Thanksgiving is a day to eat turkey, drink your heart out and be merry with the ones you love. While we know there are many things to be thankful for this year (*cough* elastic waistbands *cough*), there are many facts people don't know about one of the biggest American holidays of the year.
From turkey to TV dinners, here are some of the most absurd facts you never knew about Thanksgiving.
The first Thanksgiving celebration lasted 3 days. To celebrate the Pilgrims' successful first harvest, Governor William Bradford put together a good ol' fashioned feast and invited their Native American allies to take part. Naturally, they partied well into the night ... and the next two nights after that.
Have you given thanks to the Constitution? Most people know the traditional Thanksgiving story of Plymouth Rock and the harvest feast filled with a cornucopia of food, there's another side to the story that has more to do with the Constitution than turkey. President George Washington, who issued a proclamation on the day in 1787, originally wanted Americans to spend an entire day giving thanks for the revolutionary government the Constitution formed.
It's the reason we have TV dinners. In 1953, a company called Swanson greatly miscalculated the amount of turkey the American public would eat on Thanksgiving. In fact, the miscalculation was so big that company was left with 10 train cars filled with 260 tons of frozen turkeys. Thankfully, a wise businessman came up with the idea to sell these turkeys in prepackaged frozen meals with sides of peas and sweet potatoes for 98 cents.
Turkey isn't just the name of the bird we eat at dinner. There are three towns in the United States that boast the name Turkey -- Turkey, Tex., Turkey Creek, Louis. and Turkey, N.C. -- each with under 500 residents.
The United States isn't the only country that celebrates the holiday. Canada also celebrates Thanksgiving, although they do it on their own time. Canadian Thanksgiving falls on the second Monday in October of every year. It was created in 1879 by Parliament to be "a day of General Thanksgiving to Almighty God for the bountiful harvest with which Canada has been blessed."
One of the most famous Christmas songs was originally made for Thanksgiving. Originally called "One Horse Open Sleigh," the song "Jingle Bells" was penned in 1851 by James Lord Pierpont and planned to be sung at Sunday School during Thanksgiving. Although the song wasn't too much of a hit with the kids but adults loved it and the lyrics were altered to be used for Christmas and published in 1857.
Check out these Thanksgiving traditions that have nothing to do with Thanksgiving: