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John Mason was born in King’s Lynn, Norfolk in 1586. He was educated at Oxford and, while serving in the Royal Navy, led an expedition against pirates in the Hebrides. He was appointed the second governor of the Cupers Cove plantation in 1616 and held that position until 1621. During his term as governor he was actively involved in the suppression of piracy and in 1620 alone he records rescuing five fishing vessels (two French and three Portuguese) from pirates in the waters off Newfoundland. Mason surveyed much of the coast of Newfoundland and produced a map of the Island that was first published in 1625. He also composed A Briefs Discourse of the New-Found-Land which was published in Edinburgh in 1620. After leaving Newfoundland, Mason went on to become Treasurer and Paymaster of the King’s army and later founded the colony of New Hampshire. Mason died in 1635 and was buried in Westminster Abbey.