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Culinary Historians of Canada (Virtual): The Real Story of the “First Thanksgiving” in America in1621

November 17, 2021 @ 7:30 pm - 9:00 pm


Most of the stories we learned about the “first Thanksgiving” in the Americas in 1621 are wrong. John Ota explains what really happened.

As part of the research for his recent book, The Kitchen, Culinary Historians of Canada member and author, John Ota traveled to Plymouth, Massachusetts, where he cooked a meal over an open fire with renowned Pilgrim Foodways historian Kathleen Wall.

On the 400th anniversary of the Harvest Celebration Feast involving the New England colonists and the Wampanoag native people, John will share his experiences of the culinary history, architecture, cooking methods and the dishes from the first Thanksgiving in America of 1621. He will also talk about the history of Thanksgiving in Canada, with an eye to similarities, differences and of course, the different dates . (This year American Thanksgiving will take place Thursday November 25, 2021 while Canadian Thanksgiving took place October 11, 2021).

The presentation will include over 100 visual images, recipes from 1621, as well as truths and misconceptions about this favorite holiday occasion. Yes, there was turkey – but it was not the main event!

John Ota loves Thanksgiving! He is the author of The Kitchen, the best-selling book about his journey through history in search of the perfect design. He has degrees from the University of Toronto and the Schools of Architecture at the University of British Columbia and Columbia University. John has worked in architecture offices in Toronto, New York and Vancouver. He has chaired the awards committee of the Ontario Association of Architects and served on the Toronto Historical Board. He is a proud member of the Culinary Historians of Canada.


November 17, 2021
7:30 pm - 9:00 pm




Culinary Historians of Canada
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