With best wishes for a Happy Thanksgiving!

Click here to print with ANSWERS.

1) In October 1863, Abraham Lincoln issued a Proclamation calling for Thanksgiving, which has been celebrated as a national holiday every year since.  Lincoln’s message came seventy-four years to the day after a similar proclamation from this earlier president.

2) This US state, whose license plates display “Land of Lincoln”, grows more pumpkins than any other.

3) Roger Ebert wrote that this 1987 combination of road movie and buddy picture, starring Steve Martin and John Candy, was “the only movie that our family watches as a custom, most every Thanksgiving”.

4) Provide the title and author of the classic of world literature in which the protagonist, Christian, journeys to the Celestial City.

5) In 1995, Rolling Stone referred to this band fronted by Dolores O’Riordan as “Ireland’s biggest musical export since U2”.  The group’s hit singles included “Linger” and “Zombie”.

6) Freedom from Want, also known as The Thanksgiving Picture, was part of this artist’s monumental 1943 series, Four Freedoms.  Inspired by Franklin Roosevelt’s famous speech of the same name, the series raised over $130 million in war bonds, equivalent to more than $2 billion today.

7) These two NFL teams have been hosting Thanksgiving afternoon home games for a combined total of more than 125 years.  The two host cities start with the same letter.

8) This simple “covenant”, signed by forty-one Pilgrims before their landing at Plymouth, is considered a foundational document of American democracy.  As one historian wrote, the agreement “instituted government on the basis of ‘equal laws’ enacted by all the people for ‘the general good.’”

9) A holiday tradition since 1924, this event starts on Central Park West and concludes at Herald Square.

10) In 1847, little more than a decade after their relocation along the Trail of Tears, the Choctaw Nation raised a $170 donation “for the relief of the starving poor” in this country.  In 1995, the country’s president visited Oklahoma to thank the Choctaw for their extraordinary generosity, in the absence of any previous connection, “…the only link being a common humanity, a common sense of another people suffering…”.

11) Popularized by John Madden and chef Paul Prudhomme, this dish has been horrifying vegetarians for decades.  The portmanteau name reflects its multiple elements.

12) Give the surname of the poet, born in 1872 and christened Paul Laurence, who was one of the most important early African American writers.  His “A Thanksgiving Poem” concludes – “With incense sweet our thanks ascend;/Before thy works our powers pall;/Though we should strive years without end;/We could not thank thee for them all.”

13) The Battle of the Philippine Sea acquired its nickname from a US aviator, commenting on the disproportionate losses suffered by the opposing Japanese, who referred to it as “an old-time turkey shoot”.  The battle occurred in this Pacific island chain, named for a Spanish queen, which today consists of two US territories.

14) The 1978 made-for-television Holiday Special was the first spin-off from this film franchise, one of the most lucrative in history.  Unfortunately, it was a notorious flop, leading the series creator to lament, “If I could find every copy…I would smash them with a hammer.”

15) Name’s the same – a chart-topping English singer, whose debut album No Angel included the hit “Thank You”, and the queen who founded Carthage.

16) Credit for the creation of Thanksgiving as a US national holiday is due in large part to Sarah Josepha Hale, who waged a seventeen-year campaign spanning four presidencies.  Hale is most famous for writing this nursery rhyme, which was the first audio recording made by Thomas Edison on his phonograph.

17) Celebrated around the autumn equinox, the Chuseok harvest festival is one of the most important holidays in this Asian culture.  A time of feasting and family, it sees many celebrants brave massive traffic jams to return to their ancestral hometowns.

18) The Texas Longhorns under coach Darrell Royal used this offensive scheme to great effect, winning thirty consecutive games.  However, it was the arch-rival Oklahoma Sooners who employed the namesake formation in setting the single-season rushing record in 1971, rolling up more than 472 yards per game.

19) The name of this dish is derived from a Narragansett word denoting a mixture of corn and other ingredients.  Typically, the dish contained the “Three Sisters” – corns, beans and squash – which Native Americans grew together in distinctive mounds.

20) “Thanksgiving Day.  Let all give humble, hearty, and sincere thanks, now, but the turkeys.  In the island of Fiji they do not use turkeys; they use plumbers.  It does not become you and me to sneer at Fiji.” The quote is from this author’s 1894 novel, Pudd’nhead Wilson.


And a closing thought…


As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation

is not to utter words but to live by them.

President Kennedy, Thanksgiving Day Proclamation 1963