November 6, 1863
Gov. Boreman has issued his proclamation, in accordance with the recommendation of the President of the United States, setting apart Thursday the 26th inst., as a day of Thanksgiving. He concludes with this excellent suggestion.
“And while we are rejoicing and other praises for the abundance with which we are blest, let us not forget to remember the poor and the needy, the widow and the orphan, whom the vicissitudes of life and the casualties of war have left in our midst unprovided for and unprotected.”
November 28, 1863
Dinner at the Atheneum. – On Thanksgiving Day, a number of the benevolent ladies of the city provided a first rate dinner to the sick of the Atheneum Hospital and the prisoners. In all sixty-four soldiers were provided with an excellent dinner, which must have been highly relished after living a couple of years on army rations. The ladies who deserve particular credit are, Mrs. Harry, Mrs. France, Mrs. Rhiheldaffer and Miss Maggie Baltzell.
November 28, 1863
Thanksgiving Day. – No Thanksgiving day ever appointed was so universally observed hereabouts as Thursday last. We do not think there were a half dozen houses in the city that pretended to do any business whatever, or even to open their doors. Service were held in all the churches and the attendance was as large as upon any Sabbath day. Everybody prepared a big dinner and invited everybody else to come and eat drink and be merry, and the consequence was that every body appeared to be happy and thankful, except that class of persons who have always more time than they know how to dispose of, and are never happy and never thankful for anything. A more beautiful day for the occasion could not have been picked out of the month of November.
In obedience to the order of Captain Thorpe, nearly all the drinking saloons in the city were closed up – in front – and there was not as much darkness and disorder as might have been expected, judging from the experience of previous holidays in this quarter. However, a few persons were seen whose conduct might have justified the suspicion that they had been worrying down a little of the enemy which steals away the brains, and in one of two instances the proposition of the poet, that “drunkenness is a very gentleman like sin, and scorns to be beholden,” was fully sustained, for what these people received in the drinking saloons they commonly left at the doors again.
December 1, 1863
Thanksgiving in Camp. – S. B. McC, one of our Wheeling boys, writes to us that they had a good time on Thanksgiving day at Gen. Sullivan’s headquarters. The General gave a dinner at which Gens. Kelley and Averill were present. Several of the boys got up a ball in camp, and proceeded to tip their toes in regular Terpsichorean style. Heavy rains on the Potomac are reported in the letter within the last few days.
Timeline of West Virginia: Civil War and Statehood: November 1863