The creation of a national day for Dads began back in the 1900s when a grateful daughter wanted to express her deep appreciation for her own father. William Smart was a civil war veteran. He was widowed when his wife died in childbirth. Mr. Smart raised his six children on a rural farm in eastern Washington State. When Sonora Louise Smart Dodd, one of Mr. Smart’s children, was grown she wanted to show her appreciation for her father. He had shown her a great love and strength in raising her and her siblings as a single parent. So, in 1909, she proposed a day to honor her father in June (the month of her father’s birth).
The very first Fathers’ Day followed on June 19, 1910 in Spokane, Washington. In 1924, President Calvin Coolidge showed support of this becoming a national holiday. However, it wasn’t until 1966 when President Lyndon Johnson officially proclaimed Fathers’ Day a national holiday to be celebrated on the 3rd Sunday in June.
Harry C. Meek, president of the Lions Club in Chicago, was also a component in establishing Fathers’ Day. He gave several speeches around the United States expressing the need for a day to honor our fathers. In 1920, the Lions Clubs of America presented him with a gold watch with the inscription “Originator of Fathers’ Day”.
- If your father is living, wear a red rose.
- If your father has passed away, wear a white rose.
- The very creative tie as a gift.
- A cookout, usually prepared by Dad himself.
- Tell your Dad how much you love him and why.
- Give him a great big hug.
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photo courtesy of Seepsteen.
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