Labor Day what does it mean to you?
Back in the old days, when I was going to school, Labor Day meant it was time to go back to school. Summer break was over. Memorial Day marked the ending of the school year, and Labor Day marked the beginning.
I don’t think we really knew or even cared what the significance of Labor Day was, our summer was over.
Labor Day has been recognized and celebrated since the end of the 19th century, when there was much unrest and violence because The American Organized Labor movement tried to force the employers to take better care of the worker. With their persistence the Labor moment was instrumental in creating better work environments, pay, hours, benefits, and laws were made to protect laborers.
Prior to their efforts, people worked 12 hour days 7 days a week. Children as young as 5 and 6 worked in the mines, factories, and mills. Working conditions were often harsh and unsafe.
The first Monday in September was marked as a day to honor the achievements of The American Labor Movement, and pay tribute to the works of laborers who contributed in the development of the United States.
On September 5, 1882, 10,000 workers took unpaid time off to march from City Hall to Union Square in New York City, holding the first Labor Day parade.
On June 28, 1894, President Grover Cleveland made Labor Day a Federal holiday.
There is some dispute to who really was the brainchild of Labor Day.
Many credit Peter J. McGuire, cofounder of the American Federation of Labor, while others have suggested that Matthew Maguire, a secretary of the Central Labor Union, first proposed the holiday.
Who ever it was, we thank them for helping to establish this holiday.
I hope that you are having a safe, fun and eventfilled three day weekend.