Mary of Plymouth - James Otis

When the Pilgrim goes Abroad

If there be a desire to travel, we must either walk, or sail in boats, and one may not go far on foot in either direction along the coast, without coming upon streams or brooks over which has been felled a tree to serve as bridge. Now father thinks a bridge of may be necessary, because of his footing being so sure; but you know that women are more timid, and it is difficult to walk above the rushing streams on so slight a support as a round log.

Because of having made our plantation near to a deserted Indian village, there were paths through the woods in every direction, and these we used whenever making an excursion in search of bayberry plums, or herbs of any kind.

[Illustration] from Mary of Plymouth by James Otis

The Indians, after Squanto had made us friendly with the great chief Massasoit, were ready to sell us boats, and queer sorts of ships would they seem in your eyes. One kind is made of the bark taken from the birch tree in great sheets, sewn together with sinews of deer, and besmeared with fat from the pitch pine.

I have seen one that would carry with safety four people, so light that I myself could lift it, but no man may use one of these bark vessels without first having been taught t how to sail it, for they are so like a feather on the water that the slightest movement oversets them.

[Illustration] from Mary of Plymouth by James Otis

For my part, I feel more secure in what our people call a dugout, which is made with much labor by the Indians, and is, as Captain Standish says in truth, "a most unwieldy ship."


Front Matter

Why This Story was Written
The Leaking Speedwell
Searching for a Home
After the Storm
Wash Day
Finding the Corn
Attacked by the Savages
Building Houses
Miles Standish
The Sick People
The New Home
Master White and the Wolf
Inside of the House
A Chimney Without Bricks
Building the Fire
Master Bradford's Chimney
Scarcity of Food
A Timely Gift
The First Savage Visitor
Squanto's Story
Living in the Wilderness
The Friendly Indians
Grinding the Corn
A Visit From Massasoit
Massasoit's Promise
Massasoit's Visit Returned
The Big House Burned
The Mayflower Leaves Port
Setting the Table
What and How we Eat
Table Rules
A Pilgrim Goes Abroad
Making a Dugout
Governor Carver's Death
Bradford Chosen Governor
Farming in Plymouth
Cooking Indian Corn
The Wedding
Making Maple Syrup
Decorating the House
Trapping Wolves and Pigeons
Elder Brewster
The Visit to Massasoit
Keeping the Sabbath Holy
Making Clapboards
Cooking Pumpkins
A New Oven
Making Spoons and Dishes
The Fort and Meeting-House
The Harvest Festival
How to Play Stoolball
On Christmas Day
When the Fortune Arrived
Possibility of Another Famine
On Short Allowance
A Threatening Message
Pine Knots and Candles
Tallow From Bushes
Wicks for the Candle
Dipping the Candles
When James Runs Away
Evil-Minded Indians
Long Hours of Preaching
John Alden's Tubs
English Visitors
Visiting the Neighbors
Why More Fish are not Taken
How Wampum is Made
Ministering to Massasoit
The Plot Thwarted
The Captain's Indian
Ballots of Corn
Arrival of the Ann
Little James Comes to Port
The New Meeting-House
The Church Service
The Tithingmen
Master Winslow Brings Cows
A Real Oven
Butter and Cheese
Settlement at Wessagussett
The Village at Merrymount
The First School
Too Much Smoke
Schools Comforts
How Children Were Punished
New Villages
Making Ready for a Journey
Clothing for Salem
Food for the Journey
Before Sailing for Salem
Beginning the Journey
The Arrival at Salem
Sight-Seeking in Salem
Back to Plymouth