"The Good Land"
TWO generations after the settlement of New England, Puritan historians extolled the courage of their patriarchs, the men who first established beachheads upon the virgin continent. William Hubbard, whose General History of New England won the endorsement of the Massachusetts General Court in 1682, recounted the single- minded commitment of John Winthrop, "that honorable and worthy gentleman," who guided the Great Migration of 1630. At "a solemn feast" shortly before his last farewell, Governor Winthrop, "finding his bowels yearn within him," broke into "a flood of tears" which "set them all a weeping." But despite the distress at losing dear friends forever, this passionate outburst failed to dampen their spirits "as to think of breaking off their purpose so far carried on."1Cotton Mather, writing nearly three decades after Hubbard, was similarly struck by the resolution of the founding fathers. It was, he felt, "a strange work of God" which inspired diverse men "to secede into a wilder-____________________