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named Nemattanow, who was wont, out of vanity or some unaccountable humor, to dress himself up with feathers, in a most barbarously fantastic manner. This habit obtained for him among the English the name of Jack-of-the-feather. He was renowned among his countrymen both for courage and cunning, and was esteemed the greatest war. captain of those times. But, what was most remarkable, although he had been in many skirmishes and engagements with the English, he had always escaped without a wound. From this accident, seconded by his own ambition and craft, he obtained at length the reputation of being invulnerable and immortal.

Early in 1622, Nemattanow came to the house of one Morgan, who kept and sold a variety of well-selected commodities for the use of the Indians. Smitten with a strong desire to obtain some of them, Ne. mattanow persuaded Morgan to accompany him to Pamunkey, on the assurance of an advantageous traffic at that place. On the way, he is supposed to have murdered the trader. Within two or three days, he returned again to the house of his victim, where were only two stout young men, servants of Morgan, at home. They, observing that he wore their master's cap on his head, inquired after him; and Jack told them frankly he was dead.

Confirmed in their previous suspicions by this declaration, they seized him, and endeavored to carry him before Mr. Thorpe, who lived at a neighboring settlement. But their prisoner troubled them su much by his resistance, and withal provoked them so intolerably by his bravadoes, that they finally shot him down, and put him into a boat, in order to convey him the remaining seven or eight miles of the way. But the Indian soon grew faint; and finding himself surprised by the pangs of death, he requested his captors to stop. In his last moments he most earnestly besought of them two great favors; first, never to make it known that he was killed by a bullet; and secondly, to bury him among the English, that the certain knowledge and monument of his mortality might still be concealed from the sight of his countrymen. So strong was the ruling passion in death.

Opechancanough was so far from being a particular friend of Nemattanow, that he had given the president to understand, by a messenger, some time before the transaction just related, that he should consider it a favor in him, if he would take measures to have Jack despatched. The popularity of the war-captain was the only reason why he forbore to take such measures himself. Nevertheless, with a consummate wiliness he availed himself of this same popularity, on the death of his rival-as Jack seems to have been—the better to inflame and exasperate the Indians against the whites. He affected to be excessively grieved at his death, and for some time was unusually loud in his declarations of resentment and his threats of revenge. A mes. senger came from the president, to ascertain what was intended by these demonstrations of hostility, and again all was quiet as before; nothing could induce the sachem to violate the vast regard which he had always entertained for the English. About the same time he gave them liberty, by negotiation, to seat themselves any where on the shores

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of the rivers, within his dominions, where the natives had no villages. The treaty he had already made for the discovery of mines, as well as for mutual friendship and defence, was at his request engraven on a brass plate, and fastened to one of the largest oaks growing upon his territories, that it might be had always in remembrance.

For several years after the massacre, a war was waged between the colonists and the savages, so inveterate and ferocious as to transmit a mutual abhorrence and prejudice to the posterity of both. The former obtained at this period the name of the Long-Knives, by which they were distinguished to a very late day, in the hieroglyphic language of the natives. Every precaution and preparation was taken and made upon both sides, in view of a desperate conflict. Orders were issued by the government, from time to time, directing a general vigilance and caution against the enemy who now engrossed all thought; and especially prohibiting the waste of arms and ammunition. The remnants of.the settlements were drawn together into a narrower compass. Of cighty plantations, all were abandoned but six, which lay contiguous at the lower part of James river; and three or four others, of which the owners or overseers, refusing to obey public orders, intrenched themselves, and mounted cannon for their own separate defence.

A considerable space of territory between the Virginians and the savage tribes was wasted with fire, for the sole purpose of laying bare the stealthy approaches of the enemy, who, under cover of the long grass and underwood, and the gigantic shield of the oak and cypress, had heretofore been able to advance unperceived, and rise up in attack almost from under the very feet of the English. But even a boundary of fire could not always restrain the fury, nor elude the skill of the Indians. Wisely content with short and sudden incursions, for plun. der and revenge rather than conquest, they frequently succeeded in carrying off the corn and cattle of the colonists, and sometimes their persons into captivity. They were themselves, on the other hand, hunted like beasts of prey. No prisoners were made; no quarter was given.

From the time of the massacre, Opechancanough seems no longer to have taken the least trouble to conceal his hostility. He returned a haughty answer to the first demand made upon him for the redemption of the English captives; and trampled under foot the picture of the English monarch, which was sent to him as a compliment. Late in 1622, when Captain Croshaw was trading on the Potomac, with the only tribe which was now willing to carry on commerce, he had scarcely landed from his vessel, when a messenger arrived from Opechancanough to Japazaws, (king of the Patawomekes,) bearing two baskets of beads as a royal present, and soliciting the king to murder his new visitants on the spot. He was assured, that whether he did his part or not, before the end of two moons, there should not be an Englishman left in the whole country. Japazaws first disclosed the message to his guest; and then, after thinking and talking of it two days, made answer that the English were his friends, and pitchipan (the Powhatan emperor) his brother; and therefore there should be no more blood shed between them by his means. The beads were returned by the messenger.

After this, the colonists had their season of success; and more Indians are said to have been slain during the autumn and winter of 1622—3, than had ever before fallen by the hands of the English, since the settlement of Jamestown. But the course adopted by the civilised party sufficiently indicates the desperate state of their affairs. They availed themselves of a stratagem worse than barbarous in its principle, however circumstances might be supposed in this case to justify it. A peace was offered to the enemy and accepted; but just as the corn, which the latter were induced to plant, was beginning to grow ripe, the English fell upon them in all directions at a given hour of an appointed day, killed many, and destroyed a vast quantity of provisions. Several of the greatest war-captains were among the slain; and for some time Opechancanough himself was reported to be one. This rumor alone, so long as believed, was equat to a victory; “ for against him," says the historian, “was this stratagem chiefly laid."

Such language furnishes evidence enough of the apprehension which his movements and reputation had excited. But he

gave more substantial reasons for the respect which he still wrested from his enemy, by his prowess. A battle took place at his own village of Pamunkey, in 1625, in which the main body of the savages numbered eight hundred bowmen, independently of detachments from remote tribes; and though the English, led on by Governor Wyatt in person, succeeded in driving the enemy from the field, they were unable to pursue them as far as Matapony. That town was their principal depot and rallying point, and the acknowledged inability to reach it, though but four miles distant, proves that the battle was by no means decisive. It appears from this affair, too, that all the efforts of the English, during an inveterate war of three years, had not driven the tribes even from the neighborhood of their own settlements. What was more discouraging, Opechancanough was not to be deceived a second time by the arts of diplomacy. In 1628, the governor's proclamation, which announced the appointment of commissioners to negotiate with the enemy, declared expressly an intention to repeat the stratagem of 1622; but the plan failed of success, and the Pamun. kies and Chickahominies—most immediately under the influence of Opechancanough-were more troublesome at this period than ever before.

afterwards, the same tribes made an irruption so furious and alarming, that every twentieth man was despatched, under the command of the governor, to parley with thema term in the records which shows forcibly, as Burk observes, the respect this brave people had inspired. But Opechancanough was still implacable; and when, in the course of 1632, a peace was at last formally concluded, sd little dependence was placed on that circumstance, that even while the commissioners on both sides were adjusting the preliminaries, a proclama.

Four years

tion was issued, forbidding the colonists either to parley or trade with the Indians.

This truce or treaty was understood to be on both sides a temporary expedient; but the chieftain was the first to take advantage of it, During nine years he remained quietly making his preparations for the conflict which his sagacity told him must some day or other be renewed. The hour at length arrived. The colony was involved in dissensions. Insurrections had taken place. The governor was unpopular, and the people were unprepared and heedless. Opechancanough lost not a moment in concerting measures for effecting at a single blow the bloody, but in his bosom noble design, which had already engrossed the solicitude and labor of so large a part of his life.

He was now advanced in years, but his orders were conveyed with electric rapidity to the remotest tribes of the great confederacy associated under his influence. With the five nearest his own location, and most completely under his control, he resolved to make the principal onset in person. The more distant stations were assigned to the leading chiefs of the several nations; and thus the system of a war that raged from the mouth of the Chesapeake to the heads of all the great rivers, which flow into it, was so simple as to render confusion impossible. The whole force was let loose upon the entire line of the English settlements at nearly the same instant of time. Five hundred persons perished in the massacre. Many others were carried into captivity. The habitations, corn, household utensils, instruments of farming, every thing essential to comfort, and almost every thing necessary to life, was consumed by fire. But for circumstances in the situation of the settlements, over which Opechancanough had no control, and which he could not guard against, the fate of Virginia had been decided by this single blow.

As it was, every other labor and thought were suspended in the terrors of an Indian war. The loom was abandoned. The plough was left in its furrow. All who were able to bear arms were embodied as a militia for the defence of the colony; and a chosen body, comprising every twentieth man, marched into the enemy's country under Governor Berkeley's personal command. The operations of the war, which raged thenceforth without any intermission until the death of Opéchancanough—and that alone was expected to end it-are detailed by no historian. The early Virginian records which remain in manuscript are altogether silent respecting this period, and the meagre relation of Beverley is the only chronicle which has survived the ravages of time. This circumstance of itself sufficiently indicates the confusion and dismay of the era.

Opechancanough, whose last scene now rapidly approaches, had become so decrepid by age, as to be unable to walk, though his spirit, rising above the ruins of his body, directed, from the littor upon which his Indians carried him, the onset and the retreat of his warriors. The wreck of his constitution was at length completed by the extreme fatigues encountered in this difficult and laborious service. His flesh became macerated; his sinews lost their elasticity; and his eyelids

were so heavy that he could not see, unless they were lifted up by his faithful attendants. In this forlorn condition he was closely pursued by Berkeley with a squadron of horse, and at length surprised and taken. He entered Jamestown for the first time in his life, as the most conspicuous figure in the conqueror's triumph.

To the honor of the English, they treated their distinguished captive with the tenderness which his infirmities demanded, and the respect which his appearance and talents inspired. They saw the object of their terror bending under the load of years, and shattered by the hardships of war; and they generously resolved to bury the remembrance of their injuries in his present melancholy reverse of fortune. His own deportment was suitable to his former glory, and the principles of an Indian hero. He disdained to utter complaint or to manifest uneasiress. He believed that tortures were preparing for him; but instead of any consequent reduction in his haughtiness, his language and demeanor bespoke the most absolute defiance and contempt.

But generally he shrouded himself in reserve; and as if desirous of showing his enemies that there was nothing in their presence even to rouse his curiosity, and much less to excite his apprehensions, he but rarely permitted his eyelids to be listed up. He continued in this state several days, attended by his affectionale Indian servants, who had begged permission to wait upon him. · But his long life of near an hundred years* was drawing to its close. He was basely shot through the back by one of the soldiers appointed to guard him, from no other provocation than the recollection of his ancient hostility.

To the last moment his courage remained unbroken. The nearer death approached, the more care he seemed to use in concealing his dejection, and preserving the dignity and serenity of his aspect. Only a few minutes before he expired, he heard an unusual bustle in the room where he was confined. Having ordered his attendants to raise his eyelids, he discovered a number of persons crowding round him, for the purpose of gratifying an unseasonable curiosity. The dying chief felt the indignity, but disdaining to notice the intruders, he raised himself as well as he could, and with a voice and air of authority, demanded that the governor should be immediately brought in. When the latter made his appearance, the chieftain scornfully told him, that “had it been his fortune to have taken Sir William Berkeley prisoner, he should not have exposed him as a show to his people."

Such was the death of Opechancanough. His character is too well explained by his life to require any additional comment. His own countrymen were more extensively and more completely under his influence than they had been under that of Powhatan himself. This is the more remarkable, from the fact that Opitchipan, whose age and family at least entitled him to some deference, retained the nominal

* So write some historians; but as he is understood to have been younger than Powhatan, the estimate is possibly too large by ten or twenty years. It is said that Berkeley had proposed taking him to England, as a living argument to counteract the representations made in that country as to the unhealthiness of the Virginian climate.

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