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George Bancroft, History of the United States from the Discovery of the American Continent, Vol. 7, 4th edition. 4 0 Browse Search
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liberties, both civil and religious, and transmit them to their posterity. Their children have waded through seas of difficulty, to leave us free and happy in the enjoyment of English privileges. Now if we should give them up, can our children rise up and call us blessed? Is a glorious death in defence of our liberties better than a short infamous life, and our memories to be had in detestation to the latest posterity? Let us all be of one heart, and stand fast in the liberties wherewith Christ has made us free; and may he of his infinite mercy grant us deliverance out of all our troubles. Such were the cheering words of Prescott and his companions, and they never forgot Chap. VIII.} 1774. Aug. their pledge. Everywhere the rural population of Massachusetts were anxiously weighing the issues in which they were involved. One spirit moved through them all. From the hills of Berkshire to the Penobscot, they debated the great question of resistance as though God were hearkening;
at Cambridge, with Spenser as their chief commander, and Putnam as second brigadier. Rhode Island voted an army of fifteen hundred men, and probably about a thousand of them appeared round Boston, under Nathaniel Greene as their commander. He was one of eight sons, born in a house of a single story, near the Narragansett Bay in Warwick. In that quiet seclusion, Gorton and his followers, untaught of universities, had reasoned on the highest questions of being. They had held, that in America Christ was coming to his temple, that outward ceremonies, baptism and the eucharist, and also kings and lords, bishops and chaplains, were all but carnal ordinances, sure to have an end; that humanity must construct its church by the voice of the Son of God, the voice of reason and love. The father of Greene, descended from ancestry of this school, was at once an anchor smith, a miller, a farmer, and, like Gorton, a preacher. The son excelled in diligence and in manly sports. None of his age