Nixon White House had to nail Thanksgiving turkey by its feet
Image via Richard Nixon Foundation.

Nixon turkey
Nothing went according to plan.

Nothing went according to plan in Richard Nixon‘s White House. Not even Thanksgiving dinner.

The Washington Post recollects:

Thanksgiving always reminds us of the time during the Nixon administration when a particularly rambunctious turkey was presented to the late President at the White House.

The turkey was so flustered that, according to the tale, which is not widely recalled these days, its feet had to be nailed to the table.

We checked our recollection with a few Nixon administration veterans. One of them, who definitely would have known, emailed back: “Regarding the effort to restrain the White House Thanksgiving turkey, it is my understanding that at least one year, they nailed its feet to the table.”

(Apparently, the bird doesn’t have nerve endings in portions of its feet.)

We can only hope the turkey — like the President — was pardoned.

By the way, there is a fascinating photo gallery of Thanksgiving traditions at the White House. Be sure to check it out.

Staff Reports


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