This coming Monday, Americans around the nation will grill hamburgers and hotdogs at neighborhood barbecues, play water sports at the lake, and maybe see some firework displays – all in honor of Labor Day. Often regarded by Americans as the symbolic end of summer – the last long weekend of the season before autumn begins and those long summer days begin to fade – it sometimes seems as if this holiday means little more than just a day off work, or school, or of course the beginning of the NFL and college football seasons. Traditionally, however, Labor Day is meant to be a celebration of much more than that, outlined in the first proposal of the holiday in the late 1800s as a day to exhibit “the strength and esprit de corps of the trade and labor organizations.”
Coming off the heels of the American Industrial Revolution that spanned the mid to late 19th century, the average American worker endured 12-hour days, 7 days a week, to make a basic living. The use of child labor and harsh working conditions were also prominent during that time. As workers sought an outlet to express their demands for better working environments and a better quality of life, unions developed and held parades to voice their concerns, the first of which took place on September 5, 1882. Recognized as the very first Labor Day, ten thousand workers marched from city hall to Union Square in New York City to honor the workers of America and to vocalize their workplace issues. As years passed, more states began to hold these parades, and finally, in 1894, Congress passed an act declaring the first Monday in September to be the legal holiday known as Labor Day.
Honor your workers this Labor Day by giving them promotion gifts to show your gratitude for all their hard work. Whether it’s a crystal engraved award, an executive pen set, or a simple scented candle, they will be sure to appreciate the recognition.
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