John Smith and William Bradford were both leaders who established
colonies. They both established a colony and they attempted to attract
settlers with writings. Their writings were intended for different audiences and they both had different purposes.
John Smith's writings were different than William Bradford's. John Smith had a different purpose and his writings were intended for a different audience. John Smith's purpose was to bring people to the new world. He wrote a pamphlet to the people in England and told about all the good things about New England. In his pamphlet he tried to persuade people to join him in the new land. John Smith wrote about how he promised New England was better than England. John Smith's audience was intended for people from England, and possible settlers. John Smith said, "What pleasure can be more than in planting vines, fruits, or herbs, in contriving their own grounds to
the pleasure of their own minds, their fields, gardens, orchards, buildings, ships, and other works…."
William Bradford's writings were intended for different audiences and he had a different purpose than John Smith. William Bradford's audience was intended for the future generation. His writings were intended for the future generation. He wrote a diary about his actual experiences in Colonial America. Bradford discussed in his diary about the many hardships he faced. Bradford said, "But that which was most sad and lamentable was, that in two or three months' time half of their company died…" Though Bradford talked about the bad things, he also talked about the goods things that occurred during the first Thanksgiving. William Bradford said, "And besides waterfowl there was great store of wild turkeys, of which they took many, besides
venison. Besides they had about a peck of meal a week to a person, or now since harvest, Indian corn to that proportion."
John Smith and William Bradford both tried to persuade people to join
them in the new world. They both had different purposes and they both wrote to different audiences. Even though John Smith and William Bradford had their differences their intentions were both the same.
Smith returned to England in 1608 and published A True Relation. He did more exploring in the United States and was made president of the colony of Jamestown.
He then went back to England again and worked on A Map of Virginia.
In 1609 Smith was burnt very badly by his gun powder bag exploding while he was in America. He returned once again to England to work on more literature. He explored New England in 1614 and was named Admiral. While traveling back to America from England in 1615, he was captured by pirates. He worked on A Description of New England before returning to England. Smith requested a financial grant to start a colony in New England in 1618. New England Trials was published in 1620. In 1622, The General Historie of Virginia, New England, and the Summer Isles was published.
Smith published several other works before his death in 1631. Many people gleaned advice from his writings on how to establish colonies. Although the Puritans rejected him because of their religious bias, they made good use of his maps. Unfortunately, John Smith died in poverty.
Although John Smith may seem vainglorious in his writings, he contributed a great deal to the growth of the new colonies. His writings helped get the New World started and influenced future writers for years. Not only was John Smith a writer, he was an adviser and an expert on new lands (Leary 291). Despite the suspicions of scholars, the historical value of his works is something that cannot be denied. Without the hard work he put into his recordings and maps, the colonists to follow would have had little to go by and would have perhaps lacked a vision for the new world's promise: "He sang of himself but also of the bounty and beauty of the New World, its rugged shores, its fertile fields, sweet brooks and crystal springs, and of possibilities there for people bound in Europe by persecution and poverty." (Leary 292) His influence on American literature lasts until today.
Bradford kept a handwritten journal detailing the history of the first 30 years of Plymouth Colony. Large parts of this journal were published as Of Plymouth Plantation, and have been republished a number of times. (It is currently in print as ISBN 0-07-554281-1.) Bradford, along with Edward Winslow and others, contributed material to George Morton, who merged everything into a book, published in London in 1622, nicknamed Mourt's Relation, which was primarily a journal of the colonists' first years at Plymouth.
William Bradford Achievements:
William Bradford became the governor of Plymouth after the first governor died in 1621. His writings were based on his experiences as a member (and leader) of the colony. He wrote about their tragedies, and triumphs, as they "lifted up their eyes to the heavens."