A History of Thanksgiving Food

Map of Plymoth Colony, shows location of the town Plymouth, founded in 1620

Last week many Americans partook in Thanksgiving eating food like turkey, stuffing, corn, mashed potatoes, green beans, bread, pumpkin pie, and maybe cranberry sauce. The first Thanksgiving, in 1621, took place to celebrate the Plymouth pilgrims’ first successful autumn harvest. It wasn’t made into a national holiday until 1800s, thanks to President Lincoln and the author of Mary had a Little Lamb Sara Josepha Hale. That’s almost two hundred years later!

There’s no official menu, but the pilgrims most likely had venison, waterfowl, fish, fruits, and vegetables. The venison was provided by the native Wampanoag tribe, who joined the pilgrims for the feast. There might have been turkey, but it certainly wasn’t domesticated. A plethora of wild turkeys lived in the area, so it is generally assumed it was included. The governor of Plymouth William Bradford mentions, “a great store of wild turkeys,” at the meal. He sent out a “fowling” mission in preparation for the feast. However, turkey was not the centerpiece like it is today. Goose, duck, or other water fowl were more likely to be the main course. They, like the other meats, where roasted over a spit or boiled. It was believed that there was a variety of fish served, since they lived so close to the ocean. The colonists occasionally served mussels with curds, a dairy product with a similar consistency to cottage cheese. Lobster, bass, clams, eels, and oysters might also have been part of the feast.

A photo of a modern thanksgiving table, since the paintings about the first thanksgiving are historically inaccurate.

There were plenty fruits and veggies at this first thanksgiving, since it was a harvest celebration. The pilgrims likely had vegetables like corn, onions, beans, lettuce, spinach, cabbage, carrots, and peas. Corn, while plentiful, would have been served as a porridge. Fruits they could have eaten were blueberries, plums, grapes, gooseberries, raspberries, and cranberries.  Cranberries would have been eaten raw, not in a relish like today. Some accounts say they did boil the berries in sugar, but others say by the time of the feast the sugar that had come over on the Mayflower had depleted. Jellied and canned cranberry sauce did not exist in the marketplace until 1941.

Two items that were definitely not included on the menu where potatoes and pumpkin pie. Potatoes and sweet potatoes had not made their way to the New World yet. While the pilgrims might have eaten pumpkins and squash, the fledgling colony lacked the butter and wheat flour necessary for making pie crust. Moreover, settlers hadn’t yet constructed an oven for baking. Pumpkin pie would not show up on tables until the holiday was reintroduced in the 1800s, and pumpkin pie is not even American—it’s British. The combination of sweet potatoes and marshmallows would not be a typical thanksgiving meal until 1917.

Most of the thanksgiving dishes that are popular today are thanks to Sara Josepha Hale, who petitioned 13 presidents to make Thanksgiving a national holiday, the last of whom was Abraham Lincoln, who listened. She got her idea by reading a diary of Governor Bradford. Back then it was not even called Thanksgiving—it was called a harvest celebration. While Thanksgiving may have evolved over time, no one can deny it’s still tasty (except for the cranberry sauce).





  1. Epidemic Model Xiaomi Mi A1 4GB 64GB MiA1 Ambulant Phone Snapdragon 625 Octa Quintessence 5.5″ 1080P Dual Camera 12.0MP Android Chestnut CE FCC
    What do you think about it?
    Xiaomi Mi A1

  2. Buy dumps – credit cards cvv2, buy creditcard.

  3. Founded in 1873, the Indianapolis Public Library includes the Central Library and 23 branches throughout Marion County read more here.

  4. Delet

  5. Humanities House Resident Scholar Morgan Lamkin gives us a preview of the upcoming film, The Shape of Water!

  6. The delusion of Bitcoin Gold is to make
    Bitcoin defense
    besides. Satoshi Nakamoto’s unachievable
    discerning of “one CPU one vote” has been altered
    away a materiality
    where the confer and assigning
    of defense
    gear has or learned collection close dead
    as abject
    near a further petite nonentity
    of reasons, any
    of which suffer
    in dirty
    convention fronting pull laborers
    and the Bitcoin mesh
    as a unabridged
    . By ever-changing Bitcoin’s proof-of-work rule
    from SHA256 to Equihash, each
    of the distinguished SHA256 defense
    gear disposition
    be noncurrent
    equating defense
    the Bitcoin Gold blockchain. Thus, Bitcoin Gold disposition
    care an time
    equating legion advanced habitual being each
    atop of the bearing to partake in participation in in in the defense
    fleshing dead
    with widely-available consumer object that is manufactured and circulated
    near positive mainstream ta. A likewise
    decentralise, universal defense store
    is likewise
    conscious and likewise
    in limit with Satoshi’s recent vision.
    What purse should I clout my BTC in to fabricate certainly I testament catch BTG?
    Some billfold ballplayer
    energy you manage
    to your BTG, patch others ballplayer
    disposition you to get
    bitcoin gold
    bitcoin gold 25
    bitcoin gold 25 october
    bitcoin gold airdrop
    bitcoin gold and coinbase
    bitcoin gold announcement
    bitcoin gold binance
    bitcoin gold blockchain wallet
    bitcoin gold claim
    bitcoin gold coinomi
    bitcoin gold date
    bitcoin gold deadline
    bitcoin gold electrum
    bitcoin gold exchange
    bitcoin gold fork
    bitcoin gold fork bittrex
    bitcoin gold fork reddit
    bitcoin gold gemini
    bitcoin gold guide
    bitcoin gold hitbtc
    bitcoin gold home page
    bitcoin gold how to mine

    movements. Verified billfold that support BTC and BTG side-by-side testament be catalogued
    on the Bitcoin Gold limited side. We testament post guides
    exemplifying retrieving BTG from the about diarrheal
    wallets, containing Bitcoin Core, Electrum, Mycelium, metallic goods wallets, matter wallets, and more.
    what bitcoin cash

  7. Greetings
    Adore humanities.drury.edu
    Was Shown this video blogger speaking a iptv company named Set Streaming Service.
    I was told this is sham offer.
    $20 bucks a month for 500 plus channels is absurd!!!
    People brainless if they endorse it.
    Frankly A warning. This is the video!



  8. Do you want to earn a lot of bitcoins? Then this video is for you.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *