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Cape is made by the maine Sea on the one side, and a great Bay on the other in forme of a sickle: on it doth inhabit the people of Pawmet: and in the bottome of the Bay, the people of Chawum. Towards the South and South west of this Cape, is found a long and dangerous shoale of sands and rocks. But so farre as I incircled it, I found thirtie fadom water aboard the shore and a strong current: which makes mee think there is a Channell about this shoale; where is the best and greatest fish to be had, Winter and Summer, in all that Countrie. But, the Salvages say there is no Channell, but that the shoales beginne from the maine at Pawmet, to the Ile of Nausit; and so extends beyond their knowledge into the Sea. The next to this is Capawack, and those abounding Countries of copper, corne, people, and mineralls; which I went to discover this last yeare: but because I miscarried by the way, I will leave them, till God please I have better acquaintance with them.
The Massachusets, they report, sometimes have warres with the Bashabes of Pennobscot; and are not alwaies friends with them of Chawum and their alliants: but now they are all friends, and have each trade with other, so farre as they have societie, on each others frontiers. For they make no such voiages as from Pennobscot to Cape Cod; seldom to Massachewset. In the North (as I have said) they begunne to plant corne, whereof the South part hath such plentie, as they have what they will from them of the North; and in the Winter much more plenty of fish and foule: but both Winter and Summer hath it in the one part or other all the yeare; being the meane and most indifferent temper, betwixt heat and colde, of all the regions betwixt the Lyne and the Pole: but the furs Northward are much better, and in much more plentie, then Southward.
The remarkablest Iles and mountains for Landmarkes are these; The highest Ile or Sorico, in the Bay of Pennobscot: but the three Iles and a rock of Matinnack are much furder in the Sea; Metinicus is also three plaine Iles and a rock, betwixt it and Monahigan: Monahigan is a rounde high Ile; and close. by it Monanis, betwixt which is a small harbor where we ride. In Damerils Iles is such another: Sagadahock is knowne by Satquin, and foure or five Iles in the mouth. Smyths Iles are a heape together, none neere them, against Accominticus. The three Turks heads are three Iles seen far to Sea-ward in regard of the headland.
The cheefe headlands are onely Cape Tragabigzanda and Cape Cod.
The cheefe mountaines, them of Pennobscot: and twinkling mountaine of Aucocisco; the greate mountaine of Sasanou; and the high mountaine of Massachusit: each of which you shall finde in the Mappe; their places, formes, and altitude. The waters are most pure, proceeding from the intrals of rockie mountaines; the hearbes and fruits are of many sorts and kindes as alkermes, currans, or a fruit like currans, mulberries, vines, respices, goosberries, plummes, walnuts, chesnuts, small nuts, &c. pumpions, gourds, strawberries, beans, pease, and mayze: a kinde or two of flax, where with they make nets, lines and ropes both small and great, verie strong for their quantities.
Oke, is the chiefe wood; of which there is great difference in regard of the soyle where it groweth, firre, pyne, walnut, chestnut, birch, ash, elme, cypresse, ceder, mulberrie, plumtree, hazell, saxefrage, and many other sorts.
Eagles, Gripes, diverse sorts of Haukes, Cranes, Geese, Brants, Cormorants, Ducks, Sheldrakes, Teale, Meawes, Guls, Turkies, Dive-doppers, and many other sorts, whose names I knowe not.
Whales, Grampus, Porkpisces, Turbot, Sturgion, Cod, Hake, Haddock, Cole, Cusk, or small Ling, Shark, Mackerrell, Herring, Mullet, Base, Pinacks, Cunners, Pearch, Eels, Crabs, Lobsters, Muskles, Wilkes, Oysters, and diverse others &c.
Moos, a beast bigger than a Stagge; Deere, red, and Fallow; Bevers, Wolves, Foxes, both blacke and other; Aroughconds, Wild-cats, Beares, Otters, Martins, Fitches, Musquassus, and diverse sorts of vermine, whose names I know not. All these and divers other good things do heere, for want of use, still increase, and decrease with little diminution, whereby they growe to that abundance. You shall scarce finde any Baye, shallow shore or Cove of sand, where you may not take many Clampes, or Lobsters, or both at your pleasure, and in many places lode your boat if you please; Nor Iles where you finde not fruits, birds, crabs, and muskles, or all of them, for taking, at a lowe water. And in the harbors we frequented, a little boye might take of Cunners, and Pinacks, and such delicate fish, at the ships sterne, more than sixe or tenne can eate in a daie; but with a casting net, thousands when wee pleased and scarce any place, but Cod, Cuske, Holybut,
Mackerell, Scate, or such like, a man may take with a hooke or line what he will. And, in diverse sandy Baies, a man may draw with a net great store of Mullets, Bases, and diverse other sorts of such excellent fish, as many as his Net can drawe on shore: no River where there is not plentie of Sturgion, or Salmon, or both; all which are to be had in abundance observing but their seasons. But if a man will goe at Christmasse to gather Cherries in Kent, he may be deceived; though there be plentie in Summer: so, heere these plenties have each their seasons, as I have expressed. We for the most part had little but bread and vinegar: and though the most part of Iuly when the fishing decaied they wrought all day, laie abroade in the Iles all night, and lived on what they found, yet were not sicke: But I would wish none put himself long to such plunges; except necessitie constraine it: yet worthy is that person to starve that heere cannot live; if he have sense, strength and health: for there is no such penury of these blessings in any place, but that a hundred men may, in one houre or two, make their provisions for a day: and hee that hath experience to manage well these affaires, with fortie or thirtie honest industrious men, might well undertake (if they dwell in these parts) to subiect the Salvages, and feed daily two or three hundred men, with as good corne, fish and flesh, as the earth hath of those kindes, and yet make that labor but their pleasure: provided that they have engins, that be proper for their purposes.
Who can desire more content, that hath small meanes; or but only his merit to advance his fortune, then to tread, and plant that ground hee hath purchased by the hazard of his life? If he have but the taste of virtue, and magnanimitie, what to such a minde can bee more pleasant, then planting and building a foundation for his Posteritie, gotte from the rude earth, by Gods blessing and his owne industrie, without prejudice to any? If hee have any graine of faith or zeale in Religion, what can hee doe lesse hurtfull to any; or more agreeable to God, then to seeke to convert those poore Salvages to know Christ, and humanitie, whose labors with discretion will triple requite thy charge and paines? What so truely sutes with honour and honestie, as the discovering things unknowne? erecting Townes, peopling Countries, informing the ignorant, reforming things unjust, teaching virtue; and gaine to our Native mother-countrie a kingdom to attend her; finde imploy
ment for those that are idle, because they know not what to doe so farre from wronging any, as to cause Posteritie to remember thee; and remembering thee, ever honour that remembrance with praise?
Captain John Smith's "Description of New England" is the first book in which the country previously called North Virginia is styled New England. It was published in London in 1616, the full title being "A Description of New England: or The Observations, and Discoveries of Captain John Smith (admirall of that Country) in the North of America, in the year of our Lord 1614: with the successe of sixe ships, that went the next yeare 1615; and the accidents befell him among the French men of warre: with the proofe of the present benefit this countrey affoords: whither this present yeare, 1616, eight voluntary Ships are gone to make further tryall." Smith's map of New England was first published in this tract. It was subsequently reissued in other works of Smith, additions being made on the engraved copper plate from time to time to indicate the more recent discoveries and settlements. Many of the names which our towns and cities now bear are given on the map to prominent places on the coast, but Plymouth and Cape Anna are the only places which have retained the names thus given. Boston appears near the present York, Me., and London and Oxford where Cohasset and Scituate, Mass., now are.
Smith lett Virginia, where he had spent about two years and a half, in the autumn of 1609. On March 3, 1614, he left the Downs, with two vessels, fitted out by four London merchants and himself, for New England, where he arrived the last of April, as appears in his account here given. He was absent on this voyage about six months. He made two unsuccessful attempts to reach these shores the next year. In consideration of his labors and interest in New England colonization the Plymouth Company conferred upon him the title of Admiral of New England. Various obstacles prevented him from ever again visiting New England, but he distributed thousands of his books and maps to promote emigration.
About one-half of Smith's work is here printed, the part devoted to the description of New England. The rest is mainly a plea for colonization. There are various editions of Smith's "Description of New England," which can be consulted by the student that here used is the Boston edition of 1865, with an introduction by Charles Deane. Smith's complete works have been published in a single volume, carefully edited by Edward Arber.
THE DIRECTORS OF THE OLD SOUTH WORK,
Old South Meeting-house, Boston, Mass.
That the Queene of Englandes title to all the West Indies, or at the leaste to as moche as is from Florida to the Circle articke, is more lawfull and righte then the Spaniardes, or any other Christian Princes.
To confute the generall claime and unlawful title of the insatiable Spaniardes to all the West Indies, and to prove the justenes of her Majesties title and of her noble progenitours, if not to all, yet at leaste to that parte of America which is from Florida beyonde the Circle articke, wee are to sett downe in true order, accordinge to the juste observation of tyme, when the West Indyes, with the ilandes and continent of the same, were firste discoured and inhabited, and by what nation, and by whome. Then are wee to answer in generall and particulerly to the moste injurious and unreasonable donation graunted by Pope Alexander the Sixte, a Spaniarde borne, of all the West Indies to the Kinges of Spaine and their successors, to the greate prejudice of all other Christian Princes, but especially to the domage of the Kinges of England.
Ffor the firste pointe, wee of England have to shewe very auncient and auctenticall chronicles, written in the Welshe or Brittishe tongue, wherein wee finde that one Madock ap Owen Guyneth, a Prince of North Wales, beinge wearye of the civill warres and domesticall dissentions in his contrie, made twoo voyadges oute of Wales, and discovered and planted large