Presidents’ Day Honors the Work of George Washington and Abraham Lincoln

Presidents%27+Day+Honors+the+Work+of+George+Washington+and+Abraham+Lincoln

Nick Huffman

Presidents’ Day, also known as George Washington’s Birthday, is celebrated on the third Monday of February. It is popularly recognized as honoring the lives of George Washington and Abraham Lincoln, as their birthdays fall around this time of year. The day is understood as a celebration of the birthdays and the lives of all US presidents. 

How Presidents’ Day Came to Be

Presidents’ Day came to be in the 1880s, when the birthday of George Washington (the first president and commander of the Continental Army during the American Revolution) was celebrated as a federal holiday. In 1968, Congress passed the Uniform Monday Holiday Bill, which moved some of the federal holidays to Mondays. This change was made to schedule certain holidays so that workers had a couple long weekends throughout the year. During the debate on the bill, it was proposed that Washington’s birthday be renamed Presidents’ Day to honor the birthdays of both Washington and Lincoln; although that Lincoln’s birthday was celebrated in many states, it was never an official holiday. 

Presidents’ Day, George Washington, and Abraham Lincoln Fun Facts

According to the federal government, the holiday’s official name is still “Washington’s Birthday”. George Washington was the first president in the United States and served from April 30, 1789 to March 4, 1797. He is also the only president in the nation’s history to have been unanimously elected by the Electoral College. George Washington also established the two-term precedent for presidents after rejecting to serve a third term and retiring to his home in Virginia called Mount Vernon. Washington also began school at age six, but left at age fifteen to become a surveyor. This was because his mother couldn’t afford to send him to college. 

Although he never had children of his own, Washington married Martha Dandridge Curtis, who already had two children. To this day, on February 22nd of each year, Washington’s farewell address is still read in the United States Senate. 

Abraham Lincoln was the 16th president of the United States. He served from March 4, 1861 until his death on April 15, 1865. He was the President that led the country through the American Civil War. Lincoln was also largely self-educated and even taught himself the law. He also delivered the Gettysburg Address on November 19, 1863. Even though it lasted for less than two minutes, it is one of the most famous speeches in American history and had a lasting impact on the country.

 

Presidents’ Day is arguably one of the most important holidays for the United States that is celebrated on the third Monday of February. This day honors the work of George Washington and Abraham Lincoln.