The Commercial-News, Danville, IL


November 22, 2012

Remember to give thanks

DANVILLE — Today across America, statistics show 90 percent of us will eat turkey to celebrate Thanksgiving — with unofficial numbers even higher for those who will watch football as well.

Today’s holiday is much different than the first fall feast shared by the Plymouth colonists and their neighbors, the Wampanoag tribe in 1621. Yet the real reason for the day remains the same.

The Plymouth colonists spend 66 days at see in 1620 crossing the rough Atlantic Ocean in search of a land of their own where they could worship as they saw fit.

Their ship ended up far north of their original destination, but they decided to stay.

They lived on their ship during the first winter. Sickness took its toll, with only half of their original number still alive in spring of 1621.

As the weather warned, they began to explore the countryside and were surprised to be greeted in English by a member of the Abenaki tribe.

They soon met Squanto, a member of the Pawtuxet tribe, who had been kidnapped years before and taken to England, where he learned to speak the language. He later escaped and returned to his homeland aboard another exploratory mission.

Squanto taught the Plymouth colonists how to survive in their new home and, most important, helped them live in peace with their neighbors, the Wampanoags.

The story of the first feast is familiar, with the colonists and Native Americans sitting down together for huge feast.

From that start, the tradition continued. Colonies — and later, states — celebrated a version of Thanksgiving on their own.

President Abraham Lincoln issued a proclamation in 1863, during the bloodiest days of the Civil War, establishing a day of thanksgiving on the fourth Thursday in November.

Lincoln asked his fellow Americans to ask God “to commend to his tender care all those who have become widows, orphans, mourners or sufferers in the lamentable civil strive.”

He also hoped the day would “heal the wounds of the nation.”

In the wake of this month’s rather rancorous election, the latter sentiment still applies.

Americans should be thankful for their prosperity, their safety compared to so many others on the planet and their freedom to select their leaders through ballots and not bullets.

We here at the Commercial-News also would like to add our thanks to our advertisers and our readers for helping make 2012 a successful year. We look forward to many more in the years ahead.

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone.

Text Only
  • Put money to better use Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn announced earlier this week the state would pass along $52 million in federal dollars to pay for various alternative transportation projects, such as bike paths and walking trails. While the money is nice, it could be put to b

    April 16, 2014

  • Make penalty a tough one An old nemisis appears to be making a comeback in Illinois, and legislators and law enforcement officials worry that the influx of heroin will leave an even deadlier wake than before. The situation is bad enough that members of the Illinois House dec

    April 13, 2014

  • A good addition for United Way United Way officials announces earlier this week the addition of a 2-1-1 phone service, which connects people in need with agencies that can offer assistance. The latest addition to the United Way's arsenal of ways to aid residents in Vermilion Count

    April 11, 2014

  • A glimmer of promise An Illinois legislator -- state Sen. Andy Manar, D-Staunton -- finally appears to recognize a growing problem in the state that his fellow lawmakers apparently choose to ignore: Illinois schools face real financial problems. Many school districts hav

    April 10, 2014

  • E-cigarettes: Use caution The latest craze sweeping the area involves an old habit -- smoking -- in a way. And like its well-know toxic predecessor, not much is known about it as it begins to become more commonplace. Electronic cigarettes -- known as E cigarettes -- provide i

    April 6, 2014

  • Gambling plan takes new turn Members of the Illinois Legislature will consider yet another version of a bill to expand gambling in the state. This one also includes a proposal to put a casino in Danville -- kind of. State Rep. Bob Rita, D-Blue Island, told The Associated Press h

    April 3, 2014

  • Time to start cleaning up As the days grow longer and the temperatures continue to rise -- hopefully -- area residents can begin to put the record-setting snowfall and cold behind them and enjoy spring. The sunny days already have melted away the 50-plus inches of snow that f

    March 28, 2014

  • Great job at NJCAA Mary Miller gym on the campus of Danville Area Community College must still echo with the cheers from last week's National Junior College Athletic Association's Men's Division II Basketball Tournament. Sixteen teams from across the country visited DA

    March 25, 2014

  • School merger is right move Residents in the Catlin and Jamaica school districts soon will have a chance to vote on a plan to merge the two districts. It's a good move for the most important people involved -- the students. A Committee of Ten, made up of representatives from bo

    March 23, 2014

  • Use a brake on spring break Today marks a couple of significant benchmarks in our area's move away from the snowiest winter on record. It's the first full day of spring and it's the first day of a week-long spring break for District 118 students. That means more young people wi

    March 21, 2014

AP Video
Captain of Sunken SKorean Ferry Arrested Raw: Fire Destroys 3 N.J. Beachfront Homes Raw: Pope Presides Over Good Friday Mass Raw: Space X Launches to Space Station Superheroes Descend on Capitol Mall Man Charged in Kansas City Highway Shootings Obama Awards Navy Football Trophy Anti-semitic Leaflets Posted in Eastern Ukraine Raw: Magnitude-7.2 Earthquake Shakes Mexico City Ceremony at MIT Remembers One of Boston's Finest Raw: Students Hurt in Colo. School Bus Crash Raw: Church Tries for Record With Chalk Jesus Raw: Faithful Celebrate Good Friday Worldwide Deadly Avalanche Sweeps Slopes of Mount Everest Police Arrest Suspect in Highway Shootings Drought Concerns May Hurt Lake Tourism Vermont Goat Meat Gives Refugees Taste of Home Calif. Investigators Re-construct Fatal Bus Cras Mayor Rob Ford Launches Re-election Campaign Appellate Court Hears Okla. Gay Marriage Case
NDN Video
Raw: Fire Destroys 3 N.J. Beachfront Homes Raw: Space X Launches to Space Station My name is Cocaine Lohan Gets Candid About Her Sex List The 2014 New York Auto Show Meet Johnny Manziel's New Girlfriend Chelsea Clinton Announces Pregnancy Funny: Celebrating Easter with Martha Stewart and Friends Man Accuses 'X-Men' Director Bryan Singer of Sexually Abusing Him As a Teenager Man hit with $525 federal fine after he doesn't pay for soda refill Lea Michele & Naya Rivera Feuding? Jabari Parker declares for the NBA draft Singing Nun Belts Out Cyndi Lauper New West, Texas Explosion Video Swim Daily, Throwback Thursday Don't Be A Tattletale: Bad Bullying Tips For Students The trillest thoughts on marijuana "RHOA" Star Charged With Battery Grizzly Bears Get Snowy Birthday Party Weatherman draws forecast when another technical glitch strikes WGN
Must Read