MEET THE REAL PILGRIMS: Everyday Life on Plimoth Plantation in 1627 by

MEET THE REAL PILGRIMS: Everyday Life on Plimoth Plantation in 1627

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Really a visit to today's working replica of Plimoth Plantation: The book is illustrated with photos of the tourist spot's ""actors"" playing their roles and the dialogue (in ""Elizabethan English"") is taped from interviews with them. Nevertheless Loeb sets it up like a trip to the past, with himself as tour-guide announcing beforehand that ""you"" will be staying in the simple home of malcontent John Billington, who we are told will be hanged for murder in 1630. (But ""please don't stare at John for what you know about his future."") During the visit Loeb takes readers to the meetinghouse, interviews an indentured servant, has a young wife describe her wedding day, passes by a woman and child set in the stocks for punishment, and spends a good deal of time on the ancient backgrounds of ""nonsensical"" colonial medicine. Some information does come through--for example that many of the Plimoth pilgrims (including our host John Billington) were not Separatists at all but just came along to better their chances--but with it one must take Loeb's editorializing, on today's food additives and nuclear contamination, for example. And his attempt at personalization is more condescending than vivifying.

Pub Date: June 15th, 1979
Publisher: Doubleday