How Did Labor Day Come About?

By Cindy
Posted . Filed under Events & Happenings.

Fisrt labor day Parade Sept 5 1882The first Labor Day was organized by Peter J McGuire in 1882. McGuire was a carpenter and one of the leaders of the American union movement.

Over 10,000 workers marched from New York’s City Hall to Union Square. After the parade they enjoyed a picnic, concert, and speeches at Reservoir Park with their families.
Did you know that different countries around the world also celebrate the holiday along with the United States? In some countries it is called May Day and in others it is known as International Workers’ Day. Labor Day is an annual holiday celebrated all over the world. It originated from the eight-hour day movement in the nineteenth century. Labor unions called for eight hours for work, eight hours for play, and eight hours for sleep. It then became a reason for workers to celebrate their social and economic progress in the early twentieth century. Today, people are happy it is a day off work and perhaps forget the origins of this important holiday. Most countries celebrate this day on May 1. In some countries it is called May Day and in others it is known as International Workers’ Day. People around the world celebrate Labor Day in different ways. In China it marked the beginning of a seven-day holiday called Golden Week. People from all over the country traveled to their hometowns or visited resorts. However, in 2008, the Chinese government went back to the single public holiday. Indians have celebrated Labor Day since May 1, 1927. There are many festivals and processions organized by different labor organizations and people fill the streets for huge parties. Italians celebrate the day with a huge, free music concert in Rome. Up to one million people attend the spectacular. For most people, it is a chance to enjoy the nice weather and have a picnic with family, friends and co-workers.
In many cities across America, Labor Day continues to be celebrated in the very same fashion. Labor day in America is always the first Monday of September, whereas more and more countries are moving the day to the first Monday in May, so people get a three-day weekend.

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