A Thankgiving Proclamation from a Governor Who, in 1936, Could Seriously Write

This spell-casting Thanksgiving proclamation was penned by Connecticut Governor Wilber Cross in 1936:

Time out of mind at this turn of the seasons when the hardy oak leaves rustle in the wind and the frost gives a tang to the air and the dusk falls early and the friendly evenings lengthen under the heel of Orion, it has seemed good to our people to join together in praising the Creator and Preserver, who has brought us by a way that we did not know to the end of another year.

In observance of this custom, I appoint Thursday, the twenty-sixth of November, as a day of Public Thanksgiving for the blessings that have been our common lot and have placed our beloved State with the favored regions of earth — for all the creature comforts:

the yield of the soil that has fed us and the richer yield from labor of every kind that has sustained our lives — and for all those things, as dear as breath to the body, that quicken man’s faith in his manhood, that nourish and strengthen his spirit to do the great work still before him: for the brotherly word and act; for honor held above price; for steadfast courage and zeal in the long, long search after truth; for liberty and for justice freely granted by each to his fellow and so as freely enjoyed; and for the crowning glory and mercy of peace upon our land; — that we may humbly take heart of these blessings as we gather once again with solemn and festive rites to keep our Harvest Home.

That’s some good writin’, boy!

Interestingly, there’s arguably a subtle tugging away from the traditional Christian calendar, as if to suggest that maybe, just maybe, history should turn on the political founding of America, the New Republic, in 1776, and not necessarily just the birth of Jesus:

Given under my hand and seal of the State at the Capitol, in Hartford, this twelfth day of November, in the year of our Lord one thousand nine hundred and thirty six and of the independence of the United States the one hundred and sixty-first.

About Santi Tafarella

I teach writing and literature at Antelope Valley College in California.
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2 Responses to A Thankgiving Proclamation from a Governor Who, in 1936, Could Seriously Write

  1. Christ's Angel says:

    Book X, Quatrain 71 – Michel Notre Dame (written in the 16th century) :

    The earth and air will freeze a very great sea,
    When they will come to venerate Thursday:
    That which will be never was it so fair,
    From the four parts they will come to honor it.

    Many turkeys will be frozen so that Thanksgiving Day may be enjoyed by all.

    Happy Thanksgiving, Santi!

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