Family: What made Plymouth Unique

Historian and Director Emeritus of the Pilgrim Society Peggy Baker has noted, “Family is at the heart of the Pilgrim story….that makes Plymouth Colony unique amid a sea of other settlements – English, Dutch, French, and Spanish alike – that were almost exclusively masculine… The Separatist movement, from its earliest beginnings, was built around strong…

Pastor John Robinson and the Synod of Dort

During the time the Pilgrims were staying in Leyden a famous synod was called by the Dutch Reformed Church to settle a doctrinal dispute initiated by Jacob Arminius.  Though Jacob had already died, his disciples presented their objections to the teachings of John Calvin.  This challenge was called the Remonstrance of 1610.  Those defending the…

Lessons from the Life of Stephen Hopkins

Stephen Hopkins was baptized on the 30th of April, 1581 in Upper Clatford, Hampshire, England.  The adventures he would experience due to his desire for liberty of conscience could scarcely be equaled by any other who would come on the Mayflower.  Stephen was the only passenger to have previously been in Jamestown prior to his…

Why They Came: 400 Years

Consider the number 400.  The Hebrew Republic, a government built on the family, self-rule, local control and universal education with separation of powers appeared in ancient Israel from 1450 to 1050 BC.  Unique among all the ancient nations and Empires, it had the highest literacy and the greatest freedom for the individual.  However, the individual…

The Grand Union Flag of 1776

On January 1, 1776, while the British laid siege to Boston, George Washington raised the Grand Union Flag on Prospect Hill near his headquarters in Cambridge. It was the first flag of the united colonies.  It was known as the Congress Colors, the First Navy Ensign and the Cambridge Flag and could be considered the…

The Miraculous Story of Hanukkah

The 400 years of “silence” between the closing of the book of Malachi and the birth of Christ is not due to God’s inactivity but rather to no prophet speaking under divine inspiration. The writings during this time, like any other, depict the distinct intervention of God’s hand in the affairs of men.  Though not…

The Gettysburg Address

155 years ago, on November 19, 1863, Lincoln delivered what has become his most famous address. He was not the main speaker and his remarks lasted all but two minutes. However, what he said captured the hearts and minds of Americans then, as well as serving as a reminder for us today. To understand its…

First Prayer of the Continental Congress, 1774

In history we find some of the best writings to be apologetics or in defense of rights.  In 1774 the Continental Congress published its Declaration and Resolves stating in part: “…By the immutable laws of nature, the principles of the English constitution, and the several charters or compacts, have the following rights… life, liberty and…