Meet Susanna: An American Girl of Plymouth Colony 1627
Good morrow! I be here in Plymouth in the New World in 1627. 'Tis 7 years since the Mayflower sailed here. My family came to the New World just 3 years ago. I have but 9 years and can hardly remember our old home.
I help my mother sweep the hearth. Now we can prepare the daily meals. My mother prepares the fire to make dinner. First, to break our fast on bread and cheese.
For dinner we prepare a pottage of samp (cornmeal) and milk and mackerel. There are many many ways to prepare fish.
I help Mam make bread for dinner. Mam beats the samp in a mortar and I and sift the flower out of it. This is called homminey. I put in a Pot of two or three Gallons, with Water, and boyled it upon a gentle Fire till it be like Hasty Pudden. Mam mixed Flower with it, cast it into a deep Bason.
We formed the loaf, turned it out upon the Peel and carried to the oven.
Now I must see to the garden. We grow many hearbes to make a sallat: lettuce, carrots, spinach, endive, chicory, cabbage, Cowcumbers, onyons, parsley, sage, thyme, rosemary and mint.
I pick some onyons then water the garden before I return indoors.
Now I prepare some tooth powder from marigolds and prepare some medicine.
After dinner, I am allowed to visit with my friends.
I stop at the home of my friend Mary Oldham.
What news! Mary's father is about to be banished from the Colony! He hath been accused of trying to overthrow the colony! He hath spoken badly about our leaders, preferring instead to follow the ways of Rev. John Lyford, a rogue who practices in the manner of the Church of England.
Mary polishes her father's armor to prepare for his banishment.
Mem prepares Calendula (pot marigold) for cooking.
Goodman Brewster explains why Mary's father, John Oldham, is to be banished. Goodman Brewster is Ruling Elder, a layman responsible for the government of the congregation since Pastor Robinson is not here. He preaches and teaches. 'Tis God who decides before birth who will rise to heaven; we do not hold with Saints' days, hymns, the recitations of the Lord's Prayer and creeds. We celebrate only 2 sacraments: baptism and the Lord's Supper. Lyford favors Church of England and is an opportunist. He broke the law of the colony. He was argumentative and tried to turn some men against Goodman Brewster and our church.
This be our meetinghouse/fort.
From the top of the fort, we can see the entire village and the Bay.
I walk down the back path and find a cool spot to bide awhile.
'Tis quite hot today, but I am not hot in my clothing. I wear a linen smock under my waistcoast and petticoat. The linen absorbs my perspiration and keeps me cool. Even so, I think I shall bide here awhile under the shade of the tree.
Mem will join us in a moment and mayhap others as well. Goody Sprague hath promised to teach me to sing a catch. It goes like this: "Hey Ho/Nobody's Home/Meat nor drink nor money have I none/Yet will I be merry." We sing for quite a sum of time. Shh do not tell the Governor we are singing a drinking song or he will fine Goodman Sprague a sum he can ill afford to pay. As the sun sinks lower in the sky, I must return home for supper. Fare thee well. God Bye to you!