First Ladies Camp

As some of you know, I did some camps for little girls. Just this past week, I finished a camp about First Ladies. We learned about Martha Washington, Dolley Madison, Abigail Adams, Eleanor Roosevelt, and Jackie Kennedy. It was fun. There were 6 girls in attendance, including Lexi. We had a great time.

Of Plymouth Plantation-AO (Ch 36)

Here’s the next chapter that we’re supposed to read.

[269] Anno Dom: 1646. (Ch 36)

About the middle of May, this year, came in 3. ships into this harbor, in warlike order; they were found to be men of war. The captain’s name was Crumwell, who had taken sundry prizes from the Spaniards in the West Indies. He had a commission from the Earl of Warwick. He had aboard his vessels about 80. lusty men, (but very unruly,) who, after they came ashore, did so distemper themselves with drink as they became like mad-men; and though some of them were punished & imprisoned, yet could they hardly be restrained; yet in the end they became more moderate & orderly. They continued here about a month or 6. weeks, and then went to the Massachusetts; in which time they spent and scattered a great deal of money among the people, and yet more since (I fear) then money, notwithstanding all the care & watchfulness that was used towards them, to prevent what might be.

In which time one sad accident fell out. A desperate fellow of the company fell to quarreling with some of his company. His captain commanded him to be quiet & cease his quarreling; but he would not, but reviled his captain with base language, & in the end half drew his rapier, & intended to run at his captain; but he closed with him, and wrested his rapier from him, and gave him a box on the ear; but he would not give over, but still assaulted his captain. Whereupon he took the same rapier as it was in the scabbard, and gave him a blow with the hilts; but it lighted on his head, & the small end of the bar of the rapier hilts pierced his skull, & he died a few days after. But the captain was cleared by a counsel of war. This fellow was so desperate a quarreler as the captain was fain many times to chain him under hatches from hurting his fellows, as the company did testify; and this was his end.

This Captain Thomas Crumwell set forth another voyage to the West Indies, from the Bay of the Massachusetts, well manned & victualed; and was out 3. years, and took sundry prizes, and returned rich unto the Massachusetts, and there died the same summer, having got a fall from his horse, in which fall he fell on his rapier hilts, and so bruised his body as he shortly after died thereof, with some other distempers, which brought him into a fever. Some observed that there might be something of the hand of God herein; that as the forenamed man died of the blow he gave him with the rapier hilts, so his own death was occasioned by a like means.

This year Mr. Edward Winslow went into England, upon this occasion: some discontented persons under the government of the Massachusetts sought to trouble their peace, and disturb, if not innovate, their government, by laying many scandals upon them; and intended to prosecute against them in England, by petitioning & complaining to the Parliament. Also Samuel Gorton & his company made complaints against them; so as they made choice of Mr. Winslow to be their agent, to make their defense, and gave him commission & instructions for that end; in which he so carried himself as did well answer their ends, and cleared them from any blame or dishonor, to the shame of their adversaries. But by reason of the great alterations in the State, he was detained longer than was expected; and afterwards fell into other employments there, so as he hath now been absent this 4. years, which hath been much to the weakening of this government, without whose consent he took these employments upon him.

Anno 1647. And Anno 1648.

Of Plymouth Plantation-AO (Ch 8)

Chapter 8 of “Of Plymouth Plantation” by William Bradford, all with modern spelling.

This is following AO’s Year 8 schedule for Week 20.

The 8. Chap.

Of the troubles that befell them on the coast, and at sea being forced, after much trouble, to leave one of their ships & some of their company behind them.

 Being thus put to sea they had not gone far, but Mr. Reinolds the master of the lesser ship complained that he found his ship so leak as he durst not put further to sea till she was mended. So the Mr. of the bigger ship (called Mr. Jonas) being consulted with, they both resolved to put into Dartmouth & have her there searched & mended, which accordingly was done, to their great charge & loss of time and a fair wind. She was here thoroughly searched from stem to stern, some leaks were found & mended, and now it was conceived by the workmen & all, that she was sufficient, & they might proceed without either fear or danger. So with good hopes from hence, they put to sea again, conceiving they should go comfortably on, not looking for any more lets of this kind; but it fell out otherwise, for after they were gone to sea again above 100. leagues without the Lands End, holding company together all this while, the Mr. of the small ship complained his ship was so leaky as he must bear up or sink at sea, for they could scarce free her with much pumping. So they came to consultation again, and resolved both ships to bear up back again & put into Plymouth, which accordingly was done. But no special leak could be found, but it was judged to be the general weakness of the ship, and that she would not prove sufficient for the voyage. Upon which it was resolved to dismiss her & part of the company, and proceed with the other ship. The which (though it was grievous, & caused great discouragement) was put in execution. So after they had took out such provision as the other ship could well stow, and concluded both what number and what persons to send back, they made another sad parting, the one ship going back for London, and the other was to proceed on her voyage. Those that went back were for the most part such as were willing so to do, either out of some discontent, or fear they conceived of thee ill success of the voyage, seeing so many crosses befall, & the year time so far spent; but others, in regard of their own weakness, and charge of many young children, were thought least useful, and most unite to bear the brunt of this hard adventure; unto which work of God, and judgment of their brethren, they were contented to submit. And thus, like Gideon’s army, this small number was divided, as if the Lord by this work of his providence thought these few to many for the great work he had to do. But here by the way let me show, how afterward it was found that the leakness of this ship was partly by being over masted, and too much pressed with sails; for after she was sold & put into her old trim, she made many voyages & performed her service very sufficiently, to the great profit of her owners. But more especially, by the cunning & deceit of the Mr. & his company, who were hired to stay a whole year in the country, and now fancying dislike & fearing want of victuals, they plotted this stratagem to free themselves; as afterwards was known, & by some of them confessed. For they apprehended that the greater ship, being of force, & in whom most of the provisions were stowed, she would retain enough for herself, whatsoever became of them or the passengers; & indeed such speeches had been cast out by some of them; and yet, besides other encouragements, the chief of them that came from Leyden went in this ship to give the Mr. content. But so strong was self-love & his fears, as he forgot all duty and former kindnesses, & dealt thus falsely with them, though he pretended otherwise. Amongst those that returned was Mr. Cushman & his family, whose heart & courage was gone from them before, as it seems, though his body was with them till now he departed; as may appear by a passionate letter he write to a friend in London from Dartmouth, whilst the ship lay there a-mending; the which, besides the expressions of his own fears, it shows much of the providence of God working for their good beyond man’s expectation, & other things concerning their condition in these streets. I will here relate it. And though it discovers some infirmities in him (as who under temptation is free), yet after this he continued to be a special instrument for their good, and to do the offices of a loving friend & faithful brother unto them, and partaker of much comfort with them.
The letter is as followeth.
To his loving friend Ed: S.[Z] at Henige House in the Duke’s Place,
these, &c.
Dartmouth, Aug. 17.
Loving friend, my most kind remembrance to you & your wife, with loving E. M. &c. whom in this world I never look to see again. For besides the imminent dangers of this viage, which are no less than deadly, an infirmity of body hath ceased me, which will not in all likelihood leave me till death. What to call it I know not, but it is a bundle of lead, as it were, crushing my heart more & more these 14. days, as that although I do the actions of a living man, yet I am but as dead; but the will of God be done. Our pinnace will not cease leaking, else I think we had been halfway at Virginia, our voyage hither hath been as full of crosses, as ourselves have been of crookedness. We put in here to trim her, & I think, as others also, if we had stayed at sea but 3. or 4. hours more, she would have sunk right down. And though she was twice trimmed at Hamton, yet now she is open and leaky as a sieve; and there was a board, a man might have pulled off with his fingers, 2 feet long, where the water came in as at a mole hole. We lay at Hamton 7. days, in fair weather, waiting for her, and now we lie here waiting for her in as fair a wind as can blow, and so have done these 4. days, and are like to lie 4. more, and by that time the wind will happily turn as it did at Hampton. Our victuals will be half eaten up, I think, before we go from the coast of England, and if our voyage last long, we shall not have a month’s victuals when we come in the country. Near 700li. hath bene bestowed at Hampton, upon what I know not. Mr. Martin saith he neither can nor will give any account of it, and if he be called upon for accounts he crieth out of unthankfulness for his pains & care, that we are suspicious of him, and flings away, & will end nothing. Also he so insulted over our poor people, with such scorn & contempt, as if they were not good enough to wipe his shoes. It would break your heart to see his dealing, and the mourning of our people. They complain to me, & alas! I can do nothing for them; if I speak to him, he flies in my face, as mutinous, and saith no complaints shall be heard or received but by himself, and saith they are forward, & waspish, discontented people, & I do ill to hear them. There are others that would lose all they have put in, or make satisfaction for what they have had, that they might depart: but he will not hear them, nor suffer them to go ashore, lest they should run away. The sailors also are so offended at his ignorant boldness, in meddling & controlling in things he knows not what belongs too, as that some threaten to mischief him, others say they will leave the ship & go their way. But at the best this cometh of it, that he makes himself a scorn & laughing-stock unto them. As for Mr. Weston, except grace do greatly sway with him, he will hate us ten times more than ever he loved us, for not confirming the conditions. But now, since some pinches have taken them, they begin to revile the truth, & say Mr. Robinson was in the fault who charged them never to consent to those conditions, nor choose me into office, but indeed appointed them to choose them they did choose. But he & they will rue too late, they may now see, & all be ashamed when it is too late, that they were so ignorant, yea, & so inordinate in their courses. I am sure as they were resolved not to seal those conditions, I was not so resolute at Hampton to have left the whole business, except they would seal them, & better the voyage to have been broken of then, then to have brought such misery to ourselves, dishonour to God, & detriment to our loving friends, as now it is like to do. 4. or 5. of the chief of them which came from Leyden, came resolved never to go on those conditions. And Mr. Martine, he said he never received no money on those conditions, he was not beholden to the merchants for a pine, they were bloodsuckers, & I know not what. Simple man, he indeed never made any conditions with the merchants, nor ever spake with them. But did all that money fly to Hampton, or was it his own? Who will ge & lay out money so rashly & lavishly as he did, and never know how he comes by it, or on what conditions? 2ly. I told him of the alteration long ago, & he was content; but now he dominates, & said I had betrayed them into the hands of slaves; he is not beholden to them, he can set out 2. ships himself to a voyage. When, good man? He hath but 50li. in, & if he should give up his accounts he would not have a penny left him, as I am persuaded, &c. Friend, if ever we make a plantation, God works a miracle; especially considering how scant we shall be of victuals, and most of all un-united amongst ourselves, & devoid of good tutors & regiment. Violence will break all. Where is the meek & humble spirit of Moses? & of Nehemiah who rectified the walls of Jerusalem, & the state of Israel? Is not the sound of Rehoboam’s brags daily heard amongst us? Have not the philosophers and all wise men observed that, even in settled common wealth, violent governors bring either themselves, or people, or both, to ruin; how much more in the raising of common wealth, when the mortar is yet scarce tempered that should bind the walls. If I should write to you of all things which promiscuously fore-run our ruin, I should over charge my weak head and grieve your tender heart; only this, I pray you prepare for evil tidings of us every day. But pray for us instantly, it may be the Lord will be yet entreated one way or other to make for us. I see not in reason how we shall escape even the gasping of hunger starved persons; but God can do much, & his will be done. It is better for me to die, then now for me to bear it, which I do daily, & expect it hourly; having received the sentence of death, both within me & without me. Poor William King & myself do strive who shall be meat first for the fishes; but we look for a glorious resurrection, knowing Christ Jesus after the flesh no more, but looking unto the joy that is before us, we will endure all these things and account them light in comparison of that joy we hope for. Remember me in all love to our friends as if I named them, whose prayers I desire earnestly, & wish again to see, but not till I can with more comfort look them in the face. The Lord give us that true comfort which none can take from us. I had a desire to make a brief relation of our estate to some friend. I doubt not but your wisdom will teach you seasonably to utter things as here after you shall be called to it. That which I have written is true, & many things more which I have forborne. I write it as upon my life, and last confession in England. What is of use to be spoken of presently, you may speak of it, and what is fit to conceal, conceal. Pass by my weak manner, for my head is weak, & my body feeble, the Lord make me strong in him, & keep both you & yours.
Your loving friend,
Robart Cushman.
Dartmouth, Aug. 17. 1620.
These being his conceptions & fears at Dartmouth, they must needs be much stronger now at Plymouth.

Of Plymouth Plantation-AO (Ch 7)

Chapter 7 of “Of Plymouth Plantation” by William Bradford, all with modern spelling.

This is following AO’s Year 8 schedule for Week 20.

The 7. Chap

Of their departure from Leyden, and other things there about, with their arrival at Southampton, were they all met together, and took in there provisions.

At length, after much travel and these debates, all things were got ready and provided. A small ship was bought, & fitted in Holland, which was intended as to serve to help to transport them, so to stay in the country and attend upon fishing and such other affairs as might be for the good & benefit of the colony when they came there. Another was hired at London, of burden about 9. score; and all other things got in readiness. So being ready to depart, they had a day of solemn humiliation, their pastor taking his text from Ezra 8: 21. And there at the river, by Ahava, I proclaimed a fast, that we might humble ourselves before our God, and seek of him a right way for us, and for our children, and for all our substance. Upon which he spent a good part of the day very profitably, and suitable to their present occasion. The rest of the time was spent in powering out prayers to the Lord with great fervency, mixed with abundance of tears. And the time being come that they must depart, they were accompanied with most of their brethren out of the city, unto a town sundry miles of called Delfes-Haven, where the ship lay ready to receive them. So they left that goodly & pleasant city, which had been their resting place near 12. years; but they knew they were pilgrims, & looked not much on those things, but lift up their eyes to the heavens, their dearest country, and quieted their spirits. When they came to the place, they found the ship and all things ready; and such of their friends as could not come with them followed after them, and sundry also came from Amsterdam to see them shipped and to take their leave of them. That night was spent with little sleep by the most, but with friendly entertainment & christian discourse and other real expressions of true christian love. The next day, the wind being fair, they went aboard, and their friends with them, were truly doleful was the sight of that sad and mournful parting; to see what sighs and sobs and prayers did sound amongst them, what tears did gush from every eye, & pithy speeches persist each heart; that sundry of the Dutch strangers that stood on the key as spectators, could not refrain from tears. Yet comfortable & sweet it was to see such lively and true expressions of clear & unfeigned love. But the tide (which stays for no man) calling them away that were thus loath to depart, their Reverend: pastor falling down on his knees, (and they all with him,) with watery cheeks commended them with most fervent prayers to the Lord and his blessing. And then with mutual embraces and many tears, they took their leaves one of an other; which proved to be the last leave to many of them.
Thus hoisting sail, with a prosperous wind they came in short time to Southampton, where they found the bigger ship come from London, lying ready, with all the rest of their company. After a joyful welcome, and mutual congratulations, with other friendly entertainments, they fell to parley about their business, how to dispatch with the best expedition; as also with their agents, about the alteration of the conditions. Mr. Carver pleaded he was employed here at Hampton, and knew not well what the other had done at London. Mr. Cushman answered, he had done nothing but what he was urged too, partly by the grounds of equity, and more especially by necessity, other wise all had been dashed and many undone. And in the beginning he acquainted his fellow agents here with, who consented unto him, and left it to him to execute, and to receive the money at London and send it down to them at Hampton, where they made the provisions; the which he accordingly did, though it was against his mind, & some of the merchants, that they were their made. And for giving them notice at Leyden of this change, he could not well in regard of the shortness of the time; again, he knew it would trouble them and hinder the business, which was already delayed overlong in regard of the season of the year, which he feared they would find to their cost. But these things gave not content at present. Mr. Weston, likewise, came up from London to see them dispatched and to have the conditions confirmed; but they refused, and answered him, that he knew right well that these were not according to the first agreement, neither could they yield to them without the consent of the rest that were behind. And indeed they had special charge when they came away, from the chief of those that were behind, not to do it. At which he was much offended, and told them, they must then look to stand on their own legs. So he returned in displeasure, and this was the first ground of discontent between them. And whereas there wanted well near 100li. to clear things at their going away, he would not take order to disburse a penny, but let them shift as they could. So they were forced to sell of some of their provisions to stop this gape, which was some 3. or 4. score firkins of butter, which commodity they might best spare, having provided too large a quantity of that kind. Then they write a letter to the merchants & adventures about the differences concerning the conditions, as follows.
Aug. 3. Ano: 1620.
Beloved friends, sorry we are that there should be occasion of writing at all unto you, partly because we ever expected to see the most of you here, but especially because there should any difference at all be conceived between us. But seeing it falleth out that we cannot confer together, we think it meet (though briefly) to show you the just cause & reason of our differing from those articles last made by Robert Cushman, without our commission or knowledge. And though he might propound good ends to himself, yet it no way justifies his doing it. Our main difference is in the 5. & 9. article, concerning the dividing or holding of house and lands; the enjoying whereof some of your selves well know, was one special motive, amongst many other, to provoke us to go. This was thought so reasonable, that when the greatest of you in adventure (whom we have much cause to respect), when he propounded conditions to us freely of his own accord, he set this down for one; a copy whereof we have sent unto you, with some additions then added by us; which being liked on both sids, and a day set for the payment of moneys, those of Holland paid in theirs. After that, Robert Cushman, Mr. Pierce, & Mr. Martine, brought them into a better form, & write them in a book now extant; and upon Robert’s showing them and delivering Mr. Mullins a copy thereof under his hand (which we have), he paid in his money. And we of Holland had never seen other before our coming to Hampton, but only as one got for him self a private copy of them; upon sight whereof we manifested utter dislike, but had put off our estates & were ready to come, and therefore was too late to reject the voyage. Judge therefore we beseech you indifferently of things, and if a fault have been committed, lay it where it is, & not upon us, who have more cause to stand for the one, then you have for the other. We never gave Robert Cushman commission to make any one article for us, but only sent him to receive moneys upon articles before agreed on, and to further the provisions till John Carver came, and to assist him in it. Yet since you conceive your selves wronged as well as we, we thought meet to add a branch to the end of our 9. article, as will almost heal that wound of it self, which you conceive to be in it. But that it may appear to all men that we are not lovers of our selves only, but desire also the good & enriching of our friends who have adventured your moneys with our persons, we have added our last article to the rest, promising you again by letters in the behalf of the whole company, that if large profits should not arise within the 7. years, that we will continue together longer with you, if the Lord give a blessing. This we hope is sufficient to satisfy any in this case, especially friends, since we are assured that if the whole charge was divided into 4. parts, 3. of them will not stand upon it, neither do regard it, &c. We are in such a strait at present, as we are forced to sell away 60li. worth of our provisions to clear the Haven, & withal put our selves upon great extremities, scarce having any butter, no oil, not a sole to mend a shoe, nor every man a sword to his side, wanting many muskets, much armor, &c. And yet we are willing to expose our selves to such imminent dangers as are like to ensue, & trust to the good providence of God, rather than his name & truth should be evil spoken of for us. Thus saluting all of you in love, and beseeching the Lord to give a blessing to our endeavor, and keep all our hearts in the bonds of peace & love, we take leave & rest,
Yours, &c.
Aug. 3. 1620.
It was subscribed with many names of the chiefest of the company.
At their parting Mr. Robinson write a letter to the whole company, which though it hath already been printed, yet I thought good here likewise to insert it; as also a brief letter writ at the same time to Mr. Carver, in which the tender love & godly care of a true pastor appears.
My dear Brother,—I received inclosed in your last letter the note of information, which I shall carefully keep & make use of as there shall be occasion. I have a true feeling of your perplexity of mind & toil of body, but I hope that you who have always been able so plentifully to administer comfort unto others in their trials, are so well furnished for your self as that far greater difficulties than you have yet undergone (though I conceive them to have been great enough) cannot oppress you, though they press you, as the Apostle speaks. The spirit of a man (sustained by the spirit of God) will sustain his infirmity, I doubt not so will yours. And the better much when you shall enjoy the presence & help of so many godly & wise brethren, for the bearing of part of your burden, who also will not admit into their hearts the least thought of suspicion of any the least negligence, at least presumption, to have been in you, what so ever they think in others. Now what shall I say or write unto you & your goodwife my loving sister? even only this, I desire (& always shall) unto you from the Lord, as unto my own soul; and assure your self that my heart is with you, and that I will not forslow my bodily coming at the first opportunity. I have written a large letter to the whole, and am sorry I shall not rather speak then write to them; & the more, considering the want of a preacher, which I shall also make some spur to my hastening after you. I do ever commend my best affection unto you, which if I thought you made any doubt of, I would express in more, & the same more ample & full words. And the Lord in whom you trust & whom you serve ever in this business & journey, guide you with his hand, protect you with his wing, and show you & us his salvation in the end, & bring us in the mean while together in the place desired, if such be his good will, for his Christ’s sake.
Yours, &c.
Jo: R.
July 27. 1620.
This was the last letter that Mr. Carver lived to see from him. The other follows.
Loving Christian friends, I do heartily & in the Lord salute you all, as being they with whom I am present in my best affection, and most earnest longings after you, though I be constrained for a while to be bodily absent from you. I say constrained, God knowing how willingly, & much rather then otherwise, I would have borne my part with you in this first brunt, were I not by strong necessity held back for the present. Make account of me in the mean while, as of a man divided in my self with great pain, and as (natural bonds set a side) having my better part with you. And though I doubt not but in your godly wisdom, you both foresee & resolve upon that which concerneth your present state & condition, both severally & jointly, yet have I thought it but my duty to add some further spur of provocation unto them, who rune already, if not because you need it, yet because I owe it in love & duty. And first, as we are daily to renew our repentance with our God, especially for our sins known, and generally for our unknown trespasses, so doth the Lord call us in a singular manner upon occasions of such difficulty & danger as lieth upon you, to a both more narrow search & careful reformation of your ways in his sight; least he, calling to remembrance our sines forgotten by us or unrepented of, take advantage against us, & in judgment leave us for the same to be swallowed up in one danger or other; whereas, on the contrary, since being taken away by earnest repentance & the pardon thereof from the Lord sealed up unto a man’s conscience by his spirit, great shall be his security and peace in all dangers, sweet his comforts in all distresses, with happy deliverance from all evil, whether in life or in death.
Now next after this heavenly peace with God & our own consciences, we are careful to provide for peace with all men what in us lieth, especially with our associates, & for the watchfulness must be had, that we neither at all in our selves do give, no nor easily take offense being given by others. Woe be unto the world for offenses, for though it be necessary (considering the malice of Satan & man’s corruption) that offenses come, yet woe unto the man or woman either by whom the offense cometh, saith Christ, Mat. 18: 7. And if offenses in the unseasonable use of things in themselves indifferent, be more to be feared than death itself, as the Apostle teacheth, 1. Cor. 9: 15. how much more in things simply evil, in which neither honor of God nor love of man is thought worthy to be regarded. Neither yet is it sufficient that we keep our selves by the grace of God from giving offense, except withal we be armed against the taking of them when they be given by others. For how imperfect & lame is the work of grace in that person, who wants charity to cover a multitude of offenses, as the scriptures speak. Neither are you to be exhorted to this grace only upon the common grounds of Christianity, which are, that persons ready to take offense, either want charity, to cover offenses, of wisdom duly to weigh human frailty; or lastly, are gross, though close hypocrites, as Christ our Lord teacheth, Mat. 7:1, 2, 3, as indeed in my own experience, few or none have been found which sooner give offense, then such as easily take it; neither have they ever proved sound & profitable members in societies, which have nourished this touchy humor. But besides these, there are diverse motives provoking you above others to great care & conscience this way: As first, you are many of you strangers, as to the persons, so to the infirmities one of another, & so stand in need of more watchfulness this way, least when such things fall out in men & women as you suspected not, you be inordinately affected with them; which doth require at your hands much wisdom & charity for the covering & preventing of incident offenses that way. And lastly, your intended course of civil community will minister continual occasion of offense, & will be as fuel for that fire, except you diligently quench it with brotherly forbearance. And if taking of offense ceaselessly or easily at men’s doings be so carefully to be avoided, how much more heed is to be taken that we take not offense at God him self, which yet we certainly do so oft as we do murmur at his providence in our crosses, or bear impatiently such afflictions as wherewith he pleaseth to visit us. Store up therefore patience against the evil day, without which we take offense at the Lord him self in his holy & just works.
A 4. thing there is carefully to be provided for, to wit, that with your common employments you join common affections truly bent upon the general good, avoiding as a deadly plague of your both common & special comfort all retiredness of mind for proper advantage, and all singularly affected any manner of way; let every man repress in him self & the whole body in each person, as so many rebels against the common good, all private respects of mens selves, not sorting with the general convenience. And as men are careful not to have a new house shaken with any violence before it be well settled & the parts firmly knit, so be you, I beseech you, brethren, much more careful, that the house of God which you are, and are to be, be not shaken with unnecessary novelties or other oppositions at the first settling thereof.
Lastly, whereas you are become a body politic, using amongst your selves civil government, and are not furnished with any persons of special eminency above the rest, to be chosen by you into office of government, let your wisdom & godliness appear, not only in choosing such persons as do entirely love and will promote the common good, but also in yielding unto them all due honor & obedience in their lawful administrations; not beholding in them the ordinariness of their persons, but God’s ordinance for your good, not being like the foolish multitude who more honor the gay coat, then either the virtuous mind of the man, or glorious ordinance of the Lord. But you know better things, & that the image of the Lord’s power & authority which the magistrate beareth, is honorable, in how mean persons soever. And this duty you both may the more willingly and ought the more conscionably to perform, because you are at least for the present to have only them for your ordinary governors, which yourselves shall make choice of for that work.
Sundry other things of importance I could put you in mind of, and of those before mentioned, in more words, but I will not so far wrong your godly minds as to think you heedless of these things, there being also diverse among you so well able to admonish both themselves & others of what concerneth them. These few things therefore, & the same in few words, I do earnestly commend unto your care & conscience, joining therewith my daily incessant prayers unto the Lord, that he who hath made the heavens & the earth, the sea and all rivers of waters, and whose providence is over all his works, especially over all his dear children for good, would so guide & guard you in your ways, as inwardly by his Spirit, so outwardly by the hand of his power, as that both you & we also, for & with you, may have after matter of praising his name all the days of your and our lives. Fare you well in him in whom you trust, and in whom I rest.
An unfeigned wellwiller of your happiness
success in this hopeful voyage,
John Robinson.
This letter, though large, yet being so fruitful in it self, and suitable to their occasion, I thought mete to insert in this place.
All things being now ready, & every business dispatched, the company was called together, and this letter read amongst them, which had good acceptation with all, and after fruit with many. Then they ordered & distributed their company for either ship, as they conceived for the best. And chose a Governor & 2. or 3. assistants for each ship, to order the people by the way, and see to the disposing of their provisions, and such like affairs. All which was not only with the liking of the masters of the ships, but according to their desires. Which being done, they set sail from thence about the 5th of August; but what befell them further upon the coast of England will appear in the next chapter.

Of Plymouth Plantation-AO (Ch 3)

Chapter 3 of “Of Plymouth Plantation” by William Bradford, all with modern spelling.

This is following AO’s Year 8 schedule for Week 19.

The 3. Chap

Of their settling in Holland, and their manner of living, and entertainment there

Being now come into the Low Countries, they saw many goodly & fortified cities, strongly walled and guarded with troops of armed men. Also they heard a strange & uncouth language, and beheld the different manners & customs of the people, with their strange fashions and attires; all so far differing from that of their plain country villages (wherein they were bred, & had so long lived) as it seemed they were come into a new world. But these were not the things they much looked on, or long took up their thoughts; for they had other work in hand, & another kind of war to wage & maintain. For though they saw fair & beautiful cities, flowing with abundance of all sorts of wealth & riches, yet it was not long before they saw the grim & grisly face of poverty coming upon them like an armed man, with whom they must buckle & encounter, and from whom they could not fly; but they were armed with faith & patience against him, and all his encounters; and though they were sometimes fooled, yet by God’s assistance they prevailed and got the victory.
Now when Mr. Robinson, Mr. Brewster, & other principal members were come over, (for they were of the last, & stayed to help the weakest over before them,) such things were thought on as were necessary for their settling and best ordering of the church affairs. And when they had lived at Amsterdam about a year, Mr. Robinson, their pastor, and some others of best discerning, seeing how Mr. John Smith and his company was already fallen in to contention with the church that was there before them, & no means they could use would do any good to cure the same, and also that the flames of contention were like to break out in that ancient church itself (as afterwards lamentably came to pass); which things they prudently foreseeing, thought it was best to remove, before they were any way engaged with the same; though they well knew it would be much to the prejudice of their outward estates, both at present & in likelihood in the future; as indeed it proved to be.
Their removal to Leyden:
For these & some other reasons they removed to Leyden, a fair & beautiful city, and of a sweet situation, but made more famous by the university wherewith it is adorned, in which of late had been so many learned men. But wanting that traffic by sea which Amsterdam enjoys, it was not so beneficial for their outward means of living & estates. But being now here pitched they fell to such trades & employments as they best could; valuing peace & their spiritual comfort above any other riches whatsoever. And at length they came to raise a competent & comfortable living, but with hard and continual labor.
Being thus settled (after many difficulties) they continued many years in a comfortable condition, enjoying much sweet & delightful society & spiritual comfort together in the ways of God, under the able ministry, and prudent government of Mr. John Robinson, & Mr. William Brewster, who was an assistant unto him in the place of an Elder, unto which he was now called & chosen by the church. So as they grew in knowledge & other gifts & graces of the spirit of God, & lived together in peace, & love, and holiness; and many came unto them from diverse parts of England, so as they grew a great congregation. And if at any time any differences arose, or offenses broke out (as it cannot be, but some time there will, even amongst the best of men) they were ever so mete with, and nipped in the head betimes, or otherwise so well composed, as still love, peace, and communion was continued; or else the church purged of those that were incurable & incorrigible, when, after much patience used, no other means would serve, which seldom came to pass. Yea such was the mutual love, & reciprocal respect that this worthy man had to his flock, and his flock to him, that it might be said of them as it once was of that famous Emperor Marcus Aurelious, and the people of Rome, that it was hard to judge whether he delighted more in having such a people, or they in having such a pastor. His love was great towards them, and his care was always bent for their best good, both for soul and body; for besides his singular abilities in divine things (wherein he excelled), he was also very able to give directions in civil affairs, and to foresee dangers & inconveniences; by which means he was very helpful to their outward estates, & so was every way as a common father unto them. And none did more offend him then those that were close and cleaving to themselves, and retired from the common good; as also such as would be stiff & rigged in matters of outward order, and inveigh against the evils of others, and yet be remiss in themselves, and not so careful to express a virtuous conversation. They in like manner had ever a reverent regard unto him, & had him in precious estimation, as his worth & wisdom did deserve; and though they esteemed him highly whilst he lived & labored amongst them, yet much more after his death, when they came to feel the want of his help, and saw (by woeful experience) what a treasure they had lost, to the grief of their hearts, and wounding of their souls; yea such a loss as they saw could not be repaired; for it was as hard for them to find such another leader and feeder in all respects, as for the Taborits to find another Ziska. And though they did not call themselves orphans, as the other did, after his death, yet they had cause as much to lament, in another regard, their present condition, and after usage. But to return; I know not but it may be spoken to the honor of God, & without prejudice to any, that such was the true piety, the humble zeal, & fervent love, of this people (whilst they thus lived together) towards God and his ways, and the single heartiness & sincere affection one towards another, that they came as near the primitive pattern of the first churches, as any other church of these later times have done, according to their rank & quality.
But seeing it is not my purpose to treat of the several passages that befell this people whilst they thus lived in the Low Countries, (which might worthily require a large treatise of itself,) but to make way to show the beginning of this plantation, which is that I aim at; yet because some of their adversaries did, upon the rumor of their removal, cast out slanders against them, as if that state had been weary of them, & had rather driven them out (as the heathen historians did fain of Moses & the Israelites when they went out of Egypt), then that it was their own free choice & motion, I will therefore mention a particular or two to show the contrary, and the good acceptation they had in the place where they lived. And first though many of them were poor, yet there was none so poor, but if they were known to be of that congregation, the Dutch (either bakers or others) would trust them in any reasonable matter when they wanted money. Because they had found by experience how careful they were to keep their word, and saw them so painful & diligent in their callings; yea, they would strive to get their custom, and to employ them above others, in their work, for their honesty & diligence.
Again; the magistrates of the city, about the time of their coming away, or a little before, in the public place of justice, gave this commendable testimony of them, in the reproof of the Wallons, who were of the French church in that city. These English, said they, have lived amongst us now this 12. years, and yet we never had any suit or accusation came against any of them; but your strife & quarrels are continual, &c. In these times also were the great troubles raised by the Arminians, who, as they greatly molested the whole state, so this city in particular, in which was the chief university; so as there were daily & hot disputes in the schools there about; and as the students & other learned were divided in their opinions, so were the 2. professors or divinity readers themselves; the one daily teaching for it, the other against it. Which grew to that pass, that few of the disciples of the one would hear the other teach. But Mr. Robinson, though he taught thrice a week himself, & write sundry books, besides his many fold pains otherwise, yet he went constantly to hear their readings, and heard the one as well as the other; by which means he was so well grounded in the controversy, and saw the force of all their arguments, and knew the shifts of the adversary, and being himself very able, none was fitter to buckle with them then himself, as appeared by sundry disputes; so as he began to be terrible to the Arminians; which made Episcopius (the Arminian professor) to put forth his best strength, and set forth sundry Theses, which by public dispute he would defend against all men. Now Poliander the other professor, and the chief preachers of the city, desired Mr. Robinson to dispute against him; but he was loath, being a stranger; yet the other did importune him, and told him that such was the ability and nimbleness of the adversary, that the truth would suffer if he did not help them. So as he condescended, & prepared himself against the time; and when the day came, the Lord did so help him to defend the truth & foil this adversary, as he put him to an apparent nonplus, in this great & public audience. And the like he did a 2. or 3. time, upon such like occasions. The which as it caused many to praise God that the truth had so famous victory, so it procured him much honor & respect from those learned men & others which loved the truth. Yea, so far were they from being weary of him & his people, or desiring their absence, as it was said by some, of no mean note, that were it not for giving offense to the state of England, they would have preferred him otherwise if he would, and allowed them some public favor. Yea when there was speech of their removal into these parts, sundry of note & eminency of that nation would have had them come under them, and for that end made them large offers. Now though I might allege many other particulars & examples of the like kind, to show the untruth & unlikely-hood of this slander, yet these shall suffice, seeing it was believed of few, being only raised by the malice of some, who labored their disgrace.

Violin/Viola Duet

While in the Philippines, my brother and I played a duet for our relatives. It’s an old-time favorite, and the place we’re playing in is called a “nippa-hut” and made of bamboo. It was a great experience. Enjoy the video!

(By the way, my grandfather, Lolo, shot this video. Isn’t he a good video-man?)