A Look Back at Spring 1621

Join Plimoth Patuxet Museums’ Deputy Executive Director and Chief Historian, Richard Pickering, in a Lunch & Learn lecture in which he chronicles the Spring of the Pilgrim’s first year in New England. Click here for a 44-minute video of his July 22, 2021 presentation.

The Mayflower had finally arrived at Plymouth in December, leaving half of the passengers on board sick and dying. But by Spring, those who had survived were ready to get on with the business of creating a colony.

Spring 1621 begins with descriptions of the first birdsong, followed by days of digging and sowing their first garden as they had been taught by Native women. The spring calmness quickly evaporated as Samoset, an Indigenous man from present day Maine, walked into the colony and introduced himself starting several years of conversation and diplomacy with the Pokanoket Massasoit Ousamequin that helped them survive.

Why did Ousamequin and John Carver create an agreement in March 1621? How did it affect future interactions between the two parties? After a winter of sickness, the events of Spring 1621 brought much needed stability to the colonists and provided the foundation for many years of settlement in Plymouth.

Click here for a look-back presentation on the Winter of 1621 by Institutional Giving Manager at Plimoth Patuxet Museums, Tom Begley