Costumes of Swedes

This "irrepressible conflict" between two races was by no means abated by the introduction of a third. As early as 1626, Gustavus Adolphus, King of Sweden and the hero of the Thirty Years' War, had entertained the idea of establishing colonies in America, and in pursuance of that object had encouraged the formation of a company, not only for trading purposes but also to secure a refuge for the "oppressed of all Christendom." To Usselinx, an Antwerp merchant, the originator of the Dutch West India Company, belongs the honor of first suggesting to the king this enterprise. The glorious death of Gustavus on the victorious field of Lutzen in 1632 deferred the execution of a purpose which had not been forgotten even in the midst of that long and arduous campaign. But a few days before he fell, the Protestant hero had spoken of the colonial prospect as "the jewel of his kingdom."

History of the United States, Vol. I (of VI)
By E. Benjamin Andrews
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Published 1912

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