Unlike the Canadian Thanksgiving which is always on the second Monday of October each year, the American Thanksgiving is on the fourth Thursday of November. The difference in date is simply because north of the 49th parallel, in Canada, it is a few degrees colder, affecting the crops and the harvests. In fact if we in Canada waited until the American Thanksgiving, chances are all that we could be grateful for would be buried under several feet of snow ;)!
The Americans commonly trace the Thanksgiving holiday to a 1621 celebration at the Plymouth Plantation, in Massachusetts, where the Plymouth settlers held a harvest feast after a successful growing season. The Plymouth settlers, known as the Pilgrims, came to the New World (America) in the ship Mayflower (pictured alongside) in 1620 from England. Its 102 passengers consisted of two core groups – religious separatists from Holland and a largely non-religious settler group from London. They were helped in the early years by the local native-Americans to establish roots.
The US president Abraham Lincoln declared the Thanksgiving Day each year on the last Thursday of November, but President Roosevelt had the fourth Thursday of November passed into law during a year when there were five Thursdays. Essentially, it’s a day to be thankful for all we have. What are YOU thankful for from the past year on this Thanksgiving Day? What are you thankful for TODAY?