The season of giving thanks is here again and it means different things to different people. For example, if you have young children in your home, you’ve probably had the opportunity to see some pretty fancy examples of the Pilgrim’s pride – some of those big hats they wore or some Native American headdresses – all made of brown, orange, green and yellow construction paper.
Just ask these youngsters and they will tell you about the first Thanksgiving in America. These stories will no doubt include references to the sharing of a meal among the new arrivals to the continent and the Indians who had been here for generations. Even though this first Thanksgiving meal was estimated to have occurred in 1621, it was a made an official U.S. holiday more than a century later.
The History of Thanksgiving
While Canadians celebrate Thanksgiving – also known as Jour de l’Action de grâce – on the second Monday in October, in the United States, the modern Thanksgiving holiday tradition is usually traced to the 1621 feast in Plymouth, Massachusetts. Those migrating from England in the 1620s and 1630s carried the tradition of Days of Fasting and Days of Thanksgiving with them to New England.
Online reference site, Wikipedia notes, “According to historian Jeremy Bangs, director of the Leiden American Pilgrim Museum, the Pilgrims may have been influenced by watching the annual services of Thanksgiving for the relief of the siege of Leiden in 1574. In later years, religious thanksgiving services were declared by civil leaders such as Governor Bradford, who planned a thanksgiving celebration and fast in 1623. The practice of holding an annual harvest festival did not become a regular affair in New England until the late 1660s.”
The Thanksgiving holiday, with its English traditions, continued even after the hostilities of the American Revolution subsided. As the first President of the United States, George Washington proclaimed the first nation-wide thanksgiving celebration in America marking November 26, 1789, “as a day of public thanksgiving and prayer to be observed by acknowledging with grateful hearts the many and signal favours of Almighty God”.
Our Physicians are Thankful
In spite and perhaps because of the challenges we all have to face, Thanksgiving is a good time to reflect on the people and things that enrich our lives. We asked a few of the physicians at Texas Back Institute about the things they are most thankful for and got some interesting answers.
Dr. Nayan Patel said,
“I’m thankful every time a patient tells me they are doing better!”
We’re guessing that the many patients who Dr. Patel has helped in his practice would share this thanks!
Dr. Isador Lieberman notes,
“I’m thankful for Simon’s Sushi.”
One can only imagine how different the world might have been if the Pilgrims and the Native Americans had had California Rolls for that first feast!
Dr. Jason Marchetti has a little different twist on the feast of Thanksgiving. He notes,
“Over the past year my family and I have been transitioning to a vegetarian/”plant strong” diet and lifestyle. I never thought I would do this and can’t believe I am saying this: it’s been great! I am thankful of my wife for pushing us initially in this direction and for the positive health benefits this has had for us. Our 4 & 10 year old boys have been the most difficult to convert (especially the 10 year old who is a little more set in his chicken nugget ways) but I am also thankful that they are willing to go without turkey and ham this year!”
Here’s some good news for the Marchetti family. There will be no tryptophan daze this year!
Dr. Stephen Tolhurst said,
“I am thankful for my wonderful family and that my family and I found a great house and can live in the community I serve.”
Happy Thanksgiving from Texas Back Institute!
For whatever you’re thankful, the staff and physicians at Texas Back Institute hope you have a great Thanksgiving Day and holiday season.