The recipient of SMDPA's Award for Distinguished Mayflower Scholarship in 2001 will be Dr. Jeremy Dupertuis Bangs, former curator at Plimoth Plantation, and recent founder of the Leiden American Pilgrim Museum in the Netherlands. As Dr. Bangs lives and works in Leiden, we will make the award to him in absentia at our Annual Luncheon on January 13, 2001, showing a video tape on his museum, with some comments in his own words on his present research.
Jeremy Bangs is a central figure today in the mission of understanding and interpreting the Mayflower passengers, both as sojourners in Holland and as settlers of New Plymouth. His work is brilliant and valiant. He has discovered new genealogical and historical evidence, has studied the Pilgrims as they appeared to contemporary Dutch painters, contributes a regular column on "Pilgrim Life" in New England Ancestors, and is now spearheading an attempt to save the remains of the Vrouwekerk, the church in which some of the Pilgrims worshipped in Leiden, against the wrecking ball of the town council. The third volume of his Scituate Town Records, due out any time, has enough in it to make several researchers illustrious.
Among Dr. Bang's ongoing projects is a book on a subject which he, above all, is equipped to handle: the Pilgrims in Leiden. This book, he notes, "started as a biography of Edward Winslow based on the discovery of a couple hundred pages of material from the international commission of which he was the chairman, including several unknown letters by him which include his use of the seal showing the Winslow arms." Bangs further hopes to complete the (as yet not fully published) Plymouth Colony Records. He will realize this in part when he publishes in the foreseeable future a book provisionally titled Indian Deeds, Land Occupation in Plymouth Colony, 1620-1692. "This," he says, "should be interesting for people to learn how exactly the society grew and what the real history of Indian relations included." In fact, only about half the deeds by which the colonists acquired title to territory have been published so far.
Dr. Jeremy Bangs, the third recipient of SMDPA's Award, follows Caroline Kardell in 1999 and Robert Charles Anderson in 2000.