The United States of America celebrates the fourth Thursday of November as the annual federal holiday commonly known as Thanksgiving Day. Thanksgiving is now primarily identified as a secular holiday, historically identified as a religious observation to give thanks to God for the annual harvest.
The very first Thanksgiving in America took place in the year 1620 when a bunch of pilgrims,members of the English Separatist Church, came from England, where they were bullied for their being orthodoxy, to America where they expected to get support for their religious practise. But the first one year was very hard for them as they could not find any food and shelter and almost half of the pilgrims died. When the pilgrims were going through the tough time the Native Americans helped them to survive and also helped them in harvesting crops. After round about a year the pilgrims had a huge harvest with a ton of food. To celebrate, they held a huge feast and invited the group of Native Americans who had helped them get through that first difficult year.
There are little evidences that the feast of thanks led directly to the modern Thanksgiving Day holiday.
Thanksgiving can be traced back to 1863 when President Lincoln became the first president to proclaim Thanksgiving Day. After the Americam Revolution, George Washington declared the Thanksgiving Day on November 26th. In 1941, Franklin D. Roosevelt changed the date to the fourth Thursday in November, which is the date followed till today. The holiday has been a fixture of late November ever since.
Even today the U.S. traditon abides by the tradition of the meal of 1621. Often in modern times the Thanksgiving dinner features turkey, which is considered to be the main part of the dinner. Some of the details of the American Thanksgiving story are myths that developed in the 1890s and early 1900s as part of the effort to forge a common national identity in the aftermath of the Civil War and in the melting pot of new immigrants. In the United States, certain kinds of food are traditionally served at Thanksgiving meals like baked or roasted turkey, stuffed, mashed potatoes with gravy, Sweet potatoes, cranberry sauce, sweet corn, other fall vegetables, and pumpkin pie are commonly associated with Thanksgiving dinner. Many vegetarians or vegans eat tofurky, a meatless turkey made of tofu.