Entradas

Mostrando las entradas de junio, 2009

1700

From this time till the American Revolution New York continued a province of the Crown. Royal governor succeeded royal governor, some of them better, some worse. Of the entire line Bellomont was the most worthy official, Cornbury the least so. One of the problems which chiefly worried all of them was how to execute the navigation acts, which, evaded everywhere, were here unscrupulously defied. Another care of the governors, in which they succeeded but very imperfectly, was to establish the English Church in the colony. A third was the disfranchisement of Catholics. This they accomplished, the legislature concurring, and the disability continued during the entire colonial period.

Hottest struggle of all occurred over the question of the colony's right of self-taxation. The democracy stood for this with the utmost firmness, and even the higher classes favored rather than opposed. The governors, Cornbury and Lovelace, most frantically, but in vain, expostulated, scolded, threatened, …

1686

The English conquest of New Netherland from the Dutch speedily followed the Stuarts' return to the throne. Cromwell had mooted an attack on Dutch America; Connecticut's charter of 1662 extended that colony to include the Dutch lands. England based her claim to the territory on alleged priority of discovery, but the real motives were the value of the Hudson as an avenue for trade, and the desire to range her colonies along the Atlantic coast in one unbroken line. The victory was not bloody, nor was it offensive to the Dutch themselves, who in the matter of liberties could not lose. King Charles had granted the conquered tract to his brother, the Duke of York, subsequently James II., and it was in his honor christened with its present name of New York.

The Duke's government was not popular, especially as it ordered the Dutch land-patents to be renewed--for money, of course; and in 1673, war again existing between England and Holland, the Dutch recovered their old possession.…

1688-1700

Prayers ended, the "men folks" went forth to the day's toil. It was hard, partly from its then rough character, partly from poverty of appliances. For the hardest jobs neighbors would join hands, fighting nature as they had to fight the Indians, unitedly. Farming tools, if of iron or steel, as axe, mattock, spade, and the iron nose for the digger or the plough, the village blacksmith usually fashioned, as he did the bake-pan, griddle, crane, and pothooks, for indoor use. Tables, chairs, cradles, bedsteads, and those straight-backed "settles" of which a few may yet be seen, were either home-made or gotten up by the village carpenter. Mattresses were at first of hay, straw, leaves, or rushes.
Before 1700, however, feather beds were common, and houses and the entire state of a New England farmer's home had become somewhat more lordly than the above picture might indicate. The colonists made much use of berries, wild fruits, bread and milk, game, fish, and shel…

WITCHCRAFT 1675

1675.
The home life of colonial New England was unique. Its like has appeared nowhere else in human history. Mostwise it was beautiful as well. In it religion was central and supreme. The General Court of Plymouth very early passed the following order: "Noe dwelling-howse shal be builte above halfe a myle from the meeting-howse in any newe plantacion without leave from the Court, except mylle-howses and ffermehowses." In laying out a village the meeting-house, as the hub to which everything was to be referred, was located first of all. The minister's lot commonly adjoined. Then a sufficiency of land was parcelled off to each freeholder whereon to erect his dwelling. Massachusetts from the first, and Plymouth beginning somewhat later, also made eminent provision for schools--all in the interest of religion.

The earliest residences were necessarily of logs, shaped and fitted more or less rudely according to the skill of the builder or the time and means at his disposal. Th…

1678

Turner's victory brought the war to a crisis. The red men lacked resources. The whites had learned the secrets of savage warfare. They could no longer be led into ambush, while their foe at no time during the war ventured to engage them in open field. Large parties of Indians began to surrender; many roving bands were captured. Hostilities continued still many months in Maine, the whites more and more uniformly successful, till the Treaty of Casco, April 12, 1678, at last terminated the war.

Hunted by the English backward and forward, Philip was at last driven to his old home upon Mount Hope. Here Captain Church, one of the most practised of Indian fighters, surprised him on the morning of August 12, 1676, encamped upon a little upland, which it is believed has been exactly identified near a swamp at the foot of the mountain. By residents in the neighborhood it is known as Little Guinea. At the first firing Philip, but partially dressed, seized gun and powder-horn and made for th…