Page images
PDF

rest returned to Plimmoth well fraught, and their men well, within five moneths, odde dayes. . From London went two more, one of 200 Tums, Pro** * got thither in six weeks, and within six weeks after with 44 men and boyes was full fraught, and returned again into England within five moneths and a few daies; the other went to the Canaries with drie fish, which they sold at a great rate, for Rials of 8, and as I heard turned pirats. I being at Plimoth prouided with 3 good Prose 7, 1917. ships, yet but fifteen men to stay with me in the country was Windbound three moneths, as was many a hundred saile more, so that the season being past, ships went for New-foundland, whereby my designe was frustrate, which was to me & my friends no small losse, in regard whereof here the Westerne Commissioners in the behalfe of themselues; and the rest of the Companie, contracted with me by articles indented vnder our hands, to be Admirall of that Country during my life, and in the renewing of their Letters pattents so to be nominated, halfe the fruits of our endeuours theirs, the rest our owne ; being thus ingaged; now the businesse doth prosper, some of them would willingly forget me; but I am not the first they haue deceived. - There was foure good ships prepared at Plim- Profes. 1618. moth, but by reason of their disagreement, the season so wasted, as onely 2 went forward, the one being of 200 Tuns, returned well fraught for Plimmoth, and her men in health, within five moneths; the other of 80 Tuns, went for Bilbow with drie fish, and made a good returne. In this wayage Edward Rowcroft, alias Stallings, a valiant souldier, that had bin with me in Virginia, and seuen yeares after went with me from Plimoth towards New England with Thomas Dirmer an understanding and an industrious Gentleman to inhabite it; all whose names with our proceedings you may reade at large in my description of New England, upon triall before the Judge of the Admiraltie, how when we had past the worst, for pure cowardize the Maister and sailers ran away with the ship and all I had, and left me alone among 8 or 9 French men of Warre in the yeare 1615. This Stallings went now againe in those ships, and hauing some wrong offered him in New England by a French man, hee tooke him, and as he writ to me, he went with her to Virginia with fish, to trade with them for such commodities as they might spare; he knew both these countries well, yet he promised me the next Spring to

meet me in New England; but the ship and he perished in Virginia.

Proofe 9. 1619. This yeare againe, diuers ships intending to go from Plimmoth, so disagreed, as there went but one of 200 Tuns, who stayed in the country about 6 weeks, with 38 men and boyes, had her fraught, which she sold at the first penie, for 2100 pounds, besides the Furres: so that euery poor sailer that had but a single share, had his charges, and 16.l.. 10.s. for his seuen moneths worke. Mr. Thomas Dirmer hauing liued about a yeare in New-sound-land, returning to Plimmoth, went for New England in this ship, and not only confirmes what I haue writ, but so much more approued of it, that he stayed there with fiue or six men in a little boate; finding 2 or 3 Frenchmen among the sauages, who had lost their ship, augmented his companie, with whom he ranged the coast to Virginia, where he was kindly welcomed and well refreshed; thence returned to New England again, where hauing bin a yeare, in his back-returne to Virginia, he was so wounded by the sauages, he died upon it, them escaped were relieued at Virginia. Let not men attribute their great aduentures and wntimely deaths to vnfortunatenesse, but rather wonder how God did so long preserue them, with so small means to do so much, leauing the fruits of their labours to be an encouragement to those our poore vndertakings; and this for aduantage as they writ onto me, that God had laid this Country open for vs, and slaine the most part of the inhabitants by cruell warres and a mortall disease; for where I had seene 100 or 200 people, there is scarce ten to be found. From Pembrocks bay to Harrintons bay there is not 20; from thence to Cape An, some 30; from Taulbuts bay to the Riuer Charles, about 40; and not any of them touched with any sicknes, but one poore Frenchman that died.

Prose to loan. For to make triall this yeare there is gone 6 or 7 saile from the West country, onely to fish, three of whom are returned, and as I was certainly informed, made so good a voyage, that euery sailer for a single share had 20 poids for his 7 moneths work, which is more then in 20 moneths he should haue gotten had he gone for wages any where. Now though all the former ships haue not made such good voyages as they expected, by sending opinionated vnskilfull men, that had not experienced diligence to saue that they tooke, nor take that there was ; which now patience and practise hath brought to a reasonable kind of perfection: in despite of all detractors and calumniations, the Country yet hath satisfied all, the defect hath bin in their vsing or abusing it, not in it selfe 1707" 7776.

A plantation in New England.

Wpon these inducements some few well disposed Prote it low. Gentlemen and Merchants of London and other places prouided two ships, the one of 160 Tunnes, the other of 70; they lest the coast of England the 23 of August, with about 120 persons, but the next day the lesser ship sprung a leake that forced their returne to Plimmoth, where discharging her and 20 passengers, with the great ship and a hundred persons besides sailers, they set saile againe the sixt of September, and the ninth of Nouember fell Cope Iames; but being pestred nine weeks in this leaking vnwholsome ship, lying wet in their cabbins, most of them grew very weake, and weary of the sea, then for want of experience ranging to and again, six weeks before they found a place they liked to dwell on, forced to lie on the bare ground without couerture in the extremitie of Winter, fortie of them died, and 60 were left in very weake estate at the ships coming away, about the first of April following, and ariued in England the sixt of May.

Immediately after her ariuall, from London they proof, is loo. sent another of 55 Tunnes to supply them, with 37 persons, they set saile in the beginning of Iuly, but being crossed by Westerly winds, it was the end of August ere they could ; Plimmoth, and ariued at New Plimmoth in New Eng

nd the eleuenth of Nouember, where they sound all the people they left in April, as is said, lustie and in good health, except six that died. Within a moneth they returned here sor England, laded with clapboord, wainscot & walnut, with about three hogsheads of Beuer skins and some Saxefras, the 13 of December, and drawing neare our coast, was taken by a Frenchman, set out by the Marquis of Cera Gouernour of Ile Deu on the coast of Poytou, where they kept the ship, imprisoned the Master and companie, took from them to the value of about 500 pounds; and after 14 days sent them home with a poore supply of victuall, their owne being deuoured hy the Marquis and his hungry seruants; they ariued at London the 14 of Februarie, leauing all them they found and caried to New England well and in health, with victuall and corne sufficient till the next haruest.

The copie of Letter sent by this ship. Louing cousin, at our ariuall at New Plimmoth one" in New England, we found all our friends and planters in good health, though they were left sicke and weake with very small meanes, the Indians round about vs peaceable

y

s

and friendly, the country very pleasant and temperate, yeelding naturally of it self great store of fruites, as vines of diuers sorts in great abundance ; there is likewise walnuts, chesnuts, small nuts and plums, with much varietie of flowers, rootes, and herbs no lesse pleasant then wholsome and profitable : no place hath more goose-berries and straw-berries, nor better, Timber of all sorts you haue in England, doth couer the Land, that affoords beasts of diuers sorts, and great flocks of Turkies, Quailes Pigeons and Patriges; many great lakes abounding with fish, fowle, Beuers and Otters. The sea affoords vs as great plenty of all eacellent sorts of sea-fish, as the rivers and Iles doth carietie of wilde fowle of most vsefull sorts. Mines we find to our thinking, but neither the goodnesse nor qualitie we know. Better grain cannot be then the Indian corne, if we will plant it vpon as good ground as a man need desire. We are all free-holders, the rent day doth not trouble vs, and all those good blessings we haue, of which and what we list in their seasons for taking. Our companie are for most part very religious honest people; the word of God sincerely taught vs. euery Sabbath: so that I know not any thing a contented mind can here want. I desire your friendly care to send my wife and children to me, where I wish all the friends I have in England, and so I rest ---, . ! . - Your louing kinsman William Hilton.

Prose 13, 1831. From the West country went ten or twelue ships to fish which were all well fraughted; those that came first at Bilbow made 17 pounds a single share, besides Beuer, Otters and Martins skins; but some of the rest that came to the same ports that were already furnished, so glutted the market, their price was abated, yet all returned so well contented, they are a preparing to go againe. There is gone from the West of England onely to fish 35 ships, & about the last of April two more from London, the one of 100 Tuns, the other of 30, with some 60 passengers to supply the plantation with all necessary proulsions. Now though the Turke and French hath bin somewhat too busie, would all the Christian Princes but be truly at wnitie as his royall Maiestie our Soueraigne Lord and King desireth, 70 saile of good ships were sufficient to fire the most of his coasts in the Leuant, and make such a guard in the straits of Hellespont, as would make the great Turke himselfe more afraid in Constantinople, then the smallest red crosse, crosses the seas would be, either of any French, Piccaroun, or the pirats of Argere. * * ,

For this yeare 1622.

An abstract of Letters sent from the Collony in New
England, Iuly 16, 1622.

Since the newes of the massacre in Virginia, though the Indians continue their wonted friendship, yet are we more wary of them then before; for their hands hath bin embrued in much English blood, onely by too much confidence, but not by force.

Here I must intreate a little your fauours to digresse. They did not kill the English because they were Christians, but for their weapons and commodities, that were rare nouelties; but now they feare we may beate them out of their dens, which Lions and Tygers would not admit but by force. But must this be an argument for an English man, or discourage any either in Virginia or New England? No: for I haue tried them both. For Virginia, I kept that country with 38, and had not to eate but what we had from the sauages. When I had ten men able to go abroad, our common wealth was very strong; with such a number I ranged that vnknown country 14 weeks; I had but 18 to subdue them all, with which great army I stayed six weekes before their greatest Kings habitations, till they had gathered together all the power they could ; and yet the Dutchmen sent at a needlesse excessiue charge did helpe Powhatan how to betray me.

Of their numbers we were vncertaine; but them two honorable Gentlemen (Captaine George Percie and Captaine Francis West, two of the Phittiplaces, and some other such noble gentlemen and resolute spirits bore their shares with me, and now liuing in England) did see me take this murdering Opechaukanough now their great King by the long locke on his head, with my pistole at his breast, I led him among his greatest forces, and before we parted made him fill our Bark of twenty Tuns with corne. When their owne wants was such, I haue giuen them part againe in pittie, and others haue bought it againe to plant their fields. * , o, . For wronging a souldier but the value of a peny, I haue caused Powhatan send his owne men to lames Towne to receiue their punishment at my discretion. It is true in our greatest extremitie they shot me, slue three of my men, and by the folly of them that fled tooke me prisoner; yet God made Pocahontas the Kings daughter the meanes to deliuer me: & thereby taught me to know their trecheries to preserue the rest.

It was also my chance in single combat to take the King of

Paspahegh prisoner, and by keeping him, forced his subjects to worke in chaines, till I made all the country pay contribution, hauing little else whereon to liue. - - - - -

« PreviousContinue »