What is the history of Thanksgiving?
When was the first Thanksgiving? How and why did this tradition begin? Why did early settlers like turkey so much? Is Thanksgiving celebrated in any other countries?
The First Thanksgiving that America celebrates is the one designed by Sarah Hale in her campaign for a religious day of thanks for abundance (especially turkey, beef, pork and gravies). She worked on it from 1827 - 1863 (my ancestors saw it happen) and it succeeded in drawing in fans across America and Canada.
I like Thanksgiving, but the actual first Thanksgiving (1621) was little like Sarah's. There were no Pilgrims - the settlers' were very poor seperatists calling themselves "saints" and their leaders wrote about pilgrims, as in the Old Testament, and through the years, the word became Pilgrims and equated with Puritans and the English Pilgrims that dressed in black and white (Sarah loved that image of purity and piety).
The real foods served were beer, venison (brought by 90 uninvited Native Americans), waterfowl, puddings, some vegetables, and maybe some turkey. The 4 women and couple dozen children and youth still alive at Plimouth Colony probably served the 29 men first and ate last. There were only about 50 settlers left in late 1621.
There's more at
http://hubpages.com/hub/Our-Thanksgivin … d-Campaign
http://pattyinglishms.hubpages.com/hub/ … anksgiving
Much of the information about the actual 1621 Thanksgiving comes directly from diaries of the settlers, their leaders & other Mayflower passengers called "strangers", all preserved in archives in Pilgrim Hall Museum and additional museums.
The very first Thanksgiving was not held in 1621, but in 1619. It was held in Berkeley Hundred, Virginia, and was proclaimed by Charter with these words:
"We ordaine that the day of our ship's arrival at the place assigned for plantacon in the land of Virginia shall be yearly and perpetually kept holy as a day of thanksgiving to Almighty God."
Thirty-six pilgrims under the leadership of Captain John Woodleaf held the first Thanksgiving on December 4, 1619. The holy day (holiday) was not a meal, but a prayer service.
In the spring of 1621, Pilgrims from the Mayflower established their first settlement called Plimoth, which is located south of Boston, Massachusetts. Thanks to the assistance of the Wampanoag Indian tribe, the Plimoth settlers reaped a bountiful harvest in the Autumn of 1621, and celebrated with a three-day festive meal to thank the local Indians and God Almighty.
At that meal they dined on wild turkey and venison, and dishes made from corn and pumpkins. There was no wheat in the New World, so they didn't have today's pumpkin pie.
Thanksgiving was made an official national holiday by President Abraham Lincoln during the Civil War in 1863. He designated the day for:
"Thanksgiving and Praise to our beneficent Father who dwelleth in the Heavens."
You can read the full history and view graphics for these events at:
http://writerfox.hubpages.com/hub/Thank … d_24313748
To see 250 Thanksgiving Pictures and Images, go here:
http://writerfox.hubpages.com/hub/Thank … d_24313748
Based on the American model, Thanksgiving is also celebrated by Canada. The Canadian Thanksgiving is in October.
That second link should be this one:
http://writerfox.hubpages.com/hub/Thank … and-Images
Sorry I couldn't edit it.
For more than two centuries, days of thanksgiving were celebrated by individual colonies and states. Then in the midst of the Civil War in 1863, President Abraham Lincoln proclaimed a national Thanksgiving Day to be held each November. From that day, Thanksgiving ceremony is being celebrated.
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