Why So Late?

Dear Reader:

Yesterday we touched on the subject of why Thanksgiving is so late without a good explanation  so I did my homework ….Why is it so late?

We have to go all the way back to 1939 when Franklin D. Roosevelt was President. Because we were slowly just starting to pull out of the Depression FDR decided that he would change the date Abraham Lincoln had originally decided upon…the national day of thanks… as being the last Thursday in November to the third Thursday in November.

Basically his reasoning was based on building the economy back up. He figured by having the holiday the third Thursday of the month…it would free up an extra week or so between Thanksgiving and Christmas that retailers could sure use to boost their Christmas sales.

*(Retailers loved the idea- in fact today FDR is credited with providing the impetus for Black Friday-but most Americans did not “cotton” to the change.)

So finally in 1941, the year we joined in WWII, President Roosevelt decided to change it (not back to the last Thursday of the month like Lincoln) but the fourth Thursday of the month…(no matter whether it was the last or not) – since occasionally we have five Thursdays in a month)

This year the problem was the first day of the month started on a Friday which meant the first Thursday in this November 2019 month didn’t begin until the 7th. A little math here…7 x 4=28! Check it out on the calendar! 🙂

So now you know….Lincoln set the last Thursday in November, FDR first tried the third Thursday in November but the people didn’t like it much so he finally changed it to the fourth Thursday (no matter how it falls…early or late (earliest possibility now is the 22- latest- 28)

See how confusingly simply it really is! 🙂 It’s just simple arithmetic complicated by politics! 🙂 🙂 🙂 Nice rhyme there! (What else is new?)

So until tomorrow…For most school children…today is their last day before the holidays…it is always hard to tell who is the happiest…the students or the teachers! Well done everyone…Thanksgiving is almost here!

“Today is my favorite day”  Winnie the Pooh

Boo’s Daily Fall Photos….Fall just keeps getting better and better…peaking for Thanksgiving Day I think!

Fall leaves mixed in Spanish Moss…a lowcountry “delicacy” ..beautiful old homes and new….and each shrub and tree trying to get  attention with the sunlight dappling through it.

Pulling into my driveway I could see the sassafras bushes all the way from the front driveway and my Bradford Pear has undergone an amazing transformation in two days…from dark red to……bright oranges and golden yellows.


About Becky Dingle

I was born a Tarheel but ended up a Sandlapper. My grandparents were cotton farmers in Laurens, South Carolina and it was in my grandmother’s house that my love of storytelling began beside an old Franklin stove. When I graduated from Laurens High School, I attended Erskine College (Due West of what?) and would later get my Masters Degree in Education/Social Studies from Charleston Southern. I am presently an adjunct professor/clinical supervisor at CSU and have also taught at the College of Charleston. For 28 years I taught Social Studies through storytelling. My philosophy matched Rudyard Kipling’s quote: “If history were taught in the form of stories, it would never be forgotten.” Today I still spread this message through workshops and presentations throughout the state. The secret of success in teaching social studies is always in the story. I want to keep learning and being surprised by life…it is the greatest teacher. Like Kermit said, “When you’re green you grow, when you’re ripe you rot.”
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4 Responses to Why So Late?

  1. bcparkison says:

    LOL…If that last picture is your Bradford boy are you in for a time of rakeing. I have raked my walk every day for a week and they are still falling. If they would fall all at once it would be helpful.


    • Becky Dingle says:

      Oh…that is ‘Big Bradford’…everything grows big around here and yes the leaves make a pile bigger than myself….raking too soon is a lesson in futility…so I have learned to let the leaves enrich the yard for a few weeks and than rake right before Christmas or right after depending on the falling season.


  2. Lynn says:

    Just thinking about how confusing this could be! In fact just last Thursday I quickly sent all of our American friends a quick “Happy Thanksgiving” greeting, somehow thinking it was the third Thurs. of November…and being so late this had to be the correct date…BUT, alas, I was a week early. Maybe this is better than a whole week late. By then everyone will be past Thanksgiving and on into Christmas…full speed ahead!
    So I’m suggesting that perhaps another date completely…and earlier as we have in Canada with the second Monday in October always being our special day of thanks. This seems a fitting time with the harvest in full swing and the children needing a one day holiday about then too. Then comes Nov. with a holiday weekend for the Nov. 11th Remembrance Day…quite a big deal up here. After this a little lull and then begin the preparations for Christmas. By the end of November many, like us, already have their trees up and looking very beautiful. Ours is one of our own Fraser Firs and is a very long-lasting homegrown tree. Often lasts from the end of November, right thru til Valentines Day!


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