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Hale's advocacy for the national holiday lasted 17 years and four presidencies before the letter she wrote to Lincoln was successful. In at the height of the Civil War he supported legislation which established a national holiday of Thanksgiving on the last Thursday of November. Lincoln perhaps wanted the date to tie in with the anchoring of the Mayflower at Cape Cod, which occurred on Nov 21, Although we now use the Gregorian calendar.

In the date would have been Nov 11 to the Pilgrims who used the Julian calendar.

So Hale finally got her wish. She is perhaps now better known, though, for writing the nursery rhyme 'Mary Had a Little Lamb'. In , President Roosevelt moved Thanksgiving up a week to try and give a boost to retailers before Christmas during the Great Depression. FDR changed his mind after coming under pressure from Congress and in , the a resolution was passed returning the holiday to the fourth Thursday of November.

A tlantic City mayor Thomas D. Taggart later described the Thanksgiving holiday from — as "Franksgiving". There are several potential reasons Americans eat turkey on the big day: one claims that the pilgrim Edward Winslow wrote a letter about that now-famous meal in which mentioned a turkey hunt before the dinner. Another theory says the choice of turkey was inspired by Queen Elizabeth I who was eating dinner when she heard that Spanish ships had sunk on their way to attack England.

She was so thrilled with the news she ordered another goose be served.


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Some claim early US settlers roasted turkeys as they were inspired by her actions. Others say that as wild turkeys are native to North America, they were a natural choice for early settlers. When European settlers encountered turkeys for the first time in the early s, they incorrectly identified the birds as a type of guineafowl.

Since this group of birds were thought to come from Turkey, the North American bird was dubbed 'turkey fowl'. This later became shortened to 'turkey' and entered the vernacular. The English navigator William Strickland, who introduced the turkey into England in , was granted a coat of arms which included a "turkey-cock in his pride proper". S o what comprises the classic Thanksgiving dish? Chestnuts, chopped bacon or sausage, and raisins or apples are also sometimes included in the stuffing.

Pies : pumpkin pies are most common, but pecan , apple, sweet potato and mincemeat pies are also quite popular. Pumpkin pie recipe.

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Other settlers arrived after him and continued these ceremonies. During the American Revolution, Americans who remained loyal to England moved to Canada where they brought the customs and practices of the American Thanksgiving to Canada. There are many similarities between the two Thanksgivings such as the cornucopia and the pumpkin pie. In , Parliament declared November 6 th a national holiday of Thanksgiving. Over the years many dates were used for Thanksgiving, the most popular was the 3 rd Monday in October. Ten years later, in , the two days became separate holidays and Armistice Day was renamed Remembrance Day.

Finally, on January 31 st , , Parliament declared the second Monday in October of each year to be "A Day of General Thanksgiving to Almighty God for the bountiful harvest with which Canada has been blessed". Most families in Canada celebrate Thanksgiving with a special dinner for family and friends. The dinner usually includes a roasted turkey and pumpkin pie. Thanksgiving provides an opportunity to look at pioneer life, and it is an ideal time to celebrate the importance of Canadian farmers for all Canadians.

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The history of Thanksgiving day: Pies, parades and presidential pardons

General Information. Thanksgiving Day. Canadian Holidays. National Aboriginal Day. Some specialties have even become ubiquitous regional additions to local Thanksgiving menus; in Baltimore, for instance, it is common to find sauerkraut alongside the Thanksgiving turkey. Most of these regional variations have remained largely a local phenomenon, a means of connecting with local harvests and specialty foods.

However this is not true of influential southern Thanksgiving trends that had a tremendous impact on the 20th-century Thanksgiving menu. Corn, sweet potatoes, and pork form the backbone of traditional southern home cooking, and these staple foods provided the main ingredients in southern Thanksgiving additions like ham, sweet potato casseroles, pies and puddings, and corn bread dressing.

Other popular southern contributions include ambrosia a layered fruit salad traditionally made with citrus fruits and coconut; some more recent recipes use mini-marshmallows and canned fruits , biscuits, a host of vegetable casseroles, and even macaroni and cheese. Unlike the traditional New England menu, with its mince, apple and pumpkin pie dessert course, southerners added a range and selection of desserts unknown in northern dining rooms, including regional cakes, pies, puddings, and numerous cobblers.

Many of these Thanksgiving menu additions spread across the country with relocating southerners. Southern cookbooks of which there are hundreds and magazines also helped popularize many of these dishes in places far beyond their southern roots. Some, like sweet potato casserole, pecan pie, and corn bread dressing, have become as expected on the Thanksgiving table as turkey and cranberry sauce.

If there is one day each year when food and family take center stage, it is Thanksgiving. The Sunday following Thanksgiving is always the busiest travel day of the year in the United States. Each day of the long Thanksgiving weekend, more than 10 million people take to the skies.

When Is Thanksgiving Day ? | U.S. and Canada | The Old Farmers Almanac

Another 40 million Americans drive miles or more to have Thanksgiving dinner. Very little is known about the event in Plymouth that is the model for our Thanksgiving.

The only references to the event are reprinted below:. They four in one day killed as much fowl as, with a little help beside, served the company almost a week. At which time, amongst other recreations, we exercised our arms, many of the Indians coming amongst us, and among the rest their greatest king Massasoit, with some ninety men, whom for three days we entertained and feasted, and they went out and killed five deer, which they brought to the plantation and bestowed on our governor, and upon the captain and others.

And although it be not always so plentiful as it was at this time with us, yet by the goodness of God, we are so far from want that we often wish you partakers of our plenty. Heath, ed. Applewood Books. Cambridge, For as some were thus employed in affairs abroad, others were exercised in fishing, about cod and bass and other fish of which they took good store, of which every family had their portion.

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All the summer there was no want; and now began to come in store of fowl, as winter approached, of which is place did abound when they came first but afterward decreased by degrees. And besides waterfowl there was great store of wild turkeys, of which they took many, besides venison, etc. Besides, they had about a peck a meal a week to a person, or now since harvest, Indian corn to that proportion. Which made many afterwards write so largely of their plenty here to their friends in England, which were not feigned but true reports. Find out more!


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