Life of the Pilgrims as Described by William Bradford in 1620 and Edward Winslow in 1621

 

Embarkation_of_the_Pilgrims

1844 Painting Embarkation of the Pilgrims in the US Capitol

This excerpt from Bradford’s journal beginning prior to the time of the communal contract entered into by the Pilgrims, continues on to describe the treaty reached with Massasoit, and concludes with the abduction of Squanto.

“The 6. Chap.

Conscerning ye agreements and artickles between them, and such marchants & others as adventured moneys; with other things falling out aboute making their provissions.

Upon ye receite of these things by one of their messengers, they had a sollemne meeting and a day of humilliation to seeke ye Lord for his direction; and their pastor tooke this texte, 1 Sam. 23. 3, 4. And David’s men said unto him, see, we be afraid hear in Judah, how much more if we come to Keilah against the host of the Phillistines? Then David asked counsell of ye Lord againe, &c. From which texte he taught  many things very aptly, and befitting ther present occasion and condition, strengthing them against their fears and perplexities, and incouraging them in their resolutions. [27] After which they concluded both what number and what persons should prepare them selves to goe with ye first; for all yt were willing to have gone could not gett ready for their other affairs in so shorte a time; neither if all could have been ready, had ther been means to have trasported them alltogeather. Those that staied being ye greater number required ye pastor to stay with them; and indeede for other reasons he could not then well goe, and so it was ye more easilie yeelded unto. The other then desired ye elder, Mr. Brewster, to goe with them, which was also condescended unto. It was also agreed on by mutuall consente and covenante, that those that went should be an absolute church of them selves, as well as those ytstaid; seing in such a dangrous vioage, and a removall to such a distance, it might come to pass they should (for ye body of them) never meete againe in this world; yet with this proviso, that as any of ye rest came over to them, or of ye other returned upon occasion, they should be reputed as members without any further dismission or testimoniall. It was allso promised to those yt wente first, by ye body of ye rest, that if ye Lord gave them life, & meās, & opportunitie, they would come to them as soone as they could.


Aboute this time, whilst they were perplexed with ye proseedings of ye Virginia Company, & ye ill news from thence aboute Mr. Blackwell & his company, and making inquirey about ye hiring & buying of shiping for their vioage, some Dutchmen made them faire offers aboute goeing with them. Also one Mr. Thomas Weston, a mrchant of London, came to Leyden aboute ye same time, (who was well aquainted with some of them, and a furtherer of them in their former proseedings,) haveing much conferance wth Mr. Robinson & other of ye cheefe of them, perswaded them to goe on (as it seems) & not to medle with ye Dutch, or too much to depend on the Virginia Company; for if that failed, if they came to resolution, he and such marchants as were his freinds (togeather with their owne means) would sett them forth; and they should make ready, and neither feare wante of shipping nor money; for what they wanted should be provided. And, not so much for him selfe as for yesatisfing of such frends as he should procure to adventure in this bussines, they were to draw such articls of agreemente, and make such propossitions, as might ye better induce his freinds to venture. Upon which (after yeformere conclusion) articles were drawne & agreed unto, and were showne unto him, and approved by him; and afterwards by their messenger (Mr. John Carver) sent into England, who, togeather with Robart Cushman, were to receive ye moneys & make provissione both for shiping & other things for ye vioage; with this [55]charge, not to exseede their com̅ission, but to proseed according to ye former articles. Also some were chossen to doe ye like for such things as were to be prepared there; so those that weare to goe, prepared them selves with all speed, and sould of their estats and (such as were able) put in their moneys into ye commone stock, which was disposed by those appointed, for ye making of generall provissions. Aboute this time also they had heard, both by Mr. Weston and others, yt sundrie Honbl: Lords had obtained a large grante from ye king, for ye more northerly parts of that countrie, derived out of ye Virginia patente, and wholy secluded from their Govermente, and to be called by another name, viz. New-England. Unto which Mr. Weston, and ye cheefe of them, begane to incline it was [28] best for them to goe, as for other reasons, so cheefly for ye hope of present profite to be made by ye fishing that was found in yt countrie.

But as in all bussineses ye acting parte is most difficulte, espetially wher ye worke of many agents must concurr, so it was found in this; for some of those yt should have gone in England, fell of & would not goe; other marchants & freinds yt had offered to adventure their moneys withdrew, and pretended many excuses. Some disliking they wente not to Guiana; others againe would adventure nothing excepte they wente to Virginia. Some againe (and those that were most relied on) fell in utter dislike with Virginia, and [56]would doe nothing if they wente thither. In ye midds of these distractions, they of Leyden, who had put of their estats, and laid out their moneys, were brought into a greate streight, fearing what issue these things would come too; but at length ye generalitie was swaid to this latter opinion.

But now another difficultie arose, for Mr. Weston and some other that were for this course, either for their better advantage or rather for ye drawing on of others, as they pretended, would have some of those conditions altered yt were first agreed on at Leyden. To which ye 2. agents sent from Leyden (or at least one of them who is most charged with it) did consente; seeing els yt all was like to be dashte, & ye opportunitie lost, and yt they which had put of their estats and paid in their moneys were in hazard to be undon. They presumed to conclude with yemarchants on those termes, in some things contrary to their order & com̅ission, and without giving them notice of ye same; yea, it was conceled least it should make any furder delay; which was ye cause afterward of much trouble & contention.

It will be meete I here inserte these conditions, which are as foloweth.

Ano: 1620. July 1.

1. The adventurers & planters doe agree, that every person that goeth being aged 16. years & upward, be rated at 10li., and ten pounds to be accounted a single share.[57]

2. That he that goeth in person, and furnisheth him selfe out with 10li. either in money or other provissions, be accounted as haveing 20li. in stock, and in ye devission shall receive a double share.

3. The persons transported & ye adventurers shall continue their joynt stock & partnership togeather, yespace of 7. years, (excepte some unexpected impedimente doe cause ye whole company to agree otherwise,) during which time, all profits & benifits that are gott by trade, traffick, trucking, working, fishing, or any other means of any person or persons, remaine still in ye com̅one stock untill ye division.

4. That at their com̅ing ther, they chose out such a number of fitt persons, as may furnish their ships and boats for fishing upon ye sea; imploying the rest in their severall faculties upon ye land; as building houses, tilling, and planting ye ground, & makeing shuch com̅odities as shall be most usefull for ye collonie.

5. That at ye end of ye 7. years, ye capitall & profits, viz. the houses, lands, goods and chatles, be equally devided betwixte ye adventurers, and planters; wch done, every man shall be free from other of them of any debt or detrimente concerning this adventure.

[29] 6. Whosoever cometh to ye colonie herafter, or putteth any into ye stock, shall at the ende of ye 7. years be alowed proportionably to ye time of his so doing.

7. He that shall carie his wife & children, or servants, shall be alowed for everie person now aged 16. years & upward, a single share in ye devision, or if he provid them necessaries, a duble share, or if they be between 10. year old and 16., then 2. of them to be reconed for a person, both in trāsportation and devision.

8. That such children as now goe, & are under ye age of ten years, have noe other shar in ye devision, but 50. acers of unmanured land.[58]

9. That such persons as die before ye 7. years be expired, their executors to have their parte or sharr at yedevision, proportionably to ye time of their life in ye collonie.

10. That all such persons as are of this collonie, are to have their meate, drink, apparell, and all provissions out of ye com̅on stock & goods of ye said collonie.

The cheefe & principall differences betwene these & the former conditions, stood in those 2. points; that yehouses, & lands improved, espetialy gardens & home lotts should remaine undevided wholy to ye planters at ye 7. years end. 2ly, yt they should have had 2. days in a weeke for their owne private imploymente, for ye more comforte of them selves and their families, espetialy such as had families. But because letters are by some wise men counted ye best parte of histories, I shall shew their greevances hereaboute by their owne letters, in which ye passages of things will be more truly discerned.

A letter of Mr. Robinsons to John Carver.

June 14. 1620. N. Stile.

My dear freind & brother, whom with yours I alwaise remember in my best affection, and whose wellfare I shall never cease to com̅end to God by my best & most earnest praires. You doe throwly understand by our generall letters ye estate of things hear, which indeed is very pitifull; espetialy by wante of shiping, and not seeing means lickly, much less certaine, of having it provided; though withall ther be great want of money & means to doe needfull things. Mr. Pickering, you know [59]before this, will not defray a peny hear; though Robart Cushman presumed of I know not how many 100li. from him, & I know not whom. Yet it seems strange yt we should be put to him to receive both his & his partners adventer, and yet Mr. Weston write unto him, yt in regard of it, he hath drawne upon him a 100li. more. But ther is in this some misterie, as indeed it seems ther is in ye whole course. Besids, wheras diverse are to pay in some parts of their moneys yet behinde, they refuse to doe it, till they see shiping provided, or a course taken for it. Neither doe I thinke is ther a man hear would pay any thing, if he had againe his money in his purse. You know right well we depended on Mr. Weston alone, and upon such means as he would procure for this commone bussines; and when we had in hand another course with ye Dutchmen, broke it of at his motion, and upon yeconditions by him shortly after propounded. He did this in his love I know, but things appeare not answerable from him hitherto. That he should have first have put in his moneys, is thought by many to have been but fitt, but yt I can well excuse, he being a marchante and haveing use of it to his benefite; wheras others, if it had been in their hands, would have consumed it. [30] But yt he should not but have had either shipping ready before this time, or at least certaine means, and course, and ye same knowne to us for it, or have taken other order otherwise, cannot in my conscience be excused. I have heard yt when he hath been moved in the bussines, he hath put it of from him selfe, and referred it to ye others;[P] and would come to Georg Morton, & enquire news of him aboute things, as if he had scarce been some accessarie unto it. Wether he hath failed of some helps from others which he expected, and so be not well able to goe through with things, or whether he hath feared least you should be ready too soone & so encrease ye charge of shiping above [60]yt is meete, or whether he have thought by withhoulding to put us upon straits, thinking yt therby Mr. Brewer and Mr. Pickering would be drawne by importunitie to doe more, or what other misterie is in it, we know not; but sure we are yt things are not answerable to such an occasion. Mr. Weston maks himselfe mery with our endeavors about buying a ship, but we have done nothing in this but with good reason, as I am perswaded, nor yet that I know in any thing els, save in those tow; ye one, that we imployed Robart Cushman, who is known (though a good man, & of spetiall abilities in his kind, yet) most unfitt to deale for other men, by reason of his singularitie, and too great indifferancie for any conditions, and for (to speak truly) that[Q] we have had nothing from him but termes & presumptions. The other, yt we have so much relyed, by implicite faith as it were, upon generalities, without seeing yeperticuler course & means for so waghtie an affaire set down unto us. For shiping, Mr. Weston, it should seeme, is set upon hireing, which yet I wish he may presently effecte; but I see litle hope of help from hence if so it be. Of Mr. Brewer you know what to expecte. I doe not thinke Mr. Pickering will ingage, excepte in ye course of buying, in former letters specified. Aboute ye conditions, you have our reasons for our judgments of what is agreed. And let this spetially be borne in minde, yt the greatest parte of yeCollonie is like to be imployed constantly, not upon dressing ther perticuler land & building houses, but upon fishing, trading, &c. So as ye land & house will be but a trifell for advantage to ye adventurers, and yet the devission of it a great discouragmente to ye planters, who would with singuler care make it comfortable with borowed houres from their sleep. The same consideration of com̅one imploymente constantly by the most is a good reason not to have ye 2. daies in a weeke denyed ye few planters for private use, which yet is subordinate to com̅one good. Consider also how much unfite that you & [61]your liks must serve a new prentishipe of 7. years, and not a daies freedome from taske. Send me word what persons are to goe, who of usefull faculties, & how many, & perticulerly of every thing. I know you wante not a minde. I am sorie you have not been at London all this while, but ye provissions could not wante you. Time will suffer me to write no more; fare you & yours well allways in ye Lord, in whom I rest.

Yours to use,
John Robinson.

An other letter from sundrie of them at ye same time.

[31] To their loving freinds John Carver and Robart Cushman, these, &c.

Good bretheren, after salutations, &c. We received diverse letters at ye coming of Mr. Nash & our pilott, which is a great incouragmente unto us, and for whom we hop after times will minister occasion of praising God; and indeed had you not sente him, many would have been ready to fainte and goe backe. Partly in respecte of ye new conditions which have bene taken up by you, which all men are against, and partly in regard of our owne inabillitie to doe any one of those many waightie bussineses you referr to us here. For ye former wherof, wheras Robart Cushman desirs reasons for our dislike, promising therupon to alter yesame, or els saing we should thinke he hath no brains, we desire him to exercise them therin, refering him to our pastors former reasons, and them to ye censure of ye godly wise. But our desires are that you will not entangle your selvs and us in any such unreasonable courses as those are, viz. yt the marchants should have ye halfe of mens houses and lands at ye dividente; and that persons should be deprived of ye 2. days in a weeke agreed upon, yea every momente of time for their owne perticuler; by reason wherof we cannot conceive why any should carie servants for their own help and comfort; for that we can require no more [62]of them then all men one of another. This we have only by relation from Mr. Nash, & not from any writing of your owne, & therfore hope you have not proceeded farr in so great a thing without us. But requiring you not to exseed the bounds of your com̅ission, which was to proceed upon ye things or conditions agred upon and expressed in writing (at your going over about it), we leave it, not without marveling, that your selfe, as you write, knowing how smale a thing troubleth our consultations, and how few, as you fear, understands the busnes aright, should trouble us with such matters as these are, &c.

Salute Mr. Weston from us, in whom we hope we are not deceived; we pray you make known our estate unto him, and if you thinke good shew him our letters, at least tell him (yt under God) we much relie upon him & put our confidence in him; and, as your selves well know, that if he had not been an adventurer with us, we had not taken it in hand; presuming that if he had not seene means to accomplish it, he would not have begune it; so we hope in our extremitie he will so farr help us as our expectation be no way made frustrate concerning him. Since therfore, good brethren, we have plainly opened ye state of things with us in this matter, you will, &c. Thus beseeching ye Allmightie, who is allsufficiente to raise us out of this depth of dificulties, to assiste us herein; raising such means by his providence and fatherly care for us, his pore children & servants, as we may with comforte behould ye hand of our God for good towards us in this our bussines, which we undertake in his name & fear, we take leave & remaine

June 10. New Stille,
Ano: 1620.
Your perplexed, yet hopfull
bretheren,
S. F.  E. W.  W. B.  J. A.

A letter of Robart Cushmans to them.

Brethern, I understand by letters & passagess yt have come to me, that ther are great discontents, & dislike of my proceedings amongst you. Sorie I am to hear it, yet contente to beare it, as not doubting but yt partly by writing, and more principally by word when we shall come togeather, I shall satisfie any reasonable man. I have been perswaded [32] by some, espetialy this bearer, to come and clear things unto you; but as things now stand I can̅ot be absente one day, excepte I should hazard all ye viage. Neither conceive I any great good would come of it. Take then, brethern, this as a step to give you contente. First, for your dislike of ye alteration of one clause in ye conditions, if you conceive it right, ther can be no blame lye on me at all. For ye articles first brought over by John Carver were never seene of any of ye adventurers hear, excepte Mr. Weston, neither did any of them like them because of that clause; nor Mr. Weston him selfe, after he had well considered it. But as at ye first ther was 500li. withdrawne by Sr. Georg Farrer and his brother upon that dislike, so all ye rest would have withdrawne (Mr. Weston excepted) if we had not altered yt clause. Now whilst we at Leyden conclude upon points, as we did, we reckoned without our host, which was not my falte. Besids, I shewed you by a letter ye equitie of yt condition, & our inconveniences, which might be sett against all Mr. Rob: inconveniences, that without ye alteration of yt clause, we could neither have means to gett thither, nor supplie wherby to subsiste when we were ther. Yet notwithstanding all those reasons, which were not mine, but other mens wiser then my selfe, without answer to any one of them, here cometh over many quirimonies, and complaints against me, of lording it over my brethern, and making conditions fitter for theeves & bondslaves then honest men, and that of my owne head I [64]did what I list. And at last a paper of reasons, framed against yt clause in ye conditions, which as yey were delivered me open, so my answer is open to you all. And first, as they are no other but inconveniences, such as a man might frame 20. as great on ye other side, and yet prove nor disprove nothing by them, so they misse & mistake both yevery ground of ye article and nature of ye project. For, first, it is said, that if ther had been no divission of houses & lands, it had been better for ye poore. True, and yt showeth ye inequalitie of ye condition; we should more respecte him yt ventureth both his money and his person, then him yt ventureth but his person only.

2. Consider wheraboute we are, not giveing almes, but furnishing a store house; no one shall be porer then another for 7. years, and if any be rich, none can be pore. At ye least, we must not in such bussines crie, Pore, pore, mercie, mercie. Charitie hath it life in wraks, not in venturs; you are by this most in a hopefull pitie of makeing, therfore complaine not before you have need.

3. This will hinder ye building of good and faire houses, contrarie to ye advise of pollitiks. A. So we would have it; our purpose is to build for ye presente such houses as, if need be, we may with litle greefe set a fire, and rune away by the lighte; our riches shall not be in pompe, but in strenght; if God send us riches, we will imploye them to provid more men, ships, munition, &c. You may see it amongst the best pollitiks, that a com̅onwele is readier to ebe then to flow, when once fine houses and gay cloaths come up.

4. The Govet may prevente excess in building. A. But if it be on all men beforehand resolved on, to build mean houses, ye Gover laboure is spared.

5. All men are not of one condition. A. If by condition you mean wealth, you are mistaken; if you mean by condition, qualities, then I say he that is not contente his neighbour shall have as good a house, fare, means, &c. as him selfe, is [65]not of a good qualitie. 2ly. Such retired persons, as have aneie only to them selves, are fitter to come wher catching is, then closing; and are fitter to live alone, then in any societie, either civill or religious.

6. It will be of litle value, scarce worth 5li. A. True, it may be not worth halfe 5li. [33] If then so smale a thing will content them, why strive we thus aboute it, and give them occasion to suspecte us to be worldly & covetous? I will not say what I have heard since these complaints came first over.

7. Our freinds with us yt adventure mind not their owne profite, as did ye old adventurers. A. Then they are better then we, who for a litle matter of profite are readie to draw back, and it is more apparente brethern looke too it, that make profite your maine end; repente of this, els goe not least you be like Jonas to Tarshis. 2ly. Though some of them mind not their profite, yet others doe mind it; and why not as well as we? venturs are made by all sorts of men, and we must labour to give them all contente, if we can.

8. It will break ye course of com̅unitie, as may be showed by many reasons. A. That is but said, and I say againe, it will best foster comunion, as may be showed by many reasons.

9. Great profite is like to be made by trucking, fishing, &c. A. As it is better for them, so for us; for halfe is ours, besids our living still upon it, and if such profite in yt way come, our labour shall be ye less on ye land, and our houses and lands must & will be of less value.

10. Our hazard is greater then theirs. A. True, but doe they put us upon it? doe they urge or egg us? hath not ye motion & resolution been always in our selves? doe they any more then in seeing us resolute if we had means, help us to means upon equall termes & conditions? If we will not goe, they are content to keep their moneys. Thus I have pointed at a way to loose those knots, which I hope you will consider seriously, and let me have no more stirre about them. Now furder, I hear a noise of slavish conditions by me made; but surly this is all that I have altered, and reasons I have sent you. If you mean it of ye 2. days in a week for perticuler, as some insinuate, you are deceived; you may have 3. days in a week for me if you will. And when I have spoken to ye adventurers of times of working, they have said they hope we are men of discretion & conscience, and so fitte to be trusted our selves with that. But indeed ye ground of our proceedings at Leyden was mistaken, and so here is nothing but tottering every day, &c.

As for them of Amsterdam I had thought they would as soone have gone to Rome as with us; for our libertie is to them as ratts bane, and their riggour as bad to us as ye Spanish Inquision. If any practise of mine discourage them, let them yet draw back; I will undertake they shall have their money againe presently paid hear. Or if the company thinke me to be ye Jonas, let them cast me of before we goe; I shall be content to stay with good will, having but the cloaths on my back; only let us have quietnes, and no more of these clamors; full litle did I expecte these things which are now come to pass, &c.

Yours,        R. Cushman.

But whether this letter of his ever came to their hands at Leyden I well know not; I rather thinke it was staied by Mr. Carver & kept by him, forgiving offence. But this which follows was ther received; both which I thought pertenent to recite.

Salutations, &c. I received your lẽr. yesterday, by John Turner, with another ye same day from Amsterdam by Mr. W. savouring of ye place whenc it came. And indeed the many discouragements I find her, togeather with ye demurrs and retirings ther, had made me to say, I would give up my accounts to John Carver, & at his comeing aquainte him fully with all courses, and so leave it quite, with only ye pore cloaths on my back. But gathering up my selfe by further consideration, [34] I resolved yet to make one triall more, and to aquainte Mr. Weston with ye fainted state of our bussines; and though he hath been much discontented at some thing amongst us of late, which hath made him often say, that save for his promise, he would not meadle at all with ye bussines any more, yet considering how farr we were plunged into maters, & how it stood both on our credits & undoing, at ye last he gathered up him selfe a litle more, & coming to me 2. hours after, he tould me he would not yet leave it. And so advising togeather we resolved to hire a ship, and have tooke liking of one till Monday, about 60. laste, for a greater we cannot gett, excepte it be tow great; but a fine ship it is. And seeing our neer freinds ther are so streite lased, we hope to assure her without troubling them any further; and if ye ship fale too small, it fitteth well yt such as stumble at strawes allready, may rest them ther a while, least worse blocks come in ye way ere 7. years be ended. If you had beaten this bussines so throuly a month agoe, and write to us as now you doe, we could thus have done much more conveniently. But it is as it is; I hope our freinds ther, if they be quitted of the ship hire, will be indusced to venture ye more. All yt I now require is yt salt and netts may ther be boughte, and for all ye rest we will here provid it; yet if that will not be, let them but stand for it a month or tow, and we will take order to pay it all. Let Mr. Reinholds tarie ther, and bring ye ship to Southampton. We have hired another pilote here, one Mr. Clarke, who went last year to Virginia with a ship of kine.

[68]You shall here distinctly by John Turner, who I thinke shall come hence on Tewsday night. I had thought to have come with him, to have answerd to my complaints; but I shal lerne to pass litle for their censurs; and if I had more minde to goe & dispute & expostulate with them, then I have care of this waightie bussines, I were like them who live by clamours & jangling. But neither my mind nor my body is at libertie to doe much, for I am fettered with bussines, and had rather study to be quiet, then to make answer to their exceptions. If men be set on it, let them beat ye eair; I hope such as are my sinceire freinds will not thinke but I can give some reason of my actions. But of your mistaking aboute ye mater, & other things tending to this bussines, I shall nexte informe you more distinctly. Mean space entreate our freinds not to be too bussie in answering matters, before they know them. If I doe such things as I can̅ot give reasons for, it is like you have sett a foole aboute your bussines, and so turne ye reproofe to your selves, & send an other, and let me come againe to my Combes. But setting a side my naturall infirmities, I refuse not to have my cause judged, both of God, & all indifferent men; and when we come togeather I shall give accounte of my actions hear. The Lord, who judgeth justly without respect of persons, see into ye equitie of my cause, and give us quiet, peacable, and patient minds, in all these turmoiles, and sanctifie unto us all crosses whatsoever. And so I take my leave of you all, in all love & affection.

I hope we shall gett all hear ready in 14. days.

Your pore brother,
Robart Cushman.

June 11. 1620.

Besids these things, ther fell out a differance amongs those 3. that received [35] the moneys & made yeprovissions in England; for besids these tow formerly mentioned [69]sent from Leyden for this end, viz. Mr. Carver & Robart Cushman, ther was one chosen in England to be joyned with them, to make ye provisions for ye vioage; his name was Mr. Martin, he came from Billirike in Essexe, from which parts came sundrie others to goe with them, as also from London & other places; and therfore it was thought meete & conveniente by them in Holand that these strangers that were to goe with them, should apointe one thus to be joyned with them, not so much for any great need of their help, as to avoyd all susspition, or jelosie of any partiallitie. And indeed their care for giving offence, both in this & other things afterward, turned to great inconvenience unto them, as in ye sequell will apeare; but however it shewed their equall & honest minds. The provissions were for ye most parte made at Southhamton, contrarie to Mr. Westons & Robert Cushmās mind (whose counsells did most concure in all things). A touch of which things I shall give in a letter of his to Mr. Carver, and more will appear afterward.

To his loving freind Mr. John Carver, these, &c.

Loving freind, I have received from you some letters, full of affection & complaints, and what it is you would have of me I know not; for your crieing out, Negligence, negligence, negligence, I marvell why so negligente a man was used in ye bussines. Yet know you yt all that I have power to doe hear, shall not be one hower behind, I warent you. You have reference to Mr. Weston to help us with money, more then his adventure; wher he protesteth but for his promise, he would [70]not have done any thing. He saith we take a heady course, and is offended yt our provissions are made so farr of; as also that he was not made aquainted with our quantitie of things; and saith yt in now being in 3. places, so farr remote, we will, with going up & downe, and wrangling & expostulating, pass over ye som̅er before we will goe. And to speake yetrueth, ther is fallen already amongst us a flatt schisme; and we are redier to goe to dispute, then to sett forwarde a voiage. I have received from Leyden since you wente 3. or 4. letters directed to you, though they only conscerne me. I will not trouble you with them. I always feared ye event of ye Amsterdamers striking in with us. I trow you must excom̅unicate me, or els you must goe without their companie, or we shall wante no quareling; but let them pass. We have reckoned, it should seeme, without our host; and, counting upon a 150. persons, ther cannot be founde above 1200li. & odd moneys of all ye venturs you can reckone, besids some cloath, stockings, & shoes, which are not counted; so we shall come shorte at least 3. or 400li. I would have had some thing shortened at first of beare & other provissions in hope of other adventurs, & now we could have, both in Amsterd: & Kente, beere inough to serve our turne, but now we cannot accept it without prejudice. You fear we have begune to build & shall not be able to make an end; indeed, our courses were never established by counsell, we may therfore justly fear their standing. Yea, ther was a [36] schisme amongst us 3. at ye first. You wrote to Mr. Martin, to prevente ye making of yeprovissions in Kente, which he did, and sett downe his resolution how much he would have of every thing, without respecte to any counsell or exception. Surely he yt is in a societie & yet regards not counsell, may better be a king then a consorte. To be short, if ther be not some other dispossition setled unto then yet is, we yt should be partners of humilitie and peace, shall be examples of jangling & insulting. Yet your money which you ther must [71]have, we will get provided for you instantly. 500li. you say will serve; for ye rest which hear & in Holand is to be used, we may goe scratch for it. For Mr.[T] Crabe, of whom you write, he hath promised to goe with us, yet I tell you I shall not be without feare till I see him shipped, for he is much opposed, yet I hope he will not faile. Thinke ye best of all, and bear with patience what is wanting, and yeLord guid us all.

Your loving freind,
Robart Cushman.
London, June 10.
   Ano: 1620.

I have bene ye larger in these things, and so shall crave leave in some like passages following, (thoug in other things I shal labour to be more contracte,) that their children may see with what difficulties their fathers wrastled in going throug these things in their first begin̅ings, and how God brought them along notwithstanding all their weaknesses & infirmities. As allso that some use may be made hereof in after times by others in such like waightie imployments; and herewith I will end this chapter.


The 7. Chap.

Of their departure from Leyden, and other things ther aboute, with their arivall at South hamton, were they all mete togeather, and tooke in ther provissions.

Thus hoysing saile,[W] with a prosperus winde they came in short time to Southhamton, wher they found the bigger ship come from London, lying ready, wth all the rest of their company. After a joyfull wellcome, and mutuall congratulations, with other frendly entertainements, they fell to parley aboute their bussines, how to dispatch with ye best expedition; as allso with their agents, aboute ye alteration of ye conditions. Mr. Carver pleaded he was imployed hear at Hamton, and knew not well what ye other had don at London. Mr. Cushman answered, he had done nothing but what he was urged too, partly by ye grounds of equity, and more espetialy by necessitie, other wise all had bene dasht and many undon. And in ye begining he aquainted his felow agents here with, who consented unto him, and left it to him to execute, and to receive ye money at London and send it downe to them at Hamton, wher they made ye provissions; the which he accordingly did, though it was against his minde, & some of ye marchants, yt they were their made. And for giveing them notise at Leyden of this change, he could not well in regarde of ye shortnes of ye time; againe, he knew it would trouble them and hinder ye bussines, which was already delayed overlong in regard of ye season of ye year, which he feared they would find to their cost. But these things gave not contente at presente. Mr. Weston, likwise, came up from London to see them dispatcht and to have ye conditions confirmed; but they refused, and answered him, that he knew right well that these were not according to ye first agreemente, neither could they yeeld to them without ye consente of the rest that were behind. And indeed they had spetiall charge [75]when they came away, from the cheefe of those that were behind, not to doe it. At which he was much offended, and tould them, they must then looke to stand on their owne leggs. So he returned in displeasure, and this was ye first ground of discontent betweene them. And wheras ther wanted well near 100li. to clear things at their going away, he would not take order to disburse a penie, but let them shift as they could. [38] So they were forst to selle of some of their provissions to stop this gape, which was some 3. or 4. score firkins of butter, which comoditie they might best spare, haveing provided too large a quantitie of yt kind. Then they write a leter to ye marchants & adventures aboute ye diferances concerning yeconditions, as foloweth.

Aug. 3. Ano: 1620.

Beloved freinds, sory we are that ther should be occasion of writing at all unto you, partly because we ever expected to see ye most of you hear, but espetially because ther should any differance at all be conceived betweene us. But seing it faleth out that we cannot conferr togeather, we thinke it meete (though brefly) to show you ye just cause & reason of our differing from those articles last made by Robart Cushman, without our comission or knowledg. And though he might propound good ends to himselfe, yet it no way justifies his doing it. Our maine diference is in ye 5. & 9. article, concerning ye deviding or holding of house and lands; the injoying wherof some of your selves well know, was one spetiall motive, amongst many other, to provoke us to goe. This was thought so reasonable, yt when ye greatest of you in [76]adventure (whom we have much cause to respecte), when he propounded conditions to us freely of his owne accorde, he set this downe for one; a coppy wherof we have sent unto you, with some additions then added by us; which being liked on both sids, and a day set for ye paimente of moneys, those of Holland paid in theirs. After yt, Robart Cushman, Mr. Peirce, & Mr. Martine, brought them into a better forme, & write them in a booke now extante; and upon Robarts shewing them and delivering Mr. Mullins a coppy therof under his hand (which we have), he payd in his money. And we of Holland had never seen other before our coming to Hamton, but only as one got for him selfe a private coppy of them; upon sight wherof we manyfested uter dislike, but had put of our estats & were ready to come, and therfore was too late to rejecte ye vioage. Judge therfore we beseech you indiferently of things, and if a faulte have bene com̅ited, lay it wher it is, & not upon us, who have more cause to stand for ye one, then you have for ye other. We never gave Robart Cushman comission to make any one article for us, but only sent him to receive moneys upon articles before agreed on, and to further ye provissions till John Carver came, and to assiste him in it. Yet since you conceive your selves wronged as well as we, we thought meete to add a branch to ye end of our 9. article, as will allmost heale that wound of it selfe, which you conceive to be in it. But that it may appeare to all men yt we are not lovers of our selves only, but desire also ye good & inriching of our freinds who have adventured your moneys with our persons, we have added our last article to ye rest, promising you againe by leters in ye behalfe of the whole company, that if large profits should not arise within ye 7. years, yt we will continue togeather longer with you, if ye Lord give a blessing.[X] This we hope is sufficente to satisfie any in this case, espetialy freinds, since we are asured yt if [77]the whole charge was devided into 4. parts, 3. of them will not stand upon it, nether doe regarde it, &c. We are in shuch a streate at presente, as we are forced to sell away 60li. worth of our provissions to cleare ye Haven, & withall put our selves upon great extremities, scarce haveing any butter, no oyle, not a sole to mend a shoe, [39] nor every man a sword to his side, wanting many muskets, much armoure, &c. And yet we are willing to expose our selves to shuch eminente dangers as are like to insue, & trust to ye good providence of God, rather then his name & truth should be evill spoken of for us. Thus saluting all of you in love, and beseeching the Lord to give a blesing to our endeavore, and keepe all our harts in ye bonds of peace & love, we take leave & rest,

Yours, &c.
Aug. 3. 1620.

It was subscribed with many names of ye cheefest of ye company.

At their parting Mr. Robinson write a leter to ye whole company, which though it hath already bene printed, yet I thought good here likwise to inserte it; as also a breefe leter writ at ye same time to Mr. Carver, in which yetender love & godly care of a true pastor appears.

My dear Brother,—I received inclosed in your last leter ye note of information, wch I shall carefuly keepe & make use of as ther shall be occasion. I have a true feeling of your perplexitie of mind & toyle of body, but I hope that you who have allways been able so plentifully to administer comforte unto others in their trials, are so well furnished for your selfe as that farr greater difficulties then you have yet undergone [78](though I conceive them to have been great enough) cannot oppresse you, though they press you, as ye Aspostle speaks. The spirite of a man (sustained by ye spirite of God) will sustaine his infirmitie, I dout not so will yours. And ye beter much when you shall injoye ye presence & help of so many godly & wise bretheren, for ye bearing of part of your burthen, who also will not admitte into their harts ye least thought of suspition of any ye least negligence, at least presumption, to have been in you, what so ever they thinke in others. Now what shall I say or write unto you & your goodwife my loving sister? even only this, I desire (& allways shall) unto you from ye Lord, as unto my owne soule; and assure your selfe yt my harte is with you, and that I will not forslowe my bodily coming at ye first oppertunitie. I have writen a large leter to ye whole, and am sorie I shall not rather speak then write to them; & the more, considering ye wante of a preacher, which I shall also make sume spurr to my hastening after you. I doe ever com̅end my best affection unto you, which if I thought you made any doubte of, I would express in more, & ye same more ample & full words. And ye Lord in whom you trust & whom you serve ever in this bussines & journey, guid you with his hand, protecte you with his winge, and shew you & us his salvation in ye end, & bring us in ye mean while togeather in ye place desired, if shuch be his good will, for his Christs sake.

Amen.

Yours, &c.
Jo: R.
July 27. 1620.

This was ye last letter yt Mr. Carver lived to see from him. The other follows.

[79]Lovinge Christian friends, I doe hartily & in ye Lord salute you all, as being they with whom I am presente in my best affection, and most ernest longings after you, though I be constrained for a while to be bodily absente from you. I say constrained, God knowing how willingly, & much rather then otherwise, I would have borne my part with you in this first brunt, were I not by strong necessitie held back for ye present. Make accounte of me in ye mean while, as of a man devided in my selfe with great paine, and as (naturall bonds set a side) having my beter parte with [40] you. And though I doubt not but in your godly wisdoms, you both foresee & resolve upon yt which concerneth your presente state & condition, both severally & joyntly, yet have I thought it but my duty to add some furder spurr of provocation unto them, who rune allready, if not because you need it, yet because I owe it in love & dutie. And first, as we are daly to renew our repentance with our God, espetially for our sines known, and generally for our unknowne trespasses, so doth ye Lord call us in a singuler maner upon occasions of shuch difficultie & danger as lieth upon you, to a both more narrow search & carefull reformation of your ways in his sight; least he, calling to remembrance our sines forgotten by us or unrepented of, take advantage against us, & in judgmente leave us for ye same to be swalowed up in one danger or other; wheras, on the contrary, sine being taken away by ernest repentance & ye pardon therof from ye Lord sealed up unto a mans conscience by his spirite, great shall be his securitie and peace in all dangers, sweete his comforts in all distresses, with hapie deliverance from all evill, whether in life or in death.

Now next after this heavenly peace with God & our owne consciences, we are carefully to provide for peace with all men what in us lieth, espetially with our associats, & for ye watchfullnes must be had, that we neither at all in our selves doe give, no nor easily take offence being given by others. Woe be unto ye world for offences, for though it be necessarie (considering [80]ye malice of Satan & mans corruption) that offences come, yet woe unto ye man or woman either by whom ye offence cometh, saith Christ, Mat. 18. 7. And if offences in ye unseasonable use of things in them selves indifferent, be more to be feared then death itselfe, as ye Apostle teacheth, 1. Cor. 9. 15. how much more in things simply evill, in which neither honour of God nor love of man is thought worthy to be regarded. Neither yet is it sufficiente yt we keepe our selves by ye grace of God from giveing offence, exepte withall we be armed against ye taking of them when they be given by others. For how imperfect & lame is ye work of grace in yt person, who wants charritie to cover a multitude of offences, as ye scriptures speake. Neither are you to be exhorted to this grace only upon yecom̅one grounds of Christianitie, which are, that persons ready to take offence, either wante charitie, to cover offences, of wisdome duly to waigh humane frailtie; or lastly, are grosse, though close hipocrites, as Christ our Lord teacheth, Mat. 7. 1, 2, 3, as indeed in my owne experience, few or none have bene found which sooner give offence, then shuch as easily take it; neither have they ever proved sound & profitable members in societies, which have nurished this touchey humor. But besids these, ther are diverse motives provoking you above others to great care & conscience this way: As first, you are many of you strangers, as to ye persons, so to ye infirmities one of another, & so stand in neede of more watchfullnes this way, least when shuch things fall out in men & women as you suspected not, you be inordinatly affected with them; which doth require at your hands much wisdome & charitie for ye covering & preventing of incident offences that way. And lastly, your intended course of civill comunitie will minister continuall occasion of offence, & will be as fuell for that fire, excepte you dilligently quench it with brotherly forbearance. And if taking of offence causlesly or easilie at mens doings be so carefuly to be avoyded, how much more heed is to be taken yt we take not offence at God him selfe, which yet we certainly doe so oftē as we doe murmure at his providence in our crosses, or beare impatiently shuch afflictions as wherwith he pleaseth to visite us. Store up therfore patience against ye evill day, without which we take offence at ye Lord him selfe in his holy & just works.

A 4. thing ther is carfully to be provided for, to witte, that with your com̅one imployments you joyne com̅one affections truly bente upon ye generall good, avoyding as a deadly [41] plague of your both com̅one & spetiall comfort all retirednes of minde for proper advantage, and all singularly affected any maner of way; let every man represe in him selfe & ye whol body in each person, as so many rebels against ye commone good, all private respects of mens selves, not sorting with ye generall conveniencie. And as men are carfull not to have a new house shaken with any violence before it be well setled & ye parts firmly knite, so be you, I beseech you, brethren, much more carfull, yt the house of God which you are, and are to be, be not shaken with unnecessarie novelties or other oppositions at ye first setling therof.

Lastly, wheras you are become a body politik, using amongst your selves civill govermente, and are not furnished with any persons of spetiall eminencie above ye rest, to be chosen by you into office of goverment, let your wisdome & godlines appeare, not only in chusing shuch persons as doe entirely love and will promote ye com̅one good, but also in yeelding unto them all due honour & obedience in their lawfull administrations; not behoulding in them ye ordinarinesse of their persons, but Gods ordinance for your good, not being like ye foolish multitud who more honour ye gay coate, then either ye vertuous minde of ye man, or glorious ordinance of ye Lord. But you know better things, & that ye image of ye Lords power & authoritie which ye magistrate beareth, is honourable, in how meane persons [82]soever. And this dutie you both may ye more willingly and ought ye more conscionably to performe, because you are at least for yepresent to have only them for your ordinarie governours, which your selves shall make choyse of for that worke.

Sundrie other things of importance I could put you in minde of, and of those before mentioned, in more words, but I will not so farr wrong your godly minds as to thinke you heedless of these things, ther being also diverce among you so well able to admonish both them selves & others of what concerneth them. These few things therfore, & ye same in few words, I doe ernestly com̅end unto your care & conscience, joyning therwith my daily incessante prayers unto ye Lord, yt he who hath made ye heavens & ye earth, yesea and all rivers of waters, and whose providence is over all his workes, espetially over all his dear children for good, would so guide & gard you in your wayes, as inwardly by his Spirite, so outwardly by ye hand of his power, as yt both you & we also, for & with you, may have after matter of praising his name all ye days of your and our lives. Fare you well in him in whom you trust, and in whom I rest.

An unfained wellwiller of your hapie
success in this hopefull voyage,
John Robinson.

This letter, though large, yet being so frutfull in it selfe, and suitable to their occation, I thought meete to inserte in this place.

All things being now ready, & every bussines dispatched, the company was caled togeather, and this letter read amongst them, which had good acceptation with all, and after fruit with many. Then they ordered [83]& distributed their company for either shipe, as they conceived for ye best. And chose a Governor & 2. or 3. assistants for each shipe, to order ye people by ye way, and see to ye dispossing of there provissions, and shuch like affairs. All which was not only with ye liking of ye maisters of ye ships, but according to their desires. Which being done, they sett sayle from thence aboute ye 5. of August; but what befell them further upon ye coast of England will appeare in ye nexte chapter.


The 8. Chap.

Off the troubls that befell them on the coaste, and at sea being forced, after much trouble, to leave one of ther ships & some of their companie behind them.

[42] Being thus put to sea they had not gone farr, but Mr. Reinolds ye master of ye leser ship complained that he found his ship so leak as he durst not put further to sea till she was mended. So ye mr. of ye biger ship (caled Mr. Jonas) being consulted with, they both resolved to put into Dartmouth & have her ther searched & mended, which accordingly was done, to their great charg & losse of time and a faire winde. She was hear thorowly searcht from steme to sterne, some leaks were found & mended, and now it was conceived by the workmen & all, that she was sufficiente, & they might proceede without either fear or danger. So with good hopes from hence, they put [84]to sea againe, conceiving they should goe comfortably on, not looking for any more lets of this kind; but it fell out otherwise, for after they were gone to sea againe above 100. leagues without the Lands End, houlding company togeather all this while, the mr. of ye small ship complained his ship was so leake as he must beare up or sinke at sea, for they could scarce free her with much pumping. So they came to consultation againe, and resolved both ships to bear up backe againe & put into Plim̅oth, which accordingly was done. But no spetiall leake could be founde, but it was judged to be ye generall weaknes of ye shipe, and that shee would not prove sufficiente for the voiage. Upon which it was resolved to dismise her & parte of ye companie, and proceede with ye other shipe. The which (though it was greevous, & caused great discouragmente) was put in execution. So after they had tooke out such provission as ye other ship could well stow, and concluded both what number and what persons to send bak, they made another sad parting, ye one ship going backe for London, and ye other was to proceede on her viage. Those that went bak were for the most parte such as were willing so to doe, either out of some discontente, or feare they conceived of ye ill success of ye vioage, seeing so many croses befale, & the year time so farr spente; but others, in regarde of their owne weaknes, and charge of many yonge children, were thought least usefull, and most [85]unfite to bear ye brunte of this hard adventure; unto which worke of God, and judgmente of their brethern, they were contented to submite. And thus, like Gedions armie, this small number was devided, as if ye Lord by this worke of his providence thought these few to many for ye great worke he had to doe. But here by the way let me show, how afterward it was found yt the leaknes of this ship was partly by being over masted, and too much pressed with sayles; for after she was sould & put into her old trime, she made many viages & performed her service very sufficiently, to ye great profite of her owners. But more espetially, by the cuning & deceite of ye mr. & his company, who were hired to stay a whole year in ye cuntrie, and now fancying dislike & fearing wante of victeles, they ploted this strategem to free them selves; as afterwards was knowne, & by some of them confessed. For they apprehended yt the greater ship, being of force, & in whom most of yeprovissions were stowed, she would retayne enough for her selfe, what soever became of them or ye passengers; & indeed shuch speeches had bene cast out by some of them; and yet, besids other incouragments, ye cheefe of them that came from Leyden wente in this shipe to give ye mr. contente. But so strong was self love & his fears, as he forgott all duty and [43] former kindnesses, & delt thus falsly with them, though he pretended otherwise. Amongest those that returned was Mr. Cushman & his familie, whose hart [86]& courage was gone from them before, as it seems, though his body was with them till now he departed; as may appear by a passionate letter he write to a freind in London from Dartmouth, whilst ye ship lay ther a mending; the which, besids ye expressions of his owne fears, it shows much of ye providence of God working for their good beyonde man’s expectation, & other things concerning their condition in these streats. I will hear relate it. And though it discover some infirmities in him (as who under temtation is free), yet after this he continued to be a spetiall instrumente for their good, and to doe ye offices of a loving freind & faithfull brother unto them, and pertaker of much comforte with them.

The letter is as followth.

To his loving friend Ed: S.[Z] at Henige House in ye Duks Place,
these, &c.

Dartmouth, Aug. 17.

Loving friend, my most kind remembrance to you & your wife, with loving E. M. &c. whom in this world I never looke to see againe. For besids ye eminente dangers of this viage, which are no less then deadly, an infirmitie of body hath ceased me, which will not in all lieclyhoode leave me till death. What to call it I know not, but it is a bundle of lead, as it were, crushing my harte more & more these 14. days, as that allthough I doe ye acctions of a liveing man, yet I am but as dead; but ye will of God be done. Our pinass will not cease leaking, els I thinke we had been halfe way at Virginia, our viage hither hath been as full of crosses, as our selves [87]have been of crokednes. We put in hear to trim̅e her, & I thinke, as others also, if we had stayed at sea but 3. or 4. howers more, shee would have sunke right downe. And though she was twise trim̅ed at Hamton, yet now shee is open and leakie as a seive; and ther was a borde, a man might have puld of with his fingers, 2 foote longe, wher ye water came in as at a mole hole. We lay at Hamton 7. days, in fair weather, waiting for her, and now we lye hear waiting for her in as faire a wind as can blowe, and so have done these 4. days, and are like to lye 4. more, and by yt time ye wind will happily turne as it did at Hampton. Our victualls will be halfe eaten up, I thinke, before we goe from the coaste of England, and if our viage last longe, we shall not have a months victialls when we come in ye countrie. Neare 700li. hath bene bestowed at Hampton, upon what I know not. Mr. Martin saith he neither can nor will give any accounte of it, and if he be called upon for accounts he crieth out of unthankfullnes for his paines & care, that we are susspitious of him, and flings away, & will end nothing. Also he so insultēh over our poore people, with shuch scorne & contempte, as if they were not good enough to wipe his shoes. It would break your hart to see his dealing,[AA] and ye mourning of our people. They complaine to me, & alass! I can doe nothing for them; if I speake to him, he flies in my face, as mutinous, and saith no complaints shall be heard or received but by him selfe, and saith they are forwarde, & waspish, discontented people, & I doe ill to hear them. Ther are others yt would lose all they have put in, or make satisfaction for what they have had, that they might departe: but he will not hear them, nor suffer them to goe ashore, least they should rune away. The sailors also are so offended at his ignorante bouldnes, in medling & controuling in things he knows not what belongs too, as yt some [88]threaten to misscheefe him, others say they will leave ye shipe & goe their way. But at ye best this cometh of it, yt he maks him selfe a scorne & laughing stock unto them. As for Mr. Weston, excepte grace doe greatly swaye with him, he will hate us ten times more then ever he loved us, for not confirming ye conditions. But now, since some pinches have taken them, they begine to reveile ye trueth, & say Mr. Robinson was in ye falte who charged them never to consente to those conditions, nor chuse me into office, but indeede apointed them to chose them they did chose.[AB] But he & they will rue too late, they may [44] now see, & all be ashamed when it is too late, that they were so ignorante, yea, & so inordinate in their courses. I am sure as they were resolved not to seale those conditions, I was not so resolute at Hampton to have left ye whole bussines, excepte they would seale them, & better ye vioage to have bene broken of then, then to have brought such miserie to our selves, dishonour to God, & detrimente to our loving freinds, as now it is like to doe. 4. or 5. of ye cheefe of them which came from Leyden, came resolved never to goe on those conditions. And Mr. Martine, he said he never received no money on those conditions, he was not beholden to ye marchants for a pine, they were bloudsuckers, & I know not what. Simple man, he indeed never made any conditions wth the marchants, nor ever spake with them. But did all that money flie to Hampton, or was it his owne? Who will goe & lay out money so rashly & lavishly as he did, and never know how he comes by it, or on what conditions? 2ly. I tould him of ye alteration longe agoe, & he was contente; but now he dominires, & said I had betrayed them into ye hands of slaves; he is not beholden to them, he can set out 2. ships him selfe to a viage. When, good man? He hath but 50li. in, & if he should give up his accounts he would not have a penie left[89]him, as I am persuaded,[AC] &c. Freind, if ever we make a plantation, God works a mirakle; especially considering how scante we shall be of victualls, and most of all ununited amongst our selves, & devoyd of good tutors & regimente. Violence will break all. Wher is ye meek & humble spirite of Moyses? & of Nehemiah who reedified ye wals of Jerusalem, & ye state of Israell? Is not ye sound of Rehoboams braggs daly hear amongst us? Have not ye philosophers and all wise men observed yt, even in setled com̅one welths, violente governours bring either them selves, or people, or boath, to ruine; how much more in yeraising of com̅one wealths, when ye morter is yet scarce tempered yt should bind ye wales. If I should write to you of all things which promiscuously forerune our ruine, I should over charge my weake head and greeve your tender hart; only this, I pray you prepare for evill tidings of us every day. But pray for us instantly, it may be ye Lord will be yet entreated one way or other to make for us. I see not in reason how we shall escape even ye gasping of hunger starved persons; but God can doe much, & his will be done. It is better for me to dye, then now for me to bear it, which I doe daly, & expecte it howerly; haveing received ye sentance of death, both within me & without me. Poore William King & my selfe doe strive[AD] who shall be meate first for ye fishes; but we looke for a glorious resurrection, knowing Christ Jesus after ye flesh no more, but looking unto ye joye yt is before us, we will endure all these things and accounte them light in comparison of yt joye we hope for. Remember me in all love to our freinds as if I named them, whose praiers I desire ernestly, & wish againe to see, but not till I can with more comforte looke them in ye face. The Lord give us that true comforte which none can take from us. I had a [90]desire to make a breefe relation of our estate to some freind. I doubte not but your wisdome will teach you seasonably to utter things as here after you shall be called to it. That which I have writen is treue, & many things more which I have forborne. I write it as upon my life, and last confession in England. What is of use to be spoken [45] of presently, you may speake of it, and what is fitt to conceile, conceall. Pass by my weake maner, for my head is weake, & my body feeble, ye Lord make me strong in him, & keepe both you & yours.

Your loving friend,
Robart Cushman.
Dartmouth, Aug. 17. 1620.

These being his conceptions & fears at Dartmouth, they must needs be much stronger now at Plimoth.


The 9. Chap.

Of their vioage, & how they passed ye sea, and of their safe arrivall at Cape Codd.

Septr: 6. These troubls being blowne over, and now all being compacte togeather in one shipe,[AE] they put to sea againe with a prosperus winde, which continued diverce days togeather, which was some incouragmente unto them; yet according to ye usuall maner many were afflicted with sea-sicknes. And I may not omite hear a spetiall worke of Gods providence. Ther was a proud & very profane yonge man, one of ye [91]sea-men, of a lustie, able body, which made him the more hauty; he would allway be contemning ye poore people in their sicknes, & cursing them dayly with greēous execrations, and did not let to tell them, that he hoped to help to cast halfe of them over board before they came to their jurneys end, and to make mery with what they had; and if he were by any gently reproved, he would curse and swear most bitterly. But it plased God before they came halfe seas over, to smite this yong man with a greeveous disease, of which he dyed in a desperate maner, and so was him selfe yefirst yt was throwne overbord. Thus his curses light on his owne head; and it was an astonishmente to all his fellows, for they noted it to be ye just hand of God upon him.

After they had injoyed faire winds and weather for a season, they were incountred many times with crosse winds, and mette with many feirce stormes, with which ye shipe was shroudly shaken, and her upper works made very leakie; and one of the maine beames in ye midd ships was bowed & craked, which put them in some fear that yeshipe could not be able to performe ye vioage. So some of ye cheefe of ye company, perceiveing ye mariners to feare ye suffisiencie of ye shipe, as appeared by their mutterings, they entred into serious consulltation with ye mr. & other officers of ye ship, to consider in time of ye danger; and rather to returne then to cast them selves into a[92]desperate & inevitable perill. And truly ther was great distraction & differance of opinion amongst ye mariners them selves; faine would they doe what could be done for their wages sake, (being now halfe the seas over,) and on ye other hand they were loath to hazard their lives too desperatly. But in examening of all opinions, the mr. & others affirmed they knew ye ship to be stronge & firme under water; and for the buckling of ye maine beame, ther was a great iron scrue ye passengers brought out of Holland, which would raise ye beame into his place; yewhich being done, the carpenter & mr. affirmed that with a post put under it, set firme in ye lower deck, & otherways bounde, he would make it sufficiente. And as for ye decks & uper workes they would calke them as well as they could, and though with ye workeing of ye ship they [46] would not longe keepe stanch, yet ther would otherwise be no great danger, if they did not overpress her with sails. So they com̅ited them selves to yewill of God, & resolved to proseede. In sundrie of these stormes the winds were so feirce, & ye seas so high, as they could not beare a knote of saile, but were forced to hull, for diverce days togither. And in one of them, as they thus lay at hull, in a mighty storme, a lustie yonge man (called John Howland) coming upon some occasion above ye grattings, was, with a seele of the shipe throwne into [ye] sea; but it pleased God yt he caught hould of ye top-saile [93]halliards, which hunge over board, & rane out at length; yet he held his hould (though he was sundrie fadomes under water) till he was hald up by ye same rope to ye brime of ye water, and then with a boat hooke & other means got into ye shipe againe, & his life saved; and though he was something ill with it, yet he lived many years after, and became a profitable member both in church & com̅one wealthe. In all this viage ther died but one of ye passengers, which was William Butten, a youth, servant to Samuell Fuller, when they drew near ye coast. But to omite other things, (that I may be breefe,) after longe beating at sea they fell with that land which is called Cape Cod; the which being made & certainly knowne to be it, they were not a litle joyfull. After some deliberation had amongst them selves & with ye mr. of ye ship, they tacked aboute and resolved to stande for ye southward (ye wind & weather being faire) to finde some place aboute Hudsons river for their habitation. But after they had sailed yt course aboute halfe ye day, they fell amongst deangerous shoulds and roring breakers, and they were so farr intangled ther with as they conceived them selves in great danger; & ye wind shrinking upon them withall, they resolved to bear up againe for the Cape, and thought them selves hapy to gett out of those dangers before night overtooke them, as by Gods providence they did. And ye next day they gott into ye Cape-harbor wher they ridd in [94]saftie. A word or too by ye way of this cape; it was thus first named by Capten Gosnole & his company, Anno: 1602, and after by Capten Smith was caled Cape James; but it retains ye former name amongst seamen. Also yt pointe which first shewed those dangerous shoulds unto them, they called Pointe Care, & Tuckers Terrour; but ye French & Dutch to this day call it Malabarr, by reason of those perilous shoulds, and ye losses they have suffered their.

Being thus arived in a good harbor and brought safe to land, they fell upon their knees & blessed ye God of heaven, who had brought them over ye vast & furious ocean, and delivered them from all ye periles & miseries therof, againe to set their feete on ye firme and stable earth, their proper elemente. And no marvell if they were thus joyefull, seeing wise Seneca was so affected with sailing a few miles on ye coast of his owne Italy; as he affirmed,[AG] that he had rather remaine twentie years on his way by land, then pass by sea to any place in a short time; so tedious & dreadfull was ye same unto him.

But hear I cannot but stay and make a pause, and stand half amased at this poore peoples presente condition; and so I thinke will the reader too, when he well considers [47] ye same. Being thus passed ye vast ocean, and a sea of troubles before in their preparation (as may be remembred by yt which wente [95]before), they had now no freinds to wellcome them, nor inns to entertaine or refresh their weatherbeaten bodys, no houses or much less townes to repaire too, to seeke for succoure. It is recorded in scripture[AH] as a mercie to ye apostle & his shipwraked company, yt the barbarians shewed them no smale kindnes in refreshing them, but these savage barbarians, when they mette with them (as after will appeare) were readier to fill their sids full of arrows then otherwise. And for ye season it was winter, and they that know ye winters of yt cuntrie know them to be sharp & violent, & subjecte to cruell & feirce stormes, deangerous to travill to known places, much more to serch an unknown coast. Besids, what could they see but a hidious & desolate wildernes, full of wild beasts & willd men? and what multituds ther might be of them they knew not. Nether could they, as it were, goe up to ye tope of Pisgah, to vew from this willdernes a more goodly cuntrie to feed their hops; for which way soever they turnd their eys (save upward to ye heavens) they could have litle solace or content in respecte of any outward objects. For sum̅er being done, all things stand upon them with a wetherbeaten face; and ye whole countrie, full of woods & thickets, represented a wild & savage heiw. If they looked behind them, ther was ye mighty ocean which they had passed, and was now as a [96]maine barr & goulfe to seperate them from all ye civill parts of ye world. If it be said they had a ship to sucour them, it is trew; but what heard they daly from ye mr. & company? but yt with speede they should looke out a place with their shallop, wher they would be at some near distance; for ye season was shuch as he would not stirr from thence till a safe harbor was discovered by them wher they would be, and he might goe without danger; and that victells consumed apace, but he must & would keepe sufficient for them selves & their returne. Yea, it was muttered by some, that if they gott not a place in time, they would turne them & their goods ashore & leave them. Let it also be considred what weake hopes of supply & succoure they left behinde them, yt might bear up their minds in this sade condition and trialls they were under; and they could not but be very smale. It is true, indeed, ye affections & love of their brethren at Leyden was cordiall & entire towards them, but they had litle power to help them, or them selves; and how ye case stode betweene them & yemarchants at their coming away, hath allready been declared. What could now sustaine them but the spirite of God & his grace? May not & ought not the children of these fathers rightly say: Our faithers were Englishmen which came over this great [97]ocean, and were ready to perish in this willdernes;[AI] but they cried unto ye Lord, and he heard their voyce, and looked on their adversitie, &c. Let them therfore praise ye Lord, because he is good, & his mercies endure for ever.[AJ] Yea, let them which have been redeemed of ye Lord, shew how he hath delivered them from ye hand of ye oppressour. When they wandered in ye deserte willdernes out of ye way, and found no citie to dwell in, both hungrie, & thirstie, their sowle was overwhelmed in them. Let them confess before ye Lord his loving kindnes, and his wonderfull works before ye sons of men.


The 10. Chap.

Showing how they sought out a place of habitation, and what befell them theraboute.

[48] Being thus arrived at Cap-Cod ye 11. of November, and necessitie calling them to looke out a place for habitation, (as well as the maisters & mariners importunitie,) they having brought a large shalop with them out of England, stowed in quarters in ye ship, they now gott her out & sett their carpenters to worke to trime her up; but being much brused & shatered in ye shipe wth foule weather, they saw she would be longe in mending. Wherupon a few of them tendered them selves to goe by land and discovere those nearest places, whilst ye shallop was in[98]mending; and ye rather because as they wente into yt harbor ther seemed to be an opening some 2. or 3 leagues of, which ye maister judged to be a river. It was conceived ther might be some danger in ye attempte, yet seeing them resolute, they were permited to goe, being 16. of them well armed, under ye conduct of Captain Standish, having shuch instructions given them as was thought meete. They sett forth ye 15. of Novebr: and when they had marched aboute the space of a mile by ye sea side, they espied 5. or 6. persons with a dogg coming towards them, who were salvages; but they fled from them, & ran̅e up into ye woods, and ye English followed them, partly to see if they could speake with them, and partly to discover if ther might not be more of them lying in ambush. But ye Indeans seeing them selves thus followed, they againe forsooke the woods, & rane away on ye sands as hard as they could, so as they could not come near them, but followed them by ye tracte of their feet sundrie miles, and saw that they had come the same way. So, night coming on, they made their randevous & set out their sentinels, and rested in quiete yt night, and the next morning followed their tracte till they had headed a great creake, & so left the sands, & turned an other way into ye woods. But they still followed them by geuss, hopeing to find their dwellings; but they soone lost both them & them selves, falling into shuch thickets as [99]were ready to tear their cloaths & armore in peeces, but were most distresed for wante of drinke. But at length they found water & refreshed them selves, being ye first New-England water they drunke of, and was now in thir great thirste as pleasante unto them as wine or bear had been in for-times. Afterwards they directed their course to come to yeother [49] shore, for they knew it was a necke of land they were to crosse over, and so at length gott to ye sea-side, and marched to this supposed river, & by ye way found a pond of clear fresh water, and shortly after a good quantitie of clear ground wher ye Indeans had formerly set corne, and some of their graves. And proceeding furder they saw new-stuble wher corne had been set ye same year, also they found wher latly a house had been, wher some planks and a great ketle was remaining, and heaps of sand newly padled with their hands, which they, digging up, found in them diverce faire Indean baskets filled with corne, and some in eares, faire and good, of diverce collours, which seemed to them a very goodly sight, (haveing never seen any shuch before). This was near ye place of that supposed river they came to seeck; unto which they wente and found it to open it selfe into 2. armes with a high cliffe of sand in ye enterance, but more like to be crikes of salte water then any fresh, for ought they saw; and that ther was good harborige for their shalope; leaving it further to be discovered [100]by their shalop when she was ready. So their time limeted them being expired, they returned to ye ship, least they should be in fear of their saftie; and tooke with them parte of ye corne, and buried up ye rest, and so like ye men from Eshcoll carried with them of ye fruits of ye land, & showed their breethren; of which, & their returne, they were marvelusly glad, and their harts incouraged.

After this, ye shalop being got ready, they set out againe for ye better discovery of this place, & ye mr. of ye ship desired to goe him selfe, so ther went some 30. men, but found it to be no harbor for ships but only for boats; ther was allso found 2. of their houses covered with matts, & sundrie of their implements in them, but ye people were rune away & could not be seen; also ther was found more of their corne, & of their beans of various collours. The corne & beans they brought away, purposing to give them full satisfaction when they should meete with any of them (as about some 6. months afterward they did, to their good contente). And here is to be noted a spetiall providence of God, and a great mercie to this poore people, that hear they gott seed to plant them corne ye next year, or els they might have starved, for they had none, nor any liklyhood to get any [50] till ye season had beene past (as ye sequell did manyfest). Neither is it lickly they had had this, if ye first viage had [101]not been made, for the ground was now all covered with snow, & hard frozen. But the Lord is never wanting unto his in their greatest needs; let his holy name have all ye praise.

The month of November being spente in these affairs, & much foule weather falling in, the 6. of Desemr: they sente out their shallop againe with 10. of their principall men, & some sea men, upon further discovery, intending to circulate that deepe bay of Cap-codd. The weather was very could, & it frose so hard as ye sprea of ye sea lighting on their coats, they were as if they had been glased; yet that night betimes they gott downe into yebotome of ye bay, and as they drue nere ye shore they saw some 10. or 12. Indeans very busie aboute some thing. They landed aboute a league or 2. from them, and had much a doe to put a shore any wher, it lay so full of flats. Being landed, it grew late, and they made them selves a barricade with loggs & bowes as well as they could in ye time, & set out their sentenill & betooke them to rest, and saw ye smoake of ye fire ye savages made ytnight. When morning was come they devided their company, some to coaste along ye shore in ye boate, and the rest marched throw ye woods to see ye land, if any fit place might be for their dwelling. They came allso to yeplace wher they saw the Indans ye night before, & found they had been cuting up a great fish like a grampus, being some 2. inches thike of [102]fate like a hogg, some peeces wher of they had left by ye way; and ye shallop found 2. more of these fishes dead on ye sands, a thing usuall after storms in yt place, by reason of ye great flats of sand that lye of. So they ranged up and doune all yt day, but found no people, nor any place they liked. When yesune grue low, they hasted out of ye woods to meete with their shallop, to whom they made signes to come to them into a creeke hardby, the which they did at highwater; of which they were very glad, for they had not seen each other all yt day, since ye morning. So they made them a barricado (as usually they did every night) with loggs, staks, & thike pine bowes, ye height of a man, leaving it open to leeward, partly to shelter them from yecould & wind (making their fire in ye midle, & lying round aboute it), and partly to defend them from any sudden assaults of ye savags, if they should surround them. So being very weary, they betooke them to rest. But aboutemidnight, [51] they heard a hideous & great crie, and their sentinell caled, “Arme, arme”; so they bestired them & stood to their armes, & shote of a cupple of moskets, and then the noys seased. They concluded it was a companie of wolves, or such like willd beasts; for one of ye sea men tould them he had often heard shuch a noyse in New-found land. So they rested till about 5. of ye clock in the morning; for ye tide, & ther purposs to goe from thence, made them be stiring betimes. So [103]after praier they prepared for breakfast, and it being day dawning, it was thought best to be carring things downe to ye boate. But some said it was not best to carrie ye armes downe, others said they would be the readier, for they had laped them up in their coats from ye dew. But some 3. or 4. would not cary theirs till they wente them selves, yet as it fell out, ye water being not high enough, they layed them downe on ye banke side, & came up to breakfast. But presently, all on ye sudain, they heard a great & strange crie, which they knew to be the same voyces they heard in ye night, though they varied their notes, & one of their company being abroad came runing in, & cried, “Men, Indeans, Indeans”; and wthall, their arowes came flying amongst them. Their men rane with all speed to recover their armes, as by ye good providence of God they did. In ye mean time, of those that were ther ready, tow muskets were discharged at them, & 2. more stood ready in ye enterance of ther randevoue, but were comanded not to shoote till they could take full aime at them; & ye other 2. charged againe with all speed, for ther were only 4. had armes ther, & defended ye baricado which was first assalted. The crie of ye Indeans was dreadfull, espetially when they saw ther men rune out of yerandevoue towourds ye shallop, to recover their armes, the Indeans wheeling aboute upon them. But some run̅ing out with coats of malle on, & cutlasses [104]in their hands, they soone got their armes, & let flye amongs them, and quickly stopped their violence. Yet ther was a lustie man, and no less valiante, stood behind a tree within halfe a musket shot, and let his arrows flie at them. He was seen shoot 3. arrowes, which were all avoyded. He stood 3. shot of a musket, till one taking full aime at him, and made ye barke or splinters of ye tree fly about his ears, after which he gave an extraordinary shrike, and away they wente all of them. They left some to keep ye shalop, and followed them aboute a quarter of a mille, and shouted once or twise, and shot of 2. or 3. peces, & so returned. This they did, that they might conceive that they were not [52] affrade of them or any way discouraged. Thus it pleased God to vanquish their enimies, and give them deliverance; and by his spetiall providence so to dispose that not any one of them were either hurte, or hitt, though their arrows came close by them, & on every side them, and sundry of their coats, which hunge up in ye barricado, were shot throw & throw. Aterwards they gave God sollamne thanks & praise for their deliverance, & gathered up a bundle of their arrows, & sente them into England afterward by ye mr. of ye ship, and called that place ye first encounter. From hence they departed, & costed all along, but discerned no place likly for harbor; & therfore hasted to a place that their pillote, (one Mr. Coppin who had [105]bine in ye cuntrie before) did assure them was a good harbor, which he had been in, and they might fetch it before night; of which they were glad, for it begane to be foule weather. After some houres sailing, it begane to snow & raine, & about ye midle of ye afternoone, ye wind increased, & ye sea became very rough, and they broake their rudder, & it was as much as 2. men could doe to steere her with a cupple of oares. But their pillott bad them be of good cheere, for he saw ye harbor; but ye storme increasing, & night drawing on, they bore what saile they could to gett in, while they could see. But herwith they broake their mast in 3. peeces, & their saill fell over bord, in a very grown sea, so as they had like to have been cast away; yet by Gods mercie they recovered them selves, & having ye floud with them, struck into ye harbore. But when it came too, ye pillott was deceived in ye place, and said, ye Lord be mercifull unto them, for his eys never saw yt place before; & he & the mr. mate would have rune her ashore, in a cove full of breakers, before ye winde. But a lusty seaman which steered, bad those which rowed, if they were men, about with her, or ells they were all cast away; the which they did with speed. So he bid them be of good cheere & row lustly, for ther was a faire sound before them, & he doubted not but they should find one place or other wher they might ride in saftie. And though it was very darke,[106]and rained sore, yet in ye end they gott under ye lee of a smalle iland, and remained ther all yt night in saftie. But they knew not this to be an iland till morning, but were devided in their minds; some would keepe ye boate for fear they might be amongst ye Indians; others were so weake and could, they could not endure, but got a shore, & with much adoe got fire, (all things being so wett,) and ye rest were glad to come to them; for after midnight yewind shifted to the [53] north-west, & it frose hard. But though this had been a day & night of much trouble & danger unto them, yet God gave them a morning of comforte & refreshing (as usually he doth to his children), for ye next day was a faire sunshinīg day, and they found them sellvs to be on an iland secure from ye Indeans, wher they might drie their stufe, fixe their peeces, & rest them selves, and gave God thanks for his mercies, in their manifould deliverances. And this being the last day of ye weeke, they prepared ther to keepe ye Sabath. OnMunday they sounded ye harbor, and founde it fitt for shipping; and marched into ye land, & found diverse cornfeilds, & litle runing brooks, a place (as they supposed) fitt for situation; at least it was ye best they could find, and ye season, & their presente necessitie, made them glad to accepte of it. So they returned to their shipp againe with this news to ye rest of their people, which did much comforte their harts.[107]

On ye 15. of Desemr: they wayed anchor to goe to ye place they had discovered, & came within 2. leagues of it, but were faine to bear up againe; but ye 16. day ye winde came faire, and they arrived safe in this harbor. And after wards tooke better view of ye place, and resolved wher to pitch their dwelling; and ye 25. day begane to erecte ye first house for com̅one use to receive them and their goods.

[109]


The 2. Booke.

The rest of this History (if God give me life, & opportunitie) I shall, for brevitis sake, handle by way of annalls, noteing only the heads of principall things, and passages as they fell in order of time, and may seeme to be profitable to know, or to make use of. And this may be as ye 2. Booke.

The remainder of Ano: 1620.

I shall a litle returne backe and begine with a combination made by them before they came ashore, being ye first foundation of their govermente in this place; occasioned partly by ye discontented & mutinous speeches that some of the strangers amongst them had let fall from them in ye ship—That when they came a shore they would use their owne libertie; for none had power to com̅and them, the patente they had being for Virginia, and not for New-england, which belonged to an other Goverment, with which ye Virginia Company had nothing to doe. And partly that shuch an [54] acte by them done (this their condition considered) might be as firme as any patent, and in some respects more sure.

The forme was as followeth.

In ye name of God, Amen. We whose names are underwriten, the loyall subjects of our dread soveraigne Lord, King James, by ye grace of God, of Great Britaine, Franc, & Ireland king, defender of ye faith, &c., haveing undertaken, for ye glorie of God, and advancemente of ye Christian faith, and honour of our king & countrie, a voyage to plant ye first colonie in ye Northerne parts of Virginia, doe by these presents solemnly & mutualy in ye presence of God, and one of another, covenant & combine our selves togeather into a civill body politick, for our better ordering & preservation & furtherance of ye ends aforesaid; and by vertue hearof to enacte, constitute, and frame such just & equall lawes, ordinances, acts, constitutions, & offices, from time to time, as shall be thought most meete & convenient for ye generall good of ye Colonie, unto which we promise all due submission and obedience. In witnes wherof we have hereunder subscribed our names at Cap-Codd ye 11. of November, in ye year of ye raigne of our soveraigne lord, King James, of England, France, & Ireland ye eighteenth, and of Scotland ye fiftie fourth. Ano: Dom. 1620.

After this they chose, or rather confirmed, Mr. John Carver (a man godly & well approved amongst them) their Governour for that year. And after they had provided a place for their goods, or comone store, (which were long in unlading for want of boats, foulnes of winter weather, and sicknes of diverce,) and begune some small cottages for their habitation, as time would admitte, they mette and consulted of lawes & orders, both for their civill & military Govermente, as ye necessitie of their condition did require, still adding therunto as urgent occasion in severall times, and as cases did require.

In these hard & difficulte beginings they found some discontents & murmurings arise amongst some, and mutinous speeches & carriags in other; but they were soone quelled & overcome by ye wisdome, patience, and just & equall carrage of things by ye Govr and better part, wch clave faithfully togeather in ye maine. But that which was most sadd & lamentable was, that in 2. or 3. moneths time halfe of their company dyed, espetialy in Jan: & February, being ye depth of winter, and wanting houses & other comforts; being infected with ye scurvie & [55] other diseases, which this long vioage & their inacomodate condition had brought upon them; so as ther dyed some times 2. or 3. of a day, in ye foresaid time; that of 100. & odd persons, scarce 50. remained. And of these in ye time of most distres, ther was but 6. or 7. sound persons, who, to their great comendations be it spoken, spared no pains, night nor day, but with abundance of toyle and hazard of their owne health, fetched them woode, made them fires, drest them meat, made their beads, washed their lothsome cloaths, cloathed & uncloathed them; in a word, did all ye homly & necessarie offices for them wch dainty & quesie stomacks cannot endure to hear named; and all this willingly & cherfully, without any grudging in ye least, shewing herein their true love unto their freinds & bretheren. A rare example & worthy to [112]be remembred. Tow of these 7. were Mr. William Brewster, ther reverend Elder, & Myles Standish, ther Captein & military comander, unto whom my selfe, & many others, were much beholden in our low & sicke condition. And yet the Lord so upheld these persons, as in this generall calamity they were not at all infected either with sicknes, or lamnes. And what I have said of these, I may say of many others who dyed in this generall vissitation, & others yet living, that whilst they had health, yea, or any strength continuing, they were not wanting to any that had need of them. And I doute not but their recompence is with ye Lord.

But I may not hear pass by an other remarkable passage not to be forgotten. As this calamitie fell among yepassengers that were to be left here to plant, and were hasted a shore and made to drinke water, that ye sea-men might have ye more bear, and one in his sicknes desiring but a small cann of beere, it was answered, that if he were their owne father he should have none; the disease begane to fall amongst them also, so as allmost halfe of their company dyed before they went away, and many of their officers and lustyest men, as ye boatson, gunner, 3. quarter-maisters, the cooke, & others. At wch ye mr. was something strucken and sent to ye sick a shore and tould ye Govr he should send for beer for [113]them that had need of it, though he drunke water homward bound. But now amongst his company [56] ther was farr another kind of carriage in this miserie then amongst yepassengers; for they that before had been boone companions in drinking & joyllity in ye time of their health & wellfare, begane now to deserte one another in this calamitie, saing they would not hasard ther lives for them, they should be infected by coming to help them in their cabins, and so, after they came to dye by it, would doe litle or nothing for them, but if they dyed let them dye. But shuch of ye passengers as were yet abord shewed them what mercy they could, wch made some of their harts relente, as ye boatson (& some others), who was a prowd yonge man, and would often curse & scofe at ye passengers; but when he grew weak, they had compassion on him and helped him; then he confessed he did not deserve it at their hands, he had abused them in word & deed. O! saith he, you, I now see, shew your love like Christians indeed one to another, but we let one another lye & dye like doggs. Another lay cursing his wife, saing if it had not ben for her he had never come this unlucky viage, and anone cursing his felows, saing he had done this & that, for some of them, he had spente so much, & so much, amongst them, and they were now weary of him, and did not help him, having need. Another gave his companion all he had, if he died, to help [114]him in his weaknes; he went and got a litle spise & made him a mess of meat once or twise, and because he dyed not so soone as he expected, he went amongst his fellows, & swore ye rogue would cousen him, he would see him choaked before he made him any more meate; and yet yepore fellow dyed before morning.

All this while ye Indians came skulking about them, and would sometimes show them selves aloofe of, but when any aproached near them, they would rune away. And once they stoale away their tools wher they had been at worke, & were gone to diner. But about ye 16. of March a certaine Indian came bouldly amongst them, and spoke to them in broken English, which they could well understand, but marvelled at it. At length they understood by discourse with him, that he was not of these parts, but belonged to ye eastrene parts, wher some English-ships came to fhish, with whom he was aquainted, & could name sundrie of them by their names, amongst whom he had gott his language. He became proftable to them [57] in aquainting them with many things concerning yestate of ye cuntry in ye east-parts wher he lived, which was afterwards profitable unto them; as also of ye people hear, of their names, number, & strength; of their situation & distance from this place, and who was cheefe amongst them. His name was Samaset; he tould them also of another Indian whos name was [115]Squanto, a native of this place, who had been in England & could speake better English then him selfe. Being, after some time of entertainmente & gifts, dismist, a while after he came againe, & 5. more with him, & they brought againe all yetooles that were stolen away before, and made way for ye coming of their great Sachem, called Massasoyt; who, about 4. or 5. days after, came with the cheefe of his freinds & other attendance, with the aforesaid Squanto. With whom, after frendly entertainment, & some gifts given him, they made a peace with him (which hath now continued this 24. years) in these terms.

1. That neither he nor any of his, should injurie or doe hurte to any of their peopl.

2. That if any of his did any hurte to any of theirs, he should send ye offender, that they might punish him.

3. That if any thing were taken away from any of theirs, he should cause it to be restored; and they should doe yelike to his.

4. If any did unjustly warr against him, they would aide him; if any did warr against them, he should aide them.

5. He should send to his neighbours confederats, to certifie them of this, that they might not wrong them, but might be likewise comprised in ye conditions of peace.

6. That when ther men came to them, they should leave their bows & arrows behind them.[116]

After these things he returned to his place caled Sowams, some 40. mile from this place, but Squanto continued with them, and was their interpreter, and was a spetiall instrument sent of God for their good beyond their expectation. He directed them how to set their corne, wher to take fish, and to procure other comodities, and was also their pilott to bring them to unknowne places for their profitt, and never left them till he dyed. He was anative [58] of this place, & scarce any left alive besids him selfe. He was caried away with diverce others by oneHunt, a mr. of a ship, who thought to sell them for slaves in Spaine; but he got away for England, and was entertained by a marchante in London, & imployed to New-foundland & other parts, & lastly brought hither into these parts by one Mr. Dermer, a gentle-man imployed by Sr. Ferdinando Gorges & others, for discovery, & other designes in these parts. Of whom I shall say some thing, because it is mentioned in a booke set forth Ano: 1622. by the Presidente & Counsell for New-England, that he made ye peace betweene ye salvages of these parts & ye English; of which this plantation, as it is intimated, had ye benefite. But what a peace it was, may apeare by what befell him & his men.

This Mr. Dermer was hear the same year that these [117]people came, as apears by a relation written by him, & given me by a friend, bearing date June 30. Ano: 1620. And they came in Novembr: following, so ther was but 4. months differance. In which relation to his honored freind, he hath these passages of this very place.

I will first begine (saith he) wth that place from whence Squanto, or Tisquantem, was taken away; wch in Cap: Smiths mape is called Plimoth: and I would that Plimoth had ye like comodities. I would that the first plantation might hear be seated, if ther come to the number of 50. persons, or upward. Otherwise at Charlton, because ther ye savages are lese to be feared. The Pocanawkits, which live to ye west of Plimoth, bear an inveterate malice to ye English, and are of more streingth then all ye savags from thence to Penobscote. Their desire of revenge was occasioned by an English man, who having many of them on bord, made a great slaughter with their murderers & smale shot, when as (they say) they offered no injurie on their parts. Whether they were English or no, it may be douted; yet they beleeve they were, for ye Frenche have so possest them; for which cause Squanto can̅ot deney but they would have kiled me when I was atNamasket, had he not entreated hard for me. The soyle of ye borders of [59] this great bay, may be compared to most of ye plantations which I have seene in Virginia. The land is of diverce sorts; for Patuxiteis a hardy but strong soyle, Nawsel & Saughtughtett are for ye most part a blakish & deep mould, much like that wher groweth ye best Tobaco in Virginia. In ye botume of yt great bay is store of Codd & basse, or mulett, &c.

But above all he comends Pacanawkite for ye richest soyle, and much open ground fitt for English graine, &c.Massachussets is about 9. leagues from Plimoth, & situate in ye mids betweene both, is full of ilands & peninsules very fertill for ye most parte.

With sundrie shuch relations which I forbear to transcribe, being now better knowne then they were to him.

He was taken prisoner by ye Indeans at Manamoiak (a place not farr from hence, now well knowne). He gave them what they demanded for his liberty, but when they had gott what they desired, they kept him still & indevored to kill his men; but he was freed by seasing on some of them, and kept them bound till they gave him a cannows load of corne. Of which, see Purch: lib. 9. fol. 1778. But this was Ano: 1619.

fter ye writing of ye former relation he came to ye Ile of Capawack (which lyes south of this place in ye way to Virginia), and ye foresaid Squanto wth him, wher he going a shore amongst ye Indans to trad, as he used to doe, was betrayed & assaulted by them, & all his men slaine, but one that kept the boat; but him selfe gott abord very sore wounded, & they had cut of his head upon ye cudy of his boat, had not ye man reskued him with a sword. And so they got away, & made shift to gett into Virginia, wher he dyed; whether of his wounds or ye diseases of ye cuntrie, or both togeather, is uncertaine. [60] By all which it may appeare how farr these people were [119]from peace, and with what danger this plantation was begune, save as ye powerfull hand of the Lord did protect them. These things were partly the reason why they kept aloofe & were so long before they came to the English. An other reason (as after them selvs made know̅) was how aboute 3. years before, a French-ship was cast away atCap-Codd, but ye men gott ashore, & saved their lives, and much of their victails, & other goods; but after yeIndeans heard of it, they geathered togeather from these parts, and never left watching & dogging them till they got advantage, and kild them all but 3. or 4. which they kept, & sent from one Sachem to another, to make sporte with, and used them worse then slaves; (of which ye foresaid Mr. Dermer redeemed 2. of them;) and they conceived this ship was now come to revenge it.

Also, (as after was made knowne,) before they came to ye English to make freindship, they gott all the Powachsof ye cuntrie, for 3. days togeather, in a horid and divellish maner to curse & execrate them with their cunjurations, which asembly & service they held in a darke & dismale swampe.

But to returne. The spring now approaching, it pleased God the mortalitie begane to cease amongst them, and yesick and lame recovered apace, which put as it were new life into them; though they had [120]borne their sadd affliction with much patience & contentednes, as I thinke any people could doe. But it was ye Lord which upheld them, and had beforehand prepared them; many having long borne ye yoake, yea from their youth. Many other smaler maters I omite, sundrie of them having been allready published in a Jurnall made by one of the company; and some other passages of jurneys and relations allredy published, to which I referr those that are willing to know them more perticulerly. And being now come to ye 25. of March I shall begine ye year 1621.

A Page From Bradford’s Journal

Edward Winslow

Although I received no letter from you by this ship, yet forasmuch as I know you expect the performance of my promise, which was, to write unto you truly and faithfully of all things, I have therefore at this time sent unto you accordingly, referring you for further satisfaction to our more large relations.

You shall understand that in this little time a few of us have been here, we have built seven dwelling-houses and four for the use of the plantation, and have made preparation for divers others. We set last spring some twenty acres of Indian corn, and sowed some six acres of barley and peas; and according to the manner of the Indians, we manured our ground with herrings, or rather shads, which we have in great abundance, and take with great ease at our doors. Our corn did prove well; and, God be praised, we had a good increase of Indian corn, and our barley indifferent good, but our peas not worth the gathering, for we feared they were too late sown. They came up very well, and blossomed; but the sun parched them in the blossom.

Our harvest being gotten in, our governor sent four men on fowling, that so we might, after a special manner, rejoice together after we had gathered the fruit of our labors. They four in one day killed as much fowl as, with a little help beside, served the company almost a week. At which time, among other recreations, we exercised our arms, many of the Indians coming among us, and among the rest their greatest king, Massasoit, with some ninety men, whom for three days we entertained and feasted; and they went out and killed five deer, which they brought to the plantation, and bestowed on our governor, and upon the captain and others. And although it be not always so plentiful as it was at this time with us, yet by the goodness of God we are so far from want, that we often wish you partakers of our plenty.

We have found the Indians very faithful in their covenant of peace with us, very loving, and ready to pleasure us. We often go to them, and they come to us. Some of us have been fifty miles by land in the country with them, the occasions and relations whereof you shall understand by our general and more full declaration of such things as are worth the noting. Yea, it has pleased God so to possess the Indians with a fear of us and love unto us, that not only the greatest king among them, called Massasoit, but also all the princes and peoples round about us, have either made suit unto us, or been glad of any occasion to make peace with us; so that seven of them at once have sent their messengers to us to that end. Yea, an isle at sea, which we never saw, hath also, together with the former, yielded willingly to be under the protection and subject to our sovereign lord King James. So that there is now great peace amongst the Indians themselves, which was not formerly, neither would have been but for us; and we, for our parts, walk as peaceably and safely in the wood as in the highways in England. We entertain them familiarly in our houses, and they as friendly bestowing their venison on us. They are a people without any religion or knowledge of any God, yet very trusty, quick of apprehension, ripe-witted, just.

For the temper of the air here, it agrees well with that in England; and if there be any difference at all, this is somewhat hotter in summer. Some think it to be colder in winter; but I cannot out of experience so say. The air is very clear, and not foggy, as has been reported. I never in my life remember a more seasonable year than we have here enjoyed; and if we have once but kine, horses, and sheep, I make no question but men might live as contented here as in any part of the world. For fish and fowl, we have great abundance. Fresh cod in the summer is but coarse meat with us. Our bay is full of lobsters all the summer, and affords a variety of other fish. In September we can take a hogshead of eels in a night, with small labor, and can dig them out of their beds all the winter. We have muscles and othus [others?] at our doors. Oysters we have none near, but we can have them brought by the Indians when we will. All the spring-time the earth sends forth naturally very good salad herbs. Here are grapes, white and red, and very sweet and strong also; strawberries, gooseberries, raspberries, etc.; plums of three sorts, white, black, and red, being almost as good as a damson; abundance of roses, white, red and damask; single, but very sweet indeed. The country wants only industrious men to employ; for it would grieve your hearts if, as I, you had seen so many miles together by goodly rivers uninhabited; and withal, to consider those parts of the world wherein you live to be even greatly burdened with abundance of people. These things I thought good to let you understand, being the truth of things as near as I could experimentally take knowledge of, and that you might on our behalf give God thanks, who hath dealt so favorably with us.

Our supply of men from you came the 9th of November, 1621, putting in at Cape Cod, some eight or ten leagues from us. The Indians that dwell thereabout were they who were owners of the corn which we found in caves, for which we have given them full content, and are in great league with them. They sent us word there was a ship near unto them, but thought it to be a Frenchman; and indeed for ourselves we expected not a friend so soon. But when we perceived that she made for our bay, the governor commanded a great piece to be shot off, to call home such as were abroad at work. Whereupon every man, yea boy, that could handle a gun, were ready, with full resolution that, if she were an enemy, we would stand in our just defense, not fearing them. But God provided better for us than we supposed. These came all in health, not any being sick by the way, otherwise than by sea-sickness, and so continue at this time, by the blessing of God. . . .

When it pleased God we are settled and fitted for the fishing business and other trading, I doubt not but by the blessing of God the gain will give content to all. In the meantime, that we have gotten we have sent by this ship; and though it be not much, yet it will witness for us that we have not been idle, considering the smallness of our number all this summer. We hope the merchants will accept of it, and be encouraged to furnish us with things needful for further employment, which will also encourage us to put forth ourselves to the uttermost.

Now because I expect your coming unto us, with other of our friends, whose company we much desire, I thought good to advertise you of a few things needful. Be careful to have a very good bread-room to put your biscuits in. Let your cask for beer and water be iron-bound, for the first tire, if not more. Let not your meat be dry-salted; none can better do it than the sailors. Let your meal be so hard trod in your cask that you shall need an adz or hatchet to work it out with. Trust not too much on us for corn at this time, for by reason of this last company that came, depending wholly upon us, we shall have little enough till harvest. Be careful to come by some of your meal to spend by the way; it will much refresh you. Build your cabins as open as you can, and bring good store of clothes and bedding with you. Bring every man a musket or fowling-piece. Let your piece be long in the barrel, and fear not the weight of it, for most of our shooting is from stands. Bring juice of lemons, and take it fasting; it is of good use. For hot waters, aniseed water is the best; but use it sparingly. If you bring anything for comfort in the country, butter or salad oil, or both, is very good. Our Indian corn, even the coarsest, makes as pleasant meat as rice; therefore spare that, unless to spend by the way. Bring paper and linseed oil for your windows, with cotton yarn for your lamps. Let your shot be most for big fowls, and bring store of powder and shot. I forbear further to write for the present, hoping to see you by the next return. So I take my leave, commending you to the Lord for a safe conduct unto us, resting in him,

Your loving friend,

E. W.

 

Read these documents in their entirety:

Frontispiece Mourt’s Relation: Often referred to as the Journal of the Pilgrims, the document was written primary by Edward Winslow. William Bradford apparently also contributed to the document.

Of Plymouth Plantation by William Bradford

 

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