Thanksgiving, Pilgrims, and Native Americans

Most people connect Thanksgiving with the Pilgrims and the Native Americans sharing a feast in Massachusetts during the early 1620s. However, our Thanksgiving holiday tradition can also be traced as far back as a well-documented event that occurred in 1619 in Virginia. In that year, thirty-eight English settlers landed in what later became Charles City County in Virginia. Upon their arrival, these settlers—grateful for the safe journey across the Atlantic Ocean—followed the rules of their group’s charter from the London Company and dedicated, “that the day of our ships arrival at the place assigned…in the land of Virginia shall be yearly and perpetually kept holy as a day of thanksgiving to Almighty God.”


The last Thursday in November

Until 1682, most Thanksgiving proclamations were dictated by New England church leaders. However, during the height of the Civil War—on October 3, 1863—President Abraham Lincoln proclaimed “a national day of thanksgiving.” That was on Thursday, November 26th of that year. With only a few exceptions, American presidents continued to celebrate this holiday on the last Thursday in November.


The history of when we started celebrating Thanksgiving is not nearly as important as remembering WHY we celebrate this tradition.


In honor of Thanksgiving Day, I have a question for all of you!

Like it or not, we are all rapidly approaching the hectic, crazy time of year we fondly refer to as “The Holidays.” Often, we are so busy we forget why we are celebrating. Instead, we plow through the days checking things off of our to-do lists.


I’m just like you—too busy!

Too much on my plate and not enough time to do it all. Consequently, let’s make an agreement—all of us—let’s decide that we are going to take a minute to BREATHE, relax, and reflect upon what really matters—what is really important to us!



What are you grateful for today?

My answer…

Faith, Family, Friends—this beautiful, amazing country we call home—my sweet puppy who loves me unconditionally and…I thank God every day I still have good health.


What’s your answer? 

As we go through the next several weeks—let’s all try to—remember what we wrote—and put those people/things FIRST on our list.


BREATHE!  RELAX!  ENJOY!  Because—those things on our list—that’s the “good stuff” in life. 


From All of Us at LKNConnect, Happy Thanksgiving!


Photos by Tesa Jones



Tesa Jones is an Elon University alumna, retired teacher, wife, and mother of two. Although she lived most of her life in Alexandria, Virginia, she now resides in Mooresville, North Carolina. In addition to being a published author, Jones is very active in her church, adores her grandchildren, and enjoys boating, writing, and photography.






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