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ALTHOUGH the conquest of the Pequots extended the claim of Connecticut to a great proportion of the lands in the settled part of the colony, yet, to remove all grounds of complaint or uneasiness, the English planters made fair purchases of almost the whole tract of country within the settled part of Connecticut.
After the conquest of the Pequots, in consequence of the covenant made with Uncas, in 1638, and the gift of a hundred Pequots to him, he became important. A considerable number of Indians collected to him, so that he became one of the principal sachems in Connecticut, and even in New-England. At some times he was able to raise four or five hundred warriors. As the Pequots were now conquered, and as he assisted in the conquest, and was a Pequot himself, he laid claim to all that extensive tract called the Moheagan or Pequot country. Indeed, it seems he claimed, and was allowed to sell some part of that tract which was the principal seat of the Pequots. The sachems in other parts of Connecticut, who had been conquered by the Pequots, and made their allies, or tributaries, considered themselves, by the conquest of this haughty nation, as restored to their former rights. They claimed to be independent sovereigns, and to have a title to all the lands which they had at any time before possessed. The planters therefore, to show their justice to the heathen, and to maintain the peace of the country, from time to time, purchased of the respective sachems and their Indians, all the lands which they settled, excepting the towns of New-London, Groton and Stonington, which were considered as the peculiar seat of the Pequot nation. The inhabitants of Windsor, Hartford, and Weathersfield, either at the time of their settlement, or soon after, bought all those extensive tracts, which they settled, of the native, original proprietors of the country. Indeed, Connecticut planters generally made repeated purchases of their lands. The colony not only bought the Moheagan country of Uncas, but afterwards all the particular towns were purchased again, either of him or his successors, when the settlements in them commenced. Besides, the colony was often obliged to renew its leagues with Uncas and his successors, the Moheagan sachems; and to make new presents and take new deeds, to keep friendship with the Indians and preserve the peace of the country. The colony was obliged to defend Uncas from his enemies, which was an occasion of no small trouble and expense. The laws obliged the inhabitants of the several towns to reserve unto the natives a sufficient quantity of planting ground. They were allowed to hunt and fish upon all the lands no less than the English.
The colonies made laws for their protection from insult, fraud and violence. The inhabitants suffered them to erect wigwams, and to live on the very lands which they had purchased of them; and to cut their fire wood on their uninclosed lands, for more than a whole century, after the settlements began. The lands, therefore, though really worth nothing at that time, cost the planters very considerable sums, besides the purchase of their patents and the right of pre-emption.
In purchasing the lands and making settlements, in a wilderness, the first planters of Connecticut expended great estates. It has been the opinion of the best judges, who have had the most perfect acquaintance with the ancient affairs of the colony, that many of the adventurers expended more, in making settlements in Connecticut, than all the lands and buildings were worth, after all the improvements which they had made upon them.?
At the general election in Connecticut, this year, Mr. Hopkins was chosen governor, and Mr. Haynes deputy governor. Mr. Ludlow was chosen magistrate in the place of Mr. Hopkins. The other magistrates were the same who were elected the last year. The same governor, deputy governor and magistrates, who were in office, at New-Haven, the last year, were re-elected for this.
As the colonists, both in Connecticut and New-Haven, were the patentees of Lord Say and Seal, Lord Brook and the other gentlemen interested in the old Connecticut patent,and as that patent covered a large tract of country, both colonies were desirous of securing the native title to the lands, with all convenient dispatch. Several large purchases were made this year both by Connecticut and New-Haven.
Connecticut made presents to Uncas, the Moheagan sachem, to his satisfaction, and on the ist of September 1640, obtained of him a clear and ample deed of all his lands in Connecticut, except the lands which were then planted. These he reserved for himself and the Moheagans.
The same year, governor Haynes, in behalf of Hartford, made a purchase of Tunxis, including the towns of Farmington and Southington, and extending westward as far as the Mohawk country.
The people of Connecticut, about the same time, purchased Waranoke and soon began a plantation there, since called Westfield. Governor Hopkins erected a trading house and had a considerable interest in the plantation.
? These facts are fully ascertained by the records of the colonies, and of the respective towns.
9 This was the general opinion among men of extensive knowledge, in Massachusetts, as well as in Connecticut. Governor Hutchinson, in a manuscript which he wrote against the stamp act, observed, that land in New-England, at the time of its settlement, was of no value.
3 See note, p. 1o.
Mr. Ludlow made a purchase of the eastern part of Norwalk, between Saugatuck and Norwalk rivers. Captain Patrick bought the middle part of the town. A few families seem to have planted themselves in the town about the time of these purchases, but it was not properly settled until about the year 1651. The planters then made a purchase of the western part of the town.
About the same time Robert Feaks and Daniel Patrick bought Greenwich. The purchase was made in behalf of New-Haven, but through the intrigue of the Dutch governor, and the treachery of the purchasers, the first inhabitants revolted to the Dutch. They were incorporated and vested with town privileges by Peter Stuyvesant, governor of New-Netherlands. The inhabitants were driven off by the Indians, in their war with the Dutch; and made no great progress in the settlement until after Connecticut obtained the charter, and they were taken under the jurisdiction of this colony.
Captain Howe and other Englishmen, in behalf of Connecticut," purchased a large tract of the Indians, the original proprietors, on Long Island. This tract extended from the eastern part of Oyster bay to the western part of Howe's or Holmes's bay to the middle of the great plain. It lay on the northern part of the island and extended southward about half its breadth. Settlements were immediately begun upon the lands; and by the year 1642, had made considerable advancement.
New-Haven made a purchase of all the lands at Rippowams. This purchase was made of Ponus and Toquamske, the two sachems of that tract, which contained the whole town of Stamford. A reservation of planting ground was made for the Indians.3
Another large purchase, sufficient for a number of plantations, was made by captain Turner, agent for New-Haven, on both sides of Delaware bay or river. This purchase was made with a view to trade, and for the settlement of churches in gospel order and purity. The colony of New-Haven erected trading houses upon the lands, and sent nearly fifty families to make settlements upon them. The settlements were made under the jurisdiction of NewHaven, and in close combination with that colony in all their fundamental articles.
It also appears, that New-Haven, or their confederates, purchased and settled Yennycock, Southhold, on Long-Island. Mr. John Youngs, who had been a minister at Hingham in England, came over, with a considerable part of his church, and here fixed his residence. He gathered his church anew, on the 21st of October, and the planters united themselves with New-Haven. However, they soon departed from the rule of appointing none to office, or of admitting none to be freemen, but members of the church. New-Haven insisted on this as a fundamental article of their constitution. They were, therefore, for a number of years, obliged to conform to this law of the jurisdiction. Some of the principal men were the Reverend Mr. Youngs, Mr. William Wells, Mr. Barnabas Horton, Thomas Mapes, John Tuthill and Matthias Corwin.
1 The first purchases were of the sachem, Mamechimoh. Mr. Ludlow's deed bears date Feb. 26th, 1640, and Capt. Patrick's April 20th, 1640. The western purchase was of a sachem called Buckingheage. It hence appears that there were two sachems in this town,
Savage takes occasion to call this statement inaccurate, inasmuch as the settlement was made by an agent of Lord Sterling, from Lynn, Mass. The main facts as stated by Trumbull follow Winthrop's Journal closely.-). T.
3 The purchase was made by captain Nathaniel Turner, agent for New Haven. It cost about thirty pounds sterling.
Laws were enacted, both by Connecticut and New-Haven, prohibiting all purchases of the Indians, by private persons, or companies, without the consent of their respective general courts. These were to authorize and direct the manner of every purchase.
The general court, at New-Haven, this year, made a grant of Totoket to Mr. Samuel Eaton, brother of governor Eaton, upon condition of his procuring a number of his friends, from England, to make a settlement in that tract of country.
At this court it was decreed, that the plantation at Quinnipiack should be called New-Haven.
At the general election, April 6, 1641, at Hartford, John Haynes, Esq. was chosen governor, and George Wyllys, Esq. deputy governor. Mr. Hopkins was chosen magistrate, and the other principal officers were re-elected.
The brethren of the church at Weathersfield removed without their pastor, the Rev. Mr. Phillips; and, having no settled minister at first, fell into unhappy contentions and animosities. These continued for a number of years, and divided the inhabitants of the town, as well as the brethren of the church. They were the means of scattering the inhabitants, and of the formation of new settlements and churches in other places. Great pains were taken, by the ministers on the river, to compose the differences and unite the church and town; but they were unable to effect an union. Mr. Davenport and some of the brethren of the church at New-Haven were sent for, to advise and attempt a reconciliation. Mr. Davenport and his brethren gave advice somewhat different from that which had been given by the ministers and churches on the river; and, it seems, suggested the expediency of one of the parties removing and making a new settlement, if they could not by any means be united among themselves. Some were pleased with the advice, others disliked it, and the parties could not agree which of them should remove. The church, which consisted of seven members only, was divided three against four. The three claimed to be the church, and therefore pleaded, that they ought not to remove. The four, as they were the majority, insisted that it was their right to stay.
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The church at Watertown, as they had not dismissed their brethren, at Weathersfield, from their watch, judged it their duty to make them a visit, and to attempt to heal the divisions which had sprung up among them. For this benevolent purpose, several of the brethren made a journey to Connecticut; but they succeeded no better in their endeavours, than those who had been before them. It now appeared to be the opinion, that it was expedient for one of the parties to remove, but it could not be agreed which of them should be obliged again to make a new settlement. At length a number of principal men, who were the most pleased with the advice of Mr. Davenport and the New-Haven brethren, and to whom the government of that colony was most agreeable, determined to remove, and settle in combination with NewHaven.
Therefore, on the 30th of October, 1640, Mr. Andrew Ward and Mr. Robert Coe of Weathersfield, in behalf of themselves and about twenty other planters, purchased Rippowams of NewHaven. The whole number obliged themselves to remove, with their families, the next year, before the last of November. This spring the settlement commenced. The principal planters were the Rev. Mr. Richard Denton, Mr. Matthew Mitchel, Mr. Thurston Rayner, Mr. Andrew Ward, Mr. Robert Coe, and Mr. Richard Gildersleve. Mr. Denton was among the first planters of the town, and continued their minister about three or four years. After that time he removed with part of his church and congregation to Hempsted. They settled that town about the year 1643 or 1644.
At the general election, October 27, 1641, in New-Haven, Theophilus Eaton, Esq. was chosen governor, and Mr. Stephen Goodyear, deputy governor. The magistrates were Mr. Gregson, Mr. Robert Newman, Mr. Matthew Gilbert and Mr. Wakeman. Thomas Fugill was appointed secretary, and Mr. Gregson treasurer.
Upon the general election, this year, at Hartford, there was a considerable change, with respect to civil officers. George Wyllys, Esq. was elected governor, and Roger Ludlow, Esq. deputy governor. Eight magistrates were chosen for Connecticut. This is the first instance of more than six. The magistrates were John Haynes, Esq. Mr. Phelps, Mr. Webster, captain Mason, Mr. Wells, Mr. Whiting, Edward Hopkins, Esq. and Mr. William Hopkins.
The Indians were exceedingly troublesome this year. It was suspected, that they were forming a combination for a general war. All trading with them, in arms or any instruments of iron, was expressly prohibited, both by Connecticut and New-Haven. Each colony concerted all measures of defence. A constant watch was kept in all the plantations. Upon the sabbath a strong guard was set at the places of public worship.
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