Vintage Thanksgiving Postcards Are Bizarre

A few weeks ago, while exploring the Hudson Valley like every other Brooklynite who would rather go upstate than visit Manhattan, I came across a stash of vintage Thanksgiving postcards at a bookshop in Saugerties that made me chuckle and smile. These rather elegant, if sometimes disturbing (um, is that a fork and knife sticking out a living turkey?) images were all created roughly from 1900 to 1920 and often incorporate gold foil and other holiday details. While all of these cards are bathed in the reigning myths of the era about the holiday — which was historically taught as some type of kumbaya of Puritans and the Wampanoag in lieu of its genocidal reality — we can look back and laugh at prevailing attitudes and how many of these same misconceptions of peace-loving settlers remain.

Enjoy these paper relics of yesteryear. We hope you enjoy the holiday whether you’re celebrating Thanksgiving or Unthanksgiving or just chilling on your day off.

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