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9/7/2015 | Construction Blog

Labor Day is traditionally filled with last trips to the beach and barbecues during the long weekend that marks the end of summer. Like Memorial Day in May though, it’s a good time to pause for a moment or two and understand the reason why we have this federal holiday.

president-grover-clevelandBy federal law, Labor Day is always the first Monday in September. It was declared a federal holiday in 1888 to reinforce the growing sentiment in the country that the effort and labor of the American worker should be recognized and honored. The holiday has its roots in the labor movement and was first celebrated by The Central Labor Union in New York City in 1882. Thereafter, various cities and states recognized the day before Congress made it a national holiday in 1888.

Over time, Labor Day became a grandiose celebration of the labor movement and labor unions. The occasion was marked with large parades, speeches by prominent people in the movement, and wide media coverage. While these elements of the celebration have died out over time for various reasons, the holiday rightly remains a part of the American tradition to show appreciation for all those hard working people that make America an economic powerhouse.