The Origin of Mothers Day
Interested in the origin of Mothers Day?
Mothers Day Facts
Mother's Day is a holiday that originated in the United States, although today it is celebrated in many countries across the planet. It is generally celebrated on the second Sunday in May, and is most commonly marked with carnations and dining out.
History of Mothers Day
If you're interested in the history of mothers day, you may find the following mothers day facts useful:
The modern celebration of Mother's Day is modeled after the concept of Anna Jarvis, a spinster who spent a large portion of her adult life caring for her own mother, Ann Marie Reeves Jarvis, a post-Civil War Era homemaker who sought to teach her fellow mothers about the importance of home sanitation through her Mothers Friendships Clubs. The elder Jarvis' work inspired activist Julia Howe (who, incidentally, wrote the Battle Hymn of the Republic lyrics). Howe attempted to expand Ann Jarvis's work lauding mothers by attempting to designate an annual Mother's Day for Peace. Despite decades of attempts, Howe's work failed to make a permanent mark in the American culture.
The origin of mothers day holds it that Anna Jarvis is credited with turning the concept of celebrating mothers into an institution. After graduating from college Anna returned to the family home to care for her then ailing mother, Ann. After several years the mother died, leaving Anna in a deep state of grief. Anna determined that too many people grieved the death of their mothers without really celebrating them during life. Anna decided that a national celebratory day, Mother's Day, should be designated in order to highlight the importance of mothers. It was her hope that family bonds would be strengthened through the celebration of the family mothers.
In 1908, two years after her mother's death, Anna saw the first official Mother's day established. It was celebrated in the church her own mother had attended for the 20 years prior to her death. Anna's movement gradually took hold on a larger scale. In 1910 West Virginia declared the first Mother's Day proclamation, and by 1912 the Mother's Day International Association came into being. By this time every state was officially celebrating the holiday.
In 1914 President Woodrow Wilson proclaimed Mother's Day a national holiday to honor those mothers who lost sons to war. The day soon spread to officially celebrate all mothers, present and past. Wilson determined that on the designated day flags would fly at half mast.
For her part, Anna Jarvis was initially thrilled to see her grassroots campaign to honor mothers become firmly rooted. Mother's Day soon became very commercialized and expanded past the original concept. Within nine years of the first official Mother's Day, Anna Jarvis opposed the celebration of the holiday. Jarvis' concept was one of a religious observance, which was why she initially celebrated it in her mother's church. The secular nature of the cards, dinner out and flowers were offensive to her. (The traditional gift of carnations was established because Ann Jarvis' favorite flower was said to be this flower.)
Regardless of the evolution of the holiday from modest church service to multi-billion dollar industry and the origin of mothers day aside, at its core, Mother's Day is still about honoring the most important person in anyone's life, Mom.
So.... happy Mothers Day!
If you found this post on the origin of mothers love an interesting read, feel free to browse the following mother's day articles too:
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