eBook Rebecca Fraser ✓ The Mayflower Generation The Winslow Family and the Fight ✓

Rebecca Fraser's book about the Mayflower sheds new light on a family caught up in all the perils of crossing the ocean and settling in the wilderness But the story did not end there All settlers had to become linguists traders and explorers and yet not forget their roots and customs from the old country With the aid of exciting contemporary documents Rebecca Fraser brings to life of an ordinary family the Winslows made less ordinary by their responses to the challenges of the New World The very special relationship between Edward Winslow and Massassoit chief of the Wampanoags is commemorated in the first Thanksgiving But fifty years later Edward's son Josiah was commander in chief of the New England militias against Massassoit's son in King Philip's WarWritten with the pace of an epic this is a story that is both national but intimate and human chronicling as the Winslows made the painful decisions that ensured their survival in America

10 thoughts on “The Mayflower Generation The Winslow Family and the Fight for the New World

  1. says:

    This book is not user friendly It begins with the title If you are interested in the Mayflower – you’ll have 30 pages tops If you are interested in the families – you better like the Winslow’s If you buy the book for the voyage – this is the shortest shrift of all Other readers have said they bought the book for the title andor the promise of genealogical information Some mention the disjointed text Some uit I’m with them on the title and the text but I stayed I liked the new topics the ones that don't make the title and the writing got better or maybe I got used to itThe author follows Edward Winslow from his life in England to his life among the Puritan ex pats in Holland to the founding and managing of Plymouth back to England and then death in the Caribbean You see how the Mayflower voyage was inspired and planned There is some detail on the two months at sea the landing and how they lived on the Mayflower while men left it by day to build houses ashore There is some information on the crew and “adventurers”who share the small boat with the Puritans At page 75 the 3 highlighted topics in the title end Author Rebecca Fraser then covers the relations with the native tribes and with England through its changing administrations There are money problems because the colonists owe the patent’s owner You see the tough life of subsistence agriculture and how pushing into Indian lands left the tribes with too little land for hunting While life is hard new settlers come and the colonies grow Some families can afford luxury items from England Sadly you see the second generation’s lack of respect for the good relations with Indians that their parents had built up over the years I had read of King Philip’s war but not about the “praying towns” and all that led up to it There is detail to show how long bloody and destructive it was Edward Winslow’s son Josiah a community leader like his father who died on foreign shores exemplifies the problems that led to war and to its prolongation Fraser draws a direct line from the misery and loss of the war to the witch hunts that followed The book ends with a new generation the wrangling over inheritances mostly of land which most likely really belongs to the Indians who have no access to the court roomThe research is very good as is the interpretation of people and events The publisher is generous with photos The text is a problem You often have to read back for antecedents The order in which sentences are placed in paragraphs is jarring and the author will name a person or subject for whom you thought you missed the story only to be introduced or not to them or it later on A human proofing would have picked up words like “buy” when “but” seems right I’d like to give this stars but with the misleading title and the problems with the text I can’t go higher

  2. says:

    This book is drier than day old toast

  3. says:

    I received this book through Goodreads Giveaway Program Thank you As a history book it is a slow read Your mind MUST be on what you are reading and nothing else It gave the Pilgrims personalities I felt like they were finally people and not just a group that did everything in one accord I am related to a lot of these peopleBrooke Winslow Waldegrave Arnold White Thank you so much for letting me see their joys their struggles

  4. says:

    A strong start but halfway through it feels like Fraser shifts focus away from the subject of the two main Massachusetts pilgrim colonies and wanders off into extended histories of the founding families decades if not a century plus down the road Her presentation of some of the first Pilgrims is probably also benign than what is politically palatable for some Her narrative does seem like it leans toward a feeling of the initial Pilgrims were pretty cool and easy going but then they got radicalized and greedy and that's when things went South for the native population It had been a long time since I'd read about the Pilgrims so it was interesting but I think further reading will probably be necessary to get a fuller view

  5. says:

    Did not finish Read about two thirds of the book This is a history book but it's history through the lens of Edward Winslow's life I generally enjoyed the earlier section of the book which detailed the struggle of the Puritans during the early days of the Plymouth colony But there are so many people to keep track of in this book At some point it honestly becomes kind of ridiculous and it feels like the book becomes so bogged down in following all of the individuals that it fails to discuss the larger historical context in which these people live There is plenty of interesting things to learn in this book but it's definitely not a page turner

  6. says:

    On this Thanksgiving Season in 2017 it is easy to think back to the American Pilgrims Plymouth Rock The Mayflower and the first Thanksgiving which really wasn’t the first–Thanksgiving started in the southern colonies The pleasant features of the story are ingrained into our culture Even those times when some tried to divert the message into being a feast where the Pilgrims were giving thanks to the Indians for their help the religious nature of the Pilgrims has not been erased from our heritageEach time I teach American history I run the risk of foundering my course by getting too lost in the colonial period 1607 1775 is a long time Many foundational actions took place in the many not just 13 colonies in the New World Besides I am a Calvinist so there is lots of rich material regarding the theological roots of American history Seventy five percent or of colonial Americans held to Reformed theology in some form or another The Great Awakening with its two key leaders Jonathan Edwards and George Whitefield is a vital chapter in America’s history which directly impacted much that followed I never get to adeuately cover the French and Indian War in spite of my interest in itOf course the landing on the harsh rocky banks of what was called Plymouth gets notice The Pilgrims who are better termed Separatists play a major role in many aspects of American history There is the voyage itself an incredibly risky venture based on certain convictions about church life Then there is the Mayflower Compact a precursor of the written constitutions that would form the governments of both colonies and states and then of the United States Literature was birthed in part at Plymouth with William Bradford’s classic Of Plymouth Plantation European and Indian relations would be seen in its best light with the aid given by Samoset and Suanto to the settlers Economics was provided with the greatest example of the failure of socialism when the settlers attempted to share all things in common The 1621 thanksgiving celebration of course then is re enacted by school children even to this dayBut the Mayflower and Plymouth Plantation or Colony gets a short column or a few paragraphs in our history books Of necessity no history survey can do justice to specific events Plmouth’s few hundreds were soon overshadowed by the thousands of Puritans who settled the Boston area and other parts of what became the larger dominant Massachusetts Bay colony Massachusett settlers and Plymouth settlers would share and cooperate with each other for a time but Plymouth soon became just a part of the larger wealthier advanced Protestant community of MassachusettsA new book perfect for today great for anytime is titled Mayflower The Families the Voyage and the Founding of America is by Rebecca Fraser This new book is published by St Martin’s Press and is available from all major book stores Rebecca Fraser is the daughter of Antonia Fraser who has written uite a few works on English history Rebecca has previously written The Brontes about the sisters who were writers and the very readable Story of BritainThe story of the hardy band of Pilgrims is a tale worth telling and hearing again and again Call it audacity pluck courage or even near insanity the forces that worked in them to commit them to stepping on a west bound ship across the Atlantic were extraordinary Sure they survived but as evidenced by previous ventures into the New World such as Roanoke and Jamestown this was a high risk venture The mortality rates for those who came to Plymouth were exceedingly high Fraser notes a few souls who went back to England but the amazing story is of those who literally carved out a home in the wildernessOf course it helped that portions of land had already been carved or actually cleared by the Indian tribes The interactions between the Europeans and the various Indian tribes plays a large part in the developing story From some of the early and successful interactions relationships were often cordial and cooperative Indian chiefs were uite shrewd in their dealings with these new inhabitants Trade and diplomacy were both conducted to gain maximum benefits by both parties Items such as beaver skins provided a means for the colony to thrive economically Hachets guns and cloth from the Europeans were beneficial to the IndiansSadly the whole story is not one of two mutually prospering groups The increasing numbers of Europeans and superior fire power enabled them to dominate the story There were two major wars in the region The first was the Peuot War and the second was King Phillip’s War While the numbers of those killed are small compared to later wars on this continent on a per capita basis there were real killing fields King Phillip’s War was perhaps the best opportunity the Indian tribes ever had to drive out the English Of course it failed and with it the power base of the Indian community was forever diminishedReligion is a major focus of the book After all this is about the Pilgrim Fathers Add to that it was the century of religious wars and conflicts that consumed England and much of continental Europe during the 1600s Further as the story of Plymouth develops the Puritans will come to dominate the region The American colonies were a testing ground a melting pot a safe zone for many religious ideas and practices that were challenging Europe and England in particularPuritan New England which we might better call Reformed New England since not all were Puritans is often criticized misunderstood and caricatured Until Perry Miller decided to study those dreadful Puritans they were an object of curiosity or distaste than a subject of study Miller’s academic pursuit later merged with a theological reawakening of interest in Puritanism and Puritan theology As with all of history the simple explanations don’t explain The Puritan society or religious foundations of New England were complicatedAs Fraser emphasizes the Mayflower settlers were people of firm dedicated commitment to living the Christian faith in ways their separatist and Reformation theology demanded Bradford Brewster Winslow and others were the real deal So were many of those whose theological differences confuse the outsider By that I mean that the Puritans Roger Williams and his followers the Mathers and even the uakers were people of conviction Simply put they would die for their faith commitmentsAt the same time from our distant perspective the theological worldview was flawed The problem was not that they were trying to follow the Bible but rather they did not follow it adeuately or correctly A recurring error of that time was interpreting bad events as judgments of God A drought or storm an Indian raid an unexpected death and other events were too readily explained as though the New Englanders could read the mind of God in them I do believe calamities ought to drive us to self examination and repentance but we cannot know God’s purpose in all such tragediesThen there were the outright theological failures Most saddening was the practice of selling Indian captives into slavery This was the common practice during King Philip’s War War rarely brings out our better ualities but this was uite deplorable Later the witchcraft frenzy and trials were another blot on New England While there were those pastors who warned against abuses some stupid things were allowed such as allowing for “spectral evidence” in court This has reference to people claiming to have seen or witnessed a person doing something weird and that testimony being accepted as factMuch of this book is centered around the Winslow family They came on the Mayflower became leaders in the community and continued to be influential through the generations They represented what was the best most creative and most worthy of the world that would grow out of Plymouth Edward Winslow was a great man but he was still just a man a success in some areas and a failure in others He befriended Maasassoit chief of the Wampanoags and he worked to make Plymouth prosperous His son as is often the story in history was a man of a different generation His faith commitment was dim compared to the father and his actions were of the enterprising and pragmatic American than that of the commited PilgrimThis book is a fine story It is history as story; therefore it contains truth beauty and goodness but also reveals falsehoods ugliness and evil It is our nation’s story We re enact and remember only a small part but we need to know the bigger story as well

  7. says:

    The genealogists in the family have traced a couple lines back to the Mayflower so I was curious to read about the people and their experiences Rebecca Fraser covers than the voyage and early settlement she starts in Leiden and England explaining the background of the Pilgrims and their connections and clashes with mainstream society And once they landed in Plymouth those connections continued to chafe It's possible to see the roots of the American experiment both its good ualities and its harmful ones from the very beginningOh and my ancestor? He's mentioned because he fell overboard during a storm and was rescued by only the narrowest of margins A good reminder of the fragility of life

  8. says:

    This is an exceedingly interesting and engagingly written book I was hesitant to purchase it because I thought it might be slightly fawning as other books about the Mayflower families were It is decidedly not fawning The author makes clear the forces acting on each person were historically and culturally rooted She implicitly warns us against holding the actions of the past up against the mirror of modernism and this is enormously beneficial to the reader It keeps us dispassionate yet emotionally engaged in the story Reading this book will enlighten you about 17th Century English settlements in New England and much It deserves a spot on your reading list

  9. says:

    The content was uite interesting but honestly her writing made it SO difficult to read I don't think there was a single page where I did not see typos or an awkwardly worded sentence Or a sentence that just did not make sense

  10. says:

    It's surprisingly difficult to make the Pilgrims seem like real people We know all sorts of uirky details about some of them And we know the general thrust of their story the religious mania that led them first to the Netherlands and then to the New World where they somehow picked Plymouth as the place to settle instead of say the infinitely better harbor just up the coast where Boston is today We know about the cramped Mayflower the compact they wrote the hardships they endured the Indians who saved them and well ThanksgivingTo give Rebecca Fraser credit she digs deep and finds She makes some of these people almost human She tells some interesting tales some of them unfamiliar to those of us who are casually acuainted with that strange place and time The problem isn't that she's a poor writer or bad historian She seems to pass muster on both accountsThe thing that ditches this book as a worthy read is that so often highlights someone or something for pages on end Then it moves on Then it drops in casually that oh yeah that woman you were hearing about? She's dead now Get enough of those moments and a book just sort of dies as wellWhat I came away from the volume with is the notion that it must be possible to write a stirring history of the Plymouth Colony from its origins to its demise something focused on this decades long saga that for all of the glory it has grabbed in the pseudo history of our country that we all walk around with they did have turkey for Thanksgiving right?To think that Peregrine White born on the Mayflower's voyage across the sea ultimately outlived the Plymouth Colony is to realize that it came and went in less than a lifetime eclipsed in the end by the Massachusetts colony next door and the newcomers created in Rhode Island and Connecticut by those first settlers White who settled in Marshfield has a vigorous and of a comly Aspect to the last as the Boston Newsletter put it in the only obituary ever written for a Pilgrim And he died the paper noted hopefullyThink of that man's life a childhood in the wilderness forging communities that uickly claimed a role in international trade passing time with friendly Native Americans and also perhaps the single ugliest most destructive war in the nation's history the fight to the death struggle against Metacom or King Philip whose head wound up on a pike in Plymouth It may have still been there when the English king revoked the Plymouth charter and the whole thing drew to a close in 1692In any case Nathaniel Philbrook's Mayflower A Story of Courage Community and War is a better book It's the one I'd recommend not this one