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first thanksgiving meal?...

post #1 of 24
Thread Starter 

ky,

since you are the food historian i direct this mainly to you, but don't want to exclude anyone else with knowledge or even opinions. i'm hoping someone can shed some light here. if this is a rehash i apologize... i must have been playing hookie that day!

while prepping and cooking like a screaming banshee for thanksgiving i started to question and discuss whether the original thanksgiving dinner even had any resemblance to today's food orgy...wasn't it the pilgrims who were starving and the indians who fed them? i'm quite sure the indians didn't have marshmallows or bread or cranberries to make cranberry sauce, or butter, or even ovens. my guess is that the first thanksgiving meal was spit roasted wild turkey and some sort of roasted corn or corn gruel, maybe potatoes and maybe some sort of squash(pumpkin) or maybe they just had some sort of stew, but i don't think they had pots then did they.. clay pots they buried in the ground perhaps?.....thanks...it's been bugging me....

joey

 

food is like love...it should be entered into with abandon or not at all        Harriet Van Horne

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food is like love...it should be entered into with abandon or not at all        Harriet Van Horne

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post #2 of 24

Game, Game and more Game, no cows yet, Fish, clams after all this is New England. If they were stupid enough to have this feast outside in the winter, they would have froze their arses off...............Someone had to stop in Hershey Pennsylvania to get the chocolate for the S'mores. Don't anyone even try to tell me they didn't have S'mores at this gathering............

post #3 of 24

Given that some people here think all I do is search the internet and present the results as my own knowledge I'm not sure if I should answer this. But, what the heck. Being as it's Joey who asked I'll take a chance.

 

Billy, the so-called first Thanksgiving was held in September, and was a combination harvest celebration and political rally designed to try and cement relations with the Natives. Winter was not an issue.

Now, to answer some of Joey's questions:

 Yes, they did have pots. Check not only the bill of lading of the Mayflower, but of other ships that brought goods of various kinds. Primarily, cooking pots would have been copper and/or brass, plus cast-iron kettles and Dutch ovens. Keep in mind that this was not held the first year, when many did, indeed, starve over the winter.

 In terms of what they ate: Turkey was definitely not part of the meal. The primary protein was wildfowl (sea ducks, mostly, such as eider and old squaw) and seafood---including clams, as Billy notes. Governor Bradford reports having sent hunters out to look for deer, but that's the last mention of it. So, whether or not they were successful, and whether or not the Natives brought venison to the feast, remain open questions.

Squash was fairly plentiful. The Pilgrims referred to all squashes as "pompions," and most of them were New World varieties which the Natives had taught them to grow. Cranberries are native to New England, and they likely had them at the feast, albeit not in the form we think of. We know that Natives of the region used them in Pemmican. Whether that was part of the feast deponent answers not.

 

Corn was referred to either as maize or as Indian Corn, to differentiate it from other grains. "Corn," throughout Europe of the time, was a generic word for grains, and was used, variously, for wheat, rye, and buckwheat. All of the actually corn grown back then was what we call field corn. There was no sweet corn, to speak of, until the 20th century, and it didn't become popular until after WWII.

 

Roasted corn was eaten when the corn was still green. Other than that, it was ground and used as mush (poor babies had to suffer with polenta), or as a flour for making breads and puddings. The puddings were likely boiled, rather than baked. Most likely it was ground in what is commonly (but incorrectly) called a hominy block. Image a giant mortar and pestle, with the mortar carved into a section of tree trunk. Grinding corn in them is a slow process, and results in a rather coarse meal called "samp." The machine is, technically, a samp block. Natives used both samp blocks and holes bored into rock to grind corn.

 

There were other foods served, but I can't recall them off the top of my head. Keep in mind that my expertise is more about the foodways of a century later, and, primarily those of the South, which, in terms of both type and plentitude, was very different. But the obvious point, which is exactly what you were discussing, is that the "first Thanksgiving" had little to do with the dishes we commonly think of as traditional.

 


Edited by KYHeirloomer - 11/29/11 at 5:24am
They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
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They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
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post #4 of 24

Billy, fwiw, the chocolate trade, at the time, was controlled by Spain. So if they wanted S'mores, somebody would have had to detour through Miami, rather than Hershey, to get it. rolleyes.gif

 

They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
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They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
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post #5 of 24
Thread Starter 

ky,

 thanks so much for the history lesson..i knew you'd know or at least have a good idea about what went on...i haven't replied because you pretty much answered my questions...then a few more popped up... questions you answered were concerning what foods were available and what might have been eaten...my question now is how they cooked the foods, besides on open fires and spits. i realize that the pilgrims had pots and pans from the ships but the indians didn't have copper or cast iron or brass available to them and hides just weren't heavy duty enough.....did they bake/roast by burying things in the ground do you think? also, yes there were cranberry bogs, but no sugar..maybe added fruit like apples?.....did the pilgrims still have flour and sugar left from the ships stores? seems unlikely they had anything left in their stores if they were starving....not even flour to bake bread...did the pilgrims even know how to hunt, or did the indians show them how?.....how did they cook the clams and oysters do you suppose? or did they eat them raw...and who was the first one to try that?...that rabbit in mustard sauce recipe from here might have come in handy! oops, forgot no condiments! actually, that's another question...what about condiments? 

thanks again ky for the info and for always taking the time

joey

food is like love...it should be entered into with abandon or not at all        Harriet Van Horne

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food is like love...it should be entered into with abandon or not at all        Harriet Van Horne

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post #6 of 24

You looking for an answer, Joey?  Or an encyclopedia?

 

To understand how people did things you need to know who they were, what their world-view was, and the technology available to them. Not always an easy task. But a lot of your questions become self-answerable just by knowing those things.

 

British North America divided into four distinct cultural matrixes. Unfortunately, due to how history is taught in school, and the fact that virtually every popular historian (not to mention some trained historians who should know better), we all grow up with a mental image of just one of them. More times than not, when teachers and popular historians say things like "colonial" or "early American," they're talking about New England.

 

So, let's look at the folks who settled the Bay Colony. The pilgrims did not just leave Europe; they fled it because of religious persecution. They got on a boat, which took them to the wrong place, at the wrong time of year. And they didn't know anything about hunting and farming; they were artisans from the big cities. No wonder they starved that first New England winter. If the Natives hadn't been friendly, New England would still belong to them.

 

Contrast that with the people who settled Virginia (historically, the cultural matrix called the Chesapeake). They weren't fleeing anything. They were gentlemen adventurers who came here to get rich. And the easiest way to make money in the New World was to grow something. They already knew all they needed to know about farming. And they did it in a much more clement environment. There rarely was any sort of food deprivation in Virginia. If you reached out your hand the land and the sea happily fed you. When there were problems it had to do with political and other reasons, not because there was a true lack of food.

 

So, for the Pilgrims, the primary task was adapting what they knew to the conditions and materials encountered. They had pots and pans and other cookware. And they had cabins and hearths to cook in. But, as an example of adapting, they would have initially hung those pots from a wooden lug pole, rather than a crane, cuz metal was scarce and expensive. Outdoors they’d have hung them from a wooden tripod.

 

Another part of the problem is that much of what we "know" about those days comes from untrained observers who jotted a line or two in their journals. The classic case is Three Sisters planting. A typical observation would be, "The Natives plant their corn, beans, and pompions together in the same field." While we can interpret that several ways, we don't really know what “plant together” means in that context.

 

While the Pilgrims did learn much from the Natives, it's likely they would have adapted local ingredients to the cooking styles they were familiar with, as well as fusing the two cuisines.

One other thing to keep in mind: It’s taken as a truism among anthropologists that when two cultures come in conflict the more efficient one will prevail. So, contrary to popular wisdom, it was not firearms that destroyed the Native culture. Rather, as soon as the first Native woman saw a metal pot, their lifestyle was doomed.

When did the New England Natives acquire metal cookware? I dunno for sure. But for a realistic answer, correlate the French trade in Canada to when the Pilgrims settled. Metal cookware was an integral part of that trade. And the north/south “caravan” routes were fully established long before European contact.

FWIW, French fisherman were working the coast of Nova Scotia as early as 1504, and, according to food historian Patricia Mitchell, it wasn’t long after that they started trading bits of metal, iron kettles, and axes to the Natives in exchange for furs. So it’s possible the New England tribes were familiar with these products before the Pilgrims landed.  

 

hides just weren't heavy duty enough

Not necessarily so. A common cooking method among natives was to boil food in hides. A hide was hung to form a bag, and filled with water and foodstuff. The rocks, heated in a fire, would be dropped into the bag to heat the water.

 

I’ve made bean bread that way, using Cherokee recipes, and it’s just as slow a process as it sounds.

 

.....did they bake/roast by burying things in the ground do you think?

Not baking, if you’re thinking breadstuffs. But pit roasting proteins was common, and the Pilgrims no doubt adopted that technique, especially for large items that wouldn’t fit in a Dutch oven. They also adapted it using equipment available to them. The bean pot, for instance.

also, yes there were cranberry bogs, but no sugar..maybe added fruit like apples?....

There were other sweeteners available. Maple syrup and sugar, for instance, date from pre-contact. And a sweet syrup was made from pumpkin---but likely wasn’t available, yet, at the first Thanksgiving.

Here’s something that is pure speculation: Given the availability of sweeteners, and given the British fascination with puddings, it’s quite possible that cranberries might have been used to make a fruit pudding. I’ve never seen any references to it, but it wouldn’t surprise me in the least. I can easily see such a dish made with cranberries, cornmeal, and maple sugar. Or, leave out the cornmeal, throw in some nuts, and you have a cranberry compote---near enough to cranberry sauce to make no never mind.

did the pilgrims even know how to hunt, or did the indians show them how?.....

See above. One irony of the first-winter starvation was that they were surrounded by food. They just didn’t know it, nor how to harvest it.

how did they cook the clams and oysters do you suppose?

Europeans were not unfamiliar with shellfish. The surprise was the incredible quantity of it---oyster beds that stretched for miles, for instance. So they likely ate them both raw and cooked, as they had done in Europe.

...and who was the first one to try that?...

A very brave man! rolleyes.gif

that rabbit in mustard sauce recipe from here might have come in handy! oops, forgot no condiments! actually, that's another question...what about condiments? 

A good question, and one that depends on how you define condiments. For instance, sumac, as a cooking ingredient, was all but unknown in Europe, but was commonly used as a citrus substitute in the New World.

Salt and pepper most certainly were among the things brought from Europe on the Mayflower and other early ships. Mustard seed might easily have been part of the ladings as well. It’s not something I’ve ever looked into.

As a rule, Native American foodstuffs were much blander than European. Settlers really preferred bold flavors. But I have no idea when spices where being imported into New England, whereas they were being used in Virginia almost from the start.

Whew! I warned you there weren't short answers.

 

They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
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They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
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post #7 of 24
Thread Starter 

aargh ky the cyber monkeys ate my homework!...i had just written a nice reply to you and it just went zoom.....will try to rewrite later...right now it's cocktail time...make mine a double!

joey

essence was that you rock...and to thank you

food is like love...it should be entered into with abandon or not at all        Harriet Van Horne

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food is like love...it should be entered into with abandon or not at all        Harriet Van Horne

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post #8 of 24

Just a comment on the seafood.  While clams and oysters have been mentioned, it seems to me that lobsters were fairly common in that area back then.

 

But I don't know of many holiday traditions involving the Thanksgiving lobster, so I could be mistaken.

 

mjb.

 

 

Food nourishes my body.  Cooking nourishes my soul.
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Food nourishes my body.  Cooking nourishes my soul.
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post #9 of 24
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by teamfat View Post

Just a comment on the seafood.  While clams and oysters have been mentioned, it seems to me that lobsters were fairly common in that area back then.

 

But I don't know of many holiday traditions involving the Thanksgiving lobster, so I could be mistaken.

 

mjb.

 

 



another brave man who first ate a lobster?!!

joey

food is like love...it should be entered into with abandon or not at all        Harriet Van Horne

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food is like love...it should be entered into with abandon or not at all        Harriet Van Horne

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post #10 of 24
Thread Starter 

holy smoke signals ky... you truly rock!!!

clearly, i was truant for more than just one day in american history class....a point about the cooking pots used by the indains. while i know they used hides for water, stews, gruels etc. i am more curious about how they baked and what they used. obviously not how we know baking...no martha stewart homewares! the anasazi had kivas to bake their breads...did the american indians have something similair? did they wrap their meat and bury it in the ground much like the hawaiians or the west indians do with pig? i do remember in the west indies the islanders would often roast pigs and goats in the ground. they would also roast breadfruit which you'd HAVE to be starving to eat...why capt cook ever bought that back is beyond me...must have been able to travel well...it has the consistency and color of cement. the islanders would let a fire burn down and throw the whole breadfruit in the firepit and bury them in the hot ash where they would roast for hours.....still didn't improve the taste!

again, thank you for the amazing chunk of your time you put into this....and again,you rock, my friend...

joey

food is like love...it should be entered into with abandon or not at all        Harriet Van Horne

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food is like love...it should be entered into with abandon or not at all        Harriet Van Horne

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post #11 of 24

Teamfat: Lobsters abounded in those days, as did salmon. In fact, not too many years after the Pilgrims landed, laws had to be passed regarding how often those could be fed to servants and bondpersons because lobsters and salmon were so plentiful and cheap some masters would feed their servants with them everyday. Indeed, when the salmon were running, people would harvest them with pitchforks, the rivers were so thick with them.

 

Versions of the New England clam bake go back to pre-contact days. So, it's likely the Natives had taught the process to the Europeans. But I'm unaware of any specific references to lobster at the first Thanksgiving.

 

As with shellfish, the colonists were not unfamiliar with lobster. The European lobster lacks the big claws of the American, but that's the only substantial difference. And its probable that fishermen in the 1500s had been introduced to the American lobster.

 

clearly, i was truant for more than just one day in american history class

 

Wouldn't have mattered, Joey. They don't teach this stuff in school. In fact, nowadays they barely teach history at all. frown.gif

 

about how they baked and what they used

 

When talking about Native Americans, it is dangerous to say "they." You have to be more specific. Indeed, saying "Native American" is like saying "European." Both are all but meaningless terms.

 

You don't even have to go region to region to find differences. Very often, tribes living next to each other, did things very differently. So, while we can list many of the ways cooking was done by Native Americans, without some research you don't want to assign that method to specific groups.

 

For instance, the Southern Woodland tribes made boiled breads---using corn, bean, and, sometimes, acorn flours. Did the Natives of Massachusettes do so? I've never seen any reference to them doing so. I have, however, seen undocumented references to the northerners making a sort of pancake by building a fire on a flat rock, moving the fire along, and pouring the batter onto the hot rock. Johnny cakes and hoe cakes supposedly evolved from that.

 

 Did they really? I dunno. But if you try it, use lots of oil or you'll have cornbread-coated rocks to deal with. That a fact! Just don't ask me how I know.

 

Or, another example: Northern coastal tribes had clambakes. Southern coastal tribes made crab cakes. Which "they" represents seafood usage?

 

It's not just food. You can almost locate where you are by examining Native-made baskets. Among the differences: In New England they used birch and spruce bark. In the coastal area of the south, sweetgrass was the material of choice. In the southern woodlands, it was river cane. So, how did "they" make baskets?

 

There are at least 13 basic patterns of center-seam moccasins, varying by tribe and region. Add in the pucker-toe styles, and the two-piece plains styles, and the high-ankle styles of the Southwest. Now tell me how "they" made footwear.

 

I've seen lots of claims by popular historians as to the use of bannock type breads. But, based on any documentation I've seen, bannock was a product of middle- and western-Canada, and depended on wheat. So it's doubtful, at best, that it would have been found in 17th century New England. Certainly not during the early days. By the same token, buckwheat was one of the earliest European crops sown by the Pilgrims. But I have no idea how they used it. Kasha? Ground into a flour? Fed to the livestock? We know that food adaptation was a two-way street, so, did the Natives adopt buckwheat? Again, I have no idea. But I'm sure that information is available.

 

As I mentioned above, pit cooking was pretty common. I've seen it done with both wrapped and unwrapped meat. That is, in some cases the vegetable matter was layered over the ashes with a second layer covering the meat, as well as the meat being encased by it. Essentially a clambake is pit cooking (albiet in a shallow pit) using the layered method. Nowadays we cover all the layers with canvas or some such. Back in the day, however, the pit was backfilled with sand to seal it.

 

One of the differences between New England and The Chesapeake is that New England very successfully replicated the English village system. Which means one of the first community projects would have been a beehive oven. The question is, how quickly did they have those ovens operating. And once they were on-line, what effect, if any, did they have on Native life? There's probably a masters thesis buried in answering that question.

 

One thing to keep in mind with this discussion. I have more questions than answers when it comes to colonial Southern foodways, where I have some expertise (enough to have published two books on the subject, in fact). When it comes to New England I can guess, and speculate more than answering definatively. Which, as you've no doubt noticed, is why my responses are filled with qualifiers such as "likely," "possibly," "supposedly," etc.

 

BTW, the only thing I know about breadfruit is that three of the greatest seafaring books of all time resulted from that trade.

They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
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They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
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post #12 of 24
Thread Starter 

as an aside to what is being taught in history class...a woman i work with says her daughter brought home a project that the students had been working on for thanksgiving...she had made a calistoga wagon!! alrighty then......

joey

food is like love...it should be entered into with abandon or not at all        Harriet Van Horne

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food is like love...it should be entered into with abandon or not at all        Harriet Van Horne

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post #13 of 24

What's a few hundred years among friends?
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by durangojo View Post

as an aside to what is being taught in history class...a woman i work with says her daughter brought home a project that the students had been working on for thanksgiving...she had made a calistoga wagon!! alrighty then......

joey



 

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Specialties: MasterCook/RecipeFox; Culinary logistics; Personal Chef; Small restaurant owner; Caterer
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Chef,
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post #14 of 24

I can top that, Joey. It's easy when you work at a living history museum and the teachers have no idea what's going on.

 

Early this past season we had a group come in. Fourth graders, as I recall. The teacher, as so often happens, sits them down on the benches by the front gate to discuss what she should have taken care of in class the previous day.

 

"Now, children," she told them, "today we're going to see how the Pilgrims lived when they came to Kentucky."

 

The sad part is that this isn't an isolated case.

 

Before you laugh, give some thought to the fact that these are the people to whom we entrust our children.

They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
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They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
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post #15 of 24

she had made a calistoga wagon

 

I assume you mean Conestoga, Joey.

 

Ironically, our image of those, thanks to Hollywood, is also incorrect. Conestogas were freight wagons, which could carry something on the order of 2.5 tons of goods. The coloquial term "stogie," for cigars, comes from them.

 

The transport used on the immigrant trains was primarily farm wagons---tiny, by comparison. Their only similarity is that on the immigrant trains wooden bows where attached to support canvas covers as protection from the elements.

 

If you want to learn what it was really like to pack all your worldly goods in a box measuring roughly 4 x 7 feet and spend the next nine months walking across the continent, there's a really great book by Lillian Schlissel called "Women's Dairies of the Western Journey." It's a collection of diary entries and letters written by women making the trek. And it's one of the most insightful records of the wagon train era I've ever read.

 

Then, if you want to actually experience what it was like, there's a group out of Bayard, Nebraska, that conducts multi-day wagon train trips on part of the actuall Oregon Trail. With one exception (that being a potty wagon), you live exactly as the immigrants did.

They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
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They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
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post #16 of 24
Thread Starter 

thanks ky for the wagon correction....book sounds facinating...i'm not interested enough to actually live that way..no potty wagon for me thank you...i do go out on pack trips(horses) for 3-4 days at a time, and after the 3rd day, i'm pretty much toast...i want a hot shower and a cocktail with ice! have you heard of the book "tom boy mine".... it's used here in history classes...those were soome tough women...living at 13,000 ft above telluride...in the winter...i've been there in the summer and had to wear a ski jacket!  right now i'm reading about 3 sailors who encounter the same hurricane, on different boats in the caribbean...they all perished.."at the mercy of the sea"......sorry for the sidetrack.....thanks again...shall we tackle christmas?....just kidding!!!!!!

joey

food is like love...it should be entered into with abandon or not at all        Harriet Van Horne

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food is like love...it should be entered into with abandon or not at all        Harriet Van Horne

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post #17 of 24

shall we tackle christmas?....

 

Well, we sort of did, on Koukouvagia's Winter Solstice thread.

They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
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They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
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post #18 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by KYHeirloomer View Post


Before you laugh, give some thought to the fact that these are the people to whom we entrust our children.



Or, we might phrase that differently, KY.  This is how much we care about our children that we pay teachers accordingly and get what we pay for.   

 

 

"Siduri said, 'Gilgamesh, where are you roaming? You will never find the eternal life that you seek...Savour your food, make each of your days a delight, ... let music and dancing fill your house, love the child who holds you by the hand and give your wife pleasure in your embrace.'"
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"Siduri said, 'Gilgamesh, where are you roaming? You will never find the eternal life that you seek...Savour your food, make each of your days a delight, ... let music and dancing fill your house, love the child who holds you by the hand and give your wife pleasure in your embrace.'"
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post #19 of 24

I don't buy into that, Siduri.

 

Teachers, nowdays, make a fairly good wage. And they still have that incredible benefits package that's always gone with the turf (who else do you know gets about four months of paid vacation annually?). If you want that non-commensurate pay argument to hold water, you talk about firemen, and policemen, and all those good folks who dress in BDUs.

 

Teaching is like any other field; there are those who are dedicated and professional, and those who are not. It just seems that the education field is dominated by the latter types, and it gets worse every year. That's one of the reasons home schooling has been growing by leaps and bounds.

They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
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They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
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post #20 of 24

Let's watch the politics kids, CT is becoming very strict.  It would be a shame to get a Thanksgiving thread locked.

 

An elementary school teacher in Kentucky, with five years of college and graduate education, earns a little less than $50,000.  A patrol officer with an AA and a couple of years on the job earns about the same -- more with overtime.   In my opinion, they're both underpaid.  

 

KY your wing is showing,

BDL


Edited by boar_d_laze - 12/8/11 at 9:21am
post #21 of 24

The question is answered very simply - if it's such a good deal to teach how come it doesn't attract that many highly qualified and motivated people? 

Not that there aren't any, there are lots of dedicated people. But it;s a profession and should be compensated in such a way to attract professionals.  

Good teachers are a treasure, and we put our kids in their hands - I'd think we would want to pay gold to those who take care of our kids when we're not there, and who educate our future citizens!  There's no politics in that, just love of kids and the self interest of our own future.  When I'm old, some of those elementary school kids may just end up being my doctors!

"Siduri said, 'Gilgamesh, where are you roaming? You will never find the eternal life that you seek...Savour your food, make each of your days a delight, ... let music and dancing fill your house, love the child who holds you by the hand and give your wife pleasure in your embrace.'"
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"Siduri said, 'Gilgamesh, where are you roaming? You will never find the eternal life that you seek...Savour your food, make each of your days a delight, ... let music and dancing fill your house, love the child who holds you by the hand and give your wife pleasure in your embrace.'"
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post #22 of 24

KY that was all an excellent read and you've got me wondering about how the natives here in southeast wisconsin did things.  I won't have you type me a story (unless you want to) but could you direct me to some resources?

post #23 of 24

Unfortunately I don't know much about the Natives of that area, and what little I know is more about crafts than about food. But I'm sure the web is full of info. What you might have to do is search based on tribal identity, such as Chippawa, Ojibwa, Sac, Fox, Potawatomi,  etc.

 

Just guessing, but I would think there was a lot of overlap between the foodways of the Great Lakes and the upper Missouri tribes. If that supposition is true, the book, Buffalo Bird Woman's Garden might provide some insights.

 

Keep in mind, too, that European influences on that area would be more French than British, and searches under French Colonialism, New France, and such might bear results. Also check out some of the living history museums, such as Fort Chartres (sp) and the like. I'm sure some of them have foodways programs.  

 

There are, too, numerous museums in your general area that can help. There's a great one, for instance, on Washington Island. The curator there is very helpful, and I'm sure she'd be happy to give you direction.

They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
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They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
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post #24 of 24

Ben, although they tend to be more crafts oriented, this group might be helpful:

 

National Center for Great Lakes Native American Culture

PO Box 1063

Portland, IN 47371

linda.andrews@ncglnac.com

 

 

They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
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They have taken the oath of the brother in blood, in leavened bread and salt. Rudyard Kipling
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