by William Bradford


Book Two / pp. 267 - 310

1627.]                  PLYMOUTH  PLANTATION.                267

They now sent (with ye returne of ye ships) Mr.

Allerton againe into England, giveing him full power,

under their hands & seals, to conclude the former bar-

gaine with ye adventurers; and sent ther bonds for ye

paimente of the money.  Allso they sent what beaver

they could spare to pay some of their ingagementes,

& to defray his chargs; for those deepe interests still

kepte them low.  Also he had order to procure a patente

for a fitt trading place in ye river of Kenebec; for being

emulated both by the planters at Pascataway & other

places to ye eastward of them, and allso by ye fishing

ships, which used to draw much profite from ye Indeans

of those parts, they threatened to procure a grante,

& shutte them out from thence; espetially after they

saw them so well furnished with comodities, as to carie

the trade from them.  They thought it but needfull to

prevente such a thing, at least that they might not be

excluded from free trade ther, wher them selves had

first begune and discovered the same, ad brought it to

so good effecte.  This year allso they had letters, and

messengers from ye Dutch-plantation, sent unto them

from ye Govr ther, writen both in Dutch & French.

The Dutch had traded in these southerne parts, diverse

years before they came; but they begane no plantation.

hear till 4. or 5. years after their coming, and here

begining.  Ther letters were as followeth.  It being

their maner to be full of complementall titles.

268                                HISTORY OF                        [BOOK II.

     Eedele, Eerenfeste Wyse Voorsinnige Heeren, den Goveer-

neur, ende Raeden in Nieu-Pliemuen residerende; onse seer

Goede vrinden den directeur ende Raed van Nieu-Nederlande,

wensen vwe Edn:  eerenfesten, ende wijse voorsinnige geluck

salichitt [gelukzaligheid?], In Christi Jesu onsen Heere; met

goede voorspoet, ende gesonthijt, naer siele, ende lichaem.


    The rest I shall render in English, leaving out the

repetition of superfluous titles.

     [150] We have often before this wished for an opportunitie

or an occasion to congratulate you, and your prosperous and

praise-worthy undertakeings, and Goverment of your colony

ther.  And the more, in that we also have made a good

begining to pitch ye founda.tion of a collonie hear; and seeing

our native countrie lyes not farr from yours, and our fore-

fathers (diverse hundred years agoe) have made and held

frendship and alliance with your ancestours, as sufficently

appears by ye old contractes, and entrecourses, confirmed

under ye hands of kings & princes, in ye pointe of warr &

trafick; as may be seene and read by all ye world in ye old

chronakles.  The which are not only by the king now reign-

ing confirmed, but it hath pleased his majesty, upon mature

deliberation, to make a new covenante, (and to take up

armes,) with ye States Generall of our dear native country,

against our comone enemie the Spaniards, who seeke nothing

   *The orthography of some of these words differs from the modern way

of spelling them; and we have no means of ascertaining the accuracy of

Bradford's copy from the original letter.  This passage may be rendered


     "Noble, worshipful, wise, and prudent Lords, the Governor and Council-

lors residing in New Plymouth, our very dear friends: -- The Director and

Council of New Netherland wish to your Lordships, worshipful, wise, and

prudent, happiness in Christ Jesus our Lord, with prosperity and health, in

soul and body."

1627.]                  PLYMOUTH  PLANTATION.                269

else but to usurpe and overcome other Christian kings and

princes lands, that so he might obtaine and possess his pre-

tended monarchie over all Christendom; and so to rule and

comand, after his owne pleasure, over ye consciences of so

many hundred thousand sowles, which God forbid.

     And also seeing it hath some time since been reported unto

us, by some of our people, that by occasion came so farr

northward with their shalop, and met with sundry of ye

Indeans, who tould them that they were within halfe a days

journey of your plantation, and offered ther service to cary

letters unto you; therfore we could not forbear to salute you

with these few lines, with presentation of our good will and

servise unto you, in all frendly-kindnes & neighbourhood.

And if it so fall out that any goods that comes to our hands

from our native countrie, may be serviceable unto you, we

shall take our selves bound to help and accomadate you ther

with; either for beaver or any other wares or marchandise

that you should be pleased to deale for.  And if in case we

have no comodity at present that may give you contente,

if you please to sell us any beaver, or otter, or such like

comodities as may be usefull for us, for ready money, and

let us understand therof by this bearer in writing, (whom we

have apoynted to stay 3. or 4. days for your answer,) when

we understand your minds therin, we shall depute one to

deale with you, at such place as you shall appointe.  In ye

mean time we pray the Lord to take you, our honoured

good freinds and neighbours, into his holy protection.

          By the appointment of ye Govr and Counsell, &c.

ISAAK DE RASIER, Secrectaris.

From ye Manhatas, in ye fort Amsterdam,

March 9. Ano: 1627.

     To this they returned answer as followeth, on ye

other side.

270                                HISTORY OF                        [BOOK II.

      [151] To the Honoured, &c.

      The Gover & Counsell of New-Plim:  wisheth, &c.  We have

received your leters, &c. wherin appeareth your good wills

& frendship towards us; but is expresed wth over high titls,

more then belongs to us, or is meete for us to receive.  But

for your good will, and congratulations of our prosperitie in

these smale beginings of our poore colonie, we are much

bound unto you, and with many thanks doe acknowledg ye

same; taking it both for a great honour done unto us, and

for a certaine testimoney of your love and good neighbourhood.

     Now these are further to give your Worpps to understand,

that it is to us no smale joye to hear, that his majestie hath

not only bene pleased to confirme yt ancient amitie, aliance,

and frendship, and other contracts, formerly made & ratified

by his predecessors of famous memorie, but hath him selfe

(as you say) strengthened the same with a new-union the

better to resist ye prid of yt comone enemy ye Spaniard, from

whose cruelty the Lord keep us both, and our native coun-

tries.  Now forasmuch as this is sufficiente to unite us

togeather in love and good neighbourhood, in all our deal-

ings, yet are many of us further obliged, by the good and

curteous entreaty which we have found in your countrie; have-

ing lived ther many years, with freedome, and good contente,

as also many of our freinds doe to this day; for which we,

and our children after us, are bound to be thankfull to your

Nation, and shall never forgett ye same, but shall hartily

desire your good & prosperity, as our owne, for ever.

     Likwise for your freindly tender, & offer to acomodate

and help us with any comodities or marchandise you have,

or shall come to you, either for beaver, otters, or other wares,

it is to us very acceptable, and we doubte not but in short

time we may have profitable comerce & trade togeather.

But for this year we are fully supplyed with all necessaries,

both for cloathing and other things; but hereafter it is like

1627.]                  PLYMOUTH  PLANTATION.                271

we shall deale with you, if your rates be reasonable.  And

therfore when you please to send to us againe by any of

yours, we desire to know how you will take beaver, by ye

pounde, & otters, by ye skine; and how you will deale per

cent. for other comodities, and what you can furnishe us

with.  As likwise what other commodities from us may be

acceptable unto you, as tobaco, fish, corne, or other things,

and what prises you will give, &c.

     Thus hoping that you will pardon & excuse us for our rude

and imperfecte writing in your language, and take it in good

parte, because [152] for wante of use we cannot so well

express that we understand, nor hapily understand every thing

so fully as we should.  And so we humbly pray the Lord for

his mercie sake, that he will take both us and you into his

keeping & gratious protection.

         By ye Gover and Counsell of New-Plimoth,

                   Your Worpps very good freinds & neigbours, &c.

New-Plim: March 19.

     After this ther was many passages betweene them

both by letters and other entercourse; and they had

some profitable commerce togither for diverce years, till

other occasions interrupted ye same, as may happily

appear afterwards, more at large.

     Before they sent Mr. Allerton away for England this

year, ye Gover and some of their cheefe freinds had

serious consideration, not only how they might discharge

those great ingagments which lay so heavily upon them,

as is affore mentioned, but also how they mIght (if pos-

siblie they could) devise means to help some of their

freinds and breethren of Leyden over unto them, who

272                                HISTORY OF                        [BOOK II.

desired so much to come to them, ad they desired as

much their company.  To effecte which, they resolved

to rune a high course, and of great adventure, not

knowing otherwise how to bring it aboute.  Which was

to hire ye trade of ye company for certaine years, and

in that time to undertake to pay that 1800li. and all ye

rest of ye debts that then lay upon ye plantation, which

was aboute some 600li. more; and so to set them free,

and returne the trade to ye generalitie againe at ye

end of ye terme.  Upon which resolution they called

ye company togeither, and made it clearly appear unto

all what their debts were, and upon what terms they

would undertake to pay them all in such a time, and

sett them clear.  But their other ends they were faine

to keepe secrete, haveing only privatly acquaynted some

of their trusty freinds therwith; which were glad of ye

same, but doubted how they would be able to performe

it.  So after some agitation of the thing wth ye com-

pany, it was yeelded unto, and the agreemente made

upon ye conditions following.

   Articles of agreemente betweene ye collony of New-Plimoth

      of ye one partie, and William Bradford, Captein Myles

      Standish, Isaack Allerton, &c. one ye other partie; and

      shuch others as they shall thinke good to take as part-

      ners and undertakers with them, concerning the trade

      for beaver & other furrs & comodities, &c. made July,


   First, it is agreed and covenanted betweexte ye said

parties, that ye afforsaid William Bradford, Captain Myles

1627.]                  PLYMOUTH  PLANTATION.                273

Standish, & Isaack Allerton, &c. have undertaken, and doe

by these presents, covenante and agree to pay discharge

and acquite ye said collony of all ye debtes both due for

ye purchass, or any other belonging to them, at ye day of

ye date of these presents.

      [153] Secondly, ye above-said parties are to have and

freely injoye ye pinass latly builte, the boat at Manamett,

and ye shalop, called ye Bass-boat, with all other implements

to them belonging, that is in ye store of ye said company;

with all ye whole stock of furrs, fells, beads, corne, wam-

pam peak, hatchets, knives, &c. that is now in ye storre, or

any way due unto ye same uppon accounte.

     31y.  That ye above said parties have ye whole trade to them

selves, their heires and assignes, with all ye privileges therof,

as ye said collonie doth now, or may use the same, for 6. full

years, to begine ye last of September next insuing.

     41y.  In furder consideration of ye discharge of ye said

debtes, every severall purchaser doth promise and covenante

yearly to pay, or cause to be payed, to the above said par-

ties, during ye full terme of ye said 6. years, 3. bushells of

corne, or 6li. of tobaco, at ye undertakers choyse.

     51y.  The said undertakers shall dureing ye afforesaid terme

bestow 50li. per annum, in hose and shoese, to be brought

over for ye collonies use, to be sould unto them for corne

at 6s. per bushell.

      61y.  That at ye end of ye said terme of 6. years, the whole

trade shall returne to ye use and benefite of ye said collonie,

as before.

     Lastly, if ye afforesaid undertakers, after they have aquainted

their freinds in England with these covenants, doe (upon ye first

returne) resolve to performe them, and undertake to dis-

charge ye debtes of ye said collony, according to ye true mean-

ing & intente of these presents, then they are (upon such

notice given) to stand in full force; otherwise all things to

274                                HISTORY OF                        [BOOK II.

remaine as formerly they were, and a true accounte to be

given to ye said collonie, of the disposing of all things

according to the former order.

      Mr. Allerton carried a coppy of this agreemente with

him into England, and amongst other his instructions

had order given him to deale with some of their special

freinds, to joyne with them in this trade upon ye above

recited conditions; as allso to imparte their further

ends that moved them to take this course, namly, the

helping over of some of their freinds from Leyden, as

they should be able; in which if any of them would

joyne with them they should thankfully acceptt of their

love and partnership herein.  And with all (by their

letters) gave them some grounds of their hops of the

accomplishmente of these things with some advantage.

Anno Dom: 1628.

     AFTER Mr. Allertons arivall in England, he aquainted

them with his comission and full power to conclude ye

forementioned bargan & purchas; upon [154] the veiw

wherof, and ye delivery of ye bonds for ye paymente of

ye money yearly, (as is before mentioned,) it was fully

concluded, and a deede* fairly ingrossed in partch-

mente was delivered him, under their hands & seals

confirming the same.  Morover he delte with them

aboute other things according to his instructions.  As

*Nov. 6. 1627.  Page 238. [Reference is here made to the page of the

original manuscript.]

1628.]                  PLYMOUTH  PLANTATION.                275

to admitt some of these their good freinds into this

purchass if they pleased, and to deale with them for

moneys at better rates, &c.  Touching which I shall

hear inserte a letter of Mr. Sherleys, giving light to

what followed therof, writ to ye Govr as followeth.

     Sr: I have received yours of ye 26. of May by Mr. Gibs,

& Mr. Goffe, with ye barrell of otter skins, according to ye

contents; for which I got a bill of store, and so tooke them

up, and sould them togeather at 78li. 12s. sterling; and

since, Mr. Allerton hath received ye money, as will apear by

the accounte.  It is true (as you write) that your ingag-

ments are great, not only the purchass, but you are yet

necessitated to take up ye stock you work upon; and yt not

at 6. or 8. pr cent. as it is here let out, but at 30. 40. yea,

& some at 50. pr cent. which, were not your gaines great,

and Gods blessing on your honest indeaours more then

ordinarie, it could not be yt you should longe subsiste in ye

maintaining of, & upholding of your worldly affaires.  And

this your honest & discreete agente, Mr. Allerton, hath seri-

ously considered, & deeply laid to mind, how to ease you

of it.  He tould me you were contented to accepte of me

& some few others, to joyne with yon in ye purchass, as

partners; for which I kindly thanke you and all ye rest,

and doe willingly accepte of it.  And though absente, shall

willingly be at shuch charge as you & ye rest shall thinke

meete; and this year am contented to forbear my former 501i.

and 2. years increase for ye venture, both which now makes

it 80li. without any bargaine or condition for ye profite, you

(I mean ye generalitie) stand to ye adventure, outward, and

homeward.  I have perswaded Mr. Andrews and Mr. Beachamp

to doe ye like, so as you are eased of ye high rate, you were

at ye other 2. yeares; I say we leave it freely to your selves

276                                HISTORY OF                        [BOOK II.

to alow us what you please, and as God shall blesse.  What course

I rune, Mr. Beachamp desireth to doe ye same; and

though he have been or seemed somwhat harsh heretofore,

yet now you shall find he is new moulded.  I allso see by

your letter, you desire I should be your agente or factore

hear.  I have eyer found you so faithfull, honest, and upright

men, as I have even resolyed with my selfe (God assisting

me) to doe you all ye good lyeth in my power; and therfore

if you please to make choyse of so weak a man, both for

abillities and body, to performe your bussines, I promise

(ye Lord enabling me) to doe ye best I can according to those

abillities he hath given me; and wherin I faile, blame your

selves, yt you made no better choyce.  Now, because I am

sickly, and we are all mortall, I have advised Mr. Allerton

to joyne Mr. Beachamp with me in your deputation, which

I conceive to be very necessary & good for you; your charge

shall be no more, for it is not your salarie maks me under-

take your [156*] bussines.  Thus comending you & yours,

and all Gods people, unto ye guidance and protection of ye

Allmightie, I ever rest,

Your faithfull loving freind,

London, Nov. 17. 1628.                              JAMES SHERLEY.!

      *155 omitted in original MS. -- COM.

      ! Another leter of his, that should have bene placed before: --

We cannot but take notice how ye Lord hath been pleased to crosse our

proseedings, and caused many disasters to befale us therin.  I conceive ye

only reason to be, we, or many of us, aimed at other ends then Gods glorie;

but now I hope yt cause is taken away; the bargen being fully concluded, as

farr as our powers will reach, and confirmed under our hands & seals, to

Mr. Allerton & ye rest of his & your copartners.  But for my owne parte,

I confess as I was loath to hinder ye full confirming of it, being ye first pro-

pounder ther of at our meeting; so on ye other side, I was as unwilling to

set my hand to ye sale, being ye receiver of most part of ye adventurs, and

a second causer of much of ye ingagments; and one more threatened, being

most envied & aimed at (if they could find any stepe to ground their malice

on) then any other whosoever. I profess I know no just cause they ever

1628.]                  PLYMOUTH  PLANTATION.                277

    With this leter they sent a draught of a formall depu-

tation to be hear sealed and sent back unto them, to

authorise them as their agents, according to what is

mentioned in ye above said letter; and because some

inconvenience grue therby afterward I shall here in-

serte it.

had, or have, so to doe; neither shall it ever be proved yt I have wronged

them or any of ye adventurers, wittingly or willingly, one peny in ye dis-

bursing of so many pounds in those 2, year's trouble.  No, ye sole cause why

they maligne me (as I & others conceived) was yt I would not side with

them against you, & the going over of ye Leyden people.  But as I then card

not, so now I litle fear what they can doe; yet charge & trouble I know they

may cause me to be at.  And for these reasons, I would gladly have per-

swaded the other 4. to have sealed to this bargaine, and left me out, but they

would not; so rather then it should faile,  Mr. Alerton having taken so much

pains, I have sealed wth ye rest; with this proviso & promise of his, yt if any

trouble arise hear, you are to bear halfe ye charge.  Wherfore now I doubt

not but you will give your generallitie good contente, and setle peace amongst

your selves, and peace with the natives; and then no doubt but ye God of

Peace will blese your going out & your returning, and cause all yt you sett

your hands unto to prosper; the which I shall ever pray ye Lord to grante

if it be his blessed will.  Asuredly unless ye Lord be mercifull unto us & ye

whole land in generall, our estate & condition is farr worse then yours.

Wherfore if ye Lord should send persecution or trouble hear, (which is much

to be feared,) and so should put into our minds to flye for refuge, I know

no place safer then to come to you, (for all Europ is at varience one with

another, but cheefly wth us,) not doubting but to find such frendly enter-

tainmente as shall be honest & conscionable, notwithstanding what hath latly

passed.  For I profess in ye word of an honest man, had it not been to pro-

cure your peace & quiet from some turbulent spirites hear, I would not have

sealed to this last deed; though you would have given me all my adventure

and debte ready downe.  Thus desiring ye Lord to blesse & prosper you,

I cease ever resting,

Your faithfull & loving freind,

to my power,

Des: 27.                                                                       JAMES SHERLEY.

     [The above letter was written on the reverse of page 154 of the original 


278                                HISTORY OF                        [BOOK II.

     To all to whom these prets shall come greeting; know yee

that we, William Bradford, Govr of Plimoth, in N. E. in

America, Isaak Allertoll, Myles Standish, William Brewster,

& Ed: Winslow, of Plimoth aforesaid, marchants, doe by

these presents for us & in our names, make, substitute, &

appointe James Sherley, Goldsmith, & John Beachamp, Salter,

citizens of London, our true & lawfull agents, factors, sub-

stitutes, & assignes; as well to take and receive all such

goods, wares, & marchandise what soever as to our said

substitutes or either of them, or to ye citie of London, or

other place of ye Relme of Engl: shall be sente, transported,

or come from us or any of us, as allso to vend, sell, barter,

or exchaing ye said goods, wares, and marchandise so from

time to time to be sent to such person or persons upon

credite, or other wise in such maner as to our said agents

& factors joyently, or to either of them severally shall seeme

meete.  And further we doe make & ordaine our said sub-

stituts & assignes joyntly & severally for us, & to our uses,

& accounts, to buy and consigne for and to us into New-

Engl: aforesaid, such goods and marchandise to be provided

here, and to be returned hence, as by our said assignes, or

either of them, shall be thought fitt.  And to recover, receive,

and demand for us & in our names all such debtes & sumes

of money, as now are or hereafter shall be due incidente

accruing or belonging to us, or any of us, by any wayes

or means; and to acquite, discharge, or compound for any

debte or sume of money, which now or hereafter shall be

due or oweing by any person or persons to us, or any of us.

And generally for us & in our names to doe, performe, and

execute every acte & thing which to our said assignes, or

either of them, shall see me meete to be done in or aboute ye

premissies, as fully & effectually, to all intents & purposes,

as if we or any of us were in person presente.  And what-

soever our said agents & factors joyntly or severally shall

1628.]                  PLYMOUTH  PLANTATION.                279

doe, or cause to be done, in or aboute ye premisses, we will

& doe, & every of us doth ratife, alow, & confirme, by

these presents.  In wittnes wherof we have here unto put

our hands & seals.         Dated 18. Novbr 1628.

This was accordingly confirmed by the above named,

and 4. more of the cheefe of them under their hands

& seals, and delivered unto them.  Also Mr. Allerton

formerly had authoritie under their hands & seals for

ye transacting of ye former bussines, and taking up of

moneys, &c. which still he retained whilst he was

imployed in these affaires; they mistrusting neither

him nor any of their freinds faithfullnes, which made

them more remisse in looking to shuch acts as had

passed under their hands, as necessarie for ye time;

but letting them rune on to long unminded or recaled,

it turned to their harme afterwards, as will appere in

its place.

    [157] Mr. Allerton having setled all things thus in

a good and hopfull way, he made hast to returne in ye

first of ye spring to be hear with their suppLy for trade,

(for ye fishermen with whom he came used to sett forth

in winter & be here betimes.)  He brought a resonable

supply of goods for ye plantation, and without those

great interests as before is noted; and brought an

accounte of ye beaver sould, and how ye money was

disposed for goods, & ye paymente of other debtes,

having paid all debts abroad to others, save to Mr.

Sherley, Mr. Beachamp, & Mr. Andrews; from whom

280                                HISTORY OF                        [BOOK II.

likwise he brought an accounte which to them all

amounted not to above 400li. for which he had passed

bonds.  Allso he had rayed the first paymente for ye

purchass, being due for this year, viz. 200li. and brought

them ye bonae for ye same canselled; so as they now

had no more foreine debtes but ye abovesaid 400li. and

odde pownds, and ye rest of ye yearly purchass monie.

Some other debtes they had in ye cuntrie, but they

were without any intrest, & they had wherwith to dis-

charge them when they were due.  To this pass the

Lord had brought things for them.  Also he brought

them further notice that their freinds, the abovenamed,

& some others that would joyne with them in ye

trad & purchass, did intend for to send over to Leyden,

for a competente number of them, to be hear the next

year without fayle, if ye Lord pleased to blesse their

journey.  He allso brought them a patente for Kene-

beck, but it was so straite & ill bounded, as they were

faine to renew & in large it the next year, as allso that

which they had at home, to their great charge, as will

after appeare.  Hithertoo Mr. Allerton did them good

and faithfull service; and well had it been if he had

so continued, or els they had now ceased for imploy-

ing him any longer thus into England.  But of this

more afterwards.

     Having procured a patente (as is above said) for

Kenebeck, they now erected a house up above in ye

river in ye most convenientest place for trade, as they

1628.]                  PLYMOUTH  PLANTATION.                281

conceived, and furnished the same with comodities for

yt end, both winter & somer, not only with corne, but

also with such other commodities as ye fishermen had

traded with them, as coats, shirts, ruggs, & blankets,

biskett, pease, prunes, &c.; and what they could not

have out of England, they bought of the fishing ships,

and so carried on their bussines as well as they could.

     This year the Dutch sent againe unto them from

their plantation, both kind leterss, and also diverse

comodities, as suger, linen cloth, Holand finer &

courser stufes, &c.  They came up with their barke

to Manamete, to their house ther, in which came their

Secretarie Rasier; who was accompanied with a noyse

of trumpeters, and some other attendants; and desired

that they would send a boat for him, for he could

not travill so farr over land.  So they sent a boat

to Manonscussett, and brought him to ye plantation,

with ye cheefe of his company.  And after some few

days entertainmente, he returned to his barke, and

some of them wente with him, and bought sundry of

his goods; after which begining thus made, they sente

often times to ye same place, and had entercourse to-

geather for diverce years; and amongst other comodi-

ties, they vended [158] much tobaco for linen cloath,

stuffs, &c., which was a good benefite to ye people,

till the Virginians found out their plantation.  But

that which turned most to their profite, in time, was

an entrance into the trade of Wampampeake; for they

282                                HISTORY OF                        [BOOK II.

now bought aboute 50li. worth, of it of them; and they

tould them how vendable it was at their forte Orania;

and did perswade them they would find it so at Kene-

beck; and so it came to pass in time, though at first

it stuck, & it was 2. years before they could put of

this small quantity, till ye inland people knew of it;

and afterwards they could scarce ever gett enough for

them, for many years togeather.  And so this, with

their other provissions, cutt of they trade quite from

ye fisher-men, and in great part from other of ye strag-

ling planters.  And strange it was to see the great all-

teration it made in a few years amonge ye Indeans

them selves; for all the Indeans of these parts, & ye

Massachussets, had none or very litle of it,* but ye

sachems & some spetiall persons that wore a litle of

it for ornamente.  Only it was made & kepte amonge

ye Nariganssets, & Pequents, which grew rich & potent

by it, and these people were poore & begerly, and had

no use of it.  Neither did the English of this planta-

tion, or any other in ye land, till now that they had

knowledg of it from ye Dutch, so much as know what

it was, much less yt it was a comoditie of that worth

& valew.  But after it grue thus to be a comoditie

in these parts, these Indeans fell into it allso, and to

learne how to make it; for ye Narigansets doe geather

ye shells of which yey make it from their shors.  And

it hath now continued a current comoditie aboute this

* Peag.

1628                    PLYMOUTH  PLANTATION.                283

20. years, and it may prove a drugg in time.  In ye

mean time it maks ye Indeans of these parts rich &

power full and also prowd therby; and fills them with

peeces, powder, and shote, which no laws can restraine

by reasone of ye bassnes of sundry unworthy persons,

both English, Dutch, & French, which may turne to

ye ruine of many.  Hithertoo ye Indeans of these parts

had no peeces nor other armes but their bowes &

arrowes, nor of many years after; nether durst they

scarce handle a gune, so much were they affraid of

them; and ye very sight of one (though out of kilter)

was a terrour unto them.  But those Indeans to ye east

parts, which had comerce with ye French, got peces of

them, and they in ye end made a commone trade of it;

and in time our English fisher-men, led with ye like

covetoussnes, followed their example, for their owne

gaine; but upon complainte against them, it pleased

the kings ,majestie to prohibite ye same by a stricte

proclaimation, commanding that no sorte of armes, or

munition, should by any of his subjects be traded with


     Aboute some 3. or 4. years before this time, ther

came over one Captaine Wolastone,  (a man of pretie

parts,)  and with him 3. or 4. more of some eminencie,

who brought with them a great many servants, with

provissions & other implements for to begine a planta-

tion;  and pitched them selves in a place within the 

Massachusets, which they called, after their Captains

284                                HISTORY OF                        [BOOK II.

name, Mount-Wollaston.  Amongst whom was one Mr.

Morton, who, it should seeme, had some small adventure

(of his owne or other mens) amongst them; but had

litle respecte [159] amongst them, and was sleghted

by ye meanest servants.  Haveing continued ther some

time, and not finding things to answer their expecta-

tions, nor profite to arise as they looked for, Captaine

Wollaston takes a great part of ye sarvants, and trans-

ports them to Virginia, wher he puts them of at good

rates, selling their time to other men; and writs back

to one Mr. Rassdall, one of his cheefe partners, and

accounted their marchant, to bring another parte of

them to Verginia likewise, intending to put them of

ther as he had done ye rest.  And he, wth ye consente

of ye said Rasdall, appoynted one Fitcher to be his

Livetenante, and governe ye remaines of ye planta-

tion, till he or Rasdall returned to take further order

theraboute.  But this Morton abovesaid, haveing more

craft then honestie, (who had been a kind of petie-

fogger,  of Furnefells Inne, in ye other absence

watches an oppertunitie,  (commons being but hard

amongst them,) and gott some strong drinck & other

junkats, & made them a feast;. and after they were

merie, he begane to tell them, he would give them

good counsell.  You see (saith he) that many of your

fellows are carried to Virginia; and if you stay till

this Rasdall returne, you will also be carried away

and sould for slaves with ye rest.  Therfore I would

1628.]                  PLYMOUTH  PLANTATION.                285

advise you to thruste out this Levetenant Fitcher. and

I, having a parte in the plantation, will receive you

as my partners and consociats; so may you be free

from service, and we will converse, trad, plante, &

live togeather as equalls, & supporte & protecte one

another, or to like effecte.  This counsell was easily

received; so they tooke oppertunitie, and thrust Leve-

tenante Fitcher out a dores, and would suffer him to

come no more amongst them, but forct him to seeke

bread to eate, and other releefe from his neigbours,

till he could gett passages for England.  After this

they fell to great licenciousnes, and led a dissolute

life, powering out them selves into all profanenes.

And Morton became lord of misrule, and maintained

(as it were) a schoole of Athisme.  And after they

had gott some good into their hands, and gott much

by trading with ye Indeans, they spent it as vainly,

in quaffing & drinking both wine & strong waters in

great exsess, and, as some reported, 10li. worth in a

morning.  They allso set up a May-pole, drinking and

dancing aboute it many days togeather, inviting the

Indean women, for their consorts, dancing and frisk-

ing togither, (like so many fairies, or furies rather,)

and worse practises.  As if they had anew revived &

celebrated the feasts of ye Roman Goddes Flora, or

ye beasly practieses of ye madd Bacchinalians.  Mor-

ton likwise (to shew his poetrie) compose sundry

rimes & verses, tending to lasciviousness, and

286                                HISTORY OF                        [BOOK II.

others to ye detraction & scandall of some persons,

which he affixed to this idle or idoll May-polle.  They

chainged allso the name of their place, and in stead

of calling it Mounte Wollaston, they call it Merie-

mounte, [160] as if this joylity would have lasted

ever.  But this continued not long, for after Morton

was sent for England, (as follows to be declared,)

shortly after came over that worthy gentlman, Mr.

John Indecott, who brought over a patent under ye

broad seall, for ye govermente of ye Massachusets, who

visiting those parts caused yt May-polle to be cutt

downe, and rebuked them for their profannes, and

admonished them to looke ther should be better walk-

ing; so they now, or others, changed ye name of their

place againe, and called it Mounte-Dagon.

     Now to maintaine this riotous prodigallitie and pro-

fuse excess, Morton, thinking him selfe lawless, and

hearing what gaine ye French & fisher-men made by

trading of peeces, powder, & shotte to ye Indeans, he,

as ye head of this consortship, begane ye practise of ye

same in these parts; and first he taught them how to

use them, to charge, & discharg, and what proportion

of powder to give ye peece, according to ye sise or

bignes of ye same; and what shotte to use for foule,

and what for deare.  And having thus instructed them,

he imployed some of them to hunte & fowle for him,

so as they became farr more active in that imploy-

mente then any of ye, English, by reason of ther

1628.]                  PLYMOUTH  PLANTATION.                287

swiftnes of foote, & nimblnes of body, being also

quick-sighted, and by continuall exercise well know-

ing ye hants of all sorts of game.  So as when they

saw ye execution that a peece would doe, and ye bene-

fite that might come by ye same, they became madd,

as it were, after them, and would not stick to give

any prise they could attaine too for them; account-

ing their bowes & arrowes but bables in comparison

of them.

     And here I may take occasion to bewaile ye mis-

chefe that this wicked man began in these parts, and

which since base covetousnes prevailing in men that

should know better, has now at length gott ye upper

hand, and made this thing comone, notwithstanding any

laws to ye contrary; so as ye Indeans are full of peeces

all over, both fouling peeces, muskets, pistols, &c.

They have also their moulds to make shotte, of all

sorts, as muskett bulletts, pistoll bullets, swane & gose

shote, & of smaler sorts; yea, some have seen them

have their scruplats to make scrupins them selves, when

they wante them, with sundery other implements, wher-

with they are ordinarily better fited & furnished then

ye English them selves.  Yea, it is well knowne that

they will have powder & shot, when the English want

it, nor cannot gett it; and yt in a time of warr or

danger, as experience hath manifested, that when lead

hath been scarce, and men for their owne defence would

gladly have given a groat a li., which is dear enoughe,

288                                HISTORY OF                        [BOOK II.

yet hath it bene bought up & sent to other places,

and sould to shuch as trade it with ye Indeans, at

12. pence ye li.; and it is like they give 3. or 4.s. ye

pound, for they will have it at any rate.  And these

things have been done in ye same times, when some of

their neigbours & freinds are daly killed by ye Indeans,

or are in deanger therof, and live but at ye Indeans

mercie.  [161] Yea, some (as they have aquainted them

with all other things) have tould them how gunpowder

is made, and all ye materialls in it, and that they are

to be had in their owne land; and I am confidente,

could they attaine to make saltpeter, they would teach

them to make powder.  O the horiblnes of this vilanie!

how many both Dutch & English have been latly slaine

by those Indeans, thus furnished; and no remedie pro-

vided, nay, ye evill more increased, and ye blood of

their brethren sould for gaine, as is to be feared; and

in what danger all these colonies are in is too well

known.  Oh! that princes & parlements would take

some timly order to prevente this mischeefe, and at

length to suppress it, by some exemplerie punishmente

upon some of these gaine thirstie murderers, (for they

deserve no better title,) before their collonies in these

parts be over throwne by these barbarous savages,_thus

armed with their owne weapons, by these evill instru-

ments, and traytors to their neigbors and cuntrie.  But

I have forgott my selfe, and have been to longe in this

digression; but now to returne.  This Morton having

1628.]                  PLYMOUTH  PLANTATI0N.                 289

thus taught them ye use of peeces, he sould them all

he could spare; and he and his consorts detirmined

to send for many out of England, and had by some

of ye ships sente for above a score.  The which being

knowne, and his neigbours meeting ye Indeans in ye

woods armed with guns in this sorte, it was a terrour

unto them, who lived straglingly, and were of no

strenght in any place.  And other places (though more

remote) saw this mischeefe would quietly spread over

all, if not prevented.  Besides, they saw they should

keep no servants, for Morton would entertaine any,

how vile soever, and all ye scume of ye countrie, or

any discontents, would flock to him from all places,

if this nest was not broken; and they should stand

in more fear of their lives & goods (in short time)

from this wicked & deboste crue, then from ye sal-

vages them selves.

      So sundrie of ye cheefe of ye stragling plantations,

meeting togither, agreed by mutuall consente to sollissite

those of Plimoth (who were then of more strength then

them all) to joyne with them, to prevente ye further

grouth of this mischeefe, and suppress Morton & his

consortes before yey grewe to further head and strength.

Those that joyned in this acction (and after contributed

to ye charge of sending him for England) were from

Pascatataway, Namkeake, Winisimett, Weesagascusett,

Natasco, and other places where any English were seated.

Those of Plimoth being thus sought too by their mes-

290                                HISTORY OF                        [BOOK II.

sengers & letters, and waying both their reasons, and

the comone danger, were, willing to afford them their

help; though them selves had least cause of fear or

hurte.  So, to be short, they first resolved joyntly to

write to him, and in a freindly & neigborly way

to admonish him to forbear these courses, & sent

a messenger with their letters to bring his answer.

But he was so highe as he scorned all advise, and

asked who had to doe with him; he had and would

trade peeces with ye Indeans in dispite of all, with

many other scurillous termes full of disdaine.  They

sente to him a second time, and bad him be better

advised, and more temperate in his termes, for ye

countrie could not beare ye injure he did; it was

against their comone saftie, and against ye king's proc-

lamation.  He answerd in high terms as before, and

that ye kings proclaimation was no law; demanding

what penaltie was upon it.  It was answered, more

then he could [162] bear, his majesties displeasure.

But insolently he persisted, and said ye king was dead

and his displeasure with him & many ye like things;

and threatened withall that if any came to molest

him, let them looke to them selves, for he would pre-

pare for them.  Upon which they saw ther was ,no

way but to take him by force; and having so farr

proceeded, now to give over would make him farr

more hautie & insolente.  So they mutually resolved to

proceed, and obtained of ye Govr of Plimoth to send

1628.]                  PLYMOUTH  PLANTATION.                291

Captaine Standish, & some other aide with him, to

take Morton by force.  The which accordingly was

done; but they found him to stand stifly in bis de-

fence, having made fast his dors, armed his consorts,

set diverse dishes of powder & bullets ready on ye

table; and if they had not been over armed with drinke,

more hurt might have been done.  They somaned him

to yeeld, but he kept his house, and they could gett

nothing but scofes & scorns from him; but at length,

fearing they would doe some violence to ye house, he

and some of his crue came out, but not to yeeld, but

to shoote; but they were so steeld with drinke as their

peeces were to heavie for tbem; him selfe with a car-

bine (over charged & allmost halfe fild with powder

& shote, as was after found) had thought to have shot

Captaine Standish; but he stept to him, & put by his

peece, & tooke him.  Neither was ther any hurte done

to any of either side, save yt one was so drunke yt he

rane his owne nose upon ye pointe of a sword yt one

held before him as he entred ye house; but he lost

but a litle of his hott blood.  Morton they brought

away to Plimoth, wher he was kepte, till a ship went

from ye Ile of Shols for England, with which he was

sent to ye Counsell of New England; and letters writen

to give them information of his course & cariage; and

also one was sent at their comone charge to informe

their Hors more perticulerly, & to prosecute against

him.  But he foold of ye messenger, after he was_gone

292                                HISTORY  OF                       [BOOK II.

from hence, and though he wente for England, yet

nothing was done to him, not so much as rebukte for

ought was heard; but returned ye nexte year.  Some

of ye worst of ye company were disperst, and some

of ye more modest kepte ye house till he should be

heard from.  But I have been too long about so un-

worthy a person, and bad a cause.

    This year Mr. Allerton brought over a yonge man

for a minister to ye people hear, wheather upon his

owne head, or at ye motion of some freinds ther, I

well know not, but it was without ye churches send-

ing; for they had bene so bitten by Mr. Lyford, as

they desired to know ye person well whom they should

invite amongst them.  His name was Mr. Rogers; but

they perceived, upon some triall, that he was crased in

his braille; so they were faine to be at further charge

to send him back againe ye nexte year, and loose all

ye charge that was expended in his hither bringing,

which was not smalle by Mr. Allerton's accounte, in

provissions, aparell, bedding, &c.  After his returne

he grue quite distracted, and Mr. Allerton's was much

blamed yt he would bring such a man over, they hav-

ing charge enough otherwise.

      Mr. Allerton, in ye years before, had brought over

some small quantie of goods, upon his owne perticuler,

and sould them for his owne private benefite; which

was more then any man had yet hithertoo attempted.

But because he had other wise done them good ser-

1628.]                  PLYMOUTH  PLANTATION.                293

vice, and also he sould them among ye people at ye

plantation, by which their wants were supplied, and

he aledged it was the [163] love of Mr. Sherley and

some other freinds that would needs trust him with

some goods, conceiveing it might doe him some good,

and none hurte, it was not much lookt at, but past

over.  But this year he brought over a greater quan-

titie, and they were so intermixte with ye goods of

ye generall, as they knew not which were theirs, &

wch was his, being pact up together; so as they well

saw that, if any casualty had beefalne at sea, he might

have laid ye whole on them, if he would; for ther was

no distinction.  Allso what was most vendible, and

would yeeld presente pay, usualy that was his; and

he now begane allso to sell abroad to others of forine

places, which, considering their comone course, they

began to dislike.  Yet because love thinkes no evill,

nor is susspitious, they tooke his faire words for ex-

cuse, and resolved to send him againe this year for

England; considering how well he had done ye former

bussines, and what good acceptation he had with their

freinds ther; as also seeing sundry of their freinds

from Leyden were sente for, which would or might

be much furthered by his means.  Againe, seeing the

patente for Kenebeck must be inlarged, by reason of

ye former mistaks in the bounding of it, and it was

conceived, in a maner, ye same charge would serve to

inlarge this at home with it, and he that had begane

294                                HISTORY OF                        [BOOK II.

ye former ye last year would be ye fittest to effecte

this; so they gave him instructions and sente him

for England this year againe.  And in his instructions

bound him to bring over no goods on their accounte,

but 50li. in hose & shoes, and some linen cloth, (as

yey were bound by covenante when they tooke ye

trad;) also some trading goods to such a value; and

in no case to exseed his instructions, nor rune them

into any further charge; he well knowing how their

state stood.  Also yt he should so provide yt their

trading goods came over betimes, and what so ever

was sent on their accounte should be pact up by it

selfe, marked with their marke, and no other goods

to be mixed with theirs.  For so he prayed them to

give him such instructions as they saw good, and he

would folow them, to prevente any jellocie or farther

offence, upon the former forementioned dislikes.  And

thus they conceived they had well provided for all


Anno Dom. 1629.

     MR. ALLERTON safly arriving in England, and deliv-

ering his leters to their freinds their, and aquainting them

with his instructions, found good acceptation with

them, and they were very forward & willing to joyne

with them in ye partnership of trade, & in ye  charge

to send over ye Leyden people; a company wherof

were allready come out of Holand, and prepared to

come over, and so were sent away before Mr. Allerton

1629.]                  PLYMOUTH  PLANTATION.                295

could be ready to come.  They had passage with ye

ships that came to Salem, that brought over many

godly persons to begine ye plantations & churches of

Christ ther, & in ye Bay of Massachussets; so their

long stay & keeping back [164] was recompensed by

ye Lord to ther freinds here with a duble blessing,

in that they not only injoyed them now beyond ther

late expectation, (when all their hops seemed to be

cutt of,) but, with them, many more godly freinds

& Christian breethren, as ye begining of a larger har-

vest unto ye Lord, in ye increase of his churches &

people in these parts, to ye admiration of many, and

allmost wonder of ye world; that of so small begin-

ings so great things should insue, as time after mani-

fested; and that here should be a resting place for so

many of ye Lords people, when so sharp a scourge

came upon their owne nation.  But it was ye Lords

doing, & it ought to be marvellous in our eyes.

     But I shall hear inserte some of their freinds letters,

which doe best expresse their owne minds in these thir


A leter of Mr. Sherleys to ye Govr.

May 25,1629.*

     Sr: &c.  Here are now many of your and our freinds

from Leyden coming over, who, though for ye most parte

be but a weak company, yet herein is a good parte of that

      *1629, May 25, the first letter concerning the former company of Leyden

people. -- Prince.

296                                HISTORY OF                        [BOOK II.

end obtained which was aimed at, and which hath been so

strongly opposed by some of our former adventurers.  But

God hath his working in these things, which man cannot

frustrate.  With them we have allso sent some servants in

ye ship called the Talbut, that wente hence latly; but these

come in ye May-flower.  Mr. Beachamp & my selfe, with

Mr. Andrews & Mr. Hatherly, are, with your love and lik-

ing, joyned partners with you, &c.

     Your deputation we have received, and ye goods have

been taken up & sould by your freind & agente, Mr. Aller-

ton, my selfe having bine nere 3. months in Holland, at

Amsterdam & other parts in ye Low-Countries. I see further

the agreemente you have made with ye generallitie, in which

I cannot understand but you have done very well, both for

them & you, and also for your freinds at Leyden.  Mr.

Beachamp, Mr. Andrews, Mr. Hatherley, & my selfe, doe

so like and approve of it, as we are willing to joyne with

you, and, God directing and inabling us, will be assisting

and helpfull to you, ye best yt possiblie we can.  Nay, had

you not taken this course, I doe not see how you should

accomplish ye end you first aimed at, and some others in-

devored these years past.  We know it must keep us from

ye profite, which otherwise by ye blessing of God and your

indeaours, might be gained; for most of those that came

in May, & these now sente, though I hope honest & good

people, yet not like to be help full to raise profite, but rather,

ney, certaine must, some while, be chargable to you & us;

at which it is lickly, had not this wise & discreete course

been taken, many of your generalitie would have grudged.

Againe, you say well in your letter, and I make no doubte

but you will performe it, that now being but a few, on

whom ye burthen must be, you will both menage it ye beter,

and sett too it more cherfully, haveing no discontente nor

1629.]                  PLYMOUTH  PLANTATION.                297

contradiction, but so lovingly to joyne togeither, in affection

and counsell, as God no doubte will blesse and prosper your

honest labours & indeavors.  And therfore in all respects

I doe not see but you have done marvelously discreetly, &

advisedly, and no doubt but it gives all parties good con-

tente;  I mean yt are reasonable & honest men, such as

make conscience of giving ye best satisfaction they be able

for their debts, and yt regard not their owne perticuler so

much as ye accomplishing of yt good end for which this

bussines was first intended, &c.  Thus desiring ye Lord

to blese & prosper you, & all yours, and all our honest

endeavors, I rest

Your unfained & ever loving freind,

          JAMES SHERLEY.

Lon:  March 8. 1629.*

       [165] That I may handle things together, I have

put these 2. companies that came from Leyden in this

place; though they came at 2. severall times, yet they

both came out of England this year.  The former com-

pany, being 35. persons, were shiped in May, and

arived here aboute August.  The later were shiped in

ye begining of March, and arived hear ye later end of

May, 1630.  Mr. Sherleys 2. letters, ye effect wherof

I have before related, (as much of them as is perti-

nente,) mentions both.  Their charge, as Mr. Allerton

brought it in afterwards on accounte, came to above

550li. besids ther fetching hither from Salem & ye

Bay, wher they and their goods were landed; viz.

* 1629-30, March 8th, the second letter concerning the latter company of

Leyden people. -- Prince.

298                                HISTORY OF                        [BOOK II.

their transportation from Holland to England, & their

charges lying ther, and passages hither, with clothing

provided for them. For I find by accounte for ye one

company, 125. yeards of karsey, 127. ellons of linen

cloath, shoes, 66. pr, with many other perticulers.  The

charge of ye other company is reckoned on ye severall

families, some 50li., some 40li., some 30li., and so more

or less, as their number & expencess were.  And besids

all this charg, their freinds & bretheren here were to

provid corne & other provissions for them, till they

could reap a crope which was long before.  Those that

came in May were thus maintained upward of 16. or 18.

months, before they had any harvest of their owne, &

ye other by proportion.  And all they could doe in ye

mean time was to gett them some housing, and prepare

them grounds to plant on, against the season.  And

this charg of maintaining them all this while was litle

less then ye former sume.  These things I note more

perticulerly, for sundry regards.  First, to shew a rare

example herein of brotherly love, and Christian care

in performing their promises and covenants to their

bretheren, too, & in a sorte beyonde their power;

that they should venture so desperatly to ingage them

selves to accomplish this thing, and bear it so cheer-

fully; for they never demanded, much less had, any

repaymente of all these great sumes thus disbursed.

2ly.  It must needs be that ther was more then of man

in these acheevements, that should thus readily stire up

1629.]                  PLYMOUTH  PLANTATION                 299

ye harts of shuch able frinds to joyne in partnership

with them in shuch a case, and cleave so faithfullie

to them as these did, in so great adventures; and the

more because the most of them never saw their faces

to this day; ther being neither kindred, aliance, or

other acquaintance or relations betweene any of them,

then hath been before mentioned; it must needs be

therfore the spetiall worke and hand of God.  3ly.

That these poore people here in a wilderness should,

notwithstanding, be inabled in time to repay all these

ingagments, and many more unjustly brought upon

them through the unfaithfullnes of some, and many

other great losses which they sustained, which will be

made manifest, if ye Lord be pleased to give life and

time.  In ye mean time, I cannot but admire his ways

and workes towards his servants, and humbly desire

to blesse his holy name for his great mercies hithertoo.

     [166] The Leyden people being thus come over,

and sundry of ye generalitie seeing & hearing how great ye

charg was like to be that was that way to be expended,

they begane to murmure and repine at it, notwith-

standing ye burden lay on other mens shoulders;

espetialIy at ye paying of ye 3. bushells of corne

a year, according to ye former agreemente, when ye

trad was lett for ye 6. years aforesaid.  But to give

them contente herein allso, it was promised them, that

if they could doe it in ye time without it, they would

never demand it of them; which gave them good con-

300                                HISTORY OF                        [BOOK II.

tente.  And indeed it never was paid, as will appeare

by ye sequell.

      Concerning Mr. Allertons proceedings about ye in-

larging & confirming of their patent, both yt at home

& Kenebeck, will best appere by another leter of

Mr. Sherleys; for though much time & money was

expended aboute it, yet he left it unaccomplisht this

year, and came without it.  See Mr. Sherleys letter.

Most worthy & loving freinds, &c.

     Some of your letters I received in July, & some since

by Mr. Peirce, but till our maine bussines, ye patent, was

granted, I could not setle my mind nor pen to writing.  Mr.

Allerton was so turrmoyled about it, as verily I would not

nor could not have undergone it, if I might have had a

thousand pounds; but ye Lord so blessed his labours (even

beyond expectation in these evill days) as he obtained ye

love & favore of great men in repute & place.  He got

granted from ye Earle of Warwick & Sr. Ferdinandou Gorge

all that Mr. Winslow desired in his letters to me, & more

also, which I leave to him to relate.  Then he sued to ye

king to confirme their grante, and to make you a corporation,

and so to inable you to make & execute lawes, in such

large & ample maner as ye Massachusett plantation hath it;

which ye king graciously granted, referring it to ye Lord

Keeper to give order to ye solisiter to draw it up, if ther

were a presidente for it.  So ye Lord Keeper furthered it all

he could, and allso ye solissiter but as Festus said to Paule,

With no small sume of money obtained I this freedom; for

by ye way many ridells must be resolved, and many locks

must be opened with ye silver, ney, ye golden key.  Then

it was to come to ye Lord Treasurer, to have his warrente

1629.]                  PLYMOUTH  PLANTATION.                301

for freeing ye custume for a certaine time; but he would not

doe it, but refferd it to ye Counsell table.  And ther

Mr. Allerton atended day by day, when they sate, but could

not gett his petition read.  And by reason of Mr. Peirce

his staying with all ye passengers at Bristoll, he was forct

to leave ye further prosecuting of it to a solissiter.  But ther

is no fear nor doubte but it will be granted, for he hath ye

cheefe of them to freind; yet it will be marvelously need-

full for him to returne by ye first ship yt comes from thence;

for if you had this confirmed, then were you compleate,

and might bear such sway & goverment as were fitt for

your ranke & place yt God hath called you unto; and stope

ye moueths of base and scurrulous fellowes, yt are ready

to question & threaten you in every action you [167] doe.

And besids, if you have ye custome free for 7. years inward,

& 21. outward, ye charge of ye patent will be soone re-

covered, and ther is no fear of obtaining* it.  But such

things must work by degrees; men cannot hasten it as they

would; werefore we (I write in behalfe of all our partners

here) desire you to be ernest with Mr. Allerton to come,

and his wife to spare him this one year more, to finish this

great & waighty bussines, which we conceive will be much

for your good, & I hope for your posteritie, and for many

generations to come.

     Thus much of this letter.  It was dated ye 19. March,


     By which it appears what progress was made herein,

& in part what charge it was, and how left unfinished,

and some reason of ye same; but in truth (as was

* This word is here substituted for recovering in the manuscript, on the

authority of Bradford's Letter-Book.

302                                HISTORY OF                        [BOOK II.

afterwards appehended) the meaine reason was Mr.

Allerton's policie, to have an opportunitie to be sent

over againe, for other regards; and for that end pro-

cured them thus to write.  For it might then well

enough have been finshed, if not with yt clause aboute

ye custumes, which was Mr. Allertons & Mr. Sherleys

device, and not at all thought on by ye colony here,

nor much regarded, yet it might have been done with-

out it, without all queston, having passed ye kings hand;

nay it was conceived it might then have beene done

with it, if he had pleased; but covetousnes never brings

ought home, as ye proverb is, for this oppertunytie

being lost, it was never accomplished, but a great deale

of money veainly & lavishly cast away aboute it, as

doth appear upon their accounts. But of this more in

its place.

     Mr. Alerton gave them great and just ofence in this

(which I had omited* and almost forgotten), -- in

bringing over this year, for base gaine, that unworthy

man, and instrumente of mischeefe, Morton, who was

sent home but ye year before for his misdemenors.  He

not only brought him over, but to ye towne (as it were

to nose them), and lodged him at his owne house, and

for a while used him as a scribe to doe his bussines,

till he was caused to pack him a way.  So he wente to

his old nest in ye Massachusets, wher it was not long

    * This paragraph is written on the reverse of the page immediately pre-

ceding, in the original manuscript.

1629.]                  PLYMOUTH  PLANTATION.                303

but by his miscariage he gave them just occation to

lay hands on him; and he was by them againe sent

prisoner into England, wher he lay a good while in

Exeter Jeole.  For besids his miscariage here, he was

vemently suspected for ye murder of a man that had

adventured moneys with him, when he came first, into

New-England.  And a warrente was sente from ye Lord

Cheefe Justice to apprehend him, by vertue wherof he

was by the Govr of ye Massachusets sent into England;

and for other his misdemenors amongst them, they

demolisht his house, that it might be no longer a roost

for shuch unclaine birds to nestle in.  Yet he got free

againe, and write an infamouse & scurillous booke

against many godly & cheefe men of ye cuntrie; full

of lyes & slanders, and fraight with profane callumnies

against their names and persons, and ye ways of

God.  After sundry years, when ye warrs were hott

in England, he came againe into ye cuntrie, and was

implisoned at Boston for this booke and other things,

being grown old in wickednes.

      Concerning ye rest of Mr. Allertons instructions, in

which they strictly injoyned him not to exceed above

yt 50li. in ye goods before mentioned, not to bring any

but trading comodities, he followed them not at all,

but did the quite contrarie; bringing over many other

sorts of retaile goods, selling what he could by the

way on his owne accounte, and delivering the rest,

which he said to be theirs, into ye store; and for

304                                HISTORY OF                        [BOOK II.

trading goods brought but title in comparison; excusing

the matter, they had laid out much about ye Laiden

people, & patent, &c.  And for other goods, they had

much of them of ther owne dealings, without present

disbursemente, & to like effect.  And as for passing

his bounds & instructions, he laid it on Mr. Sherley,

&c., who, he said, they might see his mind in his

leters; also that they had sett out Ashley at great

charg; but next year they should have what trading

goods they would send for, if things were now well

setled, &c.  And thus were they put off; indeed Mr.

Sherley write things tending this way, but it is like he

was overruled by Mr. Allerton, and harkened more to

him then to their letters from hence.

     Thus he further writs in ye former leter.

     I see what you write in your leters concerning ye over-

coming & paying of our debts, which I confess are great,

and had need be carfully looked unto; yet no doubt but

we, joyning in love, may soone over-come them; but we

must follow it roundly & to purposs, for if we pedle out

ye time of our trad, others will step in and nose us.  But

we know yt you have yt aquaintance & experience in ye coun-

trie, as none have the like; wherfore, freinds & partners, be

no way discouraged with ye greatnes of ye debt, &c., but let

us not fulfill ye proverbe, to bestow 12d. on a purse, and put

6d. [168] in it; but as you and we have been at great charg,

and undergone much for setling you ther, and to gaine ex-

perience, so as God shall enable us, let us make use of it.

And think not with 50li. pound a yeare sent you over, to

rayse shuch means as to pay our debts.  We see a possi-

1629.]                  PLYMOUTH  PLAKTATION.                305

billitie of good if you be well supplied, and fully furnished;

and cheefly if you lovingly agree.  I know I write to godly

and wise men, such as have lerned to bear one an others

infirmities, and rejoyce at any ones prosperities; and if

I were able I would press this more, because it is hoped

by some of your enimies, that you will fail out one with

another, and so over throw your hopfull bussines.  Nay,

I have heard it crediblie reported, yt some have said, that

till you be disjoynted by discontents & factions* amongst

your sellves, it bootes not any to goe over, in hope of getting

or doing good in those parts.  But we hope beter things of

you, and that you will not only bear one with another, but

banish such thoughts, and not suffer them to lodg in your

brests.  God grant you may disappointe ye hopes of your

foes, and procure ye hartie desire of your selves & freinds

in this perticuler.

     By this it appears that ther was a kind of concurrance

betweene Mr. Allerton and them in these things, and

that they gave more regard to his way & course in

these things, then to ye advise from hence; which made

him bould to presume above his instructions, and to

rune on in ye course he did, to their greater hurt after-

wards, as will appear.  These things did much trouble

them hear, but they well knew not how to help it,

being loath to make any breach or contention hear

aboute; being so premonished as before in ye leter

above recited.  An other more secrete cause was here-

with concurrente; Mr. Allerton had maried ye daughter

of their Reverend Elder, Mr. Brewster (a man beloved

*Fractions in the manuscript.

306                                HISTORY OF                        [BOOK II.

& honoured amongst them, and who tooke great paines

in teaching & dispenceing ye word of God unto them),

whom they were loath to greeve or any way offend,

so as they bore with much in that respecte.  And with

all Mr. Allerton carried so faire with him, and procured

such leters from Mr. Sherley to him, with shuch ap-

plause of Mr. Allertons wisdom, care, and faithfullnes,

in ye bussines; and as things stood none were so fitte

to send aboute them as he; and if any should suggest

other wise, it was rather out of envie, or some other

sinister respecte then other wise.  Besids, though pri-

vate gaine, I doe perswade my selfe, was some cause

to lead Mr. Allerton aside in these beginings, yet I

thinke, or at least charitie caries me to hope, that he

intended to deale faithfully with them in ye maine, and

had such an opinion of his owne abillitie, and some

experience of ye benefite that he had made in this

singuler way, as he conceived he might both raise him

selfe an estate, and allso be a means to bring in such

profite to Mr. Sherley, (and. it may be ye rest,) as

might be as lickly to bring in their moneys againe

with advantage, and it may be sooner then from the

generall way; or at least it was looked upon by some

of them to be a good help ther unto; and that neither

he nor any other did intend to charge ye generall

accounte with any thing that rane in perticuler; or

yt Mr. Sherley or any other did purposs but yt ye

generall should be first & fully supplyed.  I say charitie

1629.]                  PLYMOUTH  PLANTATION.                307

makes me thus conceive; though things fell out other

wise, and they missed of their aimes, and ye generall

suffered abundantly hereby, as will afterwards apear.

     [169] Togeither herewith sorted an other bussines

contrived by Mr. Allerton and them ther, wthout any

knowledg of ye partners, and so farr proceeded in as

they were constrained to allow therof, and joyne in

ye same, though they had no great liking of it, but

feared what might be ye evente of ye same.  I shall

relate it in a further part of Mr. Sherley's leter as


     I am to aquainte you that we have thought good to joyne

with one Edward Ashley (a man I thinke yt some of you

know); but it is only of yt place wherof he hath a patente

in Mr. Beachamps name; and to that end have furnished

him with larg provissions, &c.  Now if you please to be

partners with us in this, we are willing you shall; for after

we heard how forward Bristoll men (and as I hear some

able men of his owne kindrid) have been to stock & sup-

ply him, hoping of profite, we thought it fitter for us to lay

hould of such an opportunitie, and to keep a kind of runing

plantation, then others who have not borne ye burthen of

setling a plantation, as we have done.  And he, on ye other

side, like an understanding yonge man, thought it better to

joyne with those yt had means by a plantation to supply

& back him ther, rather then strangers, that looke but only

after profite.  Now it is not knowne that you are partners

with him; but only we 4., Mr. Andrews, Mr. Beachamp, my

selfe, & Mr. Hatherley, who desired to have ye patente, in

consideration of our great loss we have allready sustained

in setling ye first plantation ther; so we agreed togeather to

308                                HISTORY OF                        [BOOK II.

take it in our names.  And now, as I said before, if you

please to joyne with us, we are willing you should.  Mr.

Allerton had no power from you to make this new con-

tracte, neither was he willing to doe any thing therin with-

out your consente & approbation.  Mr. William Peirce is

joyned with us in this, for we thought it very conveniente,

because of landing Ashley and his goods ther, if God please;

and he will bend his course accordingly.  He hath a new

boate with him, and boards to make another, with 4. or 5.

lustie fellowes, wherof one is a carpenter.  Now in case

you are not willing in this perticuler to joyne with us, fear-

ing ye charge & doubting ye success, yet thus much we in-

treate of you, to afford him all the help you can, either by

men, commodities, or boats; yet not but yt we will pay

you for any thing he hath.  And we desire you to keep

ye accounts apart, though you joyne with us; becase ther

is, as you see, other partners in this then ye other; so, for

all mens wages, boats-hire, or comodities, which we shall

have of you, make him debtore for it; and what you shall

have of him, make ye plantation or your selves debtore

for it to him, and so ther will need no mingling of ye ac-


     And now, loving freinds & partners, if you joyne in Ashles

patent & bussines, though we have laid out ye money and

taken up much to stock this bussines & the other, yet I

thinke it conscionable and reasonable yt you should beare

your shares and proportion of ye stock, if not by present

money, yet by securing us for so much as it shall come

too; for it is not barly ye interest yt is to be alowed & con-

sidered of, but allso ye adventure; though I hope in God,

by his blessing & your honest indeavors, it may soon be

payed; yet ye years yt this partnership holds is not long,

nor many; let all therfore lay it to harte, and make ye best

use of ye time that possiblie we cann, and let every man

1629.]                  PLYMOUTH  PLANTATION                 309

put too his shoulder, and ye burthen will be the lighter. 

I know you are so honest & conscionable men, as you will

consider hereof, [170] and returne shuch an answer as may

give good satisfaction.  Ther is none of us that would ven-

ture as we have done, were it not to strengthen & setle you

more then our owne perticuler profite.

      Ther is no liclyhood of doing any good in buying ye debte

for ye purchas.  I know some will not abate ye interest, and

therfore let it rune its course; they are to be paied yearly,

and so I hope they shall, according to agreemente.  The

Lord grant yt our loves & affections may still be united,

and knit togeither; and so we rest your ever loving friends,



Bristoll, March 19. 1629.

      This mater of ye buying ye debts of ye purchass

was parte of Mr. Allertons instructions, and in many

of them it might have been done to good profite for

ready pay (as some were); but. Mr. Sherley had no

mind to it.  But this bussines aboute Ashley did not

a litle trouble them; for though he had wite & abillitie

enough to menage ye bussines, yet some of them knew

him to be a very profane yonge man; and he had for

some time lived amonge ye Indeans as a savage, &

wente naked amongst them, and used their maners (in

wch time he got their language), so they feared he

might still rune into evill courses (though he prom-

ised better), and God would not prosper his ways.

As soone as he was landed at ye place intended, caled

Penobscote, some 4. score leagues from this place, he

310                                HISTORY OF                        [BOOK II.

write (& afterwards came) for to desire to be sup-

plyed with Wampampeake, corne against winter, and

other things.  They considered these were of their

cheefe comodities, and would be continually needed by

him, and it would much prejudice their owne trade

at Kenebeck if they did not joyne with him in ye

ordering of things, if thus they should supply him;

and on ye other hand, if they refused to joyne with

him, and allso to afford any supply unto him, they

should greatly offend their above named friends, and

might hapily lose them hereby; and he and Mr. Aller-

ton, laying their craftie wits togither, might gett sup-

plies of these things els wher; besids, they considered

that if they joyned not in ye bussines, they knew Mr.

Allerton would be with them in it, & so would swime,

as it were, betweene both, to ye prejudice of boath,

but of them selves espetially.  For they had reason

to thinke this bussines was cheefly of his contriving,

and Ashley was a man fitte for his turne and dealings.

So they, to prevente a worse mischeefe, resolved to

joyne in ye bussines, and gave him supplies in what

they could, & overlooked his proceedings as well as

they could; the which they did ye better, by joyning

an honest yonge man,*  that came from Leyden, with

him as his fellow (in some sorte), and not merely as

a servante.  Which yonge man being discreete, and

one whom they could trust, they so instructed as

* Thomas Willett.

Continue on to Book Two / pp. 311 - 351

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