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Old 05-12-2010, 15:11   #1
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Mayflower Routing

I was amazed to see that the Mayflower, a square rigged ship, sailed this way:

MayflowerHistory.com

to America in 1620. Isn't that against the prevailing winds at that latitude? Those square-riggers couldn't sail very close to the wind. How did they do it?
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Old 05-12-2010, 15:30   #2
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Although in coming from England to Cape Cod the Mayflower was sailing against the strong currents of the Gulf Stream as well as the stormy winds of the North Atlantic; she made the crossing in 66 days, which would average out to about 2 miles per hour.

The fastest clipper ships, of a century or more later, were only making a speed of about 3 miles per hour on this same route. On her return trip to England in the spring of 1621, Mayflower made the voyage in 31 days, which would have been an average speed of about 4 miles per hour.

The Mayflower made an incredible voyage; but never made their intended destination (Virginia).

See ➥ The First Thanksgiving: Journey on the Mayflower
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Old 05-12-2010, 15:53   #3
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The other issue is that that taking a more sensible southern route would have been dangerous since Spain and Britain didn't get along all that well.
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Old 05-12-2010, 16:07   #4
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Slight thread drift, but for those interested in the topic, Nathaniel Philbrick's Mayflower is a wonderful read. Despite growing up in the neighborhood, I learned things about 17th century Plymouth that were revelations. A worthy addition to the holiday wish list.
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Old 05-12-2010, 19:18   #5
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My understanding is that in 1620 James I and Spain were at peace on fact James was trying to get the infanta in Spain to marry the prince of Wales as a method of preventing war. It didn't work and relations with Spain deteriorated after 1621

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Old 05-12-2010, 20:19   #6
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my sailing genes go straight back to 8 families from mayflower-- bradford, fuller, doty, and 5 others. for bradford, i am first born of first born of first born on back to gods and gov bradford, also sam fuller, the colony physician--he was on my father side-- dad had 3 families and mom claims 5
there are some fascinating reads on this subject.
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Old 05-12-2010, 20:32   #7
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Gee Zee !!!

Are you sayin---like--we're in the company of --uh--royalty
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Old 05-12-2010, 20:46   #8
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i dont think royalty is the right word tho--LOL.. that is for the other part of the family tree...YIPES

mom has a set of white, thin books i dont remember the name of-- shows how the interrelations of all were-- like -- was my own first cousin 12 times over in the first generations of that colony;.LOL they didnt mate with injuns-- i didnt know i was kinda related to eastman of kodak, noah webster, christopher reeve, and a few others....i know about the others..i did the charts with my grandmother-- she was a fanatic.
now-- that info and 5 dollar bill will get me a cup of coffee......
those folks had to sail-- realllly SAIL that big hulk of a ship....impressive--also is impressive when you see the tiny lil dock that original mayflower sailed from. she wasnt big by any stretch. had low freeboard also.
when i was perusing that dock, satchmo's death was publicised all over tv---1971--
oh--the rest of my sailing genes are from an irish orphan who came over in around 1850 from ireland-- at age 11. when that orphan was grown, he founded great lakes shipping and brought the masons to chi-town...
is amazing the things one learns when one has old ones as companions-- my great grandparents were still kicking in my youth.
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Old 08-12-2010, 00:37   #9
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OK, this is all really interesting, but we still don't know -- how did they do it? A fat square-rigged ship bashing upwind AND against a current for 3000 miles? It doesn't seem possible.
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Old 08-12-2010, 15:33   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dockhead View Post
OK, this is all really interesting, but we still don't know -- how did they do it? A fat square-rigged ship bashing upwind AND against a current for 3000 miles? It doesn't seem possible.
they had gods on their side.
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Old 08-12-2010, 15:39   #11
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I have a bloodline going back to the Mayflower, but it has mightily thinned out over the generations.

Mark Pierce-Winslow
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Old 08-12-2010, 15:43   #12
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pirate

With difficulty methinks....
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Old 08-12-2010, 16:23   #13
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Go much past 6 or 7 generations and we is all family.
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Old 08-12-2010, 16:26   #14
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Just a thought ...

The link that Gord posted combined with the description in the original link would indicate they were blown off course mid-Atlantic by the prevaling winds. At a certain point wouldn't they pick up the Labrador current and prevailing winds which would have then pushed them south again?
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Old 08-12-2010, 16:49   #15
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sea gods wanted them where they went.

how ye doin cousin mark....
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