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TOBACCO FIRST CULTIVATED IN VIRGINIA.

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desired her in marriage. Powhatan consented, and with his daughter the noble-spirited prince gave his heart. He was ever after the firm and sincere friend of the colony. The powerful tribe of the Chickahominies also .sought the friendship of the English, and demanded to be called Englishmen.'

Though the marriage of Pocahontas was hailed as an auspicious event at the time, and has always been celebrated in the annals of the colony, it never operated as an example. The English and Indians would not intermarry, and the races have always remained distinct.

It was in 1613 that the famous expedition of Argall took place, which seems to have been prompted by a determination on the part of the English to assert their claim to the whole coast of America north of Virginia. In a time of profound peace, Argall sailed from Jamestown to Acadia, (Nova Scotia,) and surprised the small colony at Port Royal on the bay of Fundy. This was the oldest French settlement in North America, having been founded, as we have already observed, in 1605. He found the inhabitants engaged in their peaceful occupations, and in amity with the natives. They were, of course, totally unprepared for defence, and could not prevent Argall from seizing the ships and plundering the colony. This was the first act of aggression; which was followed by a series of disputes between France and England for the possession of the American soil. After Argall had sailed, the French returned to their settlement.

Argall, on his return, went into New York, then called New Amsterdam, where the Dutch had established a small colony, and by a show of superior force compelled the Dutch governor to submit himself and his colony to the King of England, and the governor of Virginia under him,' and to consent to the payment of a tribute. Argall then returned to Jamestown. The tribute and homage, however, were both refused when a new governor had arrived from Holland with better means of defence.

The culture of tobacco was now, for the first time, becoming an object of attention. Although the use of it was strongly opposed by the company, and by King James I, who went so far as to write a book against it; and although the effects of it were always unpleasant, at first, to persons not accustomed to it, tobacco has surmounted all opposition, Was Mr. Rolfe's example followed ? What did he accomplish in Acadia ? When did Argall's expedition take In New York ? place i

What is said of tobacco ?

TYRANNY OF ARGALL.

49 and become a regular article of commerce and consumption throughout the world.

In 1614, Sir Thomas Gates had been succeeded by Sir Thomas Dale, who sailed for England in 1616, and was succeeded by Mr. George Yeardley. His term of office lasted but one year, and he was then succeeded by Captain Argall, an able, but avaricious and tyrannical governor. He continued martial law in time of peace; and, having sentenced Mr. Brewster to death for contumely, gave occasion to the first appeal ever made from America to England. It came before the London company, by whom the sentence of Argall was reversed.

The following extract from Judge Marshall's history shows the arbitrary and vexatious nature of the laws which this governor enforced at the point of the bayonet :

• While martial law was, according to Stith, the common law of the land, the governor seems to have been the sole legislator. His general edicts mark the severity of his rule. He ordered that merchandise should be sold at an advance of twenty-five per centum, and tobacco taken in payment at the rate of three shillings per pound, under the penalty of three years' servitude to the company ; that no person should traffic privately with the Indians, or teach them the use of fire-arms, under pain of death; that no person should hunt deer or hogs without the governor's permission; that no man should shoot, unless in his own necessary defence, until a new supply of ammunition should arrive, on pain of a year's personal service; that none should go on board the ships at Jamestown without the governor's leave ; that every person should go to church on Sundays and holidays, under the penalty of slavery during the following week for the first offence, during a month for the second, and during a year and a day for the third. The rigour of this administration necessarily exciting much discontent, the complaints of the Virginians at length made their way to the company. Lord Delaware being dead, Mr Yeardley was appointed captain-general, with instructions to examine the wrongs of the colonists, and to redress them

Who became governor in 1616 ?
Who was his successor?

How did he govern?
By whom was he superseded/

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VIRGINIA ACQUIRES CIVIL FREEDOM.

CHAPTER VI.

VIRGINIA ACQUIRES CIVIL FREEDOM.

SEMBLY.

The new governor arrived in April, 1619; and began his administration by granting privileges of great importance to the colonists. He abolished the practice of labouring for the common stock of the colony, a most inconvenient and onerous method of raising a revenue; he confirmed the early planters in the possession of their estates; he removed the burdens imposed by the tyrannical Argall; and he abolished martial law.

By order of the London company, the power of the governor was limited by a council, which acquired the right to redress any wrongs which he might cornmit. Last and greatest of all, the people of the colony were admitted to à share in legislation by the institution of a COLONIAL AS

The first colonial assembly ever convened in America, assembled at Jamestown on the 19th of June, 1619. This may, therefore, be considered the birth-day of civil freedom in our country.

The members were elected by the different boroughs, and the representative or popular branch of the legislature was, therefore, called the house of burgesses, a name which it retained so long as Virginia remained a colony of England.

The entire legislature or assembly, composed of the governor, the council, and the burgesses, met together in one apartment, and there transacted the public business of the colony. The laws which they then enacted were sent to England for the approbation of the London company.

Hitherto but a small number of females had emigrated to Virginia. The colonists, therefore, could hardly be said to "have their home in the country. Those domestic ties, which attach men most firmly to the soil they inhabit, did not exist; and each man directed his thoughts towards the mother coun-try as the retreat of his old age. A new state of things now ensued by the arrival of a larke number of females, ninety

· What new privileges did Yeardley When did the first colonial assembly grant?

meet? : What was ordered by e London How were the members elected ? company ?

Who sanctioned their laws? What was the greatest of all ? What gave the Virginians homes ?

THE VIRGINIANS ACQUIRE CIVIL FREEDOM. 51 of whom were sent out from England in 1620, and sixty more the next year. Being persons of irreproachable character, they were married by the planters; and the colony thus acquired the best of all guarantees of permanence in its insti. tutions and patriotism in its citizens.

The necessity of establishing seminaries of learning was now apparent, and preparations were made for founding the college afterwards established by William and Mary.

About the same time one hundred convicts were transported from England to Virginia, being the first persons of this class sent to America by order of the government. Removed from the temptations which had been too strong for their virtue at home, and placed in a new scene of action, many of them became honest men and useful citizens.

The colonial assembly convened by Sir George Yeardley had not yet received the express sanction of the London company. This was granted July 24th, 1621, by an ordinance which may be considered as the written constitution of the colony. It was the model on which, with some modifications, the political systems of the other colonies were founded. It provided for the appointment of a governor and a permanent council by the company; it ordained a general assembly, consisting of this council, and two burgesses from each borough to be elected by the people, with power to enact laws subject to the veto of the governor and the ratification of the company in England. Orders of the court in London were not to be binding on the colony unless ratified by the general assembly-a very important concession. The trial by jury, and the other judicial rights of Englishmen, were also granted to the colonists. This constitution was brought over by Sir Francis Wyatt, who had been appointed to succeed governor Yeardley.

Thus the Virginians had acquired civil freedom. The rights, secured by this, their fourth charter, were sufficient to form the basis of complete political liberty. Representative government and trial by jury are justly regarded as the elements of freedom ; and when a community has acquired these, its future destinies depend, in great measure, on the virtue, intelligence, and patriotism of its citizens.

What provision for education was What were the provisions of the ordimade?

nance ? What new species of population ar- | Who succeeded Yeardley ? rived ?

What had the Virginians now acWhen were colonial assemblies sanc- quired ?

tioned by the London company ?

THE INDIANS.

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The year 1620, so fruitful in interesting events, was marked by one which will long exert a momentous influence on our destinies. This was the introduction of negro slavery. The commerce of Virginia, which had before been entirely monopolised by the London company, was now thrown open to free competition; and in the month of August, a Dutch man of war sailed up the James river, and landed twenty negroes, for the purpose of having them sold into slavery. Although domestic slavery was thus introduced into the colony, its increase was very slow; the traffic in slaves was almost entirely confined to the Dutch; and laws of the colony discouraged its progress by taxation.

At this period the colony was in a highly flourishing state, The inhabitants enjoyed civil rights, free commerce, peace, and domestic happiness. The cultivation of tobacco and cotton, hereafter to become so important to the southern country, had already been introduced; and the Indians, their most powerful neighbours, were their friends and allies. Indeed they had never regarded the Indians with much-apprehension. They were not supposed to be very numerous; only five thousand souls or fifteen hundred warriors being found within sixty miles of Jamestown; and the use of firearms by the English had enabled fifteen of them, headed by Smith, to put to flight seven hundred of the savages. They were therefore regarded with contempt'; and no care was taken to preserve their friendship, or guard against their enmity. A law, which had made it penal to instruct them in the use of fire-arms, had become a dead letter.

Security is too often the parent of danger. In the present instance, it was the cause of a terrible calamity. The Indians had secretly become hostile to the colonists. Powhatan, the old king, had died in 1618; and his son, Oppaconcanough, did not inherit the friendly dispositions of his father. A deliberate plan was concerted for annihilating the colony at a blow, and it nearly succeeded.

The story is thus told by an old writer :

• Upon the loss of one of their leading men, (a war captain, as they call him,) who was supposed to be justly put to death, however, their king, Oppaconcanough, appeared enraged, and in revenge laid the plot of a general massacre of the English

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