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The Mayflower and Her Log, Complete by Azel Ames

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the conclusion that in June, 1620, the organization was voluntary, and
that the charter-party of the MAY-FLOWER was signed--" on the one part
"--by each of the enrolled Adventurers engaged in the Leyden
congregation's colonization scheme. Goodwin' alone pretends to any
certain knowledge of the matter, but although a veracious usually
reliable writer, he is not infallible, as already shown, and could hardly
have had access to the original documents,--which alone, in this case,
could be relied on to prove his assertion that "Shortly articles were
signed by both parties, Weston acting for the Adventurers." Not a
particle of confirmatory evidence has anywhere been found in Pilgrim or
contemporaneous literature to warrant this statement, after exhaustive
search, and it must hence, until sustained by proof, be regarded as a
personal inference rather than a verity. If the facts were as appears,
they permit the hope that a document of so much prima facie importance
may have escaped destruction, and will yet be found among the private
papers of some of the last survivors of the Adventurers, though with the
acquisition of all their interests by the Pilgrim leaders such documents
would seem, of right, to have become the property of the purchasers, and
to have been transferred to the Plymouth planters.

This all-important and historic body--the company of Merchant
Adventurers--is entitled to more than passing notice. Associated to
"finance" the projected transplantation of the Leyden congregation of
"Independents" to the "northern parts of Virginia," under such patronage
and protection of the English government and its chartered Companies as
they might be able to secure, they were no doubt primarily brought
together by the efforts of one of their number, Thomas Weston, Esq., the
London merchant previously named, though for some obscure reason Master
John Pierce (also one of them) was their "recognized" representative in
dealing with the (London) Virginia Company and the Council for the
Affairs of New England, in regard to their Patents.

Bradford states that Weston "was well acquainted with some of them the
Leyden leaders and a furtherer of them in their former proceedings,"
and this fact is more than once referred to as ground for their gratitude
and generosity toward him, though where, or in what way, his friendship
had been exercised, cannot be learned,--perhaps in the difficulties
attending their escape from "the north country" to Holland. It was
doubtless largely on this account, that his confident assurances of all
needed aid in their plans for America were so relied upon; that he was so
long and so fully trusted; and that his abominable treachery and later
abuse were so patiently borne.

We are indebted to the celebrated navigator, Captain John Smith, of
Virginia fame, always the friend of the New England colonists, for most
of what we know of the organization and purposes of this Company. His
ample statement, worthy of repetition here, recites, that
"the Adventurers which raised the stock to begin and supply this
Plantation, were about seventy: some, Gentlemen; some, Merchants; some,
handicraftsmen; some adventuring great sums, some, small; as their
estates and affections served . . . . These dwell most about London.
They are not a corporation but knit together, by a voluntary combination,
in a Society, with out constraint or penalty; aiming to do good and to
plant Religion." Their organization, officers, and rules of conduct, as
given by Smith, have already been quoted. It is to be feared from the
conduct of such men as Weston, Pierce, Andrews, Shirley, Thornell,
Greene, Pickering, Alden, and others, that profitable investment, rather
than desire "to do good and to plant Religion," was their chief interest.
That the higher motives mentioned by Smith governed such tried and
steadfast souls as Bass, Brewer, Collier, Fletcher, Goffe, Hatherly,
Ling, Mullens, Pocock, Thomas, and a few others, there can be no doubt.

[Weston wrote Bradford, April 10, 1622, "I perceive and know as well
as another ye disposition of your adventurers, whom ye hope of gaine
hath drawne on to this they have done; and yet I fear ye hope will
not draw them much further." While Weston's character was utterly
bad, and he had then alienated his interest in both Pilgrims and
Adventurers, his judgment of men was evidently good.]

No complete list of the original "seventy" has ever been found, and we
are indebted for the names of forty-two, of the fifty who are now known,
to the final "Composition" made with the Pilgrim colonists, through the
latter's representatives, November 15/25, 1626, as given by Bradford,
and to private research for the rest. The list of original members of the
company of Merchant Adventurers, as ascertained to date, is as follows.
More extended mention of them appears in the notes appended to this list.

Robert Allden, Thomas Fletcher, Emanuel Altham, Thomas Goffe, Richard
Andrews, Peter Gudburn, Thomas Andrews, William Greene, Lawrence Anthony,
Timothy Hatherly, Edward Bass, Thomas Heath, John Beauchamp, William
Hobson, Thomas Brewer, Robert Holland, Henry Browning, Thomas Hudson,
William Collier, Robert Keayne, Thomas Coventry, Eliza Knight,
John Knight, John Revell, Miles Knowles, Newman Rookes, John Ling, Samuel
Sharpe, Christopher Martin(Treasurer pro tem.), James Shirley
(Treasurer), Thomas Millsop, William Thomas, Thomas Mott, John Thornell
William Mullens, Fria Newbald, Matthew Thornell William Pennington,
William Penrin. Joseph Tilden, Edward Pickering, Thomas Ward, John
Pierce, John White, John Pocock, John Wincob, Daniel Poynton, Thomas
Weston, William Quarles, Richard Wright.

Shirley, in a letter to Governor Bradford, mentions a Mr. Fogge and a Mr.
Coalson, in a way to indicate that they might have been, like himself,
Collier, Thomas, Hatherly, Beauchamp, and Andrews, also of the original
Merchant Adventurers, but no proof that they were such has yet been
discovered. It has been suggested that Sir Edwin Sandys was one of the
number, at the inception of the enterprise, but--though there is evidence
to indicate that he stood the friend of the Pilgrims in many ways,
possibly lending them money, etc.--there is no proof that he was ever
one of the Adventurers. It is more probable that certain promoters of
Higginson's and Winthrop's companies, some ten years later, were early
financial sponsers of the MAY-FLOWER Pilgrims. Some of them were
certainly so, and it is likely that others not known as such, in reality,
were. Bradford suggests, in a connection to indicate the possibility of
his having been an "Adventurer," the name of a "Mr. Denison," of whom
nothing more is known. George Morton of London, merchant, and friend of
the leaders from the inception, and later a colonist, is sometimes
mentioned as probably of the list, but no evidence of the fact as yet
appears. Sir George Farrer and his brother were among the first of the
Adventurers, but withdrew themselves and their subscriptions very early,
on account of some dissatisfaction.

It is impossible, in the space at command, to give more than briefest
mention of each of these individual Adventurers.

Allden. Was at one time unfriendly to the Pilgrims,--Bradford calls him
"one of our powerfullest opposers,"--but later their ally. Little
is known of him. He appears to have been of London.

Altham. Was Master of the pinnace LITTLE JAMES, belonging chiefly to
Fletcher, and apparently expected to command her on her voyage to
New Plymouth in 1623, as consort of the ANNE, but for some reason
did not go, and William Bridge went as her Master, in his stead.

Andrews (Richard). Was one of the wealthiest and most liberal of the
Adventurers. He was a haberdasher of Cheapside, London, and an
Alderman of the city. He became an early proprietor and liberal
benefactor of the Massachusetts Bay Company, but most illogically
gave the debt due him from Plymouth Colony (L540) to the stronger
and richer Bay Colony. He had been, however, unjustly prejudiced
against the Pilgrims, probably through the deceit of Pierce, Weston,
Shirley, and Allerton.

Andrews (Thomas). A Lord Mayor of London, reputed a brother of the
last-named. Never very active in the Adventurers' affairs, but
friendly, so far as appears.

Anthony. Little or nothing is known concerning him.

Bass. Was one of the enduring friends of the struggling Colony and
loaned them money when they were in dire straits and the prospect of
recovery was not good. He was of London, and considerable is known
concerning him.

Beauchamp. Was one of the most active of the Company for many years.
Generally to be relied upon as the Colony's friend, but not without
some sordid self seeking. Apparently a wealthy citizen and "salter"
of London.

Brewer. Is too well-known as long the partner of Brewster in the conduct
of the "hidden press" at Leyden, and as a sufferer for conscience'
sake, to require identification. He was a wealthy man, a scholar,
writer, printer, and publisher. Was of the University of Leyden,
but removed to London after the departure of the chief of the
Pilgrims. Was their stanch friend, a loyal defender of the faith,
and spent most of his later life in prison, under persecution of the

Browning. Does not appear to have been active, and little is known of

Collier. Was a stanch and steadfast friend. Finally cast in his lot
with the Pilgrims at New Plymouth and became a leading man in the
government there. His life is well known. He was a "brewer."

Coventry. Appears only as a signer, and nothing is known of him.

Fletcher. Was a well-to-do merchant of London, a warm friend and a
reliance of the Pilgrims. The loss of the LITTLE JAMES was a severe
blow to him financially.

Greene. Appears to have been a merchant and a partner in Holland (and
perhaps at London) of Edward Pickering. They were well acquainted
personally with the Pilgrims, and should have been among their most
liberal and surest friends. Facts indicate, however, that they were
sordid in their interest and not entirely just.

Goffe. Was a London merchant and ship-owner, as else where appears.
He was not only a Merchant Adventurer, but a patentee and
deputy-governor of the Massachusetts Company, and an intimate
friend of Winthrop. He lost heavily by his New England ventures.
There is, as shown elsewhere, good reason to believe that he was
the owner of the MAY-FLOWER on her historic voyage, as also when
she came over in Higginson's and Winthrop's fleets, ten years

Gudburn. Appears only as a signer, so far as known.

Hatherly. Was a well-to-do friend of the Pilgrims, and after many
complaints had been made against them among the "Purchasers"
--arising out of the rascality of Shirley and Allerton--went to New
England on a mission of inquiry. He was perfectly convinced of the
Pilgrims' integrity and charmed with the country. He made another
visit, and removed thither in 1633, to remain. He became at once
prominent in the government of New Plimoth Colony.

Heath. Does not appear to have been active, and naught is known of him.

Hobson. Is known only as a signer of the "Composition."

Holland. Was a friend and ally of the Pilgrims, and one of their
correspondents. He is supposed to have been of the ancient house of
that name and to have lived in London.

Hudson. Was not active, and appears as a signer only.

Keayne. Was a well-to-do citizen of the vicinity of London, a friend, in
a general way, of the Pilgrims. He came to Boston with Winthrop.
Was prominent in the Massachusetts Colony. Was the founder and
first commander of the early Artillery Company of Boston, the oldest
military organization of the United States, and died at Boston,
leaving a large estate and a very remarkable will, of which he made
Governor Winslow an "overseer." He was an erratic,--but valuable,

Knight (Eliza). Seems to have been the only woman of the Adventurers, so
far as they are known, but no thing is known of her. It has been
suggested that the given name has been wrongly spelled and should be
"Eleazar,"--a man's name,--but the "Composition" gives the signature
as Eliza, clearly, as published.

Knight (John). Finds no especial mention. He was probably a relative of

Knowles. Appears only as a signer of the "Composition."

Ling. Was a wealthy friend of the colonists and always true to them. He
lost his property and was in poverty when the Pilgrims (though not
yet well on their feet), in grateful remembrance of his fidelity,
sent him a generous gift.

Martin. Was the first treasurer of the colonists and also a MAY-FLOWER
Pilgrim. Mention of him appears later. He was no credit to the
Company, and his early death probably prevented much vexation.

Millsop. Appears only as a signer of the "Composition."

Mott. Has no especial mention, but is believed to have sent some of his
people to Plymouth Colony at an early day.

Mullens. Was, as appears elsewhere, a well-conditioned tradesman of
Surrey, England, who was both an Adventurer and a MAY-FLOWER
Pilgrim, and Martin and himself appear to have been the only ones
who enjoyed that distinction. He died, however, soon after the
arrival at Plymouth. That he was an Adventurer is but recently
discovered by the author, but there appears no room for doubt as to
the fact. His record was brief, but satisfactory, in its relation to
the Pilgrims.

Newbald. Finds no especial mention.

Pennington. Appears only as a signer. It is a London name.

Penrin. Appears only as a signer of the "Composition."

Pickering. Is introduced to us first as a Leyden merchant, through John
Robinson's letters. He appears to have been a shrewd, cold-blooded
calculator, like his partner-Adventurer, Greene, not interested
especially in the Pilgrims, except for gain, and soon deserting the
Adventurers. His family seem to have been in favor with Charles II.
(See Pepys' "Diary.")

Pierce (John). Although recognized by the Virginia Companies and Council
for New England, as the representative of the Adventurers, he has
only been recently generally reckoned a chief man of the
Adventurers. A Protean friend of the Pilgrims, never reliable, ever
pretentious, always self-seeking, and of no help. He was finally
ruined by the disasters to his ship, the PARAGON, which cost him all
his interests. Having attempted treacherously to secure to himself
the Patent granted in the Colony's interest, he was compelled by the
Council to surrender its advantages to the Adventurers and

Pocock. Was a stanch and firm supporter of the Pilgrims and their
interests, at all times, and to the end. He was also a financial
supporter and deputy-governor the Massachusetts Company, under
Winthrop. A correspondent of Bradford. A good man.

Poyton. Finds no especial mention. He appears as a signer only.

Quarles. Appears only as a signer of the "Composition."

Revell. Was a very wealthy citizen, merchant, and ship owner of London,
and a good man. He became also ardently interested in Winthrop's
Company. Was an "assistant" and one of the five "undertakers"
chosen to go to New England to reside. He went to New England on
the JEWELL of Winthrop's fleet, and was part owner of the LADY
ARBELLA. He evidently, however, did not like the life, and returned
after a few weeks' stay.

Rookes. Appears only as a signer.

Sharpe. Was also a friend of both Pilgrim and Puritan. He came to New
England in 1629, and settled first at Salem, in the Massachusetts
Company. He died in 1658, having long been a ruling elder of the
church there. He met with many enemies, but was a valuable man and
an able one. He was Governor Cradock's New England agent.

Shirley. Requires little mention here. The perfidious friend of the
Pilgrims,--perhaps originally true to them,--he sunk everything for
hope of gain. He was treasurer of the Adventurers, one of their
most active and intelligent men, but proved a rascal and a canting
hypocrite. He was a "citizen and gold-smith" of London.

Thomas. Has nowhere been enumerated in any list of the Adventurers
(though occasionally mentioned as such by recent writers), which is
strange, as repeated letters of his to Bradford, and other data,
show him to have been one of the best and truest of them all. He
sold his interests before the "Composition" and became a colonist
after 1630. He was the fifth of the Adventurers to come to New
England to remain, and cast in his lot with the Pilgrims at New
Plimoth--Martin, Mullens, Collier, and Hatherly preceding him. A
wealthy and well-informed man, he became a power in the government.
Probably Welsh by birth, he was a London merchant when the
Adventurers were organized. His home at Marshfield, Massachusetts,
has since become additionally famous as the home of Daniel Webster.

Thornell (John). Is sometimes confounded with another Adventurer,
Matthew Thornhill, as his name is some times so spelled. There is
reason to believe they were related. He was not a friend to the

Thornhill (or Thornell), (Matthew). Little is known concerning him.

Tilden. Was of an old family in Kent, "a citizen and girdler of London,"
as his will declares, his brother (Nathaniel) later coming to New
England and settling near Hatherly at Scituate. Nathaniel's son
Joseph--named for his uncle--was made his executor and heir. The
uncle was always a firm friend of the Pilgrims. Mr. Tilden's will
is given by Waters ("Genealogical Gleanings," vol. i. p. 71), and
is of much interest.

Ward. Appears only as a signer.

White. Probably the Rev. John White, a stanch friend of the Pilgrims,
although not a "Separatist," and intimately connected with the
upbuilding of New England. His record was a broad and noble one.
Goodwin says: "Haven thinks White was that Dorchester clergyman
reputed to be the author of the Planters' Plea." Probably, but
not certainly, William White of the Pilgrims was also an Adventurer.

Wincob (?). Was a gentleman of the family of the Countess of Lincoln,
and the one in whose name the first patent in behalf of the
Adventurers and Pilgrims (which, however, was never used) was taken.
It is only recently that evidences which, though not conclusive, are
yet quite indicative, have caused his name to be added to the list,
though there is still a measure of doubt whether it belongs there.

Weston. Requires little mention here. Once a friend of the Pilgrims and
unmistakably the organizer of the Adventurers, he became a graceless
ingrate and rascal. An instrument of good at first, he became a
heartless and designing enemy of the Planters. He was a "citizen
and merchant [ironmonger] of London." It is altogether probable
that he was originally a tool of Sir Ferdinando Gorges and was led
by him to influence the Leyden brethren to break off negotiations
with the Dutch. He died poor, at Bristol, England.

Wright. Perhaps came to New Plimoth and married a daughter of the
MAY-FLOWER Pilgrim, Francis Cooke. If so, he settled at Rehoboth and
became its leading citizen. He may possibly have been the settler
of that name in the Bay-Colony, and the weight of evidence rather
favors the latter supposition.

Of the Adventurers, Collier, Hatherly, Keayne, Mullens, Revell, Pierce,
Sharpe, Thomas, and Weston, probably Wright and White, possibly others,
came to America for longer or shorter periods. Several of them were back
and forth more than once. The records show that Andrews, Goffe, Pocock,
Revell, Sharpe, and White were subsequently members of the Massachusetts
(Winthrop's) Company.

Professor Arberl finds but six of the Pilgrim Merchant Adventurers who
later were among the Adventurers with Winthrop's Company of Massachusetts
Bay, viz.:--Thomas Andrews, John Pocock, Samuel Sharpe, Thomas Goffe,
John Revell, John White.

He should have added at least, the names of Richard Andrews and Robert
Keayne, and probably that of Richard Wright.

Of their number, Collier, Hatherly, Martin, Mullens, Thomas, and
(possibly) Wright were Plymouth colonists Martin and Mullens, as noted,
being MAY-FLOWER Pilgrims. Nathaniel Tilden, a brother of Joseph Tilden
of the Adventurers, came, as previously mentioned, to the Colony from
Kent, settling at Scituate. Joseph, being apparently unmarried, made his
nephew, Joseph of Scituate, his residuary legatee, and his property
mostly came over to the Colony.

Collier, Hatherly, and Thomas all located within a few miles of one
another, were all wealthy and prominent men in the government of the
Colony, were intimate friends,--the first and last especially,--and lent
not a little dignity and character to this new dependency of King James
the First. The remaining twenty or thereabouts whose names are not
surely known--though a few of them are pretty safely conjectured, some
being presumably of the Holland Pilgrims and their friends--were probably
chiefly small contributors, whose rights were acquired from time to time
by others of larger faith in the enterprise, or greater sympathy or
means. Not all, however, who had ceased to hold their interests when the
"Composition" was made with Allerton in behalf of the colonists, in 1626,
were of these small holders. Weston was forced out by stress of
circumstances; Thomas moved to New England; Pierce was ruined by his
ventures by sea; Martin and Mullens died in 1621; Pickering and Greene
got out early, from distrust as to profits; Wincob alone, of this class,
was a small investor, if he was one at all.

By far the greater portion of the sums invested by the Adventurers in
behalf of the Colony is represented by those whose names are known, those
still unknown representing, doubtless, numbers rather than amounts. It
is, however, interesting to note, that more than four sevenths of the
original number, as given by Captain John Smith, continued to retain
their interests till the "Composition" of 1626. It is to be hoped that
it may yet be possible to increase considerably, if not to perfect, the
list of these coadjutors of the Pilgrims--the Merchant Adventurers--the
contracting "party of the second part," to the charter-party of the

Who the Owner of the MAY-FLOWER was, or who his representative, the
"party of the first part," to the charter party of the Pilgrim ship,
cannot be declared with absolute certainty, though naturally a matter of
absorbing interest. There is, however, the strongest probability, as
before intimated, that Thomas Goffe, Esq., one of the Merchant
Adventurers, and always a stanch friend of the Pilgrims, was the owner of
the historic vessel,--and as such has interwoven his name and hers with
the histories of both the Pilgrim and Puritan hegiras from Old to New
England. He was, as previously stated, a wealthy "merchant and ship
owner of London," and not only an Adventurer with the Leyden Pilgrims,
but--nearly ten years later--a patentee of the Massachusetts Company and
one of its charter officers.

We are told in the journal of Governor Winthrop of that Company--then on
board the LADY ARBELLA, the, "Admiral" or flagship of his fleet, riding
at Cowes, ready to set sail for New England--that on "Easter Monday
(March 29), 1630, the CHARLES, the MAY-FLOWER, the WILLIAM AND FRANCIS,
the HOPEWELL, the WHALE, the SUCCESS, and the TRIAL," of his fleet, were
"still at Hampton [Southampton] and are not ready." Of these seven ships
it is certain that Mr. Goffe owned at least two, as Governor Winthrop--in
writing, some days later, of the detention of his son Henry and his
friend Mr. Pelham, who, going ashore, failed to return to the governor's
ship before she sailed from Cowes, and so went to the fleet at
Southampton for passage--says: "So we have left them behind and suppose
they will come after in one of Mr. Goffe's ships." It is clear,
therefore, that Mr. Goffe, who was an intimate friend and business
associate of Governor Winthrop, as the latter's correspondence amply
attests, and was a charter deputy-governor of the Massachusetts Company,
and at this time "an assistant," was the owner of at least two (probably
not more) of these seven belated ships of the governor's fleet, riding at
Southampton. Bearing in mind that the MAY-FLOWER and the WHALE were two
of those ships, it becomes of much importance to find that these two
ships, evidently sailing in company (as if of one owner), arrived
together in the harbor of Charlestown, New England, on Thursday, July 1,
having on board one of them the governor's missing son, Henry Winthrop.
If he came--as his father expected and as appears certain--"in one of Mr.
Goffe's ships," then evidently, either the MAY-FLOWER or the WHALE, or
both, belonged to Mr. Goffe. That both were Goffe's is rendered probable
by the fact that Governor Winthrop--writing of the vessels as if
associated and a single interest--states that "most of their cattle [on
these ships] were dead, whereof a mare and horse of mine." This
probability is increased, too, by the facts that the ships evidently kept
close company across the Atlantic (as if under orders of a common owner,
and as was the custom, for mutual defence and assistance, if occasion
required), and that Winthrop who, as we above noted, had large dealings
with Goffe, seems to have practically freighted both these ships for
himself and friends, as his freight bills attest. They would hence, so
far as possible, naturally keep together and would discharge their
cargoes and have their accountings to a single consignee, taken as nearly
together as practicable. Both these ships came to Charlestown,--as only
one other did,--and both were freighted, as noted, by one party.

Sadly enough, the young man, Henry Winthrop, was drowned at Salem the
very day after his arrival, and before that of either of the other
vessels: the HOPEWELL, or WILLIAM AND FRANCIS (which arrived at Salem the
3d); or the TRIAL or CHARLES (which arrived--the first at Charlestown, of
the last at Salem--the 5th); or the SUCCESS (which arrived the 6th);
making it certain that he must have come in either the MAY-FLOWER or the
WHALE. If, as appears, Goffe owned them both, then his ownership of the
MAY-FLOWER in 1630 is assured, while all authorities agree without cavil
that the MAY-FLOWER of Winthrop's fleet in that year (1630) and the
MAY-FLOWER of the Pilgrims were the same. In the second "General Letter
of Instructions" from the Massachusetts Company in England--dated London,
May 28, 1629--to Governor Endicott and his Council, a duplicate of which
is preserved in the First Book of the Suffolk Registry of Deeds at
Boston, the historic vessel is described as "The MAY-FLOWER, of Yarmouth
--William Pierse, Master," and Higginson, in his "Journal of a Voyage to
New England," says, "The fifth ship is called the MAY-FLOWER carrying
passengers and provisions." Yarmouth was hence undoubtedly the place of
register, and the hailing port of the MAY-FLOWER,--she was very likely
built there,--and this would remain the same, except by legal change of
register, wherever she was owned, or from what ever port she might sail.
Weston and Cushman, according to Bradford, found and hired her at London,
and her probable owner, Thomas Goffe, Esq., was a merchant of that city.
Dr. Young remarks: "The MAYFLOWER Of Higginson's fleet is the renowned
vessel that brought the Pilgrim Fathers to Plymouth in 1620." Hon.
James Savage says "The MAYFLOWER had been a name of renown without
forming part of this fleet [Winthrop's, 1630], because in her came the
devoted planters of Plimouth [1620] and she had also brought in the year
preceding [1629] some of Higginson's company to Salem." Goodwin' says:
"In 1629 she [the Pilgrim MAY-FLOWER] came to Salem with a company of the
Leyden people for Plymouth, and in 1630 was one of the large fleet that
attended John Winthrop, discharging her passengers at Charlestown." Dr.
Young remarks in a footnote: "Thirty-five of the Leyden congregation with
their families came over to Plymouth via Salem, in the MAY-FLOWER and

In view of such positive statements as these, from such eminent
authorities and others, and of the collateral facts as to the probable
ownership of the MAY-FLOWER in 1630, and on her earlier voyages herein
presented, the doubt expressed by the Rev. Mr. Blaxland in his "Mayflower
Essays," whether the ship bearing her name was the same, on these three
several voyages, certainly does not seem justified.

Captain William Pierce, who commanded the MAY-FLOWER in 1629, when she
brought over part of the Leyden company, was the very early and intimate
friend of the Pilgrims--having brought over the ANNE with Leyden
passengers in 1623--and sailed exclusively in the employ of the Merchant
Adventurers, or some of their number, for many years, which is of itself

To accept, as beyond serious doubt, Mr. Goffe's ownership of the
MAY-FLOWER, when she made her memorable voyage to New Plimoth, one need
only to compare, and to interpret logically, the significant facts;
--that he was a ship-owner of London and one of the body of Merchant
Adventurers who set her forth on her Pilgrim voyage in 1620; and that he
stood, as her evident owner, in similar relation to the Puritan company
which chartered her for New England, similarly carrying colonists,
self-exiled for religion's sake, in 1629 and again in 1630. This
conviction is greatly strengthened by the fact that Mr. Goffe continued
one of the Pilgrim Merchant Adventurers, until their interests were
transferred to the colonists by the "Composition" of 1626, and three
years later (1629) sent by the MAY-FLOWER, on her second New England
voyage, although under a Puritan charter, another company from the
Leyden congregation. The (cipher) letter of the "Governor and deputies
of the New-England Company for a plantation in Massachusetts Bay" to
Captain John Endicott, written at Gravesend, England, the 17th of April,
1629, says: "If you want any Swyne wee have agreed with those of Ne[w]
Plimouth that they deliver you six Sowes with pigg for which they a[re]
to bee allowed 9 lb. in accompt of what they the Plymouth people owe
unto Mr. Goffe [our] deputie [Governor]." It appears from the foregoing
that the Pilgrims at New Plymouth were in debt to Mr. Goffe in 1629,
presumably for advances and passage money on account of the contingent
of the Leyden congregation, brought over with Higginson's company to
Salem, on the second trip of the MAY-FLOWER. Mr. Goffe's intimate
connection with the Pilgrims was certainly unbroken from the
organization of their Merchant Adventurers in 1619/20, through the
entire period of ten years, to 1630. There is every reason to believe,
and none to doubt, that his ownership of the MAY-FLOWER of imperishable
renown remained equally unbroken throughout these years, and that his
signature as her owner was appended to her Pilgrim charter-party in
1620. Whoever the signatories of her charter-party may have been, there
can be no doubt that the good ship MAY-FLOWER, in charge of her
competent, if treacherous, Master, Captain Thomas Jones, and her first
"pilot," John Clarke, lay in the Thames near London through the latter
part of June and the early part of July, in the summer of
1620, undergoing a thorough overhauling, under contract as a
colonist-transport, for a voyage to the far-off shores of "the
northern parts of Virginia."

In whatever of old English verbiage, with quaint terms and cumbersome
repetition, the stipulations of this contract of were concealed, there
can be no doubt that they purported and designed to "ingage" that "the
Good ship MAY-FLOWER of Yarmouth, of 9 score tuns burthen, whereof for
the present viage Thomas Joanes is Master," should make the "viage" as a
colonist-transport, "from the city of London in His Majesty's Kingdom of
Great Britain," etc., "to the neighborhood of the mouth of Hudson's
River, in the northern parts of Virginia and return, calling at the Port
of Southampton, outward bound, to complete her lading, the same of all
kinds, to convey to, and well and safely deliver at, such port or place,
at or about the mouth of Hudson's River, so-called, in Virginia
aforesaid, as those in authority of her passengers shall direct," etc.,
with provision as to her return lading, through her supercargo, etc.

It is probable that the exact stipulations of the contract will never
transpire, and we can only roughly guess at them, by somewhat difficult
comparison with the terms on which the LADY ARBELLA, the "Admiral," or
flagship, of Winthrop's fleet, was chartered in 1630, for substantially
the like voyage (of course, without expectation or probability, of so
long a stay on the New England coast), though the latter was much the
larger ship. The contract probably named an "upset" or total sum for the
"round voyage," as was the of the case with the LADY ARBELLA, though it
is to be hoped there was no "demurrage" clause, exacting damage, as is
usual, for each day of detention beyond the "lay days" allowed, for the
long and unexpected tarries in Cape Cod and Plymouth harbors must have
rolled up an appalling "demurrage" claim. Winthrop enters among his
memoranda, "The agreement for the ARBELLA L750, whereof is to be paid in
hand [i e. cash down] the rest upon certificate of our safe arrival."
The sum was doubtless considerably in excess of that paid for the
MAY-FLOWER, both because she was a much larger, heavier-armed, and
better-manned ship, of finer accommodations, and because ships were, in
1630, in far greater demand for the New England trade than in 1620,
Winthrop's own fleet including no less than ten. The adjustments of
freight and passage moneys between the Adventurers and colonists are
matter of much doubt and perplexity, and are not likely to be fully
ascertained. The only light thrown upon them is by the tariffs for such
service on Winthrop's fleet, and for passage, etc., on different ships,
at a little later day. It is altogether probable that transportation of
all those accepted as colonists, by the agents of the Adventurers and
"Planters," was without direct charge to any individual, but was debited
against the whole. But as some had better quarters than others, some
much more and heavier furniture, etc., while some had bulky and heavy
goods for their personal benefit (such as William Mullen's cases of
"boots and shoes," etc.), it is fair to assume that some schedule of
rates for "tonnage," if not for individuals, became necessary, to
prevent complaints and to facilitate accounts. Winthrop credits Mr.
Goffe--owner of two of the ships in 1630--as follows:--

"For ninety-six passengers at L4, L384.
For thirty-two tons of goods at L3 (per ton).
For passage for a man, his wife and servant, (3 persons)
L16/10, L5/10 each."

Goodwin shows the cost of transportation at different times and under
varying conditions. "The expense of securing and shipping Thos. Morton
of 'Merry Mount' to England, was L12 7 0," but just what proportion the
passage money bore to the rest of the account, cannot now be told. The
expense of Mr. Rogers, the young insane clergyman brought over by Isaac
Allerton, without authority, was, for the voyage out: "For passage L1.
For diet for eleven weeks at 4s. 8d. per week, total L3 11 4"
[A rather longer passage than usual.] Constant Southworth came in the
same ship and paid the same, L3 11 4, which may hence be assumed as the
average charge, at that date, for a first-class passage. This does not
vary greatly from the tariff of to-day, (1900) as, reduced to United
States currency, it would be about $18; and allowing the value of
sterling to be about four times this, in purchase ratio, it would mean
about $73. The expenses of the thirty-five of the Leyden congregation
who came over in the MAY-FLOWER in 1620, and of the others brought in the
LION in 1630, were slightly higher than these figures, but the cost of
the trip from Leyden to England was included, with that of some clothing.
In 1650, Judge Sewall, who as a wealthy man would be likely to indulge in
some luxury, gives his outlay one way, as, "Fare, L2 3 0; cabin expenses,
L4 11 4; total, L6 14 4."



Unhappily the early chroniclers familiar with the MAY-FLOWER have left us
neither representation nor general description of her, and but few data
from which we may reconstruct her outlines and details for ourselves.
Tradition chiefly determines her place in one of the few classes into
which the merchant craft of her day were divided, her tonnage and service
being almost the only other authentic indices to this class.

Bradford helps us to little more than the statement, that a vessel, which
could have been no other, "was hired at London, being of burden about 9
score" [tons], while the same extraordinary silence, which we have
noticed as to her name, exists as to her description, with Smith,
Bradford, Winslow, Morton, and the other contemporaneous or early writers
of Pilgrim history. Her hundred and eighty tons register indicates in
general her size, and to some extent her probable model and rig.

Long search for a reliable, coetaneous picture of one of the larger ships
of the merchant service of England, in the Pilgrim period, has been
rewarded by the discovery of the excel lent "cut" of such a craft, taken
from M. Blundeville's "New and Necessarie Treatise of Navigation,"
published early in the seventeenth century. Appearing in a work of so
high character, published by so competent a navigator and critic, and
(approximately) in the very time of the Pilgrim "exodus," there can be no
doubt that it quite correctly, if roughly and insufficiently, depicts the
outlines, rig, and general cast of a vessel of the MAY-FLOWER type and
time, as she appeared to those of that day, familiar therewith.

It gives us a ship corresponding, in the chief essentials, to that which
careful study of the detail and minutiae of the meagre MAY-FLOWER history
and its collaterals had already permitted the author and others to
construct mentally, and one which confirms in general the conceptions
wrought out by the best artists and students who have attempted to
portray the historic ship herself.

Captain J. W. Collins, whose experience and labors in this relation are
further alluded to, and whose opinion is entitled to respect, writes the
author in this connection, as follows "The cut from Blundeville's
treatise, which was published more or less contemporaneously with the
MAYFLOWER, is, in my judgment, misleading, since it doubtless represents
a ship of an earlier date, and is evidently [sic] reproduced from a
representation on tapestry, of which examples are still to be seen (with
similar ships) in England. The actual builder's plans, reproduced by
Admiral Paris, from drawings still preserved, of ships of the MAYFLOWER'S
time, seem to me to offer more correct and conclusive data for accurately
determining what the famous ship of the Pilgrim Fathers was like."

Decidedly one of the larger and better vessels of the merchant class of
her day, she presumably followed the prevalent lines of that class, no
doubt correctly represented, in the main, by the few coeval pictures of
such craft which have come down to us. No one can state with absolute
authority, her exact rig, model, or dimensions; but there can be no
question that all these are very closely determined from even the meagre
data and the prints we possess, so nearly did the ships of each class
correspond in their respective features in those days. There is a
notable similarity in certain points of the MAY-FLOWER, as she has been
represented by these different artists, which is evidence upon two
points: first, that all delineators have been obliged to study the type
of vessel to which she belonged from such representations of it as each
could find, as neither picture nor description of the vessel herself was
to be had; and second, that as the result of such independent study
nearly all are substantially agreed as to what the salient features of
her type and class were. A model of a ship [3 masts] of the MAY-FLOWER
type, and called in the Society's catalogue "A Model of the MAY FLOWER,
after De Bry," but itself labelled "Model of one of Sir Walter Raleigh's
Ships," is (mistakenly) exhibited by the Pilgrim Society at Plymouth.
It is by no means to be taken as a correct representation of the Pilgrim
bark. Few of the putative pictures of the MAY-FLOWER herself are at all
satisfactory,--apart from the environment or relation in which she is
usually depicted,--whether considered from an historical, a nautical,
or an artistic point of view. The only one of these found by the author
which has commanded (general, if qualified) approval is that entitled
"The MAY-FLOWER at Sea," a reproduction of which, by permission, is the
frontispiece of this volume. It is from an engraving by the master hand
of W. J. Linton, from a drawing by Granville Perkins, and appeared in the
"New England Magazine" for April, 1898, as it has elsewhere. Its
comparative fidelity to fact, and its spirited treatment, alike commend
it to those familiar with the subject, as par excellence the modern
artistic picture of the MAY-FLOWER, although somewhat fanciful, and its
rig, as Captain Collies observes, "is that of a ship a century later than
the MAY-FLOWER; a square topsail on the mizzen," he notes, "being unknown
in the early part of the seventeenth century, and a jib on a ship equally
rare." Halsall's picture of "The Arrival of the MAY-FLOWER in Plymouth
Harbor," owned by the Pilgrim Society, of Plymouth, and hung in the
Society's Hall, while presenting several historical inaccuracies,
undoubtedly more correctly portrays the ship herself, in model, rig,
etc., than do most of the well-known paintings which represent her.
It is much to be regretted that the artist, in woeful ignorance, or
disregard, of the recorded fact that the ship was not troubled with
either ice or snow on her entrance (at her successful second attempt) to
Plymouth harbor, should have covered and environed her with both.

Answering, as the MAY-FLOWER doubtless did, to her type, she was
certainly of rather "blocky," though not unshapely, build, with high poop
and forecastle, broad of beam, short in the waist, low "between decks,"
and modelled far more upon the lines of the great nautical prototype, the
water-fowl, than the requirements of speed have permitted in the carrying
trade of more recent years. That she was of the "square rig" of her
time--when apparently no use was made of the "fore-and-aft" sails which
have so wholly banished the former from all vessels of her size--goes
without saying. She was too large for the lateen rig, so prevalent in
the Mediterranean, except upon her mizzenmast, where it was no doubt

The chief differences which appear in the several "counterfeit
presentments" of the historic ship are in the number of her masts and
the height of her poop and her forecastle. A few make her a brig or
"snow" of the oldest pattern, while others depict her as a full-rigged
ship, sometimes having the auxiliary rig of a small "jigger" or
"dandy-mast," with square or lateen sail, on peak of stern, or on the
bow sprit, or both, though usually her mizzenmast is set well aft upon
the poop. There is no reason for thinking that the former of these
auxiliaries existed upon the MAY-FLOWER, though quite possible. Her 180
tons measurement indicates, by the general rule of the nautical
construction of that period, a length of from 90 to 100 feet, "from
taffrail to knighthead," with about 24 feet beam, and with such a hull
as this, three masts would be far more likely than two. The fact that
she is always called a "ship"--to which name, as indicating a class,
three masts technically attach--is also somewhat significant, though the
term is often generically used. Mrs. Jane G. Austin calls the
MAY-FLOWER a "brig," but there does not appear anywhere any warrant
for so doing.

At the Smithsonian Institution (National Museum) at Washington, D. C.,
there is exhibited a model of the MAY-FLOWER, constructed from the ratio
of measurements given in connection with the sketch and working plans of
a British ship of the merchant MAY-FLOWER class of the seventeenth
century, as laid down by Admiral Francois Edmond Paris, of France, in his
"Souvenirs de Marine." The hull and rigging of this model were carefully
worked out by, and under the supervision of Captain Joseph W. Collins
(long in the service of the Smithsonian Institution, in nautical and
kindred matters, and now a member of the Massachusetts Commission of
Inland Fisheries and Game), but were calculated on the erroneous basis of
a ship of 120 instead of 180 tons measurement. This model, which is upon
a scale of 1/2 inch to 1 foot, bears a label designating it as "The
'MAYFLOWER' of the Puritans" [sic], and giving the following description
(written by Captain Collins) of such a vessel as the Pilgrim ship, if of
120 tons burthen, as figured from such data as that given by Admiral
Paris, must, approximately, have been. (See photographs of the model
presented herewith.) "A wooden, carvel-built, keel vessel, with full
bluff bow, strongly raking below water line; raking curved stem; large
open head; long round (nearly log-shaped) bottom; tumble in top side;
short run; very large and high square stern; quarter galleries; high
forecastle, square on forward end, with open rails on each side; open
bulwarks to main [spar] and quarter-decks; a succession of three
quarter-decks or poops, the after one being nearly 9 feet above main
[spar] deck; two boats stowed on deck; ship-rigged, with pole masts
[i.e. masts in one piece]; without jibs; square sprit sail (or water
sail under bowsprit); two square sails on fore and main masts, and
lateen sail on mizzenmast."

Dimensions of Vessel. Length, over all, knightheads to taffrail, 82
feet; beam, 22 feet; depth, 14 feet; tonnage, 120; bowsprit, outboard, 40
feet 6 inches; spritsail yard, 34 feet 6 inches; foremast, main deck to
top, 39 feet; total length, main [spar] deck to truck, 67 feet 6 inches;
fore-yard, 47 feet 6 inches; foretopsail yard, 34 feet 1 2 inches;
mainmast, deck to top, 46 feet; total, deck to truck, 81 feet; main yard,
53 feet; maintopsail yard, 38 feet 6 inches; mizzen mast, deck to top, 34
feet; total, deck to truck, 60 feet 6 inches; spanker yard, 54 feet 6
inches; boats, one on port side of deck, 17 feet long by 5 feet 2 inches
wide; one on starboard side, 13 feet 6 inches long by 4 feet 9 inches
wide. The above description "worked out" by Captain Collins, and in
conformity to which his putative model of the "MAY FLOWER" was
constructed, rests, of course, for its correctness, primarily, upon the
assumptions (which there is no reason to question) that the "plates" of
Admiral Paris, his sketches, working plans, dimensions, etc., are
reliable, and that Captain Collins's mathematics are correct, in reducing
and applying the Admiral's data to a ship of 120 tons. That there would
be some considerable variance from the description given, in applying
these data to a ship of 60 tons greater measurement (i.e. of 180 tons),
goes without saying, though the changes would appear more largely in the
hull dimensions than in the rigging. That the description given, and its
expression in the model depicted, present, with considerable fidelity, a
ship of the MAY-FLOWER'S class and type, in her day,--though of sixty
tons less register, and amenable to changes otherwise,--is altogether
probable, and taken together, they afford a fairly accurate idea of the
general appearance of such a craft.

In addition to mention of the enlargements which the increased tonnage
certainly entails, the following features of the description seem to call
for remark.

It is doubtful whether the vessels of this class had "open bulwarks to
the main [spar] deck," or "a succession of three quarter-decks or poops."
Many models and prints of ships of that period and class show but two.
It is probable that if the jib was absent, as Captain Collins believes
(though it was evidently in use upon some of the pinnaces and shallops of
the time, and its utility therefore appreciated), there was a small
squaresail on a "dandy" mast on the bowsprit, and very possibly the
"sprit" or "water-sail" he describes. The length of the vessel as given
by Captain Collins, as well as her beam, being based on a measurement of
but 120 tons, are both doubtless less than they should be, the depth
probably also varying slightly, though there would very likely be but few
and slight departures otherwise from his proximate figures. The
long-boat would be more likely to be lashed across the hatch amidships
than stowed on the port side of the deck, unless in use for stowage
purposes, as previously suggested. Captain Collins very interestingly
notes in a letter to the author, concerning the measurements indicated
by his model: "Here we meet with a difficulty, even if it is not
insurmountable. This is found in the discrepancy which exists between
the dimensions--length, breadth, and depth--requisite to produce a
certain tonnage, as given by Admiral Paris and the British Admiralty.
Whether this is due to a difference in estimating tonnage between France
(or other countries) and Great Britain, I am unable to say, but it is a
somewhat remarkable fact that the National Museum model, which was made
for a vessel of 120 tons, as given by Admiral Paris who was a Frenchman,
has almost exactly the proportions of length, depth, and breadth that an
English ship of 180 tons would have, if we can accept as correct the
lists of measurements from the Admiralty records published by Charnock
. . . In the third volume of Charnock's 'History of Marine
Architecture,' p. 274., I find that a supply transport of 175 tons,
built in 1759, and evidently a merchant ship originally, or at least a
vessel of that class, was 79.4 feet long (tonnage measure), 22.6 feet
beam, and 11.61 feet deep." The correspondence is noticeable and of
much interest, but as the writer comments, all depends upon whether or
not "the measurement of the middle of the eighteenth century materially
differed in Great Britain from what it was in the early part of the
previous century."

Like all vessels having high stems and sterns, she was unquestionably "a
wet ship,"--upon this voyage especially so, as Bradford shows, from being
overloaded, and hence lower than usual in the water. Captain John Smith
says: "But being pestered [vexed] nine weeks in this leaking,
unwholesome ship, lying wet in their cabins; most of them grew very weak
and weary of the sea." Bradford says, quoting the master of the
MAY-FLOWER and others: "As for the decks and upper works they would caulk
them as well as they could, . . . though with the working of the ship,
they would not long keep staunch." She was probably not an old craft, as
her captain and others declared they "knew her to be strong and firm
under water;" and the weakness of her upper works was doubtless due to
the strain of her overload, in the heavy weather of the autumnal gales.
Bradford says: "They met with many contrary winds and fierce storms with
which their ship was shrewdly shaken and her upper works made very
leaky." That the confidence of her master in her soundness below the
water-line was well placed, is additionally proven by her excellent
voyages to America, already noted, in 1629, and 1630, when she was ten
years older.

That she was somewhat "blocky" above water was doubtless true of her, as
of most of her class; but that she was not unshapely below the water-line
is quite certain, for the re markable return passage she made to England
(in ballast) shows that her lower lines must have been good. She made
the run from Plymouth to London on her return voyage in just thirty-one
days, a passage that even with the "clipper ships" of later days would
have been respectable, and for a vessel of her model and rig was
exceptionally good. She was "light" (in ballast), as we know from the
correspondence of Weston and Bradford, the letter of the former to
Governor Carver--who died before it was received--upbraiding him for
sending her home "empty." The terrible sickness and mortality of the
whole company, afloat and ashore, had, of course, made it impossible to
freight her as intended with "clapboards" [stave-stock], sassafras roots,
peltry, etc. No vessels of her class of that day were without the high
poop and its cabin possibilities,--admirably adapting them to passenger
service,--and the larger had the high and roomy topgallant forecastles so
necessary for their larger crews. The breadth of beam was always
considerably greater in that day than earlier, or until much later,
necessitated by the proportionately greater height ("topsides"), above
water, at stem and stern. The encroachments of her high poop and
forecastle left but short waist-room; her waist-ribs limited the height
of her "between decks;" while the "perked up" lines of her bow and stern
produced the resemblance noted, to the croup and neck of the wild duck.
That she was low "between decks" is demonstrated by the fact that it was
necessary to "cut down" the Pilgrims' shallop--an open sloop, of
certainly not over 30 feet in length, some 10 tons burden, and not very
high "freeboard"--"to stow" her under the MAY-FLOWER'S spar deck. That
she was "square-rigged" follows, as noted, from the fact that it was the
only rig in use for ships of her class and size, and that she had
"topsails" is shown by the fact that the "top-saile halliards" were
pitched over board with John Howland, and saved his life. Bradford says:
"A lustie yonge man (called John Howland) coming upon some occasion above
ye grattings, was with a seele of ye shipe throwne into ye sea: but it
pleased God yt he caught hould of ye top-saile halliards which hunge over
board & rane out at length yet he held his hould . . . till he was
haled up," etc. Howland had evidently just come from below upon the
poop-deck (as there would be no "grattings" open in the waist to receive
the heavy seas shipped). The ship was clearly experiencing "heavy
weather" and a great lurch ("seele") which at the stern, and on the
high, swinging, tilting poop-deck would be most severely felt,
undoubtedly tossed him over the rail. The topsail halliards were
probably trailing alongside and saved him, as they have others under
like circumstances.

Whether or not the MAY-FLOWER had the "round house" under her poop-deck,
---a sort of circular-end deck-house, more especially the quarters, by
day, of the officers and favored passengers; common, but apparently not
universal, in vessels of her class,--we have no positive knowledge, but
the presumption is that she had, as passenger ships like the PARAGON (of
only 140 tons), and others of less tonnage, seem to have been so fitted!

It is plain that, in addition to the larger cabin space and the smaller
cabins,--"staterooms," nowadays,--common to ships of the MAY-FLOWER'S
size and class, the large number of her passengers, and especially of
women and children, made it necessary to construct other cabins between
decks. Whether these were put up at London, or Southampton, or after the
SPEEDWELL'S additional passengers were taken aboard at Plymouth, does not
appear. The great majority of the men and boys were doubtless provided
with bunks only, "between decks," but it seems that John Billington had a
cabin there. Bradford narrates of the gunpowder escapade of young
Francis Billington, that, "there being a fowling-piece, charged in his
father's cabin [though why so inferior a person as Billington should have
a cabin when there could not have been enough for better men, is a query],
shot her off in the cabin, there being a little barrel of powder
half-full scattered in and about the cabin, the fire being within four
feet of the bed, between the decks, . . . and many people gathered
about the fire," etc.

Whatever other deductions may be drawn from this very badly constructed
and ambiguous paragraph of Bradford, two things appear certain,--one,
that Billington had a "cabin" of his own "between decks;" and the other,
that there was a "fire between decks," which "many people" were gathered
"about." We can quite forgive the young scamp for the jeopardy in which
he placed the ship and her company, since it resulted in giving us so
much data concerning the MAY-FLOWER'S "interior." Captain John Smith's
remark, already quoted, as to the MAY-FLOWER'S people "lying wet in their
cabins," is a hint of much value from an experienced navigator of that
time, as to the "interior" construction of ships and the bestowal of
passengers in them, in that day, doubtless applicable to the MAY-FLOWER.

While it was feasible, when lying quietly at anchor in a land-locked
harbor, with abundance of fire-wood at hand, to have a fire, about which
they could gather, even if only upon the "sand-hearth" of the early
navigators, when upon boisterous seas, in mid-ocean, "lying . . . in
their cabins" was the only means of keeping warm possible to voyagers.
In "Good Newes from New England," we find the lines:--

"Close cabins being now prepared,
With bred, bief, beire, and fish,
The passengers prepare themselves,
That they might have their wish."

Her magazine, carpenter's and sailmaker's lockers, etc., were doubtless
well forward under her forecastle, easily accessible from the spar-deck,
as was common to merchant vessels of her class and size. Dr. Young, in
his "Chronicles of the Pilgrim Fathers" (p. 86, note), says: "This vessel
was less than the average size of the fishing-smacks that go to the Grand
Banks. This seems a frail bark in which to cross a stormy ocean of three
thousand miles in extent. Yet it should be remembered that two of the
ships of Columbus on his first daring and perilous voyage of discovery,
were light vessels, without decks, little superior to the small craft
that ply on our rivers and along our coasts . . . . Frobisher's fleet
consisted of two barks of twenty-five tons each and a pinnace of ten
tons, when he sailed in 1576 to discover a north-west passage to the
Indies. Sir Francis Drake, too, embarked on his voyage for
circumnavigating the globe, in 1577, with five vessels, of which the
largest was of one hundred, and the smallest fifteen tons. The bark in
which Sir Humphrey Gilbert perished was of ten tons only." The LITTLE
JAMES, which the Company sent to Plymouth in July, 1623, was "a pinnace
of only forty-four tons," and in a vessel of fifty tons (the SPEEDWELL),
Martin Pring, in 1603, coasted along the shores of New England. Goodwin
says: "In 1587 there were not in all England's fleet more than five
merchant vessels exceeding two hundred tons." The SPARROW-HAWK wrecked
on Cape Cod in 1626 was only 40 feet "over all." The Dutch seem to have
built larger vessels. Winthrop records that as they came down the
Channel, on their way to New England (1630), they passed the wreck of
"a great Dutch merchantman of a thousand tons."

The MAY-FLOWER'S galley, with its primitive conditions for cooking,
existed rather as a place for the preparation of food and the keeping of
utensils, than for the use of fire. The arrangements for the latter were
exceedingly crude, and were limited to the open "hearth-box" filled with
sand, the chief cooking appliance being the tripod-kettle of the early
navigators: This might indeed be set up in any part of the ship where the
"sand-hearth" could also go, and the smoke be cared for. It not
infrequently found space in the fore castle, between decks, and, when
fine weather prevailed, upon the open deck, as in the open caravels of
Columbus, a hundred years before. The bake-kettle and the frying-pan
held only less important places than the kettle for boiling. It must have
been rather a burst of the imagination that led Mrs. Austin, in "Standish
of Standish," to make Peter Browne remind poor half-frozen Goodman--whom
he is urging to make an effort to reach home, when they had been lost,
but had got in sight of the MAY-FLOWER In the harbor--of "the good fires
aboard of her." Moreover, on January 22, when Goodman was lost, the
company had occupied their "common-house" on shore. Her ordnance
doubtless comprised several heavy guns (as such were then reckoned),
mounted on the spar-deck amid ships, with lighter guns astern and on.
the rail, and a piece of longer range and larger calibre upon the
forecastle. Such was the general disposal of ordnance upon merchant
vessels of her size in that day, when an armament was a 'sine qua non'.
Governor Winslow in his "Hypocrisie Unmasked," 1646 (p. 91), says, in
writing of the departure of the Pilgrims from Delfshaven, upon the
SPEEDWELL: "The wind being fair we gave them a volley of small shot and
three pieces of ordnance," by which it seems that the SPEEDWELL, of only
sixty tons, mounted at least "three pieces of ordnance" as, from the form
of expression, there seem to have been "three pieces," rather than three
discharges of the same piece.

The inference is warranted that the MAY-FLOWER, being three times as
large, would carry a considerably heavier and proportionate armament.
The LADY ARBELLA, Winthrop's ship, a vessel of 350 tons, carried
"twenty-eight pieces of ordnance;" but as "Admiral" of the fleet, at a
time when there was a state of war with others, and much piracy, she
would presumably mount more than a proportionate weight of metal,
especially as she convoyed smaller and lightly armed vessels, and
carried much value. There is no reason to suppose that the MAY-FLOWER,
in her excessively crowded condition, mounted more than eight or ten
guns, and these chiefly of small calibre. Her boats included her
"long-boat," with which the experience of her company in "Cape Cod harbor"
have made us familiar, and perhaps other smaller boats,--besides the
Master's "skiff" or "gig," of whose existence and necessity there are
numerous proofs. "Monday the 27," Bradford and Winslow state, "it
proved rough weather and cross winds, so as we were constrained, some in
the shallop and others in the long-boat," etc. Bradford states, in
regard to the repeated springings-a-leak of the SPEEDWELL: "So the
Master of the bigger ship, called Master Jones, being consulted with;"
and again, "The Master of the small ship complained his ship was so
leaky . . . so they [Masters Jones and Reynolds] came to
consultation, again," etc. It is evident that Jones was obliged to
visit the SPEEDWELL to inspect her and to consult with the leaders, who
were aboard her. For this purpose, as for others, a smaller boat than
the "long-boat" would often serve, while the number of passengers and
crew aboard would seem to demand still other boats. Winthrop notices
that their Captain (Melborne) frequently "had his skiff heaved out," in
the course of their voyage. The Master's small boat, called the "skiff"
or "gig," was, no doubt, stowed (lashed) in the waist of the ship, while
the "long-boat" was probably lashed on deck forward, being hoisted out
and in, as the practice of those days was, by "whips," from the
yardarms. It was early the habit to keep certain of the live-stock,
poultry, rabbits, etc., in the unused boats upon deck, and it is
possible that in the crowded state of the MAY-FLOWER this custom was
followed. Bradford remarks that their "goods or common store . . .
were long in unlading [at New Plimoth] for want of boats." It seems
hardly possible that the Admiralty authorities,--though navigation laws
were then few, crude, and poorly enforced,--or that the Adventurers and
Pilgrim chiefs themselves, would permit a ship carrying some 130 souls
to cross the Atlantic in the stormy season, without a reasonable boat
provision. The capacity of the "long-boat" we know to have been about
twenty persons, as nearly that number is shown by Bradford and Winslow
to have gone in her on the early expeditions from the ship, at Cape Cod.
She would therefore accommodate only about one sixth of the ship's
company. As the "gig" would carry only five or six persons,--while the
shallop was stowed between decks and could be of no service in case of
need upon the voyage,--the inference is warranted that other boats were
carried, which fail of specific mention, or that she was wofully
lacking. The want of boats for unlading, mentioned by Bradford, suggests
the possibility that some of the ship's quota may have been lost or
destroyed on her boisterous voyage, though no such event appears of
record, or is suggested by any one. In the event of wreck, the Pilgrims
must have trusted, like the Apostle Paul and his associates when cast
away on the island of Melita, to get to shore, "some on boards and some
on broken pieces of the ship." Her steering-gear, rigging, and the
mechanism for "getting her anchors," "slinging," "squaring," and
"cockbilling" her yards; for "making" and "shortening" sail; "heaving
out" her boats and "handling" her cargo, were of course all of the crude
and simple patterns and construction of the time, usually so well
illustrating the ancient axiom in physics, that "what is lost [spent] in
power is gained in time."

The compass-box and hanging-compass, invented by the English cleric,
William Barlow, but twelve years before the Pilgrim voyage, was almost
the only nautical appliance possessed by Captain Jones, of the
MAY-FLOWER, in which no radical improvement has since been made.
Few charts of much value--especially of western waters--had yet been
drafted, but the rough maps and diagrams of Cabot, Smith, Gosnold,
Pring, Champlain and Dermer, Jones was too good a navigator not to have
had. In speaking of the landing at Cape Cod, the expression is used by
Bradford in "Mourt's Relation," "We went round all points of the
compass," proving that already the mariner's compass had become familiar
to the speech even of those not using it professionally.

That the ship was "well-found" in anchors (with solid stocks), hemp
cables, "spare" spars, "boat-tackling" and the heavy "hoisting-gear" of
those days, we have the evidence of recorded use. "The MAY-FLOWER,"
writes Captain Collins, would have had a hemp cable about 9 inches in
circumference. Her anchors would probably weigh as follows: sheet anchor
(or best bower) 500 to 600 lbs.; stream anchor 350 to 400 lbs.; the spare
anchors same as the stream anchor.

"Charnock's Illustrations" show that the anchors used in the MAY-FLOWER
period were shaped very much like the so called Cape Ann anchor now made
for our deep-sea fishing vessels. They had the conventional shaped
flukes, with broad pointed palms, and a long shank, the upper end passing
through a wooden stock. [Tory shows in his diagrams some of the anchors
of that period with the space between the shank and flukes nearly filled
up in the lower part with metal.] Such an anchor has the maximum of
holding powers, and bearing in mind the elasticity of the hemp cables
then used, would enable a vessel to ride safely even when exposed to
heavy winds and a racing sea: There is no doubt, according to the
British Admiralty Office,--which should be authority upon the matter,
--that the flag under which the MAY-FLOWER, and all other vessels of the
merchant marine of Great Britain, sailed, at the time she left England
(as noted concerning the SPEEDWELL), was what became known as the "Union
Jack," as decreed by James the First, in 1606, supplanting the English
ensign, which had been the red cross of St. George upon a white field.
The new flag resulted from the "union" of the crowns and kingdoms of
England and Scotland, upon the accession of James VI. of Scotland to the
English throne, as James I. of England, upon the death of queen
Elizabeth. Its design was formed by superimposing the red cross of St.
George upon the white cross of St. Andrew, on a dark blue field; in other
words, by imposing the cross of St. George, taken from the English
ensign, upon the Scotch flag, and creating there by the new flag of Great

In a little monograph on "The British Flag--Its Origin and History," a
paper read by its author, Jona. F. Morris, Esq., before the Connecticut
Historical Society, June 7, 1881, and reprinted at Hartford (1889), Mr.
Morris, who has made much study of the matter, states (p. 4): "In 1603,
James VI. of Scotland was crowned James I. of England. The Scots, in
their pride that they had given a king to England, soon began to contend
that the cross of St. Andrew should take precedence of the cross of St.
George, that ships bearing the flag of the latter should salute that of
St. Andrew. To allay the contention, the King, on the 12th of April,
1606, ordered that all subjects of Great Britain travelling by sea shall
bear at the maintop the red cross of St. George and the white cross,
commonly called the cross of St. Andrew, joined together according to a
form made by his heralds besides this all vessels belonging to South
Britain or England might wear the cross of St. George at the peak or
fore, as they were wont, and all vessels belonging to North Britain or
Scotland might wear the cross of St. Andrew at the fore top, as they had
been accustomed; and all vessels were for bidden to wear any other flag
at their peril. The new flag thus designed by the heralds and proclaimed
by this order was called the 'King's Colors.' For a long period the red
cross had been the colors of English navigators, as well as the badge of
English soldiery . . . . No permanent English settlement in America
was made until after the adoption of the 'King's Colors.' Jamestown,
Plymouth, Salem, and Boston were settled under the new flag, though the
ships bringing over settlers, being English vessels, also carried the red
cross as permitted." Mr. Barlow Cumberland, of Toronto, Canada, has also
given, in a little monograph entitled "The Union Jack" (published by
William Briggs of that city, 1898), an admirable account of the history
of the British jack, which confirms the foregoing conclusions. The early
English jack was later restored. Such, roughly sketched, was the Pilgrim
ship, the renowned MAY-FLOWER, as, drafted from the meagre but fairly
trustworthy and suggestive data available, she appears to us of to-day.


In even the little we know of the later history of the ship, one cannot
always be quite sure of her identity in the records of vessels of her
name, of which there have been many. Dr. Nathaniel B. Shurtleff, of
Boston, says that "a vessel bearing this name was owned in England about
fifteen years or more before the voyage of our forefathers, but it would
be impossible to prove or disprove its identity with the renowned
MAY-FLOWER, however great such a probability might be. It is known,
nevertheless, that--the identical famous vessel afterwards hailed from
various English ports, such as London, Yarmouth, and Southampton, and
that it was much used in transporting immigrants to this country. What
eventually became of it and what was the end of its career, are equally
unknown to history." Goodwin says: "It does not appear that the
MAY-FLOWER ever revisited Plymouth, but in 1629 she came to Salem," with
a company of the Leyden people for Plymouth, under command of Captain
William Peirce, the warm friend of the Pilgrims, and in 1630 was one of
the large fleet that attended John Winthrop, under a different master,
discharging her passengers at Charlestown. Nothing is certainly known of
her after that time. In 1648 a ship [hereinafter mentioned by Hunter]
named the MAY-FLOWER was engaged in the slave trade, and the ill-informed
as well as the ill-disposed have sometimes sneeringly alleged that this
was our historic ship; but it is ascertained that the slaver was a vessel
of three hundred and fifty tons,--nearly twice the size of our ship of
happy memory. In 1588 the officials of Lynn (England) offered the
"MAY-FLOWER" (150 tons) to join the fleet against the dreaded Spanish
Armada. In 1657, Samuel Vassall, of London, complained that the
government had twice impressed his ship, MAY-FLOWER, which he had
"fitted out with sixty men, for the Straits." Rev. Joseph Hunter,
author of "The Founders of New Plymouth," one of the most eminent
antiquarians in England, and an indefatigable student of Pilgrim history
among British archives, says: "I have not observed the name of MAY
FLOWER [in which style he always writes it] before the year 1583 . . .
But the name soon became exceedingly popular among those to whom
belonged the giving of the names to vessels in the merchant-service.
Before the close of that century [the sixteenth] we have a MAY-FLOWER of
Hastings; a MAY-FLOWER of Rie; a MAY-FLOWER of Newcastle: a MAY FLOWER
of Lynn; and a MAY-FLOWER Of Yarmouth: both in 1589. Also a MAY-FLOWER
of Hull, 1599; a MAY FLOWER of London of eighty tons burden, 1587, and
1594, Of which Richard Ireland was the master, and another MAY-FLOWER of
the same port, of ninety tons burthen, of which Robert White was the
master in 1594, and a third MAY-FLOWER of London, unless it is the same
vessel with one of the two just spoken of, only with a different master,
William Morecock. In 1587 there was a MAY-FLOWER Of Dover, of which
John Tooke was the master. In 1593 there was a MAY-FLOWER of Yarmouth
of 120 tons, of which William Musgrove was the master. In 1608 there
was a MAY-FLOWER of Dartmouth, of which Nicholas Waterdonne was the
master; and in 1609 a MAY-FLOWER of Middleburgh entered an English

Later in the century we find a MAY-FLOWER of Ipswich, and another of
Newcastle in 1618; a MAY-FLOWER of York in 1621; a MAY-FLOWER of
Scarborough in 1630, Robert Hadock the master; a MAY-FLOWER of Sandwich
the same year, John Oliver the master; a MAY-FLOWER of Dover, 1633,
Walter Finnis, master, in which two sons of the Earl of Berkshire crossed
to Calais. "Which of these was the vessell which carried over the
precious [Pilgrim] freight cannot perhaps be told [apparently neither,
unless perhaps the MAY-FLOWER of Yarmouth of 1593, in which case her
tonnage is incorrectly given], but we learn from Mr. Sherley's letter to
Governor Bradford' that the same vessel was employed in 1629 in passing
between the two countries, a company of the church at Leyden, who had
joined in the first emigration, intending to pass in it to America; and
in the same author we find that the vessel arrived in the harbour of
Charlestown [N. E.] on July 1, 1630. There was a MAY-FLOWER which, in
1648, gained an unenviable notoriety as a slaver. But this was not the
MAY-FLOWER which had carried over the first settlers, it being a vessel
Of 350 tons, while the genuine MAY-FLOWER was of only 180 tons." Of the
first of her two known visits, after her voyage with the Pilgrim company
from Leyden, Goodwin says: "In August, 1629, the renowned MAY-FLOWER came
from England to Salem under Plymouth's old friend [William] Peirce, and
in her came thirty-five Leyden people, on their way to Plymouth." The
number has been in dispute, but the large cost of bringing them, over
L500, would suggest that their families must have also come, as has been
alleged, but for the following from Governor Bradford's Letter Book:
"These persons," he says, "were in all thirty-five, which came at this
time unto us from Leyden, whose charge out of Holland into England, and
in England till the ship was ready, and then their transportation hither,
came to a great deal of money, for besides victuals and other expenses,
they were all newly apparelled." Shirley, one of the Adventurers,
writing to Governor Bradford in 1629, says: "Here are now many of your
friends from Leyden coming over. With them also we have sent some
servants, or in the ship that went lately (I think called the TALBOT),
and this that these come in is the MAY-FLOWER." All that Higginson's
journal tells of her, as noted, is, that "she was of Yarmouth;" was
commanded by William Peirce, and carried provisions and passengers, but
the fact that she was under command of Captain Peirce of itself tells
much. On her next trip the MAY-FLOWER sailed from Southampton, in May,
1630, as part of Winthrop's fleet, and arrived at Charlestown July 1.
She was, on this voyage, under command of a new master (perhaps a Captain
Weatherby), Captain Peirce having, at this time, command of the ship
LYON, apparently in the service of Plymouth Colony. A vessel of this
name [MAY-FLOWER] was sailing between England and Boston in 1656. Young
says: "The MAY-FLOWER is a ship of renown in the history of the
colonization of New England. She was one of the five vessels which, in
1629, conveyed Higginson's company to Salem, and also one of the fleet
which, in 1630, brought over his colony to Massachusetts Bay."

October 6, 1652, "Thomas Webber, Mr. of the good shipp called the
MAYFLOWER of the burden of Two hundred Tuns or there abouts . . . .
Rideing at Ancor in the Harber of Boston," sold one-sixteenth of the ship
"for good & valluable Consideracons to Mr. John Pinchon of Springfield
Mrchant." The next day, October 7, 1652, the same "Thomas Webber, Mr, of
the good Shipp called the MAY FLOWER of Boston in New England now bound
for the barbadoes and thence to London," acknowledges an indebtedness to
Theodore Atkinson, a wealthy "hatter, felt-maker," and merchant of
Boston, and the same day (October 7, 1652), the said "Thomas Webber, Mr.
of the good shipp called the MAY FLOWER of the burthen of Two hundred
tuns or thereabouts," sold "unto Theodore Atkinson felt-maker
one-sixteenth part as well of said Shipp as of all & singular her masts
Sails Sail-yards Ancors Cables Ropes Cords Gunns Gunpowder Shott
Artillery Tackle Munition apparrell boate skiffe and furniture to the
same belonging." It is of course possible that this was the historic
ship, though, if so, reappearing twenty two years after her last known
voyage to New England. If the same, she was apparently under both new
master and owner. From the facts that she is called "of Boston in New
England" and was trading between that port, "the Barbadoes" and London,
it is not impossible that she may have been built at Boston--a sort of
namesake descendant of the historic ship--and was that MAY-FLOWER
mentioned as belonging, in 1657, to Mr. Samuel Vassall; as he had large
interests alike in Boston, Barbadoes, and London. Masters of vessels
were often empowered to sell their ships or shares in them. Although we
know not where her keel was laid, by what master she was built, or where
she laid her timbers when her work was done, by virtue of her grand
service to humanity, her fame is secure, and her name written among the
few, the immortal names that were not born to die.



The officers and crew of the MAY-FLOWER were obviously important factors
in the success of the Pilgrim undertaking, and it is of interest to know
what we may concerning them. We have seen that the "pilot," John Clarke,
was employed by Weston and Cushman, even before the vessel upon which he
was to serve had been found, and he had hence the distinction of being
the first man "shipped" of the MAY-FLOWER'S complement. It is evident
that he was promptly hired on its being known that he had recently
returned from a voyage to Virginia in the cattle-ship FALCON, as certain
to be of value in the colonists' undertakings.

Knowing that the Adventurers' agents were seeking both a ship and a
master for her, it was the natural thing for the latter, that he should
propose the Captain under whom he had last sailed, on much the same
voyage as that now contemplated. It is an interesting fact that
something of the uncertainty which for a time existed as to the names and
features of the Pilgrim barks attaches the names and identity of their
respective commanders. The "given" name of "Master" Reynolds, "pilott"
and "Master" of the SPEED WELL, does not appear, but the assertion of
Professor Arber, though positive enough, that "the Christian name of the
Captain of the MAY-FLOWER is not known," is not accepted by other
authorities in Pilgrim history, though it is true that it does not find
mention in the contemporaneous accounts of the Pilgrim ship and her

There is no room for doubt that the Captain of the FALCON--whose release
from arrest while under charge of piracy the Earl of Warwick procured,
that he might take command of the above-named cattle-ship on her voyage
to Virginia, as hereinafter shown--was Thomas Jones. The identity of
this man and "Master Jones" who assumed command of the MAY-FLOWER--with
the former mate of the FALCON, John Clarke, as his first officer--is
abundantly certified by circumstantial evidence of the strongest kind, as
is also the fact that he commanded the ship DISCOVERY a little later.

With the powerful backing of such interested friends as the Earl of
Warwick and Sir Ferdinando Gorges, undoubtedly already in league with
Thomas Weston, who probably made the contract with Jones,
as he had with Clarke, the suggestion of the latter as to the competency
and availability of his late commander would be sure of prompt approval,
and thus, in all probability, Captain Thomas Jones, who finds his chief
place in history--and a most important one--as Master of the MAY-FLOWER,
came to that service.

In 1619, as appears by Neill, the Virginia Company had one John Clarke in
Ireland, "buying cattle for Virginia." We know that Captain Jones soon
sailed for Virginia with cattle, in the FALCON, of 150 tons, and as this
was the only cattle ship in a long period, we can very certainly identify
Clarke as the newly-hired mate of the MAY-FLOWER, who, Cush man says
(letter of June 11/21, 1620), "went last year to Virginia with a ship of
kine." As 1620 did not begin until March 25, a ship sailing in February
would have gone out in 1619, and Jones and Clarke could easily have made
the voyage in time to engage for the MAY-FLOWER in the following June.
"Six months after Jones's trip in the latter" (i.e. after his return
from the Pilgrim voyage), Neill says, "he took the DISCOVERY (60 tons) to
Virginia, and then northward, trading along the coast. The Council for
New England complained of him to the Virginia Company for robbing the
natives on this voyage. He stopped at Plymouth (1622), and, taking
advantage of the distress for food he found there, was extortionate in
his prices. In July, 1625, he appeared at Jamestown, Virginia, in
possession of a Spanish frigate, which he said had been captured by one
Powell, under a Dutch commission, but it was thought a resumption of his
old buccaneering practices. Before investigation he sickened and died."

That Jones was a man of large experience, and fully competent in his
profession, is beyond dispute. His disposition, character, and deeds
have been the subject of much discussion. By most writers he is held to
have been a man of coarse, "unsympathetic" nature, "a rough sea-dog,"
capable of good feeling and kindly impulses at times, but neither
governed by them nor by principle. That he was a "highwayman of the
seas," a buccaneer and pirate, guilty of blood for gold, there can be no
doubt. Certainly nothing could justify the estimate of him given by
Professor Arber, that "he was both fair-minded and friendly toward the
Pilgrim Fathers," and he certainly stands alone among writers of
reputation in that opinion. Jones's selfishness,

[Bradford himself--whose authority in the matter will not be
doubted--says (Historie, Mass. ed. p. 112): "As this calamitie,
the general sickness, fell among ye passengers that were to be left
here to plant, and were basted ashore and made to drinke water, that
the sea-men might have ye more bear [beer] and one in his sickness
desiring but a small can of beare it was answered that if he were
their own father he should have none." Bradford also shows (op.
cit. p. 153) the rapacity of Jones, when in command of the
DISCOVERY, in his extortionate demands upon the Plymouth planters,
notwithstanding their necessities.]

threats, boorishness, and extortion, to say nothing of his exceedingly
bad record as a pirate, both in East and West Indian waters, compel a far
different estimate of him as a man, from that of Arber, however excellent
he was as a mariner. Professor Arber dissents from Goodwin's conclusion
that Captain Jones of the DISCOVERY was the former Master of the
MAY-FLOWER, but the reasons of his dissent are by no means convincing. He
argues that Jones would not have accepted the command of a vessel so much
smaller than his last, the DISCOVERY being only one third the size of the
MAY-FLOWER. Master-mariners, particularly when just returned from long
and unsuccessful voyages, especially if in bad repute,--as was Jones,
--are obliged to take such employment as offers, and are often glad to get
a ship much smaller than their last, rather than remain idle. Moreover,
in Jones's case, if, as appears, he was inclined to buccaneering, the
smaller ship would serve his purpose--as it seems it did satisfactorily.
Nor is the fact that Bradford speaks of him--although previously so well
acquainted--as "one Captain Jones," to be taken as evidence, as Arber
thinks, that the Master of the DISCOVERY was some other of the name.
Bradford was writing history, and his thought just then was the especial
Providence of God in the timely relief afforded their necessities by the
arrival of the ships with food, without regard to the individuals who
brought it, or the fact that one was an acquaintance of former years.
On the other hand, Winslow--in his "Good Newes from New England"
--records the arrival of the two ships in August, 1622, and says, "the one
as I take [recollect] it, was called the DISCOVERY, Captain Jones having
command thereof," which on the same line of argument as Arber's might be
read, "our old acquaintance Captain Jones, you know"! If the expression
of Bradford makes against its being Captain Jones, formerly of the
MAY-FLOWER, Winslow's certainly makes quite as much for it, while the fact
which Winslow recites, viz. that the DISCOVERY, under Jones, was sailing
as consort to the SPARROW, a ship of Thomas Weston,--who employed him for
the MAY-FLOWER, was linked with him in the Gorges conspiracy, and had
become nearly as degenerate as he,--is certainly significant. There are
still better grounds, as will appear in the closely connected relations
of Jones, for holding with Goodwin rather than with Arber in the matter.
The standard authority in the case is the late Rev. E. D. Neill, D. D.,
for some years United States consul at Dublin, who made very considerable
research into all matters pertaining to the Virginia Companies,
consulting their original records and "transactions," the Dutch related
documents, the "Calendars of the East India Company," etc. Upon him and
his exhaustive work all others have largely drawn,--notably Professor
Arber himself,--and his conclusions seem entitled to the same weight here
which Arber gives them in other relations. Dr. Neill is clearly of
opinion that the Captains of the MAY-FLOWER and the DISCOVERY were
identical, and this belief is shared by such authorities in Pilgrim
literature as Young, Prince, Goodwin, and Davis, and against this
formidable consensus of opinion, Arber, unless better supported, can
hardly hope to prevail.

The question of Jones's duplicity and fraud, in bringing the Pilgrims to
land at Cape Cod instead of the "neighbor-hood of Hudson's River," has
been much mooted and with much diversity of opinion, but in the light of
the subjoined evidence and considerations it seems well-nigh impossible
to acquit him of the crime--for such it was, in inception, nature, and
results, however overruled for good.

The specific statements of Bradford and others leave no room for doubt
that the MAY-FLOWER Pilgrims fully intended to make their settlement
somewhere in the region of the mouth of "Hudson's River." Morton states
in terms that Captain Jones's "engagement was to Hudson's River."
Presumably, as heretofore noted, the stipulation of his charter party
required that he should complete his outward voyage in that general
locality. The northern limits of the patents granted in the Pilgrim
interest, whether that of John Wincob (or Wincop) sealed June 9/ 19,
1619, but never used, or the first one to John Pierce, of February 2/12,
1620, were, of course, brought within the limits of the First (London)
Virginia Company's charter, which embraced, as is well-known, the
territory between the parallels of 34 deg. and 41 deg. N. latitude.
The most northerly of these parallels runs but about twenty miles to the
north of the mouth of "Hudson's River." It is certain that the Pilgrims,
after the great expense, labor, and pains of three years, to secure the
protection of these Patents, would not willingly or deliberately, have
planted themselves outside that protection, upon territory where they had
none, and where, as interlopers, they might reasonably expect trouble
with the lawful proprietors. Nor was there any reason why, if they so
desired, they should not have gone to "Hudson's River" or its vicinity,
unless it was that they had once seemed to recognize the States General
of Holland as the rightful owners of that territory, by making petition
to them, through the New Netherland Company, for their authority and
protection in settling there. But even this fact constituted no moral or
legal bar to such action, if desirable First, because it appears certain
that, whatever the cause, they "broke off" themselves their negotiations
with the Dutch,--whether on account of the inducements offered by Thomas
Weston, or a doubt of the ability of the Dutch to maintain their claim to
that region, and to protect there, or both, neither appears nor matters.
Second, because the States General--whether with knowledge that they of
Leyden had so "broken off" or from their own doubts of their ability to
maintain their claim on the Hudson region, does not appear--rejected the
petition made to them in the Pilgrims' behalf. It is probable that the
latter was the real reason, from the fact that the petition was twice

In view of the high opinion of the Leyden brethren, entertained, as we
know, by the Dutch, it is clear that the latter would have been pleased
to secure them as colonists; while if at all confident of their rights to
the territory, they must have been anxious to colonize it and thus
confirm their hold, increase their revenues as speedily as possible,

Third, because it appears upon the showing of the petition itself, made
by the New Netherland Company (to which the Leyden leaders had looked,
doubtless on account of its pretensions, for the authority and protection
of the States General, as they afterward did to the English Virginia
Company for British protection), that this Company had lost its own
charter by expiration, and hence had absolutely nothing to offer the
Leyden people beyond the personal and associate influence of its members,
and the prestige of a name that had once been potential. In fact, the
New Netherland Company was using the Leyden congregation as a leverage to
pry for itself from the States General new advantages, larger than it had
previously enjoyed.

Moreover it appears by the evidence of both the petition of the Directors
of the New Netherland Company to the Prince of Orange (February 2/12,
1619/20), and the letters of Sir Dudley Carleton, the British ambassador
at the Hague, to the English Privy Council, dated February 5/15, 1621/22,
that, up to this latter date the Dutch had established no colony

[British State Papers, Holland, Bundle 165. Sir Dudley Carleton's
Letters. "They have certain Factors there, continually resident,
trading with savages . . . but I cannot learn of any colony,
either I already planted there by these people, or so much as
intended." Sir Dudley Carleton's Letters.]

on the territory claimed by them at the Hudson, and had no other
representation there than the trading-post of a commercial company whose
charter had expired. There can be no doubt that the Leyden leaders knew,
from their dealings with the New Netherland Company, and the study of the
whole problem which they evidently made, that this region was open to
them or any other parties for habitation and trade, so far as any prior
grants or charters under the Dutch were concerned, but they required more
than this.

To Englishmen, the English claim to the territory at "Hudson's River"
was valid, by virtue of the discovery of the Cabots, under the law of
nations as then recognized, not withstanding Hudson's more particular
explorations of those parts in 1609, in the service of Holland,
especially as no colony or permanent occupancy of the region by the
Dutch had been made.

Professor John Fiske shows that "it was not until the Protestant England
of Elizabeth had come to a life-and-death grapple with Spain, and not
until the discovery of America had advanced much nearer completion, so
that its value began to be more correctly understood, that political and
commercial motives combined in determining England to attack Spain
through America, and to deprive her of supremacy in the colonial and
maritime world. Then the voyages of the Cabots assumed an importance
entirely new, and could be quoted as the basis of a prior claim on the
part of the English Crown, to lands which it [through the Cabots] had

Having in mind the terrible history of slaughter and reprisal between the
Spanish and French (Huguenot) settlers in Florida in 1565-67,

[Bancroft, History of the United States, vol. i. p. 68; Fiske,
Discovery of America, vol. ii. p. 511 et seq. With the terrible
experience of the Florida plantations in memory, the far-sighted
leaders of the Leyden church proposed to plant under the shelter of
an arm strong enough to protect them, and we find the Directors of
the New Netherland Company stating that the Leyden party (the
Pilgrims) can be induced to settle under Dutch auspices, "provided,
they would be guarded and preserved from all violence on the part of
other potentates, by the authority, and under the protection of your
Princely Excellency and the High and Mighty States General."
Petition of the Directors of the New Netherland Company to the
Prince of Orange.]

the Pilgrims recognized the need of a strong power behind them, under
whose aegis they might safely plant, and by virtue of whose might and
right they could hope to keep their lives and possessions. The King of
England had, in 1606, granted charters to the two Virginia Companies,
covering all the territory in dispute, and, there could be no doubt,
would protect these grants and British proprietorship therein, against
all comers. Indeed, the King (James I.) by letter to Sir Dudley
Carleton, his ambassador at the Hague, under date of December 15, 1621,
expressly claimed his rights in the New Netherland territory and
instructed him to impress upon the government of the States General his
Majesty's claim,--"who, 'jure prime occupation' hath good and sufficient
title to these parts." There can be no question that the overtures of
Sandys, Weston, and others to make interest for them with one of these
English Companies, agreed as well with both the preferences and
convictions of the Leyden Pilgrims, as they did with the hopes and
designs of Sir Ferdinando Gorges. In the light of these facts, there
appears to have been neither legal nor moral bar to the evident intention
of the Pilgrims to settle in the vicinity of "Hudson's River," if they so
elected. In their light, also, despite the positive allegations of the
truthful but not always reliable Morton, his charges of intrigue between
the Dutch and Master Jones of the MAY-FLOWER, to prevent the settlement
of his ship's company at "Hudson's River," may well be doubted. Writing
in "New England's Memorial" in 1669, Morton says: "But some of the Dutch,
having notice of their intentions, and having thoughts about the same
time of erecting a plantation there likewise, they fraudulently hired the
said Jones, by delays while they were in England, and now under pretence
of the shoals the dangers of the Monomoy Shoals off Cape Cod to
disappoint them in going thither." He adds: "Of this plot between the
Dutch and Mr. Jones, I have had late and certain intelligence." If this
intelligence was more reliable than his assertion concerning the
responsibility of Jones for the "delays while they were in England," it
may well be discredited, as not the faintest evidence appears to make him
responsible for those delays, and they are amply accounted for without
him. Without questioning the veracity of Morton (while suggesting his
many known errors, and that the lapse of time made it easy to
misinterpret even apparently certain facts), it must be remembered that
he is the original sponsor for the charge of Dutch intrigue with Jones,
and was its sole support for many years. All other writers who have
accepted and indorsed his views are of later date, and but follow him,
while Bradford and Winslow, who were victims of this Dutch conspiracy
against them, if it ever existed, were entirely silent in their writings
upon the matter, which we may be sure they would not have been, had they
suspected the Dutch as prime movers in the treachery. That there was a
conspiracy to accomplish the landing of the MAY-FLOWER planters at a
point north of "the Hudson" (in fact, north of the bounds defined by the
(first) Pierce patent, upon which they relied), i.e. north of 41 deg. N.
latitude,--is very certain; but that it was of Dutch origin, or based
upon motives which are attributed to the Dutch, is clearly erroneous.
While the historical facts indicate an utter lack of motive for such an
intrigue on the part of the Dutch, either as a government or as
individuals, there was no lack of motive on the part of certain others,
who, we can but believe, were responsible for the conspiracy. Moreover,
the chief conspirators were such, that, even if the plot was ultimately
suspected by the Pilgrims, a wise policy--indeed, self-preservation
--would have dictated their silence. That the Dutch were without
sufficient motive or interest has been declared. That the States General
could have had no wish to reject so exceptionally excellent a body of
colonists as subjects, and as tenants to hold and develop their disputed
territory--if in position to receive them and guarantee them protection
--is clear. The sole objection that could be urged against them was their
English birth, and with English regiments garrisoning the Dutch home
cities, and foreigners of every nation in the States General's employ, by
land and by sea, such an objection could have had no weight. Indeed, the
Leyden party proposed, if they effected satisfactory arrangements with
the States General (as stated by the Directors of the New Netherland
Company), "to plant there [at "Hudson's River"] a new commonwealth, all
under the order and command of your Princely Excellency and their High
Mightinesses the States General:" The Leyden Pilgrims were men who kept
their agreements.

The Dutch trading-companies, who were the only parties in the Low
Countries who could possibly have had any motive for such a conspiracy,
were at this time themselves without charters, and the overtures of the
principal company, made to the government in behalf of themselves and the
Leyden brethren, had recently, as we have seen, been twice rejected.
They had apparently, therefore, little to hope for in the near future;
certainly not enough to warrant expenditure and the risk of disgraceful
exposure, in negotiations with a stranger--an obscure ship-master--to
change his course and land his passengers in violation of the terms of
his charter-party;--negotiations, moreover, in which neither of the
parties could well have had any guaranty of the other's good faith.

But, as previously asserted, there was a party--to whom such knavery was
an ordinary affair--who had ample motive, and of whom Master Thomas Jones
was already the very willing and subservient ally and tool, and had been
such for years. Singularly enough, the motive governing this party was
exactly the reverse of that attributed--though illogically and without
reason--to the Dutch. In the case of the latter, the alleged animus was
a desire to keep the Pilgrim planters away from their "Hudson's River"
domain. In the case of the real conspirators, the purpose was to secure
these planters as colonists for, and bring them to, the more northern
territory owned by them. It is well known that Sir Ferdinando Gorges was
the leading spirit of the "Second Virginia Company," as he also became
(with the Earl of Warwick a close second) of "The Council for the Affairs
of New England," of which both men were made "Governors," in November of
1620, when the Council practically superseded the "Second Virginia
Company." The Great Charter for "The Council of Affairs of New England,"
commonly known as "The Council for New England," issued Tuesday, November
3/13, 1620, and it held in force till Sunday, June 7/17, 1635.

Although not its official head, and ranked at its board by dukes and
earls, Sir Ferdinando Gorges was--as he had been in the old Plymouth (or
Second) Virginia Company--the leading man. This was largely from his
superior acquaintance with, and long and varied experience in, New
England affairs. The "Council" was composed of forty patentees, and
Baxter truly states, that "Sir Ferdinando Gorges, at this time [1621]
stood at the head of the Council for New England, so far as influence
went; in fact, his hand shaped its affairs." This company, holding--by
the division of territory made under the original charter-grants--a strip
of territory one hundred miles wide, on the North American coast, between
the parallels of 41 deg. and 45 deg. N. latitude, had not prospered, and
its efforts at colonization (on what is now the Maine coast), in 1607 and
later, had proved abortive, largely through the character of its
"settlers," who had been, in good degree, a somewhat notable mixture of
two of the worst elements of society,--convicts and broken-down

"In 1607," says Goodwin, "Gorges and the cruel Judge Popham planted a
colony at Phillipsburg (or Sagadahoc, as is supposed), by the mouth of
the Kennebec. Two ships came, 'THE GIFT OF GOD' and the 'MARY AND JOHN,'
bringing a hundred persons. Through August they found all delightful,
but when the ships went back in December, fifty five of the number
returned to England, weary of their experience and fearful of the cold
.... With spring the ships returned from England; "but by this time the
remainder were ready to leave," so every soul returned with Gilbert [the
Admiral] . . . . For thirty years Gorges continued to push
exploration and emigration to that region, but his ambition and
liberality ever resulted in disappointment and loss." The annals of the
time show that not a few of the Sagadahoc colonists were convicts,
released from the English jails to people this colony.

Hakluyt says: "In 1607 [this should read 1608], disheartened by the death
of Popham, they all embarked in a ship from Exeter and in the new
pynnace, the 'VIRGINIA,' built in the colony, and sett sail for England,
and this was the end of that northern colony upon the river Sachadehoc

No one knew better than the shrewd Gorges the value of such a colony as
that of the Leyden brethren would be, to plant, populate, and develop his
Company's great demesne. None were more facile than himself and the
buccaneering Earl of Warwick, to plan and execute the bold, but--as it
proved--easy coup, by which the Pilgrim colony was to be stolen bodily;
for the benefit of the "Second Virginia Company" and its successor,
"the Council for New England," from the "First (or London) Company,"
under whose patent (to John Pierce) and patronage they sailed. They
apparently did not take their patent with them,--it would have been
worthless if they had,--and they were destined to have no small trouble
with Pierce, before they were established in their rights under the new
patent granted him (in the interest of the Adventurers and themselves),
by the "Council for New England." Master John Wincob's early and silent
withdrawal from his apparently active connection with the Pilgrim
movement, and the evident cancellation of the first patent issued to him
in its interest, by the (London) Virginia Company, have never been
satisfactorily explained. Wincob (or Wincop), we are told, "was a
religious Gentleman, then belonging to the household of the Countess of
Lincoln, who intended to go with them [the Pilgrims] but God so disposed
as he never went, nor they ever made use of this Patent, which had cost
them so much labor and charge." Wincob, it appears by the minutes of the
(London) Virginia Company of Wednesday, May 26/June 5, 1619, was
commended to the Company, for the patent he sought, by the fourth Earl of
Lincoln, and it was doubtless through his influence that it was granted
and sealed, June 9/19, 1619. But while Wincob was a member of the
household of the Dowager Countess of Lincoln, mother of the fourth Earl
of Lincoln; John, the eldest son of Sir Ferdinando Gorges, had married
the Earl's daughter (sister ?), and hence Gorges stood in a much nearer
relation to the Earl than did his mother's friend and dependant (as
Wincob evidently was), as well as on a much more equal social footing.
By the minutes of the (London) Virginia Company of Wednesday, February 2/
12, 1619/20, it appears that a patent was "allowed and sealed to John
Pierce and his associates, heirs and assigns," for practically the same
territory for which the patent to Wincob had been given but eight months
before. No explanation was offered, and none appears of record, but the
logical conclusion is, that the first patent had been cancelled, that
Master Wincob's personal interest in the Pilgrim exodus had ceased, and
that the Lincoln patronage had been withdrawn. It is a rational
conjecture that Sir Ferdinando Gorges, through the relationship he
sustained to the Earl, procured the withdrawal of Wincob and his patent,
knowing that the success of his (Gorges's) plot would render the Wincob
patent worthless, and that the theft of the colony, in his own interest,
would be likely to breed "unpleasantness" between himself and Wincob's
sponsors and friends among the Adventurers, many of whom were friends of
the Earl of Lincoln.

The Earl of Warwick, the man of highest social and political rank in the
First (or London) Virginia Company, was, at about the same time, induced
by Gorges to abandon his (the London) Company and unite with himself in
securing from the Crown the charter of the "Council of Affairs for New
England." The only inducements he could offer for the change must
apparently have resided in the promised large results of plottings
disclosed by him (Gorges), but he needed the influential and unscrupulous
Earl for the promotion of his schemes, and won him, by some means, to an
active partnership, which was doubtless congenial to both. The "fine
Italian hand" of Sir Ferdinando hence appears at every stage, and in
every phase, of the Leyden movement, from the mission of Weston to
Holland, to the landing at Cape Cod, and every movement clearly indicates
the crafty cunning, the skilful and brilliant manipulation, and the
dogged determination of the man.

That Weston was a most pliant and efficient tool in the hands of Gorges,
"from start to finish" of this undertaking, is certainly apparent.
Whether he was, from the outset, made fully aware of the sinister designs
of the chief conspirator, and a party to them, admits of some doubt,
though the conviction strengthens with study, that he was, from the
beginning, 'particeps criminis'. If he was ever single-minded for the
welfare of the Leyden brethren and the Adventurers, it must have been for
a very brief time at the inception of the enterprise; and circumstances
seem to forbid crediting him with honesty of purpose, even then. The
weight of evidence indicates that he both knew, and was fully enlisted
in, the entire plot of Gorges from the outset. In all its early stages
he was its most efficient promoter, and seems to have given ample proof
of his compliant zeal in its execution. His visit to the Leyden brethren
in Holland was, apparently, wholly instigated by Gorges, as the latter
complacently claims and collateral evidence proves. In his endeavor to
induce the leaders to "break off with the Dutch," their pending
negotiations for settlement at "Hudson's River," he evidently made
capital of, and traded upon, his former kindness to some of them when
they were in straits,--a most contemptible thing in itself, yet
characteristic of the man. He led the Pilgrims to "break off" their
dealings with the Dutch by the largest and most positive promises of
greater advantages through him, few of which he ever voluntarily kept (as
we see by John Robinson's sharp arraignment of him), his whole object
being apparently to get the Leyden party into his control and that of his
friends,--the most subtle and able of whom was Gorges. Bradford recites
that Weston not only urged the Leyden leaders "not to meddle with ye
Dutch," but also,--"not too much to depend on ye Virginia [London]
Company," but to rely on himself and his friends. This strongly suggests
active cooperation with Gorges, on Weston's part, at the outset, with the
intent (if he could win them by any means, from allegiance to the First
(London) Virginia Company), to lead the Leyden party, if possible, into
Gorges's hands and under the control and patronage of the Second (or
Plymouth) Virginia Company. Whatever the date may have been, at which
(as Bradford states) the Leyden people "heard, both by Mr. Weston and
others, yt sundrie Honble: Lords had obtained a large grante from ye king
for ye more northerly parts of that countrie, derived out of ye Virginia
patents, and wholly secluded from theire Governmente, and to be called by
another name, viz. New England, unto which Mr. Weston and the chiefe of
them begane to incline;" Bradford leaves us in no doubt as to Weston's
attitude toward the matter itself. It is certain that the governor,
writing from memory, long afterward, fixed the time at which the Honble:
Lords had obtained "their large grante" much earlier than it could
possibly have occurred, as we know the exact date of the patent for the,
"Council for New England," and that the order for its issue was not given
till just as the Pilgrims left Leyden; so that they could not have known
of the actual "grante" till they reached Southampton. The essential
fact, stated on this best of authority, is, that "Mr. Weston and the
chiefe of them [their sponsors, i.e. Weston and Lord Warwick, both in
league with Gorges] begane to incline to Gorges's new Council for New
England." Such an attitude (evidently taken insidiously) meant, on
Weston's part, of necessity, no less than treachery to his associates of
the Adventurers; to the (London) Virginia Company, and to the Leyden
company and their allied English colonists, in the interest of Sir
Ferdinando Gorges and his schemes and of the new "Council" that Gorges
was organizing. Weston's refusal to advance "a penny" to clear the
departing Pilgrims from their port charges at Southampton; his almost
immediate severance of connection with both the colonists and the
Adventurers; and his early association with Gorges,--in open and
disgraceful violation of all the formers' rights in New England,--to say
nothing of his exhibition of a malevolence rarely exercised except toward
those one has deeply wronged, all point to a complete and positive
surrender of himself and his energies to the plot of Gorges, as a full
participant, from its inception. In his review of the Anniversary Address
of Hon. Charles Francis Adams (of July 4, 1892, at Quincy), Daniel W.
Baker, Esq., of Boston, says: "The Pilgrim Fathers were influenced in
their decision to come to New England by Weston, who, if not the agent of
Gorges in this particular matter, was such in other matters and held
intimate relations with him."

The known facts favor the belief that Gorges's cogitations on colonial
matters--especially as stimulated by his plottings in relation to the
Leyden people--led to his project of the grant--and charter for the new
"Council for New England," designed and constituted to supplant, or
override, all others. It is highly probable that this grand scheme
--duly embellished by the crafty Gorges,--being unfolded to Weston, with
suggestions of great opportunities for Weston himself therein, warmed and
drew him, and brought him to full and zealous cooperation in all Gorges's
plans, and that from this time, as Bradford states, he "begane to
incline" toward, and to suggest to the Pilgrims, association with Gorges
and the new "Council." Not daring openly to declare his change of
allegiance and his perfidy, he undertook, apparently, at first, by
suggestions, e.g. "not to place too much dependence on the London
Company, but to rely on himself and friends;" that "the fishing of New
England was good," etc.; and making thus no headway, then, by a policy of
delay, fault finding, etc., to breed dissatisfaction, on the Pilgrims'
part, with the Adventurers, the patent of Wincob, etc., with the hope of
bringing about "a new deal" in the Gorges interest. The same "delays" in
sailing, that have been adduced as proof of Jones's complicity with the
Dutch, would have been of equal advantage to these noble schemers, and if
he had any hand in them-which does not appear--it would have been far
more likely in the interest of his long-time patron, the Earl of Warwick,
and of his friends, than of any Dutch conspirators.

Once the colonists were landed upon the American soil, especially if late
in the season, they would not be likely, it doubtless was argued, to
remove; while by a liberal policy on the part of the "Council for New
England" toward them--when they discovered that they were upon its
territory--they could probably be retained. That just such a policy was,
at once and eagerly, adopted toward them, as soon as occasion permitted,
is good proof that the scheme was thoroughly matured from the start. The
record of the action of the "Council for New England"--which had become
the successor of the Second Virginia Company before intelligence was
received that the Pilgrims had landed on its domain--is not at hand,
but it appears by the record of the London Company, under date of Monday,
July 16/26, 1621, that the "Council for New England" had promptly made
itself agreeable to the colonists. The record reads: "It was moved,
seeing that Master John Pierce had taken a Patent of Sir Ferdinando
Gorges, and thereupon seated his Company [the Pilgrims] within the limits
of the Northern Plantations, as by some was supposed,"' etc. From this
it is plain that, on receipt by Pierce of the news that the colony was
landed within the limits of the "Council for New England," he had, as
instructed, applied for, and been given (June 1, 1621), the (first)
"Council" patent for the colony. For confirmation hereof one should see
also the minutes of the "Council for New England" of March 25/April 4.,
1623, and the fulsome letter of Robert Cushman returning thanks in behalf
of the Planters (through John Pierce), to Gorges, for his prompt response
to their request for a patent and for his general complacency toward them
Hon. James Phinney Baxter, Gorges's able and faithful biographer, says:
"We can imagine with what alacrity he [Sir Ferdinando] hastened to give
to Pierce a patent in their behalf." The same biographer, clearly
unconscious of the well-laid plot of Gorges and Warwick (as all other
writers but Neill and Davis have been), bears testimony (all the stronger
because the witness is unwitting of the intrigue), to the ardent interest
Gorges had in its success. He says: "The warm desire of Sir Ferdinando
Gorges to see a permanent colony founded within the domain of the
Plymouth [or Second] Virginia Company was to be realized in a manner of
which he had never dreamed [sic!] and by a people with whom he had but
little sympathized, although we know that he favored their settlement
within the territorial limits of the Plymouth [Second] Company." He had
indeed "favored their settlement," by all the craft of which he was
master, and greeted their expected and duly arranged advent with all the
jubilant open-handedness with which the hunter treats the wild horse he
has entrapped, and hopes to domesticate and turn to account. Everything
favored the conspirators. The deflection north-ward from the normal
course of the ship as she approached the coast, bound for the latitude of
the Hudson, required only to be so trifling that the best sailor of the
Pilgrim leaders would not be likely to note or criticise it, and it was
by no means uncommon to make Cape Cod as the first landfall on Virginia
voyages. The lateness of the arrival on the coast, and the difficulties
ever attendant on doubling Cape Cod, properly turned to account, would
increase the anxiety for almost any landing-place, and render it easy to
retain the sea-worn colonists when once on shore. The grand advantage,
however, over and above all else, was the entire ease and certainty with
which the cooperation of the one man essential to the success of the
undertaking could be secured, without need of the privity of any other,
viz. the Master of the MAY-FLOWER, Captain Thomas Jones.

Let us see upon what the assumption of this ready and certain accord on
the part of Captain Jones rests. Rev. Dr. Neill, whose thorough study of
the records of the Virginia Companies, and of the East India Company
Calendars and collateral data, entitles him to speak with authority,
recites that, "In 1617, Capt. Thomas Jones (sometimes spelled Joanes) had
been sent to the East Indies in command of the ship LION by the Earl of
Warwick (then Sir Robt. Rich), under a letter of protection from the Duke
of Savoy, a foreign prince, ostensibly 'to take pirates,' which [pretext]
had grown, as Sir Thomas Roe (the English ambassador with the Great
Mogul) states, 'to be a common pretence for becoming pirate.'" Caught by
the famous Captain Martin Pring, in full pursuit of the junk of the Queen
Mother of the Great Mogul, Jones was attacked, his ship fired in the
fight, and burned,--with some of his crew,--and he was sent a prisoner to
England in the ship BULL, arriving in the Thames, January 1, 1618/19. No
action seems to have been taken against him for his offences, and
presumably his employer, Sir Robert, the coming Earl, obtained his
liberty on one pretext or another. On January 19, however, complaint was
made against Captain Jones, "late of the LION," by the East India
Company, "for hiring divers men to serve the King of Denmark in the East
Indies." A few days after his arrest for "hiring away the Company's men,
Lord Warwick got him off" on the claim that he had employed him
"to go to Virginia with cattle." From the "Transactions" of the Second
Virginia Company, of which--as we have seen--Sir Ferdinando Gorges was
the leading spirit, it appears that on "February 2, 1619/20, a commission
was allowed Captain Thomas Jones of the FALCON, a ship of 150 tons" [he
having been lately released from arrest by the Earl of Warwick's
intercession], and that "before the close of the month, he sailed with
cattle for Virginia," as previously noted. Dr. Neill, than whom there
can be no better authority, was himself satisfied, and unequivocally
states, that "Thomas Jones, Captain of the MAY-FLOWER, was without doubt
the old servant of Lord Warwick in the East Indies." Having done Sir
Robert Rich's (the Earl of Warwick's) "dirty work" for years, and having
on all occasions been saved from harm by his noble patron (even when
piracy and similar practices had involved him in the meshes of the law),
it would be but a trifling matter, at the request of such powerful
friends as the Earl and Sir Ferdinando Gorges, to steal the Pilgrim
Colony from the London Virginia Company, and hand it over bodily to the
"Council for New England,"--the successor of the Second (Plymouth)
Virginia Company,--in which their interests were vested, Warwick having,
significantly, transferred his membership from the London Company to the
new "Council for New England," as it was commonly called. Neill states,
and there is abundant proof, that "the Earl of Warwick and Gorges were in
sympathy," and were active coadjutors, while it is self-evident that both
would be anxious to accomplish the permanent settlement of the "Northern
Plantations" held by their Company. That they would hesitate to utilize
so excellent an opportunity to secure so very desirable a colony, by any
means available, our knowledge of the men and their records makes it
impossible to believe,--while nothing could apparently have been easier
of accomplishment. It will readily be understood that if the
conspirators were these men,--upon whose grace the Pilgrims must depend
for permission to remain upon the territory to which they had been
inveigled, or even for permission to depart from it, without spoliation,
--men whose influence with the King (no friend to the Pilgrims) was
sufficient to make both of them, in the very month of the Pilgrims'
landing, "governors" of "The Council for New England," under whose
authority the Planters must remain,--the latter were not likely to voice
their suspicions of the trick played upon them, if they discovered it,
or openly to resent it, when known. Dr. Dexter, in commenting on the
remark of Bradford, "We made Master Jones our leader, for we thought it
best herein to gratifie his kindness & forwardness," sensibly says,
"This proves nothing either way, in regard to the charge which Secretary
Morton makes of treachery against Jones, in landing the company so far
north, because, if that were true, it was not known to any of the company
for years afterward, and of course could not now [at that time] impair
their feelings of confidence in, or kindness towards, him. Moreover,
the phraseology, "we thought it best to gratifie," suggests rather
considerations of policy than cordial desire, and their acquaintance,
too, with the man was still young. There is, however, no evidence that
Jones's duplicity was suspected till long afterward, though his
character was fully recognized. Gorges himself furnishes, in his
writings, the strongest confirmation we have of the already apparent
fact, that he was himself the prime conspirator. He says, in his own
"Narration," "It was referred [evidently by himself] to their [the London
Virginia Company's] consideration, how necessary it was that means might
be used to draw unto those their enterprises, some of those families that
had retired themselves into Holland for scruple of conscience, giving
them such freedom and liberty as might stand with their liking." When
have we ever found Sir Ferdinando Gorges thus solicitous for the success
of the rival Virginia Company? Why, if he so esteemed the Leyden people
as excellent colonists, did he not endeavor to secure them himself
directly, for his own languishing company? Certainly the "scruple of
conscience" of the Leyden brethren did not hinder him, for he found it no
bar, though of the Established Church himself, to giving them instantly
all and more than was asked in their behalf, as soon as he had them upon
his territory and they had applied for a patent. He well knew that it
would be matter of some expense and difficulty to bring the Leyden
congregation into agreement to go to either of the Virginia grants, and
he doubtless, and with good reason, feared that his repute and the
character and reputation of his own Company, with its past history of
failure, convict settlers, and loose living, would be repellent to these
people of "conscience." If they could be brought to the "going-point,"
by men more of their ilk, like Sir Edwin Sandys, Weston, and others, it
would then be time to see if he could not pluck the ripe fruit for
himself,--as he seems to have done.

"This advice," he says, "being hearkened unto, there were [those] that
undertook the putting it in practice [Weston and others] and it was
accordingly brought to effect," etc. Then, reciting (erroneously) the
difficulties with the SPEEDWELL, etc., he records the MAY-FLOWER'S
arrival at Cape Cod, saying, "The . . . ship with great difficulty
reached the coast of New England." He then gives a glowing, though
absurd, account of the attractions the planters found--in midwinter
--especially naming the hospitable reception of the Indians, despite the
fact of the savage attack made upon them by the Nausets at Cape Cod, and
adds: "After they had well considered the state of their affairs and
found that the authority they had from the London Company of Virginia,
could not warrant their abode in that place," which "they found so
prosperous and pleasing [sic] they hastened away their ship, with orders
to their Solicitor to deal with me to be a means they might have a grant
from the Council of New England Affairs, to settle in the place, which
was accordingly performed to their particular satisfaction and good
content of them all." One can readily imagine the crafty smile with

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