Exploring Marylands Roots

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Journey to a New Life

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Timeline of the Voyage to Maryland
Depart from Cowes, England Nov. 22, 1633
The trade ship Dragon is sighted Nov. 25 - 26
Terrible storm hits Nov. 27
The Dove is lost at sea Nov. 28
The Ark nearly sinks in a storm Nov. 30
Ark sails to Barbados Dec. 1 - Jan. 3, 1634
Stay on Barbados Jan. 3 - 24
Ark and Dove sail to Virginia Jan. 24 - Feb. 27
Stay in Virginia Feb. 27 - Mar. 3
Sail around Chesapeake Bay, searching for landing spot Mar. 3 - Mar. 24
First landing in Maryland, at St. Clements Island Mar. 25
What would it be like to leave everything you've ever known behind? How would you feel? What would it be like to sail for months aboard a creaking ship across the ocean? What kinds of food would you eat? Where would you sleep? Who would you meet? What would you do?

On November 22, 1633, nearly 200 colonists began just such an adventure. Their reasons for leaving England for the new colony of Maryland were very different. Lord Baltimore, the proprietor, or owner of the colony, wanted to create a land where Catholics could live in peace. Seventeen "Gentlemen Adventurers" — men who came from wealthy families in England — hoped to grow even richer in the New World. Jesuit priests, like Father Andrew White, wanted to bring religion to the colonists and the Indians in America. And working men wanted to escape their poor lives in London. Over 140 of the 200 or so passengers on the first voyage were indentured servants. These men agreed to work anywhere from 2 to 10 years for one of the Gentlemen Adventures. In return for this work, the men received land, clothing, and supplies when their time as servants was completed.

The voyage to Maryland took over four months, with stops at the Canary Islands, Barbados, and the colony of Virginia. In this activity, you will join the colonists aboard the Ark as you cross the Atlantic. Using your mouse, you will decide whether to travel to Maryland, what to do in emergencies, and who to talk to on your journey. The choices are yours…