DYK? According to some native traditions, people had been in the Americas for at least 12,000 years before the Europeans arrived.
Some history books even depict the arrival of the Mayflower as the first contact that natives had with the Europeans. This is also not true. Wampanoags had a history of contact with Europeans, and it was not one of happiness.There was a lot of violence, and the Europeans even took some natives as slaves.
At least 2 Wampanoags knew English and had already been to Europe and back before the Pilgrims even arrived in what is now America.
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1️⃣ Myth: The English settlers were called Pilgrims.
When they first arrived in New England, the settlers were referred to as Saints or Separatists. They weren't officially called Pilgrims until 1820, 200 years after the English arrived in Plymouth.
2️⃣ Myth: The first Thanksgiving was a major historical event.
It was just a harvest. President Abraham Lincoln officially declared Thanksgiving to be an official holiday in 1863, 300 years after the first "Thanksgiving" happened.
3️⃣ Myth: The Pilgrims sparked an alliance with the natives.
Wampanoag leader Ousamequin reached out to the English to form an alliance out of desperation. His people had been decimated by disease, and he saw the alliance as a way to help protect his people from tribal rebels.
4️⃣ Myth: The Pilgrims were kind to the natives.
The English were unprepared for life in the colonies, so they raided the graves and storehouses of the natives that they later asked for help.
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📸: The Atlantic
Source: National Geographic, Smithsonian