Today is the fourth Thursday of November which is also Thanksgiving Day, a big calender event and national holiday in the United States. Traditionally it is a day of giving thanks for the blessing of the harvest of the preceding year. It seemed very appropriate therefore to select Stephen Kellogg’s ‘Thanksgiving’ as Song of the Day. The song is from Blunderstone Rookery which was one of our Albums of the Month in August.
As Simon mentioned in his review this is an epic 10 minute song “that starts and ends with the University Of Massachusetts Choral and in between packs a spirited narrative that rises in intensity to a dramatic climax, as the rocky road of a life is mapped out.”
Thanksgiving is believed to have originated in the fall of 1621 when William Bradford, governor of Plymouth Plantation, Massachusetts, invited neighbouring Indians to join the Pilgrim settlers in a three-day feast in thanksgiving for a good harvest. It was President Abraham Lincoln in 1863 who declared it an official national holiday. Sarah J. Hale, editor of Godey’s Lady’s Book (a leading women’s periodical of the time) who most recognise as paving the way to the proclamation, something she had began pushing for from 1837! It was also from this periodical that many fo the food traditions originate including turkey, dressing, pumpkin pie, and apple cider.* One of the more wacky traditions around the day include the President of the United States “pardon” of a turkey which spares the bird’s life from the dinner table.
Have a Happy Thanksgiving!