A School History of the United States eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 507 pages of information about A School History of the United States.

[Footnote 2:  Lodge’s English Colonies, pp. 295-311; Winsor’s Narrative and Critical History, Vol.  III., pp. 385-411; Bancroft’s History of the United States, Vol.  I., pp. 501-508.]

%29.  The Struggle for the Delaware; the Swedes on the Delaware.%—­And now began a bitter contest for the ownership of the country bordering the Delaware.  A few leading officials of the Dutch Company, disgusted at the way its affairs were managed, formed a new company under the lead of William Usselinx.  As they could not get a charter from Holland, for she would not create a rival to the Dutch Company, they sought and obtained one from Sweden as the South Company, and (1638) sent out a colony to settle on the Delaware River.[1] The spot chosen was on the site of Wilmington.  The country was named New Sweden, though it belonged to Maryland.  The Dutch West India Company protested and rebuilt Fort Nassau.  The Swedes, in retaliation, went farther up the river and fortified an island near the mouth of the Schuylkill.  Had they stopped here, all would have gone well.  But, made bold by the inaction of the Dutch, they began to annoy the New Netherlanders, till (1655) Peter Stuyvesant, the governor of New Netherland, unable to stand it any longer, came over from New Amsterdam with a few hundred men, overawed the Swedes, and annexed their territory west of the Delaware.  New Sweden then became part of New Netherland.[2]

[Footnote 1:  Sweden had no right to make such a settlement.  She had no claim to any territory in North America.]

[Footnote 2:  Lodge’s English Colonies, pp. 205-210; Bancroft’s History of the United States, Vol.  I., pp. 509, 510; Hildreth’s History of the United States, Vol.  I., pp. 413-442.]


1.  After the discovery of the North American coast by the Cabots, England made no attempt to settle it for nearly eighty years; and even then the colonies planted by Gilbert and Ralegh were failures.

2.  Successful settlement by the English began under the London Company in 1607.

3.  In 1609 the London Company obtained a grant of land from sea to sea, and extending 400 miles along the Atlantic; but in 1624 its charter was annulled, and in 1632 the King carved the proprietary colony of Maryland out of Virginia.

4.  Meantime Henry Hudson, in the employ of the Dutch, discovered the Delaware and Hudson rivers (1609), and the Dutch, ignoring the claims of England, planted colonies on these rivers and called the country New Netherland.

5.  Then a Swedish company began to colonize the Delaware Bay and River coast of Virginia, which they called New Sweden.

6.  Conflicts between the Dutch and the Swedes followed, and in 1655 New Sweden was made a part of New Netherland.



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A School History of the United States from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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