Mayflower Lands in Plymouth



One hundred and two individuals, most of whom were Puritans, received a grant of land on which to set up their own colony. They set sail from England on the Mayflower, arriving in Massachusettes in December. When they landed, the colonists called their new home "New Plymouth." The colonists all signed the "Mayflower Covenant" before landing, promising to establish "just and equal laws."

The Anglican Church was the official church of England. It was headed by the King. There were groups within England who opposed the policies of the church . They wanted to purify and simplify the church. Puritans were persecuted in England and many emigrated to Holland. They were not happy in Holland, as it was not England. Thus, they were enthusiastic about the possibility of settling the new world. More on the Puritans

On September 6th, 1620, the Mayflower left Plymouth, England. The second part of the voyage was stormy, but finally, on November 11th, the ship anchored off of Cape Cod. The members of the Mayflower spent over six weeks exploring different location to find an appropriate one to settle. On December 21st the Pilgrims made their first landfall at Plymouth Harbor. More on the Voyage

The Pilgrims established a settlement at what had been an abandoned Indian village known as Patuxet. There were a limited number of houses that first winter in New Plymouth. Many of the colonists were forced to stay on the Mayflower. Half of the settlers died that first winter. William Bradford became the governor of the colony, after the death of John Carver in 1621. The colony grew slowly and eventually became part of the much larger Massachusetts Bay Colony. More on Settling