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THANKSGIVING: Holidays and the Progressive Development of a Public Ideology Andrew Wiget, Professor Emeritus of New Mexico State University.

The week of the fourth Thursday in November represents the heaviest travel weekend of the year in the United States. Most Americans fly across the country to gather then for a traditional Thanksgiving meal of turkey, cranberries and pumpkin pie. Many believe that the holiday commemorates how the Puritan founders of New England survived their first winter with the help of friendly Indians. Yet Thanksgiving was not established as a national holiday until 1863, and Bradfords manuscript Of Plimoth Plantation, which reports that famous first meal, was only rediscovered and republished in 1849. In short, there was little time for Bradfords narrative to affect the national consciousness, which was becoming more and more attuned to the impending Civil War. Yet today Thanksgiving is the most popular national holiday. This presentation explores the development of the Thanksgiving holiday as a means to address the social, political and cultural tensions that shaped the United States in the modern era.


| 30.11.2021 01:01