A website from the Massachusetts Historical Society; founded 1791.

Papers of the Winthrop Family, Volume 3

Roger Williams to John Winthrop1
Williams, Roger Wintrhop, John


For his much honoured Mr. Governour these
New Providence 21 of 5t month 1637 Much honoured Sir,

My vnfaigned loue and respect to your Soules eternall Comfort, and firme perswasion of your Levelling at the highest white haue imboldned me once more to tell you of some poore thought of mine owne pend and sent to some friends amongst you; which happily (if the good Lord so please) may some way conduct to your Soules Satisfaction in the midst of all your troubles.

I haue bene long requested to write my grounds against the English preaching etc. and especially my answeres to some reasons of Mr. Robinsons2 for hearing.

In the midst of a multitude of barbarous distractions I haue fitted some thing to that purpose: and being not able at present to transcribe the whole: yet having bene long sollicited by Mr. Buckley (from whome I receaved some Obiections) and by many others, and of late by my worthy friend Mr. Peters torn sight of them, I haue thought good to send so much as I haue transcribed to the hand of my loving friend Mr. Buckly.

Sir I am bold to giue you this Intimacion because in these first loose leaues, handling the state of a Nationall church from the 38 page I haue enlarged the differences betweene Israell and all other States. I know and am perswaded that your misguidings are great and lamentable, and the further you pass in your way, the further you wander, and haue the further to come back, and the end of one Vexation will be but the beginning of another, till Conscience be permitted (though Erronious) to be free amongst you.

I am sorry my straights are such that I can not transcribe the remaynder and especially, what concernes the matter, most concerning your deare selfe, and therein especially the assoiling of some Obiections, but if the Lord please I liue I shall endeavour the rest and thanckfully receaue any Intimacion from your selfe yea from the least, whereby I might my selfe returne from any wandrings The Lord Jesus be to you and me the Way, the Truth, and he will be the Life allso. So prayes Your Worships most vnfained

Roger Williams 456

I haue no newes, but from Qunnihticut, the receaving of Sasacous, his present and Company by the Mawhauogs, and some promises of theirs to him to setle him againe at Pequt: This weeke Souwonckquawsir old Sequins Sonn, cut of 20 Pequt women and children in their passage to the Mowhauogs allso one Sachim who 3 yeares agoe was with you in the Bay with a present.


W. 2. 99; 4 Collections , VI. 205–207; N.C. , VI. 49–52.


The Reverend John Robinson (d 1625) of Leyden. This may refer to A Treatise of the Lawfulnesse of Hearing of the Ministers in the Church of England, printed posthumously in 1634, presumably in Amsterdam.