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return, they mould be reputed as members,
without further difiniflion or teftimonial."
The others were to follow as foon as poffible.

In July, they kept another day of prayer,
when Mr. Robinfon preached to them from
Ezra viii. 2i, and concluded his difcourfe

with

* Prince, 66.
$ Nqal's New-England, I. 78,



*7* ROBINSON,

with an exhortation, which breathes a noble
fpirit of Chriftian liberty, and gives a juft
idea of the fentiments of this excellent
divine, whofe charity was the more con-
fpicuous, becaufe of his former narrow prin
ciples, and the general bigotry of the re
formed minifters and churches of that day.

" Brethren, (faid he,) we are now quickly
to part from one another, and whether I
may ever live to fee your face on earth any
more, the GOD of heaven only knows ;
but whether the Lord hath appointed that
or not, I charge you before GOD and his
bleiTed angels, that you follow me no farther,
than you have feen me follow the Lord
Jefus Chrift.

" If God reveal any thing to you, by any-
other inftrument of his, be as ready to re -
ceive it, as ever you were to receive any
truth by my miniftry ; for I am verily
perfuaded-^-I am very confident, that the
Lord has more truth yet to break forth
out of his holy word. For my part, I caiv
not fufficiently bewail the condition of the
reformed churches, who are come to a
period in religion, and will go, at preient >
4 io further than the mftruments of their

reibru.ation,



reformation. The Lutherans cannot be
drawn to go beyond what Luther faw :
Whatever part of his will our good God
has revealed to Calvin, they will rather die
than embrace it. And the Calvinifts, you
fee, ftick faft where they were left, by that
great man of God, who yet faw not all
things.

" This is a mifery much to be lamented ; for
though they were burning and mining lights
in their times, yet they penetrated not into
the whole counfel of God ; but were they
now living, would be as willing to embrace
further light, as that which they firft received.
I befeech you, remember, it is an article of
your church covenant, " That you be ready
to receive whatever truth mall be made
known to you, from the written word of
GOD," Remember that, and every other
article of your facred covenant. But I muft,
Jierewithal, exhort you to take heed what
you receive as truth. Examine it, confider
it, and compare it with other fcriptures of
truth, before you receive it ; lor it is not
poffible that the Chriftian world mould come
fo lately out of fuch thick antichriilian dark-

nefs,



i 7 4 ROBINSON.

nefs, and that perfection of knowledge fhould
frreak forth at once.

" I rnuft alfo advife you to abandon,
avoid, and lhake off the name of BROWN-
JST. It is a mere nick-name ; and a brand
for the making religion, and the profeffors
of it, odious to the Chriftian world."

Having faid this, with fome other things
relating to their private conduct, he devoutly
committed them to the care and protection
of Divine Providence.

On the 2ift of July, the intended pafTen-
gers quitted Leyden, to embark at Delft-
haven, to which place they were accom
panied by many of their brethren and
friends, feveral of whom had come from
Amfterdam to take their leave of them.
The evening was fpent, till very late, in
friendly converfation j and the next morn-:
ing, the wind being fair, they went on
board ; where Mr. Robinfon, on his knees,
in a molt ardent and affectionate prayer,
again committed them to their divine Pro
tector, and with many tears, they parted.

After their arrival in New-England, he
kept up a friendly correfpondence with
them ; and when any of them went to

Europe,



ROBINSON. 174

Europe, they were received by him with
the moft cordial welcome. The difficulties
which then attended a voyage acrofs the
Atlantic, the expenfe of an equipment for
a new Colony, and the hardfhips neeeflarily
incident to a plantation in a diftant wilder-
fiefs, proved a burden ahnoft too great for
thofe who came over. They had a hard
ftruggle to fupport themfelves here, aad pay
the debts which they had contracted in
England ; whilft thofe who remained in
Holland, were in general too poor to bear
the expenfe of a removal to America, with
out the help of their brethren who had come
before them. Thefe things prevented Mr.
Robinfon from gratifying his earneft defire
to vifit his American brethren, and their
equally ardent wifh to fee him, till he was
removed by death to a better country.*

He

* Morton in his Memorial (p. 86) fays, that " his and
their adverfaries had long been plotting how they might
hinder his coming to New-England." Hutchinfon (Vol,
ii. p. 454) fays, " he was prevented by difap/>ointmer.ts, from
thofe in England, who undertook to provide for the
palfage of him and his Congregation." Whether thcfe
difappointments were defigned or unavoidable, cannot
now be determined. Candour would lead us to fuppofe
the latter. But the former fuppofition is within the
limits of credibility.



176 11 B I N S O N.

He continued with his church at Leydert,
in good health, and with a fair profpect of
living to a more advanced age, till Saturday,
the 22d of February, 1625, when he was
feized with an inward ague ; which, how
ever diftrefling, did not prevent his preach
ing twice on the next day.* Through the*
following week, his diforder increafed in ma
lignity, and on Saturday, March I, put an
end to his valuable life ; in the fiftieth year
of his age, and in the height of his reputa
tion and ufefulnefs.

Mr. Robinfon was a man of a good genius,
quick penetration, ready wit, great modefty,
integrity and candour. His claflic literature
and acutenefs in difputation were acknowl
edged by his adverfaries. His manners
were eafy, courteous and obliging. His
preaching was inftructive and affecting.
Though in his younger years he was rigid
in his feparation from the Epifcopal Church,
by whofe governors he and his friends were
treated with unrelenting feverity, yet when
convinced of his error, he openly acknowl
edged it, and by experience and converfation
with good men, he became moderate and

charitable,

* ColLe&idns of the Hitlorical Society for 1795, F- 4-



R" O' B I N S O N. 177

charitable, without abating his zeal for ftrict
and real religion. It is always a fign of a
good heart, when a man becomes mild and
candid as he grows in years. This was emi
nently true of Mr. Robinfon. He learned to
efteem all good men of every religious per-
fuafion, and charged his flock to maintain
the like candid and benevolent conduct.
His fentiments refpedHng the reformers as
exprefled in his valedictory difcourfe r will
entail immortal honour to his memory ; evi
dencing his accurate difcernment, his inflexible
honefty, and his fervent zeal for truth and a
good confcience. He was alfo pofTeffed in
an eminent degree of the talent of peace
making, and was happy in'compofmg dif
ferences among neighbours and in families ;
fo that peace and unity were preferved in
his congregation.* It is faid that " fuch was
the reciprocal love ajid refpecl: between him
and his flock, that it might be faid of them
as it was faid of the Emperor Marcus Aure-
lius and the people of Rome, that it was hard
to judge, whether he delighted more in hav
ing fuch a people, or they in having fuch a
Paftor." Befides his fmgular abilities in
Y moral

* Hazard, I. 355.



178 ROBINSON.

moral and theological matters, he was very
difcerning and prudent in civil affairs, and
able to give them good advice in regard to
their fecular and political conduct. He was
highly efteemed, not only by his own flock,
but by the magiftracy and clergy of Ley-
den, who gave him the ufe of one of their
churches, in the chancel of which he was
buried. Mr. Prince, who vilited that city in
1 714*, fays that the moft ancient people then
living told him from their parents, that the
whole city and univerfity regarded him as
a great and good man, whofe death they fin-
cerely lamented ; and that they honoured his
funeral with their prefence.

This event proved the diflblution of the
church over which he had prefided at Ley-
den. Some of them removed to Amfterdam,
fome to other parts of the Netherlands, and
others came to New-England, among whom
were his widow and children. His fon
Ifaac lived to the age of ninety, and left male
pofterity in the county of Barnftable.

* Annals, p. 160.



XXII.




XXII. JOHN CARVER,

W.
E have no particulars of the life

of Mr. Carver, previous to his appointment
as one of the agents of the Englifh Congre
gational Church, in Leyden.* At that time
he was in high efteem, as a grave, pious,
prudent, judicious man, and fuftained the
office of a deacon. In the letters written
by Sir Edwin Sandys, of the Virginia Coin-
pany, to Mr. Robinfon, the agents are faid
to have " carried themfelves with good



cretion,"



The bufmefs of the agency was long de
layed by the difcontents and factions in the
Company of Virginia,by the removal of their
former Treafurer, Sir Thomas Smith, and the
enmity between him and Sir Edwin Sandys,
his fucceflbr. At length, a patent was ob
tained, under the Company's feai ; but, by
the advice of fome friends, it was taken in
the name of John Wincob, a religious gen
tleman, belonging to the family of the Coun-
tefs of Lincoln, who intended to accompany
the adventurers to " America. This patent

and
* Hubbard's MS. page 38.



i8o CARVER.

and the propofals of Thomas Wefton of
London, merchant, and other perfons who
appeared friendly to the defign, were carried
to Leyden in the autumn of 1619, for the
confideration of the people. At the fame
time there was a plan forming for a new
council in the Weft of England, to fuper-
intend the plantation and fiihery of North
Virginia, the name of which was changed
to New-England.* To this expected eftab-
liihment, Wefton, and the other merchants
began to incline, chiefly from the hope of
prefent gain by the fifhery. This caufed
fome embarraffment, and a variety of opin
ions ; but, confidering that the council for
New-England was not yet incorporated, and
that if they fhould wait for that event, they
might be detained another year, before which
time the war between the Dutch and the
Spaniards might be renewed, the majority
concluded to take the patent, which had
been obtained from the Company of Scuth
Virginia, and emigrate to fome place near
Hudfon's River, which was within their
territory.

The

* See Vol. I. p. 306.



CARVER. 181

The next fpring, (1620) Wefton himfelf
went over to Leyden, where the people en
tered into articles of agreement with him,
both for fhipping and money, to afiift in
their tranfportation. Carver and Cufhman
were again fent to London, to receive the
money and provide for the voyage. When
they came there, they found the other mer
chants fo very penurious and fevere, that
they were obliged to confent to fome altera
tion in the articles ; which though not rei-
ifhed by their conftituents, yet were fo ftrong-
ly infifted on, that without them, the whole
adventure muft have been fruftrated.

The articles, with their amendments, were
thefe.* " ( i.) The adventurers and planters
do agree, that every perfon that goeth, being
fixteen years old and upward, be rated at ten
pounds ; and that ten pounds be accounted
a fmgle mare. (2.) That he that goeth in
perfon, and furnifheth himfelf cut with ten
pounds, either in money or other provifions,
be accounted as having twenty pounds in
ftock,and in the divifion mall receive a double
fhare. (3.) The perfons tranfported and
the adventurers mall continue their joint

flock

* Hubbard's MS. 40. Hazard's Colletfions, I. 87.



.it



CARVER.



{lock and partnermip, the fpace of feven
years, except feme unexpected impediments
do caufe the whole Company to agree other-
wife ; during which time all profits and ben
efits that are gotten by trade, traffic, truck
ing, working, timing, or any other means,
of any other perlon or perfons, mail remain
flill in the common ftock^ until the divifion.
(4.) That at their coming there, they ihali
choofe cut fuch a number of fit perfons, as
may furnifh their mips and boats, for fifhing
upon the fea ; employing the reft, in their
feveral faculties, upon the land ; as building
houfes, tilling and planting the ground, and
making fuch commodities as fhall be moft
ufeful for the Colony. (5.) That at the end
of the feven years, the capital and profits, viz..
the houfes, lands, goods and chattels be
equally divided among the adventurers ; if
any debt or detriment concerning this ad
venture* (6.) Whofoever cometh to

the Colony hereafter, or putteth any thing into
the flock, mail, at the end of the feven years
be allowed proportionally to the time of his
fo doing. (7.) He that mail carry his wife,

or

* Here fomcthing feems to be wanting which cannct
now be fupplied.



CARVER,

Or children, or fervants, fhall be allowed for
every perfon, now aged fixteen years, and
upward, a fmgle fhare in the divifion ; or if
he provide them neccflaries, a double (hare ;
or if they be between ten years old and fix-
teen, then two of them to be reckoned for a
perfon, both in tranfportation and divifion.
(8.) That fuch children as now go, and are
under ten years of age, have no other {hare
in the divifion, than fifty acres of unmanur-
ed land. (9.) That fuch perfons as die be
fore thefeven years be expired, their executors
to have their parts or lhares, at the divifion ;
proportionally to the time of their life in the
Colony. (10.) That all fuch perfons as are
of the Colony, are to have meat, drink and
apparel out of the common ftock and goods
of the faid Colony."

The difference between the articles as firft
agreed on, and as finally concluded, lay in
thefe two points, (i.) In the former, , it
was provided that " the houfes and laifBs
improved, efpecially gardens and home-fields,
ihould remain undivided, wholly to the
planters at the end of the feven years j" but,
in the latter, the houfes and lands were to be
equally divided. (2.) In the former, the

planters



1 84 CARVER.

planters were " allowed two days in the week,
for their own private employment, for the
comfort of themfelves and families, efpecial-
ly fuch as had them to take care for." In
the latter, this article was wholly omitted.

On thefe hard conditions, and with this
fmall encouragement, the pilgrims of Leyden,
ftipported by a pious confidence in the Su
preme Difpofer of all things, and animated
by a fortitude, refulting from the fteady
principles of the religion, which they profef-
fed, determined to caft themfelves on the care
of Divine Providence, and embark for
America,

With the proceeds of their own eftates,
put into a common ftock, and the afliftance
of the merchants, to whom they had mort
gaged their labour and trade for feven years,
two veflels were provided. One in Holland,
of lixty tons, called the Speedwell, command
ed by a Captain Reynolds, which was in
tended to tranfport fome of them to Ameri
ca, and there to remain in their fervice, one
year, for filhing and other ufes. Another of
one hundred and eighty tons, called the
May-flower, was chartered by Mr. Cufh-
man in London, and fent round to Southamp
ton



CARVER. 185

ton in Hampfhire, whither Mr. Carver went
to fuperintend her equipment. This veflel
was commanded by a Captain Jones, and af
ter difcharging her paflengers in America,
was to return to England. Seven hundred
pounds fterling were expended in provifions
and ftores, and other neceflary preparations ;
and the value of the trading venture which
they carried was feventeen hundred pounds.
Mr. Wefton came from London to South
ampton, to fee them difpatched. The Speed
well, with the paflengers, having arrived
there from Leyden, and the neceflary officers
being chofen to govern the people and take
care of the provifions and ftores on the
voyage ; both fhips, carrying one hundred
and twenty paflengers, failed from South
ampton on the fifth day of Auguft, 1620.

They had not failed many leagues, down
the channel, before Reynolds, Mailer of the
Speedwell, complained that his veflel was too
leaky to proceed.* Both mips then put in
at Dartmouth, where the Speedwell was
fearched and repaired ; and the workmen 4
judged her fufficient for the voyage. On the
twenty-firft of Auguft, they put to fea again ;



Prince, 71. Morton,



and, having failed in company about one
hundred leagues, Reynolds renewed his com
plaints againft his fhip ; declaring^ that by
conftant pumping he could fcarcely keep her
above water ; on which, both fhips again put
back to Plymouth. Another fearch was
made', and no defect appearing, the leaky
condition of the fhip was judged to be owing
to her general weaknefs, and ihe was pro
nounced unfit for the voyage. About twen
ty of the paifengers went on Ihore. The
others, with their provifions, were received
on board the May-flower ; and, on the fixth
of September, the Company, confiding of
one hundred and one pafTengers, (befides the
{hip's officers and crew) took their laft leave
of England, having confumed a whole month
in thefe vexatious and expenfive delays.

The true caufes of thefe mifadventures did
not then appear. One was, that the Speed
well was overmafted ; which error being
remedied, the veflel afterward made feveral
fafe and profitable voyages. But the prin
cipal caufe was the deceit of the Mafter and
crew ; who having engaged to remain a
whole year in the fervice of the Colony, and
apprehending hard fare in that employment,

were



CARVER. 187

were glad of fuch an excufe to rid themfelveb
of the bargain.

The May-flower, Jones, proceeded with
fair winds in the former part of her voyage ;
and then met with bad weather and contra
ry winds, fo that for fevera! days no fail could
be carried. The fhip laboured ib much in
the lea, that one of the main beams fprung,
which renewed tha fears and diftrefs of the
paflengers. They had then made about one
half of their voyage, and the chief of the
Company began a confultation with the com
mander of the irap, whether it were better
to proceed or to return. But one of the paf-
fengers having on board a large iron fcrew, it
was applied to the beam, and forced it into
its place. This fucc.efsful effort determined
them to proceed.

No other particulars of this lorg and te
dious voyage are preferved ;* but that the
{hip being leaky, and the people clofe flowed,
were continually wet ; that one young man, a
fervant of Samuel Fuller, died at fea ; and that
one child was born, and called Qcsanus ; he
was fon of Stephen Hopkins.

On

* Smith, 250,






i 88 CARVE R.

On the ninth of November, at break -of
day, they made land, which proved to be the
white fandy cliffs of Cape Cod. This land-
fall being further northward than they in-
tended, they immediately put about the {hip to
the fouthward ; and, before noon, found
themfelves among fhoals and breakers.*
Had they purfued their fouthern courfe, as
the weather was fine, they might, in a few
hours more, have found an opening, and
palled fafelytothe weft ward, agree ably to their
original defign, which was to go to Hud-
fon's River. But having been fo long at lea,
the fight of any land was welcome to women
and children ; the new danger was formida
ble ; and the eagernefs of the paffengers to
be fet on more was irreiiftible. Thefe cir-
cumftances, coinciding with the fecret views
of the Mailer, who had been promifed a re
ward by fome agents of the Dutch Weft-In
dia Company, if he would not carry them to
Hudfon's River, j~ induced him to put about

to

* Thefe {heals lie off the fouth-eaft extremity of the cape,
which was culled by Gofnold, Point Care, by the Dutch
and French, Malebarre, and is now known by the name of



} Of this plot between Jones and the Dutch, Secretary
Morton fays he had cerium intelligence.

Memorial, p. 6r



CARVER. 189

to the northward. Before night, the {hip
was clear of the danger. The next day they
doubled the northern extremity of the Cape,
(Race-Point) and, a ftorm coming on, the
fhip was brought to anchor in Cape Cod
harbour, where me lay perfectly fecure from
winds and fhoals.

This harbour, being in the forty-fecond
degree of north latitude, was without the
territory of the South Virginia Company.
The charter which thefe emigrants had re
ceived from them, of courfe became ufelefs.
Some fymptoms of faction, at the fame time,
appearing among the fervants, who had been
received on board in England, purporting
that when on fhore they mould be under no
government, and that one man would be as
good as another ;* it was thought proper,
by the mod judicious perfons, to have re-
cpurfe to natural law ; and that, before dif-
embarkation, the v mould enter into an afTo-

/

ciation, and combine themfelves in a political
body, to be governed by the majority. To
this they confented ; and, after folemn pray
er arid thankfgiving, a written inftrument be
ing

* Court's Relation, in Purchas, vol. v. 1843. Prince,
84. Hutch. II. 456,



190 CARVER.

ing drawn, they fubfcribed it with their own
hands, and, by a unanimous vote, chofe
JOHN CARVER their governor for one year.

The inftrument was conceived in thefe
terms. " In the name of God, Amen. We
whofe names are underwritten, the loyal fub-
jects of our dread fovereignLord, King James,
by the grace of God, of Great-Britain, France
and Ireland, King, Defender of the faith, &c.
having undertaken, for the glory of God, and
advancement of the Chriftian faith, and hon
our of our King and country, a voyage, to
plant the firft Colony in the northern parts
of Virginia, do, by thefe prefents, folemnly
and mutually, in the prefence of GOD and
of one another, covenant and combine our-
ielves together into a civil body politic, for
our better ordering and prefervation, and fur
therance of the ends aforefaid ; and, by vir
tue hereof, to enacl:, conftitute and frame
fuch juft and equal laws and ordinances, acts,
conftitutions and offices, from time to time,
as mail be thought moil meet and conve
nient, for the general good of the Colony, un
to which we promife all due fubjection and
obedience. In witnefs whereof, we have
hereunto fubfcribed our names, at Cape Cod,

the



CARVER.



191



the eleventh day of November, in the year of
the reign of our fovereign Lord, King James
of England, France and Ireland, the eigh
teenth, and of Scotland the fifty-fourth.
Anno Domini i62o.":j:

Government

J The names of the fubfcribers are placed in the follow-'
Jag order by Secretary Morton ; but Mr. Prince, with his
ufual accuracy, has compared the lift with Governor Brad
ford's MS. Hutory, and added their titles, and the
number of each one's family which came over at this time ;
obferving that fome left the whole, and others part of their
families, either in England or Holland, who came over
afterward. He has alfo been fo curious as to note thofe
who brought their wives, marked with a (f) and thofe
who died before the end of the next March, diftinguilhed
by an aftcrifm (*). . ...

Mr. John Carver, f 8

Mr. William Bradford, f 2

Mr. Edward Window, f 5

Mr. William Brewfter, f 6

Mr. Ifaac Allerton, f 6

Capt. Miles Standifh, f 2

John Alden, i

Mr. Samuel Fuller, 2

* Mr. Chr iilopher Martin,f 4

* Mr. William Mull ins, f 5

* Mr. William White, f 5
\bcfides a fan bsrn in Cape
Cod harbour, and named
Peregrln:.~\

Mr. Richard Warren, I
John Howland, [of Car
ver's family.]



Mr. Stephen Hopkins, f

* Edward Tilly, f

* John Tilly, f
Francis Cook,

* Thomas Rogers,

* Thomas Tinker, f

* John Ridgdale, f

* Edward Fuller, f

* John Turner,
Francis Eaton, f

* James Chilton, f

* John Crackfton,
John Billington, f

* Mofes Fletcher,

* John Goodman,

* Degory Prieft,

* Thomas Williams,

Gilbert






192 CARVER*

Government being thus regularly eftab-
lifhed, on a truly republican principle, fixteen
armed men were fent on more, as foon as
the weather would permit* to fetch wood
and make difcoveries. They returned at
night, with a boat-load of juniper wood ;
and made report, " that they found the land
to be a narrow neck, having the harbour on
one fide, and the ocean on the other ; that
the ground confifted of fand-hills, like the
Downs in Holland ; that in fome places the
foil was black earth " a fpit's depth ;" that
the trees were oak, pine, faflafras, juniper,
birch, holly, am, and walnut ; that the foreft
was open and without underwood ; that no
inhabitants, houfes, nor frefh water were to
be feen." This account was as much as



Online LibraryUnknownAmerican biography: or, An historical account of those persons who have been distinguished in America, as adventurers, statesmen, philosophers, divines, warriors, authors, and other remarkable characters .. (Volume 2) → online text (page 9 of 24)