ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – We are less than 24 hours away from Thanksgiving, a holiday that brings families and friends together every year. The way we celebrate today looks very different than how our founding fathers started this celebration.

Thanksgiving is one of our nation’s favorite and most reliable traditions. However, it wasn’t always that way. Not only has the food changed, but the way people celebrate it. Now we have candles to make our homes smell and look good for guests, but before people would have candles as a form of lighting.

They would also have feasts that would have 20-course meals and they would usually start at 2 p.m. in the afternoon and go all the way to around 7 p.m. The food would be different than how we have it today, some would make it saltier others would make it sweeter.

New Mexico’s first thanksgiving began as early as 1598. That’s the year that Don Juan de Oñate comes to New Mexico. He had just gotten permission from the Spanish crown to come up to what we consider El Camino Real, he is coming from what we know now as Mexico City. After he passes the river he pauses and is thankful to have made it this far. For that, they give thanks and have a ceremony and to many, that’s what they consider New Mexico’s first Thanksgiving.