In November we are bombarded with pictures of plump turkeys, happy Indians and Pilgrims together, and sales on pumpkin pies, cranberry dressing, and at least three vegetables, reminiscent of the first Thanksgiving. It is all a lie.
Here are six myths about Thanksgiving, reported to have been in 1621.
Dr. Apidta, T. (1995). The hidden history of Massachusetts: a guide for Black folks. USA: private publish.
Loewen, J.W. (2007). Lies my teacher told me. USA: Touchstone.
Paul, D. (n.d.). We were not the savages: First nation history. Retrieved from www.danielnpaul.com.
(photos with permission, “Free to modify, share, and use commercially” per Google.com)
The staple fare during this time was duck and goose. The Massasoit brought five deer to the table. Because the Europeans came to Plymouth so unprepared, the Native Americans (Columbus dubbed them “Indians”) helped the Europeans survive. Some Europeans were forced to dig up putrid corpses to eat until the “Indians” came to their rescue.
2. Those drab suits
Those wide-brimmed black hats and black & white outfits are the stuff of artists years later that, on a creative whim, decided what the “Pilgrims” wore. The real clothes were of bright colors. Bathing was not en vogue at the time, either.
3. The term “Thanksgiving”
The actual term “Thanksgiving” was not used. Abraham Lincoln declared it a holiday in 1863. It was not until 1970 the myth of the holiday was exposed and the public educated. Until then, we believed.
4. Not a friendly feast
The Pilgrims only invited one Massasoit to the October feast, who brought the tribe as tradition. Despite the Native Americans keeping the Pilgrims alive with food and good will, the Pilgrims went after their “friends” with murder, grave robbing, rape, enslavement, and more.
5. Myles Standish no Disney character
Standish was all about befriending the Native Americans; upon gaining trust, he beheaded and tricked his “friends,” played one against the other in an effort to start war, and oversaw the hangings of several.
6. This will not be in a school play…
The first actual Thanksgiving was about 1638. It was marked by attacking 700 Pequot (the majority being the elderly, children, and woman – all noncombatants). Part of the attack included burning them alive.