in the social history of England. Under such
circumstances, for men disheartened by poverty and demoralized by
idleness, struggling for life in a community that had ceased to need
the kind of labour they could perform, the best chance of salvation
seemed to lie in emigration to a new colony where the demand for labour
was sure to be great, and life might be in a measure begun anew. So
thought the good Hakluyt, and the history of the seventeenth century
did much to justify his opinion. The prodigious development of the
English commercial and naval marine, to which the intercourse with
the new and thriving American colonies greatly contributed, went far
toward multiplying the opportunities for employment and diminishing
the numbers of the needy and idle class. Many of the sons of the men
who had been driven from their farms by sheep-raising landlords made
their home upon the ocean, and helped to secure England's control of
the watery pathways. Many of them found new homes in America, and as
independent yeomen became more thrifty than their peasant fathers.

[Sidenote: Opposition to Hakluyt.]

[Sidenote: The queen's penuriousness.]

While there were many people who espoused Hakluyt's views, while
preachers might be heard proclaiming from the pulpit that "Virginia was
a door which God had opened for England," on the other hand, as in the
case of all great enterprises, loud voices were raised in opposition.
To send parties of men and women to starve in the wilderness, or be
murdered by savages or Spaniards, was a proceeding worthy of severe
condemnation for its shocking cruelty, to say nothing of its useless
extravagance. Then, as usual, the men who could see a few inches in
front of their noses called themselves wise and practical, while
they stigmatized as visionary theorizers the men whose imaginations
could discern, albeit in dim outlines, the great future. As for the
queen, who clearly approved in her innermost heart the schemes of
Raleigh and Hakluyt, not much was to be expected from her when it
came to a question of spending money. Elizabeth carried into the
management of public affairs a miserly spirit inherited, perhaps, from
her grandfather, Henry VII. When the Armada was actually entering the
Channel she deemed it sound economy to let her sailors get sick with
sour ale rather than throw it away and buy fresh for them. Such a mind
was not likely to appreciate the necessity for the enormous immediate
outlay involved in planting a successful colony. That such a document
as Hakluyt's should be laid away and forgotten was no more than
natural. To blame Elizabeth unreservedly, however, without making some
allowance for the circumstances in which she was placed, would be crude
and unfair. It was the public money that she was called upon to spend,
and the military pressure exerted by Spain made heavy demands upon it.
In spite of her pennywise methods, which were often so provoking, they
were probably less ill suited to that pinching crisis than her father's
ready lavishness would have been.

[Sidenote: The beginnings of joint-stock companies.]

That Raleigh should appeal to the sovereign for aid in his enterprise
was to have been expected. It was what all explorers and colonizers
had been in the habit of doing. Since the days of Prince Henry the
Navigator the arduous work of discovering and subduing the heathen
world outside of Europe had been conducted under government control
and paid from the public purse whenever the plunder of the heathen
did not suffice. In some cases the sovereign was unwilling to allow
private capital to embark in such enterprises; as for example in the
spring of 1491, when the Duke of Medina-Celi offered to fit out two
or three caravels for Columbus and Queen Isabella refused to give him
the requisite license, probably because she was "unwilling to have
the duke come in for a large share of the profits in case the venture
should prove successful."[25] Usually, however, such work was beyond
the reach of private purses, and it was not until the middle of the
sixteenth century, and in such commercial countries as the Netherlands
and England, with comparatively free governments, that joint-stock
companies began to be formed for such purposes. I have already alluded
to the famous Muscovy Company, first formed in the reign of Edward VI.,
and from that time forth the joint-stock principle went on rapidly
gaining strength until its approach to maturity was announced by the
creation of the English East India Company in 1600 and the Dutch East
India Company in 1602. The latter was "the first great joint-stock
company whose shares were bought and sold from hand to hand,"[26] and
these events mark the beginning of a new era in European commerce.

This substitution of voluntary coöperation among interested
individuals for compulsory action under government control was one
of the most important steps taken toward bringing in the modern era.
Americans have no reason to regret that the beginnings of English
colonization in the New World were not made by an English sovereign.
There can be no doubt that the very slight connection between these
colonies and the Crown was from the first extremely favourable to their
free and untrammelled development. Far better that the worthy Hakluyt's
essay should get tucked away in a pigeon-hole than that it should have
fired Elizabeth to such zeal for Virginia as Louis XIV. a century
afterward showed for New France!

[Sidenote: Raleigh's difficulties.]

By 1589 Raleigh seems to have despaired of finding the queen disposed
to act as a fairy godmother. He reckoned that he had already spent
£40,000 on Virginia, although this sum may perhaps have included his
contributions toward the Arctic voyages of John Davis. Such a sum would
be equivalent to not less than $1,000,000 of our modern money, and no
wonder if Raleigh began to feel more than ever that the undertaking was
too great for his individual resources. In March, 1589, we find him, as
governor of Virginia, assigning not his domain but the right to trade
there to a company, of which John White, Thomas Smith, and Rev. Richard
Hakluyt were the most prominent members. He reserved for himself
a royalty of one fifth of all the gold and silver that should be
obtained. The Company did not show much activity. We may well believe
that it was too soon after the Armada. Business affairs had not had
time to recover from that severe strain. But Raleigh never lost sight
of Virginia. Southey's accusation that he sent out colonists and then
abandoned them was ill-considered. We have already seen why it proved
impossible to send help to John White's colony.

[Sidenote: The great Spanish carrack.]

[Sidenote: The Mermaid Tavern.]

[Sidenote: King James I.]

In the pursuit of his various interests the all-accomplished knight
sometimes encountered strange vicissitudes. With all his flattery
of the crowned coquette, Elizabeth Tudor, the true sovereign of his
heart was one of the ladies of the court, the young and beautiful
Elizabeth Throckmorton. To our prosaic modern minds the attitude of
the great queen toward the favourite courtiers whom she could by no
possibility dream of raising to the dignity of prince-consort seems
incomprehensible. But after a due perusal of the English dramatists
of the time, the romance of Sidney, the extravagances of Lyly, the
poetry of Spenser and Ronsard, or some of those tales of chivalry that
turned good Don Quixote's brain, we are beguiled into the right sort
of atmosphere for understanding it. For any of Elizabeth's counsellors
or favourites to make love to any other lady was apt to call down
some manifestation of displeasure, and in 1592 some circumstances
connected with Raleigh's marriage[27] led to his imprisonment in the
Tower. But his evil star was not yet in the ascendant. Within a few
weeks one of his captains, Christopher Newport, whom we shall meet
again, brought into Dartmouth harbour the great Spanish carrack Madre
de Dios, with treasure from the Indies worth nearly four millions
of modern dollars. A large part of Raleigh's own share in the booty
was turned over to his sovereign with that blithesome grace in which
none could rival him, and it served as a ransom. In 1594 we find him
commanding an expedition to Guiana and exploring the vast solitudes
of the Orinoco in search of El Dorado. On his return to England he
found a brief interval of leisure in which to write that fascinating
book on Guiana which David Hume declared to be full of lies, a gross
calumny which subsequent knowledge, gathered by Humboldt and since
his time, has entirely refuted. Then came the great battle at Cadiz
in 1596, already mentioned, and the capture of Fayal in 1597, when
Raleigh's fame reached its zenith. About this time, or soon after,
began those ambrosial nights, those feasts of the gods, at the Mermaid
Tavern, where Selden and Camden, Beaumont and Fletcher, Ben Jonson and
Dr. Donne, sat around the table with Raleigh and Shakespeare. In that
happy time the opportunity for colonizing Virginia seemed once more to
have come, and in 1602 Raleigh sent out Samuel Mace on an expedition
of which less is known than one could wish, save that renewed search
was made for White's lost colony. Otherwise, says the historian Stith,
this Mace "performed nothing, but returned with idle stories and
frivolous allegations."[28] When he arrived in England in 1603, sad
changes had occurred. The great queen--great and admirable with all
her faults--had passed away, and a quaint pedantic little Scotchman,
with uncouth figure and shambling gait and a thickness of utterance
due partly to an ill-formed tongue and partly to excessive indulgence
in mountain dew, had stepped into her place. A web of intrigue, basely
woven by Robert Cecil and Henry Howard, had caught Raleigh in its
meshes. He was hurried off to the Tower, while an attainder bereft him
of his demesne of Virginia and handed it over to the crown.

[Sidenote: Henry, Earl of Southampton.]

[Sidenote: Gosnold, Pring and Weymouth.]

But other strong hands were taking up the work. That Earl of
Southampton to whom Shakespeare ten years before had dedicated his
"Venus and Adonis" had been implicated in Essex's rebellion and
narrowly escaped with his life. The accession of James I., which was
fraught with such ill for Raleigh, set Southampton free. But already
in 1602, while he was still a prisoner in the Tower, an expedition
organized under his auspices set sail for Virginia. It was commanded by
one of Raleigh's old captains, Bartholomew Gosnold, and has especial
interest as an event in the beginnings alike of Virginia and of New
England. Gosnold came to a region which some persons called Norumbega,
but was soon to be known for a few years as North Virginia, and always
thereafter as New England. It was he who first wrote upon the map the
names Cape Cod and Martha's Vineyard, and the Elizabeth Islands in
what we call Buzzard's Bay. His return to England was the occasion
of a fresh and strong renewal of interest in the business of what
Hakluyt called "western planting." The voyage of Martin Pring to North
Virginia, at the expense of sundry Bristol merchants, followed in
1603, and at the same time Bartholomew Gilbert, son of Sir Humphrey,
coasted the shores of Chesapeake Bay, and was slain by the Indians with
several of his men. Early in 1605 Captain George Weymouth set out in a
vessel equipped by the Earl of Southampton, Lord Arundel of Wardour,
and Sir Ferdinando Gorges, governor of the garrison at Plymouth. After
spending a month in North Virginia, Weymouth returned to England with
five captive Indians, and the popular interest aroused by his arrival
surpassed that which had been felt upon former occasions.

[Sidenote: "Eastward Ho!"]

The excitement over Virginia was promptly reflected upon the stage.
The comedy of "Eastward Ho," written by Chapman and Marston, with
contributions from Ben Jonson, was acted in 1605 and published in
the autumn of that year. The title is a survival of forms of speech
current when America was believed to be a part of the oriental world.
Some extracts from this play will serve to illustrate the popular
feeling. In the second act old Security, the money lender, is talking
with young Frank Quicksilver about the schemes of Sir Petronel Flash.
Quicksilver says, "Well, dad, let him have money; all he could anyway
get is bestowed on a ship, nowe bound for Virginia." Security replies,
"Now a frank gale of wind go with him, Master Frank! We have too few
such knight adventurers. Who would not sell away competent certainties
to purchase (with any danger) excellent uncertainties? Your true knight
venturer ever does it." In the next act a messenger enters.

 _Messenger._ Sir Petronel, here are three or four gentlemen desire to
 speak with you.

 _Petronel._ What are they?

 _Quicksilver._ They are your followers in this voyage, knight captain
 Seagull and his associates; I met them this morning and told them you
 would be here.

 _Petronel._ Let them enter, I pray you....

 _Enter Seagull, Spendall, and Scapethrift._

 _Seagull._ God save my honourable colonel!

 _Petronel._ Welcome, good Captain Seagull and worthy gentlemen; if you
 will meet my friend Frank here and me at the Blue Anchor tavern, by
 Billingsgate, this evening, we will there drink to our happy voyage,
 be merry, and take boat to our ship with all expedition....

 ACT III., SCENE 2. _Enter Seagull, Spendall, and Scapethrift in the
 Blue Anchor tavern, with a Drawer._

 _Seagull._ Come, drawer, pierce your neatest hogsheads, and let's have
 cheer,--not fit for your Billingsgate tavern, but for our Virginian
 colonel; he will be here instantly.

 _Drawer._ You shall have all things fit, sir; please you have any more

 _Spendall._ More wine, slave! whether we drink it or no, spill it, and
 draw more.

 _Scapethrift._ Fill all the pots in your house with all sorts of
 liquor, and let 'em wait on us here like soldiers in their pewter
 coats; and though we do not employ them now, yet we will maintain 'em
 till we do.

 _Drawer._ Said like an honourable captain; you shall have all you can
 command, sir. [_Exit Drawer._

 _Seagull._ Come boys, Virginia longs till we share the rest of her....

 _Spendall._ Why, is she inhabited already with any English?

 _Seagull._ A whole country of English is there, bred of those that
 were left there in '79 [Here our dramatist's date is wrong; White's
 colony, left there in 1587, is meant]; they have married [continues
 Seagull] with the Indians ... [who] are so in love with them that all
 the treasure they have they lay at their feet.

 _Scapethrift._ But is there such treasure there, Captain, as I have

 _Seagull._ I tell thee, gold is more plentiful there than copper is
 with us; and for as much red copper as I can bring I'll have thrice
 the weight in gold. Why, man, all their dripping-pans ... are pure
 gold; and all the chains with which they chain up their streets are
 massy gold; all the prisoners they take are fettered in gold; and
 for rubies and diamonds they go forth on holidays and gather 'em by
 the seashore to hang on their children's coats, and stick in their
 children's caps, as commonly as our children wear saffron-gilt
 brooches and groats with holes in 'em.

 _Scapethrift._ And is it a pleasant country withal?

 _Seagull._ As ever the sun shined on: temperate, and full of all sorts
 of excellent viands; wild boar is as common there as our tamest bacon
 is here; venison as mutton. And then you shall live freely there,
 without sergeants, or courtiers, or lawyers.... Then for your means
 to advancement, there it is simple and not preposterously mixed. You
 may be an alderman there, and never be scavenger; you may be any
 other officer, and never be a slave. You may come to preferment
 enough, ... to riches and fortune enough, and have never the more
 villainy nor the less wit. Besides, there we shall have no more law
 than conscience, and not too much of either; serve God enough, eat and
 drink enough, and enough is as good as a feast.

 _Spendall._ Gods me! and how far is it thither?

 _Seagull._ Some six weeks sail, no more, with any indifferent good
 wind. And if I get to any part of the coast of Africa, I'll sail
 thither with any wind; or when I come to Cape Finisterre, there's a
 fore-right wind continual wafts us till we come to Virginia. See, our
 colonel's come.

 _Enter Sir Petronel Flash with his followers._

 _Sir Petronel._ We'll have our provided supper brought aboard Sir
 Francis Drake's ship that hath compassed the world, where with full
 cups and banquets we will do sacrifice for a prosperous voyage.[29]

[Sidenote: Zuñiga's report to Philip III.]

The great popularity of this play, both on the stage and in print,--for
it went through four editions between September and Christmas,--is an
indication of the general curiosity felt about Virginia. The long war
with Spain had lately been brought to an end by the treaty of 1604. It
had left Spain so grievously weakened that the work of encroaching upon
her American demesnes was immeasurably easier than in the days when
Hawkins began it and Elizabeth connived at it. In a cipher despatch
from the Spanish ambassador Zuñiga to his sovereign, Philip III., dated
London, March 16, 1606, N. S., mention is made of an unpalatable scheme
of the English: "They also propose to do another thing, which, is to
send five or six hundred men, private individuals of this kingdom,
to people Virginia in the Indies, close to Florida. They sent to
that country some small number of men in years gone by, and having
afterwards sent again, they found a part of them alive."[30] In this
reference to White's colony the Spaniard is of course mistaken; no
living remnant was ever found. He goes on to say that the principal
leader in this business is Sir John Popham, Lord Chief Justice of
England, who is a terrible Puritan; and when reminded that this
enterprise is an encroachment upon Spanish territory and a violation of
the treaty, this astute judge says that he is only undertaking it in
order to clear England of thieves and get them drowned in the sea. I
have not yet complained of this to the king, says Zuñiga, but I shall
do so.

[Sidenote: First charter of Virginia, 1606.]

[Sidenote: The "Sea of Verrazano".]


It was very soon after this despatch, on April 10, O. S., that James
I. issued the charter under which England's first permanent colony was
established. This memorable document begins by defining the territorial
limits of Virginia, which is declared to extend from the 34th to the
45th parallel of latitude, and from the seashore one hundred miles
inland. In a second charter, issued three years later, Virginia is
described as extending from sea to sea, that is, from the Atlantic
Ocean to the Pacific. It is not likely that the king and his advisers
understood the westward extension of the grant, as here specified, to
be materially different from that mentioned in the first charter.
The width of the continent between Chesapeake Bay and the valley of
the St. Lawrence was supposed to be no greater than from one to two
hundred miles. It is true that before the middle of the sixteenth
century the expeditions of Soto and Coronado had proved the existence
of a continuous mass of land from Florida to California, but many
geographers believed that this continental mass terminated at the 40th
parallel or even some degrees lower, and that its northern coast was
washed by an enormous bay of the Pacific Ocean, called on old maps
the Sea of Verrazano. The coast land from Virginia to Labrador was
regarded as a thin strip separating the two oceans after somewhat the
same fashion as Central America, and hence the mouths and lower reaches
of such broad rivers as the Hudson and the Delaware were mistaken for
straits. After one has traced the slow development of knowledge through
the curious mingling of fact with fancy in the maps of Baptista Agnese
published in 1536, and that of Sebastian Münster in 1540, down to the
map which Michael Lok made for Sir Philip Sidney in 1582, he will
have no difficulty in understanding either the language of the early
charters or the fact that such a navigator as Henry Hudson should about
this time have entered New York harbour in the hope of coming out upon
the Pacific Ocean within a few days. Without such study of the old maps
the story often becomes incomprehensible.

[Sidenote: Northern and southern limits of Virginia.]

As for the northern and southern limits of Virginia, they were
evidently prescribed with a view to arousing as little antagonism as
possible on the part of Spain and France. Expressed in terms of the
modern map, the 34th parallel cuts through the mouth of the Cape Fear
River and passes just south of Columbia, the capital of South Carolina;
while the 45th parallel is that which divides Vermont from Canada.
English settlers were thus kept quite clear of the actual settlements
of Spaniards in Florida, and would not immediately be brought into
collision with the French friars and fur-traders who were beginning to
find their way up the St. Lawrence.

[Sidenote: The twin joint-stock companies, and the three zones.]

The Virginia thus designated was to be open for colonization by
two joint-stock companies, of which the immediate members and such
as should participate with them in the enterprise should be called
respectively the First Colony and the Second Colony. The First
Colony was permitted to occupy the territory between the 34th and
the 41st parallels, while the Second Colony was permitted to occupy
the territory between the 38th and the 45th parallels. It will thus
be observed that the strip between the 38th and 41st parallels was
open to both, but it was provided that neither colony should make a
plantation or settlement within a hundred miles of any settlement
already begun by the other. The elaborate ingenuity of this arrangement
is characteristic of James's little device-loving mind; its purpose,
no doubt, was to quicken the proceedings by offering to reward
whichever colony should be first in the field with a prior claim upon
the intervening region. The practical result was the division of the
Virginia territory into three strips or zones. The southern zone,
starting from the coast comprised between the mouth of the Cape Fear
River and the mouth of the Potomac, was secured to the First Colony.
The northern zone, starting from the coast comprised between the Bay
of Fundy and Long Island Sound, was secured to the Second Colony. The
middle zone, from the lower reaches of the Hudson River down to the
mouth of the Potomac, was left open to competition between the two,
with a marked advantage in favour of the one that should first come to
be self-supporting.

[Sidenote: The three zones in American history.]

It is a curious fact that, although the actual course taken by the
colonization of North America was very different from what was
contemplated in this charter, nevertheless the division of our
territory into the three zones just mentioned has happened to coincide
with a real and very important division that exists to-day. Of our
original thirteen states, those of New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Rhode
Island, and Connecticut were founded in the northern zone, and within
it their people have spread through central New York into the Far
West. In the middle zone, with the exception of a few northerly towns
upon the Hudson, were made the beginnings of New York, New Jersey,
Pennsylvania, Delaware, and Maryland. In the southern zone were planted
Virginia, the Carolinas, and Georgia. Between the three groups the
differences in local government have had much significance in the
history of the American people. In the northern zone the township
system of local government has prevailed, and in the southern zone the
county system, while in the middle zone the mixed township-and-county
system has exhibited various phases, here and there reaching a very
high stage of development.[31]

[Sidenote: Government of the two colonies.]

To return to King James's charter, the government which it provided
for his two American colonies was such as he believed would prove of
the two simple and efficient. A Royal Council of Virginia, consisting
of thirteen persons, was created in London, and its members were to be
appointed by the king. It was to exercise a general supervision over
the two colonies, but the direct management of affairs in each colony
was to be entrusted to local resident councils. Each local council
was to consist of thirteen persons, of whom one was to be president,
with a casting vote. The council in London was to give the wheels of
government a start by appointing the first members of the two colonial
councils and designating that member of each who should serve as
president for the first year. After that the vehicle was to run of
itself; the colonial council was to elect its president each year, and
could depose him in case of misconduct; it could also fill its own
vacancies, arising from the resignation, deposition, departure, or
death of any of its members. Power was given to the colonial council
to coin money for trade between the colonies and with the natives,
to invite and carry over settlers, to drive out intruders, to punish
malefactors, and to levy and collect duties upon divers imported
goods. All lands within the two colonies were to be held in free and
common socage, like the demesnes of the manor of East Greenwich, in
the county of Kent and the settlers and their children forever were
to enjoy all the liberties, franchises, and immunities enjoyed by
Englishmen in England,--a clause which was practically nullified by the
failure to provide for popular elections or any expression whatever
of public opinion. The authority of the colonial councils was supreme
within the colonies, but their acts were liable to a veto from the

This first English attempt at making an outline of government for an
English colony can never fail to be of interest. It was an experimental
treatment of a wholly new and unfamiliar problem, and, as we shall
hereafter see, it was soon proved to be a very crude experiment,
needing much modification. For the present we are concerned with the
names and characters of the persons to whom this ever-memorable charter
was granted.

[Sidenote: Persons chiefly interested in the First Colony; the London

The persons interested in the First Colony, in that southern zone which
had been the scene of Raleigh's original attempts, were represented
by some eminent citizens of London and its neighbourhood, so that
they came afterward to be commonly known as the London Company. The
names mentioned in the charter are four: the Rev. Richard Hakluyt, who
had lately been made a prebendary of Westminster; Sir Thomas Gates,
Sir George Somers, and Captain Edward Maria Wingfield. Gates was a
Devonshire soldier who had been knighted in 1596 for brave conduct
in the battle of Cadiz, and had afterward served in the Netherlands.
Somers was a native of Dorsetshire, and had received knighthood for
eminent services as commander in several naval expeditions against
the Spaniards. Captain Edward Maria Wingfield, of Stoneley Priory, in
Huntingdonshire, was of a very ancient and honourable Catholic family;
Queen Mary Tudor and Cardinal Pole had been sponsors for his father,
which accounts for the feminine middle name; he had served in the
Netherlands and in Ireland; among his near relatives, or connections
by marriage, were Shakespeare's Earl of Southampton, the lords Carew
and Hervey, and John Winthrop, of Groton, afterwards governor of
Massachusetts. But the name which, after Hakluyt's, has been perhaps
most closely identified with the London Company is that of Sir Thomas
Smith, the eminent London citizen who was its first treasurer. From
the time of his student days at Oxford Smith felt a strong interest in
"western planting," and we have already met with his name on the list
of those to whom Raleigh in 1589 assigned his trading interests in
Virginia. He was knighted in 1596 for gallantry at Cadiz, was alderman
and sheriff of London, and first governor of the East India Company
in 1600. He was at various times a member of Parliament, served as
ambassador to Russia, and was especially forward in promoting Arctic
discovery. He was one of those who sent Henry Hudson in 1610 upon his
last fatal voyage, and it was under his auspices that William Baffin
was sailing in 1616 when he discovered that remote strait leading to
the Polar Sea which has ever since been known as Smith's Sound. Few men
of that time contributed more largely in time and money to the London
Company than Sir Thomas Smith.

[Sidenote: Persons chiefly interested in the Second Colony; the
Plymouth Company.]

The persons interested in the Second Colony, in that northern zone to
which attention had recently been directed by the voyages of Gosnold,
Pring, and Weymouth, were represented by certain gentlemen connected
with the western counties, especially by Ferdinando Gorges, governor
of the garrison at Plymouth in Devonshire, who was afterwards to be
Lord Proprietor of the Province of Maine, and to play a part of some
importance in the early history of New England. This company came to be
known as the Plymouth Company. The four names mentioned in the charter
are Raleigh Gilbert, William Parker, Thomas Hanham, and George Popham.
The name of the first of these gentlemen tells its own story; he was a
younger son of Sir Humphrey Gilbert and named for his uncle. William
Parker was son and heir of Lord Morley, and commonly known by his
courtesy title as Lord Monteagle. It was he who received the anonymous
letter which led to the detection of the Gunpowder Plot, in which his
wife's brother was concerned. George Popham was a nephew,[32] and
Thomas Hanham was a grandson, of Sir John Popham, Chief Justice of the
King's Bench. They were a Somersetshire family. In securing the charter
incorporating the London and Plymouth companies nobody was more active
or influential than the chief justice, whom we have seen singled out
for mention by the Spanish ambassador.

[Sidenote: Other eminent persons interested in the scheme.]

Among other persons especially interested in the colonization of
Virginia, one should mention George Abbot, Master of University
College, Oxford, one of the translators of the common version of the
Bible, afterwards Archbishop of Canterbury; and Sir Julius Cæsar,
member of Parliament for Westminster and Chancellor of the Exchequer,
son of Julius Cæsar Adelmare, Queen Elizabeth's Italian physician; his
strong interest in maritime discovery and western planting may have
been due to the fact that, after the death of his father and while he
was still a child, his mother married the celebrated geographer, Dr.
Michael Lok. We should not forget Sir Maurice Berkeley, two of whose
sons we shall meet hereafter, one of them, Sir William Berkeley, the
most conspicuous figure among the royal governors of Virginia, the
other, Lord Berkeley of Stratton, one of the proprietors of Carolina.
An important subscriber to the company was Sir Anthony Ashley,
grandfather of the famous Earl of Shaftesbury, who was also one of the
Carolina proprietors; another was William Herbert, Earl of Pembroke,
nephew of Sir Philip Sidney and devoted friend of Shakespeare; another
was Sir Henry Cary, father of the pure and high-minded statesman,
Lucius, Viscount Falkland. Of more importance for Virginian history
than any of the foregoing was Sir Edwin Sandys, son of Edwin Sandys,
Archbishop of York. Sir Edwin was a pupil of the great Richard Hooker,
and learned from him principles of toleration little understood in that
age. After his travels on the continent he published in 1605 a treatise
entitled "Europæ Speculum, a relation of the state of religion in ...
these Western Parts of the World;" its liberal opinions gave so much
offence that about four months after its publication it was burned in
St. Paul's Churchyard by order of the Court of High Commission. At that
very time Sandys was one of the most admired and respected members of
the House of Commons, and it was on his motion that the House first
began keeping a regular journal of its transactions. He was associated
with Sir Francis Bacon in drawing up the remonstrance against King
James's behaviour toward Parliament. In later years he was an active
friend of the Mayflower Pilgrims and gave them valuable aid in setting
out upon their enterprise. But his chief title to historic fame
consists in the fact that it was under his auspices and largely through
his exertions that free representative government was first established
in America. How this came about will be shown in a future chapter. For
the present we may note that at least half a dozen of his immediate
family were subscribers to the London Company; one of his brothers had
for godfather Sir Thomas Lucy, of Charlecote Hall, the Puritan knight
who figures as Justice Shallow in the "Merry Wives of Windsor;" there
were at least two intermarriages between this Sandys family and that of
Lawrence Washington, of Sulgrave, ancestor of George Washington. It is
pleasant to trace the various connections, near and remote, whether in
blood-relationship or in community of interests and purposes, between
the different personages of a great era that has passed away; for the
more we come to discern in its concrete details the intricate web of
associations running in all directions among the men and events of the
vanished age, the more vividly is that age reproduced in our minds, the
closer does it come to the present, the more keenly does it enlist our
sympathies. As we contemplate the goodly array here brought forward
of personages concerned in the first planting of an English nation in
America, the inquiry as to what sort of men they were, for intelligence
and character, is one that can be answered with satisfaction.

[Sidenote: Expedition of the Plymouth Company; failure of the Popham

In accordance with the provisions of the charter, both London and
Plymouth companies made haste to organize expeditions for planting
their colonies in the New World. The London Company was the first
to be ready, but before we follow its adventures a word about the
Plymouth Company seems called for. On the last day of May, 1607, two
ships--the Gift of God, commanded by George Popham, and the Mary and
John, commanded by Raleigh Gilbert--set sail from Plymouth with a
hundred settlers In August, after some exploration of the coast, they
selected a site by the mouth of the Kennebec River, and built there a
rude fort with twelve guns, a storehouse and church, and a few cabins.
They searched diligently but in vain for traces of gold or silver;
the winter brought with it much hardship, their storehouse was burned
down, and Captain Popham died. In the spring a ship which arrived with
supplies from England brought the news of two deaths, that of Chief
Justice Popham, and that of Gilbert's elder brother, to whose estates
he was heir. The enterprise was forthwith abandoned and all returned
to England with most discouraging reports. The further career of the
Plymouth Company does not at present concern us. It never achieved any
notable success. When the colonization of New England was at length
accomplished it was in a manner that was little dreamed of by the king
who granted or the men who obtained the charter of 1606.

[Sidenote: Expedition of the London Company.]

The expedition fitted out by the London Company was in readiness a
little before Christmas 1606, and was placed under command of Captain
Christopher Newport, the stout sailor who had brought in the great
Spanish carrack for Raleigh. He was one of the most skilful and highly
esteemed officers in the English navy. Of the three ships that were to
go to Virginia his was the Susan Constant. The Godspeed was commanded
by Bartholomew Gosnold, and the Discovery by John Ratcliffe. Besides
their crews, the three ships carried 105 colonists. By some queer
freak of policy the names of the persons appointed to the colonial
council were carried in a sealed box, not to be opened until the
little squadron should arrive at its destination. An important paper
of instructions was drawn up for the use of the officers on landing.
Hakluyt was commonly called upon to prepare such documents, and the
style of this one sounds like him. The suggestions are those of a man
who understood the business.[33]

[Sidenote: Instructions to the colonists.]

"When it shall please God to send you on the coast of Virginia, you
shall do your best endeavour to find out a safe port in the entrance of
some navigable river, making choice of such a one as runneth farthest
into the land.... When you have made choice of the river on which you
mean to settle, be not hasty in landing your victuals and munitions,
but first let Captain Newport discover how far that river may be found
navigable, that you make election of the strongest, most wholesome and
fertile place, for if you make many removes, besides the loss of time,
you shall greatly spoil your victuals and your casks.

[Sidenote: Where to choose a site for a town.]

"But if you choose your place so far up as a bark of 50 tons will
float, then you may lay all your provisions ashore with ease, and the
better receive the trade of all the countries about you in the land;
and such a place you may perchance find a hundred miles from the
river's mouth, and the further up the better, for if you sit down near
the entrance, except it be in some island that is strong by nature, an
enemy that may approach you on even ground may easily pull you out;
_and_ [_i. e._ but] if he be driven to seek you a hundred miles _the_
[_i. e._ in] land in boats, you shall from both sides of the river
where it is narrowest, so beat them with your muskets as they shall
never be able to prevail against you."

That the enemy in the writer's mind was the Spaniard is clearly shown
by the next paragraph, which refers expressly to the massacre of the
Huguenot colony in Florida and the vengeance taken by Dominique de

[Sidenote: Precautions against a surprise.]

"And to the end that you be not surprised as the French were in Florida
by Melindus [_i. e._ Menendez] and the Spaniard in the same place by
the French, you shall do well to make this double provision: first
erect a little store at the mouth of the river that may lodge some ten
men, with whom you shall leave a light boat, that when any fleet shall
be in sight they may come with speed to give you warning. Secondly, you
must in no case suffer any of the native people to inhabit between you
and the sea-coast, for you cannot carry yourselves so towards them but
they will grow discontented with your habitation, and be ready to guide
and assist any nation that shall come to invade you; and if you neglect
this you neglect your safety.

[Sidenote: You must try to find the Pacific Ocean.]

"You must observe if you can whether the river on which you plant doth
spring out of mountains or out of lakes. If it be out of any lake the
passage to the other sea [_i. e._ the Pacific Ocean] will be the more
easy; and [it] is like enough that out of the same lake you shall find
some [rivers] spring which run the contrary way toward the East India
Sea, for the great and famous rivers of Volga, Tanais, and Dwina have
three heads near joined, and yet the one falleth into the Caspian Sea,
the other into the Euxine Sea, and the third into the Polonian Sea.

[Sidenote: Do not offend the natives, or put much trust in them.]

"... You must have great care not to offend the naturals, if you can
eschew it, and employ some few of your company to trade with them for
corn and all other lasting victuals ..., and this you must do before
that they perceive you mean to plant among them.... Your discoverers
that pass over land with hired guides must look well to them that they
slip not from them, and for more assurance let them take a compass with
them, and write down how far they go upon every point of the compass,
for that country having no way or path, if that your guides run from
you in the great woods or desert, you shall hardly ever find a passage
back. And how weary soever your soldiers be, let them never trust the
country people with the carriage of their weapons, for if they run from
you with your shot which they only fear, they will easily kill _them_
[_i. e._ you] all with their arrows. And whensoever any of yours shoots
before them, be sure that they be chosen out of your best marksmen, for
if they see your learners miss what they aim at, they will think the
weapon not so terrible, and thereby will be bold to assault you.

[Sidenote: Conceal from them your weaknesses.]

"Above all things, do not advertise the killing of any of your men [so]
that the country people may know it. If they perceive that they are but
common men, and that with the loss of many of theirs they may diminish
any part of yours, they will make many adventures upon you.... You
shall do well also not to let them see or know of your sick men, if you
have any....

[Sidenote: Beware of woodland converts.]

"You must take especial care that you choose a seat for habitation that
shall not be overburthened with woods near your town, for all the men
you have shall not be able to cleanse twenty acres a year, besides that
it may serve for a covert for your enemies round about.

[Sidenote: Avoid malaria.]

"Neither must you plant in a low or moist place, because it will prove
unhealthful. You shall judge of the good air by the people, for some
part of that coast where the lands are low have their people blear
eyed, and with swollen bellies and legs, but if the naturals be strong
and clean made it is a true sign of a wholesome soil.

[Sidenote: Guard against desertion.]

"You must take order to draw up the pinnace that is left with you under
the fort, and take her sails and anchors ashore, all but a small kedge
to ride by, lest some ill-disposed persons slip away with her."

The document contains many other excellent suggestions and directions,
two or three of which will suffice for the purposes of our narrative.

[Sidenote: Build your town carefully.]

"Seeing order is at the same price with confusion it shall be advisably
done to set your houses even and by a line, that your streets may have
a good breadth and be carried square about your market-place, and every
street's end opening into it, that from thence with a few field-pieces
you may command every street throughout....

[Sidenote: Do not send home any discouraging news.]

"You shall do well to send a perfect relation by Captain Newport of all
that is done, what height you are seated, how far into the land, what
commodities you find, what soil, woods and their several kinds, and so
of all other things else, to advertise particularly; and to suffer no
man to return but by passport from the President and Council, nor to
write [in] any letter of anything that may discourage others.

"Lastly and chiefly, the way to prosper and achieve good success is to
make yourselves all of one mind for the good of your country and your
own, and to serve and fear God, the Giver of all goodness, for every
plantation which our Heavenly Father hath not planted shall be rooted

[Sidenote: What Spain thought of it.]

The allusion to the Florida tragedy, in this charming paper, was by
no means ill considered. For in March, 1607, the King of Spain wrote
from Madrid to Zuñiga in London as follows: "You will report to me
what the English are doing in the matter of Virginia; and if the plan
progresses which they contemplated, of sending men there and ships;
and thereupon it will be taken into consideration here what steps had
best be taken to prevent it."[34] A few days after this letter Philip
III. held a meeting with his council to discuss measures which boded no
good to Captain Newport's little company. We do not know just what was
said and done, but we hardly need to be told that the temper of Spain
was notably changed in the forty-two years since Menendez's deed of
blood. How to ruin the Virginia enterprise without coming to blows with
England was now the humbler problem for Spain to solve, and it was not
an easy one.

[Sidenote: A poet laureate's farewell blessing.]

Meanwhile Newport's little fleet was half way on its voyage. It started
down the Thames from Blackwall on the 19th of December, but by reason
of "unprosperous winds" it was obliged to keep its moorings "all in the
Downs," as in the ballad of "Black-eyed Susan," until New Year's Day,
1607, when it finally got under way. A farewell blessing was wafted to
them in Michael Drayton's quaint stanzas:[35]--

           "You brave heroic minds,
            Worthy your country's name,
                That honour still pursue,
                Go and subdue,
            Whilst loitering hinds
            Lurk here at home with shame.

           "Britons, you stay too long,
            Quickly aboard bestow you,
                And with a merry gale
                Swell your stretched sail,
            With vows as strong
            As the winds that blow you.

           "Your course securely steer,
            West and by South forth keep;
                Rocks, lee shores, nor shoals,
                When Æolus scowls,
            You need not fear,
            So absolute the deep.

           "And cheerfully at sea
            Success you still entice,
                To get the pearl and gold,
                And ours to hold
            Earth's only paradise!

           "Where nature hath in store
            Fowl, venison, and fish;
                And the fruitfull'st soil
                Without your toil,
            Three harvests more.
            All greater than you wish.

           "And the ambitious vine
            Crowns with his purple mass
                The cedar reaching high
                To kiss the sky,
            The cypress, pine,
            And useful sassafras.

           "To whose, the Golden Age
            Still nature's laws doth give;
                No other cares that tend,
                But them to defend
            From winter's age,
            That long there doth not live.

           "When as the luscious smell
            Of that delicious land,
                Above the seas that flows
                The clear wind throws
            Your hearts to swell,
            Approaching the dear strand.

           "In kenning of the shore
            (Thanks to God first given)
                O you, the happiest men
                Be frolic then;
            Let cannons roar,
            Frighting the wide heaven.

           "And in regions farre,
            Such heroes bring ye forth
                As those from whom we came;
                And plant our name
            Under that star
            Not known unto our north.

           "And as there plenty grows
            Of laurel everywhere,
                Apollo's sacred tree,
                You it may see,
            A poet's brows
            To crown, that may sing there.

           "Thy voyages attend,
            Industrious Hakluyt,
                Whose reading shall inflame
                Men to seek fame,
            And much commend
            To after times thy wit."

With rich omen sailed from merry England the men who were to make the
beginnings of the United States of America. What they found and how
they fared in the paradise of Virginia shall be the theme of our next


[20] Doyle, _Virginia_, etc. p. 106.

[21] Hakluyt's _Discourse of Western Planting_ (in _Maine Hist. Soc.
Coll._), Cambridge, 1877, p. x.

[22] The case is put vigorously by Sir Thomas More in 1516: "Your
sheep, that were wont to be so meek and tame, are now become so great
devourers and so wild that they eat up and swallow down the very men
themselves. They consume, destroy, and devour whole fields, houses,
and cities; for look in what part of the realm doth grow the finest,
and therefore dearest wool, there noblemen and gentlemen, yea, and
certain abbots, holy men, God wot! not contenting themselves with
the yearly revenues and profits that were wont to grow to their
forefathers and predecessors of their lands, nor being content that
they live in rest and pleasure--nothing profiting, yea, much annoying
the weal publick--leave no ground for tillage; they enclose all into
pastures, they throw down houses, they pluck down towns, and leave
nothing standing but only the church to be made a sheep-house. And,
as though you lost no small quantity of ground by forests, chases,
lands, and parks, those good holy men turn all dwelling places and all
glebe lands into desolation and wilderness, enclosing many thousands
acres of ground together within one pale or hedge," while those who
formerly lived on the land, "poor, silly, wretched souls, men, women,
husbands, wives, fatherless children, widows, and woeful mothers with
young babes, were starving and homeless. And where many labourers
had existed by field labour, only a single shepherd or herdsman was
occupied."--_Utopia_, book i.

[23] Doyle, _Virginia_, etc. p. 103.

[24] In many cases the monasteries by injudicious relief had increased
the number of paupers and beggars. The subject of this paragraph is
admirably expounded in Ashley's _Introduction to English Economic
History_, ii. 190-376.

[25] See my _Discovery of America_, i. 409.

[26] Payne, _European Colonies_, p. 55.

[27] Circumstances not wholly creditable to him; see Stebbing's
_Ralegh_, pp. 89-94.

[28] Stith's _Virginia_, Sabin's reprint, New York, 1865, p. 30.

[29] _The Ancient British Drama_, London, 1810, vol. ii.

[30] Brown's _Genesis_, i. 46.

[31] See my _Civil Government in the United States_, chap. iv.

[32] He is commonly but incorrectly called the brother of the Chief

[33] The original is in the MS. _Minutes of the London Company_, in the
Library of Congress, 2 vols. folio.

[34] Brown's _Genesis_, i. 91.

[35] Drayton's _Works_, London, 1620. Drayton was afterwards poet



[Sidenote: Captain John Smith.]

WHILE Captain Christopher Newport, with the ships of the London
Company, is still in mid-ocean, and the seal of the king's casket
containing the names of Virginia's first rulers is still unbroken, we
may pause for a moment in our narrative, to bestow a few words upon the
early career of the personage that is next to come upon the scene,--a
man whose various and wild adventures have invested the homeliest of
English names with a romantic interest that can never die. The life
of Captain John Smith reads like a chapter from "The Cloister and the
Hearth." It abounds in incidents such as we call improbable in novels,
although precedents enough for every one of them may be found in real
life. The accumulation of romantic adventures in the career of a single
individual may sometimes lend an air of exaggeration to the story;
yet in the genius for getting into scrapes and coming out of them
sound and whole, the differences between people are quite as great as
the differences in stature and complexion. John Smith evidently had
a genius for adventures, and he lived at a time when one would often
meet with things such as nowadays seldom happen in civilized countries.
In these days of Pullman cars and organized police we are liable to
forget the kind of perils that used to dog men's footsteps through the
world. The romance of human life has by no means disappeared, but it
has somewhat changed its character since the Elizabethan age, and is
apt to consist of different kinds of incidents, so that the present
generation has witnessed a tendency to disbelieve many stories of the
older time. In the case of John Smith, for whose early life we have
little else but his autobiography to go by, much incredulity has been
expressed.[36] To set him down as an arrant braggadocio would seem
to some critics essential to their reputation for sound sense. Such
a judgment, however, may simply show that the critic has failed to
realize all the conditions of the case. Queer things could happen in
the Tudor times. Lord Campbell tells us that Sir John Popham, when he
was a law-student in the Middle Temple, used after nightfall to go out
with his pistols and take purses on Hounslow Heath, partly to show that
he was a young man of spirit, partly to recruit his meagre finances,
impaired by riotous living.[37] This amateur highwayman lived to become
Chief Justice of England. The age in which such things could be done
was that in which John Smith grew to manhood.

[Sidenote: His early life.]

[Sidenote: A cruise in the Mediterranean.]

A Latin entry in the parish register at Willoughby in Lincolnshire
shows that he received infant baptism in the church there on the 9th
of January, 1580. After the death of his parents, an irrepressible
craving for adventure led him at an early age to France, where he
served as a soldier for a while and afterward spent three years in
the Netherlands fighting against the Spaniards. In the year 1600 he
returned to Willoughby, "where within a short time, being glutted with
too much company wherein he took small delight, he retired himself into
a little woody pasture a good way from any town, environed with many
hundred acres of woods. Here by a fair brook he built a pavilion of
boughs where only in his clothes he lay. His study was Machiavelli's
Art of War and Marcus Aurelius; his exercise a good horse, with lance
and ring; his food was thought to be more of venison than anything
else."[38] However, he adds, these hermit-like pleasures could not
content him long. "He was desirous to see more of the world, and try
his fortune against the Turks; both lamenting and repenting to have
seen so many Christians slaughtering one another." In passing through
France he was robbed of all he had about him, but his life was saved by
a peasant who found him lying in the forest, half dead with hunger and
grief and nearly frozen. He made his way to Marseilles, and embarked
with a company of pilgrims for the Levant; but a violent storm arose,
which they said was all because of their having this heretic on board,
and so, like Jonah, the young adventurer was thrown into the sea.
He was a good swimmer, however, and "God brought him," he says, to
a little island with no inhabitants but a few kine and goats. Next
morning he was picked up by a Breton vessel which carried him as far as
Egypt and Cyprus. The commanding officer, Captain La Roche, who knew
some of Smith's friends in France, treated him with great kindness and
consideration. On their return voyage, at the entrance of the Adriatic
Sea, a Venetian argosy fired upon them, and a hot fight ensued, until
the Venetian struck her colours. The Bretons robbed her of an immense
treasure in silks and velvets, besides Turkish gold and silver coin, as
much as they could carry without overloading their own ship, and then
let her go on her way. When the spoil was divided, Smith was allowed to
share with the rest, and thus received £225 in coin besides a box of
stuffs worth nearly as much more. After Captain La Roche, of whom he
speaks with warm affection, had set him ashore in Piedmont, he made a
comfortable journey through Italy as far as Naples, and seems to have
learned much and enjoyed himself in "sight seeing," quite like a modern
traveller. At Rome he saw Pope Clement VIII. with several cardinals
creeping on hands and knees up the Holy Staircase. He called on Father
Parsons, the famous English Jesuit; he "satisfied himself with the
rarities of Rome;" he visited in like manner Florence and Bologna, and
gradually made his way to Venice, and so on to Gratz in Styria, where
he entered the service of the Emperor Rudolph II., and was presently
put in command of a company of 250 cavalry with the rank of captain. On
one occasion he made himself useful by devising a system of signals,
and on another occasion by inventing a kind of rude missiles which he
called "fiery dragons," which sorely annoyed the Turks by setting fire
to their camp.

[Sidenote: The three Turks' heads.]

During the years 1601 and 1602 Smith saw much rough campaigning.
The troop to which his company belonged passed into the service of
Sigismund[39] Bathori, Prince of Transylvania; and now comes the
most notable incident in Smith's narrative. The Transylvanians were
besieging Regal, one of their towns which the Turks had occupied, and
the siege made but little progress, so that the barbarians from the top
of the wall hurled down sarcasms upon their assailants and complained
of growing fat for lack of exercise. One day a Turkish captain sent
a challenge, declaring that "in order to delight the ladies, who did
long to see some court-like pastime, he did defy any captain that had
the command of a company, who durst combat with him for his head."
The challenge was accepted by the Christian army, it was decided to
select the champion by lot, and the lot fell upon Smith. A truce was
proclaimed for the single combat, the besieging army was drawn up
in battle array, the town walls were crowded with veiled dames and
turbaned warriors, the combatants on their horses politely exchanged
salutes, and then rushed at each other with levelled lances. At the
first thrust Smith killed the Turk, and dismounting unfastened his
helmet, cut off his head, and carried it to the commanding general,
Moses Tzekely, who accepted it graciously. The Turks were so chagrined
that one of their captains sent a personal challenge to Smith, and
next day the scene was repeated. This time both lances were shivered
and recourse was had to pistols, the Turk received a ball which threw
him to the ground, and then Smith beheaded him. Some time afterward
our victorious champion sent a message into the town "that the ladies
might know he was not so much enamoured of their servants' heads, but
if any Turk of their rank would come to the place of combat to redeem
them, he should have his also upon the like conditions, if he could win
it." The defiance was accepted. This time the Turk, having the choice
of weapons, chose battle-axes and pressed Smith so hard that his axe
flew from his hand, whereat loud cheers arose from the rampart; but
with a quick movement of his horse he dodged his enemy's next blow, and
drawing his sword gave him a fearful thrust in the side which settled
the affair; in another moment Smith had his head. At a later time,
after Prince Sigismund had heard of these exploits, he granted to Smith
a coat-of-arms with three Turks' heads in a shield.

[Sidenote: The entry in the Heralds' College.]

This story forcibly reminds us that the Middle Ages, which had
completely passed away from France and Italy, the Netherlands and
England, still survived at the beginning of the seventeenth century
in the eastern parts of Europe. In the Middle Ages such "court-like
pastime," in the intervals of relaxation from more serious warfare,
was not unfashionable. Still, though the incidents are by no means
incredible, the story has enough of the look of an old soldier's yarn
to excuse a moment's doubt of it. Surely here if anywhere Smith may
seem to be drawing the long bow. But at the Heralds' College in London,
in the official register of grants of arms, there is an entry in Latin
which does not sustain such a doubt. It is the record of a coat-of-arms
granted by Sigismund Bathori, Prince of Transylvania, "to John Smith,
captain of 250 soldiers, etc. ... in memory of three Turks' heads
which with his sword before the town of Regal he did overcome, kill,
and cut off, in the province of Transylvania."[40] The document on
record, which contains this mention of the grant, is a letter of safe
conduct dated December 9, 1603, signed by Sigismund at Leipsic and
given by him to Smith. The entry is duly approved, and the genuineness
of Sigismund's seal and signature certified, by Sir William Segar,
Garter King at Arms. Some critics have suggested that Smith may have
imposed upon Segar with a bogus document, and since the entry at the
Heralds' College was made in 1625, it is urged that such a long delay
in registering invests the whole affair with suspicion.

[Sidenote: Farnese's manuscript history.]

The document, however, cannot be thus summarily set aside. In the year
1625 Rev. Samuel Purchas published the second volume of his delightful
_Pilgrimes_,[41] and in the course of it he devotes several pages to
Captain Smith's adventures in the east of Europe, including the story
of the three Turks as above given. Purchas's authority for the story
was "a Booke intituled The Warres of Transylvania, Wallachi, and
Moldavia," written in Italian by Francesco Farnese, secretary to Prince
Sigismund. This history seems never to have been published in its
original form, and the manuscript is now apparently lost,[42] but there
can be no doubt that Purchas had it, or a copy of it, in his hands
about 1623. Smith's own book entitled "True Travels" was not published
until 1629, so that our original authority for this passage at arms
is not Smith himself, but one of Prince Sigismund's secretaries, who
first told the story of the English captain's exploit in a book written
for Italian readers. To the flippant criticism which treats Smith as a
vapouring braggart, this simple fact is a staggering blow between the
eyes. Let me add that in his way of telling his tale there is no trace
of boastfulness.[43] For freedom from egotistic self-consciousness
Smith's writings remind me strongly of such books as the Memoirs of
General Grant. Inaccuracies that are manifest errors of memory now and
then occur, prejudices and errors of judgment here and there confront
us, but the stamp of honesty I find on every page.

[Sidenote: Smith is sold as a slave,]

At the bloody battle of Rothenthurm, November 18, 1602, Smith was taken
prisoner and sold into slavery. At Constantinople the lady Charatza
Tragabigzanda, into the service of whose family he passed, was able to
talk with him in Italian and treated him with kindness. One can read
between the lines that she may perhaps have cherished a tender feeling
for the young Englishman, or that he may have thought so. It would not
have been strange. Smith's portrait, as engraved and published during
his lifetime, is that of an attractive and noble-looking man. His
brief narrative does not make it clear how he regarded the lady, or
what relations they sustained to each other, but she left an abiding
impression upon his memory. When in 1614 he explored the coast of New
England he gave the name Tragabigzanda to the cape which Prince Charles
afterwards named Cape Anne, and the three little neighbouring islands
he called the Turks' Heads.

[Sidenote: and cruelly treated.]

[Sidenote: His escape,]

[Sidenote: and return to England.]

The narrative is far from satisfying us as to the reasons why Smith
was sent away from Constantinople. To the east of the Sea of Azov,
and bordering on the Cossack country, was a territory which Gerard
Mercator calls Nalbrits, and Timour, the Pasha of Nalbrits, was brother
to the lady Tragabigzanda. Thither she sent him, with a request that he
should be well treated; but the rude Pasha paid no heed to his sister's
message, and our young hero was treated as badly as the other slaves,
of whom this tyrant had many. "Among these slavish fortunes," says
Smith, "there was no great choice; for the best was so bad, a dog could
hardly have lived to endure [it]." He was dressed in the skin of a wild
beast, had an iron collar fastened around his neck, and was cuffed and
kicked about until he grew desperate. One day, as he was threshing
wheat in a lonely grange more than a league distant from Timour's
castle, the Pasha came in and reviled and struck him, whereupon Smith
suddenly knocked him down with his threshing-stick and beat his brains
out. Then he stripped the body and hid it under the straw, dressed up
in the dead man's clothes and mounted his horse, tied a sack of grain
to his saddle-bow, and galloped off into the Scythian desert. The one
tormenting fear was of meeting some roving party of Turks who might
recognize the mark on his iron collar and either send him back to his
late master's place or enslave him on their own account. But in sixteen
days of misery he saw nobody; then he arrived at a Russian fortress
on the Don and got rid of his badge of slavery. He was helped on his
way from one Russian town to another, and everywhere treated most
kindly. Through the Polish country he went, finding by the wayside much
mirth and entertainment, and then through Hungary and Bohemia, until
at length he reached Leipsic, where he found Prince Sigismund. It was
then, in December, 1603, that he obtained the letter of safe conduct
already mentioned. In the course of the next year Smith travelled in
Germany, France, Spain, and Morocco, and after some further adventures
made his way back to England in the nick of time for taking part in the
enterprise projected by the London Company. Meeting with Newport and
Gosnold, and other captains who had visited the shores of America, it
was natural that his strong geographical curiosity should combine with
his love of adventure to urge him to share in the enterprise.

[Sidenote: The smoke of controversy.]

The brevity of Smith's narrations now and then leaves the story
obscure. Like many another charming old writer, he did not always
consult the convenience of the historians of a later age. So much only
is clear, that during the voyage across the Atlantic the seeds of
quarrel were sown which bore fruit in much bitterness and wrangling
after the colonists had landed. Indeed, after nearly three centuries
some smoke of the conflict still hovers about the field. To this day
John Smith is one of the personages about whom writers of history are
apt to lose their tempers. In recent days there have been many attempts
to belittle him, but the turmoil that has been made is itself a tribute
to the potency and incisiveness of his character. Weak men do not call
forth such belligerency. Amid all the conflicting statements, too,
there comes out quite distinctly the contemporary recognition of his
dignity and purity. Never was warrior known, says one old writer, "from
debts, wine, dice, and oaths so free;"[44] a staunch Puritan in morals,
though not in doctrine.

       *       *       *       *       *

[Sidenote: A tedious voyage.]

[Sidenote: Arrival in Chesapeake Bay.]

[Sidenote: Founding of Jamestown; Wingfield chosen president.]

Captain Newport's voyage was a long one, for he followed the
traditional route, first running down to the Canary Islands and then
following Columbus's route, wafted by the trade-wind straight across
to the West Indies. It seems strange that he should have done so,
for the modern method of great-circle sailing,--first practised on a
great scale by Americus Vespucius, in 1502, in his superb voyage of
4,000 miles in 33 days, from the ice-clad island of South Georgia to
Sierra Leone,[45]--this more scientific method had lately been adopted
by Captain Gosnold, who in 1602 crossed directly from the English
Channel to Cape Cod. As Gosnold was now second in command in this
expedition to Virginia, it would seem as if the shorter route might
once more have been tried to advantage. So many weeks upon the ocean
sadly diminished the stock of provisions. In the course of the voyage
some trouble arose between Smith and Wingfield, and while they were
stopping at Dominica, on the 24th of March, an accusation of plotting
mutiny was brought against the former, so that he was kept in irons
until the ships reached Virginia. After leaving the West Indies they
encountered bad weather and lost their reckoning, but the 26th of
April brought them to the cape which was forthwith named Henry, after
the Prince of Wales, as the opposite cape was afterwards named for
his younger brother, Prince Charles. A few of the company ventured on
shore, where they were at once attacked by Indians and two were badly
wounded with arrows. That evening the sealed box was opened, and it
was found that Bartholomew Gosnold, Edward Wingfield, John Smith, John
Ratcliffe, John Martin, and George Kendall were appointed members of
the Council,--six in all, of whom the president was to have two votes.
As the ships proceeded into Hampton Roads after so much stress of
weather, they named the promontory at the entrance Point Comfort.[46]
The name of the broad river which the voyagers now entered speaks for
itself. They scrutinized the banks until they found a spot which seemed
suited for a settlement, and there they landed on the 13th of May. It
was such a place as the worthy Hakluyt (or whoever wrote their letter
of instructions) had emphatically warned them against, low and damp,
and liable to prove malarious.[47] At high tide the rising waters half
covered the little peninsula, but in this there was an element of
military security, for the narrow neck was easy to guard, and perhaps
it may have been such considerations that prevailed. Smith says
there was a dispute between Wingfield and Gosnold over the selection
of this site. As soon as the company had landed here the members of
the Council, all save Smith, were sworn into office, and then they
chose Wingfield for their president for the first year. On the next
day the men went to work at building their fort, a wooden structure
of triangular shape, with a demi-lune at each angle, mounting cannon.
They called it Fort James, but soon the settlement came to be known as
Jamestown.[48] For a church they nailed a board between two trees to
serve as a reading desk, and stretched a canvas awning over it, and
there the Rev. Robert Hunt, a high-minded and courageous divine, first
clergyman of English America, read the Episcopal service and preached a
sermon twice on every Sunday.

[Sidenote: The Powhatan tribe, confederacy, and head war-chief.]

Smith's enemies were a majority in the Council and would not admit him
as a member, but he was no longer held as a prisoner. Newport's next
business was to explore the river, and Smith with four other gentlemen,
four skilled mariners, and fourteen common sailors, went along with
him, while the Jamestown fort was building. They sailed up about as
far as the site of Richmond, frequently meeting parties of Indians
on the banks or passing Indian villages. Newport was uniformly kind
and sagacious in his dealings with the red men, and they seemed quite
friendly. These were Algonquins, of the tribe called Powhatans, and
the natives who had assaulted the English at Cape Henry belonged to
a hostile tribe, so that that incident furnished a bond of sympathy
between the Powhatans and the white men. After a few days they reached
the village called Powhatan (_i.e._ "Falling Waters"), which Thomas
Studley, the colonial storekeeper, describes as consisting of about a
dozen houses "pleasantly seated on a hill." Old drawings indicate that
they were large clan houses, with framework of beams and covering of
bark, similar in general shape though not in all details to the long
houses of the Iroquois. The Powhatans seem to have been the leading
or senior tribe in a loose confederacy. Their principal village was
called Werowocomoco, situated on the north side of the York River,
about fifteen miles northeast from Jamestown as the crow flies. The
place is now called Putin Bay, a name which is merely a corruption of
Powhatan. At Werowocomoco dwelt the head war-chief of the tribe, by
name Wahunsunakok, but much more generally known by his title as The
Powhatan, just as the head of an Irish or Scotch clan is styled The
O'Neill or The MacGregor. Newport and Smith, hearing that The Powhatan
was a chief to whom other chiefs were in a measure subordinate, spoke
of him as the emperor and the subordinate chiefs as kings, a grotesque
terminology which was natural enough at that day but which in the
interest of historical accuracy it is high time for modern writers to

When Newport and Smith returned to Jamestown, they found that it had
been attacked by a force of 200 Indians. Wingfield had beaten them off,
but one Englishman was killed and eleven were wounded. In the course of
the next two weeks these enemies were very annoying; they would crouch
in the tall grass about the fort and pick off a man with their barbed
stone-tipped arrows. Hakluyt had warned the settlers against building
near the edge of a wood;[50] it seems strange that bitter experience
was needed to teach them that danger might lurk in long grass.
Presently some of their new acquaintances from the Powhatan tribe came
to the fort and told Newport that the assailants were from a hostile
tribe against which they would willingly form an alliance; and they
furthermore advised him to cut his grass, which seems to prove that
they were sincere in what they said.

[Sidenote: Newport sails for England June 22, 1607.]

[Sidenote: Suffering of the colonists.]

[Sidenote: Percy's account.]

Smith now demanded a trial on the charges which had led to his
imprisonment. In spite of objections from Wingfield a jury was
granted, and Smith was acquitted of all the charges; so that on the
10th of June he was allowed to take his seat in the Council. On the
15th the fort was finished, and on the 22d Captain Newport sailed for
England with a cargo of sassafras and fine wood for wainscoting. He
took the direct route homeward, for need was now visibly pressing.
He promised to be back in Virginia within twenty weeks, but all the
food he could leave in the fort was reckoned to be scarcely enough
for fifteen weeks, so that the company were put upon short rations.
According to Studley, 105 persons were left at Jamestown, of whom
besides the 6 councillors, the clergyman and the surgeon, there were
mentioned by name 29 gentlemen, 6 carpenters, 1 mason, 2 bricklayers,
1 blacksmith, 1 sailor, 1 drummer, 1 tailor, 1 barber, 12 labourers,
and 4 boys, with 38 whom he neither names or classifies but simply
mentions as "divers others." The food left in store for this company
was not appetizing. After the ship had gone, says Richard Potts,
"there remained neither tavern, beer-house, nor place of relief but
the common kettle; ... and that was half a pint of wheat and as much
barley, boiled with water, for a man a day; and this, having fried some
26 weeks in the ship's hold, contained as many worms as grains....
"Our [only] drink was water.... Had we been as free from all sins as
gluttony and drunkenness, we might have been canonized for saints."[51]
Chickens were raised, but not enough for so many mouths, and as there
were no cattle or sheep a nourishing diet of meat and milk was out
of the question. Nor do we find much mention of game, though there
were some who warded off the pangs of starvation by catching crabs
and sturgeon in the river. With such inadequate diet, with unfamiliar
kinds of labour, and with the frightful heat of an American summer, the
condition of the settlers soon came to be pitiable. Disease soon added
to their sufferings. Fevers lurked in the air of Jamestown. Before the
end of September more than fifty of the company were in their graves.
The situation is graphically described by one of the survivors, the
Hon. George Percy, brother of the Earl of Northumberland: "There were
neuer Englishmen left in a forreigne Countrey in such miserie as wee
were in this new discouered Virginia. Wee watched euery three nights,
lying on the bare ... ground, what weather soeuer came; [and] warded
all the next day; which brought our men to bee most feeble wretches.
Our food was but a small Can of Barlie sodden in water to fiue men
a day. Our drink cold water taken out of the River; which was at a
floud verie salt: at a low tide full of slime and filth; which was the
destruction of many of our men. Thus we lived for the space of fiue
months in this miserable distresse, not hauing fiue able men to man our
Bulwarkes upon any occasion. If it had not pleased God to haue put a
terrour in the Sauages hearts, we had all perished by those vild and
cruell Pagans, being in that weake estate as we were; our men night
and day groaning in every corner of the Fort most pittiful to heare.
If there were any conscience in men, it would make their harts to
bleed to heare the pitifull murmurings and outcries of our sick men
without reliefe, euery night and day for the space of sixe weekes:
some departing out of the World, many times three or foure in a night;
in the morning their bodies being trailed out of their Cabines like
Dogges, to be buried. In this sort did I see the mortalitie of diuers
of our people,"[52]

[Sidenote: Quarrels.]

[Sidenote: Wingfield deposed; Ratcliffe chosen president, Sept., 1607.]

In such a state of things our colonists would have been more than human
had they shown very amiable tempers. From the early wanderings of the
Spaniards in Darien down to the recent marches of Stanley in Africa,
men struggling with the wilderness have fiercely quarrelled. The fever
at Jamestown carried off Captain Gosnold in August, and after his death
the feud between Smith's friends and Wingfield's flamed up with fresh
virulence. Both gentlemen have left printed statements, and in our time
the quarrel is between historians as to which to believe. Perhaps it is
Smith's detractors who are just at this moment the more impetuous and
implacable, appealing as they do to the churlish feeling that delights
in seeing long-established reputations assailed. Such writers will tell
you as positively as if there could be no doubt about it, that Smith
was engaged in a plot with two other members of the Council to depose
Wingfield from his presidency and establish a "triumvirate" over that
tiny woodland company. Others will assert, with equal confidence, that
Wingfield was a tyrant whose ruthless rule became insupportable. A
perusal of his "Discourse of Virginia," written in 1608 in defence of
his conduct, should make it clear, I think, that he was an honourable
gentleman, but ill fitted for the trying situation in which he found
himself. To control the rations of so many hungry men was no pleasant
or easy matter. It was charged against Wingfield that he kept back
sundry dainties, and especially some wine and spirits for himself
and a few favoured friends; but his quite plausible defence is that
he reserved two gallons of sack for the communion table and a few
bottles of brandy for extreme emergencies, but the other members of
the Council, whose flasks were all empty, "did long for to sup up that
little remnant!"[53] At length a suspicion arose that he intended to
take one of the small vessels that remained in the river and abandon
the colony. Early in September the Council deposed him and elected
John Ratcliffe in his place. A few days later Wingfield was condemned
to pay heavy damages to Smith for defaming his character. "Then Master
Recorder," says poor Wingfield, "did very learnedly comfort me that
if I had wrong I might bring my writ of error in London; whereat I
smiled.... I tould Master President I ... prayed they would be more
sparing of law vntill wee had more witt or wealthe."[54]

[Sidenote: Execution of a member of the Council.]

An awful dignity hedged about the sacred person of the president of
that little colony of fifty men. One day President Ratcliffe beat James
Reed, the blacksmith, who so far forgot himself as to strike back, and
for that heinous offence was condemned to be hanged; but when already
upon the fatal ladder, and, so to speak _in extremis_, like Reynard
the Fox, the resourceful blacksmith made his peace with the law by
revealing a horrid scheme of mutiny conceived by George Kendall, a
member of the Council. Of the details of the affair nothing is known
save that Kendall was found guilty, and instead of a plebeian hanging
there was an aristocratic shooting. In telling the story Wingfield
observes that if such goings-on were to be heard of in England, "I fear
it would drive many well-affected myndes from this honourable action of

[Sidenote: Smith is captured by Opekankano,]

Wingfield's pamphlet freely admits that Smith's activity in trading
with the Indians for corn was of great service to the suffering colony.
With the coming of autumn so many wild fowl were shot that the diet was
much improved. On the 10th of December Smith started on an exploring
expedition up the Chickahominy River. Having gone as far as his shallop
would take him, he left seven men to guard it while he went on in a
canoe with only two white men and two Indian guides. This little party
had arrived at White Oak Swamp, or somewhere in that neighbourhood,
when they were suddenly attacked by 200 Indians led by Opekankano, a
brother of The Powhatan. Smith's two comrades were killed, and he was
captured after a sturdy resistance, but not until he had slain two
Indians with his pistol. It was quite like the quick-witted man to take
out his ivory pocket compass, and to entertain the childish minds of
the barbarians with its quivering needle which they could plainly see
through the glass, but, strange to say, could not feel when they tried
to touch it. Very like him it was to improve the occasion with a brief
discourse on star craft, eked out no doubt with abundant gesticulation,
which may have led his hearers to regard him as a wizard. There seems
to have been a difference of opinion among them. They tied Smith to a
tree, and the fate of Saint Sebastian seemed in store for him, when
Opekankano held up the compass; then the captive was untied, and they
marched away through the forest, taking him with them.

[Sidenote: who takes him to Werowocomoco, Jan., 1608.]

It is not at all clear why the red men should have made this attack.
Hitherto the Powhatans had seemed friendly to the white men and
desirous of an alliance with them. There is a vague traditional
impression that Opekankano was one of a party opposed to such a policy;
so that his attitude might remind us of the attitude of Montezuma's
brother Cuitlahuatzin toward the army of Cortes approaching Mexico.
Such a view is not improbable. Wingfield, moreover, tells us that two
or three years before the arrival of the English at Jamestown some
white men had ascended a river to the northward, probably the Pamunkey
or the Rappahannock, and had forcibly kidnapped some Indians. If there
is truth in this, the kidnappers may have belonged to the ill-fated
expedition of Bartholomew Gilbert. Wingfield says that Opekankano
carried Smith about the country to several villages to see if anybody
could identify him with the leader of that kidnapping party. Smith's
narrative confirms this statement, and adds that it was agreed that the
captain in question was a much taller man than he. His story is full of
observations on the country. Opekankano's village consisted of four or
five communal houses, each about a hundred feet in length, and from the
sandy hill in which it stood some scores of such houses could be seen
scattered about the plain. At length Smith was brought to Werowocomoco
and into the presence of The Powhatan, who received him in just such a
long wigwam. The elderly chieftain sat before the fireplace, on a kind
of bench, and was covered with a robe of raccoon skins, all with the
tails on and hanging like ornamental tassels. Beside him sat his young
squaws, a row of women with their faces and bare shoulders painted
bright red and chains of white shell beads about their necks stood
around by the walls, and in front of them stood the grim warriors.

[Sidenote: The rescue by Pocahontas.]

This was on the 5th of January, 1608, and on the 8th Smith returned to
Jamestown, escorted by four Indians. What had happened to him in the
interval? In his own writings we have two different accounts. In his
tract published under the title, "A True Relation,"--which was merely a
letter written by him in or about June, 1608, to a "worshipful friend"
in London and there published, apparently without his knowledge,
in August,--Smith simply says that The Powhatan treated him very
courteously and sent him back to Jamestown. But in the "General History
of Virginia," a far more elaborate and circumstantial narrative,
published in London in 1624, written partly by Smith himself and partly
by others of the colony, we get a much fuller story. We are told that
after he had been introduced to The Powhatan's long wigwam, as above
described, the Indians debated together and presently two big stones
were placed before the chief, and Smith was dragged thither and his
head laid upon them; but even while warriors were standing, with clubs
in hand, to beat his brains out, the chief's young daughter Pocahontas
rushed up and embraced him and laid her head upon his to shield him,
whereupon her father spared his life.

[Sidenote: Recent attempt to discredit the story.]

For two centuries and a half the later and fuller version of this story
was universally accepted while the earlier and briefer was ignored.
Every schoolboy was taught the story of Pocahontas and John Smith,
and for most people I dare say that incident is the only one in the
captain's eventful career that is remembered. But in recent times
the discrepancy between the earlier and later accounts has attracted
attention, and the conclusion has been hastily reached that in the
more romantic version Smith is simply a liar. It is first assumed that
if the Pocahontas incident had really occurred, we should be sure to
find it in Smith's own narrative written within a year after its
occurrence; and then it is assumed that in later years, when Pocahontas
visited London and was lionized as a princess, Smith invented the
story in order to magnify his own importance by thus linking his
name with hers. By such specious logic is the braggadocio theory of
Smith's career supported, and underneath the whole of it lies the
tacit assumption that the Pocahontas incident is an extraordinary one,
something that in an Indian community or anywhere would not have been
likely to happen.

As this view of the case has been set forth by writers of high repute
for scholarship, it has been generally accepted upon their authority;
in many quarters it has become the fashionable view. Yet its utter
flimsiness can be exhibited, I think, in very few words.

[Sidenote: Percy's pamphlet, 1625.]

The first occasion on which Smith mentions his rescue by Pocahontas was
the occasion of her arrival in London, in 1616, as the wife of John
Rolfe. In an eloquent letter to King James's queen, Anne of Denmark,
he bespeaks the royal favour for the strange visitor from Virginia
and extols her good qualities and the kindness she had shown to the
colony. In the course of the letter he says "she hazarded the beating
out of her own brains to save mine." There were then several persons
in London, besides Pocahontas herself, who could have challenged this
statement if it had been false, but we do not find that anybody did
so.[55] In 1624, when Smith published his "General History," with its
minutely circumstantial account of the affair, why do we not find, even
on the part of his enemies, any intimation of the falsity of the story?
Within a year George Percy wrote a pamphlet[56] for the express purpose
of picking the "General History" to pieces and discrediting it in the
eyes of the public; he was one of the original company at Jamestown.
If Smith had not told his comrades of the Pocahontas incident as soon
as he had escaped from The Powhatan's clutches, if he had kept silent
on the subject for years, Percy could not have failed to know the fact
and would certainly have used it as a weapon. There were others who
could have done the same, and their silence furnishes a very strong
presumption of the truth of the story.

[Sidenote: The printed text of the "True Relation" is incomplete.]

Why then did Smith refrain from mentioning it in the letter to a friend
in England, written in 1608, while the incidents of his captivity
were fresh in his mind? Well, we do not know that he did refrain from
mentioning it, for we do know that the letter, as published in August,
1608, had been tampered with. Smith was in Virginia, and the editor in
London expressly states in his Preface that he has omitted a portion
of the manuscript: "somewhat more was by him written, which being
(as I thought) fit to be private, I would not adventure to make it
public." Nothing could be more explicit. Observe that thus the case
of Smith's detractors falls at once to the ground. Their rejection of
the Pocahontas story is based upon its absence from the printed text
of the "True Relation," but inasmuch as that printed text is avowedly
incomplete no such inference is for a moment admissible. For the
omitted portion is as likely as not to have been the passage describing
Smith's imminent peril and rescue.

[Sidenote: Reason for omitting the Pocahontas incident.]

On this supposition, what could have been the editor's motive in
suppressing the passage? We need not go far afield for an answer
if we bear in mind the instructions with which the first colonists
started,--"to suffer no man ... to write [in] any letter of anything
that may discourage others."[57] This very necessary and important
injunction may have restrained Smith himself from mentioning his deadly
peril; if he did mention it, we can well understand why the person who
published the letter should have thought it best to keep the matter
private. After a few years had elapsed and the success of the colony
was assured, there was no longer any reason for such reticence. My own
opinion is that Smith, not intending the letter for publication, told
the whole story, and that the suppression was the editor's work. It
will be remembered that in the fight in which he was captured, Smith
slew two Indians. In the circumstantial account given in the "General
History" we are told that while Opekankano was taking him up and
down the country, a near relative of one of these victims attempted
to murder Smith but was prevented by the Indians who were guarding
him. The "True Relation" preserves this incident, while it omits all
reference to the two occasions when Smith's life was officially and
deliberately imperilled, the tying to the tree and the scene in The
Powhatan's wigwam. One can easily see why the editor's nerves should
not have been disturbed by the first incident, so like what might
happen in England, while the more strange and outlandish exhibitions of
the Indian's treatment of captives seemed best to be dropped from the

[Sidenote: There is no incongruity between the two narratives, except
the omission.]

But, we are told, the difficulty is not merely one of omission. In the
"True Relation" Smith not only omits all reference to Pocahontas, but
he says that he was kindly and courteously treated by his captors, and
this statement is thought to be incompatible with their having decided
to beat his brains out. Such an objection shows ignorance of Indian
manners. In our own time it has been a common thing for Apaches and
Comanches to offer their choicest morsels of food, with their politest
bows and smiles, to the doomed captive whose living flesh will in a
few moments be hissing under their firebrands. The irony of such a
situation is inexpressibly dear to the ferocious hearts of these men
of the Stone Age, and American history abounds in examples of it. In
his fuller account, indeed, Smith describes himself as kindly treated
on his way to the scene of execution[58] and after his rescue. Drop
out what happened in the interval and you get the account given in the
"True Relation."

[Sidenote: The account in the "General History" is the more probable.]

Now that omission creates a gap in the "True Relation" such as to
fatally damage its credibility. We are told that Smith, after killing a
couple of Indians, is taken captive and carried to the head war-chief's
wigwam, and is then forsooth allowed to go scot free with no notice
taken of the blood debt that he owes to the tribe! To any one who has
studied Indians such a story is well-nigh incredible. As a prisoner of
war Smith's life was already forfeited.[59] It is safe to say that no
Indian would think of releasing him without some equivalent; such an
act might incur the wrath of invisible powers. There were various ways
of putting captives to death; torture by slow fire was the favourite
mode, but crushing in the skull with tomahawks was quite common, so
that when Smith mentions it as decided upon in his case he is evidently
telling the plain truth, and we begin to see that the detailed account
in the "General History" is more consistent and probable than the
abridged account in the "True Relation."

[Sidenote: The rescue was in strict accordance with Indian usage.]

[Sidenote: Adoption of Smith.]

The consistency and probability of the story are made complete by
the rescue at the hands of Pocahontas. That incident is precisely in
accordance with Indian usage, but it is not likely that Smith knew
enough about such usage to have invented it, and his artless way of
telling the story is that of a man who is describing what he does not
understand. From the Indian point of view there was nothing romantic
or extraordinary in such a rescue; it was simply a not uncommon matter
of business. The romance with which white readers have always invested
it is the outcome of a misconception no less complete than that which
led the fair dames of London to make obeisance to the tawny Pocahontas
as to a princess of imperial lineage. Time and again it used to happen
that when a prisoner was about to be slaughtered, some one of the
dusky assemblage, moved by pity or admiration or some unexplained
freak, would interpose in behalf of the victim; and as a rule such
interposition was heeded. Many a poor wretch, already tied to the
fatal tree and benumbed with unspeakable terror, while the firebrands
were heating for his torment, has been rescued from the jaws of death,
and adopted as brother or lover by some laughing young squaw, or as
a son by some grave wrinkled warrior. In such cases the new-comer
was allowed entire freedom and treated like one of the tribe. As the
blood debt was cancelled by the prisoner's violent death, it was also
cancelled by securing his services to the tribe; and any member, old
or young, had a right to demand the latter method as a substitute for
the former. Pocahontas, therefore, did not "hazard the beating out of
her own brains," though the rescued stranger, looking with civilized
eyes, would naturally see it in that light. Her brains were perfectly
safe. This thirteen-year-old squaw liked the handsome prisoner, claimed
him, and got him, according to custom. Mark now what happened next. Two
days afterward The Powhatan, "having disguised himselfe in the most
fearfullest manner he could, caused Captain Smith to be brought forth
to a great house in the woods, and there vpon a mat by the fire be left
alone. Not long after frome behind a mat that divided the house [_i.
e._ a curtain] was made the most dolefullest noyse he ever heard."[60]
Then the old chieftain, looking more like the devil than a man, came
to Smith and told him that now they were friends and he might go back
to Jamestown; then if he would send to The Powhatan a couple of cannon
and a grindstone, he should have in exchange a piece of land in the
neighbourhood, and that chief would evermore esteem him as his own
son. Smith's narrative does not indicate that he understood this to
be anything more than a friendly figure of speech, but it seems clear
that it was a case of ceremonious adoption. As the natural result of
the young girl's intercession the white chieftain was adopted into the
tribe. A long incantation, with dismal howls and grunts, propitiated
the tutelar deities, and then the old chief, addressing Smith as a
son, proposed an exchange of gifts. The next time that Smith visited
Werowocomoco, The Powhatan proclaimed him a "werowance" or chief of the
tribe, and ordered "that all his subjects should so esteem us, and no
man account us strangers ... but Powhatans, and that the corn, women,
and country should be to us as to his own people."[61]

[Sidenote: Importance of the story of Pocahontas.]

I have dwelt at some length upon the question of Smith's veracity
for three good reasons. First, in the interests of sound historical
criticism, it is desirable to show how skepticism, which is commonly
supposed to indicate superior sagacity, is quite as likely to result
from imperfect understanding. Secondly, justice should be done to the
memory of one of the noblest and most lovable characters in American
history. Thirdly, the rescue of Smith by Pocahontas was an event of
real historic importance. Without it the subsequent relations of the
Indian girl with the English colony become incomprehensible. But for
her friendly services on more than one occasion, the tiny settlement
would probably have perished. Her visits to Jamestown and the regular
supply of provisions by the Indians began at this time.[62]

[Sidenote: Arrival of the First Supply, Jan. 8, 1608.]

[Sidenote: Ratcliffe deposed; Smith chosen president, Sept., 1608;
arrival of the Second Supply.]

On the very day that Smith returned to Jamestown the long expected ship
of Captain Newport arrived with what was known as the First Supply of
men and provisions. Part came now, the rest a few weeks later. Only
38 men had survived the hardships at Jamestown; to these the First
Supply added 120, bringing the number up to 158. For so many people,
besides the food they brought with them more corn was needed. So Smith
took his "Father Newport," as he called him, over to Werowocomoco,
where they tickled "Father Powhatan's" fancy with blue glass beads and
drove some tremendous bargains. As spring came on, Newport sailed for
England again, taking with him the deposed Wingfield. The summer of
1608 was spent by Smith in two voyages of exploration up Chesapeake Bay
and into the Potomac, Patapsco, and Susquehanna rivers. He met with
warriors of the formidable Iroquois tribe of Susquehannocks, and found
them carrying a few French hatchets which had evidently come from
Canada. During his absence things went badly at Jamestown and Ratcliffe
was deposed. On Smith's return in September he was at once chosen
president. Only 28 men had been lost this year, so that the colony
numbered 130, when Newport again arrived in September, with the Second
Supply of 70 persons, bringing the total up to 200. In this company
there were two women, a Mrs. Forrest and her maid, Anne Burroughs, who
was soon married to John Laydon, the first recorded English wedding on
American soil.

[Sidenote: Captain Newport's instructions.]

[Sidenote: Coronation of The Powhatan.]

Newport's instructions show that the members of the London Company,
sitting at their cosy English firesides, were getting impatient and
meant to have something done. He was told that he must find either
the way to the South Sea, or a lump of gold, or one of White's lost
colonists, or else he need not come back and show his face in England!
One seems taken back to the Arabian Nights, where such peremptory
behests go along with enchanted carpets and magic rings and heroic
steeds with pegs in the neck. No such talismans were to be found in Old
Virginia. When Newport read his instructions, Smith bluntly declared
that the London Company were fools, which seems to have shocked the
decorous mariner. The next order was grotesque enough to have emanated
from the teeming brain of James I. after a mickle noggin of his
native Glenlivat. Their new ally, the mighty Emperor Powhatan, must
be crowned! Newport and Smith did it, and much mirth it must have
afforded them. The chief refused to come to Jamestown, so Mahomet had
to go to the mountain. Up in the long wigwam at Werowocomoco the two
Englishmen divested the old fellow of his raccoon-skin[63] garment and
put on him a scarlet robe which greatly pleased him. Then they tried
to force him down upon his knees--which he did not like at all--while
they put the crown on his head. When the operation was safely ended,
the forest-monarch grunted acquiescence and handed to Newport his old
raccoon-skin cloak as a present for his royal brother in England.

[Sidenote: How the Indian girls danced at Werowocomoco.]

An Indian masquerading scene at one of these visits to Werowocomoco is
thus described by one of the English party: "In a fayre playne field
they made a fire, before which [we] sitting upon a mat, suddainly
amongst the woods was heard ... a hydeous noise and shrieking....
Then presently [we] were presented with this anticke; thirtie young
women came [nearly] naked out of the woods, ... their bodies all
painted, some white, some red, some black, some particolour, but all
differing; their leader had a fayre payre of buck's horns on her
head, and an otter's skin at her girdle, and another at her arm, a
quiver of arrowes at her back, a bow and arrowes in her hand; the next
had in her hand a sword, another a club, ... all horned alike....
These fiends with most hellish shouts and cries, rushing from among
the trees, cast themselves in a ring about the fire, singing and
dauncing with most excellent ill varietie; ... having spent neare an
houre in this mascarado, as they entred in like manner they departed.
Having reaccommodated themselves, they solemnly invited [us] to their
lodgings, where [we] were no sooner within the house but all these
nymphes more tormented us than ever, with crowding, pressing, and
hanging about [us], most tediously crying, _Love you not me?_ This
salutation ended, the feast was set, consisting of fruit in baskets,
fish and flesh in wooden platters; beans and peas there wanted not, nor
any salvage dainty their invention could devise: some attending, others
singing and dancing about [us]; which mirth and banquet being ended,
with firebrands [for] torches they conducted [us] to [our] lodging."

[Sidenote: Accuracy of Smith's descriptions.]

[Sidenote: Todkill's complaint.]

The wood-nymphs who thus entertained their guests are in one account
mentioned simply as "Powhatan's women," in another they are spoken
of as "Pocahontas and her women;" which seems to give us a realistic
sketch of the little maid with her stag-horn headdress and skin all
stained with puccoon leading her companions in their grotesque capers.
Truly, it was into a strange world and among a strange people that our
colonists had come. Their quaint descriptions of manners and customs
utterly new and unintelligible to them, though familiar enough to
modern students of barbaric life, have always the ring of truth.
Nowhere in the later experiences of white men with Indians do we find
quite so powerful a charm as in the early years of the seventeenth
century. No other such narratives are quite so delightful as those
of Champlain and his friends in Canada, and those of Smith and his
comrades in Virginia. There is a freshness about this first contact
with the wilderness and its uncouth life that makes every incident
vivid. There is a fascination too, not unmixed with sadness, in
watching the early dreams of El Dorado fade away as the stern reality
of a New World to be conquered comes to make itself known and felt.
Naturally the old delusions persisted at home in England long after
the colonists had been taught by costly experiences to discard them,
and we smile at the well-meant blundering of the ruling powers in
London in their efforts to hasten the success of their enterprise.
In vain did the faithful Newport seek to perform the mandates of the
London Company. No nuggets of gold were to be found, nor traces of
poor Eleanor Dare and her friends, and The Powhatan told the simple
truth when he declared that there were difficult mountains westward
and it would be useless to search for a salt sea behind them. Newport
tried, nevertheless, but came back exhausted long before he had
reached the Blue Ridge; for what foe is so pertinacious as a strange
and savage continent? In pithy terms does Anas Todkill, one of the
first colonists, express himself about these wild projects: "Now was
there no way to make us miserable but to neglect that time to make
our provision whilst it was to be had; the which was done to perfourme
this strange discovery, but more strange coronation. To lose that time,
spend that victuall we had, tire and starue our men, having no means to
carry victuall, munition, the hurt or sicke, but their own backes: how
or by whom they were invented I know not." How eloquent in grief and
indignation are these rugged phrases! A modern writer, an accomplished
Oxford scholar, expresses the opinion that the coronation of The
Powhatan, although "an idle piece of formality," "had at least the
merit of winning and retaining the loyalty of the savage."[64] Master
Todkill thought differently: "as for the coronation of Powhatan and
his presents of bason, ewer, bed, clothes, and such costly nouelties;
they had bin much better well spared than so ill spent; for we had
his favour much better onlie for a poore peece of copper, till this
stately kinde of soliciting made him so much overvalue himselfe, that
he respected vs as much as nothing at all."[65]

[Sidenote: Smith's map of Virginia.]

When Newport sailed for England, he took with him Ratcliffe, the
deposed president, a man of doubtful character of whom it was
said that he had reasons for using an alias, his real name being
Sickelmore. Deposed presidents were liable to serve as tale-bearers and
mischief-makers. Wingfield had gone home on the previous voyage, and
Newport had brought back to Virginia complaints from the Company about
the way in which things had been managed. Now Smith sent to London by
Newport his new map of Virginia embodying the results of his recent
voyages of exploration, a map of remarkable accuracy and witness to an
amount of original labour that is marvellous to think of. That map is a
living refutation of John Smith's detractors; none but a man of heroic
mould could have done the geographical work involved in making it.

With the map Smith sent what he naïvely calls his "Rude Answer" to the
London Company, a paper bristling with common-sense and not timid when
it comes to calling a spade a spade. With some topics suggested by this
"Rude Answer" we shall concern ourselves in the next chapter.


[36] Some skepticism was manifested by one of Smith's contemporaries,
Thomas Fuller, who says, in his _Worthies of England_, "It soundeth
much to the diminution of his deeds that he alone is the herald to
publish and proclaim them." The good Fuller was mistaken, however. Some
of Smith's most striking deeds, as we shall see, were first proclaimed
by others.

[37] Campbell's _Lives of the Chief Justices_, i. 210.

[38] This sketch of Smith's early life is based upon his _True
Travels_, etc., in his _Works_, edited by Edward Arber, Birmingham,
1884, pp. 821-880.

[39] For a good sketch of Sigismund and his relations to the Empire and
to the Turks, see Schlosser's _Weltgeschichte_, vol. xiii. pp. 325-344.

[40] Smith's _Works_, ed. Arber, pp. xxii., 842.

[41] Purchas, _His Pilgrimes_, ii. 1363.

[42] So many long missing historical documents have turned up of late
years that it is never safe to assert that one is "lost." That great
scholar, Don Pascual de Gayangos, seems to have seen a printed Spanish
translation of Farnese's book, but I do not know where it is.

[43] It would be just like Smith, I think, not to make much account of
his exploit. Hence he neglected to make any record of his grant of arms
until the appearance of Purchas's book in 1625, and resulting talks
among friends, probably impressed upon him the desirableness of making
such a record.

[44] Thomas Carlton's verses, in Smith's _Works_, ed. Arber, p. 692.

[45] See my _Discovery of America_, ii. 105.

[46] It seems likely that the point at the upper end of the Roads
received its name of Newport News from the gallant captain. On several
old maps I have found it spelled Newport Ness, which is equivalent to
Point Newport.

[47] See above, p. 75.

[48] It was not far from this spot that Ayllon had made his
unsuccessful attempt to found a Spanish colony in 1526. See my
_Discovery of America_, ii. 490.

[49] The Englishmen were bewildered by barbaric usages utterly foreign
to their experience. Kinship among these Indians, as so generally
among barbarians and savages, was reckoned through females only, and
when the English visitors were told that The Powhatan's office would
descend to his maternal brothers, even though he had sons living, the
information was evidently correct, but they found it hard to understand
or believe. So when one of the chiefs on the James River insisted upon
giving back some powder and balls which one of his men had stolen, it
was regarded as a proof of strict honesty and friendliness, whereas the
more probable explanation is that a prudent Indian, at that early time,
would consider it bad medicine to handle the thunder-and-lightning
stuff or keep it about one. See my _Beginnings of New England_, p. 85.

[50] See above, p. 75.

[51] Smith's _Works_, ed. Arber, p. 95.

[52] Smith's _Works_, p. lxxii.

[53] Neil's _Virginia Company_, p. 19.

[54] Smith's _Works_, p. lxxxiv.

[55] It is true, this letter of 1616 was first made public in the
"General History" in 1624 (see Smith's _Works_, p. 530); so that
Smith's detractors may urge that the letter is trumped up and was never
sent to Queen Anne. If so, the question recurs, Why did not some enemy
or hostile critic of Smith in 1624 call attention to so flagrant a

[56] Brown's _Genesis_, ii. 964; Neill's _Virginia Vetusta_, pp. v-x.

[57] See above, p. 76.

[58] Even in The Powhatan's wigwam, it was only after "having feasted
him [Smith] after their best barbarous manner they could," that the
Indians brought the stones and prepared to kill him. Smith's _Works_,
p. 400.

[59] It is true that in 1608 the Powhatans were still unfamiliar with
white men and inclined to dread them as more or less supernatural;
but they had thoroughly learned that fair skins and long beards were
no safeguard against disease and death. If they did not know that the
Jamestown colony had dwindled to eight-and-thirty men, they knew that
their own warriors had slain all Smith's party and taken him captive.

[60] Smith's _Works_, p. 400.

[61] Id. p. 26. Of course the cases of rescue and adoption were
endlessly various in circumstances; see the case of Couture, in
Parkman's _Jesuits_, p. 223; on another occasion "Brigeac was tortured
to death with the customary atrocities. Cuillérier, who was present,
... expected the same fate, but an old squaw happily adopted him, and
thus saved his life." Parkman's _Old Régime in Canada_, revised ed.
p. 108. For adoption in general see Morgan, _Ancient Society_, p.
80; _League of the Iroquois_, p. 342; Colden's _History of the Five
Nations_, London, 1755, i. 9.

[62] Of the really critical attacks upon the story of Pocahontas, the
most important are those of Charles Deane, in his _Notes on Wingfield's
Discourse of Virginia_, Boston, 1859, and Henry Adams, in the _North
American Review_, vol. civ. Their arguments have been ably answered by
W. W. Henry, in _Proceedings of Virginia Historical Society_, 1882,
and Charles Poindexter, in his _Captain John Smith and his Critics_,
Richmond, 1893. There are two writers of valuable books who seldom
allude to Smith without sneers and words of abuse,--Alexander Brown,
of Virginia, and Edward Duffield Neill, of Minnesota; they seem to
resent, as a personal grievance, the fact that the gallant captain
ever existed. On the other hand, no one loves him better than the
learned editor of his books, who has studied them with microscopic
thoroughness, Edward Arber. My own defence of Smith, when set forth in
a lecture at University College, London, 1879, was warmly approved by
my friend, the late Henry Stevens.

[63] The word "raccoon" is a thorn in poor Smith's flesh, and his
attempts to represent the sound of it from guttural Indian mouths are
droll: "There is a beast they call _Aroughcun_, much like a badger,
but useth to live on trees as squirrels do."--"He sent me presents
of bread and _Raugroughcuns_."--" Covered with a great covering of
_Rahoughcums_."--"A robe made of _Rarowcun_ skins," etc., etc.

[64] Doyle's _Virginia_, p. 124.

[65] Smith's _Works_, p. 122.



[Sidenote: The name of Christopher.]

[Sidenote: Value of the Indian alliance.]

THE men of bygone days were quite as fond as ourselves of playing
with names, and the name of Christopher, or "Christ-bearer," was a
favourite subject for such pastime. The old Syrian saint and martyr
was said to have forded a river carrying Christ on his back in the
form of a child; and so when in the year 1500 Columbus's famous pilot,
Juan de La Cosa, made his map of the new discoveries, and came to a
place where he did not know how to draw his coast-line, he filled
the space with a picture of the new Christopher wading in mid-ocean
and bringing over Christ to the heathen. At the court of James I. it
was fashionable to make similar mild jests upon the name of Captain
Christopher Newport, whose ships were carrying year by year the gospel
to the tawny natives of Virginia. Very little of the good tidings,
however, had the poor heathen of Pamunkey and Werowocomoco as yet
received. So much ado had the English colonists to keep their own souls
from quitting their bodies that they had little leisure to bestow
upon the spiritual welfare of the Indians. By the accident of Smith's
capture and the intercession of Pocahontas, they had effected a kind of
alliance with the most powerful tribe in that part of the country, and
this alliance had proved extremely valuable throughout the year 1608;
without it the little colony might have perished before the arrival
of the Second Supply. Nevertheless the friendship of the red men was
a very uncertain and precarious factor in the situation. The accounts
of the Englishmen show confused ideas as to the relations between
the tribes and chieftains of the region; and as for the Indians,
their acquaintanceship with white men was so recent that there was no
telling what unforeseen circumstance might at any time determine their
actions. The utmost sagacity was needed to retain the slight influence
already acquired over them, while to alienate them might easily prove
fatal. The colony was far from able to support itself, and as things
were going there seemed little hope of improvement. The difficulties
involved in the founding of colonies were not well understood, and the
attempts to cope with them were unintelligent.

[Sidenote: Gentlemen as pioneers.]

In the lists of these earliest parties of settlers one cannot fail to
notice the preponderance of those who are styled gentlemen, an epithet
which in those days was not lavishly and indiscriminately but charily
and precisely applied. As a rule the persons designated as gentlemen
were not accustomed to manual labour. To meet the requirements of these
aristocratic members of the community, we find in one of the lists the
name of a dealer in perfumes. A few score of farmers, with abundance
of live-stock, would have been far more to the purpose. Yet let us do
justice to the gentlemen. One of the first company of settlers, the
sturdy soldier Anas Todkill, thus testifies to their good spirit and
efficiency: "Thirty of us [President Smith] conducted 5 myles from the
fort, to learn to ... cut down trees and make clapboard.... Amongst
the rest he had chosen Gabriel Beadell and John Russell, the only
two gallants of this last supply [he means October, 1608] and both
proper gentlemen. Strange were these pleasures to their conditions;
yet lodging, eating and drinking, working or playing, they [were] but
doing as the President did himselfe. All these things were carried on
so pleasantly as within a week they became masters; making it their
delight to heare the trees thunder as they fell; but the axes so oft
blistered their tender fingers that many times every third blow had
a loud othe to drowne the eccho; for remedie of which sinne, the
President devised how to have every man's othes numbred, and at night
for every othe to have a cann of water powred downe his sleeue, with
which every offender was so washed (himselfe and all) that a man should
scarce hear an othe in a weeke.

  For he who scorns and makes but jests of cursings and his othe,
  He doth contemne, not man but God; nor God, nor man, but both.

By this let no man thinke that the President and these gentlemen spent
their time as common woodhackers at felling of trees, or such other
like labours; or that they were pressed to it as hirelings or common
slaues; for what they did, after they were but once a little invred,
it seemed and some conceited it only as a pleasure and recreation: ...
30 or 40 of such voluntary gentlemen would doe more in a day than 100
of the rest that must be prest to it by compulsion." Nevertheless, adds
this ingenuous writer, "twentie good workmen had been better than them

[Sidenote: All is not gold that glitters.]

[Sidenote: Glass and soap.]

[Sidenote: Disappointment of the Company.]

[Sidenote: Tale-bearers and complaints.]

[Sidenote: Smith's "Rude Answer."]

One strong motive which drew many of these gentlemen to the New World,
like the Castilian hidalgos of a century before, was doubtless the mere
love of wild adventure. Another motive was the quest of the pearls
and gold about gold that which the poet Drayton had written. In the
spring of 1608, while Newport was on the scene with his First Supply,
somebody discovered a bank of bright yellow dirt, and its colour was
thought to be due to particles of gold. Then there was clatter and
bustle; "there was no thought, no discourse, no hope, and no work but
to dig gold, wash gold, refine gold, and load gold." In the list of the
First Supply we find the names of two goldsmiths, two refiners, and
one jeweller;[67] but such skill as these artisans had was of little
avail, for Newport carried a shipload of the yellow stuff to London,
and found, to his chagrin, that all is not gold that glitters. On
that same voyage he carried home a coop of plump turkeys, the first
that ever graced an English bill of fare. Smith seems early to have
recovered from the gold fever, and to have tried his hand at various
industries. If precious metals could not be found, there was plenty
of excellent timber at hand. The production of tar and soap was also
attempted, as well as the manufacture of glass, to assist in which
eight Germans and Poles were brought over in the Second Supply. It was
hardly to be expected that such industries should attain remunerative
proportions in the hands of a little company of settlers who were
still confronted with the primitive difficulty of getting food enough
to keep themselves alive. The arrival of reinforcements was far from
being an unmixed benefit. Each new supply brought many new mouths to
be filled, while by the time the ship was ready to sail for England,
leaving all the provisions it could safely spare, the remnant was so
small that the gaunt spectre of threatening famine was never quite out
of sight. Moreover the new-comers from the civilized world arrived
with their heads full of such wild notions as the older settlers were
beginning to recover from under the sharp lessons of experience; thus
was confusion again and again renewed. While the bitter tale was being
enacted in the wilderness, people in London were wondering why the
symptoms of millennial happiness were so slow in coming from this
Virginian paradise. From the golden skewers and dripping-pans adorning
the kitchens of barbaric potentates,[68] or the priceless pearls that
children strolling on the beach could fill their aprons with, the
descent to a few shiploads of ignoble rough boards and sassafras was
truly humiliating. No wonder that the Company should have been loth
to allow tales of personal peril in Virginia to find their way into
print. No wonder that its directors should have looked with rueful
faces at the long columns of outgoes compared with the scant and petty
entries on the credit side of the ledger. No wonder if they should
have arrived at a state of impatience like that of the urchin who has
planted a bed full of seed and cannot be restrained from digging them
up to see what they are coming to. At such times there is sure to be
plenty of fault-finding; disappointment seeks a vent in scolding. We
have observed that Wingfield, the deposed president, had returned to
England early in 1608; with him went Captain Gabriel Archer, formerly
a student of law at Gray's Inn, and one of the earliest members of
the legal profession in English America. His name is commemorated in
the little promontory near Jamestown called Archer's Hope. He was
a mischief-maker of whom Wingfield in his "Discourse of Virginia"
speaks far more bitterly than of Smith. To the latter Archer was an
implacable enemy. On the return of Smith from his brief captivity
with the Indians, this crooked Archer exhibited his legal ingenuity
in seeking to revive a provision in the laws of Moses that a captain
who leads his men into a fatal situation is responsible for their
death. By such logic Smith would be responsible for the deaths of his
followers slain, by Opekankano's Indians; therefore, said Archer, he
ought to be executed for murder! President Ratcliffe, alias Sickelmore,
appears to have been a mere tool in Archer's hands, and Smith's life
may really have been in some danger when Newport's arrival discomfited
his adversaries. One can see what kind of tales such an unscrupulous
enemy would be likely to tell in London, and it was to be expected
that Newport, on arriving with his Second Supply, would bring some
message that Smith would regard as unjust. The nature of the message is
reflected in the reply which Smith sent home by Newport in November,
1608. The wrath of the much-enduring man was thoroughly aroused; in
his "Rude Answer," as he calls it, he strikes out from the shoulder,
and does not even spare his friend Newport for bringing such messages.
Thus does he address the Royal Council of Virginia, sitting in London:
"Right Honourable Lords and Gentlemen: I received your letter wherein
you write that our minds are so set upon faction and idle conceits,
... and that we feed you but with ifs and ands, hopes, and some few
proofes; as if we would keep the mystery of the businesse to ourselues;
and that we must expresly follow your instructions sent by Captain
Newport, the charge of whose voyage amounts to neare £2000 the which
if we cannot defray by the ship's returne, we are like to remain as
banished men. To these particulars I humbly intreat your pardons if I
offend you with my rude answer.

[Sidenote: I cannot prevent quarrels.]

"For our factions, vnlesse you would haue me run away and leaue the
country, I cannot prevent them: ... I do make many stay that would
els fly anywhither.... [As to feeding] you with hopes, etc., though I
be no scholar, I am past a school-boy; and I desire but to know what
either you [or] these here do know but I have learned to tell you by
the continual hazard of my life. I have not concealed from you anything
I know; but I feare some cause you to believe much more than is true.

[Sidenote: Your instructions were not wise.]

"Expressly to follow your directions by Captain Newport, though they be
performed, I was directly against it; but according to our Commission,
I was content to be ruled by the major part of the council, I fear to
the hazard of us all; which now is generally confessed when it is too
late.... I have crowned Powhatan according to your instructions. For
the charge of this voyage of £2000 we have not received the value of
£100.... For him at that time to find ... the South Sea, [or] a mine of
gold, or any of them sent by Sir Walter Raleigh: at our consultation I
told them was as likely as the rest. But during this great discovery of
thirty miles (which might as well have been done by one man, and much
more, for the value of a pound of copper at a seasonable time) they had
the pinnace and all the boats with them [save] one that remained with
me to serve the fort.

[Sidenote: From our infant industries you must not expect too much.]

"In their absence I followed the new begun works of pitch and tar,
glass, soap ashes, and clapboard; whereof some small quantities we
have sent you. But if you rightly consider what an infinite toil it is
in Russia and Swedeland, where the woods are proper for naught else,
and though there be the help both of man and beast in those ancient
commonweals which many an hundred years have [been] used [to] it; yet
thousands of those poor people can scarce get necessaries to live but
from hand to mouth. And though your factors there can buy as much in a
week as will fraught you a ship ...; you must not expect from us any
such matter, which are but a many of ignorant miserable souls, that
are scarce able to get wherewith to live and defend ourselves against
the inconstant salvages; finding but here and there a tree fit for the
purpose, and want[ing] all things else [which] the Russians have.

[Sidenote: While we suffer for want of food,]

"For the coronation of Powhatan, by whose advice you sent him such
presents I know not; but this give me leave to tell you, I fear they
will be the confusion of us all ere we hear from you again. At your
ship's arrival the salvages's harvest was newly gathered and we [were]
going to buy it; our own not being half sufficient for so great a
number. As for the two [shiploads] of corn [which] Newport promised to
provide us from Powhatan,[69] he brought us but 14 bushels ... [while
most of his men were] sick and near famished. From your ship we had
not provision in victuals worth £20, and we are more than 200 to live
upon this; the one half sick, the other little better.... Our diet is a
little meal and water, and not sufficient of that. Though there be fish
in the sea, fowls in the air, and beasts in the woods, their bounds are
so large, they so wild, and we so weak and ignorant that we cannot much
trouble them.

[Sidenote: peculation and intrigue are rife.]

"The soldiers say many of your officers maintain their families
out of that you send us; and that Newport hath £100 a year for
carrying news.... Captain Ratcliffe is now called Sickelmore, a poor
counterfeited imposture. I have sent you him home, lest the company
[here] should cut his throat. What he is now, every one can tell you.
If he and Archer return again, they are sufficient to keep us always in

[Sidenote: Send us next time some useful workmen.]

"When you send again I intreat you [to] send but 30 carpenters,
husbandmen, gardeners, fishermen, blacksmiths, masons, and diggers
up of trees' roots, well provided, [rather] than 1000 of such as we
have; for except we be able both to lodge them and feed them, the most
will consume with want of necessaries before they can be made good for
anything.... And I humbly entreat you hereafter, let us know what we
[are to] receive, and not stand to the sailors's courtesy to leave us
what they please....

"These are the causes that have kept us in Virginia from laying such
a foundation [as] ere this might have given much better content and
satisfaction; but as yet you must not look for any profitable returns;
so I humbly rest."[70]

[Sidenote: A sensible letter.]

It is to be hoped that the insinuation that some of the Company's
officers were peculators was ill founded; as for the fling at Newport,
it was evidently made in a little fit of petulance and is inconsistent
with the esteem in which Smith really held that worthy mariner. These
are slight blemishes in a temperate, courageous, and manly letter.
It is full of hard common-sense and tells such plain truths as must
have set the Company thinking. It was becoming evident to many persons
in London that some new departure must be made. But before Newport's
home-bound ship could cross the ocean, and before the Company could
decide upon its new plan of operations, some months must needs elapse,
and in the interim we will continue to follow the fortunes of the
little colony, now left to itself in the wilderness for the third time.

[Sidenote: Richard Hakluyt on the Indian character.]

It is evident from Smith's letter that he anticipated trouble from the
Indians. In The Powhatan's promise to count him forever as his own son
he put little faith. His own view of the noble savage seems to have
been much the same as that expressed about this time by Rev. Richard
Hakluyt, in a letter of advice and warning to the London Company:
"But for all their fair and cunning speeches, [these natives] are not
overmuch to be trusted; for they be the greatest traitors of the world,
as their manifold most crafty contrived and bloody treasons ... do
evidently prove. They be also as unconstant as the weathercock, and
most ready to take all occasions of advantages to do mischief. They
are great liars and dissemblers; for which faults oftentimes they had
their deserved payments.... To handle them gently, while gentle courses
may be found to serve, ... will be without comparison the best; but
if gentle polishing will not serve, [we] shall not want hammerers
and rough masons enow--I mean our old soldiers trained up in the
Netherlands--to square and prepare them to our Preacher's hands."[71]

[Sidenote: What Smith dreaded.]

[Sidenote: How the red men's views of the situation were changed.]

There is something delicious in the naïve promptness with which this
worthy clergyman admits the probable need of prescribing military
measures as a preparation for the cure of souls. The London Company
may have stood in need of such advice; Smith did not. He looked
upon Indians already with the eyes of a frontiersman, and the rough
vicissitudes of his life had made him quick to interpret signs of
mischief. It was not so much a direct assault that he feared as a
contest arising from the Indians' refusal to sell their corn. During
the past winter Pocahontas had made frequent and regular visits to
Jamestown, bringing corn and occasionally venison, raccoons, and other
game; and this aid had been so effective as to ward off famine for that
season. But a change had come over her father and his councillors.
As the English kept strengthening their fortifications and building
houses, as the second and third shiploads of colonists arrived, the
Indians must have begun to realize that it was their intention to
stay in the country. On Smith's first visit to Werowocomoco, when The
Powhatan said that he should henceforth regard him as a son, he showed
himself extremely curious to know why the English had come to his part
of the world. Smith did not think it safe to confess that they had come
to stay; so he invented a story of their having been defeated by the
Spaniards and driven ashore; then, he added, the pinnace being leaky,
they were obliged to stay until their Father Newport should come back
and get them and take them away. Since that conversation Father Newport
had come twice, and each time he had brought many of his children and
taken away but few. Instead of 38 men at Jamestown there were now 200.
Every painted and feathered warrior knew that these pale children were
not good farmers, and that their lives depended upon a supply of corn.
By withholding this necessary of life, how easy it might be to rid the
land of their presence!

[Sidenote: A bold resolve.]

[Sidenote: Voyage to Werowocomoco.]

As the snows began to come, toward Christmas of 1608, Smith's fears
began to be realized. When the Indians were asked for corn they refused
with a doggedness that withstood even the potent fascination of blue
glass beads. Smith fully comprehended the seriousness of the situation.
"No persuasion," he says, "could persuade him to starve." If the
Indians would not trade of their own free will they must be made to
trade. The Powhatan asked for some men who could aid him in building a
house, and Smith sent to Werowocomoco fourteen men, including four of
the newly arrived Germans. Smith followed with twenty-seven men in the
pinnace and barge. In the party were George Percy and Francis West,
brother of the Lord Delaware of whom we shall have soon to speak. At
Warrasqueak Bay, where they stopped the first night, a chieftain told
them to beware of treachery at Werowocomoco; The Powhatan, he said, had
concocted a scheme for cutting their throats. Captain Smith thanked
the redskin for his good counsel, assured him of his undying affection,
and proceeded down the river to Hampton, where he was very hospitably
entertained by the Kecoughtans, a small tribe numbering about twenty
warriors. For about a week, from December 30, 1608, till January 6,
1609, a fierce blizzard of snow and sleet obliged the party to stay
in the dry and well-warmed wigwams of the Kecoughtans, who regaled
them with oysters, fish, venison, and wild fowl. As they passed around
to the northern side of the peninsula and approached the York River,
the Indians seemed less friendly. When they arrived at Werowocomoco
the river was frozen for nearly half a mile from the shore, but Smith
rammed and broke the ice with his barge until he had pushed up to a
place where it was thick enough to walk safely; then sending the barge
back to the pinnace the whole party were landed by instalments. They
quartered themselves in the first house they came to, and sent to The
Powhatan for food. He sent them venison, turkeys, and corn-bread.

[Sidenote: Smith's parley with The Powhatan.]

The next day, January 13, the wily barbarian came to see Smith and
asked him bluntly how soon he was going away. He had not asked the
English, he said, to come and visit him, and he was sure he had no
corn for them, nevertheless he thought he knew where he could get
forty baskets of it for one good English sword per basket. Hearing
this speech, Captain Smith pointed to the new house already begun, and
to the men whom he had sent to build it, and said, "Powhatan, I am
surprised to hear you say that you have not invited us hither; you must
have a short memory!" At this retort the old chieftain burst into fits
of laughter, but when he had recovered gravity it appeared that his
notions as to a bargain remained unchanged. He would sell his corn for
swords and guns, but not for copper; he could eat corn, he could not
eat copper. Then said Captain Smith, "Powhatan, ... to testify my love
[for you] I sent you my men for your building, neglecting mine own.
What your people had, you have engrossed, forbidding them our trade;
and now you think by consuming the time we shall consume for want, not
having [wherewith] to fulfill your strange demands. As for swords and
guns, I told you long ago I had none to spare.... You must know [that
the weapons] I have can keep me from want; yet steal or wrong you I
will not, nor dissolve that friendship we have mutually promised,
except you constrain me by ... bad usage." This covert threat was not
lost upon the keen barbarian. He quickly replied that within two days
the English should have all the corn he could spare, but said he, "I
have some doubt, Captain Smith, [about] your coming hither, [which]
makes me not so kindly seek to relieve you as I would. For many do
inform me [that] your coming hither is not for trade, but to invade my
people and possess my country. [They] dare not come to bring you corn,
seeing you thus armed with your men. To free us of this fear, leave
your weapons aboard [the ship], for here they are needless, we being
all friends, and forever _Powhatans_."

[Sidenote: A game of bluff.]

This last remark, that Smith's men were virtually or constructively
members of the Powhatan tribe is in harmony with my suggestion that the
rescue of their leader by Pocahontas a year before had directly led to
his adoption, according to the usual Indian custom in such cases of
rescue. With many such discourses, says our chronicle, did they spend
the day; and on the morrow the parley was renewed. Again and again the
old chief insisted that before the corn could be brought, the visitors
must leave their arms on shipboard; but Smith was not so blind as to
walk into such a trap. He said, "Powhatan, ... the vow I made you
of my love, both myself and my men have kept. As for your promise,
I find it every day violated by some of your subjects; yet ... for
your sake only we have curbed our thirsting desire of revenge; else
had they known as well the cruelty we use to our enemies as our true
love and courtesy to our friends. And I think your judgment sufficient
to conceive--as well by the adventures we have undertaken as by the
advantage we have [in] our arms [over] yours--that had we intended you
any hurt, we could long ere this have effected it. Your people coming
to Jamestown are entertained with their bows and arrows, without any
exceptions; we esteeming it with you as it is with us, to wear our arms
as our apparel." Having made this hit, the captain assumed a still
loftier tone. It would never do to admit that this blessed corn,
though the cause of so much parley, was an indispensable necessity for
the white men. "As for your hiding your provisions ... we shall not so
unadvisedly starve as you conclude; your friendly care in that behalf
is needless, for we have [ways of finding food that are quite] beyond
your knowledge."

The narrative which I am here following[72] is written by William
Phettiplace, captain of the pinnace, Jeffrey Abbot, described as
sergeant, and two of the original settlers, Anas Todkill and Richard
Wiffin. Abbot and Phettiplace were on the spot, and the narrative was
revised by Captain Smith himself, so that it has the highest kind
of authority. One need but examine the similar parleys described so
frequently by Francis Parkman, to realize the faithful accuracy with
which these Englishmen portrayed the Indian at that early period when
English experience of the red man's ways was only beginning.

[Sidenote: The corn is brought.]

The hint that perhaps white men could get along without his corn
after all seems to have wrought its effect upon the crafty Powhatan.
Baskets filled with the yellow grain were brought, and dickering as
distinguished from diplomacy began. Yet diplomacy had not quite given
up its game. With a sorrowful face and many sighs the chief exclaimed:
"Captain Smith, I never used any chief so kindly as yourself, yet
from you I receive the least kindness of any. Captain Newport gave
me swords, copper, clothes, a bed, towels, or what[ever] I desired;
ever taking what I offered him, and would send away his guns when I
entreated him. None doth ... refuse to do what I desire but only you;
of whom I can have nothing but what you regard not, and yet you will
have whatsoever you demand.... You call me father, but I see ... you
will do what you list.... But if you intend so friendly as you say,
send hence your arms that I may believe you."

[Sidenote: Suspicions of treachery.]

Smith felt sure that this whimpering speech was merely the cover for
a meditated attack. Of his thirty-eight Englishmen but eighteen were
with him at the moment. He sent a messenger to his vessels, ordering
all save a guard of three or four men to come ashore, and he set some
Indians to work breaking the ice, so that the barge could be forced up
near to the bank. For a little while Captain Smith and John Russell
were left alone in a house with The Powhatan and a few squaws, when
all at once the old chief slipped out and disappeared from view. While
Smith was talking with the women a crowd of armed warriors surrounded
the house, but instantly Smith and Russell sprang forth and with drawn
swords charged upon them so furiously that they all turned and fled,
tumbling over one another in their headlong terror.

[Sidenote: A wily speaker.]

This incident gave the Englishmen a moral advantage. The Indian plot,
if such it was, had failed, and now the red men "to the uttermost of
their skill sought excuses to dissemble the matter; and Powhatan, to
excuse his flight and the sudden coming of this multitude, sent our
Captain a great bracelet and a chain of pearl,[73] by an ancient
orator that bespoke us to this purpose; perceiving even then from our
pinnace, a barge and men departing and coming unto us:--Captain Smith,
our [chief] is fled; fearing your guns, and knowing when the ice was
broken there would come more men, sent these numbers but to guard his
corn from stealing, [which] might happen without your knowledge. Now,
though some be hurt by your misprision, yet [The] Powhatan is your
friend, and so will forever continue. Now since the ice is open he
would have you send away your corn, and if you would have his company
send away also your guns." It was ingeniously if not ingenuously said,
but the concluding request remained unheeded, and Smith never set eyes
on his Father Powhatan again. With faces frowning, guns loaded and
cocked, the Englishmen stood by while a file of Indians with baskets
on their backs carried down the corn and loaded it into the barge. The
Indians were glad to get safely done with such work; as the chronicle
observes, "we needed not importune them to make despatch."

[Sidenote: Pocahontas reveals the plot.]

[Sidenote: Smith's message to The Powhatan.]

The Englishmen would at once have embarked, but the retreating tide
had left the barge stranded, so that it was necessary to wait for
the next high water. Accordingly it was decided to pass the night
in the house where they were already quartered, which was a kind of
outpost at some distance from the main village, and they sent word to
The Powhatan to send them some supper. Then the Indians seem to have
debated the question whether it would be prudent to surprise and slay
them while at supper or afterward while asleep. But that "dearest
jewel," Pocahontas, says the narrative, "in that dark night came
through the irksome woods, and told our Captain great cheer should be
sent us by and by; but Powhatan and all the power he could make would
after[ward] come kill us all, if [indeed] they that brought it [did]
not kill us ... when we were at supper. Therefore if we would live she
wished us presently to be gone. Such things as she delighted in [we]
would have given her; but with the tears running down her cheeks she
said she durst not be seen to have any, for if Powhatan should know
it she were but dead; and so she ran away by herself as she came.
Within less than an hour eight or ten stalwart Indians appeared,
bringing venison and other dainties, and begged the English to put
out the matches of their matchlocks, for the smell of the smoke made
them sick. Our narrator tells us nothing of the sardonic smile which
we are sure that he and his comrades can hardly have suppressed. The
captain sent the messengers back to Father Powhatan, with a concise
but significant message: "If he is coming to visit me to-night let him
make haste, for I am ready to receive him." One can imagine how such an
announcement would chill the zeal of the Indians. A few of their scouts
prowled about, but the English kept vigilant guard till high tide and
then sailed away. A queer interview it had been. With some of hell's
fiercest passions smouldering beneath the surface, an explosion had
been prevented by watchful tact on the one side and vague dread on the
other. Peace had been preserved between the strange white chieftain and
his dusky father, and two Englishmen were left at Werowocomoco, with
the four Germans, to go on with the house-building. If our chronicle
is to be trusted, the Germans played a base part. Believing that the
English colony would surely perish of famine, they sought their own
profit in fraternizing with the Indians. So, no sooner had Smith's
vessels departed from Werowocomoco on their way up to Opekankano's
village, than two of these "damned Dutchmen," as the narrator calls
them, went overland to Jamestown and said that Captain Smith had
sent them for more weapons; in this way they got a number of swords,
pikes, muskets, and hatchets, and traded them off to the redskins at

[Sidenote: How Opekankano was brought to terms.]

Meanwhile Smith's party arrived at Opekankano's village, near the place
where the Pamunkey and Mattapony rivers unite to form the York. The
chief of the Pamunkeys received them with smiles and smooth words,
but seems to have meditated treachery. At all events the Englishmen
so interpreted it when they found themselves unexpectedly surrounded
by a great crowd of armed warriors numbering several hundreds. It was
not prudent to fire on such a number if it could be avoided; actual
bloodshed might do more harm than good; a peaceable display of boldness
was better. It might have been and probably was remembered that the
Spaniards in the West Indies had often overawed all opposition by
seizing the person of the chief. After a brief consultation Smith,
accompanied by West and Percy and Russell, rushed into Opekankano's
house, seized him by the long scalp-lock, dragged him before the
astonished multitude, and held a pistol to his breast. Such prompt
audacity was its own safeguard. The corn was soon forthcoming, and the
little expedition made its way back to Jamestown, loaded with some 300
bushels of it, besides a couple of hundredweight of venison and deer
suet. In itself it was but a trifle of a pound of meat and a bushel and
a half of grain for each person in the colony. But the chief result
was the profound impression made upon the Indians. A few years later
such a bold treatment of them would have been attended with far more
difficulty and danger, would seldom indeed have been possible. But in
1609 the red man had not yet learned to gauge the killing capacity of
the white man; he was aware of terrible powers there which he could not
estimate, and was therefore inclined to err on the side of prudence.
This sudden irruption of about forty white men into the principal
Indian villages and their masterful demeanour there seemed to show that
after all it would be wiser to have them for friends than for enemies.
A couple of accidents confirmed this view of the case.

[Sidenote: Smith as a worker of miracles.]

One day as three of the Chickahominy tribe were loitering about
Jamestown, admiring the rude fortifications, one of them stole a
pistol and fled to the woods with it. His two comrades were arrested
and one was held in durance, while the other was sent out to recover
the pistol. He was made to understand that if he failed to bring it
back, the hostage would be put to death. As it was intensely cold,
some charcoal was charitably furnished for the prisoner's hut.
In the evening his friend returned with the pistol, and then the
prisoner was found apparently dead, suffocated with the fumes of the
charcoal, whereupon the friend broke forth into loud lamentations.
But the Englishmen soon perceived that some life was still left in
the unconscious and prostrate form, and Smith told the wailing Indian
that he could restore his friend to life, only there must be no more
stealing. Then with brandy and vinegar and friction the failing heart
and arteries were stimulated to their work, the dead savage came to
life, and the two comrades, each with a small present of copper, went
on their way rejoicing.

[Sidenote: A pretty accident.]

The other affair was more tragic. An Indian at Werowocomoco had got
possession of a bag of gunpowder, and was playing with it while his
comrades were pressing closely about him, when all at once it took fire
and exploded, killing three or four of the group and scorching the
rest. Whereupon our chronicler tells us, "These and other such pretty
accidents so amazed and affrighted Powhatan and all his people, that
from all parts with presents they desired peace, returning many stolen
things which we never demanded nor thought of; and after that ... all
the country became absolutely as free for us as for themselves."

[Sidenote: Communism.]

The good effects of this were soon apparent. With his mind relieved
from anxiety about the Indians, Smith had his hands free for work at
Jamestown. One of the most serious difficulties under which the colony
laboured was the communistic plan upon which it had been started. The
settlers had come without wives and children, and each man worked not
to acquire property for himself and his family but to further the
general purposes of the colony. In planting corn, in felling trees,
in repairing the fortifications, even in hunting or fishing, he was
working for the community; whatsoever he could get by his own toil or
by trade with the natives went straightway into the common stock, and
the skilful and industrious fared no better than the stupid and lazy.
The strongest kind of premium was thus at once put upon idleness, which
under circumstances of extreme anxiety and depression is apt enough
to flourish without any premium. Things had arrived at such a pass
that some thirty or forty men were supporting the whole company of two
hundred, when President Smith applied the strong hand. He gathered them
all together one day and plainly told them that he was their lawfully
chosen ruler and should promptly punish all infractions of discipline,
and they must all understand that hereafter he that will not work
shall not eat. His authority had come to be great, and the rule was
enforced. By the end of April some twenty houses had been built, a well
of pure sweet water had been dug in the fort, thirty acres or more of
ground had been broken up and planted, and nets and weirs arranged for
fishing. A few hogs and fowl had been left by Newport, and now could be
heard the squeals of sixty pigs and the peeping of five hundred spring
chickens. The manufacture of tar and soap-ashes went on, and a new
fortress was begun in an easily defensible position upon a commanding

[Sidenote: Unbidden messmates.]

[Sidenote: Arrival of Argall.]

This useful work was suddenly interrupted by an unforeseen calamity.
Rats brought from time to time by the ships had quickly multiplied,
and in April these unbidden guests were found to have made such havoc
in the granaries that but little corn was left. Harvest time was a
long way off, and it was necessary to pause for a while and collect
provisions. Several Indian villages were again visited and trading
went on amicably, but there was a limit to the aid the barbarians had
it in their power to give, and in the quest of sustenance the settlers
were scattered. By midsummer a few were picking berries in the woods,
others were quartered among the Indians, some were living on oysters
and caviar, some were down at Point Comfort catching fish, and it was
these that were the first to hail the bark of young Samuel Argall,
who was coming for sturgeon and whatever else he could find, and had
steered a straighter course from London than any mariner before him.
Argall brought letters from members of the Company complaining that the
goods sent home in the ships were not of greater value in the market,
and saying that Smith had been accused of dealing harshly with the
Indians. This must have referred to some skirmishes he had had with
the Rappahannocks and other tribes in the course of his exploration of
the Chesapeake waters during the previous summer. Another piece of news
was brought by Argall. The London Company had obtained a new charter,
and a great expedition, commanded by Lord Delaware, was about to sail
for Virginia.

[Sidenote: Second Charter of the London Company, 1609.]

This was true. The experience of two years had convinced the Company
that its methods needed mending. In the first place more money was
needed and the list of shareholders was greatly enlarged. By the
second charter, dated May 23, 1609, the Company was made a corporation
and all its members were mentioned by name. The list was headed by
Robert Cecil, Earl of Salisbury, and contained among other interesting
names those of the philosopher Bacon and of Sir Oliver Cromwell, from
whose nephew, then a lad at Huntingdon School, the world was by and
by to hear. On the list we find the names of 659 persons, of whom 21
were peers, 96 were knights, 11 were clergymen and physicians, 53
are described as captains, 28 as engineers, 58 as gentlemen, 110 as
merchants, while the remaining 282 are variously designated or only the
name is given. "Of these about 230 paid £37 10s., or more, about 229
paid less than £37 10s., and about 200 failed to pay anything."[74] It
should be borne in mind that £37 10s. at that time was equivalent to
at least $750 of to-day. Besides these individuals, the list contains
the companies of mercers, grocers, drapers, fishmongers, vintners,
brewers, masons, lawyers, fletchers, armourers, and others,--in all
fifty-six companies of the city of London. Such a list, as well as the
profusion of sermons and tracts on Virginia that were poured forth at
the time, bespeaks a general interest in the enterprise. The Company
was incorporated under the name of "The Treasurer and Company of
Adventurers and Planters of the City of London for the First Colony in
Virginia." Nothing was said about the Second Colony, so that by this
charter the London Company was unyoked from the Plymouth Company.

[Sidenote: The council in London.]

The jurisdiction of the reorganized London Company was to extend 200
miles south and 200 miles north of Old Point Comfort, which would not
quite contain all of North Carolina but would easily include Maryland
and Delaware. The government of this region was vested in a supreme
council sitting in London, the constitution of which was remarkable.
Its members were at the outset appointed by the king, but all vacancies
were thereafter to be filled by the vote of the whole body of 659
persons and 56 trade-guilds constituting the Company. The sole power
of legislation for Virginia, with the right to appoint all colonial
officers, was vested in the council. Besides thus exercising entire
sovereignty over Virginia, the Company was authorized to levy and
collect custom-house duties and even to wage war for purely defensive
purposes. Thus this great corporation was made virtually independent of
Parliament, with a representative government of its own.

[Sidenote: The local government.]

As for the local government in Virginia, it was entirely changed.
The working of the local council with its elected president had been
simply ludicrous. Two presidents had been deposed and sent home,
while the councillors had done nothing but quarrel and threaten each
other's lives, and one had been shot for mutiny. Order and quiet had
not been attained until President Smith became autocratic, after the
other members of the council had departed or died. Now the new charter
abolished the local council, and the direct rule was to be exercised by
a governor with autocratic power over the settlers, but responsible to
the supreme council in London, by which he was appointed.

[Sidenote: Thomas, Lord Delaware.]

For the Company as thus reorganized the two most important executive
offices were filled by admirable appointments. The treasurer was the
eminent merchant Sir Thomas Smith, of whom some account has already
been given. For governor of Virginia the council appointed Thomas
West, third Baron Delaware, whose younger brother, Francis West, we
have seen helping John Smith to browbeat the Indians at Werowocomoco
and Pamunkey. This Lord Delaware belonged to a family distinguished
for public service. On the mother's side he was nearly related to
Queen Elizabeth. In America he is forever identified with the history
of Virginia, and he has left a name to one of our great rivers, to a
very interesting group of Indians, and to one of the smallest states
in our Union. With New England, too, he has one link of association;
for his sister, Penelope West, married Herbert Pelham, and their son
was the first treasurer of Harvard College. Thomas West, born in 1577,
was educated at Oxford, served with distinction in the Netherlands,
and was knighted for bravery in 1599. He succeeded to the barony of
Delaware in 1602, and was a member of the Privy Council of Elizabeth
and James I. No one was more warmly enlisted than he in the project of
founding Protestant English colonies in the New World. To this cause
he devoted himself with ever growing enthusiasm, and when the London
Company was remodelled he was appointed governor of Virginia for
life. With him were associated the sturdy soldier, Sir Thomas Gates,
as lieutenant-governor, and the old sea rover, Sir George Somers, as

[Sidenote: A communistic programme.]

The spring of 1609 was spent in organizing a new expedition, while
Smith and his weary followers were struggling with the damage wrought
by rats. People out of work were attracted by the communistic programme
laid down by the Company. The shares were rated at about $300 each,
to use our modern figures, and emigration to Virginia entitled the
emigrant to one share. So far as needful the proceeds of the enterprise
"were to be spent upon the settlement, and the surplus was either to
be divided or funded for seven years. During that period the settlers
were to be maintained at the expense of the Company, while all the
product of their labours was to be cast into the common stock. At
the end of that time every shareholder was to receive a grant of
land in proportion to his stock held."[75] Doubtless the prospects of
becoming a shareholder in a great speculative enterprise, and of being
supported by the Company, must have seemed alluring to many people in
difficult circumstances. At all events, some 500 people--men, women,
and children--were got together. A fleet of nine ships, with ample
supplies, was entrusted to Newport, and in his ship, the Sea Venture,
were Gates and Somers, who were to take the colony under their personal
supervision. Lord Delaware remained in London, planning further
developments of the enterprise. Three more trusty men he could hardly
have sent out. But a strange fate was knocking at the door.

[Sidenote: Wreck of the Sea Venture.]

On the first of June, 1609, the fleet set sail and took the route
by the Azores. Toward the end of July, as they were getting within
a week's sail of the American coast, the ships were "caught in the
tail of a hurricane," one of them was sunk, and the Sea Venture was
separated from all the rest. That gallant ship was sorely shaken and
torn, so that for five days the crew toiled steadily in relays, pumping
and baling, while the water seemed to be gaining upon them. Many of
the passengers abandoned themselves to despair and to rum, or, as an
eye-witness tells us, "some of them, having good and comfortable waters
in the ship, fetched them and drank one to the other, taking their last
leave one of the other until their more joyful and happy meeting in a
more blessed world."[76] The company were saved by the skill and energy
of the veteran Somers, who for three days and nights never once left
the quarter-deck. At length land was sighted, and presently the Sea
Venture was driven violently aground and wedged immovable between two
rocks, a shattered wreck. But all her people, a hundred and fifty or
so, were saved, and most of their gear was brought away.

[Sidenote: The Bermudas.]

The island on which they were wrecked was one of a group the early
history of which is shrouded in strange mystery. If my own solution of
an obscure problem is to be trusted, these islands had once a fierce
cannibal population, whose first white visitors, Vincent Pinzon and
Americus Vespucius, landed among them on St. Bernard's day in August,
1498, and carried off more than 200 slaves.[77] Hence the place was
called St. Bernard's archipelago, but on crudely glimmering maps went
wide astray and soon lost its identity. In 1522 a Spanish captain, Juan
Bermudez, happened to land there and his name has remained. But in the
intervening years Spanish slave-hunters from San Domingo had infested
those islands and reaped and gleaned the harvest of heathen flesh till
no more was to be had. The ruthless cannibals were extirpated by the
more ruthless seekers for gold, and when Bermudez stopped there he
found no human inhabitants, but only swine running wild, a sure witness
to the recent presence of Europeans. Then for nearly a century the
unvisited spot was haunted by the echoes of a frightful past, wild
traditions of ghoulish orgies and infernal strife. But the kidnapper's
work in which these vague notions originated was so soon forgotten
that when the Sea Venture was wrecked those islands were believed to
have been from time immemorial uninhabited. Sailors shunned them as a
scene of abominable sorceries, and called them the Isles of Demons.
Otherwise they were known simply by the Spanish skipper's name as the
Bermoothes, afterward more completely anglicized into Bermudas. From
the soil of those foul goblin legends, that shuddering reminiscence of
inexpiable crime, the potent sorcery of genius has reared one of the
most exquisitely beautiful, ethereally delicate works of human fancy
that the world has ever seen. The wreck of the Sea Venture suggested to
Shakespeare many hints for the Tempest, which was written within the
next two years and performed before the king in 1611. It is not that
these islands were conceived as the scene of the comedy; the command
to Ariel to go and "fetch dew from the still-vexed Bermoothes" seems
enough to show that Prospero's enchanted isle was elsewhere, doubtless
in some fairy universe hard by the Mediterranean. But from the general
conception of monsters of the isle down to such incidents as the
flashing light on the shrouds of the ship, it is clear that Shakespeare
made use of Strachey's narrative of the wreck of the Sea Venture,
published in 1610.

[Sidenote: Arrival of the pinnaces at Jamestown, May, 1610.]

Gates and Somers found the Isles of Demons far pleasanter than their
reputation, and it was well for them that it was so, for they were
obliged to stay there nearly ten months, while with timber freshly cut
and with bolts and beams from the wreck the party built two pinnaces
which they named Patience and Deliverance. They laid in ample stores of
salted pork and fish, traversed the 700 miles of ocean in a fortnight,
and arrived at Jamestown on the 10th of May, 1610. The spectacle that
greeted them was enough to have appalled the stoutest heart. To explain
it in a few words, we must go back to August, 1609, when the seven
ships that had weathered the storm arrived in Virginia and landed their
300 or more passengers, known in history as the Third Supply.

[Sidenote: Arrival of the Third Supply, August, 1609.]

[Sidenote: Smith returns to England, October, 1609.]

Since the new dignitaries and all their official documents were in
the Bermuda wreck, there was no one among the new-comers in Virginia
competent to succeed Smith in the government, but the mischief-makers,
Ratcliffe and Archer, were unfortunately among them, and the former
instantly called upon Smith to abdicate in his favour. He had
persuaded many of the new-comers to support him, but the old settlers
were loyal to Smith, and there was much confusion until the latter
arrested Ratcliffe as a disturber of the peace. The quality of the
new emigration was far inferior to the older. The older settlers were
mostly gentlemen of character; of the new ones far too many were
shiftless vagabonds, or, as Smith says, "unruly gallants, packed
thither by their friends to escape ill destinies." They were sure to
make trouble, but for a while Smith held them in check. The end of his
stay in Virginia was, however, approaching. He was determined to find
some better site for a colony than the low marshy Jamestown; so in
September he sailed up to the Indian village called Powhatan and bought
of the natives a tract of land in that neighbourhood near to where
Richmond now stands,--a range of hills, salubrious and defensible, with
so fair a landscape that Smith called the place Nonesuch. On the way
back to Jamestown a bag of gunpowder in his boat exploded and wounded
him so badly that he was completely disabled. The case demanded such
surgery as Virginia could not furnish, and as the ships were sailing
for England early in October he went in one of them. He seems also to
have welcomed this opportunity of answering sundry charges brought
against him by the Ratcliffe faction. Some flying squirrels were sent
home to amuse King James.[78]

[Sidenote: Lord Delaware sails for Virginia, April, 1610.]

[Sidenote: Horrible sufferings.]

The arrival of the ships in England, with news of the disappearance of
the Sea Venture and the danger of anarchy in Virginia, alarmed Lord
Delaware, and he resolved to go as soon as possible and take command
of his colony. About the first of April he set sail with about 150
persons, mostly mechanics. He had need to make all haste. Jamestown
had become a pandemonium. Smith left George Percy in command, but
that excellent gentleman was in poor health and unable to exert much
authority. There were now 500 mouths to be filled, and the stores of
food diminished with portentous rapidity. The "unruly gallants" got
into trouble with the Indians, who soon responded after their manner.
They slaughtered the settlers' hogs for their own benefit, and they
murdered the settlers themselves when opportunity was offered. The
worthless Ratcliffe and thirty of his men were slain at one fell swoop
while they were at the Pamunkey village, trading with The Powhatan.[79]
As the frosts and snows came more shelter was needed than the cabins
already built could furnish. Many died of the cold. The approach of
spring saw the last supplies of food consumed, and famine began to
claim its victims. Soon there came to be more houses than occupants,
and as fast as one was emptied by death it was torn down for firewood.
Even palisades were stripped from their framework and thrown into the
blaze, for cold was a nearer foe than the red men. The latter watched
the course of events with savage glee, and now and then, lurking in
the neighbourhood, shot flights of arrows tipped with death. A gang of
men stole one of the pinnaces, armed her heavily, and ran out to sea,
to help themselves by piracy. After the last basket of corn had been
devoured, people lived for a while on roots and herbs, after which they
had recourse to cannibalism. The corpse of a slain Indian was boiled
and eaten. Then the starving company began cooking their own dead. One
man killed his wife and salted her, and had eaten a considerable part
of her body before he was found out. This was too much for people to
endure; the man was tied to a stake and burned alive. Such were the
goings on in that awful time, to which men long afterward alluded as
the Starving Time. No wonder that one poor wretch, crazed with agony,
cast his Bible into the fire, crying "Alas! there is no God."

[Sidenote: Virginia abandoned.]

[Sidenote: Arrival of Lord Delaware, June 8, 1610.]

When Smith left the colony in October, it numbered about 500 souls.
When Gates and Somers and Newport arrived from the Bermudas in May,
they found a haggard remnant of 60 all told, men, women, and children
scarcely able to totter about the ruined village, and with the gleam of
madness in their eyes. The pinnaces brought food for their relief, but
with things in such a state there was no use in trying to get through
the summer. The provisions in store would not last a month. The three
brave captains consulted together and decided, with tears in their
eyes, that Virginia must be abandoned. Since Raleigh first began, every
attempt had ended in miserable failure and this last calamity was the
most crushing of all. What hope could there be that North America would
ever be colonized? What men could endure more than had been endured
already? It was decided to go up to the Newfoundland fishing stations
and get fish there, and then cross to England. On Thursday the 7th of
June, 1610, to the funereal roll of drums, the cabins were stripped
of such things as could be carried away, and the doleful company went
aboard the pinnaces, weighed anchor, and started down the river. As
the arching trees at Jamestown receded from the view and the sombre
silence of the forest settled over the deserted spot, it seemed indeed
that "earth's paradise," Virginia, the object of so much longing, the
scene of so much fruitless striving, was at last abandoned to its
native Indians. But it had been otherwise decreed. That night a halt
was made at Mulberry Island, and next morning the voyage was resumed.
Toward noonday, as the little ships were speeding their way down the
ever widening river, a black speck was seen far below on the broad
waters of Hampton Roads, and every eye was strained. It was no red
man's canoe. It was a longboat. Yes, Heaven be praised! the governor's
own longboat with a message. His three well-stocked ships had passed
Point Comfort, and he himself was with them!

Despair gave place to exultant hope, words of gratitude and
congratulation were exchanged, and the prows were turned up-stream.
On Sunday the three staunch captains stood with their followers drawn
up in military array before the dismantled ruins of Jamestown, while
Lord Delaware stepped from his boat, and, falling upon his knees on the
shore, lifted his hands in prayer, thanking God that he had come in
time to save Virginia.


[66] Smith's _Works_, p. 439.

[67] Id. p. 108.

[68] See above, p. 58.

[69] Smith here means the village of that name, on the James River,
near the site of Richmond. See above, p. 94.

[70] Smith's _Works_, pp. 442-445.

[71] Neill's _Virginia Company_, p. 28.

[72] Smith's _Works_, pp. 448-465.

[73] Wampum is undoubtedly meant.

[74] Brown's _Genesis_, i. 228.

[75] Doyle's _Virginia_, p. 128.

[76] _Plain Description of the Bermudas_, p. 10; apud Force, vol. iii.

[77] See my _Discovery of America_, ii. 59.

[78] Neill's _Virginia Company_, p. 32.

[79] See Spelman's account of the affair, in Smith's _Works_, pp.



[Sidenote: Indian corn.]

[Sidenote: Importance of Smith's work.]

OF late years there has been some discussion as to which of the flowers
or plants indigenous to the New World might most properly be selected
as a national emblem for the United States of America, and many persons
have expressed a preference for that most beautiful of cereals,
Indian corn. Certainly it would be difficult to overrate the historic
importance of this plant. Of the part which it played in aboriginal
America I have elsewhere treated.[80] To the first English settlers it
was of vital consequence. But for Indian corn the company of Pilgrims
at Plymouth would have succumbed to famine, like so many other such
little colonies. The settlers at Jamestown depended upon corn from the
outset, and when the supply stopped the Starving Time came quickly.
We can thus appreciate the value to the Pilgrims of the alliance with
Massasoit, and to the Virginians of the amicable relations for some
time maintained with The Powhatan. We are also furnished with the
means of estimating the true importance of John Smith and his work
in the first struggle of English civilization with the wilderness.
Whether we suppose that Smith in his writings unduly exalts his own
work or not, one thing is clear. It is impossible to read his narrative
without recognizing the hand of a man supremely competent to deal
with barbarians. No such character as that which shines out through
his pages could ever have been invented. To create such a man by an
effort of imagination would have been far more difficult than to be
such a man. One of the first of Englishmen to deal with Indians, he had
no previous experience to aid him; yet nowhere have the red men been
more faithfully portrayed than in his pages, and one cannot fail to
note this unrivalled keenness of observation, which combined with rare
sagacity and coolness to make him always say and do the right things at
the right times. These qualities kept the Indians from hostility and
made them purveyors to the needs of the little struggling colony.

[Sidenote: Nobility of his nature.]

Besides these qualities Smith had others which marked him out as a
natural leader of men. His impulsiveness and plain speaking, as well
as his rigid enforcement of discipline, made him some bitter enemies,
but his comrades in general spoke of him in terms of strong admiration
and devotion. His nature was essentially noble, and his own words bear
witness to it, as in the following exhortation: "Seeing we are not
born for ourselves, but each to help other, and our abilities are much
alike at the hour of our birth and the minute of our death; seeing our
good deeds and our bad, by faith in Christ's merits, is all we have
to carry our souls to heaven or to hell; seeing honour is our lives'
ambition, and our ambition after death to have an honourable memory of
our life; and seeing by no means we would be abated of the dignities
and glories of our predecessors, let us imitate their virtues to be
worthily their successors." So wrote the man of whom Thomas Fuller
quaintly said that he had "a prince's heart in a beggar's purse,"
and to whom one of his comrades, a survivor of the Starving Time,
afterward paid this touching tribute: "Thus we lost him that in all our
proceedings made justice his first guide, ... ever hating baseness,
sloth, pride, and indignity more than any dangers; that never allowed
more for himself than his soldiers with him; that upon no danger would
send them where he would not lead them himself; that would never see us
want what he either had or could by any means get us; that would rather
want than borrow, or starve than not pay; that loved action more than
words, and hated falsehood and covetousness worse than death; whose
adventures were our lives and whose loss our deaths."[81]

[Sidenote: But for Smith the colony would probably have perished.]

It is, indeed, in all probability true that losing Smith was the
chief cause of the horrors of the Starving Time. The colony was not
ill supplied when he left it, in October, 1609, for the stock of hogs
had increased to about 600, and the Third Supply had brought sheep
and goats as well as horses. All this advantage had been destroyed by
the active hostility of the Indians, which was due to the outrageous
conduct of white ruffians whom Smith would have restrained or
punished. But for this man's superb courage and resourcefulness, one
can hardly believe that the colony would have lasted until 1609. More
likely it would have perished in one of the earlier seasons of sore
trial. It would have succumbed like Lane's colony, and White's, and
Popham's; one more would have been added to the sickening list of
failures, and the hopes built upon Virginia in England would have been
sadly dashed. The utmost ingenuity on the part of Smith's detractors
can never do away with the fact that his personal qualities did more
than anything else to prevent such a direful calamity; and for this
reason he will always remain a great and commanding figure in American

[Sidenote: Three sources of weakness.]

[Sidenote: Lord Delaware's administration.]

The arrival of Lord Delaware in June, 1610, was the prelude to a new
state of things. The pathetic scene in which that high-minded nobleman
knelt in prayer upon the shore at Jamestown heralded the end of the
chaos through which Smith had steered the colony. But the change was
not effected all in a moment. The evils were too deep-seated for that.
There had been three principal sources of weakness: first, the lack
of a strong government with unquestioned authority; secondly, the
system of communism in labour and property; thirdly, the low character
of the emigrants. This last statement does not apply to the earlier
settlers so much as to those who began to come in 1609. The earliest
companies were mainly composed of respectable persons, but as the need
for greater numbers grew imperative, inducements were held out which
attracted a much lower grade of people. Neither this evil nor the evils
flowing from communism were remedied during Lord Delaware's brief rule,
but the first evil was entirely removed. In such a rude settlement a
system by which a council elected its president annually, and could
depose him at any time, was sure to breed faction and strife; strong
government had been attained only when the strong man Smith was left
virtually alone by the death or departure of the other councillors.
Now there was no council, but instead of it a governor appointed in
London and clothed with despotic power. Lord Delaware was a man of
strict integrity, kind and humane, with a talent for command, and he
was obeyed. His first act on that memorable June Sunday, after a sermon
had been preached and his commission read, was to make a speech to the
settlers, in which, to cite his own words, "I did lay some blames on
them for many vanities and their idleness, earnestly wishing that I
might no more find it so, lest I should be compelled to draw the sword
of justice to cut off such delinquents, which I had much rather draw in
their defence to protect from enemies."[82] Happily he was not called
upon to draw it except against the Indians, to whom he administered
some wholesome doses of chastisement. The colonists were kept at work,
new fortifications were erected and dismantled houses put in repair.
The little church assumed a comfortable and dignified appearance, with
its cedar pews and walnut altar, its tall pulpit and baptismal font.
The governor was extremely fond of flowers and at all services would
have the church decorated with the bright and fragrant wild growth of
the neighbourhood. At such times he always appeared in the full dignity
of velvet and lace, attended by a body-guard of spearmen in scarlet
cloaks. A full-toned bell was hung in its place, and daily it notified
the little industrial army when to begin and when to leave off the work
of the day.

[Sidenote: Death of Somers, and cruise of Argall, 1610.]

Discipline was rigidly maintained, but the old danger of famine was
not yet fully overcome. The difficulty was foreseen immediately after
Delaware's arrival, and the veteran Somers at once sailed with the
two pinnaces for the Bermudas, intending to bring back a cargo of
salted pork and live hogs for breeding. His consort was commanded by
Samuel Argall, a young kinsman of Sir Thomas Smith, the treasurer of
the London Company. The two ships were parted by bad weather, and
Somers, soon after landing at Bermuda, fell sick and died, with his
last breath commanding his men to fulfil their errand and go back to
Virginia. But they, disgusted with the wilderness and thinking only of
themselves, went straight to England, taking with them the old knight's
body embalmed. As for young Argall, the stress of weather drove him
to Cape Cod, where he caught many fish; then cruising along the coast
he reached Chesapeake Bay and went up the Potomac River, where he
found a friend in the head sachem of the Potomac tribe and bought as
much corn as his ship could carry. With these welcome supplies Argall
reached Jamestown in September, and then Newport took the ships back
to England, carrying with him Sir Thomas Gates to make a report of
all that had happened and to urge the Company to fresh exertions. The
winter of 1610-11 was a hard one, though not to be compared with the
Starving Time of the year before. There were about 150 deaths, and Lord
Delaware, becoming too ill to discharge his duties, sailed for England
in March, 1611, intending to send Gates immediately back to Virginia.
George Percy, who had commanded the colony through the Starving Time,
was again left in charge.

[Sidenote: Sir Thomas Dale.]

Meanwhile the Company had been bestirring itself. A survey of the
subscription list for that winter shows that English pluck was getting
aroused; the colony must be set upon its feet. The list of craftsmen
desired for Virginia is curious and interesting: millwrights, iron
founders, makers of edge tools, colliers, woodcutters, ship-wrights,
fishermen, husbandmen, gardeners, bricklayers, lime-burners,
blacksmiths, shoemakers, coopers, turners, gunmakers, wheelwrights,
masons, millers, bakers, and brewers figure on the list with many
others. But there must have been difficulty in getting enough of such
respectable workmen together in due season for Newport's return trip;
for when that mariner started in March, 1611, with three ships and 300
passengers, it was a more shiftless and graceless set of ne'er-do-weels
than had ever been sent out before. One lesson, however, had been
learned; and victuals enough were taken to last the whole colony for a
year. Gates, the deputy-governor, was not ready to go, and his place
was supplied by Sir Thomas Dale, who for the purpose was appointed
High Marshal of Virginia. Under that designation this remarkable man
ruled the colony for the next five years, though his superior, Gates,
was there with him for a small part of the time. Lord Delaware, whose
tenure of office as governor was for life, remained during those five
years in England. If the Company erred in sending out scapegraces for
settlers, it did its best to repair the error in sending such a man as
Dale to govern them. Hard-headed, indomitable, bristling with energy,
full of shrewd common-sense, Sir Thomas Dale was always equal to the
occasion, and under his masterful guidance Virginia came out from the
valley of the shadow of death. He was a soldier who had seen some
of the hardest fighting in the Netherlands, and had afterward been
attached to the suite of Henry, Prince of Wales. He was connected by
marriage with Sir Walter Raleigh and with the Berkeleys.

Dale was a true English mastiff, faithful and kind but formidable when
aroused, and capable of showing at times some traits of the old wolf.
The modern excess of pity misdirected, which tries to save the vilest
murderers from the gallows, would have been to him incomprehensible. To
the upright he was a friend and helper; toward depraved offenders he
was merciless, and among those over whom he was called to rule there
were many such. John Smith judiciously criticised the policy of the
Company in sending out such people; for, he says, "when neither the
fear of God, nor shame, nor displeasure of their friends could rule
them [in England], there is small hope ever to bring one in twenty of
them ever to be good [in Virginia], Notwithstanding I confess divers
amongst them had better minds and grew much more industrious than was
expected; yet ten good workmen would have done more substantial work
in a day than ten of them in a week."[83] It was not against those who
had better minds that Dale's heavy hand was directed; it was reserved
for the incorrigible and crushed them. When he reached Jamestown, in
May, 1611, he found that the two brief months of Percy's mild rule had
already begun to bear ill fruit; men were playing at bowls in working
hours, quite oblivious of planting and hoeing.

[Sidenote: A Draconian code.]

[Sidenote: Cruel punishments.]

To meet the occasion, a searching code of laws had already been
sanctioned by the Company. In this code several capital crimes were
specified. Among them were failure to attend the church services, or
blaspheming God's name, or speaking "against the known articles of
the Christian faith." Any man who should "unworthily demean himself
"toward a clergyman, or fail to "hold him in all reverent regard," was
to be thrice publicly whipped, and after each whipping was to make
public acknowledgment of the heinousness of his crime and the justice
of the punishment. Not only to speak evil of the king, but even to
vilify the London Company, was a treasonable offence, to be punished
with death. Other capital offences were unlicensed trading with the
Indians, the malicious uprooting of a crop, or the slaughter of cattle
or poultry without the High Marshal's permission. For remissness in
the daily work various penalties were assigned, and could be inflicted
at the discretion of a court-martial. One of the first results of this
strict discipline was a conspiracy to overthrow and perhaps murder
Dale. The principal leader was that Jeffrey Abbot whom we have seen
accompanying Smith on his last journey to Werowocomoco. The plot was
detected, and Abbot and five other ringleaders were put to death
in what the narrator calls a "cruel and unusual" manner, using the
same adjectives which happen to occur in our Federal Constitution
in its prohibition of barbarous punishments. It seems clear that at
least one of the offenders was broken on the wheel, after the French
fashion; and on some other occasion a lawbreaker "had a bodkin thrust
through his tongue and was chained to a tree till he perished." But
these were rare and extreme cases; the ordinary capital punishments
were simply hanging and shooting, and they were summarily employed.
Ralph Hamor, however, one of the most intelligent and fair-minded of
contemporary chroniclers, declares that Dale's severity was less than
the occasion demanded, and that he could not have been more lenient
without imperilling the existence of the colony.[84] So the "Apostle of
Virginia," the noble Alexander Whitaker, seems to have thought, for he
held the High Marshal in great esteem. "Sir Thomas Dale," said he, "is
a man of great knowledge in divinity, and of a good conscience in all
things, both which be rare in a martial man." In his leisure moments
the stern soldier liked nothing so well as to sit and discuss abstruse
points of theology with this excellent clergyman.

[Sidenote: Communism in practice.]

[Sidenote: Effects of abolishing communism.]

But Dale was something more than a strong ruler and merciless judge.
With statesmanlike insight he struck at one of the deepest roots of
the evils which had afflicted the colony. Nothing had done so much
to discourage steady labour and to foster idleness and mischief as
the communism which had prevailed from the beginning. This compulsory
system of throwing all the earnings into a common stock had just suited
the lazy ones. Your true communist is the man who likes to live on the
fruits of other people's labour. If you look for him in these days
you are pretty sure to find him in a lager beer saloon, talking over
schemes for rebuilding the universe. In the early days of Virginia the
creature's nature was the same, and about one fifth of the population
was thus called upon to support the whole. Under such circumstances it
is wonderful that the colony survived until Dale could come and put
an end to the system. It would not have done so, had not Smith and
Delaware been able more or less to compel the laggards to work under
penalties. Dale's strong common-sense taught him that to put men under
the influence of the natural incentives to labour was better than to
drive them to it by whipping them and slitting their ears. Only thus
could the character of the colonists be permanently improved and the
need for harsh punishments relaxed. So the worthy Dale took it upon
himself to reform the whole system. The colonist, from being a member
of an industrial army, was at once transformed into a small landed
proprietor, with three acres to cultivate for his own use and behoof,
on condition of paying a tax of six bushels of corn into the public
treasury, which in that primitive time was the public granary. Though
the change was but partially accomplished in Dale's time, the effect
was magical. Industry and thrift soon began to prevail, crimes and
disorders diminished, gallows and whipping-post found less to do, and
the gaunt wolf of famine never again thrust his head within the door.

[Sidenote: The "City of Henricus."]

Six months after Dale's administration had begun, a fresh supply of
settlers raised the whole number to nearly 800, and a good stock of
cows, oxen, and goats was added to their resources. The colony now
began to expand itself beyond the immediate neighbourhood of Jamestown.
Already there was a small settlement at the river's mouth, near the
site of Hampton. The want of a better site than Jamestown was freely
admitted, and Dale selected the Dutch Gap peninsula. He built a
palisade across the neck and blockhouses in suitable positions. The
population of about 300 souls were accommodated with houses arranged
in three streets, and there was a church and a storehouse. This new
creation Dale called the City of Henricus, after his patron Prince
Henry. A city, in any admissible sense of the word, it never became,
but it left its name upon Henrico County. Afterward Dale founded other
communities at Bermuda and Shirley Hundreds, and left his name upon
the settlement known as Dale's Gift on the eastern peninsula near Cape

[Sidenote: Pocahontas seized by Argall, 1612.]

[Sidenote: Marriage of Pocahontas to John Rolfe, April, 1614.]

This expansion of the colony made it more than ever desirable to
pacify the Indians, whose attitude had been hostile ever since Smith's
departure. During all this time nothing had been seen of Pocahontas,
whose visits to Jamestown had been so frequent, but that can hardly
be called strange, since her tribe was on the war-path against the
English. The chronicler Strachey says that in 1610, being about
fifteen years old, she was married to a chieftain named Kocoum. Be
that as it may, it is certain that in 1612 young Captain Argall found
her staying with the Potomac tribe, whose chief he bribed with a
copper kettle to connive at her abduction. She was inveigled on board
Argall's ship and taken to Jamestown, to be held as a hostage for her
father's good behaviour.[85] It is not clear what might have come of
this, for The Powhatan's conduct was so unsatisfactory that Dale had
about made up his mind to use fire and sword against him, when all
at once the affair took an unexpected turn. Among the passengers on
the ill-fated Sea Venture were John Rolfe and his wife, of Heacham,
in Norfolk. During their stay on the Bermuda Islands, a daughter was
born to them and christened Bermuda. Shortly after their arrival in
Virginia, Mrs. Rolfe died, and now an affection sprang up between the
widower and the captive Pocahontas. Whether the Indian husband of
the latter (if Strachey is to be believed) was living or dead, would
make little difference according to Indian notions; for among all the
Indian tribes, when first studied by white men, marriage was a contract
terminable at pleasure by either party. Scruples of a different sort
troubled Rolfe, who hesitated about marrying a heathen unless he could
make it the occasion of saving her soul from the Devil. This was easily
achieved by converting her to Christianity and baptizing her with the
Bible name Rebekah. Sir Thomas Dale improved the occasion to renew the
old alliance with The Powhatan, who may have welcomed such an escape
from a doubtful trial of arms; and the marriage was solemnized in
April, 1614, in the church at Jamestown, in the presence of an amicable
company of Indians and Englishmen. One could wish that more of the
details connected with this affair had been observed and recorded for
us, so that modern studies of Indian law and custom might be brought
to bear upon them. How much weight this alliance may have had with the
Indians, one can hardly say; but at all events they made little or no
trouble for the next eight years.

[Sidenote: Argall attacks the French]

[Sidenote: and warns the Dutch.]

Other foes than red men called for Dale's attention. In the
neighbourhood of the Gulf of St. Lawrence the French were as busily
at work as the English in Virginia. The 45th parallel, the northern
limit of oldest Virginia, runs through the country now called Nova
Scotia. At Port Royal, on the Bay of Fundy, a small French colony
had been struggling against dire adversity ever since 1604, and more
lately a party of French Jesuits had begun to make a settlement on
Mount Desert Island, off the coast of Maine. In one of his fishing
excursions Captain Argall discovered this Jesuit settlement and
promptly extinguished it, carrying his prisoners to Jamestown. Then
Dale sent him back to patrol that northern coast, and presently Argall
swooped upon Port Royal and burned it to the ground, carrying off
the live-stock as booty and the inhabitants as prisoners. The French
ambassador in London protested and received evasive answers until the
affair was allowed to drop and Port Royal was rebuilt without further
molestation by the English. These events were the first premonition
of a mighty conflict, not to be fully entered upon till the days of
Argall's grandchildren, and not to be finally decided until the days
of their grandchildren, when Wolfe climbed the Heights of Abraham. We
are told that on his way back to Jamestown the unceremonious Argall
looked in at the Hudson River, and finding Hendrick Christiansen
there with his colony of Dutch traders, ordered him under penalty of
a broadside to haul down the flag of the Netherlands and run up the
English ensign. The philosophic Dutchman quietly obeyed, but as soon as
the ship was out of sight he replaced his own flag, consigning Captain
Argall _sotto voce_ to a much warmer place than the Hudson River.

[Sidenote: Visit of Pocahontas to London, 1616.]

[Sidenote: Her interview with Smith.]

In 1616 George Yeardley, who was already in Virginia, succeeded Sir
Thomas Gates as deputy-governor, and Dale, who had affairs in Europe
that needed attention, sailed for England. He had much reason to feel
proud of what had been accomplished during his five years' rule. Strict
order had been maintained and the Indians had been pacified, while
the colony had trebled in numbers, and symptoms of prosperity were
everywhere visible. In the ship which carried Dale to England went John
Rolfe and his wife Pocahontas. Much ado was made over the Indian woman,
who was presented at court by Lady Delaware and everywhere treated as a
princess. There is a trustworthy tradition that King James was inclined
to censure Rolfe for marrying into a royal family without consulting
his own sovereign. In the English imagination The Powhatan figured as
a sovereign; and when European feudal ideas were applied to the case
it seemed as if in certain contingencies the infant son of Rolfe
and Pocahontas might become "King of Virginia." The dusky princess
was entertained with banquets and receptions, she was often seen at
the theatre, and was watched with great curiosity by the people. It
was then that "La Belle Sauvage" became a favourite name for London
taverns. Her portrait, engraved by the celebrated artist, Simon Van
Pass,[86] shows us a rather handsome and dignified young woman, with
her neck encircled by the broad serrated collar or ruff characteristic
of that period, an embroidered and jewelled cap on her head, and a
fan in her hand. The inscription on the portrait gives her age as
one-and-twenty, which would make her thirteen at the time when she
rescued Captain Smith. While she was in England, she had an interview
with Smith. He had made his exploring voyage on the New England coast
two years before, when he changed the name of the country from North
Virginia to New England. In 1615 he had started in the service of the
Plymouth Company with an expedition for colonizing New England, but
had been captured by French cruisers and carried to Rochelle. After
his return from France he was making preparations for another voyage
to New England, when he heard of Pocahontas and called on her. When he
addressed her, as all did in England, as Lady Rebekah, she seemed hurt
and turned away, covering her face with her hands. She insisted upon
calling him Father and having him call her his child, as formerly in
the wilderness. Then she added, "They did always tell us you were dead,
and I knew not otherwise till I came to Plymouth."[87]

[Sidenote: Death of Pocahontas, 1617.]

[Sidenote: A baffled census-taker.]

Early in 1617 Argall was appointed deputy-governor of Virginia and
sailed in March to supersede Yeardley. Rolfe was made secretary of the
colony and went in the same ship; but Pocahontas fell suddenly ill,
and died before leaving Gravesend. She was buried in the parish church
there. Her son, Thomas Rolfe, was left with an uncle in England, where
he grew to manhood. Then he went to Virginia, to become the ancestor,
not of a line of kings, but of the families of Murray, Fleming, Gay,
Whittle, Robertson, Bolling, and Eldredge, as well as of the branch of
Randolphs to which the famous John Randolph of Roanoke belonged.[88]
One cannot leave the story of Pocahontas without recalling the curious
experiences of a feathered chieftain in her party named Tomocomo, whom
The Powhatan had instructed to make a report on the population of
England. For this purpose he was equipped with a sheaf of sticks on
which he was to make a notch for every white person he should meet.
Plymouth must have kept poor Tomocomo busy enough, but on arriving in
London he uttered an amazed grunt and threw his sticks away. He had
also been instructed to observe carefully the king and queen and God,
and report on their personal appearance. Tomocomo found it hard to
believe that so puny a creature as James Stuart could be the chief of
the white men, and he could not understand why he was not told where
God lived and taken to see him.

[Sidenote: Tobacco.]

[Sidenote: The Mask of Flowers.]

When Argall arrived in Virginia, he found that a new industry, at
which sundry experiments had been made under Dale, was acquiring
large dimensions and fast becoming established. Of all the gifts that
America has vouchsafed to the Old World, the most widely acceptable has
been that which a Greek punster might have called "the Bacchic gift,"
τὸ βακχικὸν δώρημα, tobacco. No other visible and tangible
product of Columbus's discovery has been so universally diffused among
all kinds and conditions of men, even to the remotest nooks and corners
of the habitable earth. Its serene and placid charm has everywhere
proved irresistible, although from the outset its use has been frowned
upon with an acerbity such as no other affair of hygiene has ever
called forth. The first recorded mention of tobacco is in Columbus's
diary for November 20, 1492. The use of it was soon introduced into
the Spanish peninsula, and about 1560 the French ambassador at Lisbon,
Jean Nicot, sent some of the fragrant herb into France, where it was
named in honour of him Nicotiana. It seems to have been first brought
to England by Lane's returning colonists in 1586, and early in the
seventeenth century it was becoming fashionable to smoke, in spite
of the bull of Pope Urban VIII. and King James's "Counterblast to
Tobacco." Every one will remember how that royal author characterized
smoking as "a custom loathsome to the eye, hateful to the nose, harmful
to the brain, dangerous to the lungs, and in the black stinking fume
thereof nearest resembling the horrible Stygian smoke of the pit that
is bottomless." On Twelfth Night, 1614, a dramatic entertainment, got
up by the gentlemen of Gray's Inn and called the Mask of Flowers, was
performed before the king and queen at Whitehall. In it the old classic
Silenus appears, jovial and corpulent, holding his goatskin wine-bag,
and with him a novel companion, an American chieftain named Kawasha,
dressed in an embroidered mantle cut like tobacco leaves, with a red
cap trimmed with gold on his head, rings in his ears, a chain of glass
beads around his neck, and a bow and arrows in his hand. These two
strange worthies discuss the merits of wine and tobacco:--

  _Silenus._      Kawasha comes in majesty;
                  Was never such a god as he.
                  He's come from a far country
                  To make our nose a chimney.

  _Kawasha._      The wine takes the contrary way
                  To get into the hood;
                  But good tobacco makes no stay,
                  But seizeth where it should.
                  More incense hath burned at
                  Great Kawasha's foot
                  Than to Silen and Bacchus both,
                  And take in Jove to boot.

  _Silenus._      The worthies they were nine, 'tis true.
                  And lately Arthur's knights I knew,
                  But now are come up worthies new,
                  The roaring boys, Kawasha's crew.

  _Kawasha._      Silenus tops[89] the barrel, but
                  Tobacco tops the brain
                  And makes the vapours fine and soote,[90]
                  That man revives again,
                  Nothing but fumigation
                  Doth charm away ill sprites.
                  Kawasha and his nation
                  Found out these holy rites.[91]

[Sidenote: Effects of tobacco culture.]

In Virginia the first settlers found the Indians cultivating tobacco in
small gardens. The first Englishman to make experiments with it is said
to have been John Rolfe in 1612. Under Yeardley's first administration,
in 1616, the cultivation of tobacco became fairly established, and
from that time forth it was a recognized staple of the colony. The
effects of this were very notable. As the great purchasing power of
a tobacco crop came to be generally known, the people of Virginia
devoted themselves more and more to its cultivation, until nearly all
other crops and most other forms of industry were neglected. Thus the
type of society, as we shall hereafter see, was largely determined by
the cultivation of tobacco. Moreover a clear and positive inducement
was now offered for emigration such as had not existed before since
the first dreams of gold and silver were dispelled. After the first
disappointments it became difficult to persuade men of hard sense to
go to Virginia, and we have seen what a wretched set of people were
drawn together by the Company's communistic schemes. But those who
came to acquire wealth by raising tobacco were of a better sort, men
of business-like ideas who knew what they wanted and how to devote
themselves to the task of getting it. With the establishment of tobacco
culture there began a steady improvement in the characters and fortunes
of the colonists, and the demand for their staple in Europe soon became
so great as forever to end the possibility of perishing from want.
Henceforth whatever a Virginian needed he could buy with tobacco.

[Sidenote: The London Company's third charter, 1612.]

[Sidenote: Lotteries.]

We have now to see how Virginia, which was fast becoming able
to support itself, became also a self-governing community. The
administrations of Lord Delaware, of Dale, of Yeardley, and of Argall,
were all despotisms, whether mild or harsh. To trace the evolution of
free government, we must take our start in the year 1612, when the
London Company obtained its third charter. The immediate occasion
for taking out this charter was the desire of the Company to include
among its possessions the Bermuda Islands, and they were now added
to Virginia. At the same time it was felt that the government of the
Company needed some further emendation in order to give the members
more direct and continuous control over its proceedings. It was thus
provided that there should be weekly meetings, at which not less
than five members of the council and fifteen of the Company must be
present. Besides this there were to be held four general courts or
quarter sessions in the course of each year, for electing the treasurer
and council and passing laws for the government of the colony. At
these quarter sessions charges could be brought against delinquent
servants of the Company, which was clothed with full judicial powers of
hearing and deciding such cases and inflicting punishments. A good many
subscribers had been alarmed by evil tidings from Virginia so that they
would refuse or more often would simply neglect to pay in the amount of
their subscriptions. To remedy these evils the Company was empowered to
expel delinquent members or to bring suits in law and equity against
them to recover damages or compel performance. Furthermore, it was
allowed to replenish its treasury by setting up lotteries, a practice
in which few people at that time saw anything objectionable. Such a
lottery was held at a house in St. Paul's Churchyard, in July, 1612,
of which the continuator of Stow's Chronicle tells us: "This lottery
was so plainly carried and honestly performed that it gave full
satisfaction to all persons. Thomas Sharplisse, a tailor of London, had
the chief prize, viz., 4,000 crowns in fair plate, which was sent to
his house in very stately manner. During the whole time of the drawing
of this lottery, there were always present divers worshipful knights
and esquires, accompanied with sundry grave discreet citizens." In
September the Spanish ambassador, Zuñiga, wrote home that "there was a
lottery on foot to raise 20,000 ducats [equivalent to about $40,000].
In this all the livery companies adventured. The grocers ventured £62
15s., and won a silver [dish] and cover valued at £13 10s."[92]

[Sidenote: The Company becomes an important force in politics.]

[Sidenote: Opposition to the charter: Middleton's speech.]

This remodelling of the Company's charter was an event of political
importance. Formerly the meetings of the Company had been few and
far between, and its affairs had been practically controlled by
the council, and in many cases by its chief executive officer, the
treasurer, Sir Thomas Smith. Now the weekly meetings of the Company,
and its courts of quarter sessions, armed with such legislative and
judicial powers, put a new face upon things. It made the Company a
democratic self-governing body, and when we recall the membership of
the Company we can see what this meant. There were fifty-six of the
craft-guilds or liveried companies of the city of London, whose lord
mayor was also a prominent member, and the political spirit of London
was aggressively liberal and opposed to high prerogative. There were
also more than a hundred London merchants and more than two hundred
persons belonging to the nobility and gentry, including some of the
foremost peers and knights in the party hostile to the Stuart king's
pretensions. The meetings of the Company were full of discussions which
could not help taking a political turn, since some of the most burning
political questions of the day--as, for example, the great dispute over
monopolies and other disputes--were commercial in character. Men's eyes
were soon opened to the existence of a great deliberative body outside
of Parliament and expressing itself with much freedom on exciting
topics. The social position and weighty character of the members drew
general attention to their proceedings, especially as many of them were
also members of either the House of Lords or the House of Commons. We
can easily believe the statement that the discussions of the Company
were followed with even deeper interest than the debates in Parliament.
It took a few years for this aspect of the situation to become fully
developed, but opposition to the new charter was soon manifested, even
by sundry members of the Company itself. Some of them agreed with
Sergeant Montague that to confer such vast and vague powers upon a
mercantile corporation was unconstitutional. In a debate in Parliament
in 1614 a member of the Company named Middleton attacked the charter on
the ground that trade with Virginia and agriculture there needed more
strict regulation than it was getting. "The shopkeepers of London," he
said, "sent over all kinds of goods, for which they received tobacco
instead of coin, infinitely to the prejudice of the Commonwealth.
Many of the divines now smell of tobacco, and poor men spend 4d. of
their day's wages at night in smoke. [He] wished that this patent may
be damned, and an act of Parliament passed for the government of the
colony by a company."[93]

[Sidenote: Mr. Martin forgets himself,]

[Sidenote: and has to apologize.]

So much effect was produced by speeches of this sort that the council
of the Company as a counterstroke presented a petition for aid, and
had it defended before the House of Commons by the eminent lawyer,
Richard Martin, one of the most brilliant speakers of the day. Martin
gave a fine historical description of English colonizing enterprise
since Raleigh's first attempts, then he dwelt upon the immediate and
pressing needs of Virginia, especially the need for securing an ample
reinforcement of honest workmen with their wives and children, and he
urged the propriety of a liberal parliamentary grant in aid of the
Company and its operations. Then at the close of an able and effective
speech his eloquence carried him away, and he so far forgot himself
as to remind the House that it had been but a thriftless penury which
had led King Henry VII. to turn the cold shoulder upon Columbus,
and to predict for them similar chagrin if they should neglect the
interests of Virginia. This affair, as he truly said, was of far
greater importance than many of the trifles on which the House was in
the habit of wasting its time. Poor Martin should have stopped a minute
sooner. His last remark was heard with indignation. One member asked
if he supposed the House was a school and he the schoolmaster; another
moved that he should be committed for contempt; finally it was decided
that he should make a public apology. So the next day, after a mild and
courteous rebuke from the Speaker, Mr. Martin apologized as follows,
according to the brief memorandum entered upon the journal of the House
of Commons for that day: "All men liable to err, and he particularly
so, but he was not in love with error, and as willing as any man to be
divorced therefrom. Admits that he digressed from the subject; that he
was like a ship that cutteth the cable and putteth to sea, for he cut
his memory and trusted to his invention. Was glad to be an example to
others, and submitted to the censure not with a dejected countenance,
for there is comfort in acknowledging an error."[94]

[Sidenote: Factions within the Company.]

[Sidenote: Death of Lord Delaware, 1618.]

While such incidents, trifling in themselves, tended to create
prejudice against the Company on the part of many members of
Parliament, factions were soon developed within the Company itself.
There was, first, the division between the court party, or supporters
of the king, and the country party, opposed to his overweening
pretensions. The difference between court and country parties was
analogous to the difference between Tories and Whigs that began in the
reign of Charles II. A second division, crossing the first one, was
that between the defenders and opponents of the monopolies. A third
division grew out of a personal quarrel between the treasurer, Sir
Thomas Smith, and a prominent shareholder, Lord Rich, afterwards Earl
of Warwick. This man's title remains to-day in the name of Warwick
County near the mouth of James River. At first he and Sir Thomas Smith
were on very friendly terms. Samuel Argall was closely connected by
marriage with Smith's family, and it was Lord Rich and his friends who
in 1617 secured Argall's appointment as deputy-governor of Virginia.
The appointment turned out to be far from creditable. Argall's rule was
as stern as Dale's, but it was not public-spirited. From the upright
and spotless Dale severity could be endured; with the self-seeking and
unscrupulous Argall it was quite otherwise. He was so loudly accused
of peculation and extortion that after one year the Company sent out
Lord Delaware to take personal charge of the colony once more. That
nobleman sailed in the spring of 1618, with 200 emigrants. They went
by way of the Azores, and while touching at the island of St. Michael,
Lord Delaware and thirty of his companions suddenly fell sick and died
in such manner as to raise a strong suspicion that their Spanish hosts
had poisoned them. Among the governor's private papers was one that
instructed him to arrest Argall and send him to England for trial. When
the ship arrived in Virginia this document fell into Argall's hands.
Its first effect was to make him behave worse than ever, until renewed
complaints of him reached England at the moment of a great change in
the governorship of the Company.

[Sidenote: Quarrel between Lord Rich and Sir Thomas Smith.]

[Sidenote: Election of Sir Edwin Sandys.]

The chief executive officer of the Company was the treasurer. Since
1609 Sir Thomas Smith had held that office, and it had naturally
enough become fashionable to charge all the ills of the colony to his
mismanagement. There may have been some ground for this. Sir Thomas
was a merchant of great public spirit and talent for business, but
he was apt to keep too many irons in the fire, and the East India
Company, of which he was governor, absorbed his attention much more
than the affairs of Virginia. The country party, led by such men as
the Earl of Southampton, Sir Edwin Sandys, and Nicholas Ferrar, were
opposed to Smith and twitted him with the misconduct of Argall. At
this moment broke out the quarrel between Smith and Lord Rich. One
of the merchant's sons aged only eighteen fell madly in love with
the nobleman's young sister, Lady Isabella Rich, and his passion
was reciprocated. There was fierce opposition to their marriage on
the part of the old merchant; and this led to an elopement and a
private wedding, at which the Earls of Southampton and Pembroke and
the Countess of Bedford assisted.[95] These leaders of the country
party thus mortally offended Sir Thomas Smith, while between him and
the young lady's brother, Lord Rich, there was a furious explosion.
Lord Rich, who in the midst of these scenes became Earl of Warwick,
by which title posterity remembers him, was a prominent leader of the
court party, but this family quarrel led him to a temporary alliance
with the opposition, with the result that in the annual election for
the treasurership of the Company, in April, 1619, Sir Thomas Smith
was defeated, and Sir Edwin Sandys chosen in his place. This victory
of the king's opponents called forth much excitement in England; for
the remaining five years of its existence the Company was controlled
by Sandys and his friends, and its affairs were "administered with
a degree of energy, unselfishness, and statesmanlike wisdom, perhaps
unparalleled in the history of corporations."[96]

[Sidenote: Sir George Yeardley appointed governor of Virginia.]

This victory in the spring election consummated the ascendency of
Sandys and his party, but that ascendency had been already shown in the
appointment of George Yeardley to succeed Lord Delaware as governor of
Virginia. The king can hardly have relished this appointment, but as
Yeardley was of rather humble birth, being the son of a poor merchant
tailor, he gave him a certain sanction by making him a knight. High
official position seemed in those days more than now to need some such
social decoration. Yeardley was ordered to send Argall home; but that
independent personage being privately notified, it is said by the
Earl of Warwick, loaded his ship and sailed for England before the
governor's arrival. He was evidently a man who could carry things with
a bold face. His defence of himself satisfied the court party but not
the country party; the evidence against him seems to have reached the
point of moral conviction, but not of legal certainty; he was put in
command of a warship for the Mediterranean service, and presently the
king, perhaps to relieve his own qualms for knighting Yeardley, slapped
him on the back and made him Sir Samuel Argall.

[Sidenote: The first American legislature, 1619.]

On many occasions the development of popular liberty in England
has gone hand in hand with its development in America. The growing
strength of the popular antagonism to Stuart methods of government was
first conspicuously marked by the ascendency of Sir Edwin Sandys and
his party in Parliament and in the management of affairs in Virginia.
Its first fruit was the introduction of parliamentary institutions
into America. Despotic government in Virginia had been thoroughly
discredited by the conduct of Argall. More than 1,000 persons were now
living in the colony, and the year 1619 saw the number doubled.[97]
The people called for self-government, and Sandys believed that only
through self-government could a colony really prosper. Governor
Yeardley was accordingly instructed to issue writs for the election
of a General Assembly in Virginia, and on the 30th of July, 1619, the
first legislative body of Englishmen in America was called together
in the wooden church at Jamestown. Eleven local constituencies were
represented under the various designations of _city_, _plantation_,
and _hundred_; and each constituency sent two representatives, called
_burgesses_, so that the assembly was called from 1619 until 1776
the House of Burgesses. The eleven boroughs were James City, Charles
City, the City of Henricus, Martin Brandon, Martin's Hundred, Lawne's
Plantation, Ward's Plantation, Argall's Gift, Flowerdieu Hundred,
Smith's Hundred, and Kecoughtan. The last two names were soon changed.
Smith's Hundred, at first named after the treasurer, took for its
sponsor one of the opposite party and became Southampton Hundred.
The name of this friend of Shakespeare, somewhat curtailed, was also
given to Kecoughtan, which became Hampton, and so remains to this day.
These eleven names indicate the extent of the colony up the James River
about to seventy miles from its mouth as the crow flies, and laterally
five or six miles inland from either bank, with a population rather
less sparse than that of Idaho at the present day. Such was the first
American self-governing state at its beginning,--a small beginning,
but what a change from the summer day that witnessed Lord Delaware's
arrival nine years before!

[Sidenote: Nature of the General Assembly.]

Concerning this House of Burgesses I shall have something to say
hereafter. Let it suffice for the present to observe that along with
the governor and deputy-governor there was an appointed upper house
called the council; and that the governor, with the assistant council,
and the House of Burgesses, altogether constituted a General Assembly
essentially similar to the General Court of Massachusetts, to their
common prototype, the old English county court, and to their numerous
posterity, the bicameral legislatures of nearly all the world in modern
times. The functions of this General Assembly were both legislative and
to some extent judicial. It was endowed with full powers of legislation
for the colony. Its acts did not acquire validity until approved by the
General Court of the London Company, but on the other hand no enactment
which the Company might make for the colony was to be valid until
approved by its General Assembly. These provisions were confirmed by a
charter issued in 1621.

[Sidenote: The first negro slaves, 1619.]

This gift of free government to England's first colony was the work
of the London Company--or, as it was now in London much more often
called, the Virginia Company--under the noble management of Sir Edwin
Sandys and his friends. That great corporation was soon to perish,
but its boon to Virginia and to American liberty was to be abiding.
The story of the Company's downfall, in its broad outlines, can be
briefly told, but first I may mention a few incidents that occurred
before the crisis. One was the first introduction of negro slaves into
Virginia, which, by a rather curious freak of dates, came in 1619, just
after the sitting of the first free legislature, and thus furnished
posterity with a theme for moralizing. "About the last of August," says
Secretary Rolfe, "[there] came in a Dutch man of warre that sold us
twenty negars." A census taken five years later, however, shows only
twenty-two negroes in the colony. The increase in their numbers was for
some time very slow, and the establishment of slave labour will best be
treated in a future chapter.

[Sidenote: A cargo of maidens, 1619.]

The same year, 1619, which witnessed the introduction of slaves and
a House of Burgesses, saw also the arrival of a shipload of young
women--spinsters carefully selected and matronized--sent out by the
Company in quest of husbands. In Virginia, as in most new colonies,
women were greatly in the minority, and the wise Sir Edwin Sandys
understood that without homes and family ties a civilized community
must quickly retrograde into barbarism. On arriving in Virginia these
girls found plenty of suitors and were entirely free to exercise their
own choice. No accepted suitor, however, could claim his bride until
he should pay the Company 120 pounds of tobacco to defray the expense
of her voyage. This practice of sending wives continued for some time,
and as homes with pleasant society grew up in Virginia, life began to
be made attractive there and the immigration rapidly increased. By
1622 the population of Virginia was at least 4,000, the tobacco fields
were flourishing and lucrative, durable houses had been built and made
comfortable with furniture brought from England, and the old squalor
was everywhere giving way to thrift. The area of colonization was
pushed up the James River as far as the site of Richmond.

[Sidenote: The great Indian massacre, 1622.]

This long narrow colony was dangerously exposed to attack from the
Indian tribes along the York and Pamunkey rivers and their confederates
to the west and north. But an Indian attack was something that people
had ceased to expect. For eight years the Indians had been to all
appearance friendly, and it was not uncommon to see them moving
freely about the villages and plantations. There had been a change of
leadership among them. Wahunsunakok, the old Powhatan whom Smith called
"Father," was dead; his brother Opekankano was now The Powhatan. It
is a traditional belief that Opekankano had always favoured hostile
measures toward the white men, and that for some years he awaited an
opportunity for attacking them. How much truth there may be in this
view of the case it would be hard to say; there is very little evidence
to guide us, but we may well believe that Opekankano and his people
watched with grave concern the sudden and rapid increase of the white
strangers. That they were ready to seize upon an occasion for war is
by no means unlikely, and the nature of the event indicates careful
preparation. Early in 1622 an Indian chief whom the English called Jack
of the Feather killed a white man and was killed in requital. Shortly
afterward a concerted attack was made upon the colony along the entire
line from Chesapeake Bay up to the Berkeley Plantation, near the site
of Richmond, and 347 persons were butchered. Such a destruction of
nearly nine per cent. of the white population was a terrible blow,
but the quickness with which the colony recovered from it shows what
vigorous vitality it had been gaining under the administration of Sir
Edwin Sandys. So lately as 1618 such a blow would have been almost
prostrating, but in 1622 the settlers turned out with grim fury and
hunted the red men like wild beasts till the blood debt was repaid with
compound interest, and peace was restored in the land for more than
twenty years.

While these fiendish scenes were being enacted in Virginia a memorable
drama was moving toward its final catastrophe in London. In the next
chapter we shall witness the overthrow of the great Virginia Company.


[80] See my _Discovery of America_, i. 27, 28, and _passim._ For a
national floral emblem, however, the columbine (_aquilegia_) has
probably more points in its favour than any other.

[81] Smith's _Works_, p. 486.

[82] Brown's _Genesis_, i. 407.

[83] Smith's _Works_, p. 487.

[84] Smith's _Works_, p. 508.

[85] Another interesting person sailed with Argall to Jamestown. A lad,
Henry Spelman, son of the famous antiquary. Sir Henry Spelman, was
at the Pamunkey village when Ratcliffe and his party were massacred
by The Powhatan (see above, p. 153). The young man's life was saved
by Pocahontas, and he was probably adopted. Argall found him with
Pocahontas among the Potomacs, and bought him at the cost of a small
further outlay in copper. Spelman afterward became a person of some
importance in the colony. His "Relation of Virginia," containing an
interesting account of the Ratcliffe massacre and other matters, was
first published under the learned editorship of Henry Stevens in 1872,
and has since been reprinted in Arber's invaluable edition of Smith's
_Works_, pp. ci.-cxiv.

[86] Neill's _Virginia Company_, p. 98.

[87] Smith's _Works_, p. 533.

[88] See Meade's _Old Churches and Families of Virginia_, ii. 79; a
most useful and delightful hook, in about a thousand pages without an

[89] There is a play upon words here. The first "top" is apparently
equivalent to "drink up," as in the following: "Its no hainous offence
(beleeve me) for a young man ... to toppe of a canne roundly," _Terence
in English_, 1614. The second "top" seems equivalent to "put the
finishing touch on."--"Silenus quaffs the barrel, but Tobacco perfects
the brain."

[90] Sweet.

[91] Nichols, _Progresses of King James_, ii. 739.

[92] Neill's _Virginia Company_, p. 66.

[93] Neill's _Virginia Company_, p. 67.

[94] Neill's _Virginia Company_, p. 71.

[95] Brown's _Genesis_, ii. 1014.

[96] Doyle's _Virginia_, p. 157.

[97] Neill's _Virginia Company_, pp. 179, 181.



[Sidenote: Summary review of the founding of Virginia.]

[Sidenote: 1606-1610.]

FEW episodes in English history are more curious than the founding
of Virginia. In the course of the mightiest conflict the world had
witnessed between the powers of despotism and the powers of freedom,
considerations chiefly strategical led England to make the ocean
her battle-ground, and out of these circumstances grew the idea of
establishing military posts at sundry important strategic points on
the North American coast, to aid the operations of the navy. In a few
far-sighted minds this idea developed into the scheme of planting one
or more Protestant states, for the increase of England's commerce,
the expansion of her political influence, and the maintenance of her
naval advantages. After royal assistance had been sought in vain
and single-handed private enterprise had proved unequal to the task
of founding a state, the joint-stock principle, herald of a new
industrial era, was resorted to, and we witness the creation of two
rival joint-stock companies for the purpose of undertaking such a task.
Of the two colonies sent out by these companies, one meets the usual
fate, succumbs to famine, and retires from the scene. The other barely
escapes a similar fate, but is kept alive by the energy and sagacity
and good fortune of one extraordinary man until sturdy London has
invested so much of her treasure and her life-blood in it that she will
not tamely look on and see it perish. Then the Lord Mayor, the wealthy
merchants, the venerable craft-guilds, with many liberal knights and
peers, and a few brilliant scholars and clergymen, turn to and remodel
the London Company into a truly great commercial corporation with an
effective government and one of London's foremost merchant princes at
its head. As if by special intervention from heaven, the struggling
colony is rescued at the very point of death, and soon takes on a new
and more vigorous life.

[Sidenote: 1610-1624.]

But for such lavish outlay to continue, there must be some solid
return, and soon a new and unexpected source of wealth is found.
All this sort of work is a novel experiment, mistakes are at first
made in plenty; neither the ends to be obtained nor the methods of
obtaining them are distinctly conceived, and from the parties of brave
gentlemen in quest of El Dorado to the crowd of rogues and pickpockets
amenable only to rough martial law, the drift of events seems somewhat
indefinite and aimless. But just as the short-lived system of communism
falls to the ground, and private ownership of land and earnings is
established, the rapidly growing demand for tobacco in England makes
its cultivation an abundant and steady source of wealth, the colonists
increase in numbers and are improved in quality. Meanwhile as the
interest felt by the shareholders becomes more lively, the Company
acquires a more democratic organization. It exerts political influence,
the court party and country party contend with each other for the
control of it, and the latter wins. Hitherto the little Virginia colony
has been, like the contemporary French colony in Canada and like
all the Spanish colonies, a despotically governed community closely
dependent upon the source of authority in the mother country, and
without any true political life. But now the victorious party in the
Company gives to Virginia a free representative government, based not
upon any ideal theory of the situation, but rooted in ancient English
precedent, the result of ages of practical experience, and therefore
likely to thrive. Finally we see the British king awakening to the fact
that he has unloosed a power that threatens danger. The doctrine of the
divine right of kings--that ominous bequest from the half-orientalized
later Roman Empire to post-mediæval Europe--was dear to the heart of
James Stuart, and his aim in life was to impose it upon the English
people. His chief obstacle was the country party, which if he could not
defeat in Parliament, he might at least weaken by striking at the great
corporation that had come to be one of its strongholds. In what we may
call the embryonic development of Virginia the final incident was the
overthrow of the London Company; but we shall see that the severing of
that umbilical cord left the colony stronger and more self-reliant than
before. In the unfolding of these events there is poetic beauty and
grandeur as the purpose of Infinite Wisdom reveals itself in its cosmic
process, slowly but inexorably, hasting not but resting not, heedless
of the clashing aims and discordant cries of short-sighted mortals,
sweeping their tiny efforts into its majestic current, and making all
contribute to the fulfilment of God's will.

       *       *       *       *       *

[Sidenote: Hostility of Spain.]

[Sidenote: Gondomar and the Spanish match.]

From the very outset the planting of Virginia had been watched with
wrath and chagrin by the Spanish court. Within the last few years a
Virginian scholar, Alexander Brown, has collected and published a large
number of manuscript letters and other documents preserved in the
Spanish archives at Simancas, which serve to illustrate the situation
in detail. Very little of importance happened in London that the
ambassador Zuñiga did not promptly discover and straightway report in
cipher to Madrid. We can now read for the first time many memoranda of
secret sessions of Philip III. and his ministers, in which this little
Protestant colony was the theme of discussion. It was a thorn in the
flesh not easy to extract unless Spain was prepared for war with Great
Britain. At first the very weakness of the colony served to keep this
enemy's hands off; if it was on the point of dying a natural death,
as seemed likely, it was hardly worth while to repeat the horrors of
Florida. In 1612, after Sir Thomas Dale's administration had begun,
Spain again took the alarm; for the moment a war with England was
threatened, and if it had broken out Virginia would have been one of
the first points attacked. But the deaths of Lord Salisbury and of
Henry, Prince of Wales, in 1612, changed the policy of both Philip and
James. There was now some hope of detaching the latter from Protestant
alliances, and Philip's designs upon Virginia were subordinated to
the far larger purpose of winning back England herself into the
Catholic ranks. A plan was made for marrying the Infanta Maria to
Baby Charles, and with this end in view one of the ablest of Spanish
diplomats, Count Gondomar (to give him at once his best-known title),
was sent as ambassador to London. Charles was only twelve years old,
and an immediate wedding was not expected, but the match could be
kept dangling before James as a bait, and thus his movements might be
guided. Should the marriage finally be made, Gondomar believed that
Charles could be converted to his bride's faith, and then England might
be made to renew her allegiance to Rome. Gondomar was mightily mistaken
in the English people, but he was not mistaken in their king. James was
ready to swallow bait, hook, and all. Gondomar completely fascinated
him,--one might almost say, hypnotized him,--so that for the next ten
years one had but to shake that Spanish match before him and he would
follow, whatever might betide. The official policy of England was thus
often made distasteful to Englishmen, and the sentiment of loyalty to
the sovereign was impaired.

[Sidenote: Gondomar's advice to the king.]

To Gondomar the king was in the habit of confiding his grievances, and
in 1614, after his angry dissolution of Parliament, he said to him one
day: "There is one thing I have here, which your king in Spain has
not, and that is a Parliament of 500 members.... I am surprised that my
ancestors should ever have permitted such an institution to come into
existence. I am a stranger and found it here when I arrived, so I am
obliged to put up with what I cannot get rid of." Here James stopped
short and turned red in the face, at having thus carelessly admitted
his own lack of omnipotence, whereupon the wily Spaniard smiled and
reminded him that at all events it was only at his royal pleasure that
this very disagreeable assembly could be called together.[98] James
acted on this hint, and did not summon a Parliament again for seven
years. It is worth remembering in this connection that at this very
time the representatives of the people in France were dismissed and not
called together again until 1789.

[Sidenote: More advice.]

While Parliament was not sitting, the sort of discussion that James
found so hateful was kept up at the meetings of the London Company
for Virginia, which were commonly held at the princely mansion of Sir
Thomas Smith. Against this corporation Gondomar dropped his sweet
poison into the king's ear. The government of colonies, he said, is
work fit only for monarchs, and cannot safely be entrusted to a roomful
of gabbling subjects; beware of such meetings; you will find them but
"a seminary to a seditious Parliament." Before James had profited by
these warnings, however, the case of Sir Walter Raleigh came up to
absorb his attention. A rare chance--as strange and sad as anything
that the irony of human destiny can show--was offered for Spain to
wreak her malice upon Virginia in the person of the earliest and most
illustrious of its founders.

[Sidenote: Imprisonment of Raleigh.]

[Sidenote: Raleigh released and sent to Guiana.]

[Sidenote: The king's treachery.]

[Sidenote: Judicial murder of Raleigh, 1618.]

In 1603, not long after King James's arrival in England, Raleigh had
been charged with complicity in Lord Cobham's abortive conspiracy for
getting James set aside in favour of his cousin, Lady Arabella Stuart.
This charge is now proved to have been ill-founded; but James already
hated Raleigh with the measure of hatred which he dealt out to so
many of Elizabeth's favourites. After a trial in which the common-law
maxim, that innocence must be presumed until guilt is proved, was read
backward, as witches were said to read the Lord's Prayer in summoning
Old Nick, Sir Walter was found guilty of high treason and condemned
to death. The wrath of the people was such that James, who did not
yet feel his position quite secure, did not venture to carry out the
sentence. He contented himself with plundering Sir Walter's estates,
while the noble knight was kept for more than twelve years a prisoner
in the Tower, where he solaced himself with experiments in chemistry
and with writing that delightful History of the World which is one of
the glories of English prose literature. In 1616, at the intercession
of Villiers, Raleigh was set free. On his expedition to Guiana in 1595
he had discovered gold on the upper waters of the Caroni River in what
is now Venezuela. In his attempt to dispense with parliaments James
was at his wits' end for money, and he thought something might be got
by sending Raleigh back to take possession of the place. It is true
that Spain claimed that country, but so did James on the strength of
Raleigh's own discoveries, and if any complication should arise there
were ways of crawling out. Raleigh had misgivings about starting on
such an adventure without first obtaining a pardon in set form; but Sir
Francis Bacon is said to have assured him that the king, having under
the privy seal made him admiral of a fleet, with power of martial law
over sailors and officers, had substantially condoned all offences,
real or alleged. A man could not at one and the same time be under
attaint of treason and also an admiral in active service. Before
Raleigh started James made him explain the details of his scheme and
lay down his route on a chart, and he promised on the sacred word of
a king not to divulge this information to any human creature. It was
only the sacred word of a Stuart king. James may have meant to keep
it, but his evil genius was not far off. The lifelike portrait of
Count Gondomar, superbly painted by the elder Daniel Mytens, hangs in
the palace at Hampton Court, and one cannot look on it for a moment
without feeling that Mephistopheles himself must have sat for it. The
bait of the Infanta, with a dowry of 2,000,000 crowns in hard cash,
was once more thrown successfully, and James told every detail of
Raleigh's plans to the Spaniard, who sent the intelligence post-haste
to Madrid. So when the English fleet arrived at the mouths of the
Orinoco, a Spanish force awaited them and attacked their exploring
party. In the fight that ensued Raleigh's son Walter was slain; though
the English were victorious, the approaches to the gold fields were
too strongly guarded to be carried by the force at their command, and
thus the enterprise was baffled. The gold fields remained for Spain,
but with the fast increasing paralysis of Spanish energy they were
soon neglected and forgotten; their existence was denied and Raleigh's
veracity doubted, until in 1889 they were rediscovered and identified
by the Venezuelan Inspector of Mines.[99] Since the expedition was
defeated by the treachery of his own sovereign, nothing was left for
the stricken admiral but to return to England. The Spanish court
loudly clamoured for his death, on the ground that he had undertaken a
piratical excursion against a country within Spanish jurisdiction. His
wife cleverly planned an escape to France, but a Judas in the party
arrested him and he was sent to the Tower. The king promised Gondomar
that Raleigh should be publicly executed, either in London or in
Madrid; but on second thought the latter would not do. To surrender him
to Spain would be to concede Spain's claim to Guiana. Without conceding
this claim there was nothing for which to punish him. Accordingly James
in this year 1618 revived the old death sentence of 1603, and Spain
drank a deep draught of revenge when the hero of Cadiz and Fayal was
beheaded in the Palace Yard at Westminster; a scene fit to have made
Elizabeth turn in her grave in the Abbey hard by. A fouler judicial
murder never stained the annals of any country.[100]

[Sidenote: The Company's election in 1620.]

[Sidenote: The king's attempt to interfere.]

The silly king gained nothing by his vile treachery. Popular execration
in England at once set him up in a pillory from which posterity is
not likely to take him down. The Spanish council of state advised
Philip III. to send him an autograph letter of thanks,[101] but the
half-promised Infanta with her rich dowry kept receding like the grapes
from eager Tantalus. A dwindling exchequer would soon leave James
with no resource except summoning once more that odious Parliament.
Meanwhile in the London Company for Virginia there occurred that change
of political drift whereof the election of Sir Edwin Sandys over Sir
Thomas Smith, aided though it had been by a private quarrel, was one
chief symptom. That election revealed the alarming growth of hostility
in the city of London to the king's pretensions and to the court
party.[102] James had said just before the election, "Choose the Devil
if you will, but not Sir Edwin Sandys." From that time forth the king's
hostility to the Company scarcely needed Gondomar's skilful nursing. It
grew apace till it became aggressive, not to say belligerent. At the
election in 1620 it was the intention of the majority in the Company
to reëlect Sandys, with whose management they were more than pleased.
Nearly 500 members were present at the meeting. It was the custom for
three candidates to be named and voted for, one after another, by
ballot, and a plurality sufficed for a choice. On this occasion the
name of Sir Edwin Sandys, first of three, was about to be put to vote,
when some gentlemen of the king's household came in and interrupted the
proceedings. The king, said their spokesman, positively forbade the
election of Sir Edwin Sandys. His Majesty was unwilling to infringe
the rights of the Company, and would therefore himself propose names,
even as many as four, on which a vote might be taken. The names were
forthwith read, and turned out to be those of Sir Thomas Smith and
three of his intimate friends.

[Sidenote: Reading of the charter.]

This impudent interference was received with a silence more eloquent
than words, a profound silence that might be felt. After some minutes
came murmurs and wrathful ejaculations, among which such expressions as
"tyranny" and "invasion of chartered rights" could be plainly heard.
The motion was made that the king's messengers should leave the room
while the situation was discussed. "No," said the Earl of Southampton,
"let them stay and hear what is said." This motion prevailed. Then
Sir Lawrence Hyde moved that the charter be read, and his motion was
greeted with one of those dutiful but ominous cries so common in
that age; from all parts of the room it resounded, "The charter! the
charter!! God save the King!" The roll of parchment was brought forward
and read aloud by the secretary. "Mr. Chairman," said Hyde, "the words
of the charter are plain; the election of a treasurer is left to the
free choice of this Company. His Majesty seems to labour under some
misunderstanding, and I doubt not these gentlemen will undeceive him."

[Sidenote: Withdrawal of Sandys.]

[Sidenote: Election of Southampton.]

For a few minutes no one replied, and there was a buzz of informal
conversation about the room, some members leaving their seats to speak
with friends not sitting near them. One of our accounts says that
some of the king's emissaries stepped out and sought his presence,
and when he heard what was going on he looked a little anxious and
his stubbornness was somewhat abated; he said of course he did not
wish to restrict the Company's choice to the names he had mentioned.
Whether this concession was reported back to the meeting, we are not
informed, but probably it was. When the meeting was called to order,
Sir Robert Phillips, who was sitting near Sandys, got up and announced
that that gentleman wished to withdraw his name; he would therefore
propose that the king's messengers should nominate two persons while
the Company should nominate a third. The motion was carried, and the
Company nominated the Earl of Southampton. The balloting showed an
extremely meagre vote for the king's nominees. It was then moved and
carried that in the earl's case the ballot should be dispensed with and
the choice signified by acclamation; and then with thundering shouts
of "Southampton! Southampton," the meeting was brought to a close. The
rebuke to the king could hardly have been more pointed, and in such
a scene we recognize the prophecy of the doom to which James's wrong
policy was by and by to hasten his son.

[Sidenote: Nicholas Ferrar.]

[Sidenote: Little Gidding.]

The choice of Shakespeare's friend instead of Sandys made no difference
whatever in the policy of the Company. From that time forth its
ruling spirits were Southampton and Sandys and Nicholas Ferrar, the
deputy-treasurer. The name of this young man calls for more than a
passing mention. Better known in ecclesiastical than in political
history, he was distinguished and memorable in whatever he undertook,
and among all the thronging figures in England's past he is one of the
most sweetly and solemnly beautiful. His father, the elder Nicholas
Ferrar, who died in April, 1620, just before the election I have been
describing, was one of London's merchant princes, and it was in the
parlour of his hospitable house in St. Osyth's Lane--now known as Size
Lane, near the Poultry--that the weekly meetings of the Virginia
Council were in these latter days regularly held. In this house the
young Nicholas was born in 1593. He had spent seven years in study at
Cambridge and five years in very extensive travel upon the continent
of Europe, when at the age of twenty-seven he came to devote all his
energies for a time to the welfare of the colony of Virginia. From
early boyhood he was noticeable for taking a grave and earnest but by
no means sombre view of life, its interests and its duties. For him
frivolity had no charm, coarse pleasures were but loathsome, yet he was
neither stern nor cold. Through every fibre of his being he was the
refined and courteous gentleman, a true Sir Galahad fit to have found
the Holy Grail. His scholarship was thorough and broad. An excellent
mathematician and interested in the new dawning of physical science, he
was also well versed in the classics and in modern languages and knew
something of Oriental philology, but he was most fond of the devotional
literature of the church. His intensely religious mood was part of
the great spiritual revival of which Puritanism was the mightiest
manifestation; yet Nicholas Ferrar was no Puritan either in doctrine or
in ecclesiastical policy. In these matters his sympathies were rather
with William Laud. At the same time his career is a living refutation
of the common notion that there is a necessary connection between the
religion of Laud and the politics of Strafford, for his own political
views were as liberal as those of Hampden and Pym. Indeed Ferrar
was a rare product of the harmonious coöperation of the tendencies
represented respectively in the Renaissance and in the Reformation,
tendencies which the general want of intelligence and moral soundness
in mankind has more commonly brought into barren conflict. His ideal of
life was much like that which Milton set forth with matchless beauty
in "Il Penseroso." Its leading motive, strengthening with his years,
was the feeling of duty toward the "studious cloister's pale," and the
part of his career that is now best remembered is the founding of that
monastic home at Little Gidding, where study and charitable deeds and
prayer and praise should go on unceasing, where at whatsoever hour of
day or night the weary wayfarer through the broad fen country should
climb that hilly range in Huntingdon, he should hear the "pealing
organ blow to the full-voiced choir below," and entering should
receive spiritual comfort and strength, and go thence on his way with
heart uplifted. In that blest retreat, ever busy with good works,
lived Nicholas Ferrar after the downfall of the great London Company
until his own early death in 1637 at the age of forty-four. Of great
or brilliant deeds according to the world's usual standard this man
did none; yet the simple record of his life brings us into such an
atmosphere of holiness and love that mankind can never afford to let it
fade and die.

This Protestant saint, withal, was no vague dreamer, but showed in
action the practical sagacity that came by inheritance from London's
best stock of bold and thrifty citizens. As one of the directing minds
of a commercial corporation, he showed himself equal to every occasion
that arose. He is identified with the last days of the London Company,
and his family archives preserve the record of its downfall. It is
thence that we get the account of the election of Southampton and many
other interesting scenes and important facts that would otherwise have
passed into oblivion.

[Sidenote: Disputes in the Company.]

After Southampton's election the king's hostility to the Company
became deadly, and within that corporation itself he found allies
who when once they found themselves unable to rule it were only too
willing to contribute to its ruin. Sir Thomas Smith and his friends now
accepted their defeat as decisive and final, and allowed themselves
to become disloyal to the Company. Probably they would have expressed
it differently; they would have said that out of regard for Virginia
they felt it their duty to thwart the reckless men who had gained
control of her destinies. Unfortunately for their version of the
case, the friends of Sir Thomas Smith were charged with the burden of
Argall's misdemeanours, and the regard which that governor had shown
for Virginia was too much like the peculiar interest that a wolf feels
in the sheepfold. It is not meant that the members of the court party
who tried to screen Argall were all unscrupulous men; such was far from
being the case, but in public contests nothing is more common than to
see men personally stainless blindly accept and defend the rogues of
their own party. In the heat of battle the private quarrel between
Smith and the Earl of Warwick was either made up or allowed to drop out
of sight. Both worked together, and in harmony with the king, to defeat
Southampton and Sandys and Ferrar. In the Company's quarter sessions
the disputes rose so high that the meetings were said to be more like
cockpits than courts.[103] On one occasion a duel between the Earl of
Warwick and Lord Cavendish, eldest son of the first Earl of Devonshire,
was narrowly prevented. As Chamberlain, one of the court gossips of
the day, writes: "Last week the Earl of Warwick and the Lord Cavendish
fell so foul at a Virginia ... court that the lie passed and repassed,
and they are [gone out] to try their fortune, yet we do not hear they
are met, so that there is hope they may return safe. In the meantime
their ladies forget not their old familiarity, but meet daily to lament
that misfortune. The factions in [the Company] are grown so violent as
Guelfs and Ghibellines were not more animated one against another; and
they seldom meet upon the Exchange, or in the streets, but they brabble
and quarrel."[104]

[Sidenote: The king rebuked by the House of Commons.]

In 1621 the king, having arrived at the end of his purse, seized what
he thought a favourable moment for summoning Parliament, but found
that body more intractable than ever. The Commons busied themselves
with attacking monopolies and impeaching the Lord Chancellor Bacon
for taking bribes. Then they expressed unqualified disapproval of
the Spanish match, whereupon the king told them to mind their own
business and not meddle with his. "A long and angry dispute ensued,
which terminated in a strong protest, in which the Commons declared
that their privileges were not the gift of the Crown, but the natural
birthright of English subjects, and that matters of public interest
were within their province."[105] This protest so infuriated the king
that he tore it into pieces, and forthwith dissolved Parliament,
sending Pym, Southampton, and other leaders to prison. This was in
January, 1622.

[Sidenote: Nathaniel Butler and his pamphlet.]

[Sidenote: Some charges and answers:]

As more than a hundred members of this froward Parliament were also
members of the Company, it is not strange that the king should have
watched more eagerly than ever for a chance to attack that corporation.
A favourable opportunity was soon offered him. A certain Nathaniel
Butler, governor of the Bermuda Islands, was accused of extorting a
large sum of money from some Spaniards who had been shipwrecked there,
and very damaging evidence was brought against him; but he seems
to have known how to enlist powerful friends on his side. On being
summoned to England he went first to Virginia, where his services were
in demand during the brief but bloody Indian war that followed upon
the massacre of 1622. Then after arriving in England he published,
in April, 1623, a savage attack upon the London Company, entitled
"The Unmasked Face of our Colony in Virginia." Simultaneously with
the publication of this pamphlet the charges against its author were
dropped and were nevermore heard of. Such a coincidence is extremely
significant; it was commonly believed at the time that Butler bought
the suppression of the charges by turning backbiter. His attack upon
the Company is so frivolous as plainly to indicate its origin in pure
malice. It is interesting as the first of the long series of books
about America printed in England which have sorely irritated their
American readers. Sixteen of the old Virginia settlers who were at
that moment in London answered it with convincing force. Some of this
Butler's accusations, with the answers of the settlers, may fitly
be cited for the side-light they throw upon the state of things in
Virginia, as well as upon the peculiar sinuosities of Stuart kingcraft.

[Sidenote: as to malaria;]

"1. I found the plantations generally seated upon meer salt marishes
full of infectious bogs and muddy creeks and lakes, and thereby
subjected to all those inconveniencies and diseases which are so
commonly found in the most unsound and most unhealthy parts of England,
whereof every country and climate hath some.

"_Answer_: We say that there is no place inhabited but is conveniently
habitable. And for the first plantation, which is Kiccoutan, ...
men may enjoy their healths and live as plentifully as in any part
of England, ... yet that there are marishes in some places we
acknowledge.... As for bogs, we know of none in all the country, and
for the rest of the plantations, as Newport's News, Blunt Point,
Warriscoyak, Martin's Hundred ... and all the plantations right over
against James City, and all the plantations above these (which are
many) ... they are [all] very fruitful, ... pleasant, ... healthful,
and high land, except James City, which yet is as high as Deptford or

[Sidenote: as to wetting one's feet;]

"2. I found the shores and sides of those parts of the main river
where our plantations are settled everywhere so shallow as no boats
can approach the shores, so that--besides the difficulty, danger, and
spoil of goods in the landing of them--people are forced to a continual
wading and wetting of themselves, and that [too] in the prime of
winter, when the ships commonly arrive, and thereby get such violent
surfeits of cold upon cold as seldom leave them until they leave [off]
to live.

"_Answer_: That generally for the plantations at all times from half
flood to half ebb any boat that draws betwixt 3 and 4 foot water may
safely come in and land their goods dry on shore without wading. And
for further clearing of his false objections, the seamen ... do at all
times deliver the goods they bring to the owners dry on shore, whereby
it plainly appears not any of the country people ... are by this means
in danger of their lives. And at ... many plantations below James City,
and almost all above, they may at all times land dry.

[Sidenote: as to dying under hedges;]

"3. The new people that are yearly sent over [who] arrive here (for the
most part very unseasonably in winter) find neither guest-house, inn,
nor any the like place to shroud themselves in at their arrival; [and]
not so much as a stroke is given toward any such charitable work; [so
that] many of [these new comers] by want hereof are not only seen dying
under hedges and in the woods, but being dead lie some of them many
days unregarded and unburied.

"_Answer_: The winter is the most healthful time and season for arrival
of new comers. True it is that as yet there is no guest-house or place
of entertainment for strangers. But we aver it was a late intent ... to
make a general gathering for the building of such a convenient house,
which by this time had been in good forwardness, had it not pleased God
to suffer this disaster to fall out by the Indians. But although there
be no public guest-house, yet are new comers entertained and lodged and
provided for by the governor in private houses. And for any dying in
the fields through this defect, and lying unburied, we are altogether
ignorant; yet that many [persons] die suddenly by the hand of God, we
often see it ... fall out even in this flourishing and plentiful city
[of London] in the midst of our streets. As for dying under hedges,
there is no hedge in all Virginia.

       *       *       *       *       *

[Sidenote: as to the houses, and their situations.]

"5. Their houses are generally the worst that ever I saw, the meanest
cottages in England being every way equal (if not superior) with the
most of the best. And besides, so improvidently and scatteringly
are they seated one from another as partly by their distance but
especially by the interposition of creeks and swamps ... they offer
all advantages to their savage enemies....

"_Answer_: The houses ... were ... built for use and not for ornament,
and are so far from being so mean as they are reported that throughout
[England] labouring men's houses ... are in no wise generally for
goodness to be compared unto them. And for the houses of men of better
rank and quality, they are so much better and [so] convenient that no
man of quality without blushing can make exception against them. [As]
for the creeks and swamps, every man ... that cannot go by land hath
either a boat or a canoe for the conveying and speedy passage to his
neighbour's house...."[106]

[Sidenote: Object of the charges.]

So go the charges and the answers. It is unnecessary to cite any
further. The animus of Captain Butler's pamphlet is sufficiently
apparent. He wished to make it appear that things were wretchedly
managed in Virginia, and that there was but a meagre and contemptible
result to show for all the treasure that had been spent and all the
lives that had been lost. Whatever could weaken people's faith in the
colony, check emigration, deter subscriptions, and in any way embarrass
the Company, he did not fail to bring forward. Not only were the sites
unhealthy and the houses mean, but the fortifications were neglected,
plantations were abandoned, the kine and poultry were destroyed by
Indians, the assembly enacted laws wilfully divergent from the laws of
England, and speculators kept engrossing wheat and maize and selling
them at famine prices; so said Butler, and knowing how effective a bold
sweeping lie is sure to be, in spite of prompt and abundant refutation,
he ended by declaring that not less than 10,000 persons had been sent
out to Virginia, of whom "through the aforenamed abuses and neglects"
not more than 2,000 still remained alive. Therefore, he added, unless
the dishonest practices of the Company in London and the wretched
bungling of its officials in Virginia be speedily redressed "by some
divine and supreme hand, ... instead of a Plantation it will shortly
get the name of a slaughter house, and [will] justly become both odious
to ourselves and contemptible to all the world."

[Sidenote: The assembly denies the allegations.]

All these allegations were either denied or satisfactorily explained
by the sixteen settlers then in London, and their sixteen affidavits
were duly sworn to before a notary public. Some months afterward,
Captain Butler's pamphlet was laid before the assembly of Virginia
and elaborately refuted. Nothing can be clearer than the fact that
the sympathies of the people in Virginia were entirely on the side of
the Company under its present management, and no fact could be more
honourable to the Company. From first to last the proceedings now to
be related were watched in Virginia with intense anxiety and fierce

[Sidenote: An answer demanded of Ferrar.]

On Thursday of Holy Week, 1623, a formal complaint against the Company,
embodying such charges as those I have here recounted, was laid before
the Privy Council, and the Lord Treasurer Cranfield, better known
as Earl of Middlesex, sent notice of it to Nicholas Ferrar, with the
demand that a complete answer to every particular should be returned
by the next Monday afternoon. Ferrar protested against such unseemly
haste, but the Lord Treasurer was inexorable. Then the young man called
together as many of the Company as he could find at an hour's notice
that afternoon; they met in his mother's parlour, and he read aloud
the complaint, which took three hours. Then Lord Cavendish, Sir Edwin
Sandys, and Nicholas Ferrar were appointed a committee to prepare the
answer. "These three," says our chronicle, "made it midnight ere they
parted; they ate no set meals; they slept not two hours all Thursday
and Friday nights; they met to admire each other's labours on Saturday
night, and sat in judgment on the whole till five o'clock on Sunday
morning; then they divided it equally among six nimble scribes, and
went to bed themselves, as it was high time for them. The transcribers
finished by five o'clock Monday morning; the Company met at six to
review their labours, and by two in the afternoon the answer was
presented at the Council Board."[107]

[Sidenote: A cogent answer is returned.]

[Sidenote: Attempts to corrupt Ferrar.]

This answer was a masterpiece of cogency. It proved the baselessness of
the charges. Either they were complete falsehoods, or they related to
disasters directly connected with the Indian massacre, which was not
due to any provocation on the part of the whites, or else they showed
the effects of mismanagement in Sir Thomas Smith's time, especially
under the tyrannical administration of Argall from which the colony
had not yet fully recovered. In short, such of the charges as really
bore against the Company were successfully shown up as affecting its
old government under Smith and Warwick, and not its new government
under Sandys and Southampton. The latter was cleared of every calumny,
and its absolute integrity and vast efficiency were fully established.
Such, at least, is the decisive verdict of history, but the lords
of the Privy Council were not willing to accept such a result. It
amounted almost to an impeachment of the court party, and it made
them angry. So the Earl of Warwick succeeded in obtaining an order
that Lord Cavendish, Sir Edwin Sandys, and Rev. Nicholas Ferrar,--as
"chief actors in inditing and penning ... an impertinent declaration
containing bitter invectives and aspersions" should be confined to
their own houses until further notice.[108] The object of this was to
prevent them from conferring with each other. Further hostile inquiries
were prosecuted, and an attempt was made to detach Ferrar from his
associates. One day, as he was answering some queries before the Privy
Council, one of the lords handed him an important official letter
to the governor of Virginia. "Who draws up such papers?" asked the
lord. "The Company," replied Ferrar modestly. "No, no!" interrupted
another lord, "we know your style; these papers are all yours, and
they are masterpieces." The letter was shown to the king, who was
pleased to observe, "Verily, the young man hath much worth in him."
To detach him from the Company the king offered to make him clerk of
the Privy Council or ambassador to the court of Savoy. Both were fine
offers for a man only in his thirtieth year, but Ferrar was not to be
tempted. Then an effort was made to induce him to advise the Company to
surrender its charter, but he refused with some scorn. A great number
of the nobility and gentry, he said, besides merchants and artisans
of the city of London, relying upon the royal charter, had engaged in
a noble enterprise, one of the most honourable that England had ever
undertaken; many planters in Virginia had risked their estates and
lives in it; the Lord had prospered their endeavours, and now no danger
threatened the colony save the malice of its enemies; as for himself he
was not going to abuse his trust by deserting it.

[Sidenote: A board of commissioners.]

While these things were going on, the king appointed a board of
commissioners to investigate the affairs of Virginia, and the spirit
in which they were appointed is sufficiently revealed by the fact
that they all belonged to the disaffected faction in the Company and
held their meetings at the house of Sir Thomas Smith. One of their
number was the vindictive and unscrupulous ex-governor, Sir Samuel
Argall,--which was much like setting the wolf to investigate the
dogs. Some of these commissioners went out to Virginia and tried to
entrap the assembly into asking for a new charter. It was all in vain.
Governor, council, and House of Burgesses agreed that they were
perfectly satisfied with the present state of things and only wanted
to be let alone. Not a morsel of evidence adverse to the present
management of the Company could be obtained from any quarter. On the
contrary, the assembly sent to England an eloquent appeal, afterward
entitled "The Tragical Declaration of the Virginia Assembly," in which
the early sufferings of the colony and its recent prosperity were
passed in review; the document concluded with an expression rather
more forcible than one is accustomed to find in decorous and formal
state papers. After describing the kind of management under which
such creatures as Argall could flourish, the document goes on to say,
"Rather [than] be reduced to live under the like government, we desire
his Majesty that commissioners may be sent over with authority to hang

[Sidenote: Attorney-general's opinion; a _quo warranto_ served.]

Long before this appeal reached England, the final assault upon the
Company had begun. In July, 1623, the attorney-general reported his
opinion that it was advisable for the king to take the government of
Virginia into his own hands. In October an order of the Privy Council
announced that this was to be done. The Company's charter was to be
rescinded, and its deputed powers of sovereignty were to be resumed by
the king. This meant that the king would thereafter appoint the council
for Virginia sitting in London. He would also appoint the governor of
Virginia with his colonial council. Such a transformation would leave
the joint-stock company in existence, but only as a body of traders
without ascertained rights or privileges and entirely dependent upon
royal favour. No settled policy could thereafter be pursued, and
under the circumstances the change was a deathblow to the Company.
Southampton and Ferrar refused to surrender, and referred the question
to their next quarter-sessions to be held in November. Then the king
brought suit against the Company in the court of King's Bench, and a
writ of _quo warranto_ was served.

[Sidenote: Appeal to Parliament.]

[Sidenote: The king refuses to allow the appeal.]

Then came the most interesting moment of all. The only hope of the
Company lay in an appeal to Parliament, and that last card was boldly
played. Early in 1624 the Spanish match, to secure which the miserable
king had for ten years basely truckled and licked the hand of England's
bitterest enemies, was finally broken off. War with Spain was at hand;
a new policy, of helping the German Protestants, and marrying Baby
Charles to a French princess, was to be considered; and much money was
needed. So James reluctantly issued writs for an election, and the
new Parliament, containing Sandys and Ferrar, with many other members
of the Virginia Company, met in February. In April a petition was
presented in behalf of the Virginia Company, and a committee had been
appointed to consider it, when the Speaker read a message from the
king, forbidding Parliament to meddle with the matter. He distinctly
announced the doctrine that the government of colonies was the business
of king and his Privy Council, and that Parliament had nothing to
do with it. This memorable doctrine was just that which afterwards
found favour with the American colonists for very different reasons
from those which recommended it to King James. The Americans took this
view because they were not represented in Parliament, and intended
with their colonial assemblies to hold the crown officials, the royal
governors, in check just as Parliament curbed the Crown. By the middle
of the eighteenth century this had come to be the generally accepted
American doctrine; it is interesting to see it asserted early in the
seventeenth by the Crown itself, and in the interests of absolutism.

[Sidenote: Attorney-general's argument.]

[Sidenote: The charter annulled, June 16, 1624.]

In 1624 Parliament was not in good condition for quarrelling with
the king upon too many issues at once. So it acquiesced, not without
some grumbling, in the royal prohibition, and the petition of the
Virginia Company was laid upon the table. A few weeks later the case
on the _quo warranto_ was argued before the court of King's Bench. The
attorney-general's argument against the charter was truly ingenious.
That charter allowed the Company to carry the king's subjects across
the ocean to Virginia; if such a privilege were to be exercised without
limitation, it might end in conveying all the king's subjects to
America, leaving Great Britain a howling wilderness! Such a privilege
was too great to be bestowed upon any corporate body, and therefore
the charter ought to be annulled. Such logic was irresistible, and
on the 16th of June the chief justice declared "that the Patent or
Charter of the Company of English Merchants trading to Virginia, and
pretending to exercise a power and authority over his Majesty's good
subjects there, should be thenceforth null and void." Next day Thomas
Wentworth, afterward Earl of Strafford, gave vent to his glee in a
private letter: "Methinks, I imagine the Quaternity before this have
had a meeting of comfort and consolation, stirring up each other to
bear it courageously, and Sir Edwin Sandys in the midst of them sadly
sighing forth, Oh, the burden of Virginia." By the Quaternity he meant
Southampton, Sandys, Ferrar, and Cavendish. On the 26th of June the
Privy Council ordered Nicholas Ferrar to bring all the books and papers
of the late Company and hand them over to its custody.

[Sidenote: Ferrar has the records copied.]

[Sidenote: History of a manuscript.]

Ferrar could not disobey the order, but he had made up his mind that
the records of the Company must be preserved, for its justification
in the eyes of posterity. As soon as he saw that the day of doom was
at hand he had copies made. One of Ferrar's dearest friends was the
delightful poet, George Herbert, a young man of his own age, whose
widowed mother had married Sir John Danvers, a prominent member of
the Company. They lived in a fine old house in Chelsea, that had once
been part of the home of Sir Thomas More. There Nicholas Ferrar passed
many a pleasant evening with George Herbert and his eccentric and
skeptical brother, afterward Lord Herbert of Cherbury; and if ever
their talk grew a bit too earnest and warm, we can fancy it mellowed
again as that other sweet poet, Dr. Donne, dropped in, with gentle
Izaak Walton, as used often to happen. In that house of friends, Ferrar
had a clerk locked up with the records until they were all copied,
everything relating to the administrations of Sandys and Southampton,
from the election of the former, in April, 1619, down to June 7, 1624.
The copy was then carefully compared with the original documents, and
its perfect accuracy duly attested by the Company's secretary, Edward
Collingwood. Sir John Danvers then carried the manuscript to the Earl
of Southampton, who exclaimed, as he threw his arms about his neck,
"God bless you, Danvers! I shall keep this with my title-deeds at
Tichfield; it is the evidence of my honour, and I prize it more than
the evidence of my lands." About four months afterward Southampton
died. Forty-three years afterward, in 1667, his son and successor
passed away, and then this precious manuscript was bought from the
executors by William Byrd, of Virginia, father of the famous historian
and antiquary. From the Byrd library it passed into the hands of
William Stith, president of William and Mary College, who used it in
writing his History of Virginia, published at Williamsburg in 1747,
one of the most admirable of American historical works. From Stith's
hands the manuscript passed to his kinsman, Peyton Randolph, president
of the Continental Congress, and after his death in 1775, Thomas
Jefferson bought it. In 1814 ex-president Jefferson sold his library
to the United States, and this manuscript is now in the Library of
Congress, 741 folio pages bound in two volumes. As for the original
documents, they are nowhere to be found among British records; and when
we recollect how welcome their destruction must have been to Sir Thomas
Smith, to the Earl of Warwick, and to James I., we cannot help feeling
that the chest of the Privy Council was not altogether a safe place in
which to keep them.

It is to the copy preserved through the careful forethought of Nicholas
Ferrar that we owe our knowledge of one of the most interesting
chapters in early American history. In the development of Virginia
the overthrow of the great London Company was an event of cardinal
importance. For the moment it was quite naturally bewailed in Virginia
as a direful calamity; but, as we shall presently see, it turned out to
be a blessing in disguise. Stuart despotism gained not one of its ends,
except the momentary gratification of spleen, and self-government in
Virginia, which seemed in peril, went on to take root more deeply and
strongly than before.


[98] Gardiner, _History of England_, ii. 251.

[99] Stebbing's _Ralegh_, p. 121; cf. Bates, _Central and South
America_, p. 436.

[100] Some lines in sweet Saxon English, written by Raleigh on
the fly-leaf of his Bible, shortly before his death, are worth

  "Even such is Time, that takes on trust
    Our youth, our joys, and all we have,
   And pays us but with age and dust;
    Who in the dark and silent grave,
        When we have wandered all our ways,
        Shuts up the record of our days.
   Yet from this earth, this grave, this dust,
   The Lord shall raise me up, I trust."

[101] Stebbing's _Ralegh_, p. 386.

[102] Gardiner, _History of England_, iii. 161.

[103] Brown's _Genesis_, ii. 1016.

[104] Neill's _Virginia Company_, p. 413.

[105] Bright, _History of England_, ii. 604.

[106] Neill's _Virginia Company_, pp. 395-401.

[107] Carter's _Ferrar_, p. 71.

[108] Neill's _Virginia Company_, p. 411.



[Sidenote: Retrospect.]

[Sidenote: Tidewater Virginia.]

From the busy streets of London, from the strife in Parliament and the
Privy Council, we must turn once more to the American wilderness and
observe what progress had been made in Virginia during the seventeen
years of its government by a great joint-stock company. But for a
correct appreciation of the situation we must qualify and limit this
period of seventeen years. The terrible experience of the first three
years left the colony at the point of death, and it was not until the
administration of Sir Thomas Dale that any considerable expansion
beyond Jamestown began. The progress visible in 1624 was mostly an
affair of ten years' duration, dating from the abolition of communism
and the beginnings of tobacco culture. By far the greater part of
this progress had been achieved within the last five years, since the
establishment of self-government and the greater part played by family
life. In 1624 the colony of Virginia extended from the mouth of James
River up nearly as far as the site of Richmond, with plantations on
both banks; and it spread over the peninsula between the James and the
broad stream next to the north of it, which at that time was called the
Charles, but since 1642 has been known as the York River. There were
also a few settlements on the Accomac peninsula east of Chesapeake Bay.
It would be hard to find elsewhere upon the North American coast any
region where the land is so generally and easily penetrable by streams
that can be navigated. The country known as "tidewater Virginia" is a
kind of sylvan Venice. Into the depths of the shaggy woodland for many
miles on either side the great bay the salt tide ebbs and flows. One
can go surprisingly far inland on sea-faring craft, while with a boat
there are but few plantations on the old York peninsula to which one
cannot approach very near. In the absence of good roads this ubiquity
of navigable water was a great convenience, but doubtless the very
convenience of it may have delayed the arduous work of breaking good
land-routes through the wilderness, and thus have tended to maintain
the partial isolation of the planters' estates, to which so many
characteristic features of life in Old Virginia may be traced.

[Sidenote: Receding frontier.]

[Sidenote: The plantations.]

If in 1624 we had gone up stream to Werowocomoco, where Smith had
broken the ice with his barge fifteen years before, we should probably
have found very little of its strange barbaric life remaining. The
first backward step of the Indian before the encroaching progress
of Englishmen had been taken. The frontier was fast receding to
the Pamunkey region along the line joining the site of West Point
with that of Cold Harbor; and from that time forward a perpetually
receding frontier of barbarism was to be one of the most profoundly
and variously significant factors in the life of English-speaking
America until the census of 1890 should announce that such a frontier
could no longer be definitely located. In the last year of James I.
the grim Opekankano and his warriors still held the Pamunkey River;
in that neighbourhood and to the north of it one might have seen
symptoms of the wild frontier life of the white hunter and trapper.
Returning thence to the great bay, the plantation called Dale's Gift
on the Accomac shore would have little about it that need detain us,
and so sweeping across from Cape Charles to Point Comfort, we should
come to Elizabeth City, named for King James's daughter Elizabeth,
Queen of Bohemia. The only plantation here, standing like a sentinel
to guard the principal avenue into the colony, bears the name of
the last treasurer of the Company, curtailed into Hampton. The next
borough bears the name of Southampton's enemy, the Earl of Warwick, and
opposite are the plantations on Warrasqueak Bay. Passing Jamestown,
we arrive at the mouth of the Chickahominy, above which lies an
extensive territory known as Charles City, with the plantations of
Wyanoke and Westover, while over on the south side of the James the
settlements known as Martin Brandon, Flowerdieu Hundred, and Bermuda
successively come into sight and disappear. Then we sail around the
City of Henricus, and passing the ruins of Falling Creek, destroyed by
the Indians, we come at length to the charming place that Smith called
Nonesuch. Here, a few miles below the spot where Richmond is in future
to stand, we reach once more the frontier. Beyond are endless stretches
of tangled and mysterious woods through which the sturdy Newport once
vainly tried to find his way to some stream flowing into the Pacific
Ocean. Here we may turn our prow and make our way down to Jamestown,
where the House of Burgesses is in session.

[Sidenote: Boroughs and burgesses.]

[Sidenote: Boroughs and hundreds.]

It is called a House of Burgesses because its members are regarded
as the representatives of boroughs, and such a name sounds queer as
applied to little areas of scattered farms in the forest. Still more
strange is the epithet "city" for tracts of woodland several miles
in extent, and containing half a dozen widely isolated plantations.
The apparent absurdity is emphasized on the modern map, where such
names as Charles City and James City are simply names of counties. How
came such names first to be used in such senses? One's mind naturally
reverts to what goes on to-day in the Far West, where geographical
names, like doubtful promissory notes, must usually be taken with heavy
discount for an uncertain future, where in every such appellation
there lurks the hope of a boom, and any collection of three or four
log-cabins, with a saw-mill and whiskey-shop, surrounded by a dozen
acres of blackened tree-stumps, may forthwith appear in the Postal
Guide under some such title as Chain Lightning City. In oldest Virginia
we may perhaps see marks of such a spirit of buoyant confidence in
such names as Charles City or the City of Henricus. No doubt Sir
Thomas Dale, when he fortified the little Dutch Gap peninsula and
marked out its streets, believed himself to be founding a true city
with urban destinies awaiting it. This explanation, however, does
not cover the whole case. Whatever the title of each individual
settlement in oldest Virginia,--whether plantation, or hundred, or
city,--all were alike conceived, for legal and political purposes,
as equivalent to boroughs, although they were not thus designated.
Now the primary meaning of the word "borough" is "fortress," and in
early English usage a borough was a small and thickly peopled hundred
surrounded by a durable wall. A "hundred" was a small aggregation of
townships united by a common responsibility for the good behaviour of
its people; it was therefore the smallest area for the administration
of justice, the smallest social community which possessed a court.
Ordinarily the hundred was a rural community, but that special
compact and fortified form of it known as the borough retained all
the legal features of the ordinary hundred; it had its own court,
and was responsible for its own malefactors and vagrants. In old
English boroughs the responsible men--those who owned property, and
paid taxes, and chose representatives--were the burgesses. Bearing
always in mind this equivalence between the borough and the hundred,
we may note further that in early times the hundred was a unit for
military purposes; it was about such a community as could furnish to
the general levy a company of a hundred armed men. It was also a unit
of representation in the ancient English shire-moot or county court.
Now in oldest Virginia the colonial assembly, when instituted in 1619,
the earliest legislature of civilized men in the western hemisphere,
was patterned after the old English county court, and it was natural
that its units should be conceived as hundreds and in some instances
called so. Moreover, there are indications that at times the hundred
was regarded as a military division, and also as the smallest area for
the administration of justice, as in the law passed in 1624 providing
that Charles City and Elizabeth City should hold monthly courts.[109]
Whatever names the early settlers of Virginia gave to their settlements
individually, they seem to have regarded them all in the legal light of
hundreds, and as they were familiar with the practical equivalence of
the borough as a unit for judicial and representative purposes, it was
natural that when they came to choose a general assembly they should
speak of its members as if they were representatives of boroughs.
They were familiar with burgesses in England, but the designations
"hundred-men" and "hundred-elders" had become obsolete.

[Sidenote: The houses.]

[Sidenote: Labourers.]

[Sidenote: Indians.]

Resuming our pilgrimage through the Virginia of 1624, we find no walls
of massive masonry with frowning turrets encompassing these rudimentary
boroughs, but at the most exposed points we meet with stout wooden
blockhouses and here and there a row of palisades. At some places
there are wharves for the convenient shipping of tobacco, but now and
then, if the tide is not just right, we may be in danger of wetting our
feet in going ashore, about which that ill-disposed Captain Butler has
lately made so much fuss. The wooden frame houses, having been built
without regard to æsthetic effects, with beams here and there roughly
hewn and boards not always smoothly planed, are not so attractive in
outward appearance as they might be, but they are roomy and well-aired,
and the settlers already point to them with some degree of pride as
more comfortable than the houses of labouring men in England. These
houses usually stand at wide intervals, and nowhere, perhaps, except
at Henricus and Jamestown, would one see them clustering in a village
with streets. Here and there one might come across a handsomer and
more finished mansion, like an English manor house, with cabins for
servants and farm buildings at some distance. Of negroes scarcely any
are to be seen, only twenty-two all told, in this population of perhaps
4,000 souls. Cheap labour is supplied by white servants, bound to their
masters by indentures for some such term as six or seven years; they
are to some extent a shiftless and degraded set of creatures gathered
from the slums and jails of English seaport towns, but many of them
are of a better sort. Of red men, since the dreadful massacre of two
years ago, one sees but few; they have been driven off to the frontier,
the alliance cemented by the marriage of Pocahontas is at an end, and
no more can white men be called Powhatans. On this point the statute
book speaks in no uncertain tones: "Ffor the Indians we hould them our
irrecosileable enimies," and it is thought fit that if any of them
be found molesting cattle or lurking about any plantation, "then the
commander shall have power by virtue of this act to rayse a sufficient
partie and fall out uppon them, and persecute them as he shall finde

[Sidenote: Agriculture, etc.]

In the plantations, thus freed from the presence of Indians, European
domestic animals have become plenty. Horses, indeed, are not yet so
much in demand as boats and canoes, but oxen draw the plough, the cows
are milked night and morning, sheep and goats browse here and there,
pigs and chickens are innumerable. Pigeons coo from the eves, and
occasionally one comes upon a row of murmurous bee-hives. The broad
clearings are mostly covered with the cabbage-like tobacco plant, but
there are also many fields of waving wheat and barley, and many more
of the tasselled Indian corn. John Smith's scheme for manufacturing
glass and soap has not yet been abandoned; the few workmen from Poland,
brought here by him, have remained, or else others have come in place
of them, for we find the House of Burgesses passing a statute admitting
them to the franchise and other privileges of English citizenship,
because of their value to the commonwealth in these branches of
industry. Skilled workmen of another sort have been sent over by
Nicholas Ferrar from France, for since mulberries grow in Virginia it
has been thought that silk-worms might be profitably raised here, but
such hopes are not destined to be realized.

[Sidenote: Tobacco.]

Such was the outward aspect of things along the banks of the James
River in the year when, amid general grief and forebodings, the London
Company was dissolved; and such it continued to be for many a year
to come, save that the cultivated area increased in extent and the
settlers in number, and that in spite of divers efforts to check it,
the raising of tobacco encroached more and more upon all other forms
of industry, tending to crush them out of existence, while at the
same time the plantations grew larger and the demand for cheap labour
was vastly increased. For some time the cultivation of Indian corn
assumed considerable proportions, so that not only was there enough
for home consumption, but in 1634 more than ten thousand bushels were
exported to Winthrop's new colony on Massachusetts Bay. Nevertheless
the encroachments of tobacco went on without cessation, until the
features of social life in old Virginia came to be those of a wealthy
and powerful community economically based upon one single form of
agricultural industry.

[Sidenote: Literature.]

In the Virginia of 1624 one could not look for any highly developed
forms of social recreation, or for means of education or literary
attainment. Various episodes of farm work, such as the harvesting
of the crops, or now and then the raising of the frame of a house
or barn, seem to have been occasions for a gathering of neighbours
with some sort of merrymaking, very much as in other primitive rural
communities. Among the leading colonists were men of university
education who brought with them literary tastes, and in their houses
might have been found ponderous tomes of controversial theology, as
well as those little thin quarto tracts of political discussion that
nowadays often fetch such fabulous prices. Captain John Smith was
spending his last years quietly in England, making maps and writing or
editing books. His "General History of Virginia," published in 1624,
can hardly fail to have been read with interest in the colony; and the
same ship that brought it may well have brought the first folio edition
of Shakespeare's complete works, which came from the press in the
preceding year. Literary production of a certain sort went on in the
colony. Such tracts as Ralph Hamor's "True Discourse" and Whitaker's
"Good News from Virginia," though books of rare interest and value,
will perhaps hardly come under the category of pure literature. But the
translation of Ovid's Metamorphoses by George Sandys, youngest brother
of Sir Edwin, has been well known and admired by scholars from that
time to our own. George Sandys came to Virginia in 1621 as treasurer
of the colony, fortified with some rather dull verses from the poet
laureate, Michael Drayton:--

    "And worthy George, by industry and use
     Let's see what lines Virginia will produce;
     Entice the Muses thither to repair,
     Entreat them gently, train them to that air;
     For they from hence may thither hap to fly."

On the bank of James River the worthy George entreated the Muses with
success and wrote the greater part of his poetical version, which was
published at London in 1626.

[Sidenote: Education.]

[Sidenote: Project for a university.]

But the Muses could not be enticed to stay long in Virginia without
some provision for higher education there, and this was well understood
by Sir Edwin Sandys and the enlightened gentlemen who supported him. In
1621 the Company resolved that funds should be appropriated "for the
erecting of a public free school ... for the education of children and
grounding of them in the principles of religion. Civility of life and
humane learning," said the committee's report, "seemed to carry with
it the greatest weight and highest consequence unto the plantations
as that whereof both Church and Commonwealth take their original
foundation and happy estate, this being also like[ly] to prove a work
most acceptable unto the planters, through want whereof they have
been hitherto constrained to their great costs to send their children
from thence hither to be taught." Rev. Patrick Copeland, a missionary
returning from the East Indies, raised £70 toward the endowment of
this school, and was busily engaged in doing more for it. It was
accordingly called the East India School, it was to be established in
Charles City, and its courses of study were to be preparatory to those
of a university which was to be set up in the city of Henricus. Great
interest was felt in this university. Like Harvard College, founded
somewhat later, it was designed not only for the education of white
youths but also for civilizing and missionary work among the Indians.
The Bishop of London raised by subscription £1,000 for the enterprise;
one anonymous benefactor gave a silver communion service; another,
who signed himself "Dust and Ashes," sent £550, and promised, after
certain progress should have been made, to add £450 more; this man
was afterward discovered to be a member of the Company, named Gabriel
Barber. The elder Nicholas Ferrar left £300 in his will, and various
contributions were added by his sons. A tract of land in Henricus was
appropriated for the site of the college, and George Thorpe was sent
out to be its rector, or, as we should say, its president. But Thorpe,
as well as others who were interested in the enterprise, perished in
the Indian massacre of 1622. It seems that Copeland was about to be
sent to take his place, and the enterprise was about to be vigorously
pushed on by Ferrar and his friends, when the overthrow of the Company
took away all control over Virginian affairs from the people most
interested in this work. So the scheme for a college remained in a
state of suspended vitality for seventy years, until Dr. Blair revived
it in 1692, and established it in the town of Williamsburg.

[Sidenote: Puritans and Liberal Churchmen.]

Everybody knows that the college of William and Mary is the oldest in
the United States, after Harvard. It is not so generally known that
the former was planned and all but established in 1622, eight years
before Winthrop and his followers came to Massachusetts Bay. It is a
just and wholesome pride that New England people feel in recalling the
circumstances under which Harvard College was founded, in a little
colony but six years of age, still struggling against the perils of
the wilderness and the enmity of its sovereign. Such an event is quite
properly cited in illustration of the lofty aims and intelligent
foresight of the founders of Massachusetts. But it should not be
forgotten that aims equally lofty and foresight equally intelligent
were shown by the men who from 1619 to 1624 controlled the affairs of
Virginia. One of the noblest features in the great Puritan movement
was its zeal for education, elementary education for everybody and
higher education for all who could avail themselves of it. It is
important to remember that this zeal for education, as well as the zeal
for political liberty, was not confined to the Puritans. Within the
established Church of England and never feeling a desire to leave it,
were eminent men who to the political principles of Pym joined a faith
in education as strong as Locke's. The general temper of these men, of
whom Richard Hooker was the illustrious master, was broadly tolerant.
Sir Edwin Sandys was friendly to the Leyden Pilgrims, and it was under
his administration that the Virginia Company granted them the patent
under which they would have founded their colony on the coast of New
Jersey or Delaware, had not foul weather driven the Mayflower to Cape
Cod. It was Sandys and Nicholas Ferrar that were most energetic in the
attempt to found a college in Virginia, and there were some curious
points of resemblance between their situation in 1622 and the situation
of Winthrop and his friends while they were laying the foundations of
Harvard College. In 1622, while James I. was plotting the overthrow
of the London Company, the horrors of Indian massacre, as sudden as
lightning from a cloudless sky, fell upon the people of Virginia. In
1637 the people of Massachusetts had the Pequot war on their hands, and
Charles I. was plotting the overthrow of the Company of Massachusetts
Bay, against whose charter he was on the point of issuing a writ of
_quo warranto_, when in St. Giles's church at Edinburgh one Sunday old
Jenny Geddes threw her camp-stool at the bishop's head, and in the
ensuing turmoil American affairs were quite forgotten.

[Sidenote: Massachusetts and Virginia.]

The comparison reminds us that the Company of Massachusetts Bay knew
how to profit by the fate of its great predecessor, the London Company
for Virginia. In the summer of 1629, when things were looking very dark
in England, the leaders of the Massachusetts Bay Company held a meeting
at Cambridge and decided to carry their company, with its charter,
across the ocean to New England, where they might work out their
purposes without so much danger from royal interference. This transfer
of the Company to America was the most fundamental circumstance in
the early history of New England. The mere physical fact of distance
transformed the commercial company into a self-governing republic,
which for more than fifty years managed its own affairs in almost
entire independence of the British government. Difficulty of access and
infrequency of communication were the safeguards of the Massachusetts
Bay Company. If it had held its meetings and promulgated its measures
in London, its life would not have been worth a five years purchase. It
had the fate of the Virginia Company for a warning, and most adroitly
did it profit by the lesson. If the Virginia Company could have been
transferred bodily to America in 1620, it might perhaps have become
similarly changed into a self-governing semi-independent republic; the
interests of the Company would have been permanently identified with
those of the colony, and the course of Virginian history might have
been profoundly affected. As it was, Virginia attained through the fall
of the Company to such measure of self-government as it had throughout
the colonial period, a self-government much like that of Massachusetts
after 1692, but far less complete than that of Massachusetts before

[Sidenote: Death of James I.]

It was not the intention of James I. that the overthrow of the Company
should contribute in any way to increase the liberties of the colony
of Virginia. All colonizable territory claimed by Great Britain was,
in his opinion, just so much royal domain, something which came to him
by inheritance like the barony of Renfrew or the manor of Windsor; it
was his to do what he liked with it, and for settlers in such territory
no better law was needed than such as he could make for them himself.
A shadow of doubt as to his own omniscience was never one of James's
weaknesses, and no sooner had the Company's charter been annulled than
he set himself to work to draw up a constitution for Virginia. It was
work of a sort that he thoroughly enjoyed, but what might have come of
it will never be known, for while he was busy with it there came upon
him what the doctors called a tertian ague, which carried him off in
March, 1625.

[Sidenote: Effect of the downfall of the Company.]

In the history of England no era is marked by the accession of Charles
I. In its policy and methods, and in the political problems at issue,
his reign was merely the continuation of his father's. But in the
history of Virginia his accession marks an important era. For if James
had lived to complete his constitution for Virginia he would in all
probability have swept away the representative government introduced
by Sir Edwin Sandys; but Charles allowed it to stand. As the situation
was left by the death of James, so it remained without essential change
until 1776. The House of Burgesses was undisturbed, but the governor
and council were thenceforth appointed by the crown. The colony was
thus left less independent than it would have been if the Company,
with its power of electing its own executive officers, could have been
transferred bodily to Virginia; but it was left more independent than
it would have been if the existence of the Company had been continued
in London. The change from governors appointed by the Company to
governors appointed by the crown was a relaxation of the supervision
which England exercised over Virginia. For the Company could devote all
its attention to the affairs of the colony, but the crown could not.
Especially in such reigns as those of the two Charleses, the attention
of the crown was too much absorbed with affairs in Great Britain to
allow it to interfere decisively with the course of events in Virginia.
The colony was thus in the main thrown back upon its own resources,
and such a state of things was most favourable to its wholesome
development. The Company, after all, was a commercial corporation,
and the main object of its existence was to earn money for its
shareholders. The pursuit of that object was by no means always sure to
coincide with the best interests of the colony. Moreover, although the
government of the Company from 1619 to 1624 was conducted with energy
and sagacity, disinterestedness, honesty, and breadth of view such as
history has seldom seen rivalled, yet there was no likelihood that such
would always be the case. Such a combination of men in responsible
positions as Southampton and Sandys and Ferrar is too rare to be
counted upon. The Company might have passed for a weary while under
the control of incompetent or unscrupulous men, and to a young colony
like Virginia such a contingency would have been not only disagreeable
but positively dangerous. No community, indeed, can long afford to
have its affairs administered by a body of men so far away as to be
out of immediate touch with it. On the other hand, even if we could
suppose a commercial company to go on year after year managing a colony
with so much intelligence and sympathy as the London Company showed
in its last days, such a situation would not be permanently wholesome
for the colony. What men need is not fostering or coddling, but the
chance to give free play to their individual capacities. If coddling
and fostering could make a colony thrive, the French in Canada ought to
have dominated North America. From all points of view, therefore, it
seems to have been well for Virginia that the Company fell when it did.
It established self-government there, set its machinery successfully to
work, and then vanished from the scene, like the Jinni in some Oriental
tale, leaving its good gift behind.

[Sidenote: The virus of liberty.]

The boon of self-government was so congenial to the temper of the
Virginians that they would doubtless have contrived somehow to obtain
it sooner or later. Hutchinson tells us that when the second American
house of representatives was instituted, namely, that of Massachusetts
Bay in 1634, the people were well aware that no provision for anything
of the sort had been made in of their charter, but they assumed that
the right to such representation was implied by that clause of the
charter which reserved to them the natural rights of Englishmen;[111]
and elsewhere the same eminent historian quaintly speaks of a House
of Burgesses as having _broken out_ in Virginia in 1619, as if there
were an incurable virus of liberty in the English blood, as if it
were something that must come out as inevitably as original sin. But
if James I. had lived longer, as I have already observed, he would
undoubtedly have made an effort to repress this active spirit of
liberty. The colonists, on hearing of the downfall of the Company, were
in great alarm lest they should lose their House of Burgesses, and
have some arbitrary governor appointed to rule over them, perhaps the
hated Argall himself, whom we have seen King James selecting as one of
a board of commissioners to investigate affairs in Virginia. In 1621,
when for some reason or other the amiable and popular Yeardley had
asked to be relieved of the duties of governor, Argall had tried to get
himself appointed in his place, but the Company had chosen Sir Francis
Wyatt, who held the office until 1626, while Yeardley remained in
Virginia as a member of the council. In 1625, as soon as the assembly
heard of King James's death, they sent Yeardley to England to pay their
respects to King Charles and to assure him that the people of Virginia
were thoroughly satisfied with their government and hoped that no
changes would be made in it.

[Sidenote: Charles I. and the tobacco trade.]

Now it happened that Charles had a favour to ask of the settlers in
Virginia, and was in the right sort of mood for a bargain. He was
no more in love than his father with the many-tongued beast called
Parliament, he saw how comfortably his brother-in-law of France was
getting along without such assistance, and he was determined if
possible to do likewise. But to get along without parliaments a poor
king must have some means of getting money. The Virginia tobacco crop
was fast becoming a great source of wealth; why should not the king
himself go into the tobacco trade? If all tobacco brought to England
from Virginia could be consigned to him, then he could retail it to
consumers at his own price and realize a gigantic profit; or, what was
perhaps still better, having obtained this monopoly, he could farm
it out to various agents who would be glad to pay roundly for the
privilege. Now the only way in which he could treat with the people
of Virginia on such matters was through the representatives of the
people. Accordingly, when Governor Wyatt in 1626 had occasion to return
to England, the king sent back Sir George Yeardley as royal governor,
which under the circumstances was a most emphatic assurance that the
wishes of the settlers should be granted. Furthermore, in a message to
their representatives Charles graciously addressed them as "Our trusty
and well-beloved Burgesses of the Grand Assembly of Virginia," and
thus officially recognized that house as a coördinate branch of the
colonial government. Some arrangements made with regard to the tobacco
trade were calculated to please the colonists. James I., under the
influence of his mentor, Count Gondomar, had browbeaten the Company
into an arrangement by which they consented to import into England not
more than 60,000 or less than 40,000 pounds of tobacco yearly from
the Spanish colonies. Charles I. on the other hand prohibited the
importation of Spanish tobacco, so that Virginia and the Bermudas had
a monopoly of the market. In spite of this friendly attitude of the
king toward the colonists, he never succeeded in becoming the sole
purchaser of their tobacco at a stipulated price. The assembly was
ready from time to time to entertain various proposals, but it never
went so far as that; and if Charles, in sanctioning this little New
World parliament, counted upon getting substantial aid in ignoring his
Parliament at home, he was sadly disappointed.

[Sidenote: The first American legislature.]

It is now time for us to attend a session of this House of Burgesses,
to make a report of its work, and to mention some of the vicissitudes
which it encountered in the course of the reign of Charles I. The
place of meeting was the wooden church at Jamestown, 50 feet in length
by 20 in width, built in 1619, for Lord Delaware's church had become
dilapidated; a solid brick church, 56 feet by 28, was built there in
1639. From the different plantations and hundreds the burgesses came
mostly in their barges or sloops to Jamestown. In 1634 the colony was
organized into counties and parishes, and the burgesses thenceforth
represented counties, but they always kept their old title. At first
the governor, council, and burgesses met together in a single assembly,
just as in Massachusetts until 1644, just as in England the Lords
and Commons usually sat together before 1339.[112] A member of this
Virginia parliament must take his breakfast of bacon and hoe-cake
betimes, for the meeting was called together at the third beat of the
drum, one hour after sunrise. The sessions were always opened with
prayers, and every absence from this service was punished with a fine
of one shilling. The fine for absence during the whole day was half a
crown. In the choir of the church sat the governor and council, their
coats trimmed with gold lace. By the statute of 1621, passed in this
very church, no one was allowed to wear gold lace except these high
officials and the commanders of hundreds, a class of dignitaries who
in 1634 were succeeded by the county lieutenants. In the body of the
church, facing the choir, sat the burgesses in their best attire, with
starched ruffs, and coats of silk or velvet in bright colours. All sat
with their hats on, in imitation of the time-honoured custom of the
House of Commons, an early illustration of the democratic doctrine, "I
am as good as you." These burgesses had their speaker, as well as their
clerk and sergeant-at-arms. Such was the first American legislature,
and two of its acts in the year 1624 were especially memorable. One
was the declaration, passed without any dissenting voice, "that the
governor shall not lay any taxes or impositions upon the colony,
their lands or commodities, otherway than by the authority of the
general assembly, to be levied and employed as the said assembly shall
appoint." The other was the punishment of Edward Sharpless, clerk of
the house. When the king's commissioners to inquire into the affairs
of Virginia asked for the public records of the colony the assembly
refused to show them, albeit they were ready to answer questions
propounded in a becoming temper. But the commissioners practised upon
Sharpless and induced him to furnish them with a copy of the records,
whereupon the assembly condemned the said Sharpless to stand in the
pillory and have half of one ear cut off.

[Sidenote: Martin's case.]

[Sidenote: Education of Indians.]

This general assembly was both a legislative and a judicial body. It
enacted laws and prescribed the penalties for breaking them, it tried
before a jury persons accused of crime and saw that due punishment
was inflicted upon those who were adjudged guilty, it determined
civil causes, assessed the amount of damages, and saw that they were
collected. From sweeping principles of constitutional law down to
the pettiest sumptuary edicts, there was nothing which this little
parliament did not superintend and direct. On one occasion, "the
delegates from Captain John Martin's plantation were excepted to
because of a peculiar clause in his patent releasing him from obeying
any order of the colony except in times of war." A few days afterward
the said Captain Martin appeared at the bar of the house, and the
speaker asking whether he would relinquish the particular clause
exempting him from colonial authority, replied that he would not yield
any part of his patent. The assembly then resolved that the burgesses
of his plantation were not entitled to seats.[113] Such exemptions of
individual planters by especial license from the home government,
although rare, were of course anomalies not to be commended; in some
cases they proved to be nuisances, and in course of time all were got
rid of. From this constitutional question the assembly turned to the
conversion of the red men, and enacted that each borough or hundred
should obtain from the Indians by just and fair means a certain number
of Indian children to be educated "in true religion and a civil course
of life; of which children the most towardly boys in wit and graces
of nature [are] to be brought up by them in the first elements of
literature, so as to be fitted for the college intended for them,
that from thence they may be sent to that work of conversion." Few
enactments of any legislature have ever been better intended or less
fruitful than this.

[Sidenote: Drunkards.]

It was moreover enacted that any person found drunk was for the first
offence to be privately reproved by the minister; the second time
this reproof was to be publicly administered; the third time the
offender must be put in irons for twelve hours and pay a fine; for any
subsequent offences he must be severely punished at the discretion of
the governor and council.

[Sidenote: Dress.]

To guard the community against excessive vanity in dress, it was
enacted that for all public contributions every unmarried man must be
assessed in church "according to his own apparel;" and every married
man must be assessed "according to his own and his wife's apparel."

[Sidenote: Flirting.]

Not merely extravagance in dress, but such social misdemeanours as
flirting received due legislative condemnation. Pretty maids were known
to encourage hopes in more than one suitor, and gay deceivers of the
sterner sex would sometimes seek to win the affections of two or more
women at the same time. Wherefore it was enacted that "every minister
should give notice in his church that what man or woman soever should
use any word or speech tending to a contract of marriage to two several
persons at one time ... as might entangle or breed scruples in their
consciences, should for such their offense, either undergo corporal
correction [by whipping] or be punished by fine or otherwise, according
to the quality of the person so offending."[114]

[Sidenote: Scandal.]

[Sidenote: Clergymen.]

Men were held to more strict accountability for the spoken or written
word than in these shameless modern days. One of the most prominent
settlers we find presenting a petition to the assembly to grant him
due satisfaction against a neighbour who has addressed to him a letter
"wherein he taxeth him both unseemly and amiss of certain things
wherein he was never faulty." Speaking against the governor or any
member of the council was liable to be punished with the pillory. It
was also imprudent to speak too freely about clergymen, who were held
in great reverence. No planter could dispose of so much as a pound
of tobacco until he had laid aside a certain specified quantity as
his assessment toward the minister's salary, which was thus assured
even in the worst times, so far as legislation could go. It was
enacted that "noe man shall disparage a mynister whereby the myndes
of his parishoners may be alienated from him and his mynistrie prove
less effectuall, upon payne of severe censure of the governor and
councell."[115] At the same time clergymen were warned against unseemly
practices in terms so concrete as to raise a suspicion that such
warning may have been needed. "Mynisters shall not give themselves to
excesse in drinking or ryott, spending their tyme idelie by day or
by night playing at dice, cards, or any other unlawfull game, but at
all tymes convenient they shall heare or reade somewhat of the holy
scriptures, or shall occupie themselves with some other honest studies
or exercise, alwayes doinge the things which shall apperteyne to
honestie and endeavour to profitt the church of God, having alwayes in
mind that they ought to excell all others in puritie of life, should be
examples to the people, to live well and christianlie."[116]

[Sidenote: Sabbath-breaking.]

The well-being of Virginia society was further protected by sundry
statutes such as the one which punished profane swearing by a fine
of one shilling per oath. "For the better observation of the Saboth"
it was enacted that no person "shall take a voyage vppon the same,
except it be to church or for other causes of extreme necessitie,"
under penalty of forfeiting twenty pounds of tobacco for each offence.
A similar fine was imposed for firing a gun upon Sunday, unless it
might be for defence against the Indians. Selling arms or ammunition
to Indians was punished by imprisonment for life, with confiscation
of goods. Every master of a family was required, under penalty of
ten pounds of tobacco, to bring with him to church every Sunday a
serviceable gun with plenty of powder and shot.

[Sidenote: Strong drink.]

Stringent legislation protected the rights of thirsty persons. "Whereas
there hath been great abuse by the vnreasonable rates enacted by
ordinary keepers, and retaylers of wine and strong waters," maximum
prices were established as follows: for Spanish wines 30 lbs. of
tobacco per gallon, for Madeira 20 lbs., for French wines 15 lbs.,
for brandy 40 lbs., for "the best sorte of all English strong waters"
80 lbs.; and any vender charging above these rates was to be fined at
double the rate. For corrupting or "sophisticating" good liquor by
fraudulent admixtures, a fine was imposed at the discretion of the
commissioners of the county courts. The inn-keeper who sold wines and
spirits to his guests did so at his own risk, for such debts were not
recoverable at law.[117]

[Sidenote: Forestallers.]

The ancient prejudice against forestalling survives in the following
statute, which would make havoc of the business of some modern brokers:
"Whatsoever person or persons shall buy or cause to be bought any
marchandize, victualls, or any other thinge, comminge by land or
water to the markett to be sold, or make any bargaine, contract or
promise for the haveinge or buyinge of the same ... before the said
marchandize, victualls, or other thinge shall bee at the markett
readie to be sold; or make any motion by word, letter or message or
otherwise to any person or persons for the enhaunsing of the price,
or dearer sellinge of any thinge or thinges above mentioned, or else
disswade, move, or stirr any person or persons cominge to the marquett,
to abstaine or forbeare to bringe or conveye any of the things above
rehearsed to any markett as aforesayd, shall be deemed and adjudged a
forestaller. And yf any person or persons shall offend in the things
before recited and beinge thereof dulie convicted or attaynted shall
for his or theire first offence suffer imprisonment by the space of
two mounthes without baile or maine-prize, and shall also loose and
forfeite the value of the goods soe by him or them bought or had as
aforesayd; and for a second offence ... shall suffer imprisonment by
the space of one halfe yeare ... and shall loose the double value
of all the goods ... soe bought ... and for the third offence ...
shall be sett on the pillorie ... and loose and forfeit all the
goods and chattels that he or they then have to theire owne use, and
also be committed to prison, there to remayne duringe the Governor's

       *       *       *       *       *

[Sidenote: The kingdom of Virginia.]

Edmund Spenser, in his dedication of the "Faëry Queene," in 1590, calls
Elizabeth the queen of England, France, and Ireland, and of Virginia,
thus characterizing as a kingdom the vast and vague domain in the
New World which she was appropriating. Soon after the downfall of the
Virginia Company, the document containing Charles I.'s appointment of
William Claiborne as secretary of state in the colony mentioned it as
"our kingdom of Virginia;" and the phrase occurs in other writings of
the time. It is a phrase that seems especially appropriate for the
colony after it had come to be a royal province, directly dependent
upon the king for its administration. During the reign of Charles I.
the relations of the kingdom of Virginia to the mother country were
marked by few memorable incidents. In this respect the contrast with
the preceding reign is quite striking. One must read the story in the
original state papers, correspondence, and pamphlets of the time, in
order to realize to what an extent the colony was cut loose by the
overthrow of the Company. The most interesting and important questions
that came up were connected with the settlement of Maryland, but before
we enter upon that subject, a few words are needed on the succession of
royal governors in Virginia.

[Sidenote: A convivial governor.]

The commission of Yeardley in 1626 named Sir John Harvey as his
successor. When Yeardley died in 1627, Harvey had not arrived upon the
scene, and needed to be notified. In such cases it was the business
of the council to appoint a governor _ad interim_, and the council
appointed one of the oldest and most honoured settlers, Francis West,
brother of the late Lord Delaware. After one year of service business
called West to England, and his place was taken by Dr. John Pott, who
held the government until Sir John Harvey's arrival in March, 1630.
This Dr. Pott is described as "a Master of Arts, ... well practised
in chirurgery and physic, and expert also in distilling of waters,
[besides] many other ingenious devices."[119] It seems that he was
likewise very fond of tasting distilled waters, and at times was more
of a boon companion than quite comported with his dignity, especially
after he had come to be governor. A letter of George Sandys to a friend
in London says of Dr. Pott, "at first he kept company too much with
his inferiors, who hung upon him while his good liquor lasted. After,
he consorted with Captain Whitacres, a man of no good example, with
whom he has gone to Kecoughtan."[120] What was done by the twain at
Kecoughtan is not matter of record, but we are left with a suggestion
of the darkest possibilities of a carouse.

After Harvey's arrival ex-Governor Pott was arrested, and held to
answer two charges: one was for having abused the powers entrusted to
him by pardoning a culprit who had been convicted of wilful murder; the
other was for stealing cattle. The first charge was a matter of common
notoriety; on the second Dr. Pott was tried by a jury and found guilty.
The ex-governor was not only a pardoner of felony, but a felon himself.
The affair reads like a scene in comic opera. Some reluctance was felt
about inflicting vulgar punishment upon an educated man of good social
position; so he was not sent to jail but confined in his own house,
while Sir John Harvey wrote to the king for instructions in the matter.
He informed the king that Dr. Pott was by far the best physician in
the colony, and indeed the only one "skilled in epidemicals," and
recommended that he should be pardoned. Accordingly the doctor was set
free and forthwith resumed his practice.

[Sidenote: Growth of Virginia.]

[Sidenote: Other colonies.]

Soon it was Governor Harvey's turn to get into difficulties. How he was
"thrust out" from his government in 1635 and restored to it by Charles
I. in 1637 will best be told in a future chapter in connection with
the affairs of Maryland. After Harvey's final departure in 1639, Sir
Francis Wyatt was once more governor for three years, and then came the
famous Sir William Berkeley, who remained for five-and-thirty years the
most conspicuous figure in Virginia. When Berkeley arrived upon the
scene, in 1642, on the eve of the great Civil War, he received from
Wyatt the government of a much greater Virginia than that over which
Wyatt was ruling in 1624. Those eighteen years of self-government had
been years of remarkable prosperity and progress. Instead of 4,000
English and 22 negroes, the population now numbered 15,000 English and
300 negroes. Moreover, Virginia was no longer the only English colony.
In 1624 there were no others, except the little band of about 200
Pilgrims at Plymouth. In 1642 the population of New England numbered
26,000, distributed among half-a-dozen self-governing colonies. There
was also a community of Dutchmen laying claim to the whole region
between the Mohawk valley and Delaware Bay, with a flourishing town
on Manhattan Island in the finest commercial situation on the whole
Atlantic coast. The Virginians did not relish the presence of these
Dutchmen, for they too laid claim to that noble tract of country. The
people of Virginia had made the first self-supporting colony and felt
that they had established a claim upon the middle zone. The very name
Virginia had not yet ceased to cling to it. In books of that time one
may read of the town of New Amsterdam upon the island of Manhattan in
Virginia. In 1635 a party of Virginians went up to the Delaware River
and took possession of an old blockhouse there, called Fort Nassau,
which the Dutch had abandoned; but a force from New Amsterdam speedily
took them prisoners and sent them back to Virginia,[121] with a polite
warning not to do so any more. They did not.

Still nearer at hand, by the waters of the Potomac and Susquehanna,
other rivals and competitors, even more unwelcome to the Virginians,
had lately come upon the scene. The circumstances of the founding
of Maryland, with its effects upon the kingdom of Virginia, will be
recounted in the two following chapters.


[109] Ingle, "Local Institutions of Virginia," _J. H. U. Studies_,
iii. 148.

[110] Hening's _Statutes at Large_, i. 176, 193.

[111] Hutchinson, _Hist. Mass. Bay_, i. 37.

[112] Skottowe, _Short History of Parliament_, p. 19; Taswell-Langmead,
_English Constitutional History_, p. 262.

[113] Neill's _Virginia Company_, p. 140.

[114] Cooke's _Virginia_, p. 149.

[115] Hening's _Statutes at Large_, i. 156.

[116] Hening, i. 158, 183.

[117] Hening, i. 194, 219, 261, 263, 300, 319, 350.

[118] Hening, i 194.

[119] Neill's _Virginia Company_, p. 221.

[120] Neill's _Virginia Carolorum_, p. 79.

[121] Brodhead's _History of New York_, i. 254.



[Sidenote: The Irish Baltimore.]

ON the southwestern coast of Ireland, not far from Cape Clear, the
steamship on its way from New York to Liverpool passes within sight of
a small promontory crowned by an ancient village bearing the Gaelic
name of Baltimore, which signifies "large townlands."[122] The events
which transferred this Irish name to the banks of the Patapsco River
make an interesting chapter of history.

[Sidenote: George Calvert.]

George Calvert, son of a wealthy Yorkshire farmer of Flemish descent,
was born about 1580. After taking his degree at Oxford and travelling
for some time on the Continent, he was employed as an under-secretary
in the state department by Sir Robert Cecil, after whom he named his
eldest son Cecilius. His warm advocacy of the Spanish marriage made him
a great favourite of James I., so that in 1617 he was knighted and in
1619 was appointed secretary of state. He seems always to have had a
leaning toward the Roman Church. Whether he was converted in 1624, or
simply made public profession of a faith long cherished in secret, is
matter of doubt. At all events, he resigned his secretaryship at that
time. The next year one of the last things done by James, a few days
before his death, was to raise Calvert to the Irish peerage as Baron

[Sidenote: A palatinate in Newfoundland.]

The son of Mary Stuart had a liberal way of dealing with his
favourites. In March, 1623, he granted the great southeastern
promontory in Newfoundland--the region now known as Ferryland, between
Trinity and Placentia bays--to George Calvert, to be held by him and
his heirs forever. The government was to be a "palatinate," a statement
which calls for a somewhat detailed explanation.

[Sidenote: Origin of palatinates.]

When that great and far-sighted ruler William the Conqueror arranged
the affairs of England after the battle of Hastings, he sought to
prevent such evils as those against which the newly founded Capetian
monarchy in France was struggling for life, evils arising from the
imperfect subordination of the great feudal lords. To this end he made
it a rule not to grant large contiguous estates to the same lord, and
in every county he provided that the king's officer, the sheriff,
should be clothed with powers overriding those of the local manorial
officers. He also obliged the tenants of the barons to swear fealty
directly to the crown. This shrewd and wholesome policy, as developed
under his able son Henry I. and his still abler great-grandson Henry
II., has profoundly affected the political career of the English race.
But to this general policy William admitted one class of exceptions.
In the border counties, which were never quite free from the fear of
invasion, and where lawlessness was apt to be more or less prevalent in
time of peace, it was desirable to make the local rulers more powerful.
Considerations of this sort prevailed throughout mediæval Europe.
Universally, the ruler of a march or border county, the count or graf
or earl placed in such a responsible position, acquired additional
power and dignity, and came to be distinguished by a grander title, as
margrave, marquis, or count of the marches. In accordance with this
general principle, William the Conqueror granted exceptional powers
and consolidation of authority to three counties, to Durham on the
Scotch border, to Chester on the border of Wales, and to Kent, where
an invader from the Continent might with least difficulty effect a
landing. Local administration in those counties was concentrated
in the hands of the county ruler; they were made exceptionally
strong to serve as buffers for the rest of the kingdom, and they were
called "palatinates" or "counties palatine," implying that within
their boundaries the rulers had quasi-regal rights as complete as
those which the king had in his palace. They appointed the officers
of justice, they could pardon treasons and felonies, forfeitures at
common law accrued to them, and legal writs ran in their name instead
of the king's. The title of "count palatine" carries us back to the
times of the Merovingian kings in Gaul, when it belonged to one of the
highest officers in the royal household, who took judicial cognizance
of all pleas of the crown. Hence the title came to be applied to
other officers endowed with quasi-regal powers. Such were the counts
palatine of the Rhine and Bavaria, who in the course of the thirteenth
century became electoral princes of the Holy Roman Empire. One of their
domains, the Rhenish Palatinate, of which Heidelberg in its peerless
beauty is the crown and glory, has contributed, as we shall hereafter
see, an element of no small importance to the population of the United

[Sidenote: Changes in English palatinates.]

To return to William the Conqueror: in an age when the organization
of society was so imperfect, and action at a distance so slow and
difficult, the possession of quasi-regal powers by the rulers of the
palatine counties made it much easier for them to summon quickly their
feudal forces in case of sudden invasion. In view of the frequency of
quarrels and raids on the border, the quasi-regal authority was liable
at any moment to be needed to prevent war from breaking out, and the
proper administration of justice demanded a short shrift and a sharp
doom for evil-doers. The powers granted by William to the palatine
counties resembled those wielded by the French dukedoms of the same
period, but with admirable forethought he appointed to rule them
priests who could not marry and found feudal families. Durham and for
a time Chester were ruled by their bishops, and over Kent as a secular
jurisdiction William placed his own brother, Odo, Bishop of Bayeux.
In course of time many changes occurred. Kent soon lost its palatine
privileges, while those of Chester were exercised by its earls until
the reign of Henry III., when the earldom lapsed to the crown. After
the conquest of Wales the county of Pembroke on its southwestern coast
was made a palatinate, but its privileges were withdrawn by Henry VIII.
For a time such privileges were enjoyed by Hexhamshire, between Durham
and Northumberland, but under Elizabeth that little county was absorbed
in Northumberland. One other northern shire, the duchy of Lancaster,
was made a palatinate by Edward III., but that came to an end in 1399,
when the Duke of Lancaster ascended the throne of England as Henry IV.
Traces of its old palatinate jurisdiction, however, still survive.
Until the Judicature Act of 1873 Lancaster and Durham had each its
own distinct and independent court of common pleas, and the duchy of
Lancaster has still its own chancellor and chancery court outside of
the jurisdiction of the lord chancellor. As for the palatine authority
of the bishops of Durham, it was vested in the crown in the year
preceding the accession of Victoria.

[Sidenote: The bishopric of Durham.]

[Sidenote: Avalon and Durham.]

From this survey it appears that by the end of the sixteenth century
the bishopric of Durham was left as the only complete instance of a
palatinate, or kingdom within the kingdom. In the northern marches
the need for such a buffer was longer felt than elsewhere, and the
old political structure remained very much as it had been created
by William I., with the mitred bishop at its head. The great Norman
cathedral, in its position of unequalled grandeur,

  "Half house of God,
   Half castle 'gainst the Scot,"

still rears its towers in the blue sky to remind us of the stern days
when tartan-clad thousands came swarming across the Tweed, to fall in
heaps before the longbow at Halidon Hill and Neville's Cross and on
many another field of blood. When the king of Scots came to be king of
England, this principality of Durham afforded an instance of a dominion
thoroughly English yet semi-independent, unimpeachable for loyalty but
distinct in its administration. It was not strange, therefore, that it
should have served as a pattern for colonial governments to be set up
in the New World. For such governments virtual independence combined
with hearty allegiance was the chief desideratum, a fact which in later
days George III. unfortunately forgot. From the merely military point
of view a colony in the American wilderness stood in at least as much
need of palatine authority as any frontier district in the Old World.
Accordingly, when it was decided to entrust the work of founding an
American colony to a nobleman with his clientage of followers, an
example of the needful organization was already furnished by the great
northern bishopric. Calvert's province in Newfoundland, which received
the name of Avalon,[123] was to be modelled after the palatinate of
Durham, and the powers granted to its lord proprietor were perhaps the
most extensive ever bestowed by the English crown upon any subject.

[Sidenote: Baltimore's colony in Newfoundland.]

A party of colonists went at once to Newfoundland in 1623, but various
affairs detained Lord Baltimore at home until 1627, when he came with
his wife and children to dwell in this New World paradise of Avalon.
The trail of the serpent was already there. A French fleet came to
attack the colony, meditating revenge for Argall's treatment of the
French at Mount Desert and Port Royal, but Baltimore's ships were
heavily armed and well handled, and the Frenchmen got the worst of it.
Then a party of Puritans came to Avalon, and these unbidden guests
were horrified at what they saw. The Rev. Erasmus Stourton returned to
England with a shocking story of how Lord Baltimore not only had the
mass performed every Sunday, but had even allowed a Presbyterian child
to be baptized by a Romish priest. Then the climate of Avalon proved to
be anything but what had been expected. One Captain Richard Whitbourne
had published an enthusiastic book in which he recorded his memories
of June days in Newfoundland, with their delicious wild strawberries
and cherries, the soft air redolent with the fragrance of red and white
roses, the woods vocal with thrushes and other songsters that rivalled
the nightingale; of wild beasts there were none that were harmful, and
"in St. John's harbour he once saw a mermaid."[124] Lord Baltimore
learned that it was not always June in Avalon. He wrote to Charles
I. in August, 1629, as follows: "I have met with difficulties and
encumbrances here which in this place are no longer to be resisted,
but enforce me presently to quit my residence and to shift to some
other warmer climate of this New World, where the winters be shorter
and less rigorous. For here your Majesty may please to understand that
I have found by too dear-bought experience, which other men for their
private interests always concealed from me, that from the middle of
October to the middle of May there is a sad fare of winter upon all
this land; both sea and land so frozen for the greater part of the time
as they are not penetrable, no plant or vegetable thing appearing out
of the earth until the beginning of May, nor fish in the sea; beside
the air so intolerable cold as it is hardly to be endured. By means
whereof, and of much salt meat, my house hath been an hospital all this
winter; of a hundred persons fifty sick at a time, myself being one,
and nine or ten of them died. Hereupon I have had strong temptations
to leave all proceedings in plantations, and being much decayed in
my strength, to retire myself to my former quiet; but my inclination
carrying me naturally to these kind of works, and not knowing how
better to employ the poor remainder of my days than ... to further,
the best I may, the enlarging your Majesty's empire in this part of
the world, I am determined to commit this place to fishermen that
are able to encounter storms and hard weather, and to remove myself
with some forty persons to your Majesty's dominion Virginia; where,
if your Majesty will please to grant me a precinct of land, with such
privileges as the king your father ... was pleased to grant me here, I
shall endeavour to the utmost of my power, to deserve it."[125]

[Sidenote: Baltimore's visit to Virginia.]

To this letter the king returned a gracious reply, in which he advised
Lord Baltimore, for the sake of his own comfort and peace of mind, to
give up such arduous kind of work and return to England; but before
this reply reached Avalon, its proprietor had sailed for Virginia, with
Lady Baltimore and the children, and a small retinue of servants and
followers. He wished to see that country with his own eyes and learn
if it were really fit for his purposes. On the first day of October,
1629, he arrived at Jamestown, where he found the assembly in session.
That versatile physician, Dr. Pott, so skilled in "epidemicals" and
strong waters and afterward convicted of lifting cattle, was then
acting as governor. The reception given to Lord Baltimore was anything
but cordial. All good Virginians hated Papists, and this particular
Papist was known to stand in high favour with the king, so that he
might turn out to be dangerous. He had been one of the commissioners
appointed by James I. to look into the affairs of Virginia; what if
he were to persuade Charles I. to turn over the colony into his hands
for safe-keeping? There was really not the slightest danger of such a
thing. Baltimore's wish was not to take possession of a colony already
established, but to found one himself in accordance with his own
ideas. It was not his purpose to become lord over the Virginians, but
their neighbour, who might dwell near them on amicable terms. But the
Virginians did not wish to receive him in any capacity or on any terms,
except as a transient guest. There was an obvious and easy device for
getting rid of him. Dr. Pott and the council tendered to him the oath
of supremacy, which of course he could not take. This oath was a sworn
recognition of the English sovereign as the only supreme authority
throughout the British dominions in all matters ecclesiastical and
spiritual. No Catholic could take such an oath. Baltimore proposed an
alternative declaration of allegiance to which he could swear, but
such a compromise was of course refused. Even had Dr. Pott and the
council felt authorized to assume such responsibility, accommodation
was not what they desired, and the royal favourite was told that he
must sail for England at once. It appears that he met with some very
rude treatment at Jamestown, which does not seem to have been publicly
rebuked until the arrival of the new royal governor, Sir John Harvey,
in the following March; for on the records of the assembly for March
25, 1630, occurs the entry: "Thomas Tindall to be pilloried two hours,
for giving my Lord Baltimore the lie and threatening to knock him
down." It is evident, however, that such unseemly conduct could not
have met with approval among respectable people at Jamestown, for when
Baltimore sailed he left his wife and children there. It is clear that
he intended soon to return, and wished to save them the discomforts and
perils of the double voyage. He knew that Virginian hospitality could
be relied on. His purpose of returning must have been well known, for
the secretary of the colony, William Claiborne, was sent to London to
keep an eye upon him and thwart his schemes as far as possible. After
arriving in England, Lord Baltimore found so many hindrances to be
reckoned with that he sent for his family and they followed him by a
later ship.

[Sidenote: The charter of Maryland.]

Baltimore's first request was for a tract of territory lying south of
James River as far as the mouth of the Chowan (or Passamagnus) River
in Albemarle Sound. This province was to be called Carolina, either
in honour of Charles I., or because the name had been given by the
Huguenots in 1562 in honour of Charles IX. of France to a point farther
south on that coast and was vaguely applicable to territory between
Virginia and Florida. A charter conveying this land to Lord Baltimore
had already been made out when Claiborne appeared with his objections,
which were supported by other persons in London who were entertaining
schemes for founding a sugar-planting colony in Carolina. The matter
was discussed in the Privy Council, and Baltimore's attention was
called to the fact that the Dutch were taking possession of the country
between the Hudson and Delaware rivers; would it not therefore be
desirable to found a colony north of the Potomac, and squeeze these
unwelcome intruders into as narrow a space as possible? Baltimore
accepted this suggestion, and a charter was drawn up, granting to him
as lord proprietor the province which received the name of Maryland,
after Charles's Catholic queen, Henriette Marie, in England commonly
called Queen Mary. The charter, which Baltimore drew up with his
own hand, was in the main a copy of the Avalon charter; but before
it had received the royal seal he died, in April, 1632. In June the
charter was issued to his eldest son Cecilius Calvert, second baron of

[Sidenote: Fate of the Avalon charter.]

In obtaining this new grant of Maryland, the Calverts did not regard
themselves as giving up their hold upon Newfoundland. Cecilius
appointed a governor for Avalon as a fishing station, but in 1637,
with characteristic recklessness, the king granted it to the Marquis
of Hamilton and some other noblemen, on the ground that the charter
had been forfeited by disuse. More or less controversy went on until
1663, when in consequence of a judgment in the courts pronouncing
the Hamilton grant void, Avalon was surrendered to Cecilius. But his
descendants really neglected it, until in 1754 the charter was again
declared forfeited, and the crown resumed its rights over the whole of
that large island.

[Sidenote: Character of the first Lord Baltimore.]

It seems to have been the physical hardships sustained in Newfoundland
that cut off the first Lord Baltimore prematurely in his fifty-third
year and prevented his witnessing the success of the enterprise which
he had so much at heart. His plan was to found in the New World a
commonwealth where Catholics might find a welcome refuge from the
oppressive legislation to which they were subjected in England. It
was a plan that could be carried out only by adopting a policy of
universal toleration utterly unknown in that age outside of the
Netherlands. It called for the utmost sagacity and tact, and was
likely to require on the part of the ruler all the well-nigh royal
powers with which Lord Baltimore had been endowed. Though the scheme
was left for the son to put into successful operation, it was devised
by the father and stamps him as no ordinary man. It is right that he
should be honoured as the first founder of Maryland. His portrait,
painted for Lord Bacon by the illustrious Daniel Mytens, is now in the
gallery of the Earl of Verulam, and there is a fine copy of it in the
state-house at Annapolis. The face is courteous and amiable, albeit
somewhat melancholy, and shows refinement and intelligence, as well as
the honesty for which he was noted. George Calvert's integrity was such
that throughout his public life men respected and trusted him without
distinction of party. Of the sincerity of his religious feelings one
gets a glimpse in such characteristic passages as the following, from
a letter to his friend, the great Earl of Strafford: "All things,
my lord, in this world pass away; wife, children, honours, wealth,
friends, and what else is dear to flesh and blood. They are but lent
us till God please to call for them back again, that we may not esteem
anything our own, or set our hearts upon anything but Him alone, who
only remains forever."[126]

[Sidenote: Cecilius Calvert, second Lord Baltimore.]

Of the early life of the son, Cecilius Calvert, very little is known.
He was born in 1606 and entered Trinity College, Oxford, in 1621,
but there is no record of his having taken a degree. He was hardly
more than eighteen years old when he became the husband of Lady Anne
Arundel, whose name is left upon one of the counties of Maryland,
and whose portrait by Vandyck, preserved in Wardour Castle, shows
her to have been one of the most beautiful women of her time. An
engraved portrait of Cecilius, made in 1657 and now in possession of
the Maryland Historical Society, gives us the impression of great
sagacity and power, with the repose that comes from undisturbed
self-control. There is perhaps more astuteness than in the father's
face, but the look is also frank, as well as lofty and refined.
Through many difficulties the plan conceived by George Calvert was
put into operation by Cecilius, who is to be regarded as preëminently
the founder of Maryland. His strong personality is impressed upon the
whole history of that interesting community; yet singularly enough, the
second Lord Baltimore never visited the colony to which the labours of
his long life were devoted. He cherished at first an intention of going
out with the first party of colonists, but finding that London fairly
swarmed with enemies to the enterprise, he found it most prudent to
stay there and contend with them. This was only the beginning of long
years of arduous work in which the right time for leaving England never
came, and the Moses of this new migration and fresh departure in the
way of founding states was at last gathered unto his fathers without
ever having set foot in the Promised Land.

[Sidenote: A new type of colonial government.]

In two ways the founding of Maryland was a new departure in methods
of colonization. In the first place, it introduced into America a new
type of colonial government. The Spanish and French colonies were
simple despotisms administered by viceroyal governors, sometimes
with advisory councils, sometimes partly held in check by an officer
called the intendant, who was himself a counter-despot. The government
of Virginia after the suppression of the Company was called a crown
government because the governor and council were appointed by the king;
it was not a despotism, because there was an assembly elected by the
people, without whose consent no taxes could be assessed or collected.
The bond of connection with the mother country was loose but real. A
contrast was afforded by Massachusetts, which under its first charter,
from 1629 to 1684, was a true republic, with governor, council, and
assembly all elected within the colony, so that the administration
could move on quite independently of any action in England. In the
proprietary governments, of which Maryland was the first example, the
lord proprietor stepped into the place of the crown, while a charter,
which might be forfeited in case of abuse, made it impossible for him
to become an absolute monarch. The elective legislature of Maryland,
which in point of seniority ranks third in America, next after Virginia
and Massachusetts, was expressly provided for in the charter. The
lord proprietor's sovereignty was limited by this elected assembly of
freemen, but his dependence upon the king of England was little more
than nominal. In token of allegiance and homage he was to send to the
king each year two Indian arrows. His rent was to be one fifth part of
all gold or silver mined in Maryland, but as no precious metals were
found there, this rent amounted to nothing. Moreover, whenever it might
seem necessary, the oath of allegiance might be administered to any
of the inhabitants. Saving this formal recognition of his overlord,
the lord proprietor was virtually king in Maryland. Laws passed by the
assembly became valid as soon as he had signed them, and did not need
to be seen by the king. In case the assembly could not conveniently be
brought together in an emergency, he could issue ordinances by himself,
analogous to the orders of the Privy Council. He could coin money and
grant titles of nobility, he could create courts, appoint judges, and
pardon criminals. It was moreover expressly stipulated that within
the limits of Maryland no taxes could be either assessed or collected
by any British government. Finally the lord proprietorship was vested
in Cecilius Calvert and his heirs, and in point of fact was exercised
by them with some interruptions for five generations; so that the
government of colonial Maryland was really a hereditary constitutional

[Sidenote: Ecclesiastical powers of the lord proprietor.]

Thus Lord Baltimore introduced into America a new and quite remarkable
type of colonial government. But in the second place his attempt to
inaugurate a policy of complete religious toleration was a still
more memorable departure from familiar methods. Among the express
provisions of the charter there was nothing that looked toward such
complete toleration. Any express toleration of Catholics would have
ruined the whole scheme at the start. The words of the charter were
conveniently vague. In the original charter of Avalon the lord
proprietor was entrusted with "the patronage and advowsons of all
churches which, with the increasing worship and religion of Christ
within the said region, hereafter shall happen to be built; together
with license and faculty of erecting and founding churches, chapels,
and places of worship, in convenient and suitable places, within the
premises, and of causing the same to be dedicated and consecrated
according to the ecclesiastical laws of England." This Avalon grant
of 1623 was made when Sir George Calvert was still a member of the
English church; it empowered him to found Anglican churches, but did
not expressly prohibit him from founding Romanist or Nonconformist
places of worship along with the others if he should see fit. Now
exactly the same words were repeated in the Maryland charter, although
it was generally known that Lord Baltimore intended to make that
colony an asylum for such English Catholics as wished to escape from
their grievances at home. The fact that no prohibition was inserted
shows that the king connived at Baltimore's scheme, perhaps through
sympathy with his Catholic queen. None of the Stuarts were fierce
Protestants, and it is worth noting that it was at the king's request
that the colony was named Maryland. Mr. Gardiner's opinion seems well
sustained, that "the phrases of the charter were intended to cover a
secret understanding between Baltimore and the king."[127]

[Sidenote: Religious toleration in Maryland.]

Starting with such a charter, religious toleration in Maryland was a
happy product of circumstances. In view of the regal powers wielded by
Lord Baltimore it was not easy for the Protestant settlers to oppress
the Catholics; while, on the other hand, if the Catholic settlers had
been allowed to annoy the Protestants, it would forthwith have raised
such a storm in England as would have overwhelmed the lord proprietor
and blasted his enterprise. The situation thus created was improved
to the best advantage by the strong common-sense and unfailing tact
of Cecilius Calvert. It is not likely that he had arrived at such
advanced views of the entire separation of church and state as those
which were set forth with such luminous cogency by Roger Williams, but
there was a statesmanlike instinct in him that led him in a similar
direction. In point of religious toleration Rhode Island unquestionably
holds the foremost place among the colonies, while next after it come
Quaker Pennsylvania, with New Netherland, which for its brief season
maintained the wholesome Dutch traditions. There are some respects in
which Maryland's record may vie with the brightest, but her success was
not attained without struggles. We shall presently have occasion to see
how curiously her beginnings were complicated with the affairs of her
elder sister Virginia and with some phases of the Puritan revolution.

[Sidenote: First settlement at St. Mary's.]

If Lord Baltimore felt obliged himself to stay in England, he was
able to send excellent agents to America in the persons of his
younger brothers, Leonard and George Calvert. The former he appointed
governor of Maryland. The most important member of the council was
Thomas Cornwallis, of an ancient and highly honourable London family,
the same to which in later days belonged the Earl Cornwallis who
surrendered an army to George Washington at Yorktown.[128] Leonard
Calvert's ships were the Ark, of 300 tons burthen, with its attendant
pinnace, the Dove, of 50 tons; and his company comprised 20 "gentlemen
adventurers" with about 300 labourers. So alarmed were London people
at the expedition that it took the ships a full month to get away from
the Thames River. All kinds of rumours flew about. It was assumed that
all Catholics must be in league with Spain and that these ships must
be concerned in some foul conspiracy against the English colonies in
America. At the last moment a great fuss was made in the Star Chamber,
and Coke sent an order post-haste to Admiral Pennington commanding the
channel fleet to stop the ships at Dover. The oath of supremacy was
administered, and we hear of 128 persons taking it at one time. It is
generally believed that the majority of the company were Protestants;
the leaders were nearly all Catholics, including the amiable Jesuit,
Father Andrew White, who has left us in quaint and very charming Latin
a full narrative of the voyage.[129] The ships finally started on the
22d of November, 1633, stopped for a while in January at Barbadoes,
and on the 27th of February reached Point Comfort, where a letter from
the king ensured them courteous treatment at the hands of Governor
Harvey. With a fresh stock of supplies they sailed up Chesapeake Bay
and into the broad Potomac, and presently on a little wooded island
which they called St. Clement's--since dwindled to the mere vestige of
a sand-bank--they celebrated Mass for the first time in English America
on the 25th of March, 1634.

[Sidenote: Relations with the Indians.]


On a bluff overlooking the deep and broad St. Mary's River the settlers
found an Indian village, which they bought from its occupants with
steel hatchets and hoes and pieces of cloth. These Indians were a tribe
of Algonquins, who had been so persecuted by their terrible Iroquois
neighbours, the Susquehannocks, that they were already intending to
move away to some safer region; so they welcomed the white purchasers
and the chance for buying steel hatchets. Leonard Calvert was as
scrupulously just in his dealings with red men as William Penn in later
days, and like Penn he was exceptionally favoured by the circumstances
of his Indian neighbours. After the Algonquins had departed from St.
Mary's, the fierce Susquehannocks to the northward were so hard pressed
by their hostile kinsmen of the Five Nations, that they were only too
glad to live on amicable terms with the settlers of Maryland. Thus
one of the most formidable difficulties in the way of American
colonization was removed at the start.

[Sidenote: Prosperity of the settlement.]

At St. Mary's, moreover, there was no Starving Time. The land had
so long been cleared by the Indians for their own cornfields that
Calvert's settlers at once began planting for themselves. Father White
speaks with approval of two native dishes which the Indians call "pone"
and "hominy," and from their squaws the English women soon learned how
to bake and fry these viands to perfection. In the course of the very
first autumn the Marylanders were able to export a shipload of corn to
New England in exchange for a cargo of salted codfish.[130] Cattle and
swine were obtained from Virginia, and soon the neighbourhood of St.
Mary's was covered with thrifty and smiling farms. New colonists came
quite steadily, and presently from St. Mary's the plantations spread
about the shores of the Potomac River and Chesapeake Bay. The first
assembly was convened and the first laws were enacted in 1635, and
when Cecilius, Lord Baltimore, died, just forty years afterward, his
Maryland had grown to be a prosperous community of 20,000 souls.

Some of the more important details of this growth will form part of our
story. At present we have to consider somewhat more closely the nature
of this palatinate government, and the modifications which it underwent
in its transfer from England to America.

[Sidenote: Constitution of Durham: the receiver-general.]

The Bishop of Durham was feudal landlord of the territory in his
bishopric, and the most considerable part of his revenue came
from rents.[131] Until 1660 he also received a fluctuating but
not insignificant income from such feudal incidents as escheats,
forfeitures, and wardships. The rents and feudal dues were collected by
the bailiffs, each in his bailiwick, and were by them paid over to the
receiver-general, who was superintendent of the palatinate's finances.
As for Durham's share of the national taxes, Parliament simply
determined the amount; the bishop's government decided how it should be
raised and his constables collected it. The only taxes collected by the
king's officers were the customs.

[Sidenote: Lord lieutenant and high sheriff.]

After 1536 the militia force of Durham, like that of other counties,
was commanded by an officer known as lord lieutenant. Formerly the
command of the militia and collecting and disbursing of revenue
were concentrated in the hands of the high sheriff, who continued
to be nominally the superior officer over the lord lieutenant and
receiver-general, while his actual duties were restricted, like those
of sheriffs in other counties, to enforcing the decisions of the
courts. But whereas all other sheriffs were crown officers, the high
sheriff of Durham was accountable only to the bishop.

[Sidenote: Chancellor of temporalities.]

[Sidenote: The halmote.]

[Sidenote: The seneschal.]

[Sidenote: The bishop's council.]

The only officer of higher dignity than the high sheriff was the
chancellor of temporalities, who exercised a twofold function. He was
the bishop's chief minister and head of the civil government, and he
presided over the bishop's high court of chancery. Below this high
tribunal there were two kinds of courts. The one was like the ordinary
courts of quarter sessions, composed of justices of the peace, save
that these justices were appointed by the bishop and punished breaches
not of the king's peace but of the bishop's peace. The other kind of
court was one that could be held in any manor of the bishopric. It
was the manorial court or "halmote," the most interesting of these
ancient institutions of Durham. The business of the halmote courts
was to adjust all questions relating to the tenure of land, rights
or easements in land, and such other matters as intimately concerned
the little agricultural community of tenants of the manor. They could
also issue injunctions and inflict sundry penalties. These courts were
held by the seneschal, an officer charged with the general supervision
of manors, but all the tenants of the manor in question could attend
the halmote, and could speak and vote there, so that it was like a
town-meeting. When we add that it could enact by-laws, thus combining
legislative with judicial functions, we see its ancestry disclosed.
This halmote in Durham was a descendant of the ancient folkmote or
primary assembly which our forefathers brought into Britain from their
earlier home in the wilds of northern Germany. In this assembly the
people of Durham preserved their self-government in matters of local
concern. But the circumstances in which the palatinate grew up seem
to have retarded the development of representative government. There
was no shire-mote in Durham, attended by selected men from every manor
or parish or township, as in the other counties of England. Instead
of laws enacted by such a representative body, there were ordinances
passed by the bishop in his council, which was composed of the
principal magistrates already mentioned, and of such noblemen or other
prominent persons as might choose to come or such as might be invited
by the bishop. It thus resembled in miniature a witenagemote or house
of lords. The bishops of Durham seem to have been in general responsive
to public opinion in their little world, and it does not appear that
the people fared worse than they would have done with a representative
assembly. The bishop was not an autocrat, but a member of a great
ecclesiastical body, and if he made himself unpopular it was quite
possible to take steps that would lead to his removal.

[Sidenote: National representation.]

[Sidenote: Limitations upon autonomy.]

The lack of representative institutions in Durham, coupled with its
semi-independence, long retarded its participation in the work of
national legislation. The bishop, of course, sat in the House of
Lords, but not until the reign of Charles II. was this county palatine
represented in the House of Commons. The change was inaugurated by
Cromwell, under whose protectorship the palatine privileges were taken
away, and Durham, reduced to the likeness of other counties, elected
its members of Parliament. In 1660 the restored monarchy undid this
change and replaced the bishop, although with his palatinate privileges
slightly shorn. In 1675 Durham began to be regularly represented in
the House of Commons, but that date was subsequent to the founding of
the Maryland palatinate. At the time when Lord Baltimore's charter was
issued, the bonds of connection between Durham and the rest of England
were three: 1. the bishop was a tenant _in capite_ of the crown,
besides being an officer of the Church and a member of the House of
Lords; 2. the county regularly paid its share of the national taxes;
and 3. cases in litigation between the bishop and his subjects could be
appealed to the Court of Exchequer in London. Saving these important
limitations, Durham was independent. The only way in which the king
could act within its limits was by addressing the bishop, who by way
of climax to his many attributes of sovereignty was endowed with the
powers of coining money, chartering towns, and exercising admiralty
jurisdiction over his seacoast.

[Sidenote: The palatinate type in America.]

As I have already observed it was natural that in founding new
governments in America, this familiar example of the Durham palatinate
should be made to serve as a model. In point of fact not only Maryland,
but every colony afterwards founded, except in New England, was
at first a palatinate, with either a single lord proprietor or a
board of proprietors at its head. Of the four colonies older than
Maryland, three--English Virginia and Massachusetts, and Dutch New
Netherland--were founded through the instrumentality of charters
granted to joint-stock companies, organized really or ostensibly for
commercial purposes; one, Plymouth, was founded by the people and
ignored by the crown until finally suppressed by it. Of the four New
England colonies younger than Maryland, all were founded by the people
themselves, one of them, New Haven, was soon suppressed, another, New
Hampshire, was turned into a royal province, the other two, Connecticut
and Rhode Island, were for the most part let alone. The governments
of all the other colonies began as proprietary governments. This was
the case with New York and the two Jerseys after the English conquest
of New Netherland; it was the case with Pennsylvania and Delaware,
with the two Carolinas, and with Georgia. One and all of these were
variations upon the theme first adopted in the founding of Maryland.
All were based upon the palatinate principle, with divers modifications
suggested by experience as likely to be more acceptable to the
proprietors or to the crown. And just as the crown, for purposes of
its own and without regard to the wishes of the people, changed the
governments of Virginia and New Hampshire and extinguished those of New
Haven and Plymouth; so in nearly every case we find the people becoming
so dissatisfied with the proprietary governments that one after another
they are overturned and the palatinates become transformed into royal
provinces. We shall, therefore, find it profitable to trace the history
of the palatinate principle in America through its initial theme and
its subsequent variations.

[Sidenote: Similarities between Durham and Maryland: the governor.]

That initial theme was mainly an echo of the Old World music, but the
differences were not without importance. In administrative machinery
there was a strong resemblance between Maryland and Durham. The
governor of Maryland was Lord Baltimore's chief minister, the head of
the civil administration of the colony. He also presided over its court
of chancery, and in this double capacity he resembled the chancellor
of temporalities. But, as befitted the head of a community planted in
a hostile wilderness, he added to these functions those of the lord
lieutenant and was commander-in-chief of the militia. Laws passed by
the assembly required his signature to make them valid, and thus he
possessed the power of veto; but he could not assent to a law repealing
any law to which the lord proprietor had assented. Such matters had to
be referred to the lord proprietor, whose prerogatives were jealously
guarded, while the extensive powers accorded to the governor were such
as convenience dictated in view of the fact that the lord proprietor
was absent in England. An instance of the principle and its limits is
furnished by the governor's pardoning power, which extended to all
offences except treason.[132]

[Sidenote: Secretary: surveyor-general.]

[Sidenote: Muster master-general: sheriffs.]

The personage next in importance to the governor was the secretary, who
as receiver and disburser of revenues resembled the receiver-general
of Durham, but to these functions he added those of recorder and judge
of probate, and sometimes also those of attorney-general. Next came
the surveyor-general, whose functions in determining metes and bounds
and in supervising manorial affairs, resembled those of the Durham
seneschal. Then there was a lieutenant commander of militia known as
master-general of the muster. In each county there was a sheriff,
who, in addition to such functions as we are familiar with, collected
all taxes, held all elections, and made the returns. These four
officers--the secretary, surveyor-general, muster master-general, and
sheriff--were paid by fees, the amount of which was determined by the
assembly, which thus exercised some control over them; but the governor
received a salary from the lord proprietor, and was to that extent
independent of the legislature.[133]

[Sidenote: The courts.]

Of courts there was one in each county, but besides this a considerable
number of manors were created, and each manor had its court baron and
court leet for the transaction of local business. Small civil cases
involving less than the worth of 1,200 pounds of tobacco, and criminal
cases not involving the death penalty, were tried in the county courts.
Above these was the provincial court, which dealt with common law,
chancery, or admiralty, as the case might be. The judges of this court
were all members of the council, to which the secretary and other chief
executive officers belonged, while the governor presided alike over
the provincial court and over the council. Appeals could be taken from
the provincial court to the council sitting as the upper house in the
assembly, after the analogy of the appellate jurisdiction of the House
of Lords; but this virtually meant that a case once decided could be
tried over again by the same judges with a few colleagues added.

[Sidenote: The primary assembly.]

[Sidenote: Initiative in legislation.]

The assembly, at the mention of which we have thus arrived, was the
principal point of difference between the palatinate of Maryland and
that of Durham. The governor of Maryland, like the bishop of Durham,
had his council, consisting solely, as the other consisted chiefly,
of high officials; but in Maryland there was popular representation,
while in Durham there was not. At first, however, the popular house
was not a representative but a primary assembly, and its sittings
were not separate from those of the council. In the first assembly,
which met at St. Mary's in February, 1635, all the freemen, or all who
chose to come, were gathered in the same room with Leonard Calvert
and his council. They drew up a body of laws and sent it to England
for the lord proprietor's assent, which was refused. The ground of
the refusal was far more than the mere technicality which on a hasty
glance it might seem to be. Cecilius refused because the charter gave
the lord proprietor the power of making laws with the assent of the
freemen, but did not give such power to the freemen with the assent
of the lord proprietor. In other words, the initiative in legislation
must always come from above, not from below. Obviously there could
be no higher authority than Cecilius as to what the charter really
intended. But the assembly of Maryland insisted upon the right of
initiating legislation, and Cecilius was wise enough to yield the point
gracefully. He consented, in view of the length of time required for
crossing the ocean, that laws enacted by the assembly should at once
become operative and so remain unless vetoed by him. But he reserved to
himself the right of veto without limitation in time. In other words,
he could at any time annul a law, and this prerogative was one that
might become dangerous.

[Sidenote: The representative assembly.]

In 1638 the primary assembly was abandoned as cumbrous. For purposes
of the military levy the province was divided into hundreds, and each
hundred sent a representative to the assembly at St. Mary's. At a later
date the county came to be the basis of representation, as in Virginia.
For some time the representatives sat with the council, as at first in
Massachusetts and Virginia; but in 1650 the representatives began to
sit as a lower house, while the council formed an upper house. As there
was a tendency, which went on increasing, for the highest offices to be
filled by Calverts and their kinsmen, the conditions were soon at hand
for an interesting constitutional struggle between the two houses. It
was to be seen whether the government was to be administered for the
Calverts or for the people, and to the story of this struggle we shall
presently come.

[Sidenote: Regal power of Lord Baltimore.]

As a result of our survey it appears that Lord Baltimore occupied a
far more independent position than any bishop of Durham. Not only was
he exempt from imperial taxation, but in case of a controversy between
himself and his subjects no appeal could be taken to any British court.
His power seemed to approach more nearly to despotism than that of any
king of England, save perhaps Henry VIII. The one qualifying feature
was the representative assembly, the effects of which time was to show
in unsuspected ways. From various circumstances mentioned in the course
of the present chapter there resulted a strange series of adventures,
which will next claim our attention.


[122] Joyce, _Irish Names of Places_, Dublin, 1869, p. 322.

[123] From the so-called isle of Avalon, in Somerset, reputed to be the
place where Christianity was first preached in Britain; the site of
the glorious minster of Glastonbury, where rest the ashes of Edgar the
Peaceful and Edmund Ironside.

[124] Browne's _Calverts_, p. 17.

[125] Browne's _Calverts_, p. 25.

[126] Browne's _Calverts_, p. 29.

[127] Gardiner, _History of England_, viii. 179.

[128] Neill's _Virginia Carolorum_, p. 99.

[129] White's _Relatio Itineris_, publ. by Maryland Hist. Soc.

[130] Winsor, _Narr. and Crit. Hist._ iii. 526.

[131] There is an excellent summary of the institutions of Durham
in Bassett's "Constitutional Beginnings of North Carolina," _Johns
Hopkins University Studies_, vol. xii. For fuller accounts see Surtees,
_History of the County Palatine of Durham_; also _Surtees Society
Publications_, vols. xxxii., lxxxii., lxxxiv.

[132] For an account of the Maryland constitution, see Sparks,

[133] "Causes of the Maryland Revolution of 1689," _Johns Hopkins
University Studies_, vol. xiv.



[Sidenote: William Claiborne and his projects].

WE have already had occasion to observe that, while from the outset
Lord Baltimore's enterprise found many enemies in England, it was
at the same time regarded with no friendly feelings in Virginia. We
have seen the Virginians sending to London their secretary of state,
William Claiborne, to obstruct and thwart the Calverts in their attempt
to obtain a grant of territory in America. For Claiborne there were
interests of his own involved, besides those of the colony which he
represented. This William Claiborne, younger son of an ancient and
honourable family in Westmoreland, had come to Virginia in 1621 and
prospered greatly, acquiring large estates and winning the respect
and confidence of his fellow planters. By 1627 he had begun to engage
in trade with the natives along the shores of Chesapeake Bay and the
Potomac and Susquehanna rivers. Such traffic, if well managed, was
lucrative, since with steel knives and hatchets, or with ribbons and
beads, one could buy furs which would fetch high prices in England. To
the enterprising Claiborne it seemed worth while to extend this trade
far to the north. His speculative vision took in the Delaware and
Hudson rivers and even included New England and Nova Scotia. So he
entered into an arrangement with a firm of London merchants, Clobery &
Company, to supply them with furs and other such eligible commodities
as might be obtained from the Indians, and in 1631 he obtained a royal
license for trading in any and all parts of North America not already
preëmpted by monopolies. This was done while he was in London opposing
Lord Baltimore. The place most prominently mentioned in the license was
Nova Scotia, and it was obtained under the seal of Scotland, from the
Secretary of State for Scotland, Sir William Alexander, to whom Nova
Scotia had some time before been granted. On returning to Virginia,
where Sir John Harvey had lately superseded the convivial Dr. Pott as
governor, Claiborne obtained a further license to trade with any of the
English colonies and with the Dutch on Henry Hudson's river.

[Sidenote: Kent Island occupied by Claiborne.]

Armed with these powers, Claiborne proceeded to make a settlement upon
an island which he had already, before his visit to London, selected
for a trading post. It was Kent Island, far up in Chesapeake Bay,
almost as far north as the mouth of the Patapsco River. Here dwellings
were built, and mills for grinding corn, while gardens were laid out,
and orchards planted, and farms were stocked with cattle.[134] A
clergyman was duly appointed, to minister to the spiritual needs of the
little settlement, and in the next year, 1632, it was represented in
the House of Burgesses by Captain Nicholas Martian, a patentee of the
land where Yorktown now stands.

[Sidenote: Conflicting grants.]

When in that same year the news of the charter granted to Lord
Baltimore arrived in Virginia, it was greeted with indignation. No
doubt there was plenty of elbow-room between the old colony and the
land assigned to the new-comers, but the example of Claiborne shows
what far-reaching plans could be cherished down on James River. The
Virginians had received a princely territory, and did not like to see
it arbitrarily curtailed. There was no telling where that sort of
thing might end. According to the charter of 1609, Virginia extended
200 miles northward from Old Point Comfort,[135] or about as far north
as the site of Chester in Pennsylvania; which would have left no room
for Maryland or Delaware. That charter had indeed been annulled in
1624, but both James I. and Charles I. had expressly declared that
the annulling of the charter simply abolished the sovereignty that
had been accorded to the Virginia Company, and did not infringe or
diminish the territorial rights of the colony. Undoubtedly the grant
to the Calverts was one of the numerous instances in early American
history in which the Stuart kings gave away the same thing to different
parties. Or perhaps we might better say that they made grants without
duly heeding how one might overlap and encroach upon another. This was
partly the result of carelessness, partly of ignorance and haziness
of mind; flagrant examples of it were the grants to Robert Gorges in
Massachusetts and to Samuel Gorton in Rhode Island. No serious harm
has come of this recklessness, but it was the cause of much bickering
in the early days, echoes of which may still be heard in silly pouts
and sneers between the grown-up children of divers neighbour states.
As regards the grant to Lord Baltimore, a protest from Virginia was
not only natural but as inevitable as sunrise. It was discussed in the
Star Chamber in July, 1633, and the decision was not to disturb Lord
Baltimore's charter; the Virginians might, if they liked, bring suit
against him in the ordinary course of law. From this decision came many
heart-burnings between Leah and her younger sister Rachel, as a quaint
old pamphleteer calls Virginia and Maryland.[136]

[Sidenote: Claiborne's resistance.]

[Sidenote: Lord Baltimore's instructions.]

[Sidenote: The Virginia council supports Claiborne.]

Viewed in the light of all the circumstances, it is difficult to
avoid seeing in Claiborne's occupation of Kent Island a strategic
move. Considered as such, it was bold and not ill-judged. With his
far-reaching schemes the Susquehanna River was a highway which would
enable him to compete with the Dutch for the northwestern fur trade.
By establishing himself on Kent Island he might command the approach
to that highway. The maxim that actual possession is nine points in
the law was in his favour. If the Star Chamber had decided to uphold
Virginia's wholesale claim to the territory granted her in 1609,
Claiborne would have been master of the situation. Even with the
decision as rendered, his own case was far from hopeless. In the autumn
of 1633 he petitioned the king to protect his interests and those of
Virginia in Kent Island. He contended that Baltimore's charter gave
jurisdiction only over territory unsettled and unimproved,--_hactenus
in culta_,--whereas Kent Island had been settled as a part of Virginia
and heavy expenses incurred there before that charter had been issued.
In sending this petition it was hoped that by resolutely keeping hold
upon the strategic point it might be possible to make Lord Baltimore
reconsider his plans and take his settlers to some other region than
the shores of Chesapeake Bay. But this hope was dashed in February,
1634, when Leonard Calvert with the first party of settlers arrived
in those waters. Claiborne's petition had not yet been answered, but
Lord Baltimore's instructions to his brother were conceived in a
conciliatory spirit. Leonard was to see Claiborne and offer him all the
aid in his power toward building up the new settlement on Kent Island,
at the same time reminding him that the place was in Baltimore's
territory and not a part of Virginia. In other words, Claiborne was
welcome to the property, only he must hold it as a tenant of the lord
proprietor of Maryland, not as a tenant of the king in Virginia. While
the Ark and the Dove were halting at anchor off Old Point Comfort, and
while Leonard Calvert was ashore exchanging courtesies with Governor
Harvey, he communicated this message to Claiborne. At the next meeting
of the council, Claiborne asked his fellow-councillors what he should
do in the matter. In reply they wondered that he should ask such
a question. Was not the case perfectly clear? Was there any reason
why they should surrender Kent Island, more than any other part of
Virginia? No, they would keep it until his Majesty's pleasure should
be known, and meanwhile they would treat the Maryland company civilly
and expected to be so treated by them. Behind this answer there was
much bad feeling. Not only were the Virginians angry at the curtailment
of their domains, not only were they alarmed as well as angry at the
arrival of Papists in their neighbourhood, but they were greatly
disgusted because Lord Baltimore's charter gave him far more extensive
trading privileges than they possessed. Calvert's message to Claiborne
had signified that before trading any further in the upper parts of
Chesapeake Bay he must obtain a license from Maryland. Assured now of
support from Virginia, Claiborne returned an answer in which he refused
in any way to admit Lord Baltimore's sovereignty.

[Sidenote: Complications with the Indians.]

Leonard's instructions had been in case of such a refusal not to molest
Claiborne for at least a year. But soon complications arose. The
settlers at St. Mary's observed indications of distrust or hostility
on the part of a neighbouring Algonquin tribe, known as the Patuxents;
so they appealed to one Captain Henry Fleete, who understood the
Algonquin language, to learn what was the matter. This Captain Fleete
wished to supplant Claiborne in the fur trade and may have welcomed a
chance of discrediting him with the Marylanders. At all events, he
reported that the Indians had been told that the Marylanders were not
Englishmen but Spaniards, and for this calumny, which might have led to
the massacre of the new-comers, he undertook to throw the blame upon
Claiborne. In the substance of this story there is a strong appearance
of truth. On the Virginia coast in those days common parlance was not
nice as to discriminating between Papists of any kind and Spaniards,
and one can easily see how from ordinary gossip the Indians may have
got their notion. There is no reason for casting atrocious imputations
upon Claiborne, who was examined in June, 1634, by a joint commission
of Virginians and Marylanders, and completely exonerated. But before
the news of this verdict reached London, the charge that Claiborne
was intriguing with the Indians had been carried to Lord Baltimore
and evidently alarmed him. Convinced that forbearance had ceased to
be a virtue, he sent word to his brother to seize Kent Island, arrest
Claiborne, and hold him prisoner until further instructions.

[Sidenote: Reprisals and skirmishes.]

This was in September, 1634. News of the message came to the ears of
Claiborne's London partners, Clobery & Company, and they petitioned
the king for protection in the possession of their island. Charles
accordingly instructed Lord Baltimore not to molest Claiborne and his
people, and he sent a letter to the governor and council of Virginia,
in which he declared that the true intention or the charter which
he had granted to Baltimore would not justify that nobleman in any
interference with Kent Island and its settlers. So the winter wore
away without incident, but early in April, 1635, one of Claiborne's
ships, commanded by one Thomas Smith, was seized in the Patuxent River
by Captain Fleete; she was condemned for trading without a license, and
was confiscated and sold with all her cargo. Claiborne then sent out an
armed sloop, the Cockatrice, to make reprisals upon Maryland shipping;
but Calvert was wide awake and sent Cornwallis with a stronger force
of two armed pinnaces, which overtook the Cockatrice in Pocomoke River
and captured her after a brisk skirmish in which half a dozen men were
killed and more wounded. That was on April 23, and on May 10 there was
another fight in the harbour of Great Wighcocomoco, at the mouth of the
Pocomoke, in which Thomas Smith commanded for Claiborne and defeated
the Marylanders with more bloodshed.

[Sidenote: Complaints against Governor Harvey.]

In the midst of these unseemly quarrels the kingdom of Virginia
witnessed something like a revolution. We have already had occasion
to mention Sir John Harvey, the governor who came in March, 1630,
after the brief administration of that versatile practitioner, Dr.
John Pott. Harvey was not long in getting into trouble. It was noticed
at first that his manners were intolerably rude. He strutted about
Jamestown as if he were on a quarter deck, and treated the august
members of the council with as little ceremony as if they had been
boot-blacks. On his own confession he once assaulted a councillor and
knocked out some of his teeth "with a cudgel."[137] But it presently
appeared that arrogance was not his worst fault. He was too fond of
money, and not particular as to how it came to him. He had a right
to make grants of land to settlers for a consideration to be paid
into the public treasury; it was charged against him that part of the
consideration found its way into his own pockets. Nor was this all, for
it happened, after the fashion of his royal master, that some of the
lands which he granted were already private property. Besides this,
he seems to have undertaken to draw up laws and proclaim them of his
own authority without submitting them to the assembly; he refused to
render an account of the ways in which he spent the public money; he
had excessive fees charged, multiplied the number of fines beyond all
reason, and took the proceeds or a part of them for his private use and
behoof. In short, he seems to have been a second and more vulgar Argall.

[Sidenote: Rage of Virginians against Maryland.]

Five years of this sort of thing had driven the men of Virginia to the
last pitch of desperation, when the Claiborne imbroglio brought on a
crisis. In obedience to the king's instructions, Harvey showed such
favour as he could to the Maryland settlers, and thus made himself
the more fiercely hated in Virginia. The Kent Island question was one
that bred dissension in families, separated bosom friends, and sowed
seeds of distrust and suspicion far and wide. To speak well of Maryland
was accounted little less than a crime. "Sell cattle to Maryland!"
exclaimed the wrathful planters, "better knock them on the head!"
From pious people this near approach of the Scarlet Woman drew forth
strong words. We are told that one day Captain Samuel Mathews, that
brave gentleman and decorous Puritan, on reading a letter from England,
dashed his hat upon the ground and stamped in fury, shouting "A pox
upon Maryland!"[138]

[Sidenote: An angry parson.]

[Sidenote: The meeting at Warren's house.]

In such a state of things we can imagine what a storm was raised when
Governor Harvey removed from office the able and popular secretary
of state, William Claiborne, and appointed one Richard Kemp in his
place. One lively gleam of vituperation lights up the grave pages
of the colonial records, when Kev. Anthony Panton called Mr. Kemp
a "jackanapes," and told him that he was "unfit for the place of
secretary," and that "his hair-lock was tied up with ribbon as old as
St. Paul's." We shall hereafter see how the outraged secretary nursed
his wrath; what he might have done in its freshness was prevented by a
sudden revolution. The assembly drew up a protest against the king's
attempts at monopolizing the tobacco trade, and Harvey refused to
transmit the protest to England. About the same time the news arrived
of the seizing of Claiborne's ship in Maryland waters. On the petition
of many of the people, a meeting of the assembly was called for May
7, to receive complaints against Sir John Harvey.[139] In the mean
time, on April 27, an indignation meeting was held at the house of
William Warren, in York, where the principal speakers were Nicholas
Martian, formerly member of the House of Burgesses for Kent Island,
Francis Pott, the doctor's brother, and William English, sheriff of
York County. The house where this meeting was held in 1635 seems
to have stood on or near the site of the house afterward owned by
Augustine Moore, where in 1781 the surrender of Lord Cornwallis was
arranged; and by a curious coincidence the speaker Nicholas Martian was
a direct ancestor both of George Washington, who commanded the army of
the United States, and of Thomas Nelson, who commanded the forces of
Virginia, on that memorable occasion.[140]

[Sidenote: Scene in the council.]

[Sidenote: Harvey deposed.]

Next morning Martian, Pott, and English were arrested, and when they
asked the reason why, Governor Harvey politely told them that they
"should know at the gallows." When the council met, the wrathful
governor strode up and down the room, demanding that the prisoners be
instantly put to death by martial law, but the council insisted that no
harm should come to them without a regular trial. Then Harvey with a
baleful frown put the question after the manner of Richard III., "What
do they deserve that have gone about to dissuade the people from their
obedience to his Majesty's substitute?" A young member, George Menefie,
replied with adroit sarcasm that he was too young a lawyer to be
ready with "a suddain opinion" upon such a question. Turning savagely
upon him, Sir John asked what all the fuss was about. "Because of the
detaining of the assembly's protest," said Menefie. Then the governor
struck Menefie heavily upon the shoulder and exclaimed, "I arrest you
on suspicion of treason," whereupon Captain John Utie, roughly seizing
the governor, answered, "And we the like to you, sir!" Samuel Mathews
threw his arms about Harvey and forced him down into a chair, while
that connoisseur in beverages, Dr. Pott, waved his hand at the window,
and in the twinkling of an eye the house was surrounded by armed men.
Mathews then told the helpless governor that he must go to London to
answer charges that would be brought against him. In vain did Harvey
argue and storm. The sequel may best be told in the words of the terse
and bleak entry in the colonial records: "On the 28th of April, 1635,
Sir John Harvey thrust out of his government; and Capt. John West
acts as governor till the king's pleasure known." When the assembly
met on May 7, these proceedings of the council were approved, and
commissioners were appointed to go to London and lay their complaints
before the king. The indignant Harvey went by the same ship, in the
custody of his quondam prisoner, Francis Pott, whom he had been so
anxious to hang without ceremony.

[Sidenote: Harvey's return.]

Such were the incidents of the ever memorable "thrusting out of Sir
John Harvey," the first revolutionary scene that was acted in English
America. When King Charles heard the story he did not feel quite so
much fondness for his trusty and well-beloved burgesses as when he
had been seeking commercial favours from them. He would not receive
their commissioners or hear a word on their side of the case, and he
swore that Sir John Harvey should straightway go back to Virginia as
governor, even were it only for one day. But when it came to acting,
Charles was not quite so bold as his words. Harvey did not return
until nearly two years had elapsed.[141] Then it was the turn of the
rebellious councillors--Utie, Mathews, West, Menefie, and Dr. Pott--to
go to London and defend themselves, while Harvey wreaked mean-spirited
vengeances on his enemies. The day of reckoning had come for Anthony
Panton, the minister who had called Mr. Secretary Kemp a "jackanapes,"
and had, moreover, as it seemed, spoken irreverently of Archbishop
Laud. Panton's conduct was judged to be "mutinous, rebellious, and
riotous,"[142] his estate was confiscated, and he was banished. A
shameful clause was inserted in the sentence, declaring him outlawed
if he should venture to return to Virginia, and authorizing anybody to
kill him at sight; but Harvey afterward tried to disown this clause,
saying that it had been wickedly interpolated by the vindictive Kemp.

[Sidenote: Harvey's fall and death.]

But Harvey's new lease of power was brief. Enemies to the throne were
getting too numerous for comfort, and we may well believe that Charles,
having once vindicated his royal dignity in the matter, was quite
ready to yield. The statements of the councillors under examination
in London no doubt had weight, for no proceedings were taken against
them, but in 1639 the king removed Harvey, and sent the excellent Sir
Francis Wyatt once more to govern Virginia. Harvey's numerous victims
forthwith overwhelmed him with law-suits, his ill-gotten wealth was
quickly disgorged, his estates were sold to indemnify Panton and
others, and the fallen tyrant, bankrupt and friendless, soon sank into
the grave,--such an instance of poetic justice as is seldom realized.

[Sidenote: Evelin sent to Kent Island.]

[Sidenote: Kent Island seized by Calvert.]

It was in December, 1637, during Harvey's second administration, that
the Kent Island troubles were renewed. After Claiborne's victorious
fight at Great Wighcocomoco, in May, 1635, he retained undisturbed
possession of the island, but a quarrel was now brewing between himself
and his London partners, Clobery & Company. They were dissatisfied
because furs did not come in quantities sufficient to repay their
advances to Claiborne. The disputes with the Marylanders had sadly
damaged the business, and the partners sent over George Evelin to look
after their interests, and armed him with power of attorney. They
requested Claiborne to turn over to him the island, with everything
on it, and to come to London and settle accounts. Claiborne tried to
get a bond from Evelin not to surrender the island to Calvert, but
that agent refused to give any assurances, except to express in strong
language his belief that Calvert had no just claim to it. Nothing was
left for Claiborne but to leave Evelin in possession. He did so under
protest, and in May, 1637, sailed for England, where Clobery & Company
immediately brought suit against him. Evelin then went to Virginia and
attached all of Claiborne's property that he could find. Presently,
whether from policy or from conviction, he changed his views as to the
ownership of Kent Island and invited Leonard Calvert to come and take
it. After some hesitation, in December, 1637, Calvert occupied the
premises with forty or fifty armed men and appointed Evelin commandant
of the island. Forthwith so many people were arrested for debts owed to
Clobery & Company that an insurrection ensued, and in February, 1638,
Calvert had to come over again and enforce his authority. Among his
prisoners taken in December was Thomas Smith, the victor in the fight
at Great Wighcocomoco, who was now tried for piracy and hanged, while
the Maryland assembly passed a bill of attainder against Claiborne,
and all his accessible property was seized for the benefit of Lord
Baltimore's treasury.

[Sidenote: Decision is given against Claiborne.]

Soon afterward the final and crushing blow was dealt in London. A Board
of Commissioners for the Plantations had lately been created there,
a germ that in later years was to develop into the well-known body
commonly called the Lords of Trade. To this board the dispute over Kent
Island had been referred, and the decision was rendered in April, 1638.
In the decision the claims of Virginia were ignored, and the matter was
treated like a personal dispute between Claiborne and Lord Baltimore.
The latter had a grant of sovereignty under the seal of England, the
former had merely a trading license under the seal of Scotland, and
this could not be pleaded in bar of the greater claim. Kent Island was
thus adjudged to Lord Baltimore. Crestfallen but not yet conquered, the
sturdy Claiborne returned to Virginia to await the turn of Fortune's

[Sidenote: Puritans in Virginia.]

In curious ways the march of events was tending in Claiborne's favour.
At first sight there is no obvious connection between questions of
religion and the ownership of a small wooded island, but it would
be difficult to name any kind of quarrel to which the Evil One has
not contrived to give a religious colouring. By the year 1638 the
population of Virginia had come to contain more than 1,000 Puritans,
or about seven per cent. of the whole. They had begun coming to
Virginia in 1611 with Sir Thomas Dale, whose friend, the Rev. Alexander
Whitaker, the famous "Apostle of Virginia," was a staunch Puritan, son
of an eminent Puritan divine who was Master of St. John's College,
Cambridge. The general reader, who thinks of Whitaker correctly as
a minister of the Church of England, must not forget that in 1611
the Puritans had not separated from the Established Church, but were
striving to reform it from within. As yet there were few Separatists,
save the Pilgrims who had fled to Holland three years before. The
first considerable separation of Puritans occurred when the colony of
Massachusetts Bay was founded in 1629. The great gulf between Puritans
and Churchmen was dug by the Civil War, and the earliest date when it
becomes strictly proper to speak of "Dissenters" is 1662, when the
first parliament of Charles II. passed the Act of Uniformity. In the
earliest days of Virginia, Puritan Churchmen were common there. When in
1617 the good Whitaker was drowned in James River, he was succeeded by
George Keith, who was also a Puritan.[143] Under the administration of
Sandys and Southampton many came. Their chief settlements were south
of James River, at first in Isle of Wight County and afterwards in
Nansemond. Among their principal leaders were Richard Bennett, son of a
wealthy London merchant and afterwards governor of Virginia, and Daniel
Gookin, noted for his bravery in the Indian massacre of 1622.

[Sidenote: Act of Uniformity, 1631.]

[Sidenote: Puritan ministers from New England.]

[Sidenote: New Act of Uniformity, 1643.]

An act of the assembly in 1631 prescribed "that there be a uniformity
throughout this colony both in substance and circumstances to the
canons and constitution of the Church of England." This legislation
probably reveals the hand of William Laud, who had three years before
become bishop of London; and it may be taken to indicate that a large
majority of Virginians had come to disapprove of Puritanism. Probably
the act was not vigorously enforced, for Governor Harvey seems to
have looked with favour upon Puritans, but it may have caused some
of their pastors to quit the colony. In 1641 an appeal for more
ministers was sent to Boston, and in response three clergymen--William
Thompson of Braintree, John Knowles of Watertown, and Thomas James
of New Haven--sailed from Narragansett Bay in December, 1642. Their
little ship was wrecked at Hell Gate and their welcome from the Dutch
at Manhattan was but surly; nevertheless they were able to procure a
new ship, and so, after a wintry voyage of eleven weeks, arrived in
James River.[144] They brought excellent letters of recommendation
from Governor Winthrop to the governor of Virginia, but might as well
have thrown them into the fire, for the new governor of Virginia, who
arrived in 1642, was the famous Sir William Berkeley, a Cavalier of
Cavaliers, a firm believer in the methods of Strafford and Laud, an
implacable foe of Puritanism and all its advocates. At the next meeting
of the assembly, in March, 1643, the following act was passed: "For
the preservation of the purity of doctrine and unity of the Church,
it is enacted that all ministers whatsoever, which shall reside in
the colony, are to be conformed to the orders and constitution of the
Church of England, and not otherwise to be admitted to teach or preach
publicly or privately, and that the Governor and Council do take care
that all non-conformists, upon notice of them, shall be compelled to
depart the colony with all convenience."[145]

[Sidenote: Expulsion of the ministers.]

Armed with this fulmination, Berkeley was not long in getting rid of
the parsons whom Winthrop had commended to his hospitality. Knowles
and James went in April, after some weeks of incessant and successful
preaching but Thompson, "a man of tall and comely presence" as we are
told, stayed through the summer and made many converts, among them the
wayward son of Daniel Gookin, a junior Daniel whose conversion was from
worldliness or perhaps devilry rather than from prelacy. This brand
snatched from the burning by Thompson went to Massachusetts, where
for many years he was superintendent of Indian affairs and won fame
by his character and writings. Thompson's work in Virginia is thus
commemorated by Cotton Mather:--

  "A constellation of great converts there
   Shone round him, and his heavenly glory were.
   Gookin was one of them; by Thompson's pains
   Christ and New England a dear Gookin gains."

[Sidenote: Indian massacre of 1644.]

The expulsion of the Boston ministers was the beginning of a
systematic harassing of the Puritans in Virginia. It was strangely
affected by the massacre perpetrated by the Indians in the spring of
1644.[146] We seem carried back to the times of John Smith when we
encounter once more the grim figure of Opekankano alive and on the
war-path. We have no need, however, with some thoughtless writers,
to call him a hundred years old. It was only thirty-six years since
Smith's capture by the Indians, although so much history had been made
that the interval seems much longer. Though a wrinkled and grizzled
warrior, Opekankano need not have been more than sixty or seventy when
he wreaked upon the white men his second massacre, on the eve of Good
Friday, 1644. The victims numbered about 300, but the Indians were
quickly put down by Berkeley, and a new treaty confined them to the
north of York River; any Indian venturing across that boundary, except
as an envoy duly marked with a badge, was liable to be shot at sight.
Opekankano was taken captive and carried on a litter to Jamestown,
whence Berkeley intended to send him to London as a trophy and
spectacle, but before sailing time the old chief was ignobly murdered
by one of his guards. It was the end of the Powhatan confederacy.

[Sidenote: Conflicting views of theodicy.]

Some worthy people interpreted this massacre as a judgment of Heaven
upon the kingdom of Virginia for the sin of harbouring Puritans;
rather a tardy judgment, one would say, coming a year after the
persecution of such heretics had begun in earnest. In Governor
Winthrop's opinion,[147] on the contrary, the sin which received such
grewsome punishment was the expulsion of the Boston ministers, with
other acts of persecution that followed. Rev. Thomas Harrison, the
bigoted Berkeley's bigoted chaplain, saw the finger of God in the
massacre, repented of his own share in the work of persecution, and
upbraided the governor, who forthwith dismissed him. Then Harrison
turned Puritan and went to preaching at Nansemond, in flat defiance
of Berkeley, who ordered and threatened and swore till he was out of
breath, when suddenly business called him over to England.

[Sidenote: Invasion of Maryland by Claiborne and Ingle.]

It was the year of Marston Moor, an inauspicious year for Cavaliers,
but a hopeful time for that patient waiter, William Claiborne. The
governor of Maryland, as well as the governor of Virginia, had gone to
England on business, and while the cats were away the mice did play.
The king ordered that any Parliament ships that might be tarrying
in Maryland waters should forthwith be seized. When this order was
received at St. Mary's, the deputy-governor, Giles Brent, felt bound to
obey it, and as there seemed to be no ships accessible that had been
commissioned by Parliament, he seized the ship of one Richard Ingle, a
tobacco trader who was known to be a Puritan and strongly suspected
of being a pirate. This incident caused some excitement and afforded
the watchful Claiborne his opportunity of revenge. He made visits
to Kent Island and tried to dispel the doubts of the inhabitants by
assuring them that he had a commission from the king.[148] He may have
meant by this some paper given him by Charles I. before the adverse
decision of 1638 and held as still valid by some private logic of his
own. When Governor Calvert returned from England in the autumn of
1644 he learned that Claiborne was preparing to invade his dominions,
along with Ingle, who had brought upon the scene another ship well
manned and heavily armed. It was a curious alliance, inasmuch as
Claiborne had professed to be acting with a royal commission, while
Ingle now boasted of a commission from Parliament. But this trifling
flaw in point of consistency did not make the alliance a weak one.
It is not sure that the invasion was concerted between Claiborne and
Ingle, though doubtless the former welcomed the aid of the latter in
reinstating himself in what he believed to be his right. The invasion
was completely successful. While Claiborne recovered Kent Island, Ingle
captured St. Mary's, and Leonard Calvert was fain to take refuge in
Virginia. During two years of anarchy Ingle and his men roamed about
"impressing" corn and tobacco, cattle and household furniture, stuffing
ships with plunder to be exported and turned into hard cash. The
estates of Cornwallis were especially ill-treated, the Indian mission
was broken up, and good Father White, loaded with irons, was sent to
England on a trumped-up charge of treason, of which he was promptly
acquitted. Long afterward this Claiborne-Ingle frolic was remembered in
Maryland as the "plundering time."

[Sidenote: Expulsion of Claiborne and Ingle.]

[Sidenote: Appointment of William Stone as governor.]

In 1645 Sir William Berkeley returned to Virginia, and from him the
fugitive Calvert received effective aid and sympathy, so that late
in 1646 he was able to invade his own territory with a force of
Virginians and fugitive Marylanders. Claiborne and Ingle were soon
expelled, and Leonard Calvert's authority was fully reëstablished.
Not long afterward, in June, 1647, this able governor died. For his
brother Cecilius, Lord Baltimore, this was a trying time. He was
a royalist at heart, with little sympathy for Puritans, but like
many other Catholics he thought it wise to keep on good terms with
Parliament, in the hope of securing more toleration than heretofore.
Such a course between Charybdis and Scylla was attended with perils.
In 1648 Cecilius appointed to his governorship William Stone, a
liberal-minded Protestant and supporter of Parliament. Soon after the
king's beheading, the young Charles II., a fugitive in the island of
Jersey, hearing of Stone's appointment, interpreted it as an act of
disloyalty on Baltimore's part, and so in a fit of spite made out a
grant handing over the palatinate of Maryland to Sir William Davenant,
that poet-laureate who was said to resemble Shakespeare until ravening
vanity made him pretend to be Shakespeare's illegitimate son. Sir
William actually set sail for America, but was overhauled in the
Channel by a Parliament cruiser and carried off to the Tower, where
amid sore distress he found a generous protector in John Milton. It was
not very long before Charles II. came to realize his mistake about Lord

[Sidenote: The Toleration Act of 1649.]

In Maryland the great event of the year 1649, which witnessed the
death of Charles I., was the passage on April 21 of the Act concerning
Religion. This famous statute, commonly known as the "Toleration Act,
was drawn up by Cecilius himself, and passed the assembly exactly as it
came from him, without amendment. With regard to Cecilius, therefore,
it may be held to show, if not the ideas which he actually entertained,
at least those which he deemed it prudent to embody in legislation.
It is not likely to have surpassed his ideals, but it may easily have
fallen somewhat short of them. The statute is so important that the
pertinent sections of it deserve to be quoted at length:[149]--

"That whatsoever person or persons within this Province and the Islands
thereunto belonging, shall from henceforth blaspheme God, that is curse
him, or deny our Saviour Jesus Christ to bee the sonne of God, or shall
deny the holy Trinity, the ffather sonne and holy Ghost, or the God
head of any of the said three persons of the Trinity, or the unity of
the Godhead, or shall use or utter any reproachfull speeches, words or
language concerning the said Holy Trinity, or any of the said three
persons thereof, shall be punished with death, and confiscation or
forfeiture of all his or her lands and goods to the Lord Proprietary
and his heires.

"That whatsoever person or persons shall from henceforth use or utter
any reproachfull words, or speeches, concerning the blessed Virgin
Mary, the mother of our Saviour, or the holy apostles, or Evangelists,
or any of them, shall in such case for the first offence forfeit to
the said Lord Proprietary and his heires the sume of ffive pound

"That whatsoever person shall henceforth upon any occasion, declare,
call, or denominate any person or persons whatsoever inhabiting,
residing, traffiqueing, trading or commerceing within this Province,
or within any of the Ports, Harbors, Creeks or Havens to the same
belonging, an heretick, Scismatick, Idolator, Puritan, Independent,
Prespiterian, popish priest, Iesuit, Iesuited papist, Lutheran,
Calvenist, Anabaptist, Brownist, Antinomian, Barronist, Roundhead,
Sep'atist, or any other name or term in a reproachfull manner relating
to matter of Religion, shall for every such offence forfeit the sume of
tenne shillings sterling.--

"Whereas the inforcing of the conscience in matters of Religion
hath frequently fallen out to be of dangerous consequence in those
commonwealths where it hath been practised, and for the more quiet
and peaceble government of this Province, and the better to preserve
mutuall Love and amity amongst the Inhabitants thereof; Be it therefore
also by the Lord Proprietary with the advice and consent of this
Assembly, ordered and enacted (except as in this present act is before
declared and sett forth,) that noe person or persons whatsoever
within this Province, or the Islands: Ports, Harbors, Creeks or havens
thereunto belonging, professing to believe in Jesus Christ, shall from
henceforth bee any waies troubled, molested or discountenanced for or
in respect to his or her religion."

A statute which threatens Unitarians with death leaves something to
be desired in the way of toleration, even though it fines a man ten
shillings for calling his neighbour a Calvinist in a reproachful
manner. Nevertheless, for the age when it was enacted this statute was
eminently liberal, and it certainly reflects great credit upon Lord
Baltimore. To be ruler over a country wherein no person professing to
believe in Jesus Christ should be molested in the name of religion was
a worthy ambition, and one from which Baltimore's contemporaries in
Massachusetts and elsewhere might have learned valuable lessons. Such a
policy as was announced in this memorable Toleration Act was not easy
to realize in the seventeenth century. The very year in which it was
enacted saw the grim wolf of intolerance thrusting his paw in at the

[Sidenote: Migration of Puritans from Virginia to Maryland.]

As had happened before, the woes of the Virginia Leah brought woe upon
the Maryland Rachel. When Governor Berkeley returned from England, he
did more than swear at the defiant chaplain Harrison and the other
preachers of Puritanism south of James River. He banished the pastors
and made life unendurable for the flocks. In 1648 two of the Nansemond
elders, Richard Bennett and William Durand, fleeing to Maryland, were
kindly received by Governor Stone, who extended a most hospitable
invitation to their people to leave Virginia and settle in the
Baltimore palatinate. Cecilius had complained that settlers did not
come fast enough and his colony was still too weak, whereupon Stone had
promised to do his best to bring in 500 new people. His opportunity
had now come; early in 1649 an advance body of 300 Puritans came from
Nansemond. The rest of their brethren hesitated, fearing lest Catholics
might be no pleasanter neighbours than the king's men, but the course
of events soon decided them. The news of the execution of Charles I.
was generally greeted in Virginia with indignation and horror, feelings
which were greatly intensified by the arrival of the Cavaliers who in
that year began to flock to Virginia. One ship in September brought 330
Cavaliers, and probably more than 1,000 came in the course of the year.
In October the assembly declared that the beheading of the king was an
act of treason which nobody in Virginia must dare to speak in defence
of under penalty of death. It also spoke of the fugitive Charles II. as
"his Majesty that now is," and made it treason to call his authority
in question. These were the last straws upon the back of the Puritan
camel, and in the course of the next few months the emigration from
Nansemond went on till as many as 1,000 persons had gone over to
Maryland. They settled upon land belonging to the Susquehannocks, near
the mouth of a stream upon which they bestowed the name of the glorious
English river that falls into the sea between Glamorgan and the Mendip
Hills, and the county through which this new-found Severn flowed they
called Providence from feelings like those which had led Roger Williams
to give that comforting name to his settlement on Narragansett Bay.
Presently this new Providence became a county bearing Lady Baltimore's
name, Anne Arundel, and the city which afterwards grew up in it was
called Annapolis. This country had not been cleared for agriculture
by the Indians, like the region about St. Mary's, and there was some
arduous pioneer work for the Puritan colony.

[Sidenote: Designs of the Puritans.]

In changing the settlement or plantation of Providence into the
county of Anne Arundel, something more than a question of naming was
involved. The affair was full of political significance. Puritans
at first entertained an idea that they might be allowed to form an
_imperium in imperio_, maintaining a kind of Greek autonomy on the
banks of their Severn, instead of becoming an integral portion of
Baltimore's palatinate. At first they refused to elect representatives
to the assembly at St. Mary's; when presently they yielded to Governor
Stone's urgency and sent two representatives in 1650, one of them was
straightway chosen speaker of the House; nevertheless, in the next
year the Puritans again held aloof. They believed that the Puritan
government in England would revoke Lord Baltimore's charter, and they
wished to remain separated from his fortunes. Their willingness to
settle within his territory was coupled with the belief that it would
not much longer be his.

[Sidenote: Submission of Virginia to Cromwell.]

This belief was not wholly without reason. The war-ships of the
Commonwealth were about to appear in Chesapeake Bay. Such audacious
proceedings as those of the Virginia Assembly could not be allowed
to go unnoticed by Parliament, and early in 1652 four commissioners
were sent to receive the submission of Berkeley and his colony. One
of these commissioners was Richard Bennett, the Puritan elder who had
been driven from Nansemond. Another was the irrepressible Claiborne,
whom Berkeley had helped drive out of Maryland. The Virginians at
first intended to defy the commissioners and resist the fleet, but
after some parley leading to negotiations, they changed their minds.
It was not prudent to try to stand up against Oliver Cromwell, and
he, for his part, was no fanatic. Virginia must submit, but she might
call it a voluntary submission. She might keep her assembly, by which
alone could she be taxed, all prohibitions upon her trade should be
repealed, and her people might toast the late king in private as much
as they pleased; only no public stand against the Commonwealth would
be tolerated. On these terms Virginia submitted. Sir William Berkeley
resigned the governorship, sold his brick house in Jamestown, and went
out to his noble plantation at Green Spring near by, there to bide his
time. For the next eight years things moved along peaceably under three
successive Roundhead governors, all chosen by the House of Burgesses.
The first was Richard Bennett, who was succeeded in March, 1655, by
Edward Digges; and after a year Digges was followed by that gallant
Samuel Mathews who had once given such a bear's hug to the arrogant
Sir John Harvey. As for Claiborne, he was restored to his old office of
secretary of state.

[Sidenote: Claiborne and Bennett in Maryland.]

In Maryland there was more trouble. As soon as Claiborne had disposed
of the elder sister, Leah, he went to settle accounts with the youthful
Rachel, who had so many wooers. There was Episcopal Virginia, whose
pretensions to the fair damsel were based on its old charter; there
was the Catholic lord proprietor, to whom Charles I. had solemnly
betrothed her; there were the Congregational brethren of Providence on
the Severn, whose new pretensions made light of these earlier vows;
but the master of the situation was Claiborne, with his commission
from Parliament and his heavily armed frigate. Mighty little cared
he, says a contemporary writer, for religion or for punctilios; what
he was after was that sweet and rich country. Claiborne's conduct,
however, did not quite merit such a slur. In this his hour of triumph
he behaved without violence, nor do we find him again laying hands upon
Kent Island. On arriving with Bennett at St. Mary's, they demanded
that Governor Stone and his council should sign a covenant "to be true
and faithful to the Commonwealth of England as it is now established
without King or House of Lords." To this demand no objection was
made, but the further demand, that all writs and warrants should run
no longer in Baltimore's name, but in the name of the Keepers of the
Liberty of England, was obstinately refused. For this refusal Stone was
removed from office, a provisional government was established, and the
commissioners sailed away. This was in April, 1652. After two months of
meditation Stone sent word to Jamestown that he was willing to yield
in the matter of the writs, whereupon Claiborne and Bennett promptly
returned to St. Mary's and restored him to office.

[Sidenote: Renewal of the troubles.]

But those were shifting times. Within a year, in April, 1653, Cromwell
turned out of doors the Rump Parliament, otherwise called Keepers of
the Liberty of England; and accordingly, as writs could no longer run
in their name, Stone announced that he should issue them, as formerly,
in the name of Lord Baltimore. He did this by order of Cecilius
himself. Trouble arose at the same time between Stone and the Puritans
of Providence, and the result of all this was the reappearance of
Bennett and Claiborne at St. Mary's, in July, 1654. Again they deposed
Stone and placed the government in the hands of a council, with William
Fuller as its president. Then they issued writs for the election of
an assembly, and once more departed for Jamestown. According to the
tenor of these writs, no Roman Catholic could either be elected as a
burgess or vote at the election; in this way a house was obtained that
was almost unanimously Puritan, and in October this novel assembly so
far forgot its sense of the ludicrous as to pass a new "Toleration Act"
securing to all persons freedom of conscience, provided such liberty
were not extended to "popery, prelacy, or licentiousness of opinion."
In short, these liberal Puritans were ready to tolerate everybody
except Catholics, Episcopalians, and anybody else who disagreed with

[Sidenote: Battle of the Severn.]

When Lord Baltimore heard how Stone had surrendered the government,
he wrote a letter chiding him for it. The legal authority of the
commissioners, Bennett and Claiborne, had expired with the Rump
Parliament. Cromwell was now Lord Protector, and according to his own
theory the Protectorate was virtually the assignee of the Crown and
successor to all its rights and obligations. Baltimore's charter was
therefore as sound under the Protectorate as it had ever been. Knowing
that Cromwell favoured this view, Cecilius wrote to Stone to resume
the government and withstand the Puritans. This led at once to civil
war. Governor Stone gathered a force of 130 men and marched against the
settlement at Providence, flying Baltimore's beautiful flag of black
and gold. Captain Fuller, with 175 men, was ready for him, and the two
little armies met on the bank of the Severn, March 25, 1655. Besides
his superiority in numbers, Fuller was helped by two armed merchant
ships, the one British, the other from New England, which kept up a
sharp fire from the river. Stone's men were put to flight, leaving one
third of their number in killed and wounded. One old Puritan writer
tells us with keen enjoyment that the field whence they fled was strewn
with their "Papist beads." Among the prisoners taken was Stone himself,
who was badly wounded. Fuller at once held a court-martial at which
Stone and nine other leading men were sentenced to death. Four were
executed, but on the intercession of some kind-hearted women Stone and
the others were pardoned.

[Sidenote: Lord Baltimore sustained by Cromwell.]

The supremacy of the Puritans in Maryland thus seemed to be
established, but it was of short duration. Some of the leading Puritans
in Virginia, such as Bennett and Mathews, visited London and tried to
get Baltimore's charter annulled. But their efforts soon revealed the
fact that Cromwell was not on their side of the question, and so they
gave up in despair, and the quarrel of nearly thirty years' standing
was at last settled by a compromise in 1657. Lord Baltimore promised
complete amnesty for all offences against his government from the
very beginning, and he gave his word never to consent to the repeal
of his Toleration Act of 1649. Upon these terms Virginia withdrew her
opposition to his charter, and indemnified Claiborne by extensive land
grants for the loss of Kent Island. Baltimore appointed Captain Josias
Fendall to be governor of Maryland and sent out his brother Philip
Calvert to be secretary. The men of Providence were fain to accept
toleration at the hands of those to whom they had refused to grant
it, and in March, 1658, Governor Fendall's authority was acknowledged
throughout the palatinate. Peace reigned on the shores of Chesapeake
Bay, the claims of Leah and Rachel were adjusted, and the fair sisters
quarrelled no more.


[134] See Latané, "Early Relations between Maryland and Virginia,"
_Johns Hopkins University Studies_, vol. xiii.

[135] See above, p. 145.

[136] Hammond, _Leah and Rachel, or, The Two Fruitfull Sisters,
Virginia and Maryland_, 1656.

[137] Neill, _Virginia Carolorum_, p. 126.

[138] _Maryland Archives--Council Proceedings_, i. 29.

[139] Hening's _Statutes at Large_, i. 223.

[140] "Memories of Yorktown," address by Lyon Gardiner Tyler, President
of William and Mary College, _Richmond Times_, Nov. 25, 1894. The
original letter of Captain Mathews and the declaration of Sir John
Harvey concerning the "mutiny of 1635" are printed in the _Virginia
Magazine of History and Biography_, i. 416-430. In my brief account I
have tried to reconcile some apparent inconsistencies in the various
statements with regard to time. Some accounts seem to extend over three
or four days the events which more probably occurred on the 27th and
28th. The point is of no importance.

[141] The interval was from April 28, 1635, to January 18, 1637.

[142] Neill, _Virginia Carolorum_, p. 143.

[143] In the famous picture of the baptism of Pocahontas, in the
rotunda of the Capitol at Washington, Whitaker, as an Episcopal
clergyman, is depicted as clothed in a surplice. A letter of
Whitaker's, of June, 1614, tells us that no surplices were used in
Virginia; see _Purchas His Pilgrimes_, iv. 1771. Surplices began to be
used there about 1724 (see Hugh Jones, _Present State of Virginia_,
1724, p. 69), and did not come into general use till the nineteenth
century (Latané, _Early Relations_, etc. p. 64).

[144] Randall, "A Puritan Colony in Maryland," _Johns Hopkins
University Studies_, iv.

[145] Hening's _Statutes at Large_, i. 277.

[146] Hildreth (_Hist. of the U. S._ i. 340) says that the Indians
"were encouraged by signs of discord among the English, having seen a
fight in James River between a London ship for the Parliament and a
Bristol ship for the king."

[147] Winthrop's _Journal_, ii. 164.

[148] Browne's _Maryland_, p. 60.

[149] _Proceedings and Acts of the General Assembly of Maryland_,
1637-1664, pp. 244-246.

           *          *          *          *          *

                Transcriber's Notes.

    Words in small capitals are shown in UPPERCASE.
    Italics are shown thus: _fine_.
    The '^' symbol has been used to show superscript.
    Inconsistent hyphenation and variant spelling remain.
    Sidenotes have been moved to the begining of the relevent paragraph.
    Footnotes have been moved to the end of the chapter.
    Obvious typographical errors have been corrected.
    Assumed printer's errors have been corrected:
    --Footnote 133 was not anchored by the printer.
      Placement is by the transcribers estimate.
    --In the table of contents "The mystery about White's colony 28,39"
      has been corrected to "...38,39"."
    --"How a part of Virginia was granted to him and received the
      name of Maryland 235" corrected to "......265"

          *          *          *          *          *

*** End of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Old Virginia and Her Neighbours, Vol. 1 (of 2)" ***

Doctrine Publishing Corporation provides digitized public domain materials.
Public domain books belong to the public and we are merely their custodians.
This effort is time consuming and expensive, so in order to keep providing
this resource, we have taken steps to prevent abuse by commercial parties,
including placing technical restrictions on automated querying.

We also ask that you:

+ Make non-commercial use of the files We designed Doctrine Publishing
Corporation's ISYS search for use by individuals, and we request that you
use these files for personal, non-commercial purposes.

+ Refrain from automated querying Do not send automated queries of any sort
to Doctrine Publishing's system: If you are conducting research on machine
translation, optical character recognition or other areas where access to a
large amount of text is helpful, please contact us. We encourage the use of
public domain materials for these purposes and may be able to help.

+ Keep it legal -  Whatever your use, remember that you are responsible for
ensuring that what you are doing is legal. Do not assume that just because
we believe a book is in the public domain for users in the United States,
that the work is also in the public domain for users in other countries.
Whether a book is still in copyright varies from country to country, and we
can't offer guidance on whether any specific use of any specific book is
allowed. Please do not assume that a book's appearance in Doctrine Publishing
ISYS search  means it can be used in any manner anywhere in the world.
Copyright infringement liability can be quite severe.

About ISYS® Search Software
Established in 1988, ISYS Search Software is a global supplier of enterprise
search solutions for business and government.  The company's award-winning
software suite offers a broad range of search, navigation and discovery
solutions for desktop search, intranet search, SharePoint search and embedded
search applications.  ISYS has been deployed by thousands of organizations
operating in a variety of industries, including government, legal, law
enforcement, financial services, healthcare and recruitment.