It was celebrated in a few states first before it became a federal holiday
Labor activists first started recognizing Labor Day before states started to unofficially celebrate it. New York was the first state to introduce a bill to write the holiday into state legislation. Oregon, though, became the first state to pass it into law in 1887. Colorado,
The first Labor Day celebration had a lot of beer
The first major Labor Day parade was held in Manhattan near city hall in 1882. Police were worried about a riot breaking out, so there was a large police presence in the area. The problem, though,
In the Department of Labor, women led first
The Department of Labor, which was created after Labor Day already existed as a holiday, was the first department led by a woman: Frances Perkins. Perkins helped lead President Franklin Roosevelt's administration through changes in labor policy after the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire in 1911, in which 146 people died.
The day off is great. But what exactly are we celebrating?
A lot. Do you enjoy not having to work weekends? The 40-hour work week? Having sick days and paid time off? You can thank labor leaders for that. Thousands of Americans have marched, protested and participated in strikes in order to create fairer, more equitable labor laws and workplaces – and still do today.