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Chapter 9:

The extended colonization of New England

The council of Plymouth for New England, having
Chap IX.} 1620.
obtained of King James the boundless territory and the immense monopoly which they had desired, had no further obstacles to encounter but the laws of nature and the remonstrances of parliament. No tributaries tenanted their countless millions of uncul tivated acres; and exactions upon the vessels of English fishermen were the only means of acquiring an immediate revenue from America. But the spirit of the commons indignantly opposed the extravagant pretensions of the favored company, and demanded for every subject of the English king the free liberty of engaging in a pursuit which was the chief source of wealth to the merchants of the west. ‘Shall the
1621. April 25.
English,’ said Sir Edwin Sandys, the statesman so well entitled to the enduring gratitude of Virginia, ‘be debarred from the freedom of the fisheries, a privilege which the French and Dutch enjoy? It costs the kingdom nothing but labor; employs shipping; and furnishes the means of a lucrative commerce with Spain.’—‘The fishermen hinder the plantations,’ replied Calvert; ‘they choke the harbors with their ballast, and waste the forests by improvident use. America is not annexed to the realm, nor within the jurisdiction of parliament; you have therefore no right ’

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