Thanksgiving Proclamation of President General Jack Manning
Thanksgiving is a time to celebrate the harvest and give thanks. Thanksgiving celebrations in America have roots in Native American and Puritan customs, and although it has been debated when the first North American Thanksgiving took place, it’s clear that celebrations of thanksgiving have been taking place for hundreds of years.
George Washington was an early proponent of celebrating Thanksgiving at the federal level in the United States. After Congress motioned that a day of Thanksgiving be held in 1789, Washington issued a Thanksgiving Proclamation on October 3, 1789 saying:
“…I do recommend and assign Thursday the 26th day of November next to be devoted by the People of these States to the service of that great and glorious Being… for the civil and religious liberty with which we are blessed; and the means we have of acquiring and diffusing useful knowledge; and in general for all the great and various favors which he hath been pleased to confer upon us.”
Another President, however, made it a national holiday. In 1863 Abraham Lincoln, influenced by the Civil War and the lobbying of Sarah Josepha Hale, editor of multiple women’s magazines, declared the fourth Thursday in November would be a national Thanksgiving Day. In 1941 Congress made Thanksgiving a legal holiday, ordering the fourth Thursday in November be marked annually as a day of thanks.
Today, Thanksgiving is celebrated with family, food and acknowledgement of all our country has to be thankful for. From all of us at the Sons of the American Revolution, we wish you and your family a peaceful and blessed day.