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The Complete Writings of Charles Dudley Warner Volume 3 by Charles Dudley Warner

Part 4 out of 7

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but tied behind as that of maids is. And the women scratch on their
bodies and limbs, with a sharp iron, pictures of fowls, fish, and
beasts, and rub into the 'drawings' lively colors which dry into the
flesh and are permanent." The "Relatyon " says the people are witty
and ingenious and allows them many good qualities, but makes this
exception: "The people steal anything comes near them; yea, are so
practiced in this art, that looking in our face, they would with
their foot, between their toes, convey a chisel, knife, percer, or
any indifferent light thing, which having once conveyed, they hold it
an injury to take the same from them. They are naturally given to
treachery; howbeit we could not find it in our travel up the river,
but rather a most kind and loving people."



On Sunday, June 21st, they took the communion lovingly together.
That evening Captain Newport gave a farewell supper on board his
vessel. The 22d he sailed in the Susan Constant for England,
carrying specimens of the woods and minerals, and made the short
passage of five weeks. Dudley Carleton, in a letter to John
Chamberlain dated Aug. 18, 1607, writes "that Captain Newport has
arrived without gold or silver, and that the adventurers, cumbered by
the presence of the natives, have fortified themselves at a place
called Jamestown." The colony left numbered one hundred and four.

The good harmony of the colony did not last. There were other
reasons why the settlement was unprosperous. The supply of wholesome
provisions was inadequate. The situation of the town near the
Chickahominy swamps was not conducive to health, and although
Powhatan had sent to make peace with them, and they also made a
league of amity with the chiefs Paspahegh and Tapahanagh, they
evidently had little freedom of movement beyond sight of their guns.
Percy says they were very bare and scant of victuals, and in wars and
dangers with the savages.

Smith says in his "True Relation," which was written on the spot, and
is much less embittered than his "General Historie," that they were
in good health and content when Newport departed, but this did not
long continue, for President Wingfield and Captain Gosnold, with the
most of the Council, were so discontented with each other that
nothing was done with discretion, and no business transacted with
wisdom. This he charges upon the "hard-dealing of the President,"
the rest of the Council being diversely affected through his
audacious command. "Captain Martin, though honest, was weak and
sick; Smith was in disgrace through the malice of others; and God
sent famine and sickness, so that the living were scarce able to bury
the dead. Our want of sufficient good food, and continual watching,
four or five each night, at three bulwarks, being the chief cause;
only of sturgeon we had great store, whereon we would so greedily
surfeit, as it cost many their lives; the sack, Aquavite, and other
preservations of our health being kept in the President's hands, for
his own diet and his few associates."

In his "General Historie," written many years later, Smith enlarges
this indictment with some touches of humor characteristic of him. He

"Being thus left to our fortunes, it fortuned that within ten days
scarce ten amongst us could either go, or well stand, such extreme
weakness and sicknes oppressed us. And thereat none need marvaile if
they consider the cause and reason, which was this: whilst the ships
stayed, our allowance was somewhat bettered, by a daily proportion of
Bisket, which the sailors would pilfer to sell, give, or exchange
with us for money, Saxefras, furres, or love. But when they
departed, there remained neither taverne, beere-house, nor place of
reliefe, but the common Kettell. Had we beene as free from all
sinnes as gluttony, and drunkennesse, we might have been canonized
for Saints. But our President would never have been admitted, for
ingrissing to his private, Oatmeale, Sacke, Oyle, Aquavitz, Beef,
Egges, or what not, but the Kettell: that indeed he allowed equally
to be distributed, and that was half a pint of wheat, and as much
barley boyled with water for a man a day, and this being fryed some
twenty-six weeks in the ship's hold, contained as many wormes as
graines; so that we might truly call it rather so much bran than
corrne, our drinke was water, our lodgings Castles in the ayre; with
this lodging and dyet, our extreme toile in bearing and planting
Pallisadoes, so strained and bruised us, and our continual labour in
the extremitie of the heat had so weakened us, as were cause
sufficient to have made us miserable in our native countrey, or any
other place in the world."

Affairs grew worse. The sufferings of this colony in the summer
equaled that of the Pilgrims at Plymouth in the winter and spring.
Before September forty-one were buried, says Wingfield; fifty, says
Smith in one statement, and forty-six in another; Percy gives a list
of twenty-four who died in August and September. Late in August
Wingfield said, "Sickness had not now left us seven able men in our
town." " As yet," writes Smith in September, "we had no houses to
cover us, our tents were rotten, and our cabins worse than nought."

Percy gives a doleful picture of the wretchedness of the colony: "Our
men were destroyed with cruel sickness, as swellings, fluxes,
burning-fevers, and by wars, and some departed suddenly, but for the
most part they died of mere famine.... We watched every three nights,
lying on the cold bare ground what weather soever came, worked all
the next day, which brought our men to be most feeble wretches, our
food was but a small can of barley, sod in water to five men a day,
our drink but cold water taken out of the river, which was at the
flood very salt, at a low tide full of shrimp and filth, which was
the destruction of many of our men. Thus we lived for the space of
five months in this miserable distress, but having five able men to
man our bulwarks upon any occasion. If it had not pleased God to put
a terror in the savage hearts, we had all perished by those wild and
cruel Pagans, being in that weak state as we were: our men night and
day groaning in every comer of the fort, most pitiful to hear. If
there were any conscience in men, it would make their hearts to bleed
to hear the pitiful murmurings and outcries of our sick men, without
relief, every night and day, for the space of six weeks: some
departing out of the world; many times three or four in a night; in
the morning their bodies trailed out of their cabins, like dogs, to
be buried. In this sort did I see the mortality of divers of our

A severe loss to the colony was the death on the 22d of August of
Captain Bartholomew Gosnold, one of the Council, a brave and
adventurous mariner, and, says Wingfield, a "worthy and religious
gentleman." He was honorably buried, "having all the ordnance in the
fort shot off with many volleys of small shot." If the Indians had
known that those volleys signified the mortality of their comrades,
the colony would no doubt have been cut off entirely. It is a
melancholy picture, this disheartened and half-famished band of men
quarreling among themselves; the occupation of the half-dozen able
men was nursing the sick and digging graves. We anticipate here by
saying, on the authority of a contemporary manuscript in the State
Paper office, that when Captain Newport arrived with the first supply
in January, 1608, "he found the colony consisting of no more than
forty persons; of those, ten only able men."

After the death of Gosnold, Captain Kendall was deposed from the
Council and put in prison for sowing discord between the President
and Council, says Wingfield; for heinous matters which were proved
against him, says Percy; for "divers reasons," says Smith, who
sympathized with his dislike of Wingfield. The colony was in very
low estate at this time, and was only saved from famine by the
providential good-will of the Indians, who brought them corn half
ripe, and presently meat and fruit in abundance.

On the 7th of September the chief Paspahegh gave a token of peace by
returning a white boy who had run away from camp, and other runaways
were returned by other chiefs, who reported that they had been well
used in their absence. By these returns Mr. Wingfield was convinced
that the Indians were not cannibals, as Smith believed.

On the 10th of September Mr. Wingfield was deposed from the
presidency and the Council, and Captain John Ratcliffe was elected
President. Concerning the deposition there has been much dispute;
but the accounts of it by Captain Smith and his friends, so long
accepted as the truth, must be modified by Mr. Wingfield's "Discourse
of Virginia," more recently come to light, which is, in a sense, a
defense of his conduct.

In his " True Relation" Captain Smith is content to say that "Captain
Wingfield, having ordered the affairs in such sort that he was hated
of them all, in which respect he was with one accord deposed from the

In the "General Historie" the charges against him, which we have
already quoted, are extended, and a new one is added, that is, a
purpose of deserting the colony in the pinnace: "the rest seeing the
President's projects to escape these miseries in our pinnace by
flight (who all this time had neither felt want nor sickness), so
moved our dead spirits we deposed him."

In the scarcity of food and the deplorable sickness and death, it was
inevitable that extreme dissatisfaction should be felt with the
responsible head. Wingfield was accused of keeping the best of the
supplies to himself. The commonalty may have believed this. Smith
himself must have known that the supplies were limited, but have been
willing to take advantage of this charge to depose the President, who
was clearly in many ways incompetent for his trying position. It
appears by Mr. Wingfield's statement that the supply left with the
colony was very scant, a store that would only last thirteen weeks
and a half, and prudence in the distribution of it, in the
uncertainty of Newport's return, was a necessity. Whether Wingfield
used the delicacies himself is a question which cannot be settled.
In his defense, in all we read of him, except that written by Smith
and his friends, he seems to be a temperate and just man, little
qualified to control the bold spirits about him.

As early as July, "in his sickness time, the President did easily
fortell his own deposing from his command," so much did he differ
from the Council in the management of the colony. Under date of
September 7th he says that the Council demanded a larger allowance
for themselves and for some of the sick, their favorites, which he
declined to give without their warrants as councilors. Captain
Martin of the Council was till then ignorant that only store for
thirteen and a half weeks was in the hands of the Cape Merchant, or
treasurer, who was at that time Mr. Thomas Studley. Upon a
representation to the Council of the lowness of the stores, and the
length of time that must elapse before the harvest of grain, they
declined to enlarge the allowance, and even ordered that every meal
of fish or flesh should excuse the allowance of porridge. Mr.
Wingfield goes on to say: "Nor was the common store of oyle, vinegar,
sack, and aquavite all spent, saving two gallons of each: the sack
reserved for the Communion table, the rest for such extremities as
might fall upon us, which the President had only made known to
Captain Gosnold; of which course he liked well. The vessels wear,
therefore, boonged upp. When Mr. Gosnold was dead, the President did
acquaint the rest of the Council with the said remnant; but, Lord,
how they then longed for to supp up that little remnant: for they had
now emptied all their own bottles, and all other that they could
smell out."

Shortly after this the Council again importuned the President for
some better allowance for themselves and for the sick. He protested
his impartiality, showed them that if the portions were distributed
according to their request the colony would soon starve; he still
offered to deliver what they pleased on their warrants, but would not
himself take the responsibility of distributing all the stores, and
when he divined the reason of their impatience he besought them to
bestow the presidency among themselves, and he would be content to
obey as a private. Meantime the Indians were bringing in supplies of
corn and meat, the men were so improved in health that thirty were
able to work, and provision for three weeks' bread was laid up.

Nevertheless, says Mr. Wingfield, the Council had fully plotted to
depose him. Of the original seven there remained, besides Mr.
Wingfield, only three in the Council. Newport was in England,
Gosnold was dead, and Kendall deposed. Mr. Wingfield charged that
the three--Ratcliffe, Smith, and Martin--forsook the instructions of
his Majesty, and set up a Triumvirate. At any rate, Wingfield was
forcibly deposed from the Council on the 10th of September. If the
object had been merely to depose him, there was an easier way, for
Wingfield was ready to resign. But it appears, by subsequent
proceedings, that they wished to fasten upon him the charge of
embezzlement, the responsibility of the sufferings of the colony, and
to mulct him in fines. He was arrested, and confined on the pinnace.
Mr. Ratcliffe was made President.

On the 11th of September Mr. Wingfield was brought before the Council
sitting as a court, and heard the charges against him. They were, as
Mr. Wingfield says, mostly frivolous trifles. According to his
report they were these:

First, Mister President [Radcliffe] said that I had denied him a
penny whitle, a chicken, a spoonful of beer, and served him with foul
corn; and with that pulled some grain out of a bag, showing it to the

Then starts up Mr. Smith and said that I had told him plainly how he
lied; and that I said, though we were equal here, yet if we were in
England, he [I] would think scorn his man should be my companion.

Mr. Martin followed with: " He reported that I do slack the service
in the colony, and do nothing but tend my pot, spit, and oven; but he
hath starved my son, and denied him a spoonful of beer. I have
friends in England shall be revenged on him, if ever he come in

Voluminous charges were read against Mr. Wingfield by Mr. Archer, who
had been made by the Council, Recorder of Virginia, the author,
according to Wingfield, of three several mutinies, as "always
hatching of some mutiny in my time."

Mr. Percy sent him word in his prison that witnesses were hired to
testify against him by bribes of cakes and by threats. If Mr. Percy,
who was a volunteer in this expedition, and a man of high character,
did send this information, it shows that he sympathized with him, and
this is an important piece of testimony to his good character.

Wingfield saw no way of escape from the malice of his accusers, whose
purpose he suspected was to fine him fivefold for all the supplies
whose disposition he could not account for in writing: but he was
finally allowed to appeal to the King for mercy, and recommitted to
the pinnace. In regard to the charge of embezzlement, Mr. Wingfield
admitted that it was impossible to render a full account: he had no
bill of items from the Cape Merchant when he received the stores, he
had used the stores for trade and gifts with the Indians; Captain
Newport had done the same in his expedition, without giving any
memorandum. Yet he averred that he never expended the value of these
penny whittles [small pocket-knives] to his private use.

There was a mutinous and riotous spirit on shore, and the Council
professed to think Wingfield's life was in danger. He says: "In all
these disorders was Mr. Archer a ringleader." Meantime the Indians
continued to bring in supplies, and the Council traded up and down
the river for corn, and for this energy Mr. Wingfield gives credit to
"Mr. Smith especially," " which relieved the colony well." To the
report that was brought him that he was charged with starving the
colony, he replies with some natural heat and a little show of
petulance, that may be taken as an evidence of weakness, as well as
of sincerity, and exhibiting the undignified nature of all this

"I did alwaises give every man his allowance faithfully, both of
corne, oyle, aquivite, etc., as was by the counsell proportioned:
neyther was it bettered after my tyme, untill, towards th' end of
March, a bisket was allowed to every working man for his breakfast,
by means of the provision brought us by Captn. Newport: as will
appeare hereafter. It is further said, I did much banquit and
ryot. I never had but one squirrel roasted; whereof I gave part
to Mr. Ratcliffe then sick: yet was that squirrel given me. I did
never heate a flesh pott but when the comon pott was so used
likewise. Yet how often Mr. President's and the Counsellors' spitts
have night and daye bene endaungered to break their backes-so, laden
with swanns, geese, ducks, etc.! how many times their flesh potts
have swelled, many hungrie eies did behold, to their great longing:
and what great theeves and theeving thear hath been in the comon
stoare since my tyme, I doubt not but is already made knowne to his
Majesty's Councell for Virginia."

Poor Wingfield was not left at ease in his confinement. On the 17th
he was brought ashore to answer the charge of Jehu [John?] Robinson
that he had with Robinson and others intended to run away with the
pinnace to Newfoundland; and the charge by Mr. Smith that he had
accused Smith of intending mutiny. To the first accuser the jury
awarded one hundred pounds, and to the other two hundred pounds
damages, for slander. "Seeing their law so speedy and cheap," Mr.
Wingfield thought he would try to recover a copper kettle he had lent
Mr. Crofts, worth half its weight in gold. But Crofts swore that
Wingfield had given it to him, and he lost his kettle: "I told Mr.
President I had not known the like law, and prayed they would be more
sparing of law till we had more witt or wealthe." Another day they
obtained from Wingfield the key to his coffers, and took all his
accounts, note-books, and "owne proper goods," which he could never
recover. Thus was I made good prize on all sides."

During one of Smith's absences on the river President Ratcliffe did
beat James Read, the blacksmith. Wingfield says the Council were
continually beating the men for their own pleasure. Read struck

For this he was condemned to be hanged; but "before he turned of the
lather," he desired to speak privately with the President, and
thereupon accused Mr. Kendall--who had been released from the pinnace
when Wingfield was sent aboard--of mutiny. Read escaped. Kendall
was convicted of mutiny and shot to death. In arrest of judgment he
objected that the President had no authority to pronounce judgment
because his name was Sicklemore and not Ratcliffe. This was true,
and Mr. Martin pronounced the sentence. In his "True Relation,"
Smith agrees with this statement of the death of Kendall, and says
that he was tried by a jury. It illustrates the general looseness of
the "General Historie," written and compiled many years afterwards,
that this transaction there appears as follows: "Wingfield and
Kendall being in disgrace, seeing all things at random in the absence
of Smith, the company's dislike of their President's weakness, and
their small love to Martin's never-mending sickness, strengthened
themselves with the sailors and other confederates to regain their
power, control, and authority, or at least such meanes aboard the
pinnace (being fitted to sail as Smith had appointed for trade) to
alter her course and to goe for England. Smiith unexpectedly
returning had the plot discovered to him, much trouble he had to
prevent it, till with store of sakre and musket-shot he forced them
to stay or sink in the river, which action cost the life of Captain

In a following sentence he says: "The President [Ratcliffe] and
Captain Archer not long after intended also to have abandoned the
country, which project also was curbed and suppressed by Smith."
Smith was always suppressing attempts at flight, according to his own
story, unconfirmed by any other writers. He had before accused
President Wingfield of a design to escape in the pinnace.

Communications were evidently exchanged with Mr. Wingfield on the
pinnace, and the President was evidently ill at ease about him. One
day he was summoned ashore, but declined to go, and requested an
interview with ten gentlemen. To those who came off to him he said
that he had determined to go to England to make known the weakness of
the colony, that he could not live under the laws and usurpations of
the Triumvirate; however, if the President and Mr. Archer would go,
he was willing to stay and take his fortune with the colony, or he
would contribute one hundred pounds towards taking the colony home.
"They did like none of my proffers, but made divers shott at uss in
the pynnasse." Thereupon he went ashore and had a conference.

On the 10th of December Captain Smith departed on his famous
expedition up the Chickahominy, during which the alleged Pocahontas
episode occurred. Mr. Wingfield's condensed account of this journey
and captivity we shall refer to hereafter. In Smith's absence
President Ratcliffe, contrary to his oath, swore Mr. Archer one of
the Council; and Archer was no sooner settled in authority than he
sought to take Smith's life. The enmity of this man must be regarded
as a long credit mark to Smith. Archer had him indicted upon a
chapter in Leviticus (they all wore a garb of piety) for the death of
two men who were killed by the Indians on his expedition. "He had
had his trials the same daie of his retourne," says Wingfield, "and I
believe his hanging the same, or the next daie, so speedy is our law
there. But it pleased God to send Captain Newport unto us the same
evening, to our unspeakable comfort; whose arrivall saved Mr. Smyth's
leif and mine, because he took me out of the pynnasse, and gave me
leave to lyve in the towne. Also by his comyng was prevented a
parliament, which the newe counsailor, Mr. Recorder, intended thear
to summon."

Captain Newport's arrival was indeed opportune. He was the only one
of the Council whose character and authority seem to have been
generally respected, the only one who could restore any sort of
harmony and curb the factious humors of the other leaders. Smith
should have all credit for his energy in procuring supplies, for his
sagacity in dealing with the Indians, for better sense than most of
the other colonists exhibited, and for more fidelity to the objects
of the plantation than most of them; but where ability to rule is
claimed for him, at this juncture we can but contrast the deference
shown by all to Newport with the want of it given to Smith.
Newport's presence at once quelled all the uneasy spirits.

Newport's arrival, says Wingfield, "saved Mr Smith's life and mine."
Smith's account of the episode is substantially the same. In his
"True Relation" he says on his return to the fort "each man with
truest signs of joy they could express welcomed me, except Mr.
Archer, and some two or three of his, who was then in my absence
sworn councilor, though not with the consent of Captain Martin; great
blame and imputation was laid upon me by them for the loss of our two
men which the Indians slew: insomuch that they purposed to depose me,
but in the midst of my miseries, it pleased God to send Captain
Newport, who arriving there the same night, so tripled our joy, as
for a while those plots against me were deferred, though with much
malice against me, which Captain Newport in short time did plainly
see." In his "Map of Virginia," the Oxford tract of 1612, Smith does
not allude to this; but in the "General Historie" it had assumed a
different aspect in his mind, for at the time of writing that he was
the irresistible hero, and remembered himself as always nearly
omnipotent in Virginia. Therefore, instead of expressions of
gratitude to Newport we read this: "Now in Jamestown they were all in
combustion, the strongest preparing once more to run away with the
pinnace; which with the hazard of his life, with Sakre, falcon and
musket shot, Smith forced now the third time to stay or sink. Some
no better than they should be, had plotted to put him to death by the
Levitical law, for the lives of Robinson and Emry, pretending that
the fault was his, that led them to their ends; but he quickly took
such order with such Lawyers, that he laid them by the heels till he
sent some of them prisoners to England."

Clearly Captain Smith had no authority to send anybody prisoner to
England. When Newport returned, April 10th, Wingfield and Archer
went with him. Wingfield no doubt desired to return. Archer was so
insolent, seditious, and libelous that he only escaped the halter by
the interposition of Newport. The colony was willing to spare both
these men, and probably Newport it was who decided they should go.
As one of the Council, Smith would undoubtedly favor their going. He
says in the "General Historie": "We not having any use of
parliaments, plaises, petitions, admirals, recorders, interpreters,
chronologers, courts of plea, or justices of peace, sent Master
Wingfield and Captain Archer home with him, that had engrossed all
those titles, to seek some better place of employment." Mr.
Wingfield never returned. Captain Archer returned in 1609, with the
expedition of Gates and Somers, as master of one of the ships.

Newport had arrived with the first supply on the 8th of January,
1608. The day before, according to Wingfield, a fire occurred which
destroyed nearly all the town, with the clothing and provisions.
According to Smith, who is probably correct in this, the fire did not
occur till five or six days after the arrival of the ship. The date
is uncertain, and some doubt is also thrown upon the date of the
arrival of the ship. It was on the day of Smith's return from
captivity: and that captivity lasted about four weeks if the return
was January 8th, for he started on the expedition December 10th.
Smith subsequently speaks of his captivity lasting six or seven

In his "General Historie" Smith says the fire happened after the
return of the expedition of Newport, Smith, and Scrivener to the
Pamunkey: "Good Master Hunt, our Preacher, lost all his library, and
all he had but the clothes on his back; yet none ever heard him
repine at his loss." This excellent and devoted man is the only one
of these first pioneers of whom everybody speaks well, and he
deserved all affection and respect.

One of the first labors of Newport was to erect a suitable church.
Services had been held under many disadvantages, which Smith depicts
in his "Advertisements for Unexperienced Planters," published in
London in 1631:

"When I first went to Virginia, I well remember, we did hang an
awning (which is an old saile) to three or foure trees to shadow us
from the Sunne, our walls were rales of wood, our seats unhewed
trees, till we cut plankes, our Pulpit a bar of wood nailed to two
neighboring trees, in foule weather we shifted into an old rotten
tent, for we had few better, and this came by the way of adventure
for me; this was our Church, till we built a homely thing like a
barne, set upon Cratchets, covered with rafts, sedge and earth, so
was also the walls: the best of our houses of the like curiosity, but
the most part farre much worse workmanship, that could neither well
defend wind nor raine, yet we had daily Common Prayer morning and
evening, every day two Sermons, and every three moneths the holy
Communion, till our Minister died, [Robert Hunt] but our Prayers
daily, with an Homily on Sundaies."

It is due to Mr. Wingfield, who is about to disappear from Virginia,
that something more in his defense against the charges of Smith and
the others should be given. It is not possible now to say how the
suspicion of his religious soundness arose, but there seems to have
been a notion that he had papal tendencies. His grandfather, Sir
Richard Wingfield, was buried in Toledo, Spain. His father, Thomas
Maria Wingfield, was christened by Queen Mary and Cardinal Pole.
These facts perhaps gave rise to the suspicion. He answers them with
some dignity and simplicity, and with a little querulousness :

"It is noised that I combyned with the Spanniards to the distruccion
of the Collony; that I ame an atheist, because I carryed not a Bible
with me, and because I did forbid the preacher to preache; that I
affected a kingdome; that I did hide of the comon provision in the

"I confesse I have alwayes admyred any noble vertue and prowesse, as
well in the Spanniards (as in other nations): but naturally I have
alwayes distrusted and disliked their neighborhoode. I sorted many
bookes in my house, to be sent up to me at my goeing to Virginia;
amongst them a Bible. They were sent up in a trunk to London, with
divers fruite, conserves, and preserves, which I did sett in Mr.
Crofts his house in Ratcliff. In my beeing at Virginia, I did
understand my trunk was thear broken up, much lost, my sweetmeates
eaten at his table, some of my bookes which I missed to be seene in
his hands: and whether amongst them my Bible was so ymbeasiled or
mislayed by my servants, and not sent me, I knowe not as yet.

"Two or three Sunday mornings, the Indians gave us allarums at our
towne. By that tymes they weare answered, the place about us well
discovered, and our devyne service ended, the daie was farr spent.
The preacher did aske me if it were my pleasure to have a sermon: hee
said hee was prepared for it. I made answere, that our men were
weary and hungry, and that he did see the time of the daie farr past
(for at other tymes bee never made such question, but, the service
finished he began his sermon); and that, if it pleased him, wee would
spare him till some other tyme. I never failed to take such noates
by wrighting out of his doctrine as my capacity could comprehend,
unless some raynie day hindred my endeavor. My mynde never swelled
with such ympossible mountebank humors as could make me affect any
other kingdome than the kingdom of heaven.

"As truly as God liveth, I gave an ould man, then the keeper of the
private store, 2 glasses with sallet oyle which I brought with me out
of England for my private stoare, and willed him to bury it in the
ground, for that I feared the great heate would spoile it.
Whatsoever was more, I did never consent unto or know of it, and as
truly was it protested unto me, that all the remaynder before
mencioned of the oyle, wyne, &c., which the President receyved of me
when I was deposed they themselves poored into their owne bellyes.

"To the President's and Counsell's objections I saie that I doe knowe
curtesey and civility became a governor. No penny whittle was asked
me, but a knife, whereof I have none to spare The Indyans had long
before stoallen my knife. Of chickins I never did eat but one, and
that in my sicknes. Mr. Ratcliff had before that time tasted Of 4 or
5. I had by my owne huswiferie bred above 37, and the most part of
them my owne poultrye; of all which, at my comyng awaie, I did not
see three living. I never denyed him (or any other) beare, when I
had it. The corne was of the same which we all lived upon.

"Mr. Smyth, in the time of our hungar, had spread a rumor in the
Collony, that I did feast myself and my servants out of the comon
stoare, with entent (as I gathered) to have stirred the discontented
company against me. I told him privately, in Mr. Gosnold's tent,
that indeede I had caused half a pint of pease to be sodden with a
peese of pork, of my own provision, for a poore old man, which in a
sicknes (whereof he died) he much desired; and said, that if out of
his malice he had given it out otherwise, that hee did tell a leye.
It was proved to his face, that he begged in Ireland like a rogue,
without a lycence. To such I would not my nam should be a

The explanation about the Bible as a part of his baggage is a little
far-fetched, and it is evident that that book was not his daily
companion. Whether John Smith habitually carried one about with him
we are not informed. The whole passage quoted gives us a curious
picture of the mind and of the habits of the time. This allusion to
John Smith's begging is the only reference we can find to his having
been in Ireland. If he was there it must have been in that interim
in his own narrative between his return from Morocco and his going to
Virginia. He was likely enough to seek adventure there, as the
hangers-on of the court in Raleigh's day occasionally did, and
perhaps nothing occurred during his visit there that he cared to
celebrate. If he went to Ireland he probably got in straits there,
for that was his usual luck.

Whatever is the truth about Mr. Wingfield's inefficiency and
embezzlement of corn meal, Communion sack, and penny whittles, his
enemies had no respect for each other or concord among themselves.
It is Wingfield's testimony that Ratcliffe said he would not have
been deposed if he had visited Ratcliffe during his sickness. Smith
said that Wingfield would not have been deposed except for Archer;
that the charges against him were frivolous. Yet, says Wingfield, "I
do believe him the first and only practiser in these practices," and
he attributed Smith's hostility to the fact that "his name was
mentioned in the intended and confessed mutiny by Galthrop." Noother
reference is made to this mutiny. Galthrop was one of those who died
in the previous August.

One of the best re-enforcements of the first supply was Matthew
Scrivener, who was appointed one of the Council. He was a sensible
man, and he and Smith worked together in harmony for some time. They
were intent upon building up the colony. Everybody else in the camp
was crazy about the prospect of gold: there was, says Smith, "no
talk, no hope, no work, but dig gold, wash gold, refine gold, load
gold, such a bruit of gold that one mad fellow desired to be buried
in the sands, lest they should by their art make gold of his bones."
He charges that Newport delayed his return to England on account of
this gold fever, in order to load his vessel (which remained fourteen
weeks when it might have sailed in fourteen days) with gold-dust.
Captain Martin seconded Newport in this; Smith protested against it;
he thought Newport was no refiner, and it did torment him "to see all
necessary business neglected, to fraught such a drunken ship with so
much gilded durt." This was the famous load of gold that proved to
be iron pyrites.

In speaking of the exploration of the James River as far as the Falls
by Newport, Smith, and Percy, we have followed the statements of
Percy and the writer of Newport's discovery that they saw the great
Powhatan. There is much doubt of this. Smith in his "True Relation
"does not say so; in his voyage up the Chickahominy he seems to have
seen Powhatan for the first time; and Wingfield speaks of Powhatan,
on Smith's return from that voyage, as one "of whom before we had no
knowledge." It is conjectured that the one seen at Powhatan's seat
near the Falls was a son of the "Emperor." It was partly the
exaggeration of the times to magnify discoveries, and partly English
love of high titles, that attributed such titles as princes,
emperors, and kings to the half-naked barbarians and petty chiefs of

In all the accounts of the colony at this period, no mention is made
of women, and it is not probable that any went over with the first
colonists. The character of the men was not high. Many of them were
"gentlemen" adventurers, turbulent spirits, who would not work, who
were much better fitted for piratical maraudings than the labor of
founding a state. The historian must agree with the impression
conveyed by Smith, that it was poor material out of which to make a



It is now time to turn to Smith's personal adventures among the
Indians during this period. Almost our only authority is Smith
himself, or such presumed writings of his companions as he edited or
rewrote. Strachey and others testify to his energy in procuring
supplies for the colony, and his success in dealing with the Indians,
and it seems likely that the colony would have famished but for his
exertions. Whatever suspicion attaches to Smith's relation of his
own exploits, it must never be forgotten that he was a man of
extraordinary executive ability, and had many good qualities to
offset his vanity and impatience of restraint.

After the departure of Wingfield, Captain Smith was constrained to
act as Cape Merchant; the leaders were sick or discontented, the rest
were in despair, and would rather starve and rot than do anything for
their own relief, and the Indian trade was decreasing. Under these
circumstances, Smith says in his "True Relation," "I was sent to the
mouth of the river, to Kegquoughtan [now Hampton], an Indian Towne,
to trade for corn, and try the river for fish." The Indians,
thinking them near famished, tantalized them with offers of little
bits of bread in exchange for a hatchet or a piece of copper, and
Smith offered trifles in return. The next day the Indians were
anxious to trade. Smith sent men up to their town, a display of
force was made by firing four guns, and the Indians kindly traded,
giving fish, oysters, bread, and deer. The town contained eighteen
houses, and heaps of grain. Smith obtained fifteen bushels of it,
and on his homeward way he met two canoes with Indians, whom he
accompanied to their villages on the south side of the river, and got
from them fifteen bushels more.

This incident is expanded in the "General Historie." After the lapse
of fifteen years Smith is able to remember more details, and to
conceive himself as the one efficient man who had charge of
everything outside the fort, and to represent his dealings with the
Indians in a much more heroic and summary manner. He was not sent on
the expedition, but went of his own motion. The account opens in
this way: "The new President [Ratcliffe] and Martin, being little
beloved, of weake judgement in dangers, and loose industrie in peace,
committed the management of all things abroad to Captain Smith; who
by his own example, good words, and fair promises, set some to mow,
others to binde thatch, some to builde houses, others to thatch them,
himselfe always bearing the greatest taske for his own share, so that
in short time he provided most of them with lodgings, neglecting any
for himselfe. This done, seeing the Salvage superfluities beginne to
decrease (with some of his workmen) shipped himself in the Shallop to
search the country for trade."

In this narration, when the Indians trifled with Smith he fired a
volley at them, ran his boat ashore, and pursued them fleeing towards
their village, where were great heaps of corn that he could with
difficulty restrain his soldiers [six or seven] from taking. The
Indians then assaulted them with a hideous noise: "Sixty or seventy
of them, some black, some red, some white, some particoloured, came
in a square order, singing and dancing out of the woods, with their
Okee (which is an Idol made of skinnes, stuffed with mosse, and
painted and hung with chains and copper) borne before them; and in
this manner being well armed with clubs, targets, bowes and arrowes,
they charged the English that so kindly received them with their
muskets loaden with pistol shot, that down fell their God, and divers
lay sprawling on the ground; the rest fled againe to the woods, and
ere long sent men of their Quiyoughkasoucks [conjurors] to offer
peace and redeeme the Okee." Good feeling was restored, and the
savages brought the English "venison, turkies, wild fowl, bread all
that they had, singing and dancing in sign of friendship till they
departed." This fantastical account is much more readable than the
former bare narration.

The supplies which Smith brought gave great comfort to the despairing
colony, which was by this time reasonably fitted with houses. But it
was not long before they again ran short of food. In his first
narrative Smith says there were some motions made for the President
and Captain Arthur to go over to England and procure a supply, but it
was with much ado concluded that the pinnace and the barge should go
up the river to Powhatan to trade for corn, and the lot fell to Smith
to command the expedition. In his "General Historie" a little
different complexion is put upon this. On his return, Smith says, he
suppressed an attempt to run away with the pinnace to England. He
represents that what food "he carefully provided the rest carelessly
spent," and there is probably much truth in his charges that the
settlers were idle and improvident. He says also that they were in
continual broils at this time. It is in the fall of 1607, just
before his famous voyage up the Chickahominy, on which he departed
December 10th--that he writes: "The President and Captain Arthur
intended not long after to have abandoned the country, which project
was curbed and suppressed by Smith. The Spaniard never more greedily
desired gold than he victual, nor his soldiers more to abandon the
country than he to keep it. But finding plenty of corn in the river
of Chickahomania, where hundreds of salvages in divers places stood
with baskets expecting his coming, and now the winter approaching,
the rivers became covered with swans, geese, ducks, and cranes, that
we daily feasted with good bread, Virginia peas, pumpions, and
putchamins, fish, fowls, and divers sorts of wild beasts as fat as we
could eat them, so that none of our Tuftaffaty humorists desired to
go to England."

While the Chickahominy expedition was preparing, Smith made a voyage
to Popohanock or Quiyoughcohanock, as it is called on his map, a town
on the south side of the river, above Jamestown. Here the women and
children fled from their homes and the natives refused to trade.
They had plenty of corn, but Smith says he had no commission to spoil
them. On his return he called at Paspahegh, a town on the north side
of the James, and on the map placed higher than Popohanock, but
evidently nearer to Jamestown, as he visited it on his return. He
obtained ten bushels of corn of the churlish and treacherous natives,
who closely watched and dogged the expedition.

Everything was now ready for the journey to Powhatan. Smith had the
barge and eight men for trading and discovery, and the pinnace was to
follow to take the supplies at convenient landings. On the 9th of
November he set out in the barge to explore the Chickahominy, which
is described as emptying into the James at Paspahegh, eight miles
above the fort. The pinnace was to ascend the river twenty miles to
Point Weanock, and to await Smith there. All the month of November
Smith toiled up and down the Chickahominy, discovering and visiting
many villages, finding the natives kindly disposed and eager to
trade, and possessing abundance of corn. Notwithstanding this
abundance, many were still mutinous. At this time occurred the
President's quarrel with the blacksmith, who, for assaulting the
President, was condemned to death, and released on disclosing a
conspiracy of which Captain Kendall was principal; and the latter was
executed in his place. Smith returned from a third voyage to the
Chickahominy with more supplies, only to find the matter of sending
the pinnace to England still debated.

This project, by the help of Captain Martin, he again quieted and at
last set forward on his famous voyage into the country of Powhatan
and Pocahontas.



We now enter upon the most interesting episode in the life of the
gallant captain, more thrilling and not less romantic than the
captivity in Turkey and the tale of the faithful love of the fair
young mistress Charatza Tragabigzanda.

Although the conduct of the lovely Charatza in despatching Smith to
her cruel brother in Nalbrits, where he led the life of a dog, was
never explained, he never lost faith in her. His loyalty to women
was equal to his admiration of them, and it was bestowed without
regard to race or complexion. Nor is there any evidence that the
dusky Pocahontas, who is about to appear, displaced in his heart the
image of the too partial Tragabigzanda. In regard to women, as to
his own exploits, seen in the light of memory, Smith possessed a
creative imagination. He did not create Pocahontas, as perhaps he
may have created the beautiful mistress of Bashaw Bogall, but he
invested her with a romantic interest which forms a lovely halo about
his own memory.

As this voyage up the Chickahominy is more fruitful in its
consequences than Jason's voyage to Colchis; as it exhibits the
energy, daring, invention, and various accomplishments of Captain
Smith, as warrior, negotiator, poet, and narrator; as it describes
Smith's first and only captivity among the Indians; and as it was
during this absence of four weeks from Jamestown, if ever, that
Pocahontas interposed to prevent the beating out of Smith's brains
with a club, I shall insert the account of it in full, both Smith's
own varying relations of it, and such contemporary notices of it as
now come to light. It is necessary here to present several accounts,
just as they stand, and in the order in which they were written, that
the reader may see for himself how the story of Pocahontas grew to
its final proportions. The real life of Pocahontas will form the
subject of another chapter.

The first of these accounts is taken from "The True Relation,"
written by Captain John Smith, composed in Virginia, the earliest
published work relating to the James River Colony. It covers a
period of a little more than thirteen months, from the arrival at
Cape Henry on April 26, 1607, to the return of Captain Nelson in the
Phoenix, June 2, 1608. The manuscript was probably taken home by
Captain Nelson, and it was published in London in 1608. Whether it
was intended for publication is doubtful; but at that time all news
of the venture in Virginia was eagerly sought, and a narrative of
this importance would naturally speedily get into print.

In the several copies of it extant there are variations in the title-
page, which was changed while the edition was being printed. In some
the name of Thomas Watson is given as the author, in others
"A Gentleman of the Colony," and an apology appears signed " T. H.,"
for the want of knowledge or inadvertence of attributing it to any
one except Captain Smith.

There is no doubt that Smith was its author. He was still in
Virginia when it was printed, and the printers made sad work of parts
of his manuscript. The question has been raised, in view of the
entire omission of the name of Pocahontas in connection with this
voyage and captivity, whether the manuscript was not cut by those who
published it. The reason given for excision is that the promoters of
the Virginia scheme were anxious that nothing should appear to
discourage capitalists, or to deter emigrants, and that this story of
the hostility and cruelty of Powhatan, only averted by the tender
mercy of his daughter, would have an unfortunate effect. The answer
to this is that the hostility was exhibited by the captivity and the
intimation that Smith was being fatted to be eaten, and this was
permitted to stand. It is wholly improbable that an incident so
romantic, so appealing to the imagination, in an age when wonder-
tales were eagerly welcomed, and which exhibited such tender pity in
the breast of a savage maiden, and such paternal clemency in a savage
chief, would have been omitted. It was calculated to lend a lively
interest to the narration, and would be invaluable as an
advertisement of the adventure.

[For a full bibliographical discussion of this point the reader is
referred to the reprint of "The True Relation," by Charles Deane,
Esq., Boston, 1864, the preface and notes to which are a masterpiece
of critical analysis.]

That some portions of "The True Relation " were omitted is possible.
There is internal evidence of this in the abrupt manner in which it
opens, and in the absence of allusions to the discords during the
voyage and on the arrival. Captain Smith was not the man to pass
over such questions in silence, as his subsequent caustic letter sent
home to the Governor and Council of Virginia shows. And it is
probable enough that the London promoters would cut out from the
"Relation" complaints and evidence of the seditions and helpless
state of the colony. The narration of the captivity is consistent as
it stands, and wholly inconsistent with the Pocahontas episode.

We extract from the narrative after Smith's departure from Apocant,
the highest town inhabited, between thirty and forty miles up the
river, and below Orapaks, one of Powhatan's seats, which also appears
on his map. He writes:

"Ten miles higher I discovered with the barge; in the midway a great
tree hindered my passage, which I cut in two: heere the river became
narrower, 8, 9 or 10 foote at a high water, and 6 or 7 at a lowe: the
stream exceeding swift, and the bottom hard channell, the ground most
part a low plaine, sandy soyle, this occasioned me to suppose it
might issue from some lake or some broad ford, for it could not be
far to the head, but rather then I would endanger the barge, yet to
have beene able to resolve this doubt, and to discharge the
imputating malicious tungs, that halfe suspected I durst not for so
long delaying, some of the company, as desirous as myself, we
resolved to hier a canow, and returne with the barge to Apocant,
there to leave the barge secure, and put ourselves upon the
adventure: the country onely a vast and wilde wilderness, and but
only that Towne: within three or foure mile we hired a canow, and 2
Indians to row us ye next day a fowling: having made such provision
for the barge as was needfull, I left her there to ride, with
expresse charge not any to go ashore til my returne. Though some
wise men may condemn this too bould attempt of too much indiscretion,
yet if they well consider the friendship of the Indians, in
conducting me, the desolatenes of the country, the probabilitie of
some lacke, and the malicious judges of my actions at home, as also
to have some matters of worth to incourage our adventurers in
england, might well have caused any honest minde to have done the
like, as wel for his own discharge as for the publike good: having 2
Indians for my guide and 2 of our own company, I set forward, leaving
7 in the barge; having discovered 20 miles further in this desart,
the river stil kept his depth and bredth, but much more combred with
trees; here we went ashore (being some 12 miles higher than ye barge
had bene) to refresh our selves, during the boyling of our vituals:
one of the Indians I tooke with me, to see the nature of the soile,
and to cross the boughts of the river, the other Indian I left with
M. Robbinson and Thomas Emry, with their matches light and order to
discharge a peece, for my retreat at the first sight of any Indian,
but within a quarter of an houre I heard a loud cry, and a hollowing
of Indians, but no warning peece, supposing them surprised, and that
the Indians had betraid us, presently I seazed him and bound his arme
fast to my hand in a garter, with my pistoll ready bent to be
revenged on him: he advised me to fly and seemed ignorant of what was
done, but as we went discoursing, I was struck with an arrow on the
right thigh, but without harme: upon this occasion I espied 2 Indians
drawing their bowes, which I prevented in discharging a french
pistoll: by that I had charged again 3 or 4 more did the 'like, for
the first fell downe and fled: at my discharge they did the like, my
hinde I made my barricade, who offered not to strive, 20 or 30
arrowes were shot at me but short, 3 or 4 times I had discharged my
pistoll ere the king of Pamauck called Opeckakenough with 200 men,
environed me, each drawing their bowe, which done they laid them upon
the ground, yet without shot, my hinde treated betwixt them and me of
conditions of peace, he discovered me to be the captaine, my request
was to retire to ye boate, they demanded my armes, the rest they
saide were slaine, onely me they would reserve: the Indian importuned
me not to shoot. In retiring being in the midst of a low quagmire,
and minding them more than my steps, I stept fast into the quagmire,
and also the Indian in drawing me forth: thus surprised, I resolved
to trie their mercies, my armes I caste from me, till which none
durst approch me: being ceazed on me, they drew me out and led me to
the King, I presented him with a compasse diall, describing by my
best meanes the use thereof, whereat he so amazedly admired, as he
suffered me to proceed in a discourse of the roundnes of the earth,
the course of the sunne, moone, starres and plannets, with kinde
speeches and bread he requited me, conducting me where the canow lay
and John Robinson slaine, with 20 or 30 arrowes in him. Emry I saw
not, I perceived by the abundance of fires all over the woods, at
each place I expected when they would execute me, yet they used me
with what kindnes they could: approaching their Towne which was
within 6 miles where I was taken, onely made as arbors and covered
with mats, which they remove as occasion requires: all the women and
children, being advertised of this accident came forth to meet, the
King well guarded with 20 bow men 5 flanck and rear and each flanck
before him a sword and a peece, and after him the like, then a
bowman, then I on each hand a boweman, the rest in file in the reare,
which reare led forth amongst the trees in a bishion, eache his bowe
and a handfull of arrowes, a quiver at his back grimly painted: on
eache flanck a sargeant, the one running alwaiss towards the front
the other towards the reare, each a true pace and in exceeding good
order, this being a good time continued, they caste themselves in a
ring with a daunce, and so eache man departed to his lodging, the
captain conducting me to his lodging, a quarter of Venison and some
ten pound of bread I had for supper, what I left was reserved for me,
and sent with me to my lodging: each morning three women presented me
three great platters of fine bread, more venison than ten men could
devour I had, my gowne, points and garters, my compas and a tablet
they gave me again, though 8 ordinarily guarded me, I wanted not what
they could devise to content me: and still our longer acquaintance
increased our better affection: much they threatened to assault our
forte as they were solicited by the King of Paspahegh, who shewed at
our fort great signs of sorrow for this mischance: the King took
great delight in understanding the manner of our ships and sayling
the seas, the earth and skies and of our God: what he knew of the
dominions he spared not to acquaint me with, as of certaine men
cloathed at a place called Ocanahonun, cloathed like me, the course
of our river, and that within 4 or 5 daies journey of the falles, was
a great turning of salt water: I desired he would send a messenger to
Paspahegh, with a letter I would write, by which they should
understand, how kindly they used me, and that I was well, lest they
should revenge my death; this he granted and sent three men, in such
weather, as in reason were unpossible, by any naked to be indured:
their cruell mindes towards the fort I had deverted, in describing
the ordinance and the mines in the fields, as also the revenge
Captain Newport would take of them at his returne, their intent, I
incerted the fort, the people of Ocanahomm and the back sea, this
report they after found divers Indians that confirmed: the next day
after my letter, came a salvage to my lodging, with his sword to have
slaine me, but being by my guard intercepted, with a bowe and arrow
he offred to have effected his purpose: the cause I knew not, till
the King understanding thereof came and told me of a man a dying
wounded with my pistoll: he tould me also of another I had slayne,
yet the most concealed they had any hurte: this was the father of him
I had slayne, whose fury to prevent, the King presently conducted me
to another kingdome, upon the top of the next northerly river, called
Youghtanan, having feasted me, he further led me to another branch of
the river called Mattapament, to two other hunting townes they led
me, and to each of these Countries, a house of the great Emperor of
Pewhakan, whom as yet I supposed to be at the Fals, to him I tolde
him I must goe, and so returne to Paspahegh, after this foure or five
dayes march we returned to Rasawrack, the first towne they brought me
too, where binding the mats in bundles, they marched two dayes
journey and crossed the River of Youghtanan, where it was as broad as
Thames: so conducting me too a place called Menapacute in Pamunke,
where ye King inhabited; the next day another King of that nation
called Kekataugh, having received some kindness of me at the Fort,
kindly invited me to feast at his house, the people from all places
flocked to see me, each shewing to content me. By this the great
King hath foure or five houses, each containing fourscore or an
hundred foote in length, pleasantly seated upon an high sandy hill,
from whence you may see westerly a goodly low country, the river
before the which his crooked course causeth many great Marshes of
exceeding good ground. An hundred houses, and many large plaines are
here together inhabited, more abundance of fish and fowle, and a
pleasanter seat cannot be imagined: the King with fortie bowmen to
guard me, intreated me to discharge my Pistoll, which they there
presented me with a mark at six score to strike therewith but to
spoil the practice I broke the cocke, whereat they were much
discontented though a chaunce supposed. From hence this kind King
conducted me to a place called Topahanocke, a kingdome upon another
river northward; the cause of this was, that the yeare before, a
shippe had beene in the River of Pamunke, who having been kindly
entertained by Powhatan their Emperour, they returned thence, and
discovered the River of Topahanocke, where being received with like
kindnesse, yet he slue the King, and tooke of his people, and they
supposed I were bee, but the people reported him a great man that was
Captaine, and using mee kindly, the next day we departed. This River
of Topahanock, seemeth in breadth not much lesse than that we dwell
upon. At the mouth of the River is a Countrey called Cuttata women,
upwards is Marraugh tacum Tapohanock, Apparnatuck, and Nantaugs
tacum, at Topmanahocks, the head issuing from many Mountains, the
next night I lodged at a hunting town of Powhatam's, and the next day
arrived at Waranacomoco upon the river of Parnauncke, where the great
king is resident: by the way we passed by the top of another little
river, which is betwixt the two called Payankatank. The most of this
country though Desert, yet exceeding fertil, good timber, most hils
and in dales, in each valley a cristall spring.

"Arriving at Weramacomoco, their Emperour, proudly lying upon a
Bedstead a foote high upon tenne or twelve Mattes, richly hung with
manie Chaynes of great Pearles about his necke, and covered with a
great covering of Rahaughcums: At heade sat a woman, at his feete
another, on each side sitting upon a Matte upon the ground were
raunged his chiefe men on each side the fire, tenne in a ranke and
behinde them as many yong women, each a great Chaine of white Beades
over their shoulders: their heades painted in redde and with such a
grave and Majeslicall countenance, as drove me into admiration to see
such state in a naked Salvage, bee kindlv welcomed me with good
wordes, and great Platters of sundrie victuals, asiuring mee his
friendship and my libertie within foure dayes, bee much delighted in
Opechan Conough's relation of what I had described to him, and oft
examined me upon the same. Hee asked me the cause of our comming, I
tolde him being in fight with the Spaniards our enemie, being over
powred, neare put to retreat, and by extreme weather put to this
shore, where landing at Chesipiack, the people shot us, but at
Kequoughtan they kindly used us, wee by signes demaunded fresh water,
they described us up the River was all fresh water, at Paspahegh,
also they kindly used us, our Pinnasse being leake wee were inforced
to stay to mend her, till Captain Newport my father came to conduct
us away. He demaunded why we went further with our Boate, I tolde
him, in that I would have occasion to talke of the backe Sea, that on
the other side the maine, where was salt water, my father had a
childe slaine, which we supposed Monocan his enemie, whose death we
intended to revenge. After good deliberation, hee began to describe
me the countreys beyond the Falles, wiih many of the rest, confirming
what not only Opechancanoyes, and an Indian which had been prisoner
to Pewhatan had before tolde mee, but some called it five days, some
sixe, some eight, where the sayde water dashed amongst many stones
and rocks, each storme which caused oft tymes the heade of the River
to bee brackish: Anchanachuck he described to bee the people that had
slaine my brother, whose death hee would revenge. Hee described also
upon the same Sea, a mighty nation called Pocoughtronack, a fierce
nation that did eate men and warred with the people of Moyaoncer, and
Pataromerke, Nations upon the toppe of the heade of the Bay, under
his territories, where the yeare before they had slain an hundred, he
signified their crownes were shaven, long haire in the necke, tied on
a knot, Swords like Pollaxes.

" Beyond them he described people with short Coates, and Sleeves to
the Elbowes, that passed that way in Shippes like ours. Many
Kingdomes hee described mee to the heade of the Bay, which seemed to
bee a mightie River, issuing from mightie mountaines, betwixt the two
seas; the people clothed at Ocamahowan. He also confirmed, and the
Southerly Countries also, as the rest, that reported us to be within
a day and a halfe of Mangoge, two dayes of Chawwonock, 6 from
Roonock, to the South part of the backe sea: he described a countrie
called Anone, where they have abundance of Brasse, and houses walled
as ours. I requited his discourse, seeing what pride he had in his
great and spacious Dominions, seeing that all hee knewe were under
his Territories.

" In describing to him the territories of Europe which was subject to
our great King whose subject I was, the innumerable multitude of his
ships, I gave him to understand the noyse of Trumpets and terrible
manner of fighting were under Captain Newport my father, whom I
intituled the Meworames which they call King of all the waters, at
his greatnesse bee admired and not a little feared; he desired mee to
forsake Paspahegh, and to live with him upon his River, a countrie
called Capa Howasicke; he promised to give me corne, venison, or what
I wanted to feede us, Hatchets and Copper wee should make him, and
none should disturbe us. This request I promised to performe: and
thus having with all the kindnes hee could devise, sought to content
me, he sent me home with 4 men, one that usually carried my Gonne and
Knapsacke after me, two other loded with bread, and one to accompanie

The next extract in regard to this voyage is from President
Wingfield's "Discourse of Virginia," which appears partly in the form
of a diary, but was probably drawn up or at least finished shortly
after Wingfield's return to London in May, 1608. He was in Jamestown
when Smith returned from his captivity, and would be likely to allude
to the romantic story of Pocahontas if Smith had told it on his
escape. We quote:

"Decem. --The 10th of December, Mr. Smyth went up the ryver of the
Chechohomynies to trade for corne; he was desirous to see the heade
of that river; and, when it was not passible with the shallop, he
hired a cannow and an Indian to carry him up further. The river the
higher grew worse and worse. Then hee went on shoare with his guide,
and left Robinson and Emmery, and twoe of our Men, in the cannow;
which were presently slayne by the Indians, Pamaonke's men, and hee
himself taken prysoner, and, by the means of his guide, his lief was
saved; and Pamaonche, haveing him prisoner, carryed him to his
neybors wyroances, to see if any of them knew him for one of those
which had bene, some two or three eeres before us, in a river amongst
them Northward, and taken awaie some Indians from them by force. At
last he brought him to the great Powaton (of whome before wee had no
knowledg), who sent him home to our towne the 8th of January."

The next contemporary document to which we have occasion to refer is
Smith's Letter to the Treasurer and Council of Virginia in England,
written in Virginia after the arrival of Newport there in September,
1608, and probably sent home by him near the close of that year. In
this there is no occasion for a reference to Powhatan or his
daughter, but he says in it: "I have sent you this Mappe of the Bay
and Rivers, with an annexed Relation of the Countryes and Nations
that inhabit them as you may see at large." This is doubtless the
"Map of Virginia," with a description of the country, published some
two or three years after Smith's return to England, at Oxford, 1612.
It is a description of the country and people, and contains little
narrative. But with this was published, as an appendix, an account
of the proceedings of the Virginia colonists from 1606 to 1612, taken
out of the writings of Thomas Studley and several others who had been
residents in Virginia. These several discourses were carefully
edited by William Symonds, a doctor of divinity and a man of learning
and repute, evidently at the request of Smith. To the end of the
volume Dr. Symonds appends a note addressed to Smith, saying:
"I return you the fruit of my labors, as Mr. Cranshaw requested me,
which I bestowed in reading the discourses and hearing the relations
of such as have walked and observed the land of Virginia with you."
These narratives by Smith's companions, which he made a part of his
Oxford book, and which passed under his eye and had his approval, are
uniformly not only friendly to him, but eulogistic of him, and
probably omit no incident known to the writers which would do him
honor or add interest to him as a knight of romance. Nor does it
seem probable that Smith himself would have omitted to mention the
dramatic scene of the prevented execution if it had occurred to him.
If there had been a reason in the minds of others in 1608 why it
should not appear in the "True Relation," that reason did not exist
for Smith at this time, when the discords and discouragements of the
colony were fully known. And by this time the young girl Pocahontas
had become well known to the colonists at Jamestown. The account of
this Chickahominy voyage given in this volume, published in 1612, is
signed by Thomas Studley, and is as follows:

'The next voyage he proceeded so farre that with much labour by
cutting of trees in sunder he made his passage, but when his Barge
could passe no farther, he left her in a broad bay out of danger of
shot, commanding none should go ashore till his returne; himselfe
with 2 English and two Salvages went up higher in a Canowe, but he
was not long absent, but his men went ashore, whose want of
government gave both occasion and opportunity to the Salvages to
surprise one George Casson, and much failed not to have cut of the
boat and all the rest. Smith little dreaming of that accident, being
got to the marshes at the river's head, 20 miles in the desert, had
his 2 men slaine (as is supposed) sleeping by the Canowe, whilst
himselfe by fowling sought them victual, who finding he was beset by
200 Salvages, 2 of them he slew, stil defending himselfe with the aid
of a Salvage his guid (whome bee bound to his arme and used as his
buckler), till at last slipping into a bogmire they tooke him
prisoner: when this news came to the fort much was their sorrow for
his losse, fewe expecting what ensued. A month those Barbarians kept
him prisoner, many strange triumphs and conjurations they made of
him, yet he so demeaned himselfe amongst them, as he not only
diverted them from surprising the Fort, but procured his own liberty,
and got himselfe and his company such estimation amongst them, that
those Salvages admired him as a demi-God. So returning safe to the
Fort, once more staied the pinnas her flight for England, which til
his returne could not set saile, so extreme was the weather and so
great the frost."

The first allusion to the salvation of Captain Smith by Pocahontas
occurs in a letter or "little booke" which he wrote to Queen Anne in
1616, about the time of the arrival in England of the Indian
Princess, who was then called the Lady Rebecca, and was wife of John
Rolfe, by whom she had a son, who accompanied them. Pocahontas had
by this time become a person of some importance. Her friendship had
been of substantial service to the colony. Smith had acknowledged
this in his "True Relation," where he referred to her as the
"nonpareil" of Virginia. He was kind-hearted and naturally
magnanimous, and would take some pains to do the Indian convert a
favor, even to the invention of an incident that would make her
attractive. To be sure, he was vain as well as inventive, and here
was an opportunity to attract the attention of his sovereign and
increase his own importance by connecting his name with hers in a
romantic manner. Still, we believe that the main motive that
dictated this epistle was kindness to Pocahontas. The sentence that
refers to her heroic act is this: "After some six weeks [he was
absent only four weeks] fatting amongst those Salvage Countries, at
the minute of my execution she hazarded the beating out of her own
braines to save mine, and not only that, but so prevailed with her
father [of whom he says, in a previous paragraph, "I received from
this great Salvage exceeding great courtesie"], that I was safely
conducted to Jamestown."

This guarded allusion to the rescue stood for all known account of
it, except a brief reference to it in his "New England's Trials" of
1622, until the appearance of Smith's "General Historie " in London,
1624. In the first edition of "New England's Trials," 1620, there is
no reference to it. In the enlarged edition of 1622, Smith gives a
new version to his capture, as resulting from "the folly of them that
fled," and says: "God made Pocahontas, the King's daughter the means
to deliver me."

The "General Historie " was compiled--as was the custom in making up
such books at the time from a great variety of sources. Such parts
of it as are not written by Smith--and these constitute a
considerable portion of the history--bear marks here and there of his
touch. It begins with his description of Virginia, which appeared in
the Oxford tract of 1612; following this are the several narratives
by his comrades, which formed the appendix of that tract. The one
that concerns us here is that already quoted, signed Thomas Studley.
It is reproduced here as "written by Thomas Studley," the first Cape
Merchant in Virginia, Robert Fenton, Edward Harrington, and I. S."
[John Smith]. It is, however, considerably extended, and into it is
interjected a detailed account of the captivity and the story of the
stones, the clubs, and the saved brains.

It is worthy of special note that the "True Relation" is not
incorporated in the "General Historie." This is the more remarkable
because it was an original statement, written when the occurrences it
describes were fresh, and is much more in detail regarding many
things that happened during the period it covered than the narratives
that Smith uses in the " General Historie." It was his habit to use
over and over again his own publications. Was this discarded because
it contradicted the Pocahontas story--because that story could not be
fitted into it as it could be into the Studley relation?

It should be added, also, that Purchas printed an abstract of the
Oxford tract in his "Pilgrimage," in 1613, from material furnished
him by Smith. The Oxford tract was also republished by Purchas in
his "Pilgrimes," extended by new matter in manuscript supplied by
Smith. The "Pilgrimes" did not appear till 1625, a year after the "
General Historie," but was in preparation long before. The
Pocahontas legend appears in the "Pilgrimes," but not in the earlier

We have before had occasion to remark that Smith's memory had the
peculiarity of growing stronger and more minute in details the
further he was removed in point of time from any event he describes.
The revamped narrative is worth quoting in full for other reasons.
It exhibits Smith's skill as a writer and his capacity for rising
into poetic moods. This is the story from the "General Historie":

"The next voyage hee proceeded so farre that with much labour by
cutting of trees in sunder he made his passage, but when his Barge
could pass no farther, he left her in a broad bay out of danger of
shot, commanding none should goe ashore till his return: himselfe
with two English and two Salvages went up higher in a Canowe, but he
was not long absent, but his men went ashore, whose want of
government, gave both occasion and opportunity to the Salvages to
surprise one George Cassen, whom they slew, and much failed not to
have cut of the boat and all the rest. Smith little dreaming of that
accident, being got to the marshes at the river's head, twentie myles
in the desert, had his two men slaine (as is supposed) sleeping by
the Canowe, whilst himselfe by fowling sought them victuall, who
finding he was beset with 200 Salvages, two of them hee slew, still
defending himself with the ayd of a Salvage his guide, whom he bound
to his arme with his garters, and used him as a buckler, yet he was
shot in his thigh a little, and had many arrowes stucke in his
cloathes but no great hurt, till at last they tooke him prisoner.
When this newes came to Jamestowne, much was their sorrow for his
losse, fewe expecting what ensued. Sixe or seven weekes those
Barbarians kept him prisoner, many strange triumphes and conjurations
they made of him, yet hee so demeaned himselfe amongst them, as he
not onely diverted them from surprising the Fort, but procured his
owne libertie, and got himself and his company such estimation
amongst them, that those Salvages admired him more than their owne
Quiyouckosucks. The manner how they used and delivered him, is as

"The Salvages having drawne from George Cassen whether Captaine Smith
was gone, prosecuting that opportunity they followed him with 300
bowmen, conducted by the King of Pamaunkee, who in divisions
searching the turnings of the river, found Robinson and Entry by the
fireside, those they shot full of arrowes and slew. Then finding the
Captaine as is said, that used the Salvage that was his guide as his
shield (three of them being slaine and divers others so gauld) all
the rest would not come neere him. Thinking thus to have returned to
his boat, regarding them, as he marched, more then his way, slipped
up to the middle in an oasie creeke and his Salvage with him, yet
durst they not come to him till being neere dead with cold, he threw
away his armes. Then according to their composition they drew him
forth and led him to the fire, where his men were slaine. Diligently
they chafed his benumbed limbs. He demanding for their Captaine,
they shewed him Opechankanough, King of Pamaunkee, to whom he gave a
round Ivory double compass Dyall. Much they marvailed at the playing
of the Fly and Needle, which they could see so plainly, and yet not
touch it, because of the glass that covered them. But when he
demonstrated by that Globe-like Jewell, the roundnesse of the earth
and skies, the spheare of the Sunne, Moone, and Starres, and how the
Sunne did chase the night round about the world continually: the
greatnesse of the Land and Sea, the diversitie of Nations, varietie
of Complexions, and how we were to them Antipodes, and many other
such like matters, they all stood as amazed with admiration.
Notwithstanding within an houre after they tyed him to a tree, and as
many as could stand about him prepared to shoot him, but the King
holding up the Compass in his hand, they all laid downe their Bowes
and Arrowes, and in a triumphant manner led him to Orapaks, where he
was after their manner kindly feasted and well used.

"Their order in conducting him was thus: Drawing themselves all in
fyle, the King in the middest had all their Peeces and Swords borne
before him. Captaine Smith was led after him by three great
Salvages, holding him fast by each arme: and on each side six went in
fyle with their arrowes nocked. But arriving at the Towne (which was
but onely thirtie or fortie hunting houses made of Mats, which they
remove as they please, as we our tents) all the women and children
staring to behold him, the souldiers first all in file performe the
forme of a Bissom so well as could be: and on each flanke, officers
as Serieants to see them keepe their orders. A good time they
continued this exercise, and then cast themselves in a ring, dauncing
in such severall Postures, and singing and yelling out such hellish
notes and screeches: being strangely painted, every one his quiver of
arrowes, and at his backe a club: on his arme a Fox or an Otters
skinne, or some such matter for his vambrace: their heads and
shoulders painted red, with oyle and Pocones mingled together, which
Scarlet like colour made an exceeding handsome shew, his Bow in his
hand, and the skinne of a Bird with her wings abroad dryed, tyed on
his head, a peece of copper, a white shell, a long feather, with a
small rattle growing at the tayles of their snaks tyed to it, or some
such like toy. All this time Smith and the King stood in the middest
guarded, as before is said, and after three dances they all departed.
Smith they conducted to a long house, where thirtie or fortie talI
fellowes did guard him, and ere long more bread and venison were
brought him then would have served twentie men. I thinke his
stomacke at that time was not very good; what he left they put in
baskets and tyed over his head. About midnight they set the meat
again before him, all this time not one of them would eat a bit with
him, till the next morning they brought him as much more, and then
did they eate all the old, and reserved the new as they had done the
other, which made him think they would fat him to eat him. Yet in
this desperate estate to defend him from the cold, one Maocassater
brought him his gowne, in requitall of some beads and toyes Smith had
given him at his first arrival] in Firginia.

"Two days a man would have slaine him (but that the guard prevented
it) for the death of his sonne, to whom they conducted him to recover
the poore man then breathing his last. Smith told them that at James
towne he had a water would doe it if they would let him fetch it, but
they would not permit that: but made all the preparations they could
to assault James towne, craving his advice, and for recompence he
should have life, libertie, land, and women. In part of a Table
booke he writ his mind to them at the Fort, what was intended, how
they should follow that direction to affright the messengers, and
without fayle send him such things as he writ for. And an Inventory
with them. The difficultie and danger he told the Salvaves, of the
Mines, great gunnes, and other Engins, exceedingly affrighted them,
yet according to his request they went to James towne in as bitter
weather as could be of frost and snow, and within three days returned
with an answer.

"But when they came to James towne, seeing men sally out as he had
told them they would, they fled: yet in the night they came again to
the same place where he had told them they should receive an answer,
and such things as he had promised them, which they found
accordingly, and with which they returned with no small expedition,
to the wonder of them all that heard it, that he could either divine
or the paper could speake. Then they led him to the Youthtanunds,
the Mattapanients, the Payankatanks, the Nantaughtacunds and
Onawmanients, upon the rivers of Rapahanock and Patawomek, over all
those rivers and backe againe by divers other severall Nations, to
the King's habitation at Pamaunkee, where they entertained him with
most strange and fearefull conjurations;

'As if neare led to hell,
Amongst the Devils to dwell.'

Not long after, early in a morning, a great fire was made in a long
house, and a mat spread on the one side as on the other; on the one
they caused him to sit, and all the guard went out of the house, and
presently came skipping in a great grim fellow, all painted over with
coale mingled with oyle; and many Snakes and Wesels skins stuffed
with mosse, and all their tayles tyed together, so as they met on the
crowne of his head in a tassell; and round about the tassell was a
Coronet of feathers, the skins hanging round about his head, backe,
and shoulders, and in a manner covered his face; with a hellish voyce
and a rattle in his hand. With most strange gestures and passions he
began his invocation, and environed the fire with a circle of meale;
which done three more such like devils came rushing in with the like
antique tricks, painted halfe blacke, halfe red: but all their eyes
were painted white, and some red stroakes like Mutchato's along their
cheekes: round about him those fiends daunced a pretty while, and
then came in three more as ugly as the rest; with red eyes and
stroakes over their blacke faces, at last they all sat downe right
against him; three of them on the one hand of the chiefe Priest, and
three on the other. Then all with their rattles began a song, which
ended, the chiefe Priest layd downe five wheat cornes: then strayning
his arms and hands with such violence that he sweat, and his veynes
swelled, he began a short Oration: at the conclusion they all gave a
short groane; and then layd downe three graines more. After that
began their song againe, and then another Oration, ever laying down
so many cornes as before, til they had twice incirculed the fire;
that done they tooke a bunch of little stickes prepared for that
purpose, continuing still their devotion, and at the end of every
song and Oration they layd downe a sticke betwixt the divisions of
Corne. Til night, neither he nor they did either eate or drinke, and
then they feasted merrily, and with the best provisions they could
make. Three dayes they used this Ceremony: the meaning whereof they
told him was to know if he intended them well or no. The circle of
meale signified their Country, the circles of corne the bounds of the
Sea, and the stickes his Country. They imagined the world to be flat
and round, like a trencher, and they in the middest. After this they
brought him a bagge of gunpowder, which they carefully preserved till
the next spring, to plant as they did their corne, because they would
be acquainted with the nature of that seede. Opitchapam, the King's
brother, invited him to his house, where with many platters of bread,
foule, and wild beasts, as did environ him, he bid him wellcome: but
not any of them would eate a bit with him, but put up all the
remainder in Baskets. At his returne to Opechancanoughs, all the
King's women and their children flocked about him for their parts, as
a due by Custome, to be merry with such fragments.

"But his waking mind in hydeous dreames did oft see wondrous shapes
Of bodies strange, and huge in growth, and of stupendious makes."

At last they brought him to Meronocomoco, where was Powhatan their
Emperor. Here more than two hundred of those grim Courtiers stood
wondering at him, as he had beene a monster, till Powhatan and his
trayne had put themselves in their greatest braveries. Before a fire
upon a seat like a bedstead, he sat covered with a great robe, made
of Rarowcun skinnes and all the tayles hanging by. On either hand
did sit a young wench of sixteen or eighteen years, and along on each
side the house, two rowes of men, and behind them as many women, with
all their heads and shoulders painted red; many of their heads
bedecked with the white downe of Birds; but everyone with something:
and a great chayne of white beads about their necks. At his entrance
before the King, all the people gave a great shout. The Queene of
Appamatuck was appointed to bring him water to wash his hands, and
another brought him a bunch of feathers, instead of a Towell to dry
them: having feasted him after their best barbarous manner they
could. A long consultation was held, but the conclusion was two
great stones were brought before Powhatan; then as many as could layd
hands on him, dragged him to them, and thereon laid his head, and
being ready with their clubs, to beate out his braines. Pocahontas,
the King's dearest daughter, when no entreaty could prevaile, got his
head in her armes, and laid her owne upon his to save him from death:
whereat the Emperour was contented he should live to make him
hatchets, and her bells, beads, and copper: for they thought him as
well of all occupations as themselves. For the King himselfe will
make his owne robes, shooes, bowes, arrowes, pots, plant, hunt, or
doe any thing so well as the rest.

'They say he bore a pleasant shew,
But sure his heart was sad
For who can pleasant be, and rest,
That lives in feare and dread.
And having life suspected, doth
If still suspected lead.'

Two days after, Powhatan having disguised himselfe in the most
fearfullest manner he could, caused Capt. Smith to be brought forth
to a great house in the woods and there upon a mat by the fire to be
left alone. Not long after from behinde a mat that divided the
house, was made the most dolefullest noyse he ever heard: then
Powhatan more like a devill than a man with some two hundred more as
blacke as himseffe, came unto him and told him now they were friends,
and presently he should goe to James town, to send him two great
gunnes, and a gryndstone, for which he would give him the country of
Capahowojick, and for ever esteeme him as his sonn Nantaquoud. So to
James towne with 12 guides Powhatan sent him. That night they
quartered in the woods, he still expecting (as he had done all this
long time of his imprisonment) every houre to be put to one death or
other; for all their feasting. But almightie God (by his divine
providence) had mollified the hearts of those sterne Barbarians with
compassion. The next morning betimes they came to the Fort, where
Smith having used the salvages with what kindnesse he could, he
shewed Rawhunt, Powhatan's trusty servant, two demiculverings and a
millstone to carry Powhatan; they found them somewhat too heavie; but
when they did see him discharge them, being loaded with stones, among
the boughs of a great tree loaded with Isickles, the yce and branches
came so tumbling downe, that the poore Salvages ran away halfe dead
with feare. But at last we regained some conference with them and
gave them such toys: and sent to Powhatan, his women, and children
such presents, and gave them in generall full content. Now in James
Towne they were all in combustion, the strongest preparing once more
to run away with the Pinnace; which with the hazard of his life, with
Sakre falcon and musketshot, Smith forced now the third time to stay
or sinke. Some no better then they should be had plotted with the
President, the next day to have put him to death by the Leviticall
law, for the lives of Robinson and Emry, pretending the fault was his
that had led them to their ends; but he quickly tooke such order with
such Lawyers, that he layed them by the heeles till he sent some of
them prisoners for England. Now ever once in four or five dayes,
Pocahontas with her attendants, brought him so much provision, that
saved many of their lives, that els for all this had starved with

'Thus from numbe death our good God sent reliefe,
The sweete asswager of all other griefe.'

His relation of the plenty he had scene, especially at Werawocomoco,
and of the state and bountie of Powhatan (which till that time was
unknowne), so revived their dead spirits (especially the love of
Pocahontas) as all men's feare was abandoned."

We should like to think original, in the above, the fine passage, in
which Smith, by means of a simple compass dial, demonstrated the
roundness of the earth, and skies, the sphere of the sun, moon, and
stars, and how the sun did chase the night round about the world
continually; the greatness of the land and sea, the diversity of
nations, variety of complexions, and how we were to them antipodes,
so that the Indians stood amazed with admiration.

Captain Smith up to his middle in a Chickahominy swamp, discoursing
on these high themes to a Pamunkey Indian, of whose language Smith
was wholly ignorant, and who did not understand a word of English, is
much more heroic, considering the adverse circumstances, and appeals
more to the imagination, than the long-haired Iopas singing the song
of Atlas, at the banquet given to AEneas, where Trojans and Tyrians
drained the flowing bumpers while Dido drank long draughts of love.
Did Smith, when he was in the neighborhood of Carthage pick up some
such literal translations of the song of Atlas' as this:

"He sang the wandering moon, and the labors of the Sun;
>From whence the race of men and flocks; whence rain and lightning;
Of Arcturus, the rainy Hyades, and the twin Triones;
Why the winter suns hasten so much to touch themselves in the ocean,
And what delay retards the slow nights."

The scene of the rescue only occupies seven lines and the reader
feels that, after all, Smith has not done full justice to it. We
cannot, therefore, better conclude this romantic episode than by
quoting the description of it given with an elaboration of language
that must be, pleasing to the shade of Smith, by John Burke in his
History of Virginia:

"Two large stones were brought in, and placed at the feet of the
emperor; and on them was laid the head of the prisoner; next a large
club was brought in, with which Powhatan, for whom, out of respect,
was reserved this honor, prepared to crush the head of his captive.
The assembly looked on with sensations of awe, probably not unmixed
with pity for the fate of an enemy whose bravery had commanded their
admiration, and in whose misfortunes their hatred was possibly

"The fatal club was uplifted: the breasts of the company already
by anticipation felt the dreadful crash, which was to bereave the
wretched victim of life: when the young and beautiful Pocahontas, the
beloved daughter of the emperor, with a shriek of terror
and agony threw herself on the body of Smith; Her hair was loose, and
her eyes streaming with tears, while her whole manner bespoke the
deep distress and agony of her bosom. She cast a beseeching
look at her furious and astonished father, deprecating his wrath, and
imploring his pity and the life of his prisoner, with all the
eloquence of mute but impassioned sorrow.

"The remainder of this scene is honorable to Powhatan. It will
remain a lasting monument, that tho' different principles of action,
and the influence of custom, have given to the manners and opinions
of this people an appearance neither amiable nor virtuous, they still
retain the noblest property of human character, the touch of pity and
the feeling of humanity.

"The club of the emperor was still uplifted; but pity had touched his
bosom, and his eye was every moment losing its fierceness; he looked
around to collect his fortitude, or perhaps to find an excuse for his
weakness in the faces of his attendants. But every eye was suffused
with the sweetly contagious softness. The generous savage no longer
hesitated. The compassion of the rude state is neither ostentatious
nor dilating: nor does it insult its object by the exaction of
impossible conditions. Powhatan lifted his grateful and delighted
daughter, and the captive, scarcely yet assured of safety, from the

"The character of this interesting woman, as it stands in the
concurrent accounts of all our historians, is not, it is with
confidence affirmed, surpassed by any in the whole range of history;
and for those qualities more especially which do honor to our nature-
-an humane and feeling heart, an ardor and unshaken constancy in her
attachments--she stands almost without a rival.

"At the first appearance of the Europeans her young heart was
impressed with admiration of the persons and manners of the
strangers; but it is not during their prosperity that she displays
her attachment. She is not influenced by awe of their greatness, or
fear of their resentment, in the assistance she affords them. It was
during their severest distresses, when their most celebrated chief
was a captive in their hands, and was dragged through the country as
a spectacle for the sport and derision of their people, that she
places herself between him and destruction.

"The spectacle of Pocahontas in an attitude of entreaty, with her
hair loose, and her eyes streaming with tears, supplicating with her
enraged father for the life of Captain Smith when he was about to
crush the head of his prostrate victim with a club, is a situation
equal to the genius of Raphael. And when the royal savage directs
his ferocious glance for a moment from his victim to reprove his
weeping daughter, when softened by her distress his eye loses its
fierceness, and he gives his captive to her tears, the painter will
discover a new occasion for exercising his talents."

The painters have availed themselves of this opportunity. In one
picture Smith is represented stiffly extended on the greensward (of
the woods), his head resting on a stone, appropriately clothed in a
dresscoat, knee-breeches, and silk stockings; while Powhatan and the
other savages stand ready for murder, in full-dress parade costume;
and Pocahontas, a full-grown woman, with long, disheveled hair, in
the sentimental dress and attitude of a Letitia E. Landon of the
period, is about to cast herself upon the imperiled and well-dressed

Must we, then, give up the legend altogether, on account of the
exaggerations that have grown up about it, our suspicion of the
creative memory of Smith, and the lack of all contemporary allusion
to it? It is a pity to destroy any pleasing story of the past, and
especially to discharge our hard struggle for a foothold on this
continent of the few elements of romance. If we can find no evidence
of its truth that stands the test of fair criticism, we may at least
believe that it had some slight basis on which to rest. It is not at
all improbable that Pocahontas, who was at that time a precocious
maid of perhaps twelve or thirteen years of age (although Smith
mentions her as a child of ten years old when she came to the camp
after his release), was touched with compassion for the captive, and
did influence her father to treat him kindly.



As we are not endeavoring to write the early history of Virginia, but
only to trace Smith's share in it, we proceed with his exploits after
the arrival of the first supply, consisting of near a hundred men, in
two ships, one commanded by Captain Newport and the other by Captain
Francis Nelson. The latter, when in sight of Cape Henry, was driven
by a storm back to the West Indies, and did not arrive at James River
with his vessel, the Phoenix, till after the departure of Newport for
England with his load of "golddust," and Master Wingfield and Captain

In his "True Relation," Smith gives some account of his exploration
of the Pamunkey River, which he sometimes calls the "Youghtamand,"
upon which, where the water is salt, is the town of Werowocomoco. It
can serve no purpose in elucidating the character of our hero to
attempt to identify all the places he visited.

It was at Werowocomoco that Smith observed certain conjurations of
the medicine men, which he supposed had reference to his fate. From
ten o'clock in the morning till six at night, seven of the savages,
with rattles in their hands, sang and danced about the fire, laying
down grains of corn in circles, and with vehement actions, casting
cakes of deer suet, deer, and tobacco into the fire, howling without
ceasing. One of them was "disfigured with a great skin, his head
hung around with little skins of weasels and other vermin, with a
crownlet of feathers on his head, painted as ugly as the devil." So
fat they fed him that he much doubted they intended to sacrifice him
to the Quiyoughquosicke, which is a superior power they worship: a
more uglier thing cannot be described. These savages buried their
dead with great sorrow and weeping, and they acknowledge no
resurrection. Tobacco they offer to the water to secure a good
passage in foul weather. The descent of the crown is to the first
heirs of the king's sisters, "for the kings have as many women as
they will, the subjects two, and most but one."

After Smith's return, as we have read, he was saved from a plot to
take his life by the timely arrival of Captain Newport. Somewhere
about this time the great fire occurred. Smith was now one of the
Council; Martin and Matthew Scrivener, just named, were also
councilors. Ratcliffe was still President. The savages, owing to
their acquaintance with and confidence in Captain Smith, sent in
abundance of provision. Powhatan sent once or twice a week "deer,
bread, raugroughcuns (probably not to be confounded with the
rahaughcuns [raccoons] spoken of before, but probably 'rawcomens,'
mentioned in the Description of Virginia), half for Smiith, and half
for his father, Captain Newport." Smith had, in his intercourse with
the natives, extolled the greatness of Newport, so that they
conceived him to be the chief and all the rest his children, and
regarded him as an oracle, if not a god.

Powhatan and the rest had, therefore, a great desire to see this
mighty person. Smith says that the President and Council greatly
envied his reputation with the Indians, and wrought upon them to
believe, by giving in trade four times as much as the price set by
Smith, that their authority exceeded his as much as their bounty.

We must give Smith the credit of being usually intent upon the
building up of the colony, and establishing permanent and livable
relations with the Indians, while many of his companions in authority
seemed to regard the adventure as a temporary occurrence, out of
which they would make what personal profit they could. The new-
comers on a vessel always demoralized the trade with the Indians, by
paying extravagant prices. Smith's relations with Captain Newport
were peculiar. While he magnified him to the Indians as the great
power, he does not conceal his own opinion of his ostentation and
want of shrewdness. Smith's attitude was that of a priest who puts
up for the worship of the vulgar an idol, which he knows is only a
clay image stuffed with straw.

In the great joy of the colony at the arrival of the first supply,
leave was given to sailors to trade with the Indians, and the new-
comers soon so raised prices that it needed a pound of copper to buy
a quantity of provisions that before had been obtained for an ounce.
Newport sent great presents to Powhatan, and, in response to the wish
of the "Emperor," prepared to visit him. "A great coyle there was to
set him forward," says Smith. Mr. Scrivener and Captain Smith, and a
guard of thirty or forty, accompanied him. On this expedition they
found the mouth of the Pamaunck (now York) River. Arriving at
Werowocomoco, Newport, fearing treachery, sent Smith with twenty men
to land and make a preliminary visit. When they came ashore they
found a network of creeks which were crossed by very shaky bridges,
constructed of crotched sticks and poles, which had so much the
appearance of traps that Smith would not cross them until many of the
Indians had preceded him, while he kept others with him as hostages.
Three hundred savages conducted him to Powhatan, who received him in
great state. Before his house were ranged forty or fifty great
platters of fine bread. Entering his house, "with loude tunes they
made all signs of great joy." In the first account Powhatan is
represented as surrounded by his principal women and chief men, "as
upon a throne at the upper end of the house, with such majesty as I
cannot express, nor yet have often seen, either in Pagan or
Christian." In the later account he is "sitting upon his bed of
mats, his pillow of leather embroidered (after their rude manner with
pearls and white beads), his attire a fair robe of skins as large as
an Irish mantel; at his head and feet a handsome young woman; on each
side of his house sat twenty of his concubines, their heads and
shoulders painted red, with a great chain of white beads about each
of their necks. Before those sat his chiefest men in like order in
his arbor-like house." This is the scene that figures in the old
copper-plate engravings. The Emperor welcomed Smith with a kind
countenance, caused him to sit beside him, and with pretty discourse
they renewed their old acquaintance. Smith presented him with a suit
of red cloth, a white greyhound, and a hat. The Queen of Apamatuc, a
comely young savage, brought him water, a turkeycock, and bread to
eat. Powhatan professed great content with Smith, but desired to see
his father, Captain Newport. He inquired also with a merry
countenance after the piece of ordnance that Smith had promised to
send him, and Smith, with equal jocularity, replied that he had
offered the men four demi-culverins, which they found too heavy to
carry. This night they quartered with Powhatan, and were liberally
feasted, and entertained with singing, dancing, and orations.

The next day Captain Newport came ashore. The two monarchs exchanged
presents. Newport gave Powhatan a white boy thirteen years old,
named Thomas Savage. This boy remained with the Indians and served
the colony many years as an interpreter. Powhatan gave Newport in
return a bag of beans and an Indian named Namontack for his servant.
Three or four days they remained, feasting, dancing, and trading with
the Indians.

In trade the wily savage was more than a match for Newport. He
affected great dignity; it was unworthy such great werowances to
dicker; it was not agreeable to his greatness in a peddling manner to
trade for trifles; let the great Newport lay down his commodities all
together, and Powhatan would take what he wished, and recompense him
with a proper return. Smith, who knew the Indians and their
ostentation, told Newport that the intention was to cheat him, but
his interference was resented. The result justified Smith's
suspicion. Newport received but four bushels of corn when he should
have had twenty hogsheads. Smith then tried his hand at a trade.
With a few blue beads, which he represented as of a rare substance,
the color of the skies, and worn by the greatest kings in the world,
he so inflamed the desire of Powhatan that he was half mad to possess
such strange jewels, and gave for them 200 to 300 bushels of corn,
"and yet," says Smith, "parted good friends."

At this time Powhatan, knowing that they desired to invade or explore
Monacan, the country above the Falls, proposed an expedition, with
men and boats, and "this faire tale had almost made Captain Newport
undertake by this means to discover the South Sea," a project which
the adventurers had always in mind. On this expedition they
sojourned also with the King of Pamaunke.

Captain Newport returned to England on the 10th of April. Mr.
Scrivener and Captain Smith were now in fact the sustainers of the
colony. They made short expeditions of exploration. Powhatan and
other chiefs still professed friendship and sent presents, but the
Indians grew more and more offensive, lurking about and stealing all
they could lay hands on. Several of them were caught and confined in
the fort, and, guarded, were conducted to the morning and evening
prayers. By threats and slight torture, the captives were made to
confess the hostile intentions of Powhatan and the other chiefs,
which was to steal their weapons and then overpower the colony.
Rigorous measures were needed to keep the Indians in check, but the
command from England not to offend the savages was so strict that
Smith dared not chastise them as they deserved. The history of the
colony all this spring of 1608 is one of labor and discontent, of
constant annoyance from the Indians, and expectations of attacks. On
the 20th of April, while they were hewing trees and setting corn, an
alarm was given which sent them all to their arms. Fright was turned
into joy by the sight of the Phoenix, with Captain Nelson and his
company, who had been for three months detained in the West Indies,
and given up for lost.

Being thus re-enforced, Smith and Scrivener desired to explore the
country above the Falls, and got ready an expedition. But this,
Martin, who was only intent upon loading the return ship with "his
phantastical gold," opposed, and Nelson did not think he had
authority to allow it, unless they would bind themselves to pay the
hire of the ships. The project was therefore abandoned. The Indians
continued their depredations. Messages daily passed between the fort
and the Indians, and treachery was always expected. About this time
the boy Thomas Savage was returned, with his chest and clothing.

The colony had now several of the Indians detained in the fort. At
this point in the "True Relation " occurs the first mention of
Pocahontas. Smith says: "Powhatan, understanding we detained certain
Salvages, sent his daughter, a child of tenne years old, which not
only for feature, countenance, and proportion much exceeded any of
his people, but for wit and spirit, the only nonpareil of his
country.' She was accompanied by his trusty messenger Rawhunt, a
crafty and deformed savage, who assured Smith how much Powhatan loved
and respected him and, that he should not doubt his kindness, had sen
his child, whom he most esteemed, to see him, and a deer, and bread
besides for a present; "desiring us that the boy might come again,
which he loved exceedingly, his little daughter he had taught this
lesson also: not taking notice at all of the Indians that had been
prisoners three days, till that morning that she saw their fathers
and friends come quietly and in good terms to entreat their liberty."

Opechancanough (the King of "Pamauk") also sent asking the release of
two that were his friends; and others, apparently with confidence in
the whites, came begging for the release of the prisoners. "In the
afternoon they being gone, we guarded them [the prisoners] as before
to the church, and after prayer gave them to Pocahuntas, the King's
daughter, in regard to her father's kindness in sending her: after
having well fed them, as all the time of their imprisonment, we gave
them their bows, arrows, or what else they had, and with much content
sent them packing; Pocahuntas, also, we requited with such trifles as
contented her, to tell that we had used the Paspaheyans very kindly
in so releasing them."

This account would show that Pocahontas was a child of uncommon
dignity and self-control for her age. In his letter to Queen Anne,
written in 1616, he speaks of her as aged twelve or thirteen at the
time of his captivity, several months before this visit to the fort.

The colonists still had reasons to fear ambuscades from the savages
lurking about in the woods. One day a Paspahean came with a
glittering mineral stone, and said he could show them great abundance
of it. Smith went to look for this mine, but was led about hither
and thither in the woods till he lost his patience and was convinced
that the Indian was fooling him, when he gave him twenty lashes with
a rope, handed him his bows and arrows, told him to shoot if he
dared, and let him go. Smith had a prompt way with the Indians. He
always traded "squarely" with them, kept his promises, and never
hesitated to attack or punish them when they deserved it. They
feared and respected him.

The colony was now in fair condition, in good health, and contented;
and it was believed, though the belief was not well founded, that
they would have lasting peace with the Indians. Captain Nelson's
ship, the Phoenix, was freighted with cedar wood, and was despatched
for England June 8, 1608. Captain Martin, "always sickly and
unserviceable, and desirous to enjoy the credit of his supposed art
of finding the gold mine," took passage. Captain Nelson probably
carried Smith's "True Relation."



On the same, day that Nelson sailed for England, Smith set out to
explore the Chesapeake, accompanying the Phoenix as far as Cape
Henry, in a barge of about three tons. With him went Dr. Walter
Russell, six gentlemen, and seven soldiers. The narrative of the
voyage is signed by Dr. Russell, Thomas Momford, gentleman, and Anas
Todkill, soldier. Master Scrivener remained at the fort, where his
presence was needed to keep in check the prodigal waste of the stores
upon his parasites by President Ratcliffe.

The expedition crossed the bay at "Smith's Isles," named after the
Captain, touched at Cape Charles, and coasted along the eastern
shore. Two stout savages hailed them from Cape Charles, and directed
them to Accomack, whose king proved to be the most comely and civil
savage they had yet encountered.

He told them of a strange accident that had happened. The parents of
two children who had died were moved by some phantasy to revisit
their dead carcasses, "whose benumbed bodies reflected to the eyes of
the beholders such delightful countenances as though they had
regained their vital spirits." This miracle drew a great part of the
King's people to behold them, nearly all of whom died shortly
afterward. These people spoke the language of Powhatan. Smith
explored the bays, isles, and islets, searching for harbors and
places of habitation. He was a born explorer and geographer, as his
remarkable map of Virginia sufficiently testifies. The company was
much tossed about in the rough waves of the bay, and had great
difficulty in procuring drinking-water. They entered the
Wighcocomoco, on the east side, where the natives first threatened
and then received them with songs, dancing, and mirth. A point on
the mainland where they found a pond of fresh water they named "Poynt
Ployer in honer of the most honorable house of Monsay, in Britaine,
that in an extreme extremitie once relieved our Captain." This
reference to the Earl of Ployer, who was kind to Smith in his youth,
is only an instance of the care with which he edited these narratives
of his own exploits, which were nominally written by his companions.

The explorers were now assailed with violent storms, and at last took
refuge for two days on some uninhabited islands, which by reason of
the ill weather and the hurly-burly of thunder, lightning, wind, and
rain, they called "Limbo." Repairing their torn sails with their
shirts, they sailed for the mainland on the east, and ran into a
river called Cuskarawook (perhaps the present Annomessie), where the
inhabitants received them with showers of arrows, ascending the trees
and shooting at them. The next day a crowd came dancing to the
shore, making friendly signs, but Smith, suspecting villainy,
discharged his muskets into them. Landing toward evening, the
explorers found many baskets and much blood, but no savages. The
following day, savages to the number, the account wildly says, of two
or three thousand, came to visit them, and were very friendly. These
tribes Smith calls the Sarapinagh, Nause, Arseek, and Nantaquak, and
says they are the best merchants of that coast. They told him of a
great nation, called the Massawomeks, of whom he set out in search,
passing by the Limbo, and coasting the west side of Chesapeake Bay.
The people on the east side he describes as of small stature.

They anchored at night at a place called Richard's Cliffs, north of
the Pawtuxet, and from thence went on till they reached the first
river navigable for ships, which they named the Bolus, and which by
its position on Smith's map may be the Severn or the Patapsco.

The men now, having been kept at the oars ten days, tossed about by
storms, and with nothing to eat but bread rotten from the wet,
supposed that the Captain would turn about and go home. But he
reminded them how the company of Ralph Lane, in like circumstances,
importuned him to proceed with the discovery of Moratico, alleging
that they had yet a dog that boiled with sassafrks leaves would
richly feed them. He could not think of returning yet, for they were
scarce able to say where they had been, nor had yet heard of what
they were sent to seek. He exhorted them to abandon their childish
fear of being lost in these unknown, large waters, but he assured
them that return he would not, till he had seen the Massawomeks and
found the Patowomek.

On the 16th of June they discovered the River Patowomek (Potomac),
seven miles broad at the mouth, up which they sailed thirty miles
before they encountered any inhabitants. Four savages at length
appeared and conducted them up a creek where were three or four
thousand in ambush, "so strangely painted, grimed, and disguised,
shouting, yelling, and crying as so many spirits from hell could not
have showed more terrible." But the discharge of the firearms and
the echo in the forest so appeased their fury that they threw down
their bows, exchanged hostages, and kindly used the strangers. The
Indians told him that Powhatan had commanded them to betray them, and
the serious charge is added that Powhatan, "so directed from the
discontents at Jamestown because our Captain did cause them to stay
in their country against their wills." This reveals the suspicion
and thoroughly bad feeling existing among the colonists.

The expedition went up the river to a village called Patowomek, and
thence rowed up a little River Quiyough (Acquia Creek?) in search of
a mountain of antimony, which they found. The savages put this
antimony up in little bags and sold it all over the country to paint
their bodies and faces, which made them look like Blackamoors dusted
over with silver. Some bags of this they carried away, and also
collected a good amount of furs of otters, bears, martens, and minks.
Fish were abundant, "lying so thick with their heads above water, as
for want of nets (our barge driving among them) we attempted to catch
them with a frying-pan; but we found it a bad instrument to catch
fish with; neither better fish, more plenty, nor more variety for
small fish, had any of us ever seen in any place, so swimming in the
water, but they are not to be caught with frying-pans."

In all his encounters and quarrels with the treacherous savages Smith
lost not a man; it was his habit when he encountered a body of them
to demand their bows, arrows, swords, and furs, and a child or two as

Having finished his discovery he returned. Passing the mouth of the
Rappahannock, by some called the Tappahannock, where in shoal water
were many fish lurking in the weeds, Smith had his first experience
of the Stingray. It chanced that the Captain took one of these fish
from his sword, "not knowing her condition, being much the fashion of
a Thornbeck, but a long tayle like a riding rodde whereon the middest
is a most poysonne sting of two or three inches long, bearded like a
saw on each side, which she struck into the wrist of his arme neare
an inch and a half." The arm and shoulder swelled so much, and the
torment was so great, that "we all with much sorrow concluded his
funerale, and prepared his grave in an island by, as himself
directed." But it " pleased God by a precious oyle Dr. Russell
applied to it that his tormenting paine was so assuged that he ate of
that fish to his supper."

Setting sail for Jamestown, and arriving at Kecoughtan, the sight of
the furs and other plunder, and of Captain Smith wounded, led the
Indians to think that he had been at war with the Massawomeks; which
opinion Smith encouraged. They reached Jamestown July 21st, in fine
spirits, to find the colony in a mutinous condition, the last
arrivals all sick, and the others on the point of revenging
themselves on the silly President, who had brought them all to misery
by his riotous consumption of the stores, and by forcing them to work
on an unnecessary pleasure-house for himself in the woods. They were
somewhat appeased by the good news of the discovery, and in the
belief that their bay stretched into the South Sea; and submitted on
condition that Ratclifte should be deposed and Captain Smith take
upon himself the government, "as by course it did belong." He
consented, but substituted Mr. Scrivener, his dear friend, in the
presidency, distributed the provisions, appointed honest men to
assist Mr. Scrivener, and set out on the 24th, with twelve men, to
finish his discovery.

He passed by the Patowomek River and hasted to the River Bolus, which
he had before visited. Pn the bay they fell in with seven or eight
canoes full of the renowned Massawomeks, with whom they had a fight,
but at length these savages became friendly and gave them bows,
arrows, and skins. They were at war with the Tockwoghes. Proceeding
up the River Tockwogh, the latter Indians received them with

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