What is Black Friday? Know the History, Significance and Date
It’s almost time for Black Friday. Here is everything you need to know about this day’s history, importance, date, and meaning.
Black Friday happens the day after Thanksgiving in the United States of America. In the past, the day was only celebrated in the United States. But now, people all over the world celebrate Black Friday. On this day, shoppers with full bellies from Thanksgiving go to stores in person and online to do their holiday shopping. They hope to find great deals and discounts on various items. Most stores open very early on Black Friday, sometimes as early as midnight or even on Thanksgiving, so they can offer great deals and bring in a lot of customers. But why do we call this day “Black Friday”? Please keep reading to learn about Black Friday’s history, meaning, date, and everything else you need to know about it.
Black Friday Date
In the United States of America, Black Friday is the day after Thanksgiving. Black Friday is on November 25 this year.
Why is it Called Black Friday? Black Friday Significance
As we get closer to Thanksgiving, stores, online shopping sites, and big brands keep sending us ads for their Black Friday sales. And there’s a good chance you’ve shopped on Black Friday at least once in your life. But where did the word come from in the first place?
There are a lot of myths about where Black Friday came from. Many people think that Black Friday got its name because shoppers get big sales and stores stop losing money. Since losses show up in red and profits in black, people thought that good deals would help them make a lot of money.
But that’s not the case. Instead, the Philadelphia police gave the day its name. Reports say that Black Friday has nothing to do with shopping. In the 1950s, the police in Philadelphia called the chaos on the day after Thanksgiving “Black Friday.” At that time, lots of people from the suburbs would come into the city for the football game, giving the police a hard time.
At that time, many city stores also used the term to describe long lines in front of their stores and a lot of people shopping at the same time. Businesses tried to call the day “Big Friday” in 1961. But it was never a good idea. In 1985, the term was used all over the United States. After 2013, Black Friday was celebrated all over the world.
On Black Friday, people rush to get the best deals they can before the holidays of Christmas and New Year’s. Even on Thanksgiving, some stores start giving discounts to customers. Shoppers who do their shopping online don’t even have to wait until midnight to get started.
Real History of Black Friday: From Financial Crash to Shopping Mania
The first time “Black Friday” was used in writing, it wasn’t to describe holiday shopping after Thanksgiving. Instead, it was used to describe a financial crisis: the crash of the U.S. gold market on September 24, 1869. Jay Gould and Jim Fisk, two Wall Street financiers who were known for being very mean, worked together to buy up as much of the country’s gold as they could. They wanted to drive up the price so they could sell it for huge profits. On that September Friday, the conspiracy finally fell apart. The stock market went into a free fall, and everyone from Wall Street barons to farmers went bankrupt.
The most common explanation for Black Friday as a shopping day after Thanksgiving is that it started with stores. The story goes that stores lost money for a whole year (“were in the red”), but then they “went into the black” (made money) on the day after Thanksgiving because people spent so much money on discounted goods. Even though it’s true that retail companies used to record their losses in red and their profits in black when doing their accounting, this is the official, but a false, story about where the tradition came from.
A Visual History of Black Friday
From the economic crash to the shopping craze In recent years, a new myth has come up that takes the tradition in a very bad direction. It says that in the 1800s, plantation owners in the South could buy slaves at a discount on the day after Thanksgiving. Some people have called for a boycott of Black Friday because of this false story about its origins. However, this story is not true.
The real history of Black Friday, on the other hand, is not as bright as what stores might tell you. In the 1950s, this phrase was used by police in the city of Philadelphia to describe the chaos that happened on the day after Thanksgiving, when people from the suburbs and tourists came into the city to shop and see sights before the big Army-Navy football game, which was always held on that Saturday. Police officers in Philadelphia were not only unable to take the day off, but they also had to work longer shifts to deal with the extra people and traffic. Shoplifters also took advantage of the chaos in stores to steal things, which made things harder for the police.
By 1961, “Black Friday” had become so popular in Philadelphia that merchants and city promoters tried, but failed, to change the name to “Big Friday” to get rid of the negative connotations. But the term didn’t catch on in the rest of the country until a long time later. Even as late as 1985, it wasn’t commonly used anywhere in the country. But sometime in the late 1980s, retailers found a way to change Black Friday into something that was good for them and their customers, rather than bad. As a result, people came up with the “red to black” idea of the holiday and the idea that the day after Thanksgiving was when American stores finally made a profit.
The story about Black Friday stuck, and soon most people forgot about the dark history of the term in Philadelphia. Since then, the one-day sales bonanza has turned into a four-day event and given rise to other “retail holidays” like Small Business Saturday/Sunday and Cyber Monday. On that Friday, stores started opening earlier and earlier, and now the most committed shoppers can go shopping right after Thanksgiving dinner.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
When is Black Friday?
The day after Thanksgiving is always Black Friday, but the exact date changes every year. Black Friday will be on November 25 in 2022. The shopping holiday happens on November 24, November 29, and November 28, 2023, 2024, and 2025, respectively.
Is Black Friday Considered a Holiday?
Black Friday is not a recognized holiday. The day after Thanksgiving is a day off for some companies, but it is not a federal holiday.
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