A few things you may not know about the origins of Thanksgiving in Canada.
- The first Thanksgiving celebration in North America is said to have taken place during Martin Frobisher's voyage in 1578. It was held in what is now Frobisher Bay, Nunavut. The event thought of as the first Thanksgiving in the United States took place in 1621.
- Thanksgiving has its roots in European harvest festivals.
- Turkey, pumpkin and squash were added to Canadian Thanskgiving practices by the United Empire Loyalists after the American Revolution.
- Thanksgiving was originally celebrated in 1816 on May 21 in lower Canada and June 18 in upper Canada. Thanksgiving was declared a national holiday in 1879, although the date fluctuated. It wasn't until 1957 that Thanksgiving was decreed to be the second Monday in October.
Let us remember that for all the challenges we may face individually, within our families, our communities and society as a whole, as Canadians, we have much to be thankful for.
I hope you have a happy, healthy and joyous Thanksgiving weekend.