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Tudor Minute: January 12

Hey, this is Heather from the Renaissance English History Podcast, and this is your Tudor Minute for January 12.

Today John Winthrop was born in either 1587 or 88 depending on who you ask (hey, I’m the same, seeing as how I’ve been 29 for the past 12 years, so I’m not judging). He is famous for being the first governor of the Massachusetts Bay Colony, and for the famous City Upon a Hill speech which every student learns in history class. He led the first immigrants in 1630, and would serve as governor for 12 of the first 20 years in the colony’s history. He was born in Suffolk, the son of a family successful in the textile business, and his father became a director at Trinity College, Cambridge, which was still a new college at this time, having been founded by Henry VIII towards the end of his reign.

By the 1620’s, the reformation in England seemed like it was headed backwards. Charles I was a Roman Catholic, and the Puritans in England began to feel persecuted. When Charles dissolved Parliament in 1629, intending to rule on his own, Winthrop was part of a group that felt they needed to leave. They received a land grant, and headed west across the ocean in April of 1630.

That’s your Tudor Minute for today. Remember you can dive deeper into life in 16th century England through the Renaissance English History Podcast at englandcast.com.