A pilgrim is the one who starts a religious voyage. They made the prestigious 1620 voyage aboard the ship Mayflower and established Plymouth Colony. They were also ordinary English men and women, and initially, they started from New England.
For religious freedom
It is being said that several religious prosecutions urged pilgrims to move from England to Holland in 1608. This is the truth but not the complete truth as they desired greater freedom; they had to leave England.
Cause for the movement
Until 1534, England was a Roman Catholic Nation, but then King Henry VIII declared himself the head of the new national Church called the Church of England. Later in 1558, he and his daughter, Queen Elizabeth, switched a few things which made the Church of England distinct from the Roman Catholic Church.
As the Church’s practices were different, people were not happy, and they wanted to worship the way they were doing it before. Therefore, they wanted to purify the Church, so they started to be known as Puritans. And another group wanted to form a new church; they were called Separatists.
The difference from the Puritans
It can be said that both Puritans and the Pilgrims left England for a similar reason. The Puritans were also nonconformists and accept only the reveled world’s authority. Both of them wanted religious freedom. Initially, Puritans were also Separatists. But they did not wish to separate Church; instead, they just wanted to purify the Church from within.
Moved to Holland
Life in Holland was also not as easy as leaving their family and friends in England. They were not even aware of how they would survive in Holland. Originally, they stayed in Amsterdam and then relocated to the city of Leiden. They stayed there for more than ten years and worked hard for survival. (See Why some immigrants leave Canada?)
Shifted to North America
This was not the place they thought of moving to, but as they did not like Holland, they planned to move to North America. They were 102 people; all of them traveled together to North America on the Mayflower. They reached Princetown Harbor in November of the same year. After that, they planned to settle in Plymouth, Massachusetts.
They lived in a democratic society where there should be equal inheritance and representation. Settling in a new place was not easy; many people even died during that time. Their life has been pretty tough, and we all owe a debt to the pioneers of any age. (See Why do some people want to migrate to the United States?)