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HOME > Biographical > Lives of Famous Indian Chiefs > CHAPTER III MASSASOIT. THE FRIEND OF THE PURITANS.
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 "Welcome, Englishmen!" A terrific peal of thunder from a cloudless sky would not have astonished the Plymouth Fathers as did these startling words. It was March 16, 1621, a remarkably pleasant day, and they had assembled in town meeting to plan and discuss ways and means for the best interests of the colony. So engrossed were they with the matter under consideration they did not notice the approach of a solitary Indian as he stalked boldly through the street of this village until he advanced towards the astonished group, and with hand outstretched in a friendly gesture and with perfectly intelligible English addressed them with the words, "Welcome, Englishmen!" The astonished settlers started to their feet and grasped their ever ready weapons. But reassured by his friendly gestures and hearty repetition of the familiar English phrase in which only kindness lurked, the settlers cordially returned his greeting and reciprocated his "welcome," which is the only one the Pilgrims ever received.

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