Note: When Oleander gave me the Mayflower prompt, she had no idea that she was handing me the opportunity to brag and fluff myself up like a Thanksgiving turkey. Oleander was oblivious to the dignity of her heritage as it relates to the Mayflower, a fact for which I am sadly chagrined. At my previous failure to brag and fluff, yes.
Once upon a time, a vessel set sail for the New World. It’s 102 passengers shared a mid-ship, windowless cabin about 15×25 feet, with less than five feet headroom. There was no bathroom facility and the trip took twice as long as anticipated.
There was no SHUFFLEBOARD on the Lido deck.
Sadly, the Mayflower didn’t sound like a lot of fun. April Showers seem much more pleasant than malnutrition, seasickness and scurvy.
In November 1620, The Mayflower landed. But the weather was really really bad. So, the passengers and crew were forced to remain on the ship until March of the next year. Only half the passengers survived that first winter.
Note: The story gets happier. Hang in there.
Although there’s not a lot of historical documentation, but who needs it, the legend is that 13 year-old Mary Chilton, who had lost both parents on the ship that winter, was the first “white woman” to set foot on America. Apparently as the boat neared shore, she quite simply leaped off in her excitement and impatience to get off the sea and onto dry land and to use a real bathroom. Later in the year she celebrated the First Thanksgiving, she got her own land grant and later married John Winslow and had ten kids.
Why am I sharing the legend of Mary Chilton? Why am I quite certain that the legend is true? Well, I believe that the petulant, excited, strong-willed, independent and lovely young Mary really was the first woman in The New World because she is my Tenth Great Grandmother!
Note: I know what you’re thinking. Why, Bacon, you don’t look a day over Ninth Great Grandmother!
Additional Note: And leave it to my Tenth Great Grandmother to be the first one ready for adventure.
But I’m serious! Please consider the following documentation of the event. And notice the family resemblance of these actual images:
I’m not sure I’d call it a leap, but perhaps it an historical way, yes. A small leap for Mary Chilton, a giant leap for women!
I quite like this one. She was greeted to America by Prince Charming himself. And look at her teeny waist. Too bad I didn’t inherit that figure.
Read the teeny tiny writing. The Landing of the Pilgrims by …. Bacon!
I rest my case!
You go Great Great Great Great Great Great Great Great Great Great Grandma Mary!
Okay Oleander, get busy with this one: Let’s hear about your strange metamorphosis into a chipmunk …