Young Benjamin Franklin
, born in 1706, professes a high respect for the Mathers, but he does not go to church, “Sunday being my studying day,” and neither the clerical nor the secular arm of Boston
is long enough and strong enough to compel that industrious apprentice into piety.
If such was the state of New England
, the laxity of New York and Virginia
needs little evidence.
Contemporary travelers found the New Yorkers singularly attached to the things of this present world.
was prosperous and therewith content.
was a paradise with no forbidden fruit.
, writing of it in 1724, considers North Carolina
“the refuge of runaways,” and South Carolina
“the delight of buccaneers and pirates,” but Virginia
“the happy retreat of true Britons and true Churchmen.”
Unluckily these Virginians
, well nourished “by the plenty of the country,” have “contemptible notions of England
We shall hear from them again.
In the meantime the witty William Byrd
describes for us his amusing survey of the Dismal Swamp
, and his excursions into North Carolina
and to Governor Spotswood
's iron mines, where he reads aloud to the Widow Fleming
, on a rainy autumn day, three acts of the Beggars' opera