F Heritage History | Scotland's Story by H. E. Marshall
Contents 
Front Matter The Story of Prince Gathelus A Fight with the Romans The March of the Romans The Story of Saint Columba French and Scot Allies The Last of the Picts A Ploughman Wins a Battle Macbeth and Three Sisters The Murder of Banquo Thane of Fife went to England Birnam Wood at Dunsinane Malcolm Canmore Saint Margaret of Scotland The Story of Pierce-Eye Donald Bane and Duncan Alexander I—The Fierce Battle of the Standard William I—the Lion Alexander II Alexander III is Crowned The Taming of the Ravens A Lady and a Brave Knight How the King Rode Home The Maid of Norway The Siege of Berwick The Last of Toom Tabard Adventures of William Wallace The Black Parliament of Ayr The Battle of Stirling Bridge The Battle of Falkirk The Turning of a Loaf How the Bruce Struck a Blow How the King was Crowned If at First you don't Succeed The King Tries Again The Fight at the Ford The Bruce Escapes The Taking of Perth How Two Castles Were Won Castle of Edinburgh is Taken How de Bohun Met his Death The Battle of Bannockburn How the Scots Carried the War The Heart of the King The Story of Black Agnes Battle of Neville's Cross French/Scots War with England The Battle of Otterburn A Fearful Highland Tournament The Duke of Rothesay The Battle of Harlaw The Scots in France Beautiful Lady of the Garden The Poet King The Black Dinner Fall of the Black Douglases The Story of the Boyds How a Mason Became an Earl The Battle of Sauchieburn A Great Sea Fight The Thistle and Rose Flodden Field Fall of the Red Douglases Story of Johnnie Armstrong The Goodman of Ballengiech King of the Commons Mary Queen of Scots Darnley and Rizzio Mary and Bothwell The Queen Made Prisoner King's Men and Queen's Men Death of Two Queens New Scotland The King and the Covenant The Soldier Poet How the Soldier Poet Died For the Crown How the King was Restored The Church among the Hills A Forlorn Hope The Battle of Killiecrankie Glen of Weeping Fortune's Gilded Sails How the Union Jack was Made For the King over the Water Story of Smugglers Prince Charles Came Home Wanderings of Prince Charles A Greater Conqueror God Save the King

Scotland's Story - H. E. Marshall




James VI.—New Scotland

For many years, daring sailors had been making voyages into unknown seas, and many new lands had been discovered. When these sailors came home with their wonderful tales of unknown countries, those who listened to them longed to sail away to see these strange places for themselves. People who were discontented or unhappy, people who were poor, people who were restless and longed for adventures, people who were hardly treated because of their religion, all went over the seas hoping to find happiness or wealth, peace or excitement. So there arose in the New World, as it was called, a New England, a new France, a new Spain.

Scotland was a small country, and for many years brave Scotsmen had been in the habit of leaving their own land, to look for fame in other lands. In every country of Europe, they were to be found fighting other people's quarrels. But now that the New World had been discovered, there seemed to be no reason why there should not be a New Scotland, as well as a New England, where Scotsmen, instead of fighting for other countries, might work for their own.

So in 1621 A.D., James gave a large piece of land in America to a Scotsman called Sir William Alexander. He also said, that to encourage people to go to this new colony (as a new country which is peopled by an old country is called) he would make every one who would go there, and who would take with him a certain number of others, a baronet. That is, he would give the title of 'Sir' to him, and to his sons after him.

Sir William Alexander was a poet as well as a statesman, and some people laughed at him. He was not content to be King among poets, they said, he must make himself King of some New-found-land, and, like another King Arthur, he must have his knights.

In spite of much laughter, Sir William went on with his plans. He called the land Nova Scotia, which is Latin, and means New Scotland. After a good deal of delay, he got a ship fitted out and sent off to New Scotland with colonists. But it was now so late in the year, and the storms were so bad, that when they arrived at Nova Scotia, they could not land, but were driven back to Newfoundland, which lies not far off. There they landed, and the ship in which they had come went home, leaving them in that far-off country.

During the winter they had many hardships. Their minister died, and so did their blacksmith, and most of the others scattered among the people of Newfoundland, trying to earn a living by fishing.

In the spring, the ship came back with more people, and a colony was really started. They built a fort and a little town of wooden houses round it. But misfortune after misfortune came upon them, and after struggling for some years, Sir William gave up all his claim to the land to a Frenchman called de la Tour, who had married an English lady. But de la Tour promised that the colony should still belong to the King of Scotland.

The French had also colonies in America, and after this, Nova Scotia changed hands many times. Sometimes it belonged to the French, sometimes to the British, until at last, in 1713 A.D., it was given back to Britain, and has belonged to Britain ever since.

Long ago, perhaps, it has been forgotten that this was ever a Scottish colony. But the place where the first colonists built was for many years called the Scottish Fort, and the place where it stood is still pointed out. The name too of Nova Scotia remains to remind us of it. If you look on the map of Canada you will see it.

In 1625 A.D. James VI. died. He had reigned for fifty-seven years, during nineteen of which his mother, Queen Mary, still lived.

He was not in the least like any of the gallant Jameses who had gone before him. He was something of a coward, and he could not bear even to see a drawn sword. He was ugly and dirty, and it is said never washed his hands. He was clever without being truly wise, so that he has been called the 'British Solomon,' and 'the wisest fool in Christendom.'

Like James I. and James V., James VI. wrote books. In one of these books he set down his ideas of how kings ought to rule, in another, he wrote against smoking. Sir Walter Raleigh, one of Queen Elizabeth's courtiers, had made voyages into far countries and had brought back tobacco with him. It soon became the fashion to smoke. Many people thought it a strange fashion. James thought it a disgusting one, and did all he could to stop it. 'It was,' he said, 'A custom loathsome to the eye, hateful to the nose, harmful to the brain, and dangerous to the lungs.'

I am afraid that people did not pay much attention to him.