Thanksgiving Trivia....Interesting Facts

Happy Thanksgiving.  If you enjoy trivia, here are some interesting facts.

Was there Turkey at the first Thanksgiving meal?
There's no evidence that turkey was eaten at the first Thanksgiving, a three-day meal shared between the pilgrims and Wamponoag tribe in 1621.  It is more likely that they ate venison and a lot of seafood.  

Of the three utensils we use to eat (spoon, fork, knife), which was not present at the first Thanksgiving?
The fork.  What did they use to eat their meal with?  A knife, a spoon and their fingers.  The fork was not brought by the pilgrims.  Governor Winthrop of Massachusetts introduced it 10 years later, but it did not really catch on until the 18th century.

Does turkey really make us sleepy?
Not really.  Trytophan does make us tired and it is in turkey.  But more of it can be found in soybeans, parmesan and pork.  So what is to blame for the post-meal coma?  Well, it could be the quantity of food over-consumed.  The huge serving of dessert could have an effect.

How much turkey is consumed on Thanksgiving?
An estimated 46 million turkeys are eaten on Thanksgiving (the birds weigh, on average, 16 pounds). That is more than double the amount eaten on Christmas (22 million) and Easter (19 million).

Did Thanksgiving officially begin with the Pilgrims?
No.  Thanksgiving only became a public holiday in 1863, when president Lincoln declared it so.

Have Thanksgiving and football always gone hand in hand?
Not quite.  It all started in 1934, when the Detroit Lions was bought by G.A. Richards.  Trying to build up the fan base for the team, he scheduled a game for Thanksgiving Day to play the Chicago Bears, who at the time were world champions.

The game sold out and was broadcasted live on radio.  And with that huge success, the tradition began.  Since then, the Detroit Lions have played 67 Thanksgiving games.

How did Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade begin?
The Macy's Thanksgiving Day parade began in 1924 with 400 employees marching off from Convent Avenue and 145th Street in New York City.  During this time the parade was accompanied not with the oversized ballons of our favorite cartoon characters, but with live animals borrowed from the Central Park Zoo -- from camels to elephants.