Best Answer

The ship called the Mayflower set sail in July 1620 with 101 passengers bound for the New World. Their original destination was an area near the western bank of the Hudson River, which marked the northern boundary of the Virginia Colony. Due to navigation errors and unfavorable winds the ship landed in November 1620 in Cape Cod in what is now Massachusetts. Due to the oncoming winter, they decided to settle on the spot of their landing rather than to try again for their original destination. Since the settler's original charter to form a colony assumed that they would be settling in Virginia and bound by that colony's charter, some of the settlers wondered if their original charter to settle had any legal weight since they were now in unclaimed and unexplored territory.

Forty-one of the colonists, all of them male, decided to draw up a document agreeing how they would govern themselves in the absence of any other overarching royal regulations. They developed a brief document now known as the Mayflower Compact. The original document has long been lost to history and all we have is several transcripts, which do not all agree on exactly what was in the original document. What is known is that the document was rather brief and essentially swore loyalty to England's King James I and the Christian religion, and stated that all future rules for the colony would be made using majority-rule democratic principles.

User Avatar

Wiki User

11y ago
This answer is:
User Avatar

Add your answer:

Earn +20 pts
Q: Why did the men on the Mayflower sign the Mayflower compact?
Write your answer...
Still have questions?
magnify glass