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Happy Presidents’ Day!

by Sara Vogt - February 21, 2022

Here at The Home Page Network, we desired to acknowledge Presidents’ Day, so we looked at some of the histories in this article to understand them more fully.

President’s Day had its roots in celebrating the first president, George Washinton’s Birthday. On February 22, 1732, George Washington was born at his family’s plantation on Pope’s Creek in Westmoreland County, in the British colony of Virginia, to Augustine Washington (1694-1743) and his second wife, Mary Ball Washington (1708-89).

Washington left one of the most enduring legacies of any American in history. Known as the “Father of His Country,” his face appears on the U.S. dollar bill and quarter, and dozens of U.S. schools, towns, and counties, as well as the state of Washington and the nation’s capital city, are named for him.

Following the death of George Washington in 1799, his February 22 birthday became a perennial day of remembrance.

At the time, Washington was revered as the most crucial figure in American history. As a country, we celebrated his contributions nationally by observing the centennial of his birth in 1832 and the start of the construction of the Washington Monument in 1848.

Washington’s Birthday did not become a legal holiday until January 31, 1879, when Congress added February 22 to the list of holidays to be observed by federal employees in the District of Columbia. The holiday initially only applied to the District of Columbia, but in 1885 it was expanded to the whole country.

In the beginning, Washington’s Birthday joined four other nationally recognized federal bank holidays of Christmas Day, New Year’s Day, the Fourth of July, and Thanksgiving. His birthday was the first to celebrate the life of an individual American, and Martin Luther King Junior Day signed into law in 1983, was the second.

The holiday is also a tribute to the general who created the first military badge of merit for the common soldier. Revived on Washington’s 200th Birthday in 1932, the Purple Heart medal (which bears Washington’s image) is awarded to soldiers injured in battle.

Nearly a century later, in 1971, the Uniform Monday Holiday Law changed the date to the third Monday in February. The position of the holiday between the birthdays of Washington and Abraham Lincoln gave rise to the popular name of Presidents Day.

While several states still have individual holidays honoring the birthdays of Washington, Abraham Lincoln, and other figures, Presidents’ Day is now popularly viewed as a day to celebrate all U.S. presidents, past and present.

We also hope we will join together to pray for President Joe Biden as he will be making many decisions that will determine our country’s future.

For more information about George Washington, please visit the link below:
https://www.history.com/topics/us-presidents/george-washington

Credits:

Videography: Andrew Moore
Video Editing: Andrew Moore
Writing: Sara Vogt
Anchor: Sara Vogt

Produced by Vogt Media
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