When I was in elementary school, there was no President’s Day. There was Lincoln’s Birthday and Washington’s Birthday. As is the case with most holidays, these days served one basic purpose for me as a child: no school. Somewhere along the way, these two days morphed into one federal (not national holiday) called President’s Day. Apparently, this is a phenomenon observed only by some area’s of the country. I’ll let Valerie Strauss of The Washington Post explain:
In the early 1950s, there was a movement led by a coalition of travel organizations to create three-day weekends by moving the celebration of some holidays to Mondays. One of the suggestions was to create a Presidents’ Day between Washington’s birthday and Lincoln’s birthday, which was a holiday in some states. A few states tried the new arrangement, but it was not universally adopted across the country.
The National Holiday Act of 1971 passed by Congress created three-day weekends for federal employees by moving the celebration of some holidays to Mondays, although states did not have to honor them.
So, today, though the federal holiday is marked on the third Monday in February, there is no agreed-upon name, no universal agreement on who is being celebrated, and the use of the apostrophe in the name is varied: Sometimes it isn’t used at all (as in Presidents Day), sometimes it is placed between the last two letters (President’s Day) and sometimes it is after the last letter (Presidents’ Day).
So, what we’re talking about his a bogus holiday that was brought on by the tourism industry. Great. Continue reading Meatless Monday: Goat Cheese and Swiss Chard Casserole