Each year, the famous sales weekend, which comes shortly after Thanksgiving Day, features a significant amount of shoppers heading to high street stores and online stores to grab the best deals on items. This year, Black Friday will occur on November 27, and stores are expected to offer items at discounted prices until Cyber Monday. Online retail giants such as Amazon and Argos have already launched a range of offers on various items.
However, most people are clueless about the history behind Black Friday and are unaware of the origin of the terms before they became to be part of the pre-Christmas shopping craze. History has told several events that led to the basis of the term Black Friday. This article highlights some of the most common occurrences.
Crash of the gold market.
The first recorded use of the term "Black Friday" was used to refer to a financial crisis that occurred in the US in 1869. On September 24, 1896, the US gold market suffered a severe crash. This was after two notorious and ruthless Wall Street financiers, namely, Jay Gould and Jim Fisk, resolved to buy up as much as possible of the country's gold. They aimed to acquire a significant amount to create a shortage, skyrocket the price, and sell the gold for unimaginable profits. On September 24, which was a Friday, the cat was let out of the bag, and their little conspiracy unraveled. This led the stock market into a free-fall, bankrupting everyone from the Wall Street moguls down to farmers.
Discount on slaves.
In recent years, another story has surfaced that certainly gives the origin of the terms an ugly twist. The story claims that back in the 19th century, Southern plantation owners were given a chance to buy slaves at a discount on the post-Thanksgiving day. This version of the origin of Black Friday has understandably compelled some people to call for a boycott of the retail holiday. However, this version of the story has no basis.
Police officers in Philadelphia were first to link Black Friday to the post-Thanksgiving period in the 1950s. A day after Thanksgiving, large crowds of tourists and shoppers flooded Philadelphia city to attend the Army-Navy football match. This created chaos, long traffic jams, and increased shoplifting. Cops in the city never took any break on that day. Instead, they worked long shifts trying to have the situation under control, thus referring to it as “Black Friday.” Later in 1966, the term Black Friday was put in print and become known after appearing in an ad in The American Philatelist magazine. In the late 1980s, the term was already common across the nation as retailers linked it to the post-Thanksgiving sales.
Moving away from history, Black Friday today feature millions of Americans and people worldwide hitting the shops and online stores in search of good deals. In some other parts of the world, Black Friday is not just a single day but extends for the whole weekend. As competition across all business platforms increasingly grow, some retailers go further to offer Black Fridays on all Fridays in November, which is a good thing for consumers.
This year, don’t get left behind during 2020 Black Friday. You might get lucky to buy the things you desired to have all year at discounted prices. Don’t be left behind during this year’s Black Friday. However, as you go shopping, do not forget to stay safe and observe the necessary measures since the current times, it’s not business as usual.