The Classic Account
of the Pilgrim Hall Museum
The original story of Thanksgiving is based around the 1621
Plymouth, Massachusetts. William Bradford's account from his work Of
is the classic:
began now to gather in the small
harvest they had, and to fit up their houses and dwellings against
winter, being all well recovered in health and strength and had all
things in good plenty. For as some were thus employed in affairs
abroad, others were exercised in fishing, about cod and bass and other
fish, of which they took good store, of which every family had their
portion. All the summer there was no want; and now began to come in
store of fowl, as winter approached, of which this place did abound
when they came first (but afterward decreased by degrees). And besides
waterfowl there was great store of wild turkeys, of which they took
many, besides venison, etc. Besides, they had about a peck of meal a
week to a person, or now since harvest, Indian corn to that proportion.
Which made many afterwards write so largely of their plenty here to
their friends in England, which were not feigned but true reports.
The only other firsthand account of the occurrences at the 1621 feast
in Plymouth is by Edward Winslow, written in Mourt's Relation
harvest being gotten in, our
governor sent four men on fowling, that so we might after a special
manner rejoice together, after we had gathered the fruits of our
labors; they four in one day killed as much fowl, as with a little help
beside, served the Company almost a week, at which time amongst other
Recreations, we exercised our Arms, many of the Indians coming amongst
us, and amongst the rest their greatest king Massasoit, with some
ninety men, whom for three days we entertained and feasted, and they
went out and killed five Deer, which they brought to the Plantation and
bestowed on our Governor, and upon the Captain and others. And although
it be not always so plentiful, as it was at this time with us, yet by
the goodness of God, we are so far from want, that we often wish you
partakers of our plenty.
to read more about the Plymouth Thanksgiving Story.
here to read the Thanksgiving Proclamation.
Straight from the Pilgrims' Mouths -
Ever wonder what
a pilgrim would say if you asked him or her about the harvest feast of
1621? The Plimoth Plantation is a "living history" museum in Plymouth,
Massachusetts. Visitors can interact with reenactors dressed in the
pilgrim's fashion of the time.
here to listen to audio from reenacted "pilgrim" interviews.
The Real Story?
When most of us think of Thanksgiving, we think of happy
Indians sitting down to a big feast. That is not entirely true. For
more information, follow the links below:
The REAL Story of Thanksgiving by
the Myths by Judy Dow & Beverly Salpin
The True, Grim Story of the First Thanksgiving,
by NPR's Bob Edwards
Myths, from History.com
What was eaten at the first Thanksgiving?
There has been a lot
of speculation about what recipes we enjoy today may or may have not
actually been at the first Thanksgiving. Grandma's famous apple pie
probably didn't make the menu, but other items such as corn, ham, and
fish were shared by pilgrims and Indians.
To learn more about the first Thanksgiving's feast and