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Educational News

Labor Day

Sep-03, 2017


Labor Day in the United States is a federal holiday celebrated on the first Monday in September each year. This day was created to honor the American labor movement and the contributions that the workers have made to the prosperity, laws, well-being and strength of the country. Since it is celebrated on a Monday, it makes for a long weekend which is known as Labor Day weekend. It is also considered as the unofficial end of summer in the United States.


Beginning in the late 19th century, as the trade union and labor movements grew, diverse groups of trade unionists proposed that a day is set aside to celebrate for their labor. However, in the United States, a September holiday was called off for Labor Day and it was first suggested in the 1880s. Later, the early history of ‘Labor Day’ was dated with different dates and events which origins to a General Assembly of the Knights of Labor and by the Central Labor Union who then organized the first parade in New York City in September 1882. In coincidence with this concealed Knights assembly, a public parade of various labor organizations was held on September 5th under the sponsorships of the Central Labor Union (CLU) of New York and the Secretary of the CLU Matthew Maguire was credited with first proposing that a national Labor Day holiday was successively to be held on the first Monday of each September in the result of this positive public protest.

Did you know that in 1887 Oregon became the first official state of the United States to make Labor Day an official holiday? By that time, it became an official Federal holiday in 1894, and thirty U.S. states had officially celebrated Labor Day.

While Canada's Labor Day also falls on the first Monday of September. More than 80 countries celebrate International Labor Day on May 1st; this is the ancient European holiday of May Day. Yet, several countries have their own dates for Labor Day.


An alternative theory is maintained that Peter J. McGuire of the American Federation of Labor had put forward the first proposal in May 1882, after observing the annual labor festival held in Toronto, Canada.

Though there was the difference among labor unions at this time about when a holiday should be celebrated for workers. While many advocated for May 1st, but President Cleveland was worried that a labor holiday on May 1st would be a remembrance of the Haymarket Affair of May 1886, as it was ultimately under the name International Workers' Day. However, in 1887, he publicly supported for the September Labor Day holiday.

How to Celebrate this Day?

The form for the celebration of this day was defined in the first proposal for the holiday - A street parade was organized to exhibit to the public "the strength and esprit de corps of the trade and labor organizations" followed by a fiesta for the workers and their families and friends. This became the pattern for Labor Day celebrations and you see many people attending to the parade on this day in the United States.

Speeches by prominent men and women were introduced later, and much more emphasis was placed upon the civil significance of this holiday.


In some neighborhoods, people organize fireworks displays, barbecues, sport events and public arts. This is the time when we have to watch the American football season as it starts on or around Labor Day and many teams play their first game of the season during the Labor Day weekend.

Labor Day Sales

To take advantage of large numbers of prospective customers with time to shop, Labor Day has become a significant vacation for discounts and allowances by many stores in the United States, especially for back-to-school sales. While some retailer’s privilege it would be one of the largest sale dates of the year, second only to the Christmas season's Black Friday sales.