Why America Celebrates Christian Holidays

Holidays in the USA 2021-2025

Fixed holidays

Public holidays that are not public are shown in gray.

Moving Holidays in the USA

Moving the holidays to Monday

A special feature goes back to President Richard Nixon in 1971, who moved most of the national holidays to the nearest Monday during his tenure. A public holiday is a day off for large parts of the population. Anniversaries such as Independence Day, New Year or Christmas, which of course cannot be celebrated on other days, are of course excluded from this.

Despite the deadlines set by the federal government, the individual US states have extensive freedom in setting deadlines. Each state can arbitrarily postpone a public holiday for its territory or cancel it entirely. For example, President's Day is not celebrated in 11 of the 50 states. Columbus Day is also only celebrated in 34 states. There are also countless dates for regional holidays.

Independence Day

The most famous holiday in the United States from numerous films is "Independence Day" on July 4th. This day goes back to the year 1776, in which the declaration of independence was signed. The name "United States of America", to which the previous 13 British colonies united, was also recorded for the first time. However, the USA only received its legal status about 12 years later with the adoption of the constitution. Nevertheless, the year 1776 is considered to be the year it was founded. Today the day is celebrated across the country with picnics, parades and fireworks. In many places, things are far more patriotic than in Germany, for example. Countless US flags plunge entire streets into a white, red, and blue sea.

Thanksgiving Day: Thanksgiving

While in Europe the harvest festival is celebrated almost exclusively in rural areas, in the USA there is a real hustle and bustle on the fourth Thursday in November. Originally the holiday was proclaimed by George Washington in 1789 and took place on October 3rd until 1862. It was not until Abraham Lincoln put Thanksgiving Day to the end of November. Even then, the reason for the relocation was of a purely economic nature: the additional bridging day on the following Friday and an extended weekend at the beginning of the Christmas season were intended to boost sales. As a result, the day known today as Black Friday was born, when retailers come up with discounts.