Front Matter A Name to be Proud of Ready for Sea The King's Gift Why I am an Adventurer The Signal for Departure A Lad's Portion The Allotment of Land An Unexpected Delay Our Arrival at Cowes We Put to Sea The Dove Disappears A Second Tempest An Unseemly Christmas The Port of Barbadoes The Arrival of the Dove Under Sail Again The Land of America The Land Given by the King Fear of the Brown Men Where to Build the City Taking the Island A Voyage of Discovery Visiting the Indians An Unexpected Meeting Captain Fleet's Story An Indian Werowance Indian vs. English Claims Seeking a Place for the City The Bargain The Village of Yaocomico What the Indians Look Like Indian Weapons and Tools Landing the Goods Counting Our Blessings The Susquehanoughs A Land of Abundance Buying Cattle Storehouse and Fort A Visitor from Virginia A Talk with the Indians Running up the Colors Settling Down Master William Claiborne Lord Baltimore's Claims Stirring up the Indians Winning Back the Indians Busy Times Indian Women as Servants Making a Canoe A Boat of Bark Indian Money A Generous Harvest Trouble at Plymouth Strange Religious Service The Dance Begins An Odd Ceremony William Claiborne's War Settlement on Kent Island We Prepare for War The Army leaves St. Mary's In Command of the Guard A Flag of Truce Captain Fleet Repents The First Prize of War A Battle is Fought The Return of the Fleet William Claiborne's Flight The City of Saint Mary's A Cruel Murder Mystery Remains Unsolved Master George Evelin A Fatal Accident Preparing for Action Ready for a Man's Duty I Wear the Uniform My New Name On Board the Pinnance Indians in War Paint The Arrival at Kent Island The Capture of the Fort Butler and Smith Captives Back to Claiborne's Fort I am Assigned New Duties A Narrow Escape Words of Praise

Calvert of Maryland - James Otis

Busy Times

From this on, until the year was come to an end, all of us at St. Mary's, governor, gentlemen, and serving men, found work enough with which to employ our hands during every hour of daylight. We had begun to build houses, cutting timber into planks and boards by long, heavy saws with a handle at either end.

In order to do this last, the trunk of a tree was raised on uprights some distance from the ground, beneath which one man stood pulling down the saw, while another, on top of the log itself, did his portion of the work.

Also during the summer was the Dove  sent again and again to Jamestown, returning therefrom with bricks, lime, clapboards, and such like material as would be needed for the houses.

Then there were the crops to be gathered, and much hunting done in order that we might have meat during the cold season.

The task of curing venison fell upon the younger members of the company, of which I was one, and we did it in Indian fashion, first cutting the meat into strips, then drying the strips in the sun, and afterward smoking the same freely.

[Illustration] from Calvert of Maryland by James Otis

It was not pleasing work, and more than once would I have fretted at being set about such menial labor, but that I remembered it was for the future good of us all, and that I should do my share toward providing for our people who were striving to build up Lord Baltimore's Province of Maryland.

It is needless for me to set down all that which we did, making mention of every task, for he who reads can easily understand what it would be necessary for a company of men and boys to do who had gone into the wilderness, there to build a town in which to spend the remainder of their days.

Before we were well come to an end of the season's work, and while saying to ourselves that there was no longer any fear that evil-minded men might set the brown-skinned people against us, word was brought that William Claiborne had begun to arm one of his pinnaces for the purpose of declaring war upon us, by preventing our own trading vessels from sailing up the bay.

This news disturbed John and me not a little; but Governor Calvert and our gentlemen paid little heed to it, so far as I could see, except that they met during two or three evenings, on board the Dove, where it was said a formal council of war was held.

As the season wore on, the white and the brown-skinned people in our town of St. Mary's grew to be fast friends, until there was no longer fear that such as Captain Fleet and William Claiborne could stir up trouble between them.