Here’s what most people know: The pilgrims and the Native American Indians celebrated Thanksgiving today with a bounty of food. Of course, there is much more to know about the feast, which first took place in Plymouth Colony, in present-day Massachusetts, in 1621. Continue reading to find out more fun facts about Thanksgiving, courtesy of History.com, CNN and All Parenting.
1. Thanksgiving did not become a national holiday until more than 200 years after the first one was celebrated. Sarah Josepha Hale, the woman who wrote “Mary Had a Little Lamb,” wrote to Abraham Lincoln in 1863. It didn’t become an official U.S. holiday until Congress signed it into law in 1941.
2. A baby turkey is called a fryer-roaster.
3. While Black Friday is a popular day for consumers to go shopping, it’s also a busy day to be a plumber. They are called to help clean up after guests who “overwhelm the system,” according to Roto-Rooter.
4. Not all turkeys can gobble. While the males make the traditional noise, females “cackle.”
5. Benjamin Franklin wanted the country’s national bird to be a turkey instead of the bald eagle. In a letter to his daughter, he said the turkey was a “much more respectable bird” and the eagle was of “bad moral character.”
6. Turkey wasn’t served at Thanksgiving. Venison, oysters, l obster, hickory nuts, cabbage, goat cheese and squash were probably consumed at the first celebration.
7. Forks weren’t used at Thanksgiving. Instead, the pilgrims used spoons and knives.
8. It was erroneously believed that The tryptophan in turkey was responsible for Thanksgiving “food comas.” Instead, it’s eating a high calorie meal and drinking alcohol that makes people sleepy.
9. Americans eat more than 46 million turkeys each year.
10. The Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade started in 1924 with 400 employees.
11. Fifty pilgrims celebrated the first Thanksgiving.
12. The pilgrims didn’t have ovens, which means pies of any kind were not eaten the first feast.
13. Black Friday became a renowned shopping “holiday” in the 1960s.
14. Nearly 90 percent of Americans eat turkey on Thanksgiving.
15. Turkeys cannot fly if they are farm raised.
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