Can you believe that the holidays are already upon us? As the year quickly comes to a close (and we all reflect on the things we are thankful for) we here at Lifestyle Real Estate Services wanted to wish you all a Happy Thanksgiving… and what better way to bring in the holidays than with some Thanksgiving-themed factoids to pester your friends and family!
A Thanksgiving-themed mishap resulted in the first TV Dinners: In 1953, the Swanson food company placed its order of turkey for the upcoming holiday. The only problem? They mistakenly bought 260 tons of extra turkey (you know, like a lot of us do when buying groceries). What could have resulted in a panic instead became a clever repurposing: Trays were frantically purchased, potatoes were mashed, and stuffing was… stuffed… resulting in thousands of prepackaged holiday meals. Thus, the “true” TV Dinner — a classic fixture of households in the 1950’s and 1960’s — was born.
How are “Mary Had a Little Lamb” and Thanksgiving related? While the history of Thanksgiving goes back centuries, the day has not always been a national holiday or a country-wide event. Over the course of 17 years, multiple U.S. presidents received letters from an individual imploring them to turn the “day of thanks” into a national holiday. The final recipient was Abraham Lincoln who, in the midst of the Civil War, considered Thanksgiving the perfect way to help unify the United States. He declared it a national holiday in 1863. The author of those letters? A woman named Sarah Josepha Hale — who just so happens to to be the writer of “Mary Had a Little Lamb”… and one of the primary reasons why we celebrate the holiday today.
Benjamin Franklin probably didn’t suggest putting a turkey on the U.S. Great Seal (instead of a bald eagle)… but he did prefer the turkey. Count me among the people who thought that Benjamin Franklin — tasked with designing the United States’ Great Seal — famously suggested using a turkey instead of a bald eagle. The rumor originates from Franklin privately remarking that the turkey was “…a much more respectable bird” and a “bird of courage” (qualities we don’t typically associate with things that gobble). However, his official plans for the Great Seal didn’t involve any birds at all — the eagle was provided by fellow committee members.
The original Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parades didn’t even involve balloons: For those who tune-in every year to watch the iconic balloons float through New York City during the “Thanksgiving Day Parade”, it might come as a surprise to hear they they were not always a fixture of the celebrations. As a matter of fact, some of the oldest parades marched enormous “puppets” through the streets (and probably scared kids more often than the Pillsbury Doughboy or Mickey Mouse do nowadays).
From all of us here at Lifestyle Real Estate Services, have a Happy Thanksgiving, be safe on Black Friday, and we’ll see you again in a few weeks!