Jekyll Island Beach 2012

Jekyll Island Beach 2012

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

I'm Thankful I Wasn't A Pilgrim!!

The Rogue Speaks:

It took the Mayflower 66 days to sail from Plymouth, England to the tip of Cape Cod. The 102 passengers were not on a Disney Cruise!! The trip was treacherous, to say the least, and the ship ended up far north of the Hudson River, which was supposed to be their destination. They hung around Cape Cod for about a month before crossing Massachusetts Bay, to the rock they named Plymouth.

The first winter was a woolly booger!! Most of the people never left the ship! It was brutally cold, and the poor Pilgrims suffered from scurvy, frost-bite, and a few contagious diseases, and many of them died without setting foot on American soil.

When spring finally came only around fifty Pilgrims were still alive. They went on shore in March, and were stunned when they were greeted by an English-speaking Abenaki Indian. He visited again and brought his friend, Squanto, a Pawtuxet. Squanto had been kidnapped by an English sea captain and became a slave. He escaped London and came back to America with an expedition.

The Pilgrims were pretty weak and malnourished after the long winter. Squanto taught them how to plant corn, catch fish, and get sap from maple trees. He also taught them to stay away from poison ivy, and other poisonous plants.

Governor Bradford decided to have a celebration in November of 1621, because the Pilgrims' corn harvest was so successful. He invited the Indians who had helped the Pilgrims, and they showed up with five deer. I guess they cooked them on a homemade spit, because the Pilgrims had no ovens. There wasn't enough sugar left on board the Mayflower for cakes and pies, so I guess they ate venison and corn, and whatever else the Indians showed them how to grow. So that celebration, which lasted for three days, was actually the first Thanksgiving, even though the Pilgrims didn't call it that.

In 1817, New York became the first state to celebrate Thanksgiving. Other states soon followed suit. In 1827, Sarah Josepha Hale (who wrote "Mary Had A Little Lamb" among other things) campaigned to have Thanksgiving as a national holiday. It wasn't until 1863 that Abe Lincoln proclaimed Thanksgiving as a legal holiday, to be held on the last Thursday in November. In 1939, FDR moved the date up a week in an attempt to increase retail sales during the Depression. That angered a lot of people, so he was forced to change it to the fourth Thursday.

The first Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade was held in 1924, with mostly bands and floats. They didn't have big balloons, but they did have live animals. The first animal balloons appeared in the 1927 parade. The first Micky Mouse balloon appeared in the parade of 1934. It is a tradition that New Yorkers gather the day before Thanksgiving to watch the filling of the giant helium balloons.

Beginning around the mid-20th century, the U.S. presidents started giving reprieves to one or two Thanksgiving turkeys each year. I believe Mr. Tom T. Urkee was one of those who was pardoned. I know you all remember him fondly.

It has become sort of a tradition for folks to express their thanks for various things during Thanksgiving, so I'll go first: I am thankful for JennieO turkeys because they were only 29 cents a pound at the grocery, and because if I had to go out and shoot one and clean it, my family would starve for sure. I am thankful for only having to bring two dishes to Allison's, the turkey and my squash casserole. I am thankful that Rod cleans up after dinner. Of course he does that every night, but I am still thankful.

I am thankful that I don't have to wear socks to bed this winter because Lizzy and Mulligan will keep my feet warm. Rod is thankful that I won't be wearing socks to bed, too, because he thinks I look goofy with socks on.

I am thankful that my children are all gainfully employed, and have given me such beautiful, smart, and talented grandchildren.

Finally, I am thankful to be living in America, despite the current unemployment dilemma, the deplorable outsourcing by companies to whom we gave bailout money, and the mean-spirited, divisive nature and uncompromising attitudes of certain politicians these days. This is still my home, and I'm gonna love it, come rain or come shine.

I am also thankful that God invented the Internet, and then gave me such nice blogger friends to hang out with every day.

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!


Tom Hakkinen said...

Hi Judie!

What an informative post! I really liked it.

noexcuses said...

You need to get out more. Nice research. I wear socks to bed all year, and I know I look goofy, but I would trade them in a heartbeat for your adorable foot warmers!

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

Jo-Ann Sanborn said...

Woolly Booger? I'm thankful for many of the same things you are, and for both a warm feeling and a good laugh this morning. Happy Thanksgiving

nothingprofound said...

Judie-thanks for the history lesson. I honestly didn't know any of this, and it was fun to learn. We really do have life easy, compared to what our predecessors had to endure. Plus, you've given me a beautiful example of humanity to ponder: Squanto. I was very moved by his story. It's good to remember there are people like him in the world.

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

Mary said...

I'm thankful I wasn't a pilgrim or a pioneer! I have my own personal dishwasher too that I thankful for! Have a wonderful Thanksgiving :-)

Lola said...

Many thanks for, as always, such an informative & interesting post!

Happy Thanksgiving to you!

XOXO Lola:)

Yanet @ 3 Sun Kissed Boys said...

I'm so looking forward to watching the parade with the boys this year!

Happy Thanksgiving!

Rocky Mountain Woman said...

I'm thankful I wasn't a Native American! You invite a few people over for turkey dinner and they never leave~lol....

Jackie said...

happy thanksgiving ! That was interesting and thanks for sharing your thankful thoughts .

Cher Duncombe said...

This was a wonderful post Judie, and you had me at "woolly booger"! I am thankful that you have Lizzy and Mulligan and a wonderful husband in Rod. And I am deeply thankful for you, my cosmic sister, the one who makes me laugh, think, sells me gorgeous paintings and brightens my days. You are a gift! Happy Thanksgiving....

Teresa said...

I truly am grateful for all of our modern conveniences also. I chuckled about the socks because I'm wearing mine to bed now. Happy Thanksgiving!

Vicki/Jake said...

HAHA...Me too! I'm thankful for the privilege of being thankful...

Jo said...

I loved that post ... I'm sure i would have failed at being a pilgrim ... what, wait on a boat for months??? i would have literally gone off the deep end without being able to explore ... Have a wonderful thanksgiving!

Anonymous said...

Wonderful history lesson! Your blog is a true gift from the Universe.
I will call you "Saraswati".
Happy Thanksgiving!
I had to add your link to my website:
My visitors deserve it!

Betty said...

Thank you for such an informative post. I would not have wanted to be a Pilgrim either. Gosh, I won't complain about having to cook the turkey tomorrow. Happy Thanksgiving!

paige said...

Another post that I love. :) Well done, you. I'm so glad you participate in this meme. Happy Thanksgiving!

Unknown said...

I love the history lesson! It's so nice to remember the story behind the holiday :) Thanks for being such an interesting blogger. I hope you and your family have a great Thanksgiving!

~✽Mumsy✽~ said...

I'm thankful for Thanksgiving, and after reading this post, I'm even more liking the idea.

Beautiful, and informative post!

Happy Thanksgiving, Judie!

Kat said...

I love the history lesson, and I'm sure the pilgrims had much to be thankful for. But NO PIES!!??!! Hope that you have a wonderful day (and my daughter insisted on buying the turkey this year because - you guessed it - she was able to get the JennieO for 29cents/lb. I sure wish we had a Krogers here!) Kat

Unknown said...

Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours!

Jingle said...

Happy Thanksgiving, take the award you like and enjoy!

Gattina said...

That's really funny that we talked about the same subject, the pligrims and the Mayflower. You know I am happy to live where I live and problems are in all countries for the moment. But I think the Mayflower offsprings, are living far better today, despite unemployent and all this stuff, lol !

Angelia Sims said...

Happy, Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours and the puppie wuppies!

I hope it is filled with RICHNESS and delight.

After reading this, I am really thankful I wasn't a pilgrim either!


Coralie Cederna Johnson said...

Blessings to all!

Amanda Lee said...

I'm thankful I didn't live in Pilgrim days -- because I probably would have been one! Loved your retelling of the Mayflower story.

Barkha Dhar said...

This is such a beautiful post Judie. Thanks for sharing the history of thanksgiving and its many traditions that bring joy to America. Thanks for expressing your gratitude for all you have. Its was wonderful reading your post and knowing you through your words.
Barkha Dhar

Lourie said...

I am thankful I wasn't a pilgrim either. Haha. Have a great day.

Jamie said...

So interesting to read all of that, and now I can join you in giving thanks that I'm celebrating Thanksgiving in 2010 and not as an actual Pilgrim! Have a fabulous holiday.

Judie said...

So I guess most of us are glad that we live in the 21st century! Even though things are a little rough all over, our lives are surely better than our forefathers!!

JJ said...

Judie: Happy Thanksgiving!

Birgit said...

Yeah, just to think of all the trouble the early settlers had to go through! (I have a MA in American history, so I was delighted to read your post.)

Happy Thanksgiving, Judie!

Greetings from Germany,

Susan said...

My youngest daughter and her HS competing marching band of 156 (including color guard-flag twirlers, the "pit", drum liner and 2 drum-majors) not only marched and played in the 75th Macy's Thanksgiving parade they were given the "honor" of being the last band, the band that escorts Santa out, and actually gets to do a little entertaining. BTW the same band was first place in their "class and level" in the state of NJ for all 4 years that my daughter was in.

I am thankful for a lot, but the internet is a biggie as I am disabled and more or less housebound. Come visit, I have a few things to make you smile!

Happy thanksgiving to you and yours!

Anonymous said...

Judie gave me a giggle
wooly booger whatever!!!
yes i love footwarmers with beating hearts
BEAR says hi to your 2 sweeties
OH it's after midnight
Happy Black Friday
~i never go out of my house Friday~


Donald Swarbrick said...

Very informative, a lot of hard work and research has gone into this post and I look forward to future reports.

Magyar said...

__I'm thankful... that, we the citizens still have a voice and that that voice is again, beginning to be heard.

Great post, Judie. _m

Pondside said...

Amen to all of that Judie! I'm glad that my ancestors came to Canada - we are so lucky to live on this beautiful continent!

Francisca said...

Delightful, Judie! I have no romantic notions about those early cross-ocean treks, no sirree! Wouldn't have wanted to be on any one of them, and I do consider myself the adventurous type. No need for socks in bed here, and we have no Thanksgiving in Manila. But I have American friends here and last night we had a huge turkey dinner, stuffing, and yes, gravy. Thankful for all that. Hope your gravy was as superb as always, even if you're not going to share the recipe. :-D

Anonymous said...

I always learn something when I come and visit the Rogue and it's always a pleasure.
Happy belated Thanksgiving x

Annesphamily said...

What a history lesson! I appreicate the research you did. Thank you for sharing Anne

Pearl Maple said...

Great post, artists often draw a pretty picture of the first thanksgiving, worth remembering how hard it was for them and how lucky we have it now

Jenny said...

Judie, this post almost made me cry.

It is lovely. I love the depth of your emotion in this writing.

The line that somehow touched me the most, though, was the one about not needing socks. I'm glad you have Lizzie to grace your life now and heal your wounded heart.

And I, too, am glad I wasn't a pilgrim. Especially a pilgrim woman. Those first photos showed the women doing all the work! What the heck is up with that!

Thank you for a lovely thankful stop this week.


Unknown said...

December first, 2010
Dear Judie,
I am late with my comments. I really like your Thanksgiving post. You give us an historical perspective that is important to remember. Well done!
We have had lots and lots of snow here and I feel as if I am drowning in things that need my attention.
My SC-post is late because I haven't been able to get my hands on a newspaper that has any kind of a horoscope!
Best wishes,

Thank you for visiting and leaving kind words on the posts that I have been able to do!