The people of Rhode Island
from the colonial union, would never have maintained their existence as a separate state, had they not sought the interference and protection of the mother country; and the founder of the colony was chosen to conduct
the important mission.
Embarking at Manhattan
, he arrived in England
not long after the death of Hampden
The parliament had placed the affairs of the American
colonies under the control of Warwick
, as governor-in-chief, assisted by a council of five peers and twelve commoners.2
Among these commoners was Henry Vane
, a man who was ever as true in his affections as in his principles, and who now welcomed the American
envoy as an ancient friend.
The favor of parliament was won by the incomparable ‘printed Indian labors of Roger Williams
the like whereof was not extant from any part of America
;’ and his merits as a missionary induced ‘both houses of parliament to grant unto him, and friends with him, a free and absolute charter4
of civil government for those parts of his abode.’5
were the places of refuge for ‘soul-liberty,’ on the Narragansett Bay
, incorporated ‘with full power and authority to rule themselves.’
To the Long Parliament, and especially to Sir Henry Vane
, Rhode Island
owes its existence as a political state.
A double triumph awaited Williams
on his return to New England
He arrived at Boston
, and letters from the parliament insured him a safe reception from those who had decreed his banishment.
But what honors