Tag Archives: Thanksgiving

An International Thanksgiving Day

Not the Fourth of July, but Thanksgiving is our most distinctive national holiday. Other nations have days celebrating their birth or independence; none other has Thanksgiving. Other peoples have had harvest festivals, in joyousness similar to the day we celebrate; but no other people has ever had a distinctive day like Thanksgiving. It is a religious, not a sectarian—a national, not a sectional— festival.

Set apart first by the Pilgrim fathers of New England, it spread to all parts of the land. It exalts gratitude, one of the finest human traits. It calls together the scattered members of the family. Coming at the time it does, it serves as an admirable prelude to the joy of the universal Christmas-tide. Our observance of the day has its own peculiar traditions, but these traditions appeal most strongly to the old stock of New England or to their descendants scattered throughout the West.

Frank Leslie’s Weekly, published from 1855 to 1922, was an American illustrated news publication started by publisher and illustrator Frank Leslie. While only 30 copies of the first edition were printed, by 1897 its circulation had grown to an estimated 65,000 copies.

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