Prosperity is the measure or touchstone of virtue, for it is less difficult to bear misfortune than to remain uncorrupted by pleasure. — Tacitus

Stephen of Philadelphia - James Otis

A Question of Duty

It was in my mind that we should depart at once, because of not knowing how to conduct ourselves properly. There was no thought that we, being Friends, should hold ourselves the equals in rank of any whom we met; but rather I asked myself how we could make excuse to our hostess, to the end that we might make shift for ourselves among the common people.

When I gave words to the thought Jethro would hear none of it; but declared that since, without any scheming on our part we had come into such luxury, we were bound to enjoy it, although he did admit that two nail-makers, or turkey-trappers, like ourselves, were out of place in such a dwelling.

It was well we were thus left alone during a certain short time, since it gave us opportunity to remember that we had been bred to gentle ways, even though our homes were so far different from this one, and when we had combed our hair to a nicety, pulling out our wrist-falls till the lace came somewhere near to hiding our grimy hands, we went down the stairs that had on them a soft, beautiful covering, far too rich, as it seemed to me, for one's shoes.

The lad who had brought us hither had departed while yet we were in the chamber trying to become acquainted with so much of splendor, and when we went to the room below, the girl Amy took upon herself the duty of hostess, as if we were her own particular guests.


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