The holiday that was a BIG misunderstanding : Thanksgiving


Madeline Khoo

In society today, Thanksgiving has been perceived as a friendly holiday between Pilgrims and Native Americans. However, with more needed research, people learn that this is just not the case.

Yemaya King

Thanksgiving is about coming together and saying your gratitude to the world. Although this holiday isn’t celebrated or showcased all the time, we still make time to visit our families and share a meal. But not many people actually know the backstory to Thanksgiving.

Thanksgiving was first celebrated in the fall of 1621 where the Pilgrims and the Wampanoag tribe sat down and ate a feast together. They were sitting down at this table where there were pies and turkeys on the table, with bread too. This is the picture that was painted for everyone to see that there was peace between the two groups.

That is not the case at all.

The Pilgrims were not the good guys in this situation. Before the Pilgrims came in the 1610s, The Wampanoag tribe had been living in America for thousands of years. They had spread throughout the land that they owned and had a total of 69 different tribes. The Pilgrims weren’t the first colonizers to come to their land. Throughout their years of living there were many colonizers that have discriminated and did wrong against the Native Americans. They even brought different diseases back to America and kidnapped the Indians.

This whole situation was a bad time as Pilgrims discovered a new land so they renamed it Plymouth to and built a new society to live in. Eventually they met the Native Americans that survived the plague and the kidnappings.

Tisquantum , a.k.a Squanto, was the most known Native American during this time period as he was the only one that knew English as he was kidnapped by an English colonist. He was the bridge between the two worlds of the Pilgrims and Native Americans.

People think that the Thanksgiving was a dinner where all the Pilgrims and Native Americans came together to sit at a long table with colorful foods and drinks up for grabs and that the Pilgrims were the ones that offered food to the Natives but in reality it was flipped.

The Native Americans were the one that went out for the food and they cooked and made it all. The Pilgrims were broke and had no hunting skills or food to make. The table being peaceful and quiet was also a myth.  It was very rowdy and hectic due to their being 50 pilgrims and 90 Wampanoag people drinking liquor, shooting guns, and hunting. There isn’t evidence that proves they made turkey, but many believe that meats that were cooked were some sort of wild birds, ducks, geese, and turkey. Many years have passed since then and when it comes to history, the story always changes. Obviously you can still celebrate this holiday, but it’s never bad to dig deep into the true background of a historical event.