Pilgrim Fathers - Mayflower 400
When the Mayflower landed in North America in 1620 many of the key figures in the new Plymouth Colony were from the Doncaster area. The very first Governor was John Carver reputedly from Doncaster, who with William Bradford was one of the key signatories of the Mayflower Compact which influenced the American constitution.
In 2020 the United Kingdom, United States of America and Holland will commemorate and celebrate the 400th anniversary of the sailing of the Mayflower, this celebration in the UK will be Mayflower 400.
Following Carver’s early death in 1621 William Bradford became Governor of the colony. Bradford served in this post for many years and was instrumental in developing the early Thanksgiving services. Bradford married twice and his descendants include George Eastman, founder of Eastman Kodak, and actor Clint Eastwood. William Bradford was born and raised in Austerfield in Doncaster and the font and small church of St Helena’s where he was baptised still survive. St Helena’s is a remarkable building in its own right and dates from around 1080.
William Brewster a prominent Pilgrim Father the son of William Brewster who's mother Mary (Smythe) Simkinson was born in Stainforth, grew up in Scrooby Manor which still exists although it is a private home.
Downloadable Pilgrim Father's Trail: