Thanksgiving Day – November 21, 1940

Our primary purpose here is to bring you photos of the Timothy Levi Crouch family of Connecticut taken at Thanksgiving in November of 1940 by Jack Delano, for the Farm Security Administration.

But first..

A year prior to the 1940 Thanksgiving holiday, President Franklin D. Roosevelt made a proclamation moving the official celebration one week earlier than the traditional fourth Thursday of November.

Roosevelt was hoping that the move would help boost sales in a slow economy still pinched by the Great Depression. When the announcement was first made there was short notice given, which affected the holiday plans of many Americans and businesses, causing complaints and protest.

This earlier holiday lasted for three years and during the period, some began calling the holiday "Franksgiving". To understand the sentiment of the country, all you have to do is watch the classic 1942 film Holiday Inn. In one of the scenes, a November calendar appears, and you'll see an animated turkey jump back and forth repeatedly between the two weeks, until he finally just looks at the audience and shrugs.

Back to the photos..

Jack Delano is part of a group of very talented yet under-rated photographers that captured and preserved our nation's history on film from the late 1930s through 1943. An incredible service to our country.

Enjoy Thanksgiving at the Crouch family home, November 21, 1940. You'll see outside the family home where it looks like somebody has parked a convertible with the top down after driving for dinner, (brrr!) a photo of the 20 lb. turkey being carved, a young man checking on the pudding, a young lady checking on the pies, the children's table for dinner and more. Enjoy!


Comments 3

  1. Timothy Levi Crouch was my great-grandfather. My mother is the girl with the long hair. The calendar in the background of one of the pictures indicates Thanksgiving being on the 28th.

    I love finding these pictures around the internet.

    Thanks for posting!

    Heather Flack

    1. Love these photos. Timothy Levi Crouch was a 5th cousin, 2x removed through the connections with the Crouch, Lamb, and Culver families.

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