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quasset, attempted in like manner to try his fortune in this fatal place, about the year 1625, yet had he this consideration, as not to venture all his own stock in one single bottom; for three or four more were embarked with him in the same design, who rather took New England in their way to make a trial, than to pitch their hopes ultimately thereon.
These brought with them a great many servants, with suitable provisions, and other requisites necessary to raise a plantation; with which they might have effected their purpose well enough, as they have done that came after, had it not been for one Morton, a master of misrule, that came along in company with the rest, that sometimes had been a pettifogger of Furnivall's inn, and possibly might bring some small adventure of his own, or other men's, with the rest. But after they had speot much labour, cost, and time in planting this place, and saw that it brought in nought but a litle" dear bought experience, the captain transports a great part of the servants to Virginia ; and that place at the first sight he likes so well, that he writes back to Mr. Rasdale, his chief partner, to bring another part of them along with him, intending to put them off there, as he had done the rest, leaving one Filcher behind, as their lieutenant to govern the rest of the plantation, till they should take further order.
But in their absence, this Morton took the counsel of the wicked husbandmen about the vineyard in the para. ble: for making the company merry one night, he persuaded them to turn out Filcher, and keep possession for themselves, promising himself to be a partner with them, and telling them, that otherwise they were like all to be sold for slaves, as were the rest of their fellows, if ever Rascale returned. This counsel was easy to be taken, as suiting well with the genius of young men, to eat, drink, and be merry, while the good things lasted, which was not long, by that course which was taken with them ; more being Aung away in some merry meetings, than with frugality would have maintained the whole company divers months. In fine, they improved what goods they had, by trading with the Indians awhile, and spent it as merrily about a may-pole ; and, as if they had found a mine, or spring of plenty, called the place Merry Mount. “Thus stolen waters are sweet, and bread eaten in secret is pleasant;" till it be found, that “the dead are there, and her guests in the depths of hell.”
News of this school of profaneness opened at Merry Mount being brought to Mr. Endicott, the deputed governour of the Massachusetts, soon after his arrival, in the year 1628, he went to visit it, and made such reformation as his wisdom and zeal led him unto. After this, Morton, like the unjust steward in the gospel, to provide himself of a way of subsistence, after he was turned out of his office, began to comply with the Indians, being, as is reported by those of Plymouth, the first that taught them the use of guns, and furnished them with powder, shot, and brass plates, wherewith to make arrow heads; not regarding what mischief he brewed for others in after time, provided he might drink a little of the sweet in the present time. But the trade was not to last long; for upon a general complaint of all the inhabitants on either side, he was seized by force, a: d sent over to the council of New England, who, it is said, dealt more favourably with him than his wickedness deserve l; so as, sometime after, he found means to return into the coun. try again, with a malicious purpose to do all the mischief he could to the colony, both by writing scurrilous pamphlets, and other evil practices, on which account he was divers tines sent backward and forward over the sea, imprisoned, and otherwise punished, till at last he ended his wretched life m obscurity at Pascataqua, as may be more particularly declared afterwards. By this means Mr. Wollaston's plantation came much what to the same conclusion as Mr. Weston's; so as the place, being now wholly deserted, fell into the hands of persons of another temper, by whom it is since improved to be come the seat of an honest, thriving, and sober township. Thus, notwithstanding the many adventures which had hitherto been made, by sundry persons of estate and quality, for the discovery and improvement of this part of America, called New England, nothing could as yet be settled by way of planting any colony upon the coast, with desirable success, save that of New Plymouth, discoursed of before. As for the rest of the plantations, they were, like the habitations of the foolish, as it is in Job, cursed before they had taken root.
In the year 1623, some merchants about Plymouth and the west of England, sent over Mr. David Tomson, a Scotchman, to begin a plantation about Pascataqua; but out of dislike, either of the place or his employers, he removed down into the Massachusetts Bay within a year after. There he possessed himself of a fruitful island, and a very desirable neck of land, since confirmed to him or his heirs by the Court of the Massachusetts, upon the surrender of all his other interest in New Eng. land, to which yet he could pretend no other title, than a promise, or a gift to be conferred on him, in a letter by Sir Ferdinando Gorges, or some other member of the Council of Plymouth.
But the vanishing of all the forementioned attempts did but make way for the settling the colony of the Massachusetts; and this was the occasion thereof. As some merchants from the west of England had a long time frequented the parts about Monhiggon, for the taking of fish, &c.; so did others, especially those of Dorchester, make the like attempt, upon the northern promontory of the Massachusetts bay, in probability first discovered by Capt. Smith, before, or in the year 1614, and by him named Tragabizanda, for the sake of a lady, from whom he received much favour while he was a prisoner amongst the Turks, by whom also the three small islands at the head of the cape were called the Three Turks' Heads. But neither of them glorying in these Mahometan titles, the promontory willingly exchanged its name for that of Cape Anne, imposed, as is said, by Capt. Mason, and which it retaineth to this day ; in honour of our famous queen Anne, the royal consort of king James; and the three other islands are now known by other names. Here did the foresaid merchants first erect stages whereon to make their fish, and yearly sent their ships thither for that end, for some considerable time; until the fame of the plantation at New Plymouth, with the success thereof, was spread abroad through all the western parts of England so far, as that it begun to revive the hopes of some of those merchants, who had not long before adventured their estates to promote so honourable a design, as was the planting and peopling this new world, although finding hitherto but small encouragement that way, they were ready to withdraw their hands.
On this consideration it was, that some merchants and other gentlemen about Dorchester did, about the year 1624, at the instigation of Mr. White, the famous preacher of that town, upon a common stock, together with those that were coming to make fish, send over sundry persons in order to the carrying on a plantation at Cape Anne; conceiving that planting on the land might go on equally with fishing on the sea, in those parts of America.
Mr. John Tylly and Mr. Thomas Gardener were employed as overseers of that whole business, the first with reference to the fishing, the other with respect to the planting on the main land, at least for one year's time; at the end of which Mr. White, with the rest of the adventurers, hearing of some religious and well affected persons, that were lately removed out of New Plymouth out of dislike of their principles of rigid separation, of which number Mr. Roger Conant was one, a religious, sober, and prudent gentleman, yet surviving about Salem till the year 1680, wherein he finished his pilgrimage, having a great hand in all these forementioned transactions, about Cape Anne, pitched upon him, the said Conant, for the managing and government of all their affairs at Cape Anne. The information he had of him, was from one Mr. Conant, a brother of his,' and well known to Mr. White. And he was so well satisfied therein, that he engaged Mr. Humphry, the Treasurer of the joint adventurers, to write to him in their names, and to signify, that they had chosen him to be their governour in that place, and would commit unto
him the charge of all their affairs, as well fishing as planting. Together with him, likewise, they invited Mr. Lyford, lately dismissed from Plymouth, to be the minister of the place, and Mr. Oldham, also discharged on the like account from Plymouth, was invited to trade for them with the Indians. All these three at that time had their dwelling at Nantasket. Mr. Lyford accepted, and came along with Mr. Conant. Mr. Oldham liked better to stay where he was for a while, and trade for himself, and not become liable to give an account of his gain or loss; but after a year's experience, the adventurers, perceiving their design not like to answer their expectations, at least as to any present advantage, threw all up; yet were so civil to those that were employed under them, as to pay them all their wages, and offered to transport them back whence they came, if so they de. sired.
It must here be noted, that Mr. Roger Conant, on the foresaid occasion made the superintendant of their affairs, disliked the place, as much as the adventurers disliked the business; and therefore in the mean while had made some inquiry into a more commodious place near adjoining, on the other side of a creek, called Naumkeag, a little to the westward, where was much better encouragement as to the design of a plantation, than that which they had attempted upon before, at Cape Anne; secretly conceiving in his mind, that in following times, (as since is fallen out) it might prove a receptacle for such as upon the account of religion would be willing to begin a foreiga plantation in this part of the world, of which he gave some intimation to his friends in England. Wherefore that reverend person, Mr. White, (under God one of the chief founders of the Massachusetts Colony in New England,) being grieved in his spirit that so good a work should be suffered to fall to the ground by the ad. venturers thus abruptly breaking off, did write to Mr. Conant, not so to desert his business; faithfully promising, that if himself with three others, (whom he knew to be honest and prudent men,) viz. John Woodberry, John Balch, and Peter Palfreys, employed by the adventurers,