Labor Day 2019 will be celebrated on Monday, September 2nd. It will pay tribute to the achievements, and contributions of American workers. Traditionally, it is celebrated on the first Monday of September, and this is the case this year too. The Labor Day has been a federal holiday since 1894 and is celebrated with much fervor every year since then. To know the why, how and who of Labor Day, simply read on.
Why is Labor Day Celebrated?
In the late 1800s, the industrial revolution was at its peak, and an American worker was working 12 hours a day for 7 days a week just to make a basic living. Even children aged 5 or 6 toiled in mines, factories, and mills to earn a fraction of what adults were making. Most workers, especially poor and recent immigrants were working in unsafe conditions and had minimal breaks, sanitary facilities, and fresh air!
The labor organizations began protesting poor work conditions and organized many events and parades. The Haymarket Riot of 1886 was one of such events that turned violent. The first Labor Day parade in the US history was organized on September 5, 1882, as 10,000 workers took unpaid off and marched from City Hall to Union Square in New York.
Many industrial centers caught on the idea of workingmen’s holiday to be celebrated on the first Monday of September. Many states even passed legislation to recognize it, but the Congress took 12 years to legalize it.
Who Created Labor Day?
The Congress made Labor Day a legal holiday by passing an act. The President, Grover Cleveland, signed the act and turned it into law on June 28, 1894. But the true founder of the Labor Day is still unknown. Some credit the co-founder of the American Federation of Labor, Peter J. McGuire while others credit, A Secretary of the Central Labor Union, Matthew Maguire for proposing the holiday.
How to Celebrate Labor Day?
Labor Day is celebrated in all cities and towns in the US. Some celebrate it with picnics, some with parades, some opt for barbeques and some select firework displays. The Labor Day weekend is also considered a symbol of the end of summer for many Americans. They celebrate it via street parades, parties, athletic events or other public gatherings.
How do you plan to celebrate Labor Day 2019? Share in the comments below!