Gingrich: The very first Americans

It was 392 years ago this month that a small band of religious pilgrims from England agreed in writing how they would govern their new settlement at Plymouth. Their covenant began, “In the name of God, Amen.”

Today, we know their agreement as the Mayflower Compact, and these pioneers as the Pilgrims.

They would have considered themselves among the earliest English settlers in the colonies — but in fact, they were some of the very first Americans.

These Pilgrims left their homes and came to this continent with nothing, to build for themselves a new life, to find freedom, and to participate in the great experiment of self-government.

That tremendous act of faith has been repeated many times in the four centuries since, by the millions of people who followed them to America to become a part of this incredible country.

Back aboard the Mayflower in November 1620, difficult years lay ahead for the Pilgrims. In large part, they and the other early settlers came here to find freedom and prosperity. Today, we are blessed to live in the freest and most prosperous nation on earth.

We have just been through a bitter and divisive election season, and for many of us, it did not turn out as we had wanted. But there are things much more important than politics. This Thanksgiving, we hope you can take the opportunity to enjoy the many wonderful pleasures of American life, including family, faith, and friends.

We have much to be thankful for.

Have a happy Thanksgiving!