In the New World Bradford and Morton were both important men of our history. The stories of both great men give us an insight into the way religion and influence affected Puritan life.
William Bradford said he believed, “Plymouth people were the chosen people to live out their last days in the earthly church” (Daly pg 560). Puritan settlers came to the new world seeking a better life and to get away from the rule of the Catholic Church they wanted to become a primitive Baptist church like in the Old Testament. The Puritans wanted to live their lives in Old Testament biblical way of life; when the settlers came to the, “New England they thought they had landed in God’s country” (Callicott). They thought they were the chosen ones the new Israelites.
William Bradford was a well educated man and was a son of a preacher and was governor of Plymouth. William Bradford came to the New England in 1620. He felt that the Puritans were God chosen people. They believed God gave them signs and things happened to people that went against Gods will.
Thomas Morton came to the New England in the year 1622. Morton was educated for the law at Oxford. Upon his arrival to Plymouth people had already heard he came with shady past. He had come by his inheritance from which he was “plaintiff, lawyer, and beneficiary” (McWilliams pg 5).
Bradford disliked Morton from the beginning feeling that he was not there for the good of the Puritan people. Morton “offered servants their freedom and equal partners in the fur trading business if they would kick Wollaston’s Lieutenant” (McWilliams pg 5). This was one of many things that Morton did that lead to the big rivalry or dislike of Bradford and Morton. “He was considered, by Bradford, to be a partier and that he liked to go with the Indian women as much as the white women, “The saints were as scandal-ized by his licentiousness as they were terrified by his having gone native” (Zuckerman pg 265). After reading various papers on the Puritans it is hard to imagine just how against any showing of sexual pleasure was even forbidden between man and wife, much less frolicking with Indian women. Although that was probably not something that was widely accepted, it was not against the law. Morton called the drinking and songs with the red and whites harmless and Bradford called the pagan ways.
Morton felt that Bradford’s, “accusations were more from fear” of what he did not know and understand and was not truly backed up by fact (Daly pg 564). Could you imagine the kind of world we would have today if everyone spend this much time and effort on who slept with who? I am not saying that people should just sleep around with people like trying on clothes, but unless you are hurting someone just go your own way.
Bradford felt that Morton was “an enemy against God” (Daly pg 565). Bradford called Morton’s conduct “Lord of misrule”, and Morton felt like it was “harmless fun” (Schoenberg). “His maypole festivities smacked of folk...