Facts about Thanksgiving
- The most common story of the first Thanksgiving involves the pilgrims at Plymouth Colony, in present-day Massachusetts, in 1621. There are 12 claims to the title of the first Thanksgiving.
- President Abraham Lincoln declared the final Thursday in November as a national day of thanksgiving.
Thanksgiving didn’t become a national holiday until 1941.
- Sarah Josepha Hale campaigned for Thanksgiving to be a national holiday. She also wrote the nursery rhyme
“Mary had a Little Lamb.”
- The National Turkey Federation estimated that 46 million turkeys—one fifth of the annual total of 235 million consumed in the United States—were eaten at Thanksgiving.
- Tryptophan in most turkeys isn’t responsible for Thanksgiving food coma. Scientist point to alcohol and the sheer caloric size of an average feast.
- Turkey wasn’t on the menu at the first Thanksgiving. The Wampanoag killed five deer for the feast, and that the colonists shot wild fowl. The feast was likely rounded out with fish, lobster, clams, nuts, and wheat flour, as well as vegetables, such as pumpkins, squashes, carrots, and peas.
- Canada also observes a Thanksgiving Day. Their holiday is the 2nd Monday in October.
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