Thanksgiving Origin


Christina Harris, Staff Writer

We are just a few weeks away from our wonderful week-long Thanksgiving break, and that also divides our first two trimesters here at Thunder Ridge. What will you be doing that week free from school?

There are many different modern Thanksgiving traditions. For example, Thunder Ridge student Benjamin Harris said he enjoys “all the food, like stuffing and turkey.” The most popular tradition is the feast during the celebration, but do you know the history of this holiday?

Modern Thanksgiving was declared in 1863, but this wasn’t even the first Thanksgiving.

Natives had celebrated days similar to Thanksgiving long before us; there were even different types of celebrations. 

The Wampanoag people had been staying at the area we now know as eastern Rhode Island and had encountered countless settlers before.

There was an arrival of the Mayflower in 1620; the settlers of the ship were people trying to get away from The Church of England. They were attempting to make it to modern New York but were stopped short due to weather.

A Wampanoag by the name of Squanto spoke English and was able to assist the settlers in all kinds of tasks. The two groups merged together in 1621. 

In the fall the Wampanoag heard gunshots and believed the English were preparing for war. Though they were misunderstood, and the English were only hunting for the celebration later on. At the celebration, the English and Natives did all kinds of things together, like eating and dancing. 

In the 19th century, our modern Thanksgiving developed when President Abraham Lincon declared 2 national Thanksgivings, one to honor the Battle of Gettysburg, and the other, our modern Thanksgiving, to give general thanks to all the things we have.

Now that you know some of the history of our celebration, maybe you can incorporate some new traditions during your week off.