Today is Thanksgiving Day and, in addition to urging you to take the time to be truly thankful for whatever good fortune you have, I ask you to remember those who were hit hard by Superstorm Sandy last month.
Thanksgiving was first proclaimed by Abraham Lincoln who, on Oct. 3, 1863, in the depths of the Civil War, declared a national day of “Thanksgiving and Praise to our beneficent Father who dwelleth in the Heavens,” to be observed on Thursday, Nov. 26. Lincoln’s successor, President Andrew Johnson, designated Dec. 7, 1865, as Thanksgiving and gave all government workers the day off, officially making it a legal holiday.
Each subsequent president continued to issue annual proclamations choosing the date for T-Day (usually the last Thursday of November, but sometimes the next-to-last). Then, on Dec. 26, 1941, President Franklin D. Roosevelt signed a bill officially fixing the date of Thanksgiving as the fourth Thursday of November each year.