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with large herds of sheep and neat cattle, and rich fields of Aax, corn, and the various kinds of grain.
These vallies, which have received the expressive name of interval lands, are of various breadths, from two to twenty miles; and by the annual inundations of the rivers which flow through them, there is frequently an accumulation of rich, fat foil, left upon their surface when the waters retire.
There are four principal ranges of mountains passing nearly from north-east to fouth-west, through New-England. These consist of a mul. titude of parallel ridges, each having many ipurs, deviating from the course of the general range; which fpurs are again broken into irregular, hilly land. The main ridges terminate sometimes in high bluff heads, near the sea-coast, and fometimes by a gradual descent in the interior parc of the country. One of the main ranges runs between Connecticut and Hudson's rivers. This range branches, and bounds the vales through which flows the Housatonick river. The most eastern ridge of this range terminates in a bluff head at Meriden. A second ends in like manner at Willingford, and a third at New Haven.
In Lyme, on the east side of Connecticut river, another range of mountains commences, forming the eastern boundary of Connecticut vale. This range trends northerly, at the distance, generally, of about ten or twelve miles east from the river, and passes through Massachusetts, where the range takes the name of Chicabee mountain ; thence crossing into New, Hampshire, at the distance of about twenty miles from the Massachusetts. line, it runs up into a very high peak, called Monadnick, which terminates this ridge of the range. A weltern ridge continues, and in about latitude 43° 20', runs up into Sunipee mountains. About fifty miles further, in the same ridge, is Mooscoog mountain.
A third range begins near Stonington in Connecticut. It takes its course north-eatterly, and is sometimes broken and discontinued ; it then rises again, and ranges in the fame direction into New Hampshire, where, in latitude 43° 25', it runs up into a high peak, called Cowjawaskoog.
The fourth range has a humble beginning about Hopkinton, in Massachusetts. The eastern ridge of this range runs north, by Watertown and Concord, and crosses Merrimack river at Pantucket Falls. In New Hampshire it rises into several high peaks, of which the White mountains are the principal. From these White mountains, a range continues northeaft, crossing the east boundary of New-Hampshire, in latitude 44° 30', and forms the height of land between Kennebeck and Chaudiere rivers.
These ranges of mountains are full of lakes, ponds, and springs of water, that give rise to numberless streams of various fizes, which, interlocking each other in every direction, and falling over the rocks in romantic calcades, flow meandering into the rivers below. No country on the globe is better watered than New England.
On the sea-coast the land is low, and in many parts level and sandy. In the vallies, between the forementioned ranges of mountains, the land is generally broken, and in many places rocky, but of a strong rich soil, capable of being cultivated to good advantage, which also is the case with many spots even on the tops of the mountains,
Rivers.] The only river which will be described under New England is Connecticut river.' It rises in a swamp on the height of land, in latitude 45° 10', longitude 4o caft. After a ficepy course of eight or ten miles, it tumbles over four separate falls, and turning west keeps close under the hills which form the northern boundary of the vale through which it runs. The Amonoofuck, and Israel rivers, two principal branches of Connecticut river, fall into it from the east, between the latitudes 44 and 45°. Between the towns of Walpole on the east, and Weftminiter on the west fide of the river, are the great falls. The whole river, compressed between two rocks scarcely thirty feet asunder, foots with amazing rapidity into a broad bafon below. Over these falls, a bridge one hundred and fixty feet in length, was built in 1784, under which the highest floods may pass without detriment. This is the first bridge that was ever erected over this noble river. Above Deerfield, in Maisachusetts, it receives Deerfield river from the west, and Millers river from the east, after which it turns westerly in a finuous course to Fighting falls, and a little after tumbles over Deerfield falls, which are impassable by boats. At Windsor, in Connecticut, it receives Farmington river from the west ; and at Hart. ford, meets the tide. From Hartford it passes on in a crooked course, until it falls into Long Inand sound, between Saybrook and Lyme.
The length of this river, in a straight line, is nearly three hundred miles. Its general course is several degrees west of south. It is from eighty to one hundred rods wide, one hundred and thirty miles from its mouth.
At its mouth is a bar of fand which considerably obstructs the navigation. Ten feet water at full tides is found on this bar, and the fame depth to Middleton. The distance of the bar from this place, as the river runs, is thirty-six miles. Above Middleton are several shoals which stretch quite across the river. Only fix feet water is found on the shoal at high tide, and here the tide ebbs and flows but about eight inches. About three miles below Middleton, the river is contracted to about forty rods in breadth, by two high mountains. Almost every where else the banks are low, and spread into fine extensive meadows. In the spring floods, which generally happen in May, these meadows are covered with water. At Hartford the water sometimes rises twenty feet above the common furface of the river, and having all to pass through the above-mentioned streight, it is sometimes two or three weeks before it returns to its usual bed. These foods add nothing to the depth of water on the bar at the mouth of the river; this bar lying too far off in the found to be affected by them.
On this beautiful river, whose banks are settled almost to its source, are many pleasant, neat, well-built towns. On its western bank, from its mouth northward, are the towns of Saybrook, Haddam, Middleton, Weathersfield, Hartford, Windsor, and Suffield, in Connecticut ; Welt Springfield, Northampton, Hatfield, and Deerfield, in Malsachusetts; Guilford, Brattleborough, in which is Fort Dummer, Westminster, Windsor, Hartford, Fairlee, Newbury, Brunswick, and many others in Vermont. Crossing the river into New-Hampshire, and travelling on the eaftern bank, you pass through Woodbury nearly opposite to Brunswick, Northumberland, the Coos country, Lyman, Orford, Lyme, Hanover,' in
within the limits of their patent, and to enquire whether, in case of their removal, the king would grant them liberty of conscience.
The agents were successful in their application. The company assured them that they would do every thing in their power to forward so good a design, and were willing to grant chem a patent with ample privileges. But such was the bigotry of the times, that the king, though solicited by some of the first men in the kingdom, could not be prevailed upon to grant them liberty in religion. He did, however, at last agree to connive at them, and to permit them to live unmolested, provided they behaved peaceably ; but to tolerate them by his public authority under his seal, was inadmissible,
This was indeed discouraging to the pious people at Leyden ; yet with an humble confidence in divine providence, they determined to pursue their original design.
Accordingly they sent their agents to England, where, in September, 1619, after a long attendance, they obtained of the Virginia company a patent of the northern parts of Virginia * This patent, with proposals from Mr. Wetton, and several other respectable merchants and friends, respecting their migration, were tranfmitted to the people at Leyden, for their consideration. These were accompanied with a request that they would immediately commence their preparations for the
voyage. On receiving this intelligence, the people, agreeably to their pious cuftoin previous to their engaging in any important affair, appointed a day of folemn prayer, on which occasion, Mr. Robinson, in a fermon from 1 Sam. xxiii. 3, 4. endeavoured to dispel their fears, and encourage their resolutions. As it was not convenient for them all to go at first, not even for all who were willing, they improved this religious opportunity to determine who should first embark. After canvassing the matter, it was found convenient for the greater number to remain, for the present, at Leyden; and of course Mr. Robinson, according to agreement, was to tarry with them. The other part, with Mr. Brewiter for their elder and teacher, agreed to be the first adventurers. The neceffary preparations were now to be made. A small ship of fixty tons was purchased, and fitted out in Holland ; and another of about one hundred and eighty tons, hired in London. The former was called the Speedwell, and the latter the May-flower. All other matters being prepared, a large concourse of friends from Leyden and Amsterdam, accompanied the adventurers to the ship, which lay at Delf Haven ; and the night preceding their embarkation was spent in tearful prayers, and in the most tender and friendly intercourse. The next day fair wind invited their departure. The parting fcene is more easily felt than described. Their mutual good wishes--their affectionate and cordial embraces, and other endearing expressions of christian love and friendfhip, drew tears even from the eyes of the strangers who beheld the scene. When the time arrived that they must part, they all, with their beloved paltor, fell on their knees, and with eyes, and hands, and hearts lifted to Heaven, fervently commended their adventuring
* This patent was taken out in the name of John Wincob, who providentially never came to America, and so all their trouble and expence in obtaining it were Loft, as they never made any use of it.
brethren to the Lord and his blessing. Thus, after mutual embraces, accompanied with many tears, they bid a long, and many of them, a last farewel.
This was on the 22d of July, 1620. The same day they failed before a fair wind for Southampton, where they found the other ship from London, with the rest of the adventurers.
After they had made the neceffary preparations for embarkation, they divided themselves into two companies, one for each ship, and with the approbation of the captains, each company chose a governor, and two or three assistants to preserve order among the people, and to distribute the provifions. On the 5th of August they failed, but the smallest ship proved so leaky, that they were obliged to return and refit. On the 21st of August they failed again, and proceeded about one hundred leagues from Jand, when they found their little thip totally unfit for the voyage, and returned,
It was not until the 6th of September that they put to sea again, leaving their little ship, and part of their company behind. On the November, after a dangerous voyage, they arrived at Cape Cod, and I the next day anchored in the harbour which is formed by the hook of the cape. This was not the place of their destination, neither was it within the limits of their patent.
It was their intention to have settled at the mouth of Hudson's river; but the Dutch, intending to plant a colony there of their own, privately hired the master of the ship to contrive delays in England, and then to conduct them to these northern coasts, and there, under pretence of shoals and winter, to discourage them from venturing to the place of destination. This is confidently afferted by the historians of that time. Although the harbour in which they had anchored was good, the country around was sandy and barren. These were discouraging circumstances; but the season being far advanced, they prudently determined to make the best of their present situation.
As they were not within the limits of their patent, and consequently not under the jurisdiction of the Virginia company, they concluded it necessary to establish a separate government for themselves. Accordingly, before they landed, having on their knees devoutly given thanks to God for their safe arrival, they formed themselves into a body politic, by a SOLEMN CONTRACT *, to which they all subscribed, thereby making it the basis of their government, They chose Mr. John Carver, a gentleman of piety and approved abilities, to be their governor for the first year. This was on the urth of November.
* The following is an authentic copy of this contrail" In the Name of God Amen: We whole Names are under-written, the Loyal Subjects of our dread Sovereign Lord King James, by the grace of God, of Great-Britain, France, and Ireland, King, Defender of the Faith, &c.
Having undertaken for the Glory of God, and advancement of the Chrifrian Faith, and Honour of our King and Country, a Voyage to Plant the first Colony in the Northern Parts of Virginia ; Do by these Presents folemnly and mutuclly in the Presence of God, and one of another, Covenant and Combine
Their next object was to fix on a convenient place for settlement. In doing this they were obliged to encounter numerous difficulties, and to suffer incredible hardships. Many of them were fick in confequence of the fatigues of a long voyage-their provisions were bad—the season was uncommonly cold—the Indians, though afterwards friendly, were now hoftile—and they were unacquainted with the coast. These difficulties they surmounted ; and on the 31st of December they were all safely landed at a place, which, in grateful commemoration of Plymouth in England, the town which they last left in their native land, they called PLYMOUTH. This is the first English town that was settled in New-England.
In some of their excursions in search of a suitable place for settlement, they found buried several baikets of Indian corn, to the amount of ten buthels, which fortunately served them for planting the next spring, and perhaps was the means of preserving them from perithing with hunger. They made diligent enquiry for the owners, whom they found, and atterwards paid the full value of the corn.
Before the end of November, Sufanna, the wife of William White, was delivered of a son, whom they called PEREGRINE. He is fuppoled to have been the first child of European extract, born in New-England.
The whole company that landed consisted of but 101 souls. Their situation was diftreiling, and their prospect truly dismal and discouraging. Their nearest neighbours, except the natives, were a French settlement at Port Royal, and one of the English at Virginia. The nearest of these was 500 miles from them, and utterly incapable of affording them relicf in a time of famine and danger. Wherever they turned their eyes, diftress was before them. Persecuted for their religion in their native land -grieved for the profanation of the holy sabbath, and other licentioufness in Holland—fatigued by their long and boisterous voyage-disap, pointed, through the treachery of their commander, of their expected country—forced on a dangerous and unknown More, in the advance of a cold winter-surrounded with hoftile barbarians, without any hope of human succour_denied the aid or favour of the court of England -without a patent--without a public promise of the peaceable enjoyment of their religious liberties—worn out with toil and sufferings-without convenient shelter from the rigours of the weather.-Such were the prospects, and such the situation of these pious, folitary christians. To add to their distrelles, a general and very mortal fickness prevailed among them, which swept off forty-six of their number before the opening of the next spring. ourselves together unto a Civil Body Politic, for our better Ordering and Preservation, and Furtherance of the Ends aforesaid; and by Virtue hereof to enact, conftitute, and frame such just and equal Laws, Ordinances, Aas, Conftitutions and Offices from Time to Time, as shall be thought most meet and convenient for the General Goud of the Colony; unto which we Promise all due Submission and Obedience : In witness whereof we have hereunder subscribed our Names at Cape Cod, the 11th of November, in the Year of the Reign of our Sovereign Lord King James of England, France, and Ireland the Eighteenth and of Scotland the Fifty-fourth, Anno Domini, 1620."
This instrument was signed by 41 heads of families, with the number in their respective families annexed, making in the whole 101 fouls,