The First Thanksgiving: What Happened, When Was It, And What Are They Hiding?

The first Thanksgiving

Every kid in America has the bullet points of the first Thanksgiving drilled into their heads---turkey, maize, the pilgrims and Native Americans coming together to hold hands, eat food, and yuck it up around the dinner table---but Thanksgiving isn't as simple as that. The pilgrims and America's native people did come together, but no one celebrated again for a good while, and it wasn't really considered Thanksgiving. This is a holiday that required some serious effort to become an annual tradition.

Source: History Channel

After the pilgrims came to America, they settled a plot of land that the Patuxet tribe had abandoned because of a plague. The weather was harsh and unforgiving, but in October 1621, the last surviving Patuxet, Squanto, arrived to teach the pilgrims how to catch eel and grow corn, so everyone partied. The Thanksgiving feast lasted for three days and featured a drop-in from 90 Native Americans, who got down alongside the 53 pilgrims. James Baker, the vice president of research for the Plymouth Plantation, stated in 1996:

The event occurred between Sept. 21 and Nov. 11, 1621, with the most likely time being around Michaelmas (Sept. 29), the traditional time.