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Standish of Standish. A story of the Pilgrims,
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Standish of Standish: A Story of the Pilgrims
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Miles Standish had been much at his wife Rose's bedside. As much time, that is, as he could spare from stalking game, guarding against savages, and felling trees to construct crude homes on shore. A bitter wind whistled through chinks and cracks in the Mayflower, anchored in Plymouth harbor that winter of Rose's chills would turn to uncontrollable shaking. Then just as suddenly, her body would be ablaze with fever. Herbs from the surgeon's chest did little to relieve her. By spring only five wives remained out of the eighteen who had sailed to Plymouth.
Rose was not among them.
Standish of Standish | Faith and History
What was that? The golden dreams of a New World that Miles and Rose had cherished together had evaporated into hollow hopes. And yet that fall Capt. Standish joined other bereaved Pilgrims in the first Thanksgiving celebration.
He led the party that went in pursuit of the alleged killers of Squanto who was later discovered to be safe. He led the revenge attacks on the Indians in the Massachusetts Bay after they were caught in a conspiracy planning to attack and destroy the Plymouth and Wessagussett colonies; several Indians were killed or executed, for which Standish received some criticism, even from his friends, for being too heavy-handed.
Standish was heavily involved in numerous aspects of Plymouth Colony, from defense to keeping the law. He was on the receiving end of John Billington's verbal wrath in Billington refused to follow the captain's orders , and was called a "silly boy" in a letter that was sent out during the Oldham-Lyford scandal of , and was noted for his short stature and for his quick temper. He was sent to arrest Thomas Morton in , for which he received the nickname "Captain Shrimp" from Morton. William Hubbard reported Standish's temper was like a "chimney soon fired".
Myles Standish would have worn similar armor, clothing and used similar weapons to those seen here. Despite the heavy criticism by his enemies, Standish was well respected within the Plymouth Colony, and held a number of positions of authority. He made several trips to England to bring trading goods back and to negotiate with the Merchant Adventurers who had financially sponsored the joint-stock company that funded the Pilgrims' voyage.
In the mids, Standish moved his family and helped found the town of Duxbury, which may have been named after his ancestral home. Standish was an heir to a fairly sizeable estate in Lancashire, but his lands were lost during the English Civil War, and neither he nor his son Alexander were ever able to legally regain control of the estate.