The Courtship of Miles Standish

Read by Leonard Wilson

(4.3 stars; 29 reviews)

During the late nineteenth century and until the middle of the twentieth, many elementary classrooms in America featured (along with a Gilbert Stuart portrait of Washington) a black-and-white print of a group of New England pilgrims on their way to church, the men carrying their muskets. Every school child at that time was intimately acquainted with the story of the Mayflower and the Plymouth colony in Massachusetts. Among the historical figures, one of the best known was Captain Miles Standish, the military commander of the little “army,” which consisted of a bare handful of men, who repeatedly defeated many times their number of hostile Indians. The children also knew the friendly Indian Squanto and the young pilgrim gentleman John Alden and the lovely maiden Priscilla Mullins.

In the middle grades practically all students used to read Longfellow’s long narrative poem The Courtship of Miles Standish, telling the story of these real people. The plot is initiated by Standish’s request that his friend, the better educated and more eloquent Alden, plead his case for him and persuade Priscilla to marry this rough middle-aged widower. What the captain did not know was that John Alden was also deeply in love with the same young girl. Present-day readers will be impressed that the delightful Miss Mullins seems to be a quite modern young lady, with a mind of her own. Many hundreds of Americans trace their ancestry to John and Priscilla, whose descendants also include Presidents John and John Quincy Adams and Longfellow himself. Those who are not familiar with their romance will find it a most pleasant tale. (Introduction by Leonard Wilson) (1 hr 28 min)


Part 1 - Miles Standish 8:03 Read by Leonard Wilson
Part 2 - Love and Friendship 8:36 Read by Leonard Wilson
Part 3 - The Lover's Errand 12:47 Read by Leonard Wilson
Part 4 - John Alden 11:56 Read by Leonard Wilson
Part 5 - The Sailing of the Mayflower 12:18 Read by Leonard Wilson
Part 6 - Priscilla 8:39 Read by Leonard Wilson
Part 7 - The March of Miles Standish 8:52 Read by Leonard Wilson
Part 8 - The Spinning-Wheel 8:55 Read by Leonard Wilson
Part 9 - The Wedding-Day 8:36 Read by Leonard Wilson


Breathing new life into "Courtship."

(5 stars)

Certainly as the description says, this is a poem that was very familiar to students in years past.Nowadays that may have changed, so this recording is very welcome. The reader, Leonard Wilson, narrates the poem with a quiet eloquence,speaking with just the right pace and emphasis in letting the story of John, Priscilla and Miles Standish unfold.

wonderful classic

(5 stars)

Loved hearing this story unfold. Especially with my daughter who is eager to learn all she can about our ancestry♡ we are decended from these two lovers and it is so neat to hear their story. We have much to learn but will enjoy this time & again♡ thank you!

(5 stars)

Excellent and eloquent reading. As I am Australian, I selected this poem to listen to as preparation to get into the vibe of Thanksgiving. Longfellow's descriptive words convey meanings which are both parochial and universal. I enjoyed this story very much.

Great! :)

(5 stars)

Great reading and great story. I love a happy ending. I'm so glad the captain survived and they patched up their friendship!

can get you hooked but isn't the best book ever

(4 stars)