For years now, the day after Thanksgiving has been known as Black Friday. We now know it as the busiest shopping day of the year, but have you ever thought about the real history of Black Friday? How did it get started and where did the term originate? Today, that is what we are going to dive into and hopefully leave you a little more knowledgeable than you were before reading this post.
The Origins of Black Friday
Ever wonder where the term”Black Friday” came from? Well, initially people would use the adjective “black” in association with negative events and tragedy. Many days have been dubbed “Black Friday” in the past. The most notable is the Panic of 1896, which you can learn all about here.
It wasn’t until around 1951 that the first recorded use of the term “Black Friday” was used in association with the day after Thanksgiving. Employers coined the term because there was a large influx of employees calling out of work that day.
It also started to be used by police in Philadelphia around the same time period due to the massive amounts of traffic and congestion caused by the Holiday crowds.
Another significant reason for the name Black Friday for the day after Thanksgiving has its origins in accounting terminology. The word “Black” in this instance has a positive financial meaning of ‘being in the black’ or profitable. The use of the word ‘black’ comes from the old bookkeeping practice of writing profits in black ink and losses in red ink. This becomes significant when you realize that most businesses depend on the day after Thanksgiving to put them in the black (or profitable) for the year.
Busiest Shopping Day of The Year
The idea of Black Friday being the busiest shopping day of the year, seems to have come about in a November 29, 1975 edition of the New York Times., where an article refers to the day as the “busiest shopping and traffic day of the year” specifically for Philadelphia.
After this initial mention, the idea became much more widespread, but still by 1985 it was reported that many retailers in major cities such as Los Angeles and Cincinnati were still unaware of the term.
The early 80’s is when many major retailers began making use of “Black Friday” as a marketing ploy, but even then some retailers were not sure how they felt about this term. It was not until the early 2000’s that the day became nationally recognized.
Black Friday Controversies
As with most holidays and days of note, Black Friday does not come without its fair share of controversy. There have been numerous instances, events, scandals, and plain false theories that tend to circulate every year.
Chaos and Violence
Of course, everyone has seen the videos of people pushing and shoving to get the last product on a shelf. People getting trampled and even arrested while Black Friday shopping. One would think that these instances of chaos and even violence would deter would be deal shoppers, but it doesn’t seem to have slowed down those who are out for a killer deal. People continue to camp out outside of businesses and line up waiting for hours , with no end in sight.
So there is a “fact” that floats around every year about the “origins of Black Friday”. It gets said that the name comes from the Pre-Civil war American South when slaves would be sold on the day after Thanksgiving. This is completely false and has been debunked.
Probably the biggest modern controversy surrounding Black Friday is actually the spilling over into Thanksgiving itself. Sales are starting earlier and earlier, and now it seems people are leaving their family dinners early in order to head to the mall when it opens. Many people are rather angry about this, and think Black Friday should remain a Friday only deal and stores should stop creeping into the Thanksgiving Holiday itself.
If you are looking for a Black Friday deal on a trailer, trailer parts, or service, then M&G Trailer Sales has you covered. Contact us today with any questions and concerns and be on the look out for the best Trailer deals in the area!