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born 1788

When Sarah Josepha Hale was widowed at 44, she had to find a way to support her 5 children. The self-taught Sarah opted to write ~ working her way up to become an influential author who used her pen for far more than just making a living. As long-time editor of a popular women's magazine, Sarah took advantage of the position to promote her causes. Besides advocating for women's rights to education + fair pay, Sarah crusaded to create a uniform, nationally recognized Thanksgiving. After 2 decades of campaigning, Abraham Lincoln answered her calls ~ declaring it an official holiday to help reunite a nation broken by the Civil War. The beloved annual celebration has been on the books ever since...and we have Sarah to thank for it!

bio bits

her quotes

all quotes by Sarah Josepha Hale (4)

"Autumn is the time when the overflowing garners of America call for this expression of joyful gratitude."

Northwood | january 1827

"There is a deep moral influence in these periodical seasons of rejoicing, in which a whole community participate. They bring out, and together, as it were, the best sympathies of our nature."

The Thanksgiving of the Heart | 1835

"[Thanksgiving] is a festival which will never become obsolete, for it cherishes the best affections of the heart—the social and domestic ties."

Godey's Lady's Book | november 1837

"And would it not be fitting and patriotic for him to appeal to the Governors of all the States, inviting and commending these to unite in issuing proclamations for the last Thursday in November as the Day of Thanksgiving for the people of each State?"

Sarah Josepha Hale to President Abraham Lincoln | september 1863
  • Quotabelle profile
  • Sarah Josepha Hale

curated with care by Ashley Simpson {november 2014}