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[168] alone knew its windings. It has known less peaceful days than these. Who can fancy the terrible scenes that may well have happened here, when its chief use was to mark the boundary-line between two hostile tribes, each quick to resist encroachments on their territory?

It is not quite easy to imagine just how it fitted into its surroundings two hundred and eighty-one years ago, when it was first christened with its English name. The days of his dignified and unhappy Majesty, King Charles the First, seem sometimes far away, but it brings them a little nearer to remember that he was only a prince, “Baby Charles” as they used to call him, at the time when Captain John Smith gave his name to the just-discovered and disappointing river. No Hudson was this beguiling stream, which promised much in its wide welcome to the eager adventurers, but soon betrayed its secret of dependence on the ebb and flow of the tides, confessing its narrow banks and its country manners. Little did sturdy Captain Smith imagine that these same banks would one day give peace and protection to the judges of his unfortunate ruler. The regicides, Goffe and Whalley, came in the same ship that brought the news of the Restoration. They must have been dignified and self-respecting refugees, received courteously by the Governor, as they were, and visited by the principal persons of the town. The magistrates of Cambridge “entertained and feasted them with great solemnity” say the old records, and the river rippled on, unashamed of its name.

The name and nothing more was the bequest of Captain Smith to the stream. The first event of its witnessing that nearly concerns us was the “semi-military picnic,” as Colonel Higginson aptly calls

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