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of death in case, after fourteen days, they should be found “in the Massachusetts, or in or near Providence, or any of the lands of Pomham or Sacononoco.”" To await their friends, as they said, some of them met at Boston, whence, by a warrant from the Governor, they were summoned to depart within two hours. They reassembled in their old home, where John Warner, “Secretary, by the order of the government of Shawomet,” wrote to Winthrop to inquire whether the General Court could have meant that place by “the lands of Pomham and Sacononoco;” and receiving his reply that it was so, they retired to. Rhode Island.” The next step showed their resolution, their capacity for business, and that power of theirs which it had been thought so important to subdue. The neighboring Narragansetts, seeing the “Gortonoges,” as they called them, return unharmed from their transportation to Massachusetts, were ready to believe that they were under the protection of a superior power, and that “the great peo. ple that were in Old England would come over and put them to death that should take away their lives without a just cause.” Encouraging, and availing themselves of this impression, six or seven of Gorton's party crossed over to the mainland, and succeeded in conclud: Cession of . - - - in No. ing a treaty with Canonicus, Mixan (his son), and 3. * Pessacus (brother and successor of Miantonomo) ". to no less effect than that of a complete cession of the Narragansett people and territory “unto the protection, care, and government of that worthy and royal prince, Charles, King of Great Britain and Ireland, his heirs and successors for ever.” In the instrument of surrender, evidently composed for their signature by English hands, the Savages declared that they took this course “upon condition of his Majesty's royal protection,” and because of having “just cause of jealousy and suspicion of some of his Majesty's pretended subjects;” and they certified that they had “made choice of four of his loyal and loving subjects, our trusty and well-beloved friends, Samuel Gorton, John Wickes, Randall Holden, and John Warner, whom we have deputed and made our lawful attorneys and commissioners, not only for the acting and performing of this our deed in the behalf of his Highness, but also for the safe custody, careful conveyance, and declaration hereof unto his Grace.”" Under the same dictation, as is evident from the topics and style, Canonicus and Pessacus addressed a letter to the General Court of Massachusetts, refusing an invitation to present themselves there in person; animadverting on the fate of Miantonomo; declaring their purpose to avenge it on Uncas, who, they alleged, had taken a ransom for his life; and announcing their “being subjects now [for the opportunity for a taunt was not to be lost] unto the same King and State yourselves are,” to whom, in case of any difference, it would accordingly be fit “for both of us to have recourse.” A letter presently followed from John Warner, who called himself Secretary to “the Commissioners put in Trust for the further Publication of the Solemn Act” of the Narragansetts in their cession to the King. It confirmed the statement of that cession, and threatened the Massachusetts people with the vengeance of the King and of the Mohawks, should they presume to interfere.” The General Court sent two messengers to the Narragansett sachems, to vindicate their own course, and to advise them to be quiet and to detach themselves from their pernicious English friends. The envoys were roughly received. “Canonicus would not admit them into his wigwam for two hours, but suffered them to stay in the rain. When he did admit them, he lay along upon his couch, and would not speak to them more than a few froward speeches, but referred them to Pessacus.” Pessacus gave them no satisfaction, but persisted in the threat of a renewal of hostilities against Uncas." His resentment, however, took counsel of his fears; and at the second annual meeting of the Commissioners of the Confederacy;” things continued to stand substantially as they had done, though the rumor of danger, taking different forms, from time to time, through various accidents, had kept the western Colonies in extreme uneasiness, and in a posture of constant preparation at once harassing and expensive. An embassy sent by the Commissioners to the Narragansett chiefs had better success than the recent one from Massachu
* Simplicitie's Defence, 74; Winthrop, II. 148, 156; Mass. Rec., II. 57. – When they were imprisoned, they were threatened with death, if they should continue to vent their “blasphemous and abominable heresies.” Some of them did continue to vent those heresies with great diligence and passion.
And then they were sent out of the
* Simplicitie's Defence, 79–84; R. I. Rec., I. 136–188; Winthrop, II. 165, Rec., I. 134 – 136. 166. * Simplicitie's Defence, 85, 86; R. I. * Simplicitie's Defence, 87–89; R. I.
Rec., I. 138–140; Winthrop, II. 165, 166. – “That indignity offered and done unto their sovereign which cannot be borne nor put up, without a sharp and princely revenge.” “We tender our allegiance and subjection unto our King and State, unto which they are become fellow-subjects with ourselves.” “Being abroad of late about our occasions, we fell to be where one of the sachems of that great people of Maukquogges was, with some of his men, whom we perceive are the most fierce and warlike people in the country or continent where we are, furnished with 3,700 guns, men expert in the use of them, plenty of powder and shot, with furniture for their bodies in time of war for their safety. . . . . . We understand that of late they have slain
a hundred French, with many Indians which were in league with the French, putting many of them to cruel tortures, and have lost but two of their own men. These being, as we understand, deeply affected with the Narragansetts in the
loss of their late sachem, . . . . . are resolved . . . . . to wage war to the uttermost, . . . . . which it seems is the very
spirit of that people to be exercised that way.” This rhodomontade of Warner was designed to increase the effect of a report which had spread, perhaps with good foundation, that a large force of Mohawks had gathered on the English frontier.
* Winthrop, II. 165, 166.
* It took place at Hartford. For the names of the Commissioners, see the Appendix.
setts. Under the influence of the friendly, and at the same time resolute, tone with which they were addressed, they accepted the proposal, made to them and Uncas alike, to “propound their several grievances” to the Commissioners, and sent “a sagamore, with other considerable persons, as their deputies,” to conclude an arrangement. “The Commissioners gave a full hearing both to the
Narragansett deputies and to Uncas, sagamore of the
Mohegans.” The chief dispute related to a ransom
* Records, &c., in Hazard, II, 25, 26. —“It was clearly proved otherwise.” (Winthrop, II. 198. Comp. Letter of Haynes to Winthrop, in Mass. Hist. Coll, XXI 229.)
* Records, &c. in Hazard, II. 14– 16, 25 – 27.
* Coddington's impatience of Gorton's presence is expressed in a letter to Winthrop, of August 5, 1644, preserved in the Massachusetts Archives
(II. 4, 5). “For Gorton, as he came
To protract the dispute by another seizure of their persons would have been at once to re-introduce an element among the dangers of a Narragansett war, and to complicate the relations, already critical enough, with the mother country. We are in due time, however, to see that it was soon revived in another form, and that it was not pacified for many years."
formerly had to rid themselves, and that