Why Do We Eat Turkey On Thanksgiving?

We eat nearly 50 million turkeys each Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving was made a national holiday in 1863 by Abraham Lincoln but there had been hints of that day being a holiday in prior years. George Washington declared Thursday, Nov. 26, 1789, to be “a day of public thanksgiving and prayer.” Today, about 50 million turkeys are consumed on Thanksgiving.

Ashley Rose Young, a historian with the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History, doesn’t believe that turkey was eaten during the “first Thanksgiving” in 1621. It was more likely venison, geese, and duck.

No citizen of the U.S. shall refrain from turkey on Thanksgiving Day

Alexander Hamilton

Poet, Sarah Josepha Hale is best known for creating the nursery rhyme “Mary Had a Little Lamb.” She had thought that the pilgrims had eaten turkey that day and started the powerful myth in her literature. In her 1827 novel Northwood, she devoted an entire chapter to a description of a New England Thanksgiving, with a roasted turkey “placed at the head of the table.” She was born 167 years after that day and started pushing for the holiday that would come another 75 years after her birth.

On Thanksgiving, remember family farmers and their challenges

Willie Nelson

Through the decades and centuries following, food that was eaten at traditional harvest festivals in New England like turkey, pumpkin, and cranberry became normal. The customs were spread out over the states and westward as it was developed.

After a good dinner one can forgive anybody, even one’s own relations.

Oscar Wilde

Turkeys are native to North America and unlike chicken and duck, they are huge and can feed a lot of people. The typical meal includes bread stuffing, potatoes, cranberry sauce, and pumpkin pie.

I like football. I find its an exciting strategic game. Its a great way to avoid conversation with your family at Thanksgiving.

Craig Ferguson

It doesn’t hurt that turkeys have always been plentiful and cost-effective, less fatty, and more affordable than a goose. Until 1935 Turkeys were bred for their plumage, not their meat, as adult turkeys have about 5000 feathers. They have been around for about 10 million years.

What if today, we were just grateful for everything?

Charlie Brown

All the states, except 12, have a turkey population. They have doubled in size in the last 40 years from less than 19 lbs to now, 29.8 lbs. 88% of Americans will eat turkey on Thanksgiving. The essential amino acid L-tryptophan is present in turkeys. The human body uses this to make serotonin and melatonin which have a soothing effect.

Even in the trials of life, if we have eyes to see them, we can find good things everywhere we look.

Joanna Gaines

The truth is you will not consume enough tryptophan to make you sleepy although you probably will eat enough food and drink to make you very tired. You should not wash the turkey to get rid of salmonella. This just spreads the bacteria around, if present. Just cook to the proper temperature, an internal temperature of 165 degrees Fahrenheit.

Author: Doyle

I was born in Atlanta, moved to Alpharetta at 4, lived there for 53 years and moved to Decatur in 2016. I've worked at such places as Richway, North Fulton Medical Center, Management Science America (Computer Tech/Project Manager) and Stacy's Compounding Pharmacy (Pharmacy Tech).

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