The Mt. Tabor staff hopes your family has a happy Thanksgiving!
The History of Thanksgiving in America
The first Thanksgiving between the Pilgrims and Wampanoag Indians happened in the fall of 1621, about 10 months after the Mayflower landed in Plymouth, MA. Only 44 of the 102 original voyagers were alive due to hardships during first year. The celebration was for the great harvest, which happened because the Native-American Indians taught them about growing local crops. The Pilgrims were appreciated, because they had helped the Wampanoags fight back a rival tribe that attacked earlier in the year.
1. What year was the celebration that is most commonly considered to be the first Thanksgiving?
A: 1621. This is the celebration that people most often talk about when they are talking about the “first” Thanksgiving. But there are others that are claimed to be the first Thanksgiving. There was another celebration in Plymouth in 1623 and one in Boston in 1631 that people claim was the actual first Thanksgiving.
2. How long did the first Thanksgiving celebration last?
A: Three days. It was celebrated much earlier than our current celebration, possibly in late September. There were about 50 European settlers and around 90 native Americans (from the Wampanoag tribe) who attended the multi-day feast.
3. Under which president did Thanksgiving become an annual holiday?
A: Abraham Lincoln. The U.S. has celebrated Thanksgiving off and on since 1774. On November, 26, 1789 George Washington made a proclamation that the country would celebrate a day of thanksgiving to God. Lincoln proclaimed Thanksgiving a national holiday after Sarah Joseph Hale, the woman who wrote “Mary Had A Little Lamb,” convinced Lincoln to make Thanksgiving a national holiday. That came after writing letters to him for 17 years.
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