Thanksgiving Timeline, 1541 - 2001
  Thanksgiving Day, 1934

26,000 fans watched the Detroit Lions face the Chicago Bears at the University of Detroit Stadium. Radio executive George Richards had purchased the Portsmouth Spartans, moved them to Detroit, and renamed them the Lions after the 1933 football season.

This was the first National Football League game held on Thanksgiving Day. It was broadcast on the NBC radio network by 94 stations to a nationwide audience. Except between 1939 and 1944, the Detroit Lions game became an annual event. Television broadcasts of the game began in 1956.

Family Around Dinner Table Watching Football on TV, Father Carving Turkey
Cover of "Sunset,"
November, 1903.

Prints and Photographs Division,
The Library of Congress.

 
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