Monday, June 20, 2016

HIstory of Father's Day

Father, Daughter, Beach, Sea, FamilyMy father went into teaching so he could spend time with us in the summer.  He also supported us through our girl scout and boy scout activities.  I was the only girl in my troop who could tie all the knots at the local scout games.  I could create a shelter out of sticks, rope, and a tarp. 

We all have memories of our father be they good or bad but I don't recall celebrating Father's day growing up.  My curiosity won out yesterday so I searched for information..  Did you know that Father's day as a nationally recognized day is quite recent?  It was nationally recognized 58 years after Woodrow Wilson declared Mother's day an official event. 

The very first wide spread Father's day took place on June 19, 1910 in Washington State after a campaign by Sonora Smart Dodd who wanted to have an official day recognizing male parents.  She was raised by a single father.  Although Calvin Coolidge urged all states to observe Father's day, it didn't happen.  It was thought that men didn't need a day with sentimental flowers, etc.

In fact, there was movement in the 1920's and 30's to scrap both Mother's and Father's day for a single Parent's day. The depression derailed this movement but retailers and advertisers promoted buying ties, socks, hats, etc because Father's day was like a "second Christmas" for fathers.  World War two helped establish Father's day because advertisers argued that Father's day was a way of honoring the troops and supporting the war effort.  By the end of the war it was a national institution.

It wasn't until 1972 that Father's day became a national holiday when Richard M. Nixon signed the official proclamation.  Now it has made its way into our culture to the point, we are unaware that it is a fairly recent event.

I hope you had a good father's day.  I called my father and wished him a wonderful day.

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