Monday, November 24, 2014

Thanksgiving Proclamations at the State Library

This week we celebrate Thanksgiving, the harvest festival celebrated by the Pilgrims in 1621. To commemorate this date the Library is displaying here some of our historical Thanksgiving proclamations from our collections. In addition to the proclamations we have included a description of the first Thanksgiving celebrated by the Pilgrims, by William Bradford from his manuscript Of Plimoth Plantation.

Massachusetts officials have been issuing Thanksgiving proclamations since 1676. The library’s collection spans the years 1779 through 1893.  

Earliest Thanksgiving proclamation in
the collection dates to 1779.
1783 proclamation by John Hancock, first and third governor of Massachusetts.

1796 proclamation by Samuel Adams, fourth Governor of Massachusetts.

William Bradford's account of Thanksgiving in 1621. From
his Of Plimoth Plantation.

Silvia Mejia
Special Collections Librarian