Sunday, November 26, 2017

November 26th...This Day in History

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FDR establishes modern Thanksgiving holiday 1941

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President Franklin D. Roosevelt signs a bill officially establishing the fourth Thursday in November as Thanksgiving Day.
The tradition of celebrating the holiday on Thursday dates back to the early history of the Plymouth and Massachusetts Bay colonies, when post-harvest holidays were celebrated on the weekday regularly set aside as “Lecture Day,” a midweek church meeting where topical sermons were presented. A famous Thanksgiving observance occurred in the autumn of 1621, when Plymouth governor William Bradford invited local Indians to join the Pilgrims in a three-day festival held in gratitude for the bounty of the season.
Thanksgiving became an annual custom throughout New England in the 17th century, and in 1777 the Continental Congress declared the first national American Thanksgiving following the Patriot victory at Saratoga. In 1789, President George Washington became the first president to proclaim a Thanksgiving holiday, when, at the request of Congress, he proclaimed November 26, a Tuesday, as a day of national thanksgiving for the U.S. Constitution. However, it was not until 1863, when President Abraham Lincoln declared Thanksgiving to fall on the last Thursday of November, that the modern holiday was celebrated nationally.
With a few deviations, Lincoln’s precedent was followed annually by every subsequent president–until 1939. In 1939, Franklin D. Roosevelt departed from tradition by declaring November 23, the next to last Thursday that year, as Thanksgiving Day. Considerable controversy surrounded this deviation, and some Americans refused to honor Roosevelt’s declaration. For the next two years, Roosevelt repeated the unpopular proclamation, but on November 26, 1941, he admitted his mistake and signed a bill into law officially making thefourth Thursday in November the national holiday of Thanksgiving Day.


(More Events on This Day in History)
  • American Revolution

  • 1776 Peyton Randolph laid to rest at William and Mary
  • Automotive

  • 1931 First U.S. “cloverleaf” appears on the cover of the Engineering News-Record
  • Civil War

  • 1863 Mine Run campaign begins
  • Cold War

  • 1950 Chinese counterattacks in Korea change nature of war
  • Crime

  • 1933 Vigilantes in California lynch two suspected murderers
  • Disaster

  • 1898 Winter storm paralyzes southern New England
  • General Interest

  • 1922 Archaeologists enter tomb of King Tut
  • Hollywood

  • 1942 Casablanca premieres in NYC
  • Literary

  • 1862 Alice in Wonderland manuscript is sent as a Christmas present
  • Music

  • 1989 MTV Unplugged premieres
  • Old West

  • 1872 The Great Diamond Hoax is exposed
  • Presidential

  • 2002 George W. Bush pardons a turkey
  • Sports

  • 1946 Football trailblazer Art Shell is born
  • Vietnam War

  • 1968 Air Force helicopter pilot rescues Special Forces team
  • World War I

  • 1916 T.E. Lawrence reports on Arab affairs
  • World War II

  • 1941 Japanese task force leaves for Pearl Harbor
 


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