Although around 53 pilgrims celebrated a bountiful harvest sometime in September or October or November of 1621, after a hard first winter in the British colonies that would later become the United States (a celebration we equate with the first Thanksgiving), there are other “first Thanksgivings in our history.
On Thursday, 18 December 1777 as declared by the continental congress, a day of Thanksgiving for the new independent nation was celebrated. Then, almost 12 years later, on Thursday 26 Nov 1789, under President Washington, Thanksgiving was celebrated according to his proclamation. However it wasn’t until The 4th Thursday in November of 1863 that the permanent day was fixed and declared by President Abraham Lincoln for our current Thanksgiving holiday.
And though there have been variations among all these historical beginnings of Thanksgiving, one thing stands true for each beginning; it was a day we set aside to recognize how God had blessed us while taking us through such hard times that threatened to destroy us. Let us never forget that it is only by His grace that we continue to exist and to enjoy great blessings. We owe Him praise and thanks and today is an appropriate day to celebrate that.