The Origin of Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving Day is a national holiday in the United States, and Thanksgiving 2019 occurs on Thursday, November 28.


In 1621, the Plymouth colonists and Wampanoag Indians shared an autumn harvest feast that is acknowledged today as one of the first Thanksgiving celebrations in the colonies. For more than two centuries, days of thanksgiving were celebrated by individual colonies and states. It wasn’t until 1863, in the midst of the Civil War, that President Abraham Lincoln proclaimed a national Thanksgiving Day to be held each November.
Sara Josepha Hale, a prominent writer and poet in the 1800’s (author of “Mary Had a Little Lamb”), was persistent in her efforts to establish a national day of thanks. According to History.com, “she lobbied state and federal officials to pass legislation creating a fixed, national day of thanks on the last Thursday of November. She believed that such a unifying measure could help ease growing tensions and divisions between the northern and southern parts of the country. Her efforts paid off: By 1854, more than 30 states and U.S. territories had a Thanksgiving celebration on the books, but Hale’s vision of a national holiday remained unfulfilled.”


The origins of “Thanksgiving” go as far back as President George Washington. However, future President’s, most notably Thomas Jefferson, differed on the idea and the tradition was celebrated regionally or differently in states for decades. It wasn’t until Ms. Hale succeeded in convincing President Abraham Lincoln to make this a national holiday that Thanksgiving, as we know it, was recognized. It wasn’t until 1863, in the midst of the Civil War, that President Abraham Lincoln proclaimed a national Thanksgiving Day to be held each November.Here is the full story. For more information, Click Here.

From all of us here at Metro, we wish you and your family a Happy Thanksgiving! We have much to be grateful for, and we appreciate all our merchants who continue to partner with us. May you have a safe and wonderful holiday!

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