Tuesday, May 8, 2012


In the United States, '''Mother's Day''' is an annual [[holiday]] celebrated on the second Sunday in May. Mother's Day recognizes [[mother]]s, motherhood and [[maternal bond]]s in general, as well the positive contributions that they make to society. 

Although many [[Mother's Day|Mother's Day celebrations world-wide]] have quite different origins and traditions, most have now been influenced by the American traditions, 

The first attempts to establish a "Mother's Day" in the U.S. were mostly marked by women's peace groups.The History of Mother's Day] from The Legacy Project, a Legacy Center (Canada)  A common early activity was the meeting of groups of mothers whose sons had fought or died on opposite sides of the [[American Civil War]]. There were several limited observances in the 1870s and the 1880s but none achieved resonance beyond the local level.

In 1868 [[Ann Jarvis]] created a committee to establish a "Mother's Friendship Day" whose purpose was "to reunite families that had been divided during the Civil War", and she wanted to expand it into an annual memorial for mothers, but she died in 1905 before the celebration became popular.Larossa, 1997,  Her daughter Anna Jarvis would continue her mother's efforts.

In New York City, [[Julia Ward Howe]] led a "Mother's Day" anti-war observance on June 2, 1872,''The First Anniversary of 'Mother's Day'", ''The New York Times,'' June 3, 1874,  "'Mother's Day,' which was inaugurated in this city on the 2nd of June, 1872, by Mrs. Julia Ward Howards[sic], was celebrated last night at Plimpton Hall by a mother's peace meeting... which was accompanied by a [[Mother's Day Proclamation]].  The observance continued in Boston for about 10 years under Howe's personal sponsorship, then died out. Julia Ward Howe's Mother's Day for Peace],

Several years later a Mother's Day observance on May 13, 1877 was held in [[Albion, Michigan]] over a dispute related to the [[temperance movement]] from "Albion's Historical Markers", maintained by an Albion, Michigan business</ref> According to local legend, Albion pioneer Juliet Calhoun Blakeley stepped up to complete the sermon of the Rev. Myron Daughterty who was distraught because an anti-temperance group had forced his son and two other [[temperance movement|temperance]] advocates to spend the night in a saloon and become publicly drunk. From the pulpit Blakeley called on other mothers to join her. Blakeley's two sons, both traveling salesmen, were so moved that they vowed to return each year to pay tribute to her and embarked on a campaign to urge their business contacts to do likewise. At their urging, in the early 1880s, the [[Methodist Episcopal Church]] in Albion set aside the second Sunday in May to recognize the special contributions of mothers.

[[Frank E. Hering]], President of the [[Fraternal Order of Eagles]], made the first known public plea for "a national day to honor our mothers" in 1904.

===Holiday establishment===
[[File:Northern Pacific Railway Mother's Day card 1915.JPG|thumb|Mother's Day postcard from [[Northern Pacific Railway]]  in 1915]]

In its present form, Mother's Day was established by [[Anna Jarvis|Anna Marie Jarvis]], with the help of Philadelphia merchant [[John Wanamaker]] following the death of her mother Ann Jarvis on May 9, 1905. A small service was held on May 12, 1907 in the Andrew's Methodist Episcopal Church in [[Grafton, West Virginia]] where Anna's mother had been teaching [[Sunday school]]. But the first "official" service was on May 10, 1908 in the same church, accompanied by a larger ceremony in the Wanamaker Auditorium in the [[Wanamaker's]] store on Philadelphia. The next year the day was reported to be widely celebrated in New York. ''"They organize no crusade in the interests of so-called 'women's rights'..."'']

Jarvis then campaigned to establish Mother's Day first as a U.S. national holiday and then later as an international holiday. ''"The promoters of White Carnation Day have expressed their intention to make the observance international in character..."''], Poverty Bay Herald, 1 June 1909 The holiday was declared officially by the state of West Virginia in 1910, and the rest of states followed quickly.Joseph M. Hawes, Elizabeth F. Shores On May 8, 1914, the U.S. Congress passed a law designating the second Sunday in May as Mother's Day and requesting a proclamation. On May 9, 1914 President [[Woodrow Wilson]] issued a proclamation declaring the first national Mother's Day as a day for American citizens to show the flag in honor of those mothers whose sons had died in war.Mother's day: its history, origin, celebration, spirit, and significance as related in prose and Rice, Susan Tracey and [[Robert Haven Schauffler]in 1914 Congress passed a law, which Wilson signed on May 8, 1914, 'designating the second Sunday in May as Mother's Day', and authorizing and requesting that Wilson issue a proclamation 'calling upon the government officials to display the United States flag on all buildings, and the people of the United States to display the flag at their homes or other suitable places on the second Sunday in May as a public expression of our love and reverence for the mothers of our country.'}}

In 1934, U.S. President [[Franklin D. Roosevelt]] approved a stamp commemorating the holiday.

In May 2008 the [[U.S. House of Representatives]] voted twice on a resolution commemorating Mother's Day, H. Res. 1113: Celebrating the role of mothers in the United States and supporting the goals and ideals of Mother's Day (Vote On Passage) Table Motion to Reconsider: H RES 1113 Celebrating the role of mothers in the United States and supporting the goals and ideals of Mother’s Day the first one being unanimous (with 21 members not voting).
The Grafton's church, where the first celebration was held, is now the [[International Mother's Day Shrine]] and is a [[National Historic Landmark]].

[[Dianthus caryophyllus|Carnation]]s have come to represent Mother's Day, since Anna Jarvis delivered 500 of them at its first celebration in 1908. Andrews Methodist Episcopal Church = National Historic Landmarks program, Many religious services held later adopted the custom of giving away carnations. This also started the custom of wearing a carnation on Mother's Day. The founder, Anna Jarvis, chose the carnation because it was the favorite flower of her mother.Leigh, 1997,  In part due to the shortage of white carnations, and in part due to the efforts to expand the sales of more types of flowers in Mother's Day, the florists promoted wearing a red carnation if your mother was living, or a white one if she was dead; this was tirelessly promoted until it made its way into the popular observations at churches.
In the United States "Mother's Day Work Clubs" were organized by Anna Jarvis's mother, [[Ann Jarvis|Ann Maria Reeves Jarvis]] (1832–1905), to improve sanitation and health in the area. These clubs also assisted both Union and Confederate encampments controlling a typhoid outbreak. They further conducted a "Mothers' Friendship Day" to reconcile families divided by the Civil War.

Commercialization of the U.S. holiday began very early, and only nine years after the first official Mother's Day had became so rampant that Mother's Day founder Anna Jarvis herself became a major opponent of what the holiday had become, Mother's Day creator likely 'spinning in her grave'  Louisa Taylor, Canwest News Service  date Mother's Day reaches 100th anniversary, The woman who lobbied for this day would berate you for buying a card spending all her inheritance and the rest of her life fighting what she saw as an abuse of the celebration.She decried the practice of purchasing greeting cards, which she saw as a sign of being too lazy to write a personal letter. She was arrested in 1948 for disturbing the peace while protesting against the commercialization of Mother's Day, and she finally said that she "...wished she would have never started the day because it became so out of control ... She died later that year.

However, Mother's Day is now one of the most commercially successful U.S. occasions, having become the most popular day of the year to dine out at a restaurant in the United States.

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