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The Story of the Mayflower and the First Thanksgiving for Children: History for Kids - FreeSchool

The Story of the Mayflower and the First Thanksgiving for Children: History for Kids - FreeSchool
You're watching FreeSchool! After trade and communication between Europe and the Americas began following Columbus's voyage in 1492, many Europeans began to seek opportunities in the New World. One such group, now known as the Pilgrims, sailed from England to North America in 1620. Some of them wanted to sail to America because they thought they could make money there. Some of them were looking for greater religious freedoms. They all thought that a new life in a new land could give them
the story of the mayflower and the first thanksgiving for children history for kids   freeschool
what they were looking for. In the summer of 1620, a ship called the

Mayflower

as well as a second ship called the Speedwell set sail from England towards the Americas. Shortly after their journey began, however, the Speedwell sprang a leak and they had to stop to make repairs. They set sail again, but they had only traveled a few hundred miles from England when the Speedwell began leaking again, forcing both ships to return to Plymouth. By then it was September, and the Pilgrims decided to
abandon the Speedwell. Some of the Speedwell's passengers moved onto the

Mayflower

, and some decided to stay in England. On September 6, 1620, the

Mayflower

set sail a third time for the Americas. Around 130 people were crammed onto the small

Mayflower

: about 100 were passengers, 70 adults and 30

children

. The rest were the ship's crew. There were animals on board the

Mayflower

as well - pigs, goats, chickens, and even some pet dogs. The ship was only 106 feet or 32 meters long and 25
the story of the mayflower and the first thanksgiving for children history for kids   freeschool
feet or 7 and a half meters wide, so the voyage was extremely crowded. When the weather was bad, the passengers had to stay below deck while the ship rocked and tilted in the waves. Many people were sick for the entire trip. Two people died, and one baby was born while they crossed the ocean. For those who were well, it must have been a long and boring journey. Some passengers read books or played card games, but by the time they arrived in the New World they must have been very glad for the
voyage to end. Land was sighted on November 9th, but there was a problem: they had landed too far north! The original destination of the

Mayflower

was supposed to be Virginia, but storms and rough seas had blown them off course so they had landed at what is now Massachusetts. They tried to sail south, but by now the winter weather had made the seas stormy, and so they decided to stay, and anchored in the harbor at Cape Cod on November 11th. They looked around for a good place to settle, and
the story of the mayflower and the first thanksgiving for children history for kids   freeschool
by December they had moved to a place they named Plymouth. The

first

winter in the New World was a terrible one for the passengers of the

Mayflower

. They were not prepared for the cold weather. They did not have enough food. Terrible sickness came. By the time the spring of 1621 came, only about half of the passengers and crew were still alive. In April, the

Mayflower

and her crew returned to England, leaving the Pilgrims to try and survive alone. They might all have died that year if it were
not for help they received from the Native Americans that lived in their area. One man in particular, named Squanto, taught the English settlers many things that they needed to know. He taught them how to plant corn, how to fish, and how to live in their new home. He knew how to speak English, and helped interpret for the settlers and the Wampanoag tribe so they could speak to each other. That fall, there was a good harvest and plenty of food. The Pilgrims had a celebration that lasted for three
days, and they invited their new friends the Wampanoags to celebrate with them. This feast is often called, 'The

First

Thanksgiving

.' I hope you enjoyed learning the

story

of the

Mayflower

and the

First

Thanksgiving

today. Goodbye till next time!