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National Day of Thanks: Prescription for a Divided Nation – Presented by Mark K. Lund, Financial Advisor in Utah

Financial Advisor Utah

In late September of 1863, with the Civil War still raging, Abraham Lincoln proclaimed that the final Thursday in November would be a National Day of Thanks. He and his cabinet hoped that the day of solemn gratitude would help “heal the wounds of the nation.”1

But the decision to observe a national Thanksgiving holiday was not something that had just occurred to the President. There’s evidence that it came about due to the repeated lobbying of one of America’s most prominent magazine editors. Sarah Josepha Hale ran Godey’s Lady Book, which at the time had a circulation of over 150,000, making it one of the most widely-read and influential periodicals in the country. (She is also famous for penning the poem “Mary’s Lamb,” which you know as “Mary Had a Little Lamb.”)

Just weeks before Lincoln’s proclamation, Hale had written to both the President and his Secretary of State William Seward, urging them to declare a national Thanksgiving. She reminded them that only the chief executive had the power to make the holiday “permanently, an American custom and institution.” Within a week of receiving Hale’s letter, Seward drafted the official proclamation.

It can’t be proved that Hale’s letter was directly responsible for Lincoln’s and Seward’s actions. But for more than 30 years she had been publicly campaigning for a fixed, national day of thanks to be held on the last Thursday of November. Over those three decades she had written numerous articles and editorials supporting the idea.

Her strong desire to see this holiday didn’t stem from the idea that the nation lacked gratitude. (Though all people in all time periods could arguably be more thankful for their blessings.) Beginning in the 1830s Hale saw that the nation was growing increasingly divided over the question of slavery. As abolitionists in the North gained greater support for ending the practice in every state, their counterparts in the South grew more determined to preserve their system.

Hale believed that a National Day of Thanksgiving could be a unifying measure that would help ease the tensions that threatened to tear the country in two.

But it was not to be.

Over four years of fierce fighting, casualties in the Civil War totaled more than 1.7 million.2 On average, roughly one man in ten in the U.S. had been killed or wounded in the fighting.

Hale’s hope then became that a nationwide observance of Thanksgiving would help to heal the deep wounds inflicted by the war. A sentiment expressed by Lincoln in his proclamation: “(I) fervently implore the interposition of the Almighty Hand to heal the wounds of the nation and to restore it as soon as may be consistent with Divine purposes to the full enjoyment of peace, harmony, tranquility and Union.”3

It is good to be reminded we have much for which to be thankful. We wish you and your loved ones a happy and meaningful Thanksgiving.

If you ever have any questions about your investments or retirement plans, please feel free to give me a call at 801-545-0696.

Regards,
Mark Lund
Stonecreek Wealth Advisors, Inc., A Financial Advisor in Utah
11576 S State Street, Bldg. 1002
Draper, UT 84020

Sources:
1. http://go.pardot.com/e/91522/and-the-mother-of-thanksgiving/8m3hfd/1736994671?h=szEEq5t8h-1k4sEsanTgW1NJj_lpqge0C3V06yFymbo
2. http://go.pardot.com/e/91522/wiki-American-Civil-War/8m3hfh/1736994671?h=szEEq5t8h-1k4sEsanTgW1NJj_lpqge0C3V06yFymbo
3. http://go.pardot.com/e/91522/e-lincoln-and-thanksgiving-htm/8m3hfl/1736994671?h=szEEq5t8h-1k4sEsanTgW1NJj_lpqge0C3V06yFymbo

This information should not be construed as investment, tax or legal advice and may not be relied on for the purpose of avoiding any Federal tax penalty. All information is believed to be from reliable sources; however we make no representation as to its completeness or accuracy. All economic and performance data is historical and not indicative of future results. Market indices discussed are unmanaged. Investors cannot invest in unmanaged indices. The publisher is not engaged in rendering legal, accounting or other professional services. If assistance is needed, the reader is advised to engage the services of a competent professional. This material was prepared by Efficient Advisors, LLC (“EA’) for Mark Lund, Mark is a Financial Advisor in Utah. He is known as a Wealth Advisor, The 401k Advisor, Investor Coach, Financial Planner, Investment Advisor and author of The Effective Investor. Mark offers investment advisory services through Stonecreek Wealth Advisors, Inc. a fiduciary, independent, fee-only, Registered Investment Advisor firm providing investment management and retirement planning for individuals and 401k consulting for small businesses. Mark’s newsletter is called The Effective Investor Newsletter. Cities served in Utah are: Salt Lake City, Salt Lake County, Utah County, Park City, Murray City, West Jordan City, Sandy City, Draper City, South Jordan City, Provo City, Orem City, Lehi City, Highland City, Alpine City, American Fork City. The views expressed herein are exclusively those of Efficient Advisors, LLC (‘EA’), and are not meant as investment advice and are subject to change. All charts and graphs are presented for informational and analytical purposes only. No chart or graph is intended to be used as a guide to investing. EA portfolios may contain specific securities that have been mentioned herein. EA makes no claim as to the suitability of these securities. Past performance is not a guarantee of future performance. Information contained herein is derived from sources we believe to be reliable, however, we do not represent that this information is complete or accurate and it should not be relied upon as such. All opinions expressed herein are subject to change without notice. This information is prepared for general information only. It does not have regard to the specific investment objectives, financial situation and the particular needs of any specific person who may receive this report. You should seek financial advice regarding the appropriateness of investing in any security or investment strategy discussed or recommended in this report and should understand that statements regarding future prospects may not be realized. You should note that security values may fluctuate and that each security’s price or value may rise or fall. Accordingly, investors may receive back less than originally invested. Investing in any security involves certain systematic risks including, but not limited to, market risk, interest-rate risk, inflation risk, and event risk. These risks are in addition to any unsystematic risks associated with particular investment styles or strategies.

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