Benjamin Franklin wanted the turkey to be the national bird of the United States.
Sarah Josepha Hale, an American magazine editor, persuaded Abraham Lincoln to declare Thanksgiving a national holiday. She is also the author of the popular nursery rhyme "Mary Had a Little Lamb"
Abraham Lincoln issued a 'Thanksgiving Proclamation' on third October 1863 and officially set aside the last Thursday of November as the national day for Thanksgiving.
The annual Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade tradition began in the 1920's.
In 1939, President Roosevelt proclaimed that Thanksgiving would take place on November 23rd, not November 30th, as a way to spur economic growth and extend the Christmas shopping season.
Congress passed a law on December 26, 1941, ensuring that all Americans would celebrate a unified Thanksgiving on the fourth Thursday of November every year.
Since 1947, the National Turkey Federation has presented a live turkey and two dressed turkeys to the President. The President does not eat the live turkey. He "pardons" it and allows it to live out its days on a historical farm.
In the US, about 280 million turkeys are sold for the Thanksgiving celebrations.
Although, Thanksgiving is widely considered an American holiday, it is also celebrated on the second Monday in October in Canada.
The average weight of a turkey purchased at Thanksgiving is 15 pounds.
The heaviest turkey ever raised was 86 pounds, about the size of a large dog.
Turkey has more protein than chicken or beef.
Male turkeys gobble. Hens do not. They make a clucking noise.
HAPPY THANKSGIVING EVERYONE!