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7 Facts about Thanksgiving

Ah. Thanksgiving. By the time you’re adult, you’ve probably celebrated almost two decades worth of Thanksgivings. But have you ever thought that everybody’s favorite food-centric holiday holds a lot of facts in it’s history? Read on to find out more.


7 | Thanksgiving isn’t for America alone.

Americans who remained loyal to Britain moved to Canada even after the American Revolution has ended, bringing with them their own Thanksgiving traditions. The Canadians have adopted the holiday as well and has been celebrating it at the end of Harvest which most likely falls on the second Monday in October. Canadians began referring to their day of thanks as “Yanksgiving.” to further differentiate from the Americans.


6 | A turkey is “pardoned” by the President every Thanksgiving.

President Lincoln was said to have spared the life of a turkey at the request of his son, Tad, who wanted to keep it as a pet. Subsequent presidents after him were intermittently presented with both live and dressed Thanksgiving turkeys. As of today, the President “pardons” two turkeys. Apple and Cider, 2011’s pardoned turkeys, retired in a custom-made enclosure at a posh livestock facility in Mount Vernon.


5 | Thanksgiving Turkey is served in space.

The first crew in space also celebrated Thanksgiving in 1973 on their Skylab 4 mission. Since then, the astronauts at the international space station are served a Thanksgiving dinner of turkey, cranberry dressing, stuffing all of the other traditional fare, excluding vegetables, which have short shelf life and spoil quickly.


4 | Ripe Cranberries bounce.

Cranberries are one of the three fruits that are native to North America. So how can you tell if a Cranberry is ripe or not? Easy breezy. Throw them to the ground and then measure how high they bounce. Berries that bounce 4 inches and higher are perfectly ripe and ready to eat.


3 | Turkey eat-out every Thanksgiving.

The National Turkey Association has done a study and according to them, every Thanksgiving, Americans consume approximately 690 million pounds of turkey. This is equal to the weight of the entire population of Singapore.


2 | Thanksgiving in America has been changed several times.

President Abraham Lincoln officially declared Thanksgiving every fourth of November. However, in 1939, President Franklin Roosevelt moved Thanksgiving up a week in the hopes that it would extend the Christmas shopping season and retailers the benefit. After two years, when the change was not-so popular, Thanksgiving was moved back to November 4th.


1 | Turkey as the National Bird of the United States of America.

President Benjamin Franklin believed the turkey was a better choice compared to the eagle since it had a much greater significance to the American people most especially because it was the main food source for the Pilgrims. He claimed the Eagle had a “bad moral character.” Thomas Jefferson opposed to the idea and fought Franklin on it. In the end, Jefferson got his way and the rest is history.


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