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How Did They do That?

The ship that carried the Pilgrims to the New World
ILLUSTRATION: SOL 90, ALAMY X3, GETTY X1

THE MAYFLOWER

On 16 September 1620, a merchant ship, the Mayflower, sailed from England, bound for the New World. On board were 102 men, women and children, half of whom (the ‘Saints’, or ‘Pilgrims’ as they are known today) were escaping religious persecution, while the other half (the ‘Strangers’) were seeking adventure and a new life across the Atlantic.

16 SEPTEMBER 1620 The Mayflower sailed from Plymouth, England

The mission to create a settlement in the Virginia territory, however, was almost a disaster. A second ship, the Speedwell, was meant to join the voyage, but it was unseaworthy so the passengers were crammed into the Mayflower. Then, terrible storms and high waves made the crossing miserable. The Mayflower finally limped into view of the New World after 66 days. The Pilgrims had made it, but – as they quickly found out – their troubles were only beginning.

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About BBC History Revealed Magazine

The Roman occupation of Britain changed the course of our history – building cities, roads and great walls, pacifying tribes and creating a unified economy. But how and why did they come to invade, and why did their mission ultimately fail? PLUS The Black Death: The terror of medieval Europe Stalin: the brutal regime of Britain’s WWII ally Prohibition: when America was dying for a drink Coco Chanel: the ultimate rags to riches story The 10 wealthiest people ever The King and Mrs Simpson: Edward VIII’s abdication The Wright Brothers Boston Tea Party The Cold War Death on the Lusitania And much, much more!