Desire Minter: Deciding About New Plymouth

November! Time to think about the Thanksgiving holiday and the myths and history surrounding the early English settlers at Plymouth, Massachusetts. I’ve written about facts and myth-busting relating to the “First Thanksgiving” and you’ll find those in our blog archives.

This year I want to share about some of the real people who came over on the Mayflower. We tend to generally call them “The Pilgrims,” but in reality there were three distinct groups on that ship which voyaged across the Atlantic in 1620. The Separatists, The Strangers, The Sailors. Continue reading

Thanksgiving 1621: The “First” Thanksgiving

It’s November 2017, and it’s time to introduce our new Historical Theme of the Month at Gazette665: Thanksgiving Through The Decades. I’ve collected four primary source excerpts about Thanksgiving celebrations in different eras of American History and will be sharing them every Friday this month.

What better decade to start than the 1620’s? After-all, in 1621, the colonists at New Plymouth settlement had a harvest celebration that has been dubbed “the first Thanksgiving” (even though there were thankful harvest gatherings in plenty of other cultures and locations in World History!).

Have you read primary sources about that first American Thanksgiving celebration? William Bradford and Edward Winslow – who were really there – wrote some brief accounts which form our understanding of that special event. (Looking for more blog posts about the Pilgrims? We’ve got a stash in our archive; just click here.) Continue reading

Historic Gardening: Practical & Pretty, Kitchen or Formal?

Moving forward along the U.S. History timeline, we get to the early settlers and the Colonial Era. In some cases, Native Americans shared their crop growing techniques with the new settlers.

Obviously, in the earliest settlement and colonial days (and along the expanding frontiers) gardening and crop growing focused on food production. But, as the colonials became well-established in larger towns or plantations, they wanted to make their homes and surroundings beautiful. They developed gardens that were both practical and pretty. Continue reading

Historic Gardening: “The Three Sisters”

May 2017’s Historical Theme of the Month on Gazette665 is Growing History: Gardening Through The Centuries, and we’ll be talking about some wonderful gardens and gardening trends in different eras of U.S. History. (Maybe we’ll do some World History gardening in another month!)

Today’s blog post focuses on the main purpose of crop growth and  shares some gardening techniques from northeastern Native American tribes.

Continue reading

Colonial Maritime Trade

19th-century-american-maritimeContinuing with our examination of the American maritime origins, the Colonial era stands as important time in the development of the trade routes, maritime industries, and the regional industry differences of the United States. (But remember – it’s not the United States yet. It’s still just the Thirteen Colonies.)

Colonists arrived in American by ship. Ocean going vessels remained their connection with the mother country – England – and a link to European culture, society, and…stuff. Throughout the colonial era, more Europeans continued to arrive; cities were built, usually near good harbors. The Atlantic bordered all the colonies, making it a relatively easy avenue for transportation. Trade routes made triangular shapes across the Atlantic, supplying European markets with raw materials and bringing back manufactured goods or slaves. However, toward the end of the Colonial Era, those trade routes and independence of the harbor cities would open contention between America and England.

Today’s blog post looks at facets of maritime history in the Colonial era: inter-colony transportation, triangular trade routes, fishing (and whaling), and the mercantile theory. Continue reading