If you’re running behind this Thanksgiving and haven’t had a chance to pick up some enduring Thanksgiving books from your library, I’ve compiled a menu of engaging stories that you can listen to online for free!
Carefully chosen for content, sound quality, and presentation, these selections offer a variety of stories for all ages: picture books for younger listeners and audio dramas for older listeners.
I hope you enjoy this collection of some of our favorites!
Cranberry Thanksgiving by Wende and Harry Devlin
Three Young Pilgrims by Cheryl Narness
Squanto and the Miracle of Thanksgiving by Eric Metaxas
The Pilgrims’ First Thanksgiving by Ann McGovern
In November by Cynthia Rylant
Pilgrim Cat by Carol Antoinette Peacock
Balloons Over Broadway by Melissa Sweet
BONUS! Get a FREE activity kit for Balloons Over Broadway.
Thank You, Sarah: The Woman Who Saved Thanksgiving by Laurie Halse Anderson
Over the River and Through the Wood by Lydia Maria Child
Thanksgiving at the Tappletons’ by Eileen Spinelli
A Turkey for Thanksgiving by Eve Bunting
Sharing the Bread by Pat Zietlow Miller and Jill McElmurry
Thankful by Eileen Spinelli
Priscilla Alden and The First Thanksgiving by Alice Benjamin Boynton
Samuel Eaton’s Day by Kate Waters
Sarah Morton’s Day by Kate Waters
Tapenum’s Day by Kate Waters
Old Time Radio
Older listeners can enjoy these Old Time Radio broadcasts featuring dramatized versions of Thanksgiving history. (These broadcasts aired between the 30s – 50s and reflect that in sound quality.)
Cavalcade of America: The Path of Praise chronicles the history of Thanksgiving from Washington to Lincoln.
Cavalcade of America: No Turning Back features two dramatizations: The Return of the Mayflower tells the story of the Pilgrims’ decision to stay in the New World despite the hardships. A second feature, The Grasshopper Plague, recounts the story of a farming family in 1931 North Dakota as they battle a plague of grasshoppers.
Cavalcade of America: Tisquantum, Strange Friend of the Pilgrims presents the story of Tisquantum (more commonly known as Squanto), who taught the Pilgrims how to survive in the New World.
Cavalcade of America: Us Pilgrims gives a glimpse of the Pilgrim Fathers through the eyes of a modern-day (1940s) immigrant.
Cavalcade of America: Stepping Stones relates the story of the Pilgrims who signed America’s first charter of civil rights, The Mayflower Compact.
You Are There: The Sailing of the Mayflower captures this historic event and dramatizes it as “live” radio coverage.
Free Online Audiobooks
Stories of the Pilgrims by Margaret Pumphrey (published in 1912)
(Read the book for free here.)
Stories of the Pilgrims is long, so if you merely want one chapter from the book, archive.org features The First Thanksgiving.
An Old-Fashioned Thanksgiving by Louisa May Alcott (full-cast audio)
Thanksgiving: A Time to Remember by Barbara Rainey
Happy Thanksgiving, dear friends!