The History of Mother's Day: Celebrating Mothers Throughout The Ages
Every second Sunday in May, we celebrate Mother's Day, a special day dedicated to recognizing and appreciating the countless contributions of mothers. The day is marked with breakfasts in bed, hand-drawn cards, bouquets of flowers, and heartfelt messages. But have you ever wondered about the origins of this tradition? Join us at Moms Justice as we take a look back at the history of Mother's Day and its significance today.
The Origins of Mother's Day
Mother's Day has roots in ancient times. The Greeks and Romans held festivals honoring mother goddesses, and early Christians celebrated "Mothering Sunday," a day when people returned to their "mother church."
However, the modern version of Mother's Day began in the United States in the 19th century. Two women, Ann Reeves Jarvis and Julia Ward Howe, played significant roles in creating a day dedicated to mothers.
Ann Reeves Jarvis started "Mothers' Day Work Clubs" in West Virginia in the 1850s. These clubs taught local women how to properly care for their children. Jarvis also organized "Mothers' Friendship Day" after the Civil War to promote reconciliation between Union and Confederate families.
Meanwhile, Julia Ward Howe, an abolitionist and suffragette, wrote the "Mother's Day Proclamation" in 1870, calling for peace and disarmament.
The Official Recognition of Mother's Day
The official Mother's Day holiday arose due to the efforts of Ann Reeves Jarvis's daughter, Anna Jarvis. After her mother's death in 1905, Anna conceived of Mother's Day as a way of honoring the sacrifices mothers made for their children.
With financial backing from a Philadelphia department store owner named John Wanamaker, Anna organized the first official Mother's Day celebration in May 1908. The event was held at a Methodist church in Grafton, West Virginia, and various Philadelphia locations.
Following the success of this first Mother's Day, Anna resolved to see the holiday added to the national calendar. She embarked on a massive campaign, writing letters to newspapers and prominent politicians urging the adoption of a special day to honor mothers.
Finally, in 1914, President Woodrow Wilson signed a measure officially establishing the second Sunday in May as Mother's Day.
Today, Mother's Day is celebrated in various ways around the globe. It remains a special day to express our gratitude to the mothers in our lives, whether through cards, gifts, or acts of kindness.
At Moms Justice, we see Mother's Day as more than a celebration. It's a time to recognize and honor the strength, dedication, and influence of mothers in our society. It's also a day to remember that mothers, like all people, deserve respect, fairness, and justice - whether at home, in the workplace, or in the courtroom.
The history of Mother's Day reminds us of the powerful impact of mothers and their essential role in society. It's a story of dedication, love, and relentless advocacy - qualities that embody the spirit of motherhood. This Mother's Day, let's remember and honor the incredible mothers in our lives, and let's stand up for justice, equality, and respect for all moms, everywhere.