FOUR years had now passed since the arrival of Winthrop's company in Massachusetts Bay. The worst hardships of a new plantation had been outlived. The infant society had been organized into coherence, symmetry, and a capacity of self-preservation and growth. The emigration had been recently renewed, and between three and four thousand Englishmen were distributed among twenty hamlets along and near the sea-shore.
They were settling into such employments as their situation dictated. They cultivated the ground, and took care of herds and flocks.1 They hunted and fished for a part of their food. They were building houses, boats, and mills; enclosing land with fences; and cutting roads through the forest to connect their towns. Their exports of cured fish, furs, and lumber bought them articles of convenience and luxury in England, and they were soon to build ships to be sold abroad. The customs of daily life were taking the new shapes impressed upon them by the strangeness of a condition so novel, and the course of public administration was beginning to be made regular by precedents.
1634. Condition of the settlers in Massachusetts.
The freemen of the Company were now about three hundred and fifty in number.2 More than two thirds of____________________
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Publication information: Book title: History of New England. Volume: 1. Contributors: John Gorham Palfrey - Author. Publisher: Little, Brown. Place of publication: Boston. Publication year: 1858. Page number: 383.