Labor Day was created by the labor movement and is dedicated to the social and economic achievements of American workers. This guide provides access to materials related to “Labor Day” in the Chronicling America digital collection of historic newspapers.
Chronicling America is a searchable digital collection of historic newspaper pages from 1789-1963 sponsored jointly by the National Endowment for the Humanities and the Library of Congress.
Included in the website is the Directory of US Newspapers in American Libraries, a searchable index to newspapers published in the United States since 1690, which helps researchers identify what titles exist for a specific place and time, and how to access them.
"Labor's Monster Parade! The First Workingmen's Holiday to be Fitly Observed!" In 1894, following several years of individual city parades and celebrations, Congress declared the first Monday of September to be Labor Day, an unprecedented holiday dedicated to the working man. Read more about it!
The information in this guide focuses on primary source materials found in the digitized historic newspapers from the digital collection Chronicling America.
The timeline below highlights important dates related to this topic and a section of this guide provides some suggested search strategies for further research in the collection.
September 5, 1882
The first Labor Day holiday, planned by of the Central Labor Union, is celebrated on a Tuesday in New York City.
June 28, 1894
Congress enacts a law to make Labor Day a national holiday, to be observed the first Monday in September.