It’s that time again to look back on the year, reflect and give thanks. Traditionally people think of Thanksgiving as an American holiday, started by the Pilgrims in 1621 to celebrate and thank the native people for a fruitful harvest. Thanksgiving Day was made an official holiday in 1863 by president Abraham Lincoln and was observed on the final Thursday of November. This tradition continues today, with the exception of 1939 and 1940, Thanksgiving has been celebrated in America on the fourth Thursday of November. At the urging of many merchants, in the years of ’39 and ’40, Franklin Roosevelt moved Thanksgiving one week earlier in an effort to increase consumer spending at the tail end of the recession. Lets take a look at what other countries have their own Thanksgiving Celebrations.
Canada began celebrating Thanksgiving in 1957. Similar to the American holiday, the Canadians use this paid holiday to visit with family and friends, eat feast like meals and of course give thanks for the harvest bounty. The day is celebrated on the second Monday of October.
For Croatians, Thanksgiving means something entirely different than it does to Americans. Celebrated on the 5th of August, the day commemorates a war of independence, when in 1995, the Croatian Army took the city of Knin and ended the Republic of Serbian Krajina. The celebration includes morning prayers, parades, concerts and of course honoring those that died in the war. In 2008, Croatian Parliament also assigned the name “Day of the Croatian Defenders” to this day.
In the West Indian island of Grenada, Thanksgiving again denotes a meaning of independence and celebrates the U.S. and Caribbean led invasion of the island on October 25th, 1983. The operation was launched to restore order in the country after the death of Prime Minister Maurice Bishop and many of his colleagues. The day is celebrated as a public holiday with banks and many shops closed.
So whatever reason has you thankful on this holiday, we hope you get to spend it with friends and family. Happy Thanksgiving!