On November 29, 1623, three years after the Pilgrims’ arrival and two years after the first Thanksgiving, Governor William Bradford made an official proclamation for a day of Thanksgiving:
To all ye Pilgrims:
In as much as the great Father has given us this year an abundant harvest of Indian corn, wheat, peas, beans, squashes, and garden vegetable, and has made l the forests to abound with game and the sea with fish and clams, and inasmuch as he has protected us from the ravages of the savages, has spared us from pestilence and disease, has
granted us freedom to worship God according to the dictates of our own conscience; now I, your magistrate, do proclaim that Al lye Pilgrims, with your wives and ye little ones, do gather at ye meeting house, on ye hill, between the hours of 9 and 12 in the day time, on Thursday, November ye 29th, of the year of our Lord one thousand six hundred and twenty-three, and the third year since ye Pilgrims landed on ye Pilgrim Rock, there to listen to ye pastor and render thanksgiving to ye Almighty God for all His blessings. William Bradford, Ye Governor of Ye Colony.
Continental Congress November 1, 1777, issued The First National Proclamation of Thanksgiving to all colonies, as a result of their victory of Saratoga:
Forasmuch as it is the indispensable duty of an men to adore the superintending Providence of Almighty God; to acknowledge with gratitude their obligation to him for benefits received and to implore such further blessing as they stand in need of; and it having pleased Him in His abundant mercy not only to continue to us the innumerable bounties of His common Providence…to smile upon us as in the prosecution of a just and necessary war for the defense and establishment of our unalienable rights and liberties…
It is therefore recommended to the legislative or executive powers of these United States, to set apart Thursday, the eighteenth day of December next, for the solemn thanksgiving and praise:
That with one heart and one voice the good people may express the grateful feelings of their hearts, and consecrate themselves to the service of their Divine Benefactor; and that together with their sincere acknowledgments and offerings, they may join the penitent confession of their manifold sins, whereby they had forfeited every favor, and their humble and earnest supplication that it may please God, through the merits of Jesus Christ, mercifully to forgive and blot them out of remembrance….
That it may please Him, to prosper….the means of religion for the promotion and enlargement of that kingdom which consisteth “in righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Ghost.”
President George Washington, on October 3, 1789, from the city of New York, proclaimed a National Day of Thanksgiving:
Whereas it is the duty of all nations to acknowledge the providence of Almighty God, to obey His will, to be grateful for his benefits, and humbly to implore His protection and favor…
Now, therefore, I do recommend and assign Thursday, the twenty-sixth day of November next, to be devoted by the people of these United States…
that we then may an unite unto him our sincere and humble thanks for His kind care and protection of the people of this country previous to their becoming a nation; for the signal and manifold mercies and the favorable interpositions of His providence in the course and conclusion of the late war….
Congress of the United States of America October 3, 1863, as proclaimed by President Abraham Lincoln, passed an Act of Congress designating an annual National Day of Thanksgiving:
I do, therefore, invite my fellow citizens in every part of the United States…to set apart and observe the last Thursday of November next as a day of Thanksgiving and Praise to our beneficent Father who dwelleth in the heavens… (it is) announced in the Holy Scriptures and proven by all history, that those nations are blessed whose God is the Lord…It has seemed to me fit and proper that God should be solemnly, reverently and gratefully acknowledged, as with one heart and one voice, by the whore American people.
THE ABOVE MATERIAL WAS PUBLISHED BY APOSTOLIC ACCENT, AUGUST 98, PAGE 11. THIS MATERIAL IS COPYRIGHTED AND MAY BE USED FOR STUDY & RESEARCH PURPOSES ONLY.