Today’s Canadian Thanksgiving often gets blended with our American neighbours - families gather together for a delicious turkey dinner, give thanks and watch some football. The two holidays celebrate an abundant harvest but it wasn’t always this way.
Bring your students together, and gobble up these top 5 facts about Canadian Thanksgiving!
- The first Thanksgiving meal was originally held in 1578, in what is now Newfoundland, when English navigator Martin Frobisher held a celebration after his crew survived the long journey over the seas.
- Thanksgiving was first introduced in Nova Scotia in the 1750s when citizens in Halifax celebrated the end of the Seven Years War with a feast.
- In 1879 Parliament declared November 6th to be an official Thanksgiving holiday.
- After WWI, both Armistice Day (now Remembrance Day) and Thanksgiving were celebrated the week of November 11th.
- The date jumped once last time in 1957 when Parliament declared Thanksgiving to be held every year on the second Monday in October.