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CHAP. their descent from this union; the Indian wife,
a instructed in the English language, and bearing an 1613. English name, sailed with her husband for England,
and was caressed at court, and respectfully admired in the city. The immediate fruits of the marriage to the colony were a confirmed peace, not with Powhatan alone, but also with the powerful Chickahominies, who sought the friendship of the English, and demanded to be called Englishmen. It might have seemed, that the European and the native races were about to become blended. Yet no such result ensued. The history of Pocahontas is full of singular incidents; from her first intercession for Smith, her regard for the English was uniform; as a wife and a mother her conduct was exemplary ; her manners were those of wild simplicity and pure and ingenuous feeling. Yet strange as is her history, nothing is more singular than her marriage. The English and the Indian races remained disunited; and the weakest gradually became extinct.
The colony was now deemed to be firmly established; and the officers undertook to assert for the English king the sole right of colonizing the North American coast to the latitude of forty-five degrees. We have seen, that the French had nestled at Port Royal. It was a time of peace between France and England; the bleak climate of Acadia could hardly tempt the possessors of Virginia ; in a hemisphere so wide and as yet so little occupied, the settlement of a new colony might rather seem to
I Stith, p. 130.
promise comfort, protection and useful intercourse. CHAP. Nothing can better mark the spirit of the times, than the events which transpired. Argall, an ingenious 1613. and active young sea-captain, of coarse passions and arbitrary temper, invaded the French, whose few cabins could with difficulty be found on so extensive
It was easy to surprise those, who had no reason to expect an attack; and thus the oldest Christian settlement in America, north of Florida, was pillaged and destroyed. England had vindicated her claim to Acadia ; the London company had avenged the invasion of its monopolies. This first contest between France and England for colonial possessions in America was, in dignity, not superior to the acts of marauders and pirates; the struggle was destined to increase, till at last, after the lapse of almost a century and a half, the strife for acres, which neither nation could cultivate, kindled a war, that spread throughout the globe.
It is said, that on his return from Acadia, Argall entered the port of New-York, but there is no room to suppose he ascended the Hudson. Holland had already opened a traffic through the channel, which Hudson had discovered. Appearing among the handful of men, who were stationed on the island of Manhattan, he asserted the sovereignty of England; and, as he had the largest force, he seems to have
1 Charlevoix, Nouv. France, l. June, 1613, p. 130, and Belknap's iii. at the close of the book; Ed- American Biography, v. ii
. p. 51. mund Howes, in Stowe, p. 1018; Stith erroneously refers the transSmith, v. ii. p. 18; Purchas, v. iv. action to 1614. Heylin, in his Cosp. 1808. Compare Purchas, p. mography, I. iv. p. 96, says 1613. 1765. Gorges' Description, p. 19. 2 Belknap, Am. Biography, v. ii. Compare Prince's Chronology, for p. 55, thought otherwise.
CHAP. been acknowledged, for the time, as lord of the har
bor. He withdrew to boast of having reduced the settlement of Holland to subjection ; and the Dutch, upon his absence, quietly pursued their profitable traffic. 1
Sir Thomas Gates, returning to England,” left the government with Dale; and employed himself successfully in England in preserving the spirit of the London company. But it was neither to English lotteries, nor to English privileged companies, that the new state was to owe its prosperity. Private industry, directed to the culture of a valuable staple, was more productive, than the patronage of Eng
land; and tobacco enriched Virginia. 1613,
The condition of private property in lands among the colonists, depended, in some measure, on the circumstances, under which they had emigrated. Some had been sent and maintained at the exclusive cost of the company; and were its servants. One month of their time and three acres of land were set apart for them, besides a small allowance of two bushels of corn from the public store; the rest of their labor belonged to their employers. This number gradually decreased; and, in 1617, there were of them all, men, women and children, but fifty-four. Others, especially the favorite settlement near the mouth of the Appomattox, were tenants, paying two and a half barrels of corn, as a yearly tribute to the
1 Stith, p. 133; Smith's NewJersey, p. 26.
2 Sinith, v. ii. p. 22; Stith, p. 132.
3 Smith, v. ii. p. 17, 18; Stith, p. 132; Chalmers, p. 34.
4 Smith, v. ï. p. 34; Stith, p. 147.
store, and giving to the public service one month's CHAP. labor, which was to be required neither at seed-time nor harvest. This more favorable condition was probably owing to some peculiarities in the manner, in which their expenses in emigrating had been defrayed. He, who came himself, or had sent others at his own expense, had been entitled to a hundred acres of land for each person; now that the colony was well established, the bounty on emigration was fixed at fifty acres, of which the actual occupation and culture gave a further right to as many more, to be assigned at leisure. Besides this, lands were granted as rewards of merit; yet not more than two thousand acres could be so appropriated to one per
Every adventurer, who had paid into the company's treasury twelve pounds and ten shillings, likewise obtained a title to a hundred acres of land, any where in Virginia, not yet granted or possessed, with a reserved claim to as much more. Such were the earliest land laws of Virginia ; imperfect and unequal as they were, they at least gave the cultivator the means of becoming a proprietor of the soil. These valuable changes were introduced by Sir Thomas Dale; a magistrate, who, notwithstanding the introduction of martial law, has gained praise for his vigor and industry, his judgment and conduct. Having remained five years in America, and now desiring to visit England and his family, he appointed George Yeardley deputy-governor, and embarked for 1616. his native country.
1 Smith, v. ii. p. 22; Stith, p. 132. 1620, p. 9, 10; Stith, p. 139, 140. 2 State of Virginia, printed in 3 Stith, p. 138.
CULTURE OF TOBACCO. ADMINISTRATION OF ARGALL.
The labor of the colony had long been misdirected; in the manufacture of ashes and soap, of glass and tar, the colonists could not sustain the competition with the nations on the Baltic. Much fruitless
cost had been incurred in planting vineyards. It 1615. was found, that tobacco might be profitably culti
vated. The sect of gold-finders had become extinct; and now the fields, the gardens, the public squares, and even the streets of Jamestown, were planted with tobacco;' and the colonists dispersed, unmindful of security in their eagerness for gain. Tobacco, as it gave animation to Virginian industry, eventually became not only the staple, but the currency of the
colony. 1617. With the success of industry and the security of
property, the emigrants needed the possession of political rights. It is an evil, incident to a corporate body, that its officers separate their interests as managers from their interests as partial proprietors. This was found to be none the less true, where an extensive territory was the estate to be managed ; and embittered parties contended for the posts of emolument and honor. It was under the influence of a faction, which rarely obtained a majority, that the office of deputy-governor was entrusted to Argall. Martial law was at that time the common law of the country; that the despotism of the new deputy, who was both self-willed and avaricious, might be complete, he was further invested with the place of admiral of the country and the adjoining seas.?
i Smith, v. ii. p. 33.
2 Stith, p. 145.