By the skillful and sustained use of propaganda, one can make a people see even heaven as hell or an extremely wretched life as paradise. — Adolf Hitler

Stephen of Philadelphia - James Otis

A Matter of History

Now in order that you may understand that which happened of grave importance to our country of Pennsylvania, and also know why I had an opportunity of traveling, it is necessary I repeat to you that which was told me by my father.

It may be you will not think it in any way interesting; but I beg that you will read every word carefully, and afterward think the matter over until you understand it clearly, otherwise you may never be able to explain why one settlement was made in a certain place, and others elsewhere.

First, as perhaps you already know, when white people began to come into this new world of America, the English kings claimed it as their land, saying it was discovered by John Cabot, who had been given permission to go out exploring, by King Henry VII.

Columbus had discovered that there were large countries where white people had never visited; but the English king claimed that Columbus had not really found the land which we call America, for he ended his voyage at the West Indies.

John Cabot, however, so the English kings said, had explored all the coast of North America from Newfoundland to Florida, and therefore it belonged, by right of discovery, to England.

Then, as you know full well, after some Spanish people had built a town in Florida, and another near by, King James gave to two companies of merchants all the land in Virginia, and by that he meant the whole country of North America, which was then known only as Virginia.

To the London Company he gave that part of it in the south, where Jamestown was afterward built, and the Plymouth Company landed in the northern portion where Plymouth was to be laid out.

All that was done in the year of grace 1606, and at that time the English people did not know how large was this new world of America.

The Dutch people, however, sent Henry Hudson out exploring in 1609, and he found the river to which he gave his name, whereupon a company like unto the London and Plymouth companies, was formed in Holland under the name: of the West India Company, by which New Amsterdam was settled; but the English people captured the town and called it New York.


Front Matter

The Name of My City
My Own Name
Why We Went to London
Bound for America
On Board Ship
Unknown Country
The End of the Voyage
Going Ashore
Our First Shelter
A Tedious Task
Our Cave Home Completed
How We Kept House
Savages Come to Town
What the Savages Wore
Game in Plenty
Sea Food
News of the Factor
Arrival of the Amity
Going to Meet the Factor
A Tiresome Journey
Meeting Old Friends
Roasting Turkeys
Turning an Honest Penny
A Place for the City
Building the City
A Bear Hunt
The New Home
Penn's Care for Colonists
The First Baby
How the Indians Live
Indian Utensils and Tools
Canoes of Bark
Making Wampum
The Beehive Huts
Finishing the Cure
Starting a Fire
Cooking Indian Corn
News of Penn's Arrival
Our Humble Preparations
The Welcome to Penn
A Day of Festivities
Penn Joins in the Sports
More Serious Business
What a Bake Oven Is
Baking in the New Oven
Penn Plans to Buy Land
Penn and the Indians
The Price Paid for Land
Gratitude of the Indians
Trapping Wild Turkeys
New Arrivals
Government by the People
The Promise of a School
Dock Creek Bridge
The Nail Business
Buying Iron in New York
No Merrymaking after Dark
Busy Days
Enoch Flower's School
End of Our School Days
Settlement of Germantown
New Laws in Our Own Town
A Division of Opinion
A Matter of History
Boundary Lines
The Governor's Following
A Proud Departure
The Settlement of Chester
Dining in State
Anchored off New Castle
An Uncomfortable Night
A Dull Journey
In Lord Baltimore's City
A Splendid Home
A Question of Duty
Amy of Maryland
The Shops of Maryland
The Result of the Visit
Philadelphia Progresses
Penn Goes Back to London