Front Matter Our Country Long Ago The Barbarous Indians The Mounds Where the Northmen Went The Northmen in America Queer Ideas Prince Henry the Navigator Youth of Columbus Columbus and the Queen "Land! Land!" Columbus and the Savages Home Again Columbus Ill-treated Death of Columbus How America Got its Name The Fountain of Youth "The Father of Waters" The French in Canada French and Spanish Quarrels The Sky City Around the World Nothing but Smoke Smith's Adventures The Jamestown Men Smith Wounded Pocahontas Visits England Hudson and the Indians The Mayflower Plymouth Rock The First Thanksgiving Snake Skin and Bullets The Beginning of Boston Stories of Two Ministers Williams and the Indians The Quakers The King-Killers King Phillip's War The Beginning of New York Penn and the Indians The Catholics in Maryland The Old Dominion Bacon's Rebellion A Journey Inland The Carolina Pirates Charter Oak Salem Witches Down the Mississippi La Salle's Adventures Indians on the Warpath Two Wars with the French Washington's Boyhood Washington's Journey Washington's First Battle Stories of Franklin Braddock's Defeat Wolfe at Quebec England and her Colonies The Stamp Tax The Anger of the Colonies The Boston Tea Party The Minutemen The Battle of Lexington Bunker Hill The Boston Boys The British leave Boston Declaration of Independence A Lady's Way of Helping Christmas Eve The Fight at Bennington Burgoyne's Surrender Winter at Valley Forge The Quaker Woman Putnam's Adventures Indian Cruelty Boone in Kentucky Famous Sea Fights The "Swamp Fox" The Poor Soldiers The Spy A Traitor's Death Two Unselfish Women Surrender of Cornwallis British Flag hauled down Washington's Farewell

Story of the Thirteen Colonies - Helene Guerber

French and Spanish Quarrels

Twenty years passed by before the French again attempted to plant a colony in America—twenty very eventful years for France and for all western Europe. The people, who, as you have heard, had all been Roman Catholics for centuries, now began to divide. Some of them refused to obey the pope, and wanted to worship in a somewhat different way. In France these people were called Huguenots, and among them was a nobleman named Coligny.

Seeing that the Huguenots were much disliked in their own country, Coligny proposed that they should go to the New World and found a colony where they could worship as they pleased without offending any one. As Cartier said the climate was too cold in Canada, Coligny sent the Huguenots farther south, in charge of Laudonniere and Ribault.

The French colonists, landing in the New World, called the country Carolina, in honor of their king, Charles, and they also gave this name to their fort. But they soon lacked food and became discouraged. As the vessel in which they had come had sailed away, they built a new ship and set out for France. At sea, lack of provisions soon brought them to such desperate straits that they drew lots and ate one of their number. In fact, had they not been taken prisoners by an English ship, it is very likely they would all have died of hunger.

Two years later another French settlement of the same name was made in Florida, on the St. Johns River. As soon as the colonists were comfortably settled, Ribault went off to punish some Spaniards for attacking his fleet in time of peace. But while he was away the Spaniards came by land to surprise the Huguenot settlement.

Now, you must know that the Spaniards were ardent Roman Catholics, so they considered it very wicked to refuse to obey the pope. Besides, they hated the French, with whom they had often been at war, and claimed Florida as their own land because Ponce de Leon had visited it first. They were so sure, therefore, that they were doing right by killing the French Huguenots, that when the massacre was all over, their leader Menendez put up a sign on a tree near by, saying that he had slain the colonists, not because they were Frenchmen, but because they were not good Catholics. This done, Menendez went back to the colony of St. Augustine, which he had founded two years before (1565) in Florida. This is the oldest city on the mainland of the United States, and it still proudly bears the name given by Menendez, its Spanish founder.

Old Spanish Mission at St. Augustine


The news of the massacre of the Huguenot colonists was received with great indignation in France. As the king would take no steps to avenge it, a nobleman named De Gourgues fitted out an expedition at his own expense, and attacked the Spaniards on the St. Johns. He came upon them unawares, and killed them all, as they had murdered the Huguenots at the same place. Then he placed a sign above the heads of the men he had hanged, saying they had been executed, not because they were Spaniards, but because they were pirates and murderers. De Gourgues then sailed away, for the Spaniards had so strong a fort at St. Augustine that the French had given up all hope of settling in Florida.

Four years after founding St. Augustine, the Spaniards planted the colony of San Diego in California, which, however, was soon abandoned. Their next colony was started many years later at Santa Fe, in New Mexico, and thence many priests went out to build mission stations in the West and convert the Indians.

The present city of Santa Fe, the oldest town in the western United States, was founded in 1598 by a Spaniard named Ovate, who had married the granddaughter of Cortez, conqueror of Mexico. This Ovate had helped the Spaniards conquer Peru. He was a very brave man, and hearing about the "Sky City "of Acoma, he resolved to visit it. About fifty years after Coronado, therefore, he came within sight of the strange town perched upon a rock.

The Indians, who by this time had learned to fear and hate the Spaniards, thought this would be a good chance to kill their greatest foe. So they invited Ovate up into their city, and showed him their cisterns and granaries. Then, taking him to the top of one of their great houses, they bade him step down through an open trapdoor into a dark chamber.

Ovate, suspecting treachery, refused to enter, and it was well for him that he did so, for a number of armed Indians were lurking there in the darkness, ready to kill the Spaniards as soon as they set foot in the apartment.