jaseal1.jpg (26181 bytes)

 

GOOD FRIDAY   MASSACRE

jaseal1.jpg (26181 bytes)

The long years of peace following the marriage of Pocahontas had disarmed suspicion and made it impossible for imagination to conceive of such a plot as was hatching in the brain of Opechancanough. So great was the faith of the colonists in the sincere intention of the Indians to keep the peace that they let the red men borrow from them some of the boats which were used going up and down the river to give notice of the plot. At the fatal hour some of the colonists were in their homes, others in the fields, planting corn and tobacco, others making brick, sawing timber or building houses, while the Indians looked on with apparent contcnt.

On this scene of harmony and hopefulness in His Majesty's first colony, Virginia, fell the dread blow of the great massacre. It is believed that the plot could not have been instigated, planned and carried out by a mind less astute and less deeply steeped in cruelty and craftiness than that of Opechancanough. It was as thoroughly managed as if the natives had had telegraphic facilities and the secret was so completely kept that no suspicion entered the heart of a colonist. The Indians kept up their appearance of friendship till the moment when they had been ordered to strike. "Some of them were even sitting down at breakfast with our people at their tables" when at eight o'clock on that Good Friday morning of March, 1622, wherever they happened to be on either side of James River for a hundred and forty miles up and down, they rose up as one man and each began murdering the pale face "friends" that happened to be closest to him. Neither aged men and women nor young children were spared. Each uplifted tomahawk fell upon the victim nearest the hand that wielded it so suddenly that "few or none discerned the weapon that brought them to destruction." Purchas, quoting letters from Virginia, says that converted Indians saved the lives of some of the colonists. The Indians lived in small, widely scattered settlements, yet all received notice when to strike and directions as to what places they were to attack. By letters and from those who returned to England it was "certified that (besides Master George Thorpe) Master John Berkeley, Captain Nathaniel Powell and his wife, and Captain Maycocke--all gentlemen of birth, virtue, and industry, and of the Council there, suffered under this their cruelty and treason." That the slaughter had been universal, if God had not put it into the heart of Chanco, an Indian belonging to one Perry, to disclose it. Let Purchas tell "how Chanco, living in the house with one Pace was urged by another Indian, his brother (who came the night before and lay with him) to kill Pace (so commanded by their king as he declared) as he would kill Perry; telling further that by such an hour in thc morning a number would come from divers places to finish the execution, who failed not at the time. Chanco rose out of his bed and revealed it to Pace, that used him as a son. And thus the rest of the colony (Jamestown and its neighbourhood) were warned and were saved. "Such was (God be thanked for it) the good fruit of an Indian converted to Christianity; for though three hundred more of ours died by many of these Pagen infidels, yet Thousands of ours were saved by the means of one of them alone which was made a Christian: blessed be God forever whose mercy endureth forever; blessed be God whose mercy is above his justice and farre above All his works; who wrought this deliverance whereby their soules escaped even as a bird out of the snare of the Fowler. Pace upon this discovery, securing his house before day, rowed over the river to James City (in that place near three miles in breadth) and gave notice thereof to the Governor, by which means they were prevented there and at such other plantations as was possible for timely intelligence to be given. For where they saw us standing upon our guard, at the sight of a piece [musket] they all ran away. "

Toward evening Sir George Yeardley went in his ship up the river to Flowerdieu Hundred to give aid to those who might be wounded. A list of those massacred includes: "At Martins, 73, at Berkeley 11, at Edward Bennett's plantation (in the present Isle of Wight) 50, at Westover 2, at Maycox 5, on Appomattox River 4, at Flowerdieu Hundred, 6, at Weyanoke 21." The Corporation of Henrico and other settlements above the Appomattox were literally wiped out for the time. At Henricopolis the people were killed or driven away and their houses were burned. At Falling Creek the iron workers were killed and everything possible destroyed. Two children who hid in the bushes escaped. The residents of Bermuda City and at the settlements on the south side of the river down to Chippoak Creek near  Brandon,  were nearly all killed. Various accounts give the numbers murdered as from 347 to 400. Colonists who held out against the assailants include Samuel Jordan, with the aid of a few refugees at Begger's Bush (now Jordan's Point), Edward Hill, at Elizabeth City, and "Mrs. Proctor, a proper, civil, Modest gentlewoman, " who defended herself and household till the colonial authorities ordered her and those with her to abandon her home and take refuge in one of the forts, or they would burn it themselves, as the Indians did when it was vacated. Daniel Gookin, at Newport News, declined to remove and with his thirty-five men, successfully defended his plantation. At the time of the massacre there were three or four ships in Jame River and one in the York, but there is no evidence that any of the colonists deserted the colony in them.

From Mary Newton Stanard's Book "Virginia's First Century" Chapter 16 p170-173

The following list of dead after the Massacre of 1622 according to "The Records of  the Virginia Company of London" Pages 565-571 Volume III 1933 US Government Printing Office

Captain Berckley's  Plantation,          (at Falling Creek 66 mi from James Citty Co)

27

John Berkley, esq          
Thomas Brasington
John Sawyer
Roger David
Francis Gowsh
Bartholomew Peram
Giles Peram
John Dowler
Laurence Dowler
Lewis Williams
Richard Boscough

Robert Horner Mason
Philip Barnes
William Swandal
Robert Williams, wife & child
Giles Bradshawe, wife & child
John Howlet, and son
Thomas Wood, and Collin's his man
Joseph Fitch Apothecary to Dr Pots
Thomas Holland

John Hunt

Thomas Sheffields Plantation,                   (3 mi from the Falling Creek)

13

Master Thomas Sheffield
& Rachael his wife
John Reeve
William Tyler, a boy
Samuel Reeve
John Ellen
Robert Tyler, a boy

Mathew_____
Judeth Howard
Thomas Poole
Methusalem_____
Thomas Taylor
William Tyler

Henrico Iland (2 mi from Sheffield's)

5

____Adkins
____Weston
Philip Shatford

William Perigo
Owen Jones,

   one of Capt Berkley's people.

Colledge People, (2 mi from Henrico Citie)

17

Samuel Stringer
George Soldan
William Basset
John Perry
Edward Ember
Jarret Moore
Thomas Xerles
Thomas Freeman
John Allen

Thomas Cooke
John Clements
James Faulkoner
Christopher Henley
William Jordan
Robert Davis
Thomas Hobson
William Baily

Abraham Pierce'sPlantation,                   (5 mi from the Colledge People)

4

William Charte
John Waterhouse

John Baker, a boy
Robert Yeoman

Capt. Smith's Company

5

Roger Royal
Thomas Jones
Robert Maurel

Edward Heydon
Henry Bushel

Adjoining Plantations

8

Richard Prat, & brother
Henry Milward, wife,
Child, and sister  

Richard, a boy
Goodwife Redhead
  

William Farrar's House

9

Master John England,
and his man John Bel
Henricke Peterson, Alice
His wife, William, his son

Thomas, his man
James Woodshaw
Mary, a servant
Elizabeth, a servant

Berkley-Hundred, (5 mi from Charles Citie)

11

Capt George Thrope, Esq
John Rowles
Richard Rowles, wife
And child
Giles Wilkins

Giles Bradway
Richard Fereby
Thomas Thrope
Robert Jordan
Edward Painter

Westover, (1 mi from Berkley-Hundred)

2

James English

Richard Dash

John West's Plantation

2

Christopher Turner

David Owen

Capt Nathaniel West's

2

Michael Aleworth

John Wright

Lt. Gib's Dividend

12

John Paly
Thomas Ratcliffe
Michael Booker
John Higglet
Nathaniel Earle

John Gibbes
Willaim Parker

Richard Waineham
Benomy Reyman
Thomas Gay
James Vpfall (Usher)
Daniel _____Mr Dowbelowes man

 

 

Richard Owens house

6

Richard Owens
Stephen Dubo
Francis, an Irishman
Thomas Paine

One old maide called Margaret
William Reeve

 

Owen Macar's house

4

Owen Macar
Garret Farrel

Richard Yeaw
one boy

Master Macock's Dividend

4

Capt Samuel Macock, esq
Edward Leister, a Signer
of the Mayflower Compact

Thomas Browne
John Downes

Flowerdieu-Hundred,  Sir George Yeardley's Plantation

6

John Philips
Thomas Nufon
John Bradford

Robert Taylor
Samuel Jarret
Elizabeth Bennet

Opposite Flowerdieu-Hundred

7

Master Hobson, & his wife
Richard Storks
John Slaughter

Thomas Philips
Richard Campton
Anne Greene

Mr Swinhowe's house

7

Mistress Swinhowe,
sons Thomas and George
Richard Mosse

John Larkin
William Blyth
Thomas Grindal

Mr Wm Bikar's house

5

William Bykar
Mathew Hawthorn & wife

Edward Peirce
Nicholas Howsdon  

Weynoack of Sir George Yeardley's people

21

Nathaniel Elie
John Flores
Henry Gape
___Buckingham
William Pusset
William Walker
John Gray
James Boate
John Suersby
Thomas Evans

Thomas Ap-Richard
Henry Haynes
John Blewet
Henry Rice
____Hurt

Jonas Alport
Thomas Stephens
Samuel Goodwine
John Snow & his boy
Margery Blewet

Powel-brooke

11

Capt. Nathan Powel, esq
His wife dau of Mr Tracy
Mistress Bray
Adam Rayner's wife
Barbara Burges
William Head       

Thomas Woolcher
William Meakins
Robert ____
Peter Jordan
Peter Goodale

Southampton-Hundred

5

Robert Goffe, his wife
William Larkum

John Davis
William Mountfort

Martin Brandon's

7

Lt Sanders
Ensigne Sherley
John Taylor & wife                

2 boys
Mathew, a Polander

Capt Spilman's

2

John Basingthwayte

Walter Shawe

Ensigne Spence's house

5

William Richmond
John Fowler
Alexander Bale                     

William Fierfax   
the Tinker

Martin's -Hundred,                                       (7 miles from James Citie)

75

Lt, Richard Kean
Master Thomas Boise
Mrs Boise and baby
4 of his men  & a maide
Ralphe Digginson & wife and servant
Nathaniel Jefferies wife
Margaret Davis
Richard Staples
His wife & child
2 maides
6 men and boys
Walter Davis & brother
Christopher Guillam
Thomas Combar
3 servants
John Boise & wife
A maide
4 man-servants
Laurence Wats & wife
2 man-servants
Henry Bromage & wife
His daughter and Man

Edward How, his wife
& child
child of John Jackson
4 man-servants

2 children

Richard Cholfer
George Jones
Cisley Cooke & wife
David Bons
John Bennet
John Mason
William Pawmet
Thomas Bats
Peter Lightburrow
James Thorley
Robert Walden
Thomas Tolling

John Butler
Maximillian Russel
Henry, a Welsh-man
Timothy Moise, his man
Henry Bromage & wife

Thomas Peirce House over against Mulberry Island

6

Thoma Peirce & wife
And child
John Hopkins

John Samon
a French boy

Edward Bennet's Plantation

46

Thomas Brewood & wife
His child, 2 servants
Thomas Ferris
George Cole
Robert Gray
John Griffin
Ensigne Harrison
John Costard
David Barry
Thomas Sheppard
Henry Price
Robert ____
Alice Jones
Thomas Cooke
Philip Worth
Mathew a maide
Francis Winder
Thomas Couly
Richard Woodward
Humfrey Cropen
Thomas Bacon
Evan Watkins

Richard Lewis
Edward Towse
Remember Michel
____Bullocke
Richard Chandler
Henry Moore
Nicholas Hunt
John Corderoy
Richard Cockwell

John Howard
Mrs Harrison
Rebbecca____
Master Prowse
Hugh_____
John______
Edward____
Mrs Chamberlen
Parnel a maide
Humfrey Sherbrooke
John Wilkins
John Burton

Mr. John Pounti's men:

6

John Scotchmore
Lt Peirce Man
Edward Brewster

Edward Turner
Capt Whittaker's man
Thomas Holland

Master Walter's house

5

Edward Walters
& His wife a boy and child

a maide

                                             A TOTAL OF 347 men, women, and children.

     Abstracted and compiled by Linda Chandler © 1999