Talk with the Doc: Thanksgiving Day History

Dr. Jim Surrell, Journal columnist

By James Surrell,M.D.

In just two days, on Thursday, November 24, 2022, we will be blessed to celebrate our annual Thanksgiving Day. This is a special time when many of us will have the opportunity to be thankful as we gather together with family and friends. Certainly, many of us also have much to be thankful for as we enjoy our great Upper Peninsula of Michigan.

Let me again briefly review the long term history of our Founding Fathers and those who followed them offering thanks for our wonderful country. Thanksgiving Day was first recognized as an official federal holiday by the United States government when President George Washington proclaimed the first national Day of Thanksgiving in 1789. For many years there was no specific national date set for the nation to celebrate a Thanksgiving Day. At that time, not all of our states celebrated a Thanksgiving Day. The states that chose to have a Thanksgiving Day celebration picked their own specific date. Therefore, it did not always fall on a Thursday. Finally, in 1941, President Franklin D. Roosevelt signed a federal bill officially proclaiming our United States Thanksgiving Day holiday to always be celebrated on the fourth Thursday in November.

At this time of Thanksgiving, and all year long, let us always remember and give thanks to all our present Military Personnel, all our Military Veterans, our local, state, and federal Law Enforcement Personnel, our Fire Fighters, our First Responders and Emergency Medical Services (EMS) personnel, and to all others who unselfishly serve us all and keep us safe. We all owe so much to these dedicated individuals who do so very much to protect us and to save lives each and every day of the year. Thank you all so very much for all you do for all of us.

Let me now offer you a bit of silly Thanksgiving humor and I sincerely wish you and yours a most Blessed and Joyful Thanksgiving Day.

– Why did they make the turkey join the band? Because he had the drum sticks.

– What do you call a Thanksgiving turkey running across the road? Poultry in motion.

– Why was my Thanksgiving soup so expensive? They told me because it was a “24 carrot” soup.

– Which side of the Thanksgiving turkey has the most feathers? The outside.

– What do you call a turkey on the day after Thanksgiving? “Lucky”.

– The teacher asked her third grade student what he was most thankful for on Thanksgiving Day. He promptly told her that he was very thankful that he was not a turkey.

This is also a great time of year to offer thanks by making a donation to a local charity of your choice, or to volunteer your personal time and talents to serve others. Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours!


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