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June 27, 2017

Feast of the First Thanksgiving 1541

1959
FEAST OF THE FIRST THANKSGIVING 1541
CANYON, TEXAS

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Late in 1959 a marker was placed at a crossing in Palo Duro Canyon, now in the Palo Duro State Park near Amarillo, commemorating a feast of Thanksgiving held in 1541 proclaimed as a day for prayer and feasting by Padre Fray Juan de Padilla for Coronado and his troops seventy-nine years before the arrival of the Pilgrims in America. Though a monument had been erected previously in Amarillo to Father Padilla, the DAC marker commemorated the location of the thanksgiving feast itself.

It is known where Coronado and his troops in armored regalia entered the canyon to seek safety and refuge, though the steep sides of the canyon seem to make it impossible for armored men on horseback to have made entry at any point.

No trace remains today of this marker, which was placed during Mrs. Richard D. Haines’ term as State Regent.

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