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History As It Happens

Nov 23, 2023

Millions of Americans devour roasted turkey for their Thanksgiving dinner. It's the traditional centerpiece of this quintessential American feast. But how did this big o'l bird migrate to our dinner tables? It has less to do with the Pilgrims than Sarah Josepha Hale. In this episode, historian Ruth McClelland-Nugent traces the origins of our modern Thanksgiving traditions and discusses why such cultural touchstones matter, even if we don't always precisely understand where they come from.