"The First Thanksgiving" celebrated in the United States was in 1621. A feast between the Pilgrims and the Wampanoag Indians at Plymouth Colony contained turkey, waterfowl, venison, fish, lobster, clams, berries, fruit, pumpkin, and squash. William Bradford noted that, "besides waterfowl, there was great store of wild turkeys, of which they took many."
The feast lasted 3-days.Thanksgiving was attended by 90 Native Americans (as accounted by attendee Edward Winslow) and 53 Pilgrims.
Thanksgiving has been an annual tradition since 1863, when, during the Civil War, President Abraham Lincoln proclaimed a national day of "Thanksgiving and Praise to our beneficent Father who dwelleth in the Heavens", to be celebrated on Thursday, November 26. Thanksgiving is celebrated on the fourth Thursday of November in the United States.
Turkey is the traditional main dish associated with a Thanksgiving meal.
The eagle on the badge of the Society of the Cincinnati Medal looked more like a turkey, which prompted Franklin's naturally inquisitive mind to compare and contrast the two birds as a symbol for the United States. Writing from France on January 26, 1784 to his daughter Sally (Mrs. Sarah Bache) in Philadelphia, Franklin casts doubt on the propriety of using the Bald Eagle to symbolize the "brave and honest Cincinnati of America," a newly formed society of revolutionary war officers. "I am on this account not displeased that the Figure is not known as a Bald Eagle, but looks more like a Turkey. For the Truth the Turkey is in Comparison a much more respectable Bird, and withal a true original Native of America..."
Turkeys may have got their names in several ways, and historians are not exactly sure how the name turkey came about, but there are several interesting theories that hold weight. Christopher Columbus might have thought they were part of the peacock family, and he "decided to call them "tuka" which is the word for peacock in the language of India". The turkey also makes a "turk, turk, turk" sound when it is scared, and the "American Indian name for the bird was firkee". Another possible way the turkey got its name is because the Turkish were great merchants of turkeys, and the bird was referred to as the "turkey bird".
Most people eat domestic turkey not wild turkey. Although wild and domestic turkeys are genetically the same species,
that’s about where the similarity ends.
The domestic turkey lost its ability to fly through selective breeding that created heavier, broad-breasted birds, a
feature much desired by chefs and commercial turkey producers. The shorter legs of the domestic turkey also mean it can’t run as well as its wild cousin.
A domestic turkey weighs about twice what a wild turkey weighs.
The average weight of a turkey purchased at Thanksgiving is 15 pounds.
Americans gobble up 48 million turkeys at Thanksgiving at an average weight of 16 pounds a piece. $1.59 per pound. A
Michigan Farm Bureau survey found a feast of turkey, stuffing and all the classic sides will cost an average of $52.23 for 10 people, up from $49.48 last year.
Males turkeys are called Tom/Gobblers, Females Hens, and young turkeys Poults.
A group of turkeys are called flock, rafter, or gang.
Turkey has more protein than chicken or beef.
Turkeys lived almost ten million years ago.
Male turkeys gobble. Hens do not. They make a clicking noise.
Turkey eggs hatch in 28 days.
A 16 week old turkey is called a fryer.
A five to seven month old turkey is called a young roaster.
A domesticated male turkey can reach a weight of 30 pounds within 18 weeks after hatching.
The average life expectancy of a domestic male turkey is just over 2 years and just over 3 years for females.
Israelis eat the most turkeys.....28 pounds per person.
The heaviest turkey ever raised was 86 pounds, about the size of a large dog.
Have a blessed Thanksgiving if you celebrate the holiday.
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What's the key to a great Thanksgiving dinner? The turKEY!
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