The Origin Of Thanksgiving

generic thanksgiving iStockphoto

This column was written by CBS News Early Show co-anchor Harry Smith.
Thanksgiving truly is my favorite holiday. It's just a feast and a moment to celebrate what's important to us.

So let us take a moment and say thank you to those pilgrims in Massachusetts who cooked up this idea in the first place.

The pilgrims figured out they would starve to death had not a Native American slave named Squanto taught them how to catch fish and plant corn.

After the harvest in 1621 the settlers invited their neighbors the Wampanoag Indians over for a three day feast.

So pleased were the Indians with the party, they went out and killed several deer as a present for their hosts.

Back then I suppose both settlers and natives believed there was enough room in North America for just about everybody.

But, the settlers kept coming and the natives kept getting pushed farther west.

If they had to do it over again I wonder if the Wampanoags might have ended that party a little differently.

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