03 September 2007
Labor Day had its beginnings in New York city with a 20-year old named Peter McGuire. He was tired of working long hours for little pay, so he began giving speeches and organizing people into unions. He and 100,000 workers went on strike in the spring of 1872, and marched through the streets of New York to demand fewer working hours per day. He went on to organize workers in Chicago and St. Louis into labor unions. On September 5, 1882 the first Labor Day parade was held in New York City, and in 1894, Congress voted Labor Day a national holiday. To learn more about the history of Labor Day and Peter McGuire, visit the Celebrate Holidays website.