The Pilgrims Journey on the Mayflower
By: Good2GoPublished: November 24, 2016
It’s truly astonishing to reflect on how transportation has advanced through the years. We’ve come a long way since horse-drawn carriages were our primary means of getting around, considering we could have access to self-driving cars within the next decade. International travel has gotten easier and less expensive, too. A flight from Boston to London, England can be done in a little over six hours. That same trip took the Pilgrims 66 days to complete on the Mayflower nearly 400 years ago.
Since most people don’t even enjoy the six hours it takes to fly from New York to Los Angeles, it’s hard to believe the Pilgrims were thrilled to be stuck on a small boat with 100 other people and possibly some farm animals for two months. But when you’re promised a fresh start in the “New World,” the opportunity might be a little hard to pass up, no matter how harsh the conditions of the trip.
Although the Mayflower didn’t set sail until 1620, conflict among English Protestants began in 1608, when they decided that the Church of England was corrupt and went against the teachings of the Bible. To avoid pledging allegiance to the Catholic Church, the Pilgrims fled to Holland in search of religious freedom. And although they were granted religious freedom, they had trouble supporting themselves financially, because Dutch craft guilds excluded them and forced them into low-paying jobs. It seemed their only option was to begin a new life across the Atlantic Ocean, in the “New World.”
The Pilgrims’ notoriously long voyage was no Norwegian Cruise. Most ships were made for carrying cargo, forcing passengers to live in the dark, cold cargo deck. In the 1600s, pirates attacks were prevalent, ships were damaged by storms, and passengers often fell overboard or got sick and died. Although the Mayflower was not attacked the pirates, it was damaged by a storm halfway through the trip, and one passenger did fall overboard (and was saved), and many Pilgrims were, unsurprisingly, seasick. One woman, Elizabeth Hopkins, gave birth to her first son while aboard the Mayflower.
On November 11, 1620, the Pilgrims finally arrived at Cape Cod, but sailed to Plymouth two weeks later to begin building a town. The Pilgrims would build houses on shore during the day, and return to the ship to sleep at night. Nearly half the people on the Mayflower died during the first winter from malnutrition, disease, and the harsh New England winter. Luckily, the area’s native people helped the surviving Pilgrims learn how to hunt local animals, gather shellfish, and grow crops like corn, beans, and squash. At the end of their first successful harvest, the Plymouth colonists held the three-day festival of Thanksgiving to celebrate.
There is plenty to be thankful for at this year’s Thanksgiving celebration. Hopefully, many of us can celebrate good health and the ability to share a special meal with our loved ones. Good2Go Auto Insurance is thankful to protect many drivers with low cost, minimum coverage auto insurance. For a free, no obligation quote today, visit www.good2go.com.