I have such fond memories of Labor Day weekends. It means a day off from work and school, and a Monday, no less. What’s not to love? I enjoy spending time with my family on Labor Day, taking advantage of the extra day of rest that this holiday provides. Recently I’ve been wondering exactly how this day came to be. After some research, I have found out a little bit about the story of Labor Day.
Labor Day is a creation of the labor movement and began as a tribute to the workers who have allowed the United States to prosper. At first, it was a holiday that was adopted state by state. Over time the celebrations began to catch on nationwide and, in 1894, Labor Day was approved as a national holiday to be observed on the first Monday of every September.
There has been some dispute as to who is truly the father of Labor Day. Traditionally it was attributed to Peter J. McGuire, a cofounder of the American Federation of Labor. However, historians in recent years believe a New York Central Labor Union secretary named Matthew Maguire could have come up with Labor Day first. Whether it was McGuire or Maguire, it is still a marvelous idea to have a holiday celebrating the workers of the United States.
Labor Day was originally celebrated with a parade in the streets, followed by a festival for workers and their families. Today, the holiday is celebrated in many different ways. From cookouts to days at the lake to simple time with family, I hope that your Labor Day is restful and spent with those that you hold dear.
What are your Labor Day traditions?