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[122] the States that were represented or for the great and
chap. V.} 1754.
able men who composed it. Every voice declared a union of all the colonies to be absolutely necessary. And, as a province might recede at will from an unratified covenant, the experienced Hutchinson, of Massachusetts, proud of having rescued that colony from thraldom to paper money, Hopkins, a patriot of Rhode Island, the wise and faithful Pitkin, of Connecticut, Tasker, of Maryland, the liberal Smith, of New York, and Franklin, the most benignant of statesmen, were deputed to prepare a constitution for a perpetual confederacy of the continent; but Franklin had already ‘projected’ a plan, and had brought the heads of it with him.1

The representatives of the Six Nations assembled tardily, but urged union and action. They accepted the tokens of peace. They agreed to look upon ‘Virginia and Carolina’ as also present. ‘We thank you,’ said Hendrick, the great Mohawk chief, ‘we thank you for renewing and brightening the covenant chain. We will take this belt to Onondaga, where our council-fire always burns, and keep it so securely that neither the thunderbolt nor the lightning shall break it. Strengthen yourselves, and bring as many as you can into this covenant chain.’ ‘You desired us to open our minds and hearts to you,’ added the indignant brave. ‘Look at the French; they are men; they are fortifying every where. But, we are ashamed to say it, you are like women, without any fortifications. It is but one step from Canada hither, and the French may easily come and turn you out of doors.’

The distrust of the Six Nations was still stronger

1 Hutchinson's History of Massachusetts, III. 21.

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