16 Fun Facts about Labor Day
Happy Labor Day! As you enjoy the last day of the long weekend, here are some fun facts about the occasion we are celebrating.
- The first observance of Labor Day in the US is believed to have been on September 5, 1882.
- According to some, it was organized by Carpenters and Joiners Union secretary Peter J. McGuire.
- Some believe that Matthew Maguire actually suggested the observance.
- Labor Day was designated a federal holiday in 1894, by which time more than 50% of the states were already marking the occasion.
- There are more than 155 million people over 16 in the nation’s workforce.
- More than 3 million people spent more than an hour and a half commuting to work in 2010 (and let’s not forget they had to go back, too!)
- The average commute is more reasonable: 25.3 minutes.
- 2010 median earnings for full time workers: $36,931 for women and $47,715 for men.
- Labor Day is celebrated on the same day in Canada.
- Canadian Labor Day started in 1872 as a demonstration for workers’ rights in Toronto.
- In Canada, Labor Day became a legal holiday (the first Monday in September) in 1874.
- In America in the 1800s, many workers used to work 12 hours a day, 7 days a week.
- The Adamson Act of 1916 set up the 8 hour workday.
- Many countries around the world celebrate workers on May Day or International Workers Day on May 1.
- The now traditional Labor Day parade was suggested in the original proposal of the holiday.
- Labor Day also marks the unofficial end of summer, the start of school and the beginning of the football season in the US.