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Captain Wadsworth had slipped out during the interval of darkness
and hidden the paper in the hollow of an oak. Then he returned and took
his place among the members, looking the most innocent of all. Andros
fumed and raved and informed the assembly that their trick would avail
them nothing, since their charter government was at an end. He went back
to Boston, to be turned out of office two years later, when the precious
charter was brought from its hiding-place.

No effort was spared to preserve the historical "Charter Oak," that had
thus been made famous. It was supported and propped in every part that
showed signs of weakness, and held up its head until 1856, when a
terrific storm brought it to the ground, shattered to fragments, all of
which were carefully gathered and preserved by those fortunate enough to
obtain them.

The early division of the colonies was long marked by the fact that
Hartford and New Haven served as the two capitals of the State until
1873, when Hartford became the sole capital.


SETTLEMENT OF RHODE ISLAND.

It has been stated that when Roger Williams was banished from
Massachusetts he took refuge among the Narragansett Indians, who
occupied the country at the head of Narragansett Bay. Canonicus, the
chief, held the good man in high esteem, and presented him with a large
tract of land, which the devout Williams named "Providence" in
remembrance of the manner in which he believed God had directed him
thither. Settlers from Massachusetts followed him, and all were
hospitably received and kindly treated. The fullest religious liberty
was allowed, and even when Anne Hutchinson visited Williams, he treated
her like a sister. Williams obtained a charter in 1644 from the
Parliament and it was confirmed in 1654. The new one granted by Charles
II. in 1663 united all the colonies into one, under the name Rhode
Island and Providence Plantations. This is still the legal name of the
State, which retains its two capitals, Providence and Newport, the
Legislature meeting alternately in each. The charter of Charles II.
suited the people so well that it remained in force until 1842, when
Thomas Dorr headed a rebellion, as related hereafter, which resulted in
the establishment of a new charter.

The existence of Rhode Island was threatened by the claim of Connecticut
to all the land on the west to the shore of Narragansett Bay, while
Plymouth insisted that the land on the east to the shore of the same bay
belonged to her. Rhode Island stoutly resisted, and succeeded in 1741
and 1752 in fixing her boundaries as they are to-day, which make her the
smallest State in the Union.


SETTLEMENT OF NEW YORK.

It has been shown that Holland was more anxious to secure trade than
territory. Soon after the discovery of the Hudson, by Captain Henry
Hudson, the Dutch traders sent vessels to Manhattan Island, now
constituting the city of New York, and began bartering with the Indians.
In 1621 Holland granted the territory from Delaware Bay to the
Connecticut River to the Dutch West India Company. The name given to the
territory was New Netherland, while the settlement, which grew in time
into the metropolis of America, was called New Amsterdam. The whole
island was bought from the Indians for sixty guilders, equal to about
twenty-four dollars, a price which is considerably less than would be
demanded to-day for the site of Greater New York.

New Netherland was governed successively by Peter Minuet, Walter Van
Twiller, William Kieft, and Peter Stuyvesant, who were sent out by the
Dutch West India Company, and whose rule extended from 1626 to 1664. Of
these, Stuyvesant was by far the ablest, and he made a strong impression
on the social and political life of New Netherland. He was severe and
stubborn, however, and many of the Dutchmen found his rule so onerous
that they were rather pleased than otherwise, when the English, in 1664,
claimed the territory by right of discovery and sent out a fleet which
compelled Stuyvesant to surrender the town. The doughty old governor
stamped about New Amsterdam with his wooden leg, calling upon his
countrymen to rally and drive back the rascals, but little or no heed
was paid to his appeals.

Charles II. had granted the territory to his brother the Duke of York,
who soon after ascended the throne, thus making the colony, which
included that of New Jersey, a royal one. The Connecticut people had
settled a large part of Rhode Island, which they claimed, but the duke
was too powerful to be resisted, and Long Island became a part of New
York, as the city and province were named.

In 1673, while at war with England, Holland sent a fleet which
recaptured New York, but it was given back to England, upon the signing
of a treaty in 1674. The manner in which New Netherland was settled by
the Dutch was quite different from that of New England. Wealthy men,
termed "patroons," were granted immense tracts of laud and brought over
settlers, whose situation was much like that of the serfs of Russia.
Traces of the patroon system remained long after the Revolution, and, in
1846, caused the "Anti-Rent War," which resulted in the death of a
number of people.

The province of New York suffered greatly from misrule. The people were
not permitted to elect their own assembly until 1683, and two years
later, when the Duke of York became king, he took away the privilege.
William and Mary, however, restored it in 1691, and it remained to the
Revolution.

As a proof of the bad governorship of New York, it may be said that
there is good reason to believe that one of its rulers was interested
with the pirates who infested the coast, while another, who refused to
sign the death-warrant of two persons who had committed no serious
crime, was made drunk and then persuaded to sign the fatal paper. When
he became sober, he was horrified to find that both had been executed.


WILLIAM KIDD, THE PIRATE.

The piracy alluded to became such a scandalous blight that strenuous
measures were taken to crush it. In 1697 Captain William Kidd, a New
York shipmaster and a brave and skillful navigator, was sent to assist
in the work. After he had cruised for a while in distant waters, he
turned pirate himself. He had the effrontery to return home three years
later, believing his friends would protect him; but, though they would
have been willing enough to do so, they dared not. He was arrested,
tried in England, convicted, and hanged. Piracy was finally driven from
the American waters in 1720.

In 1740 New York was thrown into a panic by the report that the negroes
had formed a plot to burn the town. It is scarcely possible that any
such plot existed, but before the scare had passed away four whites and
eighteen negroes were hanged, and, dreadful as it may sound, fourteen
negroes were burned at the stake. In addition, nearly a hundred were
driven out of the colony.

The fine harbor and noble river emptying into it gave New York such
advantages that, by 1750, it had become one of the most important
cities on the coast, though its population was less than that of
Philadelphia. At the time named, its inhabitants numbered about 12,000,
which was less than that of Philadelphia. The province itself contained
90,000 inhabitants. The chief towns were New York, Albany, and Kingston.
Brooklyn, which attained vast proportions within the following century,
was merely a ferry station.


SETTLEMENT OF NEW JERSEY.

New Jersey, as has been stated, was originally a part of New Netherland.
As early as 1618, the Dutch erected a trading post at Bergen. All now
included in the State was granted, in 1664, by the Duke of York to Lord
John Berkeley and Sir George Carteret. Carteret was once governor of the
island of Jersey in the English Channel, and gave the name to the new
province. In the year mentioned, the first English settlement was made
at Elizabethtown, now known as Elizabeth.

[Illustration: THE FIRST FRIENDS' MEETING-HOUSE, BURLINGTON, NEW
JERSEY.]

In 1674, the province was divided into East and West Jersey, a
distinction which is preserved to some extent to the present day.
Berkeley, who owned West Jersey, sold it to a number of Quakers, some of
whom settled near Burlington. Carteret sold his part to William Penn and
eleven other Quakers. The various changes of ownership caused much
trouble with the land titles. In 1702, all the proprietors surrendered
their rights to the crown and New Jersey became a royal colony. The same
governor ruled New York and New Jersey, though those in the latter
elected their own assembly. A complete separation from New York took
place in 1738, and New Jersey remained a royal province until the
Revolution. Its location averted all troubles with the Indians. Newark,
the principal city, was settled in 1666, by emigrants from Connecticut.
Burlington, founded in 1677, was one of the capitals and Perth Amboy the
other.

[Illustration: WILLIAM PENN, THE GOOD AND WISE RULER.]

EARLY SETTLEMENTS ON THE DELAWARE.

In 1638, a number of Swedes formed the settlement of Christina on the
Delaware, near Wilmington. They bought the land from the Indians and
named it New Sweden. A second settlement, that of Chester, was made just
below the site of Philadelphia in 1643, and was the first in the present
State of Pennsylvania. The fiery Governor Stuyvesant of New
Netherland looked upon these attempts as impudent invasions of his
territory, and, filled with anger, hurried down to Delaware and captured
both. It was a matter of no moment to the thrifty Swedes, who kept on
the even tenor of their way and throve under the new government as well
as under the old. A further account of the settlement of Delaware will
be given in our history of that of Pennsylvania.

[Illustration: NOTABLE AUDIENCE IN MARYLAND TO HEAR GEORGE FOX, THE
FOUNDER OF THE "SOCIETY OF FRIENDS" OR QUAKERS.]


SETTLEMENT OF PENNSYLVANIA AND DELAWARE.

The peace-loving Quakers were among those who suffered persecution in
England for conscience sake. William Penn was the son of Admiral Penn,
who disliked the Quakers and had been a valiant officer for the English
government.



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