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Web Smarts

WHAT: A site devoted to the history of the Mayflower and the Pilgrims of Plymouth Colony. Designed by Caleb Johnson, a member of the Society of Mayflower Descendents, this site offers a complete list of all the passengers on the Mayflower, along with a great deal of historical and genealogical information about them. Teachers and students will also find the site full of useful information on Thanksgiving-related topics.

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BEST POINTS: The site provides numerous selections from Pilgrim writings, such as William Bradford's account of the Mayflower voyage ("they were encountered many times with cross winds") and various letters and journal entries. Johnson has also written essays on a full range of topics, such as girls on the Mayflower, Squanto, and the first Thanksgiving. There's a section devoted to common Mayflower myths, and, for those who have more specialized interests, reports on the Pilgrims' religious beliefs, clothing, and weapons. The site even lists US presidents with Mayflower ancestry (George Bush is a descendent of two Mayflower passengers, John Howland and Francis Cooke, while his wife Barbara is descended from passenger Henry Samson).

WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW: Johnson's site has won several awards for its content. For students who want to cite it in school reports, there is a sample bibliographical reference, under the link "Message to Students."

(c) Copyright 1999. The Christian Science Publishing Society

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