OPINION: Forty & Eight

By 1941 Franklin Roosevelt had thrice changed the traditional date of Thanksgiving Day. Half the U.S. was eating its turkey on "Franksgiving" and the other half on any Thursday they thought more historic. Then an exasperated Congress uprose; henceforth thanks would be given on the fourth Thursday of each November. Franklin Roosevelt last week proclaimed Nov. 23, the fourth Thursday, as Thanksgiving Day. But this year the calendar had ruined the pretty new law: November has five Thursdays, and the traditional Thanksgiving Day has always been the last Thursday. Result: 40 states will eat their turkey on Nov. 23,...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!