Labor Day Began with 1882 Parade in New York

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio – Who founded Labor Day?

Turns out that historians credit two men with similar last names – McGuire and Maguire. They are Peter J. McGuire, general secretary of the Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners and a co-founder of the American Federation of Labor, and Matthew Maguire, secretary of the Central Labor Union in New York.

Historians aren’t sure if McGuire or Maguire deserve all the credit. But they are sure that first Labor Day parade took place Sept. 5, 1882 in New York City, “in accordance with the plans of the Central Labor Union, states a post on the U.S. Department of Labor website.

By 1894, 23 more states had adopted the holiday, and on June 28, 1894, President Grover Cleveland signed a law making the first Monday in September of each year a national holiday.

Pictured at top: First Labor Day parade in New York City. Image: U.S. Department of Labor.

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