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Hudson anchored in the evening under the northern edge Chap. I. of the Highlands. Here he lay wind-bound for a day, in
1609. a very good roadstead, admiring the magnificent mountains, which looked to him “as if some metal or mineral were in them."
Early the next morning a fair wind sprung up, and the 1 October. Half Moon, sailing rapidly through the winding Highlands, anchored, at noon, near Stony Point. Here some of the " people of the mountains" came on board, wondering at the "ship and weapons." The same afternoon, a thievish native, detected in pilfering some articles through the cabin windows, was shot without mercy by the mate; and Indians the stolen things were promptly recovered from the canoes Stony of the frightened savages, who lost another life in their flight. This was the first Indian blood shed by Europeans on the North River. After this sanguinary atonement had been exacted, the yacht dropped down two leagues further, through Haverstraw Bay to Teller's Point, near the mouth of the Croton.
The next day, a brisk northwest wind carried the Half 2 October. Moon seven leagues further down, through Tappan Sea to the head of Manhattan Island, where one of the captive Indians, who had escaped from the yacht in the Highlands, on the upward voyage, came off from the shore with many other savages. But Hudson, “perceiving their intent, would suffer none of them to enter the vessel. Two ca- The IIalf
. noes full of warriors then came under the stern, and shot tacked near a flight of arrows into the yacht. A few muskets were ington. discharged in retaliation, and two or three of the assailants were killed. Some hundred Indians then assembled at the point near Fort Washington, to attack the Half Moon as she drifted slowly by; but a falcon-shot killed two of them, “whereupon the rest fled into the woods." Again the assailants manned another canoe, and again the attack was repulsed by a falcon shot, which destroyed their frail bark; and so the savages “went their way,” mourning the loss of nine of their warriors. The yacht then“ got Hudson andown two leagues beyond that place,” and anchored over Hoboken.
CHAP. I. night"on the other side of the river," in the bay near Ho
boken. Hard by his anchorage, and upon " that side of 1609.
the river that is called Manna-hata," Hudson noticed that 66 there was a cliff that looked of the color of a white
green."* Here he lay wind-bound the next day, and“ 4 October. no people to trouble” him. The following morning, just
one month after his arrival at Sandy Hook, Hudson weighed his anchor for the last time, and coming out of the
"great mouth of the great river" into which he "had run Sails from so far," he set all sail, and steered off again into the main
The Half Moon's company now held a council, and were of various minds. They were in want of stores, and were not on good terms with each other, "which, if they had been, they would have accomplished more." The Dutch mate wished to winter at Newfoundland, and then explore the northwest passage through Davis's Straits. But Hudson, fearing his mutinous crew, who had lately begun to “ threaten him savagely,” opposed this proposition, and
suggested their immediate return to Holland. At last they The Half all agreed to winter in Ireland. So they sailed eastward
for a month, without seeing any land by the way, and on the seventh of November, 1609, arrived safely at Dartmouth, in Devonshire.
Thence Hudson immediately sent over an account of port to the his voyage to the Dutch East India Company, at AmsterCompany. dam, proposing to renew the search for the northwest pas
sage in the following spring, after refitting the Half Moon in England, and superseding several of the most turbulent of her crew. But contrary winds prevented his report from reaching Amsterdam for some time. When at length the East India directors heard of Hudson's arrival at Dartmouth, they instructed him to return with his vessel to Holland as soon as possible. As he was about complying
* The mineralogist may spend an agreeable day in visiting this cliff, near the "Elysian Fields" at Hoboken. Hudson supposed it to be a copper or silver mine,
† See Juet's Journal of Hudson's third voyage, in Purchas, and in i. N. Y. H. S. Coll., i., 102–146 ; and De Laet, in second series of same collections, i., 289-316. An interesting analysis of the Half Moon's voyage up and down the river, is in Yates and Moulton's History of New York, vol. i., p. 201-272.
Moon arrives at Dartmouth. ✓ Nov,
Hudson sends a re
with these orders early in the following year, he was ar- Chap. I. bitrarily forbidden to leave his native country by the En
1610. glish authorities, who were jealous of the advantages
January which the Dutch had gained by reason of Hudson's discoveries while in their service, and the Half Moon was detained for several months, quietly at anchor in Dartmouth harbor. *
The American territory, which had thus been discover- The Dutch ed by the agents of the Dutch East India Company, though in North included within James's first Virginia patent of 1606, was actually unoccupied, and unpossessed by any Christian prince or people.” In the south, John Smith's exploring parties were visiting the upper waters of the Chesapeake, and far off in the north the arquebuses of Samuel Champlain were dealing death to the aborigines on the “ Lake of the Iroquois," when, with extraordinary coincidence, Henry Hudson was about piloting the first European ves- 1609. sel through the unknown “River of the Mountains” which flowed between. No stranger but Verazzano seems to have passed the “ Narrows" before those wondering mariners who navigated the Half Moon of Amsterdam up that majestic stream, to which the assent of the world has given the name of its illustrious explorer. All above was new and undiscovered. The lethargy of uncivilized nature reigned throughout the undisturbed solitude. The wild game sprung from their familiar retreats, startled by the
* N. Y. H. S. Coll. (second series), ii., 370. “Et comme Hudson était prêt de partir avec la navire et ses gens, pour aller faire rapport de son voyage, il fût arreté en Angleterre, et reçut commandement de ne point partir, mais qu'il devait faire service à sa patrie ; ce qu'on commanda aussi aux autres Anglais qui étaient au vaisseau. Ce que plu.. sieurs trouverent fort étrange, de ce qu'on ne permettait pas au patron d'aller faire compte, et de faire rapport de son voyage et de qu'il avait fait, à ses maîtres, qui l'avaient envoyé en ce voyage ; puisque cela se faisait pour le bien commun de toutes sortes de navigations. Ceci se fit en Janvier, 1610. On estimait que les Anglais le voulaient envoyer avec quelques navires, vers Virginia, pour rechercher plus avant la susdite Rivière." -Van Meteren, xxxi., 674, 675, edit. 1618. Emanuel Van Meteren, the author of this excellent History of the Netherlands, was for many years Dutch consul in England, and died in London, at the age of seventy-seven, on the 18th of April, 1612.
+ It is stated, indeed, in the “Report and Advice" presented by the Chamber of ACcounts of the West India Company, on the 15th of December, 1644, that New Netherland, “stretching from the South River, situated in thirty-eight and a half degrees, to Cape Malebarre, in the latitude of forty-one and a half degrees, was first visited by the inhabitants of this country, in the year 1598, and especially by those of the Greenland Company, but without making fixed habitations, and only as a refuge in the winter."-Holland Documents, ii., 368. This statement, however, needs confirmation. See Appendix, note A.
Chap. I. unusual echoes which rolled through the ancient forests,
as the roar of the first Dutch cannon boomed over the si1609.
lent waters, and the first Dutch trumpets blew the inspiring national airs of the distant Fatherland. The simple Indians, roaming unquestioned through their native woods, which no sounding axe had yet begun to level, and paddling their rude canoes along the base of the towering hills which lined the unexplored river's side, paused in solemn amazement, as they beheld their strange visitor approaching from afar, and marveled whence the apparition came.*
Thus the triumphant flag of Holland was the harbinger of civilization along the banks of the great river of New York. The original purpose of the Half Moon's voyage had failed of accomplishment; but why need Hudson repine? He had not, indeed, discovered for his employers the long-sought passage to the Eastern Seas; but he had led the way to the foundation of a mighty state. The attractive region to which accident had conducted the Amsterdam yacht, soon became a colony of the Netherlands, where, for half a century, the sons and daughters of Holland established themselves securely under the ensign of the republic; transplanted the doctrines of a Reformed faith ; and obeyed the jurisprudence which had governed their ancestors. In the progress of events, a superior pow. er took unjust possession of the land; and nearly two hundred years have rolled by since the change came to pass. Yet the hereditary attributes of its earliest settlers have always happily influenced the destinies of its blended community; and many of the noblest characteristics of its Batavian pioneers have descended to the present day, unimpaired by the long ascendency of the red cross of Saint George, and only more brightly developed by the intermingling of the various races which soon chose its inviting territory for their home.
The picturesque shores, along which Hudson lingered with enthusiastic delight-and the magnificence of which drew from him the bold eulogium, “it is as beautiful a Char. I. land as the foot of man can tread upon”-have become the
* See Appendix, note B.
+ The population of the State of New York, in 1850, was 3,097,358; about equal to that of the United States when the Definitive Treaty of Peace was signed in 1783.
1609. favorite seat of elegance and refinement, and have witnessed the resistless rise of " empire and of arts." The silent River of the Mountains is now the highway of a boundless traffic, and bears upon its bosom the teeming wealth which grand artificial channels, connecting it with the mediterranean seas of a broad continent, bring down to its tides, from coasts of vast extent and illimitable resources. Swift steamers now crowd those waters, where Fulton's native genius first
" by flame compelled the angry sea, To vapor rarefied, his bark to drive
In triumph proud, through the loud sounding surge;"> while the yet more " rapid car” rushes incessantly along the iron road which science, obeying the call of enterprise, has stretched along the river's bank. The rights and interests of millions are now secured by equal laws, ordained by freely chosen agents, and enforced by the common consent. And while, at the head of tide-water, the political affairs of the commonwealth are watched and administered, and the people declare their sovereign will, the oceanwashed island of Manhattan, at the river's mouth, is the cosmopolitan emporium of an eager commerce which whitens every sea.