2017-02-06
1

Where and when did the first iconic Thanksgiving dinner celebration take place in America?

The pilgrims that sailed to the New World on a ship called the Mayflower settled in Plymouth, Massachusetts. The first Thanksgiving, which was held in 1621, happened only once and lasted for three days, but it did not become an annual celebration. Read More: • History.com: The First Thanksgiving • History.com: Mayflower Myths • Beliefnet Guide to Thanksgiving
2

Whom did the Mayflower pilgrims invite to the first Thanksgiving feast?

The pilgrims who came to the New World to escape religious persecution had a difficult time adjusting to the new climate and environment. The first winter was difficult and many lives were lost. The Native American Wampanoag tribe taught the pilgrims how to fish, hunt, and farm for food so they would have food and be able to survive in America. When the pilgrims had a three-day feast, the tribe was invited. Read More: • History.com: The First Thanksgiving • History.com: Mayflower Myths • Beliefnet Guide to Thanksgiving
3

What did the pilgrims celebrate during the first Thanksgiving?

The pilgrims had a three-day feast to celebrate and thank God and the Wampanoag tribe for helping them survive a harsh winter and for having a bountiful harvest. Read More: • History.com: The First Thanksgiving • History.com: Mayflower Myths • Beliefnet Guide to Thanksgiving
4

According to what was available during harvest season, what foods were most likely at the first Thanksgiving feast?

While the pilgrims may have feasted on wild turkey, pumpkin, and grapes at the first feast, other foods modern Thanksgiving tables have were certainly missing: mashed potatoes, pumpkin pie, cranberry sauce, and ham. Other foods that were most likely at the feast? Lobster, swan, and seal. Read More: • History.com: The Pilgrims' Menu • History.com: The First Thanksgiving • Beliefnet Guide to Thanksgiving
5

Before Thanksgiving became a federal holiday, a few U.S. presidents declared national days of thanksgiving to God for bestowing blessings on the nation. Name one of the presidents.

George Washington, John Adams, James Madison, and Abraham Lincoln were all presidents who set aside national days of thanksgiving for the country to pray and thank God together. Read More: • History.com: Thanksgiving Fun Facts • History.com: Thanksgiving Facts vs. Fiction • Beliefnet Guide to Thanksgiving
6

In 1939, President Franklin D. Roosevelt declared Thanksgiving a holiday on the fourth Thursday of November. What was the reason?

in the midst of the Great Depression, President Franklin D. Roosevelt delcared Thanksgiving to be the fourth Thursday of November in order to extend Christmas shopping by one week and stimulate the economy. Read More: • History.com: Thanksgiving Fun Facts • History.com: Thanksgiving Facts vs. Fiction • Beliefnet Guide to Thanksgiving
7

In 1846, Sarah Josepha Hale, an important magazine editor, began advocating that Thanksgiving become a national holiday in order to unify the country. What famous nursery rhyme is Hale known for writing?

Besides being an influential, popular writer and tastemaker, Sarah Josepha Hale also helped found Vassar College, once an educational institution only for women. Read More: • History.com: Thanksgiving Fun Facts • Profile: Sarah Josepha Hale • Beliefnet Guide to Thanksgiving
8

Sarah Josepha Hale wrote to five presidents before one of them took her advice to declare a national day for Thanksgiving. Which president finally declared the holiday and in what year?

Starting in 1846, Sarah Josepha Hale wrote to five presidents over 17 years--Zachary Taylor, Millard Filmore, Franklin Pierce, James Buchanan, and Abraham Lincoln. At the time, Thanksgiving was primarily celebrated in the New England region of the United States, and each state celebrated it on different dates. Hale advocated for a national day of unity to bring the country together as it was heading off to war. Abraham Lincoln was the first president to declare Thanksgiving a national holiday (though it would take a few more decades to become a federal holiday) in 1863, a few days after the Gettysburg Address. Read More: • History.com: Thanksgiving Fun Facts • Profile: Sarah Josepha Hale • Beliefnet Guide to Thanksgiving
9

When did Congress officially legalize Thanksgiving and declare it a federal holiday?

Even though President Franklin D. Roosevelt declared Thanksgiving to be a national holiday on the fourth Thursday of November, it took two years before the Senate and the House of Representatives legalized the holiday. Read More: • History.com: Thanksgiving Fun Facts • History.com: Thanksgiving Facts vs. Fiction • Beliefnet Guide to Thanksgiving
10

Before the British pilgrims came to America, Spanish colonists settled in 1565 and held a Mass, then a feast, of thanksgiving. This is believed to be the first recorded Thanksgiving celebration of any kind in the U.S. Where did the Spaniards establish the colony?

Under the leadership of Pedro Menéndez de Avilés, 600 Spanish colonists settled in Florida on September 8, 1565. A Mass and a feast of thanksgiving was prepared to celebrate the safe journey to the New World. While the feast did not celebrate the harvest, it is still the first recorded thankgiving celebration of any kind in America. Read More: • History.com: Thanksgiving Fun Facts • Wikipedia.com: Thanksgiving in the U.S. • Beliefnet Guide to Thanksgiving
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