Labor Day meaning: A brief history of the holiday and why we celebrate

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Though it’s going to be referred to as the unofficial end of summer, Labor Day is really each day to celebrate the achievements of workers. According to History.com, Labor Day originated at a time when working conditions within the U.S. were often poor and unsafe. the website reported that the typical American worked 12-hour days seven days every week just to form a living.

Around that point , labor unions began to arrange in protest of poor conditions and low pay, History.com reported. The country’s first Labor Day parade happened in 1882 when 10,000 workers took unpaid day off work to march in NY City, History.com reported. According to the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL), the Central union organized that event. Though the precise origins of Labor Day are unclear, consistent with the DOL, it had been created by either Peter J. McGuire or Matthew Maguire – both union leaders – within the 1880s.

Both men attended the primary Labor Day parade in NY City, the DOL says on its website. albeit the primary Labor Day parade happened in 1882, it wasn’t officially recognized anywhere within the U.S. until 1887, when Oregon passed legislation to form it a state holiday. After Oregon, Colorado, Massachusetts, New Jersey, and ny followed suit and made Labor Day official state holidays. However, it wasn’t until 1894 when Labor Day became a federal holiday, which was signed into law by President Cleveland. The law stated that Labor Day would fall on the primary Monday of September and it still does today.

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