Thanksgiving Turkey Traditions at the White House
Since 1947, The National Turkey Federation (NTF) and The Poultry and Egg National Board (PENB) have donated a turkey to the White House each Thanksgiving—a tradition that is often confused with the Thanksgiving presidential turkey pardon. Officially, the presidential turkey pardon began during George H.W. Bush's first Thanksgiving in the White House in 1989. Prior to that event, presidents were more likely to eat the donated birds rather than spare them. Follow this slideshow for pictures and information about the presidents and the fate of their Thanksgiving turkeys.