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Thanksgiving Day is focused on giving thanks for the blessings of the harvest and the preceding year. It is an observance that holds significant cultural and historical relevance for millions of Americans. The celebration often entails families gathering together to share a festive meal, traditionally including a roasted turkey and festive side dishes.
The origins of Thanksgiving Day date back to the early 17th century when English Pilgrims held the first feast in 1621 at Plymouth, Massachusetts, to express their gratitude to the Native American Wampanoag people who had helped them survive their first year in the New World. The tradition of giving thanks for a successful harvest had long been established in Europe; however, it was not until 1863 that President Abraham Lincoln declared the last Thursday of November as a national day of Thanksgiving to foster unity in a divided country during the Civil War. Since then, Thanksgiving Day has become an integral part of American culture.
Families across the nation gather for a festive meal, volunteer at local food drives, participate in charity events, or watch the much-anticipated Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade, which has been an annual event since 1924. Thanksgiving is not just a day of indulgence in delicious food but rather an opportunity for Americans to express their gratitude, spend time with loved ones, and give back to their communities. Thanksgiving Day is observed on the fourth Thursday in November each year.
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Thanksgiving Day references and related sitesThe White House: Thanksgiving with the Presidents www.census.gov: US Census Facts for Features on Thanksgiving Day