Thursday, November 27, 2014

Today in History: Thanksgiving

Post by Jayne Ptolemy, Manuscripts Curatorial Assistant

The William L. Clements Library sends warm Thanksgiving greetings and offers a glimpse at holidays past via our Manuscripts Division. In November 1857, William H. Ireland, Jr., sent an illustrated, lyrical letter to his friend to ensure that he would "not have a dull Thanksgiving." In the spirit of the day, Ireland included a pen-and-ink drawing of a turkey. 

William H. Ireland, Jr., ALS to M. A. W. Man[ ], 1857 November 25, Duane Norman Diedrich collection.
Also featuring a holiday turkey, our Charles Snyder papers highlight a specifically Civil War take on the Thanksgiving holiday. Dining with a Union officer's family for Thanksgiving dinner, Snyder commented on their fare. "We discussed to the best of our ability, a very good turkey, nicely cooked, which Mr. M. named 'Jeff Davis.' "
Charles E. [Snyder] ALS to Hannah [Wright], 1863 November 28, Charles Snyder papers, Schoff Civil War collection.
Even if you opt for different culinary fare this holiday, we hope this offering of turkey from the William L. Clements Library's Manuscript Division helps spread some Thanksgiving cheer.

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