Monday, November 16, 2009

Lydia Child's Thanksgiving connection

Although Lydia Maria Child (1802-1880) today is best known for her cookbooks, most people have sung "Over the river, and through the wood" which is taken from her poem "The New-England Boy's Song about Thanksgiving Day" from Flowers for Children, II, 1845.

It is interesting to note that in the original poem, the destination is to Grandfather's house. The first and last two of the original twelve stanzas are as follows:

The New-England Boy's Song about Thanksgiving Day

Over the river, and through the wood,
To Grandfather's house we go;
The horse knows the way to carry the sleigh
Through the white and drifted snow.

Over the river, and through the wood,
When grandmother sees us come,
She will say, Oh dear, the children are here,
Bring a pie for every one

Over the river, and through the wood,
Now Grandmothers cap I spy!
Hurrah for the fun! Is the pudding done?
Hurrah for the pumpkin pie!

Child's cookbooks The Frugal Housewife, 1830, later titled the American Frugal Housewife, 1832; and The Family Nurse, or Companion of the Frugal Housewife, 1837.

Home to Thanksgiving, 1867, Currier and Ives

©2009 Patricia Bixler Reber
hearthcook.com

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