Today dads celebrate Father’s Day – how this holiday appeared, or a long way to recognition.
Greece celebrates Father’s Day today, June 19, although in other countries it may be celebrated on a different date. This day around the world calls to honor fathers and their role in society. And the first time Father’s Day was celebrated on July 5, 1908 in the USA, in West Virginia, in the city of Fairmont.
The reason for Father’s Day was the death of 210 male fathers in the mine, during the Monong tragedy (∗). The organizer was Golden Clayton, whose initiative may have been influenced by the first Mother’s Day celebration that took place that year. For the celebration, she chose the Sunday closest to the birthday of her recently deceased father. However, on this day, several more important events took place in the city, so Father’s Day did not receive support among the population. West Virginia did not recognize it as an official holiday and it was never celebrated again.
However, two years later, Sonora Dodd from Spokane, Washington became the initiator of a similar holiday. She hadn’t heard anything about Golden Clayton’s failed attempt, and decided to organize Father’s Day also under the influence of Mother’s Day. In addition, she wanted to honor the memory of her father, a veteran of the American Civil War (1861-1865), and all other fathers who were veterans of that war. And then, for several decades, this holiday was waiting for its official status:
- The first bill introduced in the US Congress to legalize Father’s Day in 1913 was defeated due to fears of commercialization of the holiday.
- In 1916, President Woodrow Wilson visited Spokane, where he gave a speech commemorating Father’s Day, as well as an unsuccessful attempt by Congress to make the holiday official.
- In 1924, President Calvin Coolidge formally proposed a special date for Father’s Day in the United States, but took no action.
- After several unsuccessful attempts to popularize the holiday, in 1966, President Lyndon Johnson issued the first presidential decree to officially honor fathers, establishing the third Sunday in June as Father’s Day.
- After 6 years, in 1972, President Richard Nixon finally approved this holiday as a permanent national holiday of the United States of America.
After that, he writes cnn.gr, although it was believed that the first Father’s Day was organized in 1910 by Dodd, one of the participants in the Clayton event in 1908 was able to prove that the holiday was celebrated two years earlier.
In Greece, divorced fathers established this holiday through the Association for Manhood and Fatherhood (SY.GAPA) by its founder Nikos Spitalas, due to the devaluation of the father by the divorce justice system. Together with all Europeans, Greeks celebrate it every second Sunday in June when schools are still open for teachers to teach the role and values of the father in the family. The Greek Post issued a special series of stamps in honor of this holiday.
*Help. Accident in Mononga (English Monongah Mining disaster) occurred on December 6, 1907 in two mines of the city, six miles south of Fairmont, West Virginia, USA, and became the largest mining accident in American history. The methane explosion caused a subsequent explosion of coal dust in mines No. 6 and No. 8. According to official figures, 362 miners died, leaving 250 widows and more than 1,000 children. The mines were connected by underground workings and were considered exemplary, the most modern in the mining industry. The explosion in the mines of the Fairmont Coal Company was heard at 10:30 in the morning and was of such magnitude that the earth tremor was felt in a radius of 8 miles. Many buildings near the mines were destroyed. People and horses were thrown to the ground, trams derailed. For a while, chaos reigned on the surface. The management of the mine and officials were absent, it was impossible to understand the nature and extent of the disaster. Hundreds of screaming children and women surrounded the mine. Volunteers sought to participate in the rescue operation.