Thanksgiving DayAs an American tradition, Thanksgiving Day had it’s beginnings with the Pilgrim settlement of 1620 in what is now the state of Massachusetts. According to the history written by William Bradford in his book “Of Plimouth Plantation,” Bradford relates how the Pilgrims set up a system where they would all own property in common and would also share in the harvest. By 1623, it became clear this system was not working very well. The men were not eager to work hard and then share what they produced with everyone. Facing another year of poor harvests, they held a meeting to decide what to do. After much debate the Governor agreed that they should each plant corn for themselves. That was very successful and resulted in more people being industrious and more corn being planted.

The Pilgrims changed their economic system from socialism to individual enterprise. The land was still owned in common, each family was allotted a portion, and they could keep whatever they grew.

Their new incentive-based economic system was a great success. It looked like they would have an abundant harvest in 1623. But then, during the summer, the rains stopped, threatening the crops. The Pilgrims held a “Day of Humiliation” and prayer. The rains came and the harvest was saved. It is logical to surmise that the Pilgrims saw this as a sign that God blessed their new economic system, because Governor Bradford proclaimed November 29, 1623, as a Day of Thanksgiving.                                                                                                                Thanksgiving Day

Billie Nicholson, editor
November  2014

Other articles in November’s issue:

A Winter “To Do” List  Don’t let cold weather catch you unprepared.

Use household items to make your own Gel packs for sprains and swollen joints

Commit these ground to air emergency codes to memory. You may need them this winter.

Commit these ground to air emergency codes to memory. You may need them this winter.

Super size your rain water storage

Squash Chips – an alternate way to preserve summer squash without freezing

French style Stew

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