John G. Turner talks about the Pilgrims 400 years later

The Little Compton Historical Society offered a Zoom presentation by author James G. Turner, Professor of Religious Studies at George Mason University, on his new book, They Knew They Were Pilgrims: Plymouth Colony and the Contest for American Liberty on November 17, 2020. Click here for the one-hour video of his Zoom presentation. Click here for an audiobook preview.


Drawing on original research using underutilized sources, Dr. Turner moves beyond familiar narratives in his new history of Plymouth Colony published for the 400th anniversary of the Mayflower’s Landing. (Above, right) A map shows the Indigenous communities, including the Pokanokets and their settlement in Sowams, and the English townships with the dates of their incorporation.[Click to enlarge map]


His work focuses on the ways English settlers and Native peoples engaged in a contest for the meaning of American liberty. (Above, left) Turner talks about the 1621 treaty between the Pokanoket Massasoit Osamequin and the Pilgrim Governor John Carver. (Above, right) Sakonnet Sachem Awashonks is depicted on an 1830 figurehead in the New Bedford Whaling Museum.


(Above) Turner talks about Josiah Winslow’s authorization of exporting Indigenous people into slavery following the King Philip War and Sachem Awashonk’s later request for land for her tribe. [Click on each for a larger view.]

Click here for the one-hour video of the presentation.