We give thanks.
Families gathered at dressed dining tables heaving with delectable feasts of turkey, stuffing and all the trimmings, televised parades and endless football, punctuated by the requisite travel chaos squeezed into that much anticipated four-day weekend can only mean one thing: Thanksgiving has arrived. Ringing in the festive season, this most American of holidays and its traditional hallmarks has come to represent something far grander and more epic than its humble origins would suggest. Indeed, some may argue the anticipation and celebrations have come to eclipse even those of Christmas. In any case, there are few things more wonderfully American than Thanksgiving.
At A Girl for All Time®, it is a time to reflect on all this past year has given us, and so too remember how it all began. Our regular readers may recall a few years ago, I discovered one of my ancestors, Edward Winslow (1595-1655) was present at the very first Thanksgiving, writing a firsthand account of the event.
“ Our harvest being gotten in, our governor sent four men on fowling, that so we might after a special manner rejoice together after we had gathered the fruits of our labor. 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 we 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. “
You could say Winslow was indeed a blogger of his time, offering us a poignant glimpse of life in 1621. Implied though left out, are the many months of toil and extreme hardship these pioneering spirits had to endure before enjoying the fruits of their labour, side by side with Native Americans once deemed foe. We struggle to imagine such difficult living conditions today. As ever, A Girl for All Time's love of history endures, teaching us we have much to be thankful for.
Safe travels and Happy Thanksgiving!
Written by Frances Cain - November 23 2017