The fourth Thursday of November is special for Americans. It is Thanksgiving Day.
For Canadians, it is the second Monday of October. This is the time of the year when families gather and have quality time. They have a hearty meal together, talk, have fun, and make up for the lost time because of their hectic schedules. It is the day that they recognize their blessings and are thankful for what they have.
When we talk of a Thanksgiving recipe, how can we forget those yummy turkey dinners, pumpkin pie, candied yams, scrumptious stuffing, and mouth-watering cranberries? But before we get to the food, how did Thanksgiving Day originate?
How Thanksgiving Started
The Mayflower ship started from Southampton in England in August 1620 and headed towards the United States. Little did the 103 passengers aboard the ship know that they were going to create history by finding the US and founding this holiday.
Weeks of struggling with the strong winds and waves, the pilgrims, reached Cape Cod, Massachusetts accidentally. They anchored at Plymouth Rock and began their expedition on this new, unknown land. They formulated the “Mayflower Compact,” which acted as the basis for regulating their new colony, which gave everybody the freedom to practice any religion they chose. They were known as the Pilgrims.
Only 56 Pilgrims survived the long and harsh New England winter. However, spring brought new hope and the survivors started cultivating crops and building homes. They befriended the local Indian tribes. They traded with them and, eventually, colonies prospered.
The Day For Thanking God
The pilgrims harvested their first crop in 1621. They devoted a day for giving thanks to God for saving them and blessing them with such a rich harvest. On this day, the pilgrims prepared a rich meal consisting of Thanksgiving dinner recipes. They ate together and were thankful.
The Thanksgiving Day Belief
The Pilgrims strongly believed in God and the basis of Thanksgiving Day relies on this belief. This is the day when they thanked God for everything they may have taken for granted.
At the end of the 1700s, when the American Revolution was in its full swing, the Continental Congresses proposed to observe national Thanksgiving on one day every year.
In 1817, the New York State declared Thanksgiving Day an annual holiday. In 1863, it became a national holiday thanks to President Lincoln. Since then, each president of US has issued a declaration for celebrating this day. So may your Thanksgiving have a deeper meaning now that you know the actual story of how it all started.