Thanksgiving will soon kick off our traditional holiday season, and families across America will be sitting down to a traditional feast of mashed potatoes, gravy, biscuits, and, of course, turkey. But have you heard or read that Ben Franklin wanted our national bird to be the turkey? Imagine eating our national bird every Thanksgiving!
This is just a myth. Ben Franklin never publicly declared he wanted the turkey to be our national bird instead of the eagle. So how did this story get started? No one is quite sure, but you can find this story being told in school textbooks, on game shows, and even on the kid’s page of the Central Intelligence Agency! Check it out for yourself at https://www.cia.gov/kids-page/k-5th-grade/the-cia-seal/index.html.
The American Heraldry Society, a group which traces America’s use of badges and coats of arms, may come closest to explaining the Ben Franklin myth. According to the AHS website, www.americanheraldry.org, Franklin wrote a letter to his daughter. He complained about a new group forming called the Society of the Cincinnati, a military fraternity that restricted its membership to men who had served in the American Revolution. Franklin disliked the entire idea of forming this type of club, and when the group chose the American Bald Eagle as part of its emblem, he wrote: “For my own part I wish the Bald Eagle had not been chosen as the Representative of our Country. He is a Bird of bad moral Character… Besides he is a rank Coward: The little King Bird not bigger than a Sparrow attacks him boldly and drives him out of the District . . . For in Truth the Turkey is in Comparison a much more respectable Bird.”
In the context of the letter, Franklin is obviously displeased with the Society of the Cincinnati’s creation. He mocks the group’s choice of emblem as a way of showing his displeasure with the idea of the existence of this group. For more details, investigate the link above.
We at Hit Trophy like turkeys, especially around this time of the year. However, we are also fond of our great national bird, the American Bald Eagle. In fact, we offer over three dozen items displaying the eagle. Our largest selection of eagle items would have to be our incredibly life like statues. For example, item AE250 is our beautiful Bronze Eagle Head Sculpture. Perched above a black base, the eagle head hovers above the engraving plate. We can place up to three lines of type on the plate, and we will engrave it for free. Another great eagle statue we offer is item AE420M. This fantastic figure captures an eagle swooping down to snatch its prey. Standing at nearly eighteen inches in height, the largest of our three versions of this sculpture is awe inspiring. We can engrave up to three lines of type for free on any of the three sizes of this impressive bird. View our complete collection of American Bald Eagle Statues by clicking on the following link.
We also include the eagle on some of our plaques. Our Walnut Framed Eagle plaque is sure to please. For item P2397, the antique appeal of a detailed eagle casting in bronze finish is the centerpiece of this unique plaque. Mounted on black velour and surrounded by a frame of American walnut, this award depicts an eagle taking flight from a rocky mountain top. For engraved plaques that will be proudly displayed for years to come, choose this or any one of our excellent eagle plaques.
We even have some great gift ideas for eagle fans: Philadelphia Eagles fans that is! Become part of the team, by having your name placed on jersey number 1 in this photo. This photo print is 13 3/4"x11 3/4", and its large black frame is 23"x19" with a 3" mat and a glass front. Besides item PFPE01 for Eagle fanatics, we also offer great gifts for fans of other birds, like the Ravens, Seahawks, and Falcons. Check out all of our NFL gifts because Christmas is right around the corner!
So enjoy your turkey this Thanksgiving, and be thankful we are NOT eating our national bird instead. We wish you all a happy Thanksgiving.