McClancy’s Thanksgiving

The story of the first Thanksgiving and how it leads to McClancy’s own family celebration

McClancys Thanksgiving

Zoe Attard Portelli, McClancy News Editor

Thanksgiving is a significant holiday in American culture that has been celebrated for over two centuries. Most of us have heard the history of this celebration, or even know it like the back of our hands. But, its history should be retold every year, or 158 years ago Abraham Lincoln wouldn’t have made it a national holiday.  And so, all the way back to 1620, the story of the first Thanksgiving has its beginnings, when a ship called the Mayflower arrived in the “New World.”  Aboard this ship were over one hundred religious separatists escaping for their freedom, or the prospect of wealth.  They came to Cape Cod and started the Plymouth Rock colony.  Our Pilgrims had a rough first winter and by March, only half of the original occupants of the Mayflower survived. Then they were greeted by an English-speaking member of the Abenaki tribe, who would later bring Squantom, of the Puwtuxet tribe, to visit the Plymouth colony.  He taught the Pilgrims how to cultivate corn, extract maple sap, catch fish, and avoid poisonous plants.  He even assisted them in making an alliance with the Wampanoag tribe.  Finally, in November of 1621, the Pilgrims had their first successful harvest, which the Governor, William Bradford, wanted to commemorate with a feast. He invited his colony’s Native American allies and celebrated what is known today as the first Thanksgiving. When the history of our holiday is told, we tend to wonder how it relates to the way we celebrate now.  The premise is about giving thanks and being thankful for what we have.  This is why we filled out papers on what we were thankful for during school. Most of us were thankful for our faith, family, friends, and education, but what we are most grateful for is each other. The McClancy student and faculty bodies make up a family.  We share in celebrations and come together when needed. This was especially shown during our Thanksgiving liturgy when our donations were announced.  We truly got into the Thanksgiving Spirit this year, due to all of our giving and expressions of gratitude for all that we have.