The Ancient Dominions of Maine
The story of Norumbega is invested with the charms of fable and romance. The name is found in the map of Hieronimus da Verrazano of 1529, as "Aranbega," being restricted to a definite and apparently unimportant locality. Suddenly, in 1539, Norumbega appears in the narrative of the Dieppe Captain as a vast and opulent region, extending from Cape Breton to the Cape of Florida. About three years later Allefonsce described the "River of Norumbega," now identified with the Penobscot, and treated the capital of the country as an important market for the trade in fur. Various maps of the period of Allefonsce confine the name of Norumbega to a distinct spot; but Gastaldi's map, published by Ramusio in 1556, -though modelled after Verrazano's, of which indeed it is substantially an extract,-applies the name to the region lying between Cape Breton and the Jersey coast. From this time until the seventeenth century Norumbega was generally regarded as embracing all New England, and sometimes portions of Canada, though occasionally the country was known by other names. Still, in 1582, Lok seems to have thought that the Penobscot formed the southern boundary of Norumbega, which he shows on his map as an island; while John Smith, in 1620, speaks of Norumbega as including New England and the region as far south as Virginia. On the other hand Champlain, in 1605, treated Norumbega as lying within the present territory of Maine. He searched for its capital on the banks of the Penobscot, and as late as 1669 Heylin was dreaming of the fair city of Norumbega.
Grotius, for a time at least, regarded the name as of Old Northern origin, and connected with "Norbergia." It was also fancied that a people resembling the Mexicans once lived upon the banks of the Penobscot. Those who have labored to find an Indian derivation for the name say that it means "the place of a fine city." At one time the houses of the city were supposed to be very splendid, and to be supported upon pillars of crystal and silver. Pearls were also reported as abundant, which at that early period was no doubt the case. Charlevoix offers the unsupported statement that Francis I. made Roberval "Lord of Norumbega." Roberval was certainly the patentee of the whole territory of Norumbega, though Mark Lescarbot made merry over the matter, as he could find nothing to indicate any town except a few miserable huts. It is reasonable to infer, however, that at an early period an Indian town of some celebrity existed! Like the ancient Hochelaga, which stood on the present site of Montreal and was visited and described by Cartier, it eventually passed away. Today, but for Cartier, Hochelaga would have had quite as mythical a reputation as Norumbega, which, however, still forms an appropriate theme for critical inquiry.
The first Englishman whose name has been associated with any portion of the region known as Norumbega was John Rut. This adventurer reached Newfoundland during August, 1527, and afterwards, according to Hakluyt's report, sailed "towards Cape Breton and the coastes of Arembec," but Purchas, who was better informed, says nothing about any southward voyage. One of the ships, the "Sampson," was reported as lost, while the other, the "Mary of Guilford," returned to England. There is nothing to prove that Rut even reached Cape Breton; much less is it probable that he explored the coast southward, along Nova Scotia, which was called "Arembec."
The first Englishman certainly known to have reached any portion of the region here treated as Norumbega was David Ingram, a wandering sailor. During October, 1568, with about one hundred companions, he was landed on the shore of the Gulf of Mexico by Captain John Hawkins, who, on account of the scarcity of provisions, sailed away and left these messmates behind. With two of his companions Ingram travelled afoot along the Indian trails, passing through the territory of Massachusetts and Maine to the St. John's River, where he embarked in a French ship, the "Gargarine," commanded by Captain Champagne, and sailed for France. The narrative of his journey is profusely embellished by his imagination, it may be,-as is generally held; but that he accomplished the long march has never been doubted. At that period the minds of explorers were dazzled by dreams of rich and splendid cities in America, and Ingram simply sought to meet the popular taste by his reference to houses with pillars of crystal and silver. He also says that he saw the city of Norumbega, called Bega, which was three fourths of a mile long and abounded with peltry. There is no doubt of his having passed through some large Indian village, and possibly his Bega may have been the Aranbega of Verrazano.
At the close of 1578 Sir Humphrey Gilbert made a voyage to North America, but may not have visited Norumbega. The earliest mention of his expedition is that found in Dee's Diary, under date of Aug. 5, 1578, where he says: "Mr. Raynolds, of Bridewell, tok his leave of me as he passed towards Dartmouth to go with Sir Umfry Gilbert towards Hochelaga."
The first known English expedition to Norumbega was made in a "little ffrigate" by Simon Ferdinando, who was in the service of Walsingham. Ferdinando sailed from Dartmouth in 1579, and was absent only three months. The brief account does not state what part of Norumbega was visited; but the circumstances point to the northern part, and presumably to the Penobscot region of Maine, It would also appear that the voyage was more or less of the nature of a reconnaissance.
The first Englishman known to have conducted an expedition to Norumbega was John Walker, who, the year following the voyage of Ferdinando, sailed to the river of Norumbega, in the service of Sir Humphrey Gilbert. He reached the Penobscot, of which he gave a rough description, finding the region rich in furs, as described by Allefonsce and Ingram. He discovered a silver mine where modern enterprise is now every year opening new veins of silver and gold. This voyage, like that of his predecessor, proved a short one,-the return trip being made direct to France, where the "hides" which he had secured were sold for forty shillings apiece.
In 1583 Sir Humphrey Gilbert took possession, of Newfoundland; and afterwards sailed for Norumbega, whither IT'S " man" Walker had gone three years before. In latitude 44° north, near Sable Island, he lost his great ship, the "Admiral," with most of his supplies; when, under stress of the autumnal gales, the brave knight reluctantly abandoned the expedition and shaped his course for home, sailing in a "little ffrigate,"-possibly the " barck" of Ferdinando. Off the Azores, in the midst of a furious storm, the frigate went down, carrying Sir Humphrey with her; just as, shortly before, Parmenius-a learned Hungarian who had joined the enterprise expressly to sing the praise of fair Norumbega in Latin verse - had gone down in the "Admiral."
In 1584, while Sir Humphrey Gilbert lay sleeping in his ocean grave, Raleigh was active in Virginia, where the work of colonization was pushed forward during a period of six years. Meanwhile the services of Simon Ferdinando as pilot were employed in this direction in the pay of Granville, and Norumbega for a space was unsearched, so far as we know, by the exploring English. There seems, however, ground for supposing that the fisheries or trade in peltries may have allured an occasional trafficking vessel, and contraband voyages may have been carried on without the knowledge of the patentee, the furs being sold in France. The elder Hakluyt appears to have had a very fair idea of the region, and he knew of the copper mines off the eastern coast of Maine, at the Bay of Menan, which was laid down on the map of Molyneux. Nevertheless, the only voyager that we can now point to is Richard Strong, of Apsham, who, in 1593, sailed to Cape Breton, and afterwards cruised some time "up and down the coast of Arembec to the west and southwest of Cape Breton." He doubtless searched for seal in the waters of Maine, and made himself familiar with its shores. It is said that he saw men, whom he "judged to be Christians," sailing in boats to the southwest of Cape Breton.
The opening of the seventeenth century witnessed a revival of English colonial enterprise; and Sir Walter Raleigh, though busy with schemes for privateering, nevertheless found time to think of Virginia, of which, both north and south, he was now the patentee. Accordingly he sent out a vessel to Virginia under Mace, evidently with reference to the lost colonists. Upon the return of Mace, Sir Walter went to Weymouth to confer with him, when, to his surprise, he learned that, without authority, another expedition had visited that portion of his grant which was still often called Norumbega. This was the expedition of Gosnold, who sailed from Falmouth, March 26, 1602, in a small bark belonging to Dartmouth, and called the "Concord." The company numbered thirty-two persons, eleven of whom intended to remain and plant a colony, apparently quite forgetful of the fact that they were intruders and liable to be proceeded against by the patentee. In this voyage Gosnold took the direct route, sailing between the high and low latitudes, and making a saving of nearly a thousand miles. In this respect he has been regarded as an innovator, though probably Walker pursued the same course. If there is no earlier instance, Verrazano, as we now know, in 1524 set navigators the example of the direct course, thereby avoiding the West Indies and the Spaniards. It is reasonable to suppose that Gosnold took the idea direct from Verrazano, as he left Falmouth with the Florentine's letter in his hand, referring directly to it in his own letter to his father: while Brereton and Archer made abundant use of it in their accounts of the voyage. On May 14 Gosnold sighted the coast of Maine near Casco Bay, calling the place Northland; twelve leagues southwest of which he visited Savage Rock, or Cape Neddock, where the Indians came out in a Basque shallop, and with a piece of chalk drew for him sketches of the coast. Next Gosnold sailed southward sixteen leagues to Boon Island, and thence, at three o'clock in the afternoon, he steered out "into the sea," holding his course still southward until morning; when the "Concord" was embayed by a "mighty headland." Their last point of departure could not have been nearer the "mighty headland," which was Cape Cod, than indicated by the sailing time. If the starting-point had been Cape Ann, they would have sighted Cape Cod before sunset. Archer says, when at Savage Rock, that they were short of their "purposed voyage." They had, then, a definite plan. Evidently they were sailing to the place, south of Cape Cod, described in the letter of Verrazano. Gosnold may have seen this island in the great Verrazano map described by Hakluyt. At all events Cape Cod was rounded, and the expedition reached that island of the Elizabeth group now known as Cuttyhunk, where, upon an islet in a small lake, they spent three weeks in building a fortified house, which they roofed with rushes. All this work they kept a secret from the Indians, while they intended, according to the narrative, to establish a permanent abode. Indeed, this appears to have been the particular region for which Sir Humphrey was sailing in 1583, as we know by Hakluyt's annotation on the margin of his translation of Verrazano which Gosnold used.
From Cuttyhunk the members of the expedition made excursions to the mainland, and they also loaded their vessel with sassafras and cedar. When, however, the time fixed for the ship's departure came, those who were to remain as colonists fell to wrangling about the division of the supplies; and, as signs of a "revolt" appeared, the prospects of a settlement began to fade, if indeed the idea of permanence had ever been seriously entertained. Soon "all was given over;" and June 17 the whole company abandoned their beautiful isle, with the "house and little fort," and set sail, desiring nothing so much as the sight of their native land. Gliding past the gorgeous cliffs of Gay Head, the demoralized company had no relish for the scene, but sailed moodily on to No-Man's Land, where they caught some wild fowl and anchored for the night. The next day the "Concord," freighted we fear with discord, resumed the voyage, and took her tedious course over the solitary sea.
Gosnold reached South Hampton on the 23d of July, having "not one cake of bread" and only a "little vinegar left;" yet even here his troubles did not end, for in the streets of Weymouth he soon encountered Sir Walter Raleigh, who confiscated his cargo of sassafras and cedar boards, on the ground that the voyage was made without his consent, and therefore contraband. Gosnold nevertheless protected his own interests by ingratiating himself with Raleigh, leaving the loss to fall the more heavily on his associates. Thus was Raleigh made, upon the whole, well pleased with the results of the voyage, and he resolved to send out both ships again. Speaking with reference to the unsettled region covered by his patent, he says, "I shall yet live to see it an Englishe nation."
The year 1603 was signalized by the death of Elizabeth
and the accession of James, while at nearly the same time Raleigh's public
career came to an end. Before the cloud settled upon his life, two expeditions
were sent out. The "Elizabeth" went to Virginia, under the command of Gilbert,
who lost his life there; while Martin Pring sailed with two small vessels
for New England. Pring commanded the "Speedwell," and Edmund Jones, his
subordinate, was master of the "Discoverer." This expedition had express
authority from Raleigh "to entermeddle and deale in that action."
It was set on foot by Hakluyt and the chief merchants of Bristol. Leaving
England April 10, Pring sighted the islands of Maine on the 2d of June, and, coasting southward, entered one of the rivers. He finally reached Savage Rock, where he failed to find sassafras, the chief object of his voyage, and accordingly "bore into that great Gulfe which Captaine Gosnold overshot. This gulf was Massachusetts Bay, the northern side of which did not answer his expectations; whereupon he crossed to the southern side and entered the harbor now called Plymouth, finding as much sassafras as he desired and he remained there for about six weeks. The harbor was named Whitson, in honor of the Mayor of Bristol; and a neighboring hill, probably Captain's Hill, was called Mount Aldworth, after another prominent Bristol merchant. On the shore the adventurers built a "small baricado to keepe diligent watch and warde in" while the sassafras was being gathered in the woods. They also planted seed to test the soil. Hither the Indians came in great numbers, and "did eat Pease and Beans with our men," dancing also with great delight to the "homely musicke" of a Zitterne," which a young man in the company could play. This fellow was rewarded by the savages with tobacco and pipes, together with snake skinnes of sixe foote long," These were used as belts, and formed a large part of the savage attire, though upon their breasts they wore plates of "brasse."
By the end of July Pring had loaded the "Discoverer" with sassafras, when Jones sailed in her for England, leaving Pring to complete the cargo of the other ship. Soon the Indians became troublesome, and, armed with their bows and arrows, surrounded the "baricado," evidently intending to make an attack; but when Pring's mastiff, "greate Foole," appeared, holding a half-pike between his jaws, they were alarmed, and tried to turn their action into a jest. Nevertheless, the day before Pring sailed for England they set the forest on fire "for a mile space." On August 9 the "Elizabeth" departed from Whitson Bay, and reached Kingsroad October 2. Thus two years before Champlain explored Plymouth Harbor, naming it Port of Cape St. Louis, ten years before the Dutch visited the place calling it Crane Bay, and seventeen years before the arrival of the Leyden Pilgrims, Englishmen became familiar with the whole region, and loaded their ships with fragrant products of the neighboring woods.
We next approach the period when the French came to seek homes on the coasts of the ancient Norumbega, as, in 1604, De Monts and Champlain established themselves at St. Croix,-the latter making a voyage to Mount Desert, where he met the savages, who agreed to guide him to the Penobscot, or Peimtegoüet; believed to be the river "which many pilots and historians call Norembegue." He ascended the stream to the vicinity of the present Bangor, and met the "Lord" of Norumbega; but the silver-pillared mansions and towers had disappeared. The next year he coasted New England to Cape Malabar, but a full account of the French expeditions is assigned to another volume of the present work.
The voyage of Waymouth, destined to have such an important bearing upon the future of New England colonization, was begun and ended before Champlain embarked upon his second expedition from St. Croix, and the English captain thus avoided a collision with the French. Waymouth sailed from Dartmouth on Easter Sunday, May 15, 1605 evidently intending to visit the regions south of Cape Cod described by Brereton and Verrazano. Upon meeting contrary winds at his landfall in 41° 2' north, being of an irresolute temper, he bore away for the coast farther east; and on June 18 he anchored on the north side of the island of Monhegan. He was highly pleased with the prospect, and hoped that it would prove the "most fortunate ever discovered." The next day was Whitsunday, when he entered the present Booth's Bay, which he named Pentecost Harbor. He afterwards explored the Kennebec, planting a cross at one of its upper reaches; and, sailing for England June 16, he carried with him five of the Kennebec natives, whom he had taken by stratagem and force.
In connection with Waymouth's voyage we have the earliest indications of English public worship, which evidently was conducted according to the forms of the Church, in the cabin of the "Archangel," the savages being much impressed thereby. The historian of Waymouth's voyage declares "a public good, and true zeal of promulgating God's holy Church by planting Christianity, to be the sole intent of the honorable setter forth of this discovery."
The narrative of Waymouth's voyage was at once
published, and attracted the attention of Sir John Popham, chief-justice.
It also greatly encouraged Sir Ferdinando Gorges, who, in connection with
Sir John, obtained from King James two patents, - one for the London and
the other for the Plymouth company; the latter including that portion of
ancient Norumbega extending from 38° north to 45° north, thus completely
ignoring the claims of the French. The patentees were entitled to exercise
all those powers which belong to settled, and well-ordered society, being
authorized to coin money, impose taxes and duties, and maintain a general
government for twenty-one years.'' This was accomplished in 1606, when
Sir Ferdinando Gorges sent out a ship under Captain Challons, which was
captured by the
Spaniards and never reached her destination. Before hearing of the loss of this ship, another was despatched under Thomas Hanam, with Martin Pring as master. Failing to find Challons, they made a very careful exploration of the region, which Sir Ferdinando says was the best that ever came into his hands. In the mean time the five Indians brought home by Waymouth had been in training for use in connection with colonization under the supervision of Gorges. Indeed he expressly says that these Indians were the means, "under God, of putting on foot and giving life to all our plantations." Accordingly the plans of a permanent colony were projected, and on the last day of May, 1607, two ships-the "Gift of God" and the "Mary and John"-were despatched under the command of Captain George Popham, brother of the chief-justice, and Captain Raleigh Gilbert. At the end of twenty-one days the expedition reached the Azores, where the "Mary and John," having been left behind by her consort, barely escaped from the Netherlanders. Finally, leaving the Azores, Gilbert stood to sea, crossing the ocean alone, and sighted the hills of Le Have, Nova Scotia, July 30. After visiting the harbor of Le Have, Gilbert sailed southward, rounding Cape Sable, and entered the "great deep Bay" of Fundy. Then he passed the Seal Islands, evidently being well acquainted with the ground, and next shaped his course for the region of the Penobscot, looking in the mean time for the Camden Hills, which, on the afternoon of August 5, lifted their three double peaks above the bright summer sea. As he confidently stood in towards the land, the Matinicus Islands soon shone white "like unto Dover clifts;" and afterward the "Mary and John " found good anchorage close under Monhegan, Waymouth's fortunate island, named in honor of England's patron saint, St. George. Landing upon the island Gilbert found a sightly cross, which had been set up by Waymonth or some other navigator. The next morning, as the "Mary and John" was leaving Monhegan, a sail appeared. It proved to be the "Gift of God," of whose voyage no account is now known. In company with his consort Gilbert returned to the anchorage ground. At midnight he made a visit to Pemaquid, on the mainland, accompanied by Skidwarres, one of Waymouth's Indians, rowing over the placid waters with measured stroke among many "gallant islands." They found the village sought for, and then returned. The next day was Sunday, when the two ships' companies landed upon Monhegan,-then crowned with primeval forests and festooned with luxuriant vines,-where their preacher, the Rev. Richard Seymour, delivered a discourse and offered prayers of thanksgiving. The following is the entry of the pilot: -
"Sondaye beinge the 9th of August, in the morninge the most part of our holl company of both our shipes landed on this Illand, the wch we call St. George's Illand, whear the crosse standeth; and thear we heard a sermon delyvred unto us by our preacher, gguinge God thanks for our happy metinge and saffe aryvall into the contry; and so retorned abord aggain."This, so far as our present information extends, is the first recorded religious service by any English or Protestant clergyman within the bounds of New England, which was then consecrated to Christian civilization.
On Sunday, August 19, after encountering much danger, both ships were safely moored in the harbor of Sagadahoc at the mouth of the Kennebec. The adventurers then proceeded to build a pinnace called the "Virginia," the first vessel built in New England. She crossed the Atlantic several times. The Kennebec was explored by Gilbert, while a fort, a church, a storehouse, and some dwellings were built upon the peninsula of Sabino, selected as the site of the colony. The two ships returned to England, the "Mary and John" bearing a Latin epistle from Captain Popham to King James. It gave a glowing description of the country, which was even supposed to produce nutmegs. During the winter Popham died; and in the spring, when a ship came out with supplies, the colonists were found to be greatly discouraged, their storehouse having been destroyed by fire, and the winter having proved extremely cold. Besides, no indications of precious metals were found, and they now learned that the chief-justice, like his brother, had passed away. Accordingly the fort, "mounting twelve guns," was abandoned, and Strachey says "this was the end of that northern colony upon the river Sagadehoc."
After the abandonment of Sabino the English were actively engaged in traffic upon the coast; as appears from the testimony of Captain John Smith, who, in describing his visit to Monhegan in 1614, says that opposite "in the Maine," called Pemaquid, was a ship of Sir Francis Popham, whose people had used the port for "many yeares" and had succeeded in monopolizing the fur-trade. The particulars concerning these voyages, and the scattered settlers around the famous peninsula of Pemaquid, are not now accessible.
The next Englishman to be referred to is Henry Hudson, who, with a crew composed of English and Dutch, visited Maine in 1609,-probably finding a harbor at Mt. Desert, where he treated the Indians with cruelty and fired upon them with cannon. Sailing thence he touched at Cape Cod, and went to seek a passage to the Indies by the way of Hudson River, which had been visited by Verrazano in 1524, and named by Gomez the following year in honor of St. Anthony. The voyage of Hudson is not of necessity connected with English enterprise. The next year Captain Argall, from Virginia, visited the Penobscot region for supplies, but he does not appear to have communicated with any of his countrymen.
In 1611 the English showed themselves on the coast with a strong hand. This fact is learned from a letter of the Jesuit Biard, who, in writing to his superior at Rome, gives the history of an encounter between the English and French. From his narrative it appears that early in 1611 a French captain, named Plastrier, undertook to go to the Kennebec, and was made a prisoner by two ships "that were in an isle called Emmetenic, eight leagues from the said Kennebec." He escaped by paying a ransom and agreeing not to intrude any more. This fact coming to the knowledge of Biencourt the commander at Port Royal, the irate Frenchman proceeded to the Kennebec to find the English and to obtain satisfaction from them. Upon reaching the site of the Popham colony at Sabino, Biencourt found the place deserted. On his return he visited Matinicus (Emmetenic), where he saw the shallops of the English on the beach, but did not burn them, for the reason that they belonged to peaceful civilians and not to soldiers. Who then were the English for whom Biencourt was so considerate? Evidently they were those led by Captains Harlow and Hobson, who, as stated by Smith, sailed from Southampton for the purpose of discovering an isle "supposed to be about Cape Cod." They visited that cape and Martha's Vineyard, and, it would appear, sailed along the coast of Maine, where they showed Plastrier their papers, indicating that they acted by authority. Possibly, however, Sir Francis Popham's agent, Captain Williams, may have been the commander who expelled the French. At all events there was no lack of English representation on the coast of New England in 1611. Smith, speaking in a fit of discouragement, says that "for any plantation there was no more speeches; " but the fact that Sir Francis annually for many years sent ships to the coast indicates brisk enterprise, though there may have been no movement in favor of such a venture as that of the colony of 1607. Many scattered settlers, no doubt, were living around Pemaquid. Smith may be quoted again as saying that no Englishman was then living on the coast; but this is something that he could not know. It is also opposed to recognized facts, and to the declaration of Biard that the English in Maine desired "to be masters." Still we do not at present know the name of a single Englishman living in New England during the winter of 1611. In 1612 Captain Williams was opposite Monhegan, at Pemaquid, where, no doubt, his agents lived all the year round, collecting furs. In 1613 the scene became more animated. At this period the French were boldly inclined, and Madame de Guercheville had determined to found a Jesuit mission in what was called Acadia. In 1613, therefore, the Jesuits Biard and Masse left Port Royal and proceeded to establish themselves on the border of Somes's Sound in Mount Desert, where they began to land their goods and build a fortification, the ship in which they came being anchored near the shore. Argall, who was fishing in the neighborhood, learned of their arrival from the Indians, and by a sharp and sudden attack captured the French ship. He sent a part of the company to Nova Scotia, and carried others to Virginia. This action was not justified by the English Government, and some time afterward the French ship was surrendered.
In the year 1614 Captain John Smith, the hero of Virginia, enters upon the New England scene; yet his coming would appear, in some respects, to have been without any very careful prevision, since he begins his narrative by saying, "I chanced to arive in New England, a parte of Ameryca, at the Ile of Monahiggan." The object of his expedition was either to take whales or to try for mines of gold; and, failing in these, "Fish and Furres was our refuge." In most respects the voyage was a failure, yet it nevertheless afforded him the opportunity of writing his Description of New England, whose coast he ranged in an open boat, from the Penobscot to Cape Cod. His brief description, so fresh and unconventional, will never lose its value and charm; and, because so unique, it will maintain a place in the historical literature of its time. Smith knew that his impressions were more or less crude, yet the salient features of the coast are well presented. At the Penobscot he saw none of the people, as they had gone inland for the summer to fish; and at Massachusetts, by which he meant the territory around Boston, "the Paradise of all those parts," he found the French six weeks in advance of, him, they being the first Europeans known to have visited the place. The River of Massachusetts was reported by the natives as extending "many daies Iourney into the entralles of that countrey." At Cohasset he was attacked by the natives, and was glad to escape; while at Accomacke, which he named Plymouth, he found nothing lacking but "an industrious people." He was the third explorer to proclaim in print the value of the situation. One result of his examination was his Map of New England, which he presented to Prince Charles.
During the year 1614 another expedition was sent out. Gorges says that while he was considering the best means of reviving his "languishing hopes" of colonization, Captain Harlow brought to him one of the Indians whom he had captured in 1611. This savage, named Epenow, had been exhibited in London as a curiosity, being "a goodly man of brave aspect." Epenow was well acquainted with the New England tribes. At the same time Sir Ferdinando had recovered Assacumet, one of Waymouth's Indians who had been carried to Spain, in 1606, when Challons was captured by the Spaniards. The possession of these two Indians inspired the knight with hope, since he was firmly persuaded that in order to succeed in colonization it would be necessary to have the good-will of the natives, whose cooperation he hoped to secure through the good offices of those whom he had taught to appreciate, in some measure, the advantages of English civilization. In this respect he was wise. In connection therefore with the Earl of Southampton he fitted out a ship, which was put in command of Captain Hobson, whom he describes as "a grave gentleman." Hobson himself invested a hundred pounds in the enterprise, one of the main objects of which was to discover mines of gold. This metal, Epenow said, would be found at Capawicke, or Martha's Vineyard. Hobson sailed in June, 1614, and finally reached the place where Epenow was "to make good his undertaking," and where the savages came on board and were entertained in a friendly and hospitable way. Among the guests were Epenow's brothers and cousins, who improved the occasion to arrange for his escape,-it being decided, as it appears from what followed, that upon their return he should jump overboard and swim away, while the tribe menaced the English with arrows. They accordingly appeared in full strength at the appointed time, when Epenow, though closely watched, and clothed in flowing garments to render his retention the more certain, succeeded in evading his keepers and jumped overboard. Hobson's musketeers immediately opened fire, foolishly endeavoring to shoot the swimming savage, while Epenow's friends bravely shot their arrows and wounded the master of the ship and many of the crew. In the end Epenow escaped; and Sir Ferdinando says: "Thus were my hopes of that particular mode void and frustrate;" adding, that such are "the fruits to be looked for by employing men more zealous of gain than fraught with experience how to make it." Hobson however did not lose so much as was supposed; for, though no doubt Epenow believed that gold existed at Capawicke, and that if it should prove necessary he could bring the English to the mine, it is clear that no precious metal existed. The supposed gold was simply a sulphate of iron, which the mineralogist finds today in the aluminous clays of Gay Head.
Though both Smith and Hobson had failed essentially in the objects of their voyage, the former was not in the slightest degree disheartened, but spoke in such glowing terms of the country and its resources that the Plymouth Company resolved to take vigorous action, and offered Smith "the managing of their authority in those parts" for life. The London Company was also stirred up, and sent out four ships before the people of Plymouth acted. The Londoners offered Smith the command of their ships, which he declined, having already made a life-engagement. Nevertheless the London ships sailed in January, led by Captain Michael Cooper, and reached Monhegan in March, where they fished until June, and then sent a ship of three hundred tons to Spain loaded with fish. This ship was taken by the Turks, while another sailed to Virginia, leaving the third to return to England with fish and oil. Smith's Plymouth friends, however, furnished only two ships. Nevertheless he sailed with these, Captain Dermer being second in command. His customary ill fortune still attended him, and not far from port he lost both his masts, while his consort went on to New England. Sailing a second time in a small vessel of sixty tons, Smith was next captured by French pirates; and, while tossing at sea in captivity, wrote his Description of New England. His language has been regarded as very significant where he speaks of "the dead patent of this unregarded country;" but this is the language of a depressed prisoner. The patent was not dead; while, if it had been dead, English enterprise was alive, of which his own voyage, though cut short by pirates, was a convincing proof. To show that the patent was not dead, the Plymouth Company, in 1615, sent out Sir Richard Hawkins, who was acting "as President for that year." Hawkins sailed October 15. Gorges says that he spent his time while in New England very usefully in studying the products of the country; but unfortunately he arrived at the period when the Indian war was at its height, and many of the principal natives were killed. From New England he coasted to Virginia, and thence he sailed to Spain, "to make the best of such commodities as he had got together," which Sir Ferdinando loosely says "was all that was done by any of us that year." Nevertheless, Smith tells us that Plymouth in 1616 sent out four ships, and London two; while Purchas states that "eight voluntarie ships" went to New England to make "further tryall." Another of two hundred tons, the "Nachen," commanded by Edwarde Brawnde, who addressed an account of the voyage to "his worthye good frend Captayne John Smith, admirall of New England," also went out. In his letter reference is made to other vessels on the coast. The "Nachen," of London, sailed from Dartmouth March 8, and reached Monhegan April 20. Afterwards Brawnde went to Cape Cod in his pinnace to search for pearls, which were also the first things sought for by the Leyden emigrants, in 1620, when they reached the harbor of Provincetown. Brawnde also mentions that he had his boats detained by Sir Richard Hawkins, who thus appears to have wintered upon the coast and to have sailed to Virginia in the spring. Notwithstanding various mishaps, Brawnde entertained a favorable impression of New England, where profitable voyages were to be made in fish and furs, if not spoiled by too many factors, while he found the climate good, and the savages "a gentell-natured people," altogether friendly to the English.
In 1617 Smith himself made the discovery that the patent of New England was not dead. At that time he had secured three ships, while his life-appointment for the new country was reaffirmed. Still misfortune continued to pursue him, and he did not even succeed in leaving port. Together with a hundred sail he was wind-bound at Plymouth for three months. By the terms of the contract he says that he was to be admiral for life, and "in the renewing of their Letters pattents so to be nominated." But for the unfortunate head-winds he would have gone to New England in 1617 and undertaken a permanent work, as the times were ripe. Pie might have begun either at Plymouth or Massachusetts, "the paradise of all those parts," and thus have made Boston anything but a Nonconformist town.
In 1618 the English were still active, and Captain Rocroft went to Monhegan to meet Captain Dermer, who was expected from Newfoundland. Dermer, however, failed to appear, while Rocroft improved the occasion to seize "a small barque of Dieppe," which he carried to Virginia. This Frenchman was engaged in the fur-trade at Saco, in disregard of the claims of the English; but Gorges, with his customary humanity, condoned the offence, the man "being of our religion," and kindly made good his loss. Soon after capturing the French trader, Rocroft came near being the victim of a conspiracy on the part of certain of his own men. When the plot was discovered he spared their lives, but set them ashore at Saco, whence they went to Monhegan and passed the winter, but succeeded in escaping to England in the spring. About this time that poorly known character, Sir Richard Vines, passed a winter on the coast, probably at Saco, sleeping in the cabins of the Indians, and escaping the great plague, which swept away so many of the sagamores. The winter fisheries were commonly pursued, and the presence of Englishmen on the coast all the year round was no doubt a common thing, while a trading-post must have been maintained at Pemaquid. Rocroft finally sailed to Virginia, where he wrecked his vessel, and then lost his life in a brawl. Thus suddenly this "gallant soldier" dropped out of New England history.
With the summer of 1619 Dermer finally reached Monhegan, the rendezvous of English ships, and found, that Rocroft had sailed for Virginia. While his people engaged in fishing, he explored the coast in a pinnace as far as Plymouth, having Squanto for his guide, and then travelled afoot westward to Nummastuquyt, or Middleboro'. From this place he sent a messenger to the border of Narragansett Bay, who brought "two kings" to confer with him. Here also he redeemed a Frenchman who had been wrecked at Cape Cod. Dermer adds immediately, that he obtained another at Mastachusit, or the region about Boston, which he must have visited on his way back to Monhegan. The account of his exploration is meagre; and he hints vaguely at a very important island found June 12, which may have been thought gold-bearing, as he says that he sent home "some of the earth." Near by were two other islands, named "King James's Isles," because from thence he had "the first motives to search for that now probable passage which hereafter may be both honorable and profitable to his Majesty." Clearly he refers to a supposed passage leading through the continent to the Pacific and the Indies. In a letter to Purchas, not now known, he mentioned the important island first referred to, and probably described its locality, though its identity is now left to conjecture. It may have been situated near Boston Harbor, while the "probable passage" may have been suggested by the mouths of the Mystic and the Charles, which, according to the report given by the natives to Smith, penetrated many days' journey into the country.
Dermer finally reached Monhegan, and sent his ship home to England. He afterwards put his surplus supplies on board the "Sampson," and despatched her for Virginia. He then embarked once more in his pinnace to range along the coast. Near Nahant, during a storm, his pinnace was beached; but getting off with the loss of many stores, and leaving behind his Indian guide, he sailed around Cape Cod. At a place south of the cape he was taken prisoner by the natives, but he escaped covered with wounds. Subsequently he sailed through Long Island Sound, and, passing through Hell Gate, he found it a "dangerous cataract." While here the savages on the shore saluted him with a volley of arrows. In New York Harbor the natives proved peaceable, and undertook to show him a strait leading to the west; but, baffled by the wind, he sailed southward to Virginia, where he made a map of the coast, which he would not "part with for fear of danger." This map probably exhibited his ideas respecting the "westward passage," which was to be concealed from the French and Dutch. In Virginia this late but hopeful explorer of Norumbega died.
Dermer was emphatically an explorer, and even in 1619 was dreaming of a route through New England to China; but his most important work was the peace made with the Indians at Plymouth. It is mentioned in his report to Gorges. This report was quoted in the Relation of the president and council, and was used by Morton and Bradford. The latter quotes him as saying, with reference to Plymouth, "I would that the first plantation might here be seated, if there come to the number of fifty persons or upward." This was but the echo of Captain John Smith. Morton endeavors, in an ungenerous spirit, to cheapen the services of Dermer, but it would be as just to underrate the work of the English on the Maine coast; and we should remember that it was their faithful friend the Pemaquid Chief Samoset who hailed the Leyden colonists, upon their arrival at Plymouth, with the greeting, "Welcome, Englishmen!" This was simply the natural result of the policy of peace and good-will which imparted a gracious charm to the life of Sir Ferdinando Gorges, who may be well styled the Father of New England Colonization. Here we leave the English explorers of Norumbega.
CRITICAL ESSAY ON THE SOURCES OF INFORMATION.
DOCUMENTS, whether in our own tongue or in others, which throw light upon the explorations of the English in Norumbega are by no means wanting. They embrace formal report and epistolary chronicle in great variety and of considerable extent. In some cases they are full and rich in details, but in others they disappoint us from their meagreness. Such deficiency particularly confronts us when we are searching for the tracks of their progress in maps or charts of these early dates.
The English, in reality, were behind the age in maritime enterprise, and this forms one reason for the delay in colonizing ancient Norumbega.
The voyage of John Rut has been pointed out as the earliest voyage having a possible connection with any portion of the territory of Norumbega, which never included Bacalaos, though Bacalaos, an old name of Newfoundland, sometimes included New England. The extreme northeastern extension of Norumbega was Cape Breton. It was towards Cape Breton and the coasts of Arembec, that Rut is said to have sailed when he left St. John. Hakluyt is the first authority summoned in connection with a subject which has elicited much curious discussion; but Hakluyt was poorly informed. He refers to the chronicles of Hall and Crafton, who said that Henry VIII. sent out two ships, May 20, 1527; yet he did not know either the name of the commander or of the ships, one of which was given as the "Dominus vobiscum." Purchas, however, gives the names of both ships, and the letter of Captain Rut to Henry VIII., together with a letter in Latin, written by Albert de Prato, a canon of St. Paul's, London, which is addressed to Cardinal Wolsey. Hakluyt, in his edition of 1589, reads, "towards the coasts of Norombega," instead of Arembec, as in the edition of 1600. The latter appears to be a correction intended to limit the meaning. Arembec may have been a name given to Nova Scotia. A similar name was certainly given to one or more islands near the site of Louisburg. According tp Hakluyt, Rut often landed his men "to search the state of those unknown regions," after he left the northerly part of Newfoundland; but the confused account does not prove that it was on Cape Breton or Arembec that they landed. Rut says nothing about any such excursion, but simply says that he should go north in search of his consort, the "Samson," and then sail with all diligence ''to that island we are commanded;" and Hakluyt says that it was an expedition intended to sail toward the North Pole. Nevertheless, it has been fancied that Rut, in the "Mary of Guilford," explored all Norumbega, and then went to the West Indies. This notion is based upon the statement of Herrera, who tells of an English ship which lost her consort in a storm, and in 1519 came to Porto Rico from Newfoundland, the pilot, who was a native of Piedmont, having been killed by the Indians on the Atlantic coast. Herrera's date has been regarded as wrong; and it has been corrected, on the authority of Oviedo, and put at 1527. There is no proof that Rut lost his pilot; but as he had with him a learned mathematician, Albert de Prato, a priest, it has been assumed that the priest was both a pilot and an Italian, and consequently that the vessel seen at Porto Rico was Rut's. It would be more reasonable to suppose that this was the missing "Samson," or else one of the English traders sent to the West Indies in 1526/7. The ship described by Herrera was a "great ship" heavily armed and full of stores. On the other hand, the "Mary of Guilford" was a small vessel of one hundred and sixty tons only, prepared for fishing. Finally, Rut was still at St. John August 10, while Hakluyt states that the "Mary of Guilford" reached England by the beginning of October. This, if correct, renders the exploration of Norumbega and the cruise in the West Indies an impossibility. Nevertheless Rut must have accomplished something, while it is significant that when Carrier explored the Gulf of St. Lawrence, in 1534, he found a cape called Cape Prato, apparently a reminiscence of the canon of St Paul's.
David Ingram's narrative, referred to in the text, was printed by Hakluyt in 1589, who, however, omitted it in 1600. Ingram suffered much, and saw many things, no doubt, with a diseased brain. He listened also to the stories of others, repeating them with additions in sailor fashion; and, besides, may have been moved by vanity. Purchas, referring to Hakluyt, says, "It seemeth some incredibilities of his report caused him to leave him out in the next Impression, the reward of lying being not to be believed in truths."
The larger portion however, of the statements in his narrative appears to be true. He seems to have occupied about eleven months in reaching a river which he calls Gugida, this being simply the Indian Ouigoudi of Lescarbot, and the Ouygoudy of Champlain, who, June 24, 1604, explored the river, and named it the St. John.
Concerning Simon Ferdinando there has been much misapprehension. He was connected with the Virginia voyages in 1584-86. In the latter year his ship was grounded. This led to his being loaded with abuse by White. It was re-echoed by Williamson and Hawks. The latter declared that he was a Spaniard, hired by his nation to frustrate the English colony, calling him a "treacherous villain" and a "contemptible mariner;" yet Hawks did not understand the subject. Subsequently, Ferdinando's real character came to light; and, in one of the oldest pieces of English composition produced on the continent of North America, his skill and faithfulness were applauded by Ralph Lane. He was one of the numerous Portuguese domiciled in England; but he had powerful friends like Walsingham, and thus became the leader of the first-known English expedition to Norumbega. His life was somewhat eventful, and like most men of his class he occasionally tried his hand at privateering. At one time he was in prison on a charge of heresy, and was bailed out by William Herbert, the vice-admiral. His voyage of 1579 seems hitherto to have escaped notice; but this, together with his personal history, would form the subject of an interesting monograph.
It was through the calendars of the state-paper office that the fact of John Walker's voyage became known some time since, but not as yet with detail; and it is only by means of a marginal note, which makes Walker "Sir Humphrey Gilbert's man," that we get any clew to its purpose, and from which we are led to infer its tentative character, and its influence upon Gilbert's subsequent career.
Upon reaching Sir Humphrey Gilbert we discover a man rich in his intentions respecting Norumbega. He was the patentee, and he possessed power and resources which would have insured success but for the untimely termination of his career. The true story of his life yet remains to be written, and in competent hands it would prove a noble theme. The State Papers afford many documents throwing light upon his history, while the pages of Hakluyt supply many facts.
The work of Barlow and others, from 1584 to 1590, does not properly belong to the story of Norumbega; yet the attempts in Virginia may be studied for the side-lights which they afford, the narratives being given by Hakluyt,-who also gives the voyage of the "Marigold " under Strong, fixing the site of Arembec on the coast southwest of Cape Breton.
With the opening of the seventeenth century the literature of our subject becomes richer. Gosnold's voyage, now shorn of much of its former prestige, has only recently come to be understood. It was somewhat fully chronicled by Brereton and Archer, each of whom wrote accounts. The original volume of Brereton forms a rare bibliographical treasure. It has been reprinted by the Massachusetts Historical Society, but an edition properly edited is much needed. In 1625 Purchas gave Archer's account, with a letter by Brereton to Raleigh, and Gosnold's letter to his father. The voyage is also treated in the Dutch collection of Van der Aa, which gives an engraving at variance with the text, in that it represents the savages assisting Gosnold in building his island fortification, the construction of which was in fact kept a secret. The voyage of Gosnold has been accepted as an authorized attempt at colonization, and used to offset the Popham expedition of 1607; but that part of the titlepage of Brereton which says that the voyage was made by the permission of Raleigh is now known to be untrue, and the contraband character of the enterprise stands confessed.
It has been said more than once that Drake visited New England, and gave Gosnold some account thereof; but while he brought home the Virginia adventurers in 1587, and may then have touched on the coast of North Virginia, no early account of any such visit is found. It has also been said that Gosnold went so far in the work of fortification as to build a platform for six guns. The authority for the statement does not appear.
The voyage of Martin Pring, as already pointed out, was a legitimate enterprise, having the sanction of Sir Walter Raleigh, the patentee. This voyage is also the more noticeable as having had the active support of Hakluyt. Harris says that a thousand pounds were raised for the enterprise, and that Raleigh "made over to them all the Profits which should arise from the Voyage." Here, therefore, it may be proper to delay long enough to indicate something of Hakluyt's great work in connection with colonization.
Richard Hakluyt was born about the year 1553, and was educated at Westminster School and Christ Church College, Oxford. At an early age he acquired a taste for history and cosmography. In the preface to his work of 1589, dedicated to Walsingham, he says : -
"I do remember that being a youth, and one of her Maiestie's scholars at Westminster, that fruitfull nurserie, it was my happe to visit the chamber of Mr. Richard Hakluyt my cosin, a Gentleman of the Middle Temple, well known unto you, at a time when I found lying vpen his boord certeine bookes of Cosmosgraphie with a vniversal Mappe: he seeing me somewhat curious in the view thereof, began to instruct my ignorance by showeing me the divisions thereof."
His cousin also turned to the l07th Psalm, relating to those who go down into the sea in ships and occupy themselves on the great waters. Upon which Hakluyt continues : -
"The words of the Prophet, together with my cousin's discourse (things of high and rare delight to my young nature), tooke so deepe an impression that I constantly resolved, if euer I were preferred to the Vniversity, where better time and more convenient place might be ministered for these studies, I would by God's assistance prosecute that knowledge and kinde of literature, the doores whereof (after a sort) were so happily opened before me."
This interview decided Hakluyt for life, and one of the first fruits of his zeal was his Divers Voyages, published in 1582. In 1589 appeared his Principal Navigations. In the year 1600 he enlarged his work, bringing it out in three volumes. In 1605 Hakluyt was made a prebend of Westminster; and in 1609 he published Virginia Richly Valued, being the translation of a Portuguese work. Hakluyt also published other pieces. He died in Herefordshire, in 1616, finding a burial-place in Westminster Abbey. Still curiously enough, notwithstanding his great services to American colonization, his name has never been applied to any portion of our country; though Hudson, in 1608, named a headland on the coast of Greenland in his honor. He left behind, among other manuscripts, one entitled A Discourse of Planting, recently published, though much of the essence of the volume had been produced before in various forms. Among the tracts appended to Brereton are the Inducements of Hakluyt the Elder, who appears to have known all about the Discourse.
In connection with the voyage of Waymouth, 1605, one topic of discussion relates to the particular river which he explored. This, indeed, is a subject in connection with which a divergence of opinion may be pardonable. Did he explore the St. George's River, or the Kennebec? Belknap, however, in 1769, in a crude fashion and with poor data, held that the Penobscot was the river visited. In 1857 a maine writer took the ground that Waymouth explored the Kennebec. Other writers followed with pleas for the St. George's. Ballard wrote what was, in most respects, a convincing argument in support of the Kennebec River. In opposition to the advocate of the Kennebec, it has been said that the high mountains seen by Waymouth were not the White Mountains,-for the reason that the White Mountains could not be seen,-but were the Camden hills, towards which he went from Monhegan; and consequently that he reached the St. George's River, which lies in that direction. It has been said, also, that the White Mountains cannot be seen from that vicinity. This is simply an assumption. The Whiite Mountains are distinctly visible in fair weather from the deck of a ship lying inside of Monhegan. Yet the mountains in question have less to do with the subject than generally supposed, since a careful examination of the obscure text shows that it is not necessary to understand Rosier as saying that in going to the river they sailed directly towards the mountains. His language shows that they "came along to the other islands more adjoining the main, and in the road directly with the mountains." Here it is not necessary to suppose that it was the course sailed that was direct, but rather that it was the road that was direct with the mountains, - the term road signifying a roadstead, or anchorage place at a distance from the shore, like that of Monhegan. Beyond question Waymouth saw both the White and the Camden mountains; but they do not form such an essential element in the discussion as both sides have fancied. Strachey really settles the question where he says that Waymouth discovered two rivers,-"that little one of Pamaquid," and "the most excellent and beneficyall river of Sachadehoc." This river at once became famous, and thither the Popham colonists sailed in 1607. In fact, the St. George's River was never talked about at that period, being even at the present time hardly known in geography, while the importance of the Kennebec is very generally understood.
The testimony of another early writer would alone prove sufficient to settle the question. In fact, no question would ever have been raised if New England writers had been acquainted with the works of Champlain at an earlier period. In July, 1605, Champlain visited the Kennebec, where the natives informed him that an English ship had been on the coast, and was then lying at Monhegan; and that the captain had killed five Indians belonging to their river. These were the five Indians taken by Waymouth at Pentecost Harbor-the modern Booth's Bay-who were supposed to have been killed, though at that time sailing on the voyage to England unharmed.
The narrative of the expedition of Waymouth was written by James Rosier, and published in 1605. It was printed by Purchas, with a few changes, in 1625; and reprinted by the Massachusetts Historical Society, in 1843. This narrative forms the source of almost everything that is known about the voyage. It contains some preplexing passages; but when properly interpreted, it is found that they are all consistent with other statements, and prove that the river explored was the Kennebec.
The story of the Popham Colony, of 1607-8, at one time occasioned much acrimonious discussion, for which there was no real occasion; but of late the better the subject has been understood, the less reason has been found for any disagreement between the friends of the Church of England and the apologists of New England nonconformity.
Prior to the year 1849 the Popham Colony was known only through notices found in Purchas, the Brief Relation, Smith, Sir William Alexander, Gorges, and others. In the year 1849, however, the Hakluyt Society published Strachey's work, entitled The Historie of Travaile into Virginia Britannia, edited by R. H. Major; chapters viii., ix., and x. of which contained an account of the Popham Colony found to be much fuller than any that had appeared previously. In 1852 these chapters were reprinted with notes in the Collections of the Massachusetts Historical Society; and the next year four chapters of the work were reprinted by the Maine Historical Society. In 1863 the same society published a Memorial Volume, which was followed by heated discussions, some of which, with a bibliography of the subject, were published in 1866. Articles of a fugitive character continued to appear; and, finally, in 1880, there came from the press the journal of the voyage to the Kennebec in 1607, by one of the adventurers, which was reprinted in advance from the Proceedings of the Massachusetts Historical Society. It would seem from the internal evidence furnished by the journal and the express testimony of Purchas,1 that this composition was by James Davies, who, in the organization at the Sagadahoc, held the office of Captain of the Fort. This journal was found to be the source whence Strachey drew his account of the colony, large portions of which he copied verbatim, giving no credit. Since the publication of this journal no new material has been brought to light.
The Popham Colony formed a part of the work undertaken by Sir Ferdinando Gorges and his colaborers, who sought so long and so earnestly to accomplish the colonization of New England. Many experiments were required to insure final success, and the attempt at Sagadahoc proved eminently useful, contributing largely to that disciplinary experience essential under such circumstances. Viewed in its necessary and logical connection, it need not be regarded as a useless failure, since it opened the eyes of adventurers more fully, bringing a clearer apprehension of the general situation and the special requirements of the work which the North Virginia Company had in hand.
A paragraph that may have some bearing on the condition of things in Maine after the year 1608 appeared in 1609, and runs as follows: "Two goodly Rivers are discovered winding farre into the Maine, the one in the North part of the Land by our Westerne Colonie, Knights and Gentlemen of Excestcr, Plymouth, and others. The other in the South part thereof by our Colonie of London." Again a letter by Mason to Coke, assigned to the year 1632, teaches that the work of colonization was considered as having been continued from 1607. This would seem to indicate, that, in the opinion of the writer, the work was not wholly abandoned; yet, concerning the actual condition of affairs on the Maine coast for several years after the colonists left Fort Popham, much remains to be learned. From neglected repositories in the seaport towns of the south of England, material may yet be gleaned to show a continuous line of scattered residents living around Pemaquid during all the years that followed the departure of the Popham colonists from Sabino in 1608.
The visit of Henry Hudson to New England in 1609 is described in Juet's Journal.
Argall's visit to New England in 1610 is treated by Purchas, though it has made no figure in current histories. What appears to be the most correct account of the voyage of Hobson and Harlow, in 1611, is found in Smith. The student may also consult the Briefe Relation, which, however, appears to confuse the account by introducing an event of 1614, the capture of Indians by Hunt. Gorges is also confused here, as in many other places. We are indebted to the French for the account of the capture and ransom of Plastrier.
In connection with Argall's descent upon the French at Mount Desert, it will be necessary to consult the Jesuit Relations, which throw considerable light upon the transactions of the English at this period; also the State Papers. These show that Argall's ship was named the "Treasurer." Champlain says that this ship mounted fourteen guns, while ten more English vessels were at hand. If his statement is correct, there must have been a large number of Englishmen on the coast at this period.
Smith, in 1614, as at other times, is his own historian, and his writings show the growth of the feeling that existed with respect to colonization, and they at the same time illustrate his adverse fortune.
Gorges gives an account of Hobson's and Hallow's voyage for l6l4. Hunt's cruelty, in connection with the Indians whom he enslaved and sold in Spain, is made known bv Smith. Some of these Indians recovered their liberty, and Bradford speaks of Squanto the interpreter to the Plymouth Colony.
Gorges makes us acquainted with Sir Richard Hawkins, who was on the New Eng land coast at the close of the year 1615. Sir Richard was the son of the famous John Hawkins, who set David Ingram and his companions ashore in the Bay of Mexico. Hawkins was born in 1555, and in 1582 he conducted an expedition to the West Indies. In 1588 he is found in command of the "Swallow," and he distinguished himself in the defeat of the Armada. He next sailed upon an expedition to the Pacific, where he was captured and carried to Spain. In 1620 he was named in connection with the Algerine expedition, dying at the end of 1621 or the beginning of 1622. A full account of his transactions in New England would be very interesting; but the account of Gorges in connection with Brawnde's Letter to Smith, must suffice.
The story of Rocroft is told by Gorges, and Dermer writes of his own voyage at full length.
It remains now to speak of the old cartology, so far as it may afford any traces of the English explorers of Norumbega. At the outset the interesting fact may be indicated that the earliest reference to Norumbega upon any map is that of the Italian Verrazano, 1529; while the most pronounced, if not the latest, mention during the seventeenth century is that of the Italian Lucini, who engraved over his "Nova Anglia" the word "Norambega," which is executed with many flourishes.
Passing over the first cartographical indication of English exploration on the coast of North America, in the map of Juan de la Cosa, which is figured and described in the chapter on the Cabots; and passing over the French and the Italians,-adverting but for a moment to the Dauphin map of 1543, with its novel transformation of the name Norumbega into Anorobagea,-the next map that needs mention is that of John Rotz, of 1542. It is of interest, for the reason that the "booke of Idrography," of which it forms a part, was dedicated by its author to Henry VIII. Rotz subscribes himself "sarvant to the King's mooste excellente Majeste." The English royal arms are placed at the beginning, though originally Rotz intended to present the book to Francis I. Indeed, the outline of the coast is drawn according to the French idea. Nevertheless, the names on the map are chiefly Spanish. It shows no English exploration; and, in a general way, indicates an absence of geographical knowledge on the part of that nation, which, however, is recognized by the legend placed in the sea opposite the coast between Newfoundland and the Penobscot. The legend is as follows: "The new fonde lande quhaz men goeth a-fishing." The main features of the coast are delineated. Cape Breton and the Strait of Canseau, with the Penobscot and Sandy Hook, are defined; but Cape Cod, the "Arecifes" of Rotz, appears only in name, though in its proper relation to the Bay of St. John the Baptist, a name given to the mouth of Long Island Sound, in connection with the Narragansett Waters. The word Norumbega does not occur, and the nomenclature is hardly satisfactory. It contains no reference either to Verrazano or Cartier. The so-called map of Cabot, 1544, does not touch the particular subject under notice.
Frobisher's map of 1578 shows a strait at the north leading from the Atlantic to the Pacific, and bearing his name, but the map throws no light upon Norumbega.
Dr. John Dee was much interested in American enterprise, and made a particular study of the northern regions, as well as of the fisheries. Under date of July 6, 1578, he speaks of "Mr. Hitchcok, who had travayled in the plat for fishing." A map bearing the inscription, "Ioannes Dee, Anno, 1580," is preserved in the British Museum. It reminds one of Mercator's map of 1569, but is not so full. Dee was frequently invited to the Court of Elizabeth to make known her title to lands in the New World that had been visited by the English; and he was deferred to by Hakluyt, Gilbert, Walsingham, and others.
He writes in his diary, under date of July 3, 1582, "A meridie hor 31/2 cam Sir George Peckham to me to know the tytle of Norombega, in respect of Spayn and Portugall parting the whole world's distilleryes; he promised me of his gift and of his patient ... of the new conquest." Gilbert's voyage was then being projected, but Dee's map has no reference to him or the English adventurers. It shows the main divisions of the coast of Norumbega, except Cape Cod, from Sandy Hook to Cape Breton. The Penobscot is well defined, and Norombega lies around its headwaters.
The map in Hakluyt's Edition of Peter Martyr, published 1587, shows the English nomenclature around and north of the waters of the Gulf of St. Lawrence, but it gives away the territory of Norumbega to the French as Nova Fraucia. On the west coast of North America is Nova Albion. In Nova Francia there is a river apparently bearing the name of Arambe, which, it has been suggested, was used later in a restricted sense. Not far from this river, at the south, is the legend, "Virginia, 1580."
A map made in 1592, by Thomas Hood, does not show any English influence on the coast, but Norombega is represented north of the Penobscot, which is called R. des Guamas, intended for "Gamas," the Stag River."
The globe of Molyneux shows the explorations of Davis in the north, and its author calls the northern continent, north of Sandy Hook, "Carenas." Confusion reigns to a considerable extent. Norumbega is confined to the Penobscot, and nothing is indicated with respect to the English in that quarter.
The map of Molyneux, 1600, is extremely interesting, but it does not show the operations of the English in New England, though the Bay of Menan is recognized, this being the place so well known to Hakluyt the Elder for its deposits of copper. New England, as on Lok's map, is shown as an island.
The cartology at this period is very disappointing though the maps pointed out the main features of the coast, in many respects they were inferior to some of the earlier maps, and were occupied with a vain iteration. A little later the map of Lescarbot, of 1609, as might be supposed, is poor in its outlines and devoted rather to the French occupation.
Smith's well-known map, issued with his Description of New England in 1616, was the earliest to give a configuration of the coast, approaching accuracy; and he could have found little in Lescarbot's and Champlain's maps to assimilate, even if he had known them. Cape Cod now for the first time was drawn with its characteristic bend. Smith says that he had brought with him five or six maps, neither true to each other nor to the coast.
Smith's map did not originally contain a single English name, but the young Prince Charles, to whom it was submitted in accordance with Smith's request changed about thirty "barbarous" Indian names for others, in order that "posterity" might be able to say that royal personage was their "godfather." A number of Scotch names were selected, among others, by the grandson of the Queen of Scots. Smith gave the name of Nusket to Mount Desert, confusing it, perhaps, with the aboriginal Pemetic, which was changed to Lomond, given as "Lowmonds" on the map. The prince very naturally desired to give names recalling the country of his birth; and while Ben Lomond, one of the noblest Caledonian hills, bears a certain grand resemblance to its namesake, the breezes of the lake of Mount Desert, like "answering Lomond's,"
"Soothe many a chieftain's sleep."
In a similar spirit he named the Blue Hills of Milton the "Cheuyot hills;" the ancient river of Sagadahoc being the Forth, with what was intended for "Edenborough" standing near its headwaters. There is nothing on the map to recall the nonconformists of Nottinghamshire and Lincolnshire, who afterwards came upon the coast, except Boston and Hull which stand near the Isles of Shoals, being, in fancy, close together on the map, as afterwards they were reproduced farther south, in fact.
The young prince, then a lad of about fifteen, no doubt had suggestions made to him, respecting the names to be selected, as he favored the southern and southwestern communities like Bristol and Plymouth, which furnished those expeditions encouraged by churchmen like Popham and Gilbert. Poynt Suttliff forms a distinct recognition of Dr. Sutliffe, the Dean of Exeter, who took so much interest in New England.
On this map we find the ancient Norumbega called
New England. Rich says that Smith was the first to apply this name.
In reply, Mr. Henry C. Murphy has referred to its alleged use by a Dutchman
in 1612. Special reference is made to a statement printed upon the
back of a map contained in a book brought out by Hessell Gerritsz at Amsterdam,
giving a description of the country of the Samoieds in Tartary. The
phrase used, however, is not "New England," nor "Nova Anglia," but " Nova
Albion," which was applied to the whole region by Sir Francis Drake, in
his explorations on the Pacific coast. At that time continent lying
between the Atlantic and the Pacific was regarded as a narrow strip of
land; and as late as 1651 it was estimated that it was only ten days' journey
on foot from
the headwaters of the James to the Pacific. In 1609 the country was called Nova Britannia. It would seem, therefore, according to present indications, that Smith was entitled to the credit given him by Rich. At all events the importance of Smith's work in New England cannot be questioned. Smith himself was not backward in asserting the value of his services, declaring in one place that he "brought New England to the Subjection of the Kingdom of Great Britain." After the publication of his map, Norumbega wellnigh disappeared from the pages of travellers, and a new series of observation of the territory was begun by the authors of works like those which chronicled the doings of the Leyden Adventurers in New England.