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What Thanksgiving Looked like in the 70’s

By Christian Roemer

Thanksgiving is an awesome holiday. As far as I’m concerned, any festival that revolves around gorging yourself on delicious food is a win. Another positive about Thanksgiving is that you pretty much always know what to expect. Over the years, a few things about this turkey-based holiday have changed, but some things have also stayed the same.

Thanksgiving, 1970s

The 1970s were a time of major cultural upheaval. The United States was just emerging from the Vietnam war, and bell bottoms reigned supreme. If you hopped into a time machine, the fashion would probably be the first big difference that you’d notice. Mustaches were king, bell bottoms were the coolest, and neutral colors were the hue du jour. The ladies typically had bigger hair, and grandma probably wore glasses that took up half of her face.

The next big difference that you’d notice is the decor. Wallpaper would adorn the walls in befuddling patterns. The couches and refrigerator were probably avocado colored, and the carpet would be some shade of brown. It would be...earthy.

The last big difference you’d probably notice is that TVs were small boxes with terrible picture quality, and the radio would be playing disco music. If you wanted to crank some tunes, you’d have to pop a record onto the cabinet, and you’d probably have to spend a few minutes adjusting the rabbit ears to pick up the NFL game. Which leads us to 

The Similarities

Some things about Thanksgiving will never change. One example is that, since the 1920s, there has always been an NFL game played on this famous Thursday in November. Even though the box TV would look much different by today’s standards, you’d still have the chance to watch the pros toss the pigskin around the yard.

The food is another wonderful tradition that will probably always be about the same. A turkey is the main attraction, but the various specialty dishes probably haven’t changed too much in the past 60 years. Green bean casserole, sweet potato soufflé, stuffing, dressing, and cranberry sauce are the staples of any Thanksgiving feast. From a food spread perspective, not much has changed since the 70s.

The most important thing that hasn’t changed since the 70s is that Thanksgiving is all about family. It’s a time for folks to get together, catch up on old times, argue about politics, and pass out on the couch in a food coma. Whether your family gets along or not, it’s a time where everyone can enjoy each other’s company and find mutual happiness in a plate full of food.

If you went back in time to Thanksgiving in the 70s, you’d probably get along just fine. Certain traditions will probably always stay the same, even if the decor, music, and clothing around you changes.

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