As fate would have it, Thanksgiving this year (2017) overlaps with my dear colleague Kiran Ram’s amazing Food and Mood Project. So I decided to do a show and write a blog on food and mood.

A History of Thanksgiving:

The very 1st Thanksgiving Day occurred in the year 1621. It was a three-day festival held by pilgrims celebrating their blessings of the harvest. They invited Indians. Indians donated five deer, so venison was on the dinner table menu, and there wasn’t any turkey. There were also no pumpkin pies or potatoes as they hadn’t yet been introduced into the New England landscape. No one planned on this grateful feast creating an annual tradition.

1789. President George Washington announced the first Thanksgiving holiday, but it didn’t yet become an annual holiday until the 19th C. How did that happen? The American poet, Sarah Josepha Buell Hale, who is famous for  writing the nursery rhyme “Mary Had a Little Lamb” is responsible. She had the vision of an annual Thanksgiving American holiday. But to make it so, she campaigned, wrote and cajoled, for 30 years, for the creation of the American holiday known as Thanksgiving to come to be. 

Sarah also created the foods we have come to know as part of this holiday, such as roasted turkey and pumpkin pies. She created and published these recipes that are famous for being cooked in Thanksgiving kitchens.

1863. In the midst of the civil war President Lincoln made Thanksgiving an official yearly holiday. He proclaimed it to occur on the last Thursday of each November.

1939. President franklin D. Roosevelt moved Thanksgiving to one week earlier to help small business owners make more money during the challenging Depression times.

1989. President George Bush granted the first official pardon to a turkey sending them to retirement on a farm rather than for dinner on the table. Many presidents continue to pardon turkeys. Did you know that?

Thanksgiving is a national holiday celebrated in Canada, the United States, some of the Caribbean islands, and Liberia but often on different dates than it’s celebrated in the US.

We equate Thanksgiving with food.

Great food.

And a lot of it.

Show Resources & Links

You can go to my Food Rules Mood Blog here.

Go to the free Food and Mood Project here and listen to 40 amazing experts on food and mood. Learn how to make your life smarter, better and happier!