" Mayflower in Plymouth ," by William Halsall (1882 )

The Mayflower (English for Maiblume ) was a sailing vessel with which the so-called Pilgrim Fathers ( eng. Pilgrim Fathers ), many of which were from the Midlands, set out for America to lead a new life there. The Mayflower stabbed on 6 Septemberjul. / September 16 1620greg. Plymouth into the lake and reached instead of the desired target Virginia Cape Cod, where the settlers on 11 Novemberjul. / November 21 1620greg. near the present site Provincetown went ashore. During the crossing, two people died and a child was born. After two failed attempts, but to sail in this stormy winter still to Virginia, the passengers finally wintered on the back anchored at the northern tip of Cape Cod Bay ship. In these horribly cramped and hygienic conditions kathastrophalen decimated pneumonia and tuberculosis the Siedler, among the dead were many children. On 21 Märzjul. / March 31 1621greg. one began with the colonization of the coast in the forthcoming Plymouth ( Massachusetts). The Mayflower stood on 5 Apriljul. / April 15 1621greg. to return to England in the lake.

On board the Mayflower were 102 passengers and 31 crew members. Captain of the ship was Christopher Jones. He had bought it with partners in 1607 or 1608 for the transport of goods between England and La Rochelle. Especially wine was imported from the mainland to the British Isles. The ship was about 28 meters long, nine meters wide and had about 4 feet draft. The English merchant Thomas Weston was 1619 build in the ship cabins ( the closest in the lower deck were only about 80x50 cm in size ) and organized the crossing of the Pilgrims, mostly, like himself, members of the then persecuted in England Calvinist group of separatists were.

Many Americans, especially the noble families of New England, try to reduce their ancestry to a passenger on the Mayflower. The " General Society of Mayflower Descendants" was founded in 1897 in Plymouth.

The journey of the Mayflower is the most prominent example of the colonization of America by Europeans and is sometimes misrepresented as its beginning. In fact, the colonization of North America in modern times mid-16th century began with the colonization of Newfoundland, the city of St. John's with the appropriation by the English crown in 1583 as the oldest British colony, almost 40 years before the crossing is considered the Mayflower.