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Ben Franklin’s Politically Incorrect Telling of the First Thanksgiving

Did you know that the day we celebrate as Thanksgiving was supposed to be a fast?

It took one politically incorrect farmer to change the course of history. When the government tried to impose a fast, he called for a grand feast — thanksgivings — so that Americans could celebrate their bounty and nourish their bodies, not lament their hardships through hunger.

Ben Franklin’s tale of the first Thanksgiving is revealed in “The Compleated Autobiography by Benjamin Franklin,” which I edited as a proud direct descendant of the great statesman and inventor.

“The Compleated Autobiography by Benjamin Franklin” takes up where Franklin’s original autobiography left off — in 1757. This new volume covers Franklin’s final 33 years, including some of the most important in our nation’s history.

“The Real Story of the First Thanksgiving,” as told by Franklin himself (read below), is just one of the many topics covered in “The Compleated Autobiography by Benjamin Franklin.”
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The Real Story of the First Thanksgiving

By Benjamin Franklin (1785)

“There is a tradition that in the planting of New England, the first settlers met with many difficulties and hardships, as is generally the case when a civiliz’d people attempt to establish themselves in a wilderness country. Being so piously dispos’d, they sought relief from heaven by laying their wants and distresses before the Lord in frequent set days of fasting and prayer. Constant meditation and discourse on these subjects kept their minds gloomy and discontented, and like the children of Israel there were many dispos’d to return to the Egypt which persecution had induc’d them to abandon.

Click here to read the rest of the article, “Ben Franklin’s Politically Incorrect Telling of the First Thanksgiving.


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