Thanksgiving: The Origin & History Of This Celebration

Here’s the history of Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving Day is celebrated every November of the month and this is one of the most popular celebrations in the United States of America.

So, how did this national holiday start? Based on the article in History, one of the first Thanksgiving celebrations happened in 1621 when the Plymouth colonists from England and the Native American Wampanoag people shared an autumn harvest feast.

In 1620, pilgrims reached Massachusetts Bay after 66 days of traveling from England and began the work of establishing a village at Plymouth. Half of the pilgrims died due to the brutal winter they had to go through.

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When March came, the remaining settlers moved ashore and they were visited by a member of the Abenaki tribe who greeted them in English. Then, a few days after that member of the tribe retired with a Native American, Squanto, who was a member of the Pawtuxet tribe. Squanto was kidnapped by an English sea captain and sold into slavery before escaping to London. Eventually, he was able to return to his homeland on an exploratory expedition.

Squanto taught the pilgrims how to cultivate corn, extract sap from maple trees, catch fish in the rivers, and avoid poisonous plants. He also helped them forge an alliance with the Wampanoag.

In November of 1621, Governor William Bradford organized a celebratory feast. He invited a group of the fledgling colony’s Native American allies, including the Wampanoag chief Massasoit. This has become the first American Thanksgiving and the celebration lasted for three days.

For two centuries, this holiday has been celebrated by individual colonies and states. However, in 1863, President Abraham Lincoln proclaimed this to be a national holiday to be held each November. The proclamation happened in the midst of the Civil War.

Although this holiday is a festivity and celebration, controversies surfaced. Many Americans, including Native Americans, thought that the celebration was a cover-up of the true history of oppression and bloodshed that underlies the relationship between European settlers and Native Americans. When is Thanksgiving this 2023? This holiday falls on November 23, 2023.

Before the Thanksgiving celebration, the world is celebrating the Halloween. Do you know how pumpkin became a Halloween symbol?

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