News

PHOTOS: Turkeys who got a presidential pardon

PHOTOS: Turkeys who got a presidential pardon

GOBBLE GOBBLE: Cobbler a 19-week old, 40-pound turkey, was pardoned by President Barack Obama in 2012. After being pardoned, Cobbler headed to George Washington's historic home in Virginia to be part of the “Christmas at Mount Vernon” exhibition. Photo: Associated Press/Jacquelyn Martin

For decades U.S. presidents have been presented with Thanksgiving turkeys, and – at least in recent history – those turkeys have received a presidential “pardon,” sparing them from the dinner table. A look at some of history’s most famous turkeys.

1963
kennedyturkey
Charlie, Caroline Kennedy’s pet Welsh terrier, inspects a turkey presented to President John F. Kennedy after a traditional Thanksgiving week ceremony at the White House. President Kennedy pardoned the bird, sending it back to the farm. Charlie had the run of the grounds during the ceremony.


1994
clintonturkey
President Bill Clinton and nine-year-old Shawn Arbogast, of Harrisonburg, Va., look over Tom, a 50-pound turkey presented to the president in the Rose Garden of the White House in Washington D.C. After the ceremony, the president pardoned Tom who took up residence at the Flying Pan Park in Chantilly, VA.


2003
bush
President George W. Bush, standing with Jim Stocam, left, and Tom Fix, of Carthage, Mo., pets Stars the national Thanksgiving turkey during a ceremony pardoning the turkey in the Rose Garden of the White House. Stars, who was raised by Stocam and Fix, was given to Kidwell Farm in Virginia.


2007
mickey
Pilgrim Mickey Mouse at Ten Star Ranch in Dubois, Ind., unveiled two turkeys that received presidential pardons that year. Those turkeys went on to become the grand marshals of the Walt Disney World Thanksgiving Day Parade in Florida. The birds were transported aboard a United Airlines flight that was renamed to “Turkey One” to mark the occasion.


2009
obama
President Barack Obama pets Courage the turkey on the North Portico of the White House in Washington. After receiving its pardon, the famous fowl went to George Washington’s Mount Vernon Estates in Virginia. National Turkey Federation Chairman Walter Pelletier, his wife Elizabeth Pelletier, and Sasha and Malia Obama look on.

Recent Headlines

in Music

This week’s top alternative tracks

hozier

LISTEN: This week's top alternative songs, according to the weekly Billboard chart.

in Viral Videos

WATCH: The ‘Force’ is strong with this home

11-overlay

If you weren't already excited for the next "Star Wars" movie, this house will change your mind.

in Viral Videos

WATCH: Airman ‘Santa’ surprises 6-year-old son at storytime

santa

Aaron Williams was sad that his dad, stationed in South Korea, wouldn't be stateside for the holidays ... but a little Christmas magic gave him a gift he'll never forget.

in Entertainment, Trending, Viral Videos

TODAY’S MUST SEE: Colbert’s star-studded farewell to ‘Report’

21-overlay4

Stephen Colbert bid farewell with the help of scores of celebrities in a rousing sendoff to the tune of "We'll Meet Again."

in Music

Michael Stipe offered up as garage sale bargain

Michael Stipe attends the "Young Ones" premiere at the Landmark Sunshine on Thursday, Oct. 9, 2014, in New York.

Watch Former R.E.M. star Michael Stipe star in a skit to mark the end of TV host Stephen Colbert's late-night show.