Thanksgiving is one of our favorite holidays of the year.
It is a time of family, laughter, remembrance, love, charity and great food. For almost three centuries, Americans have celebrated Thanksgiving and the values this day represents to us. We have come to appreciate Thanksgiving even more as events and attitudes changed over time to give extra special meaning to the day as the decades and centuries marched by.
The first known American celebration of Thanksgiving was the Pilgrims in 1621 in Plymouth, Mass. The Pilgrims were grateful for having survived their journey across the Atlantic, but they were even more grateful for the bounty of the harvest that God had provided them that year. The love of the harvest, food and bounty and the appreciation of it has been the cornerstone of the holiday ever since its inception.
Over the years, other meanings have attached to the family and giving thanks element of Thanksgiving. In the American Civil war, Abraham Lincoln proclaimed the last Thursday of the month of November would be a day to give thanks, reflect and love family during the nation’s biggest test as a country. In the 1930s, President Franklin Delano Roosevelt had the date changed to the fourth Thursday of the month, partly to assuage the business needs of the country.
Then there was the influence of famous American painter Norman Rockwell. His paintings of family celebrating Thanksgiving during the Great Depression and afterwards touched the soul and fiber of Americans who loved the simpleness of home, family, security and happiness.
Tomorrow, we celebrate those virtues that have been passed down to all of us over the centuries. Here in Gonzales, Shiner, Luling, Nixon, Smiley, Waelder, Belmont and all of south central Texas, there is a special love of home, place, family, land, history and an appreciation of thankfulness that this area has been imbued with and blessed with.
At the Gonzales Inquirer, we wish everyone a very Happy Thanksgiving filled with joy, happiness, love, laughter and, of course, an enjoyable feast. From our tables, family and homes, the management and staff of the Gonzales Inquirer wish each and every one of you a Happy Thanksgiving and may the cheer of the holiday season inspire you to pay it forward.