Since it’s so close to Thanksgiving, I will share with you a few stories of pioneer Thanksgivings that I enjoyed reading. I hope you do too.
Thanksgiving on the Frontier
Wild turkeys were present on the frontier, but on one occasion thankfulness came not for enjoying the turkey, but for still being alive, as recalled by Mrs. Hulda Esther Thorpe. “One of the best Thanksgiving dinners we ever knew of was when a family of settlers had their nice wild turkey dinner taken by the Indians, who came in silently and just shoved the folks back and eat [ate] it up.
|Miracle of the Gulls Monument, Salt Lake City; |
photo by David McConeghy; wikipedia creative commons 2.0
The Mormons’ First Thanksgiving
The first Mormon pioneers arrived in the Salt Lake Valley in 1847. They got a late start on planting that summer, and the crops didn’t yield a plentiful harvest, not allowing for any thanksgiving feast. The hundreds of Saints who arrived that year had a rough time just surviving winter.
How to Season the Dressing
The most famous Laura Ingalls Wilder Thanksgiving story is the argument between Laura and her sister Mary about how to season the dressing. The argument began when their Pa announced he intended to shoot a goose for Thanksgiving dinner. After he left to hunt, Laura delighted over the prospect of dressing seasoned with onion. Mary objected, saying she doesn’t like it seasoned with onion and wanted it seasoned with sage instead.
The sisters continued to bicker back and forth: “Sage.” “Onion.” “SAGE!” “ONION!” Until Pa came back without the goose. This evidently remained a favorite story for Laura because it’s a reminder at Thanksgiving to look around and be grateful even if “the seasoning of my blessings has not been just as I would have chosen.”
Lyn Horner is a multi-published, award-winning author of western historical romance and romantic suspense novels, all spiced with paranormal elements. She is a former fashion illustrator and art instructor who resides in Fort Worth, Texas – “Where the West Begins” - with her husband and a pair of very spoiled cats. As well as crafting passionate love stories, Lyn enjoys reading, gardening, genealogy, visiting with family and friends, and cuddling her furry, four-legged children.
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