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A Trip to Plymouth Massachusetts
Plymouth town, also know as America's Hometown is easily accessible by foot, with plenty of metered parking available. It is famous for the landing of the Pilgrims and the first Thanksgiving Feast. Geographically, it is approximately 40 miles south of Boston in the state of Massachusetts. Plymouth is historically important as one of the first settlements in the country and there is a wealth of history to see within walking distance of the harbor.
Plymouth has nine public beaches, the beach where the Pilgrims landed being Plymouth beach. The beach itself is stony, with a 3 mile long barrier beach and harbor.
Much smaller than you would expect, Plymouth Rock is one of the most famous tourist attractions in Plymouth. Traditionally thought to be the site where the Pilgrims disembarked, there is no historical evidence that this is the case. It has been moved several times since its first identification in 1741, the fact that it has split in two and was accessible to the public has impacted its size.
The rock is now encased in a monument located on the waterfront, and depending on the tide, may be surrounded water.
Plymouth Rock Monument
The First Parish Church in Plymouth
First Parish Church in Plymouth is the oldest continuous church in New England. Also known as The National Memorial Pilgrim Church, it is still a functioning building today. Formed in England when many of the pilgrim met in secret,the church website describes its history as follows -
'we trace our origin back to the year 1606 when a group of dissenters from the Church of England banded together in Scrooby. In 1620 part of the Leyden congregation set sail aboard the Mayflower, seeking the freedom to worship according to the dictates of their own conscience in the New World'.
The church is located at the base of Burial Hill on the town square. The pilgrims originally held their services on the Mayflower ship, then they built a fort on Burial Hill. The current building is the fifth meeting house on this site and was dedicated in 1899.
First Parish Church in Plymouth
Burial Hill has been used by Plymouth residents since the 1620s. It was the site of the first fort used by the pilgrims for church services and meetings. Many of the Mayflower passengers were buried on the hill and it was used up until 1957.
Grave Markers and Signs in Burial Hill
A replica of the Mayflower was built in Devon, England in 1955-6 and sailed across the Atlantic Ocean on April 20th 1957. The design for the ship was based on reconstructed ship blueprints held by the American museum, and hand built by English shipbuilders' using traditional methods. The ship is considered a faithful replica except for the addition of electric lights and a lower staircase. A ticket can be purchased to enter the ship and look around, there are various displays and artifacts to explore and often employees dressed and acting in character.
Activities onboard the Ship
Monument to mark the first burial site of the passengers of the Mayflower
Marker to identify one of the first housed built in Plymouth
Statue of Massasoit
Massasoit was the Chief of the Wampanoag. He made political and personal ties with the pilgrims and is considered to have helped with their survival.
On 22 March 1620/1, Massasoit paid a visit to the Plymouth Plantation at the invitation of Tisquantum, who had interacted with the Pilgrim previously. He and a group of armed men approached the Colony and were met by the pilgrim Edward Winslow. The two men exchanged goods and agreed to a peace treaty.
The Statue of Massasoit by sculptor Cyrus E Dallin stands near Plymouth Rock.
Plymouth Hall Museum
Plymouth Hall Museum
Plymouth Hall Museum was built in 1824 by the Pilgrim Society which was founded in 1820. Described as the oldest continuously operating public museum in the country, it had a large collection of 17th century artifacts, many of which came on the Mayflower.
More Things to See
There are many other attractions and sights in Plymouth, these include The National Monument to the Forefathers, Plimoth Plantation, The Mayflower Museum and Gardens and Plimoth Grist Mill.
© 2014 Ruthbro