The New England colonies were founded by English Puritans who left England because they could not do as they wished in the home land. All Puritans were agreed in wishing for a freer government than they had in England under the Stuart kings and in state matters were really the Liberals of their time.
In religious matters, however, they were not all of one mind. Some of them wished to make only a few changes in the Church. These were called Non-Conformists. Others wished to make so many changes in religion that they could not stay in the English State Church. These were called Separatists. The settlers of Plymouth were Separatists; the settlers of Boston and neighboring towns were Non-Conformists.