In 1620, the Mayflower left England and sailed to America – a voyage of national and international significance. The story of the travelers on the ship began many years before and our 6-part series will give you an overview of their story:
1. Where did the Pilgrims come from?
To understand the Pilgrims decision to leave England, we need to look at the religious climate of that time. Some dissenters stayed and tried to reform the church from within (Puritans). Others formed the Separatist Church, but had to meet secretly at great risk.
2: The (not so) Great Escape
Young William Bradford becomes part of the Separatist Church. The religious climate in England was getting more dangerous, so plans were developed to flee to the Netherlands.
3: Refugees and Pilgrims
The men finally arrived in Amsterdam and the congregation were reunited. The decision was made to relocate to Leiden, where they stayed for many years. Plans were put in place to sail to America.
4: Saints and Strangers
After a troubled start, the Pilgrims departed from Delfshaven on the Speedwell and arrive in Southampton. After repairs in Dartmouth, they finally departed on September 6, 1620.
5: Sickness, Death, and a New Beginning
The journey ended on November 11, 1620 when they dropped anchor in Provincetown, much further north than intended. Their first encounter with Native Americans didn’t go well. It was a time of sickness and loss. They settled in Plymouth on December 15th, 1620.
6: Survival and Beyond
The first year on Cape Cod was challenging, but Samoset and other Native Americans enabled them to survive. The year ended with the first Thanksgiving.