Shawn L. Bird

Original poetry, commentary, and fiction. All copyrights reserved.

Canadian Thanksgiving December 13, 2010

Filed under: Commentary — Shawn L. Bird @ 12:09 am
Tags: , , , ,

I was just reading a children’s novel about polio and came across the snippet that Thanksgiving was celebrated in Canada by Martin Frobisher and his crew in Newfoundland a couple of decades before the Pilgrims arrived at Plymouth Rock.  That Thanksgiving had nothing to do with a good harvest. They were celebrating their thanks that they had survived a journey through the treacherous North West Passage of the Arctic Ocean: a journey that had killed two previous expeditions. 

Who knew?  We Canadians have bought into the American propaganda about “The First Thanksgiving” and some of our schools even decorate with pilgrim themes.  (I went as a pilgrim for Hallowe’en when I was 11.  Apparently I  was quite Puritanical in my youth!)  Time for a shift of perception!  Here is an interesting article from the Globe and Mail. (I wonder if it is the very one that prompted the author to include the fact in the novel?)  

Next year, decorate for Thanksgiving  with icebergs, Polar bears, sailing ships, and salt cod.  Be a Canadian original!


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