The creation of Mother’s Day was the goal of a woman who wanted to honor her mother’s legacy, but she was eventually unhappy with the commercialization of the holiday.
We really should be honoring our mothers every day of the year, but Mother’s Day is almost here and everyone will make their best effort to show mom how much they care. Reservations for brunch have been made, flowers have been ordered, and greeting cards have been purchased. While everyone knows to be on their best behavior on Mother’s Day and not to forget to make that phone call, do you know how this important holiday came to be?
The first modern American Mother’s Day was celebrated in 1908. It was the creation of Anna Jarvis who began campaigning to create the holiday in 1905. At that first celebration Anna held a memorial for her mother Ann. Anna’s mission was to honor her mother by continuing the work that Ann had started prior to her death to create a recognized holiday to celebrate mothers. Anna’s home state of West Virginia was the first to officially recognize the holiday in 1910. In 1914 President Woodrow Wilson signed a proclamation that established the second Sunday in May as Mother’s Day.
By the early 1920’s Hallmark and other companies began to sell cards for Mother’s Day and Anna became angry that the holiday was commercialized for the profit of these businesses. She believed her sentimental goal to honor her mother was being exploited and she even tried to rescind the holiday with protests, boycotts and threats of lawsuits. She even crashed a candymakers convention in 1923 and was arrested for disturbing the peace in 1925 when she protested a carnation sale by the American War Mothers.
Anna’s attempt to undo her work obviously did not stick and today Mother’s Day is both a big industry and an important sentimental holiday that brings families together all over the world. However you choose to celebrate, perhaps with breakfast in Colorado Springs or Denver, enjoy the special day with your mom.