Robert Cushman

Definition

Robert Cushman (l. 1577-1625 CE) was an author, lay preacher, and member of the Leiden congregation of separatists (later known as the pilgrims) who negotiated passage for them from the Netherlands to North America in 1620 CE aboard the Mayflower; a voyage which would result in the foundation of the Plymouth Colony in Massachusetts and the establishment of the first successful English settlement in New England. He is also author of the book The Cry of a Stone, published posthumously in 1645 CE, the first published sermon delivered in North America in 1621 CE, and the man who brought back the first narrative of the Plymouth Colony, published as Mourt's Relation, in 1622 CE. He is best known, however, for securing passage and working out the details of financing the Mayflower voyage.

More about: Robert Cushman

Timeline

  • 1577 - 1625
    Life of Robert Cushman who negotiated the funding and provision for the voyage of the Mayflower to the New World.
  • 1603 - 1606
    Separatist Robert Cushman is arrested three times for distributing anti-Anglican publications in England.
  • c. 1607
    Robert Cushman and his family join a separatist congregation fleeing England for the more religiously tolerant Netherlands.
  • 1611
    Robert Cushman's wife and two children die in Leiden, Netherlands.
  • 1617 - 1620
    Robert Cushman negotiates with businessmen of London to finance and equip the voyage of the Mayflower to the New World.
  • 1620
    Robert Cushman remains behind in England after falling ill after negotiations; the Mayflower leaves without him.
  • 1621
    Robert Cushman travels to Plymouth Colony with new patent and contract; delivers first published sermon given in the Americas.
  • 1621 - 1622
    Robert Cushman returns to England with the manuscript of Mourt's Relation, an account of the founding of Plymouth Colony, which he has published in 1622 CE.
  • 1645
    Posthumous publication of Robert Cushman's book The Cry of a Stone, defining the Separatist vision.
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