The St. Joseph Bay Chapter of NSDAR met Wednesday, Feb. 26 at Grill 19 with American History Essay Winners from local schools present. Reading their essays were: fifth-grade winner, Joseph Alvarez; sixth-grade, Celie White; seventh-grade winner, Austin Ramsey; eighth-grade, Ashton Lakey; and high school winner, Morgan Lakey.

Following is the essay from the sixth-grade winner, Celie White from Faith Christian School.

“The Voyage of the Mayflower”

It’s late July in 1620. My father, Edward Fuller; my mother, Elizabeth Fuller; my brother, Samuel Fuller; and I, Charity Fuller are on a voyage across the great seas. We are going to arrive in Virginia to finally seek religious freedom, so we can worship as we

please. I have spent several days packing my chests for the voyage, and managed to fit all of my most valuable items.

Some of the items I brought to prepare for our journey include: a wooden spoon, a cooking pot, salt for cooking and to preserve foods, butter, wheat, grains, flour, oatmeal, hard biscuits, cheese, beef, beer, a cap, a waistcoat, shoes, a sac to lay on and for storage, a bed rug, chamber pot, ink, Lilly my spaniel, and The Bible.

Our captain, Christopher Jones, told us there were going to be other people

on the ship other than pilgrims or saints. Their names, or what we called them,

were adventurers. They were not there because they wanted to get away from the

laws of King James I, but to build a colony in Virginia.

Captain Jones, the captain of our ship, the Mayflower, received word from captain Reynolds, the captain of the Speedwell, the ship travelling along with us, that the Speedwell has a leak. We will need to stop in Dartmouth for repairs, but some people have decided to stay there permanently.

The Speedwell was repaired, and for about five days was sailing without any problems. However, it has now started leaking again, and it will be dropped off permanently in Plymouth. Captain Jones told us that the remaining passengers on the Speedwell will have to be combined with us on the Mayflower.

Today is September 6, 1620 and the passengers on The Speedwell are now combined

with us on The Mayflower. It is very crowded and dark in our tween decks, and I wish I had brought a curtain or quilt for some privacy and some candles for light. The captain of our ship, Christopher Jones, told us if we do not have enough space, then we should try sleeping on the shallops, the wooden pallets attached to the walls, or making hammocks out of cloth.

It also stinks dreadfully on the ship! The smell of everyone’s chamber pots makes me sick at night! We are coming into terrible, frightening storms and are not allowed to throw out our waste!

During one terrifying storm, a man named John Howland was longing for some fresh air. He decided to get out of his bunk, and went on the deck. He was swept away by the waves and plunged overboard. Another man threw a rope and saved him!

Because of all the storms, it has taken us much longer than we intended to get to Virginia. Our food is beginning to spoil. This is my second week on the Mayflower and I am starting to long for some water, and something to eat other than tasteless oatmeal, and dry biscuits. Some people have no fresh water. They are drinking the water from the ocean, which is making them very sick.

The saints and adventurers have been getting in a lot of fights, and some people

are getting really sick. I wish I would have brought medicine from home so I could

help them. I hope and pray the saints and adventurers learn to get along with each


It is now October 25,1620, and we are running very low on food and supplies. We

have been through many storms and I wish I had brought water because now, like

many other people, I am tired of this beer that has been boiled! It tastes disgusting! Also, captain Jones said to not drink the salt water from the ocean, but people are so tired of the ‘beer’ that they are forced to drink it.

A man named William Butten and another sailor died. It is fall now, and I wish that I

could see the beautiful leaves change colors like in England, but instead all I see is storms, a blue sky, and endless water. Many passengers have been going through a shortage of food, but I am thankful my family brought a lot of food which will hopefully last us awhile.

We have just run into another storm and the continual rocking of the boat, the lack

of food, and people drinking the salt water is making everyone sick. I wish I would

Have brought my other pair of shoes because they are getting soaked from the

relentless rain.

Today is November 8th, 1620, and I am saying my prayers as Lilly and I go lie down in

bed. It has become colder, and we have only a few dry biscuits left for food. I wish I would have brought some different food because I am so tired of these dry biscuits! I hope we will spot land soon.

It is November 9, 1620, we have just spotted land and everyone is praising God!

Some people are cursing saying, “It took this long to get to this place that is not

even Virginia!” Even though it is not Virginia, I am so relieved to finally see land! After

many horrific storms, loss of supplies, food, and no clean water or beer, I am so thankful God has protected my family and me. We travelled through Southampton, Dartmouth, and finally reached the new world. It is very cold here, and I wish

I would have brought more warm clothing.

It is December 21, 1620. We have finally moved out of the Mayflower and I have just

put my bare feet on the crunchy sand. Thank you God for protecting my family on this

dangerous voyage! The 66 days was long and hard, but it is all worth it to be able to create a new settlement where we can now worship God freely!