Harvest Home Celebration recalls a time before ‘official’ Thanksgivings

10:17 am | November 16, 2012

Before Thanksgiving was declared a national holiday, each colony or community would gather together to celebrate a day of thanks.

Photo Contributed
Re-enactors at last year’s Harvest Celebration offer a look at the details of colonial life during the time of the harvest.


The Washington County Militia will celebrate this day when they host their annual Harvest Home Celebration this weekend at Sycamore Shoals State Historic Park. The celebration will be held Saturday, Nov. 17, and Sunday, Nov. 18.

Militia member and Sycamore Shoals Interpretive Ranger Jason Davis said the celebration would include militia drills and demonstrations of what life was like during colonial times.

“Before the country had Thanksgiving, the families in each colony or community would gather for a day of thanks after the harvest had been brought in,” Davis said. “It was an opportunity for the colonial families to gather together and share in the bounty of the harvest with each other.”

Davis said the militia had been hosting the Harvest Home Celebration for several years. He said the event was not one of the larger gatherings held at the park, but families did enjoy the demonstrations that are held during the celebration.

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