ePub 版

canoe, and braving the danger of a severe province resolved to begin the war at once. gale, sought the quarters of Miantonomoh. A force of eighty men, including those sent He found the Pequod chiefs already there, from Massachusetts, was assembled at Hartand the Narragansetts wavering. Knowing ford, and the command was conferred by the errand on which he had come, the hostile chieftains were ready at any moment to despatch him, and had Miantonomoh shown the least favor to the project, Williams would have paid for his boldness with his life. He spent three days and nights in the company of the savages, and succeeded in inducing Miantonomoh not only to refuse to join the war against the English, but to promise the colonists his assistance against the Pequods. In the meantime he sent a messenger to Boston to inform the governor of the designs of the Indians.

The Pequods, left to continue the struggle alone, flattered themselves

A GROUP OF INDIANS. that their superiority in numbers would give them the vic- Hooker upon Captain John Mason. The tory, and continued their aggressions upon night previous to their departure was spent the Connecticut settlements to such an extent in prayer, and on the twentieth of May the that in May, 1637, the general court of that little force embarked in boats and descended the river to the sound, and passed around to and strengthened with rush-work, an excelNarragansett Bay, intending to approach the lent defence against a foe of their own race, Pequod town from that quarter. As the but worthless when assailed by Europeans. boats sailed by the mouth of the Thames, The principal fort stood on the summit of a the savages supposed the English were considerable hill, and was regarded by Sassaabandoning the Connecticut valley.


cus, the Pequod chief, as impregnable. The The day after the arrival of the English tramp of the advancing force aroused a dog, in Narragansett Bay was the Sabbath, whose fierce bark awoke the Indian sentinel. and was scrupulously observed. On the The keen eye of the savage detected the following day they repaired to the quarters enemy in the gloom of the morning, and he of Canonicus, the old chief and principal rushed into the fort, shouting, “The English! ruler of the Narragansett tribe, and asked The English!” his assistance against the Pequods. Mian- The next moment the English were tonomoh, the nephew and prospective suc- through the palisades. On all sides they cessor of Canonicus, hesitated to join in the beheld the Indians pouring out of their doubtful enterprise, but two hundred war- lodges to take part in the hand-to-hand fight. riors agreed to accompany the English, who The odds were too great. “We must burn could not, however, count upon the fidelity them,” cried Mason, and, suiting the action of these reinforcements. Seventy Mohe- to the word, he applied a torch to a wigwam gans, under Uncas, their chief, also joined constructed of dry reeds. The flames sprang Mason. With this force the English com- up instantly, and spread with the rapidity of mander marched across the country toward lightning. The Indians vainly endeavored the Pequod towns on the Thames, and halted to extinguish the fire, and the English, withon the night of the twenty-fifth of May drawing to a greater distance, began to pick within hearing of them.

off the savages, who were doubly exposed A Sudden Attack.

by the light of the blazing fort. Wherever In the meantime the Pequods, convinced a Pequod appeared, he was shot down. The that the English had fled from the Connecti- Narragansetts and Mohegans now joined in cut region, and never dreading an attack in the conflict, and the victory was complete. their fort, which they considered impreg- More than six hundred Pequods, men, nable, had given themselves up to rejoicing women and children, perished, the majority The night, passed by the English in waiting of them in the flames. The English lost the signal for the attack, was spent by the only two men; and the battle was over in Pequods in revelry and songs, which could an hour. be plainly heard in the English camp. Two

Indians in a Rage. hours before dawn, on the morning of the As the sun rose, a body of three hundred twenty-sixth of May, the order was given to Pequod warriors were seen advancing from the little band under Mason to advance. their second fort. They came expecting to They knew they would have to decide the rejoice with their comrades in the destrucbattle by their own efforts, and were by no tion of the English. When they beheld the means certain that their Indian allies would ruined fort and the remains of its defenders, not turn against them.

they screamed, stamped on the ground and The Pequods were posted in two strong tore their hair with rage and despair. Mason forts made of palisades driven into the ground held them in check with twenty men, while the rest of the English embarked in their of all their race, had been exterminated by a boats, which had come round from Narra- mere handful of Englishmen, what could they gansett Bay, and hastened home to protect expect in a contest with them but a similar the settlements against a sudden attack. fate? For forty years the horror of this Mason, with the party mentioned, marched dreadful deed remained fresh in the savage across the country to the fort at Saybrooke, mind, and protected the young settlements where he was received with the honors due more effectually than the most vigilant to his successful exploit.

watchfulness on the part of the whites could In a few days a body of one hundred men have done, arrived from Massachusetts, under Captain Relieved from the fear of the Indians, the Stoughton, and the campaign against the Pequods was resumed. Their pride was crushed, and they made but a feeble resistance. They fled to the west, closely pursued by the English, who destroyed their cornfields, burned their villages and put their women and children to death without mercy. They made a last desperate effort at resistance in the fastnesses of a swamp, but were defeated with great slaughter. Sassacus, their chief, with a few of his men took refuge with the Mohawks, where he was soon after put to death

YALE COLLEGE. by one of his own people. The remainder of the tribe, about two hundred people of Connecticut prepared to establish a in number, surrendered to the English, and civil government for the colony, and in Janwere reduced to slavery. Some were given uary, 1639, a constitution was adopted. It to their enemies, the Narragansetts and Mo- was more liberal, and therefore more lasting, hegans; others were sent to the West Indies than that framed by any of the other coloand sold as slaves. The Pequod nation was nies. It provided for the government of the utterly destroyed.

colony by a governor, a legislature and the The thoroughness and remorselessness of usual magistrates of an English province, the work struck terror to the neighboring who were to be chosen annually by ballot. tribes. If the Pequods, the most powerful Every settler who should take the oath of allegiance to the commonwealth was to have the region west of the Connecticut, which the right of suffrage. The members of the


the had been discovered by the pursuers of the legislature were apportioned among the Pequods. He examined the coast of Long towns according to the population. The Island Sound, and spent the winter at a place colony was held to be supreme within its which he selected as a settlement. In April, own limits, and no recognition was made of 1638, Davenport and the rest of the company the sovereignty of the king or Parliament. sailed from Boston and established a settleWhen Connecticut took her place among the ment on the spot chosen by Eaton. The states of the American Union, at the opening settlers obtained a title to their lands from of the war of the Revolution, her constitution the natives, and agreed in return to protect needed no change to adapt her to her new them against the Mohawks. position. It remained in force for one hun- They named their settlement New Haven. dred and fifty years.

In 1639 a form of government was adopted,

and Eaton was elected governor. He was The Celebrated John Davenport. annually chosen to this position until his In the year of the Pequod war (1637), death, twenty years later. The colonists John Davenport, a celebrated clergyman of pledged themselves “to be governed in all London, and Theophilus Eaton, a merchant things by the rules which the Scriptures held of wealth, and a number of their associates, forth to them." The right of suffrage was who had been exiled from England for their restricted to church members. “Thus New religious opinions, reached Boston. They Haven made the Bible its statute book, and were warmly welcomed, and were urged to the elect its freemen.” In the next ten years stay in the Bay colóny, but the theological settlements spread along the sound and exdisputes were so high there that they pretended to the opposite shores of Long Island. ferred to go into the wilderness and found a The colony was distinct from and independsettlement where they could be at peace. ent of the Connecticut colony, with which Eaton with a few men was sent to explore | friendly relations were soon established.



The Union of the New England Colonies

feeling of the Colonies Towards England-Hostility of the English Government to New England—Efforts to Intro

duce Episcopacy-Massachusetts Threatens Resistance—The Revolution in England—Establishment of Free Schools in New England—Harvard College—The Printing Press—The Long Parliament Friendly to New England—The United Colonies of New England-Rhode Island Obtains a Charter—Maine Annexed to Massachusetts - The Quakers are Persecuted-Efforts to Christianize the Indians-John Eliot, the Apostle to the Indians.


HE sentiments with which the people | land what she was, and they meant to retain of the New England colonies the possession and control of their new home regarded the mother country may at any cost. They had made themselves a

be briefly stated. They were proud free people, and they meant to preserve their of the name of Englishmen, and took a deep liberties as a precious heritage for their interest in the welfare of their old home. children. They regarded the British constitution as the This was the general sentiment of New supreme law of their new states, and claimed England. There were some discontented to be true and loyal subjects of the King of persons, however, in the midst of these deterEngland. Nevertheless, they looked upon mined people. They had found the stern the success of their colonies as their own discipline of the Massachusetts colony too work, accomplished by their own patience oppressive, and some had been severely punand heroism, and they were fully aware that ished by the fiery Endicott. Upon returning they owed nothing to the mother country. to England they endeavored to induce the

They had been driven forth from her shores king to exert his power and remedy what by persecution, and left in neglect to struggle they termed the distraction and disorder of up to the successful position they now occu- the province of Massachusetts. Their compied. They owed nothing to England; in plaints were echoed by a strong party in their deepest distress they had never asked | England. Burdett wrote to Archbishop Laud aid of her, and they were willing to undergo that “The colonists aimed not at a new disany hardship rather than do so. They had cipline, but at sovereignty; that it was made laws and established institutions under accounted treason in their general court to which they had surmounted their early trials, speak of appeals to the king ;” in which and they regarded their paramount allegiance assertion he was right. as due to their respective provinces. They

The English archbishop began to regard acknowledged the right of no power beyond the departure of so many “faithful and free. the Atlantic to interfere with or change their born Englishmen and good Christians” to work. They would acknowledge their alle-join a new communion as a serious matter, giance to the king as long as he respected the and impediments were thrown in the way of system they had built up at such great cost, emigration. In February, 1634, a requisiand without assistance from him, but would tion was addressed to the colony of Massaresist any effort from him, or any one else, to chusetts ordering the colonial officials to interfere with it. They had made New Eng- produce the patent of the company in

to a

« 上一頁繼續 »