Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Stunning study on anti-white racism in America

Stunning study on anti-white racism in America

Thomas Lifson
It takes a British newspaper, the Daily Mail, to publicize a study with tremendous political implications:
White Americans feel they are more discriminated against than blacks, a new study reveals.

Sociologists from Harvard and Tufts universities asked 209 white and 208 black men and women to rate 'racism' against both ethnic groups since the 1950s on a scale of one to 10.

The results showed that while both blacks and whites saw anti-black racism decreasing over the decades, whites saw race relations as a 'zero sum game' where they were losing out as blacks 'gained' the advantage.

The results, published in the journal Perspectives on Psychological Science, showed that on average blacks saw anti-white bias rising slightly from 1.4 in the 1950s to 1.8 today.

Blacks also perceived that racism against themselves had steeply declined from 9.7 in the 1950s to 6.1 in the 90s.
White respondents, however, saw a very different picture.

For the 2000s, 11 per cent of whites gave anti-white bias the maximum 10 out of 10 rating, compared with only two per cent of whites who did so for anti-black bias.

Whites believed that discrimination against them had increased from an average of 1.8 in the 1950s to 4.7 in the 2000s.

In case anyone has forgotten, President Obama embraced the tenets of critical race theory, which seeks to replace notions of merit with quota-based decision-making. He has put Eric Holder as the top law enforcement officer of the USA, a many who will not prosecute blatant video-taped voter harrassment by Black Panthers. THis is and ought to be a political issue, even though the media are too cowardly or too far in the bag for Obama to publicize it. A majority of Americans believe in true racial equality, which means non-discrimination. The race card has been played so often it has lost its potency. It is time for true racial healing, not the phony bromides peddled by Obama on 2008.

...researchers Michael Norton and Samuel Sommers said that despite predictions that Barack Obama's election in 2008 would herald a 'post racial' America, this had not in fact occurred.

They concluded: 'A flurry of legal and cultural disputes over the past decade has revealed a new race-related controversy gaining traction: an emerging belief in anti-white prejudice.

Hat tip: Clarice Feldman

Read more: http://www.americanthinker.com/blog/2012/03/stunning_study_on_anti-white_racism_in_america.html#ixzz2ZFfejLQu
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BY HIS lordship's 







I'S the history of tlie world there is no event more 
riirious and important than the discovery of Ame- 
rica, which, with its surrounding seas, forms a 
cnm})lete hemispliere to our planet, of which the 
antients certainly knew no more than ISO degrees. 
To the glory of an event of such magnitude, and 
follovv'ed by such important consc(]uenccs to the in- 
terests of commerce, many nations have laid claim. 
Tiie limits of a small volume will not allow us to 
enter into the various disquisitions which have been 
\\Titten on the subject, in defence of the contend- 
ing parties. We have followed our own historian, 
and given the honour of the discovery to Chris- 
topher Columbus. And notwithstanding all that 
was said l.'cfore the publicatiijn of Dr. Robertson's 
History, by Gomara aiid others, or since by M. 
Otlo-, wiih a view of snatching the laurel from 
the Genoese, we are persuaded that the e\idence in 
behalf of Columbus's claims are clear and satisfao 

Wc have likewise followed the same authority 
in, endeavouring to account for the manner by 
which America was originally peopled f. Of the 


* See a letter from M. Otto to Dr. Franklin, with a me- 
moir on the discovery of America. American PhilosopAii"'' 
cai i raiisactions. Vol.11, quarto. ITbO". 

f See chap, iii. 




various other theories on tills subject we judge it 
right to mention one in this place which is plau- 
sible and well supported. The abbe Clavigero^ a 
native of America, thinks that there remains no 
other solution to this intricate question than by- 
supposing au antient union between the ecjuinoc- 
tial countries of America with those of Africa, and 
a connection of the northern countries of America 
with Europe on the east, and with Asia on the west^ 
so that according to this gentleman there has pro- 
bably been a period since the flood, in which there 
was but one continent, when the beasts of tlie cold 
climates passed over the northern isthmusses which 
perhaps connected Europe, America, and Asia j 
and the animals and reptiles peculiar to hot coun- 
tries passed over the isthmus that connected South 
America with Africa. For from various reasons 
he is induced to believe that tliere was formerly a 
tract of land uniting the easternmost part of Brazil 
to the westernmost part of Africa, which may have 
been sunk by some violent agitation of nature, 
leaving only a few traces of it in that chain of 
islands of which Cape de Verd, Fernandez, Ascen- 
sion, and St. Matthew Islands make a part. 

All other theories, he says, are subject to enor- 
mous difficulties ; and though this be not without 
some, yet they are not altogether insurmountable. 
The most formidable is the supposition of an earth- 
quake so violent as to submerge a tract of land 
more than fifteen hundred miles in length, which 
according to this hypothesis united Africa and 
South America. It is not necessary, however, to 
ascribe this stupendous revolution to a single shock, 
it may have been effected by a sux^cessiqn of earth- 
quakes, such as was felt in Canada, in l663, which 
overturned a chain of free-stone mountains up- 












iia 5 




rly a 




n of 






[er, to 


LS up- 

ADVj;iniSKMr,NT. ix 

Nvnrds (if thrro lumdred inilcs in length, converting 
tlu' \dii»)c of that immense ..art into one entire 
plain'^. Such is ihe hare oiiriiue of this genllenian's 
ihroryulii'h lie lui<- ioilitied hy many arguments 
ihat merit the atteuLion of the naturalist and piti- 

The plan of the ensuing volume will be evident 
from slight inspeetic^n of the table ot' contents : 
\hc fust six cha[)ters contain a c( mplete history of 
llie dihcoveries and settlenKUits made by Columbus, 
Cortes, Pizarro, and others, uncler the auspices of 
l!ie court of Spain. The seventh gives a brief ac- 
count of the Portuguese settlenunits in South Ame- 
rica. We then ( ome to the discoveries and settle- 
ments made by our own countrymen. And it was by 
accident only that Henry Vll. had not an earlier and 
more considerable share in those naval transactions, 
l)y which that age was so eminently distinguished, , 
He had invited Columbus to London to explain to 
him his project; but Bartholomew his brother, the 
bearer of the invitation, was, in his voyage, taken 
by pirates, and detained in their custody, till Co- 
liuTibus had obtained the protection of Isabella, and 
had sailed on the fortunate expedition. Henry was 
not discouraged by this disa])})ointment, but sent 
Sebastian Cal)ot in search of new countrit* s. The 
vesiilt of his voyage vwas the discovery and after- 
wards the settlement of the more northerly parts of 
America, Newfoundland, and that part of the con- 
tinent Vv'liich is now erected into the empire of 
the United States. The ri.se of these states, and 
Iheir proy,ressive history to the present times, to- 
gether with an historical account of the West In- 

Clavjg^ero's History of Mexico. 



dia IslancU will be found detailed in the remainder 
of the volume. 

Upon the whole we may venture to assure the 
reader that the history of America in its several 
parts will nol be found less interesting or less im- 
portant than that of any of the foregoing volumes. 
Indeed tlie discovery of this great continent with 
the neighbouring islands has been attended with 
almost incalculable advantages to all the nations of 
Europe, even to such as were not immediately con- 
cerned in tliose naval enterprises. The enlarge- 
ment of commerce and navigation increased indus- 
try and the arts every where. The nobles dissi- 
pated their fortunes in expensive pleasures : men 
of inferior rank, by wealtli gained in America, ac- 
quired a share of landed property in Europe, and 
created to themselves a considerable property of a 
new kind, in stock, credit, and correspondence. 
In some nations the privileges of the commons 
were increased by this increase of property; and 
in all places the condition of the great mass of the 
people was improved by the trade cai'ried on b#« 
tween the Old and the New World. 



CuatA, Columbus's Origin: his Application 
to different Courts : his Jirst Voij^ 
age and Discovery of Guanahani : 
his second Foyage and Discovery 
of Jamaica: his third Voyage and 
Discovery of the Continent : his 
return Home and Death 

II. .State of Hispaniolay Cuba, ^c, : 
noble Conduct of' Balboa: Mis» 
sionaries sent out. Las Ccusas's 
Conduct and Zeal, Origin of the 
African Slave Trade 



III. A View of America ; and of the 

Manners and Customs of the I'a^ 
rious Inhabita?its when frst dis^ 
covered - " - ^ 6j 

IV. History of the Conquest of Netv 

Spain by Hernando Cortes - 113 

V. History of the Conquest of Peru, 
Chili, ^c, by Pizarro ; with an 
Account of the Alanners and CuS" 
toms of the Mexicans and Pcru^ 
vians • . - - 149 


> I 


.1 1 


Chap. VI. Fmv of the other Spa7iish Pos- 
sessions and Co?iquests in the 
New JFortd - - - ISO 

VTI. History of the Portuguese Settle- 
ments in yhnerica - -19(3 

VIII. History of the Discoveries and Set- 
tlements made hy the English. — 
The Origin of the Americati IVar 204 

IX. History of the American War conti- 
lined to the Termination of the 
Royal Governmmt - - 233 

X. History of the American IFar con- 
cluded - - r - 251 

XL History of the United States of Ame- 
rica to the present Times ^ - 285 

XII. History of the British Possessio?is in 

North America - - - 297 

XIII. History of the IFest- India Islands 308 

XIV. History of the JFest Indies continued 336 
XV. History of the IVest Indies concluded 3C)1 

• Tlvj Binder is requested to place the Map of North 
Aiiiciica ai the Ci;d of the Volume* 






r 204 



- 251 










of North 


Introduct'imi. Importance of the Discovery of Amc» 
r'lca. Mariner s Compass. The Portuguese the 
first Adventurers in pursuit of foreign Countries* 
Birth and Education of Columbus . Enters the 
Sir vice of Portugal. His Marriage. Conceives 
Hopes of reaching the East Indies hif holding a 
ivdsterly Course. His Theory on the Suhject, 
His Application to difjerent Courts. His Plans 
acceded to hy the King and Queen of Spain. His 
Foyage of Discovery. Difficulties. Success, 
Lands at Guanahani. Sails to Cuba after Gold. 
To Hispaniola. Leaves a Colony there, ami re- 
turns to Spain. The Difficulties of his Foyage 
Home. Astonishment and Joy of Mankind on 
the Discovery of the New JForld. His Reception 
a t Court. The Reason of the Na me West Indies. 
His second. Foyage. Finds the Colony all de* 
sfroyed. Builds a, Town. His Followers muti^ 
7iy. Builds the Fort St. Thomas. Sets sail. 
Discovers Jamaica. -His Distresses. Return^ i 7 
Hispaniola. IFar 'with the Indians. Tax im" 
posed on them. Desolation of the Indians. Co^ 
lumbus returns to Spain. His Reception. Third 
Foyage. Discovers the Island. Trinidad. En^ 
tanifledin the River Orinoco. Discovers the Con^ 
tinent. Foyage of the Portuguese to the East 

VOL, S.XIV. M Indies 






? h 



Indies lif the Cape of Good Hope. The Reason 
of the Name America. Distresses of Coliimiicw 
Sails in Quest of the East Indies ti/ a new Pas- 
sage. Arrives at Hispaniola. His Treatment 
there. His Predietion of a Storm . The Conse- 
quences of neglecting it. His Distresses. Runs 
his Ship aground at Jamaica. Indians rfuse 
him Assistance. ForetelLs an Eclipse of the Moon, 
and. takes aduafitage of it. Returns to Spain, 
His Treatme/it and Death, 

AS individuals are protected in the enjoyment of 
their wcahh and commerce by the power of 
the community, so the general body deduces equi- 
vah^nt advantages from the extensive trade and vast 
opulence of private persons. The grandeur of the 
state, and the happiness and security of its subjects, 
are, with respect to commerce, inseparable. That 
policy must ever be narrow and short-sighted which 
\^'ould aggrandi^^e the state by the oppression of its 
members. Every thing is purchased l>y labour, 
^\hich alone is infirntely more valuable than I he 
richest mines of gold and silver. The possession of 
tJie latter has in many instances rendered nations 
poor and contemptible 5 but in no instance have 
aiilnence and felicity failed to accompany industry 
guidx)d by prudence. A superfluity of labour is a 
real treasure to society, which may at any time be 
employed like money in the public service. Hence 
arise the great ad\'antages of foreign commerce, 
which, by augmenthig tiie labour, ineflbct increases 
(he grandeur of tlie state and the wealth of the 
.subject, hy its imports it furnishes the materials 
of industry ; and by its e:q)orts it aftbrds encou- 
ragement for exertion. I'hus the mind acquires 
iidditioiiiil vigour ; it enlarges 5 Is povv^ers and facul- 




of til 
but A 
To h 
i Antii 
tile d 
tnry \\ 
to hav 
^nd to 





nent of I 

;)\vev ot 
?s equi- 
Mu\ vast 
ir of tho 
e. That 
id which 
on of its 
Jian the 
ession of 
ice have 
(mr is a 
time be 
:h of the 
s encou- 
ind facul- 



tics, and the spirit of improvement is^ at length, 
Fceii in every art and science. 

If commerce be considered as essential to in- 
dustry, and labour necessary to the opulence and 
happiness of society, we cannot but regard the dis- 
covery of the vast continent of America, and the 
islands with which it is on all sides surrounded, as 
one ot the most important consequences of tliedis- 
coveiT of the mariner's compass, and the improve- 
ments in navigation. Without a knowledge of the 
AWst Indies the intercourse with the East Indies 
would be of little advantage to luirope ; it might 
even be pernicious, by draining it of its gold and 
silver: whereas we now purchase the commodities 
of the latter not only wdth European manufactures, 
but with the silver dug out of the mines of Pot(jsi. 
To her possessions in Chili, Peru, Mexico, and the 
Antilles, Spain owes all her opulence. Great Bri- 
tain, by means of her colonies, on the continent of 
America raised herself to a great and envied height 
of grandeur and importance. Portugal almost owes 
her CKistence to her possessions in Brazil. In short, 
every nation in Europe, either immediately or cir- 
cuitously, has derived considerable advantages from 
the discovery of the western world. 

At the beginning of the fourteenth cen- . -p. 
tury we date the discovery of the compass, ' * 
which may, with great propriety, be said ^ 
to have opened to man the dominion of the sea, 
and to have put him in full possession of the terres- 
trial globe, by enabling him to visit every part of 
it. The art of steering by this instrument was gra- 
dually acquired. Sailors, unaccustomed to quit 
siglit of land, durst not launch out and commit 
tiicmselves to unknown seas. The first appearance 

» ^ • of 



A T\ of a bolder spirit may be dated from the 
1 '^AA ' voyages of the Spaniards to the Canary or 
' Fortunate Islands. By wJiat accident they 
were led to the discovery of those small isles, 
which lie 500 miles from the Sj^anish coast, and 
more than 150 miles from the coast of Africa, con- 
temporary writers have not explained ; and (heir 
subsequent voyages thither seem not to have been 
undertaken in consequence of any public or regular 
plan for extending navigation or of attempting new 

At length, liowever, the period arrivcvl wh'^n 
Providence decreed that men were to pass the 
limits within which they had so long been con- 
fined, and open to themselves a more ample field, 
wherein to display their talents, their enterprise, 
and courage. The first eHbrts towards this were 
not made by any of the more powerful states of 
Europe, or by those who had applied to navigation 
with the greatest assiduity and success. The glory 
of leading the way in this new career was reserved 
for Portugal, one of the smallest and least powerful 
of the European kingdoms. 

Among the foreigners whom the fame of the 
discoveries made by the Portuguese in Africa had 
allured into their service, was Christopher Colon 
or Columbus, a subject of the republic of Genoa, 
who discovered, at a very early period, a peculiar 
propensity for a seafaring life. His parents en- 
couraged his wishes by the education which they 
gave him. At the age of fourteen he began his 
career on that element which conducted him to so 
much glory. With a near relation, who com- 
manded a small s(]uadron, Columbus continued se- 
veral years^ distinguished equally for talents and 



)m the 
Kivy or 
It they 
i isles, 
it, and 
a, con- 
d their 
,e been 
ing new 

y\ wh'^n 
pass the 
>en con- 
ple tield, 
this were^ 
states of 
'he glory 

le of the 
.frica had 
ier Colon 
If Genoa, 
Irents en- 
hich they 
[began his 
Ihim to so 

rho com- 
Itinned se- 

ileuts and 


true courage. At length, in an obstinate engage- 
ment olf the coast of Portugal with some Venetian 
caravels, the vessel on board which he served took 
iire, together with one of the enemy's ships to 
which it was fast grappled. In this dreadful ex- 
tremity he threw himself into the sea, laid hold of 
a floating oar; and by the support of tliat, and his 
own dexterity in swimming, he reached the shore, 
and saved a life reserved for great undertakings. 

As soon as he had recovered his strength for the 
journey, he repaired to Lisbon, where he married a 
Portuguese lady. This alliance, instead of detach- 
ing him from a seafaring life, contributed to en- 
large the sphere of his naval knowledge, and to 
excite a desire of extending it still farther. His 
wife was daughter of an experienced navigator, 
from whose journals and charts Columbus learned 
the course which the Portuguese had held in mak- 
ing their discoveries, as well as the various circum- 
stances which guided or encouraged them in their 
attempts. The study of these soothed and inflamed 
his favourite passion; and while he contemplated 
the maps, and read the descriptions of the new 
countries seen by his father-in-law, his impatience 
to visit them became irresistible. He made a 
voyage to Madeira, and for several years conti- 
nued to trade with that island, with the Canaries, 
the Azores, the settlements in Guinea, and all the 
other places which the Portuguese had discovered 
on the continent of Africa. 

To find out a passage by sea to the East Indies 
was the great object in view at that period. From 
the time that the Portuguese doubled Cape de 
Verd, this was the point at which they aimed in all 
their navigations, and, in comparison with it, all 
tlieir discoveries in Africa appeared as inconsider- 

B 3 able. 

i I 



able. The Portuguese, however, senrchcd for it 
only by steering south, in hopes of arriving nt In- 
dia by turning to the east when they had sailrd 
round tlie farther extremity of Africa j wlulc Co- 
lumbus, after revohing every circumstance sug- 
gested by his superior Isnowledge in the theory as 
well as the practice of navigation, after comparing 
attentively the observations of modern pilots with 
the hints and conjectures of antient authors, con- 
cluded that by sailing directly towards the west 
across the Atlantic, new countries, which probably 
formed a part of India, must infallibly be disco- 
vered. In this opinion he was confirmed by the 
observations of his bnUher Bardiolomew, who was 
a geographer by profession, and who, in drawing 
his maps of the world, was astonished that of 300 
degrees of longitude only 1 80 at most were known 3 
and, of course, there remained as much of the 
world to be discovered as had already been found 
out: and as it seemed by no means probable that 
the ocean could extend, without any interruption, 
over one entire hemisphere, he maintained that, by 
keeping constantly west from the Canaries, they 
must infallibly come either to islands or to a con- 
tinent. Facts were not wanting to strengthen this 
plausible theoiy : a Portuguese pilot having stretch- 
ed farther to the west than was usual at that time, 
took up a piece of timber artificially carved, float- 
ing upon tlie sea; and as it was driven towards 
him by a westerly wind, he concluded that it came 
from some unknown land situated in that quarter. 
Cohimbus's brother-in-law had found to the west 
of the Madeira isles a piece of timber fashioned in 
the same manner, and brought by the same wind. 
Trees torn up by their roots were frequently driven 
by westerly winds upon the coasts of the Azores, 




and at one time (he dead bodies of two men, villi 
si!igular features resembling neither the inhabi- 
liinls of Europe nor of Afriea, were cast ashore 

As the force of this united evidence, arising from 
theoretical principles and practical observation, led 
Columbus to expect the discovery of new countries 
in the Western Ocean, other reasons induced hini 
to b.'lie\e that these must be connected with the 
continent of India. He communicated his theory 
to Paul, a physician of Florence, eminent » -p. 
for his knowledge in the science of cosmo- .^^.Z 
graphy, wlio entered warmly into the views 
of Columbus, and encouraged him in an under- 
taking which promised so much bene^t to the 

Having satisfied his own mind with respect to 
the truth of his svstem, Columbus stood in need of 
no stimulus to urge liim to reduce it to practice. 
His lirsi step was to secure the patronage of some 
European power. 1 o this end he laid his scheme 
before the senate of Genoa, making, as became a 
good citizen, his native land the first tender of his 
services. I'hey rejected his proposal, as the dream 
of a chimerical projector. He next applied to 
John n. king of Portugal, a monarch of enter- 
prising genius, and n{3 incompetent judge of naval 
atTail's. The king listened to him in the most gra- 
cious manner, and referred the consideration of 
his plan to a number of eminent geographers, 
whom he was accustomed to consult in matters of 
this kind. These men, from mean and interested 
views, started innumerable objections, and asked 
many captious questions, in order to betray Co- 
lumbus into a full explanation of his system. Hav- 


ing in a great measure gained their ends, tlicy ad- 
vised the king to dispatch a vessel, secretly, to 
attempt the proposed discovery, by following ex- 
actly the course which this great man had pointed 
out. John, forgetting, on this occasion, the senti- 
ments becoming a monarch, meanly adopted their 
perfidious counsel. 

Upon hearing of this dishonourable transaction, 

Columbus indignantly quitted the kingdom, and 

* -p. landed in Spain. Here he presented his 

lift J.* ^^^^^""^^ ^^ Ferdinand and Isabella, who at 
that time governed the united kingdoms of 
Castile and Arragon. They injudiciously submit- 
ted it to tlie examination of unskilful judges, who, 
ignorant of the principles on which Columbus 
founded his theory, rejected it as absurd ; main- 
taining that, if there were really any such countries 
as Columbus pretended, they would not have re- 
mained so long concealed 3 nor would the wisdom 
and sagacity of former ages have left the glory of 
this discovery to an obscure Genoese. 

Columbus, who had experienced the uncertain 
issue of his applications, had taken the precaution 
of sending into England his brother Bartholomew, 
to whom he had fully communicated his ideas, to 
negotiate the matter with Henry VII. On his 
voyage tliither he fell into the hands of pirates, 
who stripped him of every thing, and detained 
him a prisoner several year^. At length he made 
his escape, and arrived at London in extreme in- 
digence, where he employed himself some time 
in selling maps. With his gains he purchased a 
decent dress, and in person presented to the king 
the proposals which his brother had entrusted to 
his management. Notwithstanding Henry's ex- 



y ad- 
y, to 
g ex- 
l their 

1, and 
:ed his 
kvho at 
oms of 
s, who, 
; main- 
bave re- 
1 wisdom 
glory of 


crssivc caution nnd parsimony, he received the 
plans of Cuhimbus with more approbation than any 
monarch to whom they had been presented. 

After several unsneeessfiil applications to other 
Euro})ean powers of less note, he was induced, by 
the entrenty of Perez, a man of learning, and who 
had great inihience with Isabella, to apply a second 
time to the court of Spain. Isabella became his 
munificent patroness^ and to her ultimately he 
owed his success. 

I'hough the name of Ferdinand appears con- 
joined with that of his queen in this transaction, 
yet his distrust of Columbus w^as still so violent, 
that he refused to take any part in the eriterprise as 
king of Arragon. And as the whole expence of 
the expedition was to be defrayed by the crown of 
Castile, Isabella reserved to her subjects of that 
kingdom an exclusive right to all the benefits which 
might redound from its success. 

As soon as the treaty was signed, Isabella, by 
her attention and activity in forwarding the prepa- 
rations for tlie voyage, endeavoured to make some 
reparation to Columbus for the time which he had 
lost in fruitless solicitation. A squadron of three 
ships was fitted out, victualled for twelve months, 
and furnished with ninety men. And on the third 
day of August he left Spain, in the presence . -p. 
of a crowed of spectators, who united their ,^* ^* 
supplications to heaven for his success. He *^*^* 
steered directly for the Canary islands, where he 
arrived and refitted, and on the (idi of September 
set sail in a due western course into an unknown 

Here the voyage of discovery may be said to 
begin. The first day, as it w^as very calm, ho 
made but little progress 3 but on tlie second he 






lost sight of tlic Canaries; and many of the sailor.^, 
dejected ah*eady and dismayed, when they con- 
templated the l)()ldness of the undertaking, began 
to beat their breasts, and to shed tears, as if they 
were never more to behold land. Cohimbus com- 
forted them with assurances of success, and tlie 
prospect of vast wealth in those opulent regions 
whither he was conducting tliem. Happily for 
himself, and for the country by which he was em- 
ployed, he joined to the ardent temper and inven- 
tive genius of a projector virtues of another species, 
which are rarely united with them. He possessed 
a thorough knowledge of mankind, an insinuating 
address, a patient perseverance in executing any 
plan; the perfect government of his own passions, 
and the talent of acquiring an ascendant over those 
of other men. All these qualities, which formed 
him for command, were accompanied with a su- 
perior knowledge of his profession, which begets 
confidence in times of difficulty and danger. As 
soon as tliey put to sea he regulated every thing by 
his sole authority; he superintended the execution 
of eveiy order ; and allowing himself only a few 
hours for sleep, he was at all other times upon deck. 
He attended to the motion of tides and currents, 
watched the flight of birds, the appearance of 
fishes, of sea- weed, and of every thing that floated 
on the waves, and entered every occurrence, with 
a minute exactness, in the journal wdiich he kept. 
By the 1 4th of September the fleet was more than 
200 leagues to the west of the Canary isles. There 
they were struck with an appearance no less asto- 
nishing than new. They observed that tlie mag- 
netic needle, in their compasses, did not point ex- 
actly to the polar star, but varied towards the west; 
»nd as tliey proceeded, this variation increased. 






to tJ 


a I sc 




to ni 

to re 


on th 



to shi 


tliat ( 



ting ri 

upon t 


be inqi 






" they 


id the 


ily for 

as em- 





ing any 


ir those 


h a su- 

|i begets 

er. As 

hing by 

a few 

ance of 
c, with 
e kept, 
re than 
ss asto- 
le msg- 
loint ex- 


This phenomenon filled the companions of Cohim* 
bus with terror. They were now in a boundless 
unknown ocean, far from the usual course of navi- 
gation ; natiire itself seemed to have altered, and 
the only guide which they had left was about to 
fail them. Columbus invented a reason for this 
aj^pcarance, whicli, though not satisfactory to him- 
sclf, seemed so plausible to them, that it dispelled 
their fears, or silenced tiieir murmurs. 

Upon the first of October they were, according 
to the admiral's reckoning, 7/0 leagues to the west 
of the Canaries. They had now been three weeks 
at sea, and had proceeded far beyond what former 
navigators had attempted or deemed possible, 
and their prospect of success seemed to be as 
distant as ever. These reflections occurred often 
to men who had no other object or occupation than 
to reflect on the intention and circumstances of 
their expedition. They made impression, at first, 
on the timid and ignorant, and extending, by de- 
grees, to such as were better informed or more 
resolute, the contagion spread at length from ship 
to ship. From secret whispers they proceeded to 
open cabals and public complaints. All agreed 
that Columbus should be compelled by force to 
make the best way home. Some even proposed to 
throw him into the sea, as the surest mode of get- 
ting rid of his remonstrances^ being persuaded that, 
upon their return to Spain, the death of an unsuc- 
cessful projector would excite little concern, and 
be inquired into with no curiosity. 

Columbus was fully sensible of his perilous situa- 
tion. He had observed witli great uneasiness the 
disaffection of his crew: he retained, however, 
perfect presence of mind, and affbcted to be ig- 
norant of their machinations. Sometimes he em- 
ployed all the art& of msumalioa to sootlie hi$ 


•l I 

■ ii:; 

ii 'I 


men, Sometimes he eiuleavourefl to work upon 
their nnibition and avarice, by niagnifieeiit descrip- 
tions of the fame and wealth which they were about, 
to ac(|uire. On other occasions he assumed tiu; 
tone of authority, and tlireatened them with the 
vengeance of their sovereign, if, by tlieir dastardly 
behaviour, they should defeat this noble elfort to 
promote the glory of God, and to exalt the Spa- 
nish name above that of every other nation. Thus 
lie prevailed with them to accompany their admiral 
for some time lono;er. 

As they proceeded, the indications of ap]iroach- 
ing land seemed to be more certain. I'he birds 
began to appear in flocks, making to tlu! south- 
west : to the same point Columbus directed the 
course of his Heet. The hopes of his men were, for 
n time, greatly elevated : but at the end of thirtv 
days, no object having been descried but sea and 
«ky, their fears revived with additional ibrce j im- 
patience, rage, and despair, ap])eared in every ccAin- 
tenance. All sense of subordination was lost : the 
ofhcers took part with the private men, and they 
unanimously required their commander instantly 
to tack about and return to Europe. Finding tho 
methods which he had before adojHed of no avail, 
he promised solemnly to his men that he wcmki 
comply with their request, provided they \\-oukl 
accompany him and obey his commands for three 
days longer j and if, daring that time, land was 
not discovered, he would then abandon his enter- 
prise, and direct his course to Spain. 

Enraged as the sailors were, yet they cotisented 
to this proposition, which did not to them appear] 
unreasonable. Nor did Columbus hazard much in 
contining himself to a term so short. The presagesi 
of discovering land were now so numerous andj 
promising, that he deemed them infallible ; and! 


on the 11th of October, after public prayers for 
success, he ordered the hails to be furled, and the 
ships to be-to, keeping strict wateli lest Xhry 
should be driven ashore in the night. During thi?4 
interval of suspense and exiK'etalion no man shut 
his eyes, all kept upon deck, g^^-iiig in cntly to- 
wards that <]uarter where th^^expt cted to discover 
the land, which hatL been so long tlie object of 
their wishes, 

Al)out ten o'clock in the evening Columbus, 
standing on the forecastle, observed a light at a 
distance, and privately pointed it out to Pedro Gut- 
tierez, a page of the (pieen's wardrobe. Guttierez 
perceived it, and calling out to the comi)troUer of 
the fleet, all three saw it in motion, as if it wer« 
carried from place to place. A little after mid- 
night the joyful sound of La?nl, landy was heard 
from the Pi/Ua, which ke[)t always a-head of the 
otjier ships. They all waited in the anguish of 
tnieertainty and im])atience for the return of day. 
As soon as mornintr dawned all doubts and fears 
were rlispelled. Fiom every ship an island was 
seen about two leagues to the north, w hose verdant 
iields, w^ell stored with wood, and watered with 
many rividets, presented the aspect of a delightful 
country. The crew of the Plnta instantly began 
7V Dcum, and were joined by those of the other 
ships, with tears of joy and transports of congratu- 
lation. This office of gratitude to heaven was fol- 
lowed by an act of justice to their commander. 
They threw them.sf W*uw at the feet of Columbus, 
with feelings of seli-eondemnatlon mingled with 
reverence. The) implored him to pardon their 
past conduct ; and reverting in the phrensy of their 
admiration from one extreme to another, they now 
pronounced the man \\ horn they liad so lately re- 

voL. XXIV, c viled 



■:.i '111 

viled and threatened, to be a person inspired hf 
heaven with sagacity and fortitude more than hu- 
man, in order to accompHsh a design so far beyond 
the ideas and conception of former ages. 

As soon as the sun arose they rowed towards the 
island, with colours displayed, warlike music, and 
other martial pomp. As they approached the coast 
tliey saw it covered with a multitude of people, 
whom the novelty of the spectacle had drawn to- 
gether, whose attitudes and gestures expressed 
wonder and astonishment at the strange objects 
which presented themselves to their view. Co- 
lumbus was the first European who set foot on the 
new world which he had discovered. He landed 
in a rich dress, and with a naked sword in his 
hand. His men followed, and kneeling down 
they all kissed the ground which they had so long 
desired to see. They returned thanks to God for 
conducting their voyage to such a happy issue. 
They then took solemn possession of the countrj 
for the crown of Castile and Leon. 

The Spaniards, while thus employed, were sur- 
rounded by many of the natives, who gazed in 
silent admiration upon actions which they could 
not comprehend, and of which they could not fore- 
see the consequence. The dress of the Spaniards, 
the whiteness of their skin, their beards, their 
arms, appeared strange and surprising. The vast 
machines in which they had traversed the ocean, 
that seemed to move upon the waters with wings, 
and uttered a dreadful sound, resembling thunder 
accompanied with lightning and smoke, struck 
them with such terror, that they began to respect 
their new guests as a superior order of beings, and 
concluded that they were children of tlie Sun, who 
had descended to visit the eartlx. # 











ed hf 
m hu- 

rds the 
ic, and 
e coast 
wn to- 
'. Co- 
t on the 
L in his 
r down 
so long 
God for 


ere sur- 
azed in 
ot fore- 
lie vast 
gs, and 
in, who 



The Europeans were scarcely less amazed at the 
scene now before tlicm. Every herl), and shrub, 
and tree, was different from those which flourislied 
m Europe. The inhabitants appeared in the simple 
innocence of nature, entirely naked. Their black 
liair, long and uncurled, floated upon their shoul- 
ders, or was bound in tresses around tlieir 'eads. 
They had no beards, and every part of their body 
was perfectly smooth. Their complexion was of 
a dusky copper colour, their features singular 
rather than disagreeable, their aspect gentle and 
timia. Their taccs, and several parts of their 
body, were fantastically painted with glaring co- 
lours. They were shy at first through fear, but 
soon became familiar with the Spaniards, and with 
transports of joy received from them glass beads 
r^nd other baubles, in return for which they gave 
them such provisions as they had, and some cotton 
yarn, the only commodity of value that they could 
prrnkice. I'owards evening Columbus returned to 
his ships, accompanied by many islanders in their 
canoes, which, though rudely formed out of tlie 
trunk of a tree, they rowed with surprising dex- 
terity. Thus, in the first intei*view between the 
inhabitants of the old and nejv worlds, every thing 
was condi cted amicably, and to their mutual satis- 
faction. The one, enlightened and ambitious, form- 
ed already va/^t ideas \\ ith respect to tlie advantages 
which they might derive from the regions that be- 
gan to open to their view. The other, simple 
and undiscerning, had no foresight of the cala- 
mities and desolation which were approaching their 

Columbus, who now assumed the title and au- 
thority of admiral and viceroy, called the island 
which he had discovered San Salvador. It is better 

c 2 knowa 

^^ !' 



known by the name Guana ii cut i, which the natives 
gave it, and is one of that hirje chister of islands 
called the Lucaya or Bahama isles. It is sitnated 
more than 3000 miles west of Gomera, from 
which the squadron took its departure, and only- 
four degrees south of it : so little had Columbus 
deviated from the westerly course which he had 
fixed on as the most proper. 

The next day Columbus employed in visiting 
the coasts of the island ; and, from the universal 
poverty of the inhabitants, he perceived that this 
was not that rich country for which he was 
looking. He therefore concluded, that San Sal- 
vador was one of the isles which geographers de- 
scribed as situated in the great ocean adjacent to 
India. Having observed that most of the people 
whom he had seen wore small plates of gold, byway 
of ornament, in their nostrils, he eagerly inquired 
where they got that precious metal. They pointed 
towards the south : thither he imm.ediately directed 
his course. He saw several islands, and touched 
at three of tlie largest, on which he bestowed the 
names of St. Mary of the Conception, Ferdi- 
nanda, and Isabella. He inquired every where 
for goldj and tlie signs that were uniformly made, 
by way of answer, confirmed him in the opinion 
that it was brought from the south. He followed 
that course, and soon discovered a large island, 
which the natives of San Salvador called Cuba, 
Here tlie people, who were all naked, seemed to 
be more intelligent than those of San Salvador : 
they treated the Europeans with the same re^pect- 
fal attention, kissed their feet, and honoured them 
as sacred beings allied to heaven. 

Columbus visited almost every harbour on the 
north coast of the island 3 but, though delighted 




I, from 
nd only 

he had 

Lii liver sal 
that this 
he was 
San Sal- 
:)hers de- 
Ijacent to 
le people 
Id, byway 
f inqa.red 
J pointed 
owed the 
n, Ferdi- 
ry where 
n]y made, 
^ opinion 
re island, 
ed Cuba, 
,eemed to 
[Salvador : 
|e respect- 
red them 

ir on 




v,\ih the beauty of the scenes m hicli every where 
presented themselves, he did not find gold in such 
quantity as was sufficient to satisfy either the ava- 
rice ot his followers, or the ex{)ectations of the 
court to which he w^as to return. I'he people of 
the country, as much astonished at his eagerness in 
quest of gold, as tlie Europeans were at their igno- 
rance and simplicity, pointed towards the east, 
where an island, which they called Ilayti, Avas 
situated, in wiiich that metal was more abundant 
than among them. 

Retarded by contrary winds, Columbus did not 
reach Hayti till the 6th of December. He called 
the port where he first touched St. Nicholas, and 
the island Hispaniola, in honour of the kingdom 
by which he was employed. Here the people pos- 
sessed gold in greater abimdance than their neigh- 
bours, which they readily exchanged for bells, 
beads, or pins; and in this unequal traific both 
parties were highly pleased, each considering 
themselves as gainers by the transaction. Colum- 
bus was visited by a prince or cnxicjue of the coun- 
try, who api>eared with all the pomp know n among 
a simple people, being carried on a sort of palan- 
quin upon the shoulders of four men, and attended 
by many of his subjects, who served him with 
great respect. His deportment was grave and 
stately, he gave the admiral some thin plates of 
gold, and a girdle of curious workmanship, re- 
ceiving in return presents of small value. 

Columbus, still intent on discovering the gold 
mines, continued to interrogate all the natives with 
whom he had any intercourse concerning tlieir situ- 
ation, and in full expectation of reaching soon those 
regions which had been the object of his voyage, he 
directed his course towards the east. He put into a 

c 3 com mo- 





commodious harbour, which he called St. Tlio- 
mas, and found that district to be under the go- 
vernment of a powerful cazique, named Guacana- 
hari, who, as he afterwards learned, was one of 
the live sovereigns among whom the whole island 
was divided. He immediately sent messengers to 
Columbus, who, in his name, delivered to him 
the present of a mask, curiously fashioned with 
ears, nose and mouth, of beaten gold, and invited 
him to the place of his residence, near the harbour 
now called Cape Francois. Columbus dispatched 
pome officers to visit this prince, who, as he be- 
liaved himself with greater dignity, seemed to 
claim attention. They returned with such favour- 
able accounts both of the country and of tlie peo- 
ple, as made Columbus impatient for that interview 
with the prince to which he had been invited. 

He sailed for this purpose from Si. Thomas's 
on the 24th of December : his ship, through the 
carelessness of the pilot, struck on a rock, and was 
lost^ but by the timely assistance of boats from the 
other vessels the crew were all saved. As soon 
as the islanders heard of their disaster, they crowded 
to the shore, with their prince at their head, and 
atForded them all the assistance in their powerj by 
which means every tiling of value was carried 

Columbus was now left with a single jessel : he 
felt the difficulty of taking all his men on board, 
and resolved to leave a part of his crew in the 
island, that, by residing tliere, they might learn the 
language of the natives, study their disposition, 
examine the nature of the country, search for 
mines, prepare for the commodious settlement 
of the colony with which he proposed to return, 
and thus secure and facilitate the acquisition of 



those advantages which he expected from his dis- 
coveries. His men approved the design, and no- 
thing was wanting hut the consent of Guacanahari, 

Having taken every precaution i'oi' the security 
of the ccvlony, and obtained the full consent of the 
prince for his men to reside there, he left the island 
on the 4th of January, and on the 0th he * -p. 
discovered the Pinta, the vessel from which ,,..,.* 
he had been separated more than six weeks. ^'^'*' 
Pinzon, the captain, endeavoured to justify his con- 
duct, by pretending that lie had been driven from 
his course by stress of weather, and prevented from 
returning by contrary winds. The admiral, with- 
out farther inquiries, felt great satlsfaetion in this 
junction with his consort, which delivered him 
from many disquieting apprehensions, and restored 
Pinzon to his favour. 

Columbus found it necessary, from the condition 
of his ships, as well as from the tenvper of his men, 
to hasten his return to Europe. Ihe voyage was 
prosperous to the 14th of February, and he had 
advanced near 500 leagues across the Atlantic 
Ocean, when a storm arose, which seemed to 
bring in its train inevitable destruction. The sai- 
lors, at first, had recourse to prayers, to the invo- 
cation of saints, to vows and charms 3 but when no 
prospect of deliverance appeared, they abandoned 
themselves to despair. Columbus had to endure 
feelings of distress peculiar to himself. He dreaded 
that all tlie knowledge of his amazing discoveries 
was now to perish, and that his name would de- 
scend to posterity as that of a rash deluded adven- 
turer, instead of beinor transmitted with the honour 
due to the author and conductor of the most noble 
enterprise that had ever been undertaken. These 






; ti'il 

'. V'iit' 


reflections extinguished all sense of personal dan- 
ger. Less affected with the loss of life than so- 
licitous to preserve the memory of what he had 
attempted and achieved, he retired to his cabin, 
and wrote upon parchment a short account of the 
voyage which he had made, of the course which he 
had taken, of the situation and riches of the coun- 
tries which he had discovered, and of the colonj 
that he had left there. Having wrapped up this in an 
oiled cloth, which he inclosed in a cake of wax, ho 
put it into a cask carefnlly stopped up, and threw it 
into the sea, in hopes that some fortunate accident 
might preserve a deposit of so much importance to 
the world. 

At length Providence interposed to save a life 
reserved for other services 5 the wind abated, the 
sea became calm, and on the evening of the 15th 
Columbus and his companions discovered land, 
which proved to be St. Mary, one of the Azores, 
subject to the crown of Portugal. There Colum- 
bus obtained a supply of provisions, and whatever 
else he needed. The Pinta he had lost sight of in 
the storm, and he dreaded for some time that 
she had foundered at sea -, he then became appre- 
hensive that Pinzon had borne away for Spain, 
that he might reach it before him, and, by giving 
the first account of his discoveries, obtain some 
share in his fame. 

In order to prevent this, he left the Azores as 
soon as the weather would permit. When he was 
almost in sight of Spain, and seemingly beyond the 
reach of disaster, another storm arose, little in- 
ferior to the former in violence ; and after driving 
before it during two days and two nights, he was 
forced to take shelter in the liver Tagus. He was 



allowed to come up to I,isbon, A\'liere lie was re- 
ceived by the king of Portugal with tiie highest re- 
spect. He listened to the account which he gave 
of his voyage, with admiration mingled with re- 
gret j while Columbus, on his part, enjoyed the sa- 
tisfaction of describing the importance of his cHsco- 
veries, and of being able now to prove the soli- 
dity of his schemes, to those very persons who had 
lately rejected them as the projects of a visionary 
or designing adventurer. 

In five days Columbus set sail fc^r Spain, and 
on the 15th of March he arrived in the port of 
Palos, seven months and eleven days from the time 
when he set out thence upon his voyage. As soon 
as his ship was di.^covered approaching the port, all 
the inhabitants of Palos ran eagerly to the shore, 
in order to welcome their relations and fellow- 
citizens, and to hear the tidings of their voyage. 
When the prosperous issue of it was known, when 
they beheld the strange people, the unknown ani- 
mals, and singular productions brought from the 
countries which had been discovered, the elfusion 
of joy was general and unbounded. The l)ells 
were rung, the cannon fired j Columbus was re- 
ceived at landing with royal honours j and all the 
people, in solenm procession, accompanied him 
and his crew to the church, where they returned 
tlianks to heaven, which had so wonderfully con- 
ducted, and crowned with success, a voyage of 
greater length, and of more importance, than had 
been attempted in any former age. On the even- 
ing of the same day he had the satisfaction of see- 
ing the Pinta enter the harbour. 

The first care of Columbus was to inform the 
kino aiid queen of his arrival and success. Ferdi- 





ij M 

■i .■'l.Ifit? 


nand and Isabella, no less astonished than delighted 
with this unexpected event, desired Columbus to 
repair immediately to court, that from his own 
mouth they might receive a full detail of his ex- 
traordinary services and discoveries. During his 
journey, th(i ]-)eople crowded from the adjacent 
country, following him every where with admira- 
tion and applause. His entrance into tlie city- 
was conducted with pomp suitable to the great 
event, which added such distinguishing lustre to 
their reign. The people whom he brought with 
him from the countries which he had discovered, 
marched first, and by their singular complexion, 
the wild peculiarity of their features, and uncouth 
finery, appeared like men of another species. 
Next to them were carried the ornaments of gold, 
fashioned by the rude art of the natives. After 
these appeared tlie various commodities of the 
newly-discovered countries, together with their 
curious productions. Columbus himself closed 
the procession, and att'-.cted the eyes of all the 
spectators, who gazed with admiration on the ex- 
traordinary man, whose superior sagacity and for- 
titude had conducted their countrymen, by a route 
concealed from past ages, to the knowledge of a 
New World. Ferdinand and Isabella received him 
clad in tlieir royal robes, and seated upon a throne 
under a magnificent canopy j and when the admiral 
had finished his narration, they kneeled down and 
offered up solemn thanks to Almighty God, for the 
discovery of those new regions, from v/hich tliej 
expected so many advantages to How in upon the 
kingdoms subject to their government. Every 
mark of honour, that gratitude or admiration could 
suggest, was coaferred upon Columbus. Letters 


5 of gold, 
s. After 
s of the 
'ith their 
If closed 
)f ail the 
n the ex- 
and for- 
ly a route 
|dge of a 
ived him 
a throne 
own and 
, for the 
lich tliej 
lupon the 
lon could 

AMEfvUA. 23 

patent wrre issued, confirniino- to hhn and to his 
hi'irs mai^.y iinportant privilt'i;r.s ; Jiis fiiniily were 
ennobled ; and hhuseh treated with all that respect 
Tihieh was paid to persons of the hig])e.st rank, 
put Avhat pleased him nio.-.t, was an order to eqnij), 
without delay, an arnianient of such force a.s 
might enable him not only to take possession of 
tl;e countries ^^hicll he had already discovered, 
but to i^o in search of those more opulent regions 
■which he still e>;])ected to lind. 

While preparations w ere making for this expe- 
dition, the fame of C'olumbus's voyage spread over 
Europe, and excited general attention. Men of 
science, capable of comprehending the n.iture and 
f)f discerning the eiiects c>t tins great dihCo\er\-, 
received the account of it with admiration and 
joA'. They spoke of his voyage with rapture, and 
congratidiited one another upon tlie iejieity, iu 
having lived in the peviofl wdien, by this extraordi- 
nary e\ ent, the boundaries of human kncnvUxhre 
were so much extended, and such anew^ iield of in- 
tjuiry and observation opened, as w ould lead man- 
kind to a perfect acquaintance with the structure 
and productions of the habitable globe. \'arioui 
opinions and conjectuies w^ere formed concerning 
the new countries, and to what division of the 
earth they belonged. Columbus had no doubt 
tliat they should be reckoned a part of those vast 
regions of Asia comprehended under the general 
name of India; in consequence of which, the 
name of Indies was given them by the king and 
queen : and even after the error was detected, and 
die true position of the New W^orld w^as ascer- 
tained, the name has remained; and the appella- 
tion of ^V'est Indies is given by all the people of 






Europe to the country, and that of Indians to Its 

I'hc name by which the countries were distin- 
guished was so inviting, the specimens of (heir 
riches andfcrtihty so considerable, that volunteers 
of every rank solicited to be em})loyed in the new 
evpedition. The fleet consisted of 17 ships, which 
had on board 1500 persons, among whom were 
many of noble families who liad starved in lionour- 
able stations. The greater ])art of these, being des- 
tined to remain in tlie country, were furnished 
with eveiy recpiisite for comjuest or settlement, 
and with such artilicers as miu;bt be most tiseful in 
an infant colony. 

But, formidable as this fleet was, Ferdinand and 
Isabella did not rest their title to the possession of 
the newly-discovered countries upon its operations 
alone. They aj^plied to the Po]>e for a right to 
those territoricis which they unshed to occupy 5 who 
granted them all the countries inhabited by inti- 
dels, which they had discovered, or should disco- 
^•er ; and in virtue of that power, which he pie- 
tended to derive from Christ, he confer r-^d on the 
crown of Castile vast regions, to the possession of 
which he himself was so far from having any title, 
that he was unacquainted with their situation, and 
ignorant even of their existence. To prevent this 
grant from interfering with one formerly made to 
the crown of Portugal, he decreed that a line, 
s apposed to be drawn from pole to pole, a hundred 
leagues westward of the Azores, should sei*ve as 
the limit between them ; and, in the plenitude of 
his power, bestowed all to the east of this imagi- 
nary line, upon the Portuguese, and all to tlie westj 
of it, upon the Spaniards. 




Ferdinand and Isabolla Inning thus acquired a 
titk> which was, at tliat period, deemed com- 
pletely valid, to extend their dominion over such a 
considerable portion of the globe, notiiing now re- 
tarded the departure of the fleet. Columbus jvot 
sail from the bay of Cadiz on the 'i.^th of Septem- 
ber. On the twenty-sixth day after his departure 
he made land. It was one of the Caribbee or Lee- 
ward islands, to which he gave the name of De- 
scada. After this, he visited successively Domi- 
nica, Marigalante, Cuadeliipe, Antigua, Porto llico, 
and several other islands. On these the Spaniards 
never attempted to land without meeting vitli 
sneh a reception as discovered the martial spirit 
of t'le nati\es ; and in their habitations weru 
found relics of those horrid feasts which they liad 
made upon the bodies of their enemies taken in 

Columbus proceeded as soon as possible to His- 
paniola, where he arrived on the 22d of November. 
AN'hen he reached Nov idad, the station in which 
he iind left a few months before tiiirty-eight men, 
he was astonished that none of them appeared. Full 
of solicitude about their safety, he rowed instantly to 
land. All the natives, from whom he mighthavere- 
cei\ ed information, had tied. But the fort which he 
liad built was entirely demolished ; and the tattered 
garments, the broken arms and utensils, scattered 
about, left no room to doubt concerning the un- 
happy fate of the garrison. While the Spaniards 
were shedding tears over those sad memorials of 
their fellow-citizens, a brother of thecazique Gua- 
canahari arrived. PYoni him Columbus learned 
that as soon as the restraint, which his presence 
imposed, was withdrawn, the garrison threw otf all 

VOL. XXIV. u regard 




' ii i; ' 

J .'•.I'M 

W'i ' 



regard for the oflficer whom he had Invested with 
command, and gratitied tlieir desires without con- 
trol. The gold, the women, the provisions of 
the natives, were all the prey of those licentious op- 
pressors. They roamed in small parties over the 
island, extending tiicir rapacity and insolence to 
every corner of it. Gentle as these people were, 
those unprovoked injuries at length exhausted their 
patience, and roused their conrage. The cazi()ue 
of Cibao surprised and cut otl' several of them 
while they straggled in security. He then assem- 
bled his subjects, and, surrounding the fort, set it 
on tire. Some of the Spaniards were killed in de- 
fending it j the rest perished in attempting to make 
their escape by crossing an arm of the sea. 

Instead of attempting to revenge the death of his 
countrymen, Columbus traced out the plan of a 
town, in a large plain near a spacious bayj and 
obliging every person to put his hand to a work on 
"which their conmion safety depended, the houses 
and ramparts were soon so far advanced, by tlieir 
united labour, as to atibrd tliem shelter and secu- 
rity. This rising city he named Isabella, in ho- 
nour of his patroness the queen of Castile. 

In carrying on the necessary work, Columbus 
had to contend widi the laziness, the impatience, 
and mutinous disposition of his followers. Many 
of them were gentlemen, unaccustomed to the 
fatigue of bodily labour, and all had engaged in the 
enterprise with tlie sanguine hopes of becoming 
suddenly rich. But when, instead of that golden 
harvest which they had expected to reap witliout 
toil or pains, the Spaniards saw that their prospect | 
of wealth was remote as well ^s uncertain, and J 
that it could only be attained by the slow and per- 


sfvcnnc^ eiTorts of industry, the disappointment of 
tho.^e (iiinicnral hopes occasioned such dejcdiou 
ot mini I as kd to general discontent. The spirit 
ot dis.iil*e( tion sprcail, ar.d a ton> piracy was formed 
which might have been latal to Columbus and the 
colony. Happily h<* iliscovi red it, and, seizing the 
rin'.'Uaders.punir^hed some (il ihem, and sent others 
prisoneis into Spain, v Iniher he dispatched twelve 
of tiie .'5hi[)s which hi\l served as transports, witli 
aii'earncsi request lor a reinforc ment of men and 
a large sup])]y of pro\isions. Jn the mean time 
Columbus planned several expeditions into the 
country, in which he displayed all the military 
magniiicence that he could exhibit, in order to 
strike the imai);ination of the natives. He marched 
with colours Hying, wiih martial nmsic, and with a 
fimall body of cavalry, that paraded sometimes in the 
front and sometimes in the rear. As these were 
the first horses which had appeared in the New 
World, they were ol jects of tcnTor no less than 
admiration to the Indians, who having no tame 
animals themselves, were unacquainted with that 
vast accession of power which man hath ac- 
quired by subjecting them to iiis dominion. Ihey 
supposed them rational creatures. Ihey imagined 
that the horse and the rider formed one animal, 
with whose speed they were astonished, and whose 
impetuosity and strength they considered as irre- 
sistible. But while Columbus endeavoured to in- 
spire the natives with a dread of his power, he did 
not neglect the arts of gaining their iove and con- 
fidence. He adhered scrupulously to the princi- 
ples of integrity and justice in all his transaciions^ 
and treated them on every occasion with huma- 
Jiity and kindness. The district of Cibao, into 

D 2 which 



f ■ f : 


which he had sent one expedition, was mountain- 
ous and nncaltivated, biU in every river and brook 
gold was <^athered either in (hist or in grains. PYoni 
these indications tlie Spaniards could no longer 
doubt that the country contained rich treasures in 
its bowels, of which they hoped soon to be the 
masters. To secure the connnand of this valuable 
province Columbus erected a fort, to which he 
gave the name of St. 'I'homas, by way of ridicule 
upon some of his incredulous followers, who would 
not believe that the country produced gold till they 
saw it with their own eyes, and touched it with 
their own hands. 

As soon as he saw it prudent to leave the Island, 
Columbus resolved to pursue his discoveries, that 
he might be able to ascertain whether those new 
countries with which he had opened a communi- 
cation were connected with any region of the earth 
already known, or whetlier tliey were to be con- 
sidered as a separate portion of the globe, hitherto . 
unvisited. Having appointed his brother Don Di- 
ego, with a council of oliicers, to govern the island 
in his absence, and given all necessary instructions, 
he weighed anchor on the 24th of April with one 
ship and two small barks under his command. 
During a tedious voyage of full five months he 
made no discovery of importance, except the island 
of Jamaica. As he rans^ed along: the southern coast 
of Cuba, he w^is entangled in a labyrlntli formed 
by an incredible number of small islands, to whicii 
he gave the name of the Queen's Garden. In this 
unknown course he was retarded by contrary 
winds, assaulted with furious storms, and alarmed 
with terrible thunder and lightning, which arc 
often almost incessant between the tropics. At 
length his provisions fell shorty and his crew was 






issue e 

of it. 



had ne 


lion of 


to his 

the two 

in close 

and dui 


ha\e arr 

more in 

with hi J 

cares an( 


the sold 


had give 

island, li 

their pre 

that inofl 

tnry o]jpr 


for ihe d( 

visions, t 


niards wc 

they saw 

tliem wil 

d brook 
;. lYoni 

siircs ill 

be the 
hich he 
o would 
till they 

it with 

e island, 
ies, that 
ose new 
the earth 
be cou« 
hitherto , 
Don Di- 
le island 
ith one 
)nths he 
le island 
rn coast 
o which 
In this 
iich arc 
cs. At 
rew \\ as 


n':ady to proceed to the most desperate extremities 
a.;ainst him. Ecset with danger in such various 
forms, he was obliged to keep continual watch, to 
observe every occurrence with his own eyes, to 
issue every order, and to superintend tlie execution 
of it. Ihis unremitting fatigue of body, and in- 
tense application of mind, overpowering his con- 
stitution, though naturally vigorous and robust, 
had nearly been fatal to his life. 

But on his return to llispaniola, the sudden emo- 
tion of joy wluch he felt upon meeting with his 
brother Baitholomew at Isabella contributed greatly 
to his recovery. It was now thirteen years since 
the two brothers, whom similarity of talents united 
in close friendship, had separated from each other, 
and during that long period tliere had been no in- 
tercourse between them. Bartholomew could not 
have arri\ed at any junctin*e when Columbus stood 
more in need of a friend capable of as.-i^ting him 
with his counsels, or of dividing with him the 
cares and burthen of government. No sooner had 
Columbus set out on the voyage of di.sco\ ery, than 
the soldiers whom he had kit behind, instead of 
conforming to the prudent instructions which he 
had given, dispersed in straggling parties over the 
island, lived at discretion upcM the natives, wasted 
their provisions, seized the women, and treated 
that inofiensive race with all the msolence of mili- 
tary ojjpression. 

Self-preservation prompted the Indians to wish 
for the departure of guests who wasted their pro- 
visions, and in other respects violated the rights of 
hospitality. They had long expected that the Spa- 
niards would retire of their own accord ; but when 
they saw no chance of this, they resolved to attack 
them widi united fgrce, and drive them from the 



D 3 



• '^ 



settlements of which they had taken possession. 
Some of the caz/uines had ah'eady surprised and cut 
oli* several stragglers, llie dread of impending 
danger united the Spaniards, and re-established the 
authority of Columbus, as they saw no prospect of 
safety but in committini^ themselves to his pnident 
guidance. It was now necessary to have recourse 
to arms, which had hitherto been avoided with the 
greatest solicitude. The Spaniards were very much 
reduced, and the whole body which took the field 
consisted only of 200 foot, 20 horse, and 20 large 
dogs 5 and how strange soever it may seem to 
mention the last as composing part of a military 
force, they were not the least formidable and de- 
structive of the whole, when employed against 
naked and timid Indians. The Indians assembled ; 
and instead of attempting to draw the Spaniards 
into the fastnesses of the woods and mountains, 
tliey took their station in the most open plain in the 
country. Columbus perceived their error, and at- 
tacked them during the night, when undisciplined 
troops are least capable of acting with union and 
concert, and obtained an easy and bloodless victory. 
The consternation with which the Indians were 
filled by the noise and havoc made by the fire- 
arms, by the impetuous force of the cavalry, and 
the fierce onset of the dogs, was so great tliat they 
threw down their weapons, and fled without at- 
tem]:)tlng resistance. Many were slain, more were 
taken prisoners and reduced to servitude -, and so 
completely were the rest intimidated, that from 
that moment they abandoned themselves to despair, 
relinquishing all thoughts of contending with ag- 
gressors whom they deemed invincible. 

Columbus employed several months in marching 
tlirough the island^ and in subjecting it to the 








Spnnisli government, witlioiU meeting with any 
opposition. He imposed a tribute upon all the in- 
habitants above the age of fourteen. Each person 
who hved in those districts where gold was found, 
was obliged to pay quarterly as much gold dust as 
filled a hawk's bell ; from those in otlier parts of 
the country twenty-tive pounds of cotton were de- 
manded. This was the first regular taxation of the 
Indians, and served as a precedent for exactions 
more intolerable. The labour, attc-ntion, and fore- 
sight which they were obliged to employ in pro- 
curing tliis tribute, appeared to them most dis- 
tressing. They were through long habit incapable 
of such regular and persevering industry, and, in 
the excess of their impatience and despair, they 
formed a scheme of starving their oppressors. With 
this view they suspended all operations of agricul- 
ture, pulled up the roots of the casada plant, and, 
retiring to the mountains, left the uncultivated 
plains to their enemies. This desperate resolution 
produced in some degree the effects which they ex- 
pected. The Spaniards were reduced to extreme 
want^ but they received seasonable supplies of 
provisions from Europe, and found so many re- 
sources in their own ingenuity and industry, that 
they sutFered no great loss of men. I'he w^retched 
Indians were the victims of their own ill-concerted 
policy : they soon felt the utmost distresses of 
famine. This brought on contagious diseases 3 and 
in the course of a few months more than a third 
part of the inhabitants of the island perished, after 
experiencing misery in all its various forms. 

But while Columbus was establishing: the foun- 
dations of the Spanish grandeur in the New World, 
his enemies at home laboured with unwearied assi- 
duity to deprive him of tlie glory and rewards 




II :i' 

r '! 



which, by his services and suflerhigs, he was en- 
titJed to enjoy : he took theieiore the resohition of 
returning to Spain, in order to lay before his so- 
vereign a full account of all his transactions. He 
conimitled the administration of athiirs to Bartho- 
lomew, his brother, and appointed hrancis Holdan 
chief justice, with extensive powers. 

. j^ Columbus, after experiencing great diffi- 
' ,p* cuities, arrived in Spain, and appeared at 
^ * covdt with the modest but determined con- 
fidence of a man conbcious not only of his own 
integrity, but of having performed great services. 
Ferdinand and Isabella, who in his absence had 
lent a too favourable ear to frivolous accusations, 
recei\ed him with such distinguished marks of re- 
spect as covered his enemies with shame. The 
gold, the pearls, the cotton, and other commodi- 
ties of value which Columbus produced, seemed 
fully to refute what the malecontents had propa- 
gated w iili respect to the pc;verty of the countr}'. 
By reducing the Indians to obedience, and impo- 
sing on them a regular tax, he had secured a large 
accession ot new subjects, and the establishment 
of a revenue that promised to be considerable. By 
the niines which he had ibimd, a source of wealth 
still more copious was opened. Great as these 
advantages were, the admiral represented them 
only as prelude.-^ to iuture acquisitions, and as die 
earntst of moie important discoveries, to which 
those he had aheady made would conduct him 
\\ ith ease and certainty. 

Every preparation that Columbus required was 
now made lor a new expedition. A suitable r am- 
ber of w omen was to be chosen to accompany the 
new settlers 3 and it was agrted that persons con- 
victed of certain crimes should hereafter be con- 

Lition of 
his so- 
s. He 

at diffi- 
^ared at 
ed con- 
lis own 
ice had 
s of re- 
;. The 
i inipo- 
a large 
le. By 
s these 
as tlie 
t him 

\ed was 


my the 

Ls con- 

)e con- 





damned to work ia the mines which were to be 
opened in the New ^Vorld. Hiou.'^h the royal ap- 
probation was obtained to every m;»asure and re- 
gulation thai Columbus proposed, yet his endeavours 
to carry them into execution were lou;^ retarded, 
and almost two years were spent before a small 
Mjuadron was ecp lipped, of which he was to take 
the command. I'liis scjuadron consisted of only 
six ships, but inditlli-ently provided for a long and 
dangerous navigation. He set sail May the 30th, 
and no remarkable occurrence happened » -p. 
till they arrived within tive degrees of the , J .q* 
il line, which was on the 19th of July. " ^ 
There they were becalmed ; and the heat being so 
excessive, many of their casks burst, the liquor in 
others soured, and their provisions became cor- 
rupted. The Spaniards now were afraid that the 
ships would take lire ; but their t^ars were relieved 
by a seasonable and very heavy tall of rain. On 
the first of August they discovered the island of 
Trinidad, which lies on the coast of Guiana, m.dr 
the mouth of the Orinoco. In this river, which 
rolls towards the ocean with impetuous force, 
Columbus was entangled before he was a.^^are. 
With the utmost dithculty he escaped through a 
narrow strait j and as soon as th.^ consternation 
which diis occasioned subsided, he discerned in it 
a source of comfort and hope. He concluded, that 
such a vast body of water, as this river ^contained, 
could not be supplied by an island, and conse- 
quently that he was now arrived at that continent 
which it had long been the object of his wishes to 
discover. He landed, and found the people re- 
semble those of Hispaniola in their appearance 
and manner of life. They wore, as ornaments, 
j»muU plates of gold, and pearls of considerable 




! l> 


.iff''! It 

ii '' 




MM ■..-i"»! 

[U ;|)i' ■*!'•' II 


value. The admiral was so delighted with tlie 
beauty and fertility of the country, that he ima- 
gined it to be the Taradiso desc ribed in scripture. 
'Jlius Colunibiis had the glory not only of disco- 
vering to nianhind the existence of a new^ wcrld, 
but made considerable progress to a perfect know- 
ledge ol it ; and was the hrst man w ho conducted 
tht Spaniards to that vast continent which lias been 
the chief seat of their empire, and the source of 
their treasures in thi^ cjuarter of the globe- The 
coLdiilon of his ships niade it necessary for him to 
bear aw ay for Hispan ola, and in his way thither 
he discovered the islands of Cubugua and Marga- 
rita, which afterwards became remarkable for their 
pearl fishery. 

During his absence, Columbus found that many 
revolutions had happened at Hispaniola^ and on his 
iiriival the colony was in a very distracted state^ 
owing to the rebellion of Rolclan, vvhom he had 
left as chief justice. By a seasonable proclama- 
tion, ottering free pardon to such as should return 
to their duty, he restored the appearance of order, 
regular government, and tranquillity. 

it was at this period that the Portuguese^ ex- 
cited by ^\ hat had been done by Columbus, under- 
took a voyage, with a view of finding a passage 
to the Eabt Indies by the Cape of Good Hope. 
The command of this expedition was given to 
Vasco de Gnma, who set sail from Lisbon on the 

. -pj 9th of July, reached the Cape on the 20th 

,** of November, and arrived at Calicut, on 
^^ ' the coast of Malabar, on the 22d of May 
following. As, however, he did not possess suf- 
ficient force to attempt a settlement, he hastened 
back to Portugal, with an account of his success, 
in periormung a voyage^ tlie longest as well as the 



wilh tlie 
L he ima- 
of disco- 
w w cild_, 
ct know- 
1 has been 
r.ource of 
be. The 
or him to 
ay thither 
id Marga- 
e for their 

that many 
and on his 
ted state, 
)m he had 
dd return 
of order. 

uese, ex- 
is, under- 
a passage 
od Hope, 
given to 
on on the 
the 20th 
licut, on 
of May 
ssess suf- 
\el\ as the 


most difficult that had ever been attempted since 
the invention of navigation. He landed at Lisbon 
on the 14th of September, after an absence of two 
years two months and five days. 

This spirit of enterprise, though but . y. 
newly awakened in Spain, began soon to ^!^' 
operate extensively. All atti»mpts towards ^^' 
discc)\ ery made in that kin;,^dom had hitlierto been 
made by Columbus alone, and at the expence of 
the sovereign. But now private adventurers, al- 
lupxi by the descriptions he gave of the regions 
which he had visited, offered to fit out squadrons 
at dieir own risk, and to go in (piest of new coun- 
tries. The Spanish court seized with joy an op- 
portunity of rendering the efforts of projectors in- 
strumental in promoting designs of certain ad- 
vantage to the public, though of doubtful success 
with respect to themselves. One of the first pro- 
positions of this kind was made by Alonso de Ojeda, 
a gallant olficer, who had accompanied Columbus 
in his second voyage. Amerigo Vespucci, a Flo- 
rentine, accompanied him in his voyage. In what 
station he served is uncertainj bat soon after his 
return he transmitted an accou'it of his adventures 
and discoveries to one of his countrymen, in which 
he had the addiess so to frame his narrative, as to 
make it appear that he had the glory of having first 
discovered the continent in the New World. Ame- 
rigo's account was drawn up with elegance 3 it 
contained an amusing history of his voyage^ and 
as it was the first description that was published, 
it circulated with rapidity, and was read with ad- 
miration The country of which Amerigo was 
supposed to be the discoverer came gradually to be 
called by his name. The caprice of iTK^.nkind has 
perpetuated the error. By the univerbai consent 


! iS 



{ .l.i'' 






of all nations, Amkuica is the nanie brstouTcl on 
this now (]nartcr of the glohe. I'he boM ])retcn- 
sions of the fortunate inij)ost(^r have robbed the 
discoverer of the New World of a distinction which 
belonged to him. The name of Amerigo has snp- 
planted that of Colnmbns; and mankind may regret 
an act of injustice which, having recei\ed the sanc- 
tion of time, it is now too late to redress. 

While the vSpaniards and Portiignese, by sncces- 
sive voyages, were daily ac(|niring more erdarged 
ideas of the extent and opulence of that part of the 
globe which Columbus had made known to them, 
he himself was struggling with every distress in 
M'hicli the envy and malevolence of the people 
under his command, or tiie ingratitude of the court 
that he served, could involve him. A commis- 
« -pv sion was at length appcnnted to repair to 
' ' Hispaniola to inqui'o into the co)iduct of 
Columbus. By such a court it \^•as im])os- 
sible that this great man should escape. lie under- 
went a mock trial, \\\as condemned, mikI sent home 
loaded with cliains. Conscious of his ov» n inte- 
grity, he endured the insult with composm-e and 
dignity. The \ oyage to Spain was extremely diort. 
"When he entered the royal ])resence, Columbus 
threw himself at the feet of his sovereigns. For 
some time he remained silent -, the various passions 
that agitated his mind suppressing his power of ut- 
terance. At length he recovered himself, and vin- 
dicated his conduct in a long discourse, producing 
satisfactoiy proofs of his own integrity and honour. 
Ferdinand received him with decent civility, and 
Isabella with tenderness and resiject. lliey both 
expressed their sorrow for what had happened, 
disavowed their knowledge of it, and joined in 
promising him protection and future favour. But 
o though 

owed on 
I preten- 
bi^etl the 
on wliich 
» has siip- 
lav rec;ret 
the sane- 



)y succes- 

nirt of tbt* 
1 to them, 
distress in 
he people 
f the eunrt 
^ comniis- 

rejrdir to 
X)iuUict of 
vas inipos- 

{e under- 
sent home 
ov.n inte- 
)0snre and 
iiely Jilu)rt. 

fgn.s. lor 

AS nassior.j 

hver of ut- 

and vin- 
I producing 
lid honour. 
viUty, and 
hliey both "I 
IhappenCLl, I 

joined in 'i 
lour. But I 


though they disgraced his accuser and judge, yet 
they did not restore Columbus his jurisdiction and 
privileges as viceroy of those countries which he 
had discovered. They were afraid to trust a man 
to whom they had been so highly indebted 3 and 
retaining him at court under various pretexts, they 
appointed Nicholas de Ovando governor of Hispa- 
niola. Columbus was deeply affected with this 
new injury, and could no longer conceal the senti- 
ments which it excited. Wherever he went he 
carried about with him, as a memorial of tlie in- 
gratitude which he experienced, those fetters with 
which he had been loaded. They were constantly 
hung up in his chamber, and he gave orders that 
when he died they should be buried in his grave. 

Notwithstanding the treatment which Columbus 
had experienced, still the spirit of discovery was 
not abated; several private persons fitted out ships 
for this purpose : ^nd in order to limit exorbitant 
gain which individuals were supposed to make by 
working the mines, an ordinance was published, 
directing all the gold to be brought to a public 
smelting-house, and declaring one half of it to be 
the property of the crown. 

While these steps w^ere taking for se- * y. 
curing to the government the advantages to * * 
be gained from tlie discovery of the New 
World, Columbus demanded, in terms of the ori- 
ginal capitulation, to be reinstated in his office of 
viceroy over tlie countries which he had found out. 
The circumstance, however, which he urged in 
support of his claim, determined a jealous monarch 
to reject it. The greatness of his discoveries, and 
the prospect of their increasing value, made Ferdi- 
nand consider the concessions in the capitulation as 
extravagant and impolitic. He inspired Isabella 
VOL, XXIV. B with, 






il ' il !■ 


;l -' 



•'• ti' 


' 'i 


with the same views : they chided all Cf^lumlms'i 
requisitions ; and after attending the eourt of Sjxiin 
for nearly two years, as an humble suitor, he found 
it impossible to obtain justice from an interested 
and unfeeling prince. Sdou after lit^ applied for 
ships and men, in order tliat he might attempt ;j 
discovery of the East Indies by a new passaof-. 
This was a favourite project of the Spaniards ; Fcr- 
dinand warmly approved the undertaking, bur 
would allow him only four vessels, the largest of 
which did not exceed 70 tons burthen. He* sailed 
. yx from Cadiz on the gth of May -, but iindino- 
' ' his largest vessel clumsy and unfit for sir- 
*^* vice, he bore away for Hispaniola, in hojv^ 
of exchanging her for some other that had carried 
out his successor. When he arrived ott' St. Do- 
mingo, he found eighteen ships ready loaded and 
on the point of departing for Spain. Columbus ac- 
quainted the governor with the destination of \\\< 
voyage, and the accident which had obliged him (0 
alter his route. He requested permission to enter 
the harbour, not only that he might negotiate tik* 
exchange of his ship, but that he might take shel- 
ter during a violent hurricane, of which he dis- 
cerned the approach by various prognostics. Or. 
that account he advised him likewise to put off fo; 
some days the departure of the licet bound for 
Spain. ButOvando refused his request, and despised 
his counsel. Thus was Columbus denied admittana* 
into a country of which he had discovered the exist- 
ence and acquired the possession. His salutary warn- 
ing was regarded as the dream of a visionar}- prophet, 
who arrogantly pretended to predict an event beyond 
the reach of human foresight. I'he fleet set sail for 
Spain. Next night the hurricane came on \\^itli 
di-eadful impetuosity. Columbus, fully apprised 


f M 

olnmhns> ! 
•t of Spnin 
, he tonnd ^i 
ippliod for 
attempt i\ 
w passage, 
irds J Fer- 
king, bur 
; lan^est of 
tie sailed 
but linding 
ifit ibr ser- 
a, in liojv^ 
lad carried 
oti' St. 1)0- 
loadcd and 
lumbus ac- 
tion ot liis 
iged him to 
on to enter 
crotiate till* 
It take shcl- 
eh he lIU- 
)stics. On 
put off i\)\' 
bound for 
|nd despi>cd 
the exist- 
tary Warn- 
er}' prophet, 
ent beyond 
set sail for 
e on with 
y apprised 


of the danger, took precautions against it, and 
saved his little s(|uadron. The fleet destined for 
Spain met with the fate which the rashness and ob- 
hiinacy of its commanders deserved. Of eighteen 
bhips two or three only survived. In this general 
wreck perished the greater part of those who had 
been the most active in persecuting Columbus and 
oppressing the Indians j and together with tliem- 
fic Ives, all the wealth which they had acquired by 
their injustice and cruelty. It exceeded in value fifty 
thousand pounds; an immense sum at that period, 
and suliicient not only to have screened them from 
any severe scrutiny into their conduct, but to have 
secured them a gracious reception in the Spanish 
court. Among tlie ships tliat escaped, one had on 
board all the effects of Columbus, which had been 
recovered from the ruins of his fortune. Thus did 
Providence avenge the wrongs of an innocent man, 
and punish the oppressors of an innocent people. 
Many of tlie ignorant and superstitious, on this oc- 
casion, believed that Columbus was possessed of 
supernatural powers, and imagined that he had 
conjured up this dreadful storm by magic, in order 
to be avenged of his enemies. 

Columbus soon left Hispaniola; and after a tedi- 
ous voyage he discovered Guanaia, an island not far 
distant from the coast of Honduras. He then bore 
away for the east, towards the Gulf of Darien, and 
explored all the coast of the continent from Cape 
GracVias a Dios to a harbour which, on account of 
ks beauty and security, he called Porto Bello. 
Icre he resolved to plant a small colony, under the 
omniand of his brother. But tlie ungovernable 
pirit of the people under his command deprived 
Columbus of the glory of planting tlie first colony 
m the continent of America. Their insolence and 

£ 2 rapacity 





■f r ;:* 



rapacity provoked the natives to take arms against 
them. This repulse was followed by a series of 
other disasters. One of his ships perished j he was 
obliged to abandon another j and with tJie two that 
remained he again bore away for Hispaniola: but it 
•was "\yith the utmost difficulty they reached Ja- 
maica, where he was obliged to run them aground 
to prevent them from sinking. The measure of his 
calamities seemed now to be full ; his ships were 
ruined beyond the possibility of repair, and, of 
course, he had no means of making his situation 
known to his countr}'^men at Hispaniola. At lengtli 
he obtained two canoes from tlie natives, and Men- 
dez a Spaniard, and Fieschi a Genoese, offered 
to set out for that island, upon a voyage of above 
thirty leagues. This they accomplished in ten days, 
after surmounting incredible dangers, and enduring 
such fatigue, that several of the Indians who ac- 
companied them sunk under it and died. Eight 
months did these gallant men spend in seeking as- 
sistance from the Spanish commander in vain. The 
situation of Columbus was now the most alarming t 
his men mutinied, and threatened him, as the cause 
of their misfortunes, with deatli : the natives brought 
them in provisions with reluctance, and menaced 
to withdraw those supplies altogether. Such a re- 
solution must have been qviickly fatal to the Spa- 
niards. Their safety depended upon the good-will of 
the Indians 3 and unless tliey could revive the ad- 
miration and reverence with which that simple 
people had at first beheld them, destruction was 
unavoidable. Columbus, by a happy artifice, not 
only restored but heightened the high opinion 
which the Indians had originally entertained of 
them. By his skill in astronomy he knew there 
was shortly to be a total eclipse of the moon. He 


ies of 
le was 

but it 
}d Ja- 

of his 
s were 
nd, of 

1 Men- 

n days, 
^ho ac- 
, Eight 
ing as- 
1. The 
rming t 
e cause 
rough t 
h a re- 
e Spa- 
will of 
he ad- 
on was 
;e, not 
ned of 


tssombled all the principal people of the district 
around him on the day before it happened ; and, 
alter reproaching them for their fickleness in with- 
drawing their alfection and assistance from men 
whom they had lately revered, he told them that 
the Spaniards were servants of the Great Spirit 
who dwells in heaven, who made and governs die 
world J that he, offended at their refusing to sup- 
port persons who were die objects of his j^culiar 
care, was preparing to punish diis crime with ex- 
emplary severity, and diat very night the moon 
should withhold her light, and appear of a bloody 
ime, as a sign of divine wradi and of the vengeance 
ready to fall on them. To diis prediction some had 
listened with carelessness ; others with credulous 
astonishment. . But when the moon began gra- 
dually to be darkened, and at length appeared of a 
red colour, all were struck witJi terror. They ran 
widi consternation to their houses, and, returning 
instantly to Columbus, loaded widi provisions, 
threw them at his feet, conjuring him to intercede 
with the Great Spirit to avert the destruction widi 
which they were threatened. Columbus promised 
to comply with their desire j the eclipse went off, 
the moon recovered its splendour j and from diat 
day the Spaniards were not only furnished pro- 
fusely with provisions, but die natives widi super- 
stitious attention avoided every diing diat coali 
give diera offence. 

During these transacdons the mutineers had 
made many fruitless attempts to pass over to His- 
[<aniola in the canoes which they had seized. At 
length they appeared in open rebellion against thcii 
commander. His brother marched against theiu, 
killed some, and took their captain prisoner. The 
rest j»ubniitted, and bound diemselves oy tlie most. 











solemn oaths to obey all the commands of Colum- 
bus. Hardly was tranquillity re-established when 
ships appeared from Hispaniola to convey them 
tliither, after having been exposed to all kinds of 
misery for more than a year. 
A yv Soon after his arrival he made prepara- 
iknA tions to sail for Europe. Disasters simi- 
* lar to those which had accompanied him 
through life, continued to pursue him to the end 
of his career. At length, however, he reached 
with difficulty the port of St. Lucar, in Andalusia. 
There he received the account of the deatli of Isa- 
bella, in whose justice, humanity, andre^^vd, he 
confided as his last resource. None now remained 
to redress his wrongs, or to reward his services. To 
Ferdinand he applied for remuneration 3 but from 
him he obtained nought but fair words and un- 
meaning promises. Disgusted w ith the ingratitude 
of a monarch whom he had served witli fidelity and 
success, exhausted with the fatigues and hardships 
which he had endured, and broken with the infir- 
* y. mities which these had brought upon him, 
* ^* Columbus end'id his life on (he 20th of 
' May, in the fifty-ninth year of his age. He 
died with a composure of mind suitable to the magr 
nanimity which had ever distinguished his charac- 
ter, and with sentiments of piety becoming that 
supreme respect for religion which he manifested 
in every occurrence of his life» 



to r 


, Doi 


' Reci 
















This ret 
of hand 
the soil 
been ac 
quitted 1 







State of the Colony m Hispaniola. Policy of the 
Court of Spain. Attempts wade by the Indians 
to regain their Liberty. Cruelty of the Spaniards, 
Ovandd's wise Conduct. Cuba found to be an Island, 
. Don Diego Columbus lays claim to and obtains 
'his Rights, Attempts to colonize America. The 
'Reception which the Spaniards met with. Settle 
on the Gulf of Darien. Conquest of Cuba. 
Conduct and cruel Death of Hatuey. Discovery 
of Florida. Of the South Sea. Great Expecta- 
tions formed of it. Noble Conduct and shameful 
Death of Balboa. Missionaries sent out. Their 
Zeal, Dominicans and Franciscmis take dif- 
ferent Sides. Conduct of Las Casas. N^egroes 
imported. Origin of the African Slave Trade. 
Las Casas' s Idea of a netv Colony. Attempted, 
Unsuccessful. Discoveries toivards the IVest, 
Yucatan, Reception given to the Spaniards there, 
Campeachy, Preparations for invading Neiu 

WHILE Columbus was employed in his Jast 
voyage, tiie colony in Hispaniola gradually 
acquired the form of a regular and prosperous so- 
ciety. Isabella had prohibited the Spaniards from 
compelling the Indians to work against their will. 
This retarded for a time the progress of improve- 
ment. The Spaniards had not a sufficient number 
of hands either to work the mines or cultivate 
the soil. Several of the first colonists, who had 
been accustomed to the service of the Indians, 
quitted the island when deprived of those instru- 



ments, without which they knew not how to cany 
on any operation. Many of the new settlers wJio 
came over with Ovando, Columbus's successor, 
shortly died of distempers peculiar to the climate. 
At the same time, the exacting one half of the 
product of tlie mines, as the royal share, was 
found to be a demand so exorbitant, that no ad- 
venturers would engage to work them upon such 
terms. In order to save the colony from ruin, 
A y> Ovando ventured to relax the rigour of the 
' ^' royal edicts. He made a new distribution 
' of the Indians among the Spaniards, and 
compelled them to labour, for a stated time, in 
digging the mines, or in cultivating the ground. 
He red\iced the royal share of the gold found in 
tlie mines from the half to the third part, and soon 
after lowered it to a fifth j at which it long re- 

The Indians felt the yoke of bondage to be so 
-galling, that they made many attempts to vindicate 
dieir liberty. This the Spaniards considered as 
rebellion, and took arms in order to reduce them to 
subjection. They considered them not as men light- 
ing in defence of their rights, but as slaves who had 
revolted against their masters. Their caziques, 
when taken, were condemned, like the leaders of 
banditti, to tlie most cruel and ignominious pu- 
nishments. Overawed and humbled by the atro- 
cious treatment of their princes and nobles, who 
were objects of their highest reverence, the people 
in all the provinces of Hispaniola submitted, without 
further resistance, to the Spanish yoke. Upon the 
death of Isabella, all the regulations tending to mi- 
tigate the rigour of their servitude were forgotten. 
Qvando, without any restraint, distributed Indians 

to wh 
half ( 
sive n 
city o 
the go 
in oste 
ed to J 
share i 
ing the 
of the 
in the r 
been b 
most c 


among his friends in the island. Ferdinand, . -p. 
to wliom tlie queen had left by will one * ,, * 
half of die revenue arising from the settle- 
ments in tlie New World, conferred grants of a si- 
milar nature upon his courtiers, as the least expen- 
sive mode of rewarding their services. They 
farmed out tlie Indians, of whom they were ren- 
dered proprietors; and that wretched people, being 
compelled to labour in order to satisfy the rapa- 
city of both, tlie exactions of their oppressors no 
longer knew any bounds. During several years 
the gold brought into the royal smelting-houses in 
Hispanioia amounted annually to more than one 
hundred tliousand pounds. Vast fortunes were 
created, of a sudden, by come; otliers dissipated 
in ostentatious profusion what they acquired with 
facility. Dazzled by both, new adventurers crowd- 
ed to America, with the most eager impatience, to 
share in those t^-p-isures which had enriched their 
countrymen, avn 'v colony continued to increase. 
Ovando govei « - ihe Spaniards with wisdom and 
justice. He established equal laws, and, by execut- 
ing them with impartiality, accustomed the people 
of the colony to reverence tliem. He founded 
several new towns, and endeavoured to turn tlie 
attention of his countrymen to some branch of 
industry more useful tlian that of searching for gold 
in the mines. Some slips of the sugar-cane having 
been brought from the Canary islands by way of 
experiment, they were found to thrive with such 
increase, that the cultivation of them became an 
object of commerce. Extensive plantations were 
begun, sugar- works erected, and in a few years the 
manufacture of this commodity was the great oc- 
cupation of tlie inhabitants of Hispanioia, and the 
most considerable source of their wealtli. 





The prudent endeavours of Ovando, to promote 
the welfore of the colony, were powerfully se- 
conded by Ferdinand. The large remittances 
which he received from the New World opened 
his eyes, at length, with respect to the value and 
importance of those discoveries, which he had 
hitherto affected to undervalue. He erected a 
board of trade, composed of persons eminent for 
rank and ability, to whom he committed the admi- 
nistration of American affairs. But, notwitlistand- 
ing this attention to the welfare of the colony, a 
calamity impended which threatened its dissolu- 
tion. The original inhabitants, on whose labour 
the Spaniards in Hispaniola depended for their 
prosperity, and even their existence, wasted so fast 
that the extinction of the whole race seemed to 
"be inevitable. When Columbus discovered this 
island, the number of its inliabitants was computed 
to be at least a million. They were now reduced 
to sixty thousand, in the space of fifteen years. 
The Spaniards being thus deprived of the instru- 
ments which they were accustomed to employ, 
found it impossible to extend their improvements, 
or even to carry on the works wdiich they had 
already begun. To provide an immediate remedy, 
Ovando proposed to transport the inhabitants of tlie 
Lucayo islands to Hispaniola, under pretence tliat 
they might be civilized with more fecility, and 
instructed with greater advantage in the Christian 
religion, if tliey were united to die Spanish colony, 
and placed under the immediate inspection of the 
missionaries settled there. Ferdinand gave his 
assent to the proposal 5 several vessels were fitted 
out for die Lucayos, and forty thousand of the in- 
habitants were decoyed into Hispaniola, to share 
die sufferings which were the lot of those who 






de O 


one o 

tion of 




years s 

he com 

the cou 

court, \ 


tained ] 

As sc 

Don Di. 

where 1] 


the fami 





landed, c 

priated a 

The I 

a colony 

of oyster 

place of 

were acq 

carried o 












lived there, and to mingle their groans and tear? 
with those of that wretched race of men. 

New discoveries were made, and new colonic;? 
formed ; and by the cimimand of Ovando, Sebastian 
de Ocampo sailed round Cuba, and proved witli 
certainty that it was an island. This voyage was 
one of the last occurrences under the administra- 
tion of Ovando. Ever since the deatli of Columbus, 
his son, Don Diego, had been employed in so- 
liciting Ferdinand to grant him the offices of 
viceroy and admiral in the New World. After two 
years spent in incessant but fruitless importunity, 
he commenced a suit against his soverefgn before 
the council which managed Indian affairs 3 and that 
court, with integrity which reflects honour upon its. 
proceedings, decided against the king, and sus- 
tained Dieo:o's claim. 

As soon as the obstacles were removed, . -^ 
Don Diego repaired quickly to Hispaniola, * * 
where he lived with a splendour and magni- 
ficence hitherto unknown in the New World 5 and 
the family of Columbus seemed now to enjoy the 
honours and rewards due to his invciiti^'e genius, 
of which he had been cruelly defrauded. No benefit, 
however, accmed to the unhappy natives from this 
change of governors. Don Diego, soon after he? 
landed, divided such Indians as were still unappro- 
priated among his relations and attendants. 

The next care of the new governor was to settle 
a colony in Cubagua, celebrated for large quantities 
of oysters which produced pearls. This became a 
place of considerable resort, and large fortunes 
were acquired by the fishery for pearls, which was 
carried on with extraordinary ardour. The Indians 
especially those from the Lucayo islands, were 
Goriapelled ta dive for tliem -, and this dangerous 









and unhealthy employment was an additional ca- 
lamity which contributed not a little to the ex- 
tinction of that devoted race. 
y. p. About this period Juan Diaz de Solis 

* ' and Pinzon set out upon another voyage, 
"* They stood directly south, towards the equi- 
noctial line, which Pinzon had formerly crossed, 
and advanced as far as the 40th degree of southern 
latitude. They were astonished to find that the 
continent of America stretched on their right- 
hand through all this vast extent of ocean. They 
landed in several places to take possession in the 
name of their sovereign 5 but though the country 
appeared to be extremely fertile and inviting, their 
force was so small that they left no colony behind 
them. Their voyage served, however, to give the 
Spaniards more exalted and adequate ideas with 
respect to the dimensions of this quarter of tlie 

Though it was about ten years since Columbus 
had discovered the main land in America, yet it 
was not till this period that the Spaniards seriously 
attempted to make any settlement upon it. The 
scheme took its rise from Alonzo de Ojeda, and 
Diego de Nicuessa, who were encouraged by Fer- 
dinand. They erected two governments on tlie 
continent, one extending from Cape de Vela to 
the Gulf of Darien, and the other from that to 
Cape Gracias a Dios. The former was given to 
Ojeda, the latter to Nicuessa. Ojeda fitted out a 
ship and two brigs, with three hundred men j 
Nicuessa, six vessels, with seven hundred and 
eighty men. They sailed about the same time from 
St. Domingo for their respective governments. 
They found the natives in those countries to be of 
a character very different from that of their coun- 






the firs 

of the 

pie eqi 





their lit 



by the 

the art 




the chn 

cessant J 

a succes 

strikes ( 

two con! 

the great 



a feeble < 


duct and 

more spl 

was he tl 

will here; 

tant sceni 



1 ca- 
; ex- 






It the 



n the 


, their 


ve the 

J with 

of tlie 

yet it 
a, and 
»y Fer- 
n tlie 
ela to 
hat to 
liven to 
out a 
men J 
:d and 
e from 
[o be of 


trymen in the islands. They were fierce and war- 
like. Their arrows were dipped in a poison so 
noxious, that every wound was followed with 
certain death. In one encounter they slew above 
seventy of Ojeda's followers, and tlie Spaniards, for 
the first time, were taught to dread the inhabitants 
of the New "World. Nicuessa was opposed by peo- 
ple equally resolute in defence of their possessions. 
Nothing could soften their ferocity. Though the 
Spaniards employed every art to soothe them, they 
refused to hold any intercourse with men whose 
residence among tliem tliey considered as fatal to 
their liberty and independence. This implacable 
enmity of the natives might perhaps have been 
surmounted by the perseverance of the Spaniards, 
by the superiority of their arms, and tlieir skill in 
the art of war j but every disaster which can be 
accumulated upon the unfortunate combined to 
complete their ruin. The loss of their ships, by 
accidents, upon an unknown coast j the diseases of 
the climate 3 the want of provisions 5 and the in- 
cessant hostilities of the natives, involved tliem in 
a succession of calamities, the bare recital of which 
strikes one with horror. Though they received 
two considerable reinforcements from Hispaniola, 
the greater part of those who engaged in this ex- 
pedition perished in less than a year, in the most 
extreme misery. A few who survived settled as 
a feeble colony on the Gulf of Darien, under the 
command of Vasco Nugnez de Balboa, whose con- 
duct and courage marked him out as a leader in 
more splendid and successful undertakings. Nor 
was he tlie only adventurer in this expedition who 
will hereafter appear with lustre in more impor- 
tant scenes. Francisco Pizarro was one of Ojeda's 
companions, and in this school of adversity ac- 
voL. XXIV. F quired 

mm . 







quired or improved the talents which fitted him 
for the extraordinary actions which he afterwards 
performed. Herman de Cortes had likewise en- 
gaged early in this enterprise, which roused all 
the active youtli of Hispaniola to arms; but tlu; 
good fortune that accompanied him in his subse- 
quent adventures interposed, and saved him from 
the disasters to which his companions were ex- 
posed. He was taken ill at St. Domingo before 
the departure of the fleet, and detained there by a 
tedious indisposition. 

Notwithstanding the unfortunate issue of this 
expedition, tlie Spaniards were not deterred from 
engaging in new schemes of a similar nature- 
Don Diego Columbus proposed to conquer the 
* -p. island of Cuba, and to establish a colony 
Y"* * there, and many personsof chief distinction 
^ * in Hispaniola engaged with alacrity in tlic 
measure. He gave the command of the troops 
destined for that service to Diego Velasquez, one 
of his father's companions in his second voyage, 
and who^ having been long settled in Hispaniola, 
seemed to be v/ell qualified for conducting an ex- 
pedition of importance. Three hundred men were 
deemed sutficient for the conquest of an island 
above seven hundred miles in lenp-tli, and filled 
with inhabitants. But they were ol the same un- 
Warlike character with the people of Hispaniola, 
and had made no preparations towards a defence. 
The only obstruction the Spaniards met with was 
from Hatuey, a cazique, who had fied from His- 
paniola, and had taken possession of the eastern 
extremity of Cuba. He stood upon the defensive 
at their first landing, and endeavoured to drive 
them back to their ships. His feeble troops, how- 
ever, were won dispersed, and he himself taken 







to cor 

the jo 

tian f 

'* in 



the in< 


meet '\ 

fill ex 

Cuba \ 






was coj 


both fa; 

Rico, i 

for a vc 

west, i 

the Spa 


such vi 

were fi( 


It wa 
voyage : 

[ him 
e en- 
^d all 
It tlu; 
L from 
•e ex- 
s by a 

of this 
d from 
ler the 
in tlic 
z, one 
an ex- 
n were 
II filled 
e un- 
th was 
, how- 


prisoner. Velasquez, according to the barbarous 
maxim of the Spaniards, considered him as a slave 
who had taken arms against his master, and con- ' 
demned him to the flames. When Hatuey was 
fastened to the stake, a Franciscan friar laboured 
to convert him, and promised him admittance into 
the joys of heaven, if he would embrace the Chris- 
tian faith. ** Are there any Spaniards," says he, 
'* in that region of bliss which you describe ?" 
'^ Yes,'' replied the monk, *' but only such as are 
worthy and good." *' The best of them," retunied 
the indignant cazique, '' have neitlier worth nor 
goodness j I will not go to a place where I may 
meet with one of that accursed race." This dread- 
fill example of vengeance struck the people of 
Cuba with such terror, that they scarcely gave any 
opposition to the progress of the invaders, and 
Velasquez, without the loss of a man, annexed thia 
extensive and fertile island to the Spanish mo- 

The facility with which tliis important conquest 
was completed, served as an incitement to other 
tmdertakings. Juan Ponce de Leon having acquired 
both fame and wealtli by the reduction of Puerto 
Rico, fitted out, at his own expence, three shipa 
for a voyage of discovery. He stood to the south- 
west, and reached a country hitherto unknown to 
the Spaniards, which he called Plorida. He at- 
tempted to land in different places, but met with 
such vigorous opposition from tlie natives, who 
were fierce and warlike, as convinced him that an 
increase of force was requisite to effect a settle- 

It was not merely a passion for searching new 
countries that prompted Leon to undertake this 
voyage : he was influenced by one of diose visionary 

F 2 ideas* 


it ' 




















ideas, which at that time often mingled with the 
spirit of discovery, and rendered it more active. 
A tradition prevailed among the natives of Puerto 
Rico, that in one of the Lucayo islands tliere was a 
fountain of such wonderful virtue, as to renew the 
youth and recall the vigour of every person who 
bathed in its salutary waters. In hopes of finding 
this grand restorative, Leon and his followers 
ranged tlirough the islands, searching, with fruitless 
solicitude and labour, for the fountain which was 
the chief object of their expedition. 

Soon after the expedition to Florida, a discovery 
of much greater importance was made in another 
part of America. Balboa, having been raised to 
the government of a small colony at Santa Maria, 
in Darien, by the voluntary suffrages of his asso- 
ciates, was extremely desirous of obtaining from 
the crown a confirmation of their election. Hav- 
ing, however, no interest at court, he endeavoured 
to merit the dignity to which he aspired, and aimed 
at performing some signal service, that would se- 
cure him preference to every competitor. Full of 
this idea, he made frequent inroads into the ad- 
jacent country, subdued several caziques, and 
collected a considerable quantity of gold. In one 
of these excursions the Spaniards contended with 
such eagerness about the division of some gold, that 
they were proceeding to acts of violence against 
one another. A youjg cazique who was present, 
astonished at the high value which they set upon ^ 
thing of which he did not discern the use, tumbled 
the gold out of the balance with indignation ; and 
turning to the Spaniards, *' Why do you quarrel," 
says he, '' about such a trifle? If you are so pas- 
sionately fond of gold as to abandon your own 
country, and disturb the tranquillity of distant na- 











tinns for its sake, I will conduct you to a region 
where the metal is so common tliat the meanest 
nttmsils are formed of it." Transported with what 
they heard, Balboa eagerly inquired where this 
happy country lay. He informed him, that at 
the distance of six suns, that is, six days journey 
towards the south, tliey should discover another 
orean, near to which this wealthy kingdom was 
situated J but if tliey intended to attack that power- 
ful state, they must assemble forces far superior 
in number and strength to those which now ap- 

Tliis was the first information that the Sj)a- 
ninrds received concerning the opulent country of 
Peru. Bjrlboa had now before him objects suited 
to his ambition and enterprising genius. He im- 
nKxliately concluded that he should find, what 
Columbus had sought for in vain, a direct commu- 
niralion with the East Indies. Elated with the idea 
of performing what so great a man had fruitlessly 
attempted, he was impatient until he could set out 
upon this enterprise, in comjiarison of which all 
his former exploits appeared inconsiderable. Pre- 
vious arrangement was, ho\s'ever, necessary j he 
sent oificers to Hispaniola, from which place he 
allured a great number of volunteers, and he 
thought himself in a condition to aUen}pt the 
discovery. He set out upon this important expe- 
dition on the 1st of September, about the * yv 
time when tji':.' periodical rains began to. ' ,/ 
abat(\ Y/ithout any dithcuity ihey reached 
the territories of a cazique whose friendship he 
liad gained. Though their guides had represented 
the breadth of tlie isthnms to be only a journey of 
six days, they spent twenty-live in forcing their 
way through the woods and moantaii.s. Many of 

y 6 them 








U ' 


*- n« 



them were ready to sink witli fatigue and disease. 
At length the Indians assured them, that from the 
top of the next mountain tliey should discover the 
ocean which was the object of their wishes. When, 
with infinite toil, they had climbed up the greater 
part of that steep ascent, Balboa commanded his 
men to halt, and advanced alone to the summit, 
that he might be the first who should enjoy a spec- 
tacle which he had so long desired. As soon as he 
beheld the South Sea stretching in endless prospect 
below him, he fell on his knees, and, lifting up his 
hands to heaven, returned thanks to God, who had 
conducted him to a discoveiy so beneficial to his 
country and so honourable to himself. His followers, 
observing his transports of joy, rushed forward to 
join in his w(jnder, exultation, and gratitude. They 
held on their course to the shore with great alacri- 
ty ; when Balboa, advancing up to the middle in the 
waves, with his buckler and sword, took posses- 
sion of the ocean in the name of the king his mas- 
ter, and vowed to defend it, witli those arms, 
against all his enemies. 

That part of the great Pacific Ocean which Bal- 
boa first discovered still retains the name of the 
Gulf of St. Michael, which he gave it, and is 
situated to the east of Panama. From several of 
the petty princes who governed in the districts ad- 
jacent to that gulf, he extorted provisions and gold 5 
others sent them to him voluntarily. To these 
presents some of the caziques added a consider- 
able quantity of pearls, and he learned from 
them, with much satisfaction, that pearl oyster* 
abounded in tlie sea which he had newly disco- 
vered. Together with the acquisition of this 
wealth, which served to soothe and encourage his 
ibllowers, he received accounts which confirmed 


his sa 


the c( 



the so 


was tc 





a forct 


self m( 

or assi 




Spain { 
made, { 
sand m 
tlie Ne 
the une 
found i; 
him 0UI 
great u: 
was so 
point P 
gave h 
1200 so] 

If the 
d is 
•al of 


his san^ilne hopes of future and more oxtrnsivo 
benefits from the expedition. All the people on 
the coast of the South Sea concurred in intorming 
bim that there was a miglUy anil opulent king- 
dom, situated at a considerable distance towards 
the south-east, the inhabitants of whic h had tame 
animals to carry their burthens. Anxious as B'dboa 
was to visit this unknown country, his pnuience 
restrained him from attempting to invade it with a 
handful of men. He determined to lead back his 
followers, at present, to their settlement at Santa 
Maria, in Daricn, and to return next season with 
a force more adequate to such an arduous enter- 
prise. None of Kalboa's officers disting\ushcd hiii- 
self more in this service than Francisco Pizari;>, 
or assisted with greater courage and ardour in 
opening a communication with those countries in 
which he was destined to act a most illustrious 

Balboa's first care was to send information to 
Spain of the important discovery which he had 
made, and to demand a reinforcement of a thou- 
sand men. The first account of the discovery of 
tlie New World hardly occasioned greater joy, than 
the unexpected tidings that a passage was at last 
found into the great Southern Ocean. Notwith- 
standing Balboa's recent services, which marked 
him out as the most proper person to finish that 
great undertaking which he had begun, Ferdii n^^d 
was so ungenerous as to overlook these, and to ap- 
point Pedrarias Davila governor of Darien. He 
gave him tlie command of 15 stout ves ..^Is and 
1200soldiers3 and such was the ardour of tlie: Spanish 
gentlemen to follow a leader who was about to 
conduct them to a country where, as fame re- 
portedj tliey had only to tlirow nets into the sea 
3 and 




and draw out gold, that 1500 embarked on board 
the fleet. 

Pedrarias reached the Gulf ofDarienwitlioutany 
remarkable accident, and, to his astonishment, 
found Balboa, of whose exploits they had heard so 
much, and of whose opulence they had formed 
such high ideas, clad in a canvas jacket, and wear- 
ing coarse hempen sandals, used only by the 
meanest peasants, employed, together with some 
Indians, in tliatching his own hut with reeds. 
Even in this simple garb, which corresponded so 
ill with the expectations and wishes of his new 
guests, Balboa received tliem with dignity. And 
though his troops murmured loudly at tlie Injus- 
tice of the king, in superseding tlieir commander, 
Balboa submitted with implicit obedience to tlie 
will of his sovereign, and received Pedrarias with 
all the deference due to his character. 

Notwithstanding this moderation, towhichPedra- 
ria i owed the peaceable possession of his govern- 
ment, he appointed a judicial inoniry to be made 
into Balboa's former conduct, and imposed a con- 
siderable fine upon him. His enmity did not stop 
here. Jealousy of his s?uperior talents led him to 
the most unjustifiable conduct j and though, at one 
time, he gave him his own daughter in marriage, 
in proof of reconciliation, yet he dreaded the pro- 
sperity of a man whom he had injured so deeply, 
and, in the end, brought him to trial for disloyalty 
to his king, got him condemned nnd executed. 

During these transactions in Darien, Ferdinand 
was intent upon opening a communication witli 
the Molucca or Spice islands, by the west. He fit- 

. -pj ted out two ships to attempt Fuch a voyage, 

* ' and gave them in command to Juan Diaz 

'^' de Sohs, who discovered tlie rivers Janeiro 


and I 
in til 
cut t 
tlie w 
as the 
and ha 
at leng 
it upor 
tered i 
and by 
of Indi 
the fat 
only ex 
all whc 
the tim 
into Ai 


ard so 
>y the 



ied so 

s new 


to tlie 
s with 

a con- 
ot stop 
lim to 
at one 
le pro- 









and La Plata. In endeavouring to make a descent 
in tliis country, De Solis and several of his crew 
were slain by the natives, who, in sight of the ships, 
cut their bodies in pieces, roasted and devoured 
them. Discouraging and horrible as this event 
was, yet it was not without benefit 5 it prepared 
tlie way for a more fortunate voyage, by which the 
great design that Ferdinand had in view was accom- 
plished. Though the Spaniards were thus acti\ely 
employed in extending their discoveries and settle- 
ments in America, they still considered Hispaniola 
as their principal colony. Don Diego Columbus 
rendered the members of this colony prosperous 
and happy. But he was circumscribed in his ope- 
rations by the suspicious policy of Ferdinand, who 
at length stripped him of all power, and bestowed 
it upon Rodrigo Albuquerque, his confidential mi- 
nister. Don Diego repaired to Spain with the vain 
hope of obtaining redress. Albuquerque en- 
tered upon his office with all the rapacity of an 
indigent adventurer impatient to amass wealth ; 
and by his tyranny the wretched and innocent race 
of Indians were quickly extirpated. 

The violence of these proceedings, together with 
the fatal consequences which attended them, not 
only excited complaints amongst such as thought 
tliemselves aggrieved, but aiiected the hearts of 
all who retained any sentiments of humanity. From 
the time that ecclesiastics were sent as instructors 
into America, tJiey perceived that the rigour with 
which their countrymen treated tlie natives ren- 
dered their ministry altogether fruitless. I'he 
missionaries early remonstrated against the ^ -rx 
maxims of the planters with respect to the , ci^* 
Americans, and tl\Q repartimic7itnx, or dis- 
iributious, by which tliey were given up as slaves 



'■"■It.. : * 







to their conquerors. The Dominicans, to whom the 
instruction of the Americans was originally com- 
mitted, were most vehement in testifying against 
the repartunientos. Montesino, one of their most 
eminent preachers, inveighed against this practice, 
jn tlie great church at St, Domingo, with all tlie 
impetuosity of popular eloquence. Don Diego 
Columbus and the principal people of the colony 
complained of the monk to his superiors 3 but 
they, instead of condemning, applauded his doc- 
trine, as equally pious and seasonable. The FraU" 
ciscans espoused the defence of the repartimientos, 
and endeavoured to palliate what they could not 
justify, alleging that it was impossible to carry on 
any improvement in the colony, unless the Spa- 
niards possessed such dominion over tlie natives 
that they could compel them to labour. 

The Dominicans, regardless of such political and 
interested considerations, would not relax the 
rigour of their sentiments, and even refused to 
absolve, or admit to the sacraments, such of their 
countrymen as continued to hold the natives in 
servitude. Botli parties applied to the king for his 
decision, who determined in favour of tlie Domi- 
nicans, and declared the Indians to be a free peo- 
ple. Notwithstanding this decision the reparti^ 
mientos were continued upon their antient footing, 
nor could the repeated remonstrances of the Domi- 
nicans obtain any practical relief for the Indians ; 
and in the end Ferdinand himself concurred in 
admitting the lawfulness of the distributions, and 
even conferred new grants of Indians upon several 
of his courtiers. 

The violent operations of Albuquerque, the new 
distributor of Indians, revived die zeal of the Do- 
xninicans against the repartimientos^ and called 






the op 


to ser\ 








tron of 

he had 

the exc( 

:igaint t 

found tl 


the hear 

the opf 

would e 

He ei 

he four 


the fatnl 




nocent r 

under 1: 

deep cor 









5 but 

; doc- 



id not 

•ry on 

i Spa- 


al and 
ed to 
^es in 
for his 

lians ; 
led in 
;, and 




forth an advocate for that oppressed people, wIio> 
possessed all the courage, talents, and activity 
requisite in supporting such a desperate cause. 
This was Bartholomew de las Casas, a nalive of 
Seville, and one of the clergymen sent out with 
Columbus in his second voyage to Hispaniola, in 
order to settle in that island. He early ado|)ted 
the opinion prevalent among ecclesiastics with re- 
spect to the unlawfulness of reducing the rialives 
to ser\'itude ; and that he mighi demonstrate the 
sincerity of his conviction, he relincjuished all the 
Indians who had fallen to his own share in the di- 
vision of the inhabitants among thv'w conquerors^ 
declaring that he should ever bewail his own 
misfortune and guilt, in having exercised for a mo- 
ment tliis impious domini(jn over his fellow-crea- 
tures. From that time he became the avowed pa- 
tron of the Indians, and by his zeal and authority 
he had often the merit of setting some bounds to 
the excesses of his countrymen. He remonstrated 
againt the conduct of Albuquerque 3 and when he 
found that vain, he set out for Europe, with tlie .nost 
sanguine hopes of opening the eyes and softening 
the heart of Ferdinand, by that striking picture vf 
the oppression of his new subjects \^hich he 
would exhibit to his view. 

He easily obtained admittance to the king,whom 
he found in a declining state of health. With 
freedom and eloquence he represented to him all 
the fatal effects of tiie rcpartimientos in the Nev/ 
World, charging him with the giiilt of iiaving au- 
thori7.cd this impious measure, which had brought 
misery and destruction upon a nimierous and in- 
nocent race of men, whom Providence had plai ed 
under his protection. Ferdinand listened with 
deep compunction, and promised to take hito sun- 



I, A 


ous consideration the means of redressing the evil 
of which he complained. But deatli prevented 
him from executing his resolutions. Charles of 
Austria, to whom all his crowns devolved, ap- 
pointed cardinal Ximenes his regent. With him 
Las Casas pleaded the cause of tlie Indians, and ob- 
tained a commission from the monks of St. Jerome 
to go to America and examine their situation, and 
give them every relief tliat the case admitted. — 
Las Casas was appointed to accompany them, with 
the title of Protector of the Indians. The fathers 
of St. Jerome proceeded with caution and pru- 
dence j and having compared ditferent accounts, 
and maturely considered every thing connected 
with the subject, they determined that the Spa- 
niards must relinquish their conquests entirely, or 
give up the advantages to be derived from them, 
unless the repartimicntos were tolerated. They 
used, however, their utmost endeavours to prevent 
the fatal effects of this establishment, and to se- 
cure to tlie Indians the consolation of the best 
treatment compatible with a state of servi- 

With these decisions, Las Casas, of all the Spa- 
niards, was alone dissatisfied. He contended, that 
the Indians were by nature free, and, as their pro- 
tector, he required the superintendants not to be- 
reave them of the common privilege of humanity. 
They received his most virulent remonstrances 
with emotion, but adhered firmly to their own sy- 
stem. The Spanish planters did not bear with him 
so patiently, but were ready to tear him in pieces 
for insisting in a requisition so odious. Las Ca- 
sas found it necessary to take shelter in a con- 
vent ; and perceiving that his efforts were fruitless, 
he !>oon set out for Europe, with a fixed resolution 



had ei 




at lenj 




ment ii 
rabie ot 
this, wi 
cJiase a 
to transj 
tivating t 
odious ai 
long aboj 
ready bee 
found mc 
more cap* 
vitudcj ai] 
to be equ; 
menes rej 
he perceiv 
nien to sla 
VOL. x:{ 



5S of 




, and 

3d. — 




5 Spa- 

jly, or 


to se- 
le Spa- 
I, that 

|ir pro- 
Ito be- 
ai sy- 
|h him 
\s Ca- 


never to abandon the people in whose cause lie 
had engaged. Wlien he arrived, he found Ximenea 
declining in health, and preparing to resign his au- 
thority to the young king. Him Las Casas plied 
with intercessions in behalf of the Americans, and 
at length obtained the recall of the monks of St. 
Jerome, and a new commission was appointed to 
examine their claims, and to alleviate their suffer- 

The impossibility of carr}'ing on any improve- 
ment in America, unless the Spanish planters could 
command the labour of the natives, was an insupe- 
rable objection to his plan of treating them as free 
subjects. In order to provide some remedy for 
this, without which he knew it would be vain to 
mention his scheme. Las Casas proposed to pur- 
chase a sufficient number of negroes from the Por- 
tut^uese settlements on the coast of Africa, and 
to transport them to America, that they might be 
employed as slaves in working the mines and cul- 
tivating the ground. One of the first advantages 
which the Portuguese had derived from their dis- 
coveries in Africa arose from the trade in slaves. 
Various circumstances concurred in reviving the 
odious and diabolical commerce which had been 
long abolished in Europe, and which is no less 
repugnant to the feelings of humanity than to the 
principles of religion. Some negro slaves had al- 
ready been sent into the New World, who were 
found more robust and hardy than the natives, 
more capable of fatigue, more patient under ser- 
vitude j and the labour of one negro was computed 
to be equal to that of four Indians. Cardinal Xi- 
menes rejected this species of commerce, because 
he perceived the iniquity of reducing one race of 
men to slavery, while he was consulting about the 

\0L. XXIV. o means 


■.■« ; i 


02 AMF,»nCA. 

means of restoring libert}' to another. Las Casas, 
however, seemed incapable of making this distinc- 
tion. Whilst he contended zealously for the li- 
berty of the people born in one quarter of the 
globe, he laboured to enslave the inhabitants of 
another region, and, in the warmth of his zeal to 
save the Americans from the yoke, pronounced it 
lawful and expedient to impose one still heavier 
upon the Africans. Unfortunately for the latter. 
Las Casas' s plan was adopted. Charles granted to a 
favourite a patent, containing an exclusive right of 
importing four thousand negroes into America. 
The favourite sold his patent to some Genoese mer- 
chants for twenty-five thousand ducats, and tliey 
were the first who brought into a regular form 
that commerce for slaves between Africa and 
America, which has since been carried on to such 
an amazing extent. 

But the Genoese demanded such an high price 
for negroes, that the number imported into Hispa- 
niola made but little change upon the state of the 
colony. Las Casas, whose ardour was no less 
inventive than indefatigable, had recourse to an- 
other expedient for the relief of the Indians. He 
applied for a grant of unoccupied country, stretch- 
ing along the coast from the Gulf of Paria to the 
western frontier of that province, now known by 
the name of Santa Martha, intending to form there 
a new colony consisting of husbandmen, labourers, 
and ecclesiastics. After long and tedious discus- 
sions on the subject, his request was granted : but 
having fairly made tlie experiment, he was obliged 
to abandon it, having lost most of the people who 
accompanied him in his project. From that time 
Las Casas, ashamed to shew his face, shut him-ieli 
up in tlic convent of the Dominicans at St. Do- 



covei i( 


the gc 



the Spj 


hopes c 

ment, ( 

Cuba la 

the Spa 

yond it 



elation \ 

which w 

quez apf 

Jng it oi 

the pure 



great C( 

tained th 

tile most 


Jago the^ 

eastern p 

As tliey i 

off full of 

Cordova e 

good will 

vited the 

an appear 

tiiat, if tl 

e U- 
: tlie 
ts of 
?.al to 
ced it 
d to a 
^ht of 
3 mer- 
d tliey 
f form 
;a and 
to such 


mlngo, and soon af.ar assumed tlie habit of tliat 
order. But it is time to return to the Spanish dis- 
co veiies. 

Velasquez, who conquered Cuba, still retained 
the government of that island as the deputy of 
Diego Columbus 3 and under his prudent arlminis- 
tration Cuba became one of the most flourishing of 
the Spanish settlements. The fame of tliis allured 
tliither many persons from the other colonies, in 
hopes of finding either some permanent establish- 
ment, or some employment for their activity. As 
Cuba lay to the west of all the islands occupied by 
the Spaniards, and as tlie ocean which stretches be- 
yond it towards that quarter had not hitlierto been 
explored, these circumstances naturally invited tlie 
inhabitants to attempt new discoveries. An asso- 
ciation was formed for this purpose, at the head of 
which was Francisco Hernandez Cordova. Velas- 
quez approved of the design, and assisted in carry- 
ing it on. He and Cordova advanced money for 
the purchase of three small vessels, on which they 
embarked one hundred and ten men. They stood 
directly west, in conformity to the opinion of the 
great Columbus, who uniformly main- * y. 
tained that a westerly course would lead to -.^^J 
tlie most important discoveries. On the ' * 
twenty-first day after their departure from St. 
Jago they saw land, which proved to be the 
eastern point of the large peninsula of Yucatan. 
As they approached the shore, five canoes came 
off full of people decently clad in cotton gaiments. 
Cordova endeavoured by small presents to gain the 
good will of these people. They, in return, in- 
vited the Spaniards to visit tlieir habitations, with 
an appearance of cordiality : but they soon found 
that, if the people of Yucatan had made progregjj 

G 2 ip 

^ I 




improvement beyond their countrymen, they were 
likewise more artful and warlike. For though 
the cazique received Cordova with many tokens 
of friendship, he had posted a considerable body of 
Jiis subjects in an ambush behind a thicket, who, 
upon a signal given, rushed out and attacked the 
Spaniards witli great boldness, and some degree of 
martial order. At the first flight of their arrows, 
fifteen of the Spaniards were wounded -, but the 
Indians were struck with terror by the explosion 
of the fire-arms, and so h'urprisod at the execution 
done by them with the cross-bows, that tliey fied 
precipitately. Cordova quitted a country where 
he had met with such a fierce reception, carrying 
otf two prisoners, together with the ornaments of 
a small temple, which he plundered in his retreat. 
He continued his course towards the west, and on 
the sixteenth day arrived at Campeachy, where 
the natives received him hospitably. As their 
water began to fail, they advanced and discovered 
a river at Potonchan, some leagues beyond Cam- 
peachy. Cordova landed his troops, in order to 
protect the sailors while employed in filling the 
casks J but notwithstanding this precaution, tlie 
natives rushed down upon them with such fury, 
and in such numbers, that forty-seven of the 
Spaniards were killed on the spot, and one man 
only of the whole body escaped unhurt, After 
this flUal repulse, nothing remained but to hasten 
back to Cuba with their shatiered forces. In their 
passage they suffered excjuisite distress for want of 
water : some of them sunk under these calamities, 
and died by the way. Cordova, tlieir commander, 
expired soon after they landed at Cuba. 

Notwithstanding the disastrous conclusion of 
this expedition, it contributed rather to animate 


and fi 
new t 
Juan c 
part o 
chan J 
spect I 
and in 
of gold 
served i 
stand tl; 
other p 
which h 
^he Spai 
He tou( 
from wh 
one of J 
count ( 



dy ot* 
i the 
ree of 
It the 
\y fted 
;nts of 
e treat, 
and on 

; their 


der to 
g the 
, die 
f the 

n their 
'ant of 

ion of 



than to damp the spirit of enterprise among the 
Spaniards. Vcla.s(]uez encouraged their ardour, 
and fitted out, at his own expence, four ships for a 
new enterprise. The command of it was given to 
Juan de Grijalva, who soon discovered that » -p. 
part of the condnent which has ever since .1.^ 
'been known by the name of New Spain. 
I'hey lan<led at a river which the nadves called 
Tabasco ; and the fame of their victory at Poton- 
chan liaving reached this place, the cazique re- 
ceived them amicably, and bestowed upon them 
some vakiable presents. They next touched at 
Giiaxaca, where they were received with the re- 
spect paid to superior beings. The people per- 
fumed them as they landed with incense of gum- 
copal, ai^d presented to them as offerings the 
choicest delicaei s of the country. They were 
extremely fond of trading widi the new visitants ^ 
and in six days the Spaniards obtained ornaments 
of gold to the value of more than 3CXX)l. in ex- 
change for European toys. The two prisoners 
whom they brought from Yucatan had hitherto 
served as interpreters ; but as they did not under- 
stand the language of diis country, 'the Spaniards 
It^arned frv)m the natives by signs, that they were 
subjects of a great monarch named Montezuma, 
wjjose dominion extended over diat and many 
other provinces. Grijalva continued his course 
towards the west. lie landed on a small isle 
which he called the Isle of Sacrifices, because there 
the Spaniards beheld, for the first time, die horrid 
spectacle of human victims oflered to die gods. 
He touched also at the island St. Juan de Ulua, 
from which place he dispatched Pedro de Alvarndo, 
one of his otficers, to Velasquez with a full ac- 
count of the important discoveries diat he had 



made. In the mean time he proceeded nlonc; the 
coast as flir as the river Paiiueo. Several of his 
ofhcers were desirous of planting a colony in some 
proper station, in order that they might extend 
the dominion of their sovereign. This scheme, 
however, appeared to Grijalva too perilous to he 
attempted. He judged it more pnident to return 
to Cuba, having fultilled the purpo^;e of his voy- 
age ; which he did after an absence of six months. 
This was the longest as well as the most suc- 
cessful voyage which the Spaniards had made in 
the New World. As soon as Alvarado reached 
Cuba, Velasquez, transported with success so much 
beyond his expectations, immediately dispatched a 
person in his confidence to carry this important in- 
telligence to Spain, and to solicit such an increase of 
authority as might enable him to attempt projects 
on a much larger scale. Without waiting for the 
return of his messenger, or for the arrival of 
Grijalva, of whom he became so jealous as to 
resolve to employ him no longer, he began to 
prepare such a powerful armament as might prove 
equal to an enterprise of danger and importance. 
But before we enter upon a detailed account of the 
expedition on which Velasquez was intent, it may 
be proper to pause, and take a brief view of the 
state of the New World when first discovered, and to 
contemplate the policy and manners of the rude 
tribes that occupied the parts of it witli which the 
Spaniards were at this time acquainted. 



o he 

\e ill 
hed a 
lit in- 
ase of 
Dr the 
al of 

as to 

riiU to 

of the 
t may 
f the 
and to 
i rude 
h the 




Viciv of Amerha when , first discovered. Its vast 
Kitent. Gnnidcnr of its Objects. Its Mountniiis, 
Rivers. Lakes. Climate. Its uncultivated State, 
Its SoiL Hofr Ai)i erica was peofylcd, Condi" 
lion and Character (f the Americans. All Sd" 
vages, excefitthe Meiicans and Peruvians. The 
bodily Constitution. The Qualities of their Minds, 
Their domestic State. Their political InstitU" 
lions. Their System of IFar. The Arts with 
which they were aet/wjinted. Their religious 
Institutions. Detached Customs. General He- 
view of their Firtues and Fices, 

npWENTY-SIX years had elapsed since Co- 
-•*- lumbus conducted Europeans to the New 
World. During that period the Spaniards had 
made great progress in exploring its various re- 
gions. They had sailed along the eastern coast 
of the continent, from the river De la Plata to the 
bottom of the Mexican Gulf, and had found that it 
stretched, without interruption, through this vast 
portion of the globe. They had discovered the great 
Southern Ocean, and acquired some knowledge of 
the coast of Florida ; and though they pushed their 
discoveries no farther north, other nations had vi- 
sited those parts which they had neglected. The 
English had sailed from Labrador to the confines 
of Florida, and the Portuoraese had viewed the 
same regions. Thus, at this period, the extent of 
tlie New World was kiiown almost from its north- 
ern extremity to 35 degres south of the equator. 
The countries which stretch from tlience to the 







■j^v * 



southern boum^ary of America, the great empire 
of Feni, and the interior state of the eNtensi\e do- 
minions subject 'o the sovereigns of Mexico, were 
still undiscovered. 

When we contemplate the New World, we are 
struck with its immense extent. Cokmihu,>. made 
known a new hemisphere, larger than either Eu- 
rope, Asia, or Africa, and not much inferior in 
dimensions to a third pair of the habitable globe. 
America is remarkab'e also for its position j it 
stre'ches from ihe m^rthern polar circle to a high 
southern latitude, more than J50()miles beyond 
the farthest extreniity of the old continent on that 
side of tlie line. A country of such extent passes 
through all < he clunriies capable ot beeoniing the 
habiiation of man, and tii lor yielding the Narious 
productions j)ecu]iar either to the temperate or to 
the torrid regions of the earth. 

Next to the extent of tht New W^orld, the gran- 
deur of the objects which ir presents to \ievv, is 
most apt t( strike the eye of an observer. Nature 
seems to have carried on her operations upon a 
larger s( ale, and with a bolder hand, and to have 
distinguish* d the features of this countiy by a pe- 
euliar niagnificencc. Ihe mountains in America 
are nmch superior in height to those ^n the other 
di\isions of the g'obe. Kven the plain of Quito, 
which may l:e considered as the base of the Andes, 
is eievateii larther i\ho^ e the sea than the top of 
the Pyrenees. This stupendous ridge of the Andes, 
no less remarkable for extent than elevation, rises 
in ditl'erent places more tl^an one third above the 
Peak of Teneritfe, the highe.st land intheantient 
hemisphere. The Andes may literally be said to 
hide their heads in the clouds; the storn»s often 
roll and tiie tjiunder bursts below tlieir summits, 









rica , 











the ni 

and gi 


wiiat c 


and th 



of our 

In the 

gour oi 


tion. C 

ripen, a 

and lam 

most f( 

roj)e, ar 

most dt 

•' • .. 

pi re 
ze re 

r in 

i it 

I that 
o; I he 

II ions 
or to 


whirh, thougli exposed to the rays of the sun in 
the centre ot the turri J zone, arc covered with evcr- 
lastiiiij snows. 

From these lofty mountains descend rivers pro- 
portionally l:ir<;e, with which the streams in the 
antieiit continent are not to be compared. Th^ 
Maragnon, the Orinoco, the Plata, in South Ame- 
rica; the Mississippi and St. liaurv-nce, in Ko. th 
America, tiow in such sp.icious channels, that long 
before they feel the intluence ot the tidf they 
resemble arms of the sea rather than rivers of fresh 
water. The lakes of the New World may pro- 
perly be termed inland seas of fresh water, and 
tliere is nothing in die other parts of die globe 
which resembles the prodigious chain of lakes in 
North America. 

The New World is of a form extremely fa- 
vourable to conunercial intercourse, on account of 
the numerous inlets of the ocean, the deep bays 
and gulfs, the surrounding inlands, and being itself 
watered with a variety of navigable rivers. But 
what distinguishes America from other parts of the 
earth, is the peculiar temperature of its climate, 
and the ditierent laws to which it is subject, with 
respect to the distribution of heat an 1 cold. The 
maxims which are founded upon the observation 
of our hemisph'Te will not apply to the other. 
In the New World cold predominates. The ri- 
gour of the frigid zone extends over half of tho.se 
regions wdiich should be temperate by their posi- 
tion. Countries where the grape and the fig should 
ripen, are buried under snow one half of the year ; 
and land- situated under the same parallel with the 
most fertile and best cultivated provinces of Eu- 
roi)e, are chilled with perpetual frosts, which al- 
most destroy the power of vegetation. As we 








advance to those parts of America which he in the 
same parallel with provinces of Asia and Africa 
blessed with an uniform enjoyment of such genial 
warmth as is most friendly to life and to vegeta- 
tion, the dominion of cold continves to be felt, and 
"winter reigns, though during a short period, with 
extreme severity. If we proceed along the Ame- 
rican continent into the torrid zone, we shall 
find the cold prevjilent in the New World extend- 
ing itsflf also to this region of the globe, and mi- 
tigating the excess of its fervour. While the negro 
on the coast of Africa is scorched with unremitting 
heat, the ii habitant of Pern breathes an air equally 
mild and teniperate, and is perfectly shaded under 
a canopy of grey clouds, which intercepts the fierce 
beams of the sun, without obstructing his friendly 

Various causes combine in rendering the cli- 
mate of America so extremely different from that 
of the antient continent. America advances nearer 
to the pole than either Europe or Asia. Both these 
have large seas to the north, which are open dur- 
ing part of the year, and even v hen covered with 
ice, the wind thai blows over them is less intensely 
cold than that \\ liich blows over land in the same 
high latitudes. But in America the land stretches 
from the river St. Laurence towards tlie pole, and 
spreads out immensely to the west. A chain of 
enormous mour.tains, covered with snow and ice, 
runs th tough all this dreary region. The wind, 
in passing ovei riich an ext«^nt of high and frozen 
land, becomes so impregnated with cold, that it 
acquires a piercing keenness, which it retains in its 
progress through warmer climates, and is not en- 
tirely mitigated until it reach the Gulf of Mexico. 
Over all tlie continent of North America a north- 


westerly wind and excessive cold are synony- 
mous terms. Even in the most sultry weatiier, 
the moment that the wind veers to that (|i;arier, 
its penetrating influence is felt in a transition from 
heat to cold, no less violent than sudden, lo this 
powerful cause may be ascribed the extraordinary 
dominion of cold, and its violent inroads into the 
southern provinces in that part of the globe. 

After contemplating those peiinanent and cha- 
racteristic fiualiiies of the American continent, 
which arise from the peculiarity of its situation 
and the di>?position of its parts, the next object tliat 
merits attention is its condition when first disco- 
vered, as far as that depended on tlie industry and 
operations of man. The eftects of human inge- 
nuity and labour are more extensive and consider- 
able than even our own vanity is apt at first to 
imagine. When we survey the face of the ha- 
bitable globe, no small part of that fertility and 
beauty which we ascribe to the hand of nature is 
the work of man. His etibrts, when continued 
though a succession of ages, change the appear- 
ance, and improve the qualities of tlie earth. As 
a great part of the antient continent has long been 
occupied by nations far advanced in arts and in- 
dustry, our eye is accustomed to view the earth 
in that form which it assumes when rendered lit 
to be the residence of a numerous race of men, and 
to supply them widi nourishment. But in the 
New World the state of mankmd was ruder, 
and the aspect of nature extremely different. Im- 
mense forests covered a great part of the uncul- 
tivated earth ; and as tlie hand of industry had not 
taught the rivers to run in a proper channel, or 
drained off the* stagnating water, many of die most 
fertile plains were overflowed, or converted into 





mmi-'m v 


marshes. When the English began to set/e in 
America, they termeii the countries ot ^\hich they 
took possession The JVildcruess. Nothing but the 
eager expectation of finding mines ot' gold could 
have induced the Spaniards to penetrate through 
the woods and marshes of America, wliere, at 
every step, they observed the extreme diflbrence 
between the uncultivated fare of nature, and tJiat 
which it acquires under the hand of industr}\ 

I'he labour and operations of man not only im- 
prove and embellish the earth, but render it more 
wholesome and friendly to life. All the provinces 
of America when first discovered were found to be 
extremely unhealthy. Great numbers of the first 
settlers were cut off by the unknown and violent 
diseases with which they were infected. Such as 
survived the rage of malady, were not exempted 
from the noxious influence of the climate. Ihey 
returned to Europe feeble and emaciated, with 
complexions tliat indicated the unwiiolesome tem- 
perature of the countries where they had resided. 

The uncultivated state of the New World af- 
fected also the qualities of its prcxluctions. Ihe 
principle of lite seems to have bt'en less active and 
vigojous there than in the antient continent. 1'Jie 
diti'erent species of animals are nuich fewer in 
America than those of the other hemisphere. In 
the islands there were only four kinds of quadru- 
peds known j the largest of which did not twceed 
tlie size of a rabbit. Of two hundred ditferent 
kinds of animals s])read over the face of the earth, 
only about one third existed in America at the time 
of its discovery. The same causes whicli checked 
the growth auvi the vigour of the more noble ani- 
mals, were friendly to the pit^pagation and increase 
of reptiles and insects : the active piinciple of life 


of ii 
is in 
of ai 
we h; 
the fii 
pen sit 
and ca 
that of 
to An 
torrid 2 
eye wit 
riety of 
birds of 
did in 




RecMTis to waste its force in productions of the infe- 
rior form. The air is often darkened with clouds 
of insects, and the ground covered with shocking 
and noxious reptiles. The country around Porto 
Kello swarms with toads, in such multitudes as 
hide the surtaceof the earth. At Guyaquil, snakes 
and vipers are hardly less nuixerous. Cartliagena 
is infested with numerous tlocks of bats which 
annoy both man and beast. In the islands, legions 
of ants have at ditlerent times consumed every 
vegetable production, and left the earth entirely 
bare, as if it had been burnt with fire. 

The birds of the New World are not distin- 
guished by (jualities so conspicuous as those which 
we have observed in its quadrupeds. Birds are 
more independent of man, and less atfected by the 
changes which his industry and labour make upon 
the face of the earth. They have a greater pro- 
pensity to migrate from one country to another, 
and can gratity this instinct of their nature without 
ditHculty or danger. Hence the number of birds 
common to both continents is much greater than 
that of quadrupeds ; and even such as are peculiar 
to America nearly resemble thofe with which 
mankind were acquainted in similar legions of the 
antient hemisphere. The American birds of the 
torrid zone, like those of the climate of Asia and 
Africa, are deckt in plumage which dazzles the 
eye with the beauty of its colours, but nature, sa- 
tisfied witli clotJiing them in this gay dress, has 
denied most of them that melody of sound and va- 
riety of notes which catch and delight the ear. The 
birds of the temperate climate tliere are less splen- 
did in their appearance, but they have voices of 
greater compass, and more melodious. In some 
districts of America tlie unwholesome temperature 



i< I 

l< I 



of the air wems to be iinfavnnrable ev(^n to tlii* 
part of the creation. America however produces 
the Condor, w hidi is entitled to preeminence over 
all the flying tribe,, in bulk, in strength, and in 

1 he soil in America must of course be extremely 
variors, but the cold and moisture \vhi( h jirevail 
there have considerable influence over it. If we 
vish to rear in America the productions which 
ah'dund in any particular district of the antient 
world, we nmst advance several degrees nearer to 
the line than in the other hemisphere, as it recjuires 
«U(li an increase of heat to counterbalance the na- 
tural frigidity of the soil and climate. At the Cape 
of Good H(^pe, several of the plants and fruits pe- 
culiar tothe countries within the tropics are culti- 
vated with success j w hereas in Florida and Soutli 
Carolina, though considen'bly nearer the line, they 
cannot be brought to thri\e with equal certainty. 
But if allowance be made for this diversity in the 
degree (f heat, the soil of Americn is naturally as 
rich and fertile as that in any part of the (\arth. As 
the coiuilry was thinly inhabited, the earth was not 
exhausted by consumption. The vegetable pro- 
<luctions to which the feitility of the soil gave 
birth, being sntfered to corrupt on its surface, re- 
turned with increase into its bosom. As trees and 
plants derive a great part of their nourishment from 
air and water; if they were not destroyed, they 
vould render to the earth more, perhaps, than they 
t'.ke from it, and feed rather than impoverish it. 
T'le vast number, as well as enormous size of the 
trees in America, indicate the extraordinary vigour 
of the soil in its native state. When tlie Europeans 
first began to cultivate the New World, they were 
asionibhed at tlie luxuriant power of vegetation in 
2 its 

Its VI 

its su 
pled r 
tend t 
of thi 
not as 




its tirsi 

the noi 


that tl 

from C 

dor, n 



any res 

are mii] 

other 1 



north o 

of Aai< 


its virgin mould ; and in several i)laces the inge- 
nuity of the planter is still employed in diminishing 
its superfluous fertility, to bring it down lo a stata 
fit for portable culture. 

We are now to encjuire how America was peo- 
pled ? The theories and s|)ecalations of ingenious 
men with respect to this subject would fill many 
V(^lumes. Some have imagined that the people of 
America were not the offspring of the same com- 
mon \)arent with the rest of mankind : others con- 
tend that they are descended from some remnant 
of the antediluvian inhabitants of the earth who 
survived the deluge, and acc(n*dingly suppose the 
uncivilized tribes to be ihe most antient race of 
pet^ple on the earth. There is hardly any nation 
from the nordi to the south pole to which som» 
antitpiary, in the ex.travagance of conjecture, has 
not asciibed the honour of peopling of America. 
Without entering at large upon this elaborate dis- 
quisition, we may observe that, from 'tl»e conti- 
guity, it is possible that America may have received 
its tirst inhabitants from our contiiioa', either by 
the noith-west of Ei ope or the north-east of Asia. 
There seems, however, good reason f )r supposing 
that the progenitors of all the American nations, 
from Cape Horn to the southern coufuvvs ol Labra- 
dor, migrated from the latter rather th !i fern the 
former. The Ksquiiuaux. are the only pe(jple iii 
America who, in ihi'ir aspect or charactei', bear 
any resemblance to the northern Europeans. They 
are manifestly a race of men .dist.nct from all t!^e 
other nations of the American continent, in lan- 
guage, disposition, and in hal)its of life. Their 
original then may warrantably be traced up to the 
north of Europe. But among the other inhabitants 
of America there is such a striki :g similitude in 

H 2 th9 







the form of their bodies, and ihe qualities of their 
minds, as to force us to pronounce tiiem to be de- 
scended from one source. There mny be a variety 
in the shades, but we can every -where trace the 
same original colour. Each tribe has something 
peculiar which distinguishes it, but in all of them 
we discern certain features common to the whole 
race ; they have some resemblance to the rude 
tribes scattered over the north-east of Asia, but 
scarcely any to the nations settled in tlie northern 
extremities of Europe : we tiierefore refer them to 
Asiatic ];rogenitors having settled in those parts of 
America where the Russians have discovered the 
proximity of the two continents, and spread gradu- 
ally over its various regions. I'his account of the 
progress of population in America coincides with 
the tradition of the Mexicans concerning their own 
origin. According to them their ancestors came 
from a remote country, situated to the north-west 
of Mexico. They point out the variovis stations 
as they advanced from this into the inferior pro- 
vinces ; and it is precisely the same route which 
they must have held, if they had been emigrants 
from Asia. The Mexicans, in describing the ap- 
pearance of their progenitors, their manners, and 
habits of life at that period, exactly delineate those 
rude Tartars from whom probably they sprung. 

The condition and character of the American 
nations, at the time when they became known to 
the Europeans, deserve more attentive considera- 
tion than the inquiry concerning their oiiginah 
The latter is merely an object of curiosity, the for- 
mer is one of the most important as well as instruc- 
tive researches that can occupy the philosopher or 
historian. To complete the history of the human 
mind^ we must contemplate man in all those vari- 



i^n to 





ler or 





ous situations in which he has been placed. W© 
nuist tohow hiiTi in his progress tln'ough the cli tie- 
rent stages of society, and observ^e how the faculties 
ot the understanding untold ; we must attend to 
the eiforts of liis active powers, watch the various 
emotions of d^'sire and altection, as they rise in the 
brea-it, and mark whither they tend and with what 
they are exerted. 

In America, man appears under the rudest tonn 
in which we can conceive him to subsist. I'here 
were only two nations in tliis vast continent that 
had made any consideral)le progre^i.^ in acquiring 
the ideas and adopting tlie institutions wliich be- 
long to pohshed societies. I'heir gou-n*nment and 
manners will fall naturally under our nn lew in re- 
lating the discovery and concjue^st of Mexico and 
Peru. For the present our attention must be turned 
to the small independent tribes which occupied 
every other part of America, to whom may be ap- 
plied the denomination of Savagt^. To conduct 
this inquiry with greater accuracy, it should be ren* 
dered as simple as possible : tor this purpose it will 
be proper to consider* 

I. The bodily constitution of the Americans. — . 
The human body is less aifected by climate than 
that of any other animal. Man is the onl) liviu'^ 
creature whose frame is at once so havdy, anti so 
flexible, that he can Sj)read over the whole earth, 
become the inhabitant cjf every region, and thrive 
and multiply under every climate. Subject, how- 
ever, to the general law of naiire, trie human 
body is not entirely exempt from tlu- operation of 
climate, and when exposed to the extremes of cold 
and heat, its size or vigour diuiiuislies. I'he t'o/w- 
pU'ihm of the Americans is of a redchon t)rown, 
nearly resembling tlie colour of copper j the hair 

U i of 






: 11 




of their heads is long, black, coarse, and without 
curl. They have no heard, and every f)art of their 
body is smooth. Their persons are of a full si/e, 
extremely straight, and well proportioned. Jn the 
islands, the constitution of the natives was extremely 
feeble and languid. On the continent the human 
frame acquired greater firmness : still the Ameri- 
cans were more remarkable for agility diaii strengtJi. 
They resembled beasts of prey rather tJian animals 
formed fDr labour. They were not only averse 
from toil, but incapable of it j and when compelled 
to work, they sunk under tasks which the people 
of the other continent would have performed with 
ease. 1 he beardless countenance and smooth skin 
of the American seem to indicate a defect of vi- 
goiu'. Ihis |)eculiarity cannot be attributed to tlieir 
mode of subsistence. For though tlje food of many 
Amei leans be extremely insipid, as they are altoge- 
ther unacquainted with the u*.e of salt, rude trilies 
in otherparts of the earth have subsi.^ted on aliments 
equally simple, without any apparent diminution in 
tlieir vigour. 

As the external form of the AmeritTins leads us 
to suspect that there is some natural debiiity in 
their frame, the smallness of their appetite for ibod 
has been mentioned as a confivmation of tliis suspi- 
cion. I'he quantity of food which men consume 
raries according to the temperature of the climate 
jn which they live, the degree of activity which 
tliey exert, and the natural vigour of their consti- 
tutions. Under the enervating heat of the torrid 
zone, and where men pass their days in indolence, 
they require less nourishment than the active inha- 
bitants of temperate or cold countries. But neither 
the warmth of the climate, nor their extreme lazi- 
ness^ will account for tlie uiiccmmon defect of 










to the 
The A 
gers tc 
takes j; 


to phy 


upon t[ 

ciety is 

which < 

of indu 


reason! I 


where t 

etibrt o 

their af 

The opt 

niore cc 



fined b) 

pies anc 

simple I 


appetite amoncj the Americans. The Spanirds were 
astonished at this ; while on the other hand the ap- 
petite of the Spaniards appeared to the Aineritans 
insatiably voracious, and they affirmed that one 
Spaniard devoured more in a day than ten Ame- 

A proof of some feebleness in their frame still 
more striking is the insensibility of the Americans 
to the charms of beauty, and the power of love. 
1'he Americans are, in an amazing degree, stran- 
gers to the force of the first instinct of nature. In 
every part of the New World the natives treat tlieir 
A\'omen with coldness and inditference. They are 
neither the objects of that tender attachment which 
tjskes place in civilized society, nor of that ardent 
desire conspicuous among rude nations. 

This dilVerence of character must not be imputed 
to physical causes alone, to the exclusion of the 
influence which political and moral causes have 
upon the constitution. Wherever the state of so- 
ciety is such as to create many wants and desires 
which cannot be satisfied without regular exertions 
of industry, tlie body, accustomed lo labour, be- 
co3nes robust and patient of fatigue. The same 
reasoning will apply to what has been obser\ed 
concerning their slender demand for foodj for 
where the people are obliged to exert any unusual 
ettbrt of activity in order to procure subsistence, 
their appetite is not inferior to that of other men. 
The operation of political and moral causes is still 
more conspicuous in modifying the degree of at- 
tachment between the sexes. In a state of high 
civilization this passion, inflamed by restraint, re- 
fined by delicacy and cherished by fashion, occu- 
pies and engrosses the heart. It is no longer a 
fchnple instinct of nature : sentiment heightens the 







ardour of desire, and the nu)^t tender emotions of 
vhicli our traiue is susceptible sooth and aj.ot.dft 
tlie soul. Ihi^ ilv scriptiou, however, applies only 
to those who, by (heir situation, areexi'inptcd from 
the caies and labours oi' lile. Anionj^ persons 
doomed by their condition to incessant toil, the 
dominion ot j)as.>-ion is less violent ; their solicitude 
to procun* subsistence, and to provide for the first 
demand of naUire, leaves little leisure tor attcndiu'^ 
to its second call. Kut if the nature of the inter- 
course between the sexes varies so much in persons 
ot ditferent rank in poiisheu society, the condition 
of man while iie remains uncivilized must occasion 
a variation still more apparent. We may well sup- 
pose that amidst the hardsiiip.^, the dangers, and 
the simplicity of savage life, w here subsistence is 
always precaiious and often scanty, where men are 
{ihnost continually engaged in the jjursuil of their 
enemi*.'S or in liuardini: against their attacks, and 
where neither dress nor reserve are employed as 
arts of t'emale allurement, that the attention of the 
An}ericans to their women would be extremely 
feeble, without impufnig this st)lely to any physical 
defect or degradation in their frauie. 

jNotvvithsianding th.^ feeble make of the Ameri- 
cans, hardly any of them are dcfcrmed or muti- 
lated in any of their s^^nses ; ard there is less va- 
riety hi the human foiin throughout the New 
World than in t e ancient contment. America 
contains no negroes, which is probably owing to 
thti less deirree of heat that is ieit there to what the 
inhabitaiUs of the torrid zone in Asia and Africa 
are exposed to. Still, however, there are excep- 
tions to die general rule, and a coubide; able variety 
has i>een observed in. three districts. In the isthmus 
of Daiien, we are told that there are people of a low 


milk wl 
down of 
their cy 
hue. 'I 
weak I hi 
but the 
active ai 

bitants c 
j)Ie of 
tude, ext 
the i)ole 
people i 
known t 
heads of 
of Ameri 
tiines bus 
of distinc 
manx are 

The in 
nious Pa 
extends f 
tiiough SI 
rest of th 
gigantic r 
points in 

I' il 









Btature, feeble frame, and of a colour tliat is a dead 
milk white : their skin is coveied with a fine hairy 
down of a chalky white ; the hair of their heads, 
their eye-brows, and eye-la.-hes, are of tiie same 
hue. Their eyes are of a singular form, and so 
wrak that they can hardly bear tlie light of the sun; 
but they see clearly by inorjn-lightj and are most 
active and gay in the night. 

I'he second district that is occupied by inha- 
bitants ditfering in appearance from the other peo- 
|)le of America is situated in a high northern lati- 
tude, extending from the coast of Labrador towards 
the j)ole as far as the country is habitable. Ihe. 
peo})le scattered over those dreary regions are 
known to the Europeans by the name of Esqui- 
maux. 7'hey are of a middle size and robust, with 
heads of a disproportioncd bulk, and feet as re- 
markably small. Thc.'u' complexion inclines to the 
p^uropean white rather than to the copper colour 
of America, and they have beards which are some- 
tiines bushy and long. From these and other marks 
of distinction we may conclude that the Esqui- 
maux are a race difierent from the rest of the Ame- 

The inhabitants of the third district are the fa^ 
mous PatagoTiians at tiie southern extremity of 
America. They are supjiosed to be one of the 
wandering tribes that occupy the region which 
extends from the river De la Plata to the straits of 
Magellan. It has, however, been ascertained, by 
nccuratf observers, that the natives of Patagonia, 
tliough stout and well made, are not of such an 
extraordinary size as to be distinguished from the 
rest of the human species. Ihe existence of this 
gigantic race of men seems then to be one of those 
points in natural history, with respect to which a 







lAaiM |2.5 

■^ 1^ 12.2 

S il4S 12.0 


1.25 1.4 



6" - 








WEBSTER, N.Y. 14580 

(716) 872-4503 


cautious inquirer will hesitate, and suspend his as* 
sent, until more complete evidence shall decide 
whether he ought to admit a fact seemingly incon- 
sistent with what reason and experience have dis- 
covered, concerning the structure and condition of 
man in all the various situations in which he has 
been observed. 

In order to form a complete idea with respect to 
tlie constitution of the inhabitants of tliis and the 
other hemisphere, we should attend nor only to the 
make and vigour ot their bodies, hut consider wl.at 
degree of health they enjoy, and to wliat period of 
longevity they usually arrive. As most of them 
are unacquainted with the a"*t of numbering^, and 
all of them forgetful of what is pa-t as they are 
improvident of what is to come, ir i, impos'^ible to 
ascertain their age with any Jegree of precision. 
They seem, however, to be e\erv \vhe"e exempt 
from many of the distempers .vhich alf^ict polished 
nations. None of the mala ies vhich are the im- 
mediate otfsp! ing of luxury ever vi^iie/. them ; and 
they have no names n th.-ir languages by which 
to distinguish this numerous train of adventitious 

But whatever be the siioation in which man is 
placed, he is born to sude' ; aod his diseases in ♦^he 
ravage state, though f wer in numi^er, are, like 
those of the anima-s whom he nearly resem[)les in 
his mode of life, more violeiit and more fatal. If 
luxury engender and nou i-h disiempers of one 
jpecies. the rigours of .-.a :g' die bring on those of 
another. In the ^nva'je sM'e h'^r Ishio'^ and fatigue 
violently assault the const iuition : in polished so- 
cieties intempera^ice undei'mines it. Jt is not easy 
to dete "mine which ot them opiates with most 
fatal elfect, or tends moat to abridge human life. 



llie in 
reach oi 
best evi( 
the gen( 


liar in t 

turn our 

of their 

the igno 

vigour a 

similar t( 

the speci 


mind are 

tive in tj 

man is sii 


sphere. I: 

limited, ] 

guid. Y 

culative i 

known in 

comes tli( 


have seen 

the posse 


within th( 

ducive to 

thing bey 

While th( 

present ui 


llie influence of the former is certainly most ex- 
tensive. The pernicious consequences of luxury 
reach only to a few members in any community j the 
distresses of savage life are felt by all. Upon the 
best e\ idence that can be obtained, it appears that 
the general period of human life is shorter among 
savages than in well regulated and industrious so- 

II. After considering what appears to be pecu- 
liar in the bodily constitution of the Americans, we 
turn our attention towards the powers and qualities 
of their minds. As the individual advances from 
the ignorance and imbecility of the infant state to 
vigour and maturity of understanding, something 
siniilar to this may be observed in the progress of 
the species. With respect to it there is a period of 
infancy, during which several of the powers of the 
mind are not unfolded, and all are feeble and defec- 
tive in their operation. While the condition of 
man is simple and rude, his reason is but little ex- 
ercised, and his desires move within a narrow 
sphere. Hence the intellectual powers are extremely 
limited, his emotions and efforts are few and lan- 
guid. What among polished nations is called spe- 
culative reasoning or research is altogether un- 
known in the rude state of society, and never be- 
comes tlie occupation or amusement of the human 
faculties, until man becomes so far improved as to 
have secured the means of subsistence, as well as 
the possession of leisure and tranquillity. The 
thoughts and attention of a savage are confined 
within the small circle of objects immediately con- 
ducive to his preservation or enjoyment. Every 
thing beyond that is perfectly indifferent to him. 
While they highly prize such tilings as serve for 
present use or minister to present enjoyment^ they 


III i 





»et no value upon those which are not the object 
of some immediate want. When in the evening a 
Caribbee feels himself disposed to go to rest, no 
consideration will tempt him to sell his hamm(/vjk : 
but in the morning, wlien he is sallying out to the 
business or pastime of the day, he will part witli 
it for the slightest toy tliat catches his fancy. 
Among civilized nations arithmetic, or the art of 
numbering, is deemed an essential science, but 
among savages, who have no property to estimate, 
no hoarded treasures to count, no variety of ob- 
jects or multiplicity of ideas to enumerate, arith- 
metic is a superfluous and useless art. Accordingly, 
among some tribes in America it seems to be quite 
unknown. There are many that cannot reckon 
further than three ; several can proceed as far as 
ten or twenty, but when they would convey an 
idea of any number beyond these they point to the 
hairs of their head, intimating that it is equal to 
them, or with wonder declare it to be so great that 
it cannot be reckoned. In other respects the exer- 
cise of the understanding among rude nations is 
still more limited. The first ideas of every human 
being must be such as he receives by his senses. 
Eui in the mind of man, while in the savage state, 
there seem to be hardly any ideas but what enter 
by this avenue. The objects around him are pre- 
sented to his eye j and such as may be subservient 
to his use, or can gratify any of his appetites, at- 
tract his notice j he views the rest without curio- 
sity and attention. The active efforts of the mind 
are few, and on most occasions languid. The de- 
sires of simple nature are few, and where a favour- 
able climate yields almost spontaneously what suf- 
fices to gratify them, they excite no violent emo- 
tion. Hence the people of tlie several tribes in 



con tin 
or seat 
the gn 
tJieir a^ 
of fut 
can su 
rouse t 
sion ar( 
force of 
to tlie n 
tient ha 
Man cai 
tlie pow( 
of his CO 
especial I3 
some effc 
cautions t 
is deemec 
to wo k ( 
put his h; 
tirely upo 
munity re 
down witJ 
tions. Th 
sight whic 
They depe 
of the year 
during a th 
Though ej 
return of tl 




America waste their life in indolence : they will 
continue whole clays stretched in their hammocks 
or seated on the earth, in perfect idleness, without 
changing their posture or raising their eyes from 
the ground, or uttering a single word. Such is 
tlieir aversion from labour, that neither the hope 
of future good nor the apprehension of future evil 
can surmount it. The cravings of hunger may 
rouse them, but the exertions which these occa- 
sion are of short duration. They feel not tlie 
force of those powerful springs which give vigour 
to the movements of the mind, and urge the pa- 
tient hand of industry to persevere in its efforts. 
Man cannot continue long in this state of feeble in- 
fancy. He was made for industry and action, and 
tlie powers of his nature, as well as the necessity 
of his condition, urge him to fulfil his destiny. Ac- 
cordingly, among most of the American nations, 
especially those seated in the rigorous climates, 
lome efforts are employed and some previous pre- 
cautions taken for securing subsistence, but labour 
is deemed ignominious and degrading. It is only 
to wo k of a certain kind that man will deign to 
put his hand. The greater part is devolved en- 
tirely upon tlie women. One half of the com- 
munity remains inactive, while the other is borne 
down with the multitude and variety of its occupa- 
tions. Thus their industry is partial, and the fore- 
sight which regulates it is no less limited. A re- 
markable instance of this occurs in the chief ar- 
rangement with respect to their manner of living. 
They depend for their subsistence during one part 
of the year on fishing 5 during another on hunting 5 
during a third on the produce of their agriculture. 
Though experience has taught them to foresee the 
return of those various seasons, and to make pro- 
voL. XXIV. I vision 

fi' H 


vision for the exigencies of each ; they either want 
SLJgacity to proportion this provision to their con- 
smnption, or are so incapable of any command over 
their appetites, that from tiieir inconsiderate waste 
they often feel the calamities of famine as severely 
as the rudest tribes. What they suffer one year 
does not augment their industry, or render them 
more provident to prevent similar distresses. This 
inconsiderable thoughtlessness about futurity, the 
effect of ignorance, and the cause of sloth, ac- 
companies and characterizes man in every stage of 
savage life, and he Ls of en least solicitous about 
supplying his wants, when the means of supplying 
them are most precarious, and procured with the 
greatest difficulty. 

III. After viewing the bodily constitution of 
the Americans, and contemplating the powers of 
their minds, we are led to consider them as united 
together in society. The domestic state is the first 
and most simple form of human association. The 
union of the sexes among diiferent animals is 
of longer or shorter duration, in proportion to 
the ease or dilticulty of rearing their olfspring. 
Among those tribes where the season of infancy 
is short, and the young soon acquire vigour 
or agility, no permanent union is formed. Na- 
ture commits the care of training up the off- 
spring to the mother alone, and her tenderness 
without any other assistance is equal to the task. 
But where the state of infancy is long and helpless, 
and the joint assiduity of both parents is requisite 
in tending their feeble progeny, there a more in- 
timate connection takes place, and continues till 
the new race is grown up to full maturity. As 
the infancy of men is more feeble and helpless 
than tiiat of any other animal, the union between 



iinsband and wife cimo i '' 

«pe.-n,anen( contract if ^ *" ^^ «'"side,cd a, 
the rudest nil,es T r. > '^™«'''<--a. even amono- 

^■i>ere su!.si.stence wT Vcan ; ' /", '^'"'" '"•^'■•'^''« 
xnamt^ining a famij/ va?" ,{^'"1 ""^ '''^'^"">' <'f 
ii'mseJf to one xvife Tn H ' '"^ ™" confined 

tiie provinces, the ininhifpnT"-'™^'' """^ more fer- 
of rheir wiv^s/ L.ti^^ '""J;''-'^'! the number 
"nion subsisted dt n'^ hfr "'"V" *" ™^"-^''-'?e 
«oJvedo„verys]iJht;?e£'"°'^^^'-^ " -«^ di- 

*I'e obligation of tliis contrnc, T,''""'"' ^""«'ler«d 
jomen was e,,un)) h^™ ;, ' J''^' ?'"d'tion of the 
*.s]Hse. and to degrade the f^ T'' '"'*' ''^le. To 
"cteristic of the ««% ^/e ^^'f '^^^ ''^ f^^ cha- 
g'of'e. Man, proud of excdl n. i,"^.''"" "^ '^^ 
courage, <he chief marks of ire? '"•<■""§"' and 
;;^J'te_ people, treats Ztf^^^'lT^.'^^^'^S^ 
oisdam. In Amerir^ fi, ,. " '"ferior, with 

« ^o peculiarly g^f ^'f"- f the ^omej 
complete, that serviutde is n L '"■ ^l^'^'^^ion so 
--be their wretchedtt ' aIV^ "^''^ '" ''- 
tnbes, ,s no better than a b^n^t^fK ',""""§ '^iost 

to.every office of labour and f^ '"'l'"' ^^■^'''"^d 

J«'fer out the day i„ „',f J-^'g'^^ '7:hile the men 

•nent, the worn L , fcon /^'"1 " "' '-"""■'«- 
*0'} Tasks are im^o^ed c T"''' '°, ""^^^'»»t 
and services are rec iveH „ >, ""^ '^'f^°"t Pi<y, 
gratitude. Everv rtl "'""^ complacency or 

of thismorti^^^in ~'Th ""'"''^ "^-- 
tl.e.r lords «^th t-evem cf r. ^^ T"'' 'PP"'^'^^ • 
exalted beings, and ailnnt A ^- *'*'""' ^^ "i^re 
P--^--e. li some di."rLrr a'' '° ^^^ '" ''^i"- 
«J"i,on is so grievoi^ ri ° ^™f™^ *'***>- 



have destroyed their female children in flieir In- 
fancy, in order to deliver them from that intole- 
rable bondage to which they knew they were 
doomed. It is owing, perhaps, in some measure, 
to this state of depression, that women in rude 
nations are far from prolific. The vigour of their 
constitution is exhausted by excessive fatigue, and 
the wants and distresses of savage life are so nu- 
merous, as to induce them to take precautions m 
order to prevent too rapid an increase of their pro- 
geny. Among some of the least polished tribes, 
whose industry and foresight do not extend so far 
as to make any regular provision for their own sub- 
sistence, it is a maxim not to burthen themselves 
with rearing more than two children ; and no such 
numerous families as are frequent in civilized so- 
cieties are to be found among men in a savage state. 
When twins are born, one of them is commonly 
abandoned, and when a mother dies while she is 
nursing a child, all hope of preserving its life fails, 
and it is buried together with her in the same 
grave. Thus their experience of the difficulty of 
training up an infant to maturity, amidst the hard- 
ship of savage life, often stifles the voice of nature 
among the Americans, and suppresses the strong 
emotions of paternal tenderness. 

But though necessity compels the inhabitants of 
America thus to set bounds to the increase of their 
families, they are not deficient in affection and at- 
tachment to their offspring. As long as their pro- 
geny continue feeble and helpless, no people ex- 
ceed them in tenderness and care. But in tlie 
savage state, the affection of parents ceases almost 
as soon as their offspring attain maturity. Little 
instruction fits them for that mode of life to which 
they are destined. The parents, when they have 
J .. conducted 



in the 

and I 


In an 



tion o 


than o 



tlieir c 

seem t( 

tJiey n 

in tliat 


be twee 

the dui 

tion bel 


we turn 

pie of i 



the art 

were v( 

South A 

in whicl 

can exis! 

bounty ( 

no solici 


cessary : 

plant j e 

il ' 


eonducted them throiivrh the helpless years of in- 
fancy, leave them aftcr>A ards at entire liberty. Even 
in their tender age, they seldom advise or admonish, 
and never ciiide or chastise them. 1'hey sutler 
them to be absolute masters of their own actions. 
Jn an American hut, a father, mother, and their 
posterity li\e together, like persons assembled by 
mere accident, without seeming to feel the obliga- 
tion of the duties mutually arising from this con- 
nection. Parents arc not objects of greater regard 
than other persons, lliey treat them always with 
neglect, and often with such harshness and inso- 
lence, as to till those who have been witnesses of 
their conduct with horror. Thus the ideas which 
seem to be natural to man in his savage stat^-, as 
they result from his circumstances and cciiClitioii 
in that period of his progress, aliect the two capital 
relations in domestic life. They render the union 
between husband and wife unequal. Ihey shorten 
the duration and weaken the force of the connec- 
tion between parents and children. 

IV. From the domestic state of the Americans, 
we turn to their political institutions. All the peo- 
ple of America, now under review, may be com- 
prehended under the general denomination of 
savage, but the advances which they had made in 
the art of procuring to th :; selves subsistence 
were very unequal. On the .extensive plains of 
South America, man appears in the rudest state 
in which he has ever been observed, or perhaps 
can exist. Several tribes depend entirely upon the 
bounty of nature for subsistence. They discover 
no solicitude, they employ little Ibresight, they 
scarcely exert any industry to secure what is ne- 
cessary for their support, lliey neither sow nor 
plant 3 even the culture of tlie manioc, of which 

1 3 the 


the cassada bread is made, is an art too intricate for 
tlieir ingenuity or too fatiguing to their indolence. 
What the earth produces spontaneously, supplies 
them with food daring part of tlie year j and at 
other times tliey subsist by fishing, or by hunting. 
But the life of a hunter gradually leads man to 
a state more advanced. The chace affords but aa 
uncertain maintenance. If a savage trust to hi,<? 
bow alone for food, he and his family will be of- 
ten reduced to extreme distress. Their experience 
of this surmounts the abhorrence of labour natural 
to savage nations, and compels them to have re- 
course to culture as subsidiary to hunting. Ihcre 
is scarcely, through the whole of America, asinglt* 
nation of hunters which does not practise some 
species of cultivation. 

The agriculture of the Americans is, however, 
neitlier extensive nor laborious : all they aim at is 
to supply the defects of fish and game. On the 
southern continent the natives confined their in- 
dustry to rearing a few plants, which in a rich soil 
and warm climate were easily trained to matu- 
rity. The maizej the manioc, the plantain, the 
potatoe, and the pimento tree, are almost the only 
species of plants upon which the American tribe* 
of hunters bestowed any care. Two circumstances, 
common to all the savage nations of America, con- 
curred with those already mentioned in rendering 
their agriculture imperfect, and in circumscribing 
their power in all their operations. They had no 
tame animals, and were unacquainted with tlie 
useful metals. 

In other parts of the globe, man, in his rudest 
state, appears as lord of the creation, giving law to 
various tribes of animals which he has tamed and 
reduced to subjection. The Tartai* follows his prey 



•n the horse which he has reared ; or tends hi* 
numerous herds, wliieh furnish him hoth with 
food L.id cloa thing : the Arah has rendered hi.i 
camel docile, and avails himst^lf of its persevering 
strengtli : the Laplander has formed the rein-deer 
to be subservient to his will ; and even tiie people 
of Kamtschatka have trained their dogs to labour. 
This command over the inferior creatures is one 
of the noblest prerogatives of man, and among the 
greatest elibrts of his wisdom and power. Without 
this, his dominion is incomplete : lie is a monarch 
who has no subjects, a master without servants, 
and must perform every operation l)y the strength 
ofhisownarm. Such was the condition of all 
the rude nations of America. Iheir rt ason was so 
little improved, or their union so incomplete, that 
they seem not to have been conscious of the supe- 
riority of their nature, and suti'ered all the animal 
creation to retain its liberty, without establishing 
their own authority over any one species. Most of 
the animals, indeed, which have been rendered do- 
mestic in our continent, do not exist in the New 
World J but those peculiar to it are neither so 
fierce nor so formidable as to have exempted them 
from servitude. There are some animals of the 
same species in both continents. But the rein- 
deer which has been tamed to the yoke in one he- 
misphere runs wild in the other. The bison of 
America is manifestly of the same species with the 
horned cattle of the other hemisphere, and might 
have been rendered usefiil to the wants of the in- 
habitants. But a savage, in that uncultivated state 
in which the Americans were discovered, is the 
enemy of the other animals, not their superior. He 
wastes and destroys, but knows not how to multir 
ply or to govern tJiem. This, perhaps, is the most 




g2 AMRRlCil. 

notable distinction bi^lween the inhabitants of the 
Antit'nt and New World, and a liigh preeminence 
of civilized men above such as contiime rude, 
Suppose them, even when most improved, to be 
deprived ot" their uset'ul ministry, their empire over 
nature must, in si>me measure, cease, and be inca- 
pable of such arduous untlertakings as their assist- 
ance enables him to execute with ease. 

It is a doubtful point, w hether the dominion of 
man over the animal creation, or his accpiiring the 
use of metals, has contributed most to exttnid his 
power. The a:ra of this important discovery is 
unknown, and in our liemispluM*e very remote. 
Nature conipleles the formation of some metals : 
gold, silver, and coi)per are found in their perfect 
state in the clefts of rocks, in the sides of moun- 
tains, or in the cliannels of rivers. These were 
accordingly the metals first known, and hrst ap- 
plied to use. But iron, the most serviceable of all, 
and to which man is most indebted, is never disco- 
vered in its perfect form } it must feel twice the 
force of lire, and go through two laborious pro- 
cesses before it become lit for use. All the sa- 
vage tribes scattered over America were totally 
unacquainted with the metals which their soil 
produces in abundance, if we except some tri- 
tling quantity of gold. Their devices to supply 
this want of the serviceable metals were extremely 
awkward. The most simple operation was to 
them an undertaking: of immense labour and dif- 


iiculty. To fell a tree with no other instruments 
than hatchets of stone was employment for a 
month. To form a canoe into shape and to hol- 
low it consumed more time than is now expended 
in building a hundred sail of the line. Their 
operations ui agriculture were equally slow and 

defective ; 


ficfective ; and they were more intlcbtcd for the 
increase to the fertility of the soil than to their 
own industry. It is not wonderful tiien, that peo- 
ple without the assistance of tame animals should 
have made so little progress in cultivatifMi, — that 
they must be considered as depending for subsist- 
ence on fishing and hunting, rather than on the 
fruits of their own labour. 

From this description of the mode of subsistinj^ 
among the rude American tribes, the form and 
genius of their political institutions may be de- 
ducedj and we are enabled to trace various circum- 
stances of distinction between them and more ci- 
^ ilized nations. 

1. They were divided into small independent 
communities. While hunting is the chief source 
of subsistence, a vast extent of territory is requisite 
for supporting a small number of people. In pro- 
portion as men multiply and unite, the wild ani- 
mals, on which they depend for food, diminish, or 
fly to a greater distance from the haunts of their 
enemy. The increase of a society in this state is 
limited by its own nature, and the members of it 
must either disperse or fall upon some better me- 
thod of procuring food than by hunting. They 
cannot form into large communities, because it 
would be impossible to iind subsistence. This wa* 
the state of the American tribes 3 the numbers in 
each were inconsiderable, though scattered over 
countries of large extent. In America the word 
riatnyn is not of tlie same import as in other parts 
of tlie globe. It is applied to small societies not 
exceeding, perhaps, two or three hundred persons, 
but occupying provinces greater than some king- 
doms of Europe. I'he country of Guiana, though 
of larger t^xtent than France, and divided among u^ 
> greater 

I !• 



greater number of nations, did not contain more 
tIian25,0(X) inhabitants. In the provinces which bor- 
der on the Orinoko one may travel several hundred 
miles, in difterent direction: , without finding a single 
hut, or observing the footsteps of a human creature. 
In North America, where the climate is more ri- 
gorous, and the soil less fertile, the desolation is 
still greater, and journies of several hundred leagues 
have been made through uninhabited plains and 
forests. As long as hunting continues to be the 
chief employment of man, and ro which he trusts 
for subsistence, he can hardly be said to have occu- 
pied the earth. 

2. Nations which depend upon hunti^ig are, ia 
a great measure, strangers to the idea of property. 
As the animals on which the hunter feeds are not 
bred under his inspection, nor nourished by his 
care, he can claim no right to them while they are 
wild in the forest. They belong alike to all j and 
thither, as to a general store, all repair for suste- 
nance. The same princi].>les by which they regu- 
late tlieir chief occupations extend to that wbick 
is subordinate. Even agriculture has not intro- 
duced a complete idea of properly. As the men 
hunt, the women labour together, and after they 
have shared the toils of seed-time, they enjoy the 
harvest in common. Thus the distinctions arising 
from inequality of property are unknown. The 
terms of rich and poor enter not into their lan- 
guage, and being strangers to property, they are un- 
acquainted with what is the great object of law and 
policy, and with the . arrangements of regular go- 

3. People in this state retain a high sense of 
equality and independence. All are freemen, all 
feel tliemselves to be sucli^ and assert widi iirni- 


f!fK^ t 

A ecus 
f)wn c( 
of an( 
tliey w 
as sJavi 




the idea 


tfie eartl 

sidered j 

such sub 

the sam( 


the right 

tiie great 

exist. \ 

into the 3 

ceive tha 

duiinor tii< 

they seei 

union. 1 

not in use 

hands. I 


the family 

slain. Tl: 

is rather i 

preserve u 

watch the 

them will; 

form of I 



iTf«r«; the rights which belong to that condition. 
Accustomed to be the absohite masters of their 
f)wn conduct, they disdain to execute the orders 
of another j and having never known control, 
they vvdll not submit to correction. Many of the 
Americans when they found that they were treated 
as slaves by tl-e Spaniards died of grief, many de- 
itrciyed thcnn selves in despair. 

-1. Among people in this state, government can 
assume little authority, and the sense of civil sub- 
ordination must remain very imperfect. While 
the idea of property is unknown, or incompletely 
conceived, while the spontaneous productions of 
the earth, as well as the fruits of industry, are con- 
sidered as public stock, there can hardly be any 
such subject of ditference among the members of 
the same community as will require the hand of 
authority to interpo.se in order to adjust it. Where 
the right of exclusive possession is not introduced, 
the great object of law and jurisdiction docs not 
exist. When the members of a tribe are called 
into the field against a common enemy, they per- 
ceive that they are part of a political body. But 
duiing the intervals between such common efforts, 
they seem scarcely to feel tlie ties of political 
union. The names of magistrate and suljcct are 
not in use. The right of revenge is left in private 
hands. If violence be committed, the power of 
punishment belongs not to the community, but to 
the family or friends of the person injured or 
slain. The object of government among savages 
is rather foreign than domestic. They labour to 
preserve union among themselves that they may 
watch the motions of their enemies, and act against 
them with vigour and concert. Such was the 
form of politicjal order established among the 



greater part of the American nations, and this de- 
scription will apply, with little variation, to every 
people, b<^th in its northern and southern division, 
who have advanced no farther in ciA ilization than 
to add some slender degree of agriculture to fishing 
and hunting 

In the New World, as well as in other parts of 
the globe, cold or temperate countries appear to be 
the favourite seat of freedom and independence. 
I'here the mind, like the body, is firm and vigo- 
rous. These men, conscious of their own dignity, 
stoop with reluctance to the yoke of servitude. 
In warmer climates men acquiesce, almost without 
a struggle, in the dominion of a superior. Ac- 
cordingly, proceeding from north to south along 
tlie continent of America, we shall find the power 
of those vested with authority gradually increasing, 
and the spirit of the people more tame and passive. 
In Florida the authority of tlie sachems, caziques, 
or chiefs, was not only permanent but here- 
ditary. They were distinguished by peculiar or- 
naments, and enjoyed the prerogatives of sovereign 
power. Among the Natchez, a tribe now extinct, 
formerly situated on the banks of the Mississippi, 
the body of tlie people was considered as formed 
only for subjection. The great chief was reputed 
to be a being of a superior nature, tlie brother of 
the sun, and the sole object of their worship. His 
will was the law, to which all yielded implicit obe- 
dience. Nor did tlieir dominion end with life, but 
their principal officerSj their favourite wives, toge- 
tlier with many domestics, were sacrificed at their 
tombs, that tliey might be attended in tlie next 
V'orld by die same persons who served them rn 
tliis : and such was the reverence in Wiiich they 
were held that those victims welcomed death with 

exultation j 

to acc( 
or chic 


sun shin 
of them 
V. A 
the rudt 
fiider tJi 
are not 
1 hough 
rights of 
I'his rigli 
of neigh 
arise, wl 
shed. I 
of society 
often proi 
to repel c 
or plains t 
interest is 
tions to c 
revenge, \ 
among thi 






|r ot 











exultation j deeming it a recompense of their 
fidelity, and a mark of distinction, to be selected 
to accompany their deceased masters. In Hispa- 
niola, Cuba, and the larger islands, the caziques 
or chiefs, possessed extensive power. Their sub- 
jects executed their orders without hesitation. 
They delivered their mandates as the oracles of 
heaven, and pretended to possess the power of re- 
gulating the seasons, and of dispensing rain or 
sunshine, according as their subjects stood in need 
of them. 

V. After examining tlie political institutions of 
the rude nations in America, we are next to con- 
fiider tlieir provision for public security and de- 
fence. The small tribes dispersed over America 
are not only independent and unconnected, but 
engaged in perpetual hostilities with one another. 
Ihovigh most are strangers to the idea of separate 
property vested in any individual, the rudest of the 
American nations are well acquainted with the 
rights of each community to its own dominions. 
I'his right they hold to be perfect and exclusive, 
entitling tlie possessor to oppose the encroachment 
of neighbouring tribes. As their territories are 
extensive, and the boundaries of them not exactly 
ascertained, innumerable subjects of dispute 
arise, which seldom terminate without bloods 
shed. Even in tliis simple and primitive state 
of society interest is a source of discord, and 
often prompts savage tribes to take arms, in order 
to repel or punish such as encroach on the forests 
or plains to which they trust for subsistence. But 
interest is not so much the motive with savage na- 
tions to commence hostilitiles as the principle of 
revenge, which acquires a degree of force unknown 
among those whose passions are dissipated by the 

VOL. xxiv. K variet/ 



variety of their occupations and pursuits. The de- 
sire of vengeance, which takes possession of the 
heart of savages, resembles the extinctive rage of an 
animal rather than tlie passion of a man. It turns 
with indiscriminating fury even against inanimate 
objects. If struck with an arrow in battle, they 
will tear it from the wound, break and bite it with 
their teeth, and dash it on the ground. When un- 
der the dominion of this passion, man becomes the 
most cruel of animals. He neither pities, nor for- 
gives, nor spares. 

The force of this passion is so well understood 
by the Americans themselves, that they always ap- 
ply to it in order to excite the people to take arms. 
'' The bones of our countrymen," say they, '* lie 
uncovered. Their spirits cry against us : they must 
be appeased. Let us go and devour the people by 
whom they were slain. Sit no longer inactive on 
your mats j lift the hatchet ; console the spirits of 
the dead, and tell them that they shall be avenged." 
Animated with such exhortations, the youths raise 
the song of war, and burn with impatience to em- 
bme their hands in the blood of their enemies. A 
leader is chosen, but no man is constrained to fol- 
low him. Each individual is still master of his 
own conduct, and his engagement in the service is 
perfectly voluntary. 

The maxims by which they regulate their mili- 
tary operations, tliough extremely different from 
those which take place among more civilized peo- 
ple, are well suited to their political state and the 
nature of the country in which they act. Their 
armies are not incumbered with baggage or mili- 
tary stores. Each warrior, besides his arms, carries 
liis mat. and a small bag of pounded ma'ze, and 
with tliese he is completely equipped for any ser- 



tier, th 

As the 



Even ii 

by stra( 

their ei 


the higl 

as the e 

on his g 

tie in an 

cess is a 

chased v 

and the} 

blood of 

instead c 

a misfor 

"vx'arrior t 


Ihis s 

rica, anc 

through : 

more crai 

But whej- 

so that tl 

can sustai 

without bi 

rations of 

those of c 

tention ar 

object of 

the Ameri 

can seJdor 

niost essei 



vice. While at a distance from the enemy's fron- 
tier, they support themselves by hunting or fishing. 
As they approach nearer to the terri lories of the 
nation which they intend to attack, they collect 
their troops, and advance with greater caution. 
Even in their most active wars they proceed wholly 
by stratagem. They pjace no glory in attacking 
tlieir enemies with open force. To surprise and. 
destroy is the greatest merit of a commander, and 
the highest price of his followers. They regard it 
as the extreme of folly to meet an enemy w ho is 
on his guard, upon equal terms, or to give liim bat- 
tle in an open tield. The most distinguished suc- 
cess is a disgrace to a leader if it has been pur- 
chased with any considerable loss of his followers ^ 
and they never boast of a victory, if stained with the 
blood of their own countrymen, lb fall in battle, 
instead of being reckoned an honourable death, is 
a misfortune \\'hich subjects the memory of a 
warrior to tlie imputation of rashness and impru- 

I'his system of warfare was universal in Ame- 
rica, and the small uncivilized tribes dispersed 
through its diflerent regions and climates display 
more craft than boldness in carrying on hostilities. 
But where their communities are more populous, 
so that they can act with considerable force, and 
can sustain the loss of several of their members, 
without being sensibly weakened, the military ope- 
rations of the Americans more nearly resemble 
those of other nations. Though vigilance and at- 
tention are qualities chiefly requisite where the 
object of war is to deceive or surprise, yet, when 
the Americans are led into the field in parties, they 
can seldom- be brought to observe the precautions 
most essential to their own security. Such is the 

K 2 difficulty 




difficulty of accustoming savages to subordination, 
or to act in concert j siicli is tlieir impatience un- 
der restraint, that it is rarely they can be brought 
to conform themselves to the counsels and direc- 
tions of tlieir leaders, lliey never station centi- 
nels around the place where they rest at night -, and, 
after marching some hundreds of miles to surprise 
an enemy, are often surprised themselves, and cut 
oH', while sunk in a profound sleep, as if they were 
not within tlie reach of danger. 

If they catch an enemy unprepared, they rush 
upon them with the utmost ferocity j and tearing 
off the scalps of all those who fall victims to their 
rage, they carry home those strange tr(;phies in 
triumph. But they are still more solicitous to seize 
prisoners whom, in their return, they guard from 
insult, and treat with humanity. As soon, how-, 
ever, as they approach their own frontier, some of 
their number are dispatched to inform tlieir coun- 
trymen of the success of the expedition. Then 
the prisoners begin to feel the wretchedness of 
their condition. The women of the village, toge- 
ther with the youth who have not attained the age 
of bearing arms, assemble, and, forming themselves 
mto two lines, through which the prisoners must 
pass, beat and bruise them with sticks or stones in 
a cruel manner. After this first gratification of 
their rage, follow lamentations for the loss of such 
of their countrymen as have fallen in the service, 
accompanied with words and actions which seem 
to express the utmost anguish and grief. But in a 
moment, on a signal being given, their tears cease, 
and they begin to celebrate their victory with all 
the wild exultations of a barbarous triumph. The 
fate of the prisoners remains still undecided. The 

it. Some are de- 

•Id men deliberate concerning 



f!tined to be tortured to death, in order to satiate 
the revenge of the contjuerors ; some to replace the 
members which the community has lost in that 
and lormer wars. They who are reserved for this 
milder fate, are led to the huts of those whose 
fiMends have been killed. The women meet them 
at the door, and, if they receive them, their sulVer- 
ings are at an end. They are adopted into the fa- 
mily, and thencetbrw ard are treated witii all the 
tenderness due to a faiher, a brother, a husband, or 
a friend. Bat if the women refuse to accept of the 
prisoner who is oti'ered to them, his doom is tixed. 
No power can then i^ave him from death. I'hose 
thus devoted to death are tied to a stake, and all 
who are present, men, w^omen, and children, rush 
upon them like furies. Every species of torture is 
applied that rancour or revenge can invent. No- 
thing sets bounds to their rage, but the fear of 
abridging the duration of their vengeance by has- 
tening the death of the sulterers 3 and such is their 
cruel ingenuity in tormenting, that they often pro- 
long this scene of anguish for several days. In 
spite of all they suffer, the victims continue to 
chant their death-song with a firm voice 3 boast 
of their own exploits ; insult their tormentors, and 
w^arn them of the vengeance w hich awaits them 
on account of what they are now doing. To dis- 
play undaunted fortitude in such dreadful situa- 
tions is the noblest triumph of a warrior. Ani- 
mated with this thought, they endure, without a 
groan what seems almost impossible for human 
nature to sustain. They appear not only insen- 
sible of pain but to court it : " Forbear," said an 
aged chief of the Iroquois, when his insults had 
provoked one of his tormentors to wound him with 
a knifc^ ** ibrbear these stabs of yovir kifife, and 

K 3 rather 

i I 


ratlier let me die by fire, that those dogs, your al- 
lies, from beyond the sea, may learn by my exam- 
ple to suffer like men." 

This barbarous scene is often succeeded by one 
no less shocking, namely, that of eating their ene- 
mies. Human flesh was never used as common 
food in any country j the rancour of revenge first 
prompted men to tliis barbarous action. The 
fiercest tribes devoured none but prisoners taken in 
war, or such as they regarded as enemies. The 
perpetual hostilities carried on among the Ameri- 
can tribes are productive of fatal effects : the loss 
of men is considerable among them in proportion 
tp the degree of population. Sensible of this de- 
cay, there are tribes which endeavour to recruit 
their national force, when exhausted, by adopting 
prisoners taken in war, and by this expedient pre- 
vent their total extinction. The practice, how- 
ever, is not universally received. Resentment 
operates more powerfully among savages than 
considerations of policy. 

But though war be the chief occupation of men 
in their rude state, and to excel in it their highest 
distinction and pride, their inferiority is always 
manifest when they engage in competition with 
polished nations. Destitute of that foresight which 
discerns and provides for remote events, they are 
strangers to union and mutual confidence, and in-? 
capable of subordination. Savage nations may asto- 
nish a disciplined enemy by tlieir valour, but sel- 
dom prove formidable to him by their conduct 5 and 
when tlie contest is of long continuance must yield 
to superior knowledge. 

VI. The arts of rude nations unacquainted with 
the use of metals hardly merit any attention on 
their own account, but ^re worthy of some notice 



as they serve to display the genius and manners of 
man in this stage of his progress. The tirst dis- 
tress a savage must feel will arise from the man- 
ner in which his body is aft'ected by the heat, 
or cold, or moisture, of the climate under which 
he lives ; and his lirst care will be to provide some 
covering for his defence. In tlie warmer and more 
mild climates of America none of the rude tribes 
were clothed. To most of them nature had not 
even suggested any idea of impropriety in being al- 
together uncovered. Others were satisfied with 
some slight covering, such as decency required. 
But though naked, they were not unadorned. 
They dressed their hair in different forms. They 
flistened bits of gold, or shells, or shining stones in 
their ears, their noses, and cheeks. They stained 
their skins with great variety of tigures, and spent 
much time, and submitted to great pain in orna- 
menting their persons in this fantastic manner. 
Vanity, however, which finds endless occupation 
for ingenuity and invention in nations vvdiere dress 
has become a complex, and intricate art, is circum- 
scribed within so narrow bounds, and is confined tg 
so few articles among naked savages, that they are 
not satisfied with those simple decorations, and 
have a wonderful propensity to alter the natural 
form of their bodies in order to render it, as they 
imagine, more perfect and beautiful. This practice 
was universal among the rudest of the American 
tribes, and the operations lor that purpose began as 
soon as the infant was born. In all their attempts 
either to adorn or new-model their persons, it 
seems to have been less the object of the Americans 
to please, or to appear beautiful, than to give an 
jiir of dignity and terror to their aspect. Their 


h I 

^ i i 

. 104 AMERICA. 

regard to dress had inure reference to w\ir than 
to gallantry. 

I'he next ohiect to dress that will cnoa^e the at- 
tent ion ol the savage, is to prepare a habiiation 
which may a fiord him a shelter by day and a re- 
treat by night. Some of the Ameriean tril)es had 
advanced so little beyond the primeval simplicity of 
nature tliat they had no houses at all. JJuring the 
&Ay they take shelter from the scorcliing rays of 
tlie sun under thick trees ; at night they form a 
shed v\'ith their branches and leaves. In the rainy 
season they retire into coves formed by the hand of 
nature, or hollowed out by their own industry. 
Others sojourn in temporary huts which they 
erect with little labour, and abandon without con- 
cern. The inhabitants of those vast plains which 
are celuged wdth periodical rains raise houses 
upon piles fastened in the ground, or place them 
among the boughs of trees, and are thus safe amidst 
that wide extended inundation which surrounds 
them. Such w^ere the first essays of tlie rudest 
Americans towards providing themselves with ha- 
bitations. One circumstance merits attention as 
it is singular and illustrates the character of the 
people. Some oi their houses are so large as to af- 
ford accoirmiodation for a hundred persons. These 
are built for the reception of dif^erent families 
which dwell together under the same roof, and 
often round a common fire, wdthout separate apart- 
menrs or any kind ot partition between the spaces 
which they respc ctively occupy. As soon as men 
have acquired distinct ideas of property, or when 
they are so mucii attached to their females as to 
watch them witli care and jealousy, families, of 
course^ divide and settle in separate houses^ where 


AMF.RTCA. 105 

they can secure and gnard whatever they wish to 

After making som(3 provision for his dress and 
habitation, a savage will perceive the necessity of 
preparing proper avnjs with which to assault or 
repel an enemy. This, accordingly, has early ex- 
ercised the ingenuity and invention of all rude na- 
tions. The first oti^ensive weapons were doubtless 
such as chance presented, and the lirst attempts to 
improve upon these were extremely awkwnrd and 
simple. Clubs and lances armed with flints and 
bones are weapons known to the nidost nations. 
But for the purpose of annoying their enemies 
while at a distance, the bow and arrow is the 
most easy invention. I'his weapon is familiar to 
the inhabitants of every quarter of the globe. 
Some of the tribes in America were so destitute of 
art and ingenuity, that they had not attained to 
the discovery of this simple invention, and seem to 
have been unacquainted with the use of any missive 
weapon. The sling was little known to the people 
of North America, but in several of the provinces 
of Chili, and those of Patagonia, they fastened 
stones about the size of a fist to each end of a 
leathern thong eight feet in length, and, swinging 
these round their heads, threw them with such dex- 
terity that they seldom missed the object at which 
they aimed. 

Among people whose food and habitations are 
perfectly simple, their domestic utensils are few 
and rude. Some of the southern tribes had dis-^ 
covered the art of forming vessels of earthern 
ware, and baking them in the sun so that they could 
endure the fire. In North America, they hollowed 
a piece of hard wood into'^the form of a kettle, and 
billing it with water, brought it to boil by putting 


1 1 



lo5 amkrica/ 

red-hot stones in it-^". I'hcse vcs";els thcv used in 
j)reparing' piirt of their provisions, nnd this may be 
consitlcivd as a step towards rtfincment and luxury; 
for, in the rudest state, men were not arcjuainted 
V ith any method of dressing their victuals but by 
n^asting them on the lire j and among several tribes 
hi America this is the only species of cookery yet 
kn(>\vn. lint the niastcr-piece of art among the 
savages of America is in the construction of their 
canoes. An Escjuimaux shut up in his l)oat of whale- 
bone, covered with the skin of seals, can brave that 
stormy ocean on which the barrenness of his coun- 
try compels him to depend for the chief part of his 
subsistence. The pe(jple of Canada venture upon 
their rivers and lakes in boats made of the bark of 
trees, and so light that two men can carry them 
^vherever shallow s or cataracts obstruct the naviga- 
tion. In these frail vessels they undertake and ac- 
complish long voyages. 

But in every attempt towards industry among 
the Americans, one striking quality in their charac- 
ter is conspicuous. Ihey apply to work without 
ardour, carry it on v\ ilh little adivity, and, like 
childn n, are easih diverted from it. Their opera- 
tions advance under the hand with such slov\ iiess, 
that an eye-witness comj)ares it to the impercepti- 
ble progress of vegetation. They will suffer one ])art 
of a ri;of to decay and perish before they complete 
tlie other. I'his slowness of tlie Americans may be 
severally imputed to the little value put upon 

*See Goldsmith's Geography, p. 431. 1st edition. To 
this work we can with pleasure refer our youthful readers 
for accurate and entertaining descriptions of the manners, 
customs, and distresses of all nations in the known world, 
illustrated with a multitude of engravings and maps. 


AM Fine A. 107 

their time, to the awkward and defective na- 
ture of their tools, and to tlieir cold and phleg- 
matic temper : it is almost impossible to rouse 
them iVom that hal)ilual indolence in which they 
are suiik ; notliing but war and hunting can excite 
in them a sinrle vio-orous edi)rt. 

Vli. We next come to the consideration of their 
rehi^i )us rites and tenets, vvliich have been imper- 
fectly understood, and in iijeneral represented with 
little tidelit) . I'hero are two fundamental doctrini»s 
npon which the whole system oi' fuitiiral reli.-:;ion is 
established. These respect the Ix'ing of God, and 
the immortalitv of tlie so\d. In the earjy and most 
rude periods of savage hie, dispositions of this na- 
ture are entirely unknown. When the iniellectual 
powers are just beginning to unfold, iheir feeblt3 
exertions are directed towards a few objects of pri- 
mary necessity and use. Several tribes of America 
have no idea whatever of a supreme lacing, and no 
rites of religious worshi'p ; they pass their days, 
like the animals around them, witho.it knowledge 
or veneration of any superior power. It is, how- 
ever, only in the most uncultivated state of nature 
that men are totally insensible to impressions of an 
invisible power. Tl)e hunian mind, to which the 
principles of religion are peculiarly adapted, socn 
opens to the reception of ideas which are destined 
to be the source of consolation amidst the calami- 
ties of life. Among some of the American tribes 
may be discerned apprehensions of some mvisible 
and powerful beings. These seem to be suggested 
rather by the dread of impending evils, than to tiow 
from gi'atitude for blessings received. While 
Nature holds on her course with imiform and 
undisturbed regularity, men enjoy the benefits 
resulting from it without inquiring concerning 



its cause. But every deviation from this regulttt 
course rouses and astonishes them : they search for 
the reasons of it with eager curiosity. Dejected 
v^'ith calamities which oppress him, and exposed to 
dangers which he cannot repel, the savage no 
longer relies upon himself j he feels his own impo- 
tence, and sees no prospect of being extricated but 
by tlie interposition of some unseen arm. Hence, 
in all unenlightened nations, the iirst rites whicli 
bear any resemblance to acts of religion have for 
their object to avert evils which men sujfer or 

Among other tribes who have made great pro- 
gress in improvement may be discerned some fee- 
ble pointing towards more just and adecjuate con- 
ceptions of the power wliich presides in nature. 
They seem to perceive that there nuist be some 
universal cause to whom all things are indebted 
for their being, whom they denominate the Great 
Spirit, But their ideas are faint and confused; 
and the word spirit has a meaning \\ ith them very 
different from that which we assitin to it. Ther 
believe their gods to be of human form, though 
of a nature more excellent tlian man, whose pro- 
tection they implore wlien threatened \\'ith danger 
or oppressed with calamity. I'he sun was the 
chief object of worsliip among the Natchez. In 
their temples, which were constnicied with mag- 
nificence, and decorated with varicnis ornamenthf, 
they preserved a perpetual £re, as the purest em- 
blem of their divinity. Ministers \\'ere appointed 
to watch and feed the sacred llame. To tjiis great 
lumhiary they paid their daily devotions, and in- 
stituted in his honour stated remrning festivals. 
This is, perhaps, the most relined species of super- 
iitition kno^^•n in America, and one of the mo^t 



AMERICA. 10(> 

natural, as well ns most seducing. Tlie snn is the 
apparent S(^urce of the joy, tertUity, mul Jlle, dif- 
fused through n.'iturej and while the human mind 
contemplates and atlmires his universal and ani- 
mating energy, its admiration is apt to stop short at 
what is visible, without reaching to the unseen 
cause; and pays tbit adoration to the benetieial 
work of God which is due only to him who form- 
ed it. 

Am.ong the people of Bogota the sun and m(wn 
were the chief objects ot veneration. Their system 
of religion was more complete, though k'ss pure, 
than that of the Natchez. They had temples, al- 
tars, priests, sacrifices, and that long train of cere- 
monies which superstition introduces wherever she 
has fully established her dominion over the minds 
of men. But the rites of their worship were cruel 
and bloody. 

With respect to the doctrine of the immortality 
of the soul the sentiments of the Americans were 
more united. It may be traced from one extremity 
of America to the other j in some regions more 
faint and obscure, in others more periectly dev e- 
loped, but no where unknown. The most unci- 
vilized of its savage tribes do not apprehend deaih, 
as the extinction of being. All entertain hopes of 
a future and more happy state, where they shall be 
forever exempt from the calamities which embitter 
human life in its present condition. The highest 
place in this state they assign to the skilful hunter 
and successRil warrior : and as they imagine that 
departed spirits begin their career anew in the 
Vr'orld whither they are gone, that their friends may 
not enter upon it defenceless and unprovided, they 
bury, together with the bodies of die dead, their 
bow, their arrows, and otlier weapons used in 

vol.. XXIV. i huuting 

I m 



hunting or war : they deposit in their tombs alf^o 
whatever is reckoned necessary for their simple 
mode of life. 

VIII. To form a complete idea of the unculti- 
vated nations of America, we must not pass unob- 
served some singular customs which, though uni- 
versal and characteristic, could not be reduced to 
any of the foregoing articles : such as dancing, for 
which savages in every part of the globe have an 
unbounded passion. This is not merely a pastime 
but a serious and important occu})ation, which nfin- 
gies in every occurrence of public and private life. 
If any intercourse be necessary between two Ame- 
rican tribes, the ambassadors of the one approach in 
a solemn dance and present the calumet, or em- 
blem of peace y the sachems of the other receive it 
with the same ceremony. If war is denounced 
against an enemy it is by a dance, expressive of the 
resentment which they feel and of the vengeance 
which they meditate. If the wrath of the gods is 
to be appeased, or their beneficence to be cele- 
brated 3 if they rejoice at the birth of a child or 
mourn the death of a friend, they have dances ap- 
propriated to each of these situations, and suited to 
the different sentiments with which they are then 
animated. If a person is sick, a dance is prescribed 
as the most effectual means of restoring health j 
and if he cannot endure the fatigue of such exercise, 
the physician or conjurer performs it in his name, 
as if the virtue of his activity could be transferred to 
his patient. 

AH their dances are imitations of some action j 
but the war dance is the most striking. It is a per- 
fect representation of a complete American cam- 
paign : the departure of the warriors from their vil- 
lage, their march into tiie enemy's country, the 



tt^ution with which tiiey encamp, the address with 
which they station some of the party in ambush, the 
manner ot" surprising the enemy, the noise and fe- 
rocity of the combat, the scalping of those who are 
slain, the seizing of prisoners, the triumph nt re- 
turn of the con(juerors, and the torture of the vic- 
tims, are successfully exhibited. 

An immoderate love of play, especially at games 
of hazard, which seems natural to all people unac- 
customed to the occupations of rcg-ular industry, is 
Kkewise uni versal among the Americans. The same 
cause which so often prompts persons in civilized 
life, who are at their ease, to have recourse to this 
pastime, renders it the delight of the savage. The 
former are independent of labour, the latter do not 
feel tlie necessity of it;, and as both are unemployed,, 
they run with transport to whatever is interesting 
enough to stir and to agitate their minds. Hence 
the Americans, who at other times are so indiffe- 
rent, and animated with so few desires, as soon as 
they engage in play, become rapacious, impatient, 
noisy, and almost frantic w^th eagerness. Their 
furs, their domestic utensils, their clothes, their 
arms, are staked at the gaming-table 3 and when all 
is lost, high as their sense of independence is, in a 
wild emotion of despair and hope they wili often 
risk their personal liberty upon a single cast. 

From cavises similar to those which render them 
fond of play, the Americans are extremely addicted 
to drunkenness. It seems to have been one of the 
first exertions of human ingenuity to discover some 
composition of an intoxicating quality, and there is 
hardly any nation so rude as not to have succeeded 
in this fatal research. The most barbarous of the 
American tribes have been so ttnfortunate as to 
attain tijis art. Accordingl)^, whatever be the occa- 

h 'M sioii 

* ^jt 


fiion or pretext on which the Americans assemble, 
the meeting always terminates in a debauch. Many 
of their festivals have no other object j and they 
welcome the return of them with transports of joy. 
Their eagerness for present enjoyment renders them 
blind to its fatal cunse(]uences} and when their pas- 
sions are inflamed by drink they are frequently 
guilty of the most enormous outrages, and the fes- 
tivity rarely concludes without deeds of violence or . 

It were endless to enumerate all the detached 
customs w hich have excited the w^onder of travel- 
lers in America: one more, how^ever, must be 
n.entioned. When parents and other relations be- 
come old, or labour under any distemper which 
their slender knowledge of the healing art cannot 
rem-ove, the Americans cut short their days with a 
violent hand, in order to be relieved from, the bur- 
then of supporting and attending them. The same 
hardships and difficully of procuring subsistence, 
which deter savages in some cases from rearing 
tlieir rhild^ en, prompt them to destroy the aged 
and infirm. This is not regarded as a deed of cru- 
elty but as an act of mercy. An American broken 
with years and infirmities, conscious that he can 
no longer depend on the aid of those around him, 
places himself contentedly in his grave 5 and it is by 
the hands of his children or nearest relations that 
the thong is pulled, or the blow inflicted, which re- 
leases him tor ever from the sorrows of lite. 

IX. After contemplatinu; the rude American 
tribes in such various lights, it only remains to form 
a general estimate of their character, conij^ared 
with that of more polished nations. A human be- 
ing, as he comes originally from the hands of his 
maker, is every where the same. Tiie capacity for 




improvement seems to be the same, and his future 
talents and virtues depend, in a great measure, 
upon the st:ite of society in wliich he i;; phiced. To 
this state his mind naturally accommodates itself, 
and from it receives discipline and culture. In 
proportion to the \\ ants which it accustoms a hu- 
man being to feel, and the functions in which these 
engage him, his intellectual powers are called forth. 
According to the connections which it establishes 
betA^'een iiim and the rest of his species, the affec- 
tions of his heart are exerted. It is only by attend- 
ing to this great principle, that we can discover 
what is the character of man in every different 
period of his progress. In savage life, of course, 
the intellectual powers of man must be extremely 
limited in their operations. They are confirted 
within the naj'row sphere of what he deems neces- 
sary for supplying his wants. But the knowledge 
to which he does attain he possesses completely; it 
is the fruit of his own experience, and accommo- 
dated to his condition and exigencies. While em- 
ployed in the active occupations of war and hunt- 
ing, he often finds himself in difficult and perilous 
situations, from which the efforts of his own saga- 
city must extricate him. He must rely solely upon 
his own penetration to discern the dangers to which 
lie is exposed, and up^ni his own wisdom in pro- 
viding against them. Hence in deliberation and ac- 
tion he rests on himself alone. 

As the talents of individuals are exercised and 
improved by such exertions, much political wisdom 
is said to be displayed in conducting the affairs of 
their small communities. The council of old men 
in an American tribe deliberating upon its interests 
has been compared to the senate in more polished 
republics. The proceedings of the former are often 

h 3 no 


no less formal and sagacious tlian those of the lat- 
ter. Much address and eloquence are employed 
by the leaders, who aspire at ac(|iiiring such t onfi- 
dence with their countrymen as to have an as- 
cendant in their assemblies. But among savage 
tribes, the field for displaying political talents can- 
not be extensive. They have neither foresight nor 
temper to form complicated arrangements with re- 
spect to their future conduct. The strongest feel- 
ing in the mind of a savage is a sense of his own in- 
dependence. He has sacrificed so small a portion of 
his naiural liberty by becoming a member of soci- 
ety, that he remains in a great degree the sole mas- 
ter of his own actions, in many of his operations 
he stands as much detached from the rest of his 
species as if he had formed no union with them. 
He pursues his own career and ii^.di^dges his own 
fancy, without inquiring or regarding whether they 
may derive benefit or receive hurt from it. Hence 
the ungovernable caprice of savages, their impa- 
tience under any species of restraint, the scorn with 
which they receive advice, their high estimation 
of themselves, and their contempt of other men. 
Among them the pride of independence produces 
almost the same effects with interestedness in a 
more advanced state of society ; it refers every thing 
to a man himself, and renders the gratification 
of his own wishes the measure and end of his 

To the same cause may be imputed the hard- 
ness of heart and insensibility remarkable in all 
savage nations. Their minds, roused only by strong 
emotions, are little susceptible of gentle, delicate, 
or tender affections. Taciturnity and cunning are 
to be traced to the same cause. Impeneti.bly secret 
in forming their measures, the rude tribes of Ainc^ 






rica pursue them with a patient undcviatlng atten- 
tion, and there is no refinement of dishinmlation 
which they cannot employ in order to insure suc- 
cess. The natives of Peru were engaged ahove 
thirty years in concerting the plan of that insurrec- 
tion which took place under the vice-Rjyalty of the 
marquis de Villa Garcia; and though it was com- 
municated to a great n\uril)er of persons in every 
diiferent rank, no indication of it ever transpired 
during that long period; no man betrayed his trust, 
or gave rise, by look or \s'ord, to any suspicion of 
what was Intended. 

But if there be defects or vices peculiar to the 
savage state, there are likewise virtues which it in- 
spires, and good (]uali ties to the exercise of which 
it is friendly. The bonds of society sit so loose 
upon the members of the more rude American 
tribes that they scarcely feel any restraint. Hence 
the spirit of independence and fortitude which are 
the pride of a savage, and which he considers as the 
unalienable prerogative of man. In no situation 
does the human mind rise more superior to the 
sense of danger or the dread of death than in its 
most simple and uncultivated state. Another vir- 
tue lemarkable among savages is attachment to 
the community of which they are members, and 
perfect satisfaction with their own condition. On 
this account they have no inclination to relin(]uish 
their own habits, or to adopt those of civilized 
life. The transition is too violent to be suddenly 
made. Even where endeavours have been used to 
wean a savage from his own customs, and to render 
the accommodations of polished society familiar to 
him, he droops and languishes under the restraint 
of laws and forms ; he seizes the first opportunity 
of breaking loose from them^ and returns witlj 



transport to the forest or the wild, where he can 
enjoy a careless and uncontroled freedom. 

Such are the manners and character of tJie unci- 
vilized trihes scattered over the vast continent of 
America. In surveying these rude nations, a natu- 
ral distinction is observable between the inhabitants 
of the temperate and torrid zones. They may be 
divided into two great classes. The one compre^ 
hends all the North Americans from the river St. 
I^awrence to the Gulf of Mexico, together with 
the people of Chili, and a few small tribes towards 
(he extremity of the southern continent, lb the 
other belong all the inhabitants of the islands, and 
those settled in the various provinces wliich extend 
from the Isthmus of Darien almost to the southern 
confines of Brasil, along the east side of the Ande«. 
In 'the former, which comprehends the regions of 
the temperate zone, the human species appear 
manifestly to be more perfect. The natives are 
more robust, more active, more intelligent, and 
more courageous. They have defended their li- 
b(^';^y with persevering fortitude against the Euro- 
peans, who subdued the other rude nations of Ame- 
rica with the greatest ease. The natives of the 
temperate zone are the only pec^ple in the New 
World who are indebted for their freedom to their 
valour. The North Americans, though long en- 
compassed by three formidable European povwers, 
still retain part of their original possessions, and 
continue to exist as independent nations. T'he peo- 
ple of Chili, though early invaded, still maintain a 
gallant contest with the Spaniards, and have set 
bovmds to their encroachments; w^hereas, in the 
warmer regions, men are more feeble in their 
frame, less vigorous in the efforts of their mind, 
n^ore enslaved by pleasure, and more sunk in in- 


dolence. Accordingly in the torrid zone the Eu- 
ropeans have most completely established their do- 
minion in America. 

Conspicuous as this distinction may appear be- 
tween the inhabitants of those ditlerent regions, it 
is not universal. There are some tribes in tiie torrid 
zone hardly inferior to the natives of more tem- 
perate climates. Thus this law of climate, more 
universal, perhaps, in its operation than any that af- 
fects tlie human species, cannot be applies!, in judg- 
ing of their conduct, witliout many exceptioui. 




• CHAP. IV. 

History of the Con f/ nest nf Neiv Spain. Hernando 
Cortes has the Command (f the Expedition. Fe^ 
lasquezs Jealousy. Battle ivith, and Victory 
over, the Indians. CoUes lands at St. Juan da 
JJliia. Receives Officers from Montezuma. Pre- 
sents Irought from the Prince. Marches to 
Mexico. Tradition if the Mexicans. Grandeur 
of the City. Cortes makes Alontexuma Prisoner. 
Cruel Death of his Son. Acknowledges himself 
Vassal of the King of Castile. Attempts to con- 
vert him to Christianity. Orders Cortes to de^ 
part. Narvaez sent to seize Cortes. Fights. 
Is conquered and taken Prisoner. The Mexicans 
attack Cortes. Montezuma s Disi^race and Death. 
Spaniards retreat from Mexiuj ivith great 
JjOSs. New Resources arrive. March again io 
Mexico. Quet/avaca dies of the Small -pox. 
Cortes lays siege to and takes Mexico. Takes 
the King. Tortures him to fnd his IVealth. 
Cortes appointed Gov em or -General of New 
Spcdn. Lays the Foundation of a viagnificent 
City. His savage Cruelty to the conr/uered Mexi- 
cans. Returns to Spain. Ennolled. Goes hack 
to America. Discovers California. Returns to 
Spain. Is neglected. Dies. 

TJTT'HEN Grijalva returned to Cuba, he found 
tJie armament destined to attempt tJie con- 
quest of that rich country which he had discovered 
ahiiost complete. Not only ambition but avarice 
had urged Velascjuez to hasten his preparations j 
and having such a prospect of gratifying botli^ lie 


had advanced con.si(U»r:alj wms out of his private 
fortune loxsards defray in. the expt-ise of tlie ex- 
m-dition. He exerted his inf^uei) i as governor 
in engaging the most distin;';iiished '.x^rsor • in llu* 
colony to undertake tlie service. A m. .jer (» 
M)ldiers were fc;und eager to embark in a - darin, ; 
enterprise, but it was not so easy to tind <t persi>u 
qualilied to take the command in an expedition of 
such great importance. At length, after much de- 
liberation, Hernando Cortes was pitched on for 
the purpose. He had not hitherto acted in high 
con)mand, but had displayed such qualities in se- 
veral scenes of difficulty and danger as raised uni- 
versal expectation, and turned the eye»of his coun- 
trymen towards him, as one capable of perfornfnig 
great things. Neither the rank nor fortune of 
Cortes was such as to create sentiments of jea- 
lousy in the breast of Velasquez. He received hi.s 
commission with gratitude, and immediately erect- 
ed his standard before his own house. He soon 
after set sail froni St. Jago de Cuba, and proceeded 
to Trinidad, a small settlement on the same side of 
the island, where he was joined by a multitude of 
adventurers, and received a supply of provisions 
and military stores. From Trinidad he sailed for 
tlie Havanna, in order that he might raise more 
soldiers, and complete the victualling of his fleet. 
While he was at this place Velasquez formed a 
j)lan of taking the command olit of the hands of 
(x)rtes, of wdiom he became violently jealous. 
Cortes, forewarned of his danger, took precautions 
for his own safety. He appealed to his troops, 
whether the honour of their general, and tlieir san-» 
guine hopes of wealth and glory, ought to be sa- 
criticed to the illiberal uisinuations and grouiidles? 
jealousies of Velasquez. Witli one voice they en- 



treated tliat he would not abandon the important 
station to w hi( h he had so good a title, ottering, at 
the same time, to shed in his beiialf the last drop 
of their blood. Cortes was easily induced to com- 
ply with what he hini-^elf so ardently wished. He 
swore that he would never desert soldiers who had 
given him sueh a signal proof of their attachment, 
and promised instantly to conduct tliem to that 
rich country, which had been so long the object of 
their thoughts and wishes. I'his declaration was 
received with transports of military applause, ac- 
companied with imprecations against all who should 
presume to call in (juestion the jurisdiction of their 
general, or to obstruct the execution of his de- 

With a slender and ill-provided train did Cortes 
set sail, to make war upon a monarch whose domi- 
nions were more extensive than all the kingdoms 
subject to the Spanish crown. As religious entini- 
fiiasm always mingled with the spirit of adventure 
in the New World, and united with avarice in 
prompting the Spaniards to all their enterprises, a 
large cross was displayed in their standards, with 
this inscription : " Let us follow the cross, for un- 
der this sign we shall conquer." As Cortes had 
determined to touch at every place which Grijalva 
had visited, he steered directly towards the island 
of Cozumel ; there he had the good fortune to re- 
deem Jerome de Aguilar, a Spaniard, who had been 
eight years a prisoner among the Indians, and who 
proved hereafter extremely useful as an interpreter. 
From (>ozumel, Cortes proceeded to the river Ta- 
basco; but after repeated endeavours to conci- 
liate the good-will of the inhabitants, he was con- 
strained to have recourse to violence. The forces 
of the enemy were numerous 3 and though they ad- 

' vanced 


ranced with cxtiaortlinnry courage, they were 
routed with gTcat slaughter in several suecessive 
aelions. I'lie loss whieh they sustained, and the 
terror excited by the destructive ett'ect of the tire- 
arms, and the dreadt'ul appearance of the horses, 
humbled their tierce spirits, and induced them to 
fiie for peace. They acknowledgetl the king of 
Castile as their sovereign, and granted Cortes a 
Kupply of provisions, w iih a present of cotton gar- 
ments, some gold, and twenty female slaves. 

Cortes continued his course to the westward, 
but could discover no proper place for landing 
until he arrived at St. Juan de Ulua, by the ndia- 
bitants of which he was addressed in a most re- 
spectful manner, but in a language altogether un- 
known to Agiiilar. Cortes was in the utmost 
perplexity and distress at an event of which he 
instantly foresaw the consequences : a tortunatc 
accident, however, extricated him. One of th« 
female slaves whom he had received from tiie 
cazi([ue of Tabasco perfectly understood the Mex- 
ican language, and explained w'hat had been said in 
the Yucatan tongue, with which Aguilar was ac- 
quainted. This M'oman, known afterwards by the 
name of Donna Marina, was born in a Mexican 
province, and having been sold as a slave in the 
early part of her life, tell intD the hands of the 
Tabascans, and had resided long enough among 
them to accjuire their language, without losing the 
use of her own. From her Cortes learned that 
the two persons whom he had received on board 
his ship were deputies from 1'eutile and Pilpatoe; 
otliccrs entrusted with the government of that 
pro\'ince by a great monarch whom they called 
Montezuma, and that they were sent to inquire 
wliat his intentions were in visiting tlieir coast, and 

VOL. XXIV. M to 









to oflftT him what assistance he niight need, in or- 
der to continue his voyage. Cortes, struck with 
the appearance of tliose people as well as the te- 
nor of the message, assured them that he ap- 
proached their country with the most friendly 
sentiments, and came to propose matters of great 
importance to the welfare of their prince and hi.'? 
kingdom, which he would unfold more fully in 
person to the governor and general. Next mora- 
ijig he landed his troops, his horses and artillery, 
'i'he natives, instead of opposing the entrance of 
tiiese fatal guests into their country, assisted them 
m all their operations witli an alacrity of which 
liiey had S(^on reason to re})ent. 
. ,>j When the Mexican ministers entered the 
J ' Spanish camp, Cortes received them with 
^' much formal ceremony, assuring them that 
his business with the monarch was oi' so high im- 
portance, that he could impart it to none but the so- 
vereign himself. This they knew would be extreme- 
ly disLigreeable to Monte/Auna ; in hopes therefore 
of being able to dissuade the Spaniards from their 
purpose, they brought a great quantity of cotton 
cloth, [)lumes of various colours, and ornaments of 
gold and silver to a considerable value. The display 
of these produced a very ditferent effect from what 
the Mexicans intended. Cortes insisted upon a per- 
sonal interview with their sovereign, which they 
endeavoured by every means in their power to pre- 
vent. During this interview, some painters in the 
train of the Mexican chiefs had been diligently 
employed in delineating, upon v/hite cotton cloths, 
ligures of the ships, horses, artillery, soldiers, and 
w hatever else attracted their eyes as singular. As 
soon as Cortes knew that these pictures were to Ix? 
$tnit to Montezuma, he resolved to render the re- 







AxMKRICA. 123 

presentation more nniniated and interesting, by ex- 
hibiting sucli a sjiectacle as might give both iheni 
and their monarch an awful impression of the 
prowess of his followers, and the irresistil»le force 
of their arms. The trumpets sounded, the troops 
formed in order of battle, the artillery, pointed to- 
wards the thick woods A^hich surrounded tlie 
camp, were fired, and made dreadful havock among- 
tlic trees. The Mexicans looked on ^^"ith silent 
amazement 5 but at tbe explosion of the cannon 
many of them fled, some fell to the ground, and all 
were so confounded at the sight of men whose 
power so nearly resembled that of the gods, that 
Cortes found it difficult to compose and re-animate 

Messengers were immediately dispatched to 
Montezuma with the pictures, and a full account 
of every tiling that had passed since the arrival of 
the Spaniards, and with presents from Cortes 
Though the capital in which Montezuma resided 
was IbO miles from St. Juan de Uluaj the news 
was carried and an answer received in a few days. 
Another negotiation was set on foot, which wa? 
commenced by introducing a hundred Indians 
loaded with presents, sent to him by Montezuma. 
The magnificence of those far exceeded any idea 
which tiie Spaniards had hitherto formed of his 
wealth. Tliey were spread on mats, and exhibited 
to tl.'e greatest advantage. Cortes and his officers 
>iewed with admiration the various maiuifactures 
©f the country, cotton stutfs so fine and of a tex- 
ture so delicate as to resemble silk, pictures of 
juiimals, trees, and other natural objects, formed 
witli feathers of different colours, disposed and 
mingled with .such skill and elegance as to ri\al 
tiie works of the pencil in trutlj and beauty of 

M 'Z imitation : 



is . 

1 1; ' r 


. ' ; J 


imitation: but what chiefly attracted their admira- 
tion were two large plates of a circular form, one 
of massiv^e gold, representing the sun, the other of 
silver, an emblem of the moon» These were ac- 
companied with bracelets, collars, rings, and other 
trinkets of gold; and, that nothing might be want- 
ing that could give the Spaniards a complete idea 
of what the country aftbrded, with some boxes 
filled with pearls, precious stones, and grains of 
gold wrought, or as they had been found in the 
mines or rivers. Cortes received all these with an 
appearance of profcmnd veneration for the mo- 
narch by whom they were bestowed ; but when 
he was informed that it ^'^as Montezuma's inten- 
tion that foreign troops should not approach nearer 
to his capital, he declared, hi a resolute and per- 
emptory tone, that he could not, without disho- 
nour, return to his own country until he was ad- 
mitted into the presence of tlie prince whom he 
was appointed to visit in the name of his sovereign. 

We cannot enter into a detail of all the minute 
circumstances which attended the negotiation. By 
consummate address Cortes made himself cibsolute 
and independent of die governor of Cuba : he then 
alienated from Montezuma several of the petty 
states, with their caziques ; others he fought, con- 
quered, and attached to himself by force of arms. 
By degrees he marched up the country, and with 
the addition of tlie natives he found himself at the 
head of a large army consisting of several thousand 

When they drew near the city, about a thousand 
persons, who appeared to be of distinction, came 
forth to meet them, ad(.)rned with phimes, and clad 
in mantles of line cotton. Each of these, in hi* 
order^ passed by Cortes, and saluted him in the 









mo a 



• It 


iTiost respectful manner. They announced the 
approacli of Montezuma himself, and soon after 
the harbingers came in sight. There appeared 
first two hundred persons in an uniform dress, 
marching two and two, in deep silence, barefooted, 
with their eyes fixed to the ground. These WTre 
followed by a company of higher rank in their 
most showy apparel, in the midst of whom wn^ 
Montezuma, in a litter richly ornamented with 
gold, and feathers of various colours. Four of his 
principal favourites carried him on their shoulders, 
others supported a canopy of curious workmanship 
over his head. Before him marched three officers 
witJi rods of gold in their hands, which th.ey lifted 
up on high at certain intervals j and at that signal 
all the people bowed their heads and hid their 
faces, as unworthy to look on so great a monarch. 
When he drew near, Cortes dismounted, advan- 
cing to\vards him with otficious haste, and in a re- 
spectful posture. At the same time Montezuma 
alighted from his chair, and, leaning on the arms 
of two of his near relations, ap]")roached with a slow 
anci stately pace, his attendants covering the street 
w'tli cotton cloths, that he might not touch the 
ground. Cortes accosted him v^'ith profound re- 
verence, after tlie European fashion. He returned 
the salutation, according to the mode of his coun- 
try, by touching tlie earth with his hand and then 
kissing it. Nothing material passed in this first 
hiterview. Montezuma conducted Cortes to the 
quarters tliat he had prepared for his reception, and 
took leave of him, saying, '* You are now with 
your brothers in your own house ; refresh your- 
selves after your fatigue, and be happy until I re- 
turn." The first care of Cortes was to take pre- 
cautions for his security, by planting the artillery 

M 3 i»d 

I .11 







\i' , 

12(5 ' AMERICA. 

SO iis to commnnd llie dliferent avenues which led 
to the place allotted for their reception, by nppoint- 
ing a large division of his troops to be always on 
guard, and by posting sentinels at proper stations, 
with injuncuons to observe the same vigilant dis- 
cipline as if they were widiin sight of an enemy's 

In the evening Montezuma returned to visit his 
guests, and brouglit presents of such value as proved 
the liberality of the monarch to be suitable to the 
cpulen 'e of his kingdom. A long conference en- 
sued, in which Montezuma told him that it was 
an established tradition among the Mexicans, that 
their ancestors cnme originally from a remote re~ 
gion, and conquered the provinces now subject to 
his dominion ; that after they were settled there, 
the great captain who conducted this colony re- 
turned to his own country, promising that at some 
future period his descendants should visit them., 
iissume the government, and reform their consti- 
tution and laws j that fiom what he had heard 
and seen of Cortes and his followers, he was con- 
vinced that they were the very persons whos^ ap- 
pearance the Mexican traditions and prophecies 
tauglit them to expect ; and accordingly he had 
received them not as strangers, but as relations of 
the same blood and parentage, and desired that 
thev miiJ^ht consider themselves as masters in his 
dominions, as both he and his subjects should be 
ready to comply with their will. Cortes made a reply 
in his usual style,, and the next day he and some 
of his principal attendants were admitted again to 
an audience of the emperor. The three subsecjuent 
days were employed in viewing the city, the ap- 
pearance of which, so far superior in the order of 
iu» buildings and the number of its inhabitants to 




any place the Spaniards had bt'hcld in America, 
and yet so liUle resembling the stmcture of an 
European cityj filled them with surprise and ad- 

But how much soever the novelty of various 
rbjects might amuse or astonish the Spaniards, they 
felt the utmost solicitude with respect to their own 
situation. From a concurrence of circumstances, 
no less unexpected than favourable to their pro- 
gress, they had been allowed to penetrate into the 
heart of a powerful kingdom, and were now lodged 
in its capital. They had been warned by their new 
allies of trusting to Montezimia ; and now they 
felt the danger to wliich they were exposed. After 
levolving the matter with deep attention, Cortes 
fixed upon a plan no less extraordinary than daring. 
He determined to seize Montezuma in his palace, 
and to carry him prisoner to the Spanish quarters. 
He communicated his, plan to his principal ofiicers, 
and found means almost instantly to put it into ex- 
ecution. Thus was a powerfiil prince seized by a 
few strangers in the midst of his capital at noon- 
day,- and though his own soldiers and people broke 
cut into transports of rage, yet upon seeing Mon- 
tezuma cheerful and contented, tliey quietly di- 
spersed. History contains notliiug parallel to this 
event, either with respect to tiie temerity of the 
attempt, or the success of the execution. 

Montezuma was received in the Spanish quar- 
ters with great ceremonious respect : he was at- 
tended by his own domestics, and served with his 
usual state His principal oiHcers had free access 
to him, and he carried on every function of go- 
vernment as if he had been at perfect liberty. The 
S})aniards, however, watched him with scrupulous 
vigilance, endeavouring at the same tiiue to soothe 


:■ : i 



, i; 

128 AMERIC\. 

find reconcile him to his situation by eveiy exter- 
nal demonstration of regard and attachment. But 
from captive princes the hour of humiliation and 
suffering is never far distant. Qualpopoca his son, 
and five of the princi]ial officers who served under 
him, were brought prisoners to the capital in con- 
sequence of the orders which Montezuma had 
issued. The emperor gave them up to Cortes, 
who caused them to be tried by a Spanish court- 
martial ; and though they had acted no other part 
than what became loyal subjects and brave liien, 
in opposing the invaders of their country, they 
\vere condemned to be burnt alive. Tlie ex- 
ecution of such atrocious deeds is seldom h^ig 
suspended. The unhappy victims were instantly 
led forth. I'he pile on which tliey were laid 
was composed of the weapons collected in the 
ro}'al magazine for public defence. — But these 
were not the most shocking indignities which 
the Mexicans :ad to bear. Just before Qualpo- 
poca was led out to sulier, Cortes entered tjie 
apartment of Montezuma followed by some offi- 
cers, and a soldier carrying a pair of fetters, and, 
approaching the monarch v>ath a stern countenance, 
told him that he had been the cause of the out- 
rage committed, and that it was necessary he should 
make atonement for that guilt; then turning ab- 
ruptly, without waiting for a reply, commanded 
the soldier to clap the fetters on his legs. The 
orders were instantly executed. The disconsolate 
monarch, considering this as a prelude to his own 
death, broke out into lamentations and complaint. 
His attendants, struck with horror, fell at his feet, 
bathing them with their tears ; and, bearing up the 
fetters in their hands, endeavoured, with officious 
tenderness^ to lighten tlieir pressure. Nor did 


1 I 

1 theil 

1 cxefl 

the 1 





1*1 ^ ]H 

his 1 

[ was 1 

' me III 

I the ! 

1 extc 

if was 

^ time 


I coul< 

1 Cort 

1 comi 

K Mex 

■ to pi 

I to t 

1 ^^""^ 

B (lai:i( 

■ kixio 


tlieir c;rief abate, until Cortes returned from the 
execution and with a cheerful countenance ordered 
the fetters to be taken otf. 

The rigour with which Cortes punished the un- 
happy persons who first presumed to lay violent 
hands upon his followers, seems to have made all 
ilie impression that he desired. The spirit of 
JMontezuma was not only overawed, but svibdued. 
Such ^^'as the dread which both the monarch and 
his subjects had of the Spaniards, that no attempt 
was made to deliver their sovereign from confine- 
ment. Thus, by ^he fortunate temerity of Cortes, 
the Spaniards at once secured to themselves moi-e 
extensive authority in the Mixican empire than tt 
was possible to have acquired in a long course of 
time by open force, and they exercised more ab- 
eolute sv/ay in the name of Montezuma than tliey 
rould have done in their own. Of this power 
Cortes availed himself to the utmost : he appointed 
commissioners, who were accompanied by some 
Mexicans of distinction, to survey the empire, and 
to prepare the minds of the people for submitting 
to the Spaniards ; and in the end he persuaded 
Montezuma to yield to the lowest point of degra- 
tia»:ion, by acknowledging himself a vassal of the 
khig of Castile, and by subjecting Ms dominions 
to the paymicnt of an annual tribute. The fallen 
monarch, at the desire of Cortes, accompanied this 
profession of fealty and homage with a magnificent 
present to his new sovereign ; and, after his exam- 
ple, his subjects brought in very liberal contribu- 
tions. The Spaniards now^ collected all their ti-ea- 
«ure together ; and having melted the gold and 
silver, the value of which, without including the 
jewels, amounted to much more than one hundred 
thousand pounds sterling, the soldiers were impa- 

1. '' 



1 I 




tieut to i^ave it divided ; and Cortes complied with 
(heir desire. A fifth part was set apart for the 
kiivj^, another fifth was allotted to Cortes as com- 
mander in chief. The sums advanced by Velas- 
quez, by Cortes, and by some of the otiicers, to- 
wards defraying the expense of fitting out tlie ar- 
mament, were then deducted. The remainder 
was divided among the army in proportion to their 
ditierent ranks. After all the defalcations, the share 
of a private man did not exceed twenty pounds j 
a sum so much below tlieir expectations, that se- 
veral of the soldiers rejected it with scorn, and 
others murmured so loudly at this cruel disappoint- 
ment of their hopes, that it required all tlie address 
of Cortes to appease them. 

Cortes had frequently urged Montezuma to re- 
nounce his false s^ods and to embrace Christianity; 
which he rejected with indignation. The Mexi- 
cans adhered tenaciously to their mode of worship, 
which was ever accompanied w^ith such order and 
solemnity as to render it an object of the highest 
veneration. Cortes, finding all his attempts in- 
effectual to shake the constancy of Montezuma, 
was so much enraged at his obstinacy, that in a 
transport of zeal he led out his soldiers to throw 
down die idols in the temple by force. But the 
priests taking arms in defence of tlieir altars, and 
the people crowding with great ardour to support 
them, Cortes's prudence overililed his zeal, and 
induced him to desist from his rash attempt, after 
jdislodging the idols from one of the shrines, and 
placing in their stead an image of the Virgin Mary. 

From that time the IVIexicans began to medi- 
tate how they might expel or destroy the Spa- 
niards, and thought themselves called upon to 
avenge their insulted deities. The priests and 






leading men held frequent consultations with Mon- 
tezuma for this puri)()se. But as ir niij^ht prove 
fatal to the captive monarch to atte!n[)t either tJie 
one or the other by violence, he was wiliinjr tp try 
more gentle means. Having called Cortes into hi.s 
presence, he observed, th?it now, as all the pur- 
poses of his embassy were fully accomplisjied, the 
gods had declared their will, and the people signi- 
iied their desire, that he and his followers should 
instantly depart out of the empire. "With this he 
required them to coniply, or unavoida})le destruc- 
tion would fall suddenly on their heads. Cortes, 
perceiving that avowed opposition might ruin him, 
replied with seeming composure, that he had al- 
ready begun to prepare for returning to his own 
country, but that time was necessar}' for building 
otlier ships. 1 his appeared reasonable, and the 
Mexicans afforded them assistance in cutting down 
timber for the purpose. Cortes flattered himself 
tliat during this interval he might either find means 
to avert the threatened clan<i:er, or receive such re- 
inforcements as would enable him to despise it. 
A -pj Nine months had elapsed since he had 
,* „* dispatched messengers to Spain j and he 
daily expected their return with a confir- 
mation of his authority from the king. While he 
was reflecting on the dany-er to which he was ex- 
posed, a fleet arrived j but it was what he least 
wished for : it was from Velasquez, who had given 
tlie command of it to Narvaez, with instructions to 
seize Cortes and his principal officers ; to send them 
prisoners to him, and then to complete the discovery 
and conquest of the country in his name. Cortes, 
aware of the dangers which presented themselves 
on all sides, endeavoured to accommodate matters 
with Narvaez; who treated his overtures with con- 
i tempt. 








tempt, holding it impossible that Cortes should 
be able to resist his power. Presumption always 
leads to mischievous consequences : in the present 
instance it gave Cortes a complete victory over his 
enemies. Narvaez was wounded, made prisoner, 
and thrown into tetters : his army capituhited^ and 
ijuietly submitted to their conquerors. 

I'his sio;nal victory proved more acceptable as 
it was gained almost without bloodshed; onlv two 
soldiers were killed on the side of Cortes. He treated 
the vanquished not like enemies, but as countrymen 
and friends, and offered either to send them back 
to Cuba, or to take them into his service as partners 
in his fortune, on equal terms with his own soldiers. 
This latter proposition they almost all closed with, 
and seemed to vie with each other in professions 
of fidelity and attachment to a general, whose re- 
cent success had given them such a striking proof 
of his abilities for command. Thus, by a series of 
events no less fortunate than uncommon, Cortes 
not only escaped from perdition, which seemed in- 
evitable, but, when he least of all expected it, was 
placed at the head of a thousand Spaniards, readj 
to follow wherever he shoidd lead them. 

This seasonable addition to his army had but just 
time to enrol themselves under their new leader, 
before the Mexicans, wearied of their oppressors, 
attacked them in all quarters. Several times, in- 
deed, were they beaten with prodigious slaugliter ; 
but fresh men iTished forwai'd to occupy the place* 
of tlie slain, who meeting with the same fate were 
succeeded by others no less intrepid and eager for 
Vengeance, The utmost effort of Cortes' s abilities 
and experience, seconded by the disciphned valour 
of his troops, was scarcely sufficient to defend the 
fQitiiication* tliat surrounded tlie post where the 




Spaniards were stationed, into which the enemy 
were more than once on the point of forcing tlieir 


Cortes beheld with wonder the implacable fe- 
rocity of a people who seemed at hrst to submit 
tamely to the yoke, and had continued so long 
passive vmder it. The force of the Mexicans wai 
greatly augmented by fresh troops which poured 
in continually from the country, and their animo- 
sity was in no degree abated. They were led by 
their nobles, intlamed by the exhortations of their 
priests, and fought in defence of their temples and 
families, under the eye of their gods, and in pre- 
sence of their wives and children. After a day of 
incessant exertion, though vast numbers of the 
Mexicans were killed, and part of the city burnt, 
the Spaniards were obliged to retire, with the mor- 
titication of having accomplished nothing so deci- 
fiive as to compensate the unusual calamity of hav- 
ing twelve soldiers killed and above sixty wounded. 
Another sally, made with greater force, was not 
more effectual, and in it the general himself was 
wounded in the hand. 

Cortes now perceived, too late, the fatal error 
into which he had been betrayed by his own con- 
tempt of the Mexicans, and was satisfied that he 
could neither maintain his present station in the 
centre of an hostile city, nor retire from it without 
the most imminent danger. One resource still re- 
mained, to try what etfect the interposition of Mon- 
tezuma migiit have to soothe or overawe his sub- 
jects. When the Mexicans approached next morn- 
ing to renew the assault, that unfortunate prince, 
at the mercy of the Spaniards, and reduced to thd 
gad necessity of becoming the instrument of his 
own disgrace and of the slavery of his people, ad- 
voL. xxiv. ir vanced 


vanccd to the battlements in his royal robes, and 
with all the pomp in which he used to appear on 
solemn occasions. At the sight of their soveicign, 
whom they had been accustomed to re\ ere as a 
god, the weapons dropped from their hands, erery 
tongue was silent, all bowed their heads, and many 
prostrated themselves on the ground. Monlezunia 
addressed them with every argument that could 
mitigate their rage, or persuade them to cease from 
hostilities. When he had ended his discourse, a 
sullen murmur of disapprobation ran through the 
ranks ; to this succeeded reproaches and threats j 
and the fury of the multitude rising in a moment 
above every restraint of decency or respect, flights 
of arrows and volleys of stones poured in so vio- 
lently upon the ramparts, that before the Spanish 
soldiers, a])pointed to cover Montezuma with their 
bucklers, had time to lift them in his defence, two 
arrows wounded the unhappy monarch, and a blow 
of a stone on his temple struck him to the ground. 
On seeing him fall, the Mexicans passed in a. 
moment from one extreme to the other ; remorse 
succeeded to insult, and they fled with horror, as 
if the vengeance of heaven were pursuing the crime 
which they had committed. The Spaniards, \\ ith- 
out molestation, carried Montez.uma to his apart- 
ment, and Cortes hastened thither to console him 
under his misfortune : but he indignantly refused 
the comfort which was ministered ; he scorned to 
survive this last humiliation, and to protract an 
ignominious life. In a transport of rage he tore 
the bandage from his wounds, ar.d refused with 
such obstinacy to take any nouristiment, that he 
soon ended his days, rejecting with disdain all the 
solicitations of the Spaniards to embrace the Chris- 
tian faitli. 





Upon the death of Montezumn, Cortes, having 
lost all liope ot' bringing the Mexicans to an ac- 
connnodatioii, saw no prospect ot'satety but in at- 
lenij)ting a retreat, and began to prepare tor it. A 
Midden motion, however, of the Mexicans engaged 
}iini in new conflicts. I'hey took possession of a 
)iigh tower in tlie great temple which overlooked 
tlie Spanisli quarters, and placing there a garri>on 
of their principal warriors, not a Spaniard could 
stir without being exposed to their missile weapons. 
From this post it was necessary to dislodge them 
at any risk, and Juan de Escobar, widi a numerous 
detachment of chosen soldiers, was ordered to make 
the attack. He was thrice repulsed j which when 
Cortes perceived he rushed himself with his drawn 
sword into the diickest of the combatants. Encou- 
raged by the presence of their general, the Spaniards 
returned to the charge, and drove the Mexicans to 
the platform at the top of the tower. There a dread- 
ful carnage began ; when two young Mexicans of 
high rank, observing Cortes as he animated his sol- 
diers, resolved to sacrifice their own lives in order to 
cut otr the author of all the calamities which deso- 
lated their country. They approached him in a sup- 
pliant posture, as if they had intended tv.> lay down 
tiieir arms, and, seizing him in a momv'nt, hurried 
him towards the battlements, over which they 
threw themselves headlong, in hopes of dragging 
him along with them to be dashed in pieces by the 
same fall. But Cortes, by his strength and agility, 
broke loose from their grasp, and the gallant youths 
perished in this generous though unsuccessfid at- 
tempt to save their country. As soon as the Spa- 
niards became masters of the tower they set fire to 
it, and w^ithout further molestation continued tlie 
preparations for their retreat. 
, When the necessary prep::rations were made, 

N 2 tiiey 


13(5 AMERICA. 

they began to move, towards midnight, in thrfe 
divisions, Sandoval led the van ; Pedro Alvarado 
and Velasquez de Leon had the conduct of the 
rear j and Cortes commanded in the centre, where 
he placed the prisoners, among whom were a son 
and two daughters of Montezuma, the artillery, 
the baggage, and a portable bridge of timber, in- 
tended to be laid over the breaches in the cause- 
way. They reached the lirst breach in it without 
molestation, hoping that their retreat was undis- 
covered. But the Mexicans had watched all their 
motions with attention, and !iad made proper dis- 
positions for a most formidable attack. While the 
Spaniards were ii: .^nt upon placing their bridge * 
in the breach, and occupied in conducting tJieir 
horses and artillery along it, they were suddenly 
alarmed with the tremendous sound of warlike in- 
struments, and a general shout from an innume- 
rable multitude of enemies : the lake was covered 
with canoes, flights of arrows and showers of stones 
poured in upon them from every quarter; the 
Mexicans rushed forward to the charge with fear- 
less impetuosity, as if they lumped in that moment 
to be avenged of all their wrongs. The Spaniards, 
unable to sustain the weight of the torrent that 
poured in upon them, began to gi\ e way. In a 
moment the confusion was uni\ i rsal ; horse and 
foot, officers and soldiers, friends and enemies, 
were mingled together ; and while all fought, and 
many fell, they could hardly distinguish from what 
hand the blow came. 

Cortes, with about a hundred foot soldiers and 
a few horse, forced his way over the remaining 
breaches in the causeway, and reached the main 
landj and having formed them as soon as tliey 

* The city of Mexico was built in the midst of a lake. 


i ■ v 



i and 



arrived, he returned with such as were capable of 
service to assist his friends in their retreat. He 
met witli part of his soldiers who had brokea 
through the enemy, but found many more over- 
whelmed by the multitude of their aggres.^ors, or 
perishing in the lake 5 and heard the piteous la- 
mentations of others whom the Mexicans, having 
taken alive, were carrying off in triumph to be sa- 
criliced to the god of war. Before day, all who 
bad escaped assembled at Tacuba j but when the 
morning dawned, and discovered to the view of 
Cortes his shattered battalions, his soul was pierced 
with such anguish, that while he was forming their 
ranks, and issuing some necessary orders, his sol- 
diers observed tears trickling from his eyes, and 
remarked, with much satisfaction, that while at- 
tentive to the duties of a general he was not insen- 
sible to the feelings of a man. 

In this fatal retreat many officers of distinction 
perished 5 all the artillery, ammunition, and bag- 
gage, were lost j the greater part of the horses and 
above two thousand of their I'lascalan allies were 
killed, and only a very small portion of the trea- 
sure which they had amassed was saved. Some 
interval of tran(|uillity was now absolutely neces- 
{iary j not only that the Spaniards might give atr 
tention to the cure of their wounds, but in order 
to recruit their strength, exhausted by such a long 
succession of fatigue and hardships. During this 
period Cortes was not idle j he was considering of 
measures for retrieviuix his misfortunes. He drew 
a small supply of ammunition and two or three 
field-pieces from his stores at Vera Cruz. ITe 
dispatched an officer with four ships of Narvaoz's 
fleet to Hispaniola and Jamaica to engage adven- 
turers, and to purchase horses^ gunpowJcr, and 

N 3 other 






' »- 

other military stores. As he knew it wonld ht 
vain to attempt the reduction of Mexico unless he 
could secure the command of the lake, he gave 
orders to prepare materials for building twelve bri- 
gan tines, so that they might be carried tl:iither in 
pieces ready to be put together, and launched when 
he stood in need of them. 

While he ,was taking those necessary steps to- 
wards the execution of his measures, the spirit of 
discontent and mutiny broke out in his own army; 
they were unwilling to hazard the dangers of an- 
other campaign. The utmost he was able to eti'ect 
was to prevail with them to defer their d*^narture, 
for which they loudly called, for some time, on a 
promise that he would, at a more proper juncture, 
dismiss such as should desire it. At this juncture, 
two small ships arrived from Cuba wiih men and 
military stores j these had been sent by the gover- 
nor to Narvaez, whose success against Cortes ap- 
peared to Velasquez as certain. The officer whoni 
Cortes had appointed to command on the coa- 
artfully decoyed them into the harbour of Ver^. 
Cruz, seized the vessels, and easily persuaded the 
8oldiers to follow the standard of a more able 
leader than him whom they had been destined to 
join. Soon after, three ships of more considerable 
force came into the harbour. These belonged to 
an armament titled out by Francisco de Garay, go- 
vernor of Jamaica, who hoped to divide with Cortes 
the glory and gain of annexing the empire of New 
Spain to the crown of Castile. The men belong- 
ing to these ships abandoned also the master w^hom 
they were bound to serve, and enlihted under 
Cortes. Nor was it America alone that fiirnished 
such unexpected aid. A ship arrived from Spain, 
freighted by some private merchants, witli mili- 





iciry stores, in hopes of a proti table market in a 
country, the fame of whose opulence began to 
spreail over Europe. Cortes eagerly purchased a 
cargo which to him was invaluable, and tj^e crew> 
following the general example, joined his army. 

From these various quarters the army of Cortes 
was augmenied with a hundred and ei^jhty men 
and twenty horses j and it is not a little remarka- 
ble, that the two persons chiefly instrumental in 
furnishing him with supplies should be an avowed 
enemy w iio aimed at his destruction, and an en- 
vious rival who wished to supplant him. Having 
dismissed such of Narvaez's soldiers as remained 
with reluctance, he was able to muster 550 infan- 
try, 40 horsemen, and a train of nine field-pieces. 
At the head of these, accompanied by 10,000 Tlas- 
calans and other friendly Indians, Cortes began his 
march towards Mexico on the 28th of December, 
six months after his disastrous retreat from that 

Nor did he advance to attack an enemy unpre- 
pared to receive him. Upon the death of Monte- 
zuma, the Mexican chiefs, in whom the right of 
electing the emperor was vested, had instantly 
raised his brother Quetlavaca to the throne, a man 
distinguished for his courage and capacity. He 
repaired what the Spaniards had rained in the city, 
and strengthened it with such new fortifications' as 
the skill of his subjects was capable of erecting. 
He summoned the people in every province of the 
empire to take arms against theii* oppressors, and, 
as an encouragement to exert them,selves with vi- 
gour, he promised them an exemption from all tho 
taxes which his predece<6sois had imposed. While 
this prince was arranging his plan of defence with 
a degree of foresight uncomiuon to an American, 



I. ,|r 


' ' : I ; 


1 j: 


bis days were cut short by ilie small-pox. This 
distemper, wliich rnged at that time in New Spain 
with fatal malignity, was vinknown in that quarter 
of tlie globe until it was introduced by the Euro- 
peans, and may be reckoned among the greatest 
calamities brought upon them by their invaders. 
In his stead the Mexicans raised to the throne Gua- 
timozin, nephew and son-in-law of Montezuma, 
a young man of such high reputation for abilities 
and valour, tliat in this dangerous crisis his coun- 
trymen, with one voice, called him to the supreme 

During the siege, which was long, and attended 
with heavy loss on both sitles, the Mexicans, in 
their own defence, displayed valour which was 
hardly inferior to that with which the Spaniards 
attacked them. On land, on water, by night and 
by day, one furious conflict succeeded to another. 
Once tiie Spaniards committed an error, which 
Guatimozin instantly dibcerned, and prepared to 
take advantage of. On a signal which he gave,, 
the priests in the principal temple struck the great 
drum consecrated to the god of war. No sooner 
did the Mexicans hear its doleful solemn sound, 
calculated to inspire them with contempt of death 
and enthusiastic ardour, tlian they rushed upon the 
enemy with frantic rage. 1 he Spaniards, unable 
to resist men urged on no less by religious fury 
than hope of succejrs, began to retire at first lei- 
surely j but as the enemy pressed on, and their 
own impatience to escape increased, the terror and 
confusion became so general, that when they ar- 
rived at the gap of the causeway, Spaniards, Tlas- 
ciilans, horsemen and infantry, plunged in promis- 
cuously, while the Mexicans rushed upon them 
fiercely from every side. In vain did Cortes at- 






tempt to stop and rally his flying troops j Jear ren- 
dered them regardless of his entreaties or com- 
mands. Finding all his endeavours to renew the 
combat fruitless, his next care was to save some of 
those who had thrown themselves into the water j 
but while thus employed, with more attention to 
their situation than to his own safety, six. Mexican 
captains suddenly laid hold of him, and were hur- 
rying him off in triumph ; and though two of his 
othcers rescued him at the expense of their own 
lives, he received several danwrous wounds before 
he could break loose. Above sixty Spaniards pe- 
rished in the rout, forty of whom fell alive into 
the hands of an enemy, never known to show mercy 
to a captive. 

The approach of night, though it delivered the 
dejected Spaniards from the attacks of the enemy, 
ushered in, what was scarcely less grievous, the 
noise of their barbarous triumph, and of the horrid 
fesdval with which they celebrated their victor)^ 
Every quarter of the city was illuminated j tlie 
great temple shone with such peculiar splendour, 
that the Spaniards could plainly see the people in 
motion, and the priests busy in hastening the pre- 
parations for the death of the prisoners. Through 
the gloom they fancied that they discerned their 
companions by the whiteness of their skins, as they 
were stript naked and compelled to dance before 
the image of the god to whom they were to be 
offered. They heard the shrieks of those who 
were sacrificed, and thought that they could di- 
stinguish each unhappy victim, by the well-known 
sound of his voice. Imagjination added to what 
they really saw or heard, and augmented its horror; 
The most unfl^eling melted into tears of compas- 



;''>' ■■'■ , 



' kit, 






sion, and the stoutest heart trembled at the dread- 
ful spectacle which they beheld. 

The Mexicans, elated with their victory^ sallied 
out nex< morning to attack Cortes in his quarters. 
But they did not rely on tl-e ettbrts of their own 
arms alone. They sent the heads of the Spaniards 
whom tlicy had sacriliced, to the leading men in the 
adjacent, provinces, and assured them, that the god 
of war, appeased by the blood of tlieir invaders, 
had declared with an audible voice, that in eight 
days time those hated enemies should be linally 
destroyed, and peace and prosperity reestablished 
in the empire. 

A prediction uttered with such confidence gained 
universal credit, among a people prone to supersti- 
tion. The zeal of those who had already declared 
against the Spaniards augmented 3 and those who 
had hitherto been inactive took arms with enthu- 
siastic ardour to execute the decree of the gods. 
The Indian auxiliaries who had joined Cortes 
abandoned his army as a race of men devoted to 
certain destruction. Even the fidelity of the Tlas- 
calans was sh^hen, and the Spanish troops were 
left almost alone in their stations. Cortes, findnig 
that he attempted in vain to dispel the superstitious 
fears of his confederates by ajgnment, took advan- 
tage from the imprudence of those who had framed 
the prophecy, in fixing its accomplishndent >-;o near 
at hand, to give a striking demonstration of its fal- 
sity. He suspended all military operations during 
the period marked out by the oracle. Undercover 
of tlie brigantines, which kept the enemy at a di- 
stance, his troops lay on the lake in safety, and the 
fatal term expired without any disaster. 

Many of his allies^ ashamed of their own cre- 



dulity, returned to their station. Other tribes, 
judging that the gods, who had now deceived the 
Mexicans, had decreed finally to withdraw their 
protection from them, joined his standard 3 and so 
striking was the levity of this simple people, moved 
by every slight impression, that in a short time 
after such a general defection of hi'^^ confederates, 
Cortes saw himself at the head of a hundred and 
fifty thousand Indians. Notwithstanding this im- 
mense force, Cortes proceeded against the city with 
great caution j nor co\ild he make any impression 
till the stores, which Guatimozin had laid up, were 
exhausted by the multitudes which had crowded 
into the capital, to defend their sovereign and the 
temples of their gods. Then people of all ranks 
felt the utmost distresses of famine. What they 
suffered brou^rht on infectious and mortal diseases, 
the last calamity that visits besieged cities, and 
which filled up the measure of their woes. 

But, under the pressure of so many and such 
various evils, the spirit of Guatimozin remained 
firm and unsubdued. He rejected with scorn 
every overture of peace from Cortes ; and, disdain- 
ing the idea of submitting to the oppressors of his 
country, determined not to survive its ruin. At 
the earnest solicitations of several of his chiefs he 
attempted to escapee, but was taken by the Spa- 
niards. When brought before Cortes he appeared 
with a dignified countenance ; " I have done,'* 
said he, *' what became a monarch. I have de- 
fended my people to tlie last extremity. Nothing 
now remains but to die. Take this dagger," lay- 
ing his hand on one which Cortes wore, '' plant 
it in ray breast, and put an end to a life which caji 
no longer bs useful to my country.'* 


M, I ' ■ 




As soon afi tlie fate of their sovereign 
was known, the resistance of the Mexicans 
ceased, and Cortes took possession of that 
Rmall part of the capital which yet remained un- 
destroyed. Thus terminated the siege of Mexico, 
the most memorable event in the concjuest of Ame- 
rica. The exultation of tJie Spaniards on the ac- 
complishment of this arduous enterprise was at first 
excessive j but this was quickly damped by hndiiiLj 
so small a quantity of booty, the gold and siher 
am( unting to much less than 30,0CX^1. sterliiiL^. 
1'he murmurs and sullendiscontent of the Spanish 
soldiers led Cortes to the commission of a deed 
.which stains the glory of all his great actions. 
Vv'ithout regarding the former dignity of Giiati- 
mozin, or feeling any reverence lor the virtues 
\\ liich he had displayed, he sulijected tlie unhappy 
monarch, together with his chief favourite, to tor- 
lure, in order to force from them a discovery of 
the royal treasures, wliicli it was supposed they 
had concealed. Ihe monarch bore whatever hi,s 
tormentors could inflict with invincible fortitude, 
till Cortes, ashamed of a scene so horrid, rescued 
the royal victim from the hands of his tortm-evs, 
and prolonged a life reserved for new indignities 
and sufterings. 

The fate of the capital, as both parties had fore- 
seen, deci led that of tlie empire. The provinces 
submitted one after another to tlie conquerors. 
Small detachments of Spaniards, marching through 
them without interruption, penetrated in different 
quarters to the great Southern Ocean, which, ac- 
cording to the ideas of Columbus, they imagined 
woukl open a short as well as easy passage to the 
East Indies, and secui*e to the crown of Castile ail 
a tlie 


the envied wealth of those fertile regions ; and 
the active mind of Cortes began already to form 
schemes for attempting this important discovery. 
He did not know, that during the progress of his 
victorious arms in Mexico, the very scheme of 
which he began to form some idea, had been un- 
dertaken and accomplished by Ferdinand Magel- 
lan-^. Though an untimely fate depr,ved tliis 
great man of the satisfaction of accomplisliing the 
undertaking, his contemporaries, just to his me- 
mory and talents, ascribed to him not only the ho- 
nour of having formed the plan, but of having sur- 
mounted almost every obstacle to the completion 
of it 5 and in the present age his name is still ranked 
among the highest in the roll of eminent and suc- 
cessful navigators. The naval glory of Spain now 
eclipsed that of every other nation j and by a sin- 
gular felicity she had the merit, in the course of a 
few years, of discovering a new continent almost as 
large as that part of the earth which was foimerly 
known, and of ascertaining by experience the form 
and extent of the whole terraqueous globe. 

At the time Cortes was acquiring such extensiv^e 
territories for his native country, and preparing the 
way for new conquests, he was represented by mi- 
nisters in the court of Spain as an undutiful and 
seditious subject. His conduct in assuming the 
government of New Spain was declared to be an 
irregular usurpation, in contempt of royal autho- 
rity. A person was sent out with fa': powers to 
supersede him, and even to send Ivin home pri- 
soner. But Cortes soon prevailed on him to sur- 
render his powers, and in the mean time dispatched 
deputies to Spain with a pompous account of the 




* See Vol. XII. ch. V. of tjiis work. 


146 AMr.nicA, 

success of his nrms, with further specimens of the 
j)ro(lnolions of the country, and with rich presents 
to tJie emperor, as the earnest of future contrihu- 
tions from his new cominest j re(juesting, in re- 
compense for all his services, the approbation of 
Lis proceedings; and that he might he entrusted 
Avith the government of those dominions, \^hi(•h 
Ills conduct and the valour of his followers liad 
added to the crown of Castile. The public voice 
«leclared warmly in favour of his ])retensions, and 
the emperor aj)pointed Cartes captain-g<,;neral and 
governor of N^w Spain- 
Even before his jurisiliction ref'e'H'ed tlm legal 
sanction, Cortes ventured to exercise all the powuis 
of a governor, and endeavoured to lender his con- 
quest a secure and benelicial ac<jui,iition to his 
country. He determined to raise INlexico from it^ 
ruins : andhavins; conceived hiiih Ideas concernino 
the future n'randeur of the state of which he \\as 
laying the foundatfou, he began to rebuild its ca- 
pital on a plan which hath gradually formed tiic; 
most magnihcent city in the New World. 

it was not, however, without difliculty that the 
Mexican empire was reduced into the form of a 
Spanish colony. And to the everlasting infamy of 
the concjuerors, they affected to consider every ef- 
fort of the Mexicans to assert their own independ- 
ence, as the rebellion of vas.sals against their sove- 
reign, or the mutiny of slaves against their master. 
Under the sanction of those ill-founded maxims, 
they reduced the conmion people in the provinces 
to the most humiliating of all conditions, that of 
personal servitude. Their chiefs were punished 
with greater severity, and put to death by the most 
excruciating tortures. In almost every district of 
the iMexican empire, the progress of Spanish arms 



is marked w'ltli bloovl, and with deeds so atrocious 
as di>;grace the enterprising valour that condueted 
them to success. In the country ot" Panuco, sixty 
<M'/i(iues anil four huiuh'cd nobles were burnt at 
one time j and to complete the hoiTor of the scene, 
the children and relations of the wretched victims 
were assembled, and compelled to be spectators of 
their dyin-!: atijonies. But we will not enlareo oa 
facts which are disgraceful to human nature. 

The passions of jealousy were revived . ,^ 
with still stronger force against Cortes at ,-.',,^* 
home, and Ponce de Leon was sent out 
to seize his person and seiad him prisoner to Spain, 
^'rhe sudden death of this man, wuhin a few days 
after his arrival in New Spain, prevented the exe- 
cution of this commission. And Cortes immedi- 
ately set out ibr Castile, and hi the presence of his 
sovereign vindicated his condvict very successfully. 
His arrival in Spain removed from the » -p. 
monarch every suspicion and fear that had . rr^^' 
been entertained with respect to his inten- 
tions. The sovereign presented him with the order 
of St. Jago, and the title of marquis del Valle de 
Guaxana, and a grant of an ample territory in New 
Spain. But amidst those external proofs. of regard, 
symptoms of distrust appeared. Cortes returned to 
America, but In the remainder of his life nothing 
more is remarkable ex<x^pt the discovery of the 
peninsula of California. He returned to . ta 
his native country. But his recejnion tliere '. ' * 
was unwortJiy of his great merit. His antient 
exjxloits seemed to be ah'eady forgotten : the em- 
peror behaved to Km with cold civility ^ his mi- 
nisters treated him, sometimes with neglect, some- 
times w^ith insolence. His grie\ances received no 
redress ; }iis claims were urged without eifect ; 

o 2 and^ 


and, after several years spent in fruitless applica- 

ti(;n to ministers iiiul judges, lie ended his days on 

the second of December in the sixty-second year 

. -p. of his age. His fate was the same with 

■ ' tliat of all the persons who distinguished 

' * themi^elves in the discovery or conquest of 

the New World : envied by his contemporaries, 

and ill requited by the court which he served, he 

has been admired and ceKbrated by succeeding 

ages. AVhich has formed the most just estimate 

of his characier, an impartial consideration of liis 

actions must determine. 







H'lstnn/ of the Conquest of Peru ly Pharro, Alma- 
gro, and Lupine. Tlwir Character. Pizarro sets 
n II' from Panania. yfrriaes at Tunibez. Z)<'- 
I'lghted with the great Plentij of Gobi and Silver, 
Eil)lor"s the Countrt/. Returns. Goes to Spain, 
Inuadjs Peru a second time. Seizes the Gold at 
Coaf/ue. Meets irith Resistance at Puna. Ei- 
tent of Peru. The Incas. Civil IFar in the 
Country. yltahualpa solicits Pizarro' s yiid. 
Visits hiniy and. is taken Prison r. O/jers a Ran- 
som. The Brile iiken, but the Prince detained. 
The Spaniards share th ' M'ney, and basely mur* 
der Jtahualpa. Pe^uviav attac^ the Spaniards, 
Ahnagro penetrates into Chili. Lays claim cO 
Cuzco. Takes Ferdinand J'harro Prisoner, 
Releases him. Is made J'f- oner by P.:^arro, and 
put to Death. Pizarro's Conduct and D'0*h, 
Faca de Castro arrives. H's wise and rcso- 
lute Conduct. Is superseded by Gasca. His 
benevolent Plans and Disinterestedness. Returns 
to Spain universally honoured. Institutions and 
Manner's of the Mexicans and Pcruvia?LS. The 
recent Origin of the Mexican Empire. The Pro- 
gress of the Mexicans in Civilizatinn. Religion, 
Peruvian Mouu hy viore antienf. Its Policy 
founded in Religion. State of Property among 
the Peruvians. Their public Works and^h Is. 

Roads. B 
like Spit it. 


Buildinsj[s, Their linwar' 


E must now resume our chronological his- 
tory of discoveries in this continent^ and we 

o 3 find 




." I 


I • 

!< .<-, 


. j^ find tlirce names particularly celebrated : 
*^ * these are Francisco Pizarro, Diego de Al- 
magro, and Hernando Luqiie. Pizarro 
was the natural son oi a gentleman of an honour- 
able family, by a very low woman : liis education 
and prospects were so totally neglected, that when 
bordering on manhood he was in no higher em- 
ployment than a kee^ er of hogs. But the aspiring 
mind of this young man suddenly abandoned his 
charge : he enlisted as a soldier, and, having sensed 
several years in Italy, embarked for America, 
where he very soon distinguished himself. Al- 
niagro had as little to boast of his descent as Pi- 
zarro. 1 he one w as a bastard, the other a found- 
ling. Bred, like his companion, in the camp, he 
yielded not to him in the qualities of valour^ acti- 
vity, or insurmountable constancy in enduring tlie 
hardships inseparable from military service in tlie 
Kew World. In Almagro these virtues were ac- 
companied with openness^ generosity, and can- 
dour : ir Pizarro, they were united with the ad- 
dress, the craft, and the dissimulation of a politi- 
cian. Hernando de Luque was an ecclesiastic, 
wlio acted both as a priest and schoolmaster at Pa- 
nama, and had acquired riches that inspired him 
"with thoughts of rising to greater eminence. Such 
were the men destineil to overturn one of the most 
extensive empires on the face of the earth. Their 
confederacy for this purpose was authorised by Pe- 
drarias, the governor of Panama. Each engaged 
to employ his whole fortune in the adventure. 
Pizarro, who was the least wealthy, offered to 
take the department of tiie greatest fatigue and 
danger, and to command in person the armament 
which was to go first upon discovery. Alma- 
gro was to conduct the supplies of provisions, 
2 and 



and reinforcements of troops, of which Pizarro 
might stand in need j and Luque was to remain at 
Panama to negotiate with the governor, and super- 
intend whatever was carrying on for the general 
interest. Luque celebrated mass, divided a con- 
secrated host into three parts, and, reserving one for 
himself, gave the other two to his associates j of 
which they partook, and thus, in the name of the 
Prince of Peace, ratified a contract of which plim- 
der, bloodshed, and every enormity, were the ob- 

Pizarro set sail from Panama November . -^ 
the 14th, with a single ship and 112 men ; '* 
and so little was he acquainted with the pe- ^ 
culiaritios of the climate, that he spent two years in 
sailing from Panama to the northern extremity of 
Peru, a voyage which is now frequently performed 
in a fortnight. He landed, and found that ^he 
wealth of the country was as great as he imagined ; 
and that the resistance he was likely to meet in 
endeavouring to possess himselfof it, would be full 
as considerable. At Tumbez, a place about three 
degrees south of the line, Pizarro and his compa- 
nions feasted their eyes with tlie first view of the 
opulence and civilization of the Peruvian empire. 
This place was distinguished for its stately temple, 
and a palace of the incas or sovereigns of the coun- 
try. But what chiefly attracted their notice was 
such a show of gold and silver, not only in the or- 
naments of tlieir persons and temples, but in se- 
veral vessels and utensils for common use, formed 
of those precious metals, as left no room to doubt 
that they abounded with profusion there. Having 
explored the country sufficiently to satisfy his own 
mind, Pizarro procured two of their llamas, or tame 
cattle, to which the Spaiiiards gave the name of 









1.^2 AMERICA.' 

sheep, some vessels of gold and silver, anrl two 
young men whom he in t tended to bring up as in- 
terpreters; and with these he arrived at Panama 

A Y) towards the close of the third year from the 
^ rr.^ <i'iie of his departure. No adventurer of 
*"• ' the age sutfered hardships or encountered 
dangers which equalled those to which he was ex- 
posed, during this long period. The patience with 
which he en lured tiie one, and the fortitude with 
which he surmounted the other, are said to exceed 
whatever is recorded even in the histoiy of the New 
World, where so many romantic displays of those 
virtues occur. But neither Pizarro nor his asso- 
ciates were deterred from the prosecution of their 

It was agreed that Pizarro should go into Spain 
to release themseh'es from the government of Pe- 
clrarias, and to obtain the grant of whatever they 
should conquer. Pizarro was to be chief governor, 
with the property of 200 leagues along the sea- 
roast; Almagro, they agreed, should be adelanto, 
or king's lieutenant ; and Luque, who was a priest, 
was to be first bishop and protector of the Indians. 
TJie other profits of the enterprise were to be 
equally divided. Pizarro solicited only his own 
suit at court, and obtained for himself alone, the 
property of the land, the government, the lieute- 
nancy, and in short every tiling he was capable as 
ii layman of taking ; Almagro was forgotten j and 
to Luque was left the eventual bishopric. This 
breach of faith had nearly ruined the scheme : but 
IMzarro knew how to retreat ; he satisfied Alma- 
gro, and a reconciliation \\'as efi'ected. 

Pizarro completed his next voyage from Panama 
to the bay of St. Matthew in thirteen days. He 
advanced by land as quickly as possible towards* 




Peru. At the province of Coaque he surprised 
the natives, and seized their vessels of gold and 
silver to the amount of several thousand pounds 
sterling. Delighted with this spoil, he instantly 
dispatched one of his ships with a large remittance 
to Almagro, and another to Nicaragua with a con- 
siderable sum to several persons of influence in 
that province, ^a hopes of alluring adventurers by 
this early dispir} of the wealth which he had ac- 
quire'!. In the mean time he continued his march 
along the coast, meeting with scarcely any resist- 
ance till he arrived at tlie island of Puna in the bay 
of Guayquil. Here he spent six months in redu- 
cing the inhabitants to subjection. From » -p. 
Puna he proceeded to Tumbez, and from . ' ' 
thence to the river Piura, near the mouth 
of which he established the first Spanish colony in 
Peru, to which he gave the name of St. Michael, 

When the Spaniards invaded Peru, the domi- 
nions of its sovereigns extended in length from 
north to south 1500 miles along the Pacific Ocean. 
Its breadth was much less considerable, being uni- 
formly bounded by the vast ridge of the Andes, 
which stretched from its one extremity to the 
other. The empire was governed by a race of 
kings or incas. The twelfth in succession was 
then on the throne. The first of this race, named 
Mango Capac, was a man of great genius, and 
with the assistance of Mama Ocollo laid the foun- 
dations of a city, civilized a barbarous people, and 
instructed them in useful arts. They declared 
themselves to be children of the Sun, and that they 
were sent by their beneficent parent (o instruct 
and reclaim them. 

When the Spaniards first visited the coast of 
Peru, Huana Capac w^as seated on the throne. By 



»• . 

H^ n 


him the kingdom of Quito was suhjerted ; a con- 
quest of such extent and importance as ahnost dou- 
bled the power of the Peruvian empire. He mar- 
ried the daughter of the vanquished monarch of 
Quito, by whom he had a son named Atahualpa, 
whom, on his death at Quito, he appointed suc- 
cessor in that kingdom, leaving the rest to Huas- 
car, his eldest son, by a mother of the royal race. 
liuascar, discontented with his father's will, re- 
quired his brother to renounce the government of 
Quito, and to acknowledge him as his lawful su- 
perior, which Atahualpa refused, and marched 
against Huascar in hostile array. Victory declared 
itself in f^ivour of Atahualpa, who made a cruel 
use of his success. Conscious of the defect in his 
own title to the crown, he attempted to extermi- 
nate the royal race by putting to death all the chil- 
ihen of the Sun, descended from IVIanco Capac. 

"When Pizarro landed in the bay of St. Matthew, 
this civil war raged between the brothers with th^ 
greatest fury. His alliance and assistance were 
sought by Atahualpa, which he readily promised, 
and by these means was allowed to march his troops 
in safety across the sandy desert between St. Mi- 
chael and Motupe, where their career might easily 
have been stopped. As they approached Caxa- 
nialca, Atahualpa renewed his professions of friend- 
ship, and as an evidence of their sincerity sent tlie 
Spaniards presents of great value. On entering 
this place Pizarro took possession of a large comt, 
on one side of which was a palace of the inca, on 
the other a temple of the Sun -, the whole was sur- 
rounded with a strong rampart or wall of earth. 
He then sent messengers inviting Atahualpa to 
visit him in his quarters ; which he readily pro- 
raised. On tl>e return of tlie deputies they ga\ <* 



iu the 


, oil 

)a to 

jga\ (* 



such a description of the wealth which they had 
seen, as determined Pizarro to seize upon the Pe- 
ruvian monarch, in order that he might more easily 
come at the riches of his kingdom. The next day 
the inca approached Caxamalca without suspicion 
of Pizarro's treachery. First of all appeared 40O 
men in uniform dress, as harbingers to clear the 
way before him. He himself, sitting on a throne 
adorned with, plumes of various colours, and al- 
most entirely covered with plates of gold and silver 
(Miriched with precious stones, was carried on the 
shoulders of his principal attendants. Behind him 
( ame some chief officers of his court, carried in 
the same manner. Several bands of singers and 
dancers accompanied in this cavalcade, and the 
whole plain was covered with troops, amounting 
to more than thirty thousand men. 

As the inca drew near the Spanish quarters, fa-, 
tber Vincent Valverde, chaplain to the expedition, 
advanced with a crucifix in one hand, and a bre- 
^iary in the other, and in a long discourse attempt- 
ed to convert him to the catholic faitli. 1 his the 
monarch declined, avowing his resolution to ad- 
here to the worship of the Sun -, at the same tiuit*^ 
he wished to know where the priest had learned 
the extraoidinary things which ho had related, 
*' In this book," answered Valverde, reaching out 
to him his breviary. I'he inca opened it eagerly, 
and turning over the leaves raised it to his ear : 
" This," says he, *' is silent, it tells me nothing,'* 
and threw it with disdain to the ground. The en- 
raged monk, running towards liis countrymen, 
cried out, *' To arms, Clnristians, to arms ! I'h^ 
word of God is insulted 5 avenge tlie profanation 
vi\ these impious dogs." 

Pizarro^ who during this long conference hacl 





|i' ' 


with difficulty restrained his soldiers, eager to seize 
the rich spoils of which they had now so near a 
view, immediately gave the signal of assault, which 
terminated in the destruction of 4000 Peruvians, 
without the loss of a single Spaniard. The plunder 
of the field was rich beyond any idea which even 
the conquerors had yet formed concerning the 
wealth of Peru. 

The inca, who was taken prisoner, quickly 
discovered that the ruling passion of the Spaniards 
was avarice j he offered, therefore, to recover his 
liberty by a splendid ransom. The apartment in 
which he was confined was 22 feet long by \6 in 
breadth j this he undertook to fill with vessels of 
gold as high as he could reach. Pizarro closed 
with the proposal, and a line was drawn upon 
the walls of the chamber to mark the stipulated 
height to which the treasure was to rise. 

Atahualpa performed his part of the contract, 
and the gold which his subjects brought in was 
worth between three and four hundred thousand 
pounds sterling. When they assembled to di\ ide 
the spoils of tliis innocent people, procured by de- 
ceit, extortion, and cruelty, the transaction began 
with a solemn invocation to heaven, as if they ex- 
pected the guidance of God in distributing those 
wages of iniquity. In this division, above eight 
thousand pesos, at that time not inferior in effec- 
tive value to 10,0001. sterling in the present day, 
fell to the share of each horse soldier. Pizarro 
and his otficers received dividends in proportion to 
tlie dignity of their rank. 
. y. The Spaniards having divided among 

' * them the treasure, the inca insisted that they 

' should fulfil their promise of setting hira 

at liberty. But nothing was further from Pizarro's 

tlioughts I 


(liorigbts 5 he was even at Ibat very moment plan- 
ning schemes to take aw ay his life : an action the 
ino:>t criminal and atrocious that stains the Spanish 
name, amidst all the deeds of violence committed 
in carrying on the conquest of the New World. 
In order to g've some colour of justice to this out- 
rage, and that he might not stand singly respon- 
sible for the commission of it, Pizarro resolved to 
try the inca with all the formalities observed in the 
criminal courts of Spain. The charges exJiibited 
against him were, the deposition and death of hi* 
brother -, the permission of offering up human sa- 
crifices j the keeping of a great number of concu- 
bines ; find the exciting his subjects to take arms 
against the Spaniards. On these he was found 
ouilty, as his intamous judges had predetermined, 
aiul condemned to be burnt alive. Friar Valverde 
prostituted the autliority of his sacred function to 
confirm the wicked sentence, and by his signature 
warranted it to be just. Pizarro ordered him to 
be led to execution, and tl\e cruel priest oiiered to 
console, and attempted to convert him. The dread 
of a cruel death extorted from the trembling victim 
a desire of being bnptized. The ceremony was 
performed ; and Atahualpa, instead of being burnt, 
was strangled at the stake. ' 

The death of the inca was no sooner known, 
than tlie principal nobility at Cuzco proclaimed 
the brother of Huascar as his successor : but Pi- 
zarro set up a son of Atahualpa j and two generals 
of the Peruvians claimed the sovereign power for 
themselves. Thus was this wretched country torn 
to pieces at once by foreigners, and by .1 domestic 
war among themselves. Notwithstanding, the Pe- 
ruvians gained some considerable advantages over 
tlie Spaniards even m this distracted condition, 

VOL. XXIV. P which 







■ . /J 
*; r'fi, 





which mride Pizarro listen to torms of peace-, which 
he knew how to viohite when his ati'airs required 
it. He made use of the interval to settle the Spa- 
niards in the country, and shortly after renewed the 
war, making himself master of Cuzco, then the 
capital of the empire. New grants and supplies 
had lately arrived from Spain, Pizarro obtained 
200 leagues along the sea-coast, to the soutliward 
of his former government. Almagro ]\ad a grant 
also of two hundred more to the southward of Pi- 
zarro's. Jt seems to have been a doubtful point 
in whose territory the city of Cuzco lay. Both 
<-on landed for it ; but it was at length awarded to 
Pizarro, and a reconciliation was again eftected. 
Almagro, with an addition of Pizarro's troops to 
liis own, penetrated \^'ith difficulty and danger in^^o 
Cliili, losing many of his men, whilst he passed 
(ner mountains of immense height, and always 
covered with snow. He succeeded, however, in 
reducing a valuable and considerable part of thai 
country. No sooner did the inca perceive this di- 
\ ision of the Spanish troops, than he desired lea\e 
from Pizarro's brother, who managed his affairs 
for him at Cuzco, to assist at a solemn festival of 
his nation, which was to be held at some distance. 
1 his feast was in reality a sort of an assembly of 
the states of the kintj^dom. The inca havinsc !iis 
re(juest granted, he made the best use of his time 
in exciting his countiymen to avenge themselves of 
tlie Spanish wrongs and cmelty. They laid siege 
to Cuzco with a large army ; but the garrison under 
i^'erdinand Pizarro, though it consisted of only se- 
venty men, was, with their artillery, successtul. 

News was brought to Almagro of the danger to 
which Cuzco was exposed, and tlie general insur- 
rection of the Peruvians. Relinquishing his new 

• oonquests. 



conquests, he. hastened bark to preserve Iiis old, 
with great expedition. At his approMoh the In- 
dians raised the siege, to the joy of the garrison, 
who were ahnost exhausted by the leno ;th of the 
defence. Ahnagro resohed to renew his chiinn 
to Cu7Xo ; he had now a sort of right to it by hav- 
nig raised tlie siege, and he had "trength suiheient 
to support that right. Ferdinand anci Gonzalo, 
the two brothers of Pizarro, making some opposi- 
tion, w^re thrown into prison, and their little army 
either joined tlie conqueror, or shared the same 

Pizarro, unacquainted with the arrival of Alma- 
gro, had got together an army for the relief of 
Cuzco, who were near the tow n before they found 
that they had any other enemy than the Indians to 
contend WMth. Almagro, after having in vain tried 
to seduce their fideUty, engaged and routed them. 
His friends represented to him that now was the 
hour of his fortune, and that he was bound to em- 
ploy k by estabUshing himself beyond all possibi- 
lity of being removed. That he ought to |«ut the 
Pizarros, his prisoners, to death, and march di- 
rectly to Lima, and seize his rival. Almagro re- 
jected this advice ; and while he was deliberating 
what course he should pursue, Gonzalo Fizarro 
made his escape, with a hundred of those who were 
affected to his cause. Shortly after, by the solicita- 
tions and art of Pizarro, he released liis brother Fer- 
dinand. The treaty which they entered into wilh 
Almagro was now forgotten ; they attacked him, 
gained a complete victory, and took him prisoner. 
In spite of Alm^gro's age, whicn ought to have ex- 
cited pity ; in spite of their common warfare, their 
dangers and triumphs j in spite of every sentiment 
of gratitude, for what this unfortunate man had 

r 2 contributed 








contributed to his greatness; and in spite of his 
late mercy to his brother ; all which were pathe- 
tically and strongly urged by Alinagro, — Pizarro 
was deaf to every thing bat barbarous policy : he 
had him formally tried, condemned, and strangled 
in prison. His body was afterwards publicly be- 
headed on a scaffold, and for a long time denied 
burial. A negro slave interred it at last by stealth. 
He left one son by an Indian woman of Panama, 
whom, though at that time a prisoner at Lima, ho 
named successor to his government, p\irsuant to a 
power which the emperor had granted him. 

Pizarro considering himself now the unrivalled 
possessor of that vast empire, proceeded to parcel 
out its territories among the conquerors, but uith an 
unequal hand. Of course, all who were disappointed 
in their expectations, exclaimed loudly against the 
rapaciousness and partiality of the governor. The 
partisans of Almagro murmnred in secret, and me- 
ditated revenge. This party was yet numerous, 
though dispersed about the country. The heads of 
them, finding Pizarro implacable^ entered into a 
conspiracy to murder him. 

Their frequent cabals for this purpose did not 
pass unobserved, and the governor was warned to 
be on his guard against men who meditated some 
desperate deed. He disregarded the admonitions 
of his friends. *' Be in no pain," said he, " about 
my life ; it is perfectly safe, as long as every man 
in Pern knows that I can, in a moment, cut otf any 
head which dares to harbour a thought against it." 
This security gave the Almagrians full leisure to 
ripen every part of their scheme j and Juan de Her- 
-rada, an officer of great abilities, who had the 
charge of young Almagro's education, took the di- 
rection of their consultations, with all the zeal 




which this conncctiou inspired, and \\ ith all the 
authority whicli the ascendant thai he was known 
tohavcover the mind of his pu])il gn\e him. 

On Sunday tJie'iO'lh oCJnne, at mid-day, » j^ 
thcseason of tran(|uillity and repose in all sul- , * * 
try chmatcs, FK-rrada, at the ht^ad (>f eighteen 
of the most determined conspirators, salhed out of 
Ahnagro'shour^e, in compleie armour, and, drawini; 
their swords as they advanced hastily towards the 
governor's palace, cried out, ^' Lon^ live the kiiii;, 
but let the tyrant die !" Though Pi/arro was 
usually surrounded hy sueli a numerous train of 
attendants as suited the maonificenre of the nicst 
opulent subject of the aj^e in which he lived ; yet 
as he was just risen from table, and most of his do- 
mestics had retired to their own apartments, the 
conspirators passed thoui^h the two outer courts of 
the palace luiobserved. Tizarro, with no otlu r 
arras than his sword and b\ickler, defended the en- 
try of his apartment; and supported by his half 
brother Alcantara, and a little knot of friends, he 
maintained the unequal contest with an ijurepidity 
worthy of his past exploits, and with the vigour of 
a youthful combatant : ** (Courage," cried he, 
*' companions, we are yet enow to make those 
traitors repent of their audacity." But the armour 
of the conspirators protected them, while every 
thrust they made took etr'ect Alcantara fell dead 
at his brother's feet ; his other defenders were*, 
mortally wounded. The governor receiv ing a deadly 
thrust full in his throat, sunk to the ground, aiul 

As soon as he was slain, the assas^sins rah into 
the streets, and, waving their bloody swords, pro- 
claimed the death of the tyrant. They tlien con- 
ducted young Almagro hi solemn procession 

V 3 thruugii 







\k t 

i ■.•A:, 

througii the city, and, assembling th * magistrates 
and principal citizens, conipcii^. d them to acknow- 
ledge him as lawful successor to his father in hi« 
government. But the officers who commanded ia 
some of the provinces refused to recognize his au- 
thority, until it was confirmed by the emperor. In 
others, particularly at Cuzco, the royal standard 
was erected, and preparations were begun, in order 
to revenge the murder of their antient leader. 

In this state of things, the new governor, Vaca 
de Castro, appointed by the court of Spain, ar- 
rived. I'his gentleman had been chosen to the 
important trust, at the instance of the emperor 
alone, on account of his high reputation for justice 
and integrity. He immediately assumed the su- 
preme authority, and, by his influence and address, 
soon assembled such a body of troops, as not only 
set him above all fear of being exposed to any in- 
sult from the adverse party, but enabled him to ad- 
vance from Quito with the dignity that became 
his character. Encouraged by the approach of the 
new governor, tlie loyal were confirmed in tlieir 
principles, and avowed them with greater boldness ; 
the timid ventured to declare their sentiments ; the 
neutral and wavering, finding it necessary to choose 
a side, began to lean to that which now appeared 
to be the safest, as well as the most just. 

De Castro had scarcely landed, when Almagro 
sent an embassy to him, proposing terms ; to which 
the governor replied, that he was come under the 
emperor's authority, to do justice to all j of which, 
if a good subject, he could have no room to com- 
plain^ if a bad one, he must prepare for the result. 
This was new language to those who held the su- 
preme power in this part of the world, who almost 
forgot that they had a superior. Aknagro resolved 






to nbidt' thr fortune of war ; but victory was on the 
sick' ui" Castro — not howevci ' ithout considerable 
loss. 1 he superior number ot his troops, his own 
intiepidiiy, nnd the marti il talents ot* Francisco de 
Ciujaval, his principal ofbcer, triumphed over the 
bravery of his opponent^N, th(m;j;h led on by Alma- 
gro with a <;nllant spirit, worthy of a better cause, 
and deserving anothi r f ite. The carnage was j^reat, 
in proportion to the number of combatants. Of 
fourtt en hundred men, five hundred lay dead nu 
the field, and the number of wounded was still 

If the miliiar}' talents displayed by De Castro, 
lx>lh in the council and the ticld, surprised the ad- 
venturers in Peru, tliey were still more astonished 
nt his conduct after tlie victory, lie proceeded 
directly to tr)' his prisoners as rebels. Forty were 
condemned to suffer death, others were banished 
fnjm Peru. Their leader made his escape from 
the field of battle; but being betrayed by some of 
his officers, he was pid)lic]v beheaded at Cuzco j 
and in him the name of Almagro and the spirit of 
tlie party became extinct. 

The severity of this procedure, whilst it terrified 
eveiy body, drew dow n no odium upon the gover- 
nor, who acted clearly without prejudice or self- 
interest. To the follow^ers of Pizarro he shewed 
but little favour ; he proceeded with such con- 
stancy, that in a short time the Spaniards were re- 
duceci to an entire subjection, and the Indians were 
treated by them as fellow subjects and fellow crea- 
tures. He obliged the clergy to attend diligently 
to tiie dnty of their function, and to the conversion 
of the Indians, rather than to the acquisition of 
their gold. He laid the foundation for the excel- 
lent adninibtration of justice. He founded several 


i . 





>■ ' j! I, 

% . .. 



• I ,• ■** 

iU ■ 




towns, anrl established scliools and colleges in 
them, and placed the royal revenues on such a 
footing, that the conquest of Peru became imme- 
diately a great public advantage, which had hi- 
therto been little more than an object of private 
plunder. But while he remained poor aiuong some 
of the richest conliscations that ever were made, 
and while he enriched the royal treasuiy with 
most prodigious reniiltances, the great men at 
court received no presents j which induced them to 
got judges appointed to supersede, in a great mea- 
sure, the authority of De Castro. The end was an- 
swered ; disputes arose ; the colony was unset- 
tled J appeals and complaints were made to the 
court of Spain by ajl parties. In this confusion, 
Gonzalo, the brother of the celebrated Pizarro, 
availed himself of the general discontent, and 
contrived to set himself up at the b'.ad of a party. 
He strengdiened himself daily, and even went so 
far as to behead a viceroy who was sent to curb 

The court, justly alarmed at this progress, sent 
Peter dc la Gasca, a man differing from De Castro, 
only by being of a milder and more insinuating be- 
haviour, hut possessing the same 'jve of justice, 
tlie same greatness of soul, and the same disinte- 
rested spirit. This mildness of character suited 
the circumstances of the times, as well as the rigid 
justice of Castro did those in which he was ap- 
pointed ; for, as the revolt was now almost gene- 
ral » he had no friends but such as he could render 
so 'j though he was invested with the most ample 
authority from Spain, he neither carried men to 
enforce it, nor money j and the whole success of tlie 
expedition rented solely in his own capacity. 

When he arrived in Mexico, he declared that he 


Ik r>^ 


came not to exercise severities, but to heal the di- 
visions by gentle measures. He drew the cities of 
Lima and Cuzco from the party of Pizarro. This 
rebel leader hazarded a batde, was defcated and 
t:iken prisoner. He was soon after condennied and 
executed, with those who had been the chief in- 
struments of his rebellion. Such was the fate of 
all those who had taken a lead in the reduction of 
]Vru. Almagro beheaded 5 his son sharing the 
snnie fate ; Pi/arro murdered in his own palace j 
his brother Ferdinand kept a prisoner twenty-three 
years j and his other brother Gonzalo suffering 
death as a traitor. The new governor, having by 
necessary severities quieted his province, took ef- 
fectual care to heal its disorders by tlie arts of 
peace, and to complete what De Castro had beea 
obliged to leave unfinished. He settled tlie civil 
government, the army and the miiies, upon such a 
basis, as to ensure, under a wise administration, the 
most important advantages to his country. He is- 
sued re«nilations concernini^ tlie treatment of the 
Indians, well calculated to protect them from op- 
pression, and to pi f)vide for dieir instruction in the 
principles of religion, without deprivuig tlie Spa- 
niards of tlie b.eneiil accruing from their labour. 

Having u' v accumpli.«»hed the object of his mis- 
?ion, Ga^ca, wishing to leturn to a private station. 
Committed the government of Peru into the handi 
of the court of audience, and set out for Spain. 
As during the last four years of anarchy and tur- 
bulence' there had been no remittances made of 
tlie royal re\enue, he carried with him three hun- 
dred tJiousand pounds of public money, which the 
frconomy and o der of his administration enabled 
him to save, after paying all the expenses of the 

He was received in his native countiy with uni- 


.f ■' 





Itfi ; 

' 4I „■•« 



1()6 AMERICA. 

versal admiration for his abilities and his virtue. 
Without army, or fleet, or public I'uiid.s, Jie set 
out to oppose a formidable rebellion. By his ad- 
dress and talents he seemed to create instruments 
for executing his desij^ns. He acquired such a 
naval force as gave him the command of llu; sea. 
He raised a body of men able to contend with and 
conquer bands which gave law to Peru. In the 
place of anarchy and usurpation he established the 
government of laws and the autliority of the rightfi J 
sovereign. His abilities were, however, far ex- 
ceeded by his virtue. After residing in a country 
where wealth presented allurements which had 
hitherto seduced every person who possessed 
power there, he returned with unsuspected inte- 
grity. After distributing among his countrymen 
possessions o^ greater extent and value than had 
ever been in the disposal of a subject in any age or 
nation, he himself remained in his original state of 
poverty j and, at the very time when he brought 
such a vast recruit to the royal treasury, he was 
obliged to apply by petition for^a small sum to dis- 
charge some petty debts which he had contracted 
during the course of his service. Charles was not 
insensible to such merit : he received Gasca with 
the most distinguishing marks of esteem 3 and 
being promoted to tlie bishopric of Palnicia, h':i 
passed the remainder of his days in the tranquillity 
of retirement, respected by his country, honoured 
by his sovereign, and beloved by all. 

Notwithstanding Gasca' s wise regulations, the 
tranquillity of Peru was not of long continuance. 
Several successive insurrections desolated the 
country for some years. During these contests 
many of the iirsl invaders of Peru, and many of 
those hcentious adventurers whom the fame of 
tlieir success had allured thiilier, fell by each others 



hands. Each of the parties gradually cleared the 
country of a number of turbulent spirits, by exe- 
cuting, proscribing, or banishing their opponents. 
Men less enterprising, and less desperate, and 
more accustomed to move in the sober and peace- 
able road of industry, settled in Peru j and the 
royal authority was gradually established as lirmly 
there as in the other Spanish colonies. 

We shall conclude this chapter with a brief ac- 
count of the political institutions and national man- 
ners of the Mexicaus and Peruvians. When com- 
pared with other parts of the New World, Mexico 
and Peru may be considered as polished stales. 
But if the com})arison be made with the people of 
the antient continent, the inferiority of America in 
miprovement will be conspicuous. The people of 
both these great empires were totally unacquainted 
with the useful metals, and the progress they had 
made in extending their dominion o\ er the animal 
creation was inconsiderable. The Mexicans had 
goi'j no farther than to tame and re;>r turkeys, 
ducks, a species of small dogs, and rabbits. Tlie 
Peruvians seem to have neglected the interior 
animals, but they were more fortunate in taming 
tiic llama, an animal peculiar to their country, 
of a form which bears some resemblance to a deer, 
and some to a cai\iel, and is of a size somewhat 
larger than a sheep. Under the protection of man 
tliis species greatly multiplied. Its wool fun.tshed 
the Peruvians with clothing, its tiesh with food. 
It was even employed as a beast of burtlien, and 
carried a mod<^'ate load with patience and docility. 

According to the accounts given by the Mexi- 
cans thcmsehes, the duration of their empire was 
ihort. From the iirst migration of their parent 
tribe, tliey can reckon little more than 300 years. 
The right oX' private property was, ho\ve\cr;, per- 

I ■ 

i; ■'■■■ 






,1 ' 


!> ' •■■■ 




fectly understood, and established in its full extent. 
In Mexico, where agriculture and industry had 
made some progress, the distinction betvveen pro- 
perty in land and property in goods had taki*ii 
place. Both might be transferred by sale or barter; 
both might descend by inheritance. Every person 
who could be denominated a freeman had property 
in land. The title of others to their lands was 
derived from the office or dignity which they en- 
joyed, and when deprived of tiie latter they lost 
possession of the former. Both these modes of 
occupying land were deemed noble, and peculiar 
to citizens of the highest class. The tenure by 
which the great body of the people held tlieir pro- 
perty was very different. In every district a cer- 
tain quantity of land was measured out, in propor- 
tion to the number of families. This was culti- 
vated by the joint labour of the whole ; its pro- 
duce was deposited in a common store-house, and 
divided among tliem according to tlieir respective 
exigencies. The members of the Calpullee, or 
associations, could not alienate their share of the 
common estate ; it was indivisible permanent pro- 
perty, destined for the support of their fami- 
lies. In consequence of this distribution of the 
territory of the state, every man had an interest in 
its welfare, and the happiness of the individual 
was connected with the public security. 

Another striking circumstance, which distin- 
guishes the Mexican empire from those nations in 
America which have been already described, is the 
number and greatness of its cities. Mexico, the 
capital, is supposed to have contained 60,000 in- 
habitants. Among the Mexicans, too, the sepa- 
ration of the arts necessary in life had taken place 
to a considerable extent. The fiinctions of the 
mason^ the weaver, the goldsmith, the [>ainter, 



&c., were carried on by difTerent persons, who 
were regularly instructed in their several call- 

The distinction of ranks was established also 
in the Mexican empire j and a systenn very like 
the feudal system in several European states was 
acted upon there. The spirit of the people, thus 
familiarised to subordination, was prepared for sub- 
mitting to monarchical government. 

In tracing the great lines of the Mexican consti- 
tution, an image of feudal policy in its most rigid 
form rises to view j and we may discern in it three 
distinguishing characteristics : a nobility possessing 
almost independent authority, a people depressed 
into the lowest state of subjection, and a king en- 
trusted with the executive power of the state. Its 
spirit and principles seem to have operated in the 
New World in the same manner as in the antient. 
The jurisdiction of the crown was extremely li- 
mited. All real and eifective authority was re- 
tained by the Mexican nobles in their ow n hands, 
and the shadow of it only left to the king. 

The improved state of government among the 
Mexicans was conspicuous, in the taxes which they 
levied and in their mode of assessment. Taxes 
were laid on land, upon the acquisition of indus- 
try, and upon all commodities exposed to public 
sale in the markets. They were imposed accord- 
ing to established niles, and each knew what share 
of the common burthen he had to bear. As the use 
of money was unknown, all the taxes were paid in 
kind 5 and from these the emperor supplied his at- 
tendants in time of peace, and his armies during 
war. People who possessed no visible property 
were bound to the performance of various services. 
TOL, XXIV. a By 



h '^1 

« ;•,!; 

By tlieir labour the crown lands were cultivated^ 
public works were carried on, and the various 
houses belonging to tlie emperor were built and 
kept in repair. 

Their attention to the order and management 
of the police was very striking. Public couriers, 
stationed at proper intervals to convey intelligence 
iVoni one part of the empire to the other, led to a 
refinement in police not introduced into any king- 
dom of Europe at tliat period. I'he structure of 
the capital in a lake, with artificial dykes, and 
causeways of great length, which served as ave- 
nues to it from ditferent quarters, seems to be an 
idtra that could not have occurred to any but a 
civilized people. The same observation may be 
npplied to tlie structure of the aqueducts, by which 
they conveyed a stream of fresh wMter from a con- 
siderable distance into the city along one of tlie 
causeways. The appointment of a number of per- 
sons to cleanse the streets, to light them by tires 
kindled atditferent places, and to patrolc as watc h • 
men durinsc the nii:cht, discovers a degree of atteii- 


tion which even polished nations are late in mi- 

Their mode of computing time is a decisive evi- 
dence of their progress in improvement. 1'hcy di- 
vided the year into eighteen months, each consist- 
ing of twenty days, amounting in all to 3()0. But 
as tiiey observed tliat the course of the sun was not 
completed in that time, they added five days to the 
year, which they termed supernumerary, or waste ; 
and as these did not belong lo any month, no work 
was done, and no sacred rite performed on them ; 
they were devoted wholly to festivity and pastime. 
Such are the striking particulars which exhibit the 


' ' ki 

^ evi- 

leni ; 
It the 



Mexicans as a people considerably refined. But, 
from other circumstances, one is apt to suspect 
that in many things ihey did not greatly ditt'er 
from the other inhabitants of America. 

Like the rude tribes around them, the Mexicans 
were incessantly engaged in war j and the motives 
which j)rompted tht.m to hostility seem to have 
been the same. They fought to gratify their ven- 
geance l)y shedding the blood of their enemies. In 
ixittle they were chiefly intent on taking prisoners, 
and it w:is by the number of these that they esti- 
mated the glory of victory. No captive was ever 
ransomed or spared. All were sacrificed without 
mercy, and their flesh devoured wiih the same 
barbarous joy as among the liercest savages. On 
some occasions it rose to even wilder excesses. 
Their principal warriors covered tliemselves witli 
the skins of the unliappy victims, and danced about 
the streets j boasting of their own valour, and ex- 
ulting over tlieir enemies. This ferocity of cha- 
racter prevailed among all the nations of New 
Spain. But in proportion as mankind combine 
in social union, their niumers soften, sentimcnt-S- 
of humanity arise, and the rights of the species 
come to be understood. The fierceness of war 
abates, and even while engaged in hostility men 
remember what thev owe one (o another. The 
savage fights to destroy ; the citizen, to conquer. 
The former neither pities nor spares ; the latter 
has ae(|eired sensibility, which tempers his rage. 
To this sensibility the Mexicans seem to have been 
perfect strangers ^ which leads us to suspect lliat 
tiieir degree of civilisation must have been very 

Their funeral rites were not less bloody than 
those of the most savage tribes. On the death of 

u 2 any 

I if 

U h^ 

til i 




J t. ' 


any distinguished personage, especially of the em- 
peror, a certain number of his attendants were 
chosen to accompany him to die other world j and 
those unfortunate victims were put to death with- 
out mercy, and buried in tlie same tomb. 

Though their agriculture was more extensive than 
that of the roving tribes, yet it was not sufficient 
to supply them with such subsistence as men re- 
quire when engaged in efforts of active industry ; 
and consequently every mean was taken to prevent 
any considerable increase in their families. 

Their religious tenets, and the rites of tlieir wor- 
ship, indicate no great progress in civilization. The 
aspect of superstition in Mexico was gloomy and 
atrocious. Its divinities were clotlied with terror, 
and delighted in vengeance, llie figures of ser- 
pents, of tigers, and of other destructive animals, 
decorated their temples. Fear was the only prin- 
ciple that inspired their votaries. Fasts, mortifica- 
tions, and penances rigid and excruciating, were 
the means employed to appease tlie wrath of tlie 
gods, and the Mexicans never approached their 
altars without sprinkling them with blood drawn 
from their own bodies. But of all offerings, human 
sacrifices were deemed most acceptable. Every 
captive taken in war was brought to the temple, 
was devoted as a victim to the deity > and was sa- 
crificed with the most cruel rites. The heart and 
the head were the portion consecrated to the gods ; 
the warrior by whose prowess the prisoner had 
been seized, carried off the body to feast upon it 
witli his friends. 

The empire of Peru boasts of higher antiquity 
than that of Mexico. But die knowledge of dieir 
antient history, which the Peruvians could commu- 
nicate to their conquerors, was both imperfect and 

uncertain ; 



wicortain; for, being unac(|uainted with the art of 
writing, they were destitute of tlie onJy means by 
which the memory of past transactions can be pre- 
served with any degree of accuracy. The qtdpos, 
or knots on cords of dilferent colours, which have 
been celebrated as regular annals of the empire, 
imperfectly supplied the place of writing. Ac- 
cording to the description of Acosta, by the va- 
rious colours ditierent objects were denoted, and 
by each knot a distinct number. Thus an account 
was taken, and a register kept, of the inhabitants 
in each province, or of the several productions col- 
If cted there for public use. But they could con- 
tjibute however but little towards preserving tlie 
memory of antient events and institutions. 

Very little credit then is due to the details which 
have been given of the exploits, the battles, the 
conquests, and private character of the early Pe- 
ruvian monarchs. We can depend upon notliing 
\\\ their story as authentic, but a few facts so inter- 
woven in the system of their religion and policy 
as preserved the memory of tliem from being lost, 
unfX upon the description of such customs and in- 
stitutions as continued in force at the time of tli® 
conquest, and fell under the immediate observa- 
tions of the Spaniards. 

The people of Pern had not advanced beyond 
the rudest form of savage life, when Mango Capac, 
and his consort Mama Ocollo, appeared to instruct 
and civilize them. Who these extraordinary per- 
sonages were, we are not able to ascertain ; but, 
taking advantage of the propensity in the Peruvians 
to super:;<"ition, and particularly of their venera- 
tion for the Sun, they pretended to be the children 
of that luminary, and to deliver instructions in his 
name and by authority from hiin. The multitude 

u 3 listened 

.1 >' 




listened and believed, and in process of time tjie 
successors of Mango Capac extended their domi- 
nion over all the re i^ion?: that stretch to the west 
of the Andes from Chili to Quito, establishing in 
every province their peculiar policy and religions 
in.Jtitutions. Indeed the whole system of civil 
policy among the Peruvians was founded on reli- 
gion. TJie inca not only appeared as legislator, but 
as tlie messenger of heaven ; and his injunctions 
were received as the mandates of the deity. His 
race was held to be sacred j and, to preserve it di- 
stinct, tlie sons of Capac married their own sisters, 
and no person was ever admitted to the throne who 
could not claim it by such pure descent. To these 
children of the Sun, for that was the appellation 
bestowed upon all the offspring of the first inca, the 
people looked up with the reverence due to beings 
of a superior order. Hence the authority of the 
inca was unlimited and absolute. And all crimes, 
being considered as insults otfered to tlie deity^ 
were punished capitally. 

The system of superstition on m hich the incas 
ingrafted their pretensions to such high authority 
was of a genius very different from that established 
among the Mexicans. Mango Capac turned the 
veneratio:) of his followers entirely towards natural 
objects. The Sun, as the great source of light, of 
joy, and fertility, in the creation, attracted their 
principal homage. The moon and the stars, a» 
co-operating witli him, were entitled to secondary 
honours. Wherever the human mind k employed 
in contemplating the order and beneficence that 
really exist in nature, the spirit of superstition is 
mild. Wherever imaginary beings, created by the 
fears of men, are supposed to preside in nature, 
and become objects of worship^ superstition as- 


snmcf? a more severe and atrocious form. Of the 
latter we have an example among the Mexicans ; 
of the former, among the people of Peru. The 
Peruvians offered to the Sun a part of those produc- 
tions which his genial warmth had called fortli 
from the bosom of the earth and reared to matu- 
rity. They sacrificed as an oblation of gratitude 
some of the animals which were indebted to his 
influence for nourishment. They presented to him 
choice specimens of those works of ingenuity which 
his light had guided the hand of man in forming. 
But the incas never stained his altars with human 
blood, nor could they conceive that their benefi- 
cent father, the Sun, would be delighted with such 
horrid victims. Thus the Peruvians had attained 
to a national character mor^ mild and gentle than 
that of any people in America, which was dis- 
played in tlieir government, and even in tlieir mi- 
litary system. 

The state of property in Peru was singular, and 
contributed towards giving a mild turn of character 
to the people. All the lands capable of cultivation 
were divided into three shares : one was consecrated 
to the Sun and to the rites of religion ; the second 
belonged to the inca for the support of govern- 
ment; the third and largest share was reserved 
for the maintenance of the people, among whom 
it was parcelled out. Neither individuals, how- ' 
ever, nor communities, had a right of exclusive 
property in the portion set apart for their use. 
They possessed it only for a year, at the expiration 
of which a new division was made in proportion to 
the rank, the number, and exigencies of each fa- 
mily. All those lands were cultivated by the joint 
industry of the community. The people, sum- 
moned by a proper officer^ repaired in a body to 



nil" ' 





'^^ A 4i. 





1^ |2B 1 2.5 


II 1.8 

L25 III 1.4 










WEBSTER, N.Y. 14580 

(716) 872-4503 




the fields and performed the>r common task, while 
songs and musical instruments cheered them to 
their labour. A state thus constituted may be con- 
sidered as one great family, of which tlie several 
members were bound together in closer intercourse 
than subsisted under any form of society established 
in America. From this resulted gentle manners 
and mild virtues unknown in the savage state, and 
with which the Mexicans were little acquainted. 

The distinction of ranks was, nevertheless, fully 
established in Pern. A great body of the inhabi- 
tants were held in a state of servitude, their garb 
and houses were of a different form from diose of 
freemen. They were employed in carrying bur- 
thens, and in performing every other species of 
drudgery. Next to them in lank were such of the 
people as were fi-ee, but distinguished by no official 
ov hereditary honours. Above them were laised 
those whom the Spaniards call orejones, from the 
ornaments worn in their ears. These formed what 
may be denominated the order of nobles, and in 
peace, as well as in war, held eveiy office of power 
or trust. At the head of all were the children of 
the Sun, who, by their high descent and peculiar 
privileges, were as much exalted above the ore* 
Jones as these were elevated above the people. 

In Peru, agriculture was more extensive and 
carried on with greater skill than in any part of 
America, so that even the calamity of an unfruitful 
season was but little felt 3 for the productof the lands 
consecrated to the Sun, as well as that of those set 
apart for the incas, being deposited in storehouses, 
it remained as a stated provision for times of scar- 
city. The use of the plough, indeed, was unknown to 
the Peruvians. They turned up the earth with a kind 
of wooden mattock 5 and in lliis labour bodi sexes 
3 joined 



; ore" 


AMERICA. 177* 

joined the efforts of industry. Even the children 
of the Sun set an example of activity, by cultivating 
a lield near Cuzco with their own hands ; and they 
dignified this function by denominating it their tri- 
umph over the eartii. 

The superior ingenuity of the Peruvians is like- 
wise obvious in the construction of their houses and 
public buildings, some of which are of immense 
extent, and all of remarkable solidity. The temple 
of Pachacamac, together with the palace of the 
inca, and a fortress, were so connected as to form 
one great structure above half a league in circuit. 
The walls, indeed, owing to their entire ignorance 
of the mechanical powers, were not more than' 
twelve feet from the ground. And, though they 
had not discovered the use of mortar or cfany' 
other cement, the bricks and stones were joined 
with so much nicety, that the seams could hardly 
be discerned. The public roads and bridges claim 
also a brief notice. The two great roads from 
Cuzco to Quito extended in an uninterrupted stretch 
above 1500 miles. The one was conducted through 
the interior and mountainous country ; the other 
through the plains on the sea-coast. The forma- 
tion of those roads introduced another improve- 
ment in Peru. In its course from nortli to south, 
the road of the incas was intersected by all the tor- 
rents which roll from the Andes towards the West- 
ern Ocean. These were not fordable, nor could 
the Peruvians construct bridges either of stone or 
timber. They therefore formed cables of osiers 
of great strength, six of which they stretched across 
the stream parallel to one another, and made them 
fast on each side. These tliey bound together with 
Bmailer ropes so close as to form a compact piece 




of net- work, over which they passed with tolerable 

The Peruvians had made also, some progress in 
the arts. They had discovered the method of 
smelting and refining the silver ore which they 
found in the channels or dug for in the earth. 
They made mirrors by highly polishing hard shining 
stones 5 vessels of earthen ware of different forms ; 
hatchets and otlier instruments, some destined for 
war, and others for labour. 

Notwithstanding so many particulars, which 
seem to indicate an high degree of civilization, 
other circumstances occur that suggest the idea of 
a society still in the first stages of its improvement. 
In all the dominions of the incas, Cuzco was the 
only place that had the appearance or was entitled 
to the name of a city. Everywhere else the people 
lived mostly in detached habitations, dispersed over 
the country or settled in small villages. Of course, 
the separation of professions in Peru was not so 
complete as among the Mexicans. The less closely 
men associate, the more simple are their manners, 
and the fewer their wants. All the arts, accord- 
ingly, which were of daily and indispensable uti- 
lity, were exercised by every Peruvian indiscrimi- 
nately. None but artists employed in works of 
mere curiosity or ornament constituted a separate 
order of men, or were distir guished from other 
citizens. Another consequence resulting from the 
want of cities, was tlie little commercial intercourse 
among the inhabitants of that great empire. But 
the un\^'arlike spirit of the Peruvians was the most 
remarkable as well as tlie most fatal defect in their 
character. By tliis, Pei-u was subdued at once, awd 
almost without resistance 5 and tlie most favoura- 

AMERICA. 15^9 

ble Opportunities of regaining their freedom, and of 
crushing their oppressors, were lost through the 
timidity of the people. This character hath de- 
scended to their posterity : the Indians of Peru are 
now more tame and depressed than any people of 

I'he cruel custom that prevailed in some of the 
most savage tribes, subsisted also among the Pe- 
ruvians. On fhe death of the incas, a considerable 
number of their attendants were put to death and 
interred around them, that they might appear in 
the next world with their former dignity, and be 
nerved with proper respect. On the death of 
liuana-Capac, the most powerful of their mo- 
narchs, above a thousand victims were doomed to 
accompany him to the tomb. 

m V '« 





^icw of the other Spanish Possessions aM Con^ 
guests in the Nejv Horld. CinuUm. Sonara. 
Neiv Navarre. New Mcaico. Chili. Tacii- 
wan. Rio de la Plata, Terra Firm a. New 
Granada. Galleons. E/J]'ct of the Spa?i'ish Set^ 
tlements tvith reirard to the Colonies. Depo- 
piilation ii'ith respect to Spain. Idleness and 
Poverty. Register- Ships. Trade of Acapulco, 


ALTHOUGH Mexico and Peru are the pes- 
sessions of Spain in the New World which 
have attracted the greatest attention, yet her other 
dominions there are far from being inconsiderable 
either in extent or value. The greater part of 
tliem was reduced to subjection during the first 
part of the sixteenth century by private adven- 
turers, who fitted out their small armaments either 
in Hispaniola or in Old Spain: and if our limits 
would allow us to follow each leader in his pro- 
gress, we should discover the same daring cou- 
rage, the same persevering ardour, the same rapa- 
cious desire of wealth, and the same capacity of 
enduring and surmounting every thing in order to 
attain it, which distinguished the operations of 
the Spaniards in their greater American conquests. 
Instead, however, of entering into a detail of this 
kind, it will be right to give a brief description of 
those provinces of Spanish America which have 
not hitherto been mentioned. 

The jurisdiction of the viceroy of New Spain 



extends over several provinces which were not sub- 
ject to the dominion of the Mexicans, The coun- 
tries of Cinaloa and Sonara, that stretch along the 
east side of the Gulf of California, as well as the im- 
mense kingdoms of New Navarre and New Mexi- 
co, which bend towards the west and north, and did 
not acknowledge the sovereignty of Montezuma 
or his predecessors, are reduced, some to a greater, 
otliers to a less degree of subjection to the Spanish 
yoke. They extend through the most delightful part 
of tlie temperate zone, and have a communication 
either witli the Pacific Ocean or with the Gulf of 
Mexico, and are watered by rivers which not only 
enrich them but may become subservient to com- 
merce. The number of Spaniards settled in these 
provinces is extremely small 5 but from the rich 
mines tliat have been discovered, opened, and 
worked witlx success, they are becoming more po- 
pulous, and may soon be as valuable as any part of 
tlie Spanish empire of America. 

The peninsula of California was discovered by 
Cortes in tlie year ] 536, but the Spaniards have 
tnade little progress in peopling it. Don Joseph 
Galvez, who was sent by the court of Spain to visit 
it, brought a very favourable account : he found 
the peai'l fishery on its coasts to be valuable, and he 
discovered mines of gold of a very promising ap- 
pearance. From its vicinity to Cinaloa and Sonara, 
California may, perhaps, hereafter be no longer 
regarded among tlie desolate and almost useless 
districts of the Spanish empire. On the east of 
Mexico, Yucatan and Honduras are comprehended 
in the government of New Spain. They stretch 
from the Bay of Campeachy beyond Cape Graci^d 
a Dios, and derive their value principally from the 
logwood tree» which for tlie purposes of dyeing 

VOL. XXIV. R ha» 


( 1 



l« i' 



has become an article in commerce of great value. 
Still farther east than Honduras lie the two pro- 
vinces of Costa Riga and Veragua, which are of but 
small value, and merit no particular attention. 

The most important province d(.'pcnding on the 
riceroyalty of Peru is Chili, ths' inhabitants of 
which were, in a great measure, independent of 
the incas, and for a considerable time successfully 
resisted the arms of the Spaniards. The moun- 
tainous parts of the country are still possessed by 
tribes of the original inhabitants, who are formida- 
ble neighbours to the Spaniards, with whom, dur- 
ing the course of two centuries, they have been 
obliged to maintain almost perpetual hostility. 

That part of Chili which may l:)e properly 
deemed a Spanish province, is a narrow district ex- 
tended along the coast from the desert of Atacamas 
to the island of Chiloe, above 9OO miles. Its cli- 
mate is the most delicious in the New World. 
The soil is very fertile, and accommodated to 
European productions : among these are corn, 
tvine, and oil. All the fruits imported from 
Europe attain to full maturity there, and the ani- 
mals of our hemisphere multiply and improve, 
Kor has Nature exhausted her bounty on the 
surface of the earth j she has stored its bowels in 
various parts widi mines of gold, of silver, of cop- 
per, and of lead. 

. To tlie east of the Andes, the provinces of Tu- 
cuman and Rio de la Plata border on Chili, and 
stretch from north to south 1300 miles, and in 
breadth more than a thousand. This country forms 
itself into two great divisions, one on the north 
and the other to the south of Rio de la Plata. The 
former comprehends Paraguay, the famous .mis- 
sions of the Jesuits, and several otlier districts, 

, Th« 



The cnpitnl of I.a Plata is Buenos Ayres, the most 
■considerable sea-port in vSouth America. From 
this town a great part of the treasure of Chili and 
Peru is exported to Old Spain. Most of the coun- 
try is inhabited by native Americans. The Jesuits 
v/ere indefatigable in their endeavours to convert 
the Indians to the belief of their religion, and to 
introduce anionsf them the arts of civilized life : 
^nd they met with surprising success. More thari 
300,000 families were formerly subject to the 
Jesuits, living in obedience and with an awe bor- 
<lering on adoration. But in 17(^7 ^^^^ Jesuits were 
sent out of America by royal authority, and tluur 
subjects were put upon the same footing witli the 
rother inhabitants of the country. 

All the other territories of Spain in the New 
World, the islands excepted, of whose discovery 
,and reduction an account has already been given, 
are comprehended under two great divisions j the 
former denominated the kingdom of Terra Firma, 
the provinces of which stretch along the Atlantic 
from the eastern frontier of New Spain to the 
mouth of the Orinoco ; the latter tlie new king- 
dom of Granada, situated in the interior country. 
Terra Firma is divided into twelve large pro- 
vinces, which contain a vast deal of mountaJT;ous 
country : the valleys are deep and narrow j rnd 
being for a great part of the year flooded, the whole 
district is perhaps the most unhealthy part of the 
torrid zone. The plains are fertile, and produce 
great abundance of corn, fruits, and drugs. No 
place abounds more in rich pasturage, or has a 
greater stock of black cattle. Its capital city, 
Panama, is situated upon one of the best harbours 
of the South Seas. Hither is brought all the trea- 
sure which the rich mines of Peru and Chili pay 

r2 to 

81 II 










to the king, or produce upon a private account. 
In the bay is a pearl fishery of great value. The 
tov^^n contains 5000 houses elegantly built of brick 
and stone, disposed in a semicircular form, and en- 
livened with the spires and domes of several 
churches and monasteries. At Carthagena, the 
second town in Terra Firma, the galleons on their 
voyage from Spain put in first, and dispose of a 
considerable part of their cargo. The fleet of 
galleons consists of about eight men of war, la- 
den with every kind of merchandize, as well as 
with military stores for Peru. No sooner are 
these ships arrived in the haven of Carthagena 
than expresses are immediately dispatched to tlie 
adjacent towns, that they may get ready all the 
treasure which is deposited there to meet the gal- 
leons at Porto Bello. Here all persons concerned 
in the various branches of this extensive traffic 
assemble, and business of wonderful extent an(i 
importance is negotiated in a short time. Jn 
about a fortnight the fair is over 3 during which 
tlie display of gold and silver and precious stones 
on the one hand, and of all the curiosities and 
variety of European fabrics on the other, is as- 
tonishing. Heaps of wedges and ingots of the 
precious metals are rolled about on the wharfs like 
things of little or no value. At this time an hun- 
dred crowns are given for a mean lodging, a tliou- 
€and for a shop, and provisions of every kind are 
proportionably dear. 

The new kingdom of Granada is so far elevated 
above the level of the sea, that though it approaches 
almost to the equator the climate is remarkably 
temperate. Some districts yield gold with so great 
profusion, that single labourers have been known 
to collect in a day what was cc^ual in value to 250L 


is t 


AMERICA. lfi.5 

Its towns are populous nnd tiourishing. Industry 
is encouraj^ed, and a considerable trade is carried 
on with Carthagena. 

Having traced tlie progress of the Spaniards in 
their discoveries and conquests, to that period when 
their authority was established over all the vast re- 
gions in the New World still subject to their do- 
minion ; it remains only to consider the etiect of 
their settlements upon the countries of which tiiey 
took possession, as well as upon their own. 

Thelirst visible consequence of the establishments 
made by the Spani^irds in America, was the dimi- 
nution of the antient inhabitants to a degree equally 
astonishing and deplorable. But, notwithstanding 
the rapid depopulation of America, a very consi- 
derable number of the native race still remains" 
both in Mexico and Peru. Their settlements in 
some places are so populous as to merit the name 
of cities. In Peru, several districts, particularly in 
the kingdom of Quito, are occupied almost entirely 
by Indians; and in some provinces they are min- 
gled with the Spaniards, and are almost the only 
persons who practise the mechanic arts, and fill 
most of the inferior stations in society. In the di- 
stricts adjacent to Carthagena, to Panama, and 
Buenos- Ayres, the desolation is more general than 
even in those parts of Mexico and Peru of which 
the Spaniards have taken most full possession. 

When the conquests of the Spaniards in Ame- 
rica were completed, their monarchs, in forming 
the plan of internal policy for tlieir new dominions, 
divided tliem into two immense governments 3 one 
subject to the viceroy of New Spain, the other to 
the viceroy of Peru. The jurisdiction of the for- 
mer extended over all the provinces belonging to 
Spain in tlie northern division of the American 

R S continent. 



t ti 


I' ' 

18(5 AMERICA. 

continent. Under that of the latter was compre. 
bended whatever she possessed in South America. 
7'he authority of the viceroy over districts so far 
removed from his own eye and observation, was 
unavoidably both feeble and ill directed. A third 
viceroyalty has therefore been established at Santa 
Fc de Bojoia, the capital of the new kingdom of 
Granada, the jurisdiction of which extends over 
tlie whole kingdom of I'erra Firma, and the pro- 
vince of Quito. In subjection to the viceroys are 
other oibcers of ditlerent ranks and degrees. I'he 
various duties assigned to each, and the several 
powers which tliey exercise, cannot be discussed 
in this volume. \Ve shall therefore proceed to 
explain by what means the colonies enrich tlie 
Uiotlier country. 

Of all the methods by which riches may be ac- 
quired, that of searching for the precious metals 
is one of the most inviting to men unaccustomed to 
the regular assiduity with which the culture of tlie^ 
eartli and the operations of commerce must be car- 
ried on, or who are so rapacious as not to be satis- 
fed -with the gradual returns of prolit which tliey 
yield. Accordingly, as soon as the several coun- 
tries in America were subjected to the dominion 
cf Spain, tliis was almost the only method of 
accpiiring wealth which occurred to the adventu-. 
rers by \\ horn they were conquered. All crowded 
to Mexico and Peru, where the quantities of gold 
and silver foimd among tlie njitives promised an 
unexhausted store. During several years the J^r- 
dour of their researches was kept up by hope ra- 
ther than success. At length the rich min^s of 
Potosi, in F^ru, were accidentally discovered in 
the year 1545, by an ImU;m, as he was clambering 
up the mountain in pursuit of a llama which had 




strayed from his flock. Soon afYor, the mines 
of Sacotecas, in New Spain, little inferior to the 
other in value, were opened. From that time the 
working of mines has become the capital occupa- 
tion of the Spaniards, and is reduced into a system 
no loss complicated than interesting. 

The exuberant profusion \\ itu which the moun- 
tains of the New World poured forth tlieir trea- 
sures astonished mankind, who had been accus- 
tomed hitherto to receive a penui'iou*^ supply of 
the precious metals from the more scanty stores 
contained in the mines of the antient hemisphere. 
According to principles of computation, which 
a})pear to be extremely moderate, the quantity of 
gold and silver that has been regularly enteretl in 
the ports of Spain is equal in value to four million* 
sterling annually, reckoning from the year 1492, 
in which America was discovered, to the present 
time. This in 311 years amounts to twelve hun- 
dred and forty-four millions. Immense as this sum 
is, the Spanish writers contend that as much more 
ought to be added to it, in consideration of trea- 
sure which hfis been extracted from the mines, 
and imported fraudulently into Spain without 
paying duty to tlie king. By thi3 account Spain 
has drawn frorn the New World a supply of 
wealth amounting to nearly two thousand rive 
hundred millions of pounds sterling. 

Though the mines are the chief object of the 
Spaniards, yet the fertile countries which they 
possess in America abound with other commodi- 
ties of such value or scarcity as to attract a consi- 
derable degree of attention. Cochineal is a pro* 
duction almqst peculiar to New Spain : the Jesuits 
bark, the most salutary simple, perhaps, and of 
Hiost restorative virtue;, that Providence has made 



I i 

m' r''.f 




known to man, is found only in Peru : the indigo 
of Guatimala is superior in quality to that of any 
province in America : cocoa attains to its highest 
perfection in the Spanish colonies, and, from the 
great consumption of chocolate in Europe, as well 
as in America, is a valuable commodity : the to- 
bacco of Cuba is of more exquisite flavour than any 
brought from the New World: the sugar raised in 
that island, in Hispaniola, and in New Spain, toge- 
ther with drugs of various kinds, may be mentioned 
among the natural productions of America which 
enrich the Spanish commerce. To these must be 
added the exportation of hides. The cattle from 
which these are taken range over the vast plains 
which extend from Buenos-Ayres towards the 
Andes, in herds of thirty or foity thousand ; and 
the unlucky traveller who once falls in among 
them, may proceed for several days before he can 
disentangle himself from among the crowd that 
covers the face of the earth, and seems to have no 
end. They are scarcely less numerous in New 
Spain, and in several other provinces, where they 
are killed merely for the sake of their hides 3 and 
the slaughter at certain seasons is so great, that 
the stench of the carcases which are ieft in the 
iield would infect the air, if large packs of wild 
dogs, and vast flocks of American vultures, the 
most voracious of all the feathered kind, did not 
instantly devour them. The number of those hides 
exported in every fleet to Europe is very great, and 
is a lucrative branch of commerce. 

When the importation into Spain of those various 
articles from her colonies first became active and 
considerable, her interior industry and manu- 
factures were in so prosperous a state, that with 
the product of these she was able both to purchase' 



the commodities of the New World and to answer 
Its growing demands. Nor was the state of the 
Spanish marine at this period less flourishing than 
that of its manufactures. In the beginning of the 
sixteenth century, Spain is said to have possessed a- 
bove a thousand merchant ships, a number far supe- 
rior to that of any nation in Europe in that age. By 
the aid which foreign trade and domestic industry 
give reciprocally to each otl^er in their progress, the 
augmentation of both must have been rapid and 
extensive 3 and Spain might have received the 
^ame accession of opulence and vigour from her 
acquisitions in the New World, that otlier powers 
have derived from their colonies. But various 
causes prevented this. 

The same thing happens to nations as to indi- 
viduals. Wealth which flaws in gradually, and 
with moderate increase, nourishes that activity 
which is friendly to commerce, and calls it forth 
into vigorous exertions j but when opulence pours 
in suddenly and with too full a stream, it overturns 
all sober plans of industr)% and brings along with 
it a taste ior what is wild and extravagant. Such 
^vas tlie great and sudden augmentation of power 
and revenue that tlie pcssessions of America 
brought into Spain, and symptoms of its perni- 
cious influence soon began to appear. When 
Philip II. ascended tlie Spanish throne, remit- 
tances from the colonies became a regular and 
considerable branch of revenue. The fatal ope- 
ration of tliis change in the state of the king- 
dom was at once conspicuous. And under the 
weak administration of Philip III. the vigour 
of the nation sunk into the lowest decline. The 
inconsiderate bigotry of that monarch expelled at 
onc^ nearly a million pf his most indust;rious sub* 




jects, at the very time when the exhausted state of 
the kingdom required some extraordinary excr- 
lions of political wisdom to augment its numbers, 
and to revive its strength. Spain felt that her 
manutactures were fallen into decay ; that her 
fleets, which had been the terror of Europe^ were 
ruined^ and that her commerce was lost. Even 
agriculture, the primary object of industry in 
every prosperous state, was neglected^ and one of 
the most fertile countries in Europe hardly raised 
what was sufficient for the support of its own in- 
habitants. The Spaniards, intoxicated with the 
wealth which poured in upon them, deserted the 
paths of industry to which they had been accus- 
tomed, and repaired with eagerness to those re- 
gions from which this opulence issued | till at 
length Soain was unable to supply the growing 
demands of the colonies. She had recourse to her 
neighbours. The manufactures of the Low Coun- 
tries, of England, of France, and of Italy, fur- 
nished in abundance whatever she required. In a 
short time not above a twentieth part of the com- 
modities exported to America was of Spanish 
growth or fabric. The treasure of the New World 
may be said henceforward not to have belonged t<| 
Spain. That wealth, which by an internal circu- 
lation would have spread tlirough each vein of 
industry, and have conveyed life and motion to 
-every branch of manufacture, flowed out of die 
kingdom with such a rapid course as neither en- 
riched nor animated it. On the other hand, the 
artisans of rival nations, encouraged by ihe quick 
sale of tlieir commodities, improved so much in 
industry as to be able to aflbrd them at a rate so 
low that the manufactures of Spain were still 
hnher depressed. This destructive commerce 












drained ofF the riches of the nation, and the Spa- 
niards, in fact, became only the carriers of foreign 
merchandize, and the channel through which 
the precious metals flowed from America to the 
other European states. Spain was so much as- 
tonished and distressed at beholding her American 
treasures vanish almost as soon as they were im- 
ported, that Philip III. issued an edict, by which 
he endeavoured to raise copper money to a value in 
currency nearly equal to that of silver ; and tlic 
lord of the Peruvian and Mexican mines was re- 
duced to a wretched expedient, which is tlie last 
resource of petty impoverished states. 

Ihus the possessions of Spain in America have 
not proved a source of population and of wealth to 
her, in the same manner as tliose of other nations. 
In those countries of Europe where industry is in 
lull vigour, every person settled in such colonies 
as are similar in their situation to those of Spain, is 
supposed to give employment to three or four at 
home in supplying his wants. But wherever the 
mother country cannot atibrd this supply, every 
emigrant may be considered as a citizen lost to 
the community 5 and strangers must reap all tlie 
benelit of answering his demands. 

We have already noticed tlie trade carried oa 
by the galleons : tliese were frequently retarded 
by various accidents, and on such occasions the 
scarcity of European goods in the Spanish settle^ 
ments frequently becdme excessive ; their price 
rose to an enormous height. 1'he vigilant eye of 
mercantile attention did not fail to observe tlus 
favourable opportunity : an ample supply was 
poured in from tlie English, French, and Dutch 
islands j and when the galleons at length arrived 
tliey found the markets so glutted by this illicit 



commerce, that there was no demand for the com- 
modities with which they were loaded. To re- 
medy this, Spain permitted a considerable part of 
her commerce with America to be carried on in 
register ships. These were fitted out during the 
Intervals between tlie stated seasons when the gal- 
leons sailed, by merchants of Seville or Cadiz, 
upon obtaining a license from the council of the 
Indies, for which they paid a high premium. 

In proportion as experience manifested the ad- 
vantages of carrying on trade in this mode, the 
number of register ships increased j and at length 
in the year 1748, tlie galleons, after having been 
employed upwards of two centuries, were linally 
laid aside. From that period there has been no 
intercourse with Chili and Peru, but by single 
ships, dispatched from time to time as occasion 
requires. These sail round Cape Horn, and con- 
vey directly to tlie ports in the South Sea the pro- 
ductions and manufactures of Europe, for which 
the people settled in those countries were before 
obliged to repair to Porto-Bello or Panama. 

It remains only to give some account of the 
trade carried on between New Spain and the 
Philippine Islands. Soon after the accession of 
Philip II. a scheme was formed of planting a 
colony in these islands, which had been neglected 
since tlie time of tlieir discovery. Manilla, in the 
island of Luconia, was the station chosen for the 
capital of tliis new establishment. From it an active 
commercial intercourse began with the Chinese; 
and a considerable number of that industrious peo- 
ple, allured by the prospect of gain, settled in tlie 
Philippine Islands, under Spanish protection. They 
supplied the colony so amply witli all the valuable 
productions and manufactures of the East, as 
^ enabled 


enabled it to open a trade with America, by 3 
course of navigation the longest from land to land 
Dn our globe. In the infancy of this trade, it was 
carried on with Callao on the coast of Peru, but 
afterwards it was removed to Acapulco on tlift 
coast of New Spain. 

After various arrangements it has been brought 
into a regular form. One or two ships depart an- 
anally from Acapulco, which are permitted to 
carry out silver to the amount of more than one 
hundred thousand pounds sterling ; in return for 
which, tliey bring back spices, drugs, china, and 
jnpan wares -, calicoes, chintz, muslins, silks, and 
t'very precious article with which the East can 
supply the rest of the world. For some time tlie 
merchants of Peru were permitted to participate 
in tliis traffic, but now it is confined solely to 
New Spain. In consequence of this indulgence, 
the inhabitants of that country enjoy advantages 
unknown to the other Spanish colonies* The 
manufactures of the East are not only more suited 
to a warm climate, and are more shoAvy than those 
of Europe, but can be sold at a lower price j while, 
at the ?ame time, the profits upon them are so 
considerable as to enrich all those who are em- 
ployed either in bringing them from Manilla, or 
vending them in New Spain. As the interest 
both of the buyer and seller concurs in favouring 
this branch of commerce, it has continued in spite 
of regulations, concerted with the most anxioua 
jealousy, to circumscribe it. Under cover of what 
the laws permit to be imported, great quantities of 
India goods are poured into the mapkets of New 
Spain ; and when the European ships arrive at Vera 
Cruz, they frequently find the wants of the peopl(> 

VOL. xx^v. » §u^plied 

194 AMElRICA. 

aupplled by cheaper and more acceptable com- 

Notwithstanding these frauds, the Spanish mo- 
narclis receive a very considerable revenue from 
the American dominions. This arises from taxes 
of various kinds, which maybe divided into, 1. 
What is paid to the sovereign as lord of the New 
World : to tliis class belong the duty on the pro- 
duce of the mines, and the tribute ' exacted from 
the Indians : the former is termed by the Spaniards 
the right of signory, the latter is the duty of vas- 
salage. 2. Into the numerous duties on com- 
merce, which accompany and oppress it in every 
step: and, 3. What accrues to the king as head 
of the church. In consequence of this, he receives 
the spiritual revenues levied by the apostolic cham- 
ber in Europe, and is entitled likewise to the pro- 
fit arising from the sale of the bull of Cruzado. 
This bull, which is published every two years, 
contains an absolution from past offences, and a 
permission to eat several kinds of prohibited food 
during Lent. Every person in the Spanish colonies, 
of European, Creolian, or mixed race, purchases 
a bull, which is deemed essential to his salvation, 
at the rate set upon it by government. It is not 
easy to get at the amount of those various funds -, 
but it is probable that the net public revenue raised 
in America does not exceed a million and a half 
sterling per annum. Spain and Portugal are, how- 
ever, the only European powers who derive a direct 
revenue from their colonies. All the advantage 
that accimes to other nations from their American 
dominions arises from the exclusive enjoyment of 
tiieir trade. 

. But if the revenue which Spain draws from 
,.' . 3- . JVmerica 


America be great, the expense of administration 
in her colonies bears full proportion to it. I'he 
salaries allotted to every person in public olKce are 
very high. I'he viceroys maintain all the state 
and dignity of royalty. Their courts display such 
pomp as hardly retains the appearance of a dele- 
gated authority. All this expense is defrayed by 
the crown. 

The salaries constitute but a small part of the 
revenue enjoyed by the viceroys. From the single 
article of presents made to him on the anniver- 
sary of his name-day y a viceroy has been known to 
receive fifteen thousand pounds sterling. Accord- 
ing to a Spanish proverb, the legal revenues of a 
viceroy are known : his real profits depend upon 
his opportunities and conscience. Hence tlieir 
commission is granted only for a very short term of 
years j which renders them often more rapacious, 
in order quickly to repair a shattered fortune or to 
create a new one. But even in situations so trying 
to human frailty, there are instances of virtue that 
remains unseduced. In the year 1772, tlie marquis 
de Croiz finished the term of his viceroyalty in 
New Spain with unsuspected integrity 5 and, in- 
stead of bringing home exorbitant wealth, returned 
with the admiration and applause of a grateful peo-. 
pie, whom his government had rendered happy. 






Uisiori/ of the Portuguese Settlements in Arwerktt. 
Dlscoi^ery of Brazil, Extent of the Porluguese 
Empire, Conquest of Portugal, Brazil taken 
lu the Dutch. Recovered, Extent of Brazil, 
HqjutJ divided and governed, Inhahitants, Trade, 
Ama%onia, River Amazon. Pimple, French 
Settlement of Cayenne. Dutch Settlements at 
G?ilana. Chief Towns. Climate, Inhahitants, 

THE discovery of America by Columbus was; 
as we have seen, owing originally to just rea- 
soning on the figure of tlie eartli, though the par- 
ticular land that he discovered was far from that 
which he sought. Here was evidently a mixture 
.of wise design and fortunate accident 3 but tlie Por- 
tuguese discovery of Brazil may be regarded as 
^merely accidental. For, sailing with a considerable 
armament to India, by the way of tlie Cape of 
Good Hope, but standing out to sea to avoid the 
calms upon the coast of Atrica, the Portuguese 
Heet fell in with the continent of South America. 
Upon their return they made so favourable a re- 
port of the land which tliey had discovered, that 
the court resolved to send a colony thither. This 
was at first opposed by tlie Spaniards, who consi- 
dered the country as within their dominions. Mat- 
ters were, however, at length accommodated by a 
treaty, in which it was agreed that £he Portuguese 
should possess all that tract of land tliat lies be- 
tween the River of Amazons and that of La 


i as 
; of 
by a 


When thtir right was thus confirmed, * y% 
the Portuguese pursued the settlement with * * 
such vigour, that in a little time more than ^' 
two thousand miles of sea-coast was colonized ; 
which was infinitely to the benefit of the mother 
country. Their settlements on tlie coast of Africa 
forwarded this establishment, by the number of 
negroes which they atforded them for their works. 
Hence the introduction of negroes into this part of 
America, and the foundation of a traffic, disgrace- 
ful to allconcerned in it. 

In the very meridian of their prosperity, when 
the Portuguese were in possession of so extensive 
an empire, and so flourishing a trade in Africa, in 
Arabia, in India, in the Asiatic isles, and in tlie 
most valuable part of America, they were crushed 
by one of those incidents which decides the fates 
of kingdoms. Don Sebastian, one of their * j^ 
greatest princes, in an expedition he had ' ' 
undertaken against the Moors, was slain 3 by 
which accident the Portuguese lost their liberty, and 
were absorbed into the Spanish dominions. 

Soon after this misfortune, tlie same yoke that, 
galled the Portuguese grew so intolerable to the 
inhabitants of the Netherlands, that they threw 
it off with great fury and indignation. Not sa- 
tisfied with erecting themselves into an inde- 
pendent state, they fell upon the possessions of the 
Portuguese ; took almost all their fortresses in the 
East Indies 3 and then turned their arms upon Brazil, 
whicl was unprotected by Europe, and be- a -p) ^ 
trayed by the cowardice of the governor of ,^'r,q' 
their principal city. They would have over- 
run the whole, had not the archbishop DonMickael 
de Texeira believed, tliat in such an emergency the 
danger of his country superseded the common ob- 

t> '4 ligations 


ligations of his profession. He took arms, and at 
the head of his monks, and a few scattered forces, 
put a stop to tlie torrent of the Dutch conquest. He 
made a -gallant stand until succours arrived, and 
then resigned the commission with which the pub- 
lic necessity and his own valour had armed him, 
into the hands of a person appointed by authority. 
By this noble conduct the archbishop saved seven 
of the fourteen provinces into which Brazil was di- 
vided : the rest fell into tlie hands of tiie Dutch, 
. -p from whom they were again partly recon- 

i^fii * ^^^^*^^ ^y ^^^^ Portuguese, bat not without 
* a considerable struggle, and after much 
loss on both sides. The Portuguese agreed to pay 
the Dutch eight tons of gold, to reUnquish their 
interest in this country : which was accepted j and 
tlieyhave remained in peaceable possession of all 
Brazil till about 1/62, when the Spaniards took 
the fortress of St. Sacrament j but by treaty of 
peace it was restored. 

I'his vast territory is but little known, partly 
from tlie want of science and curiosity, and partly 
on account of the thick forests which cover tlie ex- 
tensive plains of La Plata. Though in strict alli- 
ance witli Portugal, we have little precise know- 
ledge of Brazil, and still less of tlie interior country 
of Amazonia. The chief city of Brazil was for- 
merly Saint Salvador, w^hich has since yielded to 
Bit) de Janeiro. 

Brazil is now divided into eight independent go- 
vernments, besides that of Rio de Janeiro, of which 
alone the governor retains the style of viceroy ot" 
the Brazils. The discovery and improvement of tlic 
gold and diamond mines, about one hundred 
leagues to the N. W., have secured to Janeiro a 
decided preponderance. But ^U th^ provinces 








o a 



>re gt-owlng fast into opulence and importance ; 
ind we are informed by sir George Staunton, 
that they manufactured of late years several of tlic 
most necessary articles for their own consumption, 
and their produce was so considerable tliat the ba- 
lance of trade began to be already in their favour ; 
and remittances of bullion were made to them 
from Europe, in return for the overplus of their ex- 
ports beyond their imports. The diamond mines 
belong exclusively to die crown ; and one fifth of 
the gold is exacted. There are also numerous 
taxes and impositions, which instead of enlarging 
the revenue are the great causes of its diminution. 

The European settlers in Brazil are fond of plea- 
sure, but extremely observant of the ceremonies of 
religion. I^abour is chiefly performed by slaves, 
about twenty thousand negroes being annually im- 
ported. The natives are said to be irreclaimable 
savages, who chiefly subsist apart on the coast be- 
tween Janeiro and San Salvador. The harbour of 
Rio Janeiro is capacious and excellent ; surround- 
ed by a fertile country, and protected by the cas- 
tle of Santa Gruz. On the west is the city of St, 
Sebastian, commonly called Rio de Janeiro, built 
on a tongue of land, the hills and rocks behind 
being crowned with woods, convents, houses, and 
churches. The streets are generally straight and 
well paved. Water is supplied by an aqueduct 
after die Roman plan 5 for, notwithstanding the 
name, there is no river of any note. 

The trade of Brazil is very great, and increases 
every year. Of the diamonds there are supposed 
to be returned to Europe to die amount of 130,0001. 
annually. This, with the sugar, the tobacco, the 
hides, and the valuable drugs for medicine and 
manufacturesj, may give sqme idea of the import- 





ance of this traffic, not only to Portugal, but to all 
the trading powers of Europe. 

Amazonia was discovered by Francisco Orellana, 
about the year 1580, who in returning from Peru 
sailed down the river Amazon to the Atlantic 
ocean. On the banks of the river he observed 
companies of women in arms. On that account he 
called the country Amazouia, or the Land of Ama- 
zons, and gave the name of Amazon to tlie river, 
which formerly had been called Maragnon. The 
Spaniards were never able to effect a settlement 
therej but the Portuguese have some small colonies 
on that part of the coast which lies betwixt Cape 
North and tJie mouth of the Amazon. This river 
is one of the largest in the world. It runs a course 
from west to east of about three thousand miles, 
and receives nearly two hundred other rivers, 
some of which are not inferi(/r in magnitude to the 
Danube or the Nile. The breadth of this river at 
its mouth, where it discharges itself by several 
channels into the ocean, almost under the equator, 
is one hundred and tifty miles, and atone thousand 
five hundred miles from its mouth it is forty fa- 
thoms deep. In the rainy season it overflows i^ 
banks, and waters and fertilizes the adjacent coun- 

The Indian nations inhabiting this extensive 
tract of the globe are very numerous ; and the 
banks of almost every river are inhabited by a dif*- 
ferent people, who are governed by their caziques, 
distinguished from their subjects by coronets of 
beautiful feathers. They are idolaters, and wor- 
ship the images of their antient heroes. In their 
expeditions they carry their gods with tliem. 

The possessions of the Fr 3nch on the continent 
of America are very inconsiderable. They were 







formerly the lords of Canada and Louisiana, hut 
liave now lost all tooting in North America. ()i\ 
the southern continent, liowever, they have still a 
settlement, which is called Cayenne, in Guiana. 
The chief town Is Caen, or Cayano, in which 
there are twelve hundied white inhabitants, ex- 
clusive of the garrison. Tin coast is very low, 
but within land tliere nrc tine hills, proper for 
almost every spccus of cultivrition. But tlie 
French have not yet ext( ndcd them so fnr as tJiey 
tnight. The soil and climate seem unexception- 
able> but during the rains many parts are inun- 
dated. The dry season is from June to October, 
and the heaviest rains are in our winter season. 
Cayenne pepper is the principal product of this 
country ; besides which, they export sugar, cocoa, 
vanilla, and indigo. 

The French have also taken possession of the 
island of Cayenne, which is situated at the mouth 
of the river of the same name. It is about forty- 
five miles in circumference, and is reckoned very 
unhealthy. To this place the tyrant Robespierre 
banished many of the best men of France, for po- 
litical offences. The Corsican Buonaparte has 
made use occasionally of this island for tlie same 

After the Portuguese had dispossessed the Dutch 
of Brazil, they formed settlements in Guiana, 
A. D. 1663 ', but four years afterwards they were 
expelled by the English, whose descendants form 
part of tlie colony, which was given back to the 
Dutch, in exchange for New York, in iG/t). 
Dutch Guiana is to the N. W. of the French set- 
tlement, and is often called Surinam, from a river 
of tliat name on which the capital is situated. The 
thief towns are Paramaribo, on tlie western bank 










of the Surinam, and New Middleburg near tlie 
N. W. extremity of the colony. Demerara is a 
settlement on a river of that name. Issequibo is 
another Dutch settlement on the Spanish Main, 
which surrendered to the English in 178I, but 
which was not considered of sutiicient importance 
to be retained. 

The climate of this country is reckoned un- 
wholesome. The wet and dry seasons are al- 
ternate, each for about three months. It is one of 
the richest and most valuable colonies belonging to 
the United Provinces j but it is in a less prosperous 
situation than it was some years since, owing to the 
wars in which they have been engaged with their 
fugitive negroes, whom they treated with great 
barbarity, and who are become sufficiently nu- 
merous to form a kind of colony in the woods, 
and to be really formidable enemies to their former 
masters. Under the command of chiefs elected 
from among themselves, they have cultivated lands 
for their subsistence 5 and, making frequent in- 
cursions into the neighbouring plantations, revenge 
themselves upon their old oppressors. The chief 
trade of Surinam consists in sugar, cotton, coffee, 
tobacco, flax, skins, and very valuable dyeing drugs. 

The inhabitants of Dutch Guiana are either 
whites, blacks, or the reddish-brown aboriginal 
natives of America. The promiscuous inter- 
course of these different people has likewise gene- 
rated several intermediate casts, whose colours de- 
pend on their degree of consanguinity to either 
Whites, Indians, or Negroes. — ^There are so 
many birds of various species, and remarkable for 
the beauty of their plumage, in Guiana, that several 
persons in the colony liave employed themselves 
with their dependents very advantageously in 




liilling and preserving them for tlie cabinets of na- 
turalists in different parts of Europe. The torpedo, 
or electrical eel, is fovnid in the rivers of Guiana. 
But the immense number and variety of snakes in 
this country form one of its chief inconveniencies. 
It is said that several years ago one was killed 
which measured 33 feet in length, and in the 
largest part three feet in circumierence. The 
lauba is a peculiar amphibious animal of small 
size, about the size of a pig four rnonths old, co- 
vered with line short hair 3 its iiesh is preferred to 
all other kinds of meat. The quassia, the castor-oil 
nut, the cassia, the palm-oil, the cowhage, the 
balsam of capivi, and ipecacuanha, are all natives 
here. An herbaceous plant called troolies grows 
here, whose leaves are the largest of any yet 
known : they lie on the ground, and have sometimes 
attained the almost incredible lengdi of thirty 
feet, by tliree feet in widtli. So admirable a ma- 
terial for covering has not been bestowed on this 
country in vain y most of the houses are thatched 
with it, and it will last for years without repair. 
Gum caoutchouc is produced from a large tree in 
Guiana, and is used for vessels of various kinds 
and for torches. A small tree called caruna yields 
a farinaceous nut, from which the Indians prepare a 
slow poison, the instrument of jealousy or revenge. 
Still more certain is the Ticuna poison, which is 
prepared from the roots of the nibbees, that in- 
habit the entangled forests of these immeasurable 
swamps, and are a shelter to the panthers, the 
serpents, and all those monstrous and abominable 
reptiles that generate in this pestilential aUno- 




CHAP. vm. 

Henry VII. authorizes Cabot to make Discoveries, 
Cabot takes possession of a great Part of 
North America, Patent granted to Sir JValter 
Raleigh, London and Plymouth Companies, 
Puritans persecuted, and go to America, Their 
Character and Sujj'erings. Maryland an Asy- 
lum for the Roman Catholics, Liberal Policy 
of England to her Settlements, Importance of 
the American Colonies, IVars with France, 
Washington's Expeditions, Hopes conceived of 
his future Celebrity, General Peace, American 
Commerce limited by Greatr- Britain. Stamp 
Act, Opposition to it. Repealed, Declaratory 
Act, Plan for taxing Glass, Tea, tsfc, Ame- 
rican Opposition, in which Boston takes the 
lead. Quarrels between the Military and Inha' 
bitatits. Three of the latter killed. Letters 
from Governor Hutchinson intercepted by Dr, 
Franklin, Dr, Franklin dismissed from his Of" 

HAVING discussed in the former chapters of 
this volume the subject of the Spanish and 
Portuguese discoveries and settlements on tlie con- 
tinent of America, we now proceed ta those tliat 
were made under the auspices of our own country, 
which will lead us to take a connected view of tlie 
History of the United States to the present times; 
in the course of which we shall, as far as our 
limits will allow, exhibit a distinct historical^ poli- 



tical, and geogi'aphical view of the northern con- 
tinent of America*. 

Henry VII. of England^ by tlie exertion of an 
autliority similar to that of pope Alexander f , 
granted to John Cabot, a Venetian pilot, and his 
three sons, who were subjects and natives of Eng«^ 
land, a commission *' to navigate all parts of the 
ocean for tlie purpose of discovering islands, coun- 
tries, regions, or provinces, either of Gentiles or 
Inhdels, which have been hitherto unknown to all 
Christian people, with power to set up his stand- . 
ard, and to take possession of the same as vassal* 
of the crown of England." By virtue of this com* 
mission Sebastian Cabot, one of the sons, ^ -p. 
explored and took possession of a great part ^^^.^ 
of the North American continent, in the ^ 
name and on behalf of the king of England. This 
discovery was made in consequence of an attempt 
to find a north-west passage to China 5 an enter- 
prise in which he failed, but which led to more 
important consequences. 

For the space of more than half a century after 
the discovery, the English neither navigated the 
coast nor attempted to establish colonies. Tii^ 
first English patent which was granted for ^ y. 
making settlements in the country, was ,^Vr' 
issued by queen Elizabeth to sir Hum- ' 
phrey Gilbert. Shortly after she licensed Mr, 
Walter, afterwards sir Walter, Raleigh *' to ^ -^ 
learch for Heathen lands not inhabited ,J.qj' 
by Christian people j" and granted to him, 
ju fee, all the soil within 200 leagues of the placea 

i-i ■ % 

* See the Table at the end of the vclume* 
f See page 24 o f this volume. 

Vol. XXIV. a? 




> ■•'. . 

V' lip 


• -m;- 




M^. ', 

1 ; \ 


V 1 

^l*t ■ 

n J"l^it 

' ' "Cj 

ri!' *' '' 


t*<%^ '. 

■ 4. ' 






F^' :' 


h %J 


1 ,**• , 







where his people should make their dwellings. Un- 
der his auspices an inconsiderable colony took pos- 
session of that part of the American coast which 
now forms North Carolina. In honour of the virgin 
queen, his sovereign, he gave to tlie whole country 
the name of Virginia. These first settlers, and others 
who followed them, were eidier destroyed by the 
natives, removed by succeeding navigators, or 
died without leaving any behind to tell their me- 
lancholy story. No permanent settlement was 
efiected till the reign of James the First. He 
granted letters patent to Thomas Gates and his 
* -pj associates, by which he conferred on them 
^ ^ ' '' all those territories in America which 
were not then possessed by other Christian 
princes," and which lay between the 34th and 45th 
degree of north latitude. They were divided into 
two companies. The one, consisting of adventurers 
of the city of London, was called the London com- 
pany J the other, consisting of merchants of Ply- 
mouth and some other western towns, was called 
the Plymouth company. The adventurers were 
empowered to transport thither as many English 
subjects as should willingly accompany them; and it 
was declared, *' that the colonists and their chil- 
dren should enjoy the same liberties as if they had 
remained or were born within the realm." The 
» y^ month of April is the epoch of the iirst per- 
^ ^ * manent settlement on the coast of Virginia, 
' * the name then given to all that extent of 
country which now forms the original Thirteen 
States- The emigrants took possession of a peninsula 
on the northern side of James River, and erected a 
town in honour of their sovereign, which they called 
James-Town. In a few months diseases swept away 
one half of their number ; which greatly distressed 




and alarmed the others. Nevertheless, within 
twenty years from the first foundation of James- 
Town, upwards of gcXX) English subjects had, at 
different times, migrated thither, of whom at thi* 
period only 1800 remained alive. 

Thirteen years elapsed after James-Town be- 
gan to be built, before any permanent settle- 
ment was effected in the northern colony. Vari- 
ous attempts for that purpose had failed, 
nor was the arduous business accomplished 
till it was undertaken by men who were influ- 
enced by higher motives than the mere exten- 
sion of agriculture or commerce. These were 
denominated in England Puritans, from a desire 
of farther reformation in the established church, 
and particularly for their aversion from cer- 
tain popish habits and ceremonies which they 
contended led to idolatry. So violent was the 
zeal of the majority for uniformity in matters of 
religion, that popular preachers among the Pu- 
ritans were suspended, imprisoned, and ruined, 
for not using garments or ceremonies which their 
adversaries acknowledged to be indifferent. And 
towards the end of queen Elizabeth's reign an act 
was passed for punishing those who refused to 
come to church, or were present at any conventicle 
or meeting. The punishment in certain cases was 
perpetual banishment 5 and upon those who should 
return without license, death was to be inflicted. 
This cruel law increased the number of Puritans. 
Some suffered death, others were banished ; and 
not a few, to avoid these evils, voluntarily exiled 
themselves from their native country. Of this 
number was a congregation under the pastoral 
care of Mr. John Robinson, who, to elude their 
persecutors, removed to Holland. There they con- 

T 2 tinued 




tinned ten years highly esteemed by the natives f 
A Y% when, on account of the morals of the 
iCiin ^^^^^» which in their opinion were too 
lax, they began to think of a second re- 
moval, lest their offspring should conform to tlie 
bad examples daily before them. They had also 
an ardent desire of propagating religion in foreign 
lands, and of separating themselves from all die 
existing establishments in Europe. An applica^ 
tion was made to James for full liberty of con- 
science 5 but he promised only to connive at and 
not molest them. They nevertheless ventured, 
and sailed to the number of one hundred and one 
from Plymouth, and arrived at Cape Cod in No- 
vember 1620. They formed themselves into a 
body politic under the crown of England, and em- 
ployed themselves in making discoveries till the 
end of the year. Witliin six months of their land- 
ing they buried 44 persons out of the number 
that went out. Animated with a high degree of 
religious zeal, they supported every hardship with 
fortitude and resolution. The prospect of an ex- 
emption from ecclesiastical courts, and of an un- 
disturbed liberty of worshipping their Creator in 
the way that was agreeable to their own con- 
sciences, were, in their estimation, a sufficient 
counterbalance to all that they unden^^ent. 

This handful of people laid the foundation of 
New-England, and from them spmng all those 
who have since inhabited Massachussetts, New 
Hampshire, Connecticut, and Rhode-Island. The 
Puritans, to which sect the first emigrants be- 
longed, were a plain industrious people, and 
strict observers of tiie moral and social duties. 
According to their principles, the Bible WtU, the 
sole rule both of faith and practice ; and the im* 


AMERICA. 20() 

position of articles of faitli, modes of worship, kc, 
was subversive of natural rights, and an usur})ation 
of power not delegated to any man or body of men 
whatever. It is to be lamented that these prin- 
ciples of religious liberty ceased to operate on the 
emigrants soon after they came into the possession 
of power. In the eleventh year after their a -r^ 
arrival in America, they resolved that " J^o i/?qi * 
man should be admitted to the freedom of 
their body politic, but such as were members of 
their churches j" and afterwards '* that none but 
such should share in the administration of civil 
government, or have a voice in any election." In 
a few years more they had so far forgotten their 
own sufferings, as to press for uniformity in re- 
ligion, and to turn persecutors in order to accom- 
plish it. As the intolerance of England peopled 
Mussachussetts, so the intolerance of that province 
made many emigrate from it, and gave rise to 
various distant settlements, which in the course of 
years "w^ere formed into other provincial establish- 
ments. Connecticut, Rhode-Island, and New 
Hampshire sprung from Massachussetts, and their 
early growth was greatly accelerated by her im- 
politic zeal for uniformity. The country which 
was subdivided into tliese four provinces had been 
called New England ever since the year l6l4. 
The propriety of classing them under one general 
name became more evident, from their being set- 
tled by the same kind of people, connected with 
each other by blood, uniformity of manners, and a 
similarity of religious and political sentiments. 
The early population of this northern country was 
rapid. In the short space of twenty years from 
its first settlement, 21,200 persons arrived in 
298 vessels 5 when, from a change in public affairs, 

t3 the 




the emigration from Old to New England in a great 
measure ceased. 
* j^ Maryland was tlie third English colony 
■fV r^* settled in North America j but the first 
* which from its beginning was erected into 
a province of the empire. The lirst emigration to 
this place consisted of about 200 gentlemen, chiefly 
of the Roman catholic religion. Calvert, their 
leader, purchased the right of the aborigines, and 
with their consent took possession of the town, 
which he called St. Mary's. He continued care- 
fully to cultivate their friendship, and lived with 
them on terms of perfect amity. The lands which 
had thus been ceded were planted with facility, be- 
cause they had already undergone the discipline of 
Indian tillage. Food was therefore easily procured. 
The Roman catholics, unhappy in their native 
land, and desirous of a peaceftil asylum, went over 
in great numbers to Maryland. Lord Baltimore, 
to whom the province had been granted, laid the 
foundation of its future prosperity on the broad 
basis of security o property, and of freedom ia 
religion. While Virginia persecuted the Puritans, 
numbers of them passed over to this new province, 
tlie assembly of which had enacted, ** that no 
persons, professing to believe in Jesus Christ, 
should be molested in respect of tlieir religion, or 
in the free exercise thereof." The prudence of 
one colony acquired what the folly of the other 
had thrown away. Thus in Massachussetts the 
Puritans persecuted various sects, and the Church 
of England in Virginia harassed thos^ who dis* 
Rented from the established religion ; while the 
Roman catholics of Maryland tolerated and pre- 
lected the professors of all denominations. 
The distractions which convulsed England for 




twenty-five years left no leisure for colonizing ; 
but as soon as Charles II. was restored to tlie 
throne of his ancestors, it was resumed with greater 
spirit than ever. By charters granted by a n 
this sovereign Connecticut, Rhode-Island, ^qq.-,' 
and Providence plantations were rendered 
pure democracies. Every power, legislative, ju- 
dicial and executive, was invested in the freemen 
of the corporation, or their delegates 3 and the 
colony was under no obligation to communicate its 
legislative acts to the national sovereign. 

In the succeeding year a patent was granted to 
lord Clarendon and others, comprehending that 
extent of country which now forms the . p. 
states of North Carolina, South Carolina, jggo* 
and Georgia, In the following year king 
Charles gave to his brother James, duke of York, 
a patent which included New York and New 

At this period Charles gave to Wil- . p. 
liam Penn a patent for Pennsylvania ; and \r:(..' 
some time after he obtained a farther ' 

grant of the land on tlie western side of the 
Delaware, and south of Pennsylvania, which was 
formed into a separate government, and is now 
the state of Delaware. Notwithstanding these 
charters, Mr. Penn did not think himself invested 
with the right of the soil till he had purchased it 
from the native proprietors. 

In this manner was the English North Ameri- 
can continent parcelled out into distinct govern- 
ments. Little did the founders foresee of the 
consequences both good and evil that were to 
result to the Old World from discovering and 
colonizing the New. When we consider the im- 
ittcase quantities of gold and silver which have 


■ um 






flowed from it into Europe^ the subsequent increase 
of industry and population j the prodigious ex- 
tension of commerce, manufactures, and naviga- 
tion } and tlie influence of the whole on manners 
and arts -, we see such an accumulation of good, 
as leads us to rank Cohimbus among the greatest 
benefactors of the human race. But when we 
consider the injustice done to the natives j the ex- 
tirpation of many of their numerous nations, whose 
names are now not even known j the havoc made 
among tlie first settlers j the slavery of the 
Africans, to which America has furnished the 
temptation j and the many wars which it has oc- 
casioned 5 we contemplate such a mass of misery 
as may lead one to doubt whether the evil has not 
outweighed the good. 

The advantage which the emigrants to Ameiica 
expected from the protection of their native so- 
vereign, and the prospect of aggrandisement which 
the monarch anticipated from the extension of 
his empire, made the former very solicitous for 
charters, and the latter very ready to grant them. 
Neither reasoned clearly on their nat^ne, or well 
understood their extent. In less than eight years 
1500 miles of sea-coast were granted away^ and so 
Httle did they who gave or they who accepted of 
charters understand their own transactions, that in 
several cases the same ground was covered by con- 
tradictory grants, some of which extended to the 
South Sea, over a country whose breadth is yet 
unknown, and which to this day is unexplored. 

Ideal as these charters were, they answered a 
temporary purpose. The colonists reposed con- 
fidence in them, and were excited to industry on 
their credit. And it is worthy of observation, 
that of the thirteen colonies^ no one, Georgia 
•"• excepted^ 



excepted, was settled at the expense < grr^ 
vernment. Towards the settlement ol tli it 
soutliern frontier, considerable sums have a. dit- 
ferent times been granted by parlianiintj but 
the twelve more nortliern provincjs had been 
wholly settled by private adventurers. Nor does 
it appear that any compensation for their lands 
was ever made to the aborigines of America by 
the crown or parliament of England. But policy 
as well as justice led the colonists to purchase and 
pay for what they occupied. This was done in 
almost every settlement J and they prospered most, 
who by justice and kindness took the greatest pains 
to conciliate the good- will of the natives. 

The legal and constitutional history of tlie colo- 
nies, in their early periods, affords but little in- 
struction*. It is sutiicient to observe, that in lcs» 
than eighty years from the first permanent English 
settlement in North America, the two original pa- 
tents granted to tlie Plymouth and London com- 
panies were divided and subdivided into tv/clve 
distinct and unconnected provinces j and in fifty 
years more a thirteenth, by the name of Georgia, 
was added to the southern extreme of tlie other 
establishments. To each of these there was ul* 
timately granted a form of government, resem** 
hling, in its most essential parts, that which was 
established in tlie parent state j and agreeably to 
the spirit of the British constitution, ample provi- 
sion was made for the liberties of the inhabitants. 
In some of the provinces the inhabitants chose 
their governors and other public officers, and their 
legislatures were under little or no control. In 
others, the crown delegated most of its power to 

* Se^ Tabl^ 11. zt the ^nd of the volume. 




particular persons, who were also invested with 
the property of the soil. In those which were 
most immediately dependent on the king, he ex- 
ercised no higher prerogatives over the colonists 
than he did over their fellow subjects in England ; 
and his power over the provincial legislative assem- 
blies was not greater than what he was constitu- 
tionally vested with over the house of conmions 
in the mother country. 

It is remarkable, that though the English pos- 
sessions in America were far inferior in natural 
riches to those which fell to the lot of other Euro- 
peans, yet the security of property and of liberty 
derived from the English constitvUion gave thenx 
a consequence to which the colonies of other 
powers have never attained. The wise and liberal 
policy of England towards her colonies, during the 
first century and a half after their settlement, had 
a considerable influence in exalting them to this 
preeminence. She gave them full liberty to go- 
vern themselves, and to pursue their respective in- 
terests in such manner as they thought proper. 
Their trade was open to every individual in the Bri- 
tish dominions : they participated in that excellent 
form of government with which the parent isle 
l^^as blessed, and which has raised it to an admi- 
rable height of agriculture, commerce, and manu- 
factures 3 and trial by jury was established among 

From the operation of these general principles, 
the American settlements increased in number, 
wealth and resources, with a rapidity which Sur- 
passed all previous calculation. Neither antient 
nor modern history can produce an example of co- 
lonies governed with equal wisdom, or flourishing 
with equal rapidity. In the ghort space ' of one 


4MKRICA. 215 

hunJrecl and fifty years their numbers had in- 
t ivased to three millions, and their eonimerce ta 
siuth a (iegree as to be more than a third of that of 
Cireat Britain. They also extended their settle- 
ments fifteen hnndred miles on the sea-coast, and 
tiiree hundred miles to the westward. 

'I'he good effects of a wise policy and equal go- 
vernment WL-re not only discernible in raising the 
colonies of } iigland to a preeminence over those of 
odier European nations, but in raising some amono- 
themselves to greater importance than others. 
Tlieir relative population and wealth were by no 
means correspondent to their respective advantages 
of soil and climate. The New England provinces, 
though possessed of comparatively a barren coun- 
try, improved much faster than others which were 
blessed with a superior soil and milder climate. 
Their first settlers were animated with a high de- 
gree of that religious fervour which excites to great 
midertakings. They also granted their vacant 
lauds to individuals, who personally cultivated 
them. In their towns they extended the benefits 
of education and religious instruction. By these 
means industry and morality were propagated, and 
useful knowledge generally diffused ; so that, in 
proportion to their respective numbers, it is pro- 
bable that no otlier country in the world contained 
more sober orderly citizens, and fewer who were 
profligate and abandoned. Luxury was estranged 
from their borders. Enervating wealth and pinching 
poverty were both equally rare. Early marriages, 
and a numerous of! spring, were common -, hence 
population increased, and the inhabitants generally 
possessed that happy state of mediocrity which fa- 
vours the improvement bodi of mind aud body. 






New Yofk joined New England. Pennsylvanm, 
which was chiefly settled with quakers, and which 
gave perfect liberty of conscience and an exact 
equality to all sects, was equally flourishing with 
New England. The progressive improvement of 
Pennsylvania may be estimated from the increase of 
its trade. In the year 1/04 that province imported 
goods from (he mother countiy, amounting in va- 
lue only to 1 J ,4i)C}\. j but in 17/2 to the value of 
more than half a million sterling :— an increase of 
nearly fifty to one. 

In Maryland and Virginia a policy less favour- 
able to population took place. The church of 
England Mas incorporated with the first settlement 
of Virginia ; and in the lapse of time it also became 
the established religion of Maryland. In both these 
provinces that church possessed a legal preemi- 
nence, and was maintained at the expense not 
only of its own members, but of tliose of all other 
denominations : which deterred great numbers, es- 
pecially the presbyter ians who had emigrated from 
Ireland, from settling within the limits of these 
governments, ;ind fomented h spirit of discord be- 
tween those w ho belonged to, and those who dis- 
sented from, the established church. 

In these and the other southern provinces do- 
mestic slavery was common. Though it wias not 
by law forbidden any where, yet there were com- 
paratively very few slaves to the north of Mar^-- 
Jand. The religion of the quakers produced their 
united opposition to all traflSc in tlie human race. 
Many individuals of other sects discountenanced 
it J but the principal ground of difference on this 
head, bet\^ een the northern and southern provinces, 
aruhc less from reliijious principles than from cli- 
4 uvd{^ 






1 exact 


ig with 


nent of 


reuse of 



^B '^' 

5 in va- 


alue of 


rease of 




arch of 



^K, I 



:h these 




ise not 


11 other 


lers, es- 


jd from 

•f these 


ord be- 


ho dis- 


ces do- 


ivas not 

Q com- 




;d their 


n race. 




)n this 




m cli- 





mnfc and local circumstances. Slavery is, how- 
ever, at aA times attended witu miscliijvuus conse- 
quences, h is inmioal to the proper edacaiion of 
youth. Industry and temperance, viftuc'S esSv^n- 
t.al to the health and vigoui" jf both mind and 
body, are with dilHcalty pjaciised whe-e tne la- 
bour of slaves procures an abunaanoe not oniy of 
the necessaries but of the dehcacies of life, and 
where perpetual opportuniiies occur for eaiv, ex- 
cessive, and enervating indulgences. Hesi '„.-, in 
settlements where the Sv;ii is cultivated by slaves, 
it soon becomes unfashionable for freemen to la- 
bour ; than which no prreater evil can befall a conn- 
try. Idleness is the parent of vice, v/hde labour 
of all kinds flavours and fecilitates the practice of 

By the influence of these causes, the southern 
provinces, though possessed of the most Irunful 
6oil and the mildest climate, were far inferior to 
their neighbours in strength, population, mdustry, 
and w^ealth j and this infer oriiy increased or dimi- 
nished with the number of slaves in each pro- 
vince compa; ed with the number of freemen. 

The tirst emiij-rants from England f< coionizini2: 
America, left the mother country a». a tiine when 
the dread of arbitrajy power was the predominant 
passion of the nation. Except the charter of 
Georgia in the year 1/32, all the English cuionies 
obtained their ciiarters, and their greatest number 
of European settlers, between the years 1003 and 
16'88. During the whole of this period was that 
great struggle betvveen prero^^ative and privile e 
carried on ni P>j gland, till it terminated in a rev ;- 
lution highly tavourable to tlie iiberiies of the peo- 
ple. A variety oi: concurring causes led the inna- 
bitants of the colonies to cherish an ardent love of 

VOL, XXIV. ¥ independ- 







i Aj:..;'W.T j?: 



iiidependeiice, and a dv^siie to ninintaiii all tIio.se 
riL'Jiis and privile<i;c.s which they conceived to be 
inherent to their situation. Tliey Jiad not c;nly the 
inia2:e but the substance of the Eiidish constitu- 
tion. I'hey ehose most of their nuv^istrates, and 
paid them alL They had, in e licet, the sole direc- 
tion of their internal g(jvernment. Ihe clref mark 
vi' their subordination consisted in uiakinc: no laws 
repugnant to the laws of their mother country 3 in 
their subm.itting to have such laws, as tliey did 
make, repealed by the king; and in obeying those 
restrictions tliat were laid on their trade by parlia- 

Under such favourable circumstances, the colo- 
nies in the New World had advanced nearly to 
the magnitude of a nation, while the greater part 
of Europe was almost wdiolly ignorant of their pro- 
gress. And, indeed, they themselves, though 
gradually rising higiier in the scale of political im- 
portancej did not api)ear sensible of their own con- 
sequence. One of the iirst events which drew^ on 
. y. the colonies a share of public attention, 
,J,,.* was the taking; Louisbur^ from France, 
' * Awhile that country was- at war with Great 
Biltain. "lb is war was scarcely ended when an- 
other began, in wliich the colonies w^ere distinguish- 
ed parties. It was commenced in tlic follo\ying 
. -pj manner : — - A grant of si x hundi ed thousand 
J acres of land in the neighbourhood of the 
^ ' Ohio was made out in favour of certain 
persons in A'V'estminster, London, and Virginia, 
who had associated under the title of the. Ohio 
company. At this time PYance was in possession 
of the country on both sides of tlie mouth of the 
Mississippi, as well as of Canada, and wdshe < to 
form a coiiimunicatiou between the tw y extremi- 



ties of her territories in North America. She was 
(herefore alarmed at llie scheme in agitation by 
the Ohio company, as the land granted to them lay 
l)etween the northern and southern settlements, 
ilemonstranj^es against British encroachments, as 
they were called, having been made in vain by the 
sxovernor of Canada, the French at len^'iti seized 
.some British subjects ; and, persisting in . -p. 
their claims to the country on the Oiiio ,J,-,/ 
as part of Canada, strengthened themselves ' ' * 
by erecting new forts in its vicinity, and at length 
began to seize and plunder every British tiader 
found on any part of the river. This, at tirst, pro- 
duced retaliation; btit upcni the violences being 
repeated, the governor of Virginia deierminc-d 
to send a suitable person to the Frencii comman- 
dant, to demand the reason of his hostile pro- 
ceedings, and to insist on liis evacuating a fort 
he had lately built. Major Washingt<)n was tiic 
person pitched on for this service. He was only 
twenty-one years of age when he set out on an 
expedition which was more than tour hundred 
miles distant, and one half of the route led through 
a wilderness inhabited onl)^ by Indiaiis. He p';o- 
ceeded on foot, attended by a single compani- 
on, with his provLsi(jns on his back. He arrived, 
and delivered ills message to the French com- 
mandant J but it made no impression. It was, there- 
fore, resolved to oppose with arms the encroach- 
ments of the French on the British territories. 
Virginia raised three hundred men, put tliem un- 
der the command of Washington, now a colonel, 
and sent them towards the Ohio. An en'gase- 
ment took place. In which the French were de- 
feated. With nuie hundred men, besides Indians, 
they returned to the chari?-e : a^iainst these Wash- 


ii 'i 


















inoton mncle a brave defence, but at length ac- 
cepted ot lionouiable teri'is of capitulation. 

Tiie } olicy of repressing die encroachments of 
tl^e French on the Biiiish colonies was geneinlly 
ap' roved both in England and Aii. erica. It \\as, 
therefore, derennined to lake ciicclual measuies 
for driv:pg ilieuj from the Ohio, and also lor re- 
ducing Niagara, Crown-hoint, and ihe other posts 
■u'hich they held v ithin the limits clainieu by the 
ting of Great Britain. To effect tlie first purpose, 
general Braudock was sent liom Ireland to Virginia 
with \v>o regirents, and was there joined bj, as 
many more. He was a brave man^ but destitute 
of the other quaiili(.ations of a great oificer. He 
shghted the (x-untr) militia and the Virginia offi- 
cer;j. Colonel Vv^ashington begged permission to 
go before hmi and scour the woods with his pro- 
vincial troops : but this was refused. The general 
v.'ith lourtetn Imndred nicn pushed on incautiously 
till he fell into an ambuscade of French and In- 
dians, by whom he was defeated and mortally 
wounded. The British troops were thrown into 
cr>nfiision ; but the provincials, more used to Indian 
lighting, were less disconcerted. They continued 
in an unbroken body under colonel Washington *, 
and, by covering the retreat of the regulars, pre- 

'■I I II I . I - III IT !■■_ H 

* The bravery and patriotism of colonel afterwards gene- 
ral Washir.gton were so conspicuous at this period, that 
the most important services were expected of him. In a 
fermon preached before a company of volunteers in Vir- 
ginia, Aug^nst 17, 175.'5, by the Rev. Samuel Davies, the 
author reicrs to him in the following wor'^s : " I may 
point out to the public that heroic youth, colonel Wash- 
ington, whom I cannot but hope Providence has hitherto 
preserved in so sig^nal a manner for some important ser- 
TJce to his country." 



vented their being cut off entirely. For two or three 
years after this, the war was earned on against 
Fiance without vigour or success : but when Air. 
Pitt was placed at the head of the ministry, public 
ailiiirs assumed a new aspect. V^iciory tvecy where 
crowned the British arms j and in a short time the 
French were dispossessed not only of all the Bri- 
tisli territories on which they had encroached, but 
also of Ciuebec, the capital of their antient pro- 
\ince, Canada*. 

In the course of this \\^ar, some of the colonies 
made exertions so far beyond their reasonable 
(jiiota, as to merit a reimbursement from the na- 
tional treasury : but tliis was not universally the 
case. In consequence of internal disputes, the ne- 
cessary supplies had not been raised in due time by 
others of the provincial assemblies : this did not 
accord with the vigorous and decisive genius of 
Mr. Pitt, who is said to have told Mr. Franklin, 
*' that when the war closed, if he should be in the 
ministry, he would take measures to prevent the 
colonies from having a power to refuse or delay 
the supplies tliat might be wanted for national pur- 
poses." As often, however, as money or men 
were wanted from the colonies, requisitions were 
made to their legislatures, which were generally 
and cheerfully complied with. Their exertions, 
with a few exceptions, were great, and manifested 
a serious desire to carry into effect the plans of 
Great Britain for reducing the power of France. 

In the prosecution of this war, the colonies litted 
out four hundred privateers, and furnished nearly 
twenty-four thousand men to co-operate with the 
British regular forces in North America. The 

* See Mayor's History of England, vol. ii. p. 394 — 5. 

u 3 success 






success of the former j the activity of the latter; 
the convenience ct' their liarbours; and theix" 
contiguity to the West India islands, made the co- 
lonies great acquisitions to Britain and formidable 
adversaries to France. From their growing im- 
portance the latter had much to fear. Their con- 
tinued union with Great Britain threatened the 
subversion of the commerce and American posses- 
sions of France. 

. j^ At the general peace, Canada was ceded 
*,. to Great Briiain by France ^ and the two 

'' * Floritias by Spain : her possessions, there- 
fore, in the New World, were of an extent equal 
in dimensions to several of the kingdoms of Eti- 
rope. The possession of Canada in the North, 
and of the Floridas in the South, made her sole 
mistress of the North American continent. 

From tlie first settlement of English America 
till the close of this war, the i imduct of Great Bri- 
tain towards her colonies affords an useful lesson 
to those who are disposed to colonization. She 
treated them as a judicious mother does her duti- 
ful children. Tliey shared in every privilege be- 
longing to her native sons, and but slightly felt the 
inconveniences of subordination. The catalogue 
of their grievances was small, and chiefly related 
to a few acts which operated against colonial ma- 
nufactures. These were mostly evaded, but if 
carried into execution would have been slightly 
inconvenient, and only to a few. 
. -p. Till this period the colonial regulations 

>7^'j ' seemed to have had no other object in view 

' * but the common good of the whole em- 
pire : exceptions to the contrary were few, and had 
no appearance of system. When the approach of 
the colonies to manhood made tlicni more capable 






















.r*/-\ ' /- 


of resisting impositions, Great Britain changed the 
antient system untler wlTu h lu r colonies had Jong 
floiH'ihhfd. When poiicy would ha\e dictated re- 
laxation of authority, she ro-»e in her denjands and 
muitiplied her resttaints. For some time before 
and alter the termination of the war, a consider- 
able niiercuurse had been carried on between the 
Lriiisa and Sp.tnish colonie.s, con^ sting of the ma- 
nui'actnres of Great Biiiain, imp(;rte(l by the for- 
mer and sold by the laiter, by v\hith the British 
colonies acc^uired gold and siher, and were ena- 
bled to make remiuances to the njother country. 
This trade, though it did not clash with the spirit 
of the British navigation law s, \\ as forbidden by 
their lei'.er. On account of the advantages which 
all parties reaped frgm this intei course, it had long 
been connived at by persons in power 3 but, at the 
period alluded to, some new regulations were 
adopted, by which .t was almost destroyed. So sud- 
den a stoppage was a serious blow U) the northern 
colonies. It was their misfortune, that though 
they stood in need of vast quantities of British ma- 
nufactures, their country produced very little that 
afforded a direct r -mittance to pay for them. They 
were, therefore, under a necessity of seeking else- 
where a market for their produce, and, by a cir- 
cuitous route, acquiring the means of svipporting 
their credit with the mother country. This they 
found by trading with the Spanish and French co- 
lonies in their neighbourhood. From them they 
obtained gold, silver, and valuable commodities, 
the ultimate prolits of wdiich centred in Great 
Britain. I'his intercourse gave life to business of 
every denomination j and why it should be stopped, 
could not be accounted for by the Americans, 
without supposing that tiie rulers of Great Britain 


1 J^ 



■?! :j.f 




"\\'ere jealous of their adventurous commercial spi- 
rit. Their actual sufterings were great^ but their 
apprehensious were greater. Instead of viewing 
tJie parent state, as they had long done, in the light 
of an atVectionate mother, they conceived her as 
beginning to be iniiuenced by the narrow views of 
an illiberal step-dame. 

In September, the trade between the British, 
French, and Spanish colonies was in some degree 
legalized, but under circumstances that brought no 
relief to the colonists. Indeed, the act passed on 
the occasion granted certain duties to the king 
upon goods imported, M'hich were the produce 
of a colony not under the dominion of his ma- 
jesty. Till that act passed, none avowedly for the 
purpose of revenue was to be found in the parlia- 
nientxuy statute boc^k. The wording of it made 
the colonists fear that parliament would go on 
in charging them with such taxes as they pleased. 
The imposition of duties for the purpose of laising 
a revenue in Americ:a was considered as a danger- 
ous innovation. 

The national debt of Great Britain amounted at 
this period to nearly a hundred and fifty millions ; 
and while the minister was digesting plans for dimi- 
nishing this heavy burthen, as it was then thought, 
he conceived the idea of raising a substantial re- 
venue in the British colonies from taxes laid by the 
parliament of the parent state. This in England 
was a very popular project. And in March was 

A -pj passed the memorable stamp act, by which 
*^ * it w^as enacted, that certain instruments of 

^ ' writing, as bills, bonds, &:c., should not be 
valid unless they w^ere drawn on stamped paper, on 
which a duty was laid. No sooner was this act 
published in America, tlian it raised a general 



tack ( 
tlie { 
a nun 
of bu 
to the 




alarm. The people wore filled with apprehen- 
sions at an act which they supposed to be an at- 
tack on their constitutional rights. The colonies 
petitioned the king and parliament for a redress of 
the grievance, and formed associations for tlie 
purpose of preventing the importation and use of 
British manufactures until the act should be re- 
pealed. In this opposition Virginia took the lead: 
a number of resolutions were j)assed by the house 
of burgesses, which declared '' those to be enemies 
to their country, who should, by writing or speak- 
ing, mainiaui that any person or persons, other 
than the general assembly of this colony, have any 
right or pouer to impose taxes on the people." 

Upon reading these resolutions, the boldness 
and novelty of them affected one of the members 
to such a degree, that he cried out '* Treason, 
treason !" 1 hey were, ne\ erthele^s, well received 
by the people, and forw arded to the other pro- 
vinces. Till these appeared, it was the general 
o|:inion that the act would be quietly adopted. 
The courteiiance of so respectable a colony as Vir- 
ginia confirnitd the wavering and embokiened the 
timid. Opposition assun^ed a bolder face. The 
fire of liberty blazed fortli from the press 3 some 
well- limed publications set the rights of the colo- 
nists in a I lain but strong point of view j the 
tongues and pens of -spirited citizens laboured in 
kindling the latent sparks of patriotism, and the 
flame spread from brt;ast to breast till it became 

A new mode of displaying resentment against 
the friends of the stamp act, of which there were 
many in Amerlea, began in Massachussetts, and 
was followed by the other colonies. A ftw gen- 
tlemen hung in effigy the stamp-master at 

Boston X 

'■VI' J% •* 





U '^ 

■ :.: %■ 

*226 AMKRICA. 

Boston J great immbers from town nnrl country 
came to see it. A spirit of entlmsiasm was 
dilTused aniono; the s])ectal()rs, and in the evcnino- 
It was cut down and carried in procession by tju; 
populace, shontinu; ** Liberty ar.d property^ for 
ever ! No stamps !" They next pulled ilown a new 
building lately erected by Mr. Oliver the stamp- 
master j thence they proceeiled to his dwelling- 
house, before which tliey beheaded the eibgv, 
and at the same time broke the windows of his 
house. These viohnices were repeated upon tho 
dwellings of several otTicers under government, 
both atMassachussetts and in the adjacent coloni;*s. 

From the decided opposition to the act, which 
had been exhibited in the colonies, it became 
necessary for Great Britain to enforce or repeal it. 
Both methods of proceeding had supporters. Dr. 
Franklin, who on the passing of the act had written 
to his friend in America, and emphatically said, 
'^ The sun of liberty is set : you must light up tiie 
candles of industry and economy," was afterwards 
examined at the bar of the house of commons, and 
contributed to remove prejudices, and to produce 
a disposition friendly to the repeal. 

Some speakers of great celebrity and weight 
in both houses of parliament denied the right of 
taxing the colonies : among these \\eYC lord 
Camden in the house of peers, and Mr. Pitt in 
the house of commons. '' My position," says 
lord Camden, " is this, I repeat it, I will main- 
tain it to my last hour : Taxation and representa- 
tion are inseparal)le. This position is founded o]i 
the laws of nature. It is more, it is an eternal law 
of nature. For, whatever is a man's own no other 
man has a right to take from him without his 
consent, andwdioever does it commits a robbery." 


It: of 


itt in 

:1 oil 
i his 


AMF.IIICA. 2'i7 

Mr. rUt justified the colonists in opposing the 
5t;inip act. " Yon have no ii};;ht," said he, '* to 
t;ix America. 1 rejoice that. America lias resisted. 
Ihrec millions iA' our t"elK)w suhjects so lost to 
every sense of virtue, as lamely to give up th^*ir 
libel ties, would be lit. instruments to make slaves 
of the rest." At length the repeal of the 
stamp act was finally carried. Tliis e\ent * p. 
jnive great \oy in I/)ndon. Ships in the ,w-" 
river 'i'hames di.'played their colours, and ^ 
bouses were generally illuminated in many parts 
of the nieiropolis. 'I'he news of the repeal \m\s 
ri.'ceived in the colonies with universal joy, and 
l!ie trade between them and (rreat iiritain was re- 
newed on the most liberal footing. 

The stamp act was not repealed on American 
principles J nor witliout declaring '* that parlia- 
ment had, and of right, ought to have, j)ower to 
bind the colonies in all cases whatsoever." I'he 
ivalk of the Americans, intoxicated with the ad- 
vanta-Te trained, overlooked the statute which is 
generally known by the title of the declaratory act, 
and which in one short sentence not only de- 
prived them of liberty and property, but of every 
rifi-ht incident to humanity. 

It was evident to the thoughtful and considerate, 
that from the ungracious manner iu which the stamp 
act had been repealed, ministers had not abandoned 
the project of raising a revenue in the colonies. 
The stamp act was brought forward and carried 
under the auspices of Mr. Grenville 3 and now Mr. 
Charles Townshend, chancellor of the ex- . ^^ 
chequer, pawned his credit to accomplish ,^*/ •-' 
that in wlfich Mr. Grenville had failed. / ' * 
He accordingly brought into parliament a bill for 
granting duties in die British colonies on glass, 








paper, painter' s-colours, and tea, whicli was aftor- 
wards passed into a law. This act kindled the 
resentment of the Americans, and excited a ge- 
neral opposition to the measure j so that parlia- 
* 1^ ment in the coarse of three years aban- 

ly^Ci ^^"^^ ^'*^ whole tax, except threepence 
' '^ ' per pound on all tea imported. 
Previously to this both houses of j)arliamentlind 
concurred in a joint address to his majesty, in 
which they pledged themselves to support hini in 
such farther measures as might be found necessary 
to maintain the civil magistrates in a due execution 
of the laws in Massachussetts, and beseeched him 
to direct the governor to take the most etVectual 
methods for procuring the .fullest information 
touching all treasons, &c. committed within the 
government since the 30th day of Decembir 1/07, 
in order to bring the otfenders to trial within the 
realm of Great Britain, pursuant to the provisionsof 
the statute of the 35th of Henry VIII. The latter 
part of this address, which proposed the bringing 
delinquents from Massachussetts to be tried in 
Great Britain for crimes committed in America, 
underwent many severe animadversions^, and led 
the house of burgesses of Virginia to adopt some 
very strong resolutions expressive of their oppo- 
sition to such proceedings. These were imitated 
in other colonies. And at Boston they contemptu- 
ously re-shipped the goods sent out for sale. This, 
it is probable, was the ultimate cause of tlie re- 
peal of all the duties, except of that on tea. Yet 
tills, however trifling, kept alive the jealousy of 
the colonists, and their opposition to parliamen- 
tary taxation continued and increased. 

It was not the inconvenience of paying the duty 
that was tlie cause of the opposition 5 it was the 




principle, wliicli ifomc lulmitted would linve snb« 
jct.tt'd the colonics to unlimited parliamentary 
taxation, v.itlumt ♦^iie privilege ol being repre- 
sented. Hie ri^ht, abstractedly considered, wa.** 
denied, and the smallest attempt to establish the 
<l:im by precedent was unilormly resisted. The 
rol(jnies, theretbie, entered into measures to 
eju(niiage their own manulaetures, and to retrench 
ihe uses ei' foreign superfluities, so long as the free 
iniportation of tea was prohibited. 

From the royal antl ministerial assurances o-iven 
in fa\our of Ameviia, in the year 1/^9, and the 
siib^enuent repeal in the next year of five-sixths 
of the duties which had been imposed in 176/, 
together with the consequent renewal of the mer- 
cantile intercourse between Great Britain and the 
colonies, many helped that the contention between 
the two countries \\iis tinally closed. In all 
the provinces, except Massachushetts, appearances 
sei nied to lavour that opinion. Many incidents 
operated there to the prejudice of that harmony 
wl.ich had begun else\\here to return. The sta« 
tioning a military force among them was a fruit- 
ful source of uneasiness. The royal army had 
been brouo;ht thither, with the avowed desion of 
enforcing submission to the mother country. 
Speec hes from the throne, and addresses from 
parliament, had taught the soldiers to look upon 
the inhabitants as a factious, turbulent people^ 
who aimed at throwing olf all subordination to 
Great Britain. Ihey, on the other hand, were 
at customed to look on the army as instruments of 
t\ranny, sent on purr^>se to dragoon them out of 
f eir liberties. Recii)rocal insults soured the 
t mpers, and mutual injuries embittered the pas- 
sionsj of the opposite parties. But the iirsi cvpcn 

VOL. wiy, X rupture 





• y^^ 








i i '.i 




riipUire took place on the 2d of Mnrcli, bchvcen n 
pri\ate soldier of the. 29th iTgiirient and an in- 
liahitant. On the /ilh a more dreadful scene was 
presented. The soldiers, when under arms, were 
pressed vipon, insulted, and pelted by a mob, 
who dared tlieni to lire. In this situation one of 
the soldiers, who had received a blow, fired at the 
supposed aggressor. This was followed by a 
sinijle dischar-]"e from si\ otliers. Thre.e of the 
inhabitants were killed, and live dangerously 
wounded. Tiie town ^\ as immediately in commo- 
tion, and nothing but the promise of removMj^ 
the troons out of the town [ /evented the inha- 
bitants from falling on the soldiers. The killed 
were buried in one vault, and in a most re- 
spectful manner, to express the indignation of the 
people at the slaughter of their brethren by soldioijj 
quartered among them, in violation of their civil 
liberties. Preston, the captain who commanded, 
and the party who lired on the people, weie com- 
mitted to prison, and afterwards tiied. Two were 
found guilty of manslaughter, and the rest were 

I'he events of this tragical night sunk deep iri the 
minds of the people, and were made subservient to 
important purposes. The ainiiversary of it was oh- 
served with great solemnity. Eloquent orators were 
successively employed to deliver an annual oration, 
to preserve the remembrance of it fresh in their 

llie obstacles to returning harmony were in- 
creased by making the governor and judges inMas- 
sachussetts independent of the province. Formerly 
they had been paid by yearly grants from the as- 
sembly, but about this time provision was made 
for paying their salaries by the crown. Tliis they 




made as the foundalion of an impeachment against 
Mr. Justice Uhver, before the governor; but lie 
excepted to their proceedings as uuconstituiional. 
'the assembly, nevertheless, gained two important 
points : they rendered tlie governor more odious to 
llie inhabitants, and increased the public respect 
for themselves, as the counterpart ot tiie pjriiisii 
house of (X)mmons, and as the guardians of the 
rights of the people. 

ti personal animosity subsisted between gover- 
nor Hutchinson and some disdnguished patriots in 
Mai^sachussetts. Th-^. tlame was increased to a 
high pitch by letters that had been writtt n by Hut- 
chinson, Oliver, and others, to persons in power 
andoilice in England j in which they recommended 
measures to seciu'e the (Voedience of the people. 
These letters fell into the hands of Dr. Franklin, 
a^L^ent of the pro\ ince, wlio transmitted tiiem to 
Boston. I'he indignation which was excited by this 
discovery knew n(* bounds. Ihe house of assembly 
s.nit a petition and ren;ionstrance to the king, . -p. 
charging their governor, kc. with being ,>.'*.,' 
traitors to their country, and with giving "' 
false and partial inlbrmation : at the same time 
they prayed for justice against them, and their 
speedy removal from their places. 

Ilie consequence of this petition and remon- 
strance was the accpiittal of the governor, &c. and 
the remo\ al of Dr. Franklin from the office which 
he held under government, as deputy post-master. 
This was considered as an insult oti'ered to their 
public agent, who was boimd as such to give his con- 
stituents every information respecting their char- 
tered riglits. But Dr. Franklin's only otfence was 
not the transmission of these letters : lie had taken 
a decided part in favour of America} had wiitten 

X 2 sonifc 



I* -ci 


some small tracts which were obnoxious to govern- 
ment, particularly one entitled *' Rules for redu- 
cing a great Empire to a small one," and was^ in 
fact, become the idol of his country. 

For ten years there had be n but little intermis- 
sion to the disputes between Great Bt'itain and her 
colonies^ and the ground of the controversy was 
canvassed in every company. The more the Ame- 
ricans read, reasoned, and conversed on the subject, 
the more they were coiviiced of their ri^ht to 
the exclusive disposal of their own property, i. his 
was followed by a decer'nination to resist ail en- 
croachments on that palladium of British liberty. 
They were as fully satisfied of their right to refuse 
and resist parliamentary taxation, as the raiing 
powers of Great Britain were of tlieir right to de- 
snmid and enibrce submission to it. 


: lyfi 





opposition to the Revenue System. East- India 
Company send Tea. Bostonians throiv it over- 
hoard. Conduct of Parliament toward:; Boston 
and Canada. Americans assemble, ylppoint a 
Congress, An Army appointed. Seize the Can- 
non and Ammunition in Rhode -Island, and at 
Portsmouth. Battle of Lexinnton. General 
Gage's Proclamation. Battle of Bunker s Hill. 
Its Consccjuences. Meeting of Congress. Their 
ylrrangements. General IVashington appointed 
Commander in Chief ylttack on Quel-ec. De- 
feat and Death of Montgomery. Termination 
of the Royal Government. 


^^f '^ ^^*e now entering upon a new jera of the 
^ ' . ,.' ■ erican conivo^ ersy. The duty on tea had 
been retained when the other duties had been gi- 
ven up, avowedly for the purpose of exhibiting the 
right of parliament to tax the colonies. The Ame- 
ricans denied that right, and discontinued the im- 
portation of the commodity 5 and while no attempt 
was made to introduce tea into the colonies against 
this declared sense of the inhabitants, these oppo- 
sing claims were in no danger of collision. 

As the resohition of the colonies not to import 
or consume tea had in a great measure deprived 
the English government of a revenue from this 
quarter, a scheme was formed for introducing tea 
into America under cover of the East-India com- 
pany. For tliis purpose an act was passed enabling 
the company to export all sorts of teas^ duty free, 

X a to 



234 America; 

to any place whatever. Several ships laden with 
it were immediately sent to the American colo- 
nies, and factors appointed to receive and dispose 
of their cargoes. 

The Americans, determined to oppose the reve- 
nue system in every possii)le shape, considered the 
attempt of the East-India company to evade the re- 
solutions of the colonies, and dispose of their teas 
in America, as an indirect mode of taxation, sanc- 
tioned by authority of parliament. Tliey assembled 
in various places, and in the large commercial 
towns took measures to prevent the landing of the 
tea. Committees were appointed, and armed with 
extensive powers, to inspect merchants' books, to 
propose tests, and make use of other means to 
frustrate the designs of the East- India company. 
The same spirit pervaded the people from New 
Hampshire to Georgia ; and at Philadelphia the 
inhabitants passed some strong resolutions, declar- 
ing ail those to be enemies to their country, who 
should countenance in any way the unloading or 
the sale of the obnoxious article. But at Boston 
the tea shared a more violent fate. Sensible that 
no legal measures could prevent its being landed, 
and that, if once landed, it would as certainly be 
disposed of, a number of men disguised as Indians, 
. j^ on the 18th of December, entered the 
,*!-,' ships, and threw overboard three hundred 

^ ^ ' and forty chests of it, which was the pro- 
portion belonging to the East- India company. And 
with so nmch union and system did llie colonists 
act, that there was not a single chest of any of the 
cargoes sent out by the East-[ndia company, on 
this occasion, sold for their benefit. 

ISio sooner did tlie news of tliis destructb.n of 


AMERICA." 23.5 

the tea reach Great Britain, the n the parliament 

shipping of goods, wares, and merchandizes, at 
tlie tow n of Boston, or within the harbour." 

This act threw the inhabitants of Massachussetts 
into the greatest consternation. But fortunately for 
them it was not the onlv statute made at that time : 
biit .t was also enacted, that the town meetings, 
sanctioned by charter, should be either disconti- 
nued, or subject to such restrictions as rendered 
them of no value 3 and that persons indicted for 
any capital offence committed in obstructing tlie 
powers of magistracy, might, at the pleasure of 
the governor, be sent to another colony, or (^ven 
to Great Britain, to take their trial for such offence. 

Petitions against these bills, couched in strong 
and pointed language, were presented to parlia- 
ment, as they were passing the two houses 3 and 
tlie lords of the minority entered a solemn protest 
against the passing them. On one of these occa- 
sions colonel Barrc, who had ever been the ad\o- 
cate of liberty, concluded an admirable speech hy 
saying, " You are offering the last of human out- 
rages to the people of America, by subjecting them 
in effect to military execution : instead of sending 
them the olive branch, you hnve sent the naked 
sword. What madness is it that prompts you to 
attempt obtaining that by force, which may, with 
so much more facility and certainty, be proc\u'ed 
by requisition ? Retract your odious exertions of 
tudiority, and remember that the first step towards 
making tlrem contribute to your wants is to recon- 
cile them to your government." 

I'he parliament did not stop nere : but before 






23(5 AMERICA. 

they completed the memorable session, they passed 
an act respecting the government of Quebec. The 
principal objects of the bill were, to ascertain the 
limits of the province, which were now made to 
extend southward to the Ohio, and westward to 
the banks of the Mississippi, and northward to 
the boundary of the Hudson's Bay company : to 
establish a legislative council, tlie members of 
which were appointed by, and re moveable at the 
pleasure of, the crown : to confirm French laws, 
and a trial without jury in civil cases : to secure to 
the Roman catholic clergy the legal enjoyment of 
their tithes from those who were not of their own 
religion. The revenue of the province was con- 
signed to the support of an unlimited civil hst, and 
the administration of justice ; the judges holding 
their ortices and salaries during pleasure. 

Among tlie more southern colonists, it was ima- 
gined that this bill was intended to conciliate the 
inhabitants of Canada, and make them fit instru- 
ments in the hands of government to reduce them 
to a state of slavery. But these measures did not 
nitiraidate the Americans : they rather served to 
confirm their former apprehensions of the evil de- 
signs of government, and to unite the colonies in 
their opposition. A correspondence of opinion 
with respect to the unconstitutional acts of parlia- 
ment produced an unitbrmity of proceedings in 
the colonies. Most of them entered into spirited 
resolutions, on this occasion, to unite with the 
Massachussetts in a decided opposition to the un- 
constitutional measures of the parliament. The 
1st of June, the day on which the Boston port-bill 
was to take place, was appointed to be kept as a 
day of humiliation, fasting, and prayer, through- 
out the colonies^ to seek the Divine direction and 



aid, in that critical and gloomy juncture of affairs. 
T'lJs act of cievc/Lion was considered I)) the people 
as an iuunbie appeal to Heaven ft)r the justict of 
their cause, mid deslgr.cd to mLinifest iheirdepend- 
eiK:e on liie Almighty tor success in mainiaining it 
a^^LUu-l tlieir hosiile brctiuen. llie pra}ers and 
di'^^courses of the clergy, who were fiientis to iheir 
suilering country, and wlu; had l-}' iheir exemj/iary 
coi.duct secured the confidence of ihe j^eople, had 
great iniiuence in encouraging iheir hearers to en- 
gage in deience of their riglils : an.d to them has 
been justly ascribed no inconsidejable share of the 
success and victory that crowned the American 

Ihe minds of the people being thus pre])ared, 
the Iriends of liberty of iVIas.sachu-^setis petitioned 
the governor to convene the as^embl)' 3 w hich be- 
hvjn, refused, a p-eneral meetin;^: of the inhabitants 
was called to2,ether. About eii^Iit thousand met, 
and passed several spirited resolutions, in which 
it was ('etermined to assemble a continental con- 
gress. In this the people generally concurred j and 
de^^utlcrs being appointed, the congress met on the 
2()th of October, 3774. 

In this first session the proceedings w^ere cool, 
deliberate, and loyal j but they wee marked w ith 
unanimity and vigour. They lirst drew up a state- 
ment of their riglits; then a petition to the king. 
Tlicy afterwards signed 'an association to suspend 
the importation of British goods, and the exporta- 
tion of American produce, until their grievances 
should be redressed. Ihey sent an address to the 
inhabitants of Great Britain, and another to the 
people of America : in the former they cnitmerated 
the oppressions of parliament, and called upon 
their British brethren not to aid the ministry in en- 



'■ i?. 






« I 




slaving their American subjects ; in the latter they 
endeavoured to confirm the people in a sjVu'ited and 
unanimous determination to defend their constitu- 
tional rights. 

In the mean time, every thing in IVTassachnssetts 
wore the appearan{X" of opr/osition by force. A new 
council for the governor had been appointed by the 
crown: new judges were appointed, and attempted 
to proceed in the execution of their oihce. But the 
juries refused to be sworn in under them ; and in 
some counties the people assembled to prevent tlie 
courts from entering upon business. 

The day for the annual muster of the militia ap- 
proached. General Gage, the governor, apprehen- 
sive of some violence, had the precaution to seize 
the magazines of ammunition and stores at Cam- 
bridge and Charleston, and lodged them in Boston. 
This measure, with the fortifying of that neck of 
land which joins Boston to the main land at Rox- 
bury, caused an universal alarm and ferment. Se- 
veral thousand people assembled, and it was with 
difBculty they could be restrained from flilling upon 
the British troops. 

A general assembly had been summoned to meet 
previously to this 5 and notwithstanding the writs had 
been countermanded by th > governor's proclama- 
tion, on account of the violence of the times, and 
the resignation of several of the new counsellors, 
yet representatives were cliosen by the people, who 
met at Salem, resolved themselves into a provincial 
congress, and adjourned to Concord, about twenty 
miles from Charleston. On their meeting there, 
they chose Mr. Hancock president, and proceeded 
to business. 

This congress addressed the governor with a re- 
bearsal of Uieir distresses, and took the necessary 



steps for dofeiyliiig their riglits. They regulated 
the niihtia, made provision lor supplying the trea- 
sury, and furnishing the people wilti arms ; and sueh 
"W'as tiieir enthusiasm and union, that the rceonimen- 
dations of the provineial eungress had the lorce of 

General Gage, goNernorofMassaehussetts, was in- 
censed at tliese nieasiues : he deelared in iiis answer 
to their address, that Ikitain eould nev, r harbour 
the black design of enslaving her subjeets 3 and he 
published a proelamalion, in whieh he insinuated 
that sueh proeeedings amounted to rebellion. H(^ 
also ordered barraeks to be ereeted for tiie soldiers, 
but found great dittieuity in proearing hibourers 
either in Jioston or New York. 

The governor's proelamationw^as unavailing; tlie 
provineial eongress appointed a eommittee to draw 
up apian for the immediate defence of the provinee. 
It was resolved to enlist a number of the inhabitants 
under the name of minute men, \\ ho were under 
obligation to turn out at a minute's warninsj^. 
Priddle, Ward, and Fomeroy, were eleeted efdeers 
to eommand those minute men, and the militia, in 
case they should be called to action. A committee 
of safety, and one for supplies, were appointed. 

The hame congress met again in November, and 
raised tw elve thuu^and men, one fourth of whom 
v\ere minute men, and recei\ed immediate pay. 
Ihey also sent to New Hampshire, llhode-Island, 
and Connecticut, to inform them of the steps taken, 
and to request tlieir co-operation in making up an 
army of twenty thousand men. Committees of 
these several colonies met, and settled their plans, 
llie period of conmiencing opposition to Gage's 
troops \\ as determined to be whenever they niarclied 
«ut with their baggage, ammunition, and artillery. 

A pro- 

X3i* ji.r rti 

■ "■B^^ 

^:;i m 


A proclamation had been issued by the Ixinr^, pro- 
hibiting; the cxportaiiun of military stores from Bri- 
tain, which reached America in the hitter end of 
the year 17/4. Jmmedialely the people of Rhode- 
Island seized upon and removed from the public 
battery forty pieces of cannon : soon after four lum- 
dred men attackc'd the castle at Portsmouth ; the-/ 
sustained afire from three four-pounders and small 
arms j but before they could be ready tor a second 
fire, the assailants st(jniied the fort: some secured 
and confined the garrison, vhiJc others broke open 
the pov/der-house, and took away the contents. 

A y^ In the Ibllowing February, colonel liC.dic 


was sent with a detachment of troops from 

Boston, to take possession of some cannon 
at Salem. Bat the people had inte?ii;^ence of the 
design, took up the draw-bridge in that town, and 
prevented the troops fioii^i passing, until the cannon 
were secured. In April, colonel Smith and niajur 
Pitcairn were sent with a body of about nine hun- 
dred troops, to destroy the nfditary stores which 
had been collected at Concord. It is generally be- 
Heved that another, and perhaps the princl[)al ob- 
ject of the expedition was to seize on the persons 
of Messrs. Hancock and Adams, who had rendered 
themselves peculiarly obnoxious to general Gage. 
At Lexington, the militia were collected on a 
gree«, to oppose the incursion of the British forces. 
These were fired upon by the British troops, and 
eight men killed on the spot. The militia were 
dispersed, and the troops proceeded to Concord, 
where they destroyed a few stores. But on their 
return they were incessantly harassed by the 
Americans, who, inflamed with resentment, fired 
upon them from houses and fences, and pursued 
tjieni even to Boston. I'he loss of tlxe British in 

4 vAi 


this expedition, in killed, wounded, and prisoners, 
amounted to two hundred and seventy-three men. 
Here, then, was spilt the tirst blood, in a war whieh 
ultimately severed America from the British em- 
pire. Lexington opened the lirst scene of thi.j great 
diama, which in its progress exhibited the most 
illustrious characters and events, and closed with a 
revolution important to the rights and liberties of 

This battle roused all America. The militia col- 
lected from every quarter, and Boston in a lew 
days was besieged by twenty thousand men. A 
stop was put to all intercourse between the town 
and country, and the inhabitants were reduced to 
the greatest distress for want of provisions. Ge- 
neral Gage offered to permit the people to depart, 
provided they would deliver up their arms. The 
people complied; but the general refused to stand 
by ids engagement. 

In the mean time a small number of men, to 
the amount of only two hundred and forty, under 
the command of colonels Allen and Easton, with- 
out any public orders, surprised and took the Bri-f 
tish garrisons at Ticonderoga and Crown Point, 
without the loss ot a man. 

A martial spirit now^ pervaded all ranks of men in 
the colonies. They believed that their liberties were 
in danger, and were generally disposed to risque 
their lives in defence of them. The animated vo- 
taries of the equal rights of human nature consoled 
themselves with the idea, that though their whole 
sea-coast should be destroyed, they could retire to 
the western wilderness, and enjoy the luxury of 
being free j and it was observed in conorress by one 
of the South-Carolina delegates, *' Our houses, be- 
ing constructed of brick, stone^ and wood, though 
TOL. XXIV. X destroyed 








•♦v..) '■ 

■ u It' 

destroyed may be rebuilt: but liberty once gone is 
lost tor ever." 

Resi.^tanee being resolved on by tbe Aniericnns, 
llie [)iilpit, the press, llie bench, and the bar, seve- 
rally labouri'd to nnile and encourage them. I'he 
clergy ot' New England were a numerous and re- 
spectalile body, who had a great ascendancy (n-er 
the minds of their hearers. They connected reli- 
gion and patriotism, and in their sermf)ns and 
prayers represented the cause of America as the 
cause of heaven. Writers and printers ibllowed in 
the rear of the preachers, and next to them had 
the greatest share in animating their countrymen. 
Gentlemen of the bench, in tlieir addresses to tlie 
juries, denied the charge of rebellion^ and justified 
the resistance of the colonists. 

About the latter end of May, a great part of (lie 
reinforcements ordered from Great Britain ar- 
rived at Boston, under the command of generals 
Howe, Burgoyne, and Clinton. General Gage was 
now prepared for acting with decision : but before 
he proceeded to extremities he conceived it due to 
antient forms to issue a proclamation, in which he 
otiered, in the king's name, pardon to all who 
should forthwith lay down their arms and return to 
their respective occupations, excepting only from 
the benefit of that pardon Samuel Adams and 
John Hancock, whose otf'ences were said to be of 
too flagitious a nature to admit of any otlier con>^i- 
deration than that of condign punishment. 

In June the Americans attemi)ted to fortify Bun- 
ker's Hill, wdiich is only about a mile and a lialf 
from Boston. They had during a single night 
thrown up a small breastwork, wdiich sheltered 
them from the fire of the British cannon. But the 
next morning the British army was ^ent to drive 


AMERICA. 24!5 

thorn from the hill -, and landlno- under cover of 
their cannon, they set lire to C'harleston, wliieh 
was consumed, anil marched to attack the troops 
i:i tlieir enirenehments. Jn IJoslon, the hei'jjhts 
of" every kind \v( re covered with citizens and such 
oi the king's troops as were not on duty. Tlie hills 
around the adjacent country, \\ hich atl'orded a safe 
and distinct view, were occupied by the inhabitants 
of the country. I'liouiiands both within and with- 
out Boston were anxious spectat(>rs of the blooily 
scene. The honour of liritish troops beat ])igh in 
the breasts of manv, while others with a keener 
sensibility felt for the liberties of their country. 
I'he British moved on slowly ; whii h gave the )>''o- 
vincials a better opportunity for tal.ingaim. 'ihe 
latter, in general, reserved themselves tiU thrir ad- 
versaries were within tifty or sixty yirds, b'lt then 
stream a furious discharfie of small arms. Ti » 
began of the American lire was so incessant, ild 
did such great execution, that the king's t.»> ps re- 
treated in precipitation. 1'heir otiicers rabied llieui 
and pushed them forvrard with their swords; but 
they returned to the attack with reluctance. A 
second time they were put to flight. General 
Howe and the otficers redoubled their exertions, 
and were at last successful. A retreat was ordered : 
but so zealous were the provincials, that when 
their anununition was expended they made re- 
sistance with their discharged n.kets, as if they 
had been clubS;, till the king's troops had half filled 
die redoubt. 

In this engagement fiftee i hundred Americans 
were opjioscd to three thousand British ; of whom 
the former sustained a Small loss compared with 
that of the latter : the whole loss of the Americans 
amounted to lour hiuidred and lifty 3 of the British 

\l ' to 

•y. .>if ^ 



!> A-i'^ 

ii * 

1 ^M 



to eleven luindred. The circnmstnnre most la- 
meiite.i on this bloody fiay by die Aincrii^ans was 
the loss of Dr. WarrcM, who was al this time a 
major-general. He died like a hrav^ njan, light- 
ing valiantly at tlu^ head of his i-h ry I'ijs eKCcl- 
lent hero had rendered himsc^lt coti;^ li. otus i3y his 
universal merit, abilities, and elo',u<uv .^j he had 
be^n a delegate to the lirst general coiit^.i/si,, and 
was at the time of his death president ^o the \ko- 
vincial congress of Mashachiissetts. Quitting the 
humane and peaceable vVidk of his professirin as 
a pliysician, and breaking throui^h the eiKieariiig 
ties of family connexion, he proved liimsoif ecpaaily 
calddat. d for tlie field as lor public business or 
private pursuits. 

The burning of Charleston, though a place of 
great trade, did not dlscomage the pnwincials. Jt 
excited resentment and ex-'cration, but g'^nerated 
110 disposition to submit. *' Such," says Mr. Ram- 
sey, " was the ]iigh-t(;ned siaie of the public niind_, 
and so great the inditftnnce for ])ropt ny when 
put in competition with liberiy, that military con- 
llagrations, though they distressed and impove- 
rished, had no tendency to suod'ie the colonists. 
They migiit answer in the OM World, but were 
not calculated for the New, where lh.^> war was un- 
dertaken, not tor a change of masters, but for se- 
curin^r ess"niial ritrhts." 

The action at Bunker's Hill produced many and 
very Impoi. tant consequences, K taught the British 
Bo much resoect for Americans entrenched behind 
works, that their sui)sequent operations were re- 
larded with a caution that \\ astcd away a whole 
campaign to very little purpose. It adde 1 to the 
confidence which the Aiiiericv.ns began to have in 
tlieir own abilities^ and inspired some of the lead- 


ing members of congress with, perhaps, too high 
ideas of what could he done by the iiiiJitia.. 

On the 10th of IVJay the second general congress 
had met, notwithstanding the ellorts of go\ern- 
ment to prevent it : it consisted of delegates not 
only from the twelve colonies that were before re- 
presented, but also from that of (jeorgia. On 
tlieir meeting tiiey chose Peyton Randolph for 
their president, and Charles Thompson for secre- 
tary. They proceeded with caution and modera- 
tion 5 and when applied to from the Massacluissetts 
respecting *' the taking up and exercising the 
powers of civil government," they shewed an evi- 
dent disposition not to set up any forms indepen- 
dent of Great Britain, and recommended only 
such regulations as were immediately necessary, 
and were as conformable as possible to the spirit 
and substance of their charter. And these were 
only to last till a governor of his majesty's appoint- 
ment v\()uld consent to govern the colon}' accord- 
ing to its charter. On tht^ same principles of ne- 
cessity another assumption of new powers be(\ime 
unavoidable. The great intercourse that daily took 
place throughout the colonies pointed out the pro- 
priety of establishing a general post-oiiice. Ihis 
was acc(jrdingly done 5 and Dr. Franklin, w ho had 
by royal authority been dismissed from a similar 
employment about three years before, was ap- 
pointed the head of the new department. 

While congress was making arrangements for 
their proposed continental army^, it w^as thought 
expedient once more to address the inhabitants of 
Great Britain, and to publish a declaration setting 
forth their reasons for taking arms j — to address the 
assembly of Jamaica i the inhabitants ot Ireland j 
and also to prefer a second humble petition to the 

y 3 k".ng« 

., If,, 

24(3 AMERICA. 

king. These were all drawn in appropriate bii^ 
spirited language. In their declaration they enu- 
merated the injuries that they h id rec ived, and 
then said, ** We are reduced to die aitLTi alive of 
choosing unconditional submissi jn to the tyra-nvv of 
ministers, or resistance by force. We havt counted 
the cost of this contest, and find nothing so dread- 
ful as voluntary slavery." 

About this time the continental congress unani- 
mously appointed George Wafihingtun, esq. a na- 
tive of Virginia, to the chief command of the 
American army. He .seemed, as we have already 
liinted, destined bv^ Heaven to be the saviour of his 
o^ountry. He accepted the appointment with difh- 
cU^nce J refused any pay for eight years of labo- 
rious and anxious service j and by his matchless 
skill, fortitude and perseverance, conducted Ame- 
rica tln-ough indescribable difficulties to indepen- 
dence and peace-*. After the appointment of this 



1^. ^''J. 


* General Washing'ton replied to the president of con- 
gress aniiouncinyf his appointment, in the following words : 
" I\Ir. President, 

" Though I am truly sensible of the high honour done 
me in this appointment, yet I feci great distress from a 
consciousness that my abilities and military experience 
may not be equal to the extensive ^nd important trust ; 
however, as the congress desire it, I will enter upon the 
momentous duty, and exert everv power I possess n their 
service, and in support of the glorious cause. 1 beg tl;ey 
will accept my mr)st cordial thanks for this distinguished 
testinumy of their approbation. 

" But, lest some unlucky event should happen unfa- 
vourable to my reputation, I beg it may be remembered 
by every gentleman in the room, that 1 this day declare, 
with the utmost sincerity, I do not think nlyself etjual tq 
I lie command I am honoured with. 


om a 
rust ; 
n the 


great man, congress came totlieresolation, '''That 
tliay woulA maiiirain and assist lii:n and adhere 
to him with their lives and f-^rtunes in the cause of 
American liberty." His instructions were [general, 
entreating him ** to make it his special care, in dis- 
charge of the great trust reposed in him, that the 
liberties of America received no deU'iment." Im- 
mediately afterwards generals V,^ard, Lee, Schuy- 
ler, Putnam and Gates were appointed in subordi- 
nation to him, and eight bri.^adiers, viz. Pomeroy, 
Montgomery, Wooster, Heath, Spencer, Thomas, 
Sullivan, and Green. Twelve companies of rifle- 
men were raised in Pennsylrania, Maryland, and 
Virginia 3 and bills of credit were given for two 
millions of dollars, for tlie redemption of which 
the colonies were pledged. 

In his way to the eamp at Cambridge, general 
Washington was received with the greatest ho- 
nours ; and from this time the atiairs of the Ame 
rican army beg.ui to assume the appearance oiQ 
regular and general opposition to the forces > i 
Great Britain. In the autumn, a body of troops 
under general Montgomery besieged and took the 
garrison of St. John's, which commands tlie en- 
trance into Canada. I'he prisoners amounted to 
seven hundred. He pursued his success, and took 
Montreal, and designed to push his victories to 

" As to pay, sir, I beg leave to assure the cono;ress, that 
as no pecuniary consideration could have templed me tg 
ai.cept this arduous employment, at tlie expense of my 
domestic ea^.e and happiness, 1 do not wish to make any 
proiit from it. I will keep an ex .ct account of my ex- 
penses, 'those, I doubt not, they will discharge, and that 
ib ail i desire." 

A body 

'•;:■! J 

24S AMETxirA. 

A body of troops commnnded by general Ar- 
nold was ordered to march to Canada : after suf- 
fering, in their passage through the wilderness, 
every hardship, as well as the most distressing 
hunger, they arrived, and were joined by iVlont- 
gomery before Quebec. This city, which was 
commanded by governor Carleton, was besieged: 
but there being little hope of taking the town by 
siege, they resolved to storm it. In this attack 
they proved unsuccessful j and, what was consi- 
dered as a severe misfortune, general Montgomery 
was killed. Few men have ever fallen in battle, 
so generally regretted by l)oth sides as this excel- 
lent man. In America he was celebrated as a 
martvr to the cause of freedom : — in Great Britain, 
as a misguided good man, sacrificed to what he 
supposed to be the rights of mankind. His name 
was mentioned by parliament uith singular re- 
spect: some of the most powerful speakers in that 
assembly displayed their eloquence in sounding his 
praise and lamenting his fate. Even the minister 
acknowledged his worth, while he reprobated the 
cause for which he fell. 

After this defeat general Arnold, who now com- 
manded the troops, continued some months before 
Quebec j and although his troops suffered incre- 
dibly by cold and sickness, they intercepted the 
provisions that were intended for the town and 
garrison. About the f^ame time the large and 
tiourishing town of Noriolk in Virginia was wan- 
tonly burnt by order of lord Danmore, the then 
royal governor of that province. Falmouth, a 
considt rable town in Massachussctts, shared the 
fate (.f Norfolk 3 being laid in ashes by the Bri- 
tish admiral. 

The royal government still existed in name and 

furui j 

AMERICA. 24l| 

form ; but the real power which the people obeved 
and firmly supported, was exercised by i pruv lu- 
cial congress, a council of safety, and sub fdinrue 
committees. To conciliate the friendship of the 
Indians, the popular leaders sent a small supply of 
powder into the country. They who were opposed 
to congress, embodied, and robbed the vvaggou;^ 
which were employed in its transportation. The 
inhabitants took arms, some to sup|>ort the govern- 
ment, but others to defend tho American mea- 
sures. The former acted feebly, and were easily 
overpowered. They were dispirited by the supe- 
rior numbers that opposed them j they e^ ery 
where gave way, and were obliged to fly, or feign 
submission. Solicitations had been made about thiij 
time for the king's forces to awe the southern pro- 
vinces, but w^ithout effect, till the proper season 
was over. One scheme for this purpose was frus- 
trated by a singular device. Private intelligence 
had been received of an express being sent fiom 
sir James Wright, governor of Georgia, to general 
Gage, to urge immediate assistaiice in >. ■ south. 
The express was waylaid, and the let' ers seized. 
0;ie to Gage was kept back, and another forwaraed 
in its room. The senl and hand -writing were so 
exactly imitated, that the deception was u sus- 
pected. The forged letter was acted upon Tills 
lee! to a conclusion that every th;ng was quiet, and 
tliat there was no need of troops to the southward. 
While these states were left ^o themselves, they 
had time to prepare for extremities, and in the 
mean wlille the fitends of the sovereign were seve- 
rally crushed. A series of disasters followed the 
myal cause in the year 1/75. General Gage's 
army was cooped up in Boston, and reuderea use- 
Icds. The people of Auierica generally took the 





side of congre's ; and so did the great mnss of the 
wealth, learning and influence, in all the southern 
colonies, and in most of the northern. Some ai^ed 
persons were exceptions to the contrary. A lew 
•who basked in the sun-shine of court fa\ our were 
restrained by honour, principle and interest, from 
forsaking the fountain of their enjoyments. Some 
feared tlie power of Britain, others doubted the 
perseverance of America j but a great majority re- 
solved to hazard every thing in defence of their 
rights. In the beginnii^.g of the year, the colonists 
•were farmers, merchants, and mechanics, but in 
its close they had assumed the profession of sol- 
diers. So sudden a transform.ation of so numercjus 
and so dispersed a people is without a parallel. 

This year is also remarkable for the termination 
of the royal government, which was effected \\ Ith- 
out any violence to its executive ofticers. The new 
system was introduced through necessity, and the 
imperceptible agency of a common danger ope- 
rating uniformly on the mind of the public. The 
governors, for the most part, voluntarily abdi- 
cated their charge, and retired on board ships of 
war : and their witlidrawins: from the exercise of 
their official duties I'urnished an apology, and in- 
duced a necessity for organizing a system of go- 
vernment independent of ro) al authority. 







Proreed'wgs of ParHainent. Boston evacuated ly 
the, Br'ithih. Arncrican Independence declared. 
Lord Hojre arrives. Americans defeated. Refuse 
Howes OJ)ers. U^ashin^tons Attacks. Treiiton. 
Burgnyne captured. France joins the Americans. 
Terms offered to America. Rejected. Conduct 
of tlie Indians. Distresses of the Americans, 
Arno/d's Treachery. Major Andre s Death. Ge^ 
iierai Green's Conduct. Captures Lord CormuaL 
liss y'lrmy. Peace. IVashingtons Resignation 
a/id Departure. 

nPFTE obstinnte resistance which the British nn- 
-^ expectedly met with in America, led the king 
and parliament vo think of more vigorous measures, 
in hopes thereby of bringing the contest to a speedy 
issue. For this purpose seventeen thousand Ger- 
mans were subsidized, in order to be sent a -q 
to assist in subduino; the colonies. An act , ^ ' . 
of parliament was also passed, prohibiting '' 
all intercourse with America -, and while the Boston 
port-bill was repealed, all American property taken 
. on vhe high seas was declared to be forfeited to the 
c;iptors. These acvs induced congress to change 
ihe mode of carrying on the war, and measures 
were taken to annoy the army in Boston, which 
was then under general Howe, Gage liaving set 
out for England the preceding SeptembLT. Bat- 
ttM'ies were opened, and a regular siege commenced; 
which induced general Howe to abmidon the town, 







'i^4 ■ 

2.52 AMERICA. 

but not without first plundering the inhabitants of 
every tiling tliat was valuable. 

The British^ amounting to more than seven 
thousand niLii, evacuated Boston, leaving their 
barracks standing, a number of pieces (jf cannon 
s})iked, and stores to the value of 30,0001. This 
was,att(^nded Avith many circumstances of distress 
nnd enibarrassiiicnt. On the departure of the. 
army, a great num'Der of tlie inhabitants attached 
to their so\tre:gn, and dreading public resentment, 
ciiose to abandon their country; and from the im- 
mense multitude about to depart, there were nei- 
tiier pmrhasers for their elfects, nor a suiiicient 
number of vessels for the transportation of them. 

\\ hen the fleet and army departed from Boston , 
several ships were left behind for the protection of 
\ essels coming from England : but the American 
])rivjtteers \\ere so alert, that they nevertheless 
made many prizes. Some of the vessels which 
they captured were laden with arms and war- 
Ike stores. Some transports with troops on board 
V ere also takeii, having run into the harl)our be- 
foie they knew of is behig evacuated. The boats 
employed in the embarkation of the British troops 
had scarcely ( onij-ieted their business, whcii gene- 
ral W asjiiniitoji with his armv marched into Bos- 
ton. lie was received witli marks of aj)probation 
more flattering than the pomp of a triumph. I'he 
inhabitants Jialled him as their deliverer. Recipro- 
cal congTLitulations between those who iiad been 
C(-nlined within the British lines, and those who 
"were excluded from entering them, were ex- 
i ranged w ith an ardour that cannot be described. 
General \Vashino;ton was hon.oured bv conjiresji 
Wiih u \uiOof ihanks) they ordered aUo a metlal 



« 'If 


to be struck with suitable devices, to perpetuate 
the reinenibrauce of this great eveut. 

In Canada the Americans were completely un- 
successful. The possession of this province so emi- 
nently favoured the plans of defence adopted by 
congress, that it was abandoned with great reluc- 
tance. The Americans were not only mortified 
at the disappointment of their fivourite scheiue, of 
annexing it as Vifourteenth link in the chain of their 
confederacy, but apprehended the most serious 
consequences from tjle ascendance of British power 
in that quarter. Anxious to preserve a footing 
tliere, they had persevered for a long time in stem- 
ming: the tide of unfavourable events. 

The victorious general Carleton proved himself 
worthy of success by his kind and benevolent treat- 
ment of the prisoners that fell into his hands. He 
not only fed and clothed them, but p:>rmitted 
them to return home. This humane liuj of con- 
duct was more injurious to the views of the leaders 
in the American councils, than the se\erity prac- 
tised by other British commanders. 

While the Americans were retreating, they were 
daily assailed by the remonstrances of the inhabi- 
tants ofCanada, whohad either joined or bef'cnJed 
them. But the only relief they had to olfer \\as 
an assurance of continued protection, if they re- 
treated with them : diis was a hard alternative to 
men who had families} and th.?y generally con- 
cluded that it was the lea-t of two e\ils to cast 
themselves on the clemency of that governs ent 
against which they had otfended. Ibedistre-cs 
of the retreating army were great. The British 
were close on their rear, and threatening them 
with destruction. The state of the colonies im- 
posed on them a necessity of preserving tijcir can- 

VOL, xxiv, z Don, 






ii(>!), whicli tli(>y were obliged to drug up tlie ra- 
pids, when they were to the middle in the water. 
'J 'hey were also ineuinl)ered with great numbers 
labouring under the small-pox. and other diseases. 
'Iw'o regiments, at one time, had not a single man 
in health j another had only six ; and a fourth only 
forty, and two more were nearly in the same condi- 
tion. Notwithstanding these dilhculties, general 
Sullivan conducted the retreat witii so nnich judg- 
ment and caution, that the baggage and public 
stores were saved, and the numerous sick brouoht 
oft'. The American army rea<:hed Crown- Point on 
the J St of July, and at that place they made a stand. 

A short time before the Americans abandoned 
Canada, general Arnold convened the merchants 
of Montreal, and obliged them to furnish a great 
quantity of goods, which he pretended were want- 
ed for the army, but which his nephew publicly 
disposed of at Albany. 

Jn the course of this summer a small squadron 
of ships, commanded by Sir Peter Parker, and a 
body of troops, under the generals Clinton and 
Cornwallis, attempted to take Charleston, the ca- 
pital of South Carolina. The ships made a violent 
attack ujK)n the fort on Sullivan's island, but w eic 
repulsed with great loss, and tJie expedition was 

It being now fiscertahied that the utmost lenity 
America had to expect from Britain was pardon, 
upon unconditional submission j the minds of the 
generality of people throughout the continent 
were by this time fully prepared for a formal de- 
claration of independency. North Carolina and 
Pennsylvania, which had long opposed this mea- 
sure, now signilied their concurrence. Maryland 
alone discovered syn^ptoms of reluctance. 

A motion 

1*^ SI 



A motion was made in congress, on the yih 
of June, tor declaring the colonies tree and inde- 
pendent. Tlie business was adjourned to a future 
day } and when the time for taking tiie subject 
into consideration arrived, much knowlege, inge- 
nuity and eloquence were displayed on botli sides 
of the question. The debates were continued tor 
some time with great animation. At length, alter 
a full discussion, tlie measure of proclaiming the 
colonies free and independent was approved by 
nearly an unanimous vote.* The declaration 


* The act of the United Colonies for separnting them- 
selves from the government of Great Britain, and decl.irinir 
their independence, was expressed in the following words -. 

" When, in the course of human events, it becomes ne- 
cessary for one people to dissolve the political bands wiiicli 
have connected them with another, and to assume amou'i; 
the powers of the earth the separate and equal starion to 
which the laws of nature and of nature's God entii'v' theri, 
a decent respect to the opinions of mankind re-juircs ihat 
they should declare the causes which impel them to the 

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are 
created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with 
certain unalienable rights, that among these are Ufe, Uberty, 
and the pursuit of happiness; that to secure these rights, 
governments are instituted among men, deriving their 
just powers from the consent of tlie governed ; that when- 
ever any form of government becomes destructive of thesa 
ends, it is the right of the people to alter or to abolish it, 
and to institute a ntw government, laying its foundation on 
such principles, and organizing its power in such form, 
as to them shall seem most likely to effect their safety and 
happiness. Prudence indeed, will dictate that government* 
Jong established should not be changed for light and trans- 
ient causes ; and accordingly all experience hath shewn 
that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are 
sutlerable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms 
to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of 
abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same ob- 

2 2 ject, 

•- ♦» 




^ ILa 


vas solemnly pronuilgnted on the 4th of July, 
}77Q' 1 he arnivcrsary of the day, on which this 
important event took place, has ever since been 


jcct, evinces a design to reduce them under absolute dis- 
polism, ii is tlu'ir riglit, it is tlieii duty, to ihtow ofVsiuh 
govermnenr, ;;nd to provide new guards for their future 
security, buih has l)ern the patient suHerance of ther.c 
C('Ion;es, and 8ut!i is now tlie necessity which constrains 
them to ;;hcr their former systems of government. The 
history of the present king of Clreat Britain is a history of 
repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct ohiect 
the estaliiisment of an absohM' tyrainiy over these statu. 
To prove this, let facts be subiiiitted to a candid world. 

He has refused his assent to laws the most wholesome 
and necessary for the public good. 

He has forbidden his goverjiors to pass laws of Immediate 
and pressing importance, unless suspended in their ope- 
ration till his assent should be obtained ; and when so 
suspended he has utterly neglected to attend to them. 

He has refused to pass other laws for the accommoda- 
tion of large districts of people, unless those people would 
relinquish the right of representation In the legislature, a 
right inestimable to them, and formidable to tyrants 

He has called together legislative bodies at places un- 
usual, uncomfortable, and distant from the depository of 
their public records, for the sole purpose of fatiguing them 
into compliance with his measures. 

He has dissolved representative houses repeatedly, for 
opposing, with manly iirmness, his invasions on the rights 
of the people. 

He has lefused, for a longtime after such dissolutions, 
to cause others to be elected ; whereby the legislative 
powers, incapable of annihilation, have returned to the 
people at large tor their exercise; the state remaining in 
the mean time exposed to all the danger of invasion from 
without, and convulsions within. 

He has endeavoured to prevent the population of these 
states, for that purpose obstructing the laws for naturali- 
zation of foreigners; refusing to pass others to encc iun,o:e 
their migration hither, and raising the conditions of new 
appropriations of lands. 



tonjjecrated by the Americans to religious gra- 
titude and social pleasures : it is justly considered 
by them as tlie birih-day of their tieedom. 


He has obstructed the administration of justice, by re- 
fusing; his assent to laws for establishing judiciary powers. 

He has made judges dependent on his will alone, for 
the tenure of their otlices, and the amount and payment 
of their salaries. 

He has erected a multitude of new offices, and sent hi- 
ther a swarm of officers to harass our people and eat out 
their substance. 

He has kept among us, in time of peace, standing ar- 
mies, without the consent of our legislatures. 

He has alFected to render the miUtary independent of, 
and superior to, the civil power. 

He has combined with others to subject us to a jurisdic- 
tion foreign to our constitution, and unacknowledged by 
our laws ; giving his assent to their acts of pretended le- 
gislation : — 

For quartering large bodies of armed troqps among us. 

For protecting them, by a mock trial, from punishment 
for any murders which they should commit on the inha- 
bitants of these states: 

For cutting off our trade with all parts of the world: 

For imposing taxes on us without our consent: 

For depriving us, in many cases, of the benefits of trial 
by jury : 

For transporting us beyond the seas to be tried for pre- 
tended offijnces : 

For abolishing the free system of English laws in a 
neighbouring province, establishing therein an arbitrary 
government, and enlarging its boundaries, so as to render 
it at once an example and fit instrument for introducing 
the same absolute rule into these colonies : 

For taking away our charters, abolishing our most va- 
luable laws, and altering fundamentally the form of our 
governments : 

For suspending our own legislatures, and declaring^ 
themselves invested with power to legislate for us in all 
cases whatsoever. 

z 3 He 





(•. H> 



'\ '(■' 


From the f romnlgation of tliis declaration pvery 
thing assumed a new form. Ihe Ainericans 
no longer appeared in the character of sub- 

He has abdicated government here, by declaring us out 
of his protection, and wag^ing war against us. 

He has phmdercd our seas, ravaged our coasts, burnt 
our towns, and destroyed the Hves of our people. 

He is, at this time, transporting large armies of foreign 
mercenaries to complete the works of death, desolation and 
tyranny already begun with circumstances of cruelly and 
perfidy scarcely paralleled to the most barbarous ages, 
and totally unworthy the head of a civilized nation. 

He has constrained our fellow citizens, taken captive on 
the high seas, to bear arms against their country, to be- 
come the executioners of their friends and brethren, or to 
fall themselves by their hands. 

Ht has excited domestic insurrections among us, and has 
endeavoured to bring on the inhabitants of our frontiers 
the mercile: s Indian savages, whose known rule of warfare 
is an undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes, and 

In every stage of these oppressions we have petitioned 
for redress in the most humble terms: our repeated peti- 
tions have been answered only by repeated injury. A 
prince whose characttr is thus marked by every act 
wliich may define a tyrant, is unlit to be the ruler of a free 

Nor have we been wanting in attention to our British 
brethren. We have warned them from time to time of 
attempts made by their legislature to extend an unwarrant- 
able jurisdiction over us. We have reminded them of the 
circumstances of our eniigraticm and settlement here. We 
have appealed to their native justice and magnanimity, 
and we have conjured them, by the ties of our conim(;n 
kindred, to disavow these usurpations, which would inevi- 
tably interrupt our connections and correspondence. They 
too have been deaf to the voice of justice and of consan- 
guinity. We must, therefore, acquiesce in the necessity 
which denounces our separation, and hold them as we 
h(>ld the rest of mankind, enemies in war j in peace, 



jccts in arms against their sovereign, but as an 
independent people, repelling tlie attacks of au 
invauing foe. Propositions and supplications for 
reconciiiaiiun were clone away, llie dispute was 
brought to a single point, whether the late British 
colonics slumid be conquered provinces, or free 
and independent state^^. 

The declaration was read publicly in all the 
states, and was welcomed with many demonstra- 
tions of joy. The people were encouraged by it 
to bear up under the calamities of war : the army 
received it with particular satisfaction, as it se- 
cured them from s uttering as rebels, and held out 
to their view an object, the attahiment of which 
would be an adequate recompense for the toils 
and dangers of the war. The Mattering prospects 
of an extensive commerce, freed from British 
restrictions, and the honours and emoluments of 
office in independent states, now began to glitter 
before the eyes of the colonists, and reconcile 
tliem to the dilHculties of their situation. That 

^^^^^•m^m ■ II —^—^1 ■ .11 ■ ■ — ■ — II. ^- ■■■■ Ml ■ ■ ■ I ■ ■■■ -■-■.» ■ 1,1 ■!■ ■ . ■■II. , Mj — ■■ I . iiBM— ■— 

We, therefore, the representatives of the United States 
of America, in general congress assembled, appealing to 
the supreme judge of the world for the rectitude of our 
intentions, do in the name, and by authority of the good 
people of these colonies, solemnly publish and declare, 
that these united colonies are, and of right ought to be, 
FREE and INDEPENDENT STATES; that they are absolved 
from all allegiance to the British crown ; and that all poli- 
tical connection between them and the state of Great Bri- 
tain is and ought to be totally dissolved ; and that as free 
and independent states, they have full power to levy war, 
conclude peace, contract alliances, establish commerce, and 
to do all other acts and things which independent states 
may of right do. And for the support of this declaration, 
^vith a firm rehance on the protection of divine Provi- 
dence, we mutually pledge to each other our lives, our 
fortunes, and our sacred honour. 

JoiiN Hancock, President. 


dm *^it{Sh I 






separation which they at first d. *aded as an evil^ 
they soon gloried in as a national blessing. 

By advice of the new American minister, lord 
George Germainc, the chief command of the vast 
nav'il and military force, now collected for the 
subjugation of America, was entrusted to the two 
Howes. Immediately after the declaration of in- 
de])endence, general Howe, with a powerful force, 
arrived near New York, and landed the troops upon 
Staten Island. General Washington was in New 
York, with about thirteen thousand men, who 
were encamped either in the city or the neighbour- 
ing fortifications. On the 12th of July lord Howe 
arrived and joined his brother, and though he was 
vevy much concerned to find that the declaration 
of independence had been promulgated, yet he re- 
solved to make one effort for effecting an accom- 
modation. His powers, however, were much too 
limited. He was ready to offer pardon to persons 
who contended that they had been guilty of no 
fault. Both sides, therefore, prepared seriously 
for action j and the general, being joined by tlie far 
greater part of his expected reinforcements, found 
himself at the head of thirty thousand veteran 
troops, supported by a formidj'ble fleet, composing 
together a force far superior to any that had ever 
before been seen in the New World employed in 
the same service. 

The operations of the British began by the action 
on Long Island, in the month of August. The 
Americans w^re defeated, and general Sullivan 
and lord Sterling, with a large body of men were 
made prisoners. The night after the engagement, 
a retreat was ordered and executed with such 
silence, that the Americans left ihv^ island without 
alarming their enennies and without loss. 

Almost immediately after tliis transaction ge- 


neral Sullivan was sent, upon parole, with a verbal 
message from lord Howe, requesting an interv lew. 
The committee appointed for this purpose, con- 
sisting of Dr. Franklin, Mr. John Adams, and Mr. 
Rutledge, met lord Hovve upon Staten Island, by 
whom they were treated wiih great attention -, but 
tlie conference terminated without eilecting any 
good purpose. 

In September the city of New York was aban- 
doned by the American army and taken by the Bri- 
tish : and in November Fort Washington, on York 
Island, was taken, and more than two thousand 
men made prisoners. Fort Lee, opposite to Fort 
Washington, on the Jersey shore, was soon after 
taken, but the garrison escapi-d. Al)ont the same 
time, general Clinton was sent with a body of troops 
to take possession of Rhode Island, and succeeded. 
In addition to all these losses and defeats, the Ame- 
rican army sulfered by desertion, and si ill more by 
sickness. All that now remained of it, which at 
the opening of the campaign amounted to at least 
twenty-five thousand men, did not exceed three 
thousand. The term of their engagements being 
expired, they returned in large bodies to their 
families and friends, and the few who continued with 
Washington and Lee, were too inconsiderable to 
appear formidable in the view of a powerful and 
victorious enemy. 

In tl;is alarming situation of affairs general 
Lee, through imprudence, was captured by a party 
of the British light-horse j this gave a sc\ere shock 
to the remaining hopes of the little army, and 
rendered their situation truly distressing. In die 
opinion of many the atfairs of the Americans weni 
drawing to a crisis. But general Washington, al- 
ways ready to improve every ad\antage to raise the 
drooping spirits of his handful of men, had made 

a stand 


u,. , 




' '; T.- Ill "/ 

\u^ •-■■* 

MI ' ^ 
mm ■ -i 

2<53 AMERICA. 

a stand on the Pennsylvania side of the Delaware, 
Here he collected his scattered forces, and very 
early on the 2(ith of Dec-ember, a day purposely 
selected, on the supposition that the preceeding 
festivity might favour the project of a surprize, he 
crossed the Delaware, not without extreme dif- 
ficulty, from the quantity of ice in the river, nine 
miles above Trenton, and immediately began his 
march in the midst of a storm of snow and hail at 
the head of his troops, and reached Trenton by 
day-break, and so completely surprized the army 
that upwards of nine hundred Hessians, after a 
slight resistance, were made prisoners. In th© 
evening general Washington repassed the Dela- 
ware, carrying with him his prisoners, their artil- 
lery, and colours, and entered the city of Phila- 
delphia in triumph. 

The charm was now dissolved, and it being found 
by experience that the Europeans were not invin- 
cible, great numbers of die Americans, who had 
deserted their colours, again repaired to tha 
standard of tlieir commander, who soon found 
himself at the head of a considerable army, and 
ready to act on the ottensive. This successful ex- 
pedition first gave a favourable turn to American, 
affairs, which seemed to brighten through the 
whole course of the war. Soon after, general 
Washington attacked the British at Princeton, and 
A j^ obtained a complete victory. The great 
^^y^' address in planning and executing these 

^*^' enterprizes reflected the highest honour on 
the commander ; and success revived the de- 
sponding hopes of America. 

This year was distinguished by several memo- 
rable events in favour of American liberty. On the 
opening of the campaign, governor Tryon was sent 
witli a body of troops to destroy the stores at Dan- 



bury, in Connecticut. The plan was executed j 
but tlie British sutlered in their retreat, and the 
Americans on their part lost general Wooster, a 
brave and experienced officer. General Prescot 
was taken from his quarters, on llhode Island, 
by the address of colonel Barton, and conveyed 
prisoner to the continent. 

General Burgoyne, wlio commanded the British 
northern army, took possession of Ticonderoga ; 
pushed his successes, crossed the Lake George, and 
encamped upon the banks of the Hudson, nea^ Sa- 
ratoga. His progress was, however, checked near 
Bennington, where the undisciplined militia of 
Vermont displayed the most exemplary bravery. 
The milii'm now assembled from all parts of 
New England to stop the progress of general Bur- 
goyne. These, with the regular troops, formed a 
res])ectable army, commanded by general Gates. 
After two severe actions, in which generals Lincoln 
and Arnold behaved with much gallantry 3 general 
Burgoyne found himself enclosed and was obliged 
to surrender his whole army, amounting to several 
thousand men. This memorable event happened on 
the l/th of October, 1777; it diffused an universal 
joy over America, and laid tiie foundation for a 
treaty with France. 

But prior to these transactions, the main body of 
the British forces had landed at the head of Elk 
river, and began tlieir march to Philadelphia. Ge- 
neral Washington had determined to oppose them; 
and for this purpose tirst made a stand at Red-Clay 
creek, and then upon the heights, near Brandy- 
Wine creek. Here tlie armies engaged 3 ttie 
Americans were overpowered and sutiered great 
loss. Shortly after they again *^ngaged at German 
Town, and in tlie beginning of tlie action the 
Americans had tlie advantage, but the fortune> 











,«« 'J!*'' 

I a. ' 'J} I 


. J I- v.- .5 


of the day was turned in favour of the British. 
Botli sides suftered considerable losses, and on the 
side of the Americans was that of general Nash. 

In an attack upon the forts at Mud Island and 
Red-Bank, the Hessians were unsuccessful, and 
tlieir commander killed. The British also lost a 
ship of the line. But the forts were afterwards 
taken, and the navigation of the Delaware opened. 
General Washington was reinforced with part of 
the troops which had composed the northern army, 
\nider general Gates, and both armies retired to 
winter quarters. 

In October, the same month in which general 
Burgoyne was taken at Saratoga, general Vaughan, 
with a small fleet, sailed up Hudson's river, and 
wantonly burnt Kingston, a beautiful Dutch settle- 
ment on the west side of the river. 

Till the capture of general Burgoyne, the powers 
of Euroj)e were only spectators of the war between 
Great Britain and her late colonies j but soon after 
that event they v ere drawn in to be parties 

In eveiy period of the controversy, the claims of 
the Am.eri("aps were patronized by many respecta- 
bl(j» foreigners. The addresses and other public acts 
of congress were admired by many who had no 
personal interest in the contest. Liberty is so evi- 
dently the undoubted right of mankind, that when- 
ever a people take up arms either to defend or 
recover it, they are sure of meeting with encou- 
ragemeiu, or at least good wishes from the friends 
of lumianity in e\ery part of the world. 

From the operation of these principles, *he Ame- 
ricans had the esteem and prayers of multitudes in 
every part of Europe. I'hey were reputed to be 
ill-u>ed, and determined to resist oppre-^sion. Be- 
in^ boili pitied and applauded^ bympadietic senti- 


ments were excited in their favour. These circum- 
itauces would have operated in every casif but in 
the present, the cause ot the Americans was pa- 
tronized from additional motives. An universal 
jealousy prevailed against Great Britain. Her navy 
had long claimed a degree of homage from those of 
other European nations j and demanded, as a matter 
of right, that the ships of all other powers should 
strike their sails to her as mistress of the ocean. 
From her eagerness to prevent supplies going to the 
colonists, the vessels of other powers had for some 
time past been subjected to searches and interrup- 
tions, when steering towards America, in a manner 
that could not be easily borne by independent nations. 
Soon after the intelligence of the capture of ge- 
neral Burgoyne's army, the court of France con- 
cluded a treaty of alliance and commerce witli the 
United States. This .was brought about by the 
interference of doctor Franklin, Silas Deane, and 
Arthur Lee. The terms of reciprocity on which 
France contracted \\ ith the United States were no 
less recommended by wise policy than dictated by 
true magnanimity. As tliere was nothing exclusive 
in tlie treaty, an ojjening was left for Great Britain 
to close the war wheneser she pleased, with ail 
the advantages of future commerce that France had 
stipulated for herself. This measure rendered iJie 
ejitablishment of American independence tlit; com- 
mon cause of all the conmiercial ])owers of Eu- 
rope J for the question became, ^vilelher the trade 
ot the United States should, by the subversion of 
their independence, be again monopolized b} Greut 
liriiain, or by the establishment of it, be laid open 
on equal terms to all tlie world ? 

\Vhile the mhiisters of Great Britain were 

pleasing themselves with tlie fialtering idea of a 

VOL. x.Mv. 2 A per- 

i 4 

4 '^-iM 



permanent peace in Europe, they were notle« 
surprized tlian provoked by hearing of the alliance 
which had taken place between his most Christian 
Majesty and tlie United States : this event, tiiough 
fre(]uently tbretold, was disbelieved. 

I'he marquis de la Fayette, who had long been 
a patron of the American contest, and had fought 
in her cause, was among the first in the continen- 
tal army who received the welcome tidings of the 
treaty. In a transport of joy, mingled witli an 
effusion of tears, he embraced general Washing- 
ton, exclaiming, " The king, my master, has ac- 
knowledged your independence, and made an alli- 
ance with you for its establishment." The heart- 
felt joy, which spread from breast to breast, ex- 
ceeded description. Solemn thanks were offered 
up to heaven ; a feu de joie was lired 5 and, on a 
proper signal being given, the air resounded witli 
'* Long live the king of France !'* which pouredforth 
from the hps of every soldier in the army. The 
Americans, having alone weathered the storms of 
war, now fancied the port of peace to be full in view. 

As soon as this treaty was known in England, 
the sovereign and parliament resolved to punish 
the French nation for treating with their subjects, 
which they styled " an unprovoked aggression on 
the honour of the crown, and essential interests of 
the kingdom." At the same time conciliatory bills 
were brouglit into the house and passed 5 by which 
governor Johnstone, lord Carlisle, and Mr. Eden, 
were appointed to set out for America, and open 
a negociation on the subject*. Congress would 


4* '4;! 

* The terms which they offered were principally as 
follows : 

To coDseat to a cessation of hostilities, both by sea and 
land. To 

AMERICA. 2(^7 

not now accept of the proffered terms, nor would 
tliey, said Mr. Laurens, in his answer, enter into 
the consideration of a treaty of peace with tlie king 
of Great Britain, without an ex})hcit acknowledi;- 
jiient of the independence of the States^ or the 
witlidrawint'; his fleets and armies. 

in our farliier account of this war, which wag 
protracted till the spring of 1783, we must neces- 
sarily be very brief 3 tiiking care, however, that 


To restore free intercourse, to revive mutual afT'ection, 
and renew the common benefits of naturalization, through 
the several parts ol this empire. 

To extend every freedom to trad'; that our respective 
interests can retiuirc. 

To ao^ree that no military forces jJiall be kept up in the 
dffllrtiit states of North America, without the consent of 
the j^eneral congress or [)articular assemblies. 

To concur in measures calculated to di8charp;'e the debt* 
of America, and to raise the credit and value of tlic paper 

To perpetuate our imion by a reciprocal deputation of 
an agt?nt or a^jxMits from the diflbrent slates, who shall 
have the privilege of a seat and voice in the parHament of 
Great Britain; or, if sent from Britain, in that case to have 
1 scat and voice in tlie assemblies of the different states to 
U'hich they mav be deputed respectively, in order to at- 
tend the several iiUvM-ests of those by whom they are de- 

In short, to establish the power of the respective legns- 
htures in cjich particular state, to settle its revenue, its 
civil and milit.vry establishment, and to exercise a perfect 
lieedom of legislation and internal government, so that 
the British states throu'^hout North America, acting with 
us in peace and war undei one coinmon sovereign, may 
have the irrevocable enjoyment of every privilege that is 
•hort of a total jcparaiion of interests, or consistent with 
that union ot force, on which the safety of our common 
religion and liberty depends. 

2 ^2 



* ^ no mnterml point is omitted. Early in tlie 
i-\.o" spring, count cl'Kstaign was sent with fif- 
" ^ ' totMi sail of Uic line, by the court of France, 
to assist America. He arrived at the entrance of 
tlie Delawire on the pth of July. Fro!n an ap- 
prehension of this kind, or from a prospect of 
greater security, it was reso\ed that the British 
.should evacuate Philadelphia, and concentrate their 
force in the city and harbour of New York. On 
their march they were annoyed by the Americans, 
and at Mon nouth a very regular action took place 
between pnrt of the armies j the British were re- 
pulsed with great loss; and had general Lee obey- 
ed his orders, a signal victory would probably have 
been obtained. For his ill conduct on that day, 
general I^ee was suspended, and never after per- 
mitted to join the army. It is generally supposed 
that he was jealous of Washington's fame, for his 
courage and fidelity to his country were never called 
in question. 

In August, general Sullivan, with a large body 
of troops, attempted to take possession of Rhode 
Island, but did not succeed. Soon after, the stores 
and shipping at Bedford, in Massachussetts, were 
burnt l:)y a party of the British troops. I'he same 
year, Savannah, then the capital of Georgia, was 
taken by the British, under the command of colo- 
nel Campbell. 
. r- Throughout the year 1779» the British 
,, J>y.* seem to have aimed at little more in tho 
^^^^' states to the northward of Carolina, than 
distress and depredation. Having publicly an- 
nounced their refjolution of making *' the colonies 
of as little avail as possible to their new connec- 
tions ;*' on this principle they planned several ex- 
peditions. The command of tlie army had devolv- 

ed n 

AMERICA. 2(y^ 

f(1 on sir Uonry Clinton ; genor?jl Howe having re- 
turned to Kncjland : nnd gcnrral liinroln was :ip- 
p)intcd to the coinmaihl of the American southern 

(rovcmor Tr}'on and sir George Col Iyer made 
an incursion into ( 'canned icut, and hurnt the towns 
of Fairfield and Norwalk ; fn^n-i the latter place 
certificates were transmitted to general Washing- 
ton, in which persons of veracity bore witness on 
oath to vinious acts of brutality, rapine, and cru- 
elty, committed on aged persons, women, and 

The elder citizens of the United States, who had 
grown up with habits of attachment to the British 
nation, felt the keenest sensations of regret, when 
they contrasted the year IJ.li) with 1779- The for- 
mer was their glory, Avhen in the days of their 
youth they Mere disposed to boast of the honours 
of their common countiy, but the latter filled them 
with distress. The one ennobled the British name 
with the conquest of McMitreal, Quebec, and the 
wliole province of Canada j the other was remark- 
able only for burning magazines, store-houses, 
d )ck-yards, and towns, and for the distress of a 
defenceless peasantry. 

llie American arms were crowned with success 
in an attack upon Stoney-Point, which was sur- 
prised and tnkcn by general Wayne, in the night 
of the 15th of July. Five hundred men were 
made prisoners, with little loss on either side.— 
A party of British forces attempted this summer 
to build a fort on Penobscot river, for the purpose 
of cutting timber in the neighbouring forests. A 
plan was laid by theMassachussetts to dislodge them, 
and a considerable fleet collected for the purpose 5 
but it failed of success, and tlie whole marine 

2 A 3 force 

f > 

a t 



V J^ i. 






lAAMM |2.5 

Ui lilK 




1.25 II 1.4 III 1.6 
















WEBSTER, N.Y. 14S80 

(716) 872-4503 

lift i 



f,' ft* I 


force fell into the hands of tlie British, except some 
vessels which were burnt by the Americans tliem- 

In the month of October, general Lincoln and 
count d'Estaign made an assault upon Savannah ; 
but they were repulsed with considerable loss. In 
this action, the celebrated Polish count Pulaski, 
who had acquired the reputation of a brave soldier, 
was mortally wounded. 

Thus ended the campaign of 1/79* without any 
thing decisive on either side. It is remarkable for 
the feeble exertions of the Ameri/:ans. Accidental 
causes, which had previously excited their activity, 
had in a great measure ceased to have influence. — ■ 
An enthusiasm for liberty made tliem compara- 
tively disregard property, and brave all danger, in 
tlie first years of the war. Their success in 1777 > 
made them active and vigorous. The flattering 
prospects inspired by tlie alliance with France in 
177^ f banished all fears of the success of tlie revo- 
lution J but the failure of every scheme of co-ope- 
ration, produced a despondency of mind unfavour- 
able to great exertions. Expecting too much from 
their allies, they were less prepared to prosecute 
the war from their own resources, than they would 
have been if d'Estaign had not touched on their 
coast. Their army was reduced in numbers, and 
badly clothed. In the first years of the war, the 
mercantile character was lost in tlie military spirit 
of the times ; but in the progress of it, the inhabi- 
tants, cooling in their enthusiasm, gradually re- 
turned to their former habits of lucrative business. 
This made a distinction between the army and the 
citizens, which was unfriendly to military exer- 
tions. While several events tended to tlie embar- 
rassment of Great Britain, and indirectly to the 



establishment of independence, a variety of inter- 
nal causes relaxed the exertions of the Americans, 
and, for a time, made it doubtful whether they 
would ultimately be independent citizens or con- 
quered subjects. Among tliese, tlie daily depre- 
ciation of their paper money held a distinguished 
p-eeminence ; but on this subject tlie limits of 
our volume will not allow us to enlarge. 

When the English colonies were planted in 
Xorth America, the country w^as inhabited by 
numerous tribes of Indians, whose numbers had, 
from a variety of causes, been continually lessen- 
ing. Of those that remained the Americans w^ere 
not unmindful : they had appointed commissioners 
to cultivate their friendship, and to persuade them 
to take no part in the contest. All tlie exertions 
of congress were insutiicient for the security of the 
western frontiers. In almost every period of tlie war 
a great majority of the Indians had taken part with 
Greal Britain against the Americans. The inter- 
course with these tribes had, for several years prior 
to the American war, been exclusively committed 
to John Stuart, an ofBcer of the crown and de- 
voted to tlie royal interest. By his means almost 
incredible devastation was committed at ditferent 
periods of the contest. A particular detail of the de- 
strut tion of property, of the distress of great num- 
bers who escaped only by fleeing into the woods, 
where they subsisted without covering, on the 
spontaneous productions of the earth, and of the 
barbarous murders which were committed on per- 
sons of all ages, and each sex, would be sulhcient 
to freeze every breast with horror. • "* ^ 

In several expeditions which had been carried 
on ngainst the Indians, ample vengeance had been 
taken on soiiie of tiieai ; but these partial suc- 
cess t'S 





cesses produced no lasting benefit. The few who es- 
caped had it in their power to make thousands mi- 
serable. For the permanent security of the frontier 
inhabitants, it was resolved to carry a decisive ex- 
pedition into the Indian country. A considerable 
body of continental troops was selected for the pur- 
pose, and put under the command of general Sul- 
livan. The Indians who form the confederacy of 
the six nations called the Mohawks, were the ob- 
jects of this expedition. They inhabit that im- 
mense and fertile tract of country which lies be- 
tween New England, the Middle States, and the 
province of Canada. Sullivan marched into their 
country, and burnt and destroyed all the provisions 
and settlements tliat fell in their way. 
4 Y^ On the opening of the next campaign, 

* ' the British troops left Rhode Island, An 

' ' expedition, under general Clinton and lord 
Cornwallis, was undertaken against Charleston, in 
South Carolina which, after a close siege of six 
weeks, was surrendered to the British commander j 
and general Lincoln and the whole garrison were 
made prisoners. This was the first instance in which 
the Americans had attempted to defend a town.— 
The unsuccessful event, with its consequences, 
demonstrated the policy of sacrificing the towns of 
the Union, in preference to endangering tlie whole, 
by risking too much for their defence. 

General Gates was now appointed to the com- 
mand of the southern department, and another 
army collected. In August, lord Cornwallis at- 
tacked the American troops at Camden, in South 
Carolina, and routed them with considerable loss. 
He afterwards marched through the southern states, 
and supposed that he had entirely subdued them. 

The sanie summer the British troops made fre- 


Cjuent incTirsions from New York into the Jerseys, 
ravaging and plundering the country. A large body, 
commanded by general Kniphausen, lauded in 
June, at Elizabeth Point, and proceeded into the 
country. These were much harrassed in their pro- 
gress by colonel Dayton, and the troops under his 
command. At Connecticut Farms they burnt a 
considerable part of the village. In tins neighbour- 
hood lived Mr. Caldwell, an eminent presbyterian 
clergyman, whose exertions in defence of his coun- 
try had rendered him particularly obnoxious to the 
British. Mrs. Caldwell, seeing the enemy advanc- 
mg, retired witli her housekeeper, a child of three 
years old, an infant of eight months, and a little 
maid, to a room secured on all sides by stone walls, 
except at a window opposite the enemy. Unsus- 
picious of danger, while she was sitting on her bed, 
holding one child by the hand, with the infant at 
her breast, a British soldier shot her dead, who 
had evidently come to the unguarded part of the 
house, with a design to perpetrate the horrid deed. 
Her husband shortly after shared the same fate. 

The campaign of this year passed away in suc- 
cessive disappointments and distresses. The coun- 
try seemed exhausted, and the continental currency 
expiring : the army, in want of every article of 
food and clothing, brooding over its calamities. 
While these disasters were openl)- menacing the 
American cause, treachery was silently undermin- 
ing it. General Arnold engaged, for a stipulated 
sum, to betray into the hands of the British an im- 
portant post. He had been among the first to take 
arms against Great Britain, and to widen the 
breach between the parent state and the colonies. 
His distinguished talents and exemplary courage 
had procured him every honour Uiat a grateful 
,.. ^ country 





country could bestow ; and he was in the enjoy- 
ment of such a share of fame, for the purchase of 
which the wealth of worlds would have been insuf- 
ficient. His love of pleasure produced a love of 
money, and that extinguished all sensibility to the 
obligations of honour and duty. 

The agent employed in this negociation on the 
part of sir Henry Clinton, was major Andre, a 
young officer of great hopes and uncommon merit. 
His great honour and abhorrence of duplicity, 
made him inexpert in the practise of those arts of 
deception which such a business required. He 
was taken, and the fatal papers found concealed in 
his boots. Andre offered his captors a purse of 
gold and a valuable watch, if they would let him 
pass ', and permanent provision and future promo- 
tion, if they would accompany him to New York, 
They nobly disdained the proferred bribe, and de- 
livered him over to their colonel. Andre called 
himself by the name of Anderson, and under that 
character obtained leave to send a letter to Arnold, 
who iftimed lately effected his escape. 

General Washington referred the whole case of 
major Andre to the examination and decision of a 
board consisting of fourteen general oflBcers. Their 
report, founded entirely on his own confession, 
declared that he ought to be considered as a spy, 
and that, agreeably to the laws and usages of na- 
tions, he ought to suffer death. 

Great interest was made to save his valuable life, 
which was refused but upon the condition of their 
giving up Arnold ; this could not be acceded to, 
without offending against every principle of policy. 
Andre, though superior to the terrors of death, 
wished to die like a soldier. The usages of war 
would not now allow of this request, but his feel- 


inc^s were saved from the pain of a negative. The 
guard which attended him in his confinement mnrch- 
cd with him to the place of execution. The way 
over w hich he passed was crowded witli anxious 
epectators, w hose sensibihty was strongly impressed 
by beholding an amiable youth devoted to imme- 
diate execution. Major Andre w^alked with firm- 
ness, composure and dignity, between the officers 
of his guard, his arm being locked in theirs. Upon 
iceing the preparations, he asked witli some degree 
cf concern, ** Must I die in this manner.'* He 
V as told it was unavoidable. He replied, ''lam 
reconciled to my fate, but not to the mode -, it will 
hov/erer be but a momentary pang." His conduct 
excited the admiration and melted the hearts of 
all the spectators. He was asked if he had any 
tiling to say; " Nothing," says he, *'but to request 
tliat you will witness to the world that I die like a 
brave man." 

This execution was the subject of gevere cen- 
fures ; and notwithstanding the usages of war, 
which were appealed to for the justice of the sen- 
tence, it w^ould have been honourable to the con- 
gress, and their general in chief, had the life of tliis 
excellent young man been spared. While every 
heart pitied the fate of major Andre, the conduct 
of the infamous Arnold was stamped with uni- 
versal infamy ; and, like persons of his description, 
he lived despised by mankind, and died a few 
years since''^ unlamented. General Washington 
arrived in camp just after Arnold had made his es- 
cape, and restored order in the garrison. 

After the defeat of general Gates in Carolina, 
general Greene was appointed to the command of 


• See Monthly Magazine, vol. xi. p. 546. 







the southern army. PVom this period things in 
that quarter wore a more favourable aspect. Co- 
lonel Tarleton, the active commander of the British 
legion, was defeated by general Moreton, the in- 
trepid commander of the riflemen. 
A -p. After a variety of movements the two 

' * armies met at Guildford, in Carolina, where 
' * was one of the best- fought actions during 
the war. General Greene and Lord Cornwall is 
exerted themselves at the head of their respective 
armies ; and although the Americans were obliged 
to retire from the held of battle, yet the British 
army suffered immense loss, and could not pursue 
the victory. In this action generals O'Hara and 
Howard, and colonel Tarleton were wounded : 
besides these, colonel Stuart and three captains 
were killed^ and colonel Webster died of his 

At this period Arnold, who had been made a 
brigadier-ifeneral in the British service, with a 
small number troops sailed for Virginia, and plun- 
dered the country. 

After the battle of Guildford, general Greene 
moved towards Soutli Carolina, to drive the British 
from their posts in that state. Here lord Rawdon 
obtained an inconsiderable advantage over die 
Americans near Camden. Greene, with his usual 
promptitude, instantly took measures to prevent 
his lordship from improving the success he had 
obtained. He retreated with such order that most 
of his wounded, and all his artillery, together with 
a number of prisoners, were carried off. The 
British retired to Camden, where it was known 
that they could not long subsist without fresh pro- 
visions, and the American general took proper 
measures to prevent tlieir getting any. 


k(i ■ 

hings in 
ct. Co- 
le British 
1, the in- 

the t\^^o 
la, where 
ns during 
:e obliged 
le British 
ot pursue 
Hara and 
vounded : 
; captains 
d of his 


Goneral Greene more than recovered the advan- 
tage gained over liini at Camden, by a brilliant and 
suceessful action at the Eutaw Springs. The loss 
of the British was upwards of eleven hundred men, 
besides UX)0 stand of arms : that of the Americans 
five hundred, in which number were sixty officers. 
Soon after this eiigagement, the British retired 
with their whole force to Charleston Neck. The 
defence of tlie country was given up j and the con- 
(juerors, who had carried their arms to the extre- 
mi lies of the State, seldom aimed at any thing 
more than to secure themselves in tlie vicinity of 
the capital. The crops which had been planted in 
the spring of the year under British auspices, and 
with the expectation of affording them supplies, 
frll into the hands of the Americans^ and admi- 
nistered to them a seasonable relief. The battle 
of Eutaw may be considered as closing the war in 
South Carolina. At its commencement the British 
were in force over all the state, at its close tliey 
durst not venture 20 miles from Charleston. His- 
tory affords but few instances of commanders who 
have acliieved so much w ith equal means as was 
done by general Greene in the the short space of a 

Lord Cornwall is finding general Greene suc- 
cessful in Carolina, marched to Virginia, collected 
his forces, and fortified himself in Yorktown. In 
the mean time Arnold made an incursion into 
("onnecticut, burnt a part of New London, took 
fort Grisvvold by storm, and put the garrison to the 
sword. The brave colonel Ledyard, who com- 
manded in the fort, was barbarously slain with 
Ills own sword, after he had surrendered. 

The marquis de la Fayette had been dispatched 
with about two thousand light hifantry from tiie 






% M 




main army, to watch the motions of lord Corn- 
wallis in Virginia. About the end of August, 
count de Grasse arrived with a large fleet in the 
Chcsapeek, and blocked up the troops in York 
town, and soon after admiral Greaves, witli a Bri- 
tish fleet, appeared oft^ the Capes ; an action suc- 
ceeded, but it was not decisive. 

General Washington had, previously to this, 
moved the main body of his army, together with 
the French troops, to the southward -, and as soon 
as he heard of the arrival of the French fleet in the 
Chesapeek, he made rapid marches to the head of 
the Elk, where embarking the troops, he soon ar- 
rived at York town, and a close siege commenc- 
ed which was carried on with great vigour. 

In a short time the batteries of the besiegers 
were covered with nearly a hundred pieces of can- 
non, and the works of the besieged were so da- 
maged that they could scarcely show a single gun. 
Lord Cornwallis had now no hope left but from 
offering terms of capitulation, or attempting an 
escape. He determined on the latter, but the 
scheme was frustrated by a sudden and violent 
storm of wind and rain. With this failure the last 
hope of the British army expired 3 longer resistance 
could answer no good purpose, and must occasion 
the loss of many valuable lives. Lord Cornwallis, 
therefore, wrote to general Washington, request- 
ing a cessation of arms for 24 hours, and that 
commissioners might be appointed to digest terms 
of capitulation. It is remarkable, that while co- 
lonel Laurens, the oflScer employed by Wash- 
ington on this occasion, was drawing up these 
articles, his father was closely confined in the 
Tower of London, of which lord Cornwallis was 
governor. By this singular combination of cir- 

AMERICA. 27() 

^nmstances, his lordship became a prisoner to the 
son of his own prisoner. A capituhition was 
signed} but the honour of marching out with 
colours flying, which had been refused to general 
J^incoln, on his giving up Charleston, was now- 
refused to lord Cornwallis j and general Lincoln 
was appointed to receive the submission of the royal 
army at York Town, precisely in the same way 
as his own had been conducted about eighteen 
months before. 

The regular troops of France and America em- 
ployed in this siege, consisted of about seven thou- 
sand of the former, and of five thousand five hun- 
dred of the latter j and these were assisted by four 
thousand militia. The troops of every kind that 
surrendered prisoners of war exceeded seven thou- 
sand men. 

Five days after the surrender, a British fleet and 
army of seven thousand men, destined for the re- 
lief of Cornwallis, arrived off the Chesapeek^ but 
on receiving advice of his lordship's surrender, they 
returned to New York. Such was the fate of the 
general, from whose gallantry and previous suc- 
cesses, the speedy conquest of the soutliern states 
had been so confidently expected. No event dur- 
ing the war bid fairer for oversetting the indepen- 
dence of at least a part of the confederacy, than his 
complete victory at Camden j but by the conse- 
quences of that action, his lordship became the 
occasion of rendering that a revolution, which 
from his previous success was in danger of termi- 
nating as a rebellion. The loss of this army may 
be considered as deciding the contest in favour of 
America, and laying the foundation of a general 

The reduction of an army tiiat had carried ra- 

2 B 2 vages 

''■ V 



380 AM F.RICA. 

vages and dc«itmction whorcver tlioy wont ; that 
had involved thousands of all mv^ in distress ; oc- 
casionod unusnal transports of joy in the breasts of 
the whole body of the pecjple. Tlnouohout the 
United States, they displayed a social trliunpli and 
exultation, whicii no private prosperit)- is ever ablo 
to inspire. A day of thanksgivini^ was appointevl 
by congress, who went in procession to church, to 
offer up their grateful acknowledgments for the sig- 
nal success of the campaign. 
» -pj This year, 1/81, terminated In all part,-? 
* ' of the United States in favour of the Anie- 
' ricans. It began with weakness in Carolina, 
mutiny in New Jersey, and devastation in Virgi- 
nia ; nevertheless in its close, the British were 
contined to their strong holds in or near New 
York, Charleston and Savannah, and their whole 
army was captured in Virginia. They, in the 
course of the year, had acquired much plunder, 
by which individuals were enriched, but their na- 
tion was in no respect benefited. 
, On the last day of the year, Henry Laurens was 
released from his long confinement in the Tower of 
London. To this fact we have hitherto but barely 
alluded. He was committed a close prisoner on the 
6th of October, hi the preceding year, on suspi- 
cion of high treason. This gentleman had been 
deputed by congress to solicit a loan for their ser- 
vice in the United Netherlands j and also to negci- 
ciate a treaty between them and the United States. 
On his way thither he was taken by the Vestal fri- 
gate ; and though he threw his papers overboard, 
yet enough were recovered to ascertain the object 
of his mission. In the course of his imprison- 
ment, he was ofiered his liberty, if he would ac- 
knowledge his error, which he indignantly refused. 




Afterwards, when his son arrived in France as the 
special minister of congress, he was requested to 
beg that he would withdraw himself from that 
post : to which he replied, *' My son is of age, 
and has a will of his own ; if 1 should write to 
him in the terms you demand, it would have no 
effect. He is a man of honour, he loves me 
dearly, and would lay down his life to save mine ; 
but I am sure he would not sacrifice his honour to 
save my life, and I applaud him." 

A few months after the surrender of lord Corn- 
wallis, the British evacuated all their posts in Soutli 
Carolina and Georgia, and retired to tlie main ar- 
my in New York. Early in the ensuing . -p. 
spring, sir Guy Carlton arrived in New .i^.ry' 
York, and took command of tlie British ' 
army in America. Immediately on his arrival he 
acquainted general Washington and congress, that 
negociation for peace had been commenced at Paris. 
On the 30th of November, the provisional articles 
were signed, by which Great Britain acknowledged 
the independence and sovereignty of the United 
States of America, and these articles were ratified 
by a definitive treaty. Thus ended a long and ar- 
duous conflict, which eventually gave to the Ame- 
rican states a rank among the nations of the earth. 

Toward the close of this year, congress ^ -p. 
issued a proclamation, in which the armies ' ' 
of the United States were applauded and ' * 
discharged from their duties. On the day preced- 
ing their dismission, general Washington issued 
his farewell orders in the most endearing language. 
The evacuation of New York took place in about 
tliree weeks after the American army was discharg- 
ed 3 and in the evening there was a display of fire- 

2 B 3 works^ 


























works, which exceeded every thing of the kind 
before witnessed in the United States. 

The hour now approached when general Wash- 
ington was to take leave of his officers, who had 
been endeared to him by a long series of common 
sufferings and dangers. This was done in a solemn 
manner J '' With an heart full of love and grati- 
tude," said he, '' I now take leave of you : I most 
devoutly wish that your latter days may be as pro- 
sperous and happy, as your former ones have been 
glorious and honourable." The officers came up 
successively, and he took an affectionate leave of 
each of them. When this scene was over, the 
general left the room, and passed through a corps 
of light infantry to the place of embarkation. The 
officers followed in procession. On entering his 
barge, he turned to the companions of his glory, 
and by waving his hat bid them a silent adieu. — 
Some of them answered this last signal of respect 
and affection with tears j and all of them hung 
upon the barge which conveyed him from their 
sight, till they could no longer distinguish in it tlie 
person of their beloved commander in chief. 

He proceeded to Annapolis, tlien the seat of 
congress, to resign his commissiqn. On his way 
thither, he delivered to the comptroller :n Phila- 
delphia, an account of the expenditure of all the 
public money he had ever received. This was in 
his own hand writing, and eveiy entry was made 
in a particular manner. 

In every town and village through which the 
general passed, he was met and saluted by public 
and private demonstrations of joy. His resigna- 
tion was accepted in a public manner, at which a 
great number of distinguished persons were pre- 
sent J 


sent ; and never was there witnessed a more inte- 
resting scene*. Immediately on his resignation,. 
Mr. Washington hastened to his seat at Mount 
Vernon, on the banks of the Potowmac, in Virginia, 



* At a proper moment, general Washinffton addressed 
Thomas Mifflin, the President, in the following words : 
" Mr. President, 

" The great events on which my resignation depended 
having at length taken place, I have now the honour of 
ofTering my sincere congratulations to congress, and of 
presenting myself before them to surrender into their 
hands the trust committed to me, and to claim the indul- 
gence of retiring from the service of my country. 

Happy in the confirmation of our independence and 
sovereignty, and pleased with the opportunity afforded 
the United States of becoming a respectable nation, I re- 
sign with satisfaction the appointment I accepted with 
diffidence ; a diffidence in my abilities to accomplish so 
arduous a task, which however was superseded by a con- 
iidence in the rectitude of our cause, the support of the 
Supreme Power of the Union, and the patronage of 

The successful termination of the war has verified the 
most sanguine xpectations, and my gratitude for the in- 
terposition of Providence, and the assistance I have re- 
ceived from my countrymen, increases with every review 
of the momentous contest. 

While I repeat my obligations tc the army in general, 
I should do injustice to my own feelings not to acknow- 
ledge, in this place, the peculiar services and distinguished 
merits of the persons who had been attached to my per- 
son during the war : it was impossible the choice of con- 
iidential officers to compose my family should have been 
more fortunate ; permit me, sir, to recommend in parti- 
cular those who have continued in the service to the pre- 
sent moment, as worthy of the favourable notice and 
patronage of congress. 

I consider it as an indispensable duty to close this last 
solemn act of my otHci:?! life, by commending the interests 
•f our dearest coimtry to the protection of Almighty 


t. Sinj 








where he earnestly hoped to spend the remainder 
of his days in an honourable retirement. 

Cod, and those who have the superintendance of them, 
to his holy keeping. 

" Having now finished the work assigned me, I retire 
from the great theatre of action; and bidding an aiFec- 
tionate farewell to this august body, under whose orders 
I have long acted, I here offer my commission, and take 
my leave of all the employments of public life." 

To this the President returned an appropriate answer. 

■It,'' '>.)V: «.♦ 

:?■' I 

*. ■■ ■ - 

• . >> 





Disputes in different States. General Convention, 
A System of Federal Government recommended. 
Constitution ratified, IFashlngton appointed 
Presl'lent. His Character. Re-elected. Insure 
rertion in Pennsylvania. Washington resigns, 
Adams chose fi President. United States arm 
ai(ainst France. JVashhwton elected Commander 
in Chief. Dies. Peace between France and 
America. Jefferson elected President. States 
aided to the Union. Louisiana ceded. Popular 
tion. Expenditure, Debt of the United States, 

NO sooner was peace restored by the definitiva 
treaty, and the British troops withdrawn from 
their country, than the United States began to ex- 
perience tlie defects of their general government. 
Whilst an enemy was in the country, fear, which 
had first impelled the colonists to associate in mu- 
tual defence, continued to operate as a band of po- 
litical union. It gave to the resolutions and re- 
commendations of congress the force of laws, and 
generally commanded a ready acquiescence on the 
part of state legislatures. But now each state as- 
sumed the right of disputing the propriety of the 
resolutions of congress, and the interest of an in- 
dividual state was placed in opposition to the com- 
mon welfare of the union. In addition to this 
source of division, a jealousy of the powers of con- 
gress began to be excited in tlie minds of the peo- 
ple. And the war had not long ceased before in- 
n : surrection 



surreetion and rebellion reared their head in some 
of the states. The want of money was generally 
felt ', thisj with otlier calamities in which the coun- 
try seemed to be involved, led the house of dele- 
A T) g^tes in Virginia to recommend the for- 
_ * * mation of a system of commercial regula- 
' '^' tions for the United States. Conmiission- 
ers from several of the provinces were appointed, 
who met at Annapolis in the ensuing summer, to 
consult what measures should be taken to unite the 
states in some general and efficient commercial 
system. As however the states were not all re- 
presented, and the powers of the commissioners 
were, in their opinion, too limited to propose a 
system of regulations adequate to the purpose of 
government, they agreed to recommend a general 
convention to be held at Philadelphia tlie next year. 
This measure appeared to the commissioners ab- 
solutely necessary. The old confederation was 
essentially defective, and it was destitute of almost 
every principle necessary to give effect to legis- 

^ A D ^^ ^^^ month of May delegates from all the 
,Jq>_* states except Rhode Island assembled at 
' '* Philadelphia, and chose general Washing- 
ton for tlieir president. After four months delibera- 
tion, in which the clashing interests of the several 
states appeared in all their force, the convention 
agreed to recommend the plan of a federal govern- 

As soon as the federal constitution was sub- 
mitted to the legislatures of the several states, they 
proceeded to take measures for collecting the sense 
of the people upon the propriety of adopting it. 
It Would be a tedious and fruitless task to enter 



into the debates which the ratification of the new 
constitution ■**■ occasioned in the different states, 
suffice it to .^ay, that after a full considera- . ^^ 
tion and thorough discussion of its princi- ' 
pies, it was ratified by the conventions of ' ^' 
eleven of the original thirteen states j and shortly 
after Nortli Carolina and Rhode Island acceded to 
the union. The ratification of it was celebrated in 
most of the capitals of the states with elegant pro- 
cessions, which far exceeded any thing of the kind 
ever before exhibited in America. 

The new constitution having been ratified by 
the states and senators, and representatives having 
been chosen agreeably to the articles of it, they 
met at New York and commenced their proceed- 
ings. The old congress and confederation expired, 
and a new one with more ample powers, and a 
new constitution, partly national and partly fe- 
deral succeeded in their place, to the great joy of 
all who wished for the happiness of the United 

Though great diversity of opinions had prevailed 
about the new constitution, there was but one opi- 
nion about the person who should be appointed its 
supreme executive officer. All of every party 
turned their eyes on the late commander of their 
armies, as the most proper person to be their first 
president. Perhaps there was not a well informed 
person in the United States, Mr. Washington 
himself only excepted, who was not anxious tliat 
he should be called to the executive administration 
of the proposed new plan of government. Unam- 
bitious of farther honours, he had retired to his 

* A copy of this federal constitution may be seen in 
Mor8e'$ American Geography, 







farm in Virginia, and hoped to be excused from nil 
future public service. That honest zeal for the 
public good M'hich had uniformly influenced him, 
got the better of his love of retirement^ and in- 
duced him to undertake the office. 

The intelligence of his election being commu- 
nicated to him while on his farm, he set out soon 
after for New York. On his way thither, the road 
was crowded w^ith numbers anxious to see the 
man of the people : and he was every where re- 
ceived with tlie highest honours that a grateful 
people could confer. Addresses of congratulation 
were presented to him by the inhabitants of ill- 
most every place of consequence through which 
he passed ^ to all of which he returned modest and 
vmassuming answers. 

A day was fixed, soon after his arrival, for his 
takino* the oath of office, which was in the follow- 
ing words : ** 1 do solemnly swear that I will 
faithfidly execute the office of president of the 
United States, and w^ill, to the best of my ability, 
preserve, ])rotect, and defend the constitution of 
the United States." This oath was administered 
by the chancellor of the state of New York. An 
awful silence prevailed among the spectators dur- 
ring this part of the ceremony. It was a minute 
of tlie most sublime political joy. The chancellor 
then proclaimed him president of the United States, 
whicfi was answered by the diseharge of thicteeii 
guns, and by the shouts and iicclamations of ten 
thousand joyful voices. John Adams was at the 
same time elected vice president. 

There is nothin8:morestrikinfr in the whole cha- 
racter of general Washington, and which distin- 
guished him more from other extraordinary men, 
than tlie circum^taaces which attended his promo- 


from nil 
1 lor the 
ced him, 
, and in- 

out soon 
, the road 
> see the 
ihere re- 
i gratefid 
its of al- 
^h which 
odest and 

d, for his 
le foUow- 
at I will 
It of the 
y ability, 
tut ion of 
^rk. An 
itors dur- 
1 minute 
led States, 
IS of ten 
as at the 

lole cha- 
Ih distin- 

iry men. 
Is promo- 



tion and retreat from office. He eagerly courted 
privacy, and only siihnitted to exercise authority 
as a public duty. The promotions of many men 
are the triumph of ambition over virtue. The pro- 
motions, even of gooil men, have generally been 
sought by them from motives which were very 
much mixed. The promotions of Washington al- 
most alone, seem to have been victories gained by 
iiis conscience over his taste. To despise what 
all other men eagerly pant for, to show himself 
equal to the highest places without ever seeking 
any, are the noble peculiarities of the character of 
this great man. 

Events occurred during his chief magistracy 
which convulsed the whole political world, and 
which severely tried his moderation and prudence. 
The French revolution took place. From the be- 
ginning of this revolution Washington had no con- 
fidence in its beneficial operation. But, as the first 
magistrate of the American commonwealth, he 
was bound only to consider the safety of the peo- 
ple over whom he w^as placed. He saw that it 
was wise and necessary for America to preserve a 
good understanding and a beneficial intercourse 
with France, however she might l)e governed, so 
long as she abstained from committing injury 
asfainst the United States. 

During the turbulent period of the French revo- 
lution, when the people of all countries were di- 
vided into parties, Mr. Washingtoli was a second 
time chosen president of the United States, but 
not unanimously, as in the f)rmer in- . -p. 
stance. The disposition which he had .l^J 
shown to take no part in favour of the per- ' ^ ' 
petual changes in France, had created him enemies 
among those who espoused the cause of tlie 

VOL. XXIV. 2 g French, 




French, as the cause of niankhid at lari^f . Ha 
had, h(n\'ever, a decided majority ; and Air. John 
Adams was agitin elected vice-president. 

Through the wliolc course of his second presi* 
dency, the dan;yer of America was great and i'n- 
minent, almost beyond example. The spirit of 
change, indeed, at that period, shook all nations. 
But in other countries it had to encounter antient 
and solidly est-ablished power. It had to tear up 
by the roots long habits of attachment in some na- 
tions for their i^overnment, of awe in others, of ac- 
quiescence and submission in all. But m America 
tiie orovcrnmeiit was new and weak. 

It was duri!ig this period that the president of 
the United States had to encounter and suppress an 
insurrection excited in the western counties of 
Pennsylvania. His character and office had been 
reviled j his authority had been insulted y his safety 
and his life had been threatened. Yet neither re- 
sentment, nor fear, nor even policy, could extin- 
guish the humanity tha-t dwelt in tlie breast of 
Washington. Never was there a revolt of such 
magnitude quelled with the loss of so little blood. 
. j^ J n the month of October, 1 7<)0, Mr. 
^ ./ Washington piiblicly declared his rc'olii- 
^^ ' lion of retiring from public life, and strictly 
enjoined those who were most sincerely attached 
to him by ties of friendhhip, not to nominate him 
on the ensuirg election, llie resignation of this 
great man at this period was deplored by ail the 
moderate party in America, and by tJie govern- 
ment party in Great Britain. By the latter he 
was considered as a steady friend ; and was indeed 
regarded as the leader of what was called the Eng- 
lisli party in America. Such are the vicissitudes 
of political couuectiou. In 1/70, he was considered 



in Englnnt! as a proscribed rebel : ii\ 179^ he was 
regarded as the best friend that England had in the 
United States. In 1/7^ his destruction was thought 
the only means of preserving America to Great 
Britain ; in 179O* his authority was est earned the prin- 
cipal security against her tailing under the yoke of 
France. At the former period he hmked to the aid 
of France as his only hope of guarding the hl)er- 
ties of America against England : at tlie latter he 
must have considered the power of Great Britain 
as a main barrier of the safety of America against 

Nothing was more certain than his re-election, 
if he had deemed it right to oft'er himself as a can- 
didate. The conduct however which he pur- 
sued, was the wisest he could have adopted. All 
the enemies, and many of the best friends, of the 
American government believed that it had a se- 
vere trial to encounter when the aid of Washing- 
ton's character should be witlidrawn from its exe- 
cutive government. Many seriously apprehended 
that it had scarce vigour enough to survive the 
experiment. It was fit, then, that so critical an 
experiment should be performed under his eye ; 
while his guardian wisdom was at hand to advise 
and assist in the change. 

Tlie election of the first successor to Mr. Wash- 
ington was die most important event in the history 
of the infant republic. Nothing could be con- 
ducted in a more dignified manner : the choice 
fell upon John Adams as presider.\t, and upon Tho- 
mas Jefierson as vice-president. The functions of 
the new president were not to commence * pv 
till the 4th of March, previous to which he , y^y* 
repaired to the house of representatives to ' ^' * 
take the necessary oaths. At this ceremony were 

2 c 2 a mul- 


292 AMERICA. ■ 

a multitude of spectators of high rank ; one of 
whom, after minutely describing all that passed, 
adds these words : '* Nothing can be more simple 
than the cei en^ony of this installation ; but this 
very simplicity has something in it so delightful, so 
noble, and so nearly resembling tiie grandeur of 
antiquity, that it commands our reverence, and seizes 
upon our worthiest afleetions. I speak at least of 
the eftect it produced on my feelings. This change 
of the persons exercising the most awful functions 
of the state, with so little pomp, but with so great 
Bolemnit}' 3 and which places a man, who the even- 
ing befoie was aniong the crowd of simple citi- 
zens, at the head of the government j while he 
who held the first office of the state the preceding 
evening, is returned again to the class of simple 
citizens — is full of the qualities that constitute true 

Alter various and repeated insults from the 
* -pj French government by means of their en- 


voy M. Genet j the United States found it 

necessary to arm in their own defence. 
They had for years endured with a patience of 
which there is scarcely any example in the history of 
states, all the contumely and wrongs which suc- 
cessive administrations in France had heaped upon 
them. Their ships were every where captured 5 
their ministers \\'ere but prisoners at Paris ; while 
agents, some of whom were indeed clotlied in tlie 

* See vol. iv. p. SG5, of Travels through the United 
States of North America, the country of the Iroquois, and 
Upper Car.ada, in the years 1795, 179G, and 1797, by tlie 
duke delaRochcfaucault iJancourt. Awork abounding with 
real information on almost all useful topics, and which 
cannot be too strongly recommended. 



sncred diameter of ambassadors, had endeavoured 
to excite the seeds of civil war. The United States 
resohed to arm by land and by sea. The com- 
mand of the army was bestowed on general Wash- 
ington, which he accepted, because he said he wa» 
convinced " tliat every thing they held dear and 
sacred was threatened ; though he had flattered 
himself that he had quitted for ever the boundless 
licld of public action, incessant ti'ouble, and high 
responsibility in which he had so long acted so con- 
spicuous a part." In this office he continued dur- 
ing the short period of his life which still re- 
mained. On the 12th day of December » ^^ 
1799, he was seized with an inflammation , J ' 
in his throat, attended with fever, which ' ^^' 
notwithstanding the efforts of his physicians, termi- 
nated his valuable life in two days, in the 68th year 
of his age and in the 23d year of American inde- 
pendence 5 of which he may be regarded as tlie 
founder. He died fully impressed with tliose sen- 
timents of piety which had given vigour and con- 
sistency to his virtue, and had adorned every part 
of his blameless and illustrious life. 

The precautions which the American States 
took against tlie injustice of the French govern- 
ment preserved their independence, without com- 
ing to an open rupture^ and all differences were at 
length composed by a treaty of amity and . j^ 
commerce, which was signed at Paris, on ,Q^^fx* 
the 30th of September, by plenipotentiaries 
from the two republics. Early in the following year 
intelligence was received in London, that * j^ 
a ratification of the treaty between France ,0^/ 
and America had taken place. About tlie 
same period came on the election for a new 
president in the United States, Mr. Jefferson, 

2 c 3 vice- 



f' ^*1'' 

2r4 AMFircA. 

vice-president, niul Mr. I^iur, wore candidates for 
tliis iinportiint ofiire. Ihe electifm was carried on 
with great \\;nnitli by both sides. The ballotting 
was renewed thirty-one times during three suc- 
cessive days. 1 he thirty-second time decided tJie 
contest in ilivonr of Mr. Jefferson. Since tliis pe- 
riod the contending parties tJiat, during the former 
periods of the French revohition, had i]jreatly di- 
vided the people in tlie l/r^ited States, have consi- 
derably subsided : and there is every reason to 
hope and believe that the peace and prosperity of 
the United States are lixed on a permanent basis. 

At the time of the completion of the new con- 
stitution, and the first sitting of the new congress 
in 1 789, the Union consisted (;f no more than thir- 
teen states; but since tliat period seven others have 
been added, in the manner prescribed by the con- 
stitution. Kentucky, which was formerly a district 
dependent on the state of Virginia; and Vermont, 
wliich was a })art of New Hampshire, \\ ei'e raised 
into states in the year 1 79 1 : and in I796 Ten- 
nessee, formerly part of North Carolina, was ad- 
mitted as an independent state. Since tliat period 
the Maine7 the territory north west of Ohio, 
the Indian territory, and Mississippi territory 
have been recognized as states belonging to the 
Federal Government : and very lately Louisiana has 
A -pj been ceded by Spain to the United States 

* * of America. Louisiana was discovered by 
^' Juvin Ponce de Leon in 1512, it afterwards 
came into the possession of the French, who about 
the middle of last century claimed and possessed, 
as Louisiana, all that part of the new continent 
which was bounded on the south by the gulf of 
Mexico, on the north by Canada, and on the east 
and west ladeiinitely, comprehending a greater 


'» ' k^'p 


cxtrnt th.'in the United States. In 1/52 she nearly 
completed a eh:iin of torts from New Orleans 
to Quebee, by whieh .the then English colonies 
were hemmed in, and would eventually ha\c 
been confined to the couiWryon this side tlie Al- 
legany mountains. These gigantic projects were 
deteated by the energies of Mr. V[[i in the war of 
1756'. And, by the siKr»^eding treaty of peace in 
1763, all the possessions lying east of Mississippi^ 
and int hiding the Floridas, wt.-re ceded to Cireat 
Britain : France reserved New Orleans and the 
island on which it is built. All that part uf the 
country lying east of the Alississippi was, before 
the late cession, comprehended as one of the United 
States, under the name of tlie Mississippi territory. 

According to the return of the whole number of 
persons within the several districts of the United 
States in the year 1801, the population amounted 
to more* than live millions and a quarter*, of 
^^ hich nearly nine hundred thousands are slaves, 
a circumstance which cannot be sufficiently de- 
plored by the friends of real humanity. And no 
inconsistency can be greater than that the slave 
trade should be tolerated by people who struggled 
so many years against oppression and tyranny in 
defence of their own rights. 

I'he expenditure of the government of the 
United States for the year 1 8CX) was estimated at 
fifteen millions of dollars, and the revenue for that 
year was but ten millions 3 leaving five millions to 
be provided for by new taxes. But in this estimate 
was included a sum of six hundred thousand dol- 
lars for building six ships of the line, and the sum 
appropriated to raising twelve regiments of infantry 

* See table III. at the end of the volume. 



and six troops ; these expenses were incurred by 
the preparations made to resist the aggressions of the 
French, and cannot be regarded as part of the 
usual expenditure of the government of the United 
States J and eveiy mean is taken to reduce the 
national debt, which, on the 1st of January 1/92, 
amounted to about seventeen millions and a-half 
sterling, as will be seen ia the fourth table at tlie 
end of the volume. 





British Possessions in North America. Ca,:ada. lis 
Legislature. Governor. Revenue. Manners of 
its Inhabitants . Climate. Produce. JS/etv Bruns^ 
wick. Nova Scotia. Cape Breton. Neirfound^ 
land. Its Fishery. Hudson's Bay. IFhen 
discovered. Settled. Its Produce. Its Climate. 

IN giving a connected account of the history of 
the United States^ we have been obliged to sus- 
pend that part of our plan which relates to the Bri- 
tish possessions in North America. These are still 
extensive, and of considerable importance, though 
so tliinly inhabited, and in such a disadvantageous 
climate, that they sink into a kind of insignificance 
when compared witJi the great and flourishing co- 
lonies belonging to Spain, or with the territories 
of tlie United States. The inhabitants of the for- 
mer have been estimated at seven millions, and 
those of the latter at more than five j while the po- 
pulation of the British possessions does not exceed 
two hundred thousand souls, of whom the greater 
part are French, or of French origin. 

The chief of these possessions is Canada, now di- 
vided into two parts. Upper and Lower Canada, the 
former being the western division on the north of 
the great lakes or sea of Canada, while the lower 
division is on the river St. Lawrence, towards the 
east, and contains Quebec the capital, and chief city 
of our remaining settlements. On the east of Canada, 






to the south of the ri\ er St. Lawrence, is Nova Sco- 
tia, which within these last twenty years has hceu 
divided into two provir.ces, tliat of Nova Scotia in 
the south, and New Brunswick in the north. 

What is called New Britain comprehends the 
most northern parts towards Hudson's Bay, and the 
coast of Labrador, llie large island of Newfound- 
land, that called Cape Breton, and the neighbour- 
ing isle of St. John, complete the chief denomina- 
tions of British territory. 

The original pojnilat ion of Canada consisted of 
several savage tribes j and the first European settle- 
ment was at Quebec in l(i08. For a century and 
a half it belonged to the French, but in 1 759 Que^ 
bee was conquered by general Wolfe, and at the 
peace in 17^3 Canada was ceded to Great Britain, 

The religion is the Roman Catholic, but the Bri- 
tish settlers follow their own modes of worship. A 
legislative council and an assembly are appointed 
for each of the provinces of Upper and Lower Ca- 
nada, having power to make laws with the consent 
of the governor ; but the k. jg may declare his dis- 
sent at any time within two years. The legislative 
council consists of seven members for Upper Ca- 
nada, and fifteen for the lower province, sum- 
moned by the governor under the king's autliority, 
and nominated during their lives. The house of 
assembly is to consist of fifty members from Lower 
Canada, and sixteen from Upper Canada, chosen by 
the freeholders. The councils are to assemble at 
least once a year ; and the house of assembly con- 
tinues four years, except in case of prior dissolu- 

British America is superintended by an officer 
styled governor general of the four British provinces 
in North America, who is also commander in chief 


'I LmK 'X 


of all the British troops in the four provinces, and 
the governments attached to them, and Newfound- 
land. Each of the ])rovinces has a lieutenant-gover- 
nor, who, in absence of the governor-general, ha» 
all the powers requisite to a chief magistrate. 

The only revenue arising to Great Britain from 
this colony proceeds from an advantageous com- 
merce which employs several thousand tons of 
shipping. The expenses of the civil list are sup- 
posed to be 25,000/. of which half is paid by Great 
Britain, and the other is raised by tlie provinces, 
from duties on the importation of spirits, wine, and 
a few other articles. The military estabHshment, 
with repairs of forts, kc. is stated at 100,000/. ; 
and the like sum is expended in presents to the 
savages, and salaries to oiHcers employed among 
them for trade in Upper Canada. But the advan- 
tages of tlie commerce are thought to counterba- 
lance these charges 

The manners and customs of the settlers in Ca- 
nada are considerably tinctured with French gaiety 
and urbanity. The women can generally read and 
write, and are thus superior to the menj but both 
are sunk in ignorance and superstition, and blindly 
devoted to tlieir priests, lliey universally use the 
French language, English being restricted to the 
few British settlers. Throuoh the whole of Ca- 
nada there is no public library except in the capital, 
and this is small, and consists mostlv of French 
books. And excepting the Quebec almanac not 
a single book is printed in Canada. 

The chief town is Quebec, built on a lofty point 
of land on the north-west side of the river St. Law- 
rence j which in this neighbourhood is sufficiently 
deep and spacious to lioat more than a bundi-ed sail 
of the line. The upper town is of considerable na- 


♦ ^if I 

1. ^i ; 





tural strength, and well fortified ; but the lower 
town towards the river is open to every attack. A 
large garrison is maintained, but to man the works 
five thousand soldiers would be necessary. The 
houses are commonly built of stone ; but they arc 
small and inconvenient. There are three nunneries. 
The markets are well supplied, and provisions re- 
markably cheap. The vicinity of Quebec presents 
a most sublime and beautiful sceneiy ^ and the falls 
of tlie river Montmorenci are particularly cele- 
brated. To the honour of Canada, a solemn act of 
the assembly declares all negroes to be free as soon 
as they arrive in that province. 

The climate of this part of America is very se- 
vere, but the atmosphere is generally clear. The 
extremes of heat and cold are astonishing : in July 
and August the thermometer is often as high as 
90" degrees, while the mercury freezes in the depth 
of winter. The snow begins in November, and in 
January the frost is so intense, that it is impossible 
to be long out of doors without risk of serious in- 
jury to the extremities. But winter, as at Peters- 
burg is the season of amusement, and the sledges 
afford a pleasant and speedy conveyance. In large 
houses stoves are placed in the hall, whence flues 
■pass to the other apartments j and tliere are always 
double doors and windows. On going abroad the 
whole body is covered with furs except the eyes 
and nose. In May the thaw generally comes sud- 
denly, the ice on the river bursting with the noise 
of cannon, and its passage to the sea is terrific, 
especially when it crashes against a rock. The heat 
of summer speedily succeeds the frost, and vegeta- 
tion is instantaneous. September is the most plea- 
sant month. 
The face of the country is mountainous and 
2 woody 5 

?rious 111- 

AMERIC/L, 301 

woody, but there are savannas and plains of givat 
beauty, chiefly towards Upper Canada. In the 
year l6(i3_, an earthquake is said to have over- 
whelmed a chain t)f free-stone mountains more 
than 300 miles long. In the lower province the 
jsoil consists of loose blackish earth ten or twelve 
inches thick, incumbent on a cold clay. This thin 
mould is however very fertile, and manure was sel- 
dom or never used by the French settlers ; but 
since Canada has come into our possession marie 
has been used with considerable success ; and of 
this, considerable (quantities are foundon the shores 
of the river St. Lawi-ence. 

The produce of Canada is a little tobacco culti- 
vated for private use 5 vegetables of almost all 
kinds, and considerable crops of grain; wdieat be- 
ing reckoned among their exports. The sugar- 
maple tree abounds here, and the sugar is generally 
used in the country. Both the Canadas are infested 
with rattle-snakes. Coal abounds in Cape Breton, 
but has never been discovered in Canada. The 
chief natural curiosities are the 'lakes, rivers, and 
cataracts : among the latter tiie celebrated falls 
of Niagara are chiefly on tiie side of Upper Canada, 
the river being at that part six hundred yards wide, 
and the fall one hundred and forty- two feet. A 
small island lies between the falls : and that on the 
•ide of the States is three hundred and fifty yards 
wide, while the height is one hundred and sixty- 
three feet: from the great fall a constant cloud 
ascends, which may be seen at an incredible di- 
stance 5 and the whole scene is tmly tremendous. 

Theantient province of Nova Scotia was granted 
by James I. to his secretary sir William Alexander. 
It was afterwards seized by tiie French, who were 

VOL. XXIV. 20 probably 








probably the first possessors, and by whom it was 
called Arcadia j but it was surrendered to England 
by the treaty of Utrecht in 1713. In 1784 it was 
divided into New Brunswick and Nova Scotia. 
There are two considerable bays in the former, and 
and a river of some length called St. Johns ; while 
that of St. Croix divides New Brunswick from the 
province of Maine, belonging to the United States, 
The river St. John is navigable for vessels of fifty 
tons, about sixty miles ; and for boats more than 
two hundred : it aftbrds a common and near route 
to Quebec. The grand lake is thirty miles long, 
and nine broad. The great chain of Apalachian 
mountains passes north-west of this province, and 
probably expires at the Gulf of St. Lawrence. The 
capital is Frederic-town. The chief products are 
timber and fish. 

Nova Scotia is three hundred miles long, and 
eighty broad 3 the capital is Halifax, well situated for 
the fishery, with communications by land and wa- 
ter with the other parts of the province, and with 
New Brunswick. The town is entrenched with forts 
of timber, and is said to contain fifteen thousand in- 
hwibitants. During a great part of the year the air 
is foggy and unhealthy ; and for four or five months 
intensely cold. Britain sends to these provinces 
linen and woollen cloths, and other articles to the 
amount of 30,000/., and receives timber and fish to 
the amount of 50,000/. The chief fishery is that 
of cod on the Cape Sable coast. About twenty- 
three leagues from that cape is the Isle de Sable, or 
of sand, consisting wholly of that substance, mixed 
with white transparent stones 5 the hills being 
milk-white cones, and some of them a hundred 
and forty-six feet above the sea. This strai^^/C isle 




lias ponds of fresh water ; with junipers and cran- 
berries, and some grass and vetches, which serve 
to support a few horses, cows, and hogs. 

The island of Cape Breton is said to have 
been discovered by the Normans and Bretons, 
about the year 1500 j from the latter it took its 
name, but they did not take possession of it till 
3713. Louisburg was built in 172O3 and in I J 45 
the island was taken by some troops from New 
England, and has ever since remained subject to 
the crown of Great Britain. The climate is cold 
and foggy on account of the numerous lakes and 
forests. The soil is chiefly covered with moss, and 
is unfit for the purposes of agriculture. The inha- 
bitants do not ex'-^eed a thousand. The fur trade is 
inconsiderable,!! ut the fishery is very important; tlie^ 
value of this trade while in the French possession, 
was estimated at a million sterling. There is a very 
extensive bed of coal in the island, not more than 
six feet below the surface ; but it has been chiefly 
nsed as ballast. In one of the pits a fire was 
kindled by accident, and it remains unextinguished. 

Ihe Island of St. John, at no great distance from 
Cape Breton, is attached to the province of Nova 
Scotia. It surrendered with Cape Breton, in 1745. 
A lieutenant resides at Charlotte town y and the in- 
habitants of the island are computed at five thou- 

Newfoundland was discovered by Sebastian Ca- 
bot in 1496. It is about three hundred and twenty 
miles long, and two hundred broad in the widest 
part, forming the eastern boundary of the Gulf of St. 
Lawrence. This island after various disputes was 
ceded to England by the treaty of Utre( ht. From 
the soil we reap no great advantages, for the cold is 
long continued, and very intense ; and the summer 

2 D 2 heat 

^, «i^3 

804 AMEfvlCA. 

heat, though violent, dt)es not warm it sufficient!/ 
to produce any thing vaUi:il)le. It lias many large 
and safe harbours. And se\ eral consideiable rivers. 
TJie great quantity of timber that grows here, ma/ 
heteatter atford copious supplies of masts, yards, 
and all sorts of lumber for the West-India trade. 

At present it is chiefly valuable for tiie fishery of 
cod that is carried on upon those shoals which are 
called the Banks of Nev. foundland. The great 
fishery begins the 10th of May, and continues till 
the end uf September. The cod is either dried for 
the Mediterranean, or barrelled up in a pickle of 
salt for the English market. These banks and 
the island are enveloped in a constant fog, or snow, 
and sleet. The fishery is computed to yield about 
300,000/. a year ti'om tlie cod sold in Roman Ca- 
tholic countries. By tlie treaty in 1713 the French 
were allowed to dry their nets on the northern 
shores 5 and in 1703 it was stipulated that tliey 
might fish in the Gulf of St. Lawrence 5 and the 
small isles of St. Pierre and Miquelon were ceded 
to them*. By the treaty in 1/83, the French were 
to enjoy their fisheries on tlie northern and western 
coasts 5 the inhabitants of the United States having 
the same privileges as they enjoyed before their 
independence. And the j)eace of 1801^ couhrms tha 
privileges granted to the French, 

The chief towns are St. John's, Placentia, and 
Bonavista, but not more tlian a thousand families 
remain during the winter. In tlie spring a small 
squadron is sent to to i)rotect the fisheries and set- 
tlements, the admiral being also governor of the 

* These have been captured during the present war; an 
account of which arrived while the article was transcrib- 



island^ its sole consequence depending on the 

We cannot finish our account of North Ame- 
rica without saying a few words concerning Hud- 
son's and Baffin's Bays. The knowledge of these 
seas was owing to a project for the discovery of a 
north-west passage to China. So early as 157O 
this noble design was conceived j since then it has 
frequently been revived, but never completed. — 
The most competent judges do not^ however, de- 
spair of eventual success. 

I'he inland sea, denominated Hudson's Bay, 
was explored in three voyages made by Hudson, 
during the years 1607, I6O8, and IdlO. This bold 
navigator penetrated to 80i^, nearly into the heart 
of the frozen zone. His ardour for discovery not 
being abated by tlie difficulties tliat he struggled 
with in this world of frost and snow j he remained 
here until the spring of lOll, and then prepared 
to pursue his discoveries ; but his crew mutinied, 
seized him and seven of his most faithful compa- 
nions, and committed them in a boat to the open 
seas, after which they were no more heard of. 

A chartei" for planting and improving the coun- 
try, and carrying on trade, was granted to a com- 
pany in 1670. I'he Hudson's Bay company has 
since retained a claim to the most extensive terri- 
tories, the length of which is thirteen hundred 
and fifteen miles, and the breadth three hundrexl 
and fifty j but it is not understood that the gains of 
of the company are very considerable. I'he annual 
exports are about 16,000/.^ and the returns, which 
yield a considerable revenue to government, a- 
mount, perphaps, to 30,0()0/. Ihe principal trade 
consists in beaver and other species of furs, and of 
bc^aver and deer skins. 

2 D,J The 


If t 61 


I Ilk 


The regions around Hudson's Bay, and Labrador, 

which are sometimes called Nevv^ Britain, abound 

"with animals whose fur is excellent 5 and it has 

been thought that the company do not carry the 

trade to its full extent. 

No colony has been attempted at Hudson's Bay. 
The country is every where barren ; to the north of 
the bay, even the hardy pine tree is seen no longer. 
Winter reigns, with an inconceivable rigour, for 
nine months of the year -, the other three are vio- 
lently hot. In summer a variety of colours deck 
the several animals j but when that is over, they 
all assume the livery of winter, and every tiling 
animate and inanimate is white as snow. And 
what is still more remarkable, dogs and cats that 
have been carried from England to Hudson's Ei.y, 
have, on the approach of winter, entirely changed 
their appearance, and acquired a much longer, soft- 
er, and thicker coat of hair than they had originally. 

Even in latitude 57^ the winter is very severe; 
the ice on the rivers is eight feet thick. The rocks 
burst with a horrible noise, and the splinters are 
thrown to an amazing distance. Mock-suns and 
haloes are not unfrequent ; and the sun rises and 
sets witli a large cone of yellowish light. The 
aurora borealis diffuses a variegated splendour 
which surpasses that of the full moon ; the stars 
sparkle with peculiar brilliancy, and Venus ap- 
pears as a lesser moon. The fish in the Hudson 
sea are far from numerous 5 and the whale fishery 
has been attempted without success. There are few 
shell-fish 5 and tlie quadrupeds and birds corre- 
spond with those of Labrador and Canada. The 
northern indigenes are Esquimaux, but there 
are other tribes in the south, by all of whom the 
factories are visited. For these there seems no 


AMERICA. : ')7 

provision but wliat their o^vn art and ingenuity c n 
fiirnisli; and they exhibit a great deal of these a 
tlieir manner of kindling a lire, dressing their food, 
clothing themselves, and in preserving their eyes 
from the ill etiects of that glaring white which 
every where surrounds them the greatest part of 
the year 3 in other respects they are perfectly 

■ .1 • 




CHAP. xiir. 

If^rst India Islands, how divided. Climate, Sect' 
sons. Caribhees. Their character. Manners, 
Treatment of their Children. Of their IVives. 
Religion. Dancing. Jamaica. IF hen diuo- 
vcred. Taken by the English. Treatment of the 
Natives. Mode of peopling Jamaica. Attacked 
ly the Spaniards. Buccaneers, account of Con^ 
stitutioji given to Jamaica. Attempts made to 
tax the Inhabitants, The Island described, Pro^ 
portion of Slaves to free People, Exports, Earths 
quake at Port-Royal, 

THE continent of America is, as we have already 
seen, divided by geographers into two great 
parts, north and south; the narrow isthmus of 
Darien serving as a link to connect them, and form- 
ing a rampart against the encroachments of the 
Atlantic on one side, and of the Pacific Ocean on 
the other. But to that prodigious chain of islands 
which extend in a cun''e from the Florida shore 
on the northern peninsula, to the Gulf of Venezula 
in the southern, is given the name of the West 
Indies ; from the name of India, originally assigned 
to tliem by Columbus*. Thus the whole of the new 
hemisphere is generally compiized under three 
great divisions ; North America^ South America, 
and tlie West Indies. 

That portion of the Atlantic which is separated 
from the main ocean, to the north and east by the 

* bee p. 23, of this volume. 


AMERICA. 30;1 

islands, is generally called the Mexican Gulf; but 
it is dividt'd into three distmct basins, — th(; Gulf of 
Mexico propt^rly so called, the IJay of liouduras^ 
and the Caribbeean sea. The latter take:> Its name 
from that clas^i f>f islands that bounds this part of 
the ocean to the eabt; of which the greater part 
were formerly posses.ied by Indians, that were the 
scourge of the 'uotrensive natives of Hispaniola., 
who fre(|uently expressed to Columbus liieir dreaci 
of those tierce and warlike invaders, styling them 
Caribbees. Of this class, a group nearly adjoin- 
ing to the eastern side of St. John de l*orto Kico, 
is called the Virgin lsles» The cluster of small 
islands, which stretch in a north-westerly direction, 
from the northern coast of Hispaniola to the strait, 
opposite the Florida shore, go by the name of th(5 
Eahamas. On one of these, called by the Indian?? 
Guanahani j by the Spaniards, St. Salvador ; and 
by our own seamen, the Cat Island -, Columbus 
iiuided after his hrst magi\ilicent but perilous voy- 
age, llie whole group is called by the Spaniard* 
the Lucayos, 

Most of the West India islands, being situated 
imder the tro})ic of cancer, the climate is nearly the 
same with respect to the whole. Their year com- 
prehends two distinct seasons, the wet and the dry ; 
hut as the rains form two great periods, the year may 
be considered under four cii\ isions. The spring com- 
mences \A'iih May, when the trees become more 
vivid,, and the burnt savannas begin to change tlieir 
hue, even belbre tlie rains, which generally set m 
about the middle of the month. These come from 
tlie south, and are much less violent than those 
which pour down in the autunni. They common- 
ly fall about noon, and break up with a thunder 
$torm, exJiibiting a beautitiil verdurc> and a luxuri- 








ant vegetation. 

The average height of the ther- 
mometer, which varies considerably at this season, 
is 75^. 

When these rains, which continue a fortnight, 
have subsided, tlie summer reigns in full splendour. 
Not a cloud is to be seen ; and generally between 
the hours of seven and ten in the morning, before 
the setting in of the trade wind, the heat is scarcely 
supportable ; but as soon as the influence of this 
refreshing wind is felt, nature seems to revive, and 
the climate becomes exceedingly pleasant 5 the 
medium height of the thermometer is now SO-'. 
The nights are transcendantly beautiful : the moon 
displays a magnificence in her radiance, unknown 
to Europeans ; the smallest print is legible by her 
light, and during her absence, the brilliancy of the 
milk way supplies to the traveller the necessary 
light, had makes ample amends for the shortness of 

This state lasts till the middle of August, when 
the atmosphere again becomes suifocating, which 
is the prelude to the autumnal rains. Large fleecy 
clouds are now seen in the morning, and when 
these vast accumulations of vapour have risen to a 
considerable height in the atmosphere, they move in 
a horizontal direction towards the mountains, pro- 
claiming their progress by dreadful thunder, which 
reverberated from peak to peak, and answered by 
the distant roaring of the sea, heightens the majesty 
of the scene, and irresistibly lifts up the mind of 
tlie spectator to the great Author of the universe. 

The rains seldom fall with general force till the 
beginning of October ; then the clouds pour down 
cataracts of which no one can form a just idea 
who has not witnessed them. In the interval be- 
tween the beginning of August and tlie end of Oc- 

J If 

the ther- 
lis season, 

y between 
ng, before 
is scarcely 
ice of this 
•evive, and 
asant; the 
; now 80\ 
: the moon 

ble by her 
incy of the 
; necessary 
hortness of 

rust, when 
ng, which 
arge fleecy 
and when 
risen to a 
ey move in 
itains, pro- 
der, which 
iswered by 
le majesty 
le mind of 
irce till the 
pour down 
1 just idea 
nterval be- 
end of Oc- 


tober, tlie hunicanes so terrible in their devasta- 
tions are apprehended. 

About the end of November or the beginning of 
December, the temperature again changes, tJie 
wind varies from the east towards the nortli, driv- 
ing before it heavy storms of rain and hail, till the 
atmosphere is cleared, when a second succession ot 
gerene aud pleasant weather sets in, and the winter, 
if it can be called such, between December and 
April, is the finest on the globe. 

Besides the trade-wiud which blows from the 
cast nine months in the year, tliere is a land-wind 
at night, which is peculiarly refreshing. This ad- 
vantage the lai'ger islands derive from the inequa- 
lity of their surface, for as soon as the sea-breeze 
dies a\^'ay, tlie hot air of the plain ascends to the 
tops of the mountains, and is there condensed, which 
rendering it speciiically heavier tlian it was before, 
it descends back to the plains on both sides of the 
ridge. Hence a night wind is felt m mountainous 
countries under tr.e torrid zone, blowing on ail 
sides from the land to tlie shore. 

To tiie discoverers the prospect of these is- 
lands must have been inconceivably interesting*. 
They are even now beheld, when the mind is pre- 
pared for tlie scene, witli wonder and astonisliment 
by every \oyager who sees tliem for the first time. 
The beauty ot tlie smaller islands, and the sublime 
grandeur of the larger, whose mountains form a 
stupendous and awful picture, are subjects for ex- 
quisite contemplation. Columbus in many re- 
spects found himself in a new creation, for which 
his own mind, big with hope, must have been 
wholly unprepared, llie variation of the compass. 



* See p. 15, of thig vulume. 





I ? '" .■■■ 7; :i I 



the regularity of the winds, the direful water- 
spout, could not fail of exciting astonishment and 
almost terror in every breast. 

It has been o])served that the infinite wise and 
benevolent Creator of the universe, to compel the 
exertions of those faculties which he has given us, 
has ordained that by human cultivation alone the 
eardi becomes the proper habitation of man. But 
as the West India islands in their antient state were 
not witliout culture, so neither were they generally 
noxious to the human constitution. The plains or 
savannas were regularly sown twice a year with 
Turkey wheat j the hills and vallies were cleared 
of underwood, and the trees afforded a cool and 
shady retreat. Of these the papaw, the palmetto, 
and others, are the most gracef\il of all the vege- 
table creation. Some continue to bud, to blossom, 
and bear fruit throughout the year. By the foliage 
of the greater part of the trees springing only from 
the summit of the trunk, and thence expanding into 
wide spreading branches closely arranged, every 
grove is an assemblage of majestic columns suo- 
porting a verdant canopy, and excluding the sun 
without impeding the circulation of the air. Thus 
the shade alfords not only a refiige for occasional 
use, but a wholesome habitation. 

Such, snys Mr. Edwards^, were tliese orchards of 
the sun and woods of perennial verdure, of a growth 
unknown to tlie frigid clime and less vigorous soil 
of Europe : for what is the oak compared to the 
cedar or mahogany, of each of which the trunk 
frequently measures eighty or ninety feet from the 
base to the limbs ? What European forest has 

* 3ce History Civil and Commercial of the British Colo- 
«ies in the West Indies. By Bryan Edwards, es^. 




fver ^'ven birth to a stem equal to that of die ceiba 
or A^^ild cotton tree, which alone, when rendered 
conciive, iias been known to produce a boat capable 
of containing a hundred persons ? or the still greater 
fig, the sovereign of the vegetable creation — itself 
a forest*. 

Having given a short account of the climate and 
seasons of these islands, it will be right to inquire 
into some particulars relating to the inhabitants of 
them. We have already taken notice of those be- 
longing to the larger islands, and which were first 
discovered by Columbus. From the natives of 
Hispaniola, Columbus received information of a 
barbarous and warlike people who resided in the 
other islands, who made war upon them, and de- 
voured the prisoners which they carried away, 
I'hey were called Caribbees, and were said to come 
from the east. These customs, so abhorrent from 
human nature, are established upon authentic evi- 
dence. Among themselves, however, they were 
ever represented as peaceable, friendly, and aftec- 
tionate. They considered all strangers as enemies, 
and of the people of Europe, says Mr. Edwards, 
" thev formed a ridit estimation." The Caribbees 
are jealous of their own independence, and impa- 
tient under the least infringement of it -, and when 
they find resistance or escape hopeless, tliey will 
seek refuge from the calamity in death. 

To a principle of conscious equality, may be 
imputed the contempt which they manifest to tlie 

* In the East Indies this is called the banyan tree. Mr. 
Marsden, in his interesting history of Sumatra, gives the 
dimensions of one situated twenty miles west of Patna : 
diameter 3G3 to 375 feet; circumference of the shadow 
HI 6' feet; circumference of the several stems (m number 
Wtvveeu fifty and sixty), 921 feet, 

VOL. XXIV. 2 fi iuventioni 




inventions and improvements of civilized life. Of 
our fire arms they soon learned by fatal experience 
the superiority to their own weapons, and those 
they valued -, but our arts and manufactures they 
regarded as we esteem the amusements and bau- 
bles of children : hence the propensity to theft, so 
common among other savage nations, was altoge- 
ther unknown to tlie Caribbees. 

The ardour shown by them for military enter- 
prize, had a powerful influence on their whole 
conduct. Engaged in continual warfare abroad, 
they seldom appeared cheerful at home. They 
witnessed great insensibility towards their women, 
which is remarkable, considering the warmth of the 
climate. Though not so tail as Europeans, their 
frame was robust and muscular ; dieir limbs flexi- 
ble and active, and there was a penetrating quick- 
ness in tlieir eyes, like an emanation from a fierce 
and martial spirit. But not satisfied witli tlie work- 
manship of nature, they called in the assistance of 
art to make themselves more formidable. Besides 
great quantities of red paint which they used, they 
distigured their cheeks with deep incisions and hi- 
deous scars, these they stained with black, and 
then painted black and white circles round dieir 
eyes. Some of them perforated the cartilage of 
the nostiils, and inserted the bone of a fish, a 
parrot's feather, or a fragment of tortoise-shell ; a 
custom that is also practised by the natives of New 
Hoi kind : and they strung together i:he teeth of 
such of their enemies as they had slain in baitle, 
and wore them on their legs and arms as trophies 
of successful cruelty. 

I'he Caribbees enured their children to swim 
with agility and to u.e the bow with dexterity. 
They inspired tlicm with fortitude and patience, 




with courage in war, and a contempt of suflerins^ 
and death 5 and, above all things, they instilled 
into their minds an hereditary hatred, and impla- 
cable thirst of revenge towards the Arrowauks ■^. 

The condition of the women was truly wretch- 
ed 5 though frequently bestowed as a prize of suc- 
cessful courage, tlie wife ^hus honourably obtained, 
was soon considered of as little value as the captive. 
They sustained every species of drudgery : they 
ground the maize, prepared tlie cassavi, gathered 
in the cotton, and wove the hammock ; nor were 
they allowed the privilege of eating in the pre- 
sence of their husbands f . 

The arts and manufactures of these people 
though few, displayed a degree of ingenuity which 
could scarcely have been expected in a race so 
little removed from a state ot mere animal nature, 
as to reject all dress as superfluous. Columbus 
observed an abundance of substantial cotton cloth 
in all the islands which he visited, and the natives 
possessed the art of staining it with various colours 
though the Caribbees delighted in red. Of this 

* The Arrowauks, a name given to the antient inhabi- 
tants of Hispaniola, Cuba, Jamaica, and Porto Rico, as 
well as Trinadad, who were a mild and comparatively 
cultivated people, and who seem to have had one com- 
mon origin, as they spoke the same language, possessed the 
same institutions, and practised similar superstitions. 

f Brutality towards wives was not peculiar to the 
Caribbees: it prevailed in all ages and countries among 
the uncivilized part of mankind ; and the first visible proof 
that a people is emerging from savage manners, i« a dis- 
play of tenderness towards the female sex. A full d-splay 
of the manners of all nations the youthful reader will find 
in Goldsmith's Geography, a work which abounds with 
information, and at the same time is free from every inde- 

2 E 2 cloth 

■!. ir 



■ lit 




cloth they made hammocks, such as are used at 
sea by Europeans, who not only copied tlie pattern, 
but preserved also the original name. They pos- 
sessed likewise the art of making vessels of clay 
for domestic uses j baskets composed of the fibres 
of the palmetto leaves ;. bows and arrows, such as 
the most skilful European artist would have found 
it difficult to have excelled. 

With regard to their religion little can be said : 
they certainly did not believe that death was the 
final extinction of being, but pleased themselves 
with the idea that their departed relations were 
the secret spectators of their actions ; that they still 
participated in their sufferings, and were anxious 
for their welfare : and considering the departed 
soul as susceptible of tlie same impressions and ob- 
noxious to the same passions, as when allied to the 
body ; it was thought a religious duty to sacrifice, 
at the funerals of their deceased icroes, some cap- 
tives which had been taken in battle. It has been 
said by some writers that these people entertained 
also an awful sense of one great universal cause, 
invisible, but posses ing an irresistible power 5 and 
that subordinate to him were a multitude of in- 
ferior divinities. Others, however, have denied 
this, and maintain that they had not even a name 
for the deity. It is certain that in every cottage 
a rustic altar was raised, composed of banana lea\es 
and rushes, on which they occasionally placed tiie 
earliest of their fruits and the choicest of their 
viands, as humble peace ofilrings, through the me- 
diation of their inferior deities to incensed omni- 
potence j for here, as in other parts of America, 
their devotions consisted less in gratitude, than in 
deprecations of wrath. " We can all forget be- 
nefits^ tiiough we implore mercy." 

A darker 


A darker snperstiiion likewise prevailed among 
all the unenlightened inhabitants of rhese climates j 
for they not only believed in the exi>tence of dae- 
mons and evil spiiiis, bat offered them worship by 
the hands of pretended magicians. A minute de- 
tail of these rites and ceremonies is rot necessary, 
nor would the picture be pleasing if we could find 
room to fill it up. 

The inhabitants of Hispaniola, Cuba, Jamaica, 
and Porto Rico, are evidentlv of one common ori- 
gin ; they speak the same language and possess the 
same institutions. They are a mild, and com- 
pared with the Caribbees, a cultivated people. 
When they were first discovered, botii men and 
women wore nothing more than a slight co\ ering 
of cotton cloth round the waist -, in the females it 
extended to the knees. In stature they are taller 
than the Caribbees ; in colour of a deeper brown : 
their hair was uniformly black ; their countenance 
was open and honest. With this happy people, 
love was not only a transient and youthful passion ; 
it was the source of all their pleasures, and the 
chief business of life. Their limbs were pliant 
and active, and in their motions they displayed 
both gracefulness and ease. Their agility was 
eminently conspicuous in their dances, in which 
they delighted and excelled, devoting the cool 
hours of night to this employment. It w^as their 
custom, when these islands w^ere first discovered, 
to dance from evening till the dawn j and tliough 
fifty thousand men and women have been kno^\ n 
to assemble on these occasions, they seemed to be 
actuated by one common impulse, keeping time 
by the responsive motions of their hands, feet, and 
bodies, with a suprising exactness. Ihese public 
dances w^ere appropriated to particular soierauities, 

2 E 3 and 





and being accompanied with historical songs, "vvcre 
called arictos. Besides the amusement of dancing 
they made use of athletic exercises with consider- 
able force and dexterity. 

The submissive and respectful deportment of 
these placid people towards their superiors, and 
those they considered as such, was probably derived 
from the nature of their government, which was 
monarchical and absolute. I'he sympathy which 
they manifested toward,? the distress of others, 
shows that they were not wretched themselves 5 
for in a state of absohite slavery and misery, men 

W^YQ commonly devoid both of virtue and pity. 
The power of their caziques was hereditary, to 
whom were subordinate a great number of in- 
ferior chieftains and nobles, whose situation and 
importance seemed to resemble the antient barons 
of Europe. 

The whole island of Hispaniola was divided into 
five great kingdoms. Cuba and Jamaica were 
likewise divided into separate principalities 5' but 
the whole extent of Porto Rico was subject to a 
single cazique. The principal cateique was always 

, distinguished by regal ornaments and numerous 
attendants. In travelling, he was borne on the 
shoulders of his subjects. He was regarded with 
awful reverence, and "^lis commands were instantly 
obeyed, without murmur or reluctance. 

Nor did their' veneration terminate with the life 
of the prince ; it was extended to his memory after 
deatli, a proof that his authority had been sel- 
dom or never abused. If a cazique were slain in 
battle, and the body could not be recovered, they 
composed songs in his praise, which they taught to 
tlieir children as encitemenls to honourable ac- 
tions. These heroic eftusions constituted a branch 
, . ■ of 


of the solemnities called arietos, consisting of 
hymns and ])ublic dances, accompanied with loud 
sounding music Uiat might be heard at a vast di- 

Like other unenlightened nations, these Indians 
were the slaves of superstition. Their notions of 
future happiness were narrow and sensual. They 
supposed tliat the spirits of good men were con- 
veyed to. a pleasant valley, a place of indi^lent tran- 
quillity, abounding with every thing that they es- 
teemed delicious j and where the greatest enjoy- 
ment would arise from the company of their de- 
parted virtuous ancestors. They believed in a Su- 
preme Being, to whom they assigned parents di- 
stinguished by proper names, and whose residence 
they supposed was in the sun or moon. Their 
system of idol worship was truly deplorable 3 they 
paid honours to stocks and stones converted into 
rude images, which they called Zcnni. These were 
universally hideous and •frightful in appearance, 
obje'cts of terror, not of admiration and love. 
Priests also were appointed to conduct their devo- 
tions, who claimed also the privilege of educa- 
ting the children of the people of the first rank. 
Hence the power of the priesthood was very great; 
relio-ion was made in several instances, the instru- 
ment of civil despotism, and the will of the cazique, 
if confirmed by the priest, was impiously pro- 
nounced the decree of heaven^ * 

Having described those things which ai*e com- 
mon to most of the West India islands, it is time 
that we come to particulars relating to such of tiie 
principal ones as we shall have an opportunity of 

Although the isIanHs und'^r the English govern- 
ment are not the largest, yet they merit our chief 



attention. Of these, Jamaica claims the first no- 
tice. It lies between the 7''>th and 7()th degrees of 
•west longitude, and is l.etwcen 1/ and 19 degrees 
from thet quator. Its length from cast to west is about 
one hundred and forty miles j in breath it is about 
sixty miles, and it is of an oval form. This country 
is intersected by a ridge of mountains called the 
Blue Mountains : on eac h side of which are chains 
of smaller ones. In the plains the soil is prodi- 
giously fertile. None of our islands excepting St. 
Christopher's, produce so fine sugars. The pastures 
after rains are of a most beautiful verdure. Ihey 
are ( ailed savannas, in ^^hich are found several 
salt founla'ns j and not far from Spanish-Town is a 
hot bath of extraordinary medicinal virtues. 

Jamaica was discovered by Columbus 5 and by 
the early Spanish historians it was called Xaymaca, 
which signified in the language of the natives, a 
country abounding with springs. After the death 
cf this great man, the transactions of the Spaninrds 
during a century and a half, in the settlement of 
Jamaica, have scarcely obtained the notice of his- 
tory. It came into our possession daring the usur- 
pation of Cromwell, and by means of an armament 
which was intended for tlie reduction of Hispa- 
niola. The fleet destined for this purpose was ill 
equipped: the men were badly chosen, and wor^e 
armed ; under such circum.stances it was no won- 
der that the scheme should fail. The commanders, 
who had ever been at variance, fearing to return to 
England without effecting their purpose, resolved 
to n^ake an attempt on Jamaica befi^re the inhabi- 
tants of that is;ar.d could receive information of 
their defeat in Hisp.aniola. I'he island surrendered, 
but rot till the people had secreted tlieir most va- 
luable eftiecls. 



The whole number of white people in Janriica, 
did not e\ceed ritteeen hundred : and althoujrh the 
Spaniards had po,«isessed the island so many years, 
not one hundredth part of the land tit for plantation 
was cultivated when the English made themselvehj 
masters of it. The number of negroes in tlie island 
at the time of its capture nearly equalled the 
white people. The sloth and penury of the Spanish 
planters^ when the English landed, were extreme. 
Of the many valuable commodities which Jamaica 
has since produced, in so great abundance, some 
were altogether miknown, and of the rest the inha- 
bitants cultivated no more than were sutHcient for 
their own expenditure. They possessed nothing of 
the elegancies of life, nor were they acquainted 
even with many of those gratilicalions, which, by 
civilized states, are considered as necessary to the 
comfort and conveniency of it. They were neither 
polished by social intercourse, nor improved by 
education. But whatever was their character, the 
terms imposed by the English commanders cannot 
be justified, in requiring the poor settlers in Ja- 
maica to deliver up tlieir slaves and effects, and quit 
the country altogether. They pleaded tliat they 
were born in the island, and had neither relations, 
friends, nor country elsewhere ; and they resolved to 
perish in the woods, rather than beg their bread in 
a foreign soil. The resistance that they afterwards 
made against the efibrts of our troops to expel tlieni 
from the island, may furnish this important lesson 
to conquerors ; *' That even victory has its limits 5 
and injustice frequently defeats its owji purposes." 

After the capture of tlie island, till the restora- 
tion of Charles the Second, the English in Jam-uea 
remained under military jurisdiction. Neverthe- 
less it was the intention of tlic Protector to have 




established a civil go\enin)ent on very liberal prin- 
ciples. An instrument was framed for the purpose, 
but the situation of ihe troops rec^uired niartial 
array and strict discipline: fc^r the dispossessed Spa- 
niards and fugitive negroes continued to harrass the 
soldiers with perpetual alarms. M«.n were daily 
killed by enemies in ambush. The Spanish blacks 
had separated themselves from their late masters, 
and murdered without mercy such of the English 
as fell into their hands. They even attacked the 
troops in their quarters, and set fire to some of the 
houses in tlie town of St. Jago de la Vega, tJie ca- 

Cromwell was however bent, not only on con- 
quering but on peopling the island, and while 
recruits were raising in England, he directed the 
governors of Barbad(jes and other British colonies to 
the windward to encourage some of their i)lanters 
to remove to Jamaica, on the assurance of having 
lands assigned them there. He also gave instruc- 
tions to his son Henry Cromwell, who was major 
general of ihe forces in Ireland, to engage two or 
three thousand persons of both sexes from thence to 
become settlers in Jamaica, and he advised with 
lord Broghill, who commanded at Edinburgh, on 
the best means of inducins; as great a number to 
emigrate for the same purpose from Scotland. 

In the mean time, the old soldiers within the 
island disliking their situation, and conceiving that 
the Protector had thoughts of confining them, to 
Jamaica for life, became dissatisfied and mutinous. 
Other causes concurred to awaken in them a spirit 
of discontent. Having at first found in the country 
cattle in abundance, they had destroyed them with 
such improvidence as to occasion a scarcity of fresh 
provisions, in a place which had been represented 



a» aboiindingin the highest tlcgrce. The com- 
manders, apprehending tliis event, had urged tha 
soldiers to cultivate the soil, and raise by their own 
industry Indian cijrn, pulse, and cassavi, sutHcient 
for their maintenance ; tiiis however they abso- 
lutely refused, and contemptuously rejected every 
plan which could contril)utc in the smallest degree 
to their preservation. Possessed with a passionate 
desire of returning home, they even rooted up the 
provisions which had been left planted by the Spa- 
niards. A scarcity approaching to lamine was at 
length the consecpience of such misconduct, and it 
was very speedily accompanied by its usual atten- 
dants disease and contagion. 

The Protector, as soon as he received information 
of the calamitous fate of the country, exerted him- 
self with his usual vigour, to aiford it relief. Pro- 
visions and necessaries of all kinds wee shipped 
without delay, and Cromwell, distrustful of t lie go- 
vernor's attachment, superseded him, by granting 
the commission of commander m chief of Jamaica 
to colonel Brayne. This gentleman, though pos- 
sessed of a considerable portion of sagacity and ne- 
neiration, wanted firmness and fortitude. Th^ troops 
still continued untiealthy, and the commandant, 
alarmed for his own safety, begged for permission 
to return to England. Before an answer to his pe- 
tition could arrive, he was taken seriously ill -, and, 
finding himself in imminent danger, he transferred 
his authority to D'Oyley, the laie governor, a few 
days only before he expired. 

D'Oyley happily pod.sessed all those qualifications 
in which Brayne was tieficient, but on account of 
the treatment that lie had formerly experienced^ he 
entered upon his charge with great reluctance. He 
begged permission to resign j out the Protector be- 
gan now to know hiii value, aud would nut accept 






of his resignation. And to tlie exertions of this 
brave officer, seconded and supported by the affec- 
tion which the soldiers manifested on every occa- 
sion, >ve owe at this day the possession of Jamaica, 
the recapture of which by the Spaniards, towards 
the end of the year l()5'/, became an object of great 
national concern. 

* y. On the eighth of May thirty companies 
-A^ ' of Spanish infantry landed on tlie north 

side of the island, furnished with provisions 
for eight mondis, and with every mei. ^^ of military 
offence and defence. Twelve days had elapsed be- 
fore D'Oyley knew of their landing, and six weeks 
more inter\ ened by the time that he \\ as able to ap- 
proach them by sea. He then attacked them in 
their intrenchments, and compelled the Spanish 
commander to get back as he could t(3 Cuba, after 
the loss of all his sti^res, ordnance, ammunition, 
and colours ; and of one half of the forcei which he 
had brouglit with him. Few victories have been 
more decisive j nor does history furnish many iu- 
slances of greater military skill and intrepidity than 
those which were displayed by our countrymen on 
this occasion. 

By the \^'ise, steady, and provident administra- 
tion of D'Oylev, the atfairs of tlie island began at 
length to wear a more promising appearance. Ihe 
army was become healthy, and cncomagement was 
given to a spirit of planting, by some successful ef- 
forts in raising Indian corn, cassavi, tobacco, ^'c. 
But what gave the greatest vigoiu^ to this new set- 
tlement, and raised it at once to a surprising pitch 
of opidence, was the resort thither of the Bucca- 
neers ■^■. These men^ who fought with the greatest 


* The Buccanoers had their rise in the following maii- 
jjer. Many of tiit old planters were too much in love with 



intrepidity, and spent tlieir plunder with the most 
profuse extravagance, were very welcome guests 
in Jamaica. They fiequently brought two, three, 
and four hundred thousand pieces of eight at a 
time, which were immediately squandered in all 
the ways of gaming and luxurious living. Vast for- 
tunes were made, and the returns of treasure to 
England were prodigiously great. The inhabitants 
of the island had by this means raised such funds, 
that when the source of their wealth was stopped 
up by the suppression of the pirates, they were ena- 
bled to turn tlieir industry into better channels. 


old customs and habits to abandon them entirely ; and 
hence sprung a race of pirates who obtained the name of 
Bnccaneers. These did not consist altop^ether of the inha- 
bitants of Jamaica ; but were adventurers from all nations, 
and resorted chiefly to Jamaica, on account of its conveni- 
ent situation for plundering the Spaniards. Barbadoes and 
other islands furnished their quota for this desperate society; 
and when they assembled, they bound themselves to certain 
regulations that would not have disgraced a more virtuous 
institution. At first they satisfied themselves with taking 
their ships and destroying their trade ; but encouraged by 
this success they landed upon the continent of New Spain 
and Terra Firma, burning and plunderinp; the open coun- 
try. Confidence increasing with success, they assaulted, 
and .captured some of the strongest fortresses and most opu- 
lent towns ; they even took the city of Panama by storm, 
and burned it, after defeating an army which cuine to beat 
them off. Another party '»f these pirates passed «^he strafts 
of Magellan, and entering into the South Sea, turned the 
whole coast of Perw, Chili, and the c;.st of Mexico, into 
one scene of desolation ; every where attended w ch suc- 
cess, because they were acting every where with a bravery 
and conduct, that in any other cause had merited the high- 
est honours. 

The pirates whom we call Buccaneers, the French deno"^ 
minated Flivuskertj Irom the Dutch fly-boats ia which 

vot, XXIV. 2 F they 

s 'I 


People of all professions, and from all parts of 
tl:e British dominions, now resorted to Jamaica j 
and the confusion which oAerspread England atier 
tlie death of Cromwell imj^elled many to seek for 
safety and repose in the plantations. Some of those 
who had distinguished themselves by their activity 
in brin^ino; the untortuiiate monarch to the scati-'okl, 
consiiUU'ed Jamaica as a sure place of refuge. But 
although persons of this stamp were silently per- 
mitted to lix themselves in the island, yet the t;,e- 
iieral body of the })cople participated in the ioy 
which was shewn on tlie kiniz's ret^nii. 

Ihe restored monaich made no enquiries after 
tliose who had been active in his f uLer's luuniliatiuii 
idnddeath3 he even a] 'pointed tlieir favuurite gc- 

they made their first expedhions. Buccaneers a^e in fact no 
more th:',n persons wiio iunit wild cattle in America for 
their hides and tailow. Seine of these joined the Flibus- 
teers in their first opedition ; i\vd from them the v/IioIl' 
body was named Bncca.nccrs. To ihese two sorts of people 
were soon : ddcd some of the French in the Lessor Ai- 
tliies; who, (iiidino; junv m.nch might he made by supply- 
ing people tjiat expended hir^rely, and that were not very 
exact in their bargains, and perceiv'ng' that no part of 
America alTorded a better soil, passed over to this island, 
in which they exercised their business of planters and mer- 
chants. These three sorts of people, nuitually in want of 
each, other, lived in good harniony. Vhen a Spanish war 
broke out, tl^e Buccaneers were furnished by the English 
with rcg-ular letters of marque and reprisal. Aiter the re- 
stoiation of Charles II. the hing gave orders that they 
should receive every encouragement and protection ; and 
it \-^ ^aid, on pietiy g;ood autliorlty, that hl.i majesty did 
not disdain to become a pr.rtner in the buccaneeringbusincr. 
About the year l()bO every measure v/as taken to suppre»s 
tho^e pirates, and in two years after, the most celebrutr,il 
of I'.hc P-nglish Bucanccrs, sir Henry Moreaii, who had 
been krii^,-hi:ed for his eminci'.t. serv'cos in the business, wa» 
fetiztd ui.d seat priiouer to Kngiaiid. 



poral D'Oyley to be chief governor of tlie * -p. 
island. This memorable appointment, with A,-^ 
a council elected by tlie people, may be 
considered as the first establishment of a regular 
civil government in Jamaica, after the English had 
bt^come masters of it. It was also resolved, for 
the encouragement of those who should be in- 
clined to settle there, *' that all die children of the 
natural born subje.cts of England, born in Jamaica, 
bhall be free denizens of England j and that all 
free p Tsons shall have liberty to transport them- 
selves, their tamilies, &c. to the island of Jamaica.'* 
The governor was also instructed to call an assem- 
bly, to be inditierently chosen by the people at 
large, that they might pass laws for their own in- 
ternal regulation and go\ernment, with this limi- 
tation only, tliat the laws which they should pass, 
were not f-ai ersive of their dependence on tlie 
parent state 

Hitherto tiie sovereign authority was properly 
exerted in defence of the just rights of the cnjwn, 
and in securing to its distant subjects the enjoy- 
iTJcnt of their possessions 5 but inihaj)piiy diaries 11. 
had neither steadiness nor integrity. A new sys- 
tem of legislation was adopted for this * -p. 
island, by which there was to be a perpe- ^(l^J 
tuah revenue given to the crown, and in ^''* 
future the heads of ail bills (m^mey bills excepted) 
were to be sU;io:ested in the tirst instance bv the 
governor and couricil, and transmitted to his ma- 
jesty to be a])provcd and rejected at home : on ob- 
taining die royal confirmation, tliey were to be 
returned under the great seal in the shaj-^e of laws, 
and })assed ,by the general assembly 5 whi'-h was to 
be convened fur no other purpose than that, and 

2 I 2 the 




the business of voting the usual supplies, unless in 
consequence of special orders from England. 

What misconduct on the part of the inhabitants, 
or what secret expectation on tJie part of the crown, 
origiUi^Uy gave birth to this project, it is now diffi- 
cult to deteimine. The most probable opinion is 
this. — In the year l6G3, the assembly of Barbadoe.i 
were prevailed on to grant an internal revenue to 
tlie crown, of 4 ^ per cent, on the gross exported 
produce of tliat island for ever. It is not unlikely 
that the steady refusal of the Jamaica planters to 
burthen themselves and their posterity with a simi- 
lar imposition, hrst suggested the idea of depriving 
them of tliose constitution -d franchises, which 
alone could give security and value to their pos- 
sessions. The assembly rejected the new constitu- 
tion with indignation. Notlireats could intimidate, 
no bribes could corrupt, nor arts nor arguments 
persuade them to consent to laws tliat would en- 
slave their })osterity. Colonel Long, one of the 
principal opposers of this arbitrary measure, was 
dismissed Irom his posts and sent home prisoner to 
England. He was heard, in his own defence, and 
in defence of the liberties of the island, before the 
king and council, and he pointed out, with such 
force of argument, the evil tendency of the mea- 
sures which had been pursued, that the ministry 
reluctantly cave up their project. 

It might have been hoped tliat all possible cause 
of future contest with the crown, on the question 
of political rights, was now happily obviated 5 but 
the event proved that this expectation was falla- 
cious. Although the assembly had recovered the 
privilege of framing such laws for tlieir internal 
government as tlieir exigencies might require, yet 



the royal confirmatlDii of a great part of them had 
be'jn cunsiantly refused, and stiil continued to be 
withheld, hi this unsettled state, the aitairs of 
Jamaica were suifered to remain for the space of 
fifty years. 

The true cause of such inflexibility on the part 
of the crown was the revenue. For tlie puipo.se, 
as it was pri'tcnded, of answerin£( public contin- 
gencies, the nfmislers of Charles II. had procured, 
as lias been t/oserved, from the assembly of Bar- 
bacloes, and indeed from most of the British West 
India colonies, tlie grant of a perpetual revenue. 
The refusal of Jamaica to concur in a slnfdar esta- 
blishment ', the punishment provided fur contu- 
macy ; and the means of her deliverance, have 
been stated ; but it v/as found that tlie It-nily of the 
crowm, in relinquishing the system of compulsion, 
was expected to produce that eifect which oppres- 
sion had failed to accomplish. The English go- 
vernment claimed a return from the people of 
Jamaica, for having dropt an oppressive and per- 
nicious project, as if it had actually conferred upon 
them a positive and permanent bene (it. 

The assembly, however, remained unconvinced. 
Among other objections, they pleaded that the 
money granted by Barbadoes was notoriously ap- 
propriated to purposes widely different from those 
for which it was expressly given j and they de- 
manded some pledge or security against a similar 
misapplication ; in case they should subject tlieir 
comitry to a permanent and irrevocable tax. The 
ministers refused to give satisfaction in this parti- 
cular, and finding the assembly equally resolute to 
pass their supply bills only iVom year to year, i.d- 
vised the sovereign to waive the confirmation of 
laws, and to suffer tlie adminisli'ation of jubtice in 

2 F 3 the 





the island to remain on the precarious footing tliat 
has been descril>ed. 

Such indeed was the actual situation of Jamaica 
till Georcre Jl. ascended the throne of 


these realms, when a compromise was 

^"^ * speedily ellected. Then the assembly con- 
isented to settle on the crown a standing revenue 
of 8000/. })er annum on certain conditions, of 
which the following are the principal: (l) 'J'hat 
the quit-rents arising within the island should con- 
stitute a part of such revenue. (2) That the body 
of their laws should receive the royal assent. And 
(3) That all such laws and statutes of England 
as had been esteemed laws in the island should 
continue the laws of Jamaica for ever. — ^I'he re- 
venue act, with this important declaration in it, 
Was accordingly passed^ and its confirmation by^ 
the king put an end to a contest no less disgrace- 
ful to the government at home^ than injurious to 
the people within the island. 

Thus iiave we traced the political constitution 
of Jamaica from infancy to maturity : its principles 
are BriiLsh ; its outward form has been modified 
and regulated by many unforeseen events. In its 
present appearance and actual exercise, however, it 
so nearly resembles the system of government in 
the other West India islands, that one general de- 
scription, which shall be given hereafter, will com- 
prehend the whole. A minute detail of local cir- 
cumstances would be equally uninteresting to the 
general reader, and incompatible with the limits of 
our volume. 

When Columbus first discovered Jamaica, lie 
approached it on the northern side, and was filled 
with delight and admiration at the novelty, variety, 
iiid beauty of the prospect. The country at a 

^ small 



small distance from the shore rises into hills, which 
towards the top are rounded witli singular felicity. 
The most striking circumstances, however, at- 
tending these beautiful swells, are the happy dis- 
position of tlie groves of Pimento or Jamaica pep- 
per with which most of tlicm are spontaneously 
clothed, and the consummate verdure of the turf 
underneath. As this tree, which is no less re- 
markable for fragrancy than beauty, suffers no 
rival plant to flourish within its shade 3 these groves 
are not only clear of underwood, but even the 
grass beneatli is seldom luxuriant. I'he soil pro- 
duces a clean and close turf, as smooth and even as 
the linest English lawn, and in colour infinitely 
brighter. Over this beautiful surface the pimento 
spreads itself in various compartments. To enliven 
tlie scene, and add perfection to beauty, the bounty 
of nature has copiously watered the whole district. 
Every valley has its rivulet, and every hill its cas- 
cade. In a single point of view, where rocks over- 
hang the ocean, no less than eight transparent wa- 
terfalls are beheld in the same moment. Those 
only who have been Jong at sea, can judge of the 
emotion which is felt by the thirsty voyager at so 
enchanting a prospect. 

Jamaica is divided into tlu'ee counties, Cornwall 
in the west, Middlesex in the centre, and Surry in 
the East, St. Jago or Spanish-Town is considered 
as the capital, but Kingston is the principal sea- 
port. The number of negroes is computed at two 
hundred and fifty thousand, the whites are pro- 
bably twenty thousand, the free negroes and mu- 
lattoes ten thousand. The chief exports are to 
Great Britain, Ireland, and North America, in 
sugar, rum, coffee, indigo, ginger, and pimento 5 
tliese were valued in 1787 at two jnillions ster- 

i: *■ 



hn<r. The imports were computed at a million and 
a half, of which the slaves from Africa farmed a 
considerable part. There is a poll tax witii duties 
on^sugar and rum, yielding rouhiderably more than 
100,CXJ0/. per ann., and the ordinary ex])enses of 
government in the year 17B8 w(Te computed at 
75,000/. The legislature consists of the ca})tain- 
general or the governor, a council of twelve nonfi- 
riated by the crown, and a house of assembly con- 
taining forty-three members, elected by the free- 
holders 3 the three chief towns, St. Jago, Kingston, 
and Port Royal, returning three niembers each, the 
other parishes two. The principal towns are witiiin 
a short distance of each other. Port lloyal was the 
capital, till an earth(|uake destroyed it in the \'ear 
1()()2'^". The city was rebuilt, but it was aintiu 
destroyed by lire. Notwithstanding this, the ex- 
traordinary conveniences of the harbour tempted 
ihcm to build it once more. But in the year 1/22, 
a hurricane, one of the most terrible on the records 
of history^ reduced it a third lime to a heapof rub- 


* The following awful hut Interesing particulars of tlus 
earthquake were transmitted hj one of the suflertro, 
and published in the Philosophical Transactions. 

" I lost all my people and goods, my wife, and tv/o 
men, Mrs. JB. and her daugliter. One white maid escapfjd, 
who gave me an account, that her mistress was in her 
closet, two pair of stairs high, and she was sent Into the 
jvarret, where was Mrs. B. and her daughter, when she felt 
the earthquake, and bid her take up the child and run 
down ; but turning about met the water at the top of the 
jgarret stairs, for the house sunk downright, and is now 
near thirty feet under water. My son and I went that 
morning to Liguania: the earthquake took us in the mid- 
way betwixt that and Port Royal, where we were near 




Jamaica is by far the most flourisliing and impor- 
tant of all the islands belonging to Great Britain, 
it produces more sugar and rum than are imported 
from all the rest together. Many great estates have 
been acquired in Jamaica, and tlie inhabitants in 


being overwhehned by a swift rolling sea, six feet above 
the surface, without any wind. Being forced back to 
liiguania, we found all the houses even witli the ground, 
not a place to put our heads in but negroes' huts. The 
earth continues to shake (June 20th) live or six times iii 
twenty-four hours ; and often trembling, great part of the 
mountains fell down, and falls down daily." Another 
writer, in the same collection, gives a still more lively de- 
scription of the earthquake : " Between eleven and twelve 
(says he) we felt the tavern where I then was shake, and 
saw the bricks begin to rise in the floor. At the same 
time we heard a voice in the streets cry, an earthquake! 
and immediately we ran out of the house, where we saw 
all people, with lifted-up hands, begging God's assistance. 
We continued running up the street, while on either side 
of us we saw the houses, some swallowed up, others thrown 
on heaps ; the sand in the street rising like the waves of 
the sea, lilting up all persons that stood upon it, and im- 
mediately dropping down into pits. At the same time a 
flood of water broke in, and rolled these poor souls over 
and over, some catching iiold ot beams and rafters of 
houses ; others were found in the sand, that appeared when 
the water was drained away, with their legs and arms out. 
Sixteen or eighteen of us,^ who beheld this dismal sight, 
stood on a small piece of ground, which, thanks be to God, 
did not sink. As soon as the violent shake was over, 
every man was desirous to know if any part of his family 
was left alive. I endeavoured to go towards my house 
upon the ruins of the houses that were floating upon the 
water, but could not. At length I got a canoe, and rowed 
up the great sea-side towards my house, where I saw several 
men and women floating upon the wreck out at sea ; and, 
as muuy of them p.s I could I took into the boat, and still 
rowed on till I came where I thought my house stood, but 
could hear of neither my wife nor family. Next morning 

I went 




general vie in luxury and expense with their fel- 
low subjects of Great Britain. Of so much impor- 
tance is this island to the commerce of the motiier- 
country, that a squadron of ships of v\ar is always 
litationcd irt. Port iloyal for its defence. All tiie 

for Li 

1 went from one sliip to another, till at last it pleased God 
I met with my witc and two of my negroes. She told me, 
when she felt the house shake she ran out, and called all 
the house to do the same. She was no sooner out, but the 
sand lifted up, and her negro woman grasping about her, 
they both dropt into the earth together, when at the very 
instant, the water came in, rolled tlieni over and over, till 
at length they caught hold of a beam, where they hung till 
a boat came from a Spanish vessel and took them up." 

The wharfs of Port Royal sunk down at once witli many 
of the most eminent merchants; and water, to the depth 
of several faihom, llllcd the space where the street had 
stood. The earth, in its openings, swallowed up people, 
and threw them up in other parts of the town ; nay, some 
of them survived this violence. About a thousand acres to 
the north of the town subsided, mountains were split, and 
plantations removed half a mile from the places where they 
formerly stood: and no fewer than two thousand blacks 
and whites arc said to have perished in the town. The 
«hips in the harbour had their s.hare in this disaster. Se- 
veral of them were overset ; the motion of the sea carried 
the Swan frigate over the tops of houses, by which means 
she was the instrument of saving many lives. The rest (jf 
the island suflcred In proportion ; and scarce a house in it 
was left undemolished or undamaged. In r-hort, it en- 
tirely changed not only its improved, but natural, appear- 
ance ; scarce a mountain or piece of ground standing where 
it formerly did. Upon the whole, this earthquake was a 
mere wreck of nature, and its horrors were such as caniiot 
be described. 

When the first shock was over at Port Roynl, the clergy- 
men assembled the people to implore the divine lorgive- 
ness; and some miscreant sailors took that opportunity of 
robbing the houses of the wretched inhabitants, when a 
tecond shock happened, by v/hich many of those villaii-rs 




forts are kept in excellent order, a regiment of re- 
gular troops is kept in actual service, and there is a 
strong niililia of horse and foot arrayed in case of 
an invaiion from abroad, or insurrection of th<i 

negro slaves on the island-^'. 

were swallowed up. The whole svsteni of tlic air and soil 
\v;'.s ch:ai|^!;td ; putrid smells issued from the apcriures in 
tiietarili, and occasioned pestilential disorders, which are 
said to have destroyed ahove three thousand of llie white 

* At this period there are on the Jamaica station six 
ships of the line, and thirteen frigates and smaller vessel. 
And on the Leeward Island stati(?n there are two ships of 
tlie line, two frigates of 14 ^um each, aud nine »iuuilw 





Barbadoes. Bif whom discovered. To whmn 
granted. Disputes respecting regal Government. 
Conduct of Charles II. Present Situation of 
the Island. Its Constitution. Exports. Gre- 
nada. By tvhom discovered. By whom and 
ly what Means settled. Taken hy the English. 
Attempt to levy a Tax. Present Situation of the 
Island. St. Vincents. Dominica. Cruel 
Conduct of the French. St. Christophers. 
Famous for its Sugar. Nevis. Antigua. In- 
famous Conduct of Mr. Park. Montserrat. 
The Virgin Islands. The Bahamas. T^he 

npHE island next in importance to Jamaica, 
-"- \vhich we possess in the West Indies, but the 
oldest in point of settlement, is Barbadoes. It is 
one among the windward division of the Caribbee 
islands, and was probably discovered by the Portu- 
guese in their voyages from Brazil, and from them 
it received the name wliich it still retains. The 
Caribbees, for reasons unknown to us, had de- 
serted it, and the Portuguese considering it of little 
ralue, left it nearly in the same state as they found 


When our countrymen first landed here, the/ 
found the place as destitute as if it had never been 
peopled by savages. Some years after this a ship 
of sir William Courteen's, a merchant of London, 
"U'as driven by distress of weather to this island, 
and finding refreshments on it, the master and 
teamen^ on tlieir arrival in England, made so fa- 

% vourabl* 

/MKRICA. 337 

Tonrablc a report of the beauty and fertility of the 
Cfjuntry, that the cini of Marlborough imniedi- 
ately obtained from king James I. a grant of il fur 
himself and heirs in perpetuity. 

Courteen, a man of extensive views and magni- 
ficent projeets, formed ideas of establishing a co- 
lony in the distant but promising territory. Having 
engaged about thirty persons, who uridertook to 
eettle in the island, and furnished them with every 
necessary, he sent them away : tliey arrived safe, 
and laid the foundations of a town which, * -p. 
in honour of the sovereign, they dcnomi- wLj* 
nated James Town. Sometime after, tlie 
earl of Carlisle obtained a grant of all the Catibbct 
islands, including Barbadoes; but when the charter 
came to be passed with the usual forms, tlie earl 
of Marlborough opposed it on the ground of pri- 
ority of right. The dispute was at length compro- 
mised by the earl of Carlisle undertaking to pay 
his antagonist 300/. annually for ever; in consc- 
fjuence of which lord Carlisle became sole pro- 

During this contest about the disposal of coun- 
tries, most of which were occupied by their pro- 
per owners^ the Caribbees, — the man who alono 
had tlie merit of annexing the plantation of Barba- 
does to tlie crown of England seems to have been 

The administration of sir W. Tufton, the first 
governor appointed by the earl of Carll'^le, proving 
disgreeable to his lordship, captain H *wley a y% 
was sent over to supersede him. Tufton, J ' 
resenting this measure, procured the signa- 
tures of some of the planters to a petition com- 
plaining of Hawley's conduct. Hawley construed 
this petition into an act of mutiny on the part of 

¥0L. xxiy. 2 Q Tufton^ 




Tiifton, for wliich he had him tried, condemned^ 
and execiUed j a proceeding universally exclaimed 
aiijainst as a most horrid and atrocious murder. — . 
Ilawley was recalled on this account, but escaped 
punishment, and was sent back again as chief g<>- 

* p. Ncrnor, in wiiich capacity he remained till 
i/\?o' ^^^ ^^^^'^ driven from the country by the 

united voic:e of all the inhabitants. He 

vas succeeded by major Hunkes, and afterwards 

. |-^ by Mr. liell, his deputy, who in a few 

I fill yt-'iirs was made chief governor. But tht; 

* conduct of Hawlev had alienated the mind.< 

of the new settlers I'rom power thus delegated and 

shamefully abused, and the proprietor's authority 

lost ^rouiul everv da v. In the mean time the civil 

war in England cau.sed many })eaceable and \\'ell- 

disposed people to take refuge in this island. The 

emigration from the mother country became so 

great during the conmiotions 'u England, that in 

4 y. about twenty-live years from its hrst esta- 

.'^ ■ blishment, it was computed there were 

twenty thousand white men in Barbadoes, 

of whom one half were able to bear arms. And 

* y^ in twenty-six years after, the whites were 
(^"i ' ' computed at fifty thousand, and the negro 

I ^ ' slaves at double that number. They em- 
ployed four hundred ships, one with another of 
one hundred and lifty tons burthen, in their trade. 
Their annual exports amounted to upwards ot 
35(),00()/. and their circulating cash at home was 
2CK),t)00/. Since that time the island has been much 
uu the decline. 

Soon after the establishment of the Common- 
wealth in England, circumstances arose resj)ccting 
this colony, which have produced such etFects on 
iki<i general comnicrce of Great Britain^ as cannot 


AMERICA. 33f) 

be entirely overlooked in an historical account of 
her West Indian plantations. Tlic Barbadians 
\vere warmly attached to the regal goveriunent, 
and on the death of Charles I. the jiopular resent- 
ment against his perseculors ran so high in the is- 
land, that the few planters who were suspected to 
be in the interest of the parliament thought it ne* 
tessary to seek protection in England. 

To punish these defenders of a ruined cause, 
parliament resolved to send a powerful armament 
to reduce the English colonies in the West Indies, 
but particularly Barbadoes, at that lime the most 
important and hostile of all. Ayscue, who com- 
manded the parliament's forces employed in this 
expedition, arrived in October }b5\, and suc- 
ceeded at length in bringing the island to capitu- 
late. He, however, met wirh so stout a resistance 
as deteroiined his employers inunediately to en- 
force a scheme they had projected a long time be- 
fore, of altering the whole system of Barbadian 
commerce, by prohibiting all foreign shij>s from 
trading with the English plantations, and not per- 
niitting any goods to be imported into England, 
or any of its dependencies, in any other than 
English bottoms; or in ships of that European na- 
tion of which the merchandize imported was the 
genuine growth and manufacture. And thus arose 
the navi<2ati{>n act of ihis kir.orlom: for immedi- 
ately after tbe rc-storation, its pnu-i.-^ions Acre 
ad(;pted by Charles II. v\ith tliis addition, that the 
master and three-foiuths of the mariners should 
;dso be Eneli^h sid)ieets. 

The inhabitants ol Pardadoes, justly consider- 
hig the law as a chastisenxnt intlicted on them by 
the Commonwealth for their loyalty to Charles 11. 
were tilled with ijulignation on fiudhig its pnni- 

2 G 2 i>ion« 


349 AMEAIC/l* 

sioiis adopted and confirmed on the restonllon of 
that monarch. By the regulations of this act and 
the establishment of the internal duty on tlieir pro* 
duce (to which we ha\e already referred), the/ 
tliought themselves treiUed with ingratitude, and 
they predicted the decline of their population, 
agriculture, and wealth, from the eifects of those 
measures. How tar these predictions have been 
accomplished, a comparative state of the island at 
different periods will demonstrate, with wliich tht^ 
present account will be concluded. 

Barbadoes is situated in 13^ north latitude, 
and in 5()^ west longitude. It is only about twen- 
ty-one miles in length and fourteen in breadtli, 
and contains more than one hundred thousand acres 
of land, most of which are under cultivation. The 
soil is naturally fertile, but the inhabitants have 
decreased with a rapidity seldom known in any 
other country. It appears too that the annual 
produce of the island has decreased in a much 
greater proportion than in any other of the West 
Indian colonies. 

That the dreadful succession of hurricanes, with 
which this and the other West India islands have 
been visited, has contributed to this great defalca- 
tion cannot be doubted. The capital of die island 
was scarcely risen from the ashes to which it hal 
been reduced by two dreadful fires, when it was 
torn from its foundations, and the whole country 
made a scene of desolation by tiie storm of tho 
10th of October 17^0, hi which no k^ss than four 
thousand three hundred and twenty- six of the in- 
habitants miserably perished J and the damage done 
to the country was computed at l,320,5t)4/. 15^, 
sterling;. The prospect has, in some respects, 
seemed to brighten j but although^ since the^iiure 

1 1 


f)f tbeir si^gnr plantations, the inhabitants Iiave 
Ibund some rosonrce in the cultivation of cotton, 
it does not seem probable that any encouragement 
is capable of ever restoring Barbacloes to its ant lent 
fplendour and opulence, unless it be relieved tmm 
the heaAY imposition of 41 per cent. oi:> their ex- 
ported ])roduce. 

Earbadoes is divided into li^'e districts and eleven 
parishes: it contains four towns, of which Bridge 
Town is the capital. Before the fires, this town 
consisted of iitteen hundred houses, which were 
mostly built of brick, and it is still the seat of 
governn'ient, and may be called the chief residence 
of the governor, whose country villa is situated 
within a mile of it : his salary it; 2CXX)/. per annum. 
I'he form of government of this island so very 
nearly resf.mbjes that of Jamaica, that it is unne* 
cessary to enter into detail, except to observe that 
the council is composed of twelve members, and 
the assembly of twenty- two. The most important 
variation respects tlie <^ourt of chancery, whicli in 
Barbadoes is constituted of the governor aijd coun- 
cil, whereas in Jamaica the governor is sole chan- 
cellor. On the other hand, in Barbadi-es the go- 
vernor sits in council, even when they are acting 
in their legislative capacity, which in Jamaic;i 
would be considered as unconstitutional. It may 
be farther observed, that the courts of matid ses- 
sions, common pleas, aiid exchequer, inBarbadoes, 
are distinct from each other, and not, as in Jamaica, 
united and blended in one supreme court of judi- 

In the year 1702 Barbadoes produced seventeen 
thousand hogsheads of ^^xhrnr : one hundred and 
(;ighty-eight hogsheads of molasses j five thousand 
and bixty-lbur of rura ; three thousand and forty- 

2 o 3 kus, 


six bags of ginger ; and nine hundred and scventj- 
four thousand one hundred and seventy-eigiit 
pounds of cotton. At tliat time it had sixty-four 
thousand three hundred and thirty slaves, seven 
hundred and forty-four of which were imported 
tliat year. The amount of taxes was 9443/. 19^. 3dm 


When the island of Grenada was discovered hy 
Columbus, it was inhabited by a numerous and 
warlike people, whose manners and habits had 
never been injured by the invading Spaniards. It 
was not till the year I65O tliat the French governor 
of Martinique attempted to form an establishment 
in Grenada. Notwithstanding the French had but 
newly settled in Martinique, and a great part of 
that island was still uncultivated, yet Du Parquet, 
the governor, collected two hundred men, invaded 
the rights, and destroyed tlie peace of the inhabi- 
tants of Grenada. Although the French had no 
pretence for this attack, yet the commanders ad- 
ministered the sacrament in the most solemn man- 
ner to all the soldiers on their embarkation 3 and 
when they landed, Du Parquet caused a cross 
to he erected, compelled the people to kneel be- 
fore it, and join in devout prayer to Almighty God, 
for success in their enterprise. Thus has the Christ- 
ian religion, which breathes nought but peace and 
good-will among men, been prostituted and made 
the instrument to sanction every cruelty, by the 
guilty passions of men. 

Under pretence of a fair purchase, the com- 
manders gave the natives a few knives and hatchets, 
a large quantity of glass beads, besides two bottles 
of brandy for the chief, and in consideration of 


a tc;w s 
their o 
tiieir ' 
ci. )nque 
tnke ev 
'i'he Fi 
be adn 
one in:' 
who \\ 
a preci 
tlie sea 
girl, o 
alive, 1 
of our 
the coi 
Oiu* p< 
and roc 
ing des 
to then 
in higl 
the wh( 
in l(i5 
the vai 
to culti 
and wl: 
tions c 
after ti: 


these, the value of which could not be more than 
a iv.w shillings, the iMcnicli clahned the island a» 
tiu'ir own, and considered the natives as sla>es to 
their will. Du Parquet havini; completed the 
ronquest, jcft a man named Le Compte as gover- 
nor. Undc^r his reign the Caribbees rebelled, 
which gave a pretence to him an. I Du Parquet to 
take every means of extirpating the \\hole race. — 
The Frencli historian lias altenn>ted to soften the 
shades of guilr attaching to his countrymen, yet 
be admits " 'Ihat forty of the Caribbees were in 
one instance massacred on the spot : ibrty others, 
who with difficulty escaped the sword, ran towards 
a precipice, from whence they cast themselves into 
llie sea, and miserably perished. A beautiful young 
girl, only thirteen years of age, who was tiiken 
alive, became tlie object of dispute between two 
of our ofiicers, each of them claiming her as hi.< 
lawful prize ; a third coming up, put an end to 
the contest by shooting the girl through tlie head. 
Oiu* people," adds this hinnone writer, ^* pro- 
ceeded in tlie next place to set fire to the cottages, 
and root up the provisions (;f the savages, and, hav- 
ing destroyed oi* taken aw\ay every tiling belonging 
to them, returned, with the loss of a single man, 
in high spir'ib ! ! " By such series of enormities, 
the whole race of Caribbees that possessed Grenada 
in 1650 was speedily exU-rminated. And under 
the various revolutions and calamities which at- 
tended diis plantation, and which it would be 
fruitless to enumerate, but little attention was paid 
to cultivation ; even in the year 17OO the island 
contained less than eight hundred people, blacks 
and whites, who were employed on three planta- 
tions of sugar, and fifty-two of indigo. Soon 
after tliis France began to turn her attention to- 

* ■ y 

! • I 

o44 /.MERICA. 

wards the West Indian possessions, and in tlift 
course of the next titty or sixty years the ishmd of 
Grenada was in acom})lete state ofcukivation; and 
in 17^'^, when the fortune of war made th'j Eu^- 
Jish masters of tl\is and the rest of the Vrench Cn- 
ribbee Islands, Grenada and its dependencies are 
said to have yielded annually eleven thousand 
hogslieads of sugar and twenty-seven thousand 
pounds of indigo. 

I'iie crown of England supposed itself entitled 
by the terms of capitulation to the duty of 4- per 
4:'ent. upon all produce exported from the newly 

, - <'eded islands, as paid at Ikirbadoes ; and accordingly 
in the year 1/^4, it commanded the duty to be 
levied. This demand excited much discussion, the 
crown pfTsisting" in its claim, and the people reso- 
lutely refusing to pay it. At length the question was 
referred to a solemn atljudication befojethe judges 

^ of the court of King's Bench in England j and in 
the year 177*1^ lifter the case had been elaborately 
argued four se\eral times, lord Mansfield pro- 
nounced judgment against ihe claims of die crown. 
In consecjucnce of tiiis tiie duty was abolished not 
only in Grenada, but al; in the ceded islands of 
Dominica, St. Vincent, niul I'obago. 

Soon after this, considerable disputes arose be- 
tween the catholics and protestants, the latter ob- 
jecting to the former possessing seats in the legisla- 
ture. I'he protestants aj)pealed to the king, who 
refused to re\()ke his former instructions; in conse- 
quence of which the most zealous of the protestant 
members of the assembly declined to attend, and it 
was seldom that a house could be formed. Public 
affairs soon tell into confusion, and in this state of 
p(!rplexiry the island became 1 prey to the French, 
' who captui'cd it in 1779- At the general peace of 


1783 < 
the W 
our o\ 

In g 
this isL- 
A line 
tion be 
all that 
nient j 
ones to 

of whi 
The soi 
cal pic 
worth ( 
and its ( 
It has 1 

tlie Eni 
sand, oi 
tiear art 

in tlift 
and of 
[i; and 
'■ Kng- 
[:h Ca- 
ies arc 

4- per 
to be 
:)n, the 
e reso- 
on was 
and in 
I pro- 
led not 
inds of 

>se be- 
er ob- 

and it 
tate of 
iace of 




17S3 Grenada and Jie Grenadines were restored to 
Great Britain with all the other captured islands in 
the West Indies, excepting Tobago. Since that 
period this valuable colony has been attached to 
our own country much, i': is believed, to the satis- 
faction of the inhabitants. 

In giving a brief account of the present state of 
this island, it may be observed that many of those 
smaller islands which are called the Grenadines, no 
longer ap])ertain to the government of Grenada. 
A line of division passes in an east and "west direc- 
tion between Cariacou and Union Island. The 
former of these and some otliers south of it are 
all that are now comprised in the Grenada govern- 
ment 5 Union Island, with all the little adjacent 
ones to the north, iire amiexed to the government 
of St. Vincent. 

Grenada contains eighty thousand acres of land^ 
of which about t\\o tiiirds are well cultivated. 
The soil is veiy fertile, and adapted to eveiy tropi- 
cal production. In the year 1/7^ the exports, 
cxclusiveof freight, duties, insm'ance, &c., were 
worth 600,0CX)/. It is divided into six parishes ; 
and its chief dependency Cariacou forms a seventJi. 
It has two ports of entry with separate establish- 
ments, one at St. George, the capital, and one at 
Grenville-Bay, a town and harbour on the east or 
windward side of tlie island. The former is a free 

Since these islands came into the possession of 
tlie English the number of white inhabitants has 
greatly decreased. In 1771> tliey were more tlian 
sixteen hundred : in 1777> they were only thirteen 
hundred; and inl7fl3 they did not exceed one thou- 
sand, of which about two-thirds were men able to 
tjear arms, and incorporated into live regiments ot 




militia, including a company of free blacks, nt^. 
Iiiichcd to each. I'licre arc also in general about 
live hundred regular imops, wliicli are supported 
on tho British esiablisnient. 

The negro slaves liave also decreased, l^y the re- 
turns made previou.-ly to l/Ji), they were thirty- 
iive thousand, and in 1 Jbj ihcy an.onnted to less 
than tweniy-four tlio'Liand. Alrlcan lanj^oes sold 
-it Gn^iiU la are in put ex.poiteu to the neighbour- 
in^r French and Spain h ciuonies. 1 he free people 
of colour amounicd to more than eleven hundred 
in the year l/H/, and iheagh ihif increase of tliis 
mixed race is discouraged a- much as possible, yQt 
it cannot, be prevented. The evidence ul all free 
coloured peop]t% \v he! her born tree or manumitted, 
is received in the courts of this inland, and they are 
tried on criminal charges in the same manner as 
Vvhites J they are al^o allowed to possf^s and enjoy 
lands and tenements to any aiiiOiiiit, provided they 
ixni native born subjects. 

Tlu3 goveriwr is vice admiral, and ])resides ?olely 
flt tJie courts of chaucry. His salary is 3,200/. 
j)er annum, which is raised by a poll-tax on all 
slaves. The council consists of twelve members, 
iind the assembly of twiiuy-hix. The law courts 
are held twice a y(iar, viz. in Marcli and Septem- 


Attempts were made at an early period to bring 
these islands wi.ii their dependencies under the 
English dominion, \vhic! the French as constantly 
opposed. The rightful possessors, tiie Caribbees, 
derived that security from tlie jealousy of the con- 
/icnding parties^ which they might luu e sought in 


AMEinCA. 347 

vam frnm thoir justice and humanity. By a treaty 
in 1/48, St. Vincent, Dominica, St. Lucia, and 
Tobago were declared neutral, and the antient 
proprietors were left in undisturbed possession. 
This treaty of neutrality, intended to accommodate 
botli parties, satisfied neitl>er. After the next war 
tliey agreed to divide the spc/d bet\\een tlicm ; and 
in February 17^'^^ > Dominica, St. Vincent, and 
Tobago were assigned to Creat Britain, and St. 
Lucia to France, in full and perpetual sovereignty; 
the Caribl>ees not being once meniioncd in the 
whole transaction, as if no such people existed. 
Lideed tl:iey were redu( ed t(; a miserable remnant 
of the antient or red Caribbees 5 not more ihan 
a hundred fax :i lies survived in 1763, who retained 
only a mountainous district in the island of St. 

The tirst measure of the English government 
in respect to St. Vincent, after tlie peace of 17^3, 
was to dispose of the lands 5 twenty-four thousand 
acres, being one-fourth (;f tlie whfle, were gratui- 
tously assigned over to individuals, of which Mr. 
Swinburne had twenty thousand, and general 
Monckton the other four. Ihe remainder was or- 
dered to be sold 5 and about twenty thousand acres 
fetched at public auction more than KiO.CKK)/. 
Nearly one half of the country wnsjudgt^d unlit for 
profitable cultivation, consequently tlicse grants 
and sales comprehended ali the lands of nny kind 
of value from one end of the isiand to the othei. 

The sales and allotments excited a war witli 
the Caribbees, in the course of which it became? 
the avowed intention ot government to extermi- 
nate those miserable people aiiogtther^ or. In con- 
veying them to a barren isL'ind .- n tlie coasi oi /vf- 
rica^ consign them over to a lingering destruction. 



34S AMERirA. 

By repented protests from the military officers, Ad- 
ministration desisted from their purpose, and th» 
Caribbees, after surrendering part of their lands, 
were permitted to enjoy the remainder, which 
they possess to the present period. 

In 1779 f St. Vincent was captured by the 
French, but was again restored in 1783. It con- 
tains about eighty-four thousand acres, which are 
every where well watered. The country is rugged 
and mountainous 5 the intermediate vallies, how- 
ever, are remarkably fertile, and well adapted for 
tlie cultivation of sugar. The extent of country at 
present possesed by British subjects is about twen- 
ty-four thousand acres j and as much is supposed 
to be held by the Caribbees. The rest is thought 
to be incapable of cultivation. The British terri- 
tory is divided into five parishes; the capital i» 
called Kingston: houses are but tliinly scattered 
over tlie island. In the frame of its government it 
differs but little from Grenada. 

St. Vincent is celebrated for an extensive botani-' 
Cal garden, which abounds with almost every spe- 
cies of the vegetable world tliat the hand of nature 
has bestowed on these islands for use or beauty, for 
food or luxury -, and also with many valuable ex- 
gtics from the East Indies and South America. 

The island of Dominica was so named hj 
Christopher Columbus, from the circumstance of 
its being discovered by him on a Sunday. The civil 
history of Dominica, like that of St Vincent, is but 
a mere blank, till by conquest it fell into the hands 
of the English in the year I75g, At this period 
about half the island was sold by auction in lots of 
fifty to a hundred acres each, yielding the sum of 
^12,000/. and upwards. 

The French inhabltauts are ^till more numerous 



the first 

the Eng 

ble toge 

under t 


in greai 

the hou 

no Eng 

and lai 

and ow 

to go o] 

«hot in 

him Wc 

his du\ 



[, Ad- 
id th® 

y tlie 
t con* 
h are 
ed for 
itry at 
ital 1% 
lent it 

y spe- 
ty, for 
e ex- 

ed by 
ice of 
e civil 
iS but 
ots of 



than the English, and possess the most valuable 
coffee plantations in the island. They differ but 
little in manners, customs, and religion, from 
the inhabitants of the other French islands in the 
West Indies. Before the commencement of the 
late unnatural American war, Dominica was in a 
most flourishing state, and was rising fast into im* 
portance. But during that unfortunate contest, all 
the faculties and means of Great Britain were di- 
rected to the subjugation of America, to Uie utter 
neglect of tlie West India islands. So much was 
this the case with Dominica, tliat at the height of 
the war it was protected only by six officers and 
ninety-four privates. Neglect in this instance wa* 
the more remarkable, as Dominica by its local 
situation, between Martinique and Guadeloupe, it 
tlie best calculated of all the British possessions, 
for securing to her the dominion of tJie Caribbe* 

Dominica surrendered to the French in 177^ > ^^^ 
the first measure of the conquerors was to disarm 
t!ie English. The governor forbade tliem to assem- 
ble together more than two at one time or place, 
under the penalty of military execution, and he 
ordered the centinels to shoot them if they passed 
in greater numbers. He prohibited all lights in 
the houses after nine in the evening, and suffered 
no Englishman to walk the streets without a candle 
«nd lantern. Mr. How, an English merchant 
and owner of a ship then in the bay, attempting 
to go on board his o^\^l vessel after tliat hour, wag 
shot in the attempt, and tlie centinel who killed 
him was raised in his regiment for having thus done 
his duty. Such are the tender mercies of th« 
French over their vanquished foes ! ! 
The same governor, the marquis Duchilleau, 
TOL. 2.XIV, 2 u «mploye4 


cmploycil Spies who insimuited themselves uito pii- 
vate families, and related all tiiat passed in the 
privacy of domestie intercourse. lie repeatediv 
threatened to set the tow n of Roseau on tire ; and 
when an almost universal conflagration, on Kaster 
Sunday 17^1 > consumetl five hundred iiouses, like 
another Nero, he diverted himself with llie scene, 
forlxule his soldiers to as.-.ist in extinpiiishinjj: the 
flames, and permitted them to pillage the suf- 

At the general peace Dominica was restored in 
the government of England. The joy which on 
this event illumined the countenance of every 
person, whose sutierings under an arbitrary govern- 
ment, had taught to appreciate the blessings of" tiie 
British constitution, may be conceived, but ciiu- 
inA be described. 

Dominica is about the same size as St. Vincent, 
and is divided into ten parishes. Roseau is thi^ 
capital of the island. It contains many high moun- 
tains, in .some of which are burning volcanoes that 
frequently discharge vast (juantities of sulphur. 
7'he vallies are fertile, and the island is well wa- 
tered, there being more than thirty fine rivers in it. 
Cotfee is the principal produce of the island. Tlu' 
native inhabitants are of a clear copper colour : 
they have long, sleek, black hair : their persons 
are short, stout, and well made, but they disfigure 
their faces by flattening their foreheads in infancy. 
They live chiefly by fishing in the rivers and the 
sea, or by fowling in the woods, in both these 
pursuits they use their bows and arrows with won- 
derful dexterity. They display also considerabK^ 
ingenuity in making curious wrought panniers or 
baskets of silk-gras.s, or the leaves and bark of 





Those several islands since the year l672l:jve 
constituted one ilistinct government, c:dled the 
Lci'tranl Curit/cari (javininucut. 'J'he governor 
A'islts each occasionally, but his principal resilience 
is in Antigua; in his absence the go\evnment of 
each island is administered by a lirutcnant-go- 
vernor, whose authority is limited to lit at particular 
island; and where no ii('Utenant-go\ernor is np- 
j)ointed, the president of the council takes the 

The island of St. Christ oplier was called by its 
antient possessors, the ('aribbees, the fertile island. 
It was discovered by Columbus in 14(K>, who 
Mas"so pleas(?d with its appearance that he gave it 
his own Christian name. Jt was neither planted 
nor pos'sessed by the Spaniards ; but it was the 
eldest of all the British territories in the AV'est 
Indies, and in truth the comnion mother both of 
the English and French settlements in the Caribbee 
Islands. Mr. Warner and fourteen other persons 
landed at St. Christopher's in January 1623, and by 
the month of September they had raised a good 
crop of tobacco, which they proposed to make 
their staple commodity ; but before the end ot tlio 
}ear their plantations were demolished by a dread- 
ful hurricane ^^ liich put a sudden stop to tlieir pro- 
gress. Mr. W'arner returned to England to im- 
plore succour, and obtained the patronage of the 
earl of Carlisle, who fitted out a ship for lim, 
and thus preserved a settlement which otherwise 
could not have survived its infancy. Warner liim- 
i»elf did not return till the next year, when he was 

2 H 2 accom" 


accompanied by a large body of recruits. About 
the same time D'Esnamhuc, captain of a French 
private-n*, arrived wilh thirry veteran troops, who 
tvere cordially received by the English. Hitherto 
Warner's tirst colony had lived on friendly terms 
with the native Canbbees j but under pretence of 
a supposed ])lot, the French and English attacked 
the poor Indians by night, and, accoriling to a con- 
temporary historian *, murdered one hundred and 
twenty of the stoutest in cold blood, and drovo 
the rest from the island, except such of I he wo- 
men as were young and handsome, of whom they 
made concubines and slaves. The Europeans had, 
however, but little reason to congratulate them- 
•elves on this exploit, having left one hundred of 
their number dead on the lield. 

From this period the Caribbees appear to have 
quitted altogether this and some small islands in the 
neighbourhood, and to have retired soutliwards. 
Li the year 1627 the French and English agreed to 
a partition of the whole ir:^and ; but for nearly 
half a century it exhibited a disgustful scene of 
internal contention, violence, and bloodshed. At 
tlie peace of Utrecht, the island was ceded wholly 
to the English, and the Fiench possessions were 
publicly sold for the benefit ol i ne English govern- 
ment. In 1733, 8000/. of the money was appro- 
priated as a marriage portion with the princes;* 
Anne, who was betrothed to the prince of Orange. 

Such was tile origin and progress of the British 
establishment in this island. In 1782 it was taken 
by the French, and in the following year it was 
restored to Great Britain, 


• jPerc du Tertrc, 


SLind a 
that o 
H)0<) I 
for a 
of six 

tains t 
St. Chi 
ot" war 
tlnMu ai 

island c 
a nano'' 
a brief 

more tl 
an easy 
its base 
'I'he ger 
per acri 
which 1 
wliole ii 
the ave 
i;h2 as 

;, who 
' terms 
jPice of 
a con- 
ed and 

le wo- 
ni they 
Qs had, 

Ired of 

s in the 

1 wards, 
reed to 

-ene of 
d. At 


iL was 



St. Christopher's contains about forty-four thou- 
sand acres, ul wiiich seventeen thousand are appro- 
])riated to the <^rowth of sugar; and tlie sugar 
grown in this island is vnujuestionably better tiian 
that of any of the other islands. Canes phmted in 
particular spots have been known to produce 
^^000 lb. per acre. Tlie general average jiroduce 
for a series of years is sixteen thousand hogsheadj* 
of sixtecui Inuidred ^^eil;llt each. 

The i>i:intl is divided into nine parishes, and 
contains fdur towns. Basseterre the ca])ital con- 
tains eight hundpjd houses. The proportion which 
St. Christoph'.'r's contributes with the oiher islands, 
towards an ht)nonrable provisic)n iur the governor- 
g( nrral is 1000 /. currency per annum, wliich is 
.settled on him l)y the as.-embjy inmu diately on his 
arrival. He has be.'^ides ];ei(juisiies, v hich in time 
of war are c(^,nsiderable. Lach island within this 
p;overnment l;as a separate council, and each of 
tlu-m an asstnibly, or house of representatives. 

With St. Christopher's surreiulered al>o the 
i.'-land of Nevis ; from which it is cli\ided oidy by 
a narrow chaitnel ; and of this we shall now give 
a brief account. 

Nlvis is a most beautifid spot, but is nothing 
more than a single mcHintain, rising like a cone in 
an easv ascent from the sea, the circumference of 
its l)ase does not exceed eight English miles. "J he 
country is well watered and the land very fertile. 
The general jn'oduce is about .>ixteen hundred \\ eiglit 
per acre from all the canes that are annually cut, 
which being tour tliousand acres, the return of the 
wbiole is an e(]ual number of hogsheads, which was 
the average lixed on l)y the French govcnuiienl in 
IJ"!^- '^^^ 'A I'lde for regulating the taxes. 

Aevis is di\ided into live parishes : it contains a 



2 H a 

tow \\ 


town called Charlcstown, die scat of government.- 
The commandant is appointed by the crown, but 
receives r. salary from the island. 1'lie present 
number of whites does not exceed six hundred, 
^\•hile the negroes are about ten thousand, a dispro- 
portion which necessarily converts all the white 
men, capable of bearhig arms, into a militia. 

The English first established themselves in 
Nevis under Warner, in the year IG'IS. And 
what Mr. Warner began wisely was happily com- 
pleted by his immediate successor Mr. Lake, under 
whose administration the island rose to opulence 
and importance. About the year 1(540 it is said 
that there were four thousand whites in the island ; 
so powerfully are mankind invited by the advan- 
tages of a mild and equitable system of govern- 

Antigua is situated about twenty leagues to the 
eastward of St. Christopher's : it has not a single 
spring or rivulet in it, but natm*e presents few ob- 
stacles which the avarice or industry of civilized 
man will not etideavour to surmount. The soil of 
Antigua was found to be fertile, and it was dis- 
covered that cisterns might be contrived to hold 
rain water. So early as l63'2 a few English families 
took up lands there, and began the cultivation of 
tobacco. The prosperity of the island was mani- 
fest in its extensive population till tlie beginning of 
(he last century, when Daniel Park, esq. was ap- 
pointed to the government of this and the neigh- 
bouring islands. This man was a native of Virginia, 
and wa? distingui'^hed for his excesses at a very 
early period of life. And in his government of 
Antigua he showed his contempt of every divin"5 
and moral obligation. He debauched the wife ot 
JVlr. Chester, tlie most cunsiderable merchant in 


•the hh 
part ol 
he was 
he refi: 
that att 
the pe( 
upon tl 
of othe 
^ Anti 
land, c 
the gro 
and CO 
has so 
are wo 

and an 
fiister is 
party tl: 
more h 
have en 
dable e 
the bes 
tlie min 
Tortal ] 



I, but 

es in 
is said 
island ; 

5 to the 
i\v oh- 
soil of 
ras dis- 
o hold 
ion of 

ling of 
\'as ap- 


a very 
lent of 

wife 01 
lant in 

the island, and, to prevent any complaining on the 
part of the husband, attempted to get him con- 
victed on a false accusation. After repeated enor- 
mities which outraged every feeling ol' humanity, 
he was recalled by the government at home j but 
he refused to obey, arid set at defiance every one 
that attempted to control his op(;rations j at length 
the people, exasperated at the injuries committed 
upon them, rose and murdered hii>i, with a number 
of other persons who adhered to his cause. 
^ Antigua contains about sixty thousand acres of 
land, of which more than half are appropriated to 
the growth of sugar. It is divided into six. parishes, 
and contains ?^ .nany towns. The capital is St, 
John's. No island in this part of tlie West Indies 
has so many excellent harbours. Of these the 
principal are English harbour and St. John s, both 
are well fortified, and at the former the British 
government has established a royal navy yard and 
arsenal, and conveniences for careening ships of 

The legislature of Antigua is composed of the 
commander in chief, a council o.^ twelve members, 
and an assembly of twenty-five, and it is to \t% 
credit, that it first presented an example to tlie 
cister islands of a raelioriation of the criminal law 
respecting negro slaves, by giving the accused 
party the benefit of a trial by jury. And it is still 
more honourable to this island that its inliibitaats 
have encouraged, in a particular manner, the lau- 
dable endeavours of the Moravians v\dio, from 
the best motives, have undeitaken to enliivhrea 
tlie minds of the negroes, aiid lead tuom iiuo t!ie 
knowledge of religious tnuh. T'le number of con* 
rertol negroes, according to the accounts of 1 19 



; .<Hn 



Moravians in the year 1/87, was more than 
sixteen thousnnd. 

MoNTSKRRAT was discovcred bv Colunibus at 
the srime time with St. Christopher's, from which 
ir was at first planted, in the year 1632, by a small 
colony of adventurers who had embarked under 
Warner. Their scprtrntion appears to have been 
occasioned by local attachments and n-ligious dis- 
sciitioiis, being chiefly natives of Ireland, and 
Jloman catholics. Ilie same causes, hoMcver, 
op«n-ated to the augmentation of their numbers j ibr 
so niany persons ot the same country and religion 
canie over^ soim afi.er the hist sc ttlement, as to 
create a conside .ii)]e white population, which it 
has ever since maintained. 

IViont-(jrat was invaded by the P'rcnch in 1/12, 
and sutiered so muc[i from their depredations, that- 
an aiiicle was agreed uj)on in the treaty of Utrecht 
ibr appointing con:missioners to enciuire into l]ie 
dar.jages, v. hich, h(Avever, were not made g(;()d to 
the sutrerrrs. It. was again invadi d and, with most 
of the othe'- islands, captured by ihe French during 
the American war, and restored with the rest. 

I'his island is supposed to contain thirty thou- 
sand a(.r« 8 ' f land, ot \\hich almost two-ihirds are 
very mouDtainous or barren. Ihc ]>roduce of 
Montserrat is sugar, cc/tton, and pro\ i:-;(»ns. Ihe 
average cn^ps laken for four years were 'wo thou- 
sand seven hundKnl and thirty seven hogsheads of 
sugar ; c)e\en hundred anci seven puncheons of 
rum, ana two hupAbed ami sevent}-h\e bai':\s of 
cotton. And the piv p^.ition of ingrc s to whites 
was at that period about ten ihousnn^. to thirtton 
hundred. The go\ernmei.t is adi'.:ini.-.tered by 
a legislature of its cwn^ under acaptain-geneiai. 




The Virgin Islands have been generally 
supposed to have derived their name from (jueer* 
Elizabeth j but according to Mr. P^vlwards^ Co- 
liimbiH discovered them in l-U).), and gave thcni 
this appellation in allnsion to a well-known legend 
in the llomish ritual of the eleven thousand virgins. 

The iSpaniards did not think them wortJiy of 
their attention, and no farther notice was taken 
of them till ne-arly a century after, when the/ 
were visitCil by the earl of Cumberland in his way 
to attack Porto- Rico, and the ifistorian of that 
voyage calls them " a knot of little islands, wholly 
uninhabited, sandy, barren, and craggy." I'he 
whole group couiprehends about forty islands, 
which are divided at present between the English, 
the Spaniards, and the Danes. 

The first possessors of such of these islands 
as now belong to the British government, were a 
party of Dutch Buccaneers, who fixed tliemselvvv* 
hi Tortola and built a fort for their protection. lu 
1666 they wer-' driven out by a stronger party of 
the same advt .iturers, who, calliu'^ themselved 
English, pretended to take possession lor the crown 
of England; and Charles II., if he did not com- 
mission the en terprize, made no scruple to claim 
tlie benefit of it j for 1 ortola and its depondcncie.^ 
were soon after annexed to the Leeward island 
government, and the English title has remained 
unimpeached from that time to this. 

The Dutch had made but little progress in cul- 
tivating the country when they were expelled from 
Tortola, and the chief merit of its subseijuent im- 
j)n)\ enient was reserved for some English settlerg 
from the little island of Anguilla, who had formerly 
cuibarked with their families and settled in the 
Virgin Islands. Their wants were few, and their 












government simple and unexpensive. The depaty 
governor, with a council, nominated from amonc; 
themsehes, exercised both the legislative and 
judicial aiahority, determining in a summary way, 
without a jury, all questions between subject and 
subject, and \\hen money was wanted lor public 
use, it wa.> raised by voluntary contributions. 

Under this sort of system tJiey continued till 
1756, when the iidiabitants petitioned to be put 
on the same fvjoting with tl'.e sister islands, b} the 
establishment of a perfect civil government and 
constiuitional courts of justice among thorn ; but 
in tins expectation they were not gratified till the 
year \']']Oi v^hen tlxy ]>ledged themselves to grait 
to his m.ajesty an impost of four and a half per 
cent, on ali tuods and commodities the growth of 
these islands, similar to that which was paid in the 
other Leeward Islands. 

Such was the price at which the Virgin Islands 
purchased the es'.abli.hmcnt of a constitutional 
legislature. I'he chief and almost the only staple 
productions of these islands are sugar and cotton. 
1'he \alue of the exports from them in the year 
17^7 amounted to (-ne hundred and bixty-seveu 
thousand pounds nearly, 


The Bahama or Lucayos, thourh verv mune- 
rous are but little kiiown. 1 hey are said to have 
been t(;tal]y deserted when in 1672 a few P'og- 
lishmen toi;k possession of the island Provident e. 
But !i'^''oPMng a nest of pirates, a force was sent 
from Lngiand to subdue tJicm, and a small regular 
colony was established in 172O. The English in 
the Bahama inlands are computed at three or four 
thousand 3 half of which ai'e settled in ProvidiMice, 
■■• wiicre 





Ibh in 



AMERICA. ' 35Cf 

where there is a fort and a small harbour. The 
only article cultivated tor exportation is cotton, of 
wliich the average export is about thirty hundred 
vv^eight. The soil seems to be naturally barren, w^iich 
a'Hounts for their comparative insignificance in this 
grand commercial Archipelago. 

The ]5kumud.\s or Sommku Islands, AAcre dis- 
covered by the Spaniards, but being neglected by 
them, they were again disclosed by the shipwreck 
of sir Gjorge Sonuuer in lliOi}. By Shakespear 
thev are des(>ribed as ever vexed with storms ; but 
Waller, who resided there some time, mentions 
them in dilferent colours, as enjoying a perpetual 
spring. Th(y contain about twelve or thirteen 
thousand acres of ver)' poor land, nine-tenths of 
whi<'h are (Mther uncidtivated, or reserved in 
woods lor the :,u]>ply of timber for building small 
ships, kc. for sale, which is the principal employ- 
luent of the inhabitants j and the vessels which 
ihey furnish being built of cedar, are light, buoy- 
ant, and unexpensive. 

Of the land in cultivation, no part was appro- 
priated to any other piu'pose th.ui that of raising 
Indian corn and vegetables till the year 1/83, 
w hen the growth of cotton was attempted, but 
with no great success. Of these little islands the 
chief is that called St. (xeorge, with a capital of 
the same name, containing live hundred house«{ 
built of free-stone. The number of inhabitanti 
in all the islands is about nine thousand. 'I'he 
blacks are twice as numerous as the whites, and a 
great part of the trade consists in carrying salt to 

Thus have we given an historical account of all 

the principal islands in the West Indies. Culxi 

and Porto-Rico belong to Spain, and of tlieir rise 

:» logetlier 



'I 'Ml 







fouGthcY with that of St. Domingo, we have treat- 
ed in the early part of this volume. To the French 
b<'lf>ng St. Domingo, (unless it be completely 
V rested from their dominion by the blacks, who 
have been long struggling for emancipation), Gua- 
deloupe, Martinique, and some islets. The Danes 
possess St. Croix, St. Thomas, and St. John, which 
are part of the Virgin islands. The Swedes hold 
St. Bartholomew, and the Dutch St. Eustatius. 
'Jo our own country are attached Jamaica, and 
liarbadoes ; Grenada, St. Vincent, and Dominica 5 
.St. Christopher's, Nevis, Antigua, Montserrat, and 
the greater part of the Virgin isles 5 St. Luce and 
I'obago have, during the present war, surrendered 
also to British valour. Trinidad was ceded to U8 
by Spain at the peace of 1801. 




rate su 
blacks ; 
tliese ti 
rica, an 
years aj 
the nui 
white i 
and cor 
to conf 
his emj 
their sn 
tue of 
ill the 





Jnhah'itants of the ff^csf Indies hoiv divided. CharnC" 
ter and Manners of eaih Class. Sugar, the 
Mode of Cultivating. Cotton. Indigo. CoJ)\'c. 
Cocoa. Ginger. Arnatto. Aloes. Allspice. Of 
the Trade on the North- litest Coast. 

HAVING described the islands in the West 
Indies separately, it reinains only U) enume- 
rate sucli circumstances as will apply to .hem col- 
lectively, beginning with the popiilaiion. llie 
whole inhabitants may be divided into four great 
classes: 1. European whites ; 'l Creole or native 
whites ; 3. Creoles of mixed blood, and free native 
blacks ; 4. Negroes in a state of slavery. Besides 
tliese tliere are many emigrants from North Ame- 
rica, and a considerable body of Jews. About ten 
years ago, it appeared that in tiie English islandv. 
the number of white people \\as about sixty-tive 
thousand, and of blacks fonr hundred and lifty-ti\e 

The leading feature in the character of this 
white inhabitants is an iudei^endcnt spirit, and ;i 
display of conscious equality, thnmghtnit all ranks 
and conditions. The.))oorest white person .seem.<i 
to consider himself nearly on a level with the 
richest, and, emboldened by this idea, approaches 
his employer with e:^tended hand, and a freedou], 
which, in the countries of Europe is seldom dis- 
played by men in the lower orders of life towards 
their superiors. In no part of the globe is the vir- 
tue of hospitality more generally prevalent than 
ill the Briti^ih sugiu: islands, liic gates of the 

VOL. XXIV, 2 1 piaaler 

$62 AWT.nich, 

planter are alwnys open to the reccplion of his 
guests. To be a stranger is of itself a suHicient 
Introduction, and this species of hospitahty is car- 
ried so far, tliat tliere is not a good inn throughout 
tlie West Indies. 

There are peculiarities in the habits of life of the 
white inhabitants which cannot fail to catch the 
eye of an European newly arrived j one of which is 
the contrast betwec i the general plenty and mag- 
nilicencc of their tables, and the meanness of tlieir 
houses and apartments. It being common to see 
a splendid sideboard of plate, and the choicest 
wines, with other things corresponding, in a hovel 
not superior to an English barn. The appearance 
of the negro domestics will also strike a stranger. 
The butler is the only attendant who is allowed 
the luxury of shoes and stockings : all the others 
are bare- footed, some, perhaps, half naked. Eng- 
lish manners are also diiferent in tliese from what 
we find them at home. Thus they say, ha?id such 
a thing, instead of Iring or give it : an employment 
or office is called a birth ; a kitchen is denominated 
a cook ream ; and in speaking of tlie east or west, 
they say to the windward and leeward. 

But it is to the Creoles, or natives, tliat we must 
look for the original and peculiar cast of character 
impressed by the climate. They are obviously of 
a taller race than Europeans, but not so robust. 
They are distinguished for a suppleness and free- 
dom in their joints, which enable them to move 
witl\ agility and gracefulness in dancing, an exer- 
cise in which they delight and excel. In one of 
the principal features of beauty, few ladies surpass 
the Creoles ; they have, in general, the finest ^yes 
of any women in the world, someiimes beaming 
with animation ; sometimes melting with tender- 
ness 5 

nc«« ; 
live g( 
for wl 

lered i 
no wo 
black ; 
this w 
of th 
groes 1 
their i 
are hu 
ing bii 
their v 
gree, 1 
rally b 
tlie in 
they ai 
?han i 
is bho\ 

AMEKICA. 56.1 

ncM ; a sure index, says Mr. Edwards, to that na- 
tive goodness of lieart and gL'ntleness of disposition 
for whi( li they are eminently and dcservetliy ap- 
phiudcd, and to whicli, combined with a secpies- 
lered and domestic hfe, it is doubtless owing, that 
no won\en on earth make better m ives^ or better 

The next class are the people of lolnur, or native 
blacks of a free condition. It is not easy nor in 
this work necessary to discriminate all the varieties 
of these people. In the British islands their evi- 
dence is not received in criminal cases against a 
white persr)n; they are ineligible to serve in paro- 
chial vestries and general assemblies, or to liold 
conmiissions in the militia j nor can they inherit a 
legacy exceeding 2000/. currency. To the ne- 
groes the people of colour are objects of envy and 
hatred, who abhor the idea of being slaves to the 
descendants of slaves. I'hus circumstanced, the 
general character of the mulattocs is strongly 
marked by the peculiarity of their situation. In 
their deportn'iCnt towards the white people they 
are humble, submissive, and unassuming. Their 
spirits seem to sink under the consciousness of their 
condition. Iliey are accused, however, of prov'- 
ing bad masters, when invested with power, and 
their conduct towards their slaves is, in a high de- 
gree, harsh and imperious. The accusation, gene- 
rally brought against the tree people of colour, is 
the incontincnicy of their women. This charge 
cannot be denied, but the circumstances in which 
they are placed \\ ill rather excite the tear of pity. 
Than invoke the weight of punishment. Their 
tenderness, as nurses, toward tJie sick ; their disin- 
terested gratitude and attachment where kindness 
is shown them, and ilieir peaceful deportment un- 

2 1 2 Uer 






|50 "^" 


■ 40 





1.25 U iiiii^ 







WEBSTER, N.Y. 14580 

(716) 872-4503 



cler a rlgornns fsysteni of laws, and the influence of 
manners still more oppressive, aflbrd great room 
to lament that a more enlightened and liberal po- 
licy is not adopted towards them. 

Ot" the last class, or negroes condemned to per* 
petual Civile and servitude, though born in various 
and widely separated countries, it is not easy to 
discriminate the peculiar manners and native pro- 
pcnsitie.^. The similar and uniform system of life 
to which they are all reduced, the few opportuni- 
ties and little encouragement that are given them 
for mental improvement, are circumstances that 
necessarily induce a predominant and prevailing 
cast of character and disposition. Nevertheless, 
there are among several of the African nations, 
some striking f .-atures which cannot easily be over- 
looked by a person residing in any one of the su- 
gar plantations. 

It is a well-authenticated fact that the negroes, 
in general, in our islands, at least such of them a$ 
have been long in a state of servitude, are of a 
distrustful and cowardly disposition. So degrading 
is the nature of slavery, that fortitude of mind is 
lost, in proportion as freedom is restrained. To 
the same cause, probably, must be imputed their 
propensity to conceal, oi: violate the truth; which 
is so general that it has been esteemed the most 
prominent feature in their character. If slaverjr 
call forth any virtues, they are those of sympathy 
and compassion towards persons in the same con- 
dition of life J accordingly negroes are in general 
strongly attached to their countrymen, but above 
all, to such of their companions who were trans- 
ported in the same ship with them from Africa, 
l^ut their benevolence, with few exceptions, ex- 
tends no farther. The greatest of all wretchedness 

15 fell 




to aft] 





ward si 

ful n| 


ence of 
t room 
iral po- 

to per- 
easy to 
ve pro- 
of life 
1 them 
3s that 
3 over- 
:he su- 

em a$ 
i of a 
iiid is 
. To 
I their 


, ex- 



15 felt by those who are doomed to be slaves of 
slaves. In certain handicraft employments, it is 
usual to place the youn^r negroes in a sort of ap- 
prenticeship to the older ones who are competent 
to atibrd them instruction ^ but the harshness with 
which these people enforce their authority is ex- 
treme ,• they exercise all tlie wantonness of cruelty 
without restraint or remorse. The same observa- 
tion may be made concerning their condnct to- 
wards the inferior animal creation. Even the use- 
ful and social qualities of the dog secure him no 
kind usage from an African master. 

Such are the dire effects of slavery upon the hu- 
man mind, and yet, dreadful is the thought, not 
less than se\ enty-four thousand Africans are an- 
ntially torn from their own country and carried by 
Chmtiafi m.a^ters to the West India islands, and of 
these more than half are imported by the British 
planters ! ! A melancholy reflection to think, that 
people \\ ho enjoy more of the blessings of freedom 
than any nation in the old world, should be the 
most eager in encouraging the liorrors ot slavery in 
tile new. 


In treating of the West India islands it will be 
expected that soiue account should be given of the 
principal staple commodities, and of tlie modes 
adopted in their cultivation. The first object that 
naturallv excites our attention is tlie sugar-cane, 
which has been pronounced one of the most va- 
luable plants in creation. It is a native of the east, 
and w^as probably cultivated in India and Arabia 
from time immemorial j but at what time the In- 
dians discovered the art of granulating the juica 
which is obtained iVom the cane does not appear. 

2 I 3 NotwithsUuiding 



!■ I 

I'; 1 


Kotwlthstandiiig the disputes respcctincj the t*im6 
and maim r ot the suf^ar-c me beinj^ transported to 
the West Indies, the most probable ophiion is that 
it was carried thither bv Cohinibus, in his second 
voyage, from the Canary islands. 

The sugar-cane is a jointed reed terminating 
in leaves, or blades, whose edges are finely and 
sharply serrated. The body of the cane is strong 
but brittle, and when ripe it is of a fine straw- 
colour, and contains a soft substance which atfords 
a copious supply of juice, of a sweetness the least 
cloying and most agreeable in nature. The inter- 
mediate distance between each joint of the eane 
is frcMTi one to three inches in length, and tlie cane 
itseif is about an inch in diameter. The general 
height IS from three feet and a lialf to seven feet, 
and in very rich lands the root has been known to 
pat forth upwards of a hundred suckers. 

The usual mode of hollngy or planting liy ma- 
nual labour is as follows : the quantity of land 
intended to be planted is divided into plats of fifteen 
or twenty acres each -, these are subdivided, by 
means of a line and pegs, into small .squares of 
about three teet and a half. Tiie negroes are then 
placed in a row in the first line, one to a square, 
and directed to dig out with their hoes the several 
S(]uares to the depth of five or six inches. The holes 
being now completed and the cuttings selected for 
planting, which are commonly the tops of the 
canes that have been ground for sugar, each con- 
taining five or six germs, two of these are placed 
longitudinally in the bottom of the hole, and 
covered with mould about two inches deep. In 
twelve or fourteen days the young sprouts begin to 
appear, and as soon as tliey rise a few inches above 
iiic^iuuiid they niUat be itirnibhcd witii additional 



in di! 









AMr.KICA. :i67 

monkl from the banks \\l\icl\ lunc^ been thrown u\j 
in i1igi!;ing out ihc holes. At the oiul of tour or 
five months the bnnks are w holly levelled, and tiic 
spaces between tJie rows earefvdly ploughed. Fre- 
quent, eleanings are indispensable, and a careful 
manager \\ill remove, at tlie same time, all the 
lateral shoots tliat s])ringnp after the canes begin to 
jomt. The pioperest season for planting is between 
August and N(n ember. OF the subject (jf manures, 
which is an important part of sugar culture, wc 
shall not say any thing, but pass on from the lield 
to the boiling-h(nise. 

The time of the crop, in the sugar islands, is the 
Season of gladness and festivity to man and beast. 
So salutary and nouiishing is the juice of the 
cane, that every individual of the animal creation 
derives health and vigour from the use of it. The 
great obstacle at this season to the progress of such 
planters as are not happily furnished with the 
means of grinding their canes by water, is the 
fi"e(|uent fiilure or insufHciency of their mills ^ 
for though a sugar mill isa v jry simple contrivance, 
it, nevertheless, recjuires great force to make it 
ovei-comc the resistance wliich it necessarilv meets 
w'wh. It consists j)rincipally of three upright iron- 
plated cylintlers, and tlie middle one, to wdiich 
the moving power is applied, turns tlie other two by 
means .nf cogs. Between these cylinders the canes 
an^ t\\ ice compressed ; for having passed througli 
the Jirst and se(V)nd cylinders, they are turned 
romid the middle one l)y a circular piece of frame- 
work, and forced tlirough the second and third 
operation which squeezes them completely dry, 
and s(Mnetimes reduces them topov/der. The cane- 
juice is received in a leaden bed^ and thence con- 
veyed ' 






veyed into the receiver. The macerated rind of 
the cane serves for fuel to boil the liquor. 

The juice from the mill commonly contains 
eight parts of pure water, one of sugar, and one 
of mucilage. From the receiver the juice runs 
to the boiling-house along a wooden gutter lined 
with lead. It is received into a copper pan or 
cauldron, called a clarifier. A fire is lighted and 
some white-lime is stirred into it, which neutra- 
lizes the superabundant acid, and at the same 
time becomes the basis of the sugar. As the fire 
increases in force, a scum is thrown up, and the 
heat is suffered gradually to augment till it rises to 
within a few degrees of the heat of boiling water. 
The liquor is then left to cool and drawn off leaving 
the scum behind. The liquor is conveyed to the 
evaporating boiler, where it undergoes several 
operations till it is exceedingly thick, when it is 
drawn into a cooler where the sugar grains, tliat is 
as it cools, it runs into a coarse irregular mass of 
imperfect semiformed crystals separating itself 
from the molasses. From the cooler it is carried 
into the curing-house where the molasses draia 
from it, and the process is finished. 

Sugar, thus obtained, is called muscovado, and 
is the raw material from whence the British sugar- 
bakers make their loaf or refined lump. There is^ 
another sort known by the name of Lisbon sugar ; 
in the West Indies it is called clayed sugar, and is 
thus obtained. The sugar taken from the cooler is 
put into conical pans with the points downwards, 
having a hole about half an inch in diameter at the 
bottom for the molasses to drain through, and when 
they cease to drop, a stratum of moistened clay is 
spread on the sugar^ which is the means of carry- 

AMERICA. 5(1^ 

fng n\^'ay more molasses, and leaving the sugar 
iinor than that cured in the hogshead. From the 
molasses or treacle, scummings of the hot cane- 
juice, ^:c. is made rumj but it is not necessary to 
detail the process of the distillery : we shall pro- 
ceed to consider some of the minor staple coaiuio- 
dities^ Ix^ginning with 


Cotton is a beautiful vegetable wool, and is 
found growing .spontanoousiy in all the tropical 
regions uf Asia, Africa, and America. The cotton- 
wool, which is manufactured into cloth, consists 
of two distinct kinds, known by the names of the 


former is divided into two species, which produce 
pods at an early stage, but, if suffered to grow, 
tliey will rise into trees of considerable magnitude, 
and yield annual crr;ps according to the season, 
without any kind of cultivation. The shrub- 
cotton, properly so called, is divisible mto several 
varieties, but the most protitable sorts are the green 
«eed, the small seed, and the Brasilian. The mode 
of culture is the same with all the different species. 
The plant is raised from the seed. The young 
sprouts make their appearance in about a fortnight. 
At the age of four months they are tolrpcd, by having 
an inch or more taken from the end of each shoot,, 
which is done to make the stems throw out a 
greater number of lateral branches. This opera- 
tion is sometimes performed a second and even a 
third time. At the end of live months the plant 
begins to blossom, and in two month ^i more the 
pod is formed, which, when ripe, bursts ojx^n in 
three partitions, displaying the white and glossy 
down to the sight, Tlie wool is now gathered, 



and extricated from the seeds by a macliiiic 
resembling a turner's lathe. It is afterwards sorled 
and hand-picked, and then packed in bags, con- 
taining two hundred weight each, and sent to 
market. The finest grained cotton which is brought 
to the English market is that from the Dutcli 
plantation of Berbice, Demerara, and Surinam, and 
irom the island of Cayenne. 

Of all the productions to which labour is ap- 
plied, the cotton plant is, perhaps, the most 
precarious. In its first stage it is liable to be 
attacked by the grub: it is often devoured by 
caterpillars in the second ; it is sometimes witheretl 
by the blast j and rains frccjuently destroy it both 
in the blossom and the pod. The Bahama islands 
atforded a melancholy instance of the uncertainty 
of this production in 17^8, when, between the 
months of September and March, no less than two 
hundred and eighty tons w^ere devoured bythe worm. 

Of such importance, however, is the cotton 
manufactory to our country, tliat it is computed 
not less than six hundred thousand people of all 
ages find employment in it. And it has been 
asserted, that a pound of raw cotton wool from 
Demarara has been spun into a thread that w^ould 
have extended one hundred and sixty-nine miles. 

of gi 
are tl| 
of th( 
be kej 


The plant which yields the very valuable com- 
modity called indigo grows spontaneously in all the 
West India islands. There are three sorts ; the wild, 
Guatimala, and French. The first is said to be the 
hardiest, and the dye extracted from it of the best 
quality, but the others are preferred as yielding a 
greater return, and of these the French surpasses 
the Guatimala in quantity, but yields to it in fineness 




, con- 
ent tfi 
rough t 
;ii, and 

IS ap- 
; most 
to bt' 
red b)? 
it both 
in the 
m two 
of all 

11 the 
e the 
J best 






of grain and beauty and of colom-. The richest 
lands produce the most luxuriant plants, but the 
indigo will thrive on soils that appear to be tit for 
nothing else. The cultivation and manufacture 
are thus conducted : 

The land, being cleared from weeds, is hoed into 
small trenches of two or three inches in depth, and 
twelve or fourteen inches asunder ; in the bottom 
of these, the seeds are strewed and covered lightly 
w ith mould ; but as the plants shoot the field must 
be kept constantly clean, until they rise and spread 
sufficiently to cover the ground. In the West 
Indies they have sometimes four cuttings in the 
year from the same roots. It is a plant that 
requires much sun, and will scarcely prosper any 
where beyond the tropics. Bvit tliat sun, which 
improves and invigorates the plant, propagates at 
the same time an insect destructive to it. This is 
a species of grub, which becomes a fly and preys 
on the leaves, and never fails, in the West-Indies, 
to disappoint the planter's expectations the second 
year upon the same land: the only remedy is /o 
change the ,wil every year. If this destructive in- 
sect be prevented, the prodvice per acre, for the first 
cutting, will be about eighty pounds j and though 
the product of subsequent cuttings somewhat dimi- 
nishes, yet in Jamaica and St. Domingo, if the 
land be new, about three hundred pounds per acre 
of the second quality may be annually expected 
from all the cuttings together, and four negroes 
are sufficient to carry on the cultivation of fivo 
acres, besides doing other occasional work suffi- 
cient to reimburse tlie expenses of their main- 

The process for obtaining tlie dye is conducted 


-372 AMEKICA. 

in two cisterns, which are pl.irod like steps, the 
one asctniding to the other, lliere is lui aperturii 
in the upper one near the bottom for discliargiiig 
the fluid into the second. The plant is cut with 
reaping liooks, and put in the ii]:)per cistern to ler- 
nient. When sufficiently fermented, tiie tincture 
is discharc^ed into the lower vessel, and there adta- 
ted till the dye begins to granulate or float in littles 
flakes in the water. The flakes are left to settle 
at the bottom, when the incumbent water is drawn 
oft', and the indigo distributed into small linen bags 
to drain, after which it is carefully put hito little 
square boxes or moulds^ and suft^c'red to dry in thtf 
shade, and this finishes the manufacture. 

At first sight this manufacture seems to be ones 
of the most profitable of all speculations, but tlie 
nicety of the process, and other circumstances not 
completely investigated, too frequently disappoint 
the planters' hopes. *' In tlie course of eighteen 
years," says Mr. Edwards, ^* I have knovvii t\\'enty 
persons commence Indigo planters, not one of 
whom has left a trace by whicli 1 can now point 
out where his plantation was situated, except, per- 
,haps, the remains of a ruined cistern covered hy 
weed or defiled by reptiles. IVlany of tlit^m too wero 
men of knowledge, foresight, and property. But 
disappointment trod close on the heels at ever/ 
itep. At one time the fermentation was too long 
continued 3 at another, the liquor was drawn otf 
too soon. Now the p\ilp was not duly granulated, 
and now it was worked too much. To these in- 
conveniences were added others of a much greater 
mamitude : the mortality of the nesiroes from tlie 
vapour of the fermented li(iuor, the failure of the 
seasons, and the ravages of the worm. These, (^r 





out t 

\\ OR 

to yie 
year i 
acre 3 

land r 


care ot 



As soo 

red on 

ently r 

this bu 

with a 

hunsf a 


he nia}' 


about a 


by mci 

make u 

▼ OL. 

I, the 

[ with 
() ier- 
i iitdo 
:n bags 
c) littlo 
ill thtt 

be ou(5 
I at thi5 
ces not 

AMERICA. 37'; 

flonie of these evils drove them at length to other 
pursuits, where industr}' might tind a surer recom- 


Cotfee will thrive on almost every soil in the 
West Indies ; the visual mode of planting is to lay 
out the land into s(|uares of eight feet, or in other 
w ords, to sow the seeds, or set tlie young plants, 
eight feet distant from each otlier on all sides, 
which gives six hundred and eighty trees to each 
acre. In rich soils a single tree has been known 
to yield from six to eight pounds of cotfee wdien 
dried. No produce is to be expected until the third 
year from planting, when the trees will yield but 
little, the fourth about seven hundred pounds per 
acre 3 and on the average, if the plantation be care- 
fully attended to, -tlie annual produce in moderate 
land may be reckoned at seven hundred and titty 
pounds ; and a single negro is able to take proper 
care of an acre and a half. 

The most important business of the planter is the 
gathering the crop, and the caring it for market. 
As soon as the berries acquire the colour of a black 
red on the trees, they are supposed to be suffici- 
ently ripe for picking. The negroes employed in 
this business are provided each witli a canvas bag, 
with a hoop in tlie mouth to keep it open. It is 
hung about the neck of the picker, who empties it 
occasionally into a basket, and if he be industrious 
be may pick three bushels a day. One hundred 
bushels in the pulp, fresh from tlie tree, will give 
about a thousand pounds weight of merchantable 
cofi'ee. llie pidp and parchment skin are removed 
by means of machinery, and ditferent planteii 
make use of ditferent modes of operation. Great 
. roL,\xiY, 2 k care 


I ii 


care must be taken in sliippinj^ coffee for Europe, 
tliat it be put into parts of tlic ship where it may 
not receive the ellluvia of the other freight, as no- 
thing is more remarkably disposed to imbibe exha- 
lations. A few bags of pei)per have been known 
to spoil a whole cargo of cotfee. 


The COCOA or chocolate nut, is a native of South 
America, and is said to have been carried to His- 
pani(^la from the provinces of New Spain, where, 
besides affording to the natives an article of nou- 
rishment, it served the purposes of money, and 
was used as a medium of barter. The cultivation 
of this highly nutritious production is conducted in 
the following manner. Having chosen and cleared 
a spot of level land, sheltered round with thick 
wood to secure it from the north wind, the planter 
digs a number of holes twenty feet distant from one 
another, into each of which three seeds are placed 
with great care : if all three vegetate, which 
rarely happens, one or two are cut down. The 
lifth }'ear tlie tree begins to bear, and the eightli 
it attains its full perfection. It then produces two 
crops of fruit in the year, yielding at each from 
ten to tw^enty pounds weight, and it will some- 
times continue bearing twenty years ; but it is ob» 
noxious to blights, and shrinks from the first ap- 
])earance of drought. It has happened that the 
greatest part of a large plantation has perished in a 
single night without any visible cause. Circum- 
stances of this nature, in early times gave rise to 
many superstitious notions concerning this tiee, 
and among others, the appearance of a comet was 
alwayi considejed as fatal to the cocoa. Formerly 


s no- 


. His- 
?■ nou- 
/■, and 
cted in 
1 thick 
)ni one 
:es two 
h fronn 
t is ob* 
irst ap- 
at the 
ed in a 
rise to 
s tree, 
et was 


the cuUivation of this plant was both extensive and 
successful in the British sugar islands j but at pre- 
sent there is not a single plantation in Jamaica.— 
A few scattered trees are all that remain of those 
beautiful groves which were once the pride and 
boast of the country. The only plantations of any 
account in our colonies are in Grenada and Domi- 
nica, and the worth of the annual produce is not 
estimated at more than ten or eleven thousand 

Ginger is supposed to have been originally car- 
ried to Hispaniola from the East Indies. It requires 
no greater ski 11 in the cultivation than potatoes in this 
country : it is planted much in the same manner, 
and is fit for digging only once a year, unless for 
preserving in syrup. It is distinguished into the black 
and white, but this difference arises wholly from 
the mode of curing j die former being rendered fit 
for preservation by means of boiling water, tlie 
latter by being exposed for a length of time to the 
rays of the sun ; but as it is necessary to select die 
fairest, soundest, and in every respect the best 
roots, for the latter purpose, white ginger is one- 
third or more dearer than the black. 

Arnatto is a shrub which rises to the height 
of seven or eight feet, and produces oblong hairy 
pods, somewhat resembling those of a chesnut; 
within these are envelloped, in a kind of pulp of a 
bright red colour, thirty or forty seeds : the pulp 
is something like paint -, and as paint it was used 
by the Indians, in the same manner as woad was 
used by the antient Britons. The method of ex- 
tracting the pulp is by boiling the seeds in clear 
water, till they are extricated, after which the 
seeds are taken out, and the pulp left to subside. 
It is then drawn off, and the sediment distributed 

2 K 2 ia 


575 AMr.RTCA. 

in shallow vessels, and dried in the shade. Ar- 
natto thus prepnred is sometimes mixed with cho- 
colate, to which it gives a tine tincture, and some 
medicinal virtue 3 but its principal consumption i4 
*mong painters and dyers. It is frequently used 
by farmers to give a richness of colour to their 

Aloes are propagated by suckers, and will 
thrive in soils the most dry and barren. To col- 
lect the juice, the leaves are cut oft' near the stalk, 
and then placed on each other after the manner of 
hollow tiles. The juice ofthetirst leaf flows into 
a vessel below, and the same leaf serves as a channel 
for the juice of those above it. When all the juice 
IS collected, it is brought to a proper consistence, 
at Jamaica by evaporation, but at Barbadoes, where 
it is chiefly cultivated, by eb\illition. When it be- 
comes of the consistence of honey it is poured into 
gourds for sale, and in them it hardens by age. 

The PiEMENTo or allspice is one of the most 
elegant productions of nature ; it combines the fla- 
vour and properties of many of those spices which 
are raised in the east, and forms, as its name de- 
notes, a sort of substitute for them all. This tree 
is purely the child of nature, and seems to mock 
the labours of man in his endeavours to extend or 
improve its growth : not one attempt in fifty to 
propagate young plants, where it is not found 
growing spontaneously, having succeeded. In the 
whole vegetable creation there is not a tree of 
greater beauty than the young piemento. The 
trunk which is of a gray colour, smooth and shi- 
ning, and altogether free from bark, rises from fif- 
teen to twenty feet high. It branches out on all 
sides, and is richly clothed with leaves of a deep 
j;reen, somewhat like those of the bay- tree 5 and 




ion '14 



I will 
.'0 col- 
ner of 
vs into 
le juice 
n it be- 
ed into 

le most 
the lla- 
|me de- 
lis tree 
end or 
fifty to 
In the 
ree of 
d shi- 
3m fif- 
on all 
a deep 
; and 


these, in July and August, are beautifully con- 
trasted and relieved by an exuberance of white 
flowers. p>om the leaves, which are as fragrant as 
the fruit, is obtained by distillation a fluid which 
is known by the name of the oil of cloves. The 
berries are gathered by hand, and then dried in the 



We cannot conclude our volume without briefly 
noticinsf some facts relatino^ to the north west coast 
of America. When captain Cook and the other 
British navigators were sent out upon voyages of 
discovery, it certainly was not foreseen that any 
particular commercial advantages would arise from 
their several expeditions. But the extension of 
the fur trade to the north-west coast of America is 
already one beneficial consequence from Cook's 

Of all materials for human clothing, none are 
more salutary to the inhabitants of tlie northern 
and middle latitudes, than the furs of the arctic 
quadrupeds. In the Chinese empire ap.d in Europe 
the demand for these furs is immense. They are 
indeed to be procured from the northern parts of 
Europe, Asia, and America. But the progress of 
civilization renders those animals that are covered 
with fur, very rare in the north of Europe. As 
civilization is extended, these animals will be still 
more exterminated. Our knowledge therefore, of a 
coast, of which we were before ignorant, where 
furs may be procured in abundance, was an impor- 
tant acquisition to the interests of commerce. 
From London^ from India, and from the United 

2 K 3 States, 


Stutes, (^xpedit'ions for the fur trade on the north- 
west American coast have now for many years 
been fitted out. The tirst attempts were exposed 
to some of those inconveniences, and losses, that 
ever attend any considerable new undertakings. 
The Russians and the Spaniards share it with die 
English. The disputes respecting Nootka Sound 
arose between Spain and England, in consequence 
of tlie henetits wiiich were promised by this trade, 
but these were so adjusted as to leave the trade still 
open to Britain. 

Tliese dilierences being terminated captain Van- 
cou\er was sent out upon further and more parti- 
cular disco\'eries j from him we learn the existence 
of isles on the western coast of America, not less 
mimerous no. less extensive than those on its eastern 
side. His observations, the etfect of patience and 
perseverance, coincide with those of the British 
and American fur traders, which were, in some 
instances, prior to his 3 and in others came only to 
confirm them. 

In connection with the trade on this coast the 
Sandwich, the Friendly, the Society Isles, and the 
other similar groups in the Pacific Ocean have ac- 
quired new importance, as being well adapted for 
victualling and wintering places for the ships en- 
gaged in that traffic. And it is earnestly to be hoped 
that in proportion to the advantages obtained from 
them by Europeans they, in return, will adopt 
every measure in their power to benefit the natives^ 
b}^ introducing among them every species of food 
that will flourish in their soil and climate, and by 
treating them with that humanity and kindness, 
which as christians they are bound to exhibit to- 
wards every individual of the human species. 


Names o 
and Co 





New- York 










Western ter 



Province of 

E. and W. I 
New Mexic( 
Old Mexico, 


li die 
,e still 

ot less 
ce and 
inly to 

St the 
Ind the 
Ive ac- 
ted for 
|ps en- 
li from 
If food 
md by 
»it to- 


( 379 ) 


Names of States 
and Colonies. 






New- York, 

New- Jersey, 









Western territory, 



Province of Quebec, 

E. and W. Floridas, 
New Mexico, 
Okl Mexico, 




















Ion. from 


38,54 E. 

3,39 E. 




00,25 W. 

1,37 W. 

2,42 W. 

1,52 W. 

5,00 W. 

7,00 W. 

1,44 E. 

6,30 W. 
10,00 W. 

4,56 E. 
14,29 E. 

6,30 W. 

3,32 W. 
39 W. 
26 W. 

chief towns. 

















New Orleans^ 


St. Fee, 
St. Juan, 
Mexico , 











G. Britaii^ 


( 360 ) 

The followin;^ recapitulation will comprehend, in onp 
view, the lirst discoveries and settlements of the several 
parts of North America. 

Names of Places. Jriicii settlal. By irhom. 

Quebec, 160.S By the French. 

Virginia, June, IWf) By Lord De la Ware. 

Newfoundland, June, IfilO By Governor John Guy. 

NeTlj'i^se;,} ^''f^"' 1°'* By the Dutch, 

,„ TBy part of Mr. Robinson's 
\ congregation. 
By a small English colony near 
1623 -{ the mouth of Piscataqua 


Delaware, ") 

Pennsylvania, J 

Massachusett's Bay, 

1627 By the Swedes and Fins. 






Georgia, ■. 



icoaS^y Capt. John Endicot and 
\ company. 
By Lordf Baltimore with a co- 
lony of Roman catholics. 
r By Mr. Fen wick, at Say- 
1635^ brook, near the mouth of 

^ Connecticut river, 
j^o- rBy Mr. Roger Williams and 
\^ his persecuted brethren. 
r Granted to the Duke of York 
I by Charles II., and made a 
1664^ distinct government, and 
j settled some time before 
L this by the English. 
1669 By Governor Sayle. 
1682 /^y William Penn, with a co- 
\ lony of Quakers. 
r Erected into a separate go- 
North-Carolina, about 1 728 < vernment, settled before by 

C the English. 
1732 By General Oglethorpe. 
1773 By Col. Daniel Boon. 

f By emigrants from Connecti- 
1777 \ cut and other parts of New 

ji^g- /By the Ohio and other com- 
\ panics. 

The above dates are from the periods when the first pcr- 

naaent settlements were made. 

Territory N. W. ) 
of Ohio river, J 









V >! 
>- '^"; 

{ 391 ) 

[1, in one 
,he several 


clobinson's f 


idicot and 

: with a CO- 

^ at Say- 
mouth of 

liams and 

e of York 
|id made a 

ent, and 

e before 


nth a co- 

irate go- 
Ibefore by 



Is of New 

ler com* 
I first per- 

C 'O ^- "1 1^. C'l t: 

c^ :^, '.-^ 51 Oi '^'i r-* "^ O 'O -^ Q •■■1 
-r '.'. I' cr- -r O c- X ;£• ;o -t ifj O 



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( 362 ) 

TABLE III. continued. 

Males under 10 years of age - - - 

■ of 10 and under 16 years - - - 

■ ' of 16 and under 26 years - - - 
— — of 26 and under 45 years - - - 

of 45 and upwards - - - - 

Females under 10 years of age, - - - 

of 10 and under 16 years 

• of 16 and under 26 years 

of 26 and under 45 years 

■■ of 45 and upwards - - - 

All other Persons except Indians, not taxed, 
Slaves ------- 


' Total 5,305,638* 

* In 1791 the total Number was 3,929,326. 

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