It’s the day to give things and here are some Thanksgiving facts for kids.
They had more freedom in Holland, but they didn’t enjoy the Dutch way of life as much as they thought they would.
In the hope of a better life, they took the help of a London stock company to move out to America. Most of those making this trip aboard the Mayflower were non-Separatists. Only about one-third of the original colonists were Separatists.
They reached Plymouth in 1620. There, they had to face a terrible winter. Around 46 of the original 102 had died by the next fall.
But fortune turned in their favor and the harvest of the next year was bumper. And the remaining colonists decided to celebrate with a feast, including 91 Indians who had helped the Pilgrims survive their first year.
It is believed that the Pilgrims would not have made it through the year without the help of the natives. The feast was more of a traditional English harvest festival than a true “thanksgiving” observance.
It lasted three days. Governor William Bradford sent “four men fowling” after wild ducks and geese. It is not certain that wild turkey was part of their feast. However, it is certain that they had venison. The term “turkey” was used by the Pilgrims to mean any sort of wild fowl.
On June 20, 1676, the governing council of Charlestown, Massachusetts, held a meeting to determine how best to express thanks for the good fortune that had seen their community securely established.
By unanimous vote they instructed Edward Rawson, the clerk, to proclaim June 29 as a day of thanksgiving. It is notable that this thanksgiving celebration probably did not include the Indians, as the celebration was meant partly to be in recognition of the colonists’ recent victory over the “heathen natives”.
October of 1777 marked the first time that all 13 colonies joined in a thanksgiving celebration. It also commemorated the patriotic victory over the British at Saratoga. But it was a one-time affair.