The History of Thanksgiving

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The History of Thanksgiving
Bobbie A. Harjo

In Plymouth, England, during September 1620, a ship slowly sailed out to sea. This ship was named the Mayflower, and it was on a very special trip. The Mayflower’s passengers were headed to the New World, America. These people were called the pilgrims, and they were leaving England to begin new lives. This was one of the things that they were thankful for, and one of the reasons they celebrated the first thanksgiving.

The Pilgrims set ground at Plymouth Rock on December 11, 1620. Their first winter was devastating. (The Thanksgiving story-History of Thanksgiving) Many Pilgrims died during the winter. It was a very sad time for them. At the end of the winter there was less than 50 Pilgrims remaining. More than 52 Pilgrims died that winter. It seemed hopeless, they had almost no food, and people died every day of that winter. Only a good harvest in the fall could save them. If the harvest were bad, they would surely die.

At the beginning of spring the Pilgrims met an English speaking Native American, whose name was Squanto. He taught them many things to help them with their daily lives. He showed them how to tap maple trees. He showed them the plants that could help heal them, and which plants were poisonous. He also showed them how to plant the Corn by digging deep holes and placing several seeds and fish in them. He tolled them that the decaying fish would fertilize the corn as it grew. Squanto's importance to the Pilgrims was enormous and it can be said that they would not have survived without his help. (Thanksgiving on the Net- The Pilgrims and America's First Thanksgiving)

Thanks to Squanto, the harvest that year was bountiful and the Pilgrims had more food than they could eat. They had lost of meat, fish, vegetables, fruit, and corn. They had enough food to last them all of winter. They also had other things to be thankful for too, they had successfully built themselves stable homes, and had peace...
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