Jennie Augusta Brownscombe, The First Thanksgiving at Plymouth, 1914, Pilgrim Hall Museum, Plymouth, Massachusetts
But how did this tradition really start, at least here in the United States. Let's see what Wikipedia has to say--
"Thanksgiving, or Thanksgiving Day, is a holiday celebrated in the United States on the fourth Thursday in November. It has been celebrated as a federal holiday every year since 1863, when, during the Civil War, President Abraham Lincoln proclaimed a national day of "Thanksgiving and Praise to our beneficent Father who dwelleth in the Heavens", to be celebrated on the last Thursday in November. Thanksgiving was also celebrated nationally in 1789, after a proclamation by George Washington. As a federal and public holiday in the U.S., Thanksgiving is one of the major holidays of the year. Together with Christmas and New Year, Thanksgiving is a part of the broader holiday season.
The event that Americans commonly call the "First Thanksgiving" was celebrated by the Pilgrims after their first harvest in the New World in 1621. This feast lasted three days, and it was attended by 90 Native Americans (as accounted by attendee Edward Winslow) and 53 Pilgrims. The New England colonists were accustomed to regularly celebrating "thanksgivings"—days of prayer thanking God for blessings such as military victory or the end of a drought."
Of course Wikipedia has a WHOLE lot more to say and if you are interested I encourage you to go and read the entire article.
I will be driving up to a friends house with my Mom to enjoy good food and old friends--None of us are into sports-but I bet a lot of you will be watching football--or the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade. And although some of the stores will be open-I will NOT be shopping-Call me a traditionalist--those stores should be CLOSED!!! Of course there are a lot of online sales starting early--even on Miki's Hope (just keep your eye on that left sidebar). BUT what I REALLY want everyone to do is to remember the homeless and those who can't afford a Thanksgiving Dinner. Donate what you can and volunteer to help serve the free meals if you are able.
And I will leave you with this little poem I found
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