Nov 26, 2015

The First Thanksgiving In God's American Resting Place

This headline is from "The Hill" publication in D.C.
on this Holy Thanksgiving Day, Nov.26, 2015 am
Obama: "Syrian refugees are 

like pilgrims on the Mayflower"

This Thanksgiving, President Obama is calling for Americans to 
lend a helping hand to another group of pilgrims fleeing persecution.
Common Sense Commentary: Let's get the record straight.
America was founded and settled by Pilgrim and Puritan
Christians seeking religious freedom.

Our national Thanksgiving holiday stems from the feast held in the Autumn of 1621 by the Pilgrims and the Wampanoag Indians to celebrate the colony's first successful harvest.

Much of the following taken from Wikipedia.
Don't miss the poem at the bottom of this page.

The First Thanksgiving by Brownscombe Copyright 2001 by Pilgrim Hall Museum As was the custom in England, the Pilgrims celebrated their harvest with a festival. The 50 remaining colonists and roughly 90 Wampanoag tribesmen attended the "First Thanksgiving." The major similarity between the first Jamestown settlers and the first Plymouth settlers was great human suffering.

November was too late to plant crops. Many settlers died of scurvy and malnutrition during that horrible first winter. Of the 102 original Mayflower passengers, only 44 survived. Again like in Jamestown, the kindness of the local Native Americans saved them from a frosty death.

The Pilgrims' remarkable courage was displayed the following spring. When the Mayflower returned to Europe, not a single Pilgrim deserted Plymouth.

Massasoit, chief of the Wampanoag tribe, signed a treaty with the Pilgrims in 1621, that was never broken. As a result, the two groups enjoyed a peaceful coexistence. By early 1621, the Pilgrims had built crude huts and a common house on the shores of Plymouth Bay. Soon neighboring Indians began to build relations with the Pilgrims. SQUANTO, a local Indian who had been kidnapped and taken to England nearly a decade before, served as an interpreter with the local tribes. Squanto taught the Pilgrims to fertilize the soil with dried fish remains to produce a stellar corn crop.

MASSASOIT, the chief of the nearby Wampanoags, signed a treaty of alliance with the Pilgrims in the summer. In exchange for assistance with defense against the feared Narragansett tribe, Massasoit supplemented the food supply of the Pilgrims for the first few years.

The manuscript, "Of Plymouth Plantation" was written over a period of years by William Bradford, the leader of the Plymouth Colony in MassachusettsOf Plymouth Plantation is regarded as the most authoritative account of the Pilgrims and the early years of the Colony they founded. Written between 1630 and 1651, the journal describes the story of the Pilgrims from 1608, when they settled in the Dutch Republic on the European mainland through the 1620 Mayflower voyage to the New World, until the year 1647. The book ends with a list, written in 1651, of Mayflower passengers and what happened to them.

William Bradford, a committed Christian wrote many extremely long poems among which was a poem entitled, "A Word To New Plymouth". Within this poem are the following lines ...

But them a place God did provide, 
In wilderness, and them did guide 
Unto the American shore, 
Where they made way for many more. 
They broke the ice themselves alone, 
And so became a stepping-stone 
For all others who, in like case, 
Were glad to find a resting place.

Have a blessed Thanksgiving being thankful for all God has provided here in what the Pilgrims founded and thought America to be .... "a resting place". RB

1 comment:

Ron Blair said...

Plymouth Colony Governor William Bradford declared in his journal that Squanto “became a special instrument sent of God” who didn’t leave them “till he died.”

Here's a Wall Street Journal story on Squanto: