John Winthrop Winthrop, Winthrop, England discussed on The Political History of the United States


Circulated. Amongst the relevant groups was one of the primary pieces of propaganda to get people on board with the idea of immigrating among among the ideas espoused in the general observations were one bring the gospel into america and raise a bulwark against the kingdom of the anti christ to go to a place of refuge from judgement of god that was about to descend on europe in light of the thirty years war three escape. The overpopulation of england england four escaped the growing inflation problem in england now just to interject briefly here. This may well be referring to the growing economic issues throughout throughout the region recall back from two episodes ago we had actually discussed the textile collapse that was devastating. The economy southeastern england five get away from oxford and cambridge and they're increasingly corrupt practices and teaching six god has given them the entire new world to go and improve and to once again. It's your jet here. All that uninhabited land just sitting there was wasting away against god's will it was in with rips mind their job to improve the land now of course he may be saying that the land wasn't an inhabited that the indians were there however for winthrop that doesn't really seem to count as of this moment. Nobody really recognizes can ask the indians had much right over the land. Don't worry that this belief will soon be challenged and that's something that we're going to have to wait until next time to address. Seven those going to new england would have the chance to lay the foundations of a new church eight. This entire observation ended with a plea from winthrop trip that basically positions the trip to new england as some kind of a mission. It was something that they had to do. The takeaway from from this seems pretty straightforward. England was an overcrowded pit of despair filled with heathens and a faltering economy new england offered a decent chance to escape this and start over again at the foundations of a new and better society by august of six twenty nine winthrop was one of a handful of men who had signed an agreement agreement to wrap up their business in england and agreed to make the voyage to settle new england throughout the summer of sixteen twenty nine meetings and negotiations continued towards the ultimate goal of moving moving the headquarters of the corporation to massachusetts for all of his work over the past year winthrop found himself elected governor of the colony on october twentieth sixteen twenty nine. It is a position that he would hold off and on for the rest of his life. It was decided that winthrop would initially travel alone. His wife would be following in the future sure she was pregnant. At the time drain his time as governor will still in england winthrop was involved in the actions of negotiating with those investors in england that didn't plan on going along to new england in flowery language winthrop told the investors that look the company is moving to new england. You guys aren't going to have a say in matters do the right thing. Take take the settlement and drop your interests. Oh and by the way god is watching you well. He was not entirely successful of pershing all of the lenin investors who will continue to cause problems for him in the coming years. He did manage to eliminate the majority of them. Thus ensuring more power would find itself centered in massachusetts and not back in london finally on april eighth sixteen thirty when th rope along with seven hundred other colonists would leave england and embark on a journey to the new world it is at roughly the same time that he left england that winthrop would deliver the sermon that would cement his legacy though unclear if the sermon malysz given in england shortly before the departure on the trip over or even possibly new england itself winthrop delivered a sermon known as the model of christian charity the sermon offered nothing in the way of plans for the colony a declaration of what the government structure should be or really anything that would be of any practical use in the colony when did deliver however was a vision for what new england should be. The model of christian charity was one of three works which was primarily aimed at stayed in the goals of the new immigrants to massachusetts. Their goals were twofold. They wanted to lay out what their mission was. The mission was to go over and work actively towards reforming forming the church these works the other being god's promised to his plantation by john cotton and the humble request which was also by winthrop sought to establish avenue that will reforming the church was the main priority they were not separatists when the rope and company had no plans to separate from the church of england they wanted to make that clear to everybody involved winthrop and those involved wanted to make sure that everybody backing lennon understood that they were all working for the same team in the model of christian charity winthrop will conclude by saying we shall find that the god of israel is among us when ten of us show be able to resist a thousand of our enemies enemies when he shall make us appraising glory that men shall say of succeeding plantations the lord make it likely that of new england four four we must consider that we as a city upon a hill the eyes of all the people are upon us so that if we shall deal falsely with our god in this work we we have undertaken and so caused him to withdraw his president help from us. We shall be made a story and b word through the world. We shall open the mouths of enemies. He's to speak evil of the way of god and all the professors for god's sake we shall shame the faces of many of god's worthy servants and caused their prayers to be turned into curses upon us to we become consumed out of the good land whether we are going the line from that speech for we must consider that we shelby as a city upon a hill. The eyes of all the people are upon us has the place as one of the most famous lines in american history. It serves almost <music> as a mission statement for what the united states itself wants to stand for today. The legacy of the line is so often portrayed in terms of democracy eighty or the moral attitudes of the united states which genuinely really is not winthrop had intended however the fact remains that the simple line by winthrop has withstood the the test of time and remains one of the building blocks that the united states recipe poetic sermons aside winthrop still is a columnist travelling to a harsh and unforgiving land after an initial dispute over the location of the colony in salem winthrop personally relocated to a new settlement off the charles river near massachusetts massachusetts bay in what would become boston winthrop's next task was going to be the establishment of a government. We talked last time about the government that was established in new england. The freemen who were members of the church had a vote for the assistant magistrates those magistrates would then vote for the office of governor it is important do not get carried away here and begin thinking that john winthrop was in any fashion early republican and just a quick note here on terminology because i want to be clear about this until we basically reached the civil a war. If you hear me mentioned republicans please no. I'm referring to small are republicans. In other words. These are not members of the modern republican party but rather these are those who advocate the creation of republic got it good terminology side. John winthrop was no republican winthrop government. It was essentially a limited democratic dictatorship sure members of the church did get a vote for their leaders but that's where democracy ended. This was not a complex complex form of government in fact it was unbelievably simple vote for the guy you want and then up until the next election they are going to have near absolute power additionally with was not a supporter of universal suffrage he in fact did all he could to limit the electric winthrop insisted that only those freeman men who were members of the church could vote this of course is going to have a widespread chilling effect members outta the church would have no voice in government likewise likewise by limiting who could vote it should the church would remain powerful. This isn't to say that when through wanted to establish anything looking like a theocracy instead he wanted wanted to limit suffrage to men whom he knew would support the puritan way of life in this way winthrop had not established democracy where the people act as the source the power rather winthrop had designed a system where a small group of loyal men tied more centrally to the church would become the source from which power could be obtained so sure john winthrop was willing to let church members be part of the electorate but at the same time is going to be a vast overstatement to refer to winthrop rope as being a pro republican or even particularly democratic the power of the governor which more often than not met winthrop had full rights over both the practical tactical function of the colony and the legislative function in terms of legislative action there was relatively little early in the colony law and order was important but they already had a law code the bible winthrop turn to the bible asses legal code and was sufficiently satisfied to simply follow out the punishments prescribed within initially during those early years winthrop would develop a rivalry with thomas dudley dudley would often find himself at odds with winthrop deadly repeatedly call that winthrop's policies then would become a general pain in the side of john winthrop biggest conflict between the men came over the laws. Both men supported the bible was there legal basis winthrop took a more lenient view understanding that colonial life was harsh winthrop supported acting in a manner that gave more lenient punishments deadly looking at this said. Hey we have a covenant with god. Who are you to disobey him when he came up with these punishments. Do you see a list of exceptions lunacy yeah me neither eventually winthrop would lose out and with those the governorship over these debates but don't feel too bad for winthrop. He is going to be back as governor soon enough well. There's really goes to show hover is that it's not like winthrop exists on an island in the colony. He does does have to deal with political pressures of the day and navigate the seas like anybody else. Ultimately with rope would become something of a moderate politically wedged in between the the more conservative thomas dudley who we've been talking about and eventually the more liberal minded roger williams who we are going to talk about in depth next time this isn't to say that winthrop would be a moderate by contemporary standards because no he really isn't but at this moment he found himself occupying that position this also moves us to a more central point about the politics and the beliefs of john winthrop winthrop often talks about covenants between the settlers and god this dominated the worldview of winthrop and was something that seemed always to be at the forefront of his policies in winthrop's mind. The people had an agreement with god in some ways this this is not terribly dissimilar from the political thought a century later during the american revolution john locke one of the biggest influences in the revolution believed that a social contract contract existed between the individual and their government. This is a very popular line of thought throughout the age of enlightenment and would be a central theme of the entire era winthrop's beliefs are not that out of line with this however he views the contract not as one between a body politic and the government but rather with god god as the sovereign in other words. There was a social contract between everybody and god and again. This is not to say that winthrop is some enlightened enlightened thinker. The guy really isn't winthrop was as previously discussed anti-democratic at his very core. If winthrop would right at one point that a democrat is amongst the most vile nations accounted the meanest and worst of all forms of government because i already said it once i want to be clear that democrat macron in this instance is a small democrat in this fashion winter viewed politics with a top down approach..

Coming up next