Lying Media Bastards

November 23, 2005

Praise God for Vit-tory


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Almost every year I trot out this article, forget it every existed, and then rediscover it the following year. Kinda like a tradition and neurological disorder at the same time.

But here’s my summary of the real history of the Thanksgiving holiday (with great thanks to the author of the above article, Brian Brasel).

1621- “The First Thanksgiving”
November 1777- The Continental Congress declares a day of Thanksgiving to thank God for an American military victory over a powerful British general.
July 1861- Confederate Congress declares a day of Thanksgiving to thank God for their victory over the Union in the First Battle of Bull Run
April 1862- President Lincoln declares day of Thanksgiving to thank God for the Union victory over the Confederacy at Shiloh
September 1862- Confederate Congress declares a day of Thanksgiving to thank God for their victory over the Union in the Second Battle of Bull Run
August 1863- President Lincoln declares day of Thanksgiving to thank God for the Union victory over the Confederacy at Gettysburg
December 1865- President Johnson establishes a national Thanksgiving holiday to celebrate the Union victory in the Civil War
October 1931- President Hoover becomes the first president to actually make a rhetorical connection between the national holiday of Thanksgiving and the pilgrims

In other words, Thanksgiving was first the “thanks, Indians, for helping us colonists survive in your harsh New World” feast. Then, for around 240 years, Thanksgiving was a string of unrelated “thank you, God, for letting us slaughter the people who disagreed with us” days. Then for another 60+ years, it was the “thanks, God, for letting the North beat the South in the Civil War” holiday. And now, for the past 70, it’s been the Indian & Pilgrim thing again. Well, the Pilgrim thing coupled with pleasant/unpleasant family reunions and the baking of turkeys, pies and casseroles.

Always fascinated by the misremembered history of Americana.

Posted by Jake on November 23, 2005 10:18 am

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