Presidents’ Day 2021, also known as Washington’s Birthday, will be celebrated on Monday 15 February 2021 in the United States of America. The Presidents’ Day remarks the birth of George Washington, the first president of the USA. Traditionally, Presidents’ Day is celebrated on the third Monday of February each year because George Washington was born in February 1732. Not only this, but another revered president of the United States Abraham Lincoln was also born in February 1809. Therefore, the Presidents’ Day has become a universal celebration and a Federal Holiday for Americans.
Presidents’ Day or President’s Day?
This is an interesting controversy in the USA where some people use an apostrophe after the letter “s” of Presidents whereas the other use it before “s”. The Federal Government calls it “Presidents’ Day” and celebrates it honoring all the men who ever ascended the office of the President in the country. However, many states use the words “President’s Day” celebrating it as the birthday of George Washington.
It is so because the Federation has allowed the states to use any couple of words that they prefer. Initially, it was called President’s Day until the late 1960s when the Uniform Monday Holiday Act was passed in Congress. Senator Robert McClory of Illinois advocated for the law that would declare a specific day for the celebration and the day would be called Presidents’ Day. However, the states would be free to use any name they prefer.
Is Presidents’ Day a Public Holiday on the state level?
Yes, the majority of the US states observe Presidents’ Day as a public holiday in one way or another. However, the day is not a public holiday universally in the United States. Currently, at least sixteen out of fifty states celebrate President’s Day and nine states celebrate the day as Presidents’ Day. Whereas at least nine states celebrate the day as Washington’s Birthday along with Washington DC. In Arizona, the day is celebrated as Lincoln-Washington Presidents’ Day and the state of Utah observes it as Washington and Lincoln Day. The day is celebrated as George Washington/Thomas Jefferson Birthday in Alabama. Nevertheless, the majority of states observe a holiday on Presidents’ Day in one way or another except nine states. Nine out of fifty states do not celebrate a public holiday on Presidents’ Day.
Long Weekend on Presidents’ Day
Presidents’ Day falls on the third Monday of February which makes it a Long Weekend. Curious about Long Weekend? Okay, don’t worry at all! I’m gonna tell you what is Long Weekend.
Saturday and Sunday are observed as the weekend in the United States like Canada, and Europe. Thus, when a holiday falls on Friday or Monday, it becomes a Long Weekend. Interesting? Let’s move forward now!
What do People do on Presidents’ Day?
Presidents’ Day activities vary in the USA as the title of the day does. The Federal Government arranges celebration in the honor of almost all the (prominent) presidents of the United States although George Washington enjoys a special place in speeches usually. It is because he led the revolution that liberated Americans from British Colonizers and made them one nation.
In the states, people appreciate the contributions of different presidents like Abraham Lincoln, Thomas Jefferson, and Daisy Gatson Bates also. Thomas Jefferson was also among the founding fathers of the United States and he played a key role in the expansion of the country. Therefore, his fans appreciate his role commemorating him on Presidents’ Day.
Abraham Lincoln is the most revered president after George Washington. He even surpassed Washington in some public surveys. It is so because he saved the country from disintegration during the Civil War. Therefore, many people admire him on Presidents’ Day. His birthday is on 15th February. Interestingly, Lincoln’s birthday will be widely celebrated as Presidents’ Day throughout the United States.
It’s going to be fun as Joe Biden has recently sworn in as the President and he claims to be the president of not Democrats but every single American. It seems like he is influenced by the universal popularity of Abraham Lincoln and George Washington. Biden’s predecessor Donald Trump delivered the control of the President’s House unwillingly and unhappily. Let’s see how Biden behaves on the day of the nation’s Commanders in Chief.
What is the Birthday of George Washington?
The documents related to the records of the first president of the United States reveal that George Washington was born on 22nd February 1732. Interestingly, 22nd February is not the only day attributed to the birthday of Washington.
According to the old calendar, the president was born on 11th February. Therefore, people were divided in celebrating Washington’s Birthday initially. Some celebrated on 11th February whereas the others did it on 22nd February. President Chester Alan Arthur announced that Washington’s Birthday would be celebrated on 22nd February instead of 11th February.
Historical Background of Presidents’ Day
In 1796, the nation celebrated the birthday of its leader for the first time. Washington was a prominent commander in colonial America however he earned widespread respect when he ruled the new-founded country with justice and responsibility. Therefore, his birthday became a day of enthusiasm and national spirit for Americans who won independence under his leadership.
In 1880, the District of Columbia celebrated the birthday of George Washington. The celebration earned widespread fame throughout the country where people were already aware of Washington’s role in their independence. Washington is still revered for his contributions. One-dollar bill and quarter dollar coin have images of him.
Mount Rushmore is a National Monument for Americans where images of the four most revered presidents have been carved out. Washington’s image is most prominent on Mount Rushmore. In 1885, the Federal Government announced to celebrate Washington’s Birthday on 22nd February each year.
After Lincoln’s pivotal role in protecting the United States from disintegration during the Civil War, people started recalling him on Washington’s Birthday. Also, Lincoln’s Birthday that falls on 15th February encouraged people to do so. In 1865, Lincoln was assassinated and his birthday was celebrated to commemorate him. However, his birthday could not become a National Holiday although it became a Legal Holiday.
In 1968, Congress passed the legislation called H.R. 15951 (90th) and announced that Washington’s Birthday would be celebrated on the third Monday of February. In 1971, it was called Presidents’ Day after a vote in Congress to ensure that prominent presidents other than Washington would also be commemorated. Thus, they decided that all the prominent presidents would be remembered and appreciated for their contributions to the establishment and development of the country.
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