(Trends Wide) — Here’s a look at the commemoration of Labor Day, also known as Labor Day, a national holiday celebrated in the United States and Puerto Rico to honor workers. In 2021, Labor Day is September 6.
- Labor Day is celebrated on the first Monday in September.
- In many other countries, Workers’ Day (May 1) is the day workers are honored. Most of Europe celebrates the first of May.
- For many, Labor Day symbolizes the end of summer.
- In July 2021, there were more than 161 million people in the United States workforce.
Early 1880s – According to the Department of Labor, the idea of creating a holiday to honor workers was proposed by Peter McGuire of the Union of the Brotherhood of Carpenters and Cabinetmakers or by Matthew Maguire of the International Association of Machinists. The Central Labor Union of New York appointed a committee to organize a picnic and parade honoring the workers.
September 5, 1882 – New York City held the first Labor Day parade. The US Census Bureau estimates that 10,000 workers participated. Not all employers support the idea, but many unionized workers take the first Monday in September off anyway. Some unions impose fines on workers who do go to work. Back then, workers got time off for Christmas, July 4, and every other Sunday.
1887 – Oregon becomes the first state to make Labor Day a legal holiday.
1894 – President Grover Cleveland and the US Congress make Labor Day a national holiday.
- In 1983, the union membership rate was 20.1% in the US In 2020, the union membership rate was 10.8%.
- In 2020, Hawaii and New York had the highest rate of unionized workers among the states: Hawaii at 23.7% and New York at 22%.
- South Carolina and North Carolina had the lowest, at 2.9% and 3.1% in 2020.