Idolatry is committed, not merely by setting up false gods, but also by setting up false devils; by making men afraid of war or alcohol, or economic law, when they should be afraid of spiritual corruption and cowardice. — G. K. Chesterton

Richard of Jamestown - James Otis




Captain Smith Forced to Remain Aboard

If Master Hunt and Master Wingfield had been able to bring the others around to their way of thinking, Captain Smith would have taken his rightful place in the Council without delay. Instead of which, however, he remained on board the ship idle, when there was much that he could have done better than any other, from the day on which we came in sight of Virginia, which was the fifteenth day of April, until the twenty-sixth day of June.

[Illustration] from Richard of Jamestown by James Otis

During all this time, those of the Council who were his enemies claimed that they could prove he had laid plans to murder all the chief men, and take his place as king; but yet they did not do so, and my master refused to hold any parley with them, except that he claimed he was innocent of all wrong in thought or in act.

When the others of the fleet set off to spy out the land, my master remained aboard the ship, still being a prisoner, except so far that he wore no fetters, and I would not have left him save he had commanded me sharply, for at that time, so sore was his heart, that even a lad like me could now and then say some word which might have in it somewhat of cheer.

During this time that Captain Smith was with the company and yet not numbered as one of them, the other gentlemen explored the country, and more than once was Nathaniel Peacock allowed to accompany them, therefore did I hear much which otherwise would not have been told me.

And what happened during these two months when the gentlemen were much the same as quarreling among themselves, I shall set down in as few words as possible, to the end that I may the sooner come to that story of our life in the new village, which some called James Fort, and others James Town, after King James of England.



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