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Cat in the Stax: The Easter Bunny’s Pennsylvanian Roots

By Ethan Shea

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Did you know the Easter Bunny has Pennsylvanian roots? As those who celebrate prepare for Easter, here in Pennsylvania, we can rest assured that the Easter Bunny won’t forget to leave plenty of eggs.

According to TIME Magazine, “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.”

The Free Library of Philadelphia backs up this claim and expands upon it here: “Georg Franck von Frankenau first wrote about the Alsatian tradition of a Hare bringing Easter eggs in his De ovis paschalibus or About Easter Eggs in 1682, but it was the Pennsylvania Dutch who brought the tradition of the Easter Hare or Oschter Haws to Pennsylvania.”

When it comes to holidays involving small mammals, Pennsylvania reigns supreme. Name another state that both the Easter Bunny and the immortal Punxsutawney Phil can call home! All we need now is a state bat for International Bat Appreciation Day on April 17. If you have any ideas for names, I’d love to see them in the comments!

I know I’m looking forward to a home-cooked meal with my family. Regardless of whether you celebrate Easter, I hope you enjoy a well-deserved break!


Headshot of Ethan SheaEthan Shea is a first-year English Graduate Student and Graduate Assistant at Falvey Library.


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Last Modified: April 13, 2022