it could not be expected that so proud and powerful a nation as the Spanish,—whose whole colonial system was based upon the strictest principles of exclusiveness and monopoly,—would quietly submit to such an invasion of its rights. The English had ever been, both in peace and war, the most determined and successful enemies of the colonial system of Spain. The annual flota from Vera Cruz, and the galleons and register ships from Porto Bello and Havana, were the constant prizes of their Admirals. Jamaica, with surprising rapidity, had becoine her most important colonial government, next to Ireland; chiefly in consequence of piracies committed on the Spanish trade. Both pride and interest, therefore, urged the Spaniards to prevent any settlement of the English on the southern shores of America, from whence their privateers and men-of-war might intercept the wealth of New Spain on its way

home. It is evident that the proprietors themselves did not expect a quiet and undisturbed possession of their new territory. Previous to making the settlement, they despatched Sayle to explore the coast. He reported that he thought New-Providence the most convenient place to fortify, as a safe retreat for the colonists, should they be driven out by the Spaniards.(?)* An attempt to destroy the colony was therefore anticipated ; and the Spaniards gave early proof that they did not mean to disappoint this reasonable expectation. The removal of the colony, from Port Royal to Ashley River, is involved in great mystery.† The fact,

* This was certainly one of the considerations, but the value of the Bahamas, in other and general respecis to Carolina, was also insisted on. Sayle and the proprietors, no doubt thought of the possibility of Spanish hostility ; but we doubt if the one consideration was the sole motive for such annexation.

[Editor Southern Quarterly Review + We confess we are at a loss to see this. The official record may be lost, but the history is sufficient, and the reasons for removal are obvious enough. Port Royal was too easily accessible from the sea. This, which would at the present period recommend a site for a commercial city, was the chief objection in those days to the employment of Beaufort for this purpose ; when the French and Spaniards, both great maritime powers, were both deadlily hostile to English colonization in America. These reasons have been already alleged by the historian in this very connection. Archdale distinctly says, speaking of better rivers than the Ashley and Cooper,—“ it was prudently contrived not to settle at the first or the most navigable, but on Ashley and Cooper rivers, whose entrance is not so bold as others, not having so much water ; so that the enemy and pirates, &c., have been disheartened from disturbing the settlement,&c. What could be clearer or fuller than this ?-[Editor Southern Quarterly Review.


alone, is certain. The first five pages of our earliest Council Journal, which would probably explain it, are unfortunately lost; and the only cause for the removal, assigned by our early historians, was the “greater convenience of pasture and tillage.” This does not appear to be sufficient cause, as the lands about Port Royal were quite as productive as those upon Ashley River, and certainly fully adequate to sustain a colony of probably not more than one hundred and fifty persons.

The removal can be better accounted for upon the supposition that the Indians, very numerous about Port Royal, and in constant communication with the Spaniards at St. Augustine, were hostile, and threatened the destruction of the infant colony. This becomes more probable, from the fact, that a few months after the settlement on Ashley River, the Kussoe, and other southward Indians, instigated by the Spaniards, committed such depredations as to reduce the colony to a very “languishing condition, and to make a war necessary." Captains Thomas Gray and John Godfrey headed the forces of the colony, and soon returned with a number of prisoners. These were liberated upon the submission of their tribes, and having been kindly treated by Governor West, aided very much in keeping up a good correspondence with the surrounding Indians. The Kussoes were ever afterwards the firmest friends of the English. By some strange mistake this war is not mentioned by our historians, nor are any facts, occurring in the first administration of Governor West, deemed worthy of their notice.t

The Spaniards again, who had reminded the English of their claims by invading the soil of Carolina in 1673, thir

* But the plan of settlement necessarily contemplated indefinite increase, and must have provided for it. In that, indeed, was the only hope of a successful colony.—[Editor Southern Quarterly Review.

† The Kussoes are called either by this name, or by that of Kussoboes. They constituted a tribe only, and we suspect that the war with them will be found sufficiently chronicled in the account given of Governor West's conflicts with the Stonos and other Southern Indians. If history entered into the most minute details, recording the names of leaders and the progress of events in every petty skirmish, there would be no end to it ; and the career of a small State, like that of Carolina, only two hundred years old, would swellinio dimensions far exceeding those of Greece and Rome. The histories of South-Carolina contain, we think, quite as much of West's administration as it is desirable to preserve in the general history. The language of our correspondent is too sweeping entirely.—[Editor Southern Quarterly Review.

teen years afterwards, actually destroyed the Scotch settlement under Lord Cardross, at Beaufort. Our historians complain bitterly of the perfidy of the Spaniards in seducing away our slaves, and instigating the Indians against us in time of peace, but they considered themselves justified, upon the grounds that we were unlawfully possessed of the country, and might be lawfully expelled by any means. The Spaniards were to the Carolinians what the abolitionists are now to the border slave States—eternal conspirators against their lives and property,--rather more to be feared in peace than in war, and to be restrained by nothing that a Jesuitical policy will permit. This constant enmity, and almost as constant warfare, for nearly a century, delayed the progress of the colony in a very great degree, and was the chief cause of destroying its credit and depreciating its currency. The annual cost of scout boats, to prevent the escape of runaways to St. Augustine, alone amounted to more than £3,000, not to mention the cost of the several invasions of the two territories, and of the innumerable flags of truce and embassies employed. The influence of the Spaniards upon our character and prosperity was immense, and extended nearly throughout our colonial existence. It certainly deserves a much more thorough investigation than our historians have given it. Indeed, Ramsay's and Hewitt's views upon the early history of the colony should be received with caution, as they were not aware of the existence of original papers which have since been discovered, and as they never mention their authorities. Ramsay, especially, opens a very wide scope for scepticism when he says, that

in vain did he expect complete information from public records ; on many interesting subjects they were silentthe most early were illegible, others were lost,” &c.—all of which defects were supplied by the “ memories of the oldest inhabitants.” Again, he says, “ all the early histories which treat of Carolina, were attentively perused, but from them little of consequence could be obtained.” This is pretty much giving up the question of accuracy, as he condemns both the original papers and the early histories drawn from them, and accepts, in their stead, traditional evidence. Dalcho convicts him of several inaccuracies, and he is always supported by the original papers; probably those which Ramsay declared illegible. The first

[ocr errors]

Parliament we have any notice of, was held in 1671, and not in 1674, as asserted by him ; there being several notices of Parliaments and Parliamentary Conventions, between these periods, This error was probably the parent of another, viz., that the colonists at first lived under a species of military government. He is also mistaken in saying that the colonists had no title from the Indians to their lands. In 1675, more than twenty head-men and captains (women were sometimes captains) assembled at old Charles Town, and ceded to Andrew Percival, in behalf of Lord Shaftesbury and the other proprietors, St. Gyles's plantation. This plantation embraced the Indian territories of Great and Little Cassor, being the lands lying on Kyewaw and Stono rivers and the freshes of Edisto river. It is probable that, by Kyewaw, Ashley river is meant, and not the present Kyewaw, as there is a Council Journal, about this period, dated at "Kyewaw, sometimes called Charles Town."*

From the second administration of Joseph West, to the partial settlement under Archdale and Blake, contention pervaded all parts of the community. Puritans and Iligh Churchmen, Englishmen and Frenchmen, pirates and peaceful citizens, were thrown together on a narrow neck of land, and expected to amalgamate into a homogeneous population. The combined genius of Shaftesbury and Locke was supposed amply sufficient to produce this po: litical millennium ; nothing appeared too wonderful to be accomplished by the grand model; by it magnificent castles were literally to be founded on the sands of Carolina, which even southern hurricanes would not be able to overthrow; and, in a country where the Indian forages had roamed free from the commonest restraints of civilization, feudal vassalage was to be introduced; where the necessities of life demanded an equality of condition, rank, precedency and privilege, were to be made legitimate. But Locke and Shaftesbury laboured both against themselves and the spirit of the age. The writings of the one, and the political acts of the other, had contributed largely to the spirit of freedom in England. Recovering from the

* Williamson (History of North-Carolina) distinctly states the fact that Keawah, as he writes it, was the Indian name of the Ashley. The word is written, as in the text, in Williamson. and still is written, in the neighbourhood, Kiawah.—[Editor Southern Quarterly Review.

It ex

base servility immediately succeeding the Restoration, that spirit had been widening and deepening, until it produced the mature fruits of the revolution of 1688. tended itself to America, and, in this period of our history -generally passed over with a sentence enumerating the rapid succession of governors, and characterising ten years of our colonial existence simply as turbulent,*---one may discover the germs of important principles. Mr. Wheeler, indeed, has recognized in these times the exact prototype of our revolution, a century later;-not even the NewEngland influence is wanting to complete the likeness. Be this as it may, some important concessions were certainly made to the progress of the people about this time. Until 1682, it was necessary that all measures to be proposed to the Parliament (for so the Legislature was then styled) should originate in the Council, and afterwards be approved of by the Palatine Court. Thus all measures for the public good were subject to a double veto before they could be proposed to the representatives of the people. In 1682, this veto power was taken away from the Palatine Court, and the right to propose laws vested concurrently with the Council, in the colleges established under the grand model. In 1693, the right of originating laws was granted to the commons themselves,-an important concession, which they improved upon so much in after times, as to assert that all bills whatsoever must originate in their house.

The revolutionary proceedings under Seth Sothel had so unhinged and disorganized the government, that his successor, Philip Ludwell, found it necessary to appoint a committee, with full powers to draft a constitution for the colony. Owing to the many and great deficiences of the public records of this period, the report of this committee cannot be found. This is very unfortunate, as it would

* The passage is wholly unjust to our historians. They give an ample showing of all the events which took place during the interval designated; and even recite the grounds of difference in political principles, generated in the mother country, to which our author here refers. There is nothing in his own summary which is not directly indicated by our historians. In respect to the spirit of liberty, and its subsequent maturity, in the revolution of 1776, which these early periods exhibited, our correspondent qnotes Wheeler's recent work on North-Carolina ; but there is nothing so elaborate on this subject, by any American writer, comparable to what has been done by Judge Johnson in his life of Greene.—[Editor Southern Quarterly Review.

« ElőzőTovább »