Page images
PDF
EPUB

father, but a gentleman,” said the artful and enthusiastic maiden.

“I know it. I know it; by St. Peter! it is romantic. Is he young ?”

“ Yes.”
“ And handsome?"
“Handsome as Apollo, father.”
“And brave?”
“ As a lion."

“I declare, but one result can follow such an adventure. I will lose my child,” and then the old Frenchman looked so sad, that his daughter put her arms about his neck, kissed him and assured him that whatever might happen she would never leave his roof.

“ Then, by the mass! you shall wed this handsome stranger, if you wish it."

Adele blushed; but for hours she sat enraptured at her father's side, sounding the praises of Monsieur De Barre.

CHAPTER V.

THE SOUTH-LAND.

What heroes from the woodland sprung

When, through the awakened land
The thrilling cry of freedom rung,
And to the work of warfare strung
The yeoman's iron hand !" ..

-BRYANT.

UNITED by common language and nationality, as well as common interests, the English colonies from an early existence were in sympathy with each other. This sympathy increased as did their interests, until to be an English-American was to insure friendship from Maine to the southern borders of South Carolinia. In the southern colonies the advance was noted, as well as at the north and east. They had their struggles, their cares and anxieties.

The Carolinias were not alone peopled by emigrants from Europe, for Massachusetts, Connecticut and even Virginia furnished their proportion.

Under the teachings and examples of the noble Archdale, both of the Carolinias began their career of permanent prosperity. Although politically united, each acted independently of the other from the close of the seventeenth century; and both made a steady advance in population and wealth and in all the arts of refined society.

The settlers of North Carolinia turned their attention to the richer lands back from the sea ; and hunters trapped the beaver and otter in the waters far in the interior along the streams and among the hills. Before the advance of civilization, the Indians had begun to fade like a romantic but terrible dream. The powerful Hatteras tribe, which, at the time of Lane's expedition, numbered about three thousand, in the year 1700 could muster but fifteen warriors, while another tribe on the Chowan had entirely disappeared. The remainder of the savages in that region had been defrauded of their lands and driven back into the deep forests, where they and their brethren perished, by the vices and diseases of the white man. No wonder the North American Indians saw, even thus early, that they were doomed to pass away before the powerful white race. Powhatan, the emperor of Virginia, had said:

“They only want a little land; they will do us no harm.”* He did not understand the whites. He lived to know that he had made a grievous

* See “Pocahontas, a Story of Virginia,” page 83.

mistake, for the Indians had fed an insect which in time had become a devouring dragon.

In 1704, the freedom of the North Carolinians —“every one of whom,” it was said, “ did what was right in his own eyes, paying tribute to neither God nor Cæsar”—was disturbed by an attempt to establish there the ecclesiastical dominion of the Church of England. The Carolinians at this time were almost utter strangers to any sort of public worship. They had among them Presbyterians, Independents, Lutherans and Quakers, men who drew their politics, their faith, and their law from the light of nature. According to the royalists, the majority “were Quakers, atheists, deists and other evil-disposed persons.” It was among such people that the pious zeal or bigotry of the proprietaries selected Robert Daniel as deputy governor, a fit instrument to rule the colonies and establish the Church of England. The legislature chosen without reference to this end, after much opposition, acceded to the design, and further enacted that no one, who would not take the oath prescribed by law, should hold a place of trust in the colony. Thus did North Carolinia first gain experience of disfranchisement for opinion's sake, and first heard of glebes and a clergy, while churches were ordered erected at the public cost; but the people had too long drunk at the fountain

of freedom to yield. The laws could not be enforced. Six years afterward, “there was but one clergyman in the whole country.” The Quakers, led by their faith, were foremost in their opposition. They were“ not only the principal fomenters of the distractions in Carolinia; but the gov. ernor of the Old Dominion complained that they made it their business to instil like pernicious notions into the minds of his majesty's subjects in Virginia, and to justify the mad actions of the rabble by arguments destructive to all govern

ment."

When there occurred a vacancy in the office of governor, in 1705, anarchy prevailed. The northern colony had usually been governed by a deputy, appointed by the governor of South Carolinia, and Thomas Cary was commissioned as such deputy in the usual form. The proprietaries disapproved the appointment, and gave leave to the little oligarchy of their own deputies to elect a chief magistrate. They selected one William Glover; and the colony was forthwith rent with divisions. On the one side were churchmen and royalists, the immediate friends of the proprietaries; on the other, according to their statement, “a rabble of profligate persons,” meaning Quakers and other dissenters, and that majority of the people which was unconsciously swayed by democratic instincts. Each

« PreviousContinue »