Who Were The Puritans, Who Did They Become, and What Do They Mean To Us Today?

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Stained glass likeness of Augustus St. Gaudens' work, The Puritan, as seen in local landmark establishment The Student Prince and Fort Restaurant, Springfield, MA, which has resided on the site of the original Pynchon estate since 1935. By Simtropolitan, original artist unknown

The Puritans were, in their own day, nothing—a small group with no political power, easily driven from their own land into an America dominated by other powers, both Native and European. Yet they became a lightning rod for later generations, representing all that is good and bad in the American story. We will trace who the Puritans were when they arrived here, who they became, and what they left for following generations. What did the Puritans want New England to be? What ideas did they bring with them, and what ideas did they develop as a result of their experiences here?

Lori Rogers-Stokes received her Ph.D. from Stony Brook University. Dr. Stokes is an editor for New England’s Hidden Histories, a digital history project of the Congregational Library & Archives led by respected Puritan scholar Dr. James F. Cooper and dedicated to transcribing and studying newly discovered New England church records.

Presented as part of the Partnership of Historic Bostons celebration of Charter Day, which marks the founding of the city in 1630.