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N E W E N G L A N D S
ago I writ so largely, as in briefe I hope this may suffice
you to remember, that New England is a part of Ame
rica, betwixt the Degrees of 41. and 45. the very meane betwixt the North Pole and the Line. From 43. to 45. the coast is mountainous, rockie, barren and broken Iles that make many good harbours. The water is deepe, close to the shore; there are many riuers and fresh springs: few Saluages, but an incredible abundance of fish, fowle, wilde fruits, and good timber. From 43. to 41. & a half, an excellent mixed coast of stone, sand and clay, much corne, many people, some Iles, many good harbours, a temperate aire, and therein all things necessary for the building ships of any proportion, and good merchandize for their fraught, within a square of 12 leagues: 25 harbours I sounded; 30 seuerall Lordships I saw, and so neare as I could imagine, 3000 men. I was vp one riuer fortie miles, crossed the mouths of many, whose heads are reported to be great lakes; where they kill their Beuers; inhabited with many people who trade with those of New-England, and them of Canada.
The benefit of fishing, as Mr. Dee reporteth
He saith that it is more then 44 yeares ago, and it is more then 40 yeares since he writ it, that the Herring Busses out of the Low-countries, vnder the King of Spaine, were 500. besides 100 Frenchinen, and three or soure, hundred saile of Flemmings.
The coasts of Wales and Lancashire was vsed by 300 saile of strangers.
Ireland at Baltemore fraughted yearely 300 saile of Spaniards, where King Edward the sixt intended to haue made a strong Castle, because of the strait, to haue tribute for fishing.
Blacke Rocke was yearely fished by three or soure hundred saile of Spaniards, Portugals & Biskiners.
Mr. Gentleman and many Fisher-men and Fish Mongers with whom I haue conferred, report,
The Hollanders raise yearely by Herring, Cod, and Ling, 3000000 pounds.
English and French by Salt-fish, poore Iohn, Salmons and Pilchards, 300000 pounds.
Hambrough and the Sound, for Sturgion, Lobsters and Eeles, 100000 pounds.
Cape Blanke sor Tunny and Mullit, by the Biskiners and Spaniards 30000 pounds.
But diuers other learned experienced Obseruers say,
That the Duke of Medina receiueth yearely tribute of the fishers for Tunny, Mullit and Purgos, more then 10000 pounds. Lubeck hath 700 ships: Hambrough 600: Embden lately a fisher towne, 1400. whose customes by the profit of fishing hath made them so powerfull as they be. Holland and Zeland, not much greater then Yorkshire, hath thirtie walled townes, 400 villages, and 20000 saile of shippes and hoyes; 3600 are fishermen, whereof 100 are Doggers, 700 Pinckes, and Welbotes, 700 Frand botes, Britters and Todebotes, with 1300 Busses, besides three hundred that yearely fish about Yarmouth, where they sell their fish for gold; and fifteene yeares ago they had more then 116000 sea-faring men. These fishing ships do take yearely 200000 Last of fish, twelue barrels to a Last, which amounted to 3000000 pounds by the Fishermens price, that 14 yeares ago did pay for their tenths 300000 pound; which venting in Pumerland, Sprussia, Denmarke, Lesland, Russia, Swethland, Germany, Netherlands, England, or elsewhere, &c. make their returnes in a yeare about 7000000 pounds; and yet in Holland they haue neither matter to build ships, nor merchandize to set them foorth; yet by their industrie they as much increase, as other Nations decay. But leauing these vncertainties as they are, of this I am certaine, Herring. That the coast of England, Scotland, and | Salt-fish. Ireland, the North Sea, with Ireland and the poore Iohn. Sound, New-found land and Cape Blanke, do | Sturgion. serue all Europe, as well the land Townes as « Mullit. Ports, and all the Christian shipping, with Tunny. these sorts of Staple fish which is transported, Porgos. from whence it is taken, many a thousand | Caviare. mile, viz. Buttargo. Now seeing all these sorts of fish, or the most part of them, may be had in a land more fertile, temperate, and plentifull of all necessaries for the building of ships, boates and houses, and the nourishment of man; the seasons are so proper, and the fishings so neare the habitations we may there make, that New England hath much aduantage of the most of those parts, to serue all Europe farre cheaper then they can, who at home haue neither wood, salt, nor food, but at great rates; at Sea nothing but what they carry in their ships, an hundred or two hundred leagues from their habitation. But New Englands fishings is neare land, where is helpe of wood, water, fruites, fowles, corne, or other refreshings needfull; and the Terceras, Mederas, Canaries, Spaine, Portugale, Prouance, Sauoy, Sicilia, and all Italy, as conuenient markets for our dry Fish, greene Fish, Sturgion, Mullit, Cauiare, and Buttargo, as Norway, Swethland, Littuania, or Germany, for their Herring, which is here also in abundance for taking; they returning but wood, pitch, tarre, soape-ashes, cordage, flaxe, waxe, and such like commodities: we, wines, oyles, sugars, silks and such merchandize as the Straits affoord, whereby our profit may equalize theirs; besides the increase of shipping and Mariners. And for proofe hereof: With two ships sent out at the charge of Cap- Prose i. 1614. tain Marmaduke Roydon, Captain George Langam, M. Iohn Buley and W. Skelton, I went frå the Downes the third of March, and ariued in New England the last of April, where I was to haue stayed but with ten men to keep possession of those large territories. Had the whales proued, as curious information had assured me and my aduentures, (but those things failed.) So hauing but fortie five men and boyes, we built seuen boates, 37 did fish; my selfe with eight others ranging the coast, I tooke a plot of what I could see, got acquaintance of the inhabitants; 1100 Beuer skins, 100 Martins and as many Otters. 40000 of drie fish we sent for Spaine with the salt fish, traine oile and Furres, I returned for England the 18 of Iuly, and ariued safe with my company the latter end of August. Thus in six moneths I made my voyage out and home; and by the labour of 45, got neare the value of 1500 pounds in those grosse commodities. This yeare also one went from Plimmouth, set out by diuers of the Isle of Wight and the West country, by the directions & instructions of Sir Ferdinando Gorge, spent their victuals, and returned with nothing. The Virginia Company vpon this sent 4 good ships ; and because I would not undertake it for them, hauing ingaged my selfe to them of the West, the Londoners entertained the men that came home with me. They set saile in Ianuary, and ariued there in March; they found fish enough wntill halfe Iune, fraughted a ship of 300 Tuns, went for Spaine, which was taken by the Turks; one went to Virginia to relieue that Colonie, and two came for England with the greene fish, traine oile and Furres within six moneths. Proofe 3. 1615, In lanuary with 200 pounds in cash for aduenture, and sir Gentlemen wel furnished, I went from London to the foure ships was promised, prepared for me in the West country, but I found no such matter; notwithstanding at the last with a labyrinth of trouble I went from Plimmoth with a ship of 200 Tuns, and one of fiftie: when the fishing was dome onely with 15 I was to stay in the country; but ill weather breaking all my masts, I was forced to returne to Plimmoth, where rather then lose all, reimbarking myselfe in a Bark of 60 Tuns, how I escaped the English pyrates and the French, and was betrayed by foure French men of warre, I referre you to the Description of New England: but my Vice-Admirall, notwithstanding the latenesse of the yeare, setting forth with me in March, the Londoners in Ianuary, she ariued in May, they in March, yet came home well fraught in August, & all - her men well, within 5 months, odde days. Proofe 4, 1616, The Londoners ere I returned from France, for all their losse by the Turks, which was valued about 4000 pounds, sent two more in Iuly; but such courses they took by the Canaries to the West Indies, it was ten moneths ere they ariued in New England, wasting in that time their seasons, victuall and healths, yet there they found meanes to refresh themselues, and the one returned, neare fraught with fish and traine, within 2 moneths after. Proofe 5. 1616, From Plimmoth went 4 ships, onely to fish and trade, some in Frebruarie, some in March, one of 200 Tuns got thither in a month, and went full fraught for Spain, the