Richard of Jamestown - James Otis




Surprised by Savages

The fort, as it was called, had been built only of the branches of trees, and might easily have been overrun by savages bent on doing us harm.

It was while Master Wingfield, with thirty of the gentlemen, was gone to visit Powhatan's village, and the others were hunting for gold, leaving only my master and the preacher to look after the serving men and the laborers, that upward of an hundred naked savages suddenly came down upon us, counting to make an end of all who were in the town.

It was a most fearsome sight to see the brown men, their bodies painted with many colors, carrying bows and arrows, dash out from among the trees bent on taking our lives, and for what seemed a very long while our people ran here and there like ants whose nest has been broken in upon.

[Illustration] from Richard of Jamestown by James Otis

Captain Smith gave no heed to his own safety; but shouted for all to take refuge in our house of logs, while Master Hunt did what he might to aid in the defence; yet, because there had been no exercise at arms, nor training, that each should know what was his part at such a time, seventeen of the people were wounded, some grievously, and one boy, James Brumfield of whom I have already spoken, was killed by an arrow piercing his eye.



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