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[181] good will; although their condition had been improved
Chap V.} 1622
by some of the arts of civilized life. The degree of their advancement may be judged by the intelligence of their chieftain. A house having been built for Opechancanough after the English fashion, he took such delight in the lock and key, that he would lock and unlock the door a hundred times a day, and thought the device incomparable.1 When Wyatt arrived, the natives expressed a fear lest his intentions should be hostile: he assured them of his wish to preserve inviolable peace; and the emigrants had no use for fire-arms except against a deer or a fowl. Confidence so far increased, that the old law, which made death the penalty for teaching the Indians to use a musket, was forgotten; and they were now employed as fowlers and huntsmen.2 The plantations of the English were widely extended, in unsuspecting confidence, along the James River and towards the Potomac, wherever rich grounds invited to the culture of tobacco;3 nor were solitary places, remote from neighbors, avoided, since there would there be less competition for the ownership of the soil.

Powhatan, the father of Pocahontas, remained, after the marriage of his daughter, the firm friend of the English. He died in 1618; and his younger brother was now the heir to his influence. Should the native occupants of the soil consent to be driven from their ancient patrimony? Should their feebleness submit patiently to contempt, injury, and the loss of their lands? The desire of self-preservation, the necessity of self-defence, seemed to demand an active resistance; to preserve their dwelling-places, the English

1 Smith, II. 68. Stith, 211.

2 Ibid. II. 103. Beverley, 38.

3 Beverley, 38. Burk, i 231, 232.

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