The National Archives Celebrates Thanksgiving!
On October 3, 1789, President George Washington issued a proclamation naming Thursday, November 26, 1789 as an official holiday of "sincere and humble thanks." The nation then celebrated its first Thanksgiving under its new Constitution. On October 3, 1863, President Lincoln made the traditional Thanksgiving celebration a nationwide holiday to be commemorated each year on the fourth Thursday of November. View related records in the Archives Catalog.
President Franklin D. Roosevelt Carving the Thanksgiving Turkey (National Archives Identifier 6728549)
President Harry S. Truman Receiving a Turkey for Thanksgiving (National Archives Identifier 200138)
President Dwight D. Eisenhower feeds a cranberry to a turkey he received from the Turkey Foundation on November 4, 1954, at the White House. (National Archives, Dwight D. Eisenhower Presidential Library)
Presentation of a Thanksgiving Turkey to President John F. Kennedy (National Archives Identifier 6817150)
Annual Presentation of Thanksgiving Turkey to President Lyndon B. Johnson (National Archives Identifier 6802682)
Annual Presentation of Thanksgiving Turkey to President Richard Nixon (National Archives Identifier 194663)
President Gerald R. Ford Is Presented with a Thanksgiving Turkey by the National Turkey Federation (National Archives Identifier 6829627)
President George H.W. Bush Participates in the Presentation and Pardoning of the National Thanksgiving Turkey (National Archives Identifier 6728222)
President George W. Bush Pardons "Pumpkin and Pecan" in National Thanksgiving Turkey Ceremony (National Archives, George W. Bush Presidential Library)
AOTUS Blog: Giving Thanks
Pieces of History: A Thanksgiving Presidential Proclamation (from George Washington!)
Pieces of History: Tasty tidbits for your Thanksgiving table
Pieces of History: A White House Thanksgiving - with recipes!
Pieces of History: Thanksgiving with the Presidents
The Text Message: Thanksgiving around the World, World War I
The Text Message: Cartoonist Clifford Berryman on Thanksgiving
The Text Message: Thanksgiving in Rome, 1944
The White House: The Definitive History of the Presidential Turkey Pardon
The White House: The annual pardoning of the Thanksgiving turkey
Center for Legislative Archives: Congress Establishes Thanksgiving
Hoover Heads: Thanksgiving Proclamations and President Hoover
Hoover Heads: Thanksgiving in the [Hoover] White House
Bess Wallace Truman’s Thanksgiving Menu, 1947. Note: No turkey! During the winter of 1947, the Americans were urged to eat less poultry, so that grain that would normally go to feed livestock could be sent to famine-stricken people in Europe.The Trumans complied with the suggestions of the Committee (and ate their Thanksgiving turkey on Weds, not Thurs).
George H. W. Bush Library
George W. Bush Library
From the archived website, titled “Thanksgivings at the White House”
The White House Blog: The Definitive History of the Presidential Turkey Pardon