(also known as Thanksgiving Day)
It is a religious festival celebrated annually to give thanks to the lord for the harvest and the food that people have.
Thursday, 26 November, 2020 is the time to thank the almighty for all the blessing bestowed on you during the harvest time by celebrating Thanksgiving
Traditionally this festival is celebrated on the fourth Thursday of November.In America Thanksgiving is a national holiday where every body takes part in the celebrations with their family and friends. It is time for everyone to thank the lord for all that they have been given.
Thanksgiving 2020 calendar
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Everyone is well aware of the reasons for the Thanksgiving celebrations. It was the year 1621, when the ‘first Thanksgiving’ was celebrated by the colonists of ‘Plymouth’ and Wampanoag Indians collectively.The term‘Thanksgiving’ is synonymous to the traditional food being cooked on this day, to be more precise – a big fat turkey.
Thanksgiving: The First
It was in September 1620 when a ship, Mayflower, had left with 102 passengers from England’s Plymouth in search of a new place to settle and they after a cumbersome journey reached Massachusetts Bay. The passengers(who later came to be known as Pilgrims) and the Wampanoag tribe, in the month of November 1621, celebrated the first Thanksgiving and enjoyed the feast of roasted turkeys, stuffing and sweet potatoes. These celebrations and the feast lasted three days.
Thanksgiving Food: The Change
Unlike the heavy rock-solid 20-pound turkeys of today, the traditional turkeys used to weigh only eight pounds. Hence, because of this traditionally, seafood and other meats were critical parts of the feast.
In fact, tons of savory as well as sweet pies were baked, so as to preserve meats and fruits. The Pumpkin Pie, a traditional food of ‘Thanksgiving’, is believed to be an English recipe originally involving slices of apple baked and pumpkin in a pie crust.
It is a lesser known fact that it was only the first Thanksgiving which was a secular event was not repeated later but a Calvinist Thanksgiving was held in 1623, which however, did not involve any customs of food sharing with the Native Americans.
Thanksgiving: The Official Holiday
All the states were celebrating Thanksgiving on different dates, however, it was Lincoln, the then President,who declared this day as a national holiday in 1863.
Sarah Josepha Hale, Mary Had a Little Lamb’s author was one of the phenomenal forces in this campaign of getting ‘Thanksgiving’ the status of a national holiday.
Canadian, Hawaiian and Virgin Islands’ Thanksgiving
The first Canadian Thanksgiving was celebrated in 1578 when Martin Frobisher hosted a feast for his safe arrival in Newfoundland. Canadian Thanksgiving, ever since 1957, has been consistently celebrated on October’s second Monday after being celebrated on varied days.
It is also believed that the native Hawaiians had celebrated Makahiki - the longest Thanksgiving across the whole world. It was celebrated from November till February for four months where during this time both war and work were strictly forbidden.
Virgin Islands celebrates two Thanksgiving one the national holiday and the other which is known as the Hurricane Thanksgiving Day which is celebrated on October 19 only if no hurricanes strike the territory. It is a symbol of thanks that the islanders give for being spared by the dreadful hurricanes in that year.
Thanksgiving: Traditional Celebrations
Several traditional Thanksgiving meals exist in US, the main being the Turkey because of which Thanksgiving Day is also known as the Turkey Day. Mashed potatoes, Sweet Corn, Stuffing, Sweet potatoes, Fall Vegetables, Cranberry sauce and Pumpkin Pie constitute other traditional food items. All of the foods mentioned were introduced as a source of food to the Europeans for the first time when they had arrived.
Thanksgiving today is an amalgamation of several traditions ranging from ancient harvest festivals to New England’s and England’s traditional harvest festivals to the New England’s Puritan Thanksgiving and also the changing ideological and political assumptions of Native Americans.
Why is Thanksgiving celebrated with turkey?
Some historians say the early settlers were inspired by the queen's actions and roasted a turkey instead of a goose. The wild turkey is a native bird of North America.
As a result, Benjamin Franklin claimed this made the turkey a more suitable national bird for the United States than the eagle.
Who wrote to his daughter that he thought the turkey would be a better national symbol than the bald eagle?
By Lizella Augusta Jenkins Moorer
Let us give thanks to God above,
Thanks for expressions of His love,
Seen in the book of nature, grand
Taught by His love on every hand.
Let us be thankful in our hearts,
Thankful for all the truth imparts,
For the religion of our Lord,
All that is taught us in His word.
Let us be thankful for a land,
That will for such religion stand;
One that protects it by the law,
One that before it stands in awe.
Thankful for all things let us be,
Though there be woes and misery;
Lessons they bring us for our good
Later 'twill all be understood.
Thankful for peace o'er land and sea,
Thankful for signs of liberty,
Thankful for homes, for life and health,
Pleasure and plenty, fame and wealth.
Thankful for friends and loved ones too,
Thankful for all things, good and true,
Thankful for harvest in the fall,
Thankful to Him who gave it all.
Over The River
–Lydia Maria Child
Over the river and through the wood—
Now grandmother’s cap I spy!
Hurrah for the fun!
Is the pudding done?
Hurrah for the pumpkin-pie!
A Thanksgiving Poem
Paul Laurence Dunbar - 1872-1906
The sun hath shed its kindly light,
Our harvesting is gladly o'er
Our fields have felt no killing blight,
Our bins are filled with goodly store.
From pestilence, fire, flood, and sword
We have been spared by thy decree,
And now with humble hearts, O Lord,
We come to pay our thanks to thee.
We feel that had our merits been
The measure of thy gifts to us,
We erring children, born of sin,
Might not now be rejoicing thus.
No deed of our hath brought us grace;
When thou were nigh our sight was dull,
We hid in trembling from thy face,
But thou, O God, wert merciful.
Thy mighty hand o'er all the land
Hath still been open to bestow
Those blessings which our wants demand
From heaven, whence all blessings flow.
Thou hast, with ever watchful eye,
Looked down on us with holy care,
And from thy storehouse in the sky
Hast scattered plenty everywhere.
Then lift we up our songs of praise
To thee, O Father, good and kind;
To thee we consecrate our days;
Be thine the temple of each mind.
With incense sweet our thanks ascend;
Before thy works our powers pall;
Though we should strive years without end,
We could not thank thee for them all.
Lord, 'tis Thy plenty-dropping hand
By Robert Herrick
Lord, 'tis Thy plenty-dropping hand
That soils my land,
And giv'st me for my bushel sown
Twice ten for one.
All this, and better, Thou dost send
Me, to this end,
That I should render, for my part,
A thankful heart.
Harriet Maxwell Converse - 1836-1903
We who are here present thank the Great Spirit that we are here to praise Him.
We thank Him that He has created men and women, and ordered that these beings shall always be living to multiply the earth.
We thank Him for making the earth and giving these beings its products to live on.
We thank Him for the water that comes out of the earth and runs for our lands.
We thank Him for all the animals on the earth.
We thank Him for certain timbers that grow and have fluids coming from them for us all.
We thank Him for the branches of the trees that grow shadows for our shelter.
We thank Him for the beings that come from the west, the thunder and lightning that water the earth.
We thank Him for the light which we call our oldest brother, the sun that works for our good.
We thank Him for all the fruits that grow on the trees and vines.
We thank Him for his goodness in making the forests, and thank all its trees.
We thank Him for the darkness that gives us rest, and for the kind Being of the darkness that gives us light, the moon.
We thank Him for the bright spots in the skies that give us signs, the stars.
We give Him thanks for our supporters, who had charge of our harvests.
We give thanks that the voice of the Great Spirit can still be heard through the words of Ga-ne-o-di-o.
We thank the Great Spirit that we have the privilege of this pleasant occasion.
We give thanks for the persons who can sing the Great Spirit's music, and hope they will be privileged to continue in his faith.
We thank the Great Spirit for all the persons who perform the ceremonies on this occasion.
Grace for a Child
Robert Herrick - 1591-1674
Here, a little child I stand,
Heaving up my either hand;
Clod as paddocks though they be,
Here I lift them up to thee,
For a benison to fall
On our meat, and on us all