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Book XIV: the Pilgrims at Plymouth (A. D. 1620-1621.)

These extracts are taken from that valuable collection, ‘Chronicles of the Pilgrim Fathers of the Colony of Plymouth, from 1602 to 1625; now first collected from original records and contemporaneous printed documents,’ by Alexander Young, Boston, 1841.

The first extract is from Edward Winslow's ‘Brief Narration,’ London, 1646 (Young, p. 384). The rest are from the journal of Bradford and Winslow, commonly called ‘Mourt's Relation,’ London, 1622. (Young, pp. 125-136, 150-162, 167-174, 182-189.)


I.—The sailing of the Pilgrims.

[the Pilgrims sailed from Delft Haven,—often called by them Delph's Haven,—in Holland, July 22, 1620.]

And when the ship was ready to carry us away, the brethren that staid, having again solemnly sought the Lord with us and for us, and we further engaging ourselves mutually as before,—they, I say, that staid at Leyden, feasted us that were to go, at our pastor's house, being large, where we refreshed ourselves, after tears, with singing of psalms, making joyful melody in our hearts, as well as with the voice, there being many of the congregation very expert in music; and indeed it was the sweetest melody that ever mine ears heard. After this, they accompanied us to Delph's Haven, where we were to embark, and there feasted us again. And after prayer performed by our pastor, where a flood of tears was poured out, they accompanied us to the ship, but were not able to speak one to another for the abundance of sorrow to part. But we only going aboard,—the ship lying to the quay, and [312] ready to set sail, the wind being fair,—we gave them a volley of small shot, and three pieces of ordnance; and so, lifting up our hands to each other, and our hearts for each other to the Lord our God, we departed, and found his presence with us in the midst of our manifold straits he carried us through. And, if any

Delph's Haven

doubt this relation, the Dutch, as I hear, at Delph's Haven preserve the memory of it to this day, and will inform them.

Ii.-miles Standish at Cape Cod.

Some of our people, impatient of delay, desired for our better furtherance to travel by land into the country,—which was not without appearance of danger, not having the shallop with them, nor means to carry provision but on their backs,—to see whether it might be [313] fit for us to seat1 in or no; and the rather, because, as we sailed into the harbor, there seemed to be a river2 opening itself into the mainland. The willingness of the persons was liked; but the thing itself, in regard to the danger, was rather permitted than approved; and so with cautions, directions, and instructions, six-

Mayflower off Provincetown.

teen men were set3 out, with every man his musket,4 sword, and corselet, under the conduct of Captain Miles Standish, unto whom was adjoined for counsel and [314] advice William Bradford, Stephen Hopkins, and Edward Tilley.

Wednesday, the 15th of November, they were set ashore.5 And when they had ordered themselves in the order of a single file, and marched about the space of a mile by the sea, they espied five or six people, with a dog, coming towards them, who were savages; who, when they saw them, ran into the wood, and whistled the dog after them, &c. First they supposed them to be Master Jones, the master, and some of his men; for they were ashore, and knew of their coming. But, after they knew them to be Indians, they marched after them into the woods, lest other of the Indians should lie in ambush. But, when the Indians saw our men following them, they ran away with might and main, and our men turned out of the wood after them, for it was the way they intended to go; but they could not come near them. They followed them that night about ten miles, by the trace of their footings,6 and saw how they had come the same way they went, and at a turning perceived how they ran up a hill, to see whether they followed them. At length night came upon them, and they were constrained to take up their lodging.7 So they set forth three sentinels; and the rest, some kindled a fire, and others fetched wood, and there held our rendezvous that night.

In the morning, as soon as we could see the trace, we proceeded on our journey, and had8 the track until [315] we had compassed the head of a long creek;9 and there they took into another wood, and we after them, supposing to find some of their dwellings. But we marched through boughs and bushes, and under hills and valleys, which tore our very armor in pieces, and yet could meet with none of them, nor their houses, nor find any fresh water, which we greatly desired and stood in need of; for we brought neither beer nor water with us, and our victuals was only biscuit and Holland cheese, and a little bottle of aqua vita, so as we were sore athirst. About ten o'clock, we came into a deep valley, full of brush, wood-gaile,10 and long grass, through which we found little paths, or tracks; and there we saw a deer, and found springs of fresh water, of which we were heartily glad, and sat us down and drunk our first New England water with as much delight as ever we drunk drink in all our lives.

When we had refreshed ourselves, we directed our course full south, that we might come to the shore, which within a short while after we did, and there made a fire, that they in the ship might see where we were, as we had direction; and so marched on towards this supposed river. And, as we went in another valley, we found a fine clear pond11 of fresh water, being about a musket-shot broad, and twice as long. There grew also many small vines, and fowl and deer haunted there. There grew much sassafras. From thence we went on, and found much plain ground, about fifty acres, fit for the plough, and some signs where the Indians [316] had formerly planted their corn. After this, some thought it best, for nearness of the river, to go down and travel on the sea-sands, by which means some of our men were tired, and lagged behind. So we staid and gathered them up, and struck into the land again, where we found a little path to certain heaps of sand, one whereof was covered with old mats, and had a wooden thing like a mortar whelmed12 on the top of it, and an earthen pot laid in a little hole at the end thereof. We, musing13 what it might be, digged, and found a bow, and, as we thought, arrows; but they were rotten. We supposed there were many other things; but, because we deemed them graves, we put in the bow again, and made it up as it was, and left the rest untouched, because we thought it would be odious unto them to ransack their sepulchres.

We went on farther, and found new stubble, of which they had gotten corn this year, and many walnut-trees full of nuts, and great store of strawberries, and some vines. Passing thus a field or two, which were not great, we came to another, which had also been new gotten; and there we found where a house had been, and four or five old planks laid together. Also we found a great kettle, which had been some ship's kettle, and brought out of Europe. There was also a heap of sand, made like the former,—but it was newly done, we might see how they had paddled it with their hands, —which we digged up, and in it we found a little old basket full of fair Indian corn. We digged farther, and found a fine great new basket, full of very fair corn of this year, with some six and thirty goodly ears of corn, [317] some yellow, and some red, and others mixed with blue, which was a very goodly sight.14 The basket was round, and narrow at the top. It held about three or four bushels, which was as much as two of us could lift up from the ground, and was very handsomely and cunningly made. But, whilst we were busy about all these things, we set our men sentinel in a round ring, all but two or three, which digged up the corn. We were in suspense what to do with it and the kettle; and at length, after much consultation, we concluded to take the kettle, and as much of the corn as we could carry away with us; and when our shallop came, if we could find any of the people, and come to parley with them, we would give them the kettle again, and satisfy them for their corn.15 So we took all the ears, and put a good deal of the loose corn in the kettle, for two men to bring away on a staff. Besides, they that could put any into their pockets filled the same. The rest we buried again; for we were so laden with armor, that we could carry no more.

Not far from this place we found the remainder of an old fort or palisado, which, as we conceived, had been made by some Christians. This was also hard by that place which we thought had been a river;16 unto which we went, and found it so to be, dividing itself into two arms by a high bank, standing right by the cut or mouth, which came from the sea. That which was next unto us was the less. The other arm was more than twice as big, and not unlike to be a harbor for ships: but whether it be a fresh river, [318] or only an indraught of the sea, we had no time to discover; for we had commandment to be out but two days. Here, also, we saw two canoes,—the one on the one side, the other on the other side. We could not believe it was a canoe till we came near it. So we returned, leaving the further discovery hereof to our shallop, and came that night back again to the freshwater pond; and there we made our rendezvous that night, making a great fire, and a barricade to windward of us, and kept good watch with three sentinels all night, every one standing when his turn came, while five or six inches of match was burning. It proved a very rainy night.

In the morning, we took our kettle, and sunk it in the pond, and trimmed our muskets, for few of them would go off because of the wet, and so coasted the wood again to come home, in which we were shrewdly puzzled, and lost our way. As we wandered, we came to a tree, where a young sprit17 was bowed down over a bow, and some acorns strewed underneath. Stephen Hopkins said it had been to catch some deer. So as we were looking at it, William Bradford being in the rear, when he came, looked also upon it; and, as he went about, it gave a sudden jerk up, and he was immediately caught by the leg. It was a very pretty device, made with a rope of their own making, and having a noose as artificially made as any roper18 in England can make, and as like ours as can be; which we brought away with us. In the end, we got out of [319] the wood, and were fallen19 about a mile too high above the creek, where we saw three bucks; but we had rather have had one of them. We also did spring three couple of partridges: and, as we came along by the creek, we saw great flocks of wild geese and ducks; but they were very fearful of us. So we marched some while in the woods, some while on the sands, and other while in the water up to the knees, till at length we came near the ship, and then we shot off our pieces, and the long-boat came to fetch us. Master Jones and Master Carver, being on the shore with many of our people, came to meet us. And thus we came both weary and welcome home, and delivered in our corn into the store to be kept for seed; for we knew not how to come by any, and therefore were very glad, purposing, as soon as we could meet with any of the inhabitants of that place, to make them large satisfaction. This was our first discovery, whilst our shallop was in repairing.

Iii.—The first encounter.

Wednesday, the 6th of December, 1620], we set out, being very cold and hard weather. We were a long while, after we launched from the ship, before we could get clear of a sandy point20 which lay within less than a furlough of the same; in which time two were very sick, and Edward Tilley had liked to have sounded21 with cold. The gunner also was sick unto death; but hope of trucking22 made him to go, and so remained all [320] that day and the next night. At length we got clear of the sandy point, and got up our sails, and, within an hour or two, we got under the weather-shore, and then had smoother water and better sailing. But it was very cold; for the water froze on our clothes, and made them many times like coats of iron.

We sailed six or seven leagues by the shore, but saw neither river nor creek. At length we met with a tongue of land, being flat off from the shore, with a sandy point.23 We bore up to gain the point, and found there a fair income24 or road of a bay, being a league over at the narrowest, and some two or three in length; but we made right over to the land before us, and left the discovery of this income till the next day. As we drew near to the shore,25 we espied some ten or twelve Indians very busy about a black thing,— what it was we could not tell,—till afterwards they saw us, and ran to and fro, as if they had been carrying something away. We landed a league or two from them, and had much ado to put ashore anywhere, it lay so full of flat sands. When we came to shore, we made us a barricade, and got firewood, and set out sentinels, and betook us to our lodging, such as it was. We saw the smoke of the fire which the savages made that night, about four or five miles from us.

Governor Winslow.


In the morning we divided our company, some eight in the shallop; and the rest on the shore went to discover this place. But we found it only to be a bay,26 without either river or creek coming into it. Yet we deemed it to be as good a harbor as Cape Cod; for they that sounded it found a ship might ride in five fathom water. We on the land found it to be a level soil, though none of the fruitfulest. We saw two becks27 of fresh water, which were the first running streams that we saw in the country; but one might stride over them. We found also a great fish, called a grampus,28 dead on the sands. They in the shallop found two of them also in the bottom of the bay, dead in like sort. They were cast up at high water, and could not get off for the frost and ice. They were some five or six paces long, and about two inches thick of fat, and fleshed like swine. They would have yielded a great deal of oil, if there had been time and means to have taken it. So we, finding nothing for our turn, both we and our shallop returned.

We then directed our course along the sea-sands to the place where we first saw the Indians. When we were there, we saw it was also a grampus which they were cutting up. They cut it into long rands, or pieces, about an ell long, and two handful broad. We found here and there a piece scattered by the way, as it seemed, for haste. This place the most were minded we should call the Grampus Bay, because we found so many of them there. We followed the track of [322] the Indians' bare feet a good way on the sands. At length we saw where they struck into the woods by the side of a pond.29 As we went to view the place, one said he thought he saw an Indian house among the trees, so went up to see. And here we and the shallop lost sight one of another till night, it being now about nine or ten o'clock: so we light30 upon a path, but saw no house, and followed a great way into the woods. At length we found where corn had been set, but not that year.

Anon we found a great burying-place, one part whereof was encompassed with a large palisado, like a churchyard with young spires,31 four or five yards long, set as close one by another as they could, two or three foot in the ground. Within, it was full of graves, some bigger, and some less. Some were also paled32 about, and others had like an Indian house made over them, but not matted. These graves were more sumptuous than those at Cornhill;33 yet we digged none of them up, but only viewed them, and went our way. Without the palisado were graves also, but not so costly. From this place we went and found more corn-ground, but not of this year. As we ranged, we light on four or five Indian houses which had been lately dwelt in; but they were uncovered, and had no mats about them, else they were like those we found at Cornhill, but had not been so lately dwelt in. There was nothing left but two or three pieces of old mats, and a little sedge- [323] Also, a little further, we found two baskets full of parched acorns hid in the ground, which we supposed had been corn when we began to dig the same. We cast earth thereon again, and went our way. All this while we saw no people.

We went ranging up and down till the sun began to draw low, and then we hasted out of the woods, that we might come to our shallop, which, when we were out of the woods, we espied a great way off, and called them to come unto us; the which they did as soon as they could, for it was not yet high water. They were exceeding glad to see us; for they feared because they had not seen us in so long a time, thinking we would have kept by the shore-side. So, being both weary and faint,—for we had eaten nothing all day,—we fell to make our rendezvous, and get firewood, which always costs us a great deal of labor. By that time we had done, and our shallop come to us, it was within night; and we fed upon such victuals as we had, and betook us to our rest, after we had set our watch. About midnight we heard a great and hideous cry; and our sentinels called, ‘Arm, arm!’ So we bestirred ourselves, and shot off a couple of muskets, and the noise ceased. We concluded that it was a company of wolves or foxes; for one told us he had heard such a noise in Newfoundland.

About five o'clock in the morning, we began to be stirring; and two or three, which doubted whether their pieces would go off or no, made trial of them, and shot them off, but thought nothing at all. After prayer, we prepared ourselves for breakfast, and for a journey; and, it being now twilight in the morning, it [324] was thought meet to carry the things down to the shallop. Some said it was not best to carry the armor down. Others said they would be readier. Two or three said they would not carry theirs till they went themselves, but mistrusting nothing at all. As it fell out, the water not being high enough, they laid the things down upon the shore, and came up to breakfast. Anon, all of a sudden, we heard a great and strange cry, which we knew to be the same voices, though they varied their notes. One of the company, being abroad, came running in, and cried, ‘They are men! Indians, Indians!’ and withal their arrows came flying amongst us.

Our men ran out with all speed to recover their arms, as by the good providence of God they did. In the mean time, Captain Miles Standish, having a snaphance34 ready, made a shot; and after him another. After they two had shot, other two of us were ready: but he wished us not to shoot till we could take aim, for we knew not what need we should have; and there were four only of us which had their arms there ready, and stood before the open side of our barricade, which was first assaulted. They thought it best to defend it, lest the enemy should take it and our stuff, and so have the more vantage35 against us. Our care was no less for the shallop; but we hoped all the rest would defend it. We called unto them to know how it was with them; and they answered, ‘Well, well,’ every one; and, ‘Be of good courage.’ We heard three of their pieces go off; and the rest called for a firebrand to light their matches. One took a log out of the fire on [325] his shoulder, and went and carried it unto them, which was thought did not a little discourage our enemies. The cry of our enemies36 was dreadful, especially when our men ran out to recover their arms. Their note was after this manner, ‘Woach, woach, ha ha hach woach!’ Our men were no sooner come to their arms, but the enemy was ready to assault them.

There was a lusty man, and no whit less valiant, who was thought to be their captain, stood behind a tree, within half a musket-shot of us, and there let his arrows fly at us. He was seen to shoot three arrows, which were all avoided; for he at whom the first arrow was aimed saw it, and stooped down; and it flew over him. The rest were avoided also. He stood three shots of a musket. At length one took, as he said, full aim at him, after which he gave an extraordinary cry, and away they went all. We followed them about a quarter of a mile: but we left six to keep our shallop; for we were very careful of our business. Then we shouted all together two several times, and shot off a couple of muskets, and so returned. This we did, that they might see we were not afraid of them, nor discouraged.

Sword of Standish.

Thus it pleased God to vanquish our enemies, and give us deliverance. By their noise we could not guess they were less than thirty or forty, though some thought that they were many more; yet, in the dark of the morning, we could not so well discern them among the trees as they could see us by our fireside. We [326] took up eighteen of their arrows, which we have sent to England by Master Jones, some whereof were headed with brass, others with harts' horn, and others with eagles' claws. Many more, no doubt, were shot, for these we found were almost covered with leaves: yet, by the especial providence of God, none of them either hit or hurt us, though many came close by us, and on every side of us; and some coats which hung up in our barricado were shot through and through. So, after we had given God thanks for our deliverance, we took our shallop, and went our journey, and called this place ‘The First Encounter.’

Iv.—The landing on Plymouth Rock.

[the same exploring-party, in a shallop, finally reached Plymouth harbor.]

Having the wind good, we sailed all that day along the coast about fifteen leagues, but saw neither river nor creek to put into. After we had sailed an hour or two, it began to snow and rain, and to be bad weather. About the midst of the afternoon, the wind increased, and the seas began to be very rough; and the hinges of the rudder broke, so that we could steer no longer; but two men, with much ado, were fain to serve with a couple of oars. The seas were grown so great, that we were much troubled and in great danger; and night drew on. Anon Master Coppin bade us be of good cheer: he saw the harbor. As we drew near, the gale being stiff, and we bearing great sail to get in, split our [327] mast in three pieces, and were like to have cast away our shallop. Yet by God's mercy, recovering ourselves, we had the flood37 with us, and struck into the harbor.

Now he that thought that had been the place was

Sunday on Clark's island.

deceived, it being a place where not any of us had been before; and, coming into the harbor, he that was our pilot did bear up northward, which if we had continued we had been cast away. Yet still the Lord kept us, and we bare up for an island38 before us; and recovering of that island, being compassed about with [328] many rocks, and dark night growing upon us, it pleased the divine Providence that we fell upon a place of sandy ground, where our shallop did ride safe and secure all that night; and, coming upon a strange island, kept our watch all night in the rain upon that island. And in the morning we marched about it, and found no inhabitants at all; and here we made our rendezvous all that day, being Saturday, 9th of December.

On the sabbath day we rested; and on Monday we sounded the harbor, and found it a very good harbor for our shipping. We marched also into the land,39 and found divers cornfields, and little running brooks,—a place very good for situation: so we returned to our ship again with good news to the rest of our people, which did much comfort their hearts.

V.—Plymouth village founded.

>[The expedition having returned to the ship, the ‘Mayflower’ came to Plymouth harbor, and landed the colonists.]

So in the morning, after we had called on God for direction, we came to this resolution, to go presently ashore again, and to take a better view of two places which we thought most fitting for us; for we could not [329] now take time for further search or consideration, our victuals being much spent, especially our beer, and it being now the 19th of December. After our landing and viewing of the places, so well as we could, we came to a conclusion, by most voices, to set on the mainland, on the first place, on a high ground, where there is a great deal of land cleared, and hath been planted with corn three or four years ago; and there is a very sweet brook runs under the hillside, and many delicate springs of as good water as can be drunk, and where we may harbor our shallops and boats exceeding well; and in this brook much good fish in their seasons: on the farther side of the river also much corn-ground cleared. In one field is a great hill, on which we point40 to make a platform, and plant our ordnance, which will command all round about. From thence we may see into the bay, and far into the sea; and we may see thence Cape Cod. Our greatest labor will be fetching of our wood, which is half a quarter of an English mile; but there is enough so far off. What people inhabit here we yet know not; for as yet we have seen none. So there we made our rendezvous, and a place for some of our people, about twenty, resolving in the morning to come all ashore, and to build houses.

But the next morning, being Thursday, the 21st of December, it was stormy and wet, that we could not go ashore; and those that remained there all night could do nothing, but were wet, not having daylight enough to make them a sufficient court of guard41 to [330] keep them dry. All that night it blew and rained extremely. It was so tempestuous, that the shallop could not go on land so soon as was meet, for they had no victuals on land. About eleven o'clock, the shallop went off with much ado, with provisions, but could not return, it blew so strong; and was such foul weather that we were forced to let fall our anchor, and ride with three anchors ahead.

Friday, the 22d, the storm still continued, that we could not get a-land, nor they come to us aboard.

Saturday, the 23d, so many of us as could went on shore, felled and carried timber, to provide themselves stuff for building.

Sunday, the 24th, our people on shore heard a cry of some savages, as they thought, which caused an alarm, and to stand on their guard, expecting an assault; but all was quiet.

Monday, the twenty-fifth day, we went on shore,— some to fell timber, some to saw, some to rive,42 and some to carry: so no man rested all that day. But towards night, some, as they were at work, heard a noise of some Indians, which caused us all to go to our muskets; but we heard no further. So we came aboard again, and left some twenty to keep the court of guard. That night we had a sore storm of wind and rain. . . .

Thursday, the 28th of December, so many as could went to work on the hill, where we purposed to build our platform for our ordnance, and which doth command all the plain and the bay, and from whence we may see far into the sea, and might be easier impaled,43 having two rows of houses and a fair street. So in the [331] afternoon we went to measure out the grounds; and first we took notice how many families there were, willing44 all single men that had no wives to join with some family, as they thought fit, that so we might build fewer houses; which was done, and we reduced them to nineteen families. To greater families we allowed

Landing of Mary Chilton.

larger plots,—to every person half a pole in breadth, and three in length; and so lots were cast where every man should lie; which was done, and staked out. We thought this proportion was large enough at the first, for houses and gardens to impale them round, considering the weakness of our people, many of them growing ill with colds; for our former discoveries in frost and storms, and the wading at Cape Cod, had brought much weakness amongst us, which increased [332] so every day more and more, and after was the cause of many of their deaths. . . .

Monday, the 8th of January, was a very fair day, and we went betimes to work. Master Jones sent the shallop, as he had formerly done, to see where fish could be got. They had a great storm at sea, and were in some danger. At night they returned with three great seals, and an excellent good cod, which did assure us that we should have plenty of fish shortly.

This day Francis Billington, having the week before seen from the top of a tree on a high hill a great sea,45 as he thought, went with one of the master's mates to see it. They went three miles, and then came to a great water, divided into two great lakes; the bigger of them five or six miles in circuit, and in it an isle a cable-length square; the other three miles in compass, in their estimation. They are fine fresh water, full of fish and fowl. A brook46 issues from it. It will be an excellent place for us in time. They found seven or eight Indian houses, but not lately inhabited. When they saw the houses, they were in some fear; for they were but two persons, and one piece.

Tuesday, the 9th of January, was a reasonable fair day; and we went to labor that day in the building of our town, in two rows of houses,47 for more safety. We divided by lot the plot of ground whereon to build our town, after the proportion formerly allotted. We agreed that every man should build his own house, thinking, by that course, men would make more haste [333] than working in common. The common house, in which, for the first, we made our rendezvous, being near finished, wanted only covering, it being about twenty foot square. Some should make mortar, and gather thatch; so that in four days half of it was thatched. Frost and foul weather hindered us much.48 This time of the year, seldom could we work half the week.

Vi.—‘welcome, Englishmen!’

And, whilst we were busied hereabout, we were interrupted again; for there presented himself a savage, which caused an alarm. He very boldly came all alone, and along the houses, straight to the rendezvous; where we intercepted him, not suffering him to go in, as undoubtedly he would out of49 his boldness. He saluted us in English, and bade us ‘Welcome;’ for he had learned some broken English among the Englishmen that came to fish at Monhiggon,50 and knew by name the most of the captains, commanders, and masters that usually come. He was a man free in speech, so far as he could express his mind, and of a seemly carriage. We questioned him of many things. He was the first savage we could meet withal. He said he was not of these parts, but of Morattiggon, and one of the sagamores or lords thereof, and had been eight months in these parts, it lying hence a day's sail with a great wind, and five days by land. He discoursed of the [334] whole country, and of every province, and of their sagamores, and their number of men, and strength. The wind beginning to rise a little, we cast a horseman's coat about him; for he was stark naked, only a leather about his waist, with a fringe about a span long, or little more. He had a bow and two arrows,—the one headed, the other unheaded. He was a tall, straight man; the hair of his head black, long behind, only short before, none on his face at all. He asked some beer; but we gave him strong water,51 and biscuit, and butter, and cheese, and pudding, and a piece of mallard;52 all which he liked well, and had been acquainted with such amongst the English.

He told us the place where we now live is called Patuxet, and that, about four years ago, all the inhabitants died of an extraordinary plague, and there is neither man, woman, nor child remaining, as indeed we have found none; so as there is none to hinder our possession, or to lay claim unto it. All the afternoon we spent in communication with him. We would gladly have been rid of him at night; but he was not willing to go this night. Then we thought to carry him on shipboard, wherewith he was well content, and went into the shallop; but the wind was high, and the water scant, that it could not return back. We lodged him that night at Stephen Hopkins's house, and watched him.

The next day, he went away back to the Massasoits,53 from whence he said he came, who are our next bordering [335] neighbors. They are sixty strong, as he saith. The Nausites are as near, south-east of them, and are a hundred strong; and those were they of54 whom our people were encountered, as we before related. They are much incensed and provoked against the English, and, about eight months ago, slew three Englishmen; and two more hardly escaped by flight to Monhiggon. They were Sir Ferdinando Gorges' men, as this savage told us; as he did likewise of the huggery, that is, fight,55 that our discoverers had with the Nausites, and of our tools that were taken out of the woods, which we willed him should be brought again: otherwise we would right ourselves. These people are ill affected towards the English by reason of one Hunt,56 a master of a ship, who deceived the people, and got them, under color of trucking with them,—twenty out of this very place where we inhabit, and seven men from the Nausites;—and carried them away, and sold them for slaves, like a wretched man—for twenty pound a man —that cares not what mischief he doth for his profit.

Saturday, in the morning, we dismissed the savage, and gave him a knife, a bracelet, and a ring. He promised within a night or two to come again, and to bring with him some of the Massasoits, our neighbors, with such beavers' skins as they had to truck57 with us.

Saturday and Sunday, reasonable fair days. On this day came again the savage, and brought with him five other tall, proper men. They had every man a doer's [336] skin on him; and the principal of them had a wildcat's skin, or such like, on the one arm. They had, most of them, long hose up to their groins, close made, and above their groins, to their waist, another leather: they were altogether like the Irish trousers. They are of complexion like our English gypsies; no hair, or very little, on their faces; on their heads, long hair to their shoulders, only cut before,—some trussed up before with a feather, broad-wise, like a fan; another, a fox-tail hanging out. These left—according to our charge given him before—their bows and arrows a quarter a mile of from our town.

We gave them entertainment as we thought was fitting them. They did eat liberally of our English victuals. They made semblance unto us of friendship and amity. They sang and danced after their manner like antics.58 They brought with them in a thing like a bow-case—which the principal of them had about his waist —a little of their corn pounded to powder, which, put to a little water, they eat. He had a little tobacco in his bag; but none of them drank59 but when he liked. Some of them had their faces painted black, from the forehead to the chin, four or five fingers broad; others after other fashions, as they liked.

They brought three or four skins; but we would not truck with them at all that day, but wished them to bring more, and we would truck for all; which they promised within a night or two, and would leave these behind them, though we were not willing they should; and they brought us all our tools again, which were taken in the woods, in our men's absence. So, because [337] of the day, we dismissed them as soon as we could. But Samoset, our first acquaintance, either was sick, or feigned himself so, and would not go with them, and staid with us till Wednesday morning. Then we sent him to them to know the reason they came not according to their words; and we gave him a hat, a pair of stockings and shoes, a shirt, and a piece of cloth to tie about his waist.

Gov. Carver's Chair.


1 Establish themselves, as we say ‘country-seat.’

2 Pamet River, Cape Cod.

3 Sent.

4 These guns were chiefly matchlocks, as afterwards appears.

5 Probably at Stevens's Point, at the western end of Cape Cod harbor.

6 Footprints.

7 Probably near Stout's Creek, opposite Beach Point.

8 Followed.

9 East Harbor Creek, Truro.

10 Probably sweet-gale, or wax-myrtle (Myrica gale).

11 The pond near Highland Light.

12 Sunk.

13 Wondering.

14 This corn of three colors is still common at Truro.—young.

15 This they afterwards did.

16 Pamet River.

17 Sapling. The word is now used only for the sprit of a small sail; that is, the pole which holds it up transversely.

18 Rope-maker.

19 Come.

20 The end of Long Point.

21 Possibly swooned, or ached.

22 Traffic.

23 Billingsgate Point, in Wellfleet, now an island.

24 Entrance.

25 In Eastham.

26 Wellfleet harbor.

27 Brooks; i.e., Indian Brook and Cook's Brook.

28 One of the dolphin family, sometimes twenty-five feet long.

29 Great Pond, in Eastham.

30 Lighted upon, or discovered.

31 Boughs, or tops of young trees.

32 Surrounded with palings.

33 An Indian grave, where they had found corn.

34 A flint-lock musket, then rare.

35 Advantage.

36 These were the Nauset Indians.

37 Tide.

38 Clark's Island. It was named after the mate of the ‘Mayflower,’ who is said to have been the first to land there.

39 This was the ‘landing of the Pilgrims.’ Allowing for the change in the calendar, called ‘New Style,’ it corresponds to the 21st of December, though it was long considered to correspond to the 22d. ‘New Style’ means the modern or Gregorian mode of reckoning time, which was proposed by Pope Gregory XIII. in 1582, but not adopted in England till September, 1752.

40 Appoint, or propose.

41 Guard-house.

42 Split.

43 Surrounded by palings.

44 Requiring.

45 It is still called Billington Sea.

46 Town Brook.

47 These houses were built on each side of Leyden Street, which now extends from the First Church to the harbor.

48 It was, however, an unusually mild winter.

49 Monhegan, an island on the coast of Maine.

50 Beware of.

51 Ardent spirits.

52 Mallard-duck.

53 Massasoit was the name of a sachem; but they mistook it for the name of a tribe.

54 By.

55 The fight took place at Martha's Vineyard, July 1, 1620.

56 This Captain Hunt had kidnapped Indians, and carried them to Spain as slaves. The monks of Malaga set them at liberty.

57 Trade.

58 Clowns.

59 Smoked.

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