Monday, January 4, 2010

How New Island Was Settled

Map of Settlement (click the map to read it better)

Settlement spread quickly from the shipwreck sites near Beastey, Palmer
and Old Bay. By the time the Russians claimed New Island in 1820,
English-Irish and then Japanese settlers
(a whole other story!) had established several coastal communities
and a few farm towns inland, as well as many isolated outposts.

Women virtually ruled New Island mostly because of their sheer numbers in proportion to the men (about 4 to 1) and because they seemed more adaptable to the turn of events that led them here. Perhaps it was a stronger instinct to survive coupled with a dare-it-all attitude that got them into trouble in the first place! They became excellent leaders as well as capable diplomats, and were far more willing to experiment with living arrangements to insure their survival.

Some of the young sailors and guards went along with womens' community-life ideas that were truly radical for the time. The older sailors and most of the military/guard held out and settled into bachelor-villages of their own, hoping to continue some vestige of their previous lives at home. It turned out that a lot of women frequented the taverns these guys had established!

The men who joined the women in the new communities, especi
ally those in the emerging tribes, had quite a great time of it, as their services were much in demand. It wasn't long before there were lots of kids being raised by entire villages!

Supplies salvaged from the wrecks
greatly helped the new communities. Sheep, goats, cattle, pigs and chickens had survived the shipwrecks and varieties of grains and vegetables (from English seed stock) were soon thriving in small fields. Tools and a library of how-to books from the Swallowtail were most beneficial!

Next: Japanese settlers, and then the Russians