Celebrate Labor Day with Fun Facts and Stats

celebrate labor day facts and statistics

Since this coming Monday is Labor Day, I thought it would be fun to share some interesting origins, facts, and statistics about labor day. (By the way, I am taking off Monday for labor day– so no new post until Wednesday.) Without further ado, enjoy these facts I have gathered and be glad that we no longer work like it’s the 19th century.

Labor Day History

Labor Day parade
First Labor Day Parade

It’s easy to forget how much better the workplace is now than it was a century ago. Back in the 1800’s a 12 or even 16 hour work day was normal, and you would work usually 7 days a week.  Even children as young as 5 were working in factories all day. There was no such thing as OSHA, so work conditions tended to be much more hazardous. Wages were extremely low for the average worker and you didn’t get those cushy benefits either. Working in a factory posed horrendous and dangerous conditions until labor unions came along. Labor Day was established as a way to appease the rioting working class and celebrate their hard work.

September 5, 1882 (Tuesday)- first Labor Day celebration was held in New York City with a parade/demonstration

10,000- number of workers who marched in the first Labor Day parade

Founder- There is a dispute whether Peter McGuire (cofounder of the American Federation of Labor) or Matthew Maguire (factory machinist) came up with the idea for a Labor Day celebration.

Oregon- first state to declare Labor Day an official holiday (in 1887)

1894- President Grover Cleveland made Labor Day a national holiday for the first Monday in September even though he openly opposed organized labor groups.

18% of American workers in 1900 were children under 16 and, despite laws being passed, this number didn’t change much until the Great Depression.

{sources: USA.gov/Labor Day and History.com}

Labor Day Facts and Stats

153.2 Million- number of Americans (over 16 years) in the labor force as of July 2011, that number is down 1.2 million from Labor Day 2010.

12% of American workers belonged to a labor union in 2009.

84.7% of full time workers have health insurance.

2.2 Million more females than males are in management positions as of 2009.

Registered Nurse- occupation expected to add the most positions in the next 10 years.

25 minutes- average time for the commute to work.

5.9 Million people worked from home in 2009.

White after Labor Day
1900's White Summer Dress


Why not wear white after Labor Day? According to historians, it may be symbolic for those wealthy enough to leave the city for a summer vacation in which the “uniform” of choice was breezy and white- no white after Labor Day because they have to go back to their drab work/city clothes.



May 1st- when most countries celebrate Labor Day, also called May Day or International Workers’ Day. Demonstrations, speeches, and protests are more common for this Labor Day celebration which commemorates the 1886 Haymarket Massacre in Chicago.

The Longest Labor Strike- In 1991 workers at the Stockton Diamond Walnut Plant in California went on a strike that lasted until 2005- that is 14 years!

{source: U.S. Census Bureau}

Celebrate Labor Day

…And you men and women of Labor celebrating today the rights given you by the Constitution; rights for which you have fought down through the years; rights which have made Labor today a strong and respected force in our national life… –San Francisco Mayor Angelo J. Rossi (Labor Day 1939)

Football Labor Day marks the beginning of football season, so get pumped up for your favorite team!

3 Most Famous Labor Day Celebrations in America- West-Indian American Day Parade and Carnival, Chicago Jazz Festival, and Los Angeles County Fair.
labor day cartoon

How do you plan on spending Labor Day?

D – Fun Birthday Facts and Stats

birthday fun facts statsAs my baby’s first birthday nears I have been doing a little research online to prepare and found some interesting statistics on birthdays. So I decided to look up more facts and statistics on birthdays and turn it into a fun post since tomorrow is my baby’s first birthday. Happy first birthday sweet baby Anneliese!

Birthday History and Symbols

Historical Birthday Superstition: It is believed by many scholars that birthdays began in the pagan culture of Europe because of the fear that evil spirits are more attracted to a person on their birthday. Friends and family would visit with well-wishes to ward off the evil spirits.

Birthdays were usually only celebrated by nobility (which may be why we like to put a Birthday Crown on the birthday person) until the Germans began the practice of celebrating children’s birthdays called “kinderfeste” and bake a special sweet cake.

Birthday Cake– Another theory about the origin of birthday cake is that it came from the ancient Greeks. They would bake a round cake lit with candles to offer to Artemis, the Moon Goddess.


birthday facts and statistics 

The candles helped to send prayers up to the gods, thus came about the custom of making a wish before blowing out your birthday candles. In Germany the candle on a birthday cake was symbolic for the light of life.

Happy Birthday Song– It began as the “Good Morning to You” song with the now familiar “Happy Birthday to You” tune, and was written by Mildred Hill and Dr. Patty Hill as a kindergarten school song. Patty Hill is credited with changing the lyrics to “Happy Birthday” after the song gained popularity (and yes, it is still copyrighted).

Fun Birthday Facts and Stats

August– most common birth month, over 21 million Americans have birthdays in August (and the least common is February).

October 5th– most common birth date ( 9 months after New Year’s Eve).

May 22nd is the least common birth date besides February 29th.

$27.2 Million– Most money spent on a birthday party. This extravagant party was for the Sultan of Brunei’s 50th Birthday in 1996.

2 Billion birthday cards are given each year in the U.S.- that is 58% of all cards given annually.

Golden Birthday– When your age and date of birth are the same. Example: My golden birthday was my 20th because I was born on June 20th.

Jesus Christ has the most popular, well-known birthday in history- Christmas Day!

Birthday Paradox– the probability that, in a group of 23 people, there is a 50/50 chance that two of them will have the same birthday. That probability goes up to 99%^ for a group of 57 people. (source: Wikipedia “Birthday Problem”)

15 Million– average number of people celebrating a birthday today (and every day) around the world.

128,238 lb. 8 oz.– weight of the world’s largest birthday cake. Made in Fort Payne, Alabama (not far from where I live) in 1989 to celebrate the city’s centennial birthday.

Birthday Jokes and Quotes

Q: What did one birthday candle say to another?

A: “Don’t birthdays burn you up?”

When I turned two I was really anxious, because I’d doubled my age in a year.
I thought, if this keeps up, by the time I’m six I’ll be ninety.
-Steven Wright

“I remember when the candle shop burned down. Everyone stood around singing ‘Happy Birthday’.”

Birthdays are good for you. Statistics show that the people who have the most live the longest.
-Reverend Larry Lorenzoni

P.S. If you want to read about birthday celebrations in other countries, KidsParties.com has a great list of information.

{Sources: Wikipedia and Tokenz}

July 4th- Independence Day Facts and Stats

Independence Day

In my previous post I mentioned some cheap, budget-friendly ways to celebrate the 4th of July, our nation’s birth. Now I have some great facts and a little bit of history about our Independence Day. I hope you enjoy and feel free to comment with your own.

History of Independence Day

July 4th declaration of independenceWhy is July 4th Independence Day? Well, here is the short version of events that lead to America celebrating our independence on the fourth of July. Amidst growing hostility towards British oppression our Continental Congress met on June 7, 1776 and formed a committee to draw up the document that we now know as the Declaration of Independence. Then on July 2 it was complete and Continental Congress voted unanimously in favor of it. So technically July 2 is our nation’s birth, but the Declaration of Independence wasn’t officially adopted until July 4th- and that is why we now celebrate the FOURTH of JULY!

John Adams refused to acknowledge July 4 as the nation’s Independence Day, firmly believing that July 2 was the birth of our nation, and rejected all invitations to celebrate the 4th of July.

Since the nation was still fighting in the Revolutionary War for the first two Independence Days, George Washington gave all of his soldiers double rations of rum to celebrate the 4th of July.

Massachusetts– First state to make the 4th of July an officially holiday.

1870– Congress made July 4th an officially federal holiday.

source: History Channel www.history.com

Independence Day Fun Facts

Did you know that our second, third, and fourth Presidents all died on July 4th? Thomas Jefferson and John Adams died on the same day- July 4, 1826, and James Monroe died on July 4, 1831.

2.5 Million– number of people living in America on July 4, 1776.

311.7 Million– number of people living in America this year- July 4, 2011.

China– largest importer of U.S. Flags and fireworks in 2010.

Mexico– lead customer of American Flags exported from the U.S. in 2010.

11– number of places in the U.S. with “Independence” in their names.

5– number of places in the U.S. with “America” in their names.

fourth of july uncle samOrigin of Uncle Sam– Samuel Wilson was a meat packer who provided food for U.S. soldiers in the early 1800’s. He stamped the initials U.S. on his packaged products and some soldiers began to joke that it stood for Uncle Sam, giving way to the symbolic Uncle Sam of the United States government.

July 8, 1776 was the first public reading of the Declaration of Independence and the Liberty Bell rang to draw all of the citizens together to hear it.

John Hancock– only person to actually sign the Declaration of Independence on the 4th of July.

Bristol Fourth of July Parade– oldest continuing Independence Day celebration in the U.S. has been held every year since 1785.

500,000– number of people who attend the Washington D.C. Fourth of July celebration each year.

150 Million hotdogs will be eaten this Fourth of July (approximately) and that will be from the 74 Million Americans who will be barbecuing on July 4th.

26% of Americans don’t know what country we won our independence from- it’s Great Britain people!

22 Tons– amount of fireworks on display in New York City for the Fourth of July celebration.

$600 Million were spent on fireworks in one year in the U.S.

Deadliest holiday- on the 4th of July there are more alcohol related fatalities than New Year’s Day- the Fourth of July is the Number 1 Beer drinking holiday.

I hope you have a safe and fun Independence Day!

4th of july America

P.S. I will not be posting anything on the 4th of July because I will be too busy spending time with my family and enjoying this great nation that I am so proud to be a part of.


sources: Wikipedia.org and U.S. Census Bureau