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A day to give thanks

“Thanksgiving day brings uncounted family reunions. It means the return to old homes of those who have gone far away. It reunites circles long broken. It exalts the family idea, the foundation on which human society rests.”

Bert Selkirk

Nov. 27, 1914



The Record-Courier



In 1914, Americans had a great deal to be thankful for. The war that was raging in Europe had already dug in for the duration, and Selkirk had no way of knowing it would drag in the United States three years later.

The United States, meanwhile was prosperous, with rail lines connecting most corners of the country. A few miles in a buggy or flivver to Minden could get people to destinations across the country by train.

The founding of the town of Minden in 1906 prompted a growth spurt in Douglas County, according to the U.S. 1910 Census, to a whopping 1,895 people. That would be the highest population in 30 years until it rose to 2,056 in 1940.

That population was relatively self-sustaining, with most of the food eaten by Carson Valley residents grown here.

It wasn’t all green fields and prosperity though. Infections that would be minor today, would take a life then.

Nonetheless, Selkirk and Carson Valley residents had a lot of be thankful for. We could say that was because he didn’t know what was in store in the century to come, but who among us does.

Being thankful for what we have is what Thanksgiving is all about. It’s a time to look back with friends and family, to remember loved ones who are far away or who are gone.

Happy Thanksgiving.