With fondness, wishing it were true in 2021: Remembering “Uncle Sam’s Thanksgiving” by Thomas Nast, 1869


Our traditional Thanksgiving post wishing for peace:

November 1869, in the first year of the Grant administration — and Nast put aside his own prejudices enough to invite the Irish guy to dinner, along with many others. (Nast tended not to like Catholics, and especially Irish Catholics.)

In a nation whose emotions are still raw from a divisive election, a year of protest for the right to live, a year of too-long-continued deadly plague, unwarranted, horrifying assaults on police officers, not to mention daily horrors reported from Venezuela, Central America, East Timor and Indonesian New Guinea, Syria, Belarus, Asia and the Middle East, could there be a better or more timely reminder of what we’re supposed to be doing?

A Millard Fillmore’s Bathtub tradition: Uncle Sam’s Thanksgiving. History teachers should use the image — and if you’re teaching history at home to students working hard to avoid getting ill, you should use it, too. If you’re teaching in Texas . . . well, there’s something here to make everyone angry, but anger is allowed under the new history censorship rules, right?

(Click for a larger image — it’s well worth it.)

Thomas Nast's "Uncle Sam's Thanksgiving," 1869 - Ohio State University's cartoon collection

Thomas Nast’s “Uncle Sam’s Thanksgiving,” 1869 – Ohio State University’s cartoon collection, and HarpWeek

As described at the Ohio State site:

“Uncle Sam’s Thanksgiving Dinner” marks the highpoint of Nast’s Reconstruction-era idealism. By November 1869 the Fourteenth Amendment, which secures equal rights and citizenship to all Americans, was ratified. Congress had sent the Fifteenth Amendment, which forbade racial discrimination in voting rights, to the states and its ratification appeared certain. Although the Republican Party had absorbed a strong nativist element in the 1850s, its commitment to equality seemed to overshadow lingering nativism, a policy of protecting the interests of indigenous residents against immigrants. Two national symbols, Uncle Sam and Columbia, host all the peoples of the world who have been attracted to the United States by its promise of self-government and democracy. Germans, African Americans, Chinese, Native Americans, Germans, French, Spaniards: “Come one, come all,” Nast cheers at the lower left corner.

One of my Chinese students identified the Oriental woman as Japanese, saying it was “obvious.” Other friends say both are Chinese.  Regional differences.  The figure at the farthest right is a slightly cleaned-up version of the near-ape portrayal Nast typically gave Irishmen.

If Nast could put aside his biases to celebrate the potential of unbiased immigration to the U.S. and the society that emerges, maybe we can, too.

Hope your Thanksgiving week is good; hope you have good company and good cheer, turkey or not, traveling or not, company or not. Stay safe. Happy Thanksgiving 2021.  And of course, remember to fly your flag, to show you agree with Nast’s inclusive Thanksgiving.

More: Earlier posts from Millard Fillmore’s Bathtub

And in 2013:

This is an encore post.

Yes, this is an encore post. Defeating ignorance takes patience and perseverance.

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11 Responses to With fondness, wishing it were true in 2021: Remembering “Uncle Sam’s Thanksgiving” by Thomas Nast, 1869

  1. […] Thomas Nast’s “Uncle Sam’s Thanksgiving,” 2021 post […]

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  2. Ed Darrell says:

    The vacancy left by Joseph Smith’s death is not crying out to be filled. In any case, your application is denied.

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  3. mosckerr says:

    To all missionary propagandists:
    What a load of empty noise, this noise testament sack of manure. Ezra and the men of the Great Assembly, they sealed the T’NaCH. The Xtian noise testament has no portion with T’NaCH. The Xtian attempt to link the T’NaCH to this sack of manure … Old and New Testaments.

    Proof?? A reasonable demand?

    Which mitzva of the 613 Torah commandments serves as the foundation upon which stands the rabbinic anointing of David as moshiach, made by the prophet Shemuel\Samuel?

    This question, no Xtian theologian to my limited knowledge, has ever given the time of day. Now just how does the noise testament claim that Jesus fulfilled prophetic commandments, when church narishkeit has never learned, upon which precise commandment the prophet Shmuel interpreted from the Written Torah?

    Have held discussions with one Frank Hubeny on his word press blog. There he writes: [[[“””You do realize, I hope, that you have to argue from my presuppositions, what I accept as true, and your rejection of Jesus as your Messiah, if you want me to take your argument seriously.”””]]]

    The arrogance of this declaration reminds me of the contrived Xtian vs Jewish debates over Jesus as the Messiah during the Dark and Middle Ages of European christendom. But today the church stand utterly disgraced by the Shoah war crimes against humanity. Xtianity, a dead religion in both Europe and the United States. The church has no monopoly stronghold over secular governments that it had during the height of the European dark ages. And Europe fought and lost TWO Civil Wars in the 20th Century. Israel rose from the ashes of the 2nd European Civil War and in 1948 fought and won the first of its two Independence Wars, the other occurred in June 1967.

    Objective scholarship does not muddy the waters by injecting personal beliefs, Creeds and Dogmas developed during the Dark and Middle Ages. Personal beliefs compare to bribing a judge in a case before the court. The Talmud by contrast stands upon the revelation of the Oral Torah logic system; it teaches Aggadita, meaning mussar, woven together with ritual halachic observances which bnai brit persons can do in their day to day lives.

    Aggadic mussar stories require no historical basis. Aggadik mussar serves as the literature which communicates the logical interpretation of prophetic commandments unto all generations living. Xtianity by sharp contrast does not teach mussar. Xtianity preaches these archaic Creeds and Dogmas, telling the faithful what they need to believe. During this period, the church opposed individual or group study of the Bible; learning the Bible together with Talmud and Midrashim, the Church hung the ax of eternal damantion over the heads of its “flocks”; the public burning at the stake of all heretics.

    The church imposed strict decrees which demanded absolute obedience from its “flock”, to believe and obey the decreed Creeds and Dogmas which the Priests of the church proclaimed. Any “flock” member or group which challenged the church dictatorship of faith, the priests, together with their crusader like German mobs, these cowards hunted down the heretics and slaughtered – every man, woman, or child, like a pack of dogs hunting after rabbits.

    Ebionites, an early Jewish sect, declared heretical for their claims that Jesus was the Messiah but was not divine. They interpreted the Jewish law and rites with Jesus’ exposition of the law and insisted in the necessity of following those laws and rites. The Arians hold that while the son of God, Jesus neither eternal, nor as fully divine as God the father; that Jesus was a lesser, created being. This theology preached a rejection of the divinity of Jesus and taught that Jesus was created by the Father and that the title “Son of God” was merely given to Jesus as a courtesy.

    Free Spirit heretics, held that once people reached a “saved” state of spiritual perfection, laws no longer apply to them. Marcionites, argued that the vengeful, angry God they found in the Hebrew T’NaCH was an evil tyrant, separate from—and inferior to—the loving, forgiving God of the New Testament. Like many of their contemporaries, they perceived the world as a battleground between the forces of good and evil. The sect called Antinomianism preached a very similar theology, which taught that matter (the physical world), created by an evil god, and therfore evil. While the spirit, having been created by a good god – defines the good. In this view, the spirit must be freed from the chains of the material body.

    Euchites/Messalians theology preached an overemphasis on prayer and spiritual experience at the expense of disregarding the church and its sacrements, especially baptism; and renouncing social and work relations. They also believed that the essence of the trinity could be perceived by the carnal senses; that God transformed himself into a single substance, to merge with souls of the perfect state. This achieved, state of perfection, only attained by unceasing prayer and prayer alone.

    The Donatists believed that baptism and other sacraments administered by so-called “traditores”[according to Maureen A. Tilley, Ph.D.] — Xtians who had willingly repudiated their faith in the face of persecution from the Roman Empire — became invalid. Validity of sacraments depends on character of the minister. Furthermore their theology preached the prioritation of martyrdom, as the supreme Christian virtue regarding those who intentionally sought out martyrdom as saints. They held to very stringent views claiming that church clergy live completely faultless in their social behavior, for their services to sanctify holiness.

    The Cathars believed that the physical world exists as the deceptive handiwork of an evil god. Avoiding meat, cheese and some other foods, as well as refraining from sexual intercourse, their theology preach as the way to connect with the spiritual world. Modalism claimed that although God lives as a single person, He has revealed Himself in three modes throughout biblical history. The Old Testament God said to define reality through means of “the mode”: of The Father, at the incarnation, in “the mode” of The Son, and after Jesus’ ascension, in “the mode” of the Holy Spirit. These modes, by this theology preaches that they have never existed simultaneously. Therefore, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit never existed at the same time.

    The Docetists proposed that the Son of God never fully took on human flesh and that the body of Jesus was an illusion, just as Zeus in Greek mythology took the form of a bull to seduce Europa. Jesus, therefore, never physically died on the cross. Marcionism accepts Jesus as the savior. But rejected the T’NaCH God of the condemned ‘Old Testament’. Their theology preached that the God of the ‘Old Testament’ existed as a distinct lower god, than the all-forgiving God of the New Testament.

    The Eutychianism, this movement started by a monk named Eutychus (A.D. 378-452) that held to the notion that Christ’s humanity was absorbed by his divinity. Eutychus believed that Christ was of two natures, but not in two natures. Consequently this theology preached a Creed that Jesus life defined New Testament divinity; this divinity remained separate and apart from humanity.

    The Nestorians believed that the human and divine persons of Jesus remained separate; thus for them “Jesus Christ” and “the Son of God” are not quite one and the same. Pelagian theology derived their name from Pelagius, a British monk who preached in fifth-century Rome. He allegedly declared that Xtians could earn their way into Heaven by doing good deeds, without the need of divine grace.

    The Conciliarists lived at a time in the Middle Ages when two and sometimes three rivals simultaneously claimed themselves as the true Pope. They believed that church councils hold ultimate authority and even have the power to depose the Pope. They were formally condemned at the Fifth Lateran Council of 1512–1517; ultimately, the doctrine of papal infallibility was declared in 1870.

    The Lollards lived in 14th- through 16th-century England, perhaps influenced and inspired by the teachings of John Wyclif. A controversial philosopher and theologian at the University of Oxford. Rejecting transubstantiation, the powers of the Pope and many ceremonies of the church, they advocated for what some have called a “premature Reformation.”

    Adoptionism theology preaches that Jesus lived only as a non-divine man; that he was extremely virtuous; that he was, at some point, “adopted” as the Son of God by the Spirit descending on him. Adoptionism, also known as Psilanthropism and Dynamic Monarchianism. God granted Jesus powers and then adopted him as a Son.

    Albigenses theology preaches a Creed which believes in Reincarnation and two gods: one good and other evil. Apollinarian theology preaches a Creed that Jesus’ divine will overshadowed and replaced the human. Eutychianism dogmatism preaches that Jesus lived his life as a finite human being; his human nature, swallowed up by his infinite divine nature.

    Gnosticism – Dualism of good and bad, combined with a secret special knowledge of salvation. Gnosticism, represents a diverse group, but in general it preached that people possess divine souls. These divine souls, alas trapped in a material world created by an evil god. This evil T’NaCH god, ironically often identified as the God of Abraham. The Gnostics rejected and vilified the human body. Their theology preached that the material body merits destruction by the true God. In order to free humanity from the evil god who has imprisoned souls inside human bodies. Kenosis creed theology believes that Jesus gave up some divine attributes while on earth.

    Luciferianism influenced by Gnosticism held to the veneration of the characteristics associated with Lucifer, revering Lucifer not as the devil with ill intent, but as a liberator, guardian, guiding spirit and even as the true God. Macedonianism/Pneumatomachians embraced the theology which preached the divinity of Jesus. But denied the divinity of the Holy Spirit, relegating the Holy Spirit as a substance created by The Son. Manichaeism, a Gnostic dualistic heresy birthed by Mani (c. 216 – c. 276) which held the idea that the material world exists as evil, and the spirit world – the essence of ‘the good’; that these polar opposites are involved in a struggle between the good spiritual world of light, against and opposed by the bad, the material world of darkness.

    Monarchianism – God is one person. A unitarian theology which preaches of God being a single person as opposed to a Trinity of personages, which arose from attempts to preserve monotheism and reject the notion of tritheism. Monophysitism, a theology applicable only after the resurrection and incarnation of Christ. The divine Logos revealed as Christ, had one unified nature – either only divine or a synthesis of divine and human, but single nonetheless. That Jesus had only one nature: divine. By sharp contrast, Monothelitism theology preaches the belief that Jesus Christ had two natures but only one will, contrary to the orthodox christological view that Jesus Christ has both a divine and human will each corresponding to his two natures.

    Montanism preached a theology which claimed that its prophesies superseded and fulfilled the doctrines proclaimed by the apostles, emphasizing ecstatic prophesying, avoidance of sin and church discipline, chastity and remarriage. The view also held to the notion that Xtians who “fell” from grace could not possibly be redeemed.

    Nestorianism theology preached – Jesus lived as two persons. Patripassionism theology preaches that the Father suffered on the cross. Pelagianism theology preaches that Man remains unaffected by the fall and can keep all of God’s laws. Semi-Pelagianism theology preaches that Man and God cooperate to achieve man’s salvation. Socinianism theology preaches a denial of the Trinity. Jesus – a deified man. Subordinationism theology preaches that the Son exists as a lower\lesser revelation than that of the Father, as expressed through both essence and\or attributes. Tritheism theology preaches that the Trinity lives as really three separate gods.

    Apollinarianism believed that Jesus had a human body, a divine mind, but only a “lower” soul; that humans propagate souls along with bodies. Antinomianism believes that Xtians are freed from all obligations of the moral law through grace. Jehovah’s Witnesses compares to Arianism. Its theology preaches a rejection from the trinity dogma. They believe Jesus to be a created being, the archangel, Michael. As such, Jehovah’s Witnesses deny the full deity of Jesus and the Holy Spirit. Kenosis introduced by Gottfried Thomasius (1802-1875) which held that Jesus voluntarily gave up some of his divine attributes (omniscience, omnipresence, and omnipotence) while in his incarnate state such that he was not fully divine, in order to fully accomplish the work of redemption.

    Mormonism, a theology which favors polytheism. Its preachers preach the preach that human beings preexisted in a spirit realm and were produced through the procreation of a god and goddess wife; allegedly human beings simply entered human bodies in the form of babies and as a result. These babies lose their memories of the preexistence of their parents. Other preached notions about the Gods: this theology spouts off ideas that God used to be a man on another planet, the notion that the Trinity is three separate gods and that grace alone is not enough for salvation. The possibility for man to become god, baptism for the dead, and other such nonesuch. ( All this preachy preach preach learns from ‘The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn’, and the tale of the Shakespearean play: the Royal Nonesuch.)

    Xtian theology, what ever its fashion or flavor, prefers its theology and dogmatism – over the revelation of the Oral Torah which Moshe the prophet heard directly from HaShem at Horev\Sinai. Hence the Gemara in the opening pages of Avodah Zarah teaches that the Goyim all together abandoned the oath brit faith, which makes a spiritual middot alliance of t’shuva made between the Yatzir Ha’Tov and the Yatzir Ha’Rah, whereby HaShem for ever judges, by the terms of the oath brit alliance cut between Avraham and HaShem, between the two opposing and contrasting sets of social interaction middot\attributes of human nature.

    In point of fact, there does not exist enough historical physical evidence of Jesus to write a descent obituary for this silly Jesus son of Zeus myth. And that’s the rub of all heresy encapsulated into a single psycho-nutshell, as expressed throughout history, which defines the stupidity and insanity of ‘religious Man’.

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  4. Ed Darrell says:

    Moscker, it seems clear from your first post you mean the word in a pejorative way. Frankly, the grammar sounds to me as something out of white supremacist literature.

    “If Nast could put aside his biases to celebrate the potential of unbiased immigration to the U.S. and the society that emerges, maybe we can, too.

    “Hope your Thanksgiving week is good; hope you have good company and good cheer, turkey or not, traveling or not, company or not. Stay safe.”

    I hope you find peace.

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  5. mosckerr says:

    The lie post Civil War America, the false idea that Democracy supersedes Republic. Why? The Damned Yankees fought and won a Civil War over States Rights. Lincoln’s interpretation of States starkly contrasts by Jefferson’s interpretation of States. Lincoln viewed the States of the Union as something on par with counties within a State; as counties cannot secede from the State, so too States cannot secede from the Union. Lincoln invaded the South without a Congressional declaration of war; making his actions similar to Pearl Harbor, the US invasion of Vietnam, Iraq, Afghanistan, and Libya. Jefferson by stark contrast, his interpretation of State Rights: the States freely joined the Union and therefore these same States can freely leave/depart from the Union.

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  6. mosckerr says:

    Why do you refer to the Hebrew referencing a Non Jewish Person/Goy as an insult? That’s absurd. The afternoon shabbat prayer refers to the Jewish people as “Goy”. Goy defined as “nation”.

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  7. Ed Darrell says:

    Not sure about the previous comment from Moscker. It’s mostly unhinged rant, but other than the intended insult of the word “goyim,” it doesn’t directly violate most of the rules of this blog.

    For the sake of discussion, I’m letting it pass.

    The comment is not the views of this blog, even where our views are parallel.

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  8. Kiwiwriter says:

    His best cartoon was another Reconstruction-era one, which showed a prosperous, free, content African-American family gathered around the fireplace to celebrate Christmas in a center oval. Around them were separate images of all the horrors that African-Americans had suffered and endured to reach the goal of simply being able to live, work, and play like every other American. It still moves me to tears — especially the incredible detail, which includes an adorable little girl of about four or five, and the paterfamilias with a period beard warming his hands. Why is achieving this so hard 150 years later?

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  9. Happy Thanksgiving! Wishing peace for our nation too.

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  10. mosckerr says:

    To Govern is to Lie
    The culture among Western Goyim civilizations, the Government rules. Rulership, defined as people within the land exist as subjects not citizens. Foreign Policy stands upon the foundation of deception. The culture among Western Goyim civilizations, Foreign Policy takes precedence and priority over domestic policy and issues. How much more so then that the “subjects” within the Homeland must passively sit like a poodle on the lap. Domestic turmoil show anarchy and chaos to Foreign Governments.

    The culture among Western Goyim civilizations, Foreign Policy takes precedence and priority over domestic ruled subjects. As deception serves as the foundation of Foreign Policy … how much more so deception rules the policy of the Ruling Government unto its poodle subjects.

    Consequently, the outcome of this union which prioritizes Foreign Policy over Domestic servant poodle populations. The culture among Western Goyim civilizations, to impose crushing taxes upon the servant poodle populations. Government Foreign Policy has almost zero accountability. Government bureaucrats rule with impunity. Laws coast through Congress, written by Corporate Lobbies. All domestic poodle society dominated by the products which the Corporate Monopolies control. The market places, all News, entertainment, food, movies, television, and most important Government.

    A man stood before an American court and got acquitted of killing two and injuring another US Citizen. This abortion of justice, the ruled domestic poodle accepts this horrid abuse, and still wags its little fluff ball tail. Illegal aliens enjoy the “identical” Bill of Rights – parts of the US Constitution – as do the subject domestic poodle populations. Guns kill. No guilty criminals. Except when US Courts place millions of Blacks into commercial profit prison gulags.

    The purpose of Government:: to keep the sealed lid upon the domestic pressure cooker, so that this lid does not fly off and the Government burnt script. Government bureaucrats as the top of the ponzi scheme pyramid:: their job – to do what ever required to pacify social unrest. Justice: the compensation to persons who suffer damages, either intentionally or accidentally inflicted, that the person guilty for causing the damages has to pay fair restitution to the victim(s). Justice means nothing to non elected bureaucrats who have no public accountability even though they enforce police power over the governed poodle populations.

    Left\Right —- Liberal\Conservative —– Democrat\Republic —– labels have form but no substance. Both Democrat and Republican Presidents carried out the illegal invasion of Vietnam by the United States. The interests of the State, as determined by the Government, they determine how the Government spends the taxed poodle populations — their hard earned money and even their lives.

    Democracy exists as a lie. The Founding Fathers established a Republic NOT a Democracy. The Electoral College determines who rules the White House, NOT the electorate majority. America has existed as a Republic throughout its history as an Independent Nation. The Founding Fathers permitted only White land owners the Right to Vote.

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  11. […] Thomas Nast’s “Uncle Sam’s Thanksgiving,” 2021 post […]

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