Before the Mayflower: The Fight to Reach A New World

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Pilgrims said goodbye to friends and loved ones and left Leiden to return to England for the New World
Pilgrims said goodbye to friends and loved ones and left Leiden to return to England for the New World

The Pilgrims decided to relocate to Virginia, but there were still numerous obstacles ahead.

Negotiations were touch and go with the Merchant Adventurers, the stock company that back them.  Some investors signed on before eventually backing out.  The plan was for the Pilgrims would repay by sending furs, fish and lumber back to London to sell.

The company finally agreed to take on a company of “strangers” to increase their number for the voyage.

The King of England eventually gave them permission to leave the Church of England, “provided they carried themselves peaceably.”

Speedwell
Speedwell

John Carver and Robert Cushman journeyed to England to solicit a land patent.  In June 1619, the group obtained a land patent from the London Virginia Company.

On July 22, 1620 the Pilgrims said goodbye to the majority of the Separatist congregation, including John Robinson, and boarded the Speedwell.  The plan was for the first group to set up the colony and the remainder of the congregation to

follow.

The congregation now had to settle their affairs and any business they had before emigrating to the New World.  Not all of the group were able to make settle their affairs in the given time constraints.  They would have to go later.

With the land grant secured and personal affairs settled the time had come to gain supplies.  The group secured two ships the Speedwell and the Mayflower.

The journey of a lifetime was awaiting them.