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

A Lad's Portion

It seems, from what I have overheard of the conversation since we came to anchor here off Gravesend, that even a lad like myself may have a certain portion of the king's gift, for it is set down in the documents to which the gentlemen referred, that to all children under the age of sixteen years who shall be taken to Maryland at the expense of their parents, or guardians, twenty-five acres of land shall be given for their very own.

Therefore it is that I am even now the same as a New World planter, for my father is paying all the charges of my journey, and already have I begun to ask what I shall do with such an estate.

It is also set down in the documents, that each adventurer shall provide himself with one gun having a snaphance lock; ten pounds of gunpowder; forty pounds of leaden bullets, pistol and goose shot, of each sort some; one sword and belt, and one bandolier and flask.

At the first opportunity I shall ask my father if he has provided all these things for me, otherwise it may chance that I be not allowed to claim the land which Lord Baltimore has said shall be given to each child under the age of sixteen, and it would grieve me sorely to lose by any oversight that portion of the New World which is mine by right, or will be as soon as I have come to the country of Maryland.

It comes to my mind that perhaps some who may read what I am setting down, not being accustomed to the use of firearms, will fail to understand what is the meaning of a snaphance lock, for it is less than a year since it was invented. You who read doubtless think of a gun as being a firelock only, and perhaps have been vexed time and again at being forced to carry a slow match in order to discharge the weapon; but all that has been done away with by the lock of which I speak, for it is made with a spring, and affixed to the hammer is a piece of flint, which, when the trigger is pulled, strikes against the steel bar of the barrel, thus producing a spark which gives fire to the powder.

[Illustration] from Calvert of Maryland by James Otis

Mayhap some, not being versed in the art of war, will fail also to understand the meaning of the word "bandolier." It is, however, nothing more than a broad belt to be worn over the shoulder and across the breast, at the lower end of which can be fastened a bag or powder-flask, if, perchance, one does not carry his ammunition made up into cartridges, in which last case the cartridges are hung from the bandolier, as are also the flint and steel, priming horn, and such other articles as a man of arms may need.