Thanksgiving Day is a national holiday in the United States. Generally this day is celebrated to give thanks for the autumn harvest.
In the United States, Thanksgiving are celebrated on the fourth Thursday of November. So, this year Thanksgiving is celebrated on the 28th of November in the United States.
Abraham Lincoln was the first president who officially announced the exact day of this festival on the last Thursday of November every year. President Franklin D Roosevelt set this date in stone in 1939 & the date was approved in 1941 by Congress.
Not only the United States is celebrating Thanksgiving, but also Canada, Puerto Rico, Grenada & Liberia are also celebrating this day on different dates.
It is celebrated to give thanks for the blessing of the harvest. In the United States the celebration started when English colonists planned a feast to thank Native Americans for helping them to start new lives in the United States. In 1621 “The first Thanksgiving” was celebrated after this first harvest in October. That feast lasted three days. After a long campaign, Sarah Joseph Hale who is the editor of Godey’s Lady Book, a colonial women’s magazine, is credited for making Thanksgiving as a national holiday in the United States. In support of her proposal, she wrote letters to five presidents of the US. Lincoln was convinced by her letter & supported her to establish Thanksgiving Day as a national holiday in 1863.
The story started in 1620, when the Pilgrims landed on American soil & settled in an area that they named Plymouth just south of where Boston is today. In the time of spring the Pilgrims planted, grew their crops & for this they were helped by a Native American named Squanto. Squanto taught them fishing, hunting & even planting corn, pumpkins & squash. With these skills they were able to store enough food for the harsh winter months. The grateful Pilgrims then invited the Native Americans to join them for a huge harvest feast & that became known as Thanksgiving.
This is a day for the people of the United States to give thanks for what they have. Families & friends get together on that day for a meal which consists of roast turkey, stuffing cornbread, green bean casserole and roasted sweet potato casserole, winter vegetables topped off with cranberry sauce, gravy & pumpkin pie with a walnut crust & even pecan pie. A plate of this meal looks like a British Christmas dinner.
● Eating turkey for Thanksgiving in the United States anticipates Lincoln’s nationalization of the holiday in 1863. Father Alexander Hamilton declared in the 19th century that no “Citizen of the United States should refrain from turkey on Thanksgiving Day.”
● Hale was also credited for that by some people as her account highlighted a roast turkey & ultimately it became the model for this festival.
● Other people believe that the birds were chosen as they are large enough to eat by many people.
● Going back to at least 1947, the US presidents were gifted with turkeys at Thanksgiving & these turkeys were usually eaten.