Monday, November 23, 2009

A "Blue" Turkey Day ~ Thanksgiving Blue Laws in the Puritan North

"I wish the Bald Eagle had not been chosen as the representative of our country: he is a Bird of bad moral character: like those among Men who live by Sharping and Robbing, he is generally poor and very often lousy. The Turkey is a much more respectable Bird and withal a true original Native of North America."  ~ Benjamin Franklin  

In Massachusetts and Connecticut, on Thanksgiving Day (and again on Christmas Day, for that matter), many restaurants, bars, and convenience stores will only be open for special hours. But, by law, retail stores, supermarkets, and liquor stores will be closed due to Blue Laws.

Blue Laws were so named because they were published on blue paper. Written in the 1600s by mostly Puritan law makers, the aim was to preserve the morality of the colonits and later the state residents. Closing all of the stores and businesses and restricting alcohol sales was designed to assist in keeping the people in church or at home with their families on Sundays, and later on national holidays. Subsequently, blue laws were expanded to protect workers from being forced to work on Sundays and holidays.



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