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addresse our selves, with all convenient speed, not doubting of the Lords presence with us, being cleare in the way we are in: This being our minds, we intreate you to acquaint them with it speedily; and if they shall, who have set their names to their book, doe come to us, and speake with us, we shall give them leave to returne without hurt.
Your Friends and Commissioners
The returne of this answer from the Commis- ° A» Jj18 wifo sioners, as above, affrighted our wives &t children, aUo'thew'foof .forcing them to betake themselves, some into the Robert Potter, Woods among the Indians, suffering such hard-ship, other women as occasioned the death of divers of them, [°] and Sthe'toBw'of others going to take water, to depart to other plan- their children, tations for succour, the souldiers approached before So.aI,° they could take boat, who presented their Muskets ,0TM""rough* at women great with child, forcing them and cold and hardtheir children to runne deep into the water, »h'P.in pri»on, to get into the boat for feare of them [*] J^'^S we betaking our selves to one of our houses, for in short time our defence, they presently appeared in sight; S. aft,£r dTed of i'• Gorton being out of the house to convey his Wife § aorum *and (who was great with child) towards the water-side some of her for her escape, espied them about Musket-shot children, he from the house, the way which they came being iie'dowTMe in'" full of wood; they were not sooner discerned but child bed, wa« he called unto them, to keepe without the distance"° d£alt "iUi of Musket-shot, calling to his friends in the house e~ thVbo»t also to stand to their Armes, for a band of souldiers hasting off for consisting of English and Indians were in sight; so fearo,if 0n8 committing his Wife to some of Providence, which "ouldnoulavo came along with them to convey her to the boat, swimmed, had betodke himselfe to the house with the rest. These boen Ioft |». our loving neighbours, inhabiting neere unto us in w'°« °*£ TM betake himselfe to the water, though young to recover the Boat.
that q They had so that Tovvne where Master Williams sate downe, "£££d"L being deeply affected with the proceedings of the •onldiers, yea, Massachusets, comming downe unto us along with •o incensed them, to be eye and eare witnesses how things thartheyiwore"'were car"ed at our meeting; who instantly urged loth to enter- th«j Captaine, and officers for a parley, who denyed uine »peech or to yeeld or grant any such thing, but professed fhoy sly'in they would fall upon us presently, unlesse it might their last wri. be private betwixt themselves and us, and none ting they came e|se to heare it, professing to make dispatch of us casosof'riffht in one quarter of an hours worke, [q] which we and wrong understanding refused to enter into parley, unlesse which could our saiJ neighbours of Providence might be prewUhouTp'r- sent to wiinesse tne passages of it; but at the last ley, nay some after much affectionate urging, they yeelded to a of their soul, parley; and foure of Providence men to be chosen oiut'o boat out as witnesses, which we freely consented unto the parley, pro-the mutuall choyce of them, and accordingly we fessed to some met together; and we demanding of them the end they'caTneto of tneir c°mmingi they pretended we had done visit us as we some wrong unto certaine of their subjects, as also lay in bolts and that we held blasphemous errours, which we must irons amongst eitner repent of, or goe downe to the Massachusets
thorn, coin- r , f,
ming in the to be tryed at their Courts, or else they had Lomnight, not dar- mission to put us to the sword, and to pay theming to see us selves out of our goods for their charges in com
in the day, pro- .... , • , , ° u
fossed in these ming thither; to which we made answer, we could words; When not yeeld thereunto, that they that were our prowe came ret fessed adversaries should be our Judges, we being
to the ground .......... ° \ . ,°
woweremadd so larre out ot all their jurisdictions; but freely to fight, and tendred our appeale to the honourable State of loutuhout EnglTM*, in any thing that could be objected speech or par. against us, which they peremptorily refused: We ley, but alter then offered to put our case to arbitration, by in\ and'hTardyoudifferent men, mutually chosen in the countrey, •peake, many ingaging our goods, our lands, &t our persons, to of us had rather have been on your side, then for the cause we came, and the Captains •eeing some of us discouraged to fight, would not permit us to discourse with any of Providence men, lest they should speake on your bi-halfo; and this we know, that some that did signifie unto them any small thing concerning the equity of our cause the Captaine seized on them for prisoners, ami kept them in bonds, during the time of their aboad there, and much adoe to release them, that they had not taken them downe into the Massachusets, to undergoe further punishments.
make make full satisfaction for any thing that could be brought in, or appeare against us; which Propositions seemed so reasonable, not only in the eyes of the witnesses, but also to the Captain and the rest, that there was a truce agreed upon, untill such time as a Messenger being dispatcht into the Massachusets, might returne with the answer of the Governour, and Assistants, during the time of which truce, they broke open our houses, and our desks, taking away our Writings, killed our Cattle for themselves and the Indians, whom they brought with them, to live upon taking the bedding, with other necessaries in our houses, for the souldiers to lie upon, and make use of, not only at that time, but afterwards in their trenches, during the time of their league, assaulting some of our friends, both men, women, and children, who only came to see us, in that sad time of extremitie, hearing there was a truce concluded for a season, indea- \ vouring to cut them off, upon the water, (being in a small ves- I sell) by shooting halfe a score or a dozin Muskets at them, before they could get out of their reach, which they very narrowly escaped; during the time of this truce, the men of Providence (unknowne unto us) sent a Letter to the Government of the Massachusets, to informe them how things had been carried at our meeting, whereof they were eye and eare witnesses.
A true Copie of the Letter sent by the men of Providence, chosen to be witnesses, of all passages in way of our parley, to the Governour of the Massachusets, in way of mediation for peace, to prevent Countrey-men from spilling one an others blood, it is here set downe verbatim, according to the originall Copie still extant.
Providence the 2. of the 8'. M". 1643. so called.
-WfOrthy Sir, let it not seeme absurd, that we whose names "are here under written, present you with these insuing lines; we lately hearing read a Copie of your writing, directed to Samuel Gorton, and that company, as also some of us being requested by our neighbour Cole (your subject) and (all requested by Samuel Gorton, and his company, to heare and see) the truth of proceedings on both sides, our consciences perswading us, that these desires were reasonable, and for ought we know, might be a meanes (if God so wrought) to prevent the shedding of blood; these things we say considered, may (as before) cause our boldnesse. We therefore being filled with . i——. 1—_. - ___
griefe at such a spectacle, that the English should shed English blood, doe desire to acquaint you with what we did observe, during that respite, that was condescended to, for a treatie; therefore to proceed, after your Commission read, S. G. his company did desire to know in what particulars, you did demand satisfaction; the propositions being declared were foure.
Frst to get them off the Indians ground, which your Commissioners said, they had but intruded.
Secondly, for satisfaction about a Booke, wherein your Commissioners said, were grosse things penned.
Thirdly, for satisfaction for wrong done, both to English and Indians, under your subjection.
Fourthly, for charges, which your Commissioners said, they had caused by forcing this Army.
Vnto the first they answered, that the ground was theirs, and they were the true owners, and that by the same right that you did clayme it, it being long before subjected to the JVanhyganset Sachim, and purchased by them of Myantonomy, and (to take away all colour of claime) of Pumham also, and they having quiet possession of the same, untill this trouble; and therefore did conceive you had wronged them, by bringing an Army, to force them from their ground; your Commissioners pleaded, it was your right, by the Indians subjecting to you, and thereupon were very resolute to take them off by force; which they questioned not but immediatly to performe; the other as resolute, considering, they said they had bought it, and vowed to stand upon their lawfull defence, though to the last drop of their blood, the resolution on both sides being so hot, that we thought immediatly the Battle would have began; they did then appeale to the highest Court in old England, for the tryall of their right, which when your Commissioners refused, they did againe offer to put it to the tryall of indifferent Judges in this Countrey, which were parties of neither side, and counted it unreasonable, that force should be offered before the cause were tryed, which they judged you could not doe, being parties in the cause, and promised to stand to the determination of those Judges, to the utmost of their estates and persons.
Secondly, being demanded by your Commissioners, satisfaction for the Book, wherein they declared grosse things were penned, they answered, that they would put it, as the former, to be judged by indifferent Judges, both the terms, &. satisfaction.
To the third, for satisfaction for wrong done, both to Indians
and and English; they answered, they would give full satisfaction.
Concerning the fourth, wherein was great expence and charges required: they answered likewise, as in the former, that they would pay and give to the utmost satisfaction, if the Arbitrators judged, that they were the cause of raysing it, and would as fully and freely submit, as to eat and ririnke: These being in short the heads, we leave the more ample relation to your Commissioners; Sir so faire Propositions offered, we hope will worke your affections to the utmost end, of preventing blood-spilling: Nay, we hope, if it be but upon the point of honour, rather that you will be losers, then take the utmost; the case we cannot but be sadly affected with, knowing it will be dishonourable to the Lord, if those who professe themselves Christians, should not take the best means for peace; we hope you will not in the least measure take it unkindly for any hint unto you; neither that you will despise Abigals counsell, for Nabals churlishnesse; let the Lord smite them, and his hand be upon them, if they sinne against him; If one man sinne against another, the Iudge shall judge him, but if a man sinne against the Lord, who shall intreat for him 1 1 Sam. 2. 25. Now their Proposition is for man to judge, as that first part of the alleadged Scripture doth declare; some of their wives and children (if a mornfull Spectacle might move you) doe beg°e for a serious consideration of their husbands, and fathers Propositions; which if not hearkned unto, were like in mans eye to be left miserable; we would they were able to write their owne griefe, which now in pitie we have respect unto: Oh, how grievous would it be (we hope to you) if one man should be slaine, considering the greatest Monarch in the world cannot make a man; especially grievous, seeing they offer termes of peace: Sir, we know not how to end, nor what to say, we must abruptly leave desiring your wisdoms to cover our defects with love, and answer for us, if any shall challenge us, 2 Tim. 2. 7.
Chad. Broume. Thomas Olney.