America’s Turkey Day!

Kaitlin Copponi, Boss

Football, food, family, the three F’s of Thanksgiving for lots of families in America. The turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes, pumpkin pie, apple pie, every kind of pie possible, are just a few things that contribute to an array of food that spreads  tables all around the United States. Many people also think of the Pilgrims and Wampanoag.

So what is thanksgiving like for typical FHSers these days?

“My dad goes hunting in Maine, while my mom, sister and I, go to my aunts house. We just talk and eat food. Also we watch some football, getting really into the game and yelling at the TV,” Michael Morrissey, FHS senior.

“I go to my grandparents house and we have lots of delicious food every year. Then me and my sister, along with my two aunts, go black Friday shopping at midnight, now that’s a thrill,” Julia Cowell, FHS junior.

“I do the same thing as everyone else basically, the only difference is my dad is a vegan. We always have to have a substitute Thanksgiving dinner, without meat or dairy products. This kind of puts a damper on the Thanksgiving spirit for me.” Hannah Daly, FHS junior.

“My family from New York comes to my house, along with my Grandma and Great Grandma, from Florida. My brother and I will be playing in the football game at kp this year, and my entire family will come to watch us. Late afternoon we have our turkey dinner, where I pig out every year. At night we usually watch Christmas Vacation with all seventeen of us in the family room,” Patrick O’Reilly IV, FHS junior

People may wonder, what was Thanksgiving like before it became what it is today?

The year 1621, the Pilgrims and Wampanoag Indians, celebrated with a feast that is known today as one of the first Thanksgivings in the colonies. For over two centuries, thanksgivings were held at different times by different colonies and states. In 1863, Lincoln declared the national holiday of Thanksgiving to be held each November.

September, 1620, the Mayflower set sail from Plymouth, England with 102 people on board. On the ship was a variety of religiously independent people looking for a new place where they could practice their faith freely. Other people were excited by the idea of wealth and owning land in the New World.

After 66 days at sea, they anchored themselves close to the tip of the Cape. This was way north of their destination they intended to reach. After a month, they got to Massachusetts Bay, which is where they began setting up a village at Plymouth.

Throughout their first brutal winter, most of the colonists remained on board the ship, where they were tortured with horrible diseases. The illnesses were so severe that only half of their original travelers lasted to see their first spring in New England.

March came along and the settlers, who made it, moved to land, and received a shocking visit from an Abenaki Indian. He greeted them with their own language, English, which shocked them all. He then brought along Squanto . He was a big help when it came to their bad health and serious illness. He taught them how to cultivate corn, take the sap from maple trees, catch fish in rivers and stay away from the dangerous plants. He also kept them safe by helping them create an alliance with the Wampanoag.

November, 1621, their first harvest of corn was proven to be a success. Their governor at the time, Bradford,  set up a feast and invited a few Native American friends. This lasted three days and was the “first thanksgiving”, but at the time probably not referred to as this.

There is nothing stating the exact menu, however a chronicler for the pilgrims, has noted some ideas as to what was there. The Native Americans brought five deer, a few Pilgrims were sent out on a “fowling mission” to find other sources of food. Historians have suspected that they used spices from the natives, and used their cooking methods. There were no desserts or pies because they had no ovens and hardly any sugar. Turkey may not have even been served at the first thanksgiving! Other foods not served for the first thanksgiving were mashed potatoes and cranberry sauce.

Their activities consisted of ball games, singing, dancing and story telling.

Roosevelt changed the date of Thanksgiving to help in the times of depression in 1939. In 1941 the President signed a bill proclaiming Thanksgiving the fourth Thursday in November.

Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade began in 1924, as parades have become an important part to Thanksgiving. This is held in New York city and attracts 2-3 million people, celebrities, floats, balloons, bands, dancers and singers all contribute to the show.

As the years have gone on, this holiday is obviously still ongoing, but more traditions have been added on as time progresses. We are lucky that these people got us into the holiday because now we have a full day filled with celebrating! Oh, another thing added to many people’s Thanksgiving traditions is waking up ridiculously early for Black Friday shopping, and that’s another article for you! Let the holiday season begin people.

Check out the video to Thanksgiving, catchy tune, but here comes the next Rebecca Black, WATCH OUT!

(picture came from:,r:3,s:0,i:94&tx=100&ty=77)