Thanksgiving on Norfolk Island
Recipe of the day
- NYC Wine & Food Fest Returns with Midnight Jazz Breakfast, the Art of Sushi, and More
- The Winners of the 2015 Memphis in May World BBQ Cooking Contest
- Here’s a Sneak Peek at the Atlanta Food & Wine Festival 2015
- Punta Mita Gourmet & Golf: A Sumptuous Event in Mexico
- The Romería, an Ancient Spanish Festival, Finds a New Home in South Carolina
Perhaps the most unexpected place where one will find a Thanksgiving celebration inspired by the American tradition is on Norfolk Island, a small island in the South Pacific.
The island, which is a little more than 13.36 square miles and has about 2,100 residents, is about 904 miles from Brisbane, Australia. Locals on the island speak English and also communicate in a Norfuk dialect (a mix of English and Tahitian), and the area is technically considered to be an Australian territory.
This background info still begs the question of how Thanksgiving came to this part of the world. According to an islander Thanksgiving expert, the holiday was formally introduced to the island in the mid-1890s when Isaac Robinson, an American trader who came to Norfolk as an agent and eventually became "the island’s first (and so far only) United States consul."
Robinson suggested decorating the All Saints Church with palm leaves and lemons in the capital of Kingston and the tradition stuck. Today, families celebrate on the fourth Wednesday of November by bringing produce to sell to help raise money for church upkeep. They also sing American hymns and sharing a potluck meal of "cold pork and chicken, pilhis, bananas... [and] pumpkin pie."
Want to add a little island flavor to your Thanksgiving meal? Check out these pilhi recipes.
Be a Part of the Conversation
Join the Daily Meal's Community and Share your Thoughts