The Easter bunny originated from rabbits being known as very fertile animals so they served as symbols of new life during the Spring season.
The symbol of the Easter bunny originated in Germany in the 1500s. It was introduced into American folklore by German settlers who arrived in the Pennsylvania Dutch region during the 1700s. Their name for the bunny was the Osterhas or Oschter Haws. Haas means rabbit and Oster is a form of Ostern meaning Easter. Bearing similarities to Santa Claus, the Oschter Haws would lay a nest of colored eggs if the children were good.
Children would build their nest either in their home or outside. Boys would use their caps and girls would use their bonnets. The Oschter Haws would then hide the eggs in the children’s nests. The tradition of baskets would come later as the tradition spread.