Essay Sample on Pilgrims & Natives Unite: Ric Burns' Doc & Jean Ferris' Painting

Paper Type:  Book review
Pages:  3
Wordcount:  668 Words
Date:  2023-02-12


In his documentary, Ric Burns explains that the First Thanks Giving took place after a time of mourning where the Pilgrims and the Natives had lost many people. They settled in the Native land of the Wampanoag, where they built their homes and planted (Burns). They later had a lot of harvests which they celebrated with the Wampanoag. Ric Burns goes ahead to say that the Pilgrims, however, did not respect the other native tribes. In Jean Ferris' painting, the Pilgrims and the Natives have gathered to share a meal. He depicts it as a peaceful gathering with a variety of feasting foods, including blueberries (Ferris). In the article, Maya Salam explains how the story of the First Thanks Giving is inaccurate (Maya). This paper focuses on discussing how the First Thanks Giving and the encounter between the natives and the Pilgrims have been portrayed in American history.

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My previous understanding of Thanks Giving was that the Pilgrims had invited the Natives for the feast. I also understood that Thank Giving was held to celebrate the harvest from the Natives and the Pilgrims. My understanding is different from what I have learnt from the sources in that the sources depict a bad relationship between the Pilgrims and the Natives (Maya). Also, according to primary sources, before First Thanks Giving was held, many people had lost their lives.

The alliance became of interest to both the Wampanoag and the Pilgrims were in 1621 as they wanted to guarantee protection on both sides on the treaty (Burns). In the agreement, they promised not to hurt each other where anyone who broke the peace would be sent to Plymouth as a punishment. Massasoit and his people did not attack the Pilgrims as they had been sent gifts showing that the Pilgrims wanted peace.

The Natives wanted guns, metallic utensils, and liquor from the English. The English people however needed corn and furs from the Natives. Besides, the bond between the Wampanoag and the Pilgrims made some Pilgrims anxious as they believed that the Wampanoag outnumbered them. They felt that in case of an attack, they would be defeated. In the War, the Pequot were defeated and forced to sign the Treaty of Hartford (40-45 minutes). The treaty declared that the Pequot nation was dissolved and no Pequot would inhabit their former territory. The outcome made the Massasoit, and the Indian Groups acknowledge the power of English people over them. They no longer posed an obstacle to the English people.

The Praying Towns were the towns created by the Puritans for the Native Americans. The main goal of the Prayer towns was to convert the local Natives to Christianity (50-55 minutes). The Massasoit and the other Indian Groups mistrusted the missionaries and their efforts as they believed that they were brainwashing their people. They felt that the missionaries were changing their values and beliefs.

King Phillips war was caused by the execution of three Metacom's men by the English colonialists. There was also a rise in population, which led to the Colonialists unremitting desire for more land. Communication between the two groups had begun to go down, causing the conflict (55-1 hour). The early victory of the Natives war affected the colonialists in that most of their settlements were destroyed and more of their people killed. The head of King Phillip at the Plymouth symbolizes that the English were dominant as they conquered the King of the Natives. The Thanks Giving celebration of the 1676 and that of 1621 was different in that in 1621 the Natives were celebrating a harvest after a time of mourning. In 1676 however, they were celebrating the good fortune of establishing their community. In 1676, the Native Americas were not included in the feast.

Work Cited

Burns, Ric "The First Thanksgiving" of The Pilgrims Documentary (2015)

Ferris, Jean "The First Thanksgiving - 1621" (1915)

Michael, Johnsonhttps "After the Mayflower"13 September 2016 // Accessed 16 September 2019

Salam, Maya "Everything You Have Learned About Thanksgiving is Wrong" of New York Times (2017)

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Essay Sample on Pilgrims & Natives Unite: Ric Burns' Doc & Jean Ferris' Painting. (2023, Feb 12). Retrieved from

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