I found a book at the GW Bookstore that was written in MDCCCXCVIII or 1898 titled Home Life In Colonial Days by Alice Morse Earle.
In chapter 5 she describes the first Thanksgiving in 1621, writing that the Indians brought in 5 deer to the colonists for their feast.
"Pheasant, partridge, woodcock, and quail abounded, plover, snipe, and curlew were in the marsh woods; in fact, in Virginia every bird familiar to Englishmen at home was found save peacock and domestic fowl.
Wild hare and squirrels were so many that they became pests, and so much grain was eaten by them that bounties were paid in many towns for the heads of squirrels. In 1749 records show that in one Pennsylvanian town 600,000 squirrels were killed and a bounty paid for their heads."
It seems that their Thanksgiving table would have been a board, a plank of wood sat on benches like saw horses and they ate with their fingers and from wooden trenchers. They would have used coarsely woven"board cloths" and I am sure they put wildflowers out to decorate. Can you imagine?
Yesterday we ate at the dining room table, set with cinnamon candles and quilted place mats and the gnome under his dome.
I had cleared all the craft stuff earlier in the week and we had prime rib, red skin potatoes and asparagus.
No rolls, and I forgot the acorn and butternut squash.
It was delicious and quiet and we talked randomly as we ate.
The gnome played his merry pipe and we thought of the people that we couldn't be with and imagined that they were having a nice meal as well. One can only hope.
It seemed like any other dinner except we only have prime rib on birthdays or at a big holiday. It's was a treat.
The Mr doesn't like turkey.( I know, crazy, right?)
At Christmas I make lasagna or macaroni and cheese- the homemade kind and never make traditional meals.
I know- quirky and weird, right?
Anyway, I enjoy reading about Colonial times and will check out the chapters on Wool Culture and spinning with postscript on cotton and hand weaving and dress of the colonists.
I find that the more conveniences we have the more we take them for granted and if we had to make the wax to dip our own candles from we wouldn't be just burning them to make the house smell good- in fact using candles for light is so cozy and romantic and so hard to read by that I really am glad I live during this day and age even though I long, deep in my soul for those old-fashioned days.
That's what I loved about reading books like Little House in the Big Woods - imagining all the different chores and the appreciation for all that hard work.
I am just rambling-
I don't think I have a point to make-
I stitched on a book cover that I had patch worked together, featuring two lovely Gibson girls sharing tea, to take to Knit & Bitch at Picasso's Moon on Wed and I finished that yesterday while I watched the Macy's Parade and then the History channel- I learned all about Kellog and Birdseye and how these men revolutionized our modern grocery store isles with their products.
After we ate we caught up on some shows like Fringe and The Mentalist that we had DVR'd.
I am almost afraid to like anything because if I do then it gets canceled- like Moonlight and now Pushing Daisies. Kristin Cheoweth was on a show and confirmed that it had been canceled- that's what my sister told me, anyway, and I am bummed out.
I will turn it off and go back to reading and quilting.
We have computers- we can live without TV!
I feel so disappointed about losing that show- I can only hope that they do a movie or maybe they will give us some closure with Ned and Chuck. What a shame!
Anyway, I am staying home and finishing up Laura's and Lucinda's doll quilts and watching some old movies.
Happy Black Friday to those of you brave enough to go mingle with the unwashed masses- I wish you shopping fun - I worked retail too long to even consider it anything but a nightmare I never want to experience again!!!
Love & Stitches,
Thomas Tusser wrote in England in the sixteenth century in his Directions to Housewives: