History, in general, only informs us of what bad government is. — Thomas Jefferson

Richard of Jamestown - James Otis




Disagreeable Measures of Discipline

Lest there should be any question as to whether my master intended to carry out this threat or no, William Laxon, one of the carpenters, was forthwith set to work building stocks in front of the tent where lived Master Ratcliffe, the new President of the Council. Nor was this the only change disagreeable to our gentlemen, which Captain Smith brought about. No sooner had Nicholas Skot proclaimed the order that whosoever played at bowls should be set in the stocks, than he was commanded to turn about and announce with all the strength of his lungs, so that every one in the village might hear and understand, that those who would not work should not have whatsoever to eat.

[Illustration] from Richard of Jamestown by James Otis

Verily this was a hard blow to the gentlemen of our company, who prided themselves upon never having done with their hands that which was useful.

One would have thought my master had made this rule for his own particular pleasure, for straightway those of the gentlemen who could least hold their tempers in check, gathered in the tent which Master Wingfield had taken for his own, and there agreed among themselves that if Captain Smith persisted in such brutal rule, they would overturn all the authority in the town, and end by setting the Captain himself in the stocks which William Laxon was then making. It so chanced that Master Hunt overheard these threats at the time they were made, and, like a true friend and good citizen, reported the same to Captain Smith.

Whereupon my master chose a certain number from among those of the gentlemen who had become convinced that sharp measures were necessary if we of Jamestown would live throughout the winter, commanding that they make careful search of every tent, cave, hut or house in the village, taking therefrom all that was eatable, and storing it in the log house which had been put up for the common use.

Then he appointed Kellam Throgmorton, a gentleman who was well able to hold his own against any who might attempt to oppose him, to the office of guardian of the food, giving strict orders that nothing whatsoever which could be eaten, should be given to those who did not present good proof of having done a full day's labor.

Of course the people who lay sick were excused from such order, and Master Hunt was chosen to make up a list of those who must be fed, yet who were not able to work by reason of illness.



Contents

Front Matter
Review

Who I am
Left Alone in the World
An Idle Boy
Captain Smith Comes to London
Meeting Captain Smith
Captain Smith Speaks to Me
Plans of the London Company
The Vessels of the Fleet
How I Earned my Passage
When the Fleet Set Sail
The Voyage Delayed
Nathaniel's Story
We Make Sail Again
The First Island
Captain Smith Accused
Captain Smith a Prisoner
I Attend My Master
Several Islands Visited
A Variety of Wild Game
The Tempest
The New Country Sighted
The Leader Not Known
Arrival at Chesapeake Bay
An Attack by the Savages
Reading the Company's Orders
Captain Smith on the Council
Smith Remains Aboard
Exploring the Country
People Land from the Ships
Captain Smith Proven Innocent
We Who were Left Behind
Baking Bread without Ovens
Unequal Division of Labor
Building a Home of Logs
Keeping House
Lack of Cleanliness
Cave Homes
The Golden Fever
Ducks and Oysters
Roasting Oysters
Leaning to Cook
The Sweet Potato Root
A Touch of Homesickness
Master Hunt's Preaching
Neglecting the Future
Surprised by Savages
Strengthening the Fort
Sickness and Death
Smith Gains Authority
Disagreeable Discipline
Signs of Rebellion
Second Proclamation
Building a Fortified Village
Trapping Turkeys
A Crude Kind of Chimney
Cooking a Turkey
Candles or Rushlights
The Visit of Pocahontas
Captain Kendall's Plot
Death of Captain Kendall
Captain Smith's Expedition
An Exciting Adventure
Taken Before Powhatan
Pocahontas Begs for Smith
Captain Smith's Return
A New Church
Captain Newport's Return
Gold-Seekers
A Worthless Cargo
Condition of the Colony
Tobacco
Captain Newport's Return
Gazing at the Women
Hunt Brings Great News
Captain Newport's Instructions
The Story of Roanoke
The Crowning of Powhatan
Preparing for the Future
Stealing Company Goods
What the Thieving Led To
Fear of Famine
The Unhealthful Location
Gathering Oysters
Sturgeon for Food
Turpentine and Tar
Making Clapboards
Providing for Children
Dreams of the Future
A Plague of Rats
Treachery During Smith's Absence
Captain Smith's Speech
The New Laws
The Accident
Captain Smith's Departure
The "Starving Time"
Our Courage Gives Out
Abandoning Jamestown
Lord De la Warr's Arrival
The Young Planters