Father’s Day in the USA! By Bev Filer

father's day greetings Dear Father

Father’s Day 2013 is Sunday, June 16…The third Sunday of June is the official Father’s Day in the United States. Though other countries celebrate a day to honor Fathers, they have their celebrations on different dates. For instance, in Spain and Portugal fathers are honored on St. Joseph’s Day, March 19. In Australia, it is the first Sunday in September.

Let’s take a Sentimental Journey to explain how we came to honor Fathers across the USA with our special Father’s Day!  The first Father’s Day celebration was organized by Mrs. Grace Golden Clayton in order to celebrate the lives of 250 fathers who had lost their lives in the Monongah Mining disaster a few months earlier on December 6, 1907 in Monongah, West Virginia. This disaster left about 1,000 children without fathers.  The holiday was not registered by the state of West Virginia and was not celebrated again.

The credit for the first Father’s Day goes to Sonora Dodd from Spokane, Washington. Dodd held the first significant Father’s Day celebration in 1910 at the Spokane YMCA center.  Her father’s actual birthday was on June 5, which is why she chose June for the celebration of Father’s Day.  Dodd’s own father fought in the Civil War and then raised six children on his own in Spokane. His wife had died in childbirth delivering her sixth child. When Dodd listened to a Mother’s Day service in her church, she decided fathers deserved a special day of honor, also.  She was inspired by her father’s dedication in raising his six children single-handedly. What a Man!

Several more celebrations were held in Spokane, but the tradition stopped when Sonora Dodd left for school in Chicago. When she returned, she decided to promote Father’s day as holiday and took her efforts to the national level. Her strategy included working with business groups that would profit from such a holiday in sales of gifts for fathers. Given her efforts, Sonora Dodd is known today as “The mother of Father’s Day”.

President Woodrow Wilson wished to make the holiday official, speaking at the 1916 celebration in Spokane. However, its commercial nature caused congress not to pass the bill. President Coolidge also made and attempt. It gained support in 1957 when Margaret Chase Smith, a senator from Main, stated that it was not fair to honor mothers and not fathers. President Johnson finally issued a proclamation in 1966 and President Nixon made the holiday to be celebrated on the third Sunday in June official in 1972.

A Few Facts and Trivia about Father’s Day

  • Mother’s Day was made official 58 years before Father’s Day.
  • The rose is the flower that was that was selected to be worn in early Father’s Day celebrations. A red rose was worn if your father was living and a white rose for those whose fathers had passed away.
  • It’s estimated that there are more than 70 million fathers in the United States.
  • 154,000 men in the United States are staying home to care for children under the age of 15 while their wives work outside of the home.
  • More than 73 percent of Americans celebrate or acknowledge Father’s Day.
  • According to Hallmark Father’s Day is the fifth largest card selling occasion.
  • Over 102 million Father’s day cards are expected to be given this year.
  • Neckties, tools, and sporting goods equipment are some of the top gifts given to Dad on Father’s Day.


 Now you know some history of our Father’s Day in the United States. Happy Father’s Day, and may you be fortunate enough to be able to celebrate it with your father, grandfather, or caregiver special to supporting and guiding you through life! NOTE: The Silver Coast Winery is giving a Free Wine tasting in the month of June for all fathers in celebration of Father’s Day. Folks at Brunswick Plantation and Golf Resort would love to hear about a special meal you are preparing for Dad Or Time you are planning to spend with him on this Father’s day! How about a little golf…daughter or son and Father? Remember…Time is the greatest gift of all! Memories are made of this!

(Credits to www.chiff.com/fathers-day-trivia.htm wilstar.com/holidays/fathers.htm and voices.yahoo.com/fathers-day-facts-trivia-8661815.ht) for info for this article.

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