Pictured: 1912 Labor Day Demonstration at Washington Square Park


Today is Labor Day in the United States. Labor Day did not just happen. Workers/people fought for this day of recognition via events such as this demonstration in Washington Square Park on Labor Day in 1912. Signs visible here implore workers to “Organize!”

History of Labor Day in the United States via Wikipedia:

In 1887, Oregon became the first state of the United States to make Labor Day an official public holiday. By 1894, thirty U.S. states were already officially celebrating Labor Day.[12] In that year, Congress passed a bill recognizing the first Monday of September as Labor Day and making it an official federal holiday. President Grover Cleveland signed the bill into law on June 28.[13][4]

The federal law, however, only made it a holiday for federal workers.

As late as the 1930s, unions were encouraging workers to strike to make sure they got the day off.[14] All U.S. states, the District of Columbia, and the United States territories have subsequently made Labor Day a statutory holiday.[15]

Seems like mostly women here in 1912. Looking back now, the reason for this was that March of 1911 was the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire, a block from the park where tragically 146 workers died.

Photo: NYC Parks Department Twitter

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