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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
REVIEWERS WANTED. If you would like to review any of the books in this series, PM me with your Amazon email address and I will gift copies to you.

This post is to introduce a Kindle version of Volume 2 of a series entitled "AMERICA Great Crises In Our History Told by Its Makers" which was published as a print version by the Veterans of Foreign Wars in 1925. This second volume covers the colonization of America. This Kindle version is published in partnership with the VFW who receive 50% of sales revenue.

The title refers to the latest extract from the book which may be found at the bottom of this thread.

What more fascinating way of discovering history than reading eye-witness accounts? In all the histories of Virginia, who has improved upon Captain John Smith's original story of his meeting with Pocahontas? Who can give a better account of early Pennsylvania than William Penn himself? And could there be a better source of information about the Pilgrim Fathers, the early Indian wars or the Salem witch-hunts than those who witnessed the events themselves?
Covering the period from the early Huguenot settlements in Florida to the Spanish exploration and colonization of California, this volume includes eye-witness accounts of the founding of St Augustine (the oldest town in the USA); the early months of the "lost" Roanoke colony; the settlement of Jamestown; the founding of Quebec; the voyage of the Mayflower; the establishment of New Amsterdam (New York City) and its later conquest by the English; and more. Read these accounts and make your own judgments.

Introduction To The Series

"After you've heard two eyewitness accounts of an auto accident, you begin to worry about history." This observation, attributed to the comedian Henny Youngman, summarizes the dilemma you face when you want to find out what really happened in the past. When you read a history book, the "facts" are actually the author's own interpretation, often colored by a conscious or unconscious wish to have you share a particular point of view. You're one step (or many steps) removed from the original source material.

That's why the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States compiled this 12- volume collection of writings of people who actually witnessed the key events in American history - the actual actors in the events or contemporary observers of them. Past historians have spent decades locating, studying and consulting vast amounts of material such as this. This meticulously chosen selection brings you the essence of history as originally recorded by those who participated in it.

You'll be reading mostly eye-witness accounts, by people contemporary with the events they describe, including many significant historical figures themselves. So you can make your own assessments, draw your own conclusions and gain an understanding of past events undistorted by the prejudices, assumptions and selectivity of professional historians. In some instances where there aren't reliable or easily accessible eye-witness accounts, the compilers have chosen extracts from objective, authoritative historians of past generations such as Francis Parkman whose judgements have stood the test of time.

The extracts chosen aren't dry as dust: they provide an exciting, highly readable narrative from the living past. They're part of the primary source material on which all historical research is based - and these e-books bring this original, classic reporting to you directly. Through these accounts, your knowledge of American history will be immeasurably greater, your understanding of the key events in the building of the nation immensely increased.

Founded in 1899, the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States (VFW) is a nonprofit organization dedicated to foster camaderie among United States veterans of overseas conflicts, from the Spanish-American War to Iraq and Afghanistan, and to ensure that they receive due respect and entitlements for the sacrifices they and their loved ones have made on behalf of the nation. With this mission, the VFW has a natural desire to encourage a broad understanding and appreciation of American history, and this essential collection of historical documents makes a huge contribution to that aim.

This reissue was scanned, formatted and converted to e-book format by Library4Science.com in a partnership with the VFW, to make the series more accessible to a wider public. The VFW receives 50% of all sales revenue from these e-books.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Here is an excerpt from "THE HUGUENOTS IN FLORIDA" by Francis Parkman.

N THE year 1562 a cloud of black and deadly portent was thickening over France. Surely and swiftly she glided towards the abyss of the religious wars. None could pierce the future, perhaps none dared to contemplate it: the wild rage of fanaticism and hate, friend grappling with friend, brother with brother, father with son ; altars profaned, hearthstones made desolate, the robes of Justice herself bedrenched with murder. In the gloom without lay Spain, imminent and terrible. As on the hill by the field of Dreux, her veteran bands of pikemen, dark masses of organized ferocity, stood biding their time while the battle surged below, and then swept downward to the slaughter, so did Spain watch and wait to trample and crush the hope of humanity.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
This is an excerpt from Volume 2 of America "Great Crises in our History"

The Founding Of St. Augustine

By Francisco Lopez de Mendoza Grajalas.

FATHER MENDOZA, who was chaplain of the expedition to the coast of Florida commanded by "the illustrious Captain-General Pedro Menendez de Aviles" in 1565, writes of events from first hand Knowledge, when he describes the settlement of the oldest town in the United States St. Augustine.

Pedro Menendez also told this story in despatches to King Philip H, still preserved in the Royal Archives. But his chaplain's account is the only eye-witness narrative of the founding of St. Augustine available in English.

The destruction of the French Huguenot Colony, described in the portion of Mendoza's narrative given here, aroused so little interest on the part of the French Government authorities that they made no effort to avenge it. Had the Huguenot Colony been supported and protected a French settlement might have been built up here half a century before the English began colonization in the new country.


YOUR LORDSHIP will remember that, when the fleet was in preparation in Spain, I went to see the captain-general at the harbor of St. Mary, and, as I told you, he showed me a letter from his Royal Highness Philip II., signed with his name. In this letter his Majesty told him that on May 20 some ships had left France carrying seven hundred men and two hundred women. As I have stated, we learned at St. John's of Porto Rico that our despatch-boat had been captured. This fact, joined to the reflection that our fleet was much injured by the storm, and that of the ten vessels which left Cadiz only four remained, besides the one bought at the last port to transport the horses and troops all this made it evident to our captain-general, a man of arms, that the French would likely be waiting for him near the harbors, a little farther on ; that is, off Monte Christi, Havana, and the Cape of Las Canas, which lie on the same side, and precisely on our route to Florida. This was all the more to be expected since the French had come in possession of our plan to unite our forces at Havana. Not wishing, however, to encounter the French, having now lost our ships, and having but feeble means of defense, the general decided to take a northerly course, and pursue a new route, through the Bahama Channel, leaving the enemy to the windward. When I suggested this route to the admiral and the pilot, they said it was important and necessary to abandon the usual route, by way of Havana.

Read the rest of this article:

[URL=http://america.library4history.org/VFW-Huguenots-California/COLONIZATION/FOUNDING-OF-ST-AUGUSTINE]http://america.library4history.org/VFW-Huguenots-California/COLONIZATION/FOUNDING-OF-ST-AUGUSTINE
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Last week we read the exciting story of how the Spaniards murdered hundreds of French Huguenots they found in St. Augustine. This week read about the vengeance that Dominique de Gourgues visited on the nefarious Spanish.

Dominique De Gourgues

By Francis Parkman.

THE history of chivalrous France "may be searched in vain," in the words of Parkman, "for a deed of more romantic daring than the vengeance of Dominique de Gourgues.

After Menendez had butchered the French Huguenots in Florida, the relatives of these slain colonists petitioned their King for redress, "but had the honor of the nation rested in the keeping of its King, the blood of these hundreds of murdered Frenchmen would have cried from the ground in vain. But it was not to be so. Injured humanity found an avenger, and outraged France a champion, in Dominique de Gourgues."


THERE was a gentleman of Mont-de-Marsan, Dominique de Gourgues, a soldier of ancient birth and high renown. It is not certain that he was a Huguenot. The Spanish annalist calls him a "terrible heretic"; but the French Jesuit, Charlevoix, anxious that the faithful should share the glory of his exploits, affirms that, like his ancestors before him, he was a good Catholic. If so, his faith sat lightly upon him; and, Catholic or heretic, he hated the Spaniards with a mortal hate. Fighting in the Italian wars, for from boyhood he was wedded to the sword, he had been taken prisoner by them near Siena, where he had signalized himself by a fiery and determined bravery. With brutal insult, they chained him to the oar as a galley slave. After he had long endured this ignominy, the Turks captured the vessel and carried her to Constantinople. It was but a change of tyrants; but, soon after, while she was on a cruise, Gourgues still at the oar, a galley of the knights of Malta hove in sight, bore down on her, recaptured her, and set the prisoner free. For several years after, his restless spirit found employment in voyages to Africa, Brazil, and regions yet more remote. His naval repute rose high, but his grudge against the Spaniards still rankled within him; and when, returned from his rovings, he learned the tidings from Florida, his hot Gascon blood boiled with fury.

Read the rest of the article at:

http://america.library4history.org/VFW-Huguenots-California/COLONIZATION/DOMINIQUE-DE-GOURGUES.html
 

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This is an excerpt from Volume 2 of America "Great Crises in our History"

The First Voyage To Roanoke

by Captains Amadas and Barlowe

THE new charter, which Raleigh obtained in 1584 for his colonization of America, gave "all the privileges of free denizens and persons native of England." It was this provision in Raleigh's charter which formed the basis for the resistance to England that led to the Revolution. So in large measure we are indebted to Raleigh for American Independence.

While still a youth Raleigh had become interested in American colonization, and commanded one of the seven ships in the fleet of Sir Humphrey Gilbert, his half-brother, when only 26 years of age. Five years later he furnished one of the five ships in Sir Humphreys disastrous voyage, and would have sailed on this expedition, but was prevented by the order of the Queen, who was unwilling that her favorite should incur the risk of "dangerous sea fights."

This account of The First Voyage to Roanoke is taken from the written report made by Captains Amadas and Barlowe to Sir Walter.


THE 27 day of April, in the year of our redemption, 1584 we departed the West of England, with two barks well furnished with men and victuals, having received our last and perfect directions by your letters, confirming the former instructions and commandments delivered by yourself at our leaving the river of Thames.

The second of July we found shoal water, where we smelled so sweet, and so strong a smell, as if we had been in the midst of some delicate garden abounding with all kind of odoriferous flowers, by which we were assured, that the land could not be far distant : and keeping good watch, and bearing but slack sail, the fourth of the same month we arrived upon the coast, which we supposed to be a continent and firm land, and we sailed along the same a hundred and twenty English miles before we could find any entrance, or river issuing into the Sea. The first that appeared unto us, we entered, though not without some difficulty, and cast anchor about three harquebuz-shot within the haven's mouth on the left hand of the same : and after thanks given to God for our safe arrival thither, we manned our boats, and went to view the land next adjoining, and to take possession of the same, in the right of the Queen's most excellent Majesty, and rightful Queen, and Princess of the same, and after delivered the same over to your use, according to her Majesty's grant, and letters patents, under her Highness' great seal. Which being performed, according to the ceremonies used in such enterprises, we viewed the land about us, being, whereas we first landed, very sandy and low towards the water's side, but so full of grapes, as the very beating and surge of the Sea overflowed them, of which we found such plenty, as well there as in all places else, both on the sand and on the green soil on the hills, as in the plains, as well on every little shrub, as also climbing towards the tops of high cedars, that I think in all the world the like abundance is not to be found: and myself having seen those parts of Europe that most abound, find such difference as were incredible to be written.

We passed from the Sea side towards the tops of those hills next adjoining, being but of mean heighth, and from thence we beheld the Sea on both sides to the north, and to the south, finding no end any of both ways. This land lay stretching itself to the west, which after we found to be but an island of twenty miles long, and not above six miles broad. Under the bank or hill whereon we stood, we beheld the valleys replenished with goodly cedar trees, and having discharged our harquebuz-shot, such a flock of cranes (the most part white), arose under us, with such a cry redoubled by many echoes, as if an army of men had shouted all together.

Read the rest of this article:
http://america.library4history.org/VFW-Huguenots-California/COLONIZATION/FIRST-VOYAGE-TO-ROANOKE.html
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
This is an excerpt from Volume 2 of America "Great Crises in our History"

The Colony At Roanoke

By Ralph Lane.

THE enthusiastic account by Captains Amadas and Barlowe of their expedition to Virginia in 1584, delighted the great Elizabeth, as well as Raleigh who had sponsored the enterprise, and England's "Virgin Queen" named the new country Virginia in her own honor.

The expedition which founded Roanoke followed a year later. All told there were one hundred householders. They were left in charge of Ralph Lane, while Sir Richard Grenville, who had transported them, returned to England for supplies. Grenville was delayed, and the sufferings of the colonists were so severe that when Sir Francis Drake put in at Roanoke after destroying St. Augustine, the whole company returned with him to England.

This account of the ten months' history of the Roanoke Colony under Ralph Lane is taken from his report to Sir Walter Raleigh.

TO THE Northwest the farthest place of our discovery was to Chawanook distant from Roanoak about 130 miles. Our passage thither lies through a broad sound, but all fresh water, and the channel of a great depth, navigable for good shipping, but out of the channel full of shoals.

Chawanook itself is the greatest province and Seigniorie lying upon that river, and that the town itself is able to put 700 fighting men into the field, besides the force of the province itself.

The king of the said province is called Menatonon, a man impotent in his limbs, but otherwise for a savage, a very grave and wise man, and of a very singular good discourse in matters concerning the state, not only of his own country, and the disposition of his own men, but also of his neighbors round about him as well far as near, and of the commodities that each country yields.

When I had him prisoner with me, for two days that we were together, he gave me more understanding and light of the country than I had received by all the searches and savages that before I or any of my company had had conference with : it was in March last past 1586. Among other things he told me, that going three days' journey in a canoe up his river of Chawanook, and then descending to the land, you are within four days' journey to pass over land Northeast to a certain king's country, whose province lies upon the Sea, but his place of greatest strength is an island situated, as he described unto me, in a bay, the water round about the island very deep.

Out of this bay he signified unto me, that this King had so great quantity of pearls, and does so ordinarily take the same, as that not only his own skins that he wears, and the better sort of his gentlemen and followers are full set with the said pearls, but also his beds, and houses are garnished with them, and that he has such quantity of them, that it is a wonder to see.

The king of Chawanook promised to give me guides to go overland into that king's country whensoever I would : but he advised me to take good store of men with me, and good store of victual, for he said, that king would be loth to suffer any strangers to enter into his country, and especially to meddle with the fishing for any pearls there, and that he was able to make a great many of men in to the field, which he said would fight very well.

And for that not only Menatonon, but also the savages of Moratoc themselves do report strange things of the head of that river, it is thirty days, as some of them say, and some say forty days' voyage to the head thereof, which head they say springs out of a main rock in that abundance, that forthwith it makes a most violent stream : and further, that this huge rock stands so near unto a Sea, that many times in storms (the wind coming outwardly from the sea) the waves thereof are beaten into the said fresh stream, so that the fresh water for a certain space, grows salt and brackish : I took a resolution with myself, having dismissed Menatonon upon a ransom agreed for, and sent his son into the pinnace to Roanoak, to enter presently so far into that river with two double whirries, and forty persons one or other, as I could have victual to carry us, until we could meet with more either of the Moraroks, or of the Mangoaks, which is another kind of savages, dwelling more to the westward of the said river: but the hope of recovering more victual from the savages made me and my company as narrowly to escape starving in that discovery before our return, as ever men did, that missed the same.

Read the rest of the article at:
http://dev.america.library4history.org/VFW-Huguenots-California/COLONIZATION/COLONY-AT-ROANOKE.html
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
The Settlement Of Jamestown

By Captain John Smith.

THE POCAHONTAS incident was only one small episode in the fascinating career of Captain John Smith. Famed alike for his modesty, good judgment and magnanimity, this splendid "soldier of fortune" was a Captain of Artillery in 1601, and a Captain of Cavalry the same year, taping part in battles in Hungary and Transylvania.

He promoted and saved from destruction the plantation at Jamestown. He made a masterly survey of inland Virginia in 1607-8, and the same year he discovered Chesapeake Bay. In 1614 he discovered the New England Coast.

Along with his other accomplishments he was a writer of no mean ability. He wrote a "Sea Grammar" and began, but never finished, a "History of the Sea," and from 1614 to 1630 he was the indefatigable and eloquent historian of English colonization in America. But for him the process of peopling the new continent with Anglo-Saxons would have been delayed indefinitely.


IT might well be thought, a country so fair (as Virginia is) and a people so tractable, would long ere this have been quietly possessed, to the satisfaction of the adventurers, and the eternizing of the memory of those that effected it. But because all the world do see a failure; this following treatise shall give satisfaction to all indifferent readers, how the business has been carried: where no doubt they will easily understand and answer to their question, how it came to pass there was no better speed and success in those proceedings.

Captain Bartholomew Gosnold, one of the first movers of this plantation, having many years solicited many of his friends, but found small assistance; at last prevailed with some gentlemen, as Captain John Smith, Master Edward-maria Wingfield, Master Robert Hunt, and divers others, who depended a year upon his projects, but nothing could be effected, till by their great charge and industry, it came to be apprehended by certain of the nobility, gentry, and merchants, so that his Majesty by his letters patents, gave commission for establishing councils, to direct here; and to govern, and to execute there. To effect this, was spent another year, and by that, three ships were provided, one of 100 tons, another of 40 and a pinnace of 20. The transportation of the company was committed to Captain Christopher Newport, a mariner well practiced for the western parts of America. But their orders for government were put in a box, not to be opened, nor the governors known until they arrived in Virginia.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
This is an excerpt from Volume 2 of America "Great Crises in our History"

The Founding Of Quebec-1608

From the "Voyages" of Samuel de Champlain.

WHEN Champlain came to America in 1608, it was his third trip to the New World. This time he came with the definite purpose of planting a colony on the banks of the St. Lawrence as a base for future French operations. We have here his own account of his pioneer work in the founding of Quebec, the city which was to play such an important part in the struggle between France and England for possession of the North American Continent.

Francis Parkman, the great historian, who devoted most of his life to the writing of "Pioneers of France in the New World," says of Champlain's writings: "They mark the man all for his theme and his purpose, nothing for himself. Crude in style, full of superficial errors of carelessness and haste, rarely diffuse, often brief to a fault, they bear on every page the palpable impress of truth."


HAVING returned to France after a stay of three years in New France, I proceeded to Sieur de Monts, and related to him the principal events of which I had been a witness since his departure, and gave him the map and plan of the most remarkable coasts and harbors there.

Some time afterward Sieur de Monts determined to continue his undertaking, and complete the exploration of the interior along the great river St. Lawrence, where I had been by order of the late King Henry the Great in the year 1603, for a distance of some hundred and eighty leagues, commencing in latitude 48 40', that is, at Gaspe, at the entrance of the river, as far as the great fall, which is in latitude 45 and some minutes, where our exploration ended, and where boats could not pass as we then thought, since we had not made a careful examination of it as we have since done.

Now, after Sieur de Monts had conferred with me several times in regard to his purposes concerning the exploration, he resolved to continue so noble and meritorious an undertaking, notwithstanding the hardships and labors of the past. He honored me with his lieutenancy for the voyage; and, in order to carry out his purpose, he had two vessels equipped, one commanded by Pont Grave, who was commissioned to trade with the savages of the country and bring back the vessels, while I was to winter in the country.

I proceeded to Honfleur for embarkation, where I found the vessel of Pont Grave in readiness. He left port on the 5th of April. I did so on the 13th, arriving at the Grand Bank on the 15th of May, in latitude 45 15'. On the 26th we sighted Cape St. Mary, in latitude 46 45', on the Island of Newfoundland. On the 27th of the month we sighted Cape St. Lawrence, on Cape Breton, and also the Island of St. Paul, distant eighty-three leagues from Cape St. Mary. On the 30th we sighted Isle Percee and Gaspe, in latitude 48 40', distant from Cape St. Lawrence from seventy to seventy-five leagues.

On the 3d of June we arrived before Tadoussac, distant from Gaspe from eighty to ninety leagues; and we anchored in the roadstead of Tadoussac, a league distant from the harbor, which latter is a kind of cove at the mouth of the river Saguenay, where the tide is very remarkable on account of its rapidity, and where there are sometimes violent winds, bringing severe cold.

I set out from Tadoussac the last day of the month to go to Quebec.

From the Island of Orleans to Quebec the distance is a league. I arrived there on the 3d of July, when I searched for a place suitable for our settlement; but I could find none more convenient or better situated Man the point of Quebec, so called by the savages, which was covered with nut-trees. I at once employed a portion of our workmen in cutting them down, that we might construct our habitation there: one I set to sawing boards, another to making a cellar and digging ditches, another I sent to Tadoussac with the barque to get supplies. The first thing we made was the storehouse for keeping under cover our supplies, which was promptly accomplished through the zeal of all, and my attention to the work.

Some days after my arrival at Quebec a locksmith conspired against the service of the king. His plan was to put me to death, and, getting possession of our fort, to put it into the hands of the Basques or Spaniards, then at Tadoussac, beyond which vessels cannot go, from not having a knowledge of the route, nor of the banks and rocks on the way.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
This is an excerpt from Volume 2 of America "Great Crises in our History"

The Mayflower Compact

IN THE strict sense this Compact, drawn up in the cabin of the Mayflower, was not a constitution, which is "a document defining and limiting the functions of government." It was, however, the germ of popular government in America.

Governor Bradford makes this reference to the circumstances under which the Compact was drawn up and signed:

"This day, before we came to harbour, observing some not well affected to unity and concord, but gave some appearance of faction, it was thought good there should be an association and agreement, that we should combine together in one body, and to submit to such government and governors as we should by common consent agree to make and choose, and set our hands to this that follows, word for word."

IN THE name of God, Amen. We whose names are underwritten, the loyal subjects of our dread sovereign Lord, King James, by the grace of God, of Great Britain, France and Ireland king, defender of the faith, etc., having undertaken, for the glory of God, and advancement of the Christian faith, and honor of our king and country, a voyage to plant the first colony in the Northern parts of Virginia, do by these presents solemnly and mutually in the presence of God, and one of another, covenant and combine ourselves together into a civil body politic, for our better ordering and preservation and furtherance of the ends aforesaid; and by virtue hereof to enact, constitute, and frame such just and equal laws, ordinances, acts, constitutions, and offices, from time to time, as shall be thought most meet and convenient for the general good of the colony, unto which we promise all due submission and obedience. In witness whereof we have hereunder subscribed our names at Cape-Cod the 11 of November, in the year of the reign of our sovereign lord, King James, of England, France, and Ireland the eighteenth, and of Scotland the fifty-fourth. Anno Domine 1620.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
This is an excerpt from Volume 2 of America "Great Crises in our History"

Discovery Of Niagara Falls

By Father Louis Hennepin.

FATHER HENNEPIN may not have been the first white man to view Niagara Falls but he wrote the first description of it that has come down to us.

Louis Hennepin was born in Belgium in 1640, and came to America in 1678, three years after the death of Marquette. He joined La Salle's famous expedition on his arrival in Quebec and was sent in advance by La Salle to Fort Frontenac on Lake Ontario to smooth the way with the Indians for La Salle and his party. From Fort Frontenac, Hennepin proceeded with his small company to Niagara and it was then that he discovered Niagara Falls.

Hennepin's accounts of his travels and adventures in America must be taken with reservations. His description given here is an example of his proneness to exaggerate. He estimates the height of the falls as "above 600 feet" when as a matter of fact they are only 167 feet high.


BETWIXT the Lakes Ontario and Erie, there is a vast and prodigious cadence of waterwhich falls down after a surprising and astonishing manner, insomuch that the universe does not afford its parallel. 'Tis true, Italy and Suedeland boast of some such things; but we may well say they are but sorry patterns, when compared to this of which we nowspeak. At the foot of this horrible precipice, we meet with the river Niagara, which is not above half a quarter of a league broad, but is wonderfully deep in some places. It is so rapid above this descent, that it violently hurries down the wild beasts while endeavoring to pass it to feed on the other side, they not being able to withstand the force of its current, which inevitably casts them down headlong above six hundred foot.

This wonderful downfall is compounded of two great cross-streams of water, and two falls, with an isle sloping along the middle of it. The waters which fall from this vast height, do foam and boil after the most hideous manner imaginable, making an outrageous noise, more terrible than that of thunder; for when the wind blows from off the south, their dismal roaring may be heard above fifteen leagues off.

The river Niagara having thrown itself down this incredible precipice, continues its impetuous course for two leagues i together, to the great rock above mentioned, with an inexpressible rapidity: But having passed that, its impetuosity relents, gliding along more gently for two leagues, till it arrives at the Lake Ontario, or Frontenac.

Any bark or greater vessel may pass from the fort to the foot of this huge rock above mentioned. This rock lies to the westward, and is cut off from the land by the river Niagara, about two leagues farther down than the great fall ; for which two leagues the people are obliged to carry their goods over-land; but the way is very good, and the trees are but few, and they chiefly firs and oaks.

From the great fall unto this rock, which is to the west of the river, the two brinks of it are so prodigious high, that it would make one tremble to look steadily upon the water, rolling along with a rapidity not to be imagined. Were it not for this vast cataract, which interrupts navigation, they might sail with barks or greater vessels, above four hundred and fifty leagues further, cross the Lake of Hurons, and up to the farther end of the Lake Illinois (Michigan) ; which two lakes we may well say are little seas of fresh water.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
This is an excerpt from Volume 2 of America, "Great Crises in our History"

Witchcraft In New England

By Robert Calef.

SALEM and witchcraft have so long been associated in the general mind that some surprise attends the statement that women were stoned as witches in ancient Rome. During the Middle Ages the usual punishment of witches was burning.

For two centuries the destruction wrought by the witch superstition was terrible. In France alone the number of victims has been estimated at 300,000. An English law against witchcraft was rigorously enforced throughout the seventeenth century. At the same time prosecutions for witchcraft occurred in Massachusetts, Connecticut, Virginia and elsewhere in the colonies, though the only extensive panic was the one at Salem, in 1692, inflamed by the extravagant opinions of Cotton Mather.

Robert Calef was a Boston merchant of fair education, who lived through the Salem frenzy and wrote a book in defiance of the Mathers that gave the final blow to the witchcraft delusion in New England.


MR. PARRIS had been some years a minister in Salem Village, when this sad calamity, as a deluge, overflowed them, spreading itself far and near. He was a gentleman of liberal education; and, not meeting with any great encouragement, or advantage, in merchandising, to which for some time he applied himself, betook himself to the work of the ministry; this village being then vacant, he met with so much encouragement, as to settle in that capacity among them.

After he had been there about two years, he obtained a grant from a part of the town, that the house and land he occupied, and which had been allotted by the whole people to the ministry, should be and remain to him, etc., as his own estate in fee simple. This occasioned great divisions both between the inhabitants themselves, and between a considerable part of them and their said minister ; which divisions were but as a beginning, or proeludium, to what immediately followed.

It was the latter end of February, 1691, when divers young persons belonging to Mr. Parris's family, and one or more of the neighborhood, began to act after a strange and unusual manner, viz., as by getting into holes, and creeping under chairs and stools, and to use sundry odd postures and antic gestures, uttering foolish, ridiculous speeches, which neither they themselves nor any others could make sense of. The physicians that were called could assign no reason for this ; but it seems one of them, having recourse to the old shift, told them he was afraid they were bewitched. Upon such suggestions, they that were concerned applied themselves to fasting and prayer, which was attended not only in their own private families, but with calling in the help of others. March the 11th, Mr. Parris invited several neighboring ministers to join with him in keeping a solemn day of prayer at his own house. The time of the exercise, those persons were for the most part silent ; but after any one prayer was ended, they would act and speak strangely and ridiculously; yet were such as had been well educated, and of good behavior; the one, a girl of 11 or 12 years old, would sometimes seem to be in a convulsion fit, her limbs being twisted several ways, and very stiff, but presently her fit would be over.

Those ill affected or afflicted persons named several that they said they saw, when in their fits, afflicting them.

The first complained of was the said Indian woman, named Tituba: she confessed that the devil urged her to sign a book, which he presented to her, and also to work mischief to the children, etc. She was afterwards committed to prison, and lay there till sold for her fees. The account she since gives of it is, that her master did beat her, and otherways abuse her, to make her confess and accuse (such as he called) her sister-witches; and that whatsoever she said by way of confessing, or accusing others, was the effect of such usage : her master refused to pay her fees, unless she would stand to what she had said.

The children complained likewise of two other women, to be the authors of their hurt, viz., Sarah Good, who had long been counted a melancholy or distracted woman ; and one Osborn, an old bed-ridden woman; which two were persons so ill thought of, that the accusation was the more readily believed; and, after examination before two Salem magistrates, were committed. March the 19th, Mr. Lawson (who had been formerly a preacher at the said village) came thither, and hath since set forth, in print, an account of what then passed; about which time, as he saith, they complained of goodwife Cory, and goodwife Nurse, members of churches at the Village and at Salem, many others being by that time accused.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
This is an excerpt from Volume 2 of America, "Great Crises in our History"

The Founding Of Harvard College

THIS is the oldest printed account of Harvard University still in existence. It is evidently an anonymous letter, dated from Boston, September 26, 1642, and entitled "New England's First Fruits in Respect to the Progress of Learning in the College at Cambridge, in Massachusetts Bay."

It was published in London in 1643, a year after the graduation of Harvard's first class of nine members. The letter gives a graphic account of conditions in and around the future university, and shows the optimism with which the Puritans regarded the future "amid the stumps of their clearing in the wilderness."

Until recently the ancestry and early life of John Harvard was lost in obscurity. We now know that he was born in Southwark, London, in November, 1607. He was ordained as a dissenting clergyman at 30 years of age, and crossed the Atlantic to become minister in Charlestown, Mass., where he died a year later.


AFTER God had carried us safe to New England, and we had built our houses, provided necessaries for our livelihood, reared convenient Places for God's worship, and settled the Civil Government : One of the next things we longed for, and looked after was to advance learning, and perpetuate it to posterity, dreading to leave an illiterate ministry to the churches, when our present ministers shall lie in the dust. And as we were thinking and consulting how to effect this great work, it pleased God to stir up the heart of one Mr. Harvard (a godly gentleman and a lover of learning, there living among us) to give the one half of his estate (it being in all about 1700 pounds) towards the erecting of a college, and all his library: after him another gave 300 pounds, others after them cast in more, and the public hand of the State added the rest: the college was, by common consent, appointed to be at Cambridge, a place very pleasant and accommodating and is called (according to the name of the first founder) Harvard College.

The edifice is very fair and comely within and without, having in it a spacious hall; (where they daily meet at commons, lectures, exercises) and a large library with some boks to it, the gifts of diverse of our friends, their chambers and studies also fitted for, and possessed by the students, and all other rooms of office necessary and convenient, with all needful offices thereto belonging: And by the side of the college a fair Grammar School, for the training up of young scholars, and fitting of them for academical learning, that still as they are judged ripe, they may be received into the college of this school. Master Corlet is the master, who has very well approved himself for his abilities, dexterity and painfulness in teaching and education of the youth under him.

Over the college is master Dunser placed, as President, a learned conscionable and industrious man, who has so trained up his pupils in the tongues and arts, and so seasoned them with the principles of divinity and Christianity that we have to our great comfort, (and in truth) beyond our hopes, beheld their progress in learning and godliness also ; the former of these has appeared in their public declamations in Latin and Greek, and disputations logical and philosophical, which they have been wonted (besides their ordinary exercises in the college-hall) in the audience of the magistrates, ministers and other scholars, for the probation of their growth in learning, upon set days, constantly once every month to make and uphold: The latter has been manifested in sundry of them by the savory breathings of their spirits in their godly conversation. Insomuch that we are confident, if these early blossoms may be cherished and warmed with the influence of the friends of learning, and lovers of this pious work, they will by the help of God, come to happy maturity in a short time.

Over the college are twelve overseers chosen by the general court, six of them are of the magistrates, the other six of the ministers, who are to promote the best good of it, and (having a power of influence into all persons in it) are to see that every one be diligent and proficient in his proper place.
 

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This is an excerpt from Volume 2 of America, "Great Crises in our History"

The Penalty For Not Going To Church

By the County Court of Middlesex.

NEW ENGLAND in its early days was governed by a theocracy; that is to say, by its clergymen. Even the magistrates were virtually appointed by the stern and godly pastors who, having won freedom of worship for themselves, were determined that no one else should have any other sort of freedom than they prescribed.

When any persons had the temerity to stay away from the Puritan services they were likely to be haled before the magistrates and punished both for non-attendance and for "schismatical" tendencies.

This account gives the proceedings against three who stayed away from the Puritan church and were tried by the county court sitting at Cambridge on April 17, 1666. In 1691, William III reorganized the country, abolished the religious qualification for voting, and established toleration (except with regard to Papists), thus overthrowing the temporal power of the clergy.


THOMAS GOOLD, Thomas Osburne and John George being presented by the grand jury of this county for absenting themselves from the public worship of God on the Lord's day for one whole year now past, alleged respectively as followeth, viz.:

Thomas Osburne answered, that the reason of his non-attendance was, that the Lord hath discovered unto him from his word and spirit of truth that the society, wherewith he is now in communion, is more agreeable to the will of God, asserted that they were a church and attended the worship of God together, and do judge themselves bound so to do, the ground whereof he said he gave in the general court.

Thomas Goold answered, that as for coming to public worship they did meet in public worship according to the rule of Christ, the grounds whereof they had given to the court of assistants, asserted that they were a public meeting, according to the order of Christ Jesus gathered together.

John George answered, that he did attend the public meetings on the Lord's day where he was a member; asserted that they were a church according to the order of Christ in the gospel, and with them he walked and held communion in the public worship of God on the Lord's day.

Whereas at the general court in October last, and at the court of assistants in September last endeavors were used for their conviction. The order of the general court declaring the said Goold and company to be no orderly church assembly and that they stand convicted of high presumption against the Lord and his holy appointments was openly read to them and is on file with the records of this court.

The court sentenced the said Thomas Goold, Thomas Osburne and John George, for their absenting themselves from the public worship of God on the Lord's days, to pay four pounds fine, each of them, to the county order. And whereas by their own confessions they stand convicted of persisting in their schismatical assembling themselves together, to the great dishonor of Cod and our profession of his holy name, contrary to the act of the general court of October last prohibiting them therein on penalty of imprisonment, this court doth order their giving bond respectively in 20 pounds each of them, for their appearance to answer their contempt at the next court of assistants.

The above named Thomas Goold, John George, and Thomas Osburne made their appeal to the next court of assistants, and refusing to put in security according to law were committed to prison.
 

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This is an excerpt from Volume 2 of America, "Great Crises in our History"

Penn's Treaty With The Indians

Penn's Own Account.

ONE of the finest pictures that comes down to us from Colonial days is the benign figure of William Penn standing under the great elm tree at Shackamaxon, arranging a treaty with the Indians, which, as Voltaire said, "was never sworn to and never broken."

The "Great Treaty" of neighborliness and friendship to which Penn seems to refer in this account, was one of a series of treaties, most of which dealt with the purchase of land or the regulation of the trade between Whites and Indians. Each side pledged itself to deal with the other "so long as the creeks and rivers shall run, and the sun, moon and stars shall endure."

It is interesting to note that while the Whites kept minutes of their meetings with the Indians, and recorded the proceedings in their archives, the Indians, as usual, kept only oral records, which were exactly remembered and handed down intact without the loss of a syllable.


EVERY king hath his council, and that consists of all the old and wise men of his nation, which perhaps is two hundred people; nothing of moment is undertaken, be it war, peace, selling of land or traffic, without advising with them; and, which is more, with the young men too. It is admirable to consider, how powerful the kings are, and yet how they move by the breath of their people. I have had occasion to be in council with them upon treaties for land, and to adjust the terms of trade.

Their order is thus : the king sits in the middle of an half moon, and hath his council, the old and wise on each hand; behind them, or at a little distance, sit the younger fry, in the same figure. Having consulted and resolved their business, the king ordered one of them to speak to me; he stood up, came to me, and in the name of his king saluted me, then took me by the hand, and told me, "He was ordered by his king to speak to me; and that now it was not he, but the king that spoke, because what he should say, was the king's mind." He first prayed me, "To excuse them that they had not complied with me the last time; he feared there might be some fault in the interpreter, being neither Indian nor English ; besides, it was the Indian custom to deliberate, and take up much time in council, before they resolve ; and that if the young people and owners of the land had been as ready as he, I had not met with so much delay."

Having thus introduced his matter, he fell to the bounds of the land they had agreed to dispose of, and the price; which now is little and dear, that which would have brought twenty miles, not buying now two. During the time that this person spoke, not a man of them was observed to whisper or smile; the old grave, the young reverent in their deportment: they speak little, but fervently, and with elegance: I have never seen more natural sagacity, considering them without the help (I was going to say, the spoil) of tradition; and he will deserve the name of wise, that outwits them in any treaty about a thing they understand.

When the purchase was agreed, great promises passed between us of "kindness and good neighborhood, and that the Indians and English must live in love, as long as the sun gave light." Which done, another made a speech to the Indians, in the name of all the sachamakers or kings ; first to tell them what was done; next, to charge and command them "To love the Christians, and particularly live in peace with me, and the people under my government: that many governors had been in the river, but that no governor had come himself to live and stay here before; and having now such an one that had treated them well, they should never do him or his any wrong." At every sentence of which they shouted, and said, Amen, in their way.

The justice they have is pecuniary: in case of any wrong or evil fact, be it murder itself, they atone by feasts, and presents of their wampum, which is proportioned to the quality of the offense or person injured, or of the sex they are of: for in case they kill a woman, they pay double, and the reason they can render, is, "That she breedeth children, which men cannot do." It is rare that they fall out, if sober ; and if drunk, they forgive it, saying, "It was the drink, and not the man, that abused them."

We have agreed, that in all differences between us, six of each side shall end the matter : do not abuse them, but let them have justice, and you win them: the worst is, that they are the worse for the Christians, who have propagated their vices, and yielded them tradition for ill, and not for good things. But as low an ebb as these people are at, and as glorious as their own condition looks, the Christians have not outlived their sight, with all their pretensions to an higher manifestation: what good then might not a good people graft, where there is so distinct a knowledge left between good and evil? I beseech God to incline the hearts of all that come into these parts, to outlive the knowledge of the natives, by a fixed obedience to their greater knowledge of the will of God; for it were miserable indeed for us to fall under the just censure of the poor Indian conscience, while we make profession of things so far transcending.
 

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This is an excerpt from Volume 2 of America, "Great Crises in our History"

The Pequot Massacre At Fort Mystic

By Captain John Mason.

THE Pequot Indians, numbering some three thousand and inhabiting Connecticut and Rhode Island, murdered an English trader named John Oldham, who had maltreated them, and subsequently scalped seven members of an armed force sent against them to demand retribution. This "outrage," as the English regarded it, so enraged the colonists that the extermination of the Pequots was decided upon.

Influenced by Roger Williams, the neighboring tribes pledged their neutrality, and the Pequots, left to fight alone, fortified themselves near the Mystic River. Against them was sent a force of Connecticut colonists under Captain Mason, who gives this account of the massacre in the third person.

The fort was stormed and the tribe was virtually destroyed. After this exploit Captain Mason became Deputy Governor of Connecticut and long presided as Chief Judge of the colony.


AFTER a march of some eighteen to twenty miles (along Narragansett Bay) we camped with our Indian allies for the night. Purposing to make our assault before day, we roused early, and briefly commended ourselves and design to God, thinking immediately to go to the assault; the Indians showing us a path, told us that it led directly to the fort. We held on our march about two miles, wondering that we came not to the fort, and fearing we might be deluded. But seeing corn newly planted at the foot of a great hill, supposing the fort was not far off, a Champaign country being round about us, then making a stand, gave the word for some of the Indians to come up. At length Onkos and one Wequash appeared. We demanded of them, "Where is the fort?" They answered, "On the top of that hill." Then we demanded, "Where are the rest of the Indians?" They answered, "Behind, exceedingly afraid." We wished them to tell the rest of their fellows that they should by no means fly, but stand at what distance they pleased, and see whether Englishmen would now fight or not.

Then Captain Underhill came up, who marched in the rear; and commending ourselves to God, divided our men, there being two entrances into the fort, intending to enter both at once; Captain Mason leading up to that on the north-east side, who approaching within one rod, heard a dog bark and an Indian crying "Owanux! Owanux!" which is "Englishmen! Englishmen!" We called up our forces with all expedition, gave fire upon them through the palisade; the Indians being in a dead, indeed their last sleep. Then we wheeling off fell upon the main entrance, which was blocked up with bushes about breast high, over which the captain passed, intending to make good the entrance, encouraging the rest to follow. Lieutenant Seeley endeavored to enter; but being somewhat cumbered, stepped back and pulled out the bushes and so entered, and with him about about sixteen men. We had formerly concluded to destroy them by the sword and save the plunder.

Whereupon Captain Mason seeing no Indians, entered a wigwam ; where he was beset with many Indians, waiting all opportunities to lay hands on him, but could not prevail. At length William Hey-don espying the breach in the wigwam, supposing some English might be there, entered; but in his entrance fell over a dead Indian; but speedily recovering himself, the Indians some fled, others crept under their beds. The captain going out of the wigwam saw many Indians in the lane or street; he making towards them, they fled, were pursued to the end of the lane, where they were met by Edward Pattison, Thomas Barber, with some others ; where seven of them were slain, as they said. The captain facing about, marched a slow pace up the lane he came down, perceiving himself very much out of breath ; and coming to the other end near the place where he first entered, saw two soldiers standing close to the palisado with their swords pointed to the ground. The captain told them that we should never kill them after that manner. The captain also said, "We must burn them" ; and immediately stepping into the wigwam where he had been before, brought out a fire-brand, and putting it into the mats with which they were covered, set the wigwams on fire. Lieutenant Thomas Bull and Nicholas Omsted beholding, came up; and when it was thoroughly kindled, the Indians ran as men most dreadfully amazed.

And indeed such a dreadful terror did the Almighty let fall upon their spirits, that they would fly from us and run into the very flames, where many of them Perished. And when the fort was thoroughly fired, command was given, that all should fall off and surround the fort; which was readily attended by all; only one Arthur Smith being so wounded that he could not move out of the place, who was happily espied by Lieutenant Bull, and by him rescued.

The fire was kindled on the north-east side to windward; which did swiftly overrun the fort, to the extreme amazement of the enemy, and great rejoicing of ourselves. Some of them climbing to the top of the palisado; others of them running into the very flames; many of them gathering to windward, lay pelting at us with their arrows ; and we repaid them with our small shot. Others of the stoutest issued forth, as we did guess, to the number of forty, who perished by the sword.

What I have formerly said, is according to my own knowledge, there being sufficient living testimony to every particular.

But in reference to Captain Underhill and his parties acting in this assault, I can only intimate as we were informed by some of themselves immediately after the fight. Thus they marching up to the entrance on the south-west side, there made some pause; a valiant, resolute gentleman, one Mr. Hedge, stepping towards the gate, saying, "If we may not enter, wherefore came we here," and immediately endeavored to enter; but was opposed by a sturdy Indian which did impede his entrance; but the Indian being slain by himself and Sergeant Davis, Mr. Hedge entered the fort with some others; but the fort being on fire, the smoke and flames were so violent that they were constrained to desert the fort.

Thus were they now at their wits end, who not many hours before exalted themselves in their great pride, threatening and resolving the utter ruin and destruction of all the English, exulting and rejoicing with songs and dances. But God was above them, who laughed his enemies and the enemies of his people to scorn, making them as a fiery oven. Thus were the stout-hearted spoiled, having slept their last sleep, and none of their men could find their hands. Thus did the Lord judge among the heathen, filling the place with dead bodies!

And here we may see the just judgment of God, in sending even the very night before this assault, one hundred and fifty men from their other fort, to join with them of that place, who were designed as some of themselves reported to go forth against the English, at that very instant when this heavy stroke came upon them, where they perished with their fellows. So that the mischief they intended to us, came upon their own pate. They were taken in their own snare, and we through mercy escaped. And thus in little more than one hour's space was their impregnable fort with themselves utterly destroyed, to the number of six or seven hundred, as some of themselves confessed. There were only seven taken captive, and about seven escaped.

Of the English, there were two slain outright, and about twenty wounded. Some fainted by reason of the sharpness of the weather, it being a cool morning, and the want of such comforts and necessaries as were needful in such a case; especially our surgeon was much wanting, whom we left with our barks in Narragansett Bay, who had order there to remain until the night before our intended assault.

And thereupon grew many difficulties: Our provision and munition near spent; we in the enemy's country, who did far exceed us in number, being much enraged; all our Indians, except Onkos, deserting us; our pinnaces at a great distance from us, and when they would come we were uncertain.

But as we were consulting what course to take, it pleased God to discover our vessels to us before a fair gale of wind, sailing into Pequot harbor, to our great rejoicing.
 

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This is an excerpt from Volume 2 of America, "Great Crises in our History"

M. Robert Cavelier De La Salle

By Father Louis Hennepin.

M. R. C. DE LA SALLE was a person qualified for the greatest undertakings, and may be justly ranked amongst the most famous travelers that ever were. This will appear to whomsoever will consider that he spent his own estate about (in carrying out) the greatest, most important, and most perilous discovery that has been yet made. His design was to find out a passage from the northern to the south sea. . . . The river Mississippi does not indeed run that way, but he was in hopes by means of that river to discover some other river running into the south sea. In order where unto he endeavored to find by sea the mouth of the Mississippi, which discharges itself into the Gulf of Mexico, to settle there a colony, and build a good fort to be as his magazine, and serve as a retreat both by sea and by land, in case of any mishap.

He made his proposals to the French king's council, who, approving the design, his most Christian Majesty gave him all necessary authority and supplied him with ships, men, and money. . . . They sailed from Rochelle, August the 5th, 1684, and passing by Martenico and Guadaloupe, took in fresh provisions and water, with divers volunteers. The ketch being separated by storm, was taken by the Spaniards, the other three ships arrived about the middle of February, in the bay of Spiritosanto, and about ten leagues off found a large bay, which M. de la Salle took for the right arm of the Mississippi, and called it St. Louis.

M. de la Salle . . . resolved to travel along the coast to find out the mouth of the Mississippi, and, leaving the inhabitants and soldiers who were to remain in the fort, set out with twenty men and M. Cavelier his brother. The continual rains made the ways very bad, and swelled several small rivulets, which gave him a world of trouble. At last, on the 13th of February, 1686, he thought to have found his so much wished for river ; and having fortified a post on its banks, and left part of his men for its security, he returned to his fort the 31st of March, charmed with his discovery. But this joy was overbalanced by grief for the loss of his frigate. This was the only ship left unto him, with which he intended to sail in a few days for St. Domingo, to bring a new supply of men and goods to carry on his design.

M. de la Salle seeing all his affairs ruined by the loss of his ship, and having no way to return into Europe but by Canada, resolved upon so dangerous a journey, and took twenty men along with him, with one savage called Nicana, who had followed him into France, and had given such proofs of his affection to his Master, that he relied more upon him than upon any European. Having assisted at the divine service in the chapel of the fort, to implore God's mercy and protection, he set out the 22nd of April, 1686, directing his march to the northeast. . . . They tarried two whole months, being reduced to the greatest extremities. Their powder was almost spent, though they were not advanced above one hundred and fifty leagues in a direct line. Some of his men had deserted; others began to be irresolute, and all these things being carefully considered, M. de la Salle resolved to return to Fort Louis.

He remained two months and a half at Fort Louis, during which time he forgot not to comfort his small colony, which began to multiply, several children being born since their arrival. . . . Then taking twenty men with him, with his brother, his two nephews, Father Anastasius, and the Sieur Joutel, after public prayer, he set out a second time from Fort Louis and resolved not to return till he had found the Illinois.

M. de la Salle set out from the fort the 7th. of January, 1687; and having crossed the river Salbonniere and Hiens, with divers others which were mightily swollen by the rains, they came into a fine country for hunting, where his people refreshed themselves after their tiresome travel, with excellent good cheer for several days together.

With all his prudence, he could not discover the conspiracy of some of his people to kill his nephew : for they resolved upon it, and put it in execution, all of a sudden, on the 17th of March, wounding him in the head with a hatchet. . . . But these wretches, not content with this bloody deed, resolved to kill their Master too, for they feared he would justly punish them for their crime.

M. de la Salle was two leagues from the place where Moranger was killed, and being concerned at his nephews tarrying so long (for they had been gone two or three days), was afraid they were surprised by the savages ; whereupon he desired Father Anastasius to accompany him in looking after his nephews, and took two savages along with him. . . He went to them and inquired for his nephew; they made little answer, but pointed to the place where he lay. Father Anastasius and he kept going on by the riverside, till at last they came to the fatal place, where two of the villains lay hid in the grass; one on one side, and one on the other, with their pieces cocked. The first presented at him but missed fire; the other fired at the same time, and shot him in the head, of which he died, an hour after, March 19th, 1687.
 

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This is an excerpt from Volume 2 of America, "Great Crises in our History"

The Founding Of Quebec-1608

From the "Voyages" of Samuel de Champlain.

WHEN Champlain came to America in 1608, it was his third trip to the New World. This time he came with the definite purpose of planting a colony on the banks of the St. Lawrence as a base for future French operations. We have here his own account of his pioneer work in the founding of Quebec, the city which was to play such an important part in the struggle between France and England for possession of the North American Continent.

Francis Parkman, the great historian, who devoted most of his life to the writing of "Pioneers of France in the New World," says of Champlain's writings: "They mark the man all for his theme and his purpose, nothing for himself. Crude in style, full of superficial errors of carelessness and haste, rarely diffuse, often brief to a fault, they bear on every page the palpable impress of truth."


HAVING returned to France after a stay of three years in New France, I proceeded to Sieur de Monts, and related to him the principal events of which I had been a witness since his departure, and gave him the map and plan of the most remarkable coasts and harbors there.

Some time afterward Sieur de Monts determined to continue his undertaking, and complete the exploration of the interior along the great river St. Lawrence, where I had been by order of the late King Henry the Great in the year 1603, for a distance of some hundred and eighty leagues, commencing in latitude 48 40', that is, at Gaspe, at the entrance of the river, as far as the great fall, which is in latitude 45 and some minutes, where our exploration ended, and where boats could not pass as we then thought, since we had not made a careful examination of it as we have since done.

Now, after Sieur de Monts had conferred with me several times in regard to his purposes concerning the exploration, he resolved to continue so noble and meritorious an undertaking, notwithstanding the hardships and labors of the past. He honored me with his lieutenancy for the voyage; and, in order to carry out his purpose, he had two vessels equipped, one commanded by Pont Grave, who was commissioned to trade with the savages of the country and bring back the vessels, while I was to winter in the country.

I proceeded to Honfleur for embarkation, where I found the vessel of Pont Grave in readiness. He left port on the 5th of April. I did so on the 13th, arriving at the Grand Bank on the 15th of May, in latitude 45 15'. On the 26th we sighted Cape St. Mary, in latitude 46 45', on the Island of Newfoundland. On the 27th of the month we sighted Cape St. Lawrence, on Cape Breton, and also the Island of St. Paul, distant eighty-three leagues from Cape St. Mary. On the 30th we sighted Isle Percee and Gaspe, in latitude 48 40', distant from Cape St. Lawrence from seventy to seventy-five leagues.

On the 3d of June we arrived before Tadoussac, distant from Gaspe from eighty to ninety leagues; and we anchored in the roadstead of Tadoussac, a league distant from the harbor, which latter is a kind of cove at the mouth of the river Saguenay, where the tide is very remarkable on account of its rapidity, and where there are sometimes violent winds, bringing severe cold.

I set out from Tadoussac the last day of the month to go to Quebec.

From the Island of Orleans to Quebec the distance is a league. I arrived there on the 3d of July, when I searched for a place suitable for our settlement; but I could find none more convenient or better situated Man the point of Quebec, so called by the savages, which was covered with nut-trees. I at once employed a portion of our workmen in cutting them down, that we might construct our habitation there: one I set to sawing boards, another to making a cellar and digging ditches, another I sent to Tadoussac with the barque to get supplies. The first thing we made was the storehouse for keeping under cover our supplies, which was promptly accomplished through the zeal of all, and my attention to the work.

Some days after my arrival at Quebec a locksmith conspired against the service of the king. His plan was to put me to death, and, getting possession of our fort, to put it into the hands of the Basques or Spaniards, then at Tadoussac, beyond which vessels cannot go, from not having a knowledge of the route, nor of the banks and rocks on the way.

In order to execute his wretched plan, by which he hoped to make his fortune, he suborned four of the worst characters, as he supposed, telling them a thousand falsehoods, and presenting to them prospects of acquiring riches.

These four men, having been won over, all promised to act in such a manner as to gain the rest over to their side, so that, for the time being, I had no one with me in whom I could put confidence, which gave them still more hope of making their plan succeed; for four or five of my companions, in whom they knew that I put confidence, were on board of the barques, for the purpose of protecting the provisions and supplies necessary for our settlement.

In a word, they were so skillful in carrying out their intrigues with those who remained that they were on the point of gaining all over to their cause, even my lackey, promising them many things which they could not have fulfilled.

Being now all agreed, they made daily different plans as to how they should put me to death, so as not to be accused of it, which they found to be a difficult thing. But the devil, blindfolding them all and taking away their reason and every possible difficulty, they determined to take me while unarmed, and strangle me, or to give a false alarm at night, and shoot me as I went out, in which manner they judged that they would accomplish their work sooner than otherwise. They made a mutual promise not to betray each other, on penalty that the first one who opened his mouth should be poniarded. They were to execute their plan in four days, before the arrival of our barques, otherwise they would have been unable to carry out their scheme.
 

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This is an excerpt from Volume 2 of America, "Great Crises in our History"

The Death Of Marquette

By Father Claude Dablon.

FATHER MARQUETTE'S narrative of his voyages and discoveries in the valley of the Mississippi was prepared for publication in 1678 by Father Claude Dablon, Superior of the Missions of the Society of Jesus in Canada. To this Father Dablon added the account given here of Marquette's death and burial.

FATHER JAMES MARQUETTE, having promised the Illinois, called Kaskaskia, to return among them to teach them our mysteries, had great difficulty in keeping his word. The great hardships of his first voyage had brought on a dysentery, and had so enfeebled him that he lost all hope of undertaking a second voyage. Yet, his malady having given way and almost ceased toward the close of summer in the following year, he obtained permission of his superiors to return to the Illinois to found that noble mission.

He set out for this purpose in the month of November, 1674, from the Bay of the Fetid, with two men, one of whom had already made that voyage with him. During a month's navigation on the Illinois Lake he was pretty well; but, as soon as the snow began to fall, he was again seized with the dysentery, which forced him to stop in the river which leads to the Illinois. There they raised a cabin, and spent the winter in such want of every comfort that his illness constantly increased. He felt that God had granted him the grace he had so often asked, and he even plainly told his companions so, assuring them that he would die of that illness and on that voyage. To prepare his soul for its departure, he began that rude wintering by the exercises of Saint Ignatius, which, in spite of his great bodily weakness, he performed with deep sentiments of devotion and great heavenly consolation; and then spent the rest of his time in colloquies with all heaven, having no more intercourse with earth amid these deserts, except with his two companions, whom he confessed and communicated twice a week, and exhorted as much as his strength allowed.

Some time after Christmas, in order to obtain the grace not to die without having taken possession of his beloved mission, he invited his companions to make a novena in honor of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin. Contrary to all human expectation, he was heard, and, recovering, found himself able to proceed to the Illinois town as soon as navigation was free. This he accomplished in great joy, setting out on the 29th of March. He was eleven days on the way, where he had ample matter for suffering, both from his still sickly state and from the severity and inclemency of the weather.

Having at last reached the town on the 8th of April, he was received there as an angel from heaven ; and after having several times assembled the chiefs of the nation with all the old men (anciens), to sow in their minds the first seed of the gospel, after carrying his instructions into the cabins, which were always filled with crowds of people, he resolved to speak to all publicly in general assembly, which he convoked in the open fields, the cabins being too small for the meeting. A beautiful prairie near the town was chosen for the great council. It was adorned in the fashion of the country, being spread with mats and bear-skins ; and the father, having hung on cords some pieces of India taffety, attached to them four large pictures of the Blessed Virgin, which were thus visible on all sides. The auditory was composed of five hundred chiefs and old men, seated in a circle around the father, while the youth stood without to the number of fifteen hundred, not counting women and children who are very numerous, the town being composed of five or six hundred fires.

The father spoke to all this gathering, and addressed them ten words by ten presents which he made them; he explained to them the principal mysteries of our religion, and the end for which he had come to their country; and especially he preached to them Christ crucified, for it was the very eve of the great day on which he died on the cross for them, as well as for the rest of men. He then said mass.

Three days after, on Easter Sunday, things being arranged in the same manner as on Thursday, he celebrated the holy mysteries for the second time ; and by these two sacrifices, the first ever offered there to God, he took possession of that land in the name of Jesus Christ, and gave this mission the name of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin.

He was listened to with universal joy and approbation by all this people, who earnestly besought him to return as soon as possible among them, since his malady obliged him to leave them. The father, on his part, showed them the affection he bore them, his satisfaction at their conduct, and gave his word that he or some other of our fathers would return to continue this mission so happily begun. This promise he repeated again and again, on parting with them to begin his journey. He set out amid such marks of friendship from these good people that they escorted him with pomp more than thirty leagues of the way, contending with one another for the honor of carrying his little baggage.

AFTER the Illinois had taken leave of the father, filled with a great idea of the gospel, he continued his voyage, and soon after reached the Illinois Lake, on which he had nearly a hundred leagues to make by an unknown route, because he was obliged to take the southern [eastern] side of the lake, having gone thither by the northern [western]. His strength, however, failed so much that his men despaired of being able to carry him alive to their journey's end; for, in fact, he became so weak and exhausted that he could no longer help himself, nor even stir, and had to be handled and carried like a child.
 

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This is an excerpt from Volume 2 of America, "Great Crises in our History"

The Persecution Of The Quakers

By James Cudworth.

FROM the first imprisonment of George Fox, founder of the religious denomination known as Quakers, in 1649, its members were objects of continuous persecution. At the time Cudworth, a magistrate of Scituate, Mass., wrote this letter (1658) there were seldom less than 1000 Quakers in English and colonial prisons.

Between 1661 and 1697 over 13,000 of them were jailed in England, 198 were transported as slaves and 338 died in prison. These persecutions were upon such pretexts as refusing to pay tithes, to swear or to remove the hat; for preaching in public places or traveling on the Sabbath. In New England stringent exclusion laws were passed, but the Quakers seemed to thrive on persecution. Numerous women were "stripped naked from the waist, tied to a cart's tail and whipped through the streets." Four Quakers one a woman, Mary Dyer were hanged on Boston Common.


AS for the state and condition of things among us, it is sad, and like so to continue; the antichristian persecuting spirit is very active, and that in the powers of this world. He that will not whip and lash, persecute and punish men that differ in matters of religion, must not sit on the bench, nor sustain any office in the commonwealth.

Last election, Mr. Hatherly and myself left off the bench, and myself discharged of my captainship, because I had entertained some of the Quakers at my house (thereby that I might be the better acquainted with their principles). I thought it better so to do, than with the blind world to censure, condemn, rail at, and revile them, when they neither saw their persons, nor knew any of their principles. But the Quakers and myself cannot close in divers things; and so I signified to the court I was no Quaker, but must bear my testimony against sundry things that they held, as I had occasion and opportunity. But withal, I told them, that as I was no Quaker, so I would be no persecutor. This spirit did work those two years that I was of the magistracy; during which time I was on sundry occasions forced to declare my dissent in sundry actings of that nature; which, although done with all moderation of expression, together with due respect unto the rest, yet it wrought great disaffection and prejudice in them, against me; so that if I should say some of themselves set others on work to frame a petition against me, that so they might have a seeming ground from others (though first moved and acted by themselves, to lay me what they could under reproach) I should do no wrong. The petition was with nineteen hands; it will be too long to make rehearsal. It wrought such a disturbance in our town, and in our military company, that when the act of court was read in the head of the company, had not I been present and made a speech to them, I fear there had been such actings as would have been of a sad consequence.

The court was again followed with another petition of fifty-four hands, and the court returned the petitioners an answer with much plausibleness of speech, carrying with it great show of respect to them, readily acknowledging, with the petitioners, my parts and gifts, and how useful I had been in my place; professing they had nothing at all against me, only in that thing of giving entertainment to the Quakers; when as I broke no law in giving them a night's lodging or two and some victuals. For, our law then was, If any entertain a Quaker, and keep him after he is warned by a magistrate to depart, the party so entertaining shall pay twenty shillings a week, for entertaining them. Since hath been made a law, If any entertain a Quaker, if but a quarter of an hour, he is to forfeit five pounds. Another, That if any see a Quaker, he is bound, if he live six miles or more from the constable, yet he must presently go and give notice to the constable, or else is subject to the censure of the court (which may be hang him). Another, That if the constable know or hear of any Quaker in his precincts, he is presently to apprehend him; and if he will not presently depart the town, the constable is to whip them, and send them away. And divers have been whipped with us in our patent; and truly, to tell you plainly, that the whipping of them with that cruelty, as some have been whipped, and their patience under it, hath sometimes been the occasion of gaining more adherence to them, than if they had suffered them openly to have preached a sermon.

Also another law, That if there be a Quaker meeting anywhere in this colony, the party in whose house, or on whose ground, is to pay forty shillings; the preaching Quaker forty shillings; every hearer forty shillings. Yea, and if they have meetings, though nothing be spoken when they so meet, which they say, so it falls out sometimes our last law, That now they are to be apprehended, and carried before a magistrate, and by him committed to be kept close prisoner, until he will promise to depart and never come again; and will also pay his fees (which I perceive they will do neither the one nor the other) ; and they must be kept only with the country's allowance, which is but small (namely, coarse bread and water). No friend may bring them anything; none may be permitted to speak with them; nay, if they have money of their own, they may not make use of that to relieve themselves.

In the Massachusetts (namely, Boston colony) after they have whipped them, and cut their ears, have now, at last, gone the furthest step they can: they banish them upon pain of death, if ever they come there again. We expect that we must do the like; we must dance after their pipe. Now Plymouth saddle is on the Bay horse (viz., Boston), we shall follow them on the career; for, it is well if in some there be not a desire to be their apes and imitators in all their proceedings in things of this nature.

All these carnal and antichristian ways, being not of God's appointment, effect nothing as to the obstructing or hindering of them in their way or course. It is only the Word and Spirit of the Lord that is able to convince gainsayers : they are the mighty weapons of a Christian's warfare, by which great and mighty things are done and accomplished.

They have many meetings and many adherents, almost the whole town of Sandwich is adhering towards them; and give me leave a little to acquaint you with their sufferings, which is grievous unto and saddens the hearts of most of the precious saints of God. It lies down and rises up with them, and they cannot put it out of their minds, to see and hear of poor families deprived of their comforts and brought into penury and want (you may say, by what means, and to what end?). As far as I am able to judge of the end, it is to force them from their homes and lawful habitations, and to drive them out of their coasts.

The Massachusetts have banished six of their own inhabitants, to be gone upon pain of death ; and I wish that blood be not shed. But our poor people are pillaged and plundered of their goods; and haply, when they have no more to satisfy their unsatiable desire, at last may be forced to flee, and glad they have their lives for a prey.

As for the means by which they are impoverished: these in the first place were scrupulous of an oath; Why then we must put in force an old law, that all Must take the oath of fidelity. This being tendered, they will not take it; and then we must add more force to the law, and that is, if any man refuse, or neglect to take it by such a time, shall pay five pounds or depart the colony. When the time is come, they are the same as they were; then goes out the marshal, and fetcheth away their cows and other cattle. Well, another court comes, they are required to take the oath again, they cannot then five pounds more. On this account thirty-five head of cattle, as I have been credibly informed, hath been by the authority of our court taken from them the latter part of this summer; and these people say, If they have more right to them, than themselves, Let them take them. Some that had a cow only, some two cows, some three cows, and many small children in their families, to whom in summer time a cow or two was the greatest outward comfort they had for their subsistence. A poor weaver that hath seven or eight small children (I know not which) , he himself lame in his body, had but two cows, and both taken from him. The marshal asked him, What he would do? He must have his cows. The man said, That God that gave him them, he doubted not, but would still provide for him.
 
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