Curious as I am about all things historical, I’ve been thinking lately about the turkey, and found out a few interesting facts about this American original:
- Native Americans hunted wild turkeys as early as 1000AD.
- Wild turkeys were one of the first exports from the America to Europe.
- As early as the 16th century, wild turkeys were being domesticated and crossbred in Europe.
- Contrary to popular belief, the turkey was not on the menu at the first Thanksgiving in 1621. In fact, it did not become a Thanksgiving staple until 1800.
- Today, turkeys eaten around the world are all descended from wild American turkeys.
- In America, the average annual consumption is 16 pounds per person.
- Besides the meat of the turkey, the feathers are used for pillows and down comforters, and the hide used for belts and shoes.
As the aroma of turkey fills your home tomorrow, remember to give thanks for the unattractive bird that is the center of the meal, and an American original.
——-> UP NEXT: A Thanksgiving Poem for you by Ella Wheeler Wilcox.