A Story of Thanksgiving and Turkeys

2 min readNov 17, 2022


Hello Mighty Friend,

From one bird to another, the history of Turkeyday, better known as Thanksgiving and by far the most beloved holiday in the United States of America, is full of fascinating stories that span across centuries!

Whether the first observation of Thanksgiving was a sixteenth century mass of thanksgiving held in St. Augustine, Florida or the more widely accepted 1623 religious thanksgiving day in Plymouth, Massachusetts, is a matter for historians to settle, but for our mighty friends’ enjoyment we want to focus on the more recently established tradition of pardoning the Thanksgiving Turkey!

In more recent history, while presidents John F. Kennedy and Ronald Reagan, along with First Ladies Thelma “Pat” Nixon and Rosalynn Carter, pardoned Thanksgiving turkeys, what we have come to know as the Turkey Pardon only became an annual tradition in 1989 when President George H.W. Bush ‘presented’ to that year’s turkey an official presidential pardon. He famously said:

But let me assure you, and this fine tom turkey, that he will not end up on anyone’s dinner table, not this guy — he’s presented a Presidential pardon as of right now — and allow him to live out his days on a children’s farm not far from here.”

So, mighty friends, remember to tune in this year for the official pardoning of the Thanksgiving Turkey to be held on 22 November!

Gobble gobble, until then!


MightyOwl (another beloved bird)




MightyOwl is a free online educational platform that is looking to revolutionize the way students learn outside the classroom.