Time to Say Thanks

Sharing a meal together. Spending time with family and friends. Giving thanks for our freedom, the food we eat and more. This is what Thanksgiving is today as well as back in 1621 when the Plymouth colonists and the Wampanoag Indians shared their autumn harvest feast that is acknowledged today as one of the first Thanksgiving celebrations in the colonies.

According to History.com, Pilgrims held their second Thanksgiving celebration in 1623 to mark the end of a long drought that had threatened the year’s harvest and in 1789, George Washington issued the first Thanksgiving proclamation by the national government of the United States.

New York became the first of several states to officially adopt an annual Thanksgiving holiday back in 1817 however it was in 1827 that noted magazine editor Sarah Josepha Hale launched a very persistent campaign to establish the holiday. In 1863, Abraham Lincoln finally gave in and in a proclamation he scheduled Thanksgiving for the final Thursday in November and it was celebrated then until 1939 when Franklin D. Roosevelt moved the holiday up a week to spur retail sales during the Great Depression. This caused a great controversy where in the people nicknamed it “Franksgiving” and finally in 1941 President Roosevelt signed a bill making Thanksgiving the fourth Thursday in November.

Today’s Thanksgiving celebration is also noted for turkey, stuffing, parades, the arrival of Santa Claus and most important to many…football!

The South Dade News Leader hopes that your home is filled with families and friends who bring laughter and joy on this Thanksgiving Day when we all give thanks for what we have been given.

Happy Thanksgiving!