[Ed. – Americans have always made the most of their lot, whether the glass was full or otherwise.]
The Pilgrims who arrived in what became the Massachusetts Bay Colony 400 years ago almost didn’t make it through their first winter.
Crippled by disease and poor planning, the first Pilgrims landed in Plymouth at the worst possible time to embark on a new settlement. The Mayflower ironically set sail from the English port at Plymouth in September 1620, in a late exit. They crossed the Atlantic over a 66-day voyage that was wrought with seasickness while cramping the occupants of two ships into one. The second ship traveling with the Mayflower, the Speedwell, had to turn back over structural failures at the start of the trip.
The journey served as a preview of the hardship to follow. The boat was crowded in the middle of storm season, with a freezing deck above and a cargo of sick passengers below. …