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Labor Day Parade in Buffalo, New York, 1900
A Labor Day Parade in Buffalo, New York in 1900

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The Very First Labor Day
September 5, 1882

If you could create a holiday, what would it be called? What date would you choose for your holiday? Peter J. McGuire, a carpenter and labor union leader, was the person who came up with the idea for Labor Day. He thought American workers should be honored with their own day. He proposed his idea to New York's Central Labor Union early in 1882, and they thought the holiday was a good idea, too. With four long months between Independence Day and Thanksgiving, Peter suggested a month halfway in between. But what date should they choose?
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