Collections: 
0-9 | A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M | N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | U | V | W | X | Y | Z

Page 7 of Address at the three hundredth anniversary of the settlement of Jamestown / by Hon. Thomas Nelson Page.

item | thumbnails | details | text | pdf
Download this image
four men left by Newport when he sailed from Virginia in June, 1607, he found on his return in January with the first supply, but thirty-four alive: Of the four hundred or there- abouts left in 1609, Lord Delaware found but sixty-two or sixty-three surviving in 1610. In the next twenty years, of the seven or eight thousand who came to Virginia to seize and settle her for England, over six thousand died on the way or in the first year of their "seasoning." As we stand here today, it is almost impossible for the mind to conceive what these men underwent. The whole world has been not only explored, but become well-nigh as familiar to us as our own home county or town. We read in the morn- ing press accounts of the ordinary happenings in every quarter of the globe. Every sea has been charted and almost every land has become the playground of the tourist. The fabled iabors of Hercules, and the far-famed travels of Ulysses are surpassed by a thousand captains who sail the Arctic and the Tropic Seas. But in those days those men faced every danger which the human imagination could conjure up and faced it with a constant mind. If they turned back to England months and months away, of toilsome, tedious and perilous travel, they found the Spaniard with sword and rack and stake on the horizon. If they faced the new Continent, they looked into the vast, impenetrable and illimitable forest, behind every tree of which and in every patch of weeds in which there lurked a murderous foe. They had reached a charmed but an unknown land with a changeable and untried climate; their provisions originally intended to last only until they could seed and har- vest a new crop, had been wasted during their long voyage, and would not last them out. Their form of government was one ill calculated as it proved, to meet the needs of their situ- ation. But their direst enemy was one more lurking than the savage Indian and more fell than the cruel Spaniard. They had pitched upon a landing-place simply because of the security which it offered against their enemies, without knowing aught of the climate and its perils, and it proved to be a spot so malarial that before the first slimmer was out, sixty men of 7