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The Christian Foundations of Work in America

Columbus was the first to see in the New World, finally giving up his hopes for passage to the Indies, a land representing the gates of Eden itself. His report was but the first of the images of a land of all but workless plenty. Exploring the Carolina coast a century after Columbus, Captain Arthur Barlowe found himself in the midst of such "incredible" fruitfulness that he was certain it was the "golden age" intact--a land where "the earth bringeth forth all things in abundance, as in the first creation, without toil or labor." Later when Captain John Smith undertook a careful mapping of the New England coast he was convinced that three days work a week would satisfy any settler in that fruitful land, much of that time spent in the "pretty sport" of fishing.