Happy Thanksgiving, Overdrive Readers!

In honor of what might be the first entrepreneurial-oriented meeting in US history, I give you Babeled.com’s top 10 most interesting Thanksgiving facts:

  1. According to Michael Gannon, a historian from the University of Florida, the very first Thanksgiving actually took place on September 8, 1565 in St. Augustine, Florida between Spaniards and the Timicua Indians.
  2. The widely accepted first Thanksgiving is credited to the Pilgrims when they had a harvest celebration with the Wampanoag Indians that lasted three days in the fall of 1621 (actual date unknown).
  3. The food that would have been on the mostly consisted of venison (deer), wild fowl (geese, duck, wild turkey, eagles), seafood (lobster, eel, cod), dried corn (Not popcorn!), pumpkin (Not pumpkin pie!), nuts (walnuts, acorns), and fruits (plums, grapes).  Ham, potatoes, corn on the cob, cranberry sauce, and yams were not present.
  4. George Washington proclaimed a national Thanksgiving following the defeat of the British at Saratoga in December of 1777.
  5. Sarah Josepha Hale, author of “Mary Had a Little Lamb” and America’s first female magazine editor, wrote to five U.S. presidents over 40 years urging that Thanksgiving be made a national holiday.
  6. Upon the urging of Hale, in 1863 Abraham Lincoln proclaimed the last Thursday in November to be the national holiday of Thanksgiving.
  7. In the twentieth century, Thanksgiving kicked off the Christmas shopping season and in 1939 President Franklin Delano Roosevelt moved the Thanksgiving holiday up one week to stimulate the economy. The holiday was aptly nicknamed “Franksgiving”.
  8. In 1941, Congress officially declared Thanksgiving to be observed on the fourth Thursday of November.
  9. Benjamin Franklin believed that the national bird should have been recognized as a wild turkey and not the bald eagle.
  10. Football has been played on the Thanksgiving holiday going back to 1920. The Detroit Lions have played in every single Thanksgiving Day football game since 1934 and the Dallas Cowboys have done the same since 1966.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Categories: general


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