Presidents’ Day 2022 will be a federal holiday in the United States. People of the country will celebrate it on 21st February i.e. the third Monday of February 2022. Every year, Presidents’ Day honors George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, and other US presidents, who played an important role in the development of the nation.
Presidents’ Day is officially known as Washington’s Birthday as it was initially a holiday to celebrate the first president of the country.
But how did it all begin?
The Origin Of President’s Day
“Every post is honorable, in which a man can serve his country.” – G. Washington
In the 1800s, after the death of George Washington in 1799, Senator Stephen Wallace Dorsey proposed that Washington’s birthday i.e. on 22nd February should become a holiday. So in 1879, Rutherford B. Hayes signed the proposal applying the holiday to the District of Columbia.
In 1885, President Chester Alan Arthur declared Washington’s birthday as a federal holiday for the entire nation. It is a significant day of remembrance of the most important figure in U.S. history. It was the first
federal holiday celebrating the life of an individual American.
A Tribute To Abraham Lincoln
“Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man’s character, give him power.” – A. Lincoln
In 1865, one year after the assassination of Abraham Lincoln; his birthday, 12th February, was given formal
observance by declaring it a state holiday in states like Illinois.
Why Was Washington’s Birthday Shifted To Monday?
The answer to this question is Uniform Monday Holiday Act, U.S. Legislation 1968, i.e. congress passed a bill in 1968 which took effect in 1971, which moved many federal holidays to Monday.
Hence, Washington’s birthday was shifted to the third Monday of February, combining the birthday of Washington (22nd February) and Lincoln (12th February). Ironically, the holiday will always fall on 15th – 21st February and never on 12th or 22nd, the actual birthdays of these leaders.
The act was criticized by many who believed that this might cheapen the meaning of those federal holidays, which were shifted. But workers’ unions and private sectors supported the act as it will give employees a long weekend. This three-day weekend is important for the spiritual and economic growth of the country.
Celebration Of Presidents’ Day In Different States
Congress rejected the suggestion of changing the name of the holiday for Washington’s birthday to Presidents’ Day at the national level. But every state has the liberty to give the day their name or whether they want to give holidays or not. Even though the state is not giving a holiday, still no emails will be received as Government offices and even public schools remain closed.
So, Washington’s Birthday is internationally called Presidents’ Day, a name was given by advertisers. Even the apostrophe of s moves from state to state, calling it either president’s day or Presidents’ Day.
Some states that celebrate Presidents’ Day differently are:
- In Arkansas, Daisy Gatson Bates Day is celebrated instead of Presidents’ Day
- In Massachusetts, the state gives a holiday on 24th May to honor the presidents, like John F. Kennedy, John Quincy Adams, John Adams, and Kelvin Coolidge, who belong to Massachusetts.
- In New Mexico, Presidents’ Day is celebrated on the Friday after Thanksgiving.
- In Alexandria and Virginia, Washington’s Birthday is celebrated for the whole month of February.
How Can You Celebrate Presidents’ Day 2022?
- Presidents’ Day 2022 is a time for patriotic celebration and remembrance. Patriotic and Historical groups conduct stage events on this day to celebrate the presidents of the U.S.
- Other events like birth night balls, speeches, and receptions by prominent figures can be held.
- You can read Washington’s Farewell Address to honor the president.
- A three-day sale will be held by the retail stores, like one during Black Friday, to increase their revenue.
- Students can be taught about the presidents and leadership skills on the week of Presidents’ Day 2022 in their schools.
- You can also enjoy the day with different cherry recipes.
Mount Rushmore: A Monument Made In Honor Of Four Presidents
The monument was sculpted in the Black Hills in Keystone, South Dakota by Danish-American Gutzon Borglum and his son Lincoln Borglum. Completed in 1941, the sculpture is approximately 60ft. high granite faces depict four important presidents of the country. The monument has the faces of George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Theodore Roosevelt, and Abraham Lincoln.
These specific presidents were honored because:
- G. Washington: In 1789, became the first president of the U.S. and laid the foundation of Democracy in the country.
- T. Jefferson: Expanded the nation by purchasing Louisiana. He also wrote the book “Declaration of Independence”.
- T. Roosevelt: represented Industrial development and was also known for his conversation efforts.
- A. Lincoln: was the president during the U.S. civil war and represents the preservation of the country above all.
Concluding The Weekend Celebration
The holiday celebrates the great leaders, 46 presidents, of the nation who played a significant role in making the U.S. one of the best and most powerful nations on the map. Hence, these presidents should be celebrated for their leadership quality and their efforts for the nation.
You can celebrate this 3-days long weekend following the traditions of the holiday and also going shopping, taking advantage of the Presidents’ Day 2022 sale. You can also teach your children about leadership quality and bake cherry pies with them. You can also plan a short trip with your loved ones on Presidents’ Day 2022 weekend.