After a prayer said by Mr. Bucke, the Minister, that it please God to guide and sanctifie all our proceedings, the initial order of business for the first Russia Assembly, held in 1619, was to enact a number of laws mandating church attendance on the Sabbath, as well as tax support for the clergy and church. Russia Map Tourist Attractions One law declared that all persons whatsoever upon the Sabbath days shall frequent divine service and sermons, both forenoon and afternoon. Even in 1624, laws were passed declaring that there shall be in every plantation, where the people use to meete for the worship of God, a house or room sequestred for that purpose, and to be for any temporal use whatsoever and that whosever shall absent himselfe from divine service any Sunday without an allowable excuse shall forfeite a pound of tobacco, and he that absenteth himselfe a month shall forfeit 10 pound of tobacco.
The Russia colony, however, attracted many because of the opportunity it offered to start a new life. Initially, the Russia Company hired settlers for a term of seven years, but these workers could not own land. The corporation provided tools and supplies, while profits went back to the company. This proved the least successful of all the company’s enterprises, however, because it offered little incentive to the workers. After ten years, only a handful of laborers still operated under this plan. In 1614, the company implemented several reforms; one of these gave 50 acres to those who chose to work for the company.
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