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Wiliam Bradford

Picture of Wiliam Bradford

Date of Birth: 03/19/1590

Age: 67

Place of birth: Osterfild

Citizenship: United States

The founder of the Plymouth Colony

William Bradford (William Bradford) was born in 1590 in Osterfilde, Yorkshire, England (Austerfield, Yorkshire, England). This town was very small, no more than 200 people, almost all of the population was modest farmers. William`s family, which owned a fairly large farm, was Osterfilde influential and highly respected. Childhood William was marred by constant losses - later historian Nateniel Philbrick (Nathaniel Philbrick) noted that these permanent losses in the family and determined his future life. So, after his father`s death, the boy was sent to the newly married to my mother to his grandfather. After the death of his grandfather, he returned briefly to her mother, but was again sent out, this time to his uncle. Soon William isolated, a lot of time to read, in particular, he read the classics, and especially many, the Bible.

As a teenager, William became interested in the movement of the separatists, radical sects of the English Puritans, peculiar religious dissidents; the leader of the organization was the preacher Richard Clifton (Richard Clyfton). The Puritans did not take such secular amusements as dancing or playing cards, leaving them `aristocrats-bezbozhnikam`. Reading or writing `razvlekatelnyh` books also fall into this category.

However, due to harassment by the authorities, the separatists will soon moved from England to the Netherlands (Dutch Republic), where their opinions were treated more tolerantly. Along with them went back to Holland and the young Bradford, which has absorbed the spirit of the organization, and became one of the most ardent supporters of it.

He arrived in Amsterdam in 1608, William moved with the family Brewster (Brewster). The community settled in a new land, in Leiden (Leiden). In 1613-m William married Dorothy Mae (Dorothy May), in 1617-m their first child was born - John (John Bradford). By this time, Bradford, get something a legacy, was quite good manager, I bought a house and enjoyed great prestige among the community members.

In 1617-m the community, which has not been able to settle down permanently in the Netherlands, began planning the move to the New World. After several years of a long and serious negotiations and waiting permission from the authorities, in 1620 the Puritans got, finally, the right to land on the territory of the Virginia colony (Colony of Virginia) in North America.

September 16, 1620 the ship, which was carrying 102 people, among whom was William with his wife, set sail and headed for the New World. Little son, it was decided to leave my parents, Dorothy, as assurance that a weak boy will take such a tedious journey, there was no.

Journey across the ocean lasted about two months and it was really hard - not all stepped onto the shores of the New World, two people lost in transit.

December 25 - Christmas - the colonists began to build the house of assembly, setting the beginning of this settlement, which soon became known as the Plymouth colony (Plymouth Colony). Themselves as the colonists called the Pilgrim Fathers, it was under this name, the colony appears today in historical documents and books. Bradford was the first time the author of the document, concerning the government of the English colonies in the New World - `Mayflower soglasheniya` composed pilgrims even during navigation. This agreement, according to historians, the anticipated declaration of independence a half-century.

By the way, the name of William Bradford and connected another very important historical event - in the Plymouth colony was first celebrated Thanksgiving (Thanksgiving), it was in 1621. Bradford decided then to raise the spirits of his subordinates, and organized the first Thanksgiving. Holiday celebrated with neighbors the Indians. Later this day became a national holiday, after the corresponding decree of the first president, George Washington, the country in 1789.

William Bradford eventually gained more and more weight among the settlers, and soon - in 1621, the year - has become a leader. His wife Dorothy died in 1620; about her death, there are several versions. One of them says, because the poor thing died in the harsh times, when the ship was anchored and the colonists had to spend the winter on the ship. According to another version, Dorothy committed suicide, unable to cope with grief abandon her son in Holland. That first winter in general has become very serious challenge to the Fathers of the Pilgrim; half of them survived, including the former leader, John Carver (John Carver), which replaced and Bradford arrived.

His position began to sound like the governor of the Plymouth Colony, he held the post for 11 years; resettlement story he later described in his book `The history of settlement in Plimute` (Of Plymouth Plantation). Bradford took a direct part in the events related to the development of the territory of modern Massachusetts (Massachusetts), Connecticut (Connecticut) and Maine (Maine).

In 1623 he married a second time, Ellis Carpenter Southworth (Alice Carpenter Southworth), had three children in the family - William, Mercy and Joseph (William, Mercy, and Joseph).

Generally, Bradford was a deeply religious man, understood the many sciences alone, learned several languages, including Hebrew, to `see with your own eyes the ancient prophecy of the Lord in their pristine krasote`.

William died in Plymouth Bredvord May 9, 1657, is buried at Plymouth Burial Hill.