The New World Tapestry

Home | *NEW* 1619 Panel | History | Tapestry Panels 1583 - 1603 | Tapestry Panels 1605 - 1618 | Tapestry Panels 1619 - 1642 | Tapestry Exhibition | Adventurers for Virginia | Colour Codes | Gallery 1 | Gallery 2

Back to 1606 Menu


cene Four
         1606 PANEL




 ‘Make  habitation, plantation and to deduce a colony of sundry of our people in that part of America commonly called “Virginia”.

So  states the Charters to the two Virginia Companies and because of its geographical position in the far west of England the Plymouth Company being 250 miles ‘nearer’ America than the London one in the south-east it is able to reach Virginia more easily and, vitally, sail from Plymouth’s glorious harbour at any state of the tide.


The driving force in Plymouth is Sir Francis Popham, Virginia Council member and Sir John’s only son. He’s been in Plymouth for the last two years organising the affairs of the Company and preparing ships and supplies for the forthcoming voyages. Activity is centred on Sutton harbour in the Barbican area of the town. ‘Barbican’ means the gateway defence of a castle and Plymouth’s fortification dominates the harbour where the Company’s three ships are being victualed. They are: the Richard, the Mary and the Gift.


The local merchants supplying the ships from the warehouses include Josias Calmady (1584 panel) and Abraham Jennings who are often only paid for their provisioning by the owners when their vessel returns with booty or a saleable cargo – hence the phrase ‘when my ship comes in’. This can be this year, next year, sometime, never. In the case of the Richard’s owner, it is never.


Captain Christopher Challons is the master of the Richard. Another Devonian in these early colonisation attempts, his home is at Leigh Mill near Plymouth. He is given orders by the company to take his ship on a mission to the coast of Maine and, joining in with Captain Thomas Hanham’s vessel, survey the area for the possible landing and settlement sites for the next year’s proper attempt. However, Challons’ luck runs out on November 10th when his ship is captured by the Spanish and he and his crew taken to Spain and imprisoned, as is pictured here. Only Challons and his officers face a future. They are treated reasonably well because they can expect to be ransomed. However, the crew’s fate, being worthless money-wise, is dire. As for the Company itself, it is a tremendous loss but only the first of the disasters to befall them.


tapestry photo 1606 scene four

WILLOW TREE Salix alba. The barke being burnt to ashes and steeped in vineger, takes away cornes and other risings in the feet and toes. Dioscorides


THISTLE Cardus marianum.  Using the seeds of the plant it is healing and restorative to the liver. Dioscorides

Click here for further Wikipedia information