Abbildungen der Seite

New-England. Other states have felt the effects of their villany. Hence they have characterised the New-Englanders as a knavil, artful, and dihoneft people. But that conduct wbich distinguishes only a small class of people in any nation or state ought not to be indiscriminately ascribed to all, or be soffered to Ramp their national character. In New England there is as great a proportion of honest and induftrious citizens as in any of the United States.

The people of New England generally obtain their estates by hard and persevering labour : They of consequence know their value, and spend with frugality. Yet in no country do the indigent and unfortunate fare better. Their laws oblige every town to provide a competent maintenance for their poor, and the necessitous stranger is procected, and relieved from their humane inftitutions. It may in truth be said, that in no par: of the world are the people happier, better furnished with the neceffaries and conveniencies of life, or more independent than the farmers in New-England. As the great body of ihe people are hardy, independent freeholders, their manners are, as they ought to be, congenial to their employment, plain, simple, and unpolish. ed. Strangers are received and entertained among them with a great deal of artless sincerity, friendly, and unformal hospitality. Their children, those imitative creatures, to wbose education particular attention is paid, early. imbibe the manners and habits of those around them ; and the stranger, with pleasure, notices the honcft and decent respect that is paid him by the children as be passes through the country,

As the people, by representation, make their own laws, and appoint their own officers, they cannot be oppressed ; and living under governments which have few lucrative places, they have few motives to bribery, corrupt canvassings, or intrigue. Real abilities and a moral character unblemished, are the qualifications requifite in the view of most people for officers of public trust. The expression of a wish to be promoted, is ihe direct way to be disappointed.

The inhabitants of New-England are generally fond of the arts, and have cultivated them with great success. Their colleges have flourished beyond any others in the United States. The illuftrious characters they have produced, who have distinguished themselves in politics, law, divinity, the mathematics and philosophy, natural and civil history, and in the fine arts, particularly in poetry, evince the truth of these observations.

Many of the women in New England are handsome. They generally have fair, fresh and healthful countenances, mingled with much temale fofiness and delicacy. Those who have had the advantages of a good education and they are considerably numerous) are genteel, easy, and agreeable in their manners, and are sprightly and sensible in their conversation. They are early taught to manage domelic concerns wiih neatness and economy. Ladies of the first rank and fortune make it part of their daily business io superintend the affairs of the family. Employment at the needle, in cookery and at the spinning-wheel, with them is honourable. Idleness, even in chore of independent fortunes, is universally disreputable. The women in the coun. try manufa&ture the greatest part of the clothing of their families. Their lie pen and woollen cloths are Atrong and decent. Their butter and cheese is not inferior to any in the world.

Dancing is the principal and favorite amusement in New-England; and of this the young people of both sexes are extremely fond. Gaming is prac. tised by none but those who cannot, or rather will not find a reputable enn

ployment. The gamefter, the horse-jockey, and she knave, are equally def. piled; and their company is avoided by all who would sullain fair and irre. proachable characters.

In che winter leason, while the ground is covered with snow, which is commonly iwo or three months, fleighing is the general diversion. A great pari of ihe families throughout the country are furnithed with horses and sleighs. The young people collect in parties, and, with a great deal of sociability, refort 10 a place of rendezvous, where they regale themselves for a few hours with dancing and a social supper, and then retire. These diversions, as well as all others, are many times carried to access. To these excesses, and a sud. den exposure w extreme cold, after the exercise of dancing, physicians have afcribed the consumption, which are so frequent among the young people in New-England.


IVEW-ENGLAND has no one staple commodity. The ocean and the forest affords.the iwo principal articles of export. Cod-fish, macka'rel, shad, salmon, and other filh-whale oil and whale bone- malts, boards, scantling, faves, hoops, and thingles, have been, and are fill exported in large quantities. The annual amount of cod and other filh, for foreign exportation, including the profits arising from the whale-fishery, is estimated at upwards of half a million.

Besides the ariicles enumerated, they export from the various parts of New England ships built for sale, horles, mules, live-Hock-pickled beef and pork, pot-ash, pearl-ash, flax-leed, butter and cheese-New-England difilled rum, and oiher arricles which will be mentioned in their proper places. The balance of trade, as far as imperfect calculations will enable us to judge, has generally been agair At New England; not from any unavoidable 1.ecelluy, but from' ber extravagant importacions. From a view of the annual imports into New-England, it appears that the greatest part of them consists of the luxuries, or at best the disponsible conveniencies of life; the country affords the necessaries in great abundance.

The pallions, for the gratification of which these articles of luxury are consumed, have raged since the peace of 1783, and have brought a heavy debt upon the consumers. Necellity, that irreillible governess of mankind, has of late in a happy degree checked the influence of these passions, and the people begin to confine themselves more to the necessaries of life. It is wished that the principles of indaftry and frugality may gain such Arength as to make those wanis, which at firit may be painful, become so familiar as to be no longer felt.


WIR Walter Raleigh had given the name of North Virginia to the whole eaftern coast of North America, in honour of Elizabeth, the virgin queen. A company was afterwards formed in England, called the North Virginia company.” Having obtained from James I. a grant of those terri. tories, in 3614 the company employed some ships to fish on ihe coafls; when the commanders found it expedient to go on shore, they were in general kind. ly received by the Indians who frequented those paris, Whilst things were on this footing, one captain Thomas Hunt, enticing a number of the natives

No. 24.

* on board his ship, made them prisoners ; and, setting fail, proceeded to Malaga, where he sold them for slaves, reserving only one man, who was called Squanto, and who was afterwards carried back to his native country ; and baving been kindly treated whilft in England, his mediation with his coune, lymen served to abate their resentment of this outra je.

When fome years had elapsed after this transaction, a religious fociety, known by the name of Brownists, consisting of one hundred and twenty persons, having obtained a grant of land from James I. arrived in November 1621, at Cape Cod, ncar to which they landed and built the town of Plymouth ; so called from the sea-port of that name in England, at which they had embarked.

Great numbers, of different feets, of those who are called Puritans, from that time went over every year from England to secile in America. Jo the year 1629 the town of Salem was built ; and foco after Charles I. granted these new settlers a patent, incorporating them by ihe name of the goveroor and company of Massachusett's Bay. They were empowered to make laws for the good of the plantation, not repugnant to those of England, and liberty of conscience being granted to all who would settle there, great numbers of thole who could not obtain that privilege in England went over and in a little time new settlements were made; particularly one styled Charles Town, on the south side of Charle's river, and that of Dorchester at the bottom of Mafachufett's Bay. Soon after, part of ihe inhabitants of Charles Town, passing over to the oppofile fhore, erected Boston, the prefent capital of New England.

That coleration which these Protestants claimed as their natural right, they denied to those who held tenets repugnant to their own. Their rigid severity obliged a number of settlers to withdraw themselves, and form a separate colony, which they called Providence, upon Newport-river, near RhodeYland. The increasing population of these colonies soon after caused the town of Hartford to be built, in order to form a frontier against the inCursions.of the Indians s who, however had, in general, lived on a friendly footing with their new neighbours. The towns of Windsor, Weathershold, and Spring held, rose soon after.

A separate government was formed in 1635 on ConneEticut-river, which afterward obtaining a charter from Charles II. che province of Connecticut was founded. The charter authorized this colony to elect their own governor Council, and magidrates, and to enact such laws as fhould be most advantagrous to the colony, provided they were not repugnant to those of England.

The persecution of the Protefant Dihenters in England Aill continuing great numbers of people removed to New-England ; and the old colonies being overstocked, there was an absolute necessity of forming new planiarions ; and therefore, in 1637, Theophilus Eaton, Esq. and the Rev. Mr. Davenport, finding there was not room at Masachusetts Bay, purchased from the Indians the lands lying on the sea-coatt between ConneEticut.river and Hudson's or the North River, where they built a town, and named is New-llaver, from whence the colony derived the name of the New Haven colony.

While the southern parts of New England were thus fiiling with inhabitants, other emigrants, induced by the profits arising from the fur trade, farled to theN. E. between the rivers Merrimac and Kennzbec, forening iwy

Yule IV.

dilline colonies, one named New Hampshirs, and the other ftill farther to the callward, was called the Province of Main. * In the space of no more more than twenty years, New-England had above. forty towns, and the English had taken pofseflion of this country from the river Kennebec on the N. E. almost to Hudson's river on the S. W. an extent of upward of four hundred mile, on the sea-coall. Such was the first rise and origin of the New-England colonies, which from these small beginnings, became populous, wealthy, aud important.

In this colony the firft difensions with the mother country arose, on the British parliament imposing Itamp-duties on all papers and parchments made use of in law-proceedings, and in money-transactions between man and man, in the year 1765. This act being repealed the following year, caused the general ferment to subside ; but in the year 1969 it revived with accumulated force, on fresh internal taxes being laid, particularly a duty of gd. per pound on all teas. The populace at Bojlon assembling, resisted the officers appointed to collect the customs, and destroyed great quantities of tea ; for which offences an act of parliament passed, prohibiting all commerce being carried on as the port of Boston. The provincial assembly had for some years been on ill terms with Mr. (afterwards Sir Francis Barnard, the governor of the province, and he being recalled, was succeeded by general Gage, and a body of forces, amounting to about 2000 men, which failed from Ireland aud Halifax, arrived soon after. But neither the new governor, who was known and respected in the province, was capable of allaying the ferment, nor could the appearance of the troops ove-rawe that spirit of opposition to arbitrary powers, which had now become unusually prevalent, and this oppolition, as we have already mentioned in the sketch we have given of the history of the United States, ultimately terminated in the emancipation of the former British colonists.

We shall close this general history of New England with a few remarks respecting the Indians. • We cannot even hazard a conje&ture respecting the Indian population of New-England, at the time of its (entlement by the English. Captain Smith, in a voyage to this coaft in 1614, supposed that, on the Massachusetts Island, there were about 3000 Indians. All accounts agree, that the sca-coaft and neighbouring islands were thickly inhabited.

Three years before the arrival of the Plymouth colony, a very mortal fickness, supposed to have been the plague, or perhaps the yellow-fever, raged with great violence among the Indians in the eastern parts of New-England. Whole towns were depopulated. The living were not able to bury the dead ; and their bones were found lying above ground, many years after. The Massachusetts Indians are said io have been reduced from 30,000 to 300 fighring men. In 163, the small-pox swept off great numbers of the Indians in Massachusetts.

In 1763, on the Iland of Nantucket, in the space of four months, the Indians wer e reduced, by a mortal fickness, from 320 10 85 souls. The hand of Providence is notable in these surprising instances of mortalıty, among rhe Indians, to make room for the English. Comparatively few have perilhed by wars. They waste and moulder away—they in a manner unaccountable disappear.

The number of Indians in the fate of Connecticut in 1774 was one thousand shree hundred and fixty-three, But their number is now doubtless

mnch lessened. The principal part of their presen: priation in this state is at Mohegan, in New London county.

The number of Indians in Rhode Island in 1683, was only five hundred and twenty-five. More than half of these live in Charleton, in the county of Washington. In 1774, the number of Indians in Rindelsland was one sbousand four hundred and eighty-two; so that in nine yrars the decrease was nine hundred and fifty-seven. We have never heen able to ascertain the exact State of the Indian population in Marathule is ad New Hampshire. In 1784, there was a tube of about forty Indians at Norridgewalk, in the Province of Main, with some few o her farvering remains of tribes in other parts ; and a number of towus ihmiy inhabited roand Cape Cod.

When the English firft arrived in America, the Indians had no cimes not places set apart for religious worship. The first settiers in New England were a great pains to introduce among them ihe habiis of civilized life, and to inftruct them in the Chrisian religion. A few years intercourse wich the Indians introduced them to establish several good and natural regulations. They ordained, that if a man be idle a week, or at nost a fortnighı, he full pay five Chillings. Every young man, not a servant, shall be obliged to frit up a wigwan, and plant for himself. If an unmarried man thall lie with an unmarried woman, he shall pay (wenty shillings. If any woman bull not bave her hair tied up fhe shall pay five fillings, &c.

The Rev. Mr. Elliot of Roxbury, near Boston, who has been Ayled the great Indian Apoftle, with much labour, learned the Natie dialect of the Indian languages. He published an Indian grammar, and preached in Indian to several tribes, and in 1664 translated the Bible and feveral religious books into the Indian language. He relaties leveral pertinent queries of the Indians respecting Christian religion. Among others ; wherber Fesus Christ, the mediator or interpreter, could understand prayers in the Indian language ? If the father be bad and the child good, why should God, in the second commandment be offended with the child ? How the Indians canje to differ so much from the English in the knowlediye of God and Jefus Christ, fince they all sprang from one father ? Mr. Eliot was indefatigable in his labours, and travelled throgh all parts of Malachufetts and Plymouth colonies, as far as Cape Cod. The colony had luch a veneration for him, that, in an art of ibe general assembly, relating to the Indians, they express themselves thus, . By the advice of the said magirtrates, and of Mr. Elliot.' M. Mayhew, who also learned the Indian Language, was very active in propagating the knowledge of Christianity among the Indians at Nantucket, Martha's Vineyard, and Elizabeth Island.

Mr. Brainard was a truly pious and successful millonary among the Indians on the Susquehannah and Delaware rivers. In 1744, he rodo about four thousand miles among the Indians, fomevimes five or fix wecks together, without seeing a white person. The Rev. Mr. Kirtland of Stockbridge has been laboriously engaged, and greatly serviceable in civilizing and Chriftianizing the Oneida and other Indians.

Concerning ihe religion of the unlaughe natives of America, Mr. Brainord who was well acquainted with it, informs us, that, after the coming of the white people, the Indians in New Jersey, who once held a plura'iiy of deities, supposed there were only three, because they law people of three kinds of complexions, viz.--English, Negroes, and themfelves.

« ZurückWeiter »