4 fast facts about Presidents Day
With smoke and gun powder hanging in the air, our founding fathers designed an avant-garde, three-branch government system to be lead by an elected citizen in the wake of the Revolutionary War. The president of the United States of America would lead the nation’s armed forces, uphold the constitution and serve as the head of state and government. This tradition has continued for more than 220 years.
On Monday, Feb. 20, we celebrate Presidents Day. But what is it all about? Brush up on your history trivia with 4 fast facts about this U.S. federal holiday.
Did you know … ?
1. First celebrated on Feb. 22, 1885, the holiday was originally observed to honor the nation’s first president, George Washington, on his birthday.
2. George Washington created the Purple Heart to honor soldiers wounded or killed in action while serving in the U.S. armed forces. In 1932, the military decoration was reinstated on Presidents Day.
3. In 1971, the date was moved to the third Monday of February each year in response to the Uniform Monday Holiday Act, which was implemented to gift more three-day weekends to the national workforce.
4. February boasts a handful of presidential birthdays in addition to George Washington’s, including Abraham Lincoln’s, William Henry Harrison’s and Ronald Reagan’s.
Now, the third Monday of every February is day of patriotic celebration and remembrance marked by festivals and classic battle re-enactments at historical sites across the nation. Although many federal workers have the day off, businesses often remain open, and public transportation systems run on regular schedules.