By Anna Waldherr at A Lawyers Prayers
“The First Thanksgiving” by Jean Leon Gerome Ferris (c. 1913), Library of Congress/Prints and Photographs Division (digital ID cph.3g04961) (PD-Art, Old-80; copyright not renewed)
A foundation stone for democracy on this continent, the Mayflower Compact was the first document under which the Plymouth Colony was governed. The agreement, which established an elected authority all would obey, was signed in 1620 as the Mayflower rode at anchor in Cape Cod Harbor.
For the Sake of Freedom and Equality
The Pilgrims were actually comprised of two groups: Separatists and non-Separatists.
The Separatists sought religious liberty, specifically the right to separate from the Church of England. They had initially emigrated to the tolerant Netherlands, but found the Dutch culture at odds with their own.
The non-Separatists — like many to follow them — sought economic and social opportunity, and the chance for a better life in America.
In the broadest terms, all risked their lives for the…
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