Happy Thanksgiving

Today is Thanksgiving Day in Canada. It was originally held in November but the date was changed about 60 years ago so that it wouldn’t conflict with Remembrance Day which is held on November 11.

The history of this day of thanks, while related to British and European harvest festivals, is also said by historians to come from the first celebration of Thanksgiving in North America during the 1579 voyage of explorer Martin Frobisher while he was in the Arctic looking for the Northwest Passage.

Another explanation is that French settlers, having arrived with Samuel De Champlain in 1604, held a thanksgiving feast with the neighbouring First Nations.

Whatever the history, the point is that we should recognise and appreciate the advantages that we have in life.

Many thanks.

14 thoughts on “Happy Thanksgiving”

  1. Happy Thanksgiving. I hadn’t thought about a possible connection to our harvest festivals, although the existing version of those in England dates from the 1840s so probably too late to have influenced Thanksgiving customs.

    1. I was raised in French Canada where it’s called Action de grâce; it doesn’t have the same importance because of its historical links to Protestantism, but given that the story of how Champlain and his group almost starved without First Nations help and support is becoming more known, that’s changing. And of course, there are commercial influences, as well as inter-marriage (I was a product of that – my mother was from Sussex). I had to go to both churches. Not confusing at all. 😉

      I haven’t read a lot about the links to the English and European harvest festivals, but there are traditions going back to the Romans, apparently (for example, cracking wishbones). The First Nations also celebrated the harvest with feasting and dancing. Cheers.

I'd love to hear what you have to say!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s