September 23, 2018

That Old Fashion Christian Love, from Benedict Arnold's Memoir.

Benedict Arnold

 It is well known that the Providence Plantations, and Rhode Island in particular, were known for a greater tolerance in religious matters than prevailed in the neighboring Plymouth colony, probably because they were of gentler blood, or if not that, more willing to follow the lead of gentlemen.  The intolerance of sectaries in Massachusetts was cause of the escape of many from that colony into ours, not always of the most desirable;  but as they were especially intolerant of attractive women, it is possible that we gained in the long run.  Many such of delicate nature were whipped at the cart-stair in hardly more than a shift from the town of Boston to the Providence line.  This same intolerance has been a cause of much of my trouble in later life, the Massachusetts Puritans being unable to recognize a gentleman when they saw one, or indeed to take a broad and catholic view of any communities or circumstances not straitened to the narrow range of their own understanding. 

Thus in 1724 Father Rallé, a Roman Catholic priest of saintly life and great learning, who had risked his life in missionary service to the Algonquin Indians in the Kennebec Valley (what was then a District of Massachusetts) suffered indeed no harm from them, but was killed and scalped by Massachusetts settlers, who left his mangled remains to be decently buried by the savages on the banks of the Dead River.  I found his grave, as shall be later related; and was at the pains of erecting a proper stone monument not un-moistened by my own tears.  

                                                        Benedict Arnold (My Story)

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