Who Really Hosted the First Thanksgiving?

In November we celebrate the feast between Native Americans and the Pilgrims of the Plymouth colony, however there were many similar feasts throughout North America.

You probably know the story people tell of the first Thanksgiving. Native Americans helped the Pilgrims of the Plymouth Colony. The Pilgrims had a feast to give thanks. But did you know that several other places in North America had similar feasts before the Pilgrims?

The oldest city in the United States is St. Augustine, Florida. It was founded by Spanish settlers. They held a feast to celebrate their safe arrival in what they called “the New World.” They invited the native Timucua people to eat with them. This was over 50 years before the Plymouth Rock Thanksgiving.

Martin Frobisher was an explorer. He was searching for the Northwest Passage. In 1587 he arrived in what we now call Canada. He held a feast to give thanks for his safe arrival. Today, Canadians commemorate Frobishers’s feast. Their Thanksgiving is in October. Historians have records of similar feasts between natives and settlers in what is now Maine, Texas, and Virginia. Clearly, giving thanks is an idea that is important to many people.

What Do You Think? Why do you think giving thanks is important to so many people?

Photo Credit: McGraw-Hill Education