The Origins of Turkey Day aka Thanksgiving in Canada!

Thanksgiving in Canada is on the second Monday of October every year. And those lovely people to the South of the boarder, commonly referred to around here as ‘Merica, really have no clue when it comes to holidays in the country North of their boarder.

Canadians have enjoyed Thanksgiving well before their counterparts to the South. And the history of Turkey Day in Canada, became a recent topic of conversation between my family. Because my family lives in America. And I live in Canada.

Yesterday, my wife and I, celebrated Canada’s Thanksgiving with a great group of friends. And as we lounged around the house having conversations about our lives, I was chatting with my own family south of the boarder about the Canadian holiday weekend on an app called Voxer.

Voxer is a messaging service which allows you to text, share photos and/or send two-way voice messages. And the best part is it is a free service, when you are on Wi-Fi. Its a great way to keep in touch with anyone around the world. My younger brother and I, have been using it for about 5-years.

And while I was sipping on an IPA, chatting with friends, and listening to my younger brother prepare to board an airplane bound for Italy, we started talking about the Origins of Canadian Thanksgiving.

And wouldn’t you know it. Canadians celebrated Thanksgiving before Americas!

This is when I, located some great information on the web at The Canadian Encyclopedia, which describes the origins of Canada’s Thanksgiving Day Celebrations:

The first official, annual Thanksgiving in Canada was celebrated on 6 November 1879, though Indigenous peoples in Canada have a history of celebrating the fall harvest that predates the arrival of European settlers. Sir Martin Frobisher and his crew are credited as the first Europeans to celebrate a Thanksgiving ceremony in North America, in 1578. They were followed by the inhabitants of New France under Samuel de Champlain in 1606.

This was 17 years before what is often recognized as the first American Thanksgiving — the Pilgrims’ celebration of their first harvest in Massachusetts in 1621 (which was actually predated by several similar events in the New England colonies by at least 14 years). The prototypical Thanksgiving feast featuring the uniquely North American turkey, squash and pumpkin was introduced to Nova Scotia in the 1750s. The citizens of Halifax commemorated the end of the Seven Years’ War in 1763 with a day of Thanksgiving, and Loyalistssubsequently brought the celebration to other parts of the country.

In 1957, Thanksgiving was proclaimed an annual event to occur on the second Monday of October. It is an official statutory holiday in all provinces and territories except Prince Edward Island, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, and Newfoundland and Labrador.