Jump Start the Labor Day Holiday With These Fun Facts

Every year, nationwide, we celebrate the first Monday in September as Labor Day.

So, how did the holiday come about?

The holiday grew out of the 19th century organized labor movement and soon became a national holiday as the movement assumed a prominent role throughout society.

Well then how did it all get started? Here are the facts behind Labor Day according to the U.S Department Of Labor

The movement became public in 1882. In 1882, before the day was recognized as a national holiday, workers marched from City Hall to Wendel’s Elm Park, the largest park in New York City at the time. They gathered with their families for concerts, picnics and speeches.

The parade inspired other unions. After the parade in New York, other regions began having their own parades. By 1887, Five states declared Labor Day a state holiday (Oregon, Massachusetts, New York, New Jersey, and Colorado)

Two people (with similar names, I might add) are credited for the New York parade. Both Matthew Maguire, a machinist, and Peter McGuire, a carpenter, are linked with the first parade in 1882.

Grover Cleveland aided in making Labor Day a National Holiday. President Cleveland and lawmakers in Washington wanted a federal holiday to celebrate organized labor. Cleveland signed an act in 1894 establishing the federal holiday. While at the time most states already had passed laws establishing a Labor Day holiday. Sen. Of South Dakota, James Henderson Kyle introduced S. 730  which made Labor Day a federal holiday. Which is to be celebrated on the first Monday of September. It was approved on June 28, 1894.

The evolution of the holiday. In the late 1800s, Labor Day celebrations shifted their focus from parades to a wider celebration that recognizes organized labor with more festivals than parades. Some also mark it as the end of summer and beginning of fall.

Other Labor Day Fun Facts:

  • The eight-hour work day wasn’t established until 1916
  • 97% of US employers celebrate Labor Day

Extract is wishing you a wonderful Labor Day weekend, enjoy!


About the Author: Taylor Genter

Taylor is the Marketing Specialist at Extract with experience in data analytics, graphic design, and both digital and social media marketing.  She earned her Bachelor of Business Administration degree in Marketing at the University of Wisconsin- Whitewater. Taylor enjoys analyzing people’s behaviors and attitudes to find out what motivates them, and then curating better ways to communicate with them.