New England Forefathers´ Day Orations, 1770–1865

An Annotated Edition of Selected Plymouth Anniversary Addresses

The volume presents the first comprehensive documentation of New England Forefathers’ Day orations. Between the American Revolution and the Civil War, they were the cornerstone of anniversary performances dedicated to the commemoration of the arrival of the Mayflower and the Pilgrim Fathers in Plymouth in 1620 and the ensuing foundation of the first Puritan colony in New England. The oratory of the celebrations of December 22, contributed significantly to the construction of a national U.S. American myth of origin and a national U.S. American historical and political tradition.

The annotated edition of thirty-one Forefathers’ Day addresses from 1770 through 1865 collects representative examples from different historical contexts and from different regions of the United States. The selection of anniversary addresses is accompanied by introductions to the respective celebrations, orators, and contexts, and by reprints of historical paintings and popular prints of early colonial New England history.


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