Thanksgiving

Wishing Everyone a Happy Thanksgiving Day.

In November 1621, after the Pilgrims’ first corn harvest proved successful, Governor William Bradford organized a celebratory feast and invited a group of the fledgling colony’s Native American allies, including the Wampanoag chief Massasoit. Now remembered as American’s “first Thanksgiving”—although the Pilgrims themselves may not have used the term at the time—the festival lasted for three days.

While no record exists of the historic banquet’s exact menu, the Pilgrim chronicler Edward Winslow wrote in his journal that Governor Bradford sent four men on a “fowling” mission in preparation for the event, and that the Wampanoag guests arrived bearing five deer. Historians have suggested that many of the dishes were likely prepared using traditional Native American spices and cooking methods. Because the Pilgrims had no oven and the Mayflower’s sugar supply had dwindled by the fall of 1621, the meal did not feature pies, cakes or other desserts, which have become a hallmark of contemporary celebrations.

Joseph Leyendecker

Joseph Leyendecker, “Pilgrim and Football Player, 1928″, November Cover Art of the Saturday Evening Post, 1928

Joseph Christian Leyendecker (March 23, 1874 – July 25, 1951) was one of the pre-eminent American illustrators of the early 20th century. He is best known for his poster, book, and advertising illustrations, the trade character known as The Arrow Collar Man, and his numerous covers for The Saturday Evening Post. Between 1896 and 1950, Leyendecker painted more than 400 magazine covers. Leyendecker virtually invented the whole idea of modern magazine design.

Note: Additional images of Leyendecker’s work plus a more extensive biography can be found at this site in the June 2016 article entitled “Joseph Christian Leyendecker”. ===