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POLK COUNTY NEWS-GAZETTE. EENTOX. TENNESSEE.
" ' ' "' ' ' ... ' f Benton Banking Company BENTON, TENN. Capital Stock $25,000 Surplus $5,000 -d nLa A Designated State Depository J. G. NORTON, President A. J. WILLIAMS, Vice President J. D. CLEMMER, Cashier H. W. McCLARY, Asst. Cashiei II s m.,-?-?. .... I BACKED BY REAL ESTATE WORTH OVER $500,000 00. DIRECTORS. it ill . ii ill 1UL 'i JL z r-':TVl H K.: . i' O v - - .. fj 1 t Ik :5t ill mi car cn&z cod ft D f 4 HANKSGIVING DAY has a long and curious history and did not originate entirely with the Pil grims at Plymouth, for Thanksgiv ing days are mentioned in the Bi ble days set apart for giving thanks to God for some special mercy. These days of fast and prayer were customary In England before the Reformation, and later the Protestants appointed certain days of praise and thanks for various blessings. The discov ery of the Gunpowder Plot in 1605 in London , brought the common sentiment of Thanksgiving. A scheme had been formed to blow up parlia ment house on the 5th of November, the first '. day of . the session. Great quantities of gunpow- ' der and inflammable material were found con . ealed in the vaults underneath the building. The ' .tplot.was discovered and the traitors were exe- . . euted. , In consequence of this deliverance the i " i " day". was, ordered to .be kept as ."a public thanks ftfPing to. Almighty' God.", every year that "u 1 , y ' ' feigned thankfulness may "never be forgotten, and, tliatf'ge.'to oome may yield praises tp God's di vine majesty for the same: "J AH ministers were '; m ordered ta ay greers thereon, for which special . forms were provded,"' This 'andual thanksgiving,' , together- with 6ne established Mater pn May 29, was - abolished in 183S in England,, for both had ' fallen into 'disuse. For several years afterward, , however,: these . days were recognized . in . New. lEngland 'Jbjtii ilBcov"iuCfa" 6n '-account : o ' "" ItlSTpCw in their : church' calendars. England continued to have special-days appointed for giv ing thantovand as. recently as 1872 there was a day 'selected for the public to offer prayers of thanksgiving for the recovery of the late King Edward, then prince of Wales, from typhoid fever,..' -" The first thanksgiving on the American conti nent was held by an English minister named TVolfall, and was celebrated off the coast of New foundland This pious man accompanied the Frobisher expedition which brought the first Eng lish colony to North America. Tho log of the ship gives the record of the day's observances and tells how on Monday, May 28, 158, aboard the Ayde, the men received communion, and how Minister Wo 1 fall in a sermon gave humble and hearty thanks to God for his miraculous deliver ance in these dangerous' places. This was the first Christian sermon preached In North Ameri can waters. Agalir in 1607 there was a similar service held at Sagadahoc a little village on the coast of Maine. There is little record of this thanksgiving except that it consumed only a few hours of the day, after which the people returned to their labors. The great American Tnanksgivlng day had its origin In the Massachusetts colony in 1621, and Gov. William Bradford, the first governor of that little band of sturdy pilgrims, sent out the first Thanksgiving proclamation, setting apart a day for prayer and rejoicing over the plenteous har vest of that year. The Englishmen recalled their Guy Fawkes thanksgiving, and the Dutch remem bered hearing their ancestors speak of the great day of praise and prayer held at Leyden, Hol land, in 1578, when that city was delivered from a siege. So, the entire colony began their pious preparation for what proved to be the gayest Thanksgiving the colony ever knew, for. after the first one, which lasted several days, the Puritan Thanksgiving meant long sermons, long prayers and long faces. Governor Bradford fe termlned that the Initial Thanksgiving should be celebrated with no little ceremony and that feasting should play a part in the occasion. His tory tells us that he sent out four men, who were to search for game for the feast. Many fowls were shot in fact, enough to meet the wants of the colony for a week. Wild turkeys predominated, so it seems that the turkey made Its appearance early in the history of Thanks giving. The day selected was December 13 (old style). At the dawn of fhat day a small cannon Vas fired from the hill and a procession was formed near the beach, close to where the Plymouth Rock now rests. Elder Brewster, wear ing his ministerial garb and carrying the Bible, . led the procession as it moved solemnly along the street. 'The men walked three abraast, with Governor Bradford In the rear. There was a long service in the meeting house, and after it was over there was a dinner and such a din ner had never been known in 'the colony, for, apart from the savory turkey and other wild fowl, thoj women had done their share in pro viding good things from the limited supply at their command. The most dramatic incident oo curred when the -dinner was in progress, for as Jf by magic 00 friendly red men, under King lAassasolt, appeared, carrying haunches of veni son as an addition to the feast Thanksgiving " day soon lengthened Into days, for the psalm singing and feasting, interspersed with war dances, were continued several days. After that Thanksgiving days took on a differ ent aspect, and occurred at any season; some tlmat twice a fear, or sometimes a year or two were skipped, Just as it pleased the governor of the colony, until 1664, when the day became a formal one in . Massachu setts. Other colonies fol lowed the example, and pretty soon all New Eng land joined in giving thanks on the same day. During the . Revolution ary war Thanksgiving . days , became , a fashion, and the .continental 'con gress - set apart at least eight days during one year for that purpose. On December 18, 1777. General Washington Is sued a proclamation for a general Thanksgiving to be ' celebrated ' by the sol diers of the Continental army. In 1789 congress decided to ask the president to issue a proclama tion asking the people to suspend work and give thanks on a certain' day of the year. There had . been considerable opposition to the passage of . the bill, some 'ol the,? reasons given being mpre r . humorous than' serious. President ' Washington i acquiesced in the wishes of congress and issued , a 'proclamation appointing November 26 of that f year as the day for the Amerlcaa people tO join ' in - thanksgiving to God"for the care and , pro tection he had given them In their plentiful harvest and freedom , from epidemics. From time to , time our presidents issued proclamations,' but it was generally left to the goverA.s of the states tp determine on ..what day it should occur. Under. the administration of John Adams two national fast days were ob served, but no real Thanksgiving. It was not until 1815, after three national fasts on account of the . war, that another national Thanksgiving was appointed by the president, James Madison. This was due to peace with Great Britain. After this there was another lull In proclamations as far as presidents were concerned until 1849, when President Taylor set a day of fast on August the third on account of the cholera. Meanwhile the national Thanksgiving day seemed to be dying out, except In the New England states. Then came, the Civil war, and .the nation was again summoned to fasting, and two such days were kept in 1861 January 4 and September 26 but it was not until1863 that the horizon had so brightened as to warrant the appointment of a national Thanksgiving. Immediately after the Battle of Gettysburg Mrs. Sarah J. Hale, a Boston woman, wrote to President Lincoln suggesting a national thanksgiving, and following her advice, the president set apart Thursday, August 6, as a day of "praise and prayer." On November 26 of the Bame year another Thanksgiving was kept, and this was really a great festival and observed in every northern state. In 1S64 the 24th of November was kept. After this, with one ex ception, our great national day of thanks has been celebrated on the last Thursday -In No vember. The presidential proclamations contain very little that is new or original and usually take the form of an essay. In 1898, after the Spanish American war, President McKInley had a chance to vary the conventional form by "giving special thanks for the restoration of peace." This was just 100 years after Washington's proclamation. President Roosevelt, who always did original things, declared "that a Thanksgiving proclama tion could not be made a brilliant epigrammatl cal paper." The proclamation of the president stamps the feast with a sort of official character something possessed by no other holiday. This proclamation does not make it a legal holiday it merely recommends that the people suspend business for the day. A special statute In each state is required to make the day a legal holi day, and this has not been enacted in every state. The day was originally set apart for thanksgiv ing, fasting, prayer and religiouB devotions, but the modern Thanksgiving has become a day of feasting and jollity, and Is made the occasion of all sorts of sports and festivities. The craze for outdoor life keeps many from the churches, although the places of worship continue to be. filled with "a goodly company," who gather to give thanks to him "from whom cometh every good and every perfect gift." The turkey Is still king of the Thanksgiving feast and as an addition the good things of the field and vineyard have been added. The famous pigeon pie, which was a popular Thanksgiving dish in the early part of the nineteenth century, la rarely seen in these days. The wild pigeons, which alighted in great numbers , on the buck wheat fields, were enticed by a decoy duck with in a spring net and caught by the hundred. They were kept alive and fattened on grain until the day before Thanksgiving, when they were killed and made into a pie for the Thanksgiving table. Most of the old customs of the day have ,;,V. passed out of existence. The turkey raffle with dice is still a custom In some parts of the coun try. Usually the turkey Is a tough bird, which was purchased cheap by the proprietor of the saloon (for the raffle usually takes place there). The raffle, of course, draws a crowd of men, who incidentally patronize the bar during the pro ceedings. Another sportive feature of Thanks giving no longer In vogue was the shooting match, where live turkeys tied to sticks were used. This cruel practice was abandoned be cause the New England clergy objected, not on account of its cruelty, but because it kept the men away from the church service. This reason seems to fit In with the idea of the men back in the seventeenth century who, while they were eating a Thanksgiving dinner of venison, discov ered that the deer had been killed on Sunday. They at once sent for the Indian and had him publicly whipped, and also compelled him to return the money which he had been paid for the deer. -This being done, they at once re sumed their dinner and finished up the venison. New York city is responsible for the strangest of all Thanksgiving customs, and one which has only recently died out. Young men and boy! used to dress themselves in fantastic garb and parade the streets hundreds of the boys wear, ing their sisters' old clothes, their faces smeared with paint and their heads covered with wlga. As late as 1S85 they held parades and made the street hideous with their thumping drums and blaring trumpets. ' In 1870 this queer perform ance took on the dignity of a political parade and prizes were distributed to the companies wearing the most unique clothing. Spnator William M. Tweed, the famous political boss of that period, was the donor of a prize of $500 In gold.. This custom was undoubtedly a survival of Guy Fawkes days, carried out on a later day In the year; for some unknown reason It was practiced only. In New York city. Thanksgiving has always been a day of char ity, and In the old days It was considered bad luck to turn even a tramp from the door, and today our friendly inns, almshouses and charit able institutions have their turkey dinners, usual ly gifts from charitable people. Our prisons, too, serve their inmates with a hearty meal and have ome sort of service of praise. The customs of the great national holiday may have changed somewbat, yet the spirit of the first Thanksgiv ing, which was held at Plymouth, In 1621, still hovers about the national day of prayer and praise of the twentieth century a spirit of thankfulness to God for his mercy and kindness to the people of our great American republic. FOR ARRIVING COOKS. "How will I find the house?" asked the cook who had booked for Lonelyville. "Can't go wrong," said her employer. "Oar suburb maintains a reception committee at ths depot." , J 1; iff! i :i KJ 1 list 1 ' f,''r X'WW VffW:-VWWK'WWeo'',;' r AT ; ml J. G. Norton. V. P. Scarborough, Tv U Lowery, C. W. Gamble. A. J. Williams, It. W. Clemmer, B. B. C. Witt. J. L. Taylor, F. T. Harrison. We pay 3 per cent, on three mcnth and 4 per cent, on six-month tlm deposits. Cleveland National Bank, Cleveland, Tenn. ..itau . ... SURPLUS AND PROriTt. ....... .... yAOrlZ STOCKHOLDERS' LIABILITY.. M. - VWM VOTAL RUONCIBlLITY ,...WW OFFICERS J. n Johnston. 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