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Community Matters, History & Biography, Law

The History of Labor Day

Labor Day is the celebration of the value and dignity of work, and its role in the American way of life. There is some mystery as to the originator, however we do know that the first Labor Day holiday was organized by the Central Labor Union and celebrated on Tuesday, September 5, 1882, in New York City. By June of 1894, President Grover Cleveland had signed legislation making the first Monday in September a legal holiday. Labor Day continues to be an important holiday for Labor Unions.

Traditionally, Springfield citizens celebrate Labor Day with parades and picnics. This year is no exception. Springfield's annual Labor Day parade will begin at 10 a.m. on Monday. Visit the News-Leader website for the parade route and more information.

Did you know?

  • In 1887 Oregon became the first state to grant legal status to Labor Day.
  • For many decades the holiday was a day for workers to air grievances and discuss strategies for securing better working conditions and salaries. Now the holiday is seen more as a time for leisure.
  • It wasn't until the 1950s that most workers gained an 8-hour work day.
  • Today Labor Day is often associated with the MDA Telethon, which coincides with the holiday every year. Locally, the Branson Landing is hosting a variety of events with proceeds benefiting the MDA Telethon.

Read more about the American Labor Movement:

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