The Indian threat was also near at hand and they actually buried the dead secretly at night in unmarked graves so the Indians would not know how weakened they had become.
Even the names on the Mayflower compact are something Bradford wrote down years later ~ and I think one of those names is in error ~ but half the modern membership of the Mayflower Society owe their qualification to his supposed daughter who stayed back in Leyden.
Which, of course, is neither here nor there. These people all had gigantic brass cojones! Literally the largest ones in the world ~ just a few years previously the Indians a couple of hundred miles to the West had engaged in a huge war with upwards of ten thousand combatants.
With many members of their tribal warrior elites coming in at 7 feet tall, and every one of them built like professional body builders, the Pilgrims knew a few firearms weren't likely to secure their place on the continent ~ they needed some friends, and informants.
In the end the New England plan of development was reduced to the simple formula of carving out new towns adjacent to old towns ~ no pitiful helpless isolated settlers stuck off in the woods for them. They extended a well-armed and vigilent society of villages into the wilderness and conquered it all.
Things were different in New York and Pennsylvania ~ so development patterns were different.
Bradford was quite clear about his failures to make the colony members all work at their best, or any part thereof. He even used a whip, and reported that also failed.
Only assignment of parcels of land to be farmed by the individuals or families was successful. That assignment can be found by a simple Google search.
Private ownership and private decision making works.
Central ownership and centralized decision making fails.