summer's over... sort of...

The Lowdown on Labor Day

It's Labor Day: The last un-official day of summer filled with beach picnics and backyard BBQs. But what exactly are we celebrating here? Is this holiday anything more than Frisbee, parades, barbequed corn and daytime drinking?
Well think fast because it's quiz time.

What Is Labor Day?

A) A holiday to celebrate the hellish hours of pushing a woman goes through during childbirth.

B) A holiday started by college kids so they could get drunk on Sunday and sleep it off on Monday.

C) A holiday created to stop people from wearing white for the rest of the year.

D) A holiday created to honor the "working man."

If you guessed D, you're correct (and if you didn't guess D, we might be a little worried about you).

Don't worry if you can't remember the holiday's history from your 4th grade Social Studies class because we're bringing you the ‘Cliff Notes' version of what this day of rest is all about.

Labor Day is a tradition that has been celebrated on the first Monday of September in the US since the 1880s. The national holiday was started by the labor movement and is dedicated to the social and economic achievements of American workers.

On September 5, 1882, 10,000 workers assembled in New York City to march in America's first Labor Day parade and show worker solidarity. Although there is some speculation as to exactly who came up with the idea for Labor Day, most historians credit Peter J. McGuire, a carpenter and co-founder of the Federation of Organized Trades and Labor Unions.

After the success of the initial Labor Day, New York's Central Labor Union approved McGuire's proposal to hold the celebration annually and in 1894, Congress passed legislation to make Labor Day a national holiday.

For many decades, Labor Day was used by workers not only to celebrate their accomplishments, but also to air their grievances and discuss strategies for securing better working conditions and salaries.

These days, however, Labor Day is less about grievances and strategies and more about summer's final day of festivities. We don't know about you guys, but our strategy is to spend the day at the beach.

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