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Anno Dom: 1633
\HIS year Mr. Ed: Winslow was chosen Governor.
By the first returne this year, they had leters from Mr.
Sherley of Mr. Allerton's further ill success, and the loss by Mr. Peirce, with many sadd complaints; but litle hope of any
1 Winslow had returned from England, sailing from London in the William and Francis, March 9, 1631–32, and reaching Boston, June 5, 1632. Winthrop, 1. *78. Bradford had now served twelve years as governor, and “now by importunity gat off.” The temptations to hold office were not such as to lead to any contest for places, either of governor or of a member of the Council. The Court felt obliged at this time to discourage a refusal to hold office by imposing fines upon any who, having been elected, should refuse to hold and execute his office for the year. In the case of the governor the fine was fixed at twenty pounds sterling, and in that of a councillor, ten pounds. One who had served a year as governor might decline without any penalty. Winthrop, History, 1. *98; Plymouth Col. Rec., 1. 5.
The names of the governor's councillors or Assistants are given for the first time in the Records for this year - William Bradford, Myles Standish, John Howland, John Alden, John Doane, Stephen Hopkins and William Gilson. “We know from this History, that on the first election of Bradford as Governor, in 1621, Allerton was chosen his Assistant, and held the office, by re-election, for a number of years. In 1624, the number was increased to five, with which number, says Hubbard, 'they rested contented till the year 1633, when two more were added.' In an official letter written by Governor Bradford to Governor Winthrop, dated February 6, 1631-32, besides the signature of the Governor, it bears the names of Miles Standish, Samuel Fuller, John Alden, and Thomas Prence, who were probably the Assistants at that time. Winslow, who was then absent, may have completed the number.
“Respecting the time for the annual election of Governor and Assistants, we find in 1633, when the first record of the election of those officers appears, and in 1634, 1635, and 1636, that it took place at the General Court in January. They were to enter upon the duties of their office, however, on the ensuing March, which was the commencement of the civil year; though no particular day appears to have been assigned for that purpose. Prence was elected Governor in 1634, 'for the year following, and to enter upon the place the 1st of March or the 27th of the same.' Bradford was chosen in 1635, and was to enter upon his duties on the first Tuesday in March. Winslow, in 1636, was to enter upon the place the 1st of March. In 1633,
thinge to be gott of Mr. Allerton, or how their accounts might be either eased, or any way rectified by them ther; but now saw plainly that the burthen of all would be cast on their backs. The spetiall passages of his letters I shall here inserte, as shall be
pertinente to these things; for though I am weary of this tedious and uncomfortable subjecte, yet for the clearing of the truth I am compelled to be more large in the opening of these matters, upon which (194) so much trouble hath insued, and so many hard censures have
on both sides. I would not be partiall to either, but deliver the truth in all, and, as nere as I can, in their owne words and passages, and so leave it to the impartiall judgment of any that shall come to read, or veiw these things. His leters are as folow, dated June 24. 1633.
LOVING FREINDS, my last? was sente in the Mary and John, by Mr. William Collier, etc.: I then certified of you the great, and uncomfortable, and unseasonable loss you and we had, in the loss of Mr. Peirce his ship, the Lyon; but the Lords holy name be blessed, who gives and takes as it pleaseth him; his will be done, Amen. I then re
when Winslow was first chosen, he entered upon his duties at once. ... In 1636,
3 "This year (1633) likewise Mr. William Collier arrived with his family in NewEngland, who as he had been a good Benefactor to the Colony of New-Plimouth before he came over, having been an Adventurer unto it at its first beginning; so also he approved himself a very useful Instrument in that Jurisdiction after he arrived, being frequently Chosen, and for divers years serving God and the Country in the place of Magistracy; and lived a godly and holy life untill old Age, which to him is a Crown of Glory, being found in the way of Righteousness.” Morton, New Englands Memoriall, *91.
lated unto you that fearfull accidente, or rather judgmente, the Lord pleased to lay on London Bridge,' by fire, and therin gave you a touch of my great loss; the Lord, I hope, will give me patience to bear it, and faith to trust in him, and not in these slipery and uncertaine things of this world.
I hope Mr. Allerton is nere upon sayle? with you by this; but he had many disasters here before he could gett away; yet the last was a heavie one; his ship, going out of the harbor at Bristoll, by stormie weather was so farr driven on the shore, as it cost him above 1ooli. before shee could be gott off againe. Verily his case was so lamentable as I could not but afford him some help therin (and so did some mere strangers to him); besides, your goods were in her, and if he had not been supported, he must have broke off his viage, and so loss could not have been avoyded on all sides. When he first bought her, I thinke he had made a saving match, if he had then sunck her, and never set her forth. I hope he sees the Lords hand against him, and will leave of these vioages. I thinke we did well in parting with her; she would have been but a clogge to the accounte from time to time, and now though we shall not gett much by way of satisfaction, yet we shall lose no more. And now, as before I have writte, I pray you finish all the accounts and reconings with him there; for here he hath nothing, but many debtes that he stands ingaged to many men for. Besides, here is not a man that will spend a day, or scarce an hower, aboute the accounts but my selfe, and the bussines will require more time and help then I can afford. I shall not need to say any more; I hope you will doe that which shall be best and just, to which adde mercie, and consider his intente, though he failed in many perticulers, which now cannot be helped, etc.
1 "1632–3, February 11. ) night till 8 morning. (Laud's Diary).” - PRINCE.
Bradford wrote “safe,” but struck it out. In all editions the word “sayle " is used; but in June, when this letter was written, Allerton would be at or near the coast of New England.
• On April 15 a fishing vessel, John Corbin, master, arrived at Pascataqua bringing one Richard Foxwell, who “heard from Mr. Alerton, whoe was making ready at Bristol for to come for this cuntery.” William Hilton to John Winthrop, Jr., April 18, 1633, in & Mass. Hist. Collections, IX. 262.
To morrow, or next day at furthest, we are to pay 300li. and Mr. Beachamp is out of the towne, yet the bussines I must doe. Oh the greefe and trouble that man, Mr. Allerton, hath brought upon you and us! I cannot forgett it, and to thinke on it drawes many a sigh from my harte, and teares from my eyes. And now the Lord hath visited me with an other great loss, yet I can undergoe it with more patience. But this I have follishly pulled upon my selfe, etc. (And in another he hath this passage:) ? By Mr. Allertons faire propossitions and large (195) promises, I have over rune my selfe; verily, at this time greefe hinders me to write, and tears will not suffer me to see; wherfore, as you love those that ever loved you, and that plantation, thinke upon us. Oh what shall I say of that man, who hath abused your trust and wronged our loves; but now to complaine is too late, nither can I complaine of your backwardnes, for I am perswaded it lys as heavie on your harts, as it doth on our purses or credites. And had the Lord sent Mr. Peirce safe home, we had eased both you and us of some of those debts; the Lord I hope will give us patience to bear these crosses; and that great God, whose care and providence is every where, and spetially over all those that desire truly to fear and serve him, direct, guid, prosper, and blesse you so as that you may be able (as I perswade my selfe you are willing) to discharge and take off this great and heavie burthen which now lyes upon me for your sakes; and I hope in the ende for the good of you, and many thousands more; for had not you and we joyned and continued togeather, New-England might yet have been scarce knowne, I am perswaded, not so replenished and inhabited with honest English people, as now it is. The Lord increase and blesse them, etc. So, with my continuall praiers for you all, I rest
Your assured loving friend,
JAMES SHERLEY. June 24. 1633.
By this it apperes when Mr. Sherly sould him the ship and all her accounts, it was more for Mr. Allertons advantage then theirs; and if they could get any there, well and good, for they were like to have
1 The brackets are in the original ms.
nothing here. And what course was held to hinder them there, hath all ready beene manifested. And though Mr. Sherley became more sinsible of his owne condition, by these losses, and therby more sadly and plainly to complaine of Mr. Allerton, yet no course was taken to help them here, but all left unto them selves; not so much as to examene and rectifie the accounts, by which (it is like) some hundereds of pounds might have been taken off. But very probable it is, the more they saw was taken off, the less might come unto them selves. But I leave these maters, and come to other things.
Mr. Roger Williams (a man godly and zealous, having many precious parts, but very unsettled in judgmente) came over first to the Massachusets, but upon some discontente left that place, and came hither, (wher he was friendly entertained, according to
· Roger Williams and his wife, Mary, came in the ship Lyon, William Peirce, master, leaving Bristol 1 December, 1630, and arriving off Nantasket 5 February, 1630–31. He was of a Welsh family, had been favored by Sir Edward Coke, and took a degree of Bachelor of Arts at Pembroke College in 1627. While holding a benefice in or near Lincolnshire, he became a Nonconformist and appears to have been one of the objects of Laud's persecutions. Letter to Mrs. Sadleir, 1652. Narragansett Club, vi. 239. Rev. John Wilson being then about to depart for England, his church invited Williams to supply his place during this absence; but Williams, as yet believed to be of moderate views, declined, on the ground that he "durst not officiate to an unseparated people.” The church at Salem then expressed an intention of employing him, but the Boston magistrates warned against it, and succeeded in preventing his ordination. Winthrop, History, 1. *52. He removed to Plymouth, where he "spake on the Lord's days and week-days, and wrought hard at the hoe for my bread (and so afterward at Salem), until I found them both professing to be a separated people in New England (not admitting the most godly to communion without a covenant), and yet communicating with the parishes in Old by their members repairing on frequent occasions thither.” Mass. Hist. Soc. Proceedings, III. 316. He was in Plymouth in the latter part of 1631, and Winthrop gives an account of hearing him there in October, 1632. “On the Lord's Day there was a sacrament, which they did partake in; and, in the afternoon, Mr. Roger Williams (according to their custom) propounded a question, to which the pastor, Mr. Smith, spake briefly; then Mr. Williams prophesied; and after that the governor of Plimouth (Bradford] spake to the question; after him the elder (Brewster]; then some two or three more of the congregation. Then the elder desired the governour of Massachusetts and Mr. Wilson to speak to it, which they did. When this was ended, the deacon, Mr. Fuller, put the