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THE TREATY OF PEACE
HE next day passed and no Indians came to the village. The
day after this was Sunday, and the Pilgrims were always
careful to make Sunday a
holy day. They met in the common-house to sing and pray to
God, and to listen to Elder Brewster's sermon.
When their service was over, they started quietly toward
their homes. Before them marched Captain Standish with his
gun, ready to give the alarm if he saw any danger.
Suddenly five great Indians came out of the forest. They
wore suits of deerskin, and their faces were streaked with
gay-colored paints. In their hair they wore long eagle
feathers, and each man carried a roll of fine furs.
"It is Samoset and his friends. That means five more hungry
men to feed," said Priscilla to Mistress Brewster.
"I think we have plenty of food to share with them,"
answered Mistress Brewster. "We will set the table for them
in the common-house, and they need not come into our
houses at all. It frightens the children to see them looking
in at the doors."
After the Indians had eaten their dinner, they spread their
furs upon the table. Then they
 motioned to bowls and kettles, and knives, and other things
which they wanted in return for their rolls of furs.
"No, Samoset, this is Sunday. This is our Lord's Day. Tell
your friends we cannot trade with them on the Lord's Day.
Come to-morrow and we will be glad to buy your furs."
Samoset could not see why one day was any better than
another, but he told his friends what the Pilgrims had said.
So the Indians rolled up their furs and without another word
walked out of the village.
Several days passed and the Indians did not return. The
Pilgrims began to wonder if the savages were angry because
they had not taken the furs on Sunday.
The men were again in the common-house drawing plans for the
fort to be built upon the hill, when Francis Billington and
Love Brewster rushed into the room. They were pale with
fright and out of breath with running.
"Indians! Indians!" they gasped. "We were down by the
brook—gathering willows—to make
whistles—and we saw—at least
a hundred Indians—come out of the woods."
But Miles Standish did not wait to hear the end of their
story. He ran to the door and looked toward the forest. Yes,
the boys were right, there was a large band of Indians on
the hill near
 by. They talked together and pointed toward Plymouth
Quickly Captain Standish turned and gave his orders. Each
man knew just where he was to stand and what he was to do in
case of an attack.
Then Samoset and another Indian left the band and came slowly
down into the village. Miles Standish and Edward Winslow
went forward to meet them.
"This is Squanto, friend of English," said Samoset.
"You are both welcome to our village," answered Edward
Winslow. "We hope you have brought many furs to trade with
"No furs," replied Samoset. "Massasoit, the Great Chief of
red men, comes to meet the White Chief. Massasoit would be
the White Chief's brother."
When the Pilgrims learned that the king of many tribes
waited to see them, they wished to show him honor. Governor
Carver prepared some gifts for the chief, and Edward
Winslow, wearing his finest armor, went with Squanto to the
place where the Indians waited.
Massasoit looked very like a king as he rested his long bow
upon the ground and stood to receive
the white man. He was very tall and straight.
His garments of deerskin were beautifully trimmed
with shells and shining quills, and he wore a band
 of eagle feathers which reached from the top of his head to
"Massasoit looked very like a king"
Upon the grass before Massasoit, Edward Winslow spread a red
blanket of fine wool, upon
which he placed strings of bright beads, a knife, and a long
When he had slowly and carefully arranged
 all these things, Winslow arose and said to Massasoit, "My
chief sends to you these gifts and invites you to his
house. He would be your friend."
When Squanto had told Massasoit these words, the chief
motioned Winslow to stay there until he returned. Then
taking twenty of his warriors, he went to the village, led
Captain Standish, Master Allerton, and six other soldiers
dressed in their bright armor met Massasoit and his men at
the brook and escorted them to the common-house. Here a
large rug was spread and cushions were laid for the chief
and his braves.
Soon the sound of drum and fife was heard, and Governor
Carver entered, followed by the rest of the little army.
Then meat and drink were brought, and, after the company had
eaten together, Governor Carver and Massasoit made a treaty
Massasoit arose and in his own language promised that the
Indians would not harm the white men, and, if other Indian
tribes made war upon Plymouth, Massasoit would help the
He promised that his tribes should not bring their bows and
arrows into the white men's settlement.
When Samoset had told in English what Massasoit had said,
Governor Carver spoke. He said the Pilgrims would not harm
 or carry their guns into the Indian villages when they went
there to visit. He promised Massasoit they would always pay
the Indians a fair price for the furs and other things they
bought of them.
When the governor's words had been told to Massasoit by
Squanto, a treaty of peace was signed. The Indian chief
could not write, but, instead, he made a little cross.
Massasoit did not understand the signing of the paper. When
Indians make a treaty of peace the two chiefs always smoke a
peace pipe. So the governor and the chief smoked the great
stone peace pipe which Samoset brought to them. "Now are the
white men and the red men always brothers," said Samoset.
Then Massasoit unrolled the gifts he had brought to his
white brother, Governor Carver. There were the finest of
furs, a bow and arrows like his own, and a necklace of
When Massasoit and his company were ready to return to their
camp, Captain Standish and his soldiers escorted them as far
as the brook, to show them honor.
This treaty of peace between the Pilgrims and the Indians
was kept for fifty years. In all this time they did not
break their promises to each other.