The first winter for the Pilgrims was terrible. Between starvation, pneumonia, and tuberculosis, about half died.
The second winter was terrible, again with little food. Those who survived the first two winters only did so by the goodness of the Native Americans who graciously shared their food.
The third winter was far better, with plenty of food. In a few years, there was enough abundance that the Pilgrims had paid off their debt to those who financed their trip. They were alive, thriving, and free of debt.
Those are a few highlights of the Pilgrims’ story told by Karl Denninger in his article from 2006, which is reposted at Market-Ticker: The Truth About Thanksgiving.
What caused the change from starving to thriving is the part of the story I never heard growing up.