Mother’s Day

13151752_268558400152916_7532379225096516754_nToday is Mother’s Day for our American readers, and we would like to wish everyone a happy one.  The roots of the American holiday go back to the early 20th century and the efforts of Anna Jarvis.

Anna Jarvis was born in 1864 in Grafton, West Virginia.  With the help of her mother, she was able to obtain an education and set out to be a school teacher.  Tragedy struck, when her father died in 1902 forcing her and her mother to move to Philadelphia to live with relatives.  On May 9, 1905, Anna Jarvis’ mother died and Anna was devastated.

In trying to cope with her grief and guilt over her mother’s death, Anna began developing the idea of a national holiday for mothers.  On the second Sunday in May, the anniversary of her mother’s death, Anna met with friends and proposed the idea.  It was met with resounding approval.  The next year on May 10, 1908, the first mother’s day was celebrated in Grafton, West Virginia.  At the Methodist Church where her mother taught Sunday School, Anna passed out carnations, her mother’s favorite flower.

Few holidays gained so much public support, and a resolution to make it a public holiday passed the House of Representatives quickly.  However, it stalled in the Senate.  Therefore Anna began the letter writing campaign to end all letter writing campaigns.  She single handedly wrote to governors, mayors, Senators, newspapers and ministers.  Basically anyone she thought would listen.  Her persistence paid off and Mother’s Day was made a national holiday on May 14, 1914.

So thank you to all the mothers out there for all you do!

ER

Sources available on request