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[497] for some years prior to 1621, why is it that we do not find it mentioned by that name prior to that year. Premising the significant fact that we do not find it mentioned in the ancient records by any name prior to 1621, the obvious answer to that question springs up of itself.

So important a headland (important at least to sailors) as that promontory was, could not have been, and would not have been, permitted by seafaring men to stand without a name from 1608 to 1621. Their convenience absolutely required that it should, from the earliest years of the Colony, have a well-established name, and one universally known among seamen. This name I have no doubt was Newport's News, and while doubtless well known and in constant use among sailors from 1608, the chances were five hundred to one that the Colonial authorities would, in official communications to the Company in London, have no occasion to mention the name of the point until a settlement of people should be made there, while individuals returning to London from the Colony and masters of ships sailing between London and the Colony might, in their intercourse with members of the Company as private individuals, and with the Company itself as a corporation, have spoken, and no doubt did often speak, of Newport's News as a point which they had rounded or anchored before on such and such a date, when tide and wind were ahead.

That the point was not occupied by a settlement of white people prior to 1621, we have, I think, good grounds for believing from the facts now to be adduced. Rolfe's relation, written in Virginia in 1616, and now in the British Museum in the original manuscript, and sent by Rolfe to the Company in London in 1616, has, among others, the following statement:

The places which are now possessed and inhabited are sixe,

1st. Henrico and the lymitts,

2d. Bermuda Nether Hundreds,

3d. West and Shirley Hundreds,

4th. James Towne,

5th. Kequoughtan [now, 1882, Hampton],

6th. Dale's Gift; ‘upon the sea neere unto Cape Charles;’

and Rolfe states that 351 persons composed at that time the entire population of the Colony.

The first legislative, representative body that was ever convened in Virginia, was organized on 30th July, 1619, at Jamestown. All the settlements in the Colony, then eleven in number, were represented in that body, each settlement by two burgesses. I have the names of the eleven settlements now before me, but to economize space I do not here


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