William Bradford (1590-1657)
William Bradford (March 19, 1590 – May 9, 1657) was a leader of the Pilgrim settlers of the Plymouth Colony in Massachusetts, and became Governor of the Plymouth Colony. He was the second signer and primary architect of the Mayflower Compact. As Governor of Plymouth, Bradford is also credited as being the first to proclaim what popular American culture viewed as the first Thanksgiving.
- Being thus arrived in a good harbor, and brought safe to land, they fell upon their knees and blessed the God of Heaven who had brought them over the vast and furious ocean, and delivered them from all the perils and miseries thereof, again to set their feet on the firm and stable earth, their proper element.
- Ch. 1.
- Our fathers were Englishmen which came over this great ocean, and were ready to perish in this wilderness.
- Ch. 2.
- The loss of...honest and industrious men's lives cannot be valued at any price.
- Ch. 3.
- But it pleased God to visit us then with death daily, and with so general a disease that the living were scarce able to bury the dead.
- Ch. 4.
- Cold comfort to fill their hungry stomach.
- Ch. 5.
- Behold, now, another providence of God. A ship comes into the harbor.
- Ch. 6.
- Thus out of small beginnings greater things have been produced by His hand that made all things of nothing, and gives being to all things that are; and, as one small candle may light a thousand, so the light here kindled hath shone unto many, yea in some sort to our whole nation.
- Ch. 7.