Sarah Hale & our National Thanksgiving Holiday

I learned something new today. With all my education and then homeschooling my own children, I had never heard of Sarah Hale.

Sarah Hale
Sarah Hale –
Richard’s Free Lbirary

Sarah Hale is how we have a national holiday called Thanksgiving. Yeah, we have all learned about the pilgrims and the Indians getting together to share a meal after a very trying year in America.

But this tradition was sporadic at best until President Lincoln made a presidential declaration that we all stop on the fourth week of November and thank our God for all the many blessings we so often take for granted.

Thanksgiving: who's idea was it, REALLY? Click To Tweet

And who is Sarah Hale?

Well, she has likely touched your life more than you know. Sarah actually penned the words to the nursery rhyme “Mary Had a Little Lamb”. How about that for prestige? She wrote a lot of poetry, and published a book of them not long after her young husband of 10 years passed away.

She was fortunate in the late 18th century to have an education. Being a “girl”, this was not typical. After her 18th birthday, she determined to change that and started a private school to teach girls.

Sarah Hale – Poet and Editor

Dress 1851 fashion plate - Sarah Hale
Godey’s dress Fashion plate 1851

Her book of poetry led to an offer to be the editor of a women’s magazine, Godey’s Lady’s Book. Again, this was a rarity for women. She hoped the magazine would promote “the moral and intellectual excellence of women.” As the editor, she was able to influence women in many ways. in the mid 19th century she encouraged brides to wear white dresses and recommend wrinkle treatments. But it didn’t stop there.

She used her magazine to encourage other specific causes. Strongly believing in women’s education and encouraged mothers to teach their daughter’s alongside their sons. She was also an abolitionist before the Civil War.

Sarah Hale – Activist

Sarah was also an abolitionist before the Civil War, fighting to abolish slavery. Shewas also active in preserving American History. She actively raised money for historic sites such as George Washington’s Mount Vernon home and The Bunker Hill Monument in Massachusetts.

She wanted to promote patriotism and for decades she urged Americans to celebrate Thanksgiving by publishing poems about Thanksgiving and recipes for roast turkey and pumpkin pie.

It took decades and myriads of letters to governors and presidents to acquire this life long goal. But finally, she wrote to Abraham Lincoln. She encouraged that possibly a day of Thanksgiving would bring people together. This is when President Lincoln declared a day for Thanksgiving.

Can Thanksgiving Change Our Things Today?

Sadly, it didn’t work then to stop the inevitable. But Maybe it could for us today. No matter ifi you believe in God or not, gratitude changes things. Even if we are being today to “cancel Thanksgiving, what if we still took the time to be thankful.

Let’s count our blessings this year. And keep it up every day in 2021. If we took our eyes off of what is wrong in our world and started celebrating what is right, we would probably find that there is much more right than wrong.

Mandy Signature
Savannah, GA

Resources

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.