By: Jasmine Wolfe
The Easter bunny first arrived in America in the 1700s with German Immigrants who settled in Pennsylvania and transported their tradition of an egg-laying hare called “Osterhase” or “Oscher Haws.” Children made nests in which this creature could lay its colored eggs. Eventually the custom spread across the U.S. and the fabled rabbit’s Easter morning deliveries expanded to include chocolate and other types of candy and gifts, while decorated baskets replaced nests. Additionally, children often leave carrots for the bunny in case he gets hungry from all his hopping.
But where did this German tradition come from? There’s a mythological figure from Germany named Ostara, who was a symbol of fertility and new life of the coming spring. It is said that Ostara changed her pet bird into a rabbit to amuse children, and the rabbit laid brightly colored eggs, which Ostara gave to children as gifts. This myth eventually brought about the tradition of the Easter Bunny, bringing colored eggs and other gifts to children.
The same tradition is practiced today in the US (and some, but not all, European countries), except the moss nests have become baskets filled with grass. The addition of chocolates is relatively modern, having come about in the late 1800s. Two students Sarah Spatafore and Nick McCausland were asked did you know that the Easter Bunny originally came from german immigrants? Sarah Spatafore responds with, “No I did not, that is crazy” but Nick McCausland responded, “Yea I actually did.”