Father's Day From the Beginning

rose father's dayFather's Day is 100 years old today. It all began because of a smart man and his loving daughter.

In 1909, Sonora Smart Dodd was listening to a church sermon on Mother's Day and thought there should be a special day for dads too. Her father, William Jackson Smart, a Civil War veteran, had raised Dodd and her five younger brothers on his own since her mother died in childbirth in 1898.

With some help from her pastor and the YMCA, June 19, 1910, was designated as the first Father's Day in Spokane, Washington. Throughout the day, Sunday sermons were themed around the importance of fatherhood. 

Dodd chose June because her father was born that month.


Father's Day began being celebrated on a more national level in 1924, when President Calvin Coolidge supported the idea and said he wanted more states to get involved.

In 1966, President Lyndon Johnson signed an order proclaiming the third Sunday in June as Father's Day. He requested that flags on all government buildings be flown that day.

In 1972, President Richard Nixon signed a proclamation permanently observing Father's Day on the third Sunday in June.

Today, Father's Day is celebrated in over 50 countries around the world on various days throughout the year.

Roses are the official flowers of Father's Day: Red should be worn if your father is living; white if your father has died.

How will you be celebrating Father's Day today?


Image via Tobyotter/Flickr

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