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The Riverside Press, Cambridge :
Electrotyed and Printed by H. 0. Houghton & Co.


The delay in the publication of this volume has
been due to various causes, the chief of which was
the lamented death of the Hon. Israel Washburn,
Jr., Chairman of the Committee of Publication,
and the issue, meantime, of the third volume of
the Documentary series containing the Trelawnij

On account of the large number of papers which
had accumulated, the Committee have thought it
inexpedient to begin with this volume the publi-
cation of the Proceedings of the Society, and they
have therefore made it the ninth volume of the
Collections instead of the first volume of a new
series. It is, o£ course, to be understood that the
writers of the papers are alone responsible for the
views which they advance.




I —Sir William Phips. By William Goold, of Windham, Mc. 1

II— BnV'ailier-Gcncral Samuel Waldo, 169G-1759. By Joseph

WiDiamson, of Belfast, Me ".'i

III — Claude De La Tour. By John Edwards Godfrey, of Ban-

gor, Me 'J7

IV — John Peirce, Cloth Worker of London, and the Phniouth

Patent of 1621. By John Johnston, of Middlefown, Conn. 11.5

V — The Sheepscot Farms. By Alexander Jolinston, of Wiscas-

set, Me 127

VI — William Hutchings, the last surviving Revolutionary Pen-
sioner in New England. By Joseph Williamson, of Belfast,
Me l.')7

VII — General John Chandler, of Monmouth, Me., with Extracts from

his Autobiography. By George Foster Talbot, of Port-
land, Me 167

VIII — The White Hills of New Hampshire. By Edward Henry

Elwell, of Deering, Me 207

IX — The Territorial History of Bangor and Vieinity. By Albert

Ware Paine, of Bangor, Me 221

X — Memoir of Nathan Clirtbrd. By James Ware Bradbury, of

Augusta, l\Ie 2.35

XI — Grammatical Sketch of the Ancient Abnaki, outlined in the
Dictionary of Fr. Sebastian Rale, S. J. Part I. The Ab-
naki Noun. By Rev. Michael Charles O'Brien, of Ban-
gor, Me 2.59

XII — Edward Godfrey. His Life, I.K>tters, and Public Services, 1584-

1664. By Charles Edward Banks, M. D., of Portland, Me. 295



Portrait of Sir William Pliips Frontispiece

Bill of Credit, 1690 33

Funeral Ticket 57

Portrait of Brigadier-General Samuel Waldo 75

Congratulations of the Massachusetts House of Representatives to

General Waldo, on his Return from Louisburg 82

Arms of Godfrey 297

Autograjih of Edward Godfrey 300

Ditto 335







IRead at a Meeting of the Maine Historical Society at Portland,
May 15, 1879.]

For those to whom historical research is no
task, being led to undertake it by natural inclina-
tion, it is a manifest duty to make an effort to re-
claim the history of the men of their own colony,
province, or state who were in their life conspic-
uous for their civil, military, or naval service, or
were in any way benefactors of their race. Every
generation that passes without this attempt leaves
the trail more obscure.

Our Society, in the half century and more of its
existence, has done much to retrieve the history
of the territory now forming our State, and the
people who first settled it, and yet there is much
left for us to do. A large part of it was disputed
territory, for the possession of which two powerful
nations of different relisrions contended. It was
impossible for the white inhabitants to enjoy long
intervals of peace; they became soldiers and sailors
in spite of themselves. At some seasons they M^cre
compelled, for safety, to eat, sleep, and worship


with their arms in their hands, or within reach in
a moment. They could lead a scout, or build and
sail a transport. If Canada or Acadia were to be
invaded, or the French and Indians driven back,
the home government looked to the Massachusetts
province — of which Maine became a part, and
an important one, as it was the frontier — to lead
off with men and money and armed transports.
Some of the men of Maine who served in these
expeditions have had their lives written; but in
historical investigations new facts are continually
coming to light, which lead to new conclusions.

The subject of this biographical paper. Sir Wil-
liam Phips, had a friend and contemj)orary well
qualified, and acknowledging it to be his duty to
record his acts. Soon after the death of Governor
Phips, in 1695, that accomplished scholar and vo-
luminous writer, Rev. Cotton Mather, wrote his
friend's life. It is a brief life for such a man ;
but it is the only good authority to consult for a
knowledge of his parentage and early life. Some
have said that it is highly colored. Professor Bow-
en, who wrote of Sir William in Sparks's "Amer-
ican Biography," speaks of the improbability of
some of Cotton Mather's statements, I think with-
out reason. Mather was colleague pastor with
his father. Dr. Increase Mather, of the Old North
Church, in Boston, to whose communion Governor
Phips belonged. Drake, in his life of him, says,
" Literature owes a vast deal to Cotton Mather,
especially for his historical and biographical works.


"Were these alone to be struck out of existence,
it would make a void in these departments of lit-
erature, that would confound many who affect
to look upon them with contempt." The " New
England Weekly Journal," of the 19th of Feb-
ruary, 1728, after announcing the death of Dr.
Mather, says, " He was perhaps the principal orna-
ment of this country, — the greatest scholar that
ever was bred in it." It would seem that a life of
Governor Phips, whose home was in the same city
with that of his biographer, might be relied upon
for prominent incidents of his career, even if the
details are somewhat highly colored. His admin-
istration of the government of the province is im-
partially treated by Hutchinson in his history of

Mather's " History of Sir William Phips " was
first published in London in 1697, with a certifi-
cate which commences thus : " The author of tlie
following narrative is a person of such well-known
integrity, prudence, and veracity, that there is not
any cause to question the truth of what he here
relates." This is signed by three well-known Eng-
lish divines. First by Nathaniel Mather, uncle of
the author, who probably superintended the pub-
lication. It is dedicated to the Earl of Bellomont,
who succeeded Phips, as Governor of Massachu-
setts, after his death in 1695, — the Earl being then
in En2:land. The other sis^ners of the certificate
were John Howe and Matthew Mead, both London
ministers of high standing. The author's name


nowhere appears, but the work was republished in
Mather's "Magnalia" in 1702, the authorship be-
ing thus acknowledged. The work commences in
a somewhat grandiloquent style : " The Life of His
Excellency, Sir William Phips, Knight, Late Cap-
tain-General, and Governor-in-Chief of the Prov-
ince of Massachusetts Bay. Containing the mem-
orable changes undergone, and actions performed
by him. Written by one intimately acquainted
with him. ' From him learn virtue, and life's
truest work.' ' Now as mortality has done its part
on a considerable person, with whom I had the
honor to be well acquainted, and a person as mem-
orable for the wonderful changes which befell him,
as imitable for his virtues and actions under these
changes, I shall endeavor with the chymistry of an
impartial historian to raise my friend so far out of
his ashes, as to show him unto the world.' " This
paragraph I take from the Introduction, which
covers two pages of the " Magnalia." Dr. Mather's
account of the birthplace and parentage of Gov-
ernor Phips, if it is not laudatory of the place, is
commendable for its brevity, and has been often
quoted. It commences in these words : " This our
Phips was born February 2, 1650, at a despicable
plantation on the river Kennebeck, and almost
the furthest village of the eastern settlement of
New England. And the father of that man, who
was as great a blessing as England had in the age,
was a gunsmith. James Phips, once of Bristol,
had the honor of being the father of him whom


we shall presently see made by the God of Heaven
as great a blessing to New England as that coun-
try could have had if they themselves had pleased.
His fruitful mother, yet living, had no less than
twenty-six children, whereof twenty-one were
sons, but equivalent to them all was William, one
of the youngest, whom his father, dying, left
young with his mother, and with her he lived,
' keeping sheep in the wilderness,' until he was
eighteen years old."

Our associate, Mr. Sewall, who is the best au-
thority for the topography and traditions of that
region, gives this description of the birthplace of
William Phips, in his '' Ancient Dominions of
Maine " : " Not far from Wiscasset, on the lower
margin of Monseag Bay, near the mouth of a riv-
ulet of the same name, a peninsula of arable land
strikes out from the southeast extreme of the
purchase of Bate man and Brown into a body of
water formed by the junction of the waters of the
bay above, in their passage to the sea, with those
flowing from Sheepscot Bay below, into the Ken-
nebeck opposite Bath. ... To this peninsula, as
the precise locality of the birthplace of William
Phips, tradition points the beholder, and calls it
Phips's Point. Phips's shipyard was not far from
his birthplace, and not at Sheepscot farms." The
author above quoted says, " Phips's wealth pro-
cured him knighthood." In this he is mistaken.
It was his energy, good judgment, and persever-
ance, shown in achieving wealth, and the exact


fulfilment of his promises to his partners and his
crew, when he had obtained his wealth, that pro-
cured him, not only knighthood from his sover-
eign, but the esteem and admiration of the court
and people of England, and the people of his na-
tive colony.

I shall again quote from Mather. He says of
young Phips : —

" His friends earnestly solicited him to settle
among them, in a plantation of the east, but he
had an unaccountable impulse upon his mind, per-
suading him, as he would privately hint unto some
of them, that he was born to great matters. To
come at these great matters, his first contrivance
was to bind himself an apprentice unto a ship car-
penter for four years, in which time he became
master of the trade." Our young shipwright was
now twenty-two years old, when he went to Bos-
ton, where Dr. Mather says he first learned to read
and write, and followed his trade there about a
year; and by a laudable deportment, so recom-
mended himself, that he married a young gentle-
woman of good repute, who was the widow of Mr.
John Hull, a well-bred merchant, and the daughter
of one Captain Roger Spencer, a person of good
fashion. Roger Spencer was of Saco. The first
entry in the book of records of that ancient town,
under the date September 6, 1653, is that a per-
mit was granted to Roger Spencer, to set up a
saw-mill within the township, provided '^ that he
doth make her ready to do execution within one


Another daughter of Roger Spencer married
Dr. David Bennett of Rowley, whose son, Spencer
Bennett, became the adopted son of his childless
aunt and her husband, William Phips, and assumed
their name. Of him more will appear. We find
that both Governor Phips and his wife were na-
tives of Maine.

Mather continues : " Within a little after his
marriage, Phips indented with several persons in
Boston to build them a ship at Sheepscot, two or
three leagues eastward of Kennebeck. He also
provided a lading of lumber to bring with him,
which would have been to the advantage of all
concerned. But just as the ship was hardly fin-
ished, the barbarous Indians on the river broke
forth into a cruel war upon the English ; and the
miserable people, surprised by so sudden a storm
of blood, had no refuge from the infidels but the
ship now finishing in the harbor. Whereupon he
left his intended lading behind him, and instead
thereof, carried with him his old neighbors and
their families, free of charges, to Boston ; so that
the first action that he did after he was his own
man was to save his father's house, with the rest
of the neighborhood, from ruin ; but the disap-
pointment which befell him from the loss of his
other lading plunged his affairs into greater em-
barrassments with such as had employed him."

In the fourth volume of the Maine Historical
Society's Collections, Samuel Johnson wrote of this
locality, to which the editor, Mr. Willis, added


notes of his own. One of which says that Captain
Sylvanus Davis, who was a large land-holder in
that region, and was councillor for Sagadahock
under the charter of 1690, informed the govern-
ment in 1701, "that in 1675 there were no less
than 156 families settled at Sagadahock, of which
fifty were at Sheepscot." These fifty families
alone would, at the usual computation of five to a
family, have made a company of 250 persons, who
took refuge on board the ship. If all those fam-
ilies had been as numerous as the Phips family,
some must have fallen a prey to the savages, as
the company would have numbered 1,300. Could
the cellars which were uncovered at Sheepscot
Farms in the summer of 1877, on the occasion of
the Society's visit there, have belonged to those
people whom Phips rescued in 1675 — about the
time, probably, when Davis numbered them ? If
so, it was not the " despicable place " that Mather
described it. He did not write until Governor
Phips was dead, and probably he had no definite
idea of that region, having never visited it.

As we are entirely dependent on Dr. Mather for
our facts relating to Governor Phips's early life, I
may as well use his own language, where it will
best serve my purpose. He says of our subject: —

" He was hitherto no more than beginning to
make scaffolds for further and higher actions. He
would frequently tell the gentlewoman, his wife,
that he should yet be captain of a king's ship;
that he should come to have the command of


better men than he now accounted himself, and
that he would be the owner of a fair brick house
in the Green Lane of North Boston, and that it
may be, this would not be all that the providence
of God would bring him to. She entertained
these passages with suflicient incredulity, but he
had so serious and positive an expectation of them
that it is not easy to say what was the original

" He was of an enterprising genius, and natu-
rally disdained littleness. With little show of wit,
there was much wisdom. His talent lay not in
airs, that serve chiefly for the pleasant turns of
conversation, but he might say as Themistocles,
' Though he could not play upon a fiddle, he knew
how to make a little city become a great one.'
He would prudently contrive a weighty undertak-
ing, and then patiently pursue it to the end.

" Being thus of the true temper, he betakes
himself to the sea, the right scene for such things ;
and upon the advice of a Spanish wreck about the
Bahamas, he took a voyage thither, but with lit-
tle more success than what just served him a little,
to furnish him for a voyage to England, whither
he went in a vessel not much unlike that which
the Dutchmen stamped on their first coin, with
these words about it, 'None can tell where fate
will bear me.' "

It is more than probable that Phips owned this
ancient looking vessel, being imable to pay for a
better one. We may conclude from Dr. Mather's


language that he succeeded in finding this wreck
about the Bahamas, from which he obtained some-
thing to assist in his longer voyage to England,
and which he could show to the king and the
commissioners of the navy, to induce them to give
him the command of a ship in which to pursue his
search for sunken treasure. It was an age of ad-
venture. On the surrender of an enemy's city,
plunder was the rule. The ocean was infested by
pirates, and several well-known naval commanders
sailed on lawful expeditions that ended in piracy.
Captain Kidd gradually became a buccaneer.

It is probable that Captain Phips had some prac-
tical knowledge of sailing small vessels, while he
lived on the Sheepscot waters. All young men
like him, having sufficient energy, at some time in
their early life made fishing trips to the Banks, or
coasting voyages to Boston, and to the southern
colonies. The common highways were the sea and
rivers, so that all had some knowledge of water
conveyance. Young Phips could not have had
any scientific knowledge of navigation until years
after he went to Boston, for Mather asserts that it
was there that he first learned to read and write.

His biographer continues. " Having first in-
formed himself that there was another Spanish
wreck, wherein was lost a mighty treasure, hith-
erto undiscovered, he had a strong impression on
his mind that he should be the discoverer, and he
made such representations at White Hall, that by
the year 1683 he became the ' captain of a king's


ship,' and arrived in New England commander of
the Algier Rose, a frigate of eighteen guns, and
ninety-five men." Charles II. was then the reign-
ing monarch of England, and his brother, the Duke
of York, and two years later King James 11., was
High Admiral, and at the head of the navy board.
He had commanded the fleet in a successful en-
gagement with the Dutch, and was a brave officer.
Samuel Pepys was one of the commissioners of the
navy under him. His Diary was first published
a few years ago, which lets in much light on the
public and private life of Charles II., and his
brother, the Duke of York. It was undoubtedly
the Duke who, becoming sufficiently interested in
Captain Phips and his proposed adventure, in-
duced the king to give him the command of a
small frigate for his purpose.

Thus far we have been obliged to trust to one
writer for the history of this remarkable man,
Captain Phips. But now he has become a captain
in the royal navy, his acts are a matter of record,
both in England and in the archives of the Massa-
chusetts Colony, by which we can verify some of
the statements of his biographer. Of the next
five years of the life of Captain Phips, Dr. Mather
gives the most readily accessible account ; it is no
doubt authentic.

He says: "To relate all the dangers through
which he passed, both by sea and land, and all the
tiresome trials of his patience as well as his cour-
age, while year after year the most vexing acci-


dents imaginable delayed the success of his de-
sign, would tire the patience of the reader, where-
fore I shall supersede all journal of his voyages
to and fro, with reciting one instance of his con-
duct that showed him to be a person of no mean

" While he was captain of the Algier Rose, his
men, growing weary of their unsuccessful enter-
prise, made a mutiny, wherein they approached
him on the quarter-deck with drawn swords in
their hands, and required him to join with them
in running away with the ship, to drive a trade
of piracy on the South Seas. Captain Phips,
though he had not so much of a weapon as an
ox-goad, or a jawbone, in his hands, yet, like an-
other Shamgar or Sampson, with most undaunted
fortitude, rushed upon them, and with the blows
of his bare hands felled them, and quelled all the

Another and more extensive conspiracy was en-
tered upon by the crew, while the ship was ca-
reenino* at a small uninhabited island. A brido-e
had been laid to the bold shore, to which the ship
was moored, and all the crew but eight or ten of
the best men, were on shore in the woods on leave.
Some of the crew, no doubt, had been pirates before
and wished to be again. The whole party con-
spired to seize the ship that evening, and after put-
ting the captain and his friends on shore, to sail
for the South Seas on a piratical expedition. They
wanted the carpenter to join them, but he asked


time to decide, and found a way to inform Captain
Piiips of the plot.

With his few men the captain took up the
bridge and loaded and trained his guns to bear
upon the mutineers, on their return in the even-
ing. On their approach the captain hailed them
with orders to stand off, and said that he should
leave them on the island to starve. This brought
them to their knees to beg forgiveness, saying that
they had no ill-will to the captain, but wanted
the ship. He finally admitted them on board, but
kept an eye on them until he arrived at Jamaica,
where they were discharged.

With a few new men to take the place of the
mutineers. Captain Phips sailed for the island of
Hispaniola, or St. Domingo, where he fell in with
an old Spaniard, who gave him some information
of the wreck of a treasure-ship many years be-
fore, at the north of Port de la Plata on that isl-
and, so named from the landing of a boat with
plate from the wreck. With renewed courage
Captain Phips commenced the search for sunken
treasure in this new place, without success. The
Algier Rose had been in the West India waters
for perhaps two years, and needed repairs, the
completion of which at the island the mutiny had
prevented. Besides, if his search should be suc-
cessful, Captain Phips felt that he could not trust
his present crew. With these discouragements he
sailed for England, but with no abatement of con-
fidence that he should yet find the wreck.


The Duke of York, who had been Admiral of
England under his brother, Charles II., and who
had the direction of naval affairs, had now come
to be the reigning sovereign, as James 11. The
unpopularity of his measures caused loud com-
plaint, and William, Prince of Orange, was solic-
ited to come to England and claim the throne in
the right of his wife, who was the eldest daughter
of James.

To repel this threatened invasion, James needed
all of his frigates, and however high Captain
Phips might have stood in his estimation, he had
no ship to spare for treasure hunting. Captain
Phips was not to be thwarted in his designs on ac-
count of the strait in which the king was placed.
He soon found powerful friends, probably with the
assistance or introduction of the king. Captain
Phips interested the Duke of Albemarle in his en-
terprise. He was a nobleman of great wealth,
whose father, the celebrated General Monk, had es-
poused the cause of the Stuarts, and was the prin-
cipal instrument in restoring Charles II. to his
throne, for which he and his brother James never
ceased to be grateful. Others besides the Duke
became interested in Captain Phips's scheme. It
is good evidence that Captain Phips retained the
friendship and confidence of the king, that he
granted a charter to the Duke of Albemarle and
his associates, for ownership and possession of all
the wrecks that might be discovered for a term of


A ship and a small vessel for a tender were ob-
tained and fitted out. Mather says that Captain
Phips '* invented many of the instruments neces-
sary to the prosecution of his intended fishery."
I cannot improve Dr. Mather's account of the
search for, and recovery of, the treasure ,- so I give
it in his own language :

" Captain Phips, arriving with his ship and
tender at Port de la Plata, made a stout canoe of
a stately cotton-tree, so large as to carry eight or
ten oars, for the making of which periaga (as they
call it) he did, with the same industry that he did
everything else, employ his own hands and adze,
and endured no little hardship, lying abroad in
the woods many nights together. This periaga,
with the tender, being anchored at a place con-
venient, the boat kept busking to and again, but
could only discover a reef of rising shoals, there-
about called " The Boilers," which, rising within
two or three feet of the surface, were yet so steep
that a ship striking on them would immediately
sink. One of the men, looking over the side of
the periaga into the calm water, spied a sea
feather growing as he judged out of a rock, where-
upon they had one of their Indians to dive down

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