The Real History of the First Ever Thanksgiving in Texas
The first Thanksgiving to take place in Texas was not in November as it is observed today. According to the Texas Almanac, an online Texas reference book, the first "official" Thanksgiving that was observed in Texas happened on the first Thursday in December back in 1849, as it was proclaimed by then-Governor George Wood.
Furthermore, did you know the very first Thanksgiving to be celebrated on the North American continent is said to have taken place in what would one day become the state of Texas?
The date was April 30, 1598, when Spanish explorer Juan de Onate and his community of 500 people, including soldiers, colonists, wives and children, and 7000 heads of livestock arrived near the Rio Grande in what is now known as San Elizario, just outside of El Paso, Texas.
After surviving an eight-day torrential downpour, the expedition suffered from extreme heat and dry weather while crossing the Chihuahuan Desert. After arriving in what is now the Texas region, Juan de Onate and his expedition settled in and planned a day to give thanks for their arrival and survival.
The first Thanksgiving in North America was observed in Texas on April 30th, 1598, by Juan de Onate and his tribe, and the local native Pueblo Indians who welcomed and helped them settle into Texas after their long struggles to arrive here.
So, this Thanksgiving, you may want to think about Spanish explorer Juan de Onate, his expedition, the Pueblo Indians, and the struggles they fought to get where we are today.
I believe we Texans should take pride in the idea that some of the very first settlers in North America celebrated a "Thanksgiving" meal in what would later become known as the Lone Star State.