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November 11th: Mayflower Lands at Provincetown

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395 years ago, on November 11, 1620 Mayflower arrived at present-day Provincetown after 66 days at sea.
After arriving in the New World, the Pilgrims realized they needed organized rules of law, as not all of the ship’s passengers had come to New England as Separatists; some of the passengers (the “Strangers”) had left England to acquire land and create new fishing or hunting establishments for monetary gain. The Mayflower Compact was drafted on November 11th on board the ship while anchored in Provincetown Harbor and signed by 41 men.
The Mayflower Compact created a civil and democratic society in the New World in which leaders were appointed laws were framed in cooperation as a community, and it is widely considered a precursor to the United States Constitution.
While the original document did not survive, William Bradford penned the Mayflower Compact’s contents in his diary (which you can see here), “Of Plimoth Plantation”, which is currently held in the Massachusetts State House Library.

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