Friday, August 29, 2014

Labor Day: Time to Reflect on Our Great Nation

“Without labor nothing prospers.”
- Sophocles

Every first Monday in September is Labor Day. This U.S. holiday celebrates the American labor movement and is dedicated to the social and economic achievements of workers. 

Labor Day also gives us a chance to recall the history of our great nation. The holiday originated during one of American labor history’s most dismal chapters. In the late 1800s, at the height of the Industrial Revolution in the United States, the average American worked 12-hour days and seven-day weeks in order to eke out a basic living. 

As manufacturing began to outplace agriculture as the wellspring of American employment, labor unions, which had first appeared in the late 18th century, grew more prominent and vocal. On September 5, 1882, 10,000 workers took unpaid time off to march from City Hall to Union Square in New York City, holding the first Labor Day parade in U.S. history.  

Each year, this holiday continues to let us pay tribute to the American worker, who created so much of our strength, freedom and leadership.  Have a wonderful Labor Day weekend!

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