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questions and guesses, which outrages occasioned as much vexation and heart-burning as does the modern right of search on the high seas.

Great jealousy did they likewise stir up, by their intermeddling and successes among the divine sex; for being a race of brisk, likely, pleasant-tongued varlets, they soon seduced the light affections of the simple damsels from their ponderous Dutch gallants. Among other hideous customs, they attempted to introduce among them that of bundling, which the Dutch lasses of the Nederlandts, with that eager passion for novelty and foreign fashions natural to their sex, seemed very well inclined to follow, but that their mothers, being more experienced in the world, and better acquainted with men and things, strenuously discountenanced all such outlandish innovations.

But what chiefly operated to embroil our ancestors with these strange folk, was an unwarrantable liberty which they occasionally took of entering in hordes into the territories of the NewNetherlands, and settling themselves down, without leave or license, to improve the land, in the manner I have before noticed This unceremonious mode of taking possession of new land was technically termed squatting, and hence is derived the appellation of squatters ; a name odious in the ears of all great landholders, and which is given to those enterprising worthies who seize upon land first, and take their chance to make good their title to it afterwards.

All these grievances, and many others which were constantly accumulating, tended to form that dark and portentous cloud, which, as I observed in a former chapter, was slowly gathering over the tranquil province of New-Netherlands. The pacific cabinet of Van Twiller, however, as will be perceived in the so quel, bore them all with a magnanimity that redounds to their immortal creditbecoming by passive endurance inured to this increasing mass of wrongs ; like that mighty man of old, who by dint of carrying about a calf from the time it was born, continued to carry it without difficulty when it had grown to be an ox.

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CHAPTER IX.

HOW THE FORT GOED HOOP WAS FEARFULLY BELEAGUERED

HOW THE RENOWNED WOUTER FELL INTO A PROFOUND

DOUBT, AND HOW HE FINALLY EVAPORATED.

By this time my readers must fully perceive what an arduous task I have undertaken—exploring a little kind of Herculaneum of history, which had lain nearly for ages buried under the rubbish of years, and almost totally forgotten-raking up the limbs and fragments of disjointed facts, and endeavoring to put them scrupulously together, so as to restore them to their original form and connection—now lu; forth the character of an almost forgotten hero, like a mutilated statue—now deciphering a half defaced inscription, and now lighting upon a mouldering manuscript, which, after painful study, scarce repays the trouble of perusal.

In such case how much has the reader to depend upon the honor and probity of his author, lest, like a cunning antiquarian, he either impose upon him some spurious fabrication of his own, for a precious relic from antiquity-or else dress the dismembered fragment with such false trappings, that it is scarcely possible to distinguish the truth from the fiction with which it is erveloped. This is a grievance which I have more than once had

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to lament, in the course of my wearisome researches among the works of my fellow historians, who have strangely disguised and distorted the facts respecting this country; and particularly respecting the great province of New-Netherlands; as will be perceived by any who will take the trouble to compare their romantic effusions, tricked out in the meretricious gauds of fable, with this authentic history.

I have had more vexations of the kind to encounter, in those parts of my history which treat of the transactions on the eastern border, than in any other, in consequence of the troops of historians who have infested those quarters, and have shown the honest people of Nieuw-Nederlandts no mercy in their works. Among the rest, Mr. Benjamin Trumbull arrogantly declares, that “the Dutch were always mere intruders.”—Now to this I shall make no other reply, than to proceed in the steady narration of my history, which will contain not only proofs that the Dutch had clear title and possession in the fair valleys of the Connecticut, and that they were wrongfully dispossessed thereof-but likewise, that they have been scandalously maltreated ever since, by the misrepresentations of the crafty historians of New-England. And in this I shall be guided by a spirit of truth and impartiality, and a regard to immortal fame-for I would not wittingly dishonor my work by a single falsehood, misrepresentation, or prejudice, though it should gain our forefathers the whole country of New England.

I have already noticed in a former chapter of my history, that the territories of the Nieuw-Nederlandts extended on the east, quite to the Varshe or fresh, or Connecticut river. Here, at an early period, had been established a frontier post on the bank of the river, and called Fort Goed Hoop, not far from the site of the present fair city of Hartford. It was placed under the command of Jacobus Van Curlet, or Curlis, as some historians will have it; a doughty soldier, of that stomachful class famous for eating all they kill. He was long in the body and short in the limb, as though a tall man's body had been mounted on a little man's legs. He made up for this turnspit construction by striding to such an extent, that you would have sworn he had on the seven-leagued boots of Jack the Giant-killer; and so high did he tread on parade, that his soldiers were sometimes alarmed lest be should trample himself under foot.

But notwithstanding the erection of this fort and the appointment of this ugly little man of war as commander, the Yankees continued the interlopings hinted at in my last chapter, and at length had the audacity to squat themselves down within the jurisdiction of Fort Goed Hoop.

The long-bodied Van Curlet protested with great spirit against these unwarrantable encroachments, couching his protest in Low Dutch, by way of inspiring more terror, and forthwith dispatched a copy

of the protest to the governor at New-Amsterdam, together with a long and bitter account of the aggressions of the enemy. This done, he ordered his men, one and all, to be of good cheershut the gate of the fort, smoked three pipes, went to bed, and awaited the result with a resolute and intrepid tranquillity, that greatly animated his adherents, and no doubt struck sore dismay and affright into the hearts of the enemy.

Now it came to pass, that about this time, the renowned Wouter Van Twiller, full of years and honors, and council dinners, had reached that period of life and faculty which, according to the great Gulliver, entitles a man to admission into the ancient order of Struldbruggs. He employed his time in smoking his

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