Dorset Pilgrims: The Story of West Country Pilgrims Who Went to New England in the 17th Century by Frank Thistlethwaite soon to be presented for sale on the brilliant BookLovers of Bath web site!
Published: London: Barrie & Jenkins, 1989, Hardback in dust wrapper.
Contains: Black & white plates; Maps; Genealogical tables; Appendices ;
From the cover: This is a book that skilfully blends the minutiae of scholarly research with a powerful narrative. It tells the tale of a small group of English Puritans who, in the early 17th century, set sail to find a new life and a new Church in New England. Brought together by the recruiting powers and visionary drive of the famous Dorchester clergyman, John White, these pilgrims many of them West Country neighbours and some connected by marriage embarked on their dangerous voyage. On 20 March 1630 the first of them boarded the Mary and John and set sail across the Atlantic to found Dorchester on Massachusetts Bay.
Thistlethwaite vividly evokes the shock of the inhospitable climate as the pilgrims struggled to survive. Like a hive of bees, they did not stay long where they had first settled but swarmed a second time. Within five years the greater part of the community had uprooted themselves and trekked through the New England wilderness to settle on its frontier, the Connecticut River. Here, in a single plantation they still persisted as that same close-knit West Country community. Many had their homelots and field strips next to the same Dorset neighbours. The lifestyle too, with apple orchards and cider, Devon cattle rearing and dairying, hemp and flax, preserved a West Country flavour. But inevitably the old ways had to be adapted. The book ends with the great Indian Revolt of 1675, and in describing how this crisis was met, the author shows how the passage of four decades had turned the children of Dorset pilgrims into pioneers of Americas moving frontier.
It is an exciting story, skilfully pieced together from parish records, from wills and inventories, land grants and conveyances, court and church records and the lucky chance of an occasional diary or bundle of letters. Out of this fragmentary material, the author has convincingly recreated the experience of the pilgrims, bringing them to life across the centuries.
Very Good in Very Good Dust Wrapper. A little rubbing to the edges of the dust wrapper with a light crease to the top corner of the upper panel. Slight lean. Top edge of the text block tanned. Text complete, clean and tight.
Olive boards with Gilt titling to the Spine. [IX] 294 pages. Index. 9½” x 6¼”.
Of course, if you don’t like this one, may I draw your attention to more books in my History catalogue?